in this article, we will talk about that why did the Romans Explore Deeper into Africa? the Roman Empire included large territorial holdings around the Mediterranean Sea in Europe North Africa and West Asia military campaigns were sent across Europe and North Africa an order for Rome to expand more and more their southern border was in North Africa at the beginning of the Sahara Desert.
this arid mostly uninhabitable place assured a natural border and defense between other civilizations but also it stopped the Roman expansion little is known about Roman expeditions that existed beyond this point however the Romans had a few attempts on exploring deeper into the African continent sub-saharan Africa was explored by Roman expeditions between 19 BC and 19 AD most likely in an effort to locate the sources of valuable trade goods and establish routes to bring them to the seaports.
on the coast of North Africa thereby minimizing disruption in trade caused by conflicts among indigenous tribes and kingdoms most of these expeditions began as military campaigns while the last one may have been initiated in the interests of trade relations but the purpose of all of them seems to have been in the interests of expanding Roman presence in Africa and locating the source of the most valuable trade goods in order to let you experience.
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in Africa whose merchants brought goods for trade from the interior to the three great Roman centers on the North African coast Leptis Magna away, ax and Sabratha but the desire for even more goods and direct access to them prompted Roman excursions to the sub-Saharan regions the five expeditions were in 19 BC and in 41 50 70 and 90 AD.
the cultural impact of the Roman expeditions on the sub-Saharan cultures in fact is still debated among scholars trade among the different kingdoms and tribes of Africa was already well established by the time the Phoenicians founded Carthage 332 BCE the Overland trade routes connections and seaports had been used by African merchants for centuries and once the Carthaginians gained a foothold.
in North Africa contributed to the wealth prestige and power of their central city and others in the region trade centers were already established on the North African coast by the semi-nomadic or nomadic Berber tribes of the region who traded with each other and may have exported goods elsewhere after 30 BC following the death of Cleopatra the seventh Rome took Egypt and added it to its North African holdings.
it was a very important grain supply to Rome the Empire was supplemented through the trade at the cities of Reggio and Tripolitania Rome had established trade relations with the other kingdoms as well from West Africa other traders also brought their items towards Tripolitania but this trade routes were often disrupted by conflicts between kingdoms or different tribes.
it has been suggested that one of the tribes involved in this region’s trade the Garamantes though this claim has been challenged it is not known if the GAR amantes were directly involved in trade coming from West Africa however it’s possible that they interrupted trade through raids on caravans which sparked a response from Rome leading to the first of Roman expeditions Lucius Cornelius Baba’s 1st century BC was proconsul of Africa in 19 BCE when he was ordered by Augustus Caesar to put down.
the Garamantes who were in some way interfering with Roman interests in the phezzan region of Libya Babis led 10,000 Legionnaires from Sabratha against the Berber tribe and conquered them afterward and perhaps on his own initiative or on orders he sent a number of his men onward to explore the land of Lyons which lay on the other side of the Hegar mountains in the central Sahara region palaces men returned with the report of a large body of water.
now thought to be the Niger River and Roman coins and other artifacts have been found in the region supporting the claim that Bal bise’s men crossed the mountains and explored the region this evidence has debated another expedition was led by Paulinus in the course of this campaign in 41 see Paulinus led his men over the Atlas Mountains.
in southern Mauritania, he reached the summit of the mountains after a 10-day March and according to Pliny then traveled a significant distance down through the plains to explore along a river referred to as gur and then the area around the Darras River modern Senegal River evidence for Roman presence in this region comes from artifacts and coins discovered.
there many in and around the city of Acts used in 50 ad one Septimus Flaccus led an expedition from Leptis Magna against a rebellious tribe which was disrupting trade in the region controlled by the so-called Garamantes who Flaccus was is equally unclear as he is not identified with any Legion and no earlier mention is made of him some scholars have suggested that the geographer Ptolemy.
who wrote the account of flack is expedition based on an earlier source got his name wrong probably this was the case or he may have omitted information he felt was unnecessary flaccus must have had some military background however in order to command a force that led them successfully against whatever group of people was causing the problem.
in the southern regions usually, military commanders were sent in military expeditions this possible general marched into garamantes territory and subdued them he then traveled on over the table st mountains and into the land known as agra simba which was north of a great body of water known as the lake of hippopotamus and rhinoceros this lake has been identified as lake chad flock is’s expedition is the first one known to have interacted with the populace of this region.
at any length but no details are available on what this contact consisted of scholars agree that agra symbol was to the north of lake chad but as the lake was much larger at the time precisely where it was how large the region and who lived there is unknown it is assumed it was controlled by the Garamantes however festus concluded business with the Garamantes.
they seemed to have been on friendly terms with Rome 20 years later when one Julius materna led an expedition into their territories the problem with sources regarding this expedition is that it is unclear who mater nice was and what position diplomat merchant or military commander he held there is no mention of materna spa for or after this expedition and details of the excursion itself seemed to support any of the three possibilities he traveled.
in the company of the garment ian king and so as a diplomat could have been forging better political relations as a merchant forging better trade relations as a general helping the king to put down rebellious subjects which would have benefited them both anyway whoever he was and whatever position he held materna sees success seems to have been based on the reports of the expeditions.
which went before him like flaccus he crossed the table st mountains and explored agra Simba and like Festus and bobis explored the region around the Niger River however in expedition was also sent to go find two sources of the Nile and went beyond the sedan all these expeditions were supported by Legionnaires and had mainly a commercial purpose.
only the one conducted by Emperor Nero seemed to be a prepper div for the conquest of Ethiopia or Nubia in 62 AD two Legionnaires explored the source of the Nile one of the main objectives of the exploration was to locate and obtain gold using camels to transport it overland back to Roman provinces.
in the Mediterranean coast sea voyages between Rome and North Africa conversely could be completed in less than a month and so were much more lucrative and further safer for both investors and crew although there is no defining document explicitly stating why the overland expeditions were launched it is reasonable to conclude based on the nature of the military campaigns and the Roman independence on African Goods.