Why was Rome so successful for so long?
The success of Rome as a city, being the centre of the Roman Empire until 285 CE, when the Empire was divided in two, is partly down to both military and administrative efficiency. The province of Rome that grew to dominate Italy and the mostly unplanned territorial expansion into Europe evolved into the largest empire of its time. Rome's long term success is mostly down to Augustus, the first Roman emperor, who strengthened the borders and improved the central management of Rome to the point where it had total control over the wider territories. Rome's influence declined in later years as the Empire grew too vast for one administration to control, leading to the Empire's division between east and west. After this, Rome continued to dominate the Western Empire and it wasn't until the city was conquered by the goth Alaric that it ceased to be a world power. Rome's military, economic and magisterial power was so long lived that historians have found no single cause for its decline, believing it to be a combination of economic disasters, political unrest and the increasing confidence of the barbarian armies.
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