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The Histories

The Histories

Paperback Oxford World's Classics (Paperback)

By (author) Cornelius Tacitus, Edited by D. S. Levene, Translated by W.H. Fyfe

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  • Publisher: Oxford University Press
  • Format: Paperback | 368 pages
  • Dimensions: 130mm x 191mm x 23mm | 249g
  • Publication date: 15 July 2008
  • Publication City/Country: Oxford
  • ISBN 10: 0199540705
  • ISBN 13: 9780199540709
  • Illustrations note: maps
  • Sales rank: 200,679

Product description

'The story I now commence is rich in vicissitudes, grim with warfare, torn by civil strife, a tale of horror even during times of peace.' Edward Gibbon called The Histories an 'immortal work, every sentence of which is pregnant with the deepest observations and the most lively images'. Its author, Cornelius Tacitus, widely acknowledged as the greatest of all Roman historians, describes with cynical power the murderous 'Year of the Four Emperors' - AD 69 - when in just a few months the whole of the Roman Empire was torn apart by civil war. The ultimate triumph of Vespasian and his sons Titus and Domitian was only the prelude to further conflicts and disasters, with revolts among the Germans and Jews challenging the very foundations of Roman authority. W. H. Fyfe's classic translation has been substantially revised to accord with modern scholarship, and supplied with extensive historical and literary notes. The Introduction provides an essential guide to understanding the subtleties of Tacitus' writing, and sets the historical scene with a succinct account of the political and social background to the Imperial Roman state. Maps of the Roman Empire and a Glossary of Place Names complete this valuable edition. ABOUT THE SERIES: For over 100 years Oxford World's Classics has made available the widest range of literature from around the globe. Each affordable volume reflects Oxford's commitment to scholarship, providing the most accurate text plus a wealth of other valuable features, including expert introductions by leading authorities, helpful notes to clarify the text, up-to-date bibliographies for further study, and much more.

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Author information

D. S. Levene is Lecturer in Classics at the University of Durham. He was educated at the City of London School and Brasenose College, Oxford. His writings include Religion in Livy (Leiden, 1993) and articles on Sallust and Tacitus.

Review quote

plenty here to savour ... Tacitus was not just a fine writer, he was also a senior Roman politician. Max Davidson, The Daily Telegraph