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Rome: Eternal City


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A thrilling portrait of the city at the heart of Western civilization, brought to life in twenty-two scenes from its 2,500-year history.

About the Author

Ferdinand Addis read classics at Oxford, before embarking on a career as a journalist and author. He lives in London with his wife and daughter.


'Superb ... Rome's history is written in blood and Addis, who has a vivid, pacey writing style, spares not the squeamish as he describes three millennia of violence from the first kings to Il Duce' The Times.
'Addis is not lacking in chutzpah ... This is an energetic attempt to bring Rome's history alive through grand narrative; the florid flights and snappy paragraphs are underpinned by serious reading ... Addis's chosen formula is to serve up selected highlights, mostly the expected ones [...] but to come at them from quirky angles ... Thanks to his enthusiasm, Addis succeeds in keeping his reader afloat' Guardian.
'Histories comprising a series of vignettes are in vogue, and here the format is applied to the city of Rome. From its ancient foundation to the Second World War, via Gauls, ghettos and gladiators, its 22 chapters focus on the themes of individuals, myths and beliefs' BBC World Histories.
'Telling the entire story of a city in a concise, meaningful way is always a challenge, but particularly when that city is somewhere as steeped in history as Rome. Ferdinand Addis solves this problem by adopting the in-vogue trend of using episodic vignettes ... There's plenty here to enjoy' History Revealed.
'He brings the myth of Rome alive by concentrating on vivid episodes from its rich history. This is a book about people, and their experiences, prejudices and beliefs' Oxford Times.
'A confident, elegant account of the city's progress ... [Addis's] version is admirably ambitious and succeeds splendidly in a task that would daunt lesser authors' Daily Mail.
'A fresh, lively and welcome retrospect on one of the Mediterranean's most complex and challenging stories' TLS.

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