- Paperback: 592 pages
- Publisher: Pan; Reprints edition (5 May 2006)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0330491369
- ISBN-13: 978-0330491365
- Product Dimensions: 13 x 4.1 x 19.7 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars See all reviews (50 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 190,101 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
The Fall of the Roman Empire: A New History Paperback – Unabridged, 5 May 2006
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More About the Author
'Meticulously and compellingly, he traces the rise of the tribe... -- The Times
'[a] ground-breaking study' -- Mail on Sunday
'it is unusual for a modern academic historian to arrive at, let alone articulate, so thorough a conclusion.' -- The Times
'this is history writing at its best' -- The Tablet
Ground-breaking study -- Mail on Sunday
A major new narrative account of one of history's greatest and most epic mysteries: the strange death of the Roman Empire.See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
Other reviewers have provided more in-depth looks at the pros and cons of this book - with which I would agree (in particular some of the contemporary language and jokes would seem out of place)- therefore I will not repeat them here. Suffice to say this is an excellent, informative account of one of the world's most important events.
The book deals very well with a number of complex themes and always has an eye on the overall argument which I will not set out here as others have done so in their comments. This period of history is certainly a very exciting one and there are many important parallels for present-day situations. That writers such as Mr Heather are producing books such as this one on the late Roman period is a benefit for us all and a change to the majority of history books published today which, I feel, tend to concentrate on much more recent history.
The Who's Who at the back of the book is very useful to keep track of the individuals mentioned in the text (as, necessarily, a book covering such a large and complex topic must deal with a many personalities). My only criticism, and it is a minor one, is that the maps could be improved; often the text refers to the maps but then goes on to discuss places that are not on the maps. Overall a brilliant and surprisingly 'unheavy' read for a book of its length.
He essentially makes, in what is a very accessible narrative story, three main points.
First, the Empire as it stood about 300 AD had survived the "crisis of the third century" and emerged from it in a better position to resist the "ennemies at the Gates" (i.e. the Germanic ones but also the Sassanid Persians, which had become much more aggressive than the previous Parthian dynasty) whose pressure along the Rhine and the Danube had increased considerably. This is the traditional argument about the increased difficulties entailed by having to fight on several fronts simultaneously where each of the ennemies will take advantage of any withdrawal of troops facing it to attack its piece of the frontier. The date chosen for beginning the book is anything but innocent. While showing that the Germanic tribes had merged into a few more powerful confederations (the Vandals, Franks and Alamans, in particular), selection 300 AD as a starting allows to mention the 3rd century civil wars without having to emphasize how destructive they were on the Empire.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Loved it, absolutely adored it.
Based on a deep fascination with the Roman Empire's fall and a total lack of knowledge around the events which triggered it, I took a punt on... Read more
The perfect companion for all Roman history enthusiasts is the ROMA VICTRIX WINE BEAKERCalix Imperium, Roma Victrix Pewter wine beaker
In this book, Heather presents an... Read more
A different perspective and an excellent way to understand the fall of the Roman Empire in the West. Highly recommended.Published 11 months ago by Alberto Souviron
This might be one of the best history books I have ever read. When I finished the book, I had the impression that the author had explained the fall of Rome in a satisfactory manner... Read morePublished 15 months ago by Eustaquia