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34 of 37 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A good educational Aid
I have bought this book to help with my studies in field archaeology as I need to know an extensive amount about the Roman Period and his book has everything relevant, Salway writes in such a way that the average leyman can understand this simplistic but fascinating style of writing along with the footnotes have helped me write several essays this book is a goldmine of...
Published on 4 Oct. 2002 by MR E P GRIST

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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Roman Britain
It always seems a bit impertinent to criticise a serious and scholarly book by an expert in a field in which one is not very knowledgeable oneself. Salway's book is balanced, full, well-sourced and ranges across the full history and geography of Britain 55 BC -circa 400. It combines narrative with analysis, mentions the problems scholars and archaeologists have debated,...
Published on 12 Nov. 2011 by a Flynn


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34 of 37 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A good educational Aid, 4 Oct. 2002
This review is from: A History of Roman Britain (Paperback)
I have bought this book to help with my studies in field archaeology as I need to know an extensive amount about the Roman Period and his book has everything relevant, Salway writes in such a way that the average leyman can understand this simplistic but fascinating style of writing along with the footnotes have helped me write several essays this book is a goldmine of source material - the inclusion of several maps of Roman Britain is a stroke of pure genius.
I heartilly recommend this book to anyone who hads an extensive interest in Rome & it's people & empire.
However if the reader has only a passive interest in Roman History this may be heavy reading (and not entirely suitable for schoolchildren to use as a study aid) as Salway does tend to veer away from the point sometimes albeit for a short while it can be distracting and there are sometimes Omissions such as years (I know we cannot date archaeological evidence exactly but a 'ballpark' estimate would be nice) Salway also uses the writing of Tacitus a roman historian - sometimes so much so that I feel I no Longer need to read the writings of Tacitus as they all are here.
all in all an excellent aid for the older student.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Roman Britain, 12 Nov. 2011
This review is from: A History of Roman Britain (Paperback)
It always seems a bit impertinent to criticise a serious and scholarly book by an expert in a field in which one is not very knowledgeable oneself. Salway's book is balanced, full, well-sourced and ranges across the full history and geography of Britain 55 BC -circa 400. It combines narrative with analysis, mentions the problems scholars and archaeologists have debated, and is well sourced without being a cluttered mass of footnotes and bibliography. No dount its standards of research and accuracy are high.

Yet--and I do say this on the basis of loving the subject of Roman Britain, not disliking it--it is rather dull. (Worthy and dull?)
How could he have got round this? Some suggestions from a non-specialist:
--hanging explanations and issues round colourful but also crucial historical events and events
--starting chapters with stimulating and evocative "mysteries": just how did that archaeological find cause us to rethink? just what did that remark of Tacitus mean? just when and why did the Romans leave?
--shorter, punchier sentences. It is quite a good idea not to have an overall assertion and supporting eviednce in the same long sentence, and then further evidence in the next sentence: but it often happens here.
--putting key maps or tables at helpful places in the text instead of in a clump at the front.
One is reminded of that old adage: "Writing history is still writing". In places the style is not only flat but convoluted. To take a genuinely random example:

"If we are right in seeing the 'waves' of imported coins as representing actual movements of people--and it might be safer but unhelpful in constructing a hypothesis simply to record the coins without interruption--then it was probably in the later second century BC that Britain first began to feel the pressure from Germany on the people known to the ancients vaguely as the Belgae".

Surely there are better ways to say this? This book is much easier to put down than to keep open, I fear.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A history of Roman Britain, 6 Mar. 2014
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This review is from: A History of Roman Britain (Paperback)
This is one of the books recommended by the tutor of an on-line course run by Exeter University. The book has proved an invaluable source of information for the work needed. I would recommend it , and the course, to anyone interested in the Roman period.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A History of Roman Britain!, 22 Feb. 2011
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Je Salter (UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: A History of Roman Britain (Paperback)
If you are looking for a book that gives you the specific details of Roman Britian that's written in a way that's fairly easy to read unlike some books of this nature, then this is a book for you. It gives you more than just dates and makes a good addition to your library!

It has all kinds of fascinating details from what life was like in the country, religion, Britain before the Romans came and how it was after they left. It gives you so much more than just dates as someone suggested. Very good.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Worthy, informative and dull, 10 Mar. 2014
This review is from: A History of Roman Britain (Paperback)
Peter Salway's book may be a sine qua non of Romano-British history it is now however the place to start reading on the subject. It is thorough in application however. It is very good if you desire an in-depth description of tribal relations with the Romans' or wish to know of the machinations of the Roman successions, or detailed information on the construction of, for example Hadrian's wall, and alter additions and subtractions to it. It is almost utterly bereft of anecdotes and fails to inspire or entertain in any sense. This where I began my Romano-British reading and halfway through I gave up which is very rare for me. I actually didn't get as far as the later sections which dealt with 'Britain under Roman rule' - assimilation, town and country, economy and religion and society, as I felt I could find livelier writing elsewhere.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 20 Nov. 2014
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This review is from: A History of Roman Britain (Paperback)
Yet to read but looks good
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13 of 28 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A record of dates and names rather than life., 12 Dec. 2000
By A Customer
The book covers in great detail the centuries from Caesar to the exodus of the Roman army and even beyond those frontiers of time. It has copious dates and names of people and places but somehow it does not provide a coherent narrative which takes the reader into life in Roman Britain.
There is a lack of depth at any one point which would help to explain what was happening to the people who lived in that society. There is a lot of historical fact, or records, but the book does not inform about what it was like to be a citizen, a servant or a slave in Roman Britain.
It is about a past that is dead - not one that is linked to the contemporary geography, language, beliefs and self-understanding of the islands and people that were occupied by the Roman army.
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A History of Roman Britain
A History of Roman Britain by Peter Salway (Paperback - 31 May 2001)
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