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Bibliophile price: £9.00
Hannibal's bid to conquer Rome is legendary, but how well known is Scipio Africanus who finally defeated him in 202 BC? Likewise, the great orator Cicero is a major figure in Roman history, but have we heard of the vicious young man Clodius whose debaucheries he exposed relentlessly in speeches that were as witty as they were shocking? In this chronicle we learn not only about the kings and generals who ruled republican Rome but also the notable figures who shaped the political and cultural landscape. The biographies of 57 foremost Romans are accompanied by timelines and features. Roman entertainment would include both the theatre, with audiences standing in the early days, and gladiatorial combats, which originally were limited to private functions and only became public events at the end of the Republican period. Trade in wine, olive oil, grain and pottery created serious money for the merchant classes, so Roman senators were forbidden to engage in trade, making it impossible for personal gain to influence their political decisions. The period ends with the dramatic events surrounding the death of Julius Caesar, who rose to power as a brilliant orator and was betrayed by his friends, leaving his nephew Augustus to initiate the imperial age with the help or hindrance of Mark Antony and his Egyptian mistress Cleopatra. Arranged chronologically and beautifully illustrated with maps, diagrams and almost 300 reproductions, 98 in colour. 240pp, softback.
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