The Roman Empire, named for its capital city, was the phase of the ancient Roman civilization characterized by an autocratic form of government. From the time of Augustus (who informally transitioned the Roman Republic into the Empire) to the Fall of the Western Empire, Rome dominated Western Eurasia and North Africa, and composed the majority of the region's population.

Map of the Roman Empire at its height.

At this territorial peak, the Roman Empire controlled approximately 5 900 000 km² (2,300,000 sq.mi.) of land surface. Rome's influence upon the culture, law, technology, arts, language, religion, government, military, and architecture of civilizations that followed continues to this day. In the immediate wake of the Empire's fall, its Eastern half, which had become a separate political entity in a schism, continued as the Byzantine Empire.

Roman Empire in Crosstime Traffic[]

Roman Empire in Gunpowder Empire[]

In one alternate, the Roman Empire got off to a much stronger start, and became Agrippan Rome.

Roman Empire in In High Places[]

In an alternate in which the Roman Republic lost the Samnite Wars in the 4th century BC, the Roman Empire never existed. No other European culture filled the gap left by Rome's defeat. Neither Christianity nor Islam ever existed. Technology in that alternate remained at a Bronze Age level in the late 21st century.

Renegade Crosstimers from the home timeline used this low-tech alternate to set-up an illegal crosstime slave trade. This group did business with other low-tech alternates where slavery was still permitted (such as an alternate where the Great Black Deaths wiped out 80% of the population of Europe) and raided other alternates to capture slaves.The crosstimers even engaged in a sort of "slavery tourism" wherein wealthy masochists from the home timeline would pay for the experience of being a slave.

The scheme was found out after Annette Klein, a denizen of the home timeline who'd been taken as a slave, was able to escape back to the home timeline and alert the authorities.

Roman Empire in The Gladiator[]

Italians were proud of their heritage in the late 21st century. Little figurines of Roman soldiers were popular toys among hobbyists, and one popular hobby shop in Milan was called The Gladiator.[1]

Roman Empire in "Death in Vesunna"[]

The Roman Empire was a destination for time travelers who sought to acquire ancient literary works through unscrupulous means.

Roman Empire in Give Me Back My Legions![]

To keep the region of Germany pacified and to bring it closer into the Roman Empire, the Emperor Augustus assigned three legions under the command of Military Governor Publius Varus. In AD 9, Varus and the three legions set out through the Teutoburg Forest to their winter quarters in Gaulic Vetera. They were ambushed by Germanic tribes not wanting to be under Roman rule led by the Cherusci leader Arminius. This ambush led to the annihilation of the legions and one of the greatest defeats of the Empire.

Roman Empire in Household Gods[]

Despite being a lawyer from the United States, a country whose laws are largely based on those of the Roman Empire, Nicole Gunther knew next to nothing about its history, beyond what she learned from clips of movies such as Ben-Hur. Somehow, she believed it to be an ideal time period when women had equality with men, and did not suspect that it had slavery. A careless prayer to two ancient pagan deities caused her mind to live in the Roman Empire, in the body of a woman named Umma, for one year, from AD 170-171. She was quickly disabused of all her incorrect notions.

Roman Empire in "Occupation Duty"[]

In their time of imperial expansion, the Romans had wrecked Hierosolyma. In later centuries, however, Roman power disappeared, leaving the Philistinians and Moabites, who had been there long before the Romans, to fight over the city.[2]

Roman Empire in Ruled Britannia[]

The Roman Empire once ruled Britannia and it was against the Romans that Boudicca led the revolt which William Shakespeare later immortalised in his play Boudicca. Jack Hungerford, the tireman for the Theatre, wryly observed that the parallels between Boudicca and Queen Elizabeth were strengthened by the fact that under the rule of Queen Isabella and King Albert, England was once again ruled from Rome, referring to the Hapsburgs' Catholic monarchy.

Roman Empire in "Shock and Awe"[]

In about 30 CE, a pesky and vocal barbarian leader known "the Chieftain" to the Roman Empire, and the "Son of God" to his followers, instigated a destructive and short-lived rebellion in the Jewish regions. In response, the empire sent General Pontius Pilate to solve this problem. Pilate defeated the rebels and eventually captured the Chieftain and his second-in-command, the Rock, with the treacherous assistance of one of the Chieftain's disciples. With the Chieftain's death, his movement quickly withered away to nothing.

Roman Empire in Worldwar[]

The Roman Empire was Monique Dutourd's specialty as a historical researcher. During the German rule of France, she self-censored her lectures to mask any criticism of Germans which could arise from discussing their nation's role in Roman history.

Following the Race-German War of 1965, France passed from the Greater German Reich to the Race's sphere of influence. Senior Researcher Ttomalss hired Dutourd to tutor him in Roman history, as he was interested in a time when governments on Earth resembled the government of the Race. Dutourd, while she could not complain about receiving this well-paying job, feared that Roman history might give Ttomalss ideas which would prove detrimental to human autonomy.

Roman Empire in "The Yorkshire Mammoth"[]

During the Roman occupation of Britannia, a number of animals, including the aurochs, the cave bear, and the dire wolf vanished from England, Wales and Scotland. Several survived in Ireland until the Norman invasion.[3]

See also[]

In Harry Turtledove's fantasy worlds, the Western Roman Empire has served as the primary model for the following.

Elabonian Empire in the Elabon Series.
Kaunian Empire in Darkness.


  1. The Gladiator, pg. 58, HC.
  2. See e.g.: Atlantis and Other Places, pg. 241, HC.
  3. Clarksworld #155.