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Having recently discovered an interest in Ancient history, I picked up this book hoping for some information to flesh out the bones of my minimal knowledge. It's divided into sections: chronological chapters explaining Rome's emergance as a regional & then world power; its leading political & literary figures; details of daily life & social interactions. There are also helpful chapters on the prominant myths and the gods/ godesses. The information is pitched at adult level but not those necessarily already well versed in Roman history. For a beginner like myself, it is an excellant starter course, providing enough information to make the events understandable but not bombarding the amatuer historian with too much weighty detail. The style of the book is very accessible: the text is imbued with a sense of fun, a successful attempt to make the ancient practices & events come alive to the modern reader. Some readers may be put off by the use of extra information boxes dotted on the pages (fascinating though they are) and the text of most pages is fragmented by headings. The book provides suggestions for further reading and I think where this book suceeds is in making the reader want to extend their knowledge beyond this fun guide to the basics, giving us a taster of subjects to be further explored.
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