History and Political Science History and Political Science Answer 1 The Importance of Asia (Asia Minor) to the Romans was because it connected the Eastern and Western part of the empire via a land route…
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The Eastern region was infertile, unproductive and sparsely populated. Its significance lay in the fact that it was a natural buffer zone that secured the western, fertile region from invasions and raids. During this period, Asia was inhabited by many different communities who were quite progressive and developed. The dyes and woolen textiles made in this region were quite famous and in tremendous demand. The Romans saw this region as a rich place for collection of taxes so that they could live lavishly and in style. The area also was quite rich in natural resources. Spices were grown in Asia which seasoned the food of the Romans, and was a crop that had worldwide commercial value.1 The larger cities of Asia were important centers for education and culture. In fact, Asia had everything that the Romans desired and wanted. Riches from Asia allowed them to indulge in a luxuriant life style, build their cities and have the largest armies in the world. Their large armies helped them to control and manage the territories they conquered.2 During the Roman peace period, trade and other cultural activities flourished in Asia Minor. Roman emperors acknowledged the importance of this region and travelled to different cities in Asia to help and encourage in the development and progress of this province. The Romans were quite adept in constructing roads, and a vast network of roads was built here to connect this part of Asia to the rest of the Roman Empire. During this time many enormous temples and other public construction such as libraries, sewerage systems, fountains etc. were designed by Roman architects and built by the local populating. Answer 2 The Third Mithridatic war fought during 73-63BC was the longest of the three Mithridatic conflicts. It started because the ruler of Bithynia was a puppet of the Romans, and Mitrhridates tried to overthrow him. Consequently, the ruler of Bithynia declared war on Pontus because of encouragement and support provided to him by the Romans advisors. The two legions of Roman soldiers allied with the army of Nicomedes IV proceeded to invade Mitrhridates’ kingdom of Pontus in 89 BC. Nicomedes and his Roman allies were completed routed.3 Although Mitrhridates was welcomed in Anatolia, his hatred against the Romans persisted, and in 88 BC, he instigated a massacre campaign against the Romans and their Italian allies and eliminated them throughout the entire region. Tigranes the Great, who ruled neighboring Armenia became an ally of Mitrhridates and consolidated his alliance by marrying Mitrhridates’ daughter. Both kingdoms supported each other against Rome.4 The conflict in Asia Minor reflected Mithradte’s desire to defeat the Romans and include Asia in his rule. The second conflict was different because it reflected the ambitions of the Roman general Murena. Since both wars were inconclusive, it was apparent that there was going to be another war because Sulla who had discussed the terms and agreement of the first conflict had died. Sulla was a staunch proponent of peace. 5 Most of Sulla’s allies thought that the peace terms that he had negotiated were too soft, and when Sulla died the Roman Senate firmly refused to approve the agreement. In this war, the Romans defeated Mitrhridates VI of Pontus which ended the Pontic Kingdom and created the Kingdom of Armenia as an allied client of Rome. The importance of these wars was that the Romans gained power and influence in absolutely new territories. The precise dates of the
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