This introduction to the people of ancient Rome is packed with information about their daily lives and generously illustrated with examples of the buildings, artwork, and everyday objects they left behind as evidence of their remarkable culture. From rich and powerful emperors to entrepreneurial merchants and artisans to daring gladiators and lowly slaves, each played a role in the establishment of the largest empire the world has ever seen. An engaging portrait of a society that continues to fascinate us two thousand years after its heyday, the accessible text is sprinkled with quotes from ancient Roman writers, historians, and emperors. Ages twelve and up.
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Paul Roberts is a curator of Roman antiquities at the British Museum.From School Library Journal:
Grade 3–6—With its high-quality photos of artifacts, buildings, and artwork, this history of the Romans through the end of the Empire looks to be an exciting overview. Unfortunately, the writing falls short. There is no coherence between paragraphs, and the text reads as though random facts were thrown together. Fifteen chapters discuss different members of the populace, including "Senators and Generals," "Farmers and Foodmakers," and "Craftsmen and Artists." The text uses quotes from original sources and also includes the Latin names for many items and people, a good addition. However, some of the information seems misleading, as in the chapter on women, which describes the freedom they had without fully addressing the fact that they were still greatly restricted. Peter Connolly's Ancient Rome (Oxford Univ., 2001) and Fiona MacDonald's Ancient Rome (Heinemann Library, 2004) are much better overviews, although their photos aren't as spectacular.—Clare A. Dombrowski, Amesbury Public Library, MA END
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