The Roman civilization came from a small agricultural community founded on the Italian Peninsula in the tenth century BC, which was located along the Mediterranean Sea and centered on the city of Rome, as the legendary version, the city was founded by Romulus and Remus in 753 BC.
The Roman civilization began as a monarchy from its foundation to the year 509 BC, when the last king of Rome Tarquinius the Superb was killed and started the Roman Republic. During this period, which according to Virgil (Aeneid) and Livy (History of Rome) there were seven kings which accumulated the executive, judicial and religious authorities and were assisted by the senate which held legislative and veto power, deciding to approve or disapprove the laws enacted by the king.
Already the Roman Republic is the term used by convention to define the Roman state and its provinces since the end of the Kingdom of Rome in 509 BC to the establishment of the Roman Empire in 27 BC. During the Republican period, Rome became the simple city - been a great empire.
During those nearly 400 years of the republic emerged as the first major works Circus Maximus, the first aqueduct that distributed water to the entire city, and the Appian Way, a major road that allowed the movement of troops by the Roman territories. It was also during this period that the Roman conquests began with the domination of the Greek cities of southern Italian peninsula. And then the greatest enemy of Rome, the city of Carthage in 149 BC, and later conquered Greece in 133 BC, taking full control of the Mediterranean Sea.
But the Roman Republic fell into crisis in the first century BC, when the Roman Senate now has its power challenged by the military power of some generals, place a series of events that culminated in the first triumvirate, a secret agreement between Julius Caesar, Pompey, two major generals of Rome, and Crassus, a wealthy merchant. The three came to head the government until the defeat and death of Crassus in battle and the beginning of a war between two generals resulting in the victory of Caesar declared himself dictator in 49 BC. After two years Caesar invaded Egypt and proclaimed as queen Cleopatra but was assassinated by a conspiracy of the Senate, led by his nephew and adopted son Gross in 44 BC.
By this time the republic had been decisively shattered and the second triumvirate between Octavian (Julius Caesar 's nephew), Mark Antony and Lepidus arises. The three conspirators hunt all the death of Caesar and the Roman territory divided into three parts, but the part corresponding to Lepidus was soon annexed by Octavian and soon he defeats Mark Antony also effectively becoming the first Roman emperor and given the title of Augusto - "consecrated" or "holy" - in 27 BC , the date used by historians as the beginning of the Roman Empire.
The first Roman Emperor was known as Octavian Augustus (27 BC - 14 AD), followed by Tiberius (14-37) , Caligula (37-41), Claudius (41-54) and Nero (54-68), which are known as the Julio-Claudian dynasty. It is during this period that Jesus Christ was born and died and there was the fire of Rome during the reign of Nero.
After the suicide of Nero, Flavian dynasty starts with Titus Flavius Sabinus Vespasian (69-79), followed by Titus Flavius Vespasian Augustus (79-81) and Titus Flavius Domitian (81-96). It was during this period that was built the Coliseum in Rome (70-90) and the emperor Titus destroyed Jerusalem starting the second Jewish Diaspora in 70 AD.
After the murder of Domitian, Rome is fairly skeptical about the validity of the model and the imperial dynastic succession evolved into the concept of the fittest. This change led to the period of the Five Good Emperors: Nerva (96-98), Trajan (98-117), Hadrian (117-138), Antoninus Pius (138-161) and Marcus Aurelius (161-180). During this period Rome enjoyed relative peace and political, military and economic prosperity, and then reached its peak. But this period was interrupted when Marcus Aurelius indicated that the most suitable to replace him in office after his death man but his son, Commodus (161-192) which was responsible for the beginning of the political instability that rocked the Roman Empire.
After the death of Commodus begins the crisis of the third century between (193-285), to which the empire had 28 emperors and only 2 died of natural causes, and this period also marked the beginning of the invasions of the barbarians who inhabited the borderlands empire. This crisis does not end with the arrival of Diocletian in 285 that finally brought order in the empire divided into two parts: eastern and western.
The time of prosperity and lasts just 410 Rome is sacked by the Visigoths, and in 452 the Huns, led by Attila, invade the Italian peninsula, but did not reach Rome. In 455 the Vandals plunder Rome and in 476 the Roman Empire in the West fell when Romulus Augustus is deposed from power by the Germanic barbarians. However the Eastern Roman Empire, with its capital at Constantinople, continued to exist for nearly a thousand years, until 1453. The fall of Rome in 476 is the landmark for the early Middle Ages.