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Marriage, Divorce and the Power of the Father
The Romans believed strongly in marriage and were always monogamous (they only had one
wife/husband at a time) and the goal of marriage was the production and education of children. In
upper class families the marriage was often arranged and dissolved…

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part of the household, as were the slaves. The Roman word for household was familia. The family
was the basis of Roman society. The father was the head of the family and firmly in control of his
household. In the Roman family everyone was taught to respect authority and discipline.…

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Women in Ancient Rome
Traditionally women were always in manu (under a man's control) first their father's and then their
husband's. Women in Rome were not allowed to play any role in public life. There were no women in
the senate, no women generals, no women lawyers or emperors. High…

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Children, education and upbringing
The Romans had a low birth rate, possibly because their water was carried in lead pipes and lead is
thought to cause infertility. There were few methods of birth control and many children died in the
first few years of life. For these reasons parents…

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Roman Social Structure

If both parents were freeborn Romans then their children could become Roman citizens. By the end
of the 1st century, children of slaves and even ex-slaves could also become citizens. Women could
have citizen status but they were never allowed to vote. This was because they were…

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The responsibilities of the patron and client were:
A Patron: A Client:
Explained laws to his clients Provided money to his patron for a
Defended his clients in court dowry
Gave his clients food or money Helped raise ransom money if his patron
Helped his clients if they were in…

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Slaves and Freedmen
Rome's wealth and success were partly based on slavery. People were bought and sold like any
other property, some people even sold themselves as slaves to pay off their debts. However most
slaves were prisoners of war and as Rome conquered more and more countries, more…

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If the master was killed at home and the murderer was not caught, all of the slaves who were at the
house at the time of the murder were killed, usually by crucifixion. The Romans were always afraid
that the slaves would revolt against them.

The Romans continued with slavery…

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Roman Religion
The early Romans were influenced by both the Etruscans (people who lived in Italy) and the Greeks in
their religion. The first Romans believed that there were spirits in the air, earth and water. They also
believed that these spirits had to be kept happy, so they made…

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Romans built huge temples to their gods and goddesses. Inside the temple was a statue of the deity
as well as any offerings that people made to gain the god or goddesses favour. The priests and
priestesses looked after the temples. Eventually, worship of these deities spread across the whole…


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