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Re: [Roman_History_Books] Rome In The First Century On PBS

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  • IrenesBooks@aol.com
    In a message dated 7/26/01 4:13:49 PM Eastern Daylight Time, ... For a poll and earlier opinions go here:
    Message 1 of 21 , Jul 26, 2001
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      In a message dated 7/26/01 4:13:49 PM Eastern Daylight Time,
      marianofsherwood95@... writes:

      > Has anybody else seen the recent PBS airing of "Rome In the First Century"?

      > If so, what did you think? I'd love to hear others' opinions! :)

      For a poll and earlier opinions go here:
      http://forums.about.com/ab-ancienthist/messages?msg=2161.1

      As you see, I (aka RomaHOST) was greatly outvoted <grin>

      I saw Part Two last night, and didn't like it either. You wouldn't know from
      the show that there was a "Year of the Four Emperors", nor that Titus Flavius
      existed.

      And to all: Please give your opinion here on Yahoo too....

      For books, here is my reading list:
      http://romanhistorybooksandmore.freeservers.com/booklist1a.htm

      Irene
      http://romanhistorybooksandmore.freeservers.com/
      Co-host, Ancient/Classical History Forum
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    • Jay Latona
      Hi All, I hurried home last night to catch the show on PBS. I didn t know it would be 2 hours. The video portions of the show did not support the audio very
      Message 2 of 21 , Jul 26, 2001
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        Hi All,

        I hurried home last night to catch the show on PBS.
        I didn't know it would be 2 hours.
        The video portions of the show did not support the audio very well.
        They did an interesting seque from Claudius to Nero to Vespasian.
        And they did try to put things into historical perspective, such as
        Nero's wanting to distract the public from his reign of terror by
        persecuting the Christians.
        And Saul's life was blended in very well into what else Rome was doing
        at the time.
        And I was amused by one of the historians saying that "ROme's dirty little
        secret" was that generals with the requisite might can be candidates
        for the next emperor position opening up. Now that's a big secret, except
        Marius, Sulla, and Caesar all did it in the last century.

        So all in all, they did a good job giving you a flavor of life in the
        first century under Roman rule..
        It was very ambitious and I feel that the tapes for
        $30 is a good buy for someone wanting to get a sense of what was
        going on in the known world after Augustus took over in 31 B.C.

        I really feel that all ancient history lovers should be thankful that
        "Gladiator" made such a big splash in Western society. That movie will spawn
        a lot of Roman history movie-making.

        I was so motivated after seeing "Gladiator" that I joined the book chat
        on Augustus and then got this great idea to go to Rome and investigate
        the ruins there once again (after 11 years).
        So I went to Rome; took tours of the Forum ruins; and even found the
        place where old Julius was assassinated (in Pompei's curio).
        And I have the photos and videos to prove it.

        So there's my take on the impact of "Roman Empire in the First Century".
        That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

        Jay

        --- IrenesBooks@... wrote:
        > In a message dated 7/26/01 4:13:49 PM Eastern Daylight Time,
        > marianofsherwood95@... writes:
        >
        > > Has anybody else seen the recent PBS airing of "Rome In the First Century"?
        >
        >
        > > If so, what did you think? I'd love to hear others' opinions! :)
        >
        > For a poll and earlier opinions go here:
        > http://forums.about.com/ab-ancienthist/messages?msg=2161.1
        >
        > As you see, I (aka RomaHOST) was greatly outvoted <grin>
        >
        > I saw Part Two last night, and didn't like it either. You wouldn't know from
        > the show that there was a "Year of the Four Emperors", nor that Titus Flavius
        >
        > existed.
        >
        > And to all: Please give your opinion here on Yahoo too....
        >
        > For books, here is my reading list:
        > http://romanhistorybooksandmore.freeservers.com/booklist1a.htm
        >
        > Irene
        > http://romanhistorybooksandmore.freeservers.com/
        > Co-host, Ancient/Classical History Forum
        > http://forums.about.com/ab-ancienthist/start
        > Forum Book Discussions
        > http://forums.about.com/ab-ancienthist2/start
        >


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      • Judy Geary
        I m always glad to see history popularized even if it s superficial. For Rome in the first century, Lindsey Davis is a fun read. (I note, but tolerate minor
        Message 3 of 21 , Jul 26, 2001
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          I'm always glad to see history "popularized" even if it's superficial. For Rome in the first century, Lindsey Davis is a fun read. (I note, but tolerate minor anachronisms.)

          JG

          Lady Marian wrote:

          > Hey All:
          > Has anybody else seen the recent PBS airing of "Rome In the First Century"? If so, what did you think? I'd love to hear others' opinions! :)
          > So far, I've only seen Part I, but I thought the producers/writers did a good job (and Sigourney Weaver was the narrarator). Does anybody have any book suggestions about this period on Roman history, both fiction and non-fiction?
          > Thanks much,
          > Denise
          > Boris Raymond <braymond@...> wrote: Why not have for a change, a discussion on some aspect of "The Fall of
          > Rome" circa A.D. 440 to 476?
          > Boris Raymond [braymond@...]
          >
          > On 26 Jul 2001 Roman_History_Books@yahoogroups.com wrote:
          >
          > >
          > > There are 2 messages in this issue.
          > >
          > > Topics in this digest:
          > >
          > > 1. Book Chats - August Recess / Suggestions
          > > From: IrenesBooks@...
          > > 2. Re: Book Chats - August Recess / Suggestions
          > > From: valentina casa <thelma_72@...>
          > >
          > >
          > > ________________________________________________________________________
          > > ________________________________________________________________________
          > >
          > > Message: 1
          > > Date: Wed, 25 Jul 2001 11:27:46 EDT
          > > From: IrenesBooks@...
          > > Subject: Book Chats - August Recess / Suggestions
          > >
          > > Hi All!
          > >
          > > July chats were a dud, and I have decided to call a recess for August: I'll
          > > be away myself for at least two weeks.
          > >
          > > We'll start again in September, hopefully with "I, Claudius" if everyone
          > > agrees.
          > >
          > > Meanwhile, I've direct e-mailed our "regulars" already for input, and now
          > > looking for yours too. Any suggestions/questions on the chats?
          > >
          > > You can put them either here or e-mail me directly at IrenesBooks@....
          > >
          > > Looking forward to hearing from you,
          > >
          > > Irene
          > > http://romanhistorybooksandmore.freeservers.com/
          > > Co-host, Ancient/Classical History Forum
          > > http://www.delphi.com/ab-ancienthist/start
          > > Forum Book Discussions
          > > http://www.delphi.com/ab-ancienthist2/start
          > >
          > >
          > > ________________________________________________________________________
          > > ________________________________________________________________________
          > >
          > > Message: 2
          > > Date: Wed, 25 Jul 2001 19:47:24 +0200 (CEST)
          > > From: valentina casa <thelma_72@...>
          > > Subject: Re: Book Chats - August Recess / Suggestions
          > >
          > > Have a good holidays.
          > > Valentina Casa
          > > --- IrenesBooks@... ha scritto:
          > > <HR>
          > > <html><body>
          > > <tt>
          > > Hi All!<BR>
          > > <BR>
          > > July chats were a dud, and I have decided to call a
          > > recess for August: I'll <BR>
          > > be away myself for at least two weeks.<BR>
          > > <BR>
          > > We'll start again in September, hopefully with
          > > "I, Claudius" if everyone <BR>
          > > agrees.<BR>
          > > <BR>
          > > Meanwhile, I've direct e-mailed our
          > > "regulars" already for input, and now <BR>
          > > looking for yours too.  Any suggestions/questions
          > > on the chats?<BR>
          > > <BR>
          > > You can put them either here or e-mail me directly at
          > > IrenesBooks@....<BR>
          > > <BR>
          > > Looking forward to hearing from you,<BR>
          > > <BR>
          > > Irene<BR>
          > > <a
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        • IrenesBooks@aol.com
          Here is the PBS website: http://www.pbs.org/empires/romans/empire/index.html Irene http://romanhistorybooksandmore.freeservers.com/ Co-host, Ancient/Classical
          Message 4 of 21 , Jul 26, 2001
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          • Lady Marian
            Thanks, Irene, for the PBS link! Did you watch Part I & II of Rome in the First Century ? If so, what did you think? Denise
            Message 5 of 21 , Jul 27, 2001
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              Thanks, Irene, for the PBS link! Did you watch Part I
              & II of "Rome in the First Century"? If so, what did
              you think?

              Denise



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            • Lady Marian
              Hi Judy: So you thought Rome in the First Century was superficial? If so, why? Just curious ....! :) Fair Winds & Blessings, Denise ===== Blessings & Fair
              Message 6 of 21 , Jul 27, 2001
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                Hi Judy:

                So you thought "Rome in the First Century" was
                superficial? If so, why? Just curious ....! :)

                Fair Winds & Blessings,

                Denise



                =====

                Blessings & Fair Winds,

                Denise


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              • Lady Marian
                Thanks, Jay, for sharing your opinion on Rome in the First Century! Neat observations! So -- would you care to perhaps share your photos of your recent
                Message 7 of 21 , Jul 27, 2001
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                  Thanks, Jay, for sharing your opinion on "Rome in the
                  First Century!" Neat observations! So -- would you
                  care to perhaps share your photos of your recent trip
                  to Rome with us listmates?

                  I've seen "Gladiator" (so far) six times, and have
                  loved it each time. And have gleaned new
                  info/insights from each viewing, too. Even wrote and
                  published a short essay on the film's impact on my
                  life. And you're right -- this movie will, no doubt,
                  spawn other Roman-era type films that once were so
                  popular in the 1950's and 1960's. Only question is:
                  will these newer films be as high of quality as
                  "Gladiator"? One can fervently hope so! (And I do
                  hope none will be parodies of toga parties!)

                  Denise


                  =====

                  Blessings & Fair Winds,

                  Denise


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                • Jay Latona
                  Hi Denise. I am just now organizing my photos and notes for a website. I wanted to accomplish a few things during my impromptu European jaunt: 1. find out
                  Message 8 of 21 , Jul 27, 2001
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                    Hi Denise.
                    I am just now organizing my photos and notes for a website.
                    I wanted to accomplish a few things during my impromptu European
                    jaunt:
                    1. find out about cheap fares to Europe
                    2. go through the Forum ruins in Rome again.
                    3. explore Sicily and visit Greek/Roman ruins there
                    4. and look into my roots on Sicily (somewhere above Agrigento)

                    I will let you know the URL once I establish the site.
                    Thanks for your interest.

                    Regarding "Gladiator":
                    1. The acting, costumes, battle scenes, special effects were all
                    terrific.
                    2. the sense of place and time in Rome was excellent and a credit to
                    Ridley Scott the director.
                    3. the contrived story involving the Emperor Commodus was tedious
                    and not true to history.

                    Here's hoping there are producers who have the courage to gather up
                    more hundreds of millions of dollars to create more "swords and sandals"
                    epics for our viewing pleasure.

                    Jay

                    --- Lady Marian <marianofsherwood95@...> wrote:
                    > Thanks, Jay, for sharing your opinion on "Rome in the
                    > First Century!" Neat observations! So -- would you
                    > care to perhaps share your photos of your recent trip
                    > to Rome with us listmates?
                    >
                    > I've seen "Gladiator" (so far) six times, and have
                    > loved it each time. And have gleaned new
                    > info/insights from each viewing, too. Even wrote and
                    > published a short essay on the film's impact on my
                    > life. And you're right -- this movie will, no doubt,
                    > spawn other Roman-era type films that once were so
                    > popular in the 1950's and 1960's. Only question is:
                    > will these newer films be as high of quality as
                    > "Gladiator"? One can fervently hope so! (And I do
                    > hope none will be parodies of toga parties!)
                    >
                    > Denise
                    >
                    >
                    > =====
                    >
                    > Blessings & Fair Winds,
                    >
                    > Denise
                    >
                    >
                    > __________________________________________________
                    > Do You Yahoo!?
                    > Make international calls for as low as $.04/minute with Yahoo! Messenger
                    > http://phonecard.yahoo.com/
                    >


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                  • IrenesBooks@aol.com
                    In a message dated 7/27/01 3:08:24 PM Eastern Daylight Time, ... Not much! Rather uncritical use of available sources. Too many images, repeat images,
                    Message 9 of 21 , Jul 27, 2001
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                      In a message dated 7/27/01 3:08:24 PM Eastern Daylight Time,
                      marianofsherwood95@... writes:

                      > If so, what did
                      > you think?

                      Not much! Rather uncritical use of available sources. Too many images,
                      repeat images, background sound.

                      Irene
                      http://romanhistorybooksandmore.freeservers.com/
                      Co-host, Ancient/Classical History Forum
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                    • Todd Sigler
                      Hi Irene (and group)- I enjoyed the special for what it was, which was a cliff notes version of history. But you are right, the repeated images (the one of a
                      Message 10 of 21 , Jul 27, 2001
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                        Hi Irene (and group)-
                        I enjoyed the special for what it was, which was a
                        cliff notes version of history. But you are right,
                        the repeated images (the one of a window's image on a
                        wall, presumably in the Senate seemed to be repeated
                        every 5 minutes or so) were annoying and distracting.

                        Todd
                        --- IrenesBooks@... wrote:
                        > In a message dated 7/27/01 3:08:24 PM Eastern
                        > Daylight Time,
                        > marianofsherwood95@... writes:
                        >
                        > > If so, what did
                        > > you think?
                        >
                        > Not much! Rather uncritical use of available
                        > sources. Too many images,
                        > repeat images, background sound.
                        >
                        > Irene
                        > http://romanhistorybooksandmore.freeservers.com/
                        > Co-host, Ancient/Classical History Forum
                        > http://forums.about.com/ab-ancienthist/start
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                        >


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                      • IrenesBooks@aol.com
                        There were a lot of image repeats which I think were for budgetary reasons, such as the same houses/buildings/reenactment figures shown all over again. I have
                        Message 11 of 21 , Jul 27, 2001
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                          There were a lot of image repeats which I think were for budgetary reasons,
                          such as the same houses/buildings/reenactment figures shown all over again. I
                          have no quarrel with that, I objected to the _number_ of images. It was
                          really more the repeat waves, the water and the flames that seemed so
                          unnecessary.

                          The only image repeat that I thought was really weird was the collapsing
                          toga: It was used for both the assassination of Caesar and the discovery of
                          Claudius behind the curtain... very unimaginative, IMO.

                          The relentless background music is personal gripe of mine for all
                          documentaries in recent years: I'm wearing a hearing aid (not deaf enough for
                          CC though) and spoken word with music in the background is rather hard to
                          follow. They even used it with the talking heads. I think documentary
                          producers really have boxed themselves in with that technique. I propose an
                          Emmy for the first one who manages to get out of that box <grin>

                          Irene
                        • David Wend
                          I have not yet viewed much of Rome In The First Century but it cannot help being superficial. I saw a portion where Pliny the Younger was being discussed
                          Message 12 of 21 , Jul 27, 2001
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                            I have not yet viewed much of "Rome In The First Century" but it cannot help
                            being superficial. I saw a portion where Pliny the Younger was being discussed
                            with his role of serving the tyrant Domitian and living to hate it. I find
                            Pliny an interesting person but he certainly did enjoy advancement under
                            Domitian even though he knew several members of the "Stoic Opposition."
                            Domitian could have refused Pliny advancement on this basis. In fact, he
                            allowed honors to several people with connections to this group. It is not
                            often mentioned that Domitian was somewhat conciliatory to the opposition.

                            So, I find programs like this one interesting but no substitute for reading.

                            Judy Geary wrote:

                            > Hi Denise,
                            >
                            > Actually I was responding to another's comment. My feeling is that 4 fours
                            > to cover essentially 150 years (Part one started with Augustus), must be
                            > superficial.
                            >
                            > Gotta go. Watching a special on gladiators.
                            >
                            > Judy
                            >
                            > Lady Marian wrote:
                            >
                            > > Hi Judy:
                            > >
                            > > So you thought "Rome in the First Century" was
                            > > superficial? If so, why? Just curious ....! :)
                            > >
                            > > Fair Winds & Blessings,
                            > >
                            > > Denise
                            > >
                            > > =====
                            > >
                            > > Blessings & Fair Winds,
                            > >
                            > > Denise
                            > >
                            > > __________________________________________________
                            > > Do You Yahoo!?
                            > > Make international calls for as low as $.04/minute with Yahoo! Messenger
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                            > >
                            > >
                            > >
                            > >
                            > > Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
                            >
                            > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                            >
                            >
                            >
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                          • Judy Geary
                            Hi Denise, Actually I was responding to another s comment. My feeling is that 4 fours to cover essentially 150 years (Part one started with Augustus), must be
                            Message 13 of 21 , Jul 27, 2001
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                              Hi Denise,

                              Actually I was responding to another's comment. My feeling is that 4 fours
                              to cover essentially 150 years (Part one started with Augustus), must be
                              superficial.

                              Gotta go. Watching a special on gladiators.

                              Judy

                              Lady Marian wrote:

                              > Hi Judy:
                              >
                              > So you thought "Rome in the First Century" was
                              > superficial? If so, why? Just curious ....! :)
                              >
                              > Fair Winds & Blessings,
                              >
                              > Denise
                              >
                              > =====
                              >
                              > Blessings & Fair Winds,
                              >
                              > Denise
                              >
                              > __________________________________________________
                              > Do You Yahoo!?
                              > Make international calls for as low as $.04/minute with Yahoo! Messenger
                              > http://phonecard.yahoo.com/
                              >
                              >
                              >
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                            • IrenesBooks@aol.com
                              Pliny seems to have had a rather uninterrupted career. Here is a timeline: http://www.umich.edu/~classics/latin/231/231pliny.html Irene Irene
                              Message 14 of 21 , Jul 27, 2001
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                                Pliny seems to have had a rather uninterrupted career. Here is a timeline:

                                http://www.umich.edu/~classics/latin/231/231pliny.html

                                Irene

                                Irene
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                              • Lady Marian
                                Hi All: Thanks for answering my questions about Rome in the First Century on PBS (I ll be watching Part II this evening; I had it taped earlier in the week).
                                Message 15 of 21 , Jul 28, 2001
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                                  Hi All:
                                  Thanks for answering my questions about "Rome in the First Century" on PBS (I'll be watching Part II this evening; I had it taped earlier in the week). Do any of you folks on this list have good book suggestions on the life of Pliny The Elder/Pliny the Younger/Domition/Vespasian!
                                  Thanks!




                                  Blessings & Fair Winds,

                                  Denise



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                                • Jimmyjb
                                  ... I don t know about the others but imho Barbara Levick s _Vespasian_ was published by Routledge (in the UK) about three years ago and is still in print. It
                                  Message 16 of 21 , Jul 28, 2001
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                                    Lady Marian wrote:

                                    > ... Do any of you folks on this list have good book suggestions on the life of Pliny The Elder/Pliny the Younger/Domition/Vespasian! Thanks!

                                    I don't know about the others but imho Barbara Levick's _Vespasian_ was published by Routledge (in the UK) about three years ago and is still in print. It is probably the only book on Vespasian in print, but very worth while as are all of Dr. Levick's biographies of the early
                                    emperors. I believe she has an older work on Claudius, also quite good. Bernard Henderson's treatment of Vespasian in his Five Roman Emperors (based heavily on Plutarch) is also pretty informative, but is long out of print (1927 with a 1970 reprint) and is made obsolete by Levick's
                                    research.
                                    ----------
                                    BTW, I promised Irene a tidbit on Cleopatra and Herod -- possibly of interest to the current book discussion, or the one that has been postponed. Just a bit of irony. Here goes.

                                    Julius Caesar and Antony's Cleopatra tried to persuade Marcus to free up some of the lands of Rome's Judaean client Herod the Great to add to her Greater Eastern Empire (or whatever that co-dominion was to be known) but Antony stood by his backer to the north, even though Herod's
                                    loyalties had proven fickle, switching allegiances according to the way the power struggle was going...he later switched over to Octavian. Julius had to "disengage" from Cleopatra much as Antony also threw her over.

                                    Herod's granddaughter, Queen Berenice (who allegedly had an incestuous relationship with her brother Herod Agrippa II) acted as a Judaean Cleopatra: she was a scheming "eastern princess" who had snared a Roman ruler...in this case Titus. The Senate and People forced Titus to renounce
                                    his conniving mistress, much as his predecessors had to drop Cleopatra under popular pressure.

                                    I always like to find these parallels in ancient history. Who knows, perhaps Berenice was emulating
                                    the Egyptian princess in her way. Berenice was allowed to remain in Rome, where she wielded some influence through her brother Agrippa II. The latter had sided with Rome in the Great Judaean Revolt and was in some favor with the Flavian house. Titus' short life did not permit us to
                                    know whether he might have resumed his attachment to Berenice. It says much for Berenice's charms that she was in her forties (and Titus in his twenties) when she was his mistress.

                                    Jim Bloom
                                  • IrenesBooks@aol.com
                                    [Thank you, Jim, for Herod] Yes, Barbara Levick s Vespasian (and her Claudius ) is excellent, as is Pat Southern s Domitian, Tragic Tyrant . Since each
                                    Message 17 of 21 , Jul 28, 2001
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                                      [Thank you, Jim, for Herod]

                                      Yes, Barbara Levick's "Vespasian" (and her "Claudius") is excellent, as is
                                      Pat Southern's "Domitian, Tragic Tyrant".

                                      Since each book heavily relies on annalistic data and other ancient records,
                                      one can find information on the Plinys too in there.

                                      Then there is Julian Bennett's "Trajan, Optimus Princeps", which also deals
                                      with Pliny the Younger.

                                      You find all these on my reading list:
                                      http://romanhistorybooksandmore.freeservers.com/booklist1a.htm

                                      Irene
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