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Reading and Reference: World History: Rome and Her Empire


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This is a book that I have had in my personal home library for close to 40 years. It's an excellent book for both reading and for research and reference; especially if you are interested in the history of ancient Rome.

  • “Rome and Her Empire” by Cunliffe, Barry W.; Edited by David Baker, McGraw-Hill Book Company, 1978.

Barry Cunliffe or rather Sir Barrington Windsor Cunliffe, CBE, FBA, FSA, is a British archaeologist and academic. He specializes in writing comprehensive books about ancient civilizations. I have always been fascinated with the history of ancient Rome. As a freelance article writer I have used this book as a reference for some of the articles that I have published. In fact, I referred to this book to research and learn about the real history of Marcus Aurelius. That movie “Gladiator” (2000) which starred Russell Crowe, was more fiction than fact. The most important FACT that the movie distorted was that Marcus Aurelius did nominate his own son, Commodus, to succeed him. In the movie Aurelius handed that job over to the Roman General, Maximus (played by Russell Crowe), claiming that his own son was not fit to be a ruler of the people.  However, according to real historical records, it turns out Commodus was indeed a lousy ruler!


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When I was in school. history was one of the subjects but I did not study history in college or university. Nonetheless, I was very much interested in history, therefore, I continued to read history books. Apart from few characters and setting, nothing in Gladiator was historical. I think HBO TV series Rome was more accurate.

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