Browse Items (6 total)

  • Collection: The Fall of the Roman Empire (1964)

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This clip shows Marcus Aurelius receiving dignitaries from all provinces of the Empire, and from various client states. He acknowledges each dignitary in a long procession of chariots. This scene was filmed with a huge cast of actors. The procession…

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This cameo relief of Commodus highlights his attempts to portray himself as a divine figure. The relief contains elements commonly associated with Jupiter, Helios, and Apollo. In the film The Fall of the Roman Empire, as well as in history, Commodus…

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This statue of Commodus demonstrates his obsession with portraying himself as Hercules. This particular manifestation of Commodus’ megalomania is emphasized at the end of the film The Fall of the Roman Empire, when he wears a lionskin styled after…

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The Column of Marcus Aurelius details his wars along the Danube River on the northern frontier of the Roman Empire. It demonstrates the military prowess of the Emperor Marcus Aurelius as well as the power of imperial propaganda. It contains reliefs…

Cassius Dio (155-235 AD) is probably the most important source on the reign of Commodus (r. 177-192 AD). Dio was himself an eyewitness to much of what he recorded, as he was a Senator during the time Commodus was Emperor. Several plot points from the…

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The film begins with a quotation from Edward Gibbon’s Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire. Gibbon’s idea of a long Roman decline brought on by many factors influenced the movie considerably, though the plot is only loosely based on the real…
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