Popular Ancient Books

30+ [Hand Picked] Popular Books On Ancient

Discover the list of some best books written on Ancient by popular award winning authors. These book on topic Ancient highly popular among the readers worldwide.

4.2/5

Heroes: Mortals and Monsters, Quests and Adventures by Stephen Fry

Mortals and Monsters. Quests and Adventures . . . There are Heroes - and then there are Greek Heroes. Few mere mortals have ever embarked on such bold and heart-stirring adventures, overcome myriad monstrous perils, or outwitted scheming vengeful gods, quite as stylishly and triumphantly as Greek heroes. In this companion to his bestselling Mythos, Stephen Fry brilliantly re Mortals and Monsters. Quests and Adventures . . . There are Heroes - and then there are Greek Heroes. Few mere mortals have ever embarked on such bold and heart-stirring adventures, overcome myriad monstrous perils, or outwitted scheming vengeful gods, quite as stylishly and triumphantly as Greek heroes. In this companion to his bestselling Mythos, Stephen Fry brilliantly retells these dramatic, funny, tragic and timeless tales. Join Jason aboard the Argo as he quests for the Golden Fleece. See Atalanta - who was raised by bears - outrun any man before being tricked with golden apples. Witness wily Oedipus solve the riddle of the Sphinx and discover how Bellerophon captures the winged horse Pegasus to help him slay the monster Chimera. Filled with white-knuckle chases and battles, impossible puzzles and riddles, acts of base cowardice and real bravery, not to mention murders and selfless sacrifices, Heroes is the story of what we mortals are truly capable of - at our worst and our very best. ___________ 'Ebullient and funny' The Times 'Entertaining and edifying' Daily Telegraph 'A rollicking good read' Independent 'Fry exhibits enormous erudition and enthusiasm' Mail on Sunday 'The Greek gods of the past become relatable as pop culture, modern literature and music are woven throughout. Joyfully informal yet full of the literary legacy' Guardian

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5/5

SPQR: A History of Ancient Rome by Mary Beard

In SPQR, an instant classic, Mary Beard narrates the history of Rome "with passion and without technical jargon" and demonstrates how "a slightly shabby Iron Age village" rose to become the "undisputed hegemon of the Mediterranean" (Wall Street Journal). Hailed by critics as animating "the grand sweep and the intimate details that bring the distant past vividly to life" (E In SPQR, an instant classic, Mary Beard narrates the history of Rome "with passion and without technical jargon" and demonstrates how "a slightly shabby Iron Age village" rose to become the "undisputed hegemon of the Mediterranean" (Wall Street Journal). Hailed by critics as animating "the grand sweep and the intimate details that bring the distant past vividly to life" (Economist) in a way that makes "your hair stand on end" (Christian Science Monitor) and spanning nearly a thousand years of history, this "highly informative, highly readable" (Dallas Morning News) work examines not just how we think of ancient Rome but challenges the comfortable historical perspectives that have existed for centuries. With its nuanced attention to class, democratic struggles, and the lives of entire groups of people omitted from the historical narrative for centuries, SPQR will to shape our view of Roman history for decades to come.

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3.1/5

The Storm Before the Storm: The Beginning of the End of the Roman Republic by Mike Duncan

The Roman Republic was one of the most remarkable achievements in the history of civilization. After its founding in 509 BCE, Rome grew from an unremarkable Italian city-state to the dominant superpower of the Mediterranean world. Through it all, the Romans never allowed a single man to seize control of the state. Every year for four hundred years the annually elected cons The Roman Republic was one of the most remarkable achievements in the history of civilization. After its founding in 509 BCE, Rome grew from an unremarkable Italian city-state to the dominant superpower of the Mediterranean world. Through it all, the Romans never allowed a single man to seize control of the state. Every year for four hundred years the annually elected consuls voluntarily handed power to their successors. Not once did a consul give in to the temptation to grab absolute power and refuse to let it go. It was a run of political self-denial unmatched in the history of the world. The disciplined Roman republicans then proceeded to explode out of Italy and conquer a world filled with petty tyrants, barbarian chieftains, and despotic kings. But the very success of the Republic proved to be its undoing. The republican system was unable to cope with the vast empire Rome ruled. Bankrolled by mountains of imperial wealth and without a foreign enemy to keep them united, ambitious Roman leaders began to stray from the republican austerity of their ancestors. Almost as soon as they had conquered the Mediterranean, Rome would become engulfed in violent political conflicts and civil wars that would destroy the Republic less than a century later. The Storm Before the Storm tells the story of the beginning of the end of the Roman Republic--the story of the first generation that had to cope with the dangerous new political environment made possible by Rome's unrivaled domination over the known world. The tumultuous years from 133-80 BCE set the stage for the fall of the Republic. The Republic faced issues like rising economic inequality, increasing political polarization, the privatization of the military, endemic social and ethnic prejudice, rampant corruption, ongoing military quagmires, and the ruthless ambition and unwillingness of elites to do anything to reform the system in time to save it--a situation that draws many parallels to present-day America. These issues are among the reasons why the Roman Republic would fall. And as we all know, those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it.

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4.2/5

The Darkening Age: The Christian Destruction of the Classical World by Catherine Nixey

The Darkening Age is the largely unknown story of how a militant religion deliberately attacked and suppressed the teachings of the Classical world, ushering in centuries of unquestioning adherence to 'one true faith'. Despite the long-held notion that the early Christians were meek and mild, going to their martyr's deaths singing hymns of love and praise, the truth, as Cat The Darkening Age is the largely unknown story of how a militant religion deliberately attacked and suppressed the teachings of the Classical world, ushering in centuries of unquestioning adherence to 'one true faith'. Despite the long-held notion that the early Christians were meek and mild, going to their martyr's deaths singing hymns of love and praise, the truth, as Catherine Nixey reveals, is very different. Far from being meek and mild, they were violent, ruthless and fundamentally intolerant. Unlike the polytheistic world, in which the addition of one new religion made no fundamental difference to the old ones, this new ideology stated not only that it was the way, the truth and the light but that, by extension, every single other way was wrong and had to be destroyed. From the 1st century to the 6th, those who didn't fall into step with its beliefs were pursued in every possible way: social, legal, financial and physical. Their altars were upturned and their temples demolished, their statues hacked to pieces and their priests killed. It was an annihilation. Authoritative, vividly written and utterly compelling, this is a remarkable debut from a brilliant young historian.

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3.3/5

Esther: Royal Beauty by Angela Elwell Hunt

A Bible story brought to life! After she is forcibly taken to the palace of the king, a beautiful young Jewish woman, known to the Persians as Esther, wins a queen's crown and then must risk everything in order to save her people . . . and bind her husband's heart... An ambitious tyrant threatens genocide against the Jews in ancient Persia, so an inexperienced beautiful you A Bible story brought to life! After she is forcibly taken to the palace of the king, a beautiful young Jewish woman, known to the Persians as Esther, wins a queen's crown and then must risk everything in order to save her people . . . and bind her husband's heart... An ambitious tyrant threatens genocide against the Jews in ancient Persia, so an inexperienced beautiful young queen must take a stand for her people. When Xerxes, king of Persia, issues a call for beautiful young women, Hadassah, a Jewish orphan living in Susa, is forcibly taken to the palace of the pagan ruler. After months of preparation, the girl known to the Persians as Esther wins the king's heart and a queen's crown. But because her situation is uncertain, she keeps her ethnic identity a secret until she learns that an evil and ambitious man has won the king's permission to exterminate all Jews--young and old, powerful and helpless. Purposely violating an ancient Persian law, she risks her life in order to save her people...and bind her husband's heart. Esther marks bestselling author Angela Hunt's return to biblical fiction. In each novel she explores an example of a Hebrew Old Testament tob woman: a woman whose physical beauty influences those around her--and can change the course of history.

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4/5

Lady of the Eternal City by Kate Quinn

National bestselling author Kate Quinn returns with the long-awaited fourth volume in the Empress of Rome series, an unforgettable new tale of the politics, power, and passion that defined ancient Rome. Elegant, secretive Sabina may be Empress of Rome, but she still stands poised on a knife’s edge. She must keep the peace between two deadly enemies: her husband Hadrian, Rom National bestselling author Kate Quinn returns with the long-awaited fourth volume in the Empress of Rome series, an unforgettable new tale of the politics, power, and passion that defined ancient Rome. Elegant, secretive Sabina may be Empress of Rome, but she still stands poised on a knife’s edge. She must keep the peace between two deadly enemies: her husband Hadrian, Rome’s brilliant and sinister Emperor; and battered warrior Vix, who is her first love. But Sabina is guardian of a deadly secret: Vix’s beautiful son Antinous has become the Emperor’s latest obsession. Empress and Emperor, father and son will spin in a deadly dance of passion, betrayal, conspiracy, and war. As tragedy sends Hadrian spiraling into madness, Vix and Sabina form a last desperate pact to save the Empire. But ultimately, the fate of Rome lies with an untried girl, a spirited redhead who may just be the next Lady of the Eternal City . . .

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4.5/5

Pandora's Boy by Lindsey Davis

Flavia Albia is a private investigator, always drawn to an intriguing puzzle - even if it is put to her by her new husband's hostile ex-wife. On the Quirinal Hill, Clodia Volumnia, a very young girl with stars in her eyes, has died, amid suggestions that she was poisoned by a love-potion. It will have been supplied by a local witch, who goes by the name of Pandora, though Flavia Albia is a private investigator, always drawn to an intriguing puzzle - even if it is put to her by her new husband's hostile ex-wife. On the Quirinal Hill, Clodia Volumnia, a very young girl with stars in her eyes, has died, amid suggestions that she was poisoned by a love-potion. It will have been supplied by a local witch, who goes by the name of Pandora, though Albia learns that Pandora carries on a trade in herbal beauty products while hiding much more dangerous connections. Pandora's beloved grandson, a trainee hack lawyer, is one of the dead girl's empty-headed friends; can this be relevant?As she homes in on the truth, Albia has to contend with the occult, organised crime, an unusual fertility symbol, and celebrity dining. She discovers the young girl was a handful; her father mediates in disputes, yet has divorced his grief-stricken wife and is now suing his own mother-in-law; Clodia's so-called friends were none too friendly. The supposedly sweet air of the Quirinal hides the smells of loose morality, casual betrayal and even gangland conflict. When a friend of her own is murdered, Albia determines to expose as much of this local sickness as she can - beginning with the truth about the death of little Clodia.'Davis's prose is a lively joy, and Flavia's Rome is sinister and gloriously real.' The Times on Sunday

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3/5

Dictator by Robert Harris

Imperium...Conspirata...and now, the long-awaited final volume of the author's best-selling Cicero trilogy. With Dictator, Robert Harris brings the saga of Cicero's life to a time when some of the most epic events in human history occurred: the collapse of the Roman republic, the subsequent civil war, the murder of Pompey and the assassination of Julius Caesar. Yet the ques Imperium...Conspirata...and now, the long-awaited final volume of the author's best-selling Cicero trilogy. With Dictator, Robert Harris brings the saga of Cicero's life to a time when some of the most epic events in human history occurred: the collapse of the Roman republic, the subsequent civil war, the murder of Pompey and the assassination of Julius Caesar. Yet the question it asks is a timeless one: how is political freedom to be safeguarded against the triple threat of unscrupulous personal ambition, of an electoral system dominated by vested financial interests, and of the corrupting impact of waging ceaseless foreign wars? And in the very human figure of Cicero--brilliant, flawed, frequently fearful, and yet ultimately brave--Harris gives us a hero for both his own time, and for ours.

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3.1/5

Hannibal by Patrick N. Hunt (Pen Name)

One of the greatest commanders of the ancient world brought vividly to life: Hannibal, the brilliant general who successfully crossed the Alps with his war elephants and brought Rome to its knees. Hannibal Barca of Carthage, born 247 BC, was one of the great generals of the ancient world. His father, Hamilcar, was also a great strategist and master tactician who imposed Car One of the greatest commanders of the ancient world brought vividly to life: Hannibal, the brilliant general who successfully crossed the Alps with his war elephants and brought Rome to its knees. Hannibal Barca of Carthage, born 247 BC, was one of the great generals of the ancient world. His father, Hamilcar, was also a great strategist and master tactician who imposed Carthaginian rule over much of present-day Spain. After Hamilcar led the Carthaginian forces against Rome in the First Punic War, Hannibal followed in his father’s footsteps, leading Carthage in the Second Punic War. From the time he was a teenager, Hannibal fought against Rome. He is famed for leading Carthage’s army across north Africa, into Spain, along the Mediterranean coast, and then crossing the Alps with his army and war elephants. Hannibal won victories in northern Italy by outmaneuvering his Roman adversaries and defeated a larger Roman army at the battle of Cannae in 216 BC. Unable to force Rome to capitulate, he was eventually forced to leave Italy and return to Carthage when a savvy Roman general named Scipio invaded north Africa. Hannibal and Scipio fought an epic battle at Zama, which Hannibal lost. The terms of surrender were harsh and many Carthaginians blamed Hannibal, eventually forcing him into exile until his death. To this day Hannibal is still regarded as a military genius. Napoleon, George Patton, and Norman Schwarzkopf, Jr. are only some of the generals who studied and admired him. His strategy and tactics are still taught in military academies. He is one of the figures of the ancient world whose life and exploits never fail to impress. Historian Patrick N. Hunt has led archeological expeditions in the Alps and elsewhere to study Hannibal’s exploits. Now he brings Hannibal’s incredible story to life in this riveting and dramatic book.

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4.9/5

The Rise of Athens: The Story of the World's Greatest Civilization by Anthony Everitt

A magisterial account of how a tiny city-state in ancient Greece became history's most influential civilization, from the bestselling author of acclaimed biographies of Cicero, Augustus, and Hadrian Filled with tales of adventure and astounding reversals of fortune, The Rise of Athens celebrates the city-state that transformed the world--from the democratic revolution that A magisterial account of how a tiny city-state in ancient Greece became history's most influential civilization, from the bestselling author of acclaimed biographies of Cicero, Augustus, and Hadrian Filled with tales of adventure and astounding reversals of fortune, The Rise of Athens celebrates the city-state that transformed the world--from the democratic revolution that marked its beginning, through the city's political and cultural golden age, to its decline into the ancient equivalent of a modern-day university town. Anthony Everitt constructs his history with unforgettable portraits of the talented, tricky, ambitious, and unscrupulous Athenians who fueled the city's rise: Themistocles, the brilliant naval strategist who led the Greeks to a decisive victory over their Persian enemies; Pericles, arguably the greatest Athenian statesman of them all; and the wily Alcibiades, who changed his political allegiance several times during the course of the Peloponnesian War--and died in a hail of assassins' arrows. Here also are riveting you-are-there accounts of the milestone battles that defined the Hellenic world: Thermopylae, Marathon, and Salamis among them. An unparalleled storyteller, Everitt combines erudite, thoughtful historical analysis with stirring narrative set pieces that capture the colorful, dramatic, and exciting world of ancient Greece. Although the history of Athens is less well known than that of other world empires, the city-state's allure would inspire Alexander the Great, the Romans, and even America's own Founding Fathers. It's fair to say that the Athenians made possible the world in which we live today. In this peerless new work, Anthony Everitt breathes vivid life into this most ancient story. Praise for The Rise of Athens "[An] invaluable history of a foundational civilization . . . combining impressive scholarship with involving narration."--Booklist "Compelling . . . a comprehensive and entertaining account of one of the most transformative societies in Western history . . . Everitt recounts the high points of Greek history with flair and aplomb." --Shelf Awareness "Highly readable . . . Everitt keeps the action moving."--Kirkus Reviews Praise for Anthony Everitt's The Rise of Rome "Rome's history abounds with remarkable figures. . . . Everitt writes for the informed and the uninformed general reader alike, in a brisk, conversational style, with a modern attitude of skepticism and realism."--The Dallas Morning News "[A] lively and readable account . . . Roman history has an uncanny ability to resonate with contemporary events."--Maclean's "Elegant, swift and faultless as an introduction to his subject." --The Spectator "An engrossing history of a relentlessly pugnacious city's 500-year rise to empire." --Kirkus Reviews "Fascinating history and a great read."--Chicago Sun-Times

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4.2/5

Mortal Republic: How Rome Fell into Tyranny by Edward J. Watts

A new history of the Roman Republic and its collapse In Mortal Republic, prizewinning historian Edward J. Watts offers a new history of the fall of the Roman Republic that explains why Rome exchanged freedom for autocracy. For centuries, even as Rome grew into the Mediterranean's premier military and political power, its governing institutions, parliamentary rules, and pol A new history of the Roman Republic and its collapse In Mortal Republic, prizewinning historian Edward J. Watts offers a new history of the fall of the Roman Republic that explains why Rome exchanged freedom for autocracy. For centuries, even as Rome grew into the Mediterranean's premier military and political power, its governing institutions, parliamentary rules, and political customs successfully fostered negotiation and compromise. By the 130s BC, however, Rome's leaders increasingly used these same tools to cynically pursue individual gain and obstruct their opponents. As the center decayed and dysfunction grew, arguments between politicians gave way to political violence in the streets. The stage was set for destructive civil wars--and ultimately the imperial reign of Augustus. The death of Rome's Republic was not inevitable. In Mortal Republic, Watts shows it died because it was allowed to, from thousands of small wounds inflicted by Romans who assumed that it would last forever.

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3.2/5

The Third Nero by Lindsey Davis

Flavia Albia's day-old marriage is in trouble - her new husband may be permanently disabled and they have no funds. So when Palace officials ask her to help expose a plotter in their midst she is obliged to accept their commission. The plot could not be bigger. Ever since he died in AD 68, apparently by his own hand, Rome has been haunted by reports that the Emperor Nero i Flavia Albia's day-old marriage is in trouble - her new husband may be permanently disabled and they have no funds. So when Palace officials ask her to help expose a plotter in their midst she is obliged to accept their commission. The plot could not be bigger. Ever since he died in AD 68, apparently by his own hand, Rome has been haunted by reports that the Emperor Nero is in fact very much alive and about to return to claim his throne. Two Nero pretenders have emerged in the East and met grisly fates. But now, as the Emperor Domitian, whose tyrannical, paranoid reign grows ever more unpopular, fights a war in faraway Dacia, there emerges a far more sinister contender. What's more the rumour is that this false Nero is already in Rome. Plunged into the conspiracy, Flavia must infiltrate the house of the Parthians who have smuggled in this new impostor, negotiate with spies, dodge the assassins sent by the Palace traitor, and somehow cope with her stricken husband.Can she succeed before the impostor is revealed? Or will Rome once more be plunged into civil war?

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3.7/5

When Women Ruled the World: Six Queens of Egypt by Kara Cooney

This riveting narrative explores the lives of six remarkable female pharaohs, from Hatshepsut to Cleopatra--women who ruled with real power--and shines a piercing light on our own perceptions of women in power today. Female rulers are a rare phenomenon--but thousands of years ago in ancient Egypt, women reigned supreme. Regularly, repeatedly, and with impunity, queens lik This riveting narrative explores the lives of six remarkable female pharaohs, from Hatshepsut to Cleopatra--women who ruled with real power--and shines a piercing light on our own perceptions of women in power today. Female rulers are a rare phenomenon--but thousands of years ago in ancient Egypt, women reigned supreme. Regularly, repeatedly, and with impunity, queens like Hatshepsut, Nefertiti, and Cleopatra controlled the totalitarian state as power-brokers and rulers. But throughout human history, women in positions of power were more often used as political pawns in a male-dominated society. What was so special about ancient Egypt that provided women this kind of access to the highest political office? What was it about these women that allowed them to transcend patriarchal obstacles? What did Egypt gain from its liberal reliance on female leadership, and could today's world learn from its example? Celebrated Egyptologist Kara Cooney delivers a fascinating tale of female power, exploring the reasons why it has seldom been allowed through the ages, and why we should care.

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3.5/5

Daughter of Sand and Stone by Libbie Hawker

When Zenobia takes control of her own fate, will the gods punish her audacity? Zenobia, the proud daughter of a Syrian sheikh, refuses to marry against her will. She won’t submit to a lifetime of subservience. When her father dies, she sets out on her own, pursuing the power she believes to be her birthright, dreaming of the Roman Empire’s downfall and her ascendance to the When Zenobia takes control of her own fate, will the gods punish her audacity? Zenobia, the proud daughter of a Syrian sheikh, refuses to marry against her will. She won’t submit to a lifetime of subservience. When her father dies, she sets out on her own, pursuing the power she believes to be her birthright, dreaming of the Roman Empire’s downfall and her ascendance to the throne. Defying her family, Zenobia arranges her own marriage to the most influential man in the city of Palmyra. But their union is anything but peaceful—his other wife begrudges the marriage and the birth of Zenobia’s son, and Zenobia finds herself ever more drawn to her guardsman, Zabdas. As war breaks out, she’s faced with terrible choices. From the decadent halls of Rome to the golden sands of Egypt, Zenobia fights for power, for love, and for her son. But will her hubris draw the wrath of the gods? Will she learn a “woman’s place,” or can she finally stake her claim as Empress of the East?

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5/5

The Confessions of Young Nero by Margaret George

The New York Times bestselling and legendary author of Helen of Troy and Elizabeth I now turns her gaze on Emperor Nero, one of the most notorious and misunderstood figures in history. Built on the backs of those who fell before it, Julius Caesar's imperial dynasty is only as strong as the next person who seeks to control it. In the Roman Empire no one is safe from the stin The New York Times bestselling and legendary author of Helen of Troy and Elizabeth I now turns her gaze on Emperor Nero, one of the most notorious and misunderstood figures in history. Built on the backs of those who fell before it, Julius Caesar's imperial dynasty is only as strong as the next person who seeks to control it. In the Roman Empire no one is safe from the sting of betrayal: man, woman or child. As a boy, Nero's royal heritage becomes a threat to his very life, first when the mad emperor Caligula tries to drown him, then when his great aunt attempts to secure her own son's inheritance. Faced with shocking acts of treachery, young Nero is dealt a harsh lesson: it is better to be cruel than dead. While Nero idealizes the artistic and athletic principles of Greece, his very survival rests on his ability to navigate the sea of vipers that is Rome. The most lethal of all is his own mother, a cold-blooded woman whose singular goal is to control the empire. With cunning and poison, the obstacles fall one by one. But as Agrippina's machinations earn her son a title he is both tempted and terrified to assume, Nero's determination to escape her thrall will shape him into the man he was fated to become, an Emperor who became legendary. With impeccable research and captivating prose, The Confessions of Young Nero is the story of a boy's ruthless ascension to the throne. Detailing his journey from innocent youth to infamous ruler, it is an epic tale of the lengths to which man will go in the ultimate quest for power and survival.

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3.8/5

The Odyssey by Homer , Robert Fagles (Translator) , Bernard Knox (Introduction)

Sing to me of the man, Muse, the man of twists and turns driven time and again off course, once he had plundered the hallowed heights of Troy. So begins Robert Fagles' magnificent translation of the Odyssey, which Jasper Griffin in The New York Times Review of Books hails as "a distinguished achievement." If the Iliad is the world's greatest war epic, then the Odyssey is liter Sing to me of the man, Muse, the man of twists and turns driven time and again off course, once he had plundered the hallowed heights of Troy. So begins Robert Fagles' magnificent translation of the Odyssey, which Jasper Griffin in The New York Times Review of Books hails as "a distinguished achievement." If the Iliad is the world's greatest war epic, then the Odyssey is literature's grandest evocation of everyman's journey though life. Odysseus' reliance on his wit and wiliness for survival in his encounters with divine and natural forces, during his ten-year voyage home to Ithaca after the Trojan War, is at once a timeless human story and an individual test of moral endurance. In the myths and legends that are retold here, Fagles has captured the energy and poetry of Homer's original in a bold, contemporary idiom, and given us an Odyssey to read aloud, to savor, and to treasure for its sheer lyrical mastery. Renowned classicist Bernard Knox's superb Introduction and textual commentary provide new insights and background information for the general reader and scholar alike, intensifying the strength of Fagles' translation. This is an Odyssey to delight both the classicist and the public at large, and to captivate a new generation of Homer's students. -- Robert Fagles, winner of the PEN/Ralph Manheim Medal for Translation and a 1996 Academy Award in Literature from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, presents us with Homer's best-loved and most accessible poem in a stunning new modern-verse translation.

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4.6/5

The Iliad by Homer , Robert Fagles (Translator) , Bernard Knox (Introduction)

The Iliad is one of the two great epics of Homer, and is typically described as one of the greatest war stories of all time, but to say the Iliad is a war story does not begin to describe the emotional sweep of its action and characters: Achilles, Helen, Hector, and other heroes of Greek myth and history in the tenth and final year of the Greek siege of Troy.

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3.1/5

The Epic of Gilgamesh by Anonymous , N.K. Sandars (Translator)

Andrew George's "masterly new translation" (The Times) of the world's first truly great work of literature Miraculously preserved on clay tablets dating back as much as four thousand years, the poem of Gilgamesh, king of Uruk, is the world’s oldest epic, predating Homer by many centuries. The story tells of Gilgamesh’s adventures with the wild man Enkidu, and of his arduous Andrew George's "masterly new translation" (The Times) of the world's first truly great work of literature Miraculously preserved on clay tablets dating back as much as four thousand years, the poem of Gilgamesh, king of Uruk, is the world’s oldest epic, predating Homer by many centuries. The story tells of Gilgamesh’s adventures with the wild man Enkidu, and of his arduous journey to the ends of the earth in quest of the Babylonian Noah and the secret of immortality. Alongside its themes of family, friendship and the duties of kings, the Epic of Gilgamesh is, above all, about mankind’s eternal struggle with the fear of death. The Babylonian version has been known for over a century, but linguists are still deciphering new fragments in Akkadian and Sumerian. Andrew George’s gripping translation brilliantly combines these into a fluent narrative and will long rank as the definitive English Gilgamesh. For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.

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4.1/5

The Aeneid by Virgil , Robert Fitzgerald (Translator)

The Aeneid is an epic poem written by Virgil in the 1st century BC. It's hero is Aeneas, a Trojan who travels from Troy to Italy to eventually found Rome. Some argue that The Aeneid is Virgil's answer to Homer's Odyssey and Iliad, combining two genres of the day - travel and war - into one poem. Take that, Homer! No civilization is without a bit of revisionist history: so i The Aeneid is an epic poem written by Virgil in the 1st century BC. It's hero is Aeneas, a Trojan who travels from Troy to Italy to eventually found Rome. Some argue that The Aeneid is Virgil's answer to Homer's Odyssey and Iliad, combining two genres of the day - travel and war - into one poem. Take that, Homer! No civilization is without a bit of revisionist history: so it was that Virgil picked up the story of Aeneas, which was already floating around at the time, and forged an epic founding myth for Rome. And The Aeneid fit the bill, as it linked Rome with the legends of ancient Troy, glorified stodgy Roman values, and legitimized its emperors as descendants of the heroes and gods of the past. George Washington probably didn't chop down a cherry tree, but it's a fun legend to tell the kids.

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3.8/5

Metamorphoses by Ovid , David Raeburn (Translation) , Denis Feeney (Contributor)

Prized through the ages for its splendor and its savage, sophisticated wit, The Metamorphoses is a masterpiece of Western culture--the first attempt to link all the Greek myths, before and after Homer, in a cohesive whole, to the Roman myths of Ovid's day. Horace Gregory, in this modern translation, turns his poetic gifts toward a deft reconstruction of Ovid's ancient them Prized through the ages for its splendor and its savage, sophisticated wit, The Metamorphoses is a masterpiece of Western culture--the first attempt to link all the Greek myths, before and after Homer, in a cohesive whole, to the Roman myths of Ovid's day. Horace Gregory, in this modern translation, turns his poetic gifts toward a deft reconstruction of Ovid's ancient themes, using contemporary idiom to bring today's reader all the ageless drama and psychological truths vividly intact. --From the book jacket

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4.7/5

The Republic by Plato , Desmond Lee (Translator)

Presented in the form of a dialogue between Socrates and three different interlocutors, this classic text is an enquiry into the notion of a perfect community and the ideal individual within it. During the conversation, other questions are raised: what is goodness?; what is reality?; and what is knowledge? The Republic also addresses the purpose of education and the role o Presented in the form of a dialogue between Socrates and three different interlocutors, this classic text is an enquiry into the notion of a perfect community and the ideal individual within it. During the conversation, other questions are raised: what is goodness?; what is reality?; and what is knowledge? The Republic also addresses the purpose of education and the role of both women and men as guardians of the people. With remarkable lucidity and deft use of allegory, Plato arrives at a depiction of a state bound by harmony and ruled by philosopher kings.

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4.3/5

Oedipus Rex by Sophocles , J.E. Thomas (Translator)

"...what man wins more happiness than just its shape and the ruin when that shape collapses?" Sophocles' Oedipus Rex has never been surpassed for the raw and terrible power with which its hero struggles to answer the eternal question, "Who am I?" The play, a story of a king who acting entirely in ignorance kills his father and marries his mother, unfolds with shattering pow "...what man wins more happiness than just its shape and the ruin when that shape collapses?" Sophocles' Oedipus Rex has never been surpassed for the raw and terrible power with which its hero struggles to answer the eternal question, "Who am I?" The play, a story of a king who acting entirely in ignorance kills his father and marries his mother, unfolds with shattering power; we are helplessly carried along with Oedipus towards the final, horrific truth. To make Oedipus more accessible for the modern reader, our Prestwick House Literary Touchstone Classics includes a glossary of the more difficult words, as well as convenient sidebar notes to enlighten the reader on aspects that may be confusing or overlooked. We hope that the reader may, through this edition, more fully enjoy the beauty of the verse, the wisdom of the insights, and the impact of the drama.

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3.8/5

The Histories by Herodotus , Aubrey de Sélincourt (Translator) , John M. Marincola (Editor, Introduction, Notes)

One of the masterpieces of classical literature, the "Histories" describes how a small and quarrelsome band of Greek city states united to repel the might of the Persian empire. But while this epic struggle forms the core of his work, Herodotus' natural curiosity frequently gives rise to colorful digressions - a description of the natural wonders of Egypt; an account of Eu One of the masterpieces of classical literature, the "Histories" describes how a small and quarrelsome band of Greek city states united to repel the might of the Persian empire. But while this epic struggle forms the core of his work, Herodotus' natural curiosity frequently gives rise to colorful digressions - a description of the natural wonders of Egypt; an account of European lake-dwellers; and far-fetched accounts of dog-headed men and gold-digging ants. With its kaleidoscopic blend of fact and legend, the "Histories" offers a compelling Greek view of the world of the fifth century BC.

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4/5

The Oresteia: Agamemnon, The Libation Bearers, The Eumenides by Aeschylus , Robert Fagles (Translator) , William Bedell Stanford (Introduction)

Alternate cover edition can be found here, here, here, here In the Oresteia—the only trilogy in Greek drama which survives from antiquity—Aeschylus took as his subject the bloody chain of murder and revenge within the royal family of Argos. Moving from darkness to light, from rage to self-governance, from primitive ritual to civilized institution, their spirit of struggle an Alternate cover edition can be found here, here, here, here In the Oresteia—the only trilogy in Greek drama which survives from antiquity—Aeschylus took as his subject the bloody chain of murder and revenge within the royal family of Argos. Moving from darkness to light, from rage to self-governance, from primitive ritual to civilized institution, their spirit of struggle and regeneration becomes an everlasting song of celebration.

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3.1/5

Meditations by Marcus Aurelius , Martin Hammond (Translator) , Diskin Clay (Introduction)

Written in Greek, without any intention of publication, by the only Roman emperor who was also a philosopher, the Meditations of Marcus Aurelius (AD 121-180) offer a remarkable series of challenging spiritual reflections and exercises developed as the emperor struggled to understand himself and make sense of the universe. Ranging from doubt and despair to conviction and ex Written in Greek, without any intention of publication, by the only Roman emperor who was also a philosopher, the Meditations of Marcus Aurelius (AD 121-180) offer a remarkable series of challenging spiritual reflections and exercises developed as the emperor struggled to understand himself and make sense of the universe. Ranging from doubt and despair to conviction and exaltation, they cover such diverse topics as the nature of moral virtue, human rationality, divine providence, and Marcus' own emotions. But while the Meditations were composed to provide personal consolation and encouragement, in developing his beliefs Marcus Aurelius also created one of the greatest of all works of philosophy: a timeless collection of extended meditations and short aphorisms that has been consulted and admired by statesmen, thinkers and readers through the centuries.

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3.4/5

Antigone by Sophocles , J.E. Thomas (Translator)

The curse placed on Oedipus lingers and haunts a younger generation in this new and brilliant translation of Sophocles' classic drama. The daughter of Oedipus and Jocasta, Antigone is an unconventional heroine who pits her beliefs against the King of Thebes in a bloody test of wills that leaves few unharmed. Emotions fly as she challenges the king for the right to bury her The curse placed on Oedipus lingers and haunts a younger generation in this new and brilliant translation of Sophocles' classic drama. The daughter of Oedipus and Jocasta, Antigone is an unconventional heroine who pits her beliefs against the King of Thebes in a bloody test of wills that leaves few unharmed. Emotions fly as she challenges the king for the right to bury her own brother. Determined but doomed, Antigone shows her inner strength throughout the play. Antigone raises issues of law and morality that are just as relevant today as they were more than two thousand years ago. Whether this is your first reading or your twentieth, Antigone will move you as few pieces of literature can. To make this quintessential Greek drama more accessible to the modern reader, this Prestwick House Literary Touchstone Edition includes a glossary of difficult terms, a list of vocabulary words, and convenient sidebar notes. By providing these, it is our intention that readers will more fully enjoy the beauty, wisdom, and intent of the play.

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4.1/5

History of the Peloponnesian War by Thucydides , Rex Warner (Translator) , Moses I. Finley (Introduction/Notes)

Written four hundred years before the birth of Christ, this detailed contemporary account of the long life-and-death struggle between Athens and Sparta stands an excellent chance of fulfilling its author's ambitious claim. Thucydides himself (c.460-400 BC) was an Athenian and achieved the rank of general in the earlier stages of the war. He applied thereafter a passion for Written four hundred years before the birth of Christ, this detailed contemporary account of the long life-and-death struggle between Athens and Sparta stands an excellent chance of fulfilling its author's ambitious claim. Thucydides himself (c.460-400 BC) was an Athenian and achieved the rank of general in the earlier stages of the war. He applied thereafter a passion for accuracy and a contempt for myth and romance in compiling this factual record of a disastrous conflict.

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3.6/5

Aesop's Fables by Aesop , Laura Harris (Editor) , Laura Gibbs (Translator)

Aesop's Fables or Aesopica refers to a collection of fables credited to Aesop (620-560 BC), a slave and story-teller who lived in Ancient Greece. Aesop's Fables have become a blanket term for collections of brief fables, usually involving anthropomorphic animals. Many stories included in Aesop's Fables, such as The Fox and the Grapes (from which the idiom "sour grapes" was Aesop's Fables or Aesopica refers to a collection of fables credited to Aesop (620-560 BC), a slave and story-teller who lived in Ancient Greece. Aesop's Fables have become a blanket term for collections of brief fables, usually involving anthropomorphic animals. Many stories included in Aesop's Fables, such as The Fox and the Grapes (from which the idiom "sour grapes" was derived), The Tortoise and the Hare, The North Wind and the Sun and The Boy Who Cried Wolf, are well-known throughout the world.

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3.5/5

Medea by Euripides , Rex Warner (Translator)

One of the most powerful and enduring of Greek tragedies, Medea centers on the myth of Jason, leader of the Argonauts, who has won the dragon-guarded treasure of the Golden Fleece with the help of the sorceress Medea. Having married Medea and fathered her two children, Jason abandons her for a more favorable match, never suspecting the terrible revenge she will take. Eurip One of the most powerful and enduring of Greek tragedies, Medea centers on the myth of Jason, leader of the Argonauts, who has won the dragon-guarded treasure of the Golden Fleece with the help of the sorceress Medea. Having married Medea and fathered her two children, Jason abandons her for a more favorable match, never suspecting the terrible revenge she will take. Euripides' masterly portrayal of the motives fiercely driving Medea's pursuit of vengeance for her husband's insult and betrayal has held theater audiences spellbound for more than twenty centuries. Rex Warner's authoritative translation brings this great classic of world literature vividly to life. Reprint of the John Lane, The Bodley Head Limited, London, 1944 edition.

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3.7/5

The Oedipus Cycle: Oedipus Rex, Oedipus at Colonus, Antigone by Sophocles , Robert Fitzgerald (Translator) , Dudley Fitts (Translator)

English versions of Sophocles’ three great tragedies based on the myth of Oedipus, translated for a modern audience by two gifted poets.

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