- Mass Market Paperback: 184 pages
- Publisher: Ballantine Books (September 12, 1974)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0345242408
- ISBN-13: 978-0345242402
- Product Dimensions: 6.9 x 4.3 x 0.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 0.8 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #444,234 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Those About to Die Mass Market Paperback – September 12, 1974
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Top Customer Reviews
Almost 50 years have passed since I first read this shocker and I've found it again. Before pushing "go to checkout" this is my memory:
Absolutely incredible book on Roman life. By "incredible," I really do mean "unbelievable" details of Roman excesses, not just in the killing arena, but in raising and eating rare foods: hummingbird tongues, fish that changed colors as they were boiled alive, unborn calves and other animals cooked inside their mothers, and on and on.
In the arena, there were specialists in animal as well as human destruction called "bestiarii" who could kill a lion with their bare hands. The author said the bestiarii hated and feared only leopards because of the animals' blinding speed.
The Roman Colosseum arena could be flooded in minutes, not only for mock sea battles, but for imaginary paradise islands populated by luscious women and handsome men singers and musicians--who were fed to crocodiles to the delight of the crowd.
So out of hand did the "Bread and Circuses" of Rome become that shipments of sand for the Colosseum floor were given priority over shipments of food, according to that author.
I read this shocking book as a very young teenager--it was a paperback book belonging to an uncle. If I can remember this much after nearly 50 years, this is a book that stays with you--whether totally true or not.
UPDATE---Well, I was half right, because this is about half the book it was. Not Amazon's fault. The book arrived in less than a week in surprisingly good condition for a paperback.
No, the 1960 publisher "reverse Bowdlerized" the original I read.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Exceptional history of the games and many who were a part of them. Very informative.Published 11 days ago by Lynn B. Schornick
read this 50 years ago and wanted to read it again but found it very difficult to get hold of.
So I am chuffed to get my hands on it again.
I like Mannix, and I enjoyed Those About to Die. It was fascinating, even if it is somewhat poorly edited. I also learned quite a bit about the Rome of the gladiator era.Published 6 months ago by James P. Wright
Excellent reading! I allways knew about gladiators, contests against wild animals and mock battles, but I never knew just how elaborate some of the contests were. Read morePublished 9 months ago by tony
It reads not like an historical narrative but more like a sloppy, but tortuously long, college essay embellished with not particularly complex moralizing. Read morePublished 10 months ago by R. Ottaiano
This is a well written book about the times of the Roman games. Keep in mind that it reads more like a sports report than a non-fiction text.Published 10 months ago by Ed D.
As an overview the book stands a fair chance of passing. As a book of history, it fails because it is neither objective nor well written.Published 11 months ago by P. R. Brumlik