This paper will look into the primary reasons for the rise of the Roman papacy to power, and a few of the many things that aided the papacy in getting there. The fall of the Roman Empire is clearly a key factor in the rise of the papacy, so a look into the factors that caused the fall of the Roman Empire is essential. Secondly, a look into how the church positioned itself, to step into the vacuum of power left behind by the fall of the Roman Empire will prove to be needed. Lastly, there will be a brief look at the positive and negative ramifications that ensued from the churches rise to power. This paper will not be an exhaustive look into the rise of the papacy, but instead will provide a good place to start ones study into the subject. THE FALL OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE
The fall of the Roman Empire is not a short discussion nor is it conclusive in nature, because no historians can seem to agree on the exact cause or causes of the fall. However, most historians do agree that the fall of the Roman Empire was the result of a combination of factors, such as social immorality, the concentration of power to Caesar, Christianity, and barbarian wars. Each of these four influences will be discussed in the upcoming pages, but the order in which each is discussed is not meant to add wait to one over another. Social Immorality
When the discussion of moral decay is brought out, in reference to the fall of the Roman Empire, most people’s minds immediately gravitate toward the bath houses or the gladiator arena.1 Most people find these acts to be immoral at their face value, but there is a greater level
1 Keith Bradley, “Leisure and Ancient Rome,” Canadian Journal of History 31, no. 3 (December 1996): 425-26. of immorality involved in the bath houses and gladiator arenas. The obvious thoughts of these social issues are bad enough, but one must consider that the people in power used these methods to manipulate...