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Posted July 20, 2012
Recommended - worth your time
Topics jump around a bit and there is some repetition, but the book is very well written and the subject interesting. Author provides additional related book titles and authors for further review at the end of each chapter. Helpful if you are interested in that chapter's subject.
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Posted November 28, 2012
I learned a lot form this book the Author was very educated and
I learned a lot form this book the Author was very educated and obtained information from some other sources but not many. The Book wasn’t persuasive at all it was just all facts and of course there was some things that could not be proven but historians did make an educated guess with the information that they did have. A little over 300 pages it hit on religion government, culture, and economics over a very long time period. Woolf does a good job of giving examples of different viewpoints and really allows you to make your own decision about whether this person was good or bad. One of many examples would be if the Roman Empire attacking Carthage was a good thing or a bad thing? Was it good to destroy another empire just to expand yours? And was Rome greedy? This was great of him to do because it really allowed you to think and consider how you saw Rome but giving you facts to go off of.
The book didn’t expand on a lot material, and it is understandable that covering all of Rome in one book is hard. Being able to give every detail is impossible but the book could have gone more in depth in a lot of different areas. For example going more in depth with the fall of the Roman Empire would have been a lot better. There was a lot on how the Empire rose but it wasn’t much on how Rome fell, just a little more than two chapters.
The book didn’t impact me in such a way that I would read it again or use it as another reference. The book was very informing but the lack of citations on many facts was questionable to how he acquired them. Also many of the sentences seemed hard to read and not because they were boring but because the transition wasn’t very good and the sentences didn’t flow as well as other book I have read. I would recommend it to someone that was just looking for an overview of the Roman Empire and how it rose and fell. The book does have some good facts but I don’t think this is the first choice of a book to choose for writing a paper. Overall the book kept me interested for the most part like I said before there were some dry parts but a great over view of the Roman Empire.
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