The Roman Empire began in 509 B.C. and lasted till the 6 B.C. The Romans who were highly inspired by the Greeks adapted their governing system. But instead of just limiting their government to city states, they brought new ideas into their government. They established a ruling senate which was the basis's of their ruling power. The Senate was composed of large land owning aristocrats that composed laws that they could benefit from. The plebeians "poor people" demanded equal representation in the senate. This battle was won and they were awarded the Plebian Assembly. But as history passed, the senate would no longer need the assembly's approval and this would start the deterioration of the Roman Republic and many other variables.
Rome being the epicenter of the Hellenistic period, they gradually grew to occupy all of the Mediterranean. With these conquered lands they enslaved all of the people except for their close neighbors. These slaves were sold to all people of Rome. They took over the workforce. Aristocrats would buy hundreds of slaves and use them for their benefit in their huge plantations "Latifundias." Since the small farmers were the backbone of Rome, they were forced to sell their lands because of shady politics and over taxing. Thus they would move to the city to find jobs. But since all the jobs were occupied by slaves there was no work for the poor people "the proletariat." This struggle for jobs gradually ruined the economy of Rome and forced the poor people to become even poorer and the rich people even richer. With the slave industrialization Rome also did a lot of importing instead of exporting which hurt their economy as well.
Rome because of its brutal warfare tactics hurt their image as a peaceful empire. Their war with the Carthage, the Punic Wars, brought another side to Rome's growing personality.