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The Fall of Rome Podcast

Patrick Wyman / Wondery

Society & Culture, History, Documentary, Education, Ancient History, Medieval History, Tides Of History, Patrick Wyman

4.8 • 2.2K Ratings

Overview

Barbarians, political breakdown, economic collapse, mass migration, pillaging and plunder. The fall of the Roman Empire has been studied for years, but genetics, climate science, forensic science, network models, and globalization studies have reshaped our understanding of one of the most important events in human history. PhD historian and specialist Patrick Wyman brings the cutting edge of history to listeners in plain, relatable English.

Binge all episodes of The Fall of Rome exclusively and ad-free by joining Wondery+ in Wondery App or on Apple Podcasts. Start your free trial by visiting wondery.com/links/the-fall-of-rome-podcast/ now.

34 Episodes

32: Patrick is Hosting a New Show! Check out the "Pursuit of Dadliness" Now!

Welcome to "The Pursuit of Dadliness." This is a podcast for folks who want to enjoy their passions and their hobbies, whatever those might be, and genuinely strive to get better at doing stuff and more knowledgeable about the world around them. That, to me, is the essence of Dadliness. If you like tall wooden ships, smoked meats, remembering mediocre athletes of yesteryear, home gyms, comfortable sneakers, and much more, then subscribe now to "The Pursuit of Dadliness" wherever you get your podcasts.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 5 September 2023

31: Interview: Historian Kyle Harper on Disease, Climate and the Fall of the Roman Empire

How did a changing climate and plague play into the fall of the Roman Empire? I'm joined by Kyle Harper, Professor of Classics at the University of Oklahoma, to discuss his important new book The Fate of Rome: Climate, Disease, and the End of an Empire.Subscribe to Tides of History today so you never miss an episode: https://smarturl.it/TOHWatch the trailer for Darkest Hour: http://bit.ly/2uH7nAtThank you to our sponsors:Hello Fresh - Take $30 off your first week of meals when you enter code TIDES30 at:www.hellofresh.comSquarespace - Get a free trial and save 10% when you launch your domain here:www.squarespace.com/tidesMVMT - Get 15% off your order when you visit them here:www.mvmt.com/tidesQuip - Get a free brush head refill when you purchase a toothbrush here:www.getquip.com/tidesSee Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 3 April 2018

30: Tides of History: Natural Disasters and the End of the Roman Empire

Justinian was the last great Roman emperor, but his reign was plagued by disasters beyond his control: volcanic eruptions, a changing climate, and a plague of epic proportions. Those disasters created a turning point that we can, with good reason, call the end of the Roman Empire.Subscribe to Tides of History today so you never miss an episode: https://smarturl.it/TOHThank you to our sponsors:Hello Fresh - Take $30 off your first week of meals when you enter code TIDES30 at:www.hellofresh.comSquarespace - Get a free trial and save 10% when you launch your domain here:www.squarespace.com/tidesMVMT - Get 15% off your order when you visit them here:www.mvmt.com/tidesQuip - Get a free brush head refill when you purchase a toothbrush here:www.getquip.com/tidesSee Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 20 March 2018

29: Tides of History: Justinian the Great and the Reconquest of the Western Empire

Justinian is one of the defining figures of the Roman Empire. In many ways, he marks the boundary between Antiquity and the Middle Ages. In this episode, we explore his ambitious reform program and his reconquest of the lost provinces of the West.Subscribe to Tides of History today so you never miss an episode: https://smarturl.it/TOHThank you to our sponsors:Hello Fresh - Take $30 off your first week of meals when you enter code TIDES30 at:www.hellofresh.comSquarespace - Get a free trial and save 10% when you launch your domain here:www.squarespace.com/tidesMVMT - Get 15% off your order when you visit them here:www.mvmt.com/tidesQuip - Get a free brush head refill when you purchase a toothbrush here:www.getquip.com/tidesSee Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 6 March 2018

28: Tides of History: How the Eastern Roman Empire Survived Attila the Hun and the Disastrous Fifth Century

While the western half of the Roman Empire was collapsing, the east managed to weather the storm of the disastrous fifth century. In this episode, we examine how and why it survived Attila the Hun and a host of other problems through the eyes of a family of soldiers and bureaucrats.Subscribe to Tides of History today so you never miss an episode: https://smarturl.it/TOHThank you to our sponsors:Texture - Get a 14-day free trial with access to thousands of online magazines here:www.texture.com/tidesSquarespace - Get a free trial and save 10% when you launch your domain here:www.squarespace.com/tidesThe Great Courses - Get a free trial with access to thousands of videos here:www.thegreatcoursesplus.com/tidesSee Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 20 February 2018

27: Tides of History: Why Didn't The Eastern Empire Fall?

When we talk about the fall of the Roman Empire, we're only talking about the western half - France, Spain, Italy, North Africa, and Britain. The eastern half of the Roman Empire survived the disastrous fifth century and would last in one form or another until 1453. What was so special about the eastern half of the Roman Empire, and how did it avoid the fate of its western cousin?Subscribe to Tides of History today so you never miss an episode: https://smarturl.it/TOHThank you to our sponsors:Texture - Get a 14-day free trial with access to thousands of online magazines here:www.texture.com/tidesSquarespace - Get a free trial and save 10% when you launch your domain here:www.squarespace.com/tidesThe Great Courses - Get a free trial with access to thousands of videos here:www.thegreatcoursesplus.com/tidesSee Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 6 February 2018

26: Tides of History: How Latin Became the Romance Languages

How did Latin splinter into the Romance languages? In this episode, we explore how Latin transformed from a single, widely dispersed language into a series - French, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, Romanian, and so on - of related but no longer mutually intelligible tongues.Thank you to our sponsors:Hello Fresh - Take $30 off your first week of meals when enter code TIDES30 at:www.hellofresh.comSquarespace - Get a free trial and save 10% when you launch your domain here:www.squarespace.com/tidesZip Recruiter - Learn how to hire smarter and get a free trial when you visit them here:www.ziprecruiter.com/tidesSee Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 14 December 2017

25: Tides of History: The Decline and Fall of the Roman City

Cities were what made the Roman world Roman, but as the Empire fell apart, so did its cities. They shrank drastically or disappeared entirely between 400 and 600. In today's episode, we'll find out how and why. Subscribe today so you never miss an episode: https://smarturl.it/TOHThank you to our sponsors:Audible - Try audible free and get a free audio book when you visit them here:www.audible.com/tidesSquarespace - Get a free trial and save 10% when you launch your domain here:www.squarespace.com/tidesZip Recruiter - Learn how to hire smarter and get a free trial when you visit them here:www.ziprecruiter.com/tidesThe Great Courses - Get a free trial with access to thousands of videos here:www.thegreatcoursesplus.com/tides See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 14 November 2017

24: Tides of History: The Roman City

Cities were what made the Roman world, well, Roman. They were centers of culture and political life, and they were the bedrock that tied together its economy. Today we'll explore how those cities came into being, what sustained them, and what made them so important to the Roman Empire.Subscribe to Tides of History today so you never miss an episode: https://smarturl.it/TOHSee Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 24 October 2017

Introducing Tides of History

History does not repeat itself, but it does rhyme, said Mark Twain. From the fall of the Roman Empire to the rise of the modern world: history ebbs and flows over the centuries, driven by great tides of economic, social, political, religious, and cultural change that shape the world and everyone who lives on it. In this new series from Wondery, PhD historian Patrick Wyman (Fall of Rome) brings the cutting edge of that history to listeners in plain, relatable English. Episodes 1 & 2 out now!Subscribe today so you never miss an episode: https://smarturl.it/TOHSee Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 20 July 2017

23: Could the Roman Empire Have Survived?

Could the Roman Empire have survived past the fifth century? To answer that question, we examine some other points when the Empire could have fallen apart but didn't, and what brought it back together after Caesar's assassination and the Crisis of the Third Century. Take the survey at wondery.com/survey. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 22 June 2017

22: The Brilliance of Saint Augustine. An Interview with Elizabeth Bruenig

Saint Augustine is one of the foundational figures of Christianity and one of the most influential thinkers of all time. He was also a complex and fascinating figure in his own right. Elizabeth Bruenig, an editor at the Washington Post and writer on politics and Christianity (@ebruenig on Twitter) joins me to discuss Augustine's life, thought, and greater meaning. Take the survey at Wondery.com/survey. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 15 June 2017

21: Rome's Legacy and the Barbarian Kingdoms

As central government disappeared from what had been the Western Roman Empire, the barbarian kingdoms stepped into the void, creating new forms of rulership and institutions that would lay the groundwork for the fragmented, fractured medieval world. Take the survey at Wondery.com/survey. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 8 June 2017

20: The Anglo-Saxon Migration, the North Sea World, and the Birth of England

Roman Britain fell fast, and it fell hard. Into the ruins of this world stepped a wave of migrants from the North Sea coast of the Continent whom we know as the Anglo-Saxons. This migration, a complex and dynamic movement of people over the course of 200 years, rewrote the political, demographic, linguistic, and cultural maps of eastern Britain, transforming it into England. Watch a preview of Genius, the new show on National Geographic about Albert Einstein, starring academy award winner Geoffrey Rush: NatGeoTV.com/Genius Take the survey at wondery.com/survey. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 25 May 2017

19: Why Didn't Rome Rise Again? An Interview with Professor Walter Scheidel

Why didn't Rome rise again? Everywhere else in the world, the appearance of one great empire was marked by their recurrent resurgence, but in Europe it happened only once. Professor Walter Scheidel of Stanford University - the author of numerous outstanding books on Rome and beyond, most recently "The Great Leveler", on the history of economic inequality - argues that this lack of recurring empires is what laid the groundwork for the eventual rise of Europe, the Great Divergence, that underpins the modern world of today. Watch a preview of Genius, the new show on National Geographic about Albert Einstein, starring academy award winner Geoffrey Rush: NatGeoTV.com/Genius Take the survey at wondery.com/survey. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 18 May 2017

18: The Warlords of Northern Gaul and the Rise of the Franks

As the Roman Empire disintegrated, northern Gaul turned first into a military province and then into a playground for warlords, some Roman and some barbarian. This episode is the story of how one warlord and one group navigated this environment to become the kingdom of the Franks. Watch a preview of Genius, the new show on National Geographic about Albert Einstein, starring academy award winner Geoffrey Rush: NatGeoTV.com/Genius Take the survey at wondery.com/survey. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 11 May 2017

17: Ostrogothic Kingdom or the Western Empire Reborn?

Under the leadership of their great king Theoderic, the Ostrogoths built a kingdom for themselves in Italy. But was this a kingdom, and Theoderic a king, or was he an emperor and his new realm the Western Empire reborn? Watch a preview of Genius, the new show on National Geographic about Albert Einstein, starring academy award winner Geoffrey Rush: NatGeoTV.com/Genius Take the survey at wondery.com/survey. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 27 April 2017

16: The Kingdom of the Visigoths

The ashes of the Roman Empire produced a host of new states built on the foundations it left behind. The first of these was the Visigothic Kingdom of Toulouse, which dominated southern Gaul and helped bring about the end of the Roman Empire. Watch a preview of Genius, the new show on National Geographic about Albert Einstein, starring academy award winner Geoffrey Rush: NatGeoTV.com/Genius Take the survey at wondery.com/survey. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 13 April 2017

15: The Death of the Roman Political System

Taxes, soldiers, and loyalty: these were the foundations, the structures, of the Roman political system. This episode explores how and why they fell apart over the course of the disastrous fifth century, which saw the provinces gradually slip away from the control of the imperial center. Watch a preview of Genius, the new show on National Geographic about Albert Einstein, starring academy award winner Geoffrey Rush: NatGeoTV.com/Genius Take the survey at wondery.com/survey. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 30 March 2017

14: The Calamitous Fifth Century - A Narrative History

It took just 80 years for the Roman Empire to fall apart completely, from a ponderous but functional state at the death of Theodosius the Great 395 to nonexistence by 476. How and why did that happen? In this narrative, we examine the major figures and events of the calamitous fifth century. Take the survey at wondery.com/survey. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 16 March 2017

13: The Unraveling of the Roman World

The Roman world was more than just an empire; it was a cultural, social, economic, and political space built on the easy movement of goods, people, beliefs, and practices from place to place. It was a broad unity, and when the Roman Empire fell, so too did that easy movement and the world it had created. Take the survey at wondery.com/survey. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 2 March 2017

12: The Fall of the Roman Economy

The Roman economy was a marvel, the powerhouse that produced surpluses big enough to support huge cities, maintain an enormous standing army, and construct monumental buildings that stand to this day. When the Roman state fell apart, so too did the economy it supported, but in different ways, in different places, at different times. If you have a spare moment, take the survey at wondery.com/survey. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 17 February 2017

11: The Roman Economy Before the Fall

The economy of the Roman Empire was surprisingly modern, featuring commercial markets, large-scale production, and agricultural sophistication that wouldn't be matched until the middle of the nineteenth century. In this episode, we explore how it was organized, how it functioned, and what it had come to look like just before it all went south. If you have a spare moment, please take the survey at Wondery.com/survey. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 3 February 2017

10: The Late Roman Army, Barbarians, and the Frontier

The Roman army was the central institution in the late Roman world. It had changed dramatically from the classic legions of Augustus and Marcus Aurelius, adapting itself to the much different world of the third and fourth centuries, but it remained a huge economic driver and a cultural world unto itself. Subscribe to Hollywood & Crime at smarturl.it/hollywoodandcrime Check out the new History Matters podcast: https://soundcloud.com/historymatterspodcast See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 13 January 2017

9: Attila and the Empire of the Huns

Attila the Hun is the best-known barbarian from antiquity, but the Hunnic Empire he inherited and expanded hasn't gotten the credit it deserves for its complexity and organization. This episode explores how the Huns created an empire that stretched from the Ural Mountains in Russia to the Rhine River in Germany. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 13 December 2016

8: The Vandals and the Fall of Roman Africa

North Africa was the most prosperous region of the western Roman Empire, the agricultural heartland that fed the city of Rome, and the barbarian Vandals' conquest of the region was the final nail in the coffin of the Western Empire as a whole. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 23 November 2016

Special Episode: The End Of The Gladiators

Gladiators are one of the defining characteristics of the Roman Empire in popular culture. How and why did they disappear? We explore the topic in this special episode. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 30 October 2016

7: The Three Transformations Of Roman Gaul

Gaul was one of the heartlands of the Roman Empire, and it encompassed a tremendous amount of diversity within its borders. Over the course of the fifth century, the region split along its fault lines, with three different paths emerging for its constituent parts. The north became a playground for Frankish warlords, while in the two southern locales, life went on much as it had before. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 20 October 2016

6: The Catastrophic Fall Of Roman Britain

In 350, Britain was a thoroughly integrated province of the Roman Empire, full of prosperous, Latin-speaking cities, luxurious villas, and all the other trappings of Roman life. By 500, the cities were gone, the economy had collapsed, and the island was split among an innumerable number of petty kingdoms. What happened? How did everything go so wrong? See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 1 October 2016

5: Just How Screwed Up Was the Later Roman Empire?

One of the fundamental questions about the later Roman Empire is just what a mess it really was. Did the barbarians topple a fundamentally healthy, functional state? Or were they merely the straw that broke the camel's back of a diseased, rotten, empire that could no longer hold itself together? In this episode, we discuss just how things had changed between the peak of the Roman Empire in the second century and the beginning of the end in the fourth. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 15 September 2016

4: The Gothic Sack of Rome

In 395, the barbarian Goths rebelled against the Romans and fought a campaign that culminated in the sack of Rome in 410. But were the Goths really barbarous foreigners, or are they better understood as a Roman army seeking a position within the Empire? See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 3 September 2016

3: The Goths and the Beginning of Rome's End

In the third episode of The Fall of Rome, we explore the Goths' migration into the Roman Empire and their desperate war for survival against the forces of the Empire. This conflict culminated in the Battle of Adrianople, the worst defeat of a Roman army in more than 350 years. How did a rag-tag group of migrants defeat the cream of the army and leave an emperor dead on the battlefield? See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 27 August 2016

2: The Barbarian World

We explore the barbarian world beyond the frontiers, focusing on the fearsome Goths who would one day leave an emperor dead on the battlefield, sack Rome itself, and found a kingdom of their own inside the empire's borders. The barbarian world was tightly tied to Rome, and those connections are what we'll investigate today, through the eyes of a Goth named Wulfila. Take the survey at Wondery.com/survey. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 12 August 2016

1: Introduction

Barbarians, political breakdown, economic collapse, mass migration, pillaging and plunder. In the introduction to this series, PhD historian Patrick Wyman takes you through the broad outlines of the fall of the Roman Empire, one of the most important events in history. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 5 August 2016

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