Naturally, as I grew older, I began to wonder where Lucas had found his inspirations for the story. The political story I am sure has been repeated many times in different periods of history. But the most obvious was the history of Rome.
A republic of noble ideals, subverted by the desires of some very ambitious men, until the establishment of an empire. It sounded like a familiar story, so during my adolescence, I grew interested and fascinated by the Romans. The greatest empire we’ve ever seen. I mean, think about it. Their empire stretched from Scotland to Egypt, Romania to Spain and Morocco. Nothing in European history can rival it. Even the EU, in its expanded form as it is now, is still smaller. Rome was huge, and powerful.
So oddly enough, it was growing up as a Star-Wars nerd that turned me into a student of Roman history, with a lesser interest in some of the mystic Eastern religions that gave birth to the ideologies of the Jedi.