Rome Did Not Fall

Happy New Year To All Those Worthy Of My Affection And, Or, Consideration. (Such as those kind enough to comment on this site!)

The tradition of celebrating the Winter Solstice as the start of the year, complete with cut fir trees and gift giving goes all the way back to Ancient Greece, and thus, by osmosis, to Rome (Zoroastrians, thus Iranians, celebrate the New Year in Spring). The Romans were a bunch of dung plastered peasants educated by the Etruscans to the north and the Greeks of Magna Grecia to the south. In the end, Rome got “renovated” by the Franks.

The Franks Renovated The Empire, Wiping Out Other Invaders.

The Franks Renovated The Empire, Wiping Out Other Invaders.

Early on, Roman peasants learned to learn. The first thing the Romans learned was that big time plutocrats such as Etruscan lords and Tarquinus Superbus, the last formidable king of Rome, were the ultimate enemy.

The Romans also learned that much less rich aristocrats (“the best who rule“) could be crucial to a revolutionary public-thing (res-publica). The natural conclusion was to make a “mixed” constitution, where the People would make the laws and the Senate (held by the aristocrats) would give “counsel” (“Senatus Consulte”). To avoid plutocracy, kings were strongly hated in Roman culture. Moreover, wealth was confined to the equivalent of a few millions dollars. Having more was, just, unlawful.

All this changed completely when, after the catastrophe of the Second Punic war, when much of the old ethical aristocracy was killed in combat, avaricious plutocrats broke down the anti-hyper wealth law, and took over. Under the Principate (=Early Roman empire, the weird contraption set-up by Augustus, officially a republic, but also a dictatorship), a Senator with a yearly income of only two million dollars, was viewed as poor.

In truth the Decline and Fall of Rome all started when the Gracchi tried to force the plutocrats to obey Rome’s anti-plutocracy laws from the Fabian era (around 380 BCE). Rome suffered horribly from plutocracy after more than 5,000 Gracchi and their supporters got killed. This was followed by Sulla’s dictatorship, two generations later.

The horror went on, until it turned into full degeneracy, civilization and population collapsing. Finally the Franks got control in the West, between 400 CE and 507 CE, and put an end to the collapse… Where it is more important to end it, that is, militarily. The Franks, being German, were much more equalitarian, so they stopped the plutocratic implosion of civilization.

However Frankish control was quintessentially Roman control. The Imperium Francorum was just a rebirth of the early principles of Rome. It’s not just that the Franks, or their law, spoke Latin. Or that  they were put in charge of the defense of a huge chunk of the empire in 400 CE. Quintessentially, the Franks lived like the early Romans, like farmers, albeit on a much larger area. This facilitated the anti-plutocratic spirit of the Imperium Francorum. To boost their numbers, the Franks showed even more tolerance than the Romans. By 600 CE, everybody was a Frank. A few decades later, slave trading was made unlawful.

By 800 CE, the Roman empire had officially been “renovated” (Renovatio Imperii Romanorum, and had just one emperor, from Northern Spain to Northern Germany, and Armorica to Constantinople: Carlus Magnus, Charlemagne (Constantinople was under a local regency at the time).

This is the simplest fact. Yet, for ideological reasons, it’s ignored. What are those reasons? They have to do with the exploitative spirit of the “West Country Men”. Admitting that the Franks reconstituted Republican Rome, complete with public government imbued with public service, and were astoundingly successful that way, is the exact opposite of what (Wall Street inspired) plutocrats want people to believe.

After being “renovated”, the empire fragmented. It became an empire of fragments. Yet, even in this highly fragmented state, the empire proved impossible to conquer (differently from say Ancient Rome, Oriental Rome (“Byzantium”), China, or India)… To this day.

Indeed, look for example at the Huns: they got to Orleans and Toulouse. However, in both cases, they were severely defeated for this insolence. Their descendants the Mongols got to Hungary, and even the Adriatic. However, they suffered heavy losses, and, by fear of the Franks, went no further. Tellingly, they made a long term alliance with said Franks.

By comparison, the Mongols conquered China, and established a durable dynasty, the Yuan, after toying with the idea of … eradicating China. Similarly the Manchus conquered China.

Observe the contrast between the Imperium Francorum and Late Rome: by 400 CE, the Franks were put in charge of defending the limes (= frontier) in the North West empire (Gallia, Germania Inferior, Germania Superior). However in 406 CE, a huge Germanic coalition galloped across the frozen (!) Rhine, surprising the Frankish army that had mauled them in years prior.

The consequence of that invasion was that the Western empire fell militarily, and, from there, demographically and economically (the Vandals cut off the Western Mediterranean, and Rome’s food, after conquering Africa).

The Franks though, had lost a battle, but not the war. By 507, at the battle of Vouille’, the Franks, army of Rome, destroyed the Goths, something the Romans had been unable to do for the previous 250 years. The same Goths that had humiliated conquered and devastated the city of Rome itself, 97 years earlier.

The regime that the Franks put in place reconstituted Rome fully by 800 CE (and more). By 1204, the Franks actually broke the “Oriental Roman empire”, by conquering Constantinople (that was the real fall of Constantinople: 1453 was just the final nail in the coffin).

By 1066 CE, the Franks had reconquered Britain. French (and thus, English), is little more than degenerated, simplified and Germanified Latin. The basic framework of law, in the West and at the UN, is technically Roman, but in the spirit of the Lex Salica of the Franks. So we can safely say this: the Greco-Romano-Franco-German imperium is still in power, and that power is worldwide.

What of the Hebrew god, in all this? I was reading a 2013 book by an American historian, who claimed that the Hebrews taught the West… equity, equality. Thus that clown demonstrated that some historians had paid for the grossest propaganda.

In truth, it’s the Greeks, the Romans and the Germans who came up with these concepts of equality and justice. Social policies, like welfare, were invented, and implemented, in Athens, and especially Rome.

Verily, it is rather the other way around: the Hebrew god’s monstrosity was a huge part of the Decline and Fall of Rome. Don’t look at me funny: I did not invent the idea. The Cathars (from the Greek catharos, pure: the original Puritans!), came up with the idea in the Twelfth Century (probably building up on the ideas of Abelard and his admirers and students). It was their main idea. The Cathars considered that the Hebrew god was, actually, the devil, and the Old Testament even worse than Hitler’s Mein Kampf (if you will forget the anachronism).

The Church of Jesus Christ and the latter days religious terrorists took that very badly, and killed millions of innocents to eradicate Protestantism (and Judaism too). So much for the Hebrew god.

Jesus was born sometimes in Spring, the early Christians believed. Yet, when the “Founding Fathers of the Church” a trio of fascists flourishing by 400 CE discovered that there was no way that they could eradicate the Greco-Roman Winter Solstice celebrations, they moved Jesus’ birth to the solstice. (In the same spirit, much of Christianity was just stolen from other religions). Now Christianity survives mostly in the religion of the Saracens (that Islam was a form of particularly dangerous Christian cult was the diagnostic of the Frankish intelligence in the Seventh Century, when the Franks got ready to stop the fanatical armies that had embraced that cult).

Rome never fell. Rome just metamorphosed into the most advanced form it needed to survive.

Patrice Ayme

***

Note: It is amazing how ignored the Franks are, because they are the direct junction between the Greco-Romans and us. There is no other junction. No just this, but the Franks surpassed Rome around 1,000 CE in some crucial ways (food production: heavy ploughs, better agriculture, beans, sustainable energy from wind and water mills, etc.).

The Franks (meaning free or ferocious) were actually a confederation, a sort of mini EU of the time, armed to the teeth, that appeared among Germans in a zone of heavy Roman influence. Unknown Romans(?) or other intellectuals had a heavy influence on them, as their Latin written law was much more advanced than the Roman one (more lenient). Initially they talked a sort of Old Dutch. Then switched to Latin.

The fact that the Franks are ignored by conventional historians is a testimony to their lack of scholarship, and servitude to a plutocratic agenda with a twisted mind of its own.

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16 Responses to “Rome Did Not Fall”

  1. richard reinhofer Says:

    Thanks for this perspective Patrice. It’s been decades since I studied the Franks but I always imagined them to be largely from modern day France. I didn’t realize they were more Germanic.

    • Patrice Ayme Says:

      Dear Richard: Happy New Year! Yes, it is amazing how ignored the Franks are, because they are the direct junction between the Greco-Romans and us. There is no other junction. No just this, but they surpassed Rome around 1,000 CE in some crucial ways (food production: heavy ploughs, better agriculture, beans, sustainable energy from wind and water mills, etc.).

      The Franks (meaning free or ferocious) were actually a confederation, a sort of mini EU of the time, that appeared among Germans in a zone of heavy Roman influence. Unknown Romans(?) or other intellectuals had a heavy influence on them, as their Latin written law was much more advanced than the Roman one (more lenient).
      Initially they talked a sort of Old Dutch. Then switched to Latin.
      PA

  2. aaron greenbird Says:

    ” Rome never fell….” Philip K. Dick, VALIS……..yet another amazing post, thank you Patrice! yes, the Gracchi bros….that is to where i point, as to the “beginning of the end ‘ for Rome, as it WAS….indeed ” there is no other junction” , so true. i would humbly mention the decline and ‘fall’ of the mystery schools as another factor. i see the murder of Hypatia (415 C.E.) as the beginning of the dark ages….i feel like we are in a place today, that is equivalent to right before the Gracci bros. do you think it so ?

    • Patrice Ayme Says:

      Hello Aaron, and happy new year! Thanks for the compliment.

      By the time of Hypatia’s horrendous violation, rape and torture to death with oyster shells, it had long been all over. In my opinion the time of the collapse can be timed exactly with Julian’s mysterious death by lance (was it in combat, or was it assassinated?), and his replacement by general Jovian. Jovian soon allowed, or ordered, the burning of libraries (363 CE). By 381 emperor Theodosius, a Spanish general passed terrible theocratic laws.

      Yet, Hypatia’s immense fame shows that the Christian fanatics were not popular with the majority of people. The very fact they had to torture her to death proves it.

      Saint Cyril was the master killer of Hypatia. Why is not the Pope asked to remove his sainthood? Having that monster a saint makes the Catholic church a criminal organization, to this day.

      Yes, we are in times such as those of the Gracchi. Obama ought to be tried for treason. At least in the court of public opinion. I remember what he used to say, before he made the “Heritage Foundation” his boss.

      A difference with the Gracchi’s times is that Rome was, then, the world’s lone hyperpower. The USA is no such thing. For example France, a superpower in her own right, has an impressive following in Europe (to which the Federal Republic of Germany, de facto, belongs). So the Europeans can try their own things, and, if, when, they succeed, present the USA with competition.

      This is what the Euro is already doing, to Krugman’s mixture of rage and bewilderment.
      Let alone Airbus (the world’s largest aerospace company)… And of course the public, or profit-less healthcare systems in Europe. Or Germany’s union on the boards law (now copied by… France).
      PA

  3. Andrej Dekleva Says:

    Patrice,

    Happy New Year and thanks for the continuous outpouring and exploration of human potential, past and present – looking forward to another year of wordpressed wisdom (and debate!)

  4. gmax Says:

    The usual version of history misses out on the Franks completely. Funny bcs they founded all the Western European regimes. As you said, history is not just a story, but also an agenda.
    Happy New Year

    • Patrice Ayme Says:

      Dear GMax: It’s certainly no happenstance that the very root of Western Civilization is ignored. Had the Franks not defeated the Huns, the Goths, the Alamani, , Arabs and Berbers, Saxons, Angles, Jutes, Vikings, Avars… Among many others, it’s hard to see how Western Civilization could exist. And that was just part of what they did…
      PA

  5. John Rogers Says:

    Knowing the role of “bread and circuses” in the decline of Rome, I thought you would be interested in this map graphic showing that the highest paid public employee in most of the 50 United States is either a football or basketball coach –

    http://digbysblog.blogspot.com/2014/01/priorities.html

    • Patrice Ayme Says:

      Thanks John. And Happy New Year. Very very interesting, your link. What’s fascinating is that these are PUBLIC employees…

      The reflection by Juvenal, about “Panem et Circenses” was made around 100 CE. Just went Gibbon puts the start of the apex of Rome (erroneously). The bread and circus thing appeared mostly AFTER the rise of plutocracy. The richest paid for the circenses. The bread was paid by the public dime. It was basically the present USA food program…
      PA

  6. Hugues Says:

    Thank you Patrice for your Post. I just finished Henri Pirenne books (you mentioned it in your previous post (hard to find) – Very interesting indeed. Frankish story has not been studied so much by modern historian or ignored by conventional historians. The XIX / XX centuries was certainly too much focused on Vercingetorix vs. Wittekind the Saxon for French German nationalistic plutocratic propagandists. I am a fan of Braudel.

    I have always been interested by the basement of a certain form of egalitarianism in German culture which one has given the best or the worth like ecology – the use of common resources (forest) by and for the people – or communism, Nazism or social democracy and so on…

    Abolition of slavery: you are right, Queen Bathilde of course
    Saracens: Son of Sarah as depicted in Bible and Koran.

    Thank you for all your thoughts. Could you please recommend me some good writers on these topics.

    Your truly,

    Hughes
    Sol Invictus to you all.

    • Patrice Ayme Says:

      Hughes: I hope your Saturnials went well, and I welcome you to the comment side of this site. Please visit often and comment.

      Few know of Pirenne, and I did not mention him for a very long time (I thought). So I feel honored that you read me so carefully. Pirenne’s thesis is certainly true in the sense that the Muslim invasion basically wiped out half of the Roman empire in a few years. No doubt something with a great economic impact.

      However, that was all rendered possible by the previous degeneracy of the Oriental empire.

      Good writers on these topics? I don’t know too well, I tend to read the original texts. Weirdly a lot of the ancient texts are not translated. Especially the writers of the Imperium Francorum (many of them bishops). It’s weird because the period is so important for the history of civilization.

      (Tours bishop) Gregory of Tours’ History of the Franks is of course a must, and does not make for boring reading.

      Archeology has had a huge, recent impact on the notions we have on the period, from Germania to Syria. German equalitarianism is fascinating, and seems to me to have arisen for reasons similar to Greece: small, self sufficient communities: lots of Germany is thus with small shallow valleys.

      Gallia was still different, as it was much more developed, and much more advanced, than not just Germany, but most of the Mediterranean (which had influenced Gallia heavily). To a great extent, Caesar’s conquest was a fluke in several ways.
      PA

  7. Holiday Destinations #5: Rome : Tourism Information Tips and Resource – Everything you need to Know Before Your Holiday Beggins Says:

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  8. marauder Says:

    Sorry, Patrick but this post is utter nonsense. By every measurable metric of civilization, the Western Roman empire fell and it was a calamitous fall at that.

    So you read *a* book by *an* author that fails to mention the Franks.

    No mainstream historian of the period in question omits discussion of the role the Franks played after the fall of the Roman Empire but such historians also recognize the instability, material paucity and semi-savagery of the Frankish empire.

    You laud the alleged egalitarianism of the Franks but neglect to mention that the slave trade was absolutely integral to the economy (practically the only export of value from the West to Islamic Spain or the Byzantine empire) of the Frankish empire.

    The Frankish egalitarianism did not extend to the victims of their slave raiding and ruthless expansionism. The Church attempted to curb this through outright prohibition (a papal bull which failed) and by encouraging Christians to purchase the slaves intended for export to the muslims (which was a partial success). It was this same Church that tried to impose order and decency on a very savage and militarized ruling class with only some success.

    You laud the martial prowess of the Franks but fail to mention how the Franks utterly failed to subdue the Bretons or the Venitians not to mention the failure of Frankish campaigns across the Pyrenees. All of this speaks to a collapse in the science and art of siege warfare and the logistics of extended campaigns which the Roman Army had perfected like no other.

    • picard578 Says:

      Your average person did not even notice do so-called fall. Western Empire disintegrated over the last decades and centuries into ever smaller states controlled by warlords. Gaelic empire formed during Diocletian was just the first such case (and I’m not sure it was the first, even). In the end, every single warlord controlled a portion of the empire, and central authority was nonexistent.

      These were definetly violent times, that is true. Disintegration was violent. But the endgame started in early third century, and it was bloodshed from then on.

      Further, Franks continued the Roman Empire – in spirit and in form (mostly) – for some time. Merovingian Frankish kingdom had bureocracy, state education, tax collection, military organization etc. comparable to that of the late Roman Empire. It was only after the Muslim invasions, when supply of crucial materials – papyrus (pergament was too expensive to maintain necessary literacy) and few others – was cut off, that Franks fell into the Middle Ages, with all the limitations it implies.

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