Roman Era Rhodes Island
In the end of the 3rd century B.C. the Roman Empire was dominant and Rhodes tried to maintain the friendliest relationship possible with the superpower, since its citizens’ freedom was in a great extent depending on the intentions of Roman politicians. For a pretty long time it succeeded in this task, as it constituted a significant educational centre for the noble families of Rome. Despite all those however, the Romans were primarily interested in restricting the growth of the island, in the first given chance. Thus, when Rhodes declined to participate in the war of the imperialistic Romans against king Perseus, they seized immediately the opportunity to declare Delos a free port, destroying in that way all Rhodes’ commercial activities. Thereafter, financially feeble Rhodes was forced to sign a treaty declaring Rome’s friends and enemies its own. The treaty was soon proved destructive for Rhodes that had to suffer the imperial wars for colonies of the Romans, as well as their domestic warfare. The final blow for the island came in 42 B.C., when Cassius invaded Rhodes, looted it carrying off thousands of works of art and completely destroyed it. Since then, Rhodes entered a prolonged period of decay.