- For the main article, see Culture of ancient Rome
Roman culture spread to Western Europe and the area around the Mediterranean Sea. Its history still has a big influence on the world today. For example, Roman ideas about laws, government, art, literature, and language are important to European culture. The Roman language, Latin, slowly evolved, becoming modern French, Spanish, Italian, and Romanian. Latin also influenced many other languages like English.
Beginning with Emperor Nero in the first century AD, the Roman government did not like Christianity. At certain points in history, people could be put to death because they were Christians. Under Emperor Diocletian, the persecution of Christians became the strongest. However, Christianity became an officially supported religion in the Roman Empire under Constantine I, who was the next Emperor. With the signing of the Edict of Milan in 313, it quickly became the biggest religion. Then in 391 AD by an edict of Emperor Theodosius I made Christianity Rome's official religion.