AP World History_Questions


1. What contributions did the Etruscans and the early Roman monarchy make to the Roman republic?

Etruscans and the early Roman monarchy made several contributions to the Roman republic. The establishment of Rome was through Romulus and Remus. Through legends, they were thought to be abandoned by their uncle, and raised up by a she wolf. In 753 B.C.E. the city of Rome was established and people like the Indo-Europeans soon migrated to Rome. There, the Indo-Europeans adopted agriculture began to blend in with the inhabitants, and establish tribal federations. In 1800 B.C.E., the appearance of bronze metallurgy was distributed, and iron in 900 B.C.E. The Roman republic benefited from the Etruscans because of their primary role in political and economic development between eight and fifth centuries. The Etruscans established cities and developed political and economic alliances throughout their settlements. The Roman republic was deeply influenced by the Etruscans; they inherited their government as a monarchy and several Roman kings were Etruscans.

Bombardments of Celtics and Greeks invaded the Etruscan society and eventually declined resulting in an opportunity for the Roman republic to overtake. The Etruscan rulers were overpowered and disposed of; the Romans soon established a central political center. Responsibilities were given to two ambassadors through the institution of republican constitutions initiated by the aristocrat king. In conclusion, the Roman Empire would not have survived without the help of the Etruscan society and culture.

2. How did the republican constitution set the stage for conflict between the patricians and the plebeians?

The patricians' and plebeians' conflict was set by the republican constitution because one was favored over the other. The republican constitution granted consuls responsibilities over military and civil powers. Consuls represented the patricians and were elected by the patricians; they were known as the wealthy class. The plebeians were known as the common class. The consuls and Senate strongly favored the patricians over the plebeians which resulted in an uprising tension between the two social classes. Eventually, the plebeians were so fed up with the state that they threatened to establish a rivalry state. As a result to preserve the plebeians within the empire, they granted the plebeians a form of representation in the government. These people were known as tribunes; initially, only two tribunes were elected by the plebeians, but eventually, the number rose to ten. Tribunes were given the right to veto anything they thought was unjust; they were also given the opportunity to intervene in any political matter. Although the establishment of tribunes was greatly beneficial to the plebeians, the patricians continued to dominate Rome. For as long as the republic survived, the plebeians remained in constant tension with the patricians. Granting an opportunity again, the government let the plebeians to become eligible in public affairs such as state offices and have one consul from their ranks. The government thereafter became efficient in all throughout their history for as long as the republican constitution survived.

3. What was the significance of the Punic Wars to the later development of Rome?

The Punic Wars were devastating battles between the Carthaginians and the Romans. It lasted through 264 B.C.E. to 146 B.C.E. and was initiated by the struggle for economic competition. Another battle was initiated by the effort to gain supremacy within the region. The result of the Punic wars was the end of Carthage as Roman forces overpowered and burned down Carthage. Through this domination, the Romans were able to acquire items in Africa such as grain, wine, oil, silver, and gold. These resources were later used in the future expansion of Rome. The war did not end with Carthaginians, it continued with the Antigonids and Seleucids ending with five devastating wars which primarily took place in Macedon and Anatolia. Instead of immediately taking the land for themselves, they let their allies take it. Wealth and authority was Rome's sole purpose by the second century B.C.E. and soon after the war, the classes of wealth and poverty were in constant tension due to the unfair distribution of wealth.

4. In general, how did the Romans deal with the people and lands that they conquered?

The way the Romans dealt with conquered societies were by enslaving them, or adding them to their society. An example of enslavement was during the Punic wars when Rome was at war with Carthage. They overtook at least fifty thousand survivors and put them into slavery. On the other hand, the people who were added into the society had an advantage because the Roman government protected them. An example of government protection was when Roman leaders dispatched armies to protect the Romans from threats by pirates and ambitious local lords. As a result of this, they became conflicted with the Seleucids and Antigonids. The conflict lasted for at least five wars. Meanwhile, the Romans usually attacked with aggressiveness and destroyed conquered cities.

5. What inherent weaknesses in the political and economic institutions of Rome did the Gracchi brothers' conflicts highlight?

The Gracchi brothers were Tiberius and Gaius, and their purpose was to regulate the amount an individual could hold. The reason behind regulating land limitations was because the rich and the poor were in constant tension and they tried to rule it out by limiting the land. Although his idea was helpful, they did not succeed with their plans. Their experiences proved to the government that the constitution of the Roman republic which was initially developed for a small city would not succeed in larger terms. The Roman government was only ruled by small families which made policies that only satisfied themselves. Following the deaths of Tiberius and Gaius, politicians and generals competed for power and position using violent methods. The Gracchi brothers showed that all the politicians wanted was power and self pleasure; instead, they should have ruled with an organized government rather than being selfish and having complete power. Their purpose was to establish the thought that there should be equality between the rich and poor and that a republic was not necessary.

6. Describe the transition from republic to empire in the 1st century B.C.E.

The transition from republic to empire was initiated by Julius Caesar. Rome was conquered by Julius Caesar in 46 B.C.E. initiating the development of republican government and claiming himself as the dictator. He then annexed the land from the wealthy and distributed it to his supporters. He established a firm foundation of military and political functions and after thirteen years of reign, Julius Caesar was assassinated by a group of Roman elites that he overpowered. Following Julius Caesar was Octavian who was later named Augustus. His sole enemy was Mark Antony which he overtook in 31 B.C.E. during a naval battle. Augustus reigned for at least forty-five years and established a firm foundation of what Rome's government would follow throughout the centuries, an imperial government. Instead of overpowering the preceding government, he still left them with power, but it was very little. All the while, he amplified his power through the reorganization of armies eliminating generals with personal armies. Throughout his reign, he only appointed leaders whom he trusted; he died in 14 C.E. and was able to stabilize the society which was in a constant war.

7. How did the Romans promote trade throughout the empire?

Throughout the empire, the Romans were able to promote trade through the long era of peace known as the Pax Romana. During the Pax Romana (1st-3rd century C.E.), trade was facilitated throughout regions strating from Mesopotamia to the Atlantic Ocean. Much alike previous societies including Persia, China, and India, the Romans developed their empire through the establishment of highways, roads, and postal systems. The engineers which constructed these roads had a very prominent reputation as road constructors. The engineers established a deep bed for their roads in preparation. They then edged them with curbs, and placed large paving stones on top. The dimensions of the road extended from six to eight meters wide on the main roads; meanwhile, mountain roads tended to be two to three meters wide. These roads networked the entire Roman empire; one of the more prominent highways was constructed parallel to the Danube and Rhine Rivers, and stretched over 2500 kilometers. The stage of vital trade was established by the establishment of specialized production of agriculture and manufactured goods. Through the use of these roads, postal services and trading became widely used; sea routes were also established. Sea routes were used to link ports throughout cities and marketplaces. The sea routes were protected by Roman military forces from pirates and enabled large cargoes to travel safely. Through the establishment of roads, trade routes, and with the addition of military naval forces, trade was promoted and widely known.

8. What was the status of women during the empire?

Throughout the empire the women's statuses were considered inferior compared to their husbands. The man in the family had complete rights to determine the mother's work or other duties which they were to perform. The men had rights to punish them for offenses, to sell them as slaves, or even execute them. Women throughout Roman times generally had a strong influence upon their families. Women were given the opportunity to select marriage partners for their offspring, and manage a portion of the family's fiscal affairs. Through the development of laws which placed limitations on women's ability to receive inheritances, several individuals found ways to take advantage of the law through its loopholes. Soon enough, women were able to completely supervise financial affairs of family business and estates.

9. How did Jesus' message threaten the Roman administration? How did they respond?

Jesus' message, “the kingdom of God is at hand,” presented a threat to the Roman administration in other words by stating that God's kingdom is coming. Unfortunately, the Romans felt threatened, but only because they misunderstood the meaning; they thought it was a threat to the Romans from Palestine. As a result, Jesus was executed on a cross around 30 C.E. Jesus taught to love neighbors and to religiously follow the omnipotent God which governed and created the world. This religion was called Christianity, but it did not stop at Jesus' death. Disciples of Jesus claimed that Jesus had risen from the dead, and wrote about their experiences through the New and Old Testaments of the Bible. After the death of Jesus, his disciples developed the emergence of the Christian religion. Again, the Romans sought to prevent this from spreading and ordered all Christian leaders to be persecuted. Nevertheless, Christianity emerged as a prominent religion and rapidly spread throughout the regions.

10. What was the appeal of the early Christian teachings? What sorts of people were most attracted to it?

Christianity taught love for neighbors and devotion to God. They also taught that instead of placing personal and family interests first, they should place religion first. Paul of Tarsus was one of Jesus' most prominent disciples and elucidated upon the thought that all things were created by God. Through this structure of religion, it gave the opportunity to understand the meaning of life and to seek salvation. It allowed the people to have a sense of spiritual freedom in their life and it was explained that spiritual freedom was more significant than wealth or power. Although Christianity faced a possibility of decline when the Romans sought to destroy the religion, it rapidly spread. The religion spread throughout crowds and tremendous amounts of people like urban populations, lower classes, and women were attracted to it. The reason behind the widespread popularity of Christianity was because it gave the people meaning in their life, it maintained a sense of purpose and future glorification for the individuals which remained faithful to Jesus.


1. Plebeians:

were a group of common people who lived throughout the fifth century B.C.E. were in constant tension with the wealthy classes. The reason behind this constant tension was because instead of equality, the aristocrats and consuls favored the Patricians instead of Plebeians. Eventually, the Plebeians were so distraught that they threatened to leave the Roman society and establish a rival community of their own. As a result, the Plebeians were granted to elect tribunes which were the Plebeians' voice in government.

2. Patricians:

were considered to be the hereditary aristocrats and wealthy classes of Rome. They lived throughout the fifth century B.C.E. They were in constant tenision between the Plebeians. The reason behind this constant tension was because instead of equality, the aristocrats favored the Patricians over the Plebeians. After the Plebeians' threat to separate and become a rivalry state, they were finally given permission to elect tribunes. Although they were given this opportunity, the Patricians remained dominant in Roman culture.

3. Pax Romana:

was a long era of peace initiated Augustus Caesar. It brought peace economically and politically throughout half of the third century B.C.E. Pax romana's name means “Roman peace” and lasted for at least two and a half centuries. Through Mesopotamia to the Atlantic Ocean, trade and communication were facilitated during this time

4. Consul:

government officials which filled the positions for handling civil and military powers. These powers were instituted in 509 B.C.E. and were elected by patricians. The consuls served one year terms.

5. Tribune:

were considered to be the voice of the plebeians in the government. The use of tribunes were initiated by the plebeians after threatening to depart and establish a rivalry state. They came into power through elections by plebeians; initially, only two tribunes were elected, but soon after it eventually rose to ten tribunes. Tribunes wielded the power to interfere with political affairs; they were also given the power to veto measures that were considered unfair.

6. Latifundia:

were enormous plantations which were conquered by wealthy elites. The organization of several latifundias were used for the laboring of slaves. Later on, they were mortgaged and had to be sold to wealthier neighbors because they wealthier operated at lower costs forcing the smaller owners to receive little to no profit.

7. Punic Wars:

was the wars between Carthage and Rome from 264 B.C.E. to 146 B.C.E. There were three wars which were devastating due to economic competitions, and supremacy over the groins. Alas, the wars ended with the cities of Carthage being burned, and the remaining fifty thousand residents were forced into slavery. After obtaining states of Carthage which included north Africa and Iberia, they used the resources found in those areas to continue with their imperial expansion.

8. Stoicism:

was considered to be the most well-known school of thought in Hellenistic Greece. Stoic values were adopted by Marcus Tullius Cero who lived from 106 B.C.E. to 43 B.C.E. Stoicism was strongly based on individuals who would try to obtain wealth through unjust, immoral, or illegal means. Cicero helped to develop Stoicism to become a very well known school of moral philosophy in Rome. Also, it stated that it was an individual's duty to live accordingly with nature and reason.

9. Judaism:

was a prominent religion of the Jewish people where it was a monotheistic religion. As a result, it established aggression throughout the Roman Empire. The jews viewed cult gatherings as an uprising conflict of the Romans and consequently, it led to the Tenth century B.C.E. Jewish wars.

10. Essenes:

formed cults which followed strict moral codes and established a ritualistically reinforced society. This cult was established during the Jewish wars from 66 B.C.E. to 70 B.C.E. The first community was established during the first century B.C.E. in Palestine.

11. Mithraism:

was a prominent religion which was dedicated to salvation which worshipped Mithras. Mithras considered to be the god of sun and light. Roman soldiers encountered this religion and closely affiliated it with strength courage and discipline rather than sun and light. As a result, the religion was prominent throughout the Roman military.

12. Christianity:

was a very prominent religion which grew tremendously and still is considered to be a main religion today. The belief surrounded their ideas around Jesus who was born around 4 B.C.E. and was considered to be their savior. Jesus was deemed as a person with miraculous powers and taught about love and devotion to fellow human beings, and the omnipotent God.

13. Etruscans:

were a dynamic group of people who aided in Italy's political and economic developments throughout the first millennium B.C.E. Scientists were able to identify where they migrated; they migrated from Italy to Anatolia. While in Anatolia, they established cities with alliances throughout their settlements in what is now known as Florence. Unfortunately, their reign ended when they were defeated at sea by Greek fleets, and Celtic people fought them from Gaul. Through these battles, the Etruscans faced decline, but ultimately aided in the development of Rome.

14. Carthaginians:

were the people which inhabited Carthage and engaged in devastating conflicts known as the Punic Wars. Their struggle for supremacy and economic competition against the Romans lasted throughout 264 B.C.E. to 146 B.C.E. Alas, the wars ended with the cities of Carthage being burned, and the remaining fifty thousand residents were forced into slavery. After obtaining states of Carthage which included north Africa and Iberia, the Romans used the resources found in those areas to continue with their imperial expansion.

15. Julius Caesar:

was General Marius's nephew who proved to be very prominent in politics throughout 60 B.C.E. and reigned over Rome in 46 B.C.E. Caesar brought a centralized form of government into Rome. He was assassinated by the Roman elite class which he alienated in 44 B.C.E.

16. Augustus Caesar:

was Julius Caesar's successor and was originally named Octavian. His ultimate rival, was Mark Antony which he defeated during a naval battle in 31 B.C.E. Throughout his forty five years of reign, he established an imperial government by centralizing political and military power. Through the centralization of political and military powers, it set a standard for Roman affairs for the following three centuries. He died in 14 C.E.

17. Marius:

was a general who sided with those advocated redistribution of land. He was the general of the Greek army and breached the Roman Empire in order to take down his political enemies. Marius passed away in 86 B.C.E.; his successor was Cornelius Sulla and his nephew was the prominent Julius Caesar.

18. Sulla:

Sulla's full name was Cornelius Sulla and he was Marius' successor who seized Rome in 83 B.C.E. Throughout Sulla's five years of reign, he slaughtered approximately ten thousand people; he died in 78 B.C.E. he proposed a conservative legislative program, but it did not later influence the society as much as it should have because it did not have a chance in the long term, and most of all, it did not benefit the social problems.

19. Tiberius Gracchus:

was Gaius's brother and was responsible for the Roman republic's social reform. The brothers worked to distribute land equally among the social classes limiting the amount of land an individual could own. Although they sought to bring equality among the people by preventing conflicts between the rich and the poor, the rich found ways to surpass this effort. His enemies assassinated him in 132 B.C.E.

20. Gaius Gracchus:

was Tiberius's brother and was responsible for the Roman republic's social reform. The brother's worked to distribute land equally among the social classes limiting the amount of land an individual could own. Although they sought to bring equality among the people by preventing conflicts between the rich and the poor, the rich found ways to surpass this effort. His enemies assassinated him in 121 B.C.E.

21. Jesus of Nazareth:

was recognized as the savior of Christianity. He was born in 4 B.C.E. and grew up during the wars between the Romans and the Jewish. Jesus was deemed as a person with miraculous powers and teach about love and devotion to fellow human beings, and the omnipotent God. He was the base of Christianity and established the religion with salvation. His miraculous powers enabled him to heal those who were ill. He was executed around 30 C.E. and was affixed to a cross when dying.

22. Paul of Tarsus:

was a Jew; also a prominent disciple of Jesus which played a great role in the expansion of Christianity (mostly around the eastern regions of the Roman empire). He encouraged to place an individual's face ahead of their own interests. Also, he explained the meanings of life, and stated that if one followed this religion faithfully , they would find a glorious future existence.

23. Tacitus:

His full name was Cornelius Tacitus and lived from 56 C.E. to 120 C.E. He was an aristocrat and considered to be perhaps the most important historian of the early Roman Empire. He wrote in his Annals that after the imperial regime was established, Roman leaders lost courage. His most important work which he wrote was Annals of Imperial Rome

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