Timeline of Ancient Rome
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Roman Daily Life video

Ancient Rome played an essential part in the legacy of world history and the development of Western civilization.

Ancient Rome existed for more than 1,200 years and, at one point, controlled much of the known world, including Europe, North Africa, and Western Asia. Ancient Rome was founded in 753 B.C.E. by the sons of Mars, the god of war.

Here is a timeline of important events that occurred during Ancient Rome that ranges from 753 B.C.E. to its final days during the 15th century C.E.

753 B.C.E.-The God of War named Mars gave birth to twin sons named Romulus and Remus. Romulus named the city Rome after he killed his brother Remus and he became ruler until his death in 715 B.C.E. For the next 240 years, ancient Rome was ruled by kings.

715 B.C.E.-Numa Pompilius becomes the ruler. During his reign, there was the creation of the priestly offices and the Roman Senate.

673 B.C.E.-Tullus Hostilius is the king. He constructs the senate-house named Curia Hostilia.

617 thru 578 B.C.E.-During this period, ancient Rome was ruled by Lucius Tarquinius Priscus. He builds the Circus Maximus, installs the first sewers systems, and institutes the first census.

534 thru 509 B.C.E.-The last Roman king named Lucius Tarquinius Superbus during this period. He was instrumental in constructing the temple named Jupiter Optimus Maximus.

509 B.C.E.-The Roman Republic period begins after the king is overthrown. A new government system is installed that includes a constitution, a complex republican government, and elected officials called Senators who were elected by the people. One year later, the office of Pontifex Maximus or High Priest is created.

496 B.C.E.-ancient Rome is victorious against the Latin League after defeating the league at the Battle of Lake Regillus.

451 B.C.E.-The Twelve Tables of Roman Laws are published by Decemviri.

447 B.C.E.-The Assembly of the People is formed. Two quaestors are elected for the first time. Quaestors supervised the treasury, armies, financial affairs, and army officials.

445 B.C.E.-Marriage between plebeians and patricians is allowed.

396 B.C.E.-Ancient Rome defeats the Etruscans, and Roman soldiers receive their first paycheck.

390 B.C.E.-Ancient Rome is defeated by the Gauls at the Battle of Allia. The Gauls would go on to sack ancient Rome.

366 B.C.E.-Lucius Sextius Sextinus is elected as the first non-patrician consul.

283 B.C.E.-The ancient Romans defeated the Etruscans, and a Gallic Tribe named the Boii at the Battle of Lake Vadimo.

267 B.C.E.-The number of quaestors are raised from four to six.

264 B.C.E.-The First Punic War begins with Carthage. The war ended in 241 B.C.E. with the defeat of Carthage. Corsica, Sardinia, and Carthage become the first ancient Roman provinces.

224 B.C.E.-The ancient Roman army defeats Gallic at the Battle of Telamon, and one year later, they defeat the Gauls again.

218 B.C.E.-The Second Punic War begins against Carthage.

216 B.C.E.-Hannibal leads Carthage over the Alps and invades the city of Rome. The ancient Roman army is defeated at the Battle of Cannae.

202 B.C.E.-Scipip Africanus Major invades Africa and defeats Hannibal at the Battle of Zama, ending the Second Punic War.

149 B.C.E.-The Third Punic War starts against Carthage.

146 B.C.E.-The Third Punic War is ended when Scipio Aemilianus Africanus, also is known as Scipio Africanus the Younger destroys the cities of Carthage and Corinth. After the destruction of ancient Greece, the ancient Romans begin to adopt ancient Greek culture into their society.

133 B.C.E.-Tiberius Gracchus approves agrarian reform and is killed.

107 B.C.E.-Gaius Marius was elected consul. He institutes the Marian Reforms of the Military. These reforms established a standing army and drafting of non-property owners into the army.

73 B.C.E.-Spartacus, who was a gladiator, leads a rebellion of slaves. Spartacus would be killed in 71 B.C.E.

67 B.C.E.-Pompey eliminates pirates from the Mediterranean Sea. He was also the first ancient Roman general to reach the Euphrates River securing new colonies along the way that increased the annual income of the Roman Empire.

59 B.C.E.-The First Triumvirate is formed with the alliance of three generals named Julius Caesar, Crassus, and Pompey.

45 B.C.E.– Julius Caesar becomes the first dictator of ancient Rome after he defeats Pompey. This brings closure to the ancient Roman Republic.

44 B.C.E.-Julius Caesar is assassinated by Marcus Brutus during the Ides of March. Civil war begins in ancient Rome.

43 B.C.E.-Octavian, Antony, and Lepidus form the Second Triumvirate.

31 B.C.E.-Octavian defeats Antony and Cleopatra at the Battle of Actium. One year later, Antony and Cleopatra commit suicide, and Egypt becomes a Roman colony.

27 B.C.E.-The Roman Empire begins when Octavian changes his name to Caesar Augustus is named the first Roman Emperor.

37 C.E.-Caligula is named emperor, and in 41 C.E., Claudius becomes emperor and invades Britain in 43 C.E.

54 C.E.-Nero becomes emperor, and in 64 C.E., he allows the city of Rome to burn to the ground blaming the Christians.

80 C.E.-The Romans finish building the Colosseum, which seats 50,000 spectators.

117 C.E.-Hadrian becomes emperor. In 122, C.E. Hadrian’s Wall is constructed in Northern England to keep the Barbarians out of the Roman Empire.

161 C.E.-Marcus Aurelius is named emperor. He dies in 180 C.E. marking the end of the Five Good Emperors.

284 C.E.-Diocletian becomes emperor. In 293, C.E. Diocletian makes Constantius I the co-emperor of the Western Roman Empire.

306 C.E.-Constantine I is named emperor. He would convert to Christianity, and in 330 C.E., he made Constantinople the new capital of the Roman Empire.

380 C.E.-Emperor Theodosius I makes Christianity the single religion of the Roman Empire. In 395 C.E., he would officially split the Roman Empire into two halves.

410 C.E.-Rome is invaded and destroyed by Alaric I, and in 447 C.E. Attila, the Hun crushes the Eastern Roman Empire.

475 C.E.-Romulus Augustus is named emperor. One year later, the Western Roman Empire falls.

533 C.E.-Justinian I is named emperor and tries to restore the empire in the west.

568 C.E.-The Lombards invade Italy.

Facts about the ancient Roman timeline

  • For the first 200 years, the ancient Romans were ruled by a monarchy.
  • Romulus, the son of Mars, was the first king of Rome.
  • The last king of ancient Rome was Tarquin the Proud.
  • The Roman Republic lasted for almost 500 years.
  • Ancient Rome defeated the Carthaginians in the Three Punic Wars.
  • Tiberius Gracchus introduced land reforms and was killed.
  • The Roman Republic was governed by two consuls and the Senate.
  • Ancient Rome experienced several social and civil wars, including one led by a slave named Spartacus.

Questions and Answers

  1. In what year was ancient Rome founded?

753 B.C.E.

  1. Who founded ancient Rome?

Romulus

  1. What group of people did the ancient Romans defeat during the Punic Wars?

Carthaginians

  1. How many years did the Roman Republic survive?

Almost 500 years

  1. Who was killed in ancient Rome after he passed extensive land reforms?

Tiberius Gracchus