SPQR: A History of Ancient Rome 1st Edition, Kindle Edition

4.1 out of 5 stars 702 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-1631492228
ISBN-10: 1631492225
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Editorial Reviews

Review

“This book tracks the rise of Rome from backwater village to imperial city, spreading its power from Syria to Spain by 63 BCE, staring down resisters, and originating the idea of nation and citizenship. Included here are the stories not just of Julius Caesar but the butcher, the baker, and the candlestick maker―and certainly women and slaves.”
- Barbara Hoffert, Library Journal

“In SPQR, her wonderful concise history, Mary Beard unpacks the secrets of the city’s success with a crisp and merciless clarity that I have not seen equaled anywhere else…. We tend to think of the Romans as coarser successors to the Greeks. Yet Beard, who doubles as a Cambridge professor and a television lecturer of irresistible salty charm, shows us how the Roman Republic got underway at almost the same time as the Athenian democracy. And it evolved into just the kind of mixed system that sophisticated commentators like Aristotle and Polybius approved of.”
- Ferdinand Mount, New York Times Book Review

“Beard does precisely what few popularizers dare to try and plenty of dons can’t pull off: She conveys the thrill of puzzling over texts and events that are bound to be ambiguous, and she complicates received wisdom in the process. Her magisterial new history of Rome, SPQR…is no exception…. The ancient Romans, Beard shows, are relevant to people many centuries later who struggle with questions of power, citizenship, empire, and identity.”
- Emily Wilson, The Atlantic

“A masterful new chronicle…. Beard is a sure-footed guide through arcane material that, in other hands, would grow tedious. Sifting myth from fact in dealing with the early history of the city, she enlivens―and deepens―scholarly debates by demonstrating how the Romans themselves shaped their legendary beginnings to short-term political ends…. Exemplary popular history, engaging but never dumbed down, providing both the grand sweep and the intimate details that bring the distant past vividly to life.”
- The Economist

“Where SPQR differs most from the standard history is in its clear-sighted honesty…. Beard tells this story precisely and clearly, with passion and without technical jargon…. SPQR is a grim success story, but one told with wonderful flair.”
- Greg Woolf, The Wall Street Journal

“[Beard] is no myth builder; she is a scholar who reaches down-to-earth conclusions based on her years of dedication to her subject…. She is able to step back to see the entire Roman world…. She shows us how to engage with the history, culture, and controversies that made Rome―and why it still matters. Beard's enthusiasm for her subject is infectious…. Lovers of Roman history will revel in this work, and new students will quickly become devotees.”
- Kirkus Reviews, Starred Review

“[Fun] helps define what sets Beard apart as commentator and what sets SPQR apart from other histories of Rome. Though she here claims that 50 years of training and study have led up to SPQR, Beard wears her learning lightly. As she takes us through the brothels, bars, and back alleys where the populus Romanus left their imprint, one senses, above all, that she is having fun.”
- James Romm, New Republic

“Monumental…. A triumphant Roman read that is sure to appear on school curricula and holiday wishlists alike.”
- Carly Silver, Shelf Awareness

About the Author

A professor of classics at Cambridge University, Mary Beard is the author of the best-selling The Fires of Vesuvius and the National Book Critics Circle Award–nominated Confronting the Classics. A popular blogger and television personality, Beard gave the Mellon Lectures at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC, and is a regular contributor to the New York Review of Books. She lives in England.

Product details

  • File Size: 83302 KB
  • Print Length: 607 pages
  • Publisher: Liveright; 1 edition (November 9, 2015)
  • Publication Date: November 9, 2015
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0108U7IHO
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Screen Reader: Supported
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #10,021 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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