from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- An empire that succeeded the Roman Republic during the time of Augustus, who ruled from 27 B.C. to A.D. 14. At its greatest extent it encompassed territories stretching from Britain and Germany to North Africa and the Persian Gulf. After 395 it was split into the Byzantine Empire and the Western Roman Empire, which rapidly sank into anarchy under the onslaught of barbarian invaders from the north and east. The last emperor of the West, Romulus Augustulus (born c. 461), was deposed by Goths in 476, the traditional date for the end of the empire.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- proper n. An empire that used to exist between 27 BCE and 476/1453 CE; it encompassed territories stretching from Britain and Germany to North Africa and the Persian Gulf.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. an empire established by Augustus in 27 BC and divided in AD 395 into the Western Roman Empire and the eastern or Byzantine Empire; at its peak lands in Europe and Africa and Asia were ruled by ancient Rome
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