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The Great Empires of the Ancient World

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The Great Empires of the Ancient World
Edited by Thomas Harrison. (Los Angeles, The J. Paul Getty Museum: 2009. Pg. 288. 288 Color and 80 B/W Illustrations.) ISBN: 978-0-89236-987-4

Reviewed by Auggie Moore - November 2, 2009

The Great Empires of the Ancient World is a lavishly illustrated book that provides readers with an enthralling overview of the major imperial powers that ruled the world from 1600 B.C. to 500 A.D. The foundation of this text is ten essays written by leading scholars in their respective fields, including Bill Manley, Trevor Byrce, Marc Van De Mieroop, Lloyd Llewellyn-Jones, Alastair Blandshard, Michael Sommer, Thomas Harrison, Ted Kaizer, Robin Coninghman, Mark Manuel, and W.J.F. Jenner.

The essays cover: Global in scope, this book provides profiles of notable rulers, overviews of the various empires and their major achievements, interesting factoids that help to show what everyday life was like for residents of these varied empires. A general historical overview is provided for each empire, as is its geography, culture, and its role in world history. Complete with maps, opulent illustrations, time lines, lists of rulers, and other enhancements make this book ideal for students of all ages as well as for use as a coffee table book with which to wile away a few spare minutes browsing through this vibrant period in history.

The essays in this anthology are narrative in nature, and extremely engaging and sure to delight both general readers and scholars alike. In addition, the lavish illustrations are also intriguing to simply look at. This book is an ideal addition for home, school, and public libraries.

Related Reviews:

Mesopotamia: Assyrians, Sumerians, Babylonians, by Enrico Ascalone.
Volume I in the Dictionaries of Civilization series, this volume provides a detailed overview of Mesopotamian history and culture.

Alexander the Great: Son of the Gods, by Alan Fildes and Joann Fletcher.
This book takes a comprehensive look at the full scope of Alexander's life, and the impact that he had, both during his life, and afterwards.

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