By the fifteenth century Europe was a driving world force, but the origins of its success have until now remained obscured in prehistory. In this book, distinguished archaeologist Barry Cunliffe views Europe not in terms of states and shifting political land boundaries but as a geographical niche particularly favored in facing many seas. These seas, and Europe's great transpeninsular rivers, ensured a rich diversity of natural resources while also encouraging the dynamic interaction of peoples across networks of communication and exchange. The development of these early Europeans is rooted in complex interplays, shifting balances, and geographic and demographic fluidity.
To an extraordinary extent we continue to live in the shadow of the classical world. At every level from languages to calendars to political systems, we are the descendants of a 'classical Europe', using frames of reference created by ancient Mediterranean cultures. As this consistently fresh and surprising new book makes clear, however, this was no less true for the inhabitants of those classical civilizations themselves, whose myths, history, and buildings were an elaborate engagement with an already old and revered past filled with great leaders and writers, emigrations and battles. Indeed, much of the reason we know so much about the classical past is the obsessive importance it held for so many generations of Greeks and Romans, who interpreted and reinterpreted their changing casts of heroes and villains. Figures such as Alexander the Great and Augustus Caesar loom large in our imaginations today, but they were themselves fascinated by what had preceded them. The Birth of Classical Europe is therefore both an authoritative history, and also a fascinating attempt to show how our own changing values and interests have shaped our feelings about an era which is by some measures very remote but by others startlingly close.
This book provides the first comprehensive history of Afro-Eurasia during the first millennium BCE and the beginning of the first millennium CE. The history of these 1300 plus years can be summed up in one word: connectivity. The growth in connectivity during this period was marked by increasing political, economic, and cultural interaction throughout the region, and the replacement of the numerous political and cultural entities by a handful of great empires at the end of the period. In the process, local cultural traditions were replaced by great traditions rooted in lingua francas and spread by formalized educational systems. This process began with the collapse of the Bronze Age empires in the east and west, widespread population movements, and almost chronic warfare throughout Afro-Eurasia, while the cavalry revolution transformed the nomads of the central Asian steppes into founders of tribal confederations assembled by charismatic leaders and covering huge territories. At the same time, new artistic and intellectual movements appeared, including the teachings of Socrates, Confucius, the Buddha, and Laozi. Increased literacy also allowed people from a wide range of social classes such as the Greek soldier Xenophon, the Indian Buddhist emperor Ashoka, the Roman emperor Marcus Aurelius, and elite women such as the poetess Sappho, the Christian martyr Perpetua, and the scholar Ban Zhao to create literary works. When the period ended in 300 CE, conditions had changed dramatically. Temperate Afro-Eurasia from the Atlantic to the Pacific was dominated by a handful of empires--Rome, Sassanid Persia, and Jin Empire-that ruled more than half the world's population, while an extensive network of trade routes bound them to Southeast and Central Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa and made possible the spread of new book based religions including Christianity, Manichaeism, Zoroastrianism, and Buddhism, thereby setting the stage for the next millennium of Afro-Eurasian history.
Marcus Agrippa personified the term 'right-hand man'. As Emperor Augustus' deputy, he waged wars, pacified provinces, beautified Rome, and played a crucial role in laying the foundations of the Pax Romana for the next two hundred years but he served always in the knowledge he would never rule in his own name. Why he did so, and never grasped power exclusively for himself, has perplexed historians for centuries.In his teens he formed a life-long friendship with Julius Caesar's great nephew, Caius Octavius, which would change world history. Following Caesar's assassination on the Ides of March 44 BC, Agrippa was instrumental in asserting his friend's rights as the dictator's heir. He established a reputation as a bold admiral, defeating Sextus Pompeius at Mylae and Naulochus (36 BC), culminating in the epoch-making Battle of Actium (31 BC), which eliminated Marcus Antonius and Queen Cleopatra as rivals. He proved his genius for military command on land by ending bloody rebellions in the Cimmerian Bosporus, Gaul, Hispania and Illyricum.In Gaul Agrippa established the vital road network that helped turn Julius Caesar's conquests into viable provinces. As a diplomat, he befriended Herod the Great of Judaea and stabilised the East. As minister of works he overhauled Rome's drains and aqueducts, transformed public bathing in the city, created public parks with great artworks and built the original Pantheon.Agrippa became co-ruler of the Roman Empire with Augustus and married his daughter Julia. His three sons were adopted by his friend as potential heirs to the throne. Agrippa's unexpected death in 12 BC left Augustus bereft, but his bloodline lived on in the imperial family, through Agrippina the Elder to his grandson Caligula and great grandson Nero.MARCUS AGRIPPA is lucidly written by the author of the acclaimed biographies Eager for Glory and Germanicus. Illustrated with colour plates, figures and high quality maps, Lindsay Powell presents a penetrating new assessment of the life and achievements of the multifaceted man who put service to friend and country before himself.A gripping, thoroughly researched and hugely impressive biography of a key player in the transition from the Roman Republic to Augustus's Empire'. Saul David, University of Buckingham, author of WAR: From Ancient Egypt to Iraq.Augustus' ascent and reign are unthinkable without Marcus Agrippa. Surprisingly, there has been no biography of Agrippa in English for some eighty years. Powell's book admirably fills this gap and will be indispensable for anyone with a serious interest in this crucial historical period. Karl Galinsky, University of Texas at Austin, author of Augustus: Introduction to the Life of an Emperor.Marcus Agrippa was one of history's most intriguing right-hand men. Few played a greater role in the emperor Augustus' success. In vigorous prose, and with a fingertip feel for Roman politics and war, Lindsay Powell brings Agrippa to life. Barry Strauss, Cornell University, author of Masters of Command: Alexander, Hannibal, Caesar and the Genius of Leadership.
The Untold Story of Drusus the Elder, Conqueror of Germania
Author: Lindsay Powell
Publisher: Grub Street Publishers
Category: Biography & Autobiography
“The first biography of an important personality from the beginnings of Rome’s empire” (Graham Sumner, coauthor of Arms and Armour of the Imperial Roman Soldier). Nero Claudius Drusus Germanicus (Drusus the Elder) was the first conqueror of Germania (the Netherlands and Germany) and one of ancient Rome’s most beloved military heroes. Yet there has never been a full volume dedicated to his remarkable story, achievements, and legacy. Eager for Glory brings this heroic figure back to life for a modern audience. Drusus was a stepson of Augustus through his marriage to Livia. As a military commander he led daring campaigns by sea and land that pushed the northern frontiers of Rome’s empire to the Elbe River. He oversaw one of the largest developments of military infrastructure of the age. He married Marc Antony’s daughter, Antonia, and fathered Germanicus, Rome’s most popular general, and the future emperor Claudius. He was grandfather of Caligula. He died when he was only twenty-nine and was revered in death. Drawing on ancient texts, evidence from inscriptions and coins, the latest findings in archaeology, as well as astronomy and medical science, Lindsay Powell has produced a long overdue and definitive account of this great Roman.
A Site-by-Site Tour of the Stone, Bronze, and Iron Ages
Author: T. Douglas Price
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Category: Social Science
Werner Herzog's 2011 film Cave of Forgotten Dreams, about the painted caves at Chauvet, France brought a glimpse of Europe's extraordinary prehistory to a popular audience. But paleolithic cave paintings, stunning as they are, form just a part of a story that begins with the arrival of the first humans to Europe 1.3 million years ago, and culminates in the achievements of Greece and Rome. In Europe before Rome, T. Douglas Price takes readers on a guided tour through dozens of the most important prehistoric sites on the continent, from very recent discoveries to some of the most famous and puzzling places in the world, like Chauvet, Stonehenge, and Knossos. This volume focuses on more than 60 sites, organized chronologically according to their archaeological time period and accompanied by 200 illustrations, including numerous color photographs, maps, and drawings. Our understanding of prehistoric European archaeology has been almost completely rewritten in the last 25 years with a series of major findings from virtually every time period, such as Ötzi the Iceman, the discoveries at Atapuerca, and evidence of a much earlier eruption at Mt. Vesuvius. Many of the sites explored in the book offer the earliest European evidence we have of the typical features of human society--tool making, hunting, cooking, burial practices, agriculture, and warfare. Introductory prologues to each chapter provide context for the wider changes in human behavior and society in the time period, while the author's concluding remarks offer expert reflections on the enduring significance of these places. Tracing the evolution of human society in Europe across more than a million years, Europe before Rome gives readers a vivid portrait of life for prehistoric man and woman.
The Wiley Blackwell Handbook of Transpersonal Psychology presents the most inclusive resource yet published on this topic - which seeks to benefit humanity by integrating ancient wisdom and modern knowledge. Features the work of more than fifty leading voices in the field, creating the most comprehensive survey of transpersonal psychology yet published Includes emerging and established perspectives Charts the breadth and diversity of the transpersonal landscape Covers topics including shamanism, neurobiology, holotropic states, transpersonal experiences, and more
The Magnificent Life and Mysterious Death of Rome's Most Popular General
Author: Lindsay Powell
Publisher: Pen and Sword
Category: Biography & Autobiography
“The story of a Roman Emperor that might have been” (Fighting Times). Germanicus was regarded by many Romans as a hero in the mold of Alexander the Great. His untimely death, in suspicious circumstances, ended the possibility of a return to a more open republic. This, the first modern biography of Germanicus, is in parts a growing-up story, a history of war, a tale of political intrigue, and a murder mystery. In this highly readable, fast paced account, historical detective Lindsay Powell details Germanicus’s campaigns and battles in Illyricum and Germania; tracks him on his epic tour of the Eastern Mediterranean to Armenia and down the Nile; evaluates the possible causes of his death; and reports on the cruel fate his wife, Agrippina, and their children suffered at the hands of Praetorian Guard commander, and Tiberius’s infamous deputy, Aelius Sejanus.
To understand business and its political, cultural, and economic context, it helps to view it historically, yet most business histories look no further back than the nineteenth century. The full sweep of business history actually begins much earlier, with the initial cities of Mesopotamia. In the first book to describe and explain these origins, Roberts depicts the society of ancient traders and consumers, tracing the roots of modern business and underscoring the relationship between early and modern business practice. Roberts's narrative begins before business, which he defines as selling to voluntary buyers at a profit. Before business, he shows, the material conditions and concepts for the pursuit of profit did not exist, even though trade and manufacturing took place. The earliest business, he suggests, arose with the long distance trade of early Mesopotamia, and expanded into retail, manufacturing and finance in these command economies, culminating in the Middle Eastern empires. (Part One) But it was the largely independent rise of business, money, and markets in classical Greece that produced business much as we know it. Alexander the Great's conquests and the societies that his successors created in their kingdoms brought a version of this system to the old Middle Eastern empires, and beyond. (Part Two) At Rome this entrepreneurial market system gained important new features, including business corporations, public contracting, and even shopping malls. The story concludes with the sharp decline of business after the 3rd century CE. (Part Three) In each part, Roberts portrays the major new types of business coming into existence. He weaves these descriptions into a narrative of how the prevailing political, economic, and social culture shaped the nature and importance of business and the status, wealth, and treatment of business people. Throughout, the discussion indicates how much (and how little) business has changed, provides a clear picture of what business actually is, presents a model for understanding the social impact of business as a whole, and yields stimulating insights for public policy today.
This book examines the interaction between people and the coast of England. It spans from 700,000 years ago, and the earliest evidence of humans in this remote corner of north-west Europe, to the end of the 20th century. The coastline has witnessed interesting and significant events throughout history and looks set to do so in the future. Often it is the first place where changes can be seen, for example the effects of climate change. It is also where evidence for human adaptation to environmental changes can most readily be seen. The coast has, of course, also been a cultural contact zone for millennia in terms of trade, industry, immigration and conflict. We are certainly at a time of great environmental and economic transition, so it is apt to now take a long view and place current events in context. Some changes happening today may seem unprecedented but in fact are not, while others are entirely new. One thing we can be sure of is that the coast and sea will become increasingly important to us, both as an economic benefit and as a threat.