The first thing the Romans are remembered for is war. The temple in the center of the Forum is to Mats, Mars is the god of war.
Mars. One of the most important gods to the Romans.
The Romans did achieve more than war.
The Romans are great road builders. The Republic and the Empire built roadies all across Europe, Britain, Anatolia, and North Africa.
These roads still exist across much of Europe.
Some ancient Roman Roads are even used as motorways today.
In times of the Roman Republic and the Imperial government, roads served an important purpose. Remember how the roads helped hold together the Latin Confederation?
The first and most important use of the roads was to move about the legions. Because of the roads, Roman legions could match from place to place very quickly.
The god Mercury-- courier of the gods.
The roads make possible a courier service. Messages can move from place to place within the Empire faster than ever before. The emperor and others can message each other using this new service.
Locals used the roads to move goods. But large amounts of goods -- grain, marble, olive oil, wine -- must travel on ships.
Rome developed on the banks of a river. -- the Tiber. It provides water for the first villages. It provides water for the fields and crops. It provides water for ships that travel to and from Rome. But a large city like Rome in the days of Augustus needs lots and lots of clean, fresh water.
That clean, fresh water has to be brought from the mountains to Rome. The way the Romans did that is by building aqueducts.
They used the arch. It allows them to build a water trough that is hundreds on miles long. And gravity moves the water
Yeah aqueducts are great engineering achievements. They can still be seen arching across the countryside of Italy, Spain,and France.
And when it comes to water, the Romans take it from high above ground to under ground. The Romans built a massive underground sewer system. In between are the public toilets.
Using arches, the Romans build miles of underground tunnels. They carry wast water to the Tiber. (Yes, not a good ideal to drink the water down stream).
The sewer system keeps Rome sanitary. It is another great Roman engineering feat.
The Romans give us the apartment block.
Insula is the Latin word for island. It is also the word the Romans use for their large apartment buildings.
Look closely at the design of these insula. The ground floor is shops. Above the shops, the first, second, third and fourth floors have the tiny one or two-room flats. Many of our newest appartment blocks also have shops on the ground floor. All the floors above the ground floor have the flats although they are somewhat larger than a poor man's Roman flat. Sometimes our apartment blocks have condos above the shops.