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    Annette Giesecke is Professor of Classics at the University of Delaware. Her research interests include the history and meaning of gardens in ancient Greece and Rome, urbanism and ethics of land use in classical antiquity, as well as expressions of the utopian impulse in classical art, literature, and architecture. With that background you would expect a well researched and informative work and indeed it is. However, it must be stressed that the book focuses only on plants that appear in Ovid`s Metamorphoses.

     

    The book starts with a brief overview of gardens, plants and plant lore of ancient Greece and Rome. This is quite useful as it gives enough background to appreciate what follows next. In the introduction, the author highlights the fact that the history of ancient gardens was also a history of the Roman villa. It helps the reader understand how the ancient Roman garden went from an afterthought at the back of the house to a focal point and highlight.

     

    continue to read the full review of The Mythology of Plants by Annette Giesecke

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    The Greek & Latin Roots of English by Tamara M Green
     
    Book Review by caldrail
     
    What a strange beast our language is. You would think that after two thousand years of history and societal change, with all the dynamics of the spoken word , the relative strengths of regional dialects, the dilution caused by travel or immigration, the very ease with which new words can enter common usage, that the English language is greatly different from that spoken by our distant ancestors. Perhaps it is, yet I was surprised to learn that 60% of modern English has roots in classical Greek or Latin...
     
    ...continue to the full review of The Greek & Latin Roots of English by Tamara M Green
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    Lost and Found: Pompeii and the Lost Cities by John Malam
     
    Book Review by Aurelia
     
    “Pompeii and other Lost Cities” is part of the Lost and Found series, a wonderful little collection of history books made for children aged 7 years and above. It is a great way to introduce your child to the wonders of history and fire up their imagination of ancient civilisations. This is certainly the kind of book that I would have spent hours poring over as a child...
     
    ...read the full review of Lost and Found: Pompeii and the Lost Cities by John Malam
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    We added another scientific paper. The download is for free, all you have to do is log on and DOWNLOAD

    Minting in Vandal North Africa: coins of the Vandal period in the Coin Cabinet of Vienna’s Kunsthistorisches Museum by GUIDO M. BERNDT ROLAND STEINACHER
     
    This paper offers a re-examination of some problems regarding the coinage of Vandal North Africa. The coinage of this barbarian successor state is one of the first non-imperial coinages in the Mediterranean world of the fifth and sixth centuries. Based on the fine collection in the Coin Cabinet of Vienna’s Kunsthistorisches Museum, this article questions the chronology of the various issues and monetary relations between the denominations under the Vandal kings, especially after the reign of Gunthamund (484– 96). The Vandals needed and created a solid financial system. In terms of political, administrative and economic structures they tried to integrate their realm into the changing world of late antiquity and the early Middle Ages.
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    Book Review by Ian Hughes
     
    It is a truth universally acknowledged that the Sasanid Shahs would regularly persecute their Christian subjects, whom they suspected of being in alliance with Rome, and that in response war would break out with the Later Roman Empire as the emperors attempted to stop the persecution of their co-religionists. In addition, it is sometimes assumed that after the last Romano-Sasanid war the newly-converted Arabs swept away the Sasanids and imposed Islam on their newly-subject peoples...
     
    ...continue to the full review of The Chronicle of Seert: Christian Historical Imagination in Late Antique Iraq by Philip Wood
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    By Viggen, in News,

    Alex Johnston is author of several fiction books about Marcus Mettius, a minor character in Julius Caesar's Commentaries on the Gallic War.
     
    UNRV Hello Alex, why don’t you tell us a little bit about yourself and how you got interested in Roman history?
    Alex Johnston: I’ve worked in finance and technology most of my career, and have always been interested in history – ancient history primarily, and Roman history primarily primarily. Not sure how it happened, to be honest with you. It was just always the case for as long as I can remember. In Caesar’s Lictor, I have Pompey riding Crassus about how old he is. Well, I’m the same age, more or less, and thinking about retiring. So I thought it would be fun to do something with that interest as sort of a post-retirement gig. The extra $1.50 or so per month that I expect to earn should really come in handy...
     
    ...continue to the Interview with Alex Johnston
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    Book Review by Lindsay Powell
    The 2,000th anniversary of the death of Augustus has renewed interest in the man regarded as the founder of the Roman Empire and its first emperor. With a canny sense for timing, acclaimed military historian Adrian Goldsworthy has published a new biography of this important, and still controversial, historical figure.
    The new biography joins his other well-received profiles of the great personalities of the Late Republic, Caesar: The Life of a Colossus (2006) and Antony and Cleopatra (2010). In his Introduction, Goldsworthy states his goal is to “tell Augustus' story afresh” (p. 11), and his mission is “to write as if this were a biography of a modern statesman, asking the same questions even if our sources make it difficult to answer them, and trying as far as possible to understand the real man” (p. 5). He makes clear that “this is not a history of the times, but a biography and thus, although wider events are considered, our attention is fixed on Augustus himself” (p. 11)...
     
    ....continue to the full review of Augustus: First Emperor of Rome by Adrian Goldsworthy
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    Let’s open this review with a frank admission: I did not like the book, due to many aspects which would probably have been irritating if taken separately but simply disappoint when combined. The title indicates the theme of this book published by Pen & Sword military: a focus on a specific campaign in the famous Peloponnesian War which put Athens and Sparta at each other’s throats in the second half of the fifth century BCE. Short, with 167 pages including two pages and a half of endnotes and one page and a half of references, it does attempt to study this sub-conflict by providing both the context and the detail of the operations. ...
     
    ...continue to the full review of Expedition to Disaster by Philip Matyszak
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    We proudly present the Ancient Warfare - VIII.4 UNRV teaser special - first 15 pages to download -->> CLICK HERE
     
    Themes are: The Seleucid Empire at war and 'Seizing Alexander's Asian conquests - The rise of Seleucus'.We are also happy to announce that Ancient Warfare Magazine is giving all UNRV readers a full 15% discount on all digital issues/subscriptions. Just enter the promotional code before checkout: unrv08 - 15% will then be deducted right away
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    Book Review by Philip Matyszak -
     
    This book is a quirky introduction to slavery in the Roman world, allegedly written by the Roman slave owner Marcus Sidonius Falx, with 'commentary' by the author Jerry Toner. The idea is to describe slavery from the viewpoint of a Roman slave owner, with the author stepping in at the end of each chapter to recommend further reading, discuss source material and occasionally to disassociate himself from Sidonius Falx's awe-inspiring lack of political correctness...
     
    ...continue to the full book review of The Roman Guide to Slave Management by Jerry Toner
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