In ancient Rome the economy was largely based on agriculture and war exploits. Therefore income generating activities were the mainly farming and conquests from wars these activities generated finances and wealth sources. To produce outputs in agriculture the wealthy Romanians used slaves to cultivate their fields and perform other productive activities. Slaves in this era were either captured defeated from defeated enemies or escaped soldiers. Slaves could also be bought from pirates or traded by their masters or those individuals who were born by slave.
Slaves were largely viewed as properties and were treated as their masters saw fit. They were therefore seen as lesser human beings by their masters and the roman free society. Slaves did not have rights and their masters were in charge of their lives. They were harshly treated by their owners and their treatment depended on the cruelty or generosity of their owners. Due to their productivity at minimum costs they were also viewed as investments since they could be sold as well as work to produce tradable agricultural products. Much of the productive and wealth generating activities in ancient Rome therefore depended on the exploitation of slaves.
The economic system in ancient Rome was therefore heavily dependent on the existence of slaves and the ability of their masters to exploit them without them rebelling. In other words the economy largely depended in the exploitation of the slaves without their resistance. Their masters could therefore subject them to chaining or locking them up in order to ensure that they did not escape. They were therefore harshly treated and punishment ranged from brutal beatings to death being imposed on the slaves who tried to resist .Others slaves were turned into gladiators whereby they were forced to fight each other to death for the amusement of their masters and the roman society.
Spartacus was such a slave who was turned into a gladiator and was therefore expected to participate in the bloody duels to entertain the roman society. Slaves in ancient Rome were therefore subjected to hard labor. Cruel punishments such as whippings, branding and crucifixion were also inflicted. Other slaves were burnt alive or fed to wild beasts in circuses to amuse crowds or as punishments. They had no protection from the Roman Empire and treating slaves kindly was rare and often interpreted as a weakness by the free society. The roman society also regarded owning slaves as a sign of prestige.
According to Strauss, Spartacus was an intelligent, strong and a charismatic slave who was able to inspire the roman slaves to successfully rebel against the roman society and fight the Roman army. Strauss therefore credits Spartacus successful rebellion on his charisma and intelligence. He also speculated that Spartacus had military experience which made him familiar with the Roman’s army tactics and was therefore capable of formulating military strategies that enabled the runaway slaves successfully mount counter attacks and defeat the army. Strauss also noted that during the Spartacus’s rebellion the roman army was engaged in other two wars and therefore their majority of the Roman’s army personnel were fighting else where. Spartacus was also viewed by the runaway as a savior sent to save them and they runaway slaves therefore were inspired and motivated to fight under his command.
Strauss also credits Spartacus’s priestly wife as an additional inspiration to the runaway’s slaves since they viewed as responsible for greatly offering Spartacus spiritual guidance and therefore providing divine intervention in their exploits. The runaway slaves also had real weapons and in every successful fight they acquired additional weapons and supplies which Spartacus divided equally amongst his runaway slave’s army. Rome also had many slaves who were often badly mistreated by their masters and were therefore willing to join Spartacus rebellion their numbers therefore quickly swelled. The roman leaders also had initially underestimated the runaway slave’s army and they were therefore able to be joined by other slaves and have time to train and become more organized before being viewed as a threat.
In the initial stages of the Spartacus rebellion the roman army was engaged in two other wars. This lead to the initial successes of the runaway slaves’ army .The return of the Roman army from war therefore implied that the army had more additional war experiences soldiers to fight the rebellious slaves. Their initial successes also played a hand in their defeat, in that the roman leaders no longer under estimated them and therefore they sent a better prepared and equipped army to fight the runaway slaves. Spartacus runaway slave’s army also did not have experienced soldiers since slaves were not permitted or conscripted in the army they were therefore disadvantaged in fighting a war against better experienced , equipped, trained and a well funded force. The roman army was also able to buy information from the pirates since they were well funded and hence the pirates betrayed runaway slaves’ army. The Roman army was therefore armed with advance information on the runaway slaves’ army plans as well as greatly outnumbering them.
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In ancient Rome the slaves were mainly from. Slaves were seen as lesser human beings and therefore could not be recruited into the military .there was therefore many able bodied individuals who joined the run away slave army. Thracian tribe which Spartacus was from was viewed as superior and this enabled Spartacus to join the army and gain experience a factor that helped him in his conquests. Since slaves were regarded as lesser human beings they were often mistreated which lead to their revolt. It also lead to the roman empire to initially underestimate them and they were therefore able to inspire others to join them due to their initial successes .Women were regarded by the roman society as slaves’ .During the Spartacus's slave his wife served as a priest and a spiritual guide to Spartacus.
Scipio Africanus is regarded as one of the Roman Empire’s Craftiest General. He was regarded as a brilliant tactician and an inspiring brave leader. He was also largely admired by his troops and many were willing to go to battle under his command. Similarly Spartacus was a brilliant commander who was admired by his men .He inspired them and motivated them and they were therefore willing to fight under his command. Spartacus was also a very honorable, charismatic and brave leader. The two therefore had qualities that helped inspire their men and motivate them into being brave soldiers even when they were outnumbered by the opposing forces.
Gothic rebels fought the roman army in Adrianople the battle ended with a humiliating defeat for the roman army. The Goth threat response by the roman army is similar to the Spartacus response in that in both cases the roman army grossly underestimated its enemies. Spartacus' slave uprising still fascinates many individuals years after it happened because it largely seen as struggle of the weak versus the mighty. The uprising resulted from mistreatment of a segment of society by the other members of the society. Such unfair treatment among individuals in the society still exist today and therefore the public can still draw significant lessons to the wars that happened thousand years ago. This is because even though the society has changed and developed overtime similar inequalities still exist even today.