Support us on
(now with Euros € and £ Pounds)
Odds and Ends
May I offer you some Jesus?
24 6, 8:28pm
Just want to point out that the "collapse of the roman empire" is a very complicated process. It is more a decline than a collapse and lasted for more than a century. Some people even say this decline started with the civil wars of the roman republic.
What is complicated you ask ? Well first, the empire didn't collapse completely, the eastern roman empire survived as the Byzantine empire and is the roman empire as much as its western counterpart (at some point it even took back italy part of spain and west of north africa). Second, as i said it's more of a decline than a collapse and was more due to internal conflicts than external invasion.
Last but not least : the barbarian invaders weren't really barbarians nor invaders. The romans had started to accept several germanic tribes as "foedus" that held a border of the empire in the name of the emperor since as early as 350 AC. Some of their "kings" were roman citizen and generals. So really some "invasions" were more internal struggle for power than anything. The date of 476 for example, is not a really clear cut, Romulus Augustulus was considered an usurper by its eastern counterpart and Odoacer deposed him in accordance to the wishes of the eastern roman emperor. Odoacer himself was a patrician and a client of the eastern roman emperor. I'm not saying the guy had not a power equivalent to a king, but he still acted (in name at least) as a subject of the roman empire. Augustulus's father in turn had served Attila and the hunnic court. Who's the barbarian and who's the roman ? They are probably both a little bit of both...
So basically the dislocation of the western roman empire was more of a progressive loss of control from the central authority over local lords that happened over a very long period of time rather than military losses and external invasions that ended it abruptly.