— Opinion —
Most Men Think About The Roman Empire Every Day
Adapted from “The Michael Knowles Show,” September 18, 2023.
Did you know most men think of the Roman Empire every single day? This fact has gone viral over the last week because a woman on TikTok asked her husband if he thinks of the Roman Empire daily, and he said, yes, he does.
When I saw this story begin circulating, I realized I was not conscious of the fact that I think of the Roman Empire every day — but I do. The minute I saw the video, I thought, Oh, I guess I do. Do women not think of the Roman Empire every day? Then, when I got home, my wife, Alissa, turned to me after having seen the TikTok and asked, “Do you really think of the Roman Empire every day?” I laughed and said, “You live with me. I basically talk about the Roman Empire every day.”
Why is that so? Why do men think of the Roman Empire every day? The answer seems rather obvious to me: the Roman Empire was the last time we had a unity of all of Western civilization. A perfect unity of it. There was a total political unity of all the lands and the peoples. There was a theological unity after the Edict of Milan when Catholicism became the official religion of the Roman Empire. There was a unity of religion, a unity of politics, and a unity of land. There was a unity of everything.
The fall of Rome is the main historical event that people compare anything to. With it came a break up that we have always been trying to reconcile and put back together. There was a bit of a resurgence with the Holy Roman Empire, though I consider that to be a sort of extension of the Roman Empire (so I think that counts). Thinking about the Habsburg monarchy, an almost continuous reign as Holy Roman Emperors, qualifies as thinking about the Roman Empire every day.
During the Middle Ages, there was a yearning in the Western mind to return to the Roman Empire. Dante wrote about this unity that they were — and now we are — all seeking. We are all so fragile and now we are so extraordinarily fragmented. That is why people make these comparisons to the fall of Rome — because they know that was a travesty.
I spoke with my friend Spencer Klavan about this “thinking of Rome every day” realization, and he pointed out that part of what is so delightful about it is, it’s the first time in quite some time that we have seen one sex stumble upon a fact about the opposite sex and get a kick out of it. So often today when one sex finds out something or makes an observation about the other sex, it is an observation made in disgust or revulsion. This is obviously true of feminists. When they discover anything masculine, they label it “toxic.” It is also true of the red pill bro-men who do not like women.
The Roman Empire question/answer is a good example of women discovering something they previously did not know about men and thinking, That’s kind of cute. That is sort of delightful. That is, of course, how it is supposed to be because men and women are different, no matter what our cultural elites tell us today. Differences between men and women are actually a cause of delight and one of the great aspects of life as a human being.
Vive la différence.