A fine book and I loved it. The cover is scary to look at and there's something about the way the book is laid out inside that reminds one of library dust and spider webs. However this was a genuine delight to read, as smooth as butter, and I'm really glad I bought it. First published in 1959 apparently some of it has been superseded by recent historical advances. Nevertheless, the core story is still the same - from monarchy to republic to principate to decline. No one is going to make a Hollywood blockbuster of this publication unlike some other history of Rome books you might find in bookstores but that's the appeal, this book is for edification not entertainment and rightly so I affirm. The writing style is easy on the mind and I loved the sweep and the detail - neither too little nor too much. I hadn't heard of the Gracchi brothers until I read about them here but now they pop up in every other book I read. Most likely I just never paid close attention before now. All the usual suspects are here Sulla, Pompey, Caesar of course, Augustus, Cicero but also less well-known names like Crassus, the aforementioned Gracchi brothers and Cato. A good buy.