Jump to content
UNRV Ancient Roman Empire Forums

Tobias

Equites
  • Content Count

    633
  • Joined

  • Last visited

Everything posted by Tobias

  1. Tobias

    Dark Ages

    For so long, Europe had been organised, governed and defended by Rome. No matter what the situation, Rome was virtually always there for the furthest extents of Europe. The beginning of the continuing invasions of barbarians shook the world, but so many continued to believe in Rome. Eventually, when Rome's soldiers coming to the rescue began to become more and more uncommon, the populace turned in on themselves. Barbarians were destroying infrastructure, coinage occassionally had little or no value and the system that the people had come to see as being inevitable, perpetual and indestructible was dismantled violently. These times, the invasions of the Huns, the goths and the reign of Romulus Augustus, were the true beginnings of the Dark Ages. What so many generations of people had believed in was now gone, or rather was run by barbarians, which amounted to the same thing. With the loss of law, infrastructure, direction and protection, the peoples of Europe had only one order of the day; survival. The people had to return to the basics; rudimentary trade of goods having more value then coinage, frugal living and lack of technology etc etc. They had to defend themselves and make enough food and income of some kind to keep themselves alive. This effectively froze Europe. Virtually no central authority could assert the sort of control that Rome had had in it's heyday, because of small dominions, and various conflicting confederations all working to protect their own interests. Of course, the church contributed it's bit. With life being so very tough, the main consolation for the general populace and indeed the upper echelons of society was that if you followed the instructions of the church to the letter, you would go the everlasting Paradise; Heaven. The church generally opposed anything outside of the bible, and the majority of the writings of ancient Rome were lost through destruction, censorship or negligence, and a life dictated by something other then the church was inconceivable. It came to be that most could not conceive of a life that was not dominated and ruled by the church, and ancient Rome (a life and time far better than what they were experiencing) may have been considered to be a legend. That was what kept the church's grip so strong throughout this time. Of course, the church generally opposed change and advancement, which assisted in holding Europe back. The fact that the dark ages lasted so long shows exactly the influence Rome had on Europe, and how terrible the effects of the barbarian invasions must have been.
  2. Tobias

    The Imperial Beards

    Perhaps a small element of it may relate to the ancient Roman days, when in times of war, a Roman Emperor might retain his beard; as the Byzantine Empire was mostly always under threat from some direction, the beard may have had an element of representing a new warlike element of Roman Emperors; of course, many Byzantine Emperors weren't all that warlike, or competent, but it might have just added to the standards of the advancing dark and mediaeval ages.
  3. My focus of interest is the Byzantine Era; The longevity of this empire, and it's ability to spring back from disaster, to me embodies the great ideal of Rome. Granted, for every great Emperor, there were a whole spiel of nonentities, but that is the same for all nations.
  4. Tobias

    Heir To The Byzantine Throne: 2006

    LOL, doesn't he just have that air of Imperial Majesty about him?
  5. Tobias

    British Actors and other abstract thought

    I would also mention Ioan Gruffudd, but it depends on whether you define a Welshman as "British" . Having seen him in various movies and series (Titanic, Hornblower, King Arthur etc.), he's one of my favourite actors.
  6. Tobias

    Saying Of The Day

    Not all the best sayings are necessarily ancient, old fellow
  7. Tobias

    Heir To The Byzantine Throne: 2006

    That family in South America is quite interesting. I honestly can't see them gaining very much in the way of a new Byzantine state, however. It was Basil II who was named "Bulgaroktonos", meaning "The Bulgar Slayer". He did marry his sister to the Ruler of Kiev, who was named Vladimir. As a consequence of his marriage, he was baptised as a christian, and went on to convert most of his people, the Rus, to christianity. He was not the Vlad the Impaler we have all come to know and love, however; Vladimir of Kiev was a fair while before that unpleasant fellow...
  8. Come now sir, let us not be pedantic; they still wrote great works, and they were working towards the enlightenment. Also, many of their works are very well known (Dante's Divine Comedy to name but one), and are generally looked upon as being part of the renaissance.
  9. Tobias

    British Actors and other abstract thought

    Heheh, when i think of British, i think of John Cleese
  10. Mine is most likely Dante Alighieri, the author of "la Divina Commedia", as another great, Giovanni Boccaccio, put it. The Divine Comedy is particularly interesting, although i have yet to read it in depth (to my shame). Dante tells of a journey in Holy Week, 1300, throughout the realms of the dead. He is guided through Hell (The first “cantiche” of the Divine Comedy, known as Inferno) and Purgatory (The second “cantiche”, Purgatorio) by the great poet, Virgil. He then embarks into Paradise (The third “cantiche”, Paradiso), guided by Dante's ideal of a perfect woman, named Beatrice, apparently a real woman he met in Florence. The entire journey is fraught with obstacles and amazing and terrible sights. The poem is truly epic, and even the merest flick-through of it is rather addictive.
  11. Tobias

    The Ignore Button

    I shall certainly do so; Perhaps not in the immediate future, because of an increasing load of schoolwork on my part, but eventually
  12. Tobias

    Saying Of The Day

    This is one of my favourite sayings, and is also my personal quote in my posts. it is perhaps rather appropriate; "He wrapped himself in quotations - as a beggar would enfold himself in the purple of emperors" - Rudyard Kipling I also like this one, written by Douglas Adams: "The answer to the great question of...life, the universe and everything: forty-two!" From "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy"
  13. Tobias

    What Ethnic Group Are You From?

    An Australian mixed-breed: My mother is Irish and German, and her family came to Australia in the late 1800's, and my father was a Scot on both his mother and father's sides, having migrated to Australia in the 1950's, and i'm apparently able to trace my ancestry back to William Wallace, although i didn't know he had any children. Perhaps i am merely of the same family as him, not a direct descendant
  14. Tobias

    Byzantine Spain

    It was part of Justinian's grand plan to reunite the east and the west; but this small portion of Spain was the most of the old Western Empire they could retrieve, as they lacked the resources to conquer the Franks and the whole of Spain, as was seen by the fact that even this strip of land in Southern Spain could not be held for long.
  15. Tobias

    The Ignore Button

    This is a rather interesting option; it certainly may make for some more quality conversation, and hopefully for some better topics as well. Of course, i can't talk, having not started a topic for an age, but i hope this shall encourage people to raise the quality of their posts and topics, whilst hopefully not alienating people. Besides, it gives me all the more motivation to work hard to become a patrician
  16. G'day all I apologise if this subject has been covered before in advance. I was curious about how many Roman soldiers could read. After reading a book concerning Gaius Marius, it said that Marius once commented that writing was "a lettered version of learning to swim; it saves lives". So; does anyone have any opinions on whether it was a useful for Roman soldiers to be able to read, and around how many could read at any time?
  17. Tobias

    Caesar+syphillus?

    My old history teacher encouraged all of us to correct him if he was wrong; he says that it is good for a student to do so, as both the student and the teacher learn from it. Of course, he said there was limits, but suitably applied...
  18. Tobias

    Caesar+syphillus?

    Hence my "interesting authority on history" description
  19. Tobias

    Digenis Acritas

    That'd make a good source for writing about the Muslims then. I've been meaning to find a translated version and read it, as i like adding such random bits of information to my knowledge
  20. Swimming eh? Now that is very interesting. I supposed that Roman marines and sailors would surely be able to swim, but i don't know too much about the land soldiers. That source from Vegetius was quite enlightening.
  21. Tobias

    Caesar+syphillus?

    Hmm, sounds like an interesting authority on history, that lecturer. Was she supposed to be a very respected personage? If not, perhaps you could tell her a thing or two about history, Lost Warrior
  22. Ha! My map arrived yesterday! I must say that i am seriously impressed with it; i could never have imagined how good it is on the spot even with pictures on this website. I would recommend anyone interested in Rome to buy this map.
  23. Tobias

    Digenis Acritas

    Ah, that'd fit in with the context of the notes. Thanks for that mate!
  24. Tobias

    Byzantine Spain

    The chap helped by Justinian was Athanagild. A Roman force protected by a naval contigent was sent from Gaul in 551 by Justinian. With this aid, Athanagild overcame his opponent, King Agila, near Seville in 554. Athanagild was then crowned King. Despite what he owed to them, Athanagild was reluctant to cede very much territory to the Romans. Eventually, he was forced to give up quite an amount of Hispania Baetica, apparently to an elderly Byzantine governor named Liberius, although this is debateable. Athanagild, apparently not learning his lesson, attempted to throw the Romans out of Iberia; however, he did not succeed, and soon invited the establishment of a Byzantine enclave in the south that would last for a further seventy years. It was apparent that the population of the area preferred the Byzantine Governor to the Visigothic King. Unfortunately, there is not in depth detail about this western outpost of Byzantine power. It's borders stretched to include the Straits of Gades and Nova Carthago, Corduba and Assionia, i believe.
  25. Tobias

    Happy Birthday Virgil61

    Happy Birthday old fellow! May no new thing arise... lol, I have yet to say Happy Birthday to someone on this site on the actual day of their Birthday, but it's the thought that counts
×