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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Skimming the surface
This book has been criticised for not being something else. If you want an in-depth history of the Egyptians, Hittites, Indo-Europeans or Romans, look elsewhere. This is a history of Europe as a whole (which includes the Near-East and North Africa) over a long period of time. For anyone who wants to understand the transition of the region AS A WHOLE from prehistory to...
Published on 11 April 2009 by Patrick Neylan

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26 of 28 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Nice book but of limited use only
After going through this book I must say that I am a bit disappointed. Although this book certainly has it's uses, it is very limited in what it gives you as an atlas of ancient history. I had expected at least some detailed maps of the important areas (Egypt, Middle east, Mesopotamia, etc.) but you only get very general maps covering an area from Norway down to the...
Published on 15 Jun. 2007 by Van Acker Philip


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26 of 28 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Nice book but of limited use only, 15 Jun. 2007
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This review is from: The New Penguin Atlas of Ancient History (Paperback)
After going through this book I must say that I am a bit disappointed. Although this book certainly has it's uses, it is very limited in what it gives you as an atlas of ancient history. I had expected at least some detailed maps of the important areas (Egypt, Middle east, Mesopotamia, etc.) but you only get very general maps covering an area from Norway down to the Sahara, with broad outlines of the empires and cultures, in most cases cities are not even indicated. If you only need the broad outlines of what was happening, this book is fine, but if you are looking for more then this book is definitely not what you need. The accompanying text is of more value, especially the population estimates, trade routes and so but most of it is a good but basic summary of history from the emergence of modern man till the fall of the Roman Empire.
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41 of 46 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Useful but rather small, 18 Oct. 2003
This review is from: The New Penguin Atlas of Ancient History (Paperback)
This is a small book both in terms of page numbers and size. However a lot of information is crammed in, mostly by using very small type faces, and I mean small. The format through most of the book is text on the verso page and a map (almost monochromatic) on the recto page. The content is sound but obviously restricted by the size of the book. I use this as an easy access aide memoire to the main events of the ancient period. Could be useful for school as it is cheap and compact.
I've awarded 3 stars as I think its rather grandiose title is a bit misleading; I would call it a guide rather than an atlas.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Skimming the surface, 11 April 2009
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Patrick Neylan "Patrick Neylan" (Orpington, Kent, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The New Penguin Atlas of Ancient History (Paperback)
This book has been criticised for not being something else. If you want an in-depth history of the Egyptians, Hittites, Indo-Europeans or Romans, look elsewhere. This is a history of Europe as a whole (which includes the Near-East and North Africa) over a long period of time. For anyone who wants to understand the transition of the region AS A WHOLE from prehistory to history, it is excellent and almost unique.

It's not quite as good as its Medieval counterpart, but it's splendid nonetheless. It starts in the Ice Age and ends in 362AD, with Emperor Julian about to lead his legions against the Persians and with the Huns in Kazakhstan, looming ominously. It overlaps with the Medieval book, but should have overlapped a bit more in order to show the end of the classical world.

There are printing errors - a missed character on one map; Ireland disappearing briefly at the end of the Ice Age - but the story of the creation of our world is well told with McEvedy's trademark deftness and wit. Where else would the non-specialist learn about Sargon of Akkad, the Seleucids and the Tocharians - not to mention the linguistic development that made nearly every language from the Orkneys to the Indus related to each other?

This is a light, easy read that can be dipped into at any time for an easy, broad introduction to early history. Recommended.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Nice Overview, 4 Feb. 2012
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N. Lott (Devon, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The New Penguin Atlas of Ancient History (Paperback)
This is a good broad brushstrokes overview of early history. Anyone who expects a detailed treatment of 50000 years in a hundred page book is asking a bit much. As the accompanying text makes clear many of the details on the early maps are vague and subject to change (in fact I think this edition has been substantially revised since the first one) but the author has tied the whole of history together quite nicely. The idea of keeping the same projection on the same place on each page works quite well and allows you to flip backwards and forwards to follow movements.

My main criticism would be around the presentation of the map. Why use a multitude of very similar hatchings to denote language instead of much easier to read colours? Understandable for a litho printed book in the 70s, much less so now.
It would also have been nice to get a bit more of China into the story but it is understandably hard to make that fit nicely onto a map.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent overview, 19 July 2013
This review is from: The New Penguin Atlas of Ancient History (Paperback)
This Atlas is a superb visual guide with clear authoritative text to the fluctuations and tides of European culture, language & history from pre history to the dawn of the medieval, feudalist period. Brilliant for using as a supporting tool with other historical texts or simply for tracking empires & tribes on their complex journeys through European history. Highly recommended.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A bargain historical atlas which fits your (large) pocket., 14 Oct. 2014
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This review is from: The New Penguin Atlas of Ancient History (Paperback)
While the usefulness of the book would have improved with a larger size, having it in my backpack for history class meant that I did not hurt myself. The combined text and maps are in fact excellent, and the portability in combination with the fair price tag says to me that this is bargain.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Atlas of ancient history, 9 Mar. 2013
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This review is from: The New Penguin Atlas of Ancient History (Paperback)
An amazing book cleverly done in a way that explains history in a very inovative way. It is a book I like to have on hand to referrer to when reading other history books.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful little book, 18 Feb. 2007
This review is from: The New Penguin Atlas of Ancient History (Paperback)
This great little book is the first of the Penguin series by Colin McEvedy and covers the period from 12500 BC to 362 AD. It should be noted that it only covers Europe, North Africa and the Near East.

It's hard to imagine someone with an interest in history who would not enjoy reading and re-reading this book. It also makes a handy reference book. Wonderful!
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4.0 out of 5 stars THE NEW PENGUIN ATLAS OF ANCIENT HISTORY, 23 Mar. 2013
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This review is from: The New Penguin Atlas of Ancient History (Paperback)
Very satisfied with this purchase. Found it a concise and authoritative surveyof its period and an excellent introductory basis for further study.
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5.0 out of 5 stars If you are interested ancient history you MUST have this book, 1 July 2014
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OL (Hanwell, London United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The New Penguin Atlas of Ancient History (Paperback)
This is one of those books that really helps the reader understand how events affect our present.
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The New Penguin Atlas of Ancient History by John Woodcock (Paperback - 28 Nov. 2002)
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