People in Rome

Roman society was divided into different social classes. There were two types of people, Roman citizens and those without Roman citizenship.

Roman citizens were divided up into two distinct classes: the patricians and the plebeians.


The patricians were the wealthy upper class people. The patricians were the ruling class of the early Roman Empire. Only certain families were part of the patrician class and you had to be born a patrician. The patricians were only a small percentage of the Roman population, but they held all the power. 

The patricians were said to be the descendants of the founders of Rome. Of course, the people in this group were free and had rights and privilege.


All the other Roman citizens of Rome were Plebeians. Plebeians were the farmers, craftsmen, laborers, and soldiers of Rome.

They were free and had rights, but not as many privileges as the patricians since they could not govern and had to pay taxes to the highest class.

The plebeians revolted many times because they wanted to be equated with the patricians. Thus, in the 5th century BC, they obtained the 'Tribuno de la Plebe', a representative who defended their interests.


They were prisoners of war or children of other slaves who had no freedom or rights. Other slaves were bought from slave traders and pirates who captured people from foreign lands and brought them to Rome. Sometimes criminals were sold into slavery. 

They were owned by their owners, so they could be bought and sold as objects.


They were slaves who were able to pay their freedom or were freed by their owners.



Make a mind map explaining how the Roman society was divided.