In the Name of Rome: The Men Who Won the Roman Empire

14 CDs. 18 hrs. Tantor. Feb. 2016. ISBN 9781515902454. $44.99. digital download. HIST
Classicist and military historian Goldsworthy (Augustus) undertakes an exhaustive review of the growth, conquests, and eventual decline of the Roman Empire through a series of biographical sketches of its notable generals from Scipio Africanus in the third century BCE through Julius Caesar and up to Belisarius in the sixth century CE. Scrupulously attending to primary sources including Livy, Tacitus, Appian, and Dio, while correlating these with epigraphic and numismatic evidence, Goldsworthy takes pains to separate historical fact from imperial propaganda. Through his examination of the organization and tactics of the Roman military as it evolved from a citizen militia into a mercenary strike force, he hints at one of the key causes of Rome's success and of its undoing. Narrator Derek Perkins does a solid and engaging job.
VERDICT While occasionally a bit slow owing to the author's overreliance on extended quotes from his ancient sources, the book will be much appreciated by students of classical and military history.

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