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The Seer in Ancient Greece by Michael FlowerThe seer (mantis), an expert in the art of divination, operated in ancient Greek society through a combination of charismatic inspiration and diverse skills ranging from examining the livers of sacrificed animals to spirit possession. Unlike the palm readers and mediums who exist on the fringe of modern society, many seers were highly paid, well respected, educated members of the elite who played an essential role in the conduct of daily life, political decisions, and military campaigns. Armies, for example, never went anywhere without one. This engaging book, the only comprehensive study of this fascinating figure, enters into the socioreligious world of ancient Greece to explore what seers did, why they were so widely employed, and how their craft served as a viable and useful social practice.
Call Number: E-Book (available online)
Ancient Greece: A History in Eleven Cities by Paul CartledgeThe contribution of the Ancient Greeks to modern western culture is incalculable. In the worlds of art, architecture, myth, literature, and philosophy, the world we live in would be unrecognizably different without the formative influence of Ancient Greek models. Ancient Greek civilization was defined by the city - in Greek, the polis, from which we derive 'politics'. It is above all this feature of Greek civilization that has formed its most enduring legacy, spawning such key terms as aristocracy, oligarchy, tyranny and - last but by no means least -democracy. This highly stimulating introduction to Ancient Greece takes the polis as its starting point. Paul Cartledge uses the history of eleven major Greek cities to illuminate the most important and informative themes in Ancient Greek history, from the first documented use of the Greek language around 1400BCE, through the glories of the Classical and Hellenistic periods, to the foundation of the Byzantine empire in around CE 330. Covering everything from politics, trade, and travel to slavery, gender, religion, and philosophy, it provides the ideal concise introduction to the history and culture ofthis remarkable civilization that helped give birth to the world as we know it.
Call Number: 938 C327a 2009
Ancient Rome: From Romulus to Justinian by Thomas R. MartinWith commanding skill, Thomas R. Martin tells the remarkable and dramatic story of how a tiny, poor, and threatened settlement grew to become, during its height, the dominant power in the Mediterranean world for five hundred years. Encompassing the period from Rome's founding in the eighth century B.C. through Justinian's rule in the sixth century A.D., he offers a distinctive perspective on the Romans and their civilization by employing fundamental Roman values as a lens through which to view both their rise and spectacular fall. Interweaving social, political, religious, and cultural history, Martin interprets the successes and failures of the Romans in war, political organization, quest for personal status, and in the integration of religious beliefs and practices with government. He focuses on the central role of social and moral values in determining individual conduct as well as decisions of state, from monarchy to republic to empire. Striving to reconstruct ancient history from the ground up, he includes frequent references to ancient texts and authors, encouraging readers to return to the primary sources. Comprehensive, concise, and accessible, this masterful account provides a unique window into Rome and its changing fortune.
Call Number: E-Book (available online)
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