Long sources of mystery, imagination, and inspiration, the myths and history of the ancient Mediterranean have given rise to artistic, religious, cultural, and intellectual traditions that span the centuries. In this unique and comprehensive introduction to the region's three major civilizations, Egypt, Greece, and Rome draws a fascinating picture of the deep links between the cultures across the Mediterranean and explores the ways in which these civilizations continue to be influential to this day.
Beginning with the emergence of the earliest Egyptian civilization around 3500 BC, Charles Freeman follows the history of the Mediterranean over a span of four millennia to AD 600, beyond the fall of the Roman empire in the west to the emergence of the Byzantine empire in the east. In addition to the three great civilizations, the peoples of the Ancient Near East and other lesser-known cultures such as the Etruscans, Celts, Persians, and Phoenicians are explored. The author examines the art, architecture, philosophy, literature, and religious practices of each culture, set against its social, political, and economic background. More than an overview of the primary political or military events, Egypt, Greece, and Rome pays particular attention to the actual lives of both the everyday person and the aristocracy: Here is history brought to life. Especially striking are the readable and stimulating profiles of key individuals throughout the ancient world, covering persons from Homer to Horace, the Pharaoh Akhenaten to the emperor Augustus, Alexander the Great to Julius Caesar, Jesus to Justinian, and Aristotle to Augustine.
Generously illustrated in both color and black-and-white, and drawing on the most up-to-date scholarship, Egypt, Greece, and Rome is a superb introduction for anyone seeking a better understanding of the civilizations of the ancient Mediterranean and their legacy to the West.
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A well done academic intro done in audio
Fact After Fact After Fact
This is a high quality recording of a textbook being read aloud. There were no ums, ahs or annoying & distracting noises, but neither was there any enthusiasm from a monotonous narrator. Both the data and presentation style are traditionally objective and the tone seems slightly removed from the subject matter. Facts about people and events are mentioned in passing without any indication from the author that they are links in a chain to future things. I felt it was organized as things just happen, one after another. It is 32 hours of who, what, where and how, but rarely any why. There was no indication that the author felt that any fact was more important than or related to any other, so it was difficult for me to place the facts into a comprehensive historical narrative. There wasn’t enough thematic structure for me and all the information ran together to become an unappealing and overwhelming fact blob.
If you want to learn more about Egypt, Greece and Rome, I recommend that you use your credits to purchase 32 hours of the many other excellent ancient history books or courses available on audible. Audible has so many better choices!
- Emily "Learning About the Ancient World"