Join NG Kids’ time-travelling mouse, Max, and get the low down on ancient Rome!
1 Rome was founded in 753BC by its first king, Romulus. It grew into a rich and powerful city during the next few hundred years.
2 By AD 117 the Roman Empire included the whole of Italy, all the lands around the Mediterranean and much of Europe, including England, Wales and parts of Scotland.
3 Roman legend says that Romulus had a twin brother called Remus. As babies they were abandoned in the area which laster became Rome. A she-wolf found and raised them, but when they grew up, Romulus fought and killed Remus and became the first ruler of Rome!
4 The Romans built such a huge empire and conquered new lands, thanks to their strong army. The Roman army could march up to 40km a day!
5 During battle, a Roman soldier or ‘legionary’ first hurled his spear at the enemy, then he fought them with his sword. To protect himself, he carried a wooden shield and wore a metal helmet and armour.
6 The Romans didn’t spend all their time fighting – they were amazing architects and engineers too! They built roads and walls – things we now take for granted.
7 To bring water to their cities, the clever Romans built aqueducts – a system of channels and bridges – to transport water for public baths and toilets!
8 The Romans liked to enjoy their food, often lying down on a couch while eating with their hands. They occasionally used a spoon, but they would never use a knife and fork. Roch Romans liked to eat exotic food, such as stork, roast parrot and even flamingo!
9 The Romans believed in gods and goddesses who ruled over different areas of life. For example, Neptune was the god of the ocean, and they prayed to him to protect them at sea. Temples were built to honour the gods, and people would visit them with offerings.
10 Tunics – two pieces of woollen fabric sewn together at the sides and shoulders, with openings for your arms and head – were the most common clothes in Rome. Some Romans also wore togas – a kind of woollen shawl – to show how wealthy they were.
Illustrations Gary Northfield garynorthfield.co.uk
Photos © Getty Images UK