Before the time of Augustus (the first emperor) the Roman Empire had acquired a huge area of land. During the reign of Augustus he decided that the natural limits seemed to be the Atlantic Ocean (to west), the Euphrates river (to the east), the Rhine and Danube (to the north) and finally the deserts of Arabia and Africa (to the south). But Britain was really easy to take so that was taken as well. Later, Trajan attempted to venture more east but Hadrian pulled back out during his reign, maintaining Augustus’ borders. Marcus Aurelius (the second of the Antonines) later managed to capture Germany, north of the Danube. All in all, the Roman Empire encompassed about 160,000 square miles during the “age of the Antonines.”
February 26, 2006
I. The Extent and Military Force of the Empire in the Age of the Antonines
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