Book cover of Emperor of Rome: Ruling the Ancient Roman World by Mary Beard
Ancient Civilizations

Emperor of Rome: Ruling the Ancient Roman World

In her international bestseller SPQR, Mary Beard told the thousand-year story of ancient Rome, from its slightly shabby Iron Age origins to its reign as the undisputed hegemon of the Mediterranean. Now, drawing on more than thirty years of teaching and writing about Roman history, Beard turns to the emperors who ruled the Roman Empire, beginning with Julius Caesar (assassinated 44 BCE) and taking us through the nearly three centuries—and some thirty emperors—that separate him from the boy-king Alexander Severus (assassinated 235 CE). […Learn More]

Book cover of Queens of a Fallen World: The Lost Women of Augustine's Confessions by Kate Cooper
Ancient Civilizations

Queens of a Fallen World: The Lost Women of Augustine’s Confessions

Queens of a Fallen World tells a story of betrayal, love, and ambition in the ancient world as seen through a woman’s eyes. Historian Kate Cooper introduces us to four women whose hopes and plans collided in Augustine’s early adulthood: his mother, Monnica of Thagaste; his lover; his fiancée; and Justina, the troubled empress of ancient Rome. Drawing upon their depictions in the Confessions, Cooper skilfully reconstructs their lives against the backdrop of their fourth-century society. […Learn More]

Book cover of Gaius Marius: The Rise and Fall of Rome's Saviour by Marc Hyden
Ancient Civilizations

Gaius Marius: The Rise and Fall of Rome’s Saviour

Gaius Marius was one of the most remarkable and significant figures of the late Roman Republic. At a time when power tended to be restricted to a clique of influential families, he rose from relatively humble origins to attain the top office of consul. He even went on to hold the post an unprecedented seven times. His political career flourished but was primarily built on military success. […Learn More]

Book cover of The Rise of Rome: From the Iron Age to the Punic Wars by Kathryn Lomas
Ancient Civilizations

The Rise of Rome: From the Iron Age to the Punic Wars

By the third century BC, the once-modest settlement of Rome had conquered most of Italy and was poised to build an empire throughout the Mediterranean basin. What transformed a humble city into the preeminent power of the region? In The Rise of Rome, the historian and archaeologist Kathryn Lomas reconstructs the diplomatic ploys, political stratagems, and cultural exchanges whereby Rome established itself as a dominant player in a region already brimming with competitors. […Learn More]

Book cover of Phoenicians and the Making of the Mediterranean by Carolina Lopez Ruiz
Ancient Civilizations

Phoenicians and the Making of the Mediterranean

The first comprehensive history of the cultural impact of the Phoenicians, who knit together the ancient Mediterranean world long before the rise of the Greeks.

Imagine you are a traveler sailing to the major cities around the Mediterranean in 750 BC. You would notice a remarkable similarity in the dress, alphabet, consumer goods, and gods from Gibraltar to Tyre. […Learn More]

Book cover of Ten Caesars: Roman Emperors from Augustus to Constantine by Barry Strauss
Biography & Autobiography

Ten Caesars: Roman Emperors from Augustus to Constantine

In this essential and “enlightening” (The New York Times Book Review) work, Barry Strauss tells the story of the Roman Empire from rise to reinvention, from Augustus, who founded the empire, to Constantine, who made it Christian and moved the capital east to Constantinople.

During these centuries Rome gained in splendor and territory, then lost both. By the fourth century, the time of Constantine, the Roman Empire had changed so dramatically in geography, ethnicity, religion, and culture that it would have been virtually unrecognizable to Augustus. […Learn More]

Book cover of The Death of Caesar: The Story of History's Most Famous Assassination by Barry Strauss
Ancient Civilizations

The Death of Caesar: The Story of History’s Most Famous Assassination 

Julius Caesar was stabbed to death in the Roman Senate on March 15, 44 BC—the Ides of March according to the Roman calendar. He was, says author Barry Strauss, the last casualty of one civil war and the first casualty of the next civil war, which would end the Roman Republic and inaugurate the Roman Empire. “The Death of Caesar provides a fresh look at a well-trodden event, with superb storytelling sure to inspire awe” (The Philadelphia Inquirer). […Learn More]

Book cover of Alaric the Goth: An Outsider's History of the Fall of Rome by Douglas Boin
Ancient Civilizations

Alaric the Goth: An Outsider’s History of the Fall of Rome

Denied citizenship by the Roman Empire, a soldier named Alaric changed history by unleashing a surprise attack on the capital city of an unjust empire.

Stigmatized and relegated to the margins of Roman society, the Goths were violent “barbarians” who destroyed “civilization,” at least in the conventional story of Rome’s collapse. But a slight shift of perspective brings their history, and ours, shockingly alive. […Learn More]

Book cover of Twelve Caesars: Images of Power from the Ancient World to the Modern by Mary Beard

Twelve Caesars: Images of Power from the Ancient World to the Modern

From the bestselling author of SPQR: A History of Ancient Rome, the fascinating story of how images of Roman autocrats have influenced art, culture, and the representation of power for more than 2,000 years

What does the face of power look like? Who gets commemorated in art and why? And how do we react to statues of politicians we deplore? In this book—against a background of today’s “sculpture wars”—Mary Beard tells the story of how for more than two millennia portraits of the rich, powerful, and famous in the western world have been shaped by the image of Roman emperors, especially the “Twelve Caesars,” from the ruthless Julius Caesar to the fly-torturing Domitian.  […Learn More]