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Augustus : The Life of Rome's First Emperor (2006)

por Anthony Everitt

MembrosCríticasPopularidadeAvaliação médiaMenções
1,1273613,092 (3.96)38
He found Rome made of clay and left it made of marble. As Rome's first emperor, Augustus transformed the unruly Republic into the greatest empire the world had ever seen. His consolidation and expansion of Roman power two thousand years ago laid the foundations for all of Western history to follow. Yet despite Augustus's accomplishments, very few biographers have concentrated on the man himself, instead choosing to chronicle the age in which he lived. In this study of power and political genius, biographer Everitt gives an intimate account of his illustrious subject. He takes some of the household names of history--Caesar, Brutus, Cassius, Antony, Cleopatra--and turns them into flesh and blood. At a time when many consider America an empire, this portrait of the greatest emperor who ever lived makes for enlightening reading.--From publisher description.… (mais)
Adicionado recentemente porGRLagow, Teddy37, MobileMaker, impatient, ejmw, Angel.R
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Mostrando 1-5 de 36 (seguinte | mostrar todos)
2015 (review can be found at the link - which is a LibraryThing page)
https://www.librarything.com/topic/185746#5095286 ( )
  dchaikin | Jun 21, 2020 |
An interesting read. After I read and enjoyed [b:The Rise of Rome: The Making of the World's Greatest Empire|13155133|The Rise of Rome The Making of the World's Greatest Empire|Anthony Everitt|https://images.gr-assets.com/books/1344368906s/13155133.jpg|18333385] and [b:Cicero: The Life and Times of Rome's Greatest Politician|84593|Cicero The Life and Times of Rome's Greatest Politician|Anthony Everitt|https://images.gr-assets.com/books/1320502320s/84593.jpg|81654] by the same author, I decided to read this one as well. It didn’t disappoint, and is packed with discussions of multiple larger-than-life figures. In addition to Caesar Augustus, they included Julius Caesar, Brutus, Cassius, Mark Antony, and Cleopatra. I also liked the numerous quotes from famous contemporaries, including Virgil, Horace, and Livy, as well as works by slightly later classical writers such as Suetonius and Plutarch (and the events would have been within living memory during their time). A few later classical historians, who wrote between 150-200 years afterward (Appian and Dio), were also quoted. Including all of them gave insights into the mindset of the time and how people perceived (or grew to perceive) the events described as they unfolded (or shortly after they unfolded), unadulterated by several thousand years of speculation and shifting ideals and expectations. It is unfortunate more did not survive the Dark Ages, especially because Augustus wrote a now-lost autobiography.

The short descriptions of the situation in the waning Roman Republic also struck me as sounding very much like the situation in the modern-day United States: “What looked in many ways like a democracy was, in fact, an oligarchy modified by elections.” (page 5).

Another good quote: “In the long run power [is] unsustainable without consent.” (page 325).
( )
  Jennifer708 | Mar 21, 2020 |
An interesting read. After I read and enjoyed [b:The Rise of Rome: The Making of the World's Greatest Empire|13155133|The Rise of Rome The Making of the World's Greatest Empire|Anthony Everitt|https://images.gr-assets.com/books/1344368906s/13155133.jpg|18333385] and [b:Cicero: The Life and Times of Rome's Greatest Politician|84593|Cicero The Life and Times of Rome's Greatest Politician|Anthony Everitt|https://images.gr-assets.com/books/1320502320s/84593.jpg|81654] by the same author, I decided to read this one as well. It didn’t disappoint, and is packed with discussions of multiple larger-than-life figures. In addition to Caesar Augustus, they included Julius Caesar, Brutus, Cassius, Mark Antony, and Cleopatra. I also liked the numerous quotes from famous contemporaries, including Virgil, Horace, and Livy, as well as works by slightly later classical writers such as Suetonius and Plutarch (and the events would have been within living memory during their time). A few later classical historians, who wrote between 150-200 years afterward (Appian and Dio), were also quoted. Including all of them gave insights into the mindset of the time and how people perceived (or grew to perceive) the events described as they unfolded (or shortly after they unfolded), unadulterated by several thousand years of speculation and shifting ideals and expectations. It is unfortunate more did not survive the Dark Ages, especially because Augustus wrote a now-lost autobiography.

The short descriptions of the situation in the waning Roman Republic also struck me as sounding very much like the situation in the modern-day United States: “What looked in many ways like a democracy was, in fact, an oligarchy modified by elections.” (page 5).

Another good quote: “In the long run power [is] unsustainable without consent.” (page 325).
( )
  Jennifer708 | Mar 21, 2020 |
audiobook ( )
  Catsysta | Aug 5, 2018 |
This was a fantastic biography. Everitt draws from all the classical sources and puts together an gripping narrative of Augustus's life and the myriad surrounding events. The story flows smoothly and a good balance is struck between necessary details and larger events. The major figures of the period are all examined from both a political and a personal perspective as well as the surviving records allow and how their motivations shaped history comes together in a coherent chronicle of the earliest years of the Roman empire. Augustus's dedication to holding the empire together as well as securing his own power is impressive and the tale is well told. ( )
  dan4mayor | Jun 28, 2018 |
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He found Rome made of clay and left it made of marble. As Rome's first emperor, Augustus transformed the unruly Republic into the greatest empire the world had ever seen. His consolidation and expansion of Roman power two thousand years ago laid the foundations for all of Western history to follow. Yet despite Augustus's accomplishments, very few biographers have concentrated on the man himself, instead choosing to chronicle the age in which he lived. In this study of power and political genius, biographer Everitt gives an intimate account of his illustrious subject. He takes some of the household names of history--Caesar, Brutus, Cassius, Antony, Cleopatra--and turns them into flesh and blood. At a time when many consider America an empire, this portrait of the greatest emperor who ever lived makes for enlightening reading.--From publisher description.

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