Describing the Roman Empire is beyond my current abilities. Needless to say, the Roman Empire was enormous, stretching from southern Egypt, across the Mediterranean and into northern Britain. But, what makes the Roman Empire so amazing is how well organized and technologically advanced it was.
Rome built roads, aqueducts, bathhouses, and villas, some of which are still standing today. Roman citizens had running water, heated baths and heating and cooling systems in their homes. They had a well organized government (Generally speaking. It ended up falling apart towards the end.) and a well trained military to keep everything in check. When Rome finally fell apart, all of these things fell with it.
What was once the mighty Western Empire of Rome was left to a handful of barbarian tribes. For the first time in their histories, the Anglos, Saxons, Franks, Visigoths, Vandals, etc., Tried to make a go of settling down and learning to become civilized. They had a rough start.
In the shadows of what was once one of the greatest empires ever known a new way of life emerged. Enlightened thinkers of the renaissance termed it the Dark Ages for its lack of education, science, fine arts and forward thinking. It was a time of struggle for survival and control , with many different factions vying for supremacy.
Rival tribes fought brutally against each other striving for a position of power.
Foreign invaders ravaged coasts, sometimes claiming the land for their own. The people scraped thier livelihood out of the earth with only their bare hands and the simplest of tools. It was a turbulent world of hardship and violence.
Like steel from the hottest forge, the harsh landscape of the Dark Ages cultivated a strong and determined people. From the ashes of Viking raids and the wreckage of bloody battlefields, mighty men and women rose up against the odds, heroes were made and legends were born.