The Rise of Athens: The Story of the World's Greatest Civilization

The Rise of Athens: The Story of the World's Greatest CivilizationA magisterial account of how a tiny city state in ancient Greece became history's most influential civilization, from the bestselling author of acclaimed biographies of Cicero, Augustus, and Hadrian

Filled with tales of adventure and astounding reversals of fortune, The Rise of Athens celebrates the city state that transformed the world from the democratic revolution that marked its beginning, through the city's political and cultural golden age, to its decline into the ancient equivalent of a modern day university town.

Anthony Everitt constructs his history with unforgettable portraits of the talented, tricky, ambitious, and unscrupulous Athenians who fueled the city's rise: Themistocles, the brilliant naval strategist who led the Greeks to a decisive victory over their Persian enemies; Pericles, arguably the greatest Athenian statesman of them all; and the wily Alcibiades, who changed his political allegiance several times during the course of the Peloponnesian War and died in a hail of assassins' arrows. Here also are riveting you are there accounts of the milestone battles that defined the Hellenic world: Thermopylae, Marathon, and Salamis among them. An unparalleled storyteller, Everitt combines erudite, thoughtful historical analysis with stirring narrative set pieces that capture the colorful, dramatic, and exciting world of ancient Greece.

Although the history of Athens is less well known than that of other world empires, the city state's allure would inspire Alexander the Great, the Romans, and even America's own Founding Fathers. It's fair to say that the Athenians made possible the world in which we live today. In this peerless new work, Anthony Everitt breathes vivid life into this most ancient story.

Praise for The Rise of Athens

[An] invaluable history of a foundational civilization . combining impressive scholarship with involving narration. Booklist

Compelling . a comprehensive and entertaining account of one of the most transformative societies in Western history . Everitt recounts the high points of Greek history with flair and aplomb.
Shelf Awareness

Highly readable . Everitt keeps the action moving. Kirkus Reviews

Praise for Anthony Everitt's The Rise of Rome

Rome's history abounds with remarkable figures Everitt writes for the informed and the uninformed general reader alike, in a brisk, conversational style, with a modern attitude of skepticism and realism. The Dallas Morning News

[A] lively and readable account . Roman history has an uncanny ability to resonate with contemporary events. Maclean's

Elegant, swift and faultless as an introduction to his subject.
The Spectator

An engrossing history of a relentlessly pugnacious city's 500 year rise to empire.
Kirkus Reviews

Fascinating history and a great read. Chicago Sun Times

La lingua geniale: 9 ragioni per amare il greco

La lingua geniale: 9 ragioni per amare il grecoLo sappiamo tutti: la prima reazione davanti a un testo in greco antico spazia dalla paralisi al terrore puro.
Ho scelto nove ragioni per amare e per raccontare ciò che il greco sa dire in modo unico, speciale, diverso da ogni altra lingua – e sì, per spazzar via ogni paura trasformandola forse in passione.

Innanzitutto questo libro parla di a: il greco antico è stata la storia più lunga e bella della mia vita.
Non importa che sappiate il greco oppure no.
Se sì, vi svelerò particolarità di cui al liceo nessuno vi ha parlato, mentre vi tormentavano tra declinazioni e paradigmi.
Se no, ma state cominciando a studiarlo, ancora meglio. La vostra curiosità sarà una pagina bianca da riempire.
Per tutti, questa lingua nasconde modi di dire che vi faranno sentire a casa, permettendovi di esprimere parole o concetti ai quali pensate ogni giorno, ma che proprio non si possono dire in italiano.
Ad esempio, i numeri delle parole erano tre, singolare, plurale e duale – due per gli occhi, due per gli amanti; esisteva un modo verbale per esprimere il desiderio, l’ottativo, e non esisteva il futuro. Insomma, il greco antico era un modo di vedere il mondo, un modo ancora e soprattutto oggi utile e geniale.
Non sono previsti esami né compiti in classe: se alla fine della lettura sarò riuscita a coinvolgervi e a rispondere a domande che mai vi eravate posti, se finalmente avrete capito la ragione di tante ore di studio, avrò raggiunto il mio obiettivo.

Pax Romana

Pax RomanaBest selling author Adrian Goldsworthy turns his attention to the Pax Romana, the famous peace and prosperity brought by the Roman Empire at its height in the first and second centuries AD. Yet the Romans were conquerors, imperialists who took by force a vast empire stretching from the Euphrates to the Atlantic coast. Ruthless, Romans won peace not through coexistence but through dominance; millions died and were enslaved during the creation of their empire.  Pax Romana examines how the Romans came to control so much of the world and asks whether traditionally favorable images of the Roman peace are true. Goldsworthy vividly recounts the rebellions of the conquered, examines why they broke out, why most failed, and how they became exceeding rare. He reveals that hostility was just one reaction to the arrival of Rome and that from the outset, conquered peoples collaborated, formed alliances, and joined invaders, causing resistance movements to fade away.

Catullus' Bedspread: The Life of Rome's Most Erotic Poet

Catullus' Bedspread: The Life of Rome's Most Erotic PoetA vivid narrative that recreates the life of Gaius Valerius Catullus, Rome’s first modern” poet, and follows a young man’s journey through a world filled with all the indulgences and sexual excesses of the time, from doomed love affairs to shrewd political maneuvering and backstabbing—an accessible, appealing look at one of history’s greatest poets.

Born to one of Verona’s leading families, Catullus spent most of his young adulthood in Rome, mingling with the likes of Caesar and Cicero and chronicling his life through his poetry. Famed for his lyrical and subversive voice, his poems about his friends were jocular, often obscenely funny, while those who crossed him found themselves skewered in raunchy verse, sudden objects of hilarity and ridicule. These bawdy poems were disseminated widely throughout Rome. Many of his poems recall his secret longstanding affair with the seductive Clodia, an older woman who would eventually be plunged into scandal following the suspicious death of her aristocratic husband.

While Catullus and Clodia made love in the shadows, the whole of Italy was quaking as Caesar, Pompey and Crassus forged a doomed alliance for power. During these tumultuous years, Catullus increasingly turned to darker subject matter, and he finally composed his greatest work of all—a poem about the decoration on a bedspread—which forms the heart of this biography, a work of beauty that will achieve immortality and make Catullus a legend.

Romanland: Ethnicity and Empire in Byzantium

Romanland: Ethnicity and Empire in ByzantiumA leading historian argues that in the empire we know as Byzantium, the Greek speaking population was actually Roman, and scholars have deliberately mislabeled their ethnicity for the past two centuries for political reasons.

Was there ever such a thing as Byzantium? Certainly no emperor ever called himself Byzantine. And while the identities of minorities in the eastern empire are clear contemporaries speak of Slavs, Bulgarians, Armenians, Jews, and Muslims that of the ruling majority remains obscured behind a name made up by later generations.

Historical evidence tells us unequivocally that Byzantium's ethnic majority, no less than the ruler of Constantinople, would have identified as Roman. It was an identity so strong in the eastern empire that even the conquering Ottomans would eventually adopt it. But Western scholarship has a long tradition of denying the Romanness of Byzantium. In Romanland, Anthony Kaldellis investigates why and argues that it is time for the Romanness of these so called Byzantines to be taken seriously.

In the Middle Ages, he explains, people of the eastern empire were labeled Greeks, and by the nineteenth century they were shorn of their distorted Greekness and became Byzantine. Only when we understand that the Greek speaking population of Byzantium was actually Roman will we fully appreciate the nature of Roman ethnic identity. We will also better understand the processes of assimilation that led to the absorption of foreign and minority groups into the dominant ethnic group, the Romans who presided over the vast multiethnic empire of the east.

24 Hours in Ancient Rome: A Day in the Life of the People Who Lived There

24 Hours in Ancient Rome: A Day in the Life of the People Who Lived There
Walk a day in a Roman's sandals.
What was it like to live in one of the ancient world's most powerful and bustling cities one that was eight times densely populated than modern day New York? In this entertaining and enlightening guide, bestselling historian Philip Matyszak introduces us to the people who lived and worked there. In each hour of the day we meet a new character from emperor to slave girl, gladiator to astrologer, medicine woman to water clock maker and discover the fascinating details of their daily lives.

Not All Dead White Men: Classics and Misogyny in the Digital Age

Not All Dead White Men: Classics and Misogyny in the Digital AgeA disturbing exposé of how today's alt right men's groups use ancient sources to promote a new brand of toxic masculinity online.

A virulent strain of antifeminism is thriving online that treats women's empowerment as a mortal threat to men and to the integrity of Western civilization. Its proponents cite ancient Greek and Latin texts to support their claims arguing that they articulate a model of masculinity that sustained generations but is now under siege.

Donna Zuckerberg dives deep into the virtual communities of the far right, where men lament their loss of power and privilege, and strategize about how to reclaim them. She finds, mixed in with weightlifting tips and misogynistic vitriol, the words of the Stoics deployed to support an ideal vision of masculine life. On other sites, pickup artists quote Ovid's Ars Amatoria to justify ignoring women's boundaries. By appropriating the Classics, these men lend a veneer of intellectual authority and ancient wisdom to their project of patriarchal white supremacy. In defense or retaliation, feminists have also taken up the Classics online, to counter the sanctioning of violence against women.

Not All Dead White Men reveals that some of the most controversial and consequential debates about the legacy of the ancients are raging not in universities but online.


MetamorphicaIn the tradition of Zachary Mason’s bestselling first novel, The Lost Books of the Odyssey – where he recast episodes from Homer’s masterpiece – Metamorphica now reimagines Ovid’s epic poem of endless transformation, Metamorphoses. Just as the Roman poet reinvigorated the Greek Classical legends 700 years after Homer, so Mason now gives us a radical and exciting renovation of those myths, 2,000 years after Ovid.

It retells the great stories of Narcissus, Orpheus, Persephone, Icarus, Midas, Medea and Actaeon, and strings them together like the stars in constellations – with even Ovid himself entering the narrative. It’s as though the ancient mythologies had been rewritten by Borges or Calvino – or artificial intelligence – and brought glimmering back into our world. Metamorphica re engages with the elemental power of the ancient shape changing gods by keeping their essences while rewriting their stories. It is this extraordinary narrative approach that is so thrilling; we watch as the author extracts and out of the original legend – adding infinite perspectives to narratives we thought we knew. Mason understands that the great myths are parables – always in flux, always relevant – always throwing shards of light from the morning of the world.

The Classical World: The Foundations of the West and the Enduring Legacy of Antiquity

The Classical World: The Foundations of the West and the Enduring Legacy of AntiquityA masterly investigation into the Classical roots of Western civilization, taking the reader on an illuminating journey from Troy, Athens, and Sparta to Utopia, Alexandria, and Rome.

An authoritative and accessible study of the foundations, development, and enduring legacy of the cultures of Greece and Rome, centered on ten locations of seminal importance in the development of Classical civilization.

Starting with Troy, where history, myth and cosmology fuse to form the origins of Classical civilization, Nigel Spivey explores the contrasting politics of Athens and Sparta, the diffusion of classical ideals across the Mediterranean world, Classical science and philosophy, the eastward export of Greek culture with the conquests of Alexander the Great, the power and spread of the Roman imperium, and the long Byzantine twilight of Antiquity.

Searching for Sappho: The Lost Songs and World of the First Woman Poet

Searching for Sappho: The Lost Songs and World of the First Woman PoetFor than twenty five centuries, all that the world knew of the poems of Sappho—the first woman writer in literary history—were a few brief quotations preserved by ancient male authors. Yet those meager remains showed such power and genius that they captured the imagination of readers through the ages. But within the last century, dozens of new pieces of her poetry have been found written on crumbling papyrus or carved on broken pottery buried in the sands of Egypt. As recently as 2014, yet another discovery of a missing poem created a media stir around the world.

The poems of Sappho reveal a remarkable woman who lived on the Greek island of Lesbos during the vibrant age of the birth of western science, art, and philosophy. Sappho was the daughter of an aristocratic family, a wife, a devoted mother, a lover of women, and one of the greatest writers of her own or any age. Nonetheless, although most people have heard of Sappho, the story of her lost poems and the lives of the ancient women they celebrate has never been told for a general audience.

Searching for Sappho is the exciting tale of the rediscovery of Sappho’s poetry and of the woman and world they reveal.

Praetorian: The Rise and Fall of Rome's Imperial Bodyguard

Praetorian: The Rise and Fall of Rome's Imperial BodyguardA riveting account of ancient Rome’s imperial bodyguard, the select band of soldiers who wielded the power to make—or destroy—the emperors they served

Founded by Augustus around 27 B.C., the elite Praetorian Guard was tasked with the protection of the emperor and his family. As the centuries unfolded, however, Praetorian soldiers served not only as protectors and enforcers but also as powerful political players. Fiercely loyal to some emperors, they vied with others and ruthlessly toppled those who displeased them, including Caligula, Nero, Pertinax, and many . Guy de la Bédoyère provides a compelling first full narrative history of the Praetorians, whose dangerous ambitions ceased only when Constantine permanently disbanded them.

de la Bédoyère introduces Praetorians of all echelons, from prefects and messengers to artillery experts and executioners. He explores the delicate position of emperors for whom prestige and guile were the only defenses against bodyguards hungry for power. Folding fascinating details into a broad assessment of the Praetorian era, the author sheds new light on the wielding of power in the greatest of the ancient world’s empires.

Creators, Conquerors, and Citizens: A History of Ancient Greece

Creators, Conquerors, and Citizens: A History of Ancient GreeceWe Greeks are one in blood and one in language; we have temples to the gods and religious rites in common, and a common way of life. So the fifth century historian Herodotus has some Athenians declare, in explanation of why they would never betray their fellow Greeks to the enemy, the barbarian Persians. And he might have added further common features, such as clothing, foodways, and political institutions. But if the Greeks knew that they were kin, why did many of them side with the Persians against fellow Greeks, and why, generally, is ancient Greek history so often the history of internecine wars and other forms of competition with one another? This is the question acclaimed historian Robin Waterfield sets out to explore in this magisterial history of ancient Greece. With information, engagingly presented, than any similar work, this is the best single volume account of ancient Greece in than a generation. Waterfield gives a comprehensive narrative of seven hundred years of history, from the emergence of the Greeks around 750 BCE to the Roman conquest of the last of the Greco Macedonian kingdoms in 30 BCE. Equal weight is given to all phases of Greek history the Archaic, Classical, and Hellenistic periods. But history is not just facts; it is also a matter of how we interpret the evidence. Without compromising the readability of the book, Waterfield incorporates the most recent scholarship by classical historians and archaeologists and asks his readers to think critically about Greek history. A brilliant, up to date account of ancient Greece, suitable for history buffs and university students alike, Creators, Conquerors, and Citizens presents a compelling and comprehensive story of this remarkable civilization's disunity, underlying cultural solidarity, and eventual political unification.