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Roman Innovations That Built An Empire And Changed The World

Many of the great places that still stand from the ancient Rome were only made possible by the impressive achievements and creativity of the Roman people. Their advancements in design and building materials allowed them to build a vast empire that stood for thousands of years. Two important innovations made this possible.

Concrete

One of the most important Roman inventions was concrete. It allowed the Romans to build new structures on a scale that was not thought possible before. Over 2000 years later, concrete is still an essential building material in many of our modern building projects.

Roman concrete was a mixture of lime mortar, volcanic ash, and aggregate. Combined, it was an incredibly durable building material that could even be set underwater.

 

It was used to build the Pantheon's dome, an impressive feature that remained the largest dome in the world for 1300 years. Today, it still remains the largest unreinforced concrete dome in the world. Now that's impressive!

Concrete allowed the Roman's to expand their empire farther than any civilization before. It was used in roads to make it easier and more efficient to transport goods and troops over land. Concrete helped the Roman's to construct ports and harbors allowing for trade.

Dome of the Pantheon

The dome of the Pantheon measures 142 feet in diameter and rises to a height of 71 feet. It is the largest unreinforced concrete dome in the world.

Arches

Another important Roman invention was the Roman arch. This design element became a foundational element for the construction of large, stable structures. If you look at just about any Roman structure that still stands today, most likely you'll find arches built into the design.

The Roman's took the stability of the arch and combined it with concrete to build some longest standing structures in the world today. Their network of aqueducts used arches to form long bridges that could transport water to distant cities and towns. Arches were used in to build the arenas and amphitheatres as well as the triumphal arches and bath houses that can be visited throughout Europe and the Middle East.

Arches in Roman Architecture

Arches can be seen in many of the popular Roman structures that are still standing today. They make up the exterior walls of the arenas and amphitheatres and were used in the long stretches of the ancient aqueducts used to expertly bring water over long distance to the cities and towns.

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Aqueduct of Segovia

This well preserved Roman aqueduct dates back to the 1st century AD.

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Colosseum

Explore the ancient amphitheater where gladiator battles entertained crowds of up to 80,000 people.

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Arena of Nîmes

Built for entertainment in AD 70, it held up to 24,000 spectators.

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Hadrian's Arch

A grand gateway between the old city of Athens and the new.

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Arles Amphitheatre

This large Roman amphitheatre from 90 AD is still in use today.

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Pont du Gard

View this ancient Roman aqueduct that transported water 50 km to the colony of Nemausus.

Roman Innovations That Live On Today

Julian Calendar

Introduced by Julius Caesar in 45 BCE, it reformed the Roman calendar by introducing the leap year. Some of the months were named after Roman gods, emperors, and their original Latin names.

Postal System

The Roman postal system, known as the "cursus publicus," was an efficient courier service during the Roman Empire. It played a crucial role in maintaining communication across the vast territories of the empire.

Roman Numerals

This new numeral system originated in ancient Rome. Although the exact origins are unknown, it is believed that the Roman's simplified an earlier numeral system used by the Etruscans.

Roman Law

Roman law is one of the most significant legal systems in history, influencing many modern legal systems around the world. The study of Roman law remains an essential part of understanding the foundations of modern legal traditions.

The Romans were renowned for their numerous innovations, which had a lasting impact on engineering, architecture, governance, and daily life. These innovations not only supported the growth and stability of the Roman Empire but also influenced future civilization all the way up to today.

If you have an interest in learning about the Roman Empire and visiting these amazing location, check out our app that will help you to locate them and learn more about these fantastic sites.

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