On a late September day in 480 B.C., Greek warships faced an invading Persian armada in the narrow Salamis Straits in the most important naval battle of the ancient world. Overwhelmingly outnumbered by the enemy, the Greeks triumphed through a combination of strategy and deception. More than two millennia after it occurred, the clash between the Greeks and Persians at Salamis remains one of the most tactically brilliant battles ever fought. The Greek victory changed the course of western history -- halting the advance of the Persian Empire and setting the stage for the Golden Age of Athens.
In his brief and meteoric life (356-323 B.C.), the greatest of all conquerors redirected the course of world history. Here, General J. F. C. Fuller, one of the premier military historians of the twentieth century, vividly portrays the astonishing successes of Alexander the Great, focusing on his brilliant battle strategies and his political savvy.
The ancient Greeks had made a remarkable advancement, in the field of Engineering and Technology. Their achievements, from 3000 BC until 1100 AD, leave us speechless and confirm that the modern technology does not owe its existence only to the industrial revolution. The ancient Greeks have put the founding stones here too.
In his classic book, J. G. Landels describes the technological advances of the Greeks and Romans with erudition and enthusiasm. He provides an important introduction to engineering, writing about power and energy sources, water engineering, cranes, and transportation devises. From aqueducts to catapults, he attempts to envision machines as they may have worked in the ancient world. He then traces the path of knowledge taken by early thinkers--including Plato, Pliny, and Archimedes--in developing early theories of engineering and physics.
The Histories of Herodotus is considered one of the seminal works of history in Western literature. Written from the 450s to the 420s BC in the Ionic dialect of classical Greek, The Histories serves as a record of the ancient traditions, politics, geography, and clashes of various cultures that were known around the Mediterranean and Western Asia at that time. It is not an impartial record but it remains one of the West's most important sources regarding these affairs. Moreover, it established without precedent the genre and study of history in the Western world, although historical records and chronicles existed beforehand.
Ancient Mesopotamia—the area now called Iraq—has received less attention than ancient Egypt and other long-extinct and more spectacular civilizations. But numerous small clay tablets buried in the desert soil for thousands of years make it possible for us to know more about the people of ancient Mesopotamia than any other land in the early Near East.
By the time of his death in 323 B.C., Alexander III of Macedonia had built an empire that stretched from the eastern Mediterranean coast through Asia Minor and into the Indus valley. Even before his sudden death, Alexander had achieved mythical status throughout his kingdom, and in the centuries that followed his life became the subject of countless chronicles and biographies.
More than fifteen centuries after its fall, the Roman Empire remains one of the most formative influences on the history of Europe. Its physical remains dot the landscape from Scotland to Syria. Its cities are still the great metropolises of the continent. Its law and institutions have shaped modern practice, and its ideal of a united Europe has haunted politicians ever since.
In 338 B.C. Philip II of Macedon established Macedonian rule over Greece. He was succeeded in 336 B.C. by his son Alexander the Great, whose conquests during the next twelve years reached as far as the Russian steppes, Afghanistan, and the Punjab, thus creating the Hellenistic world.
For three decades in the fifth century b.c. the ancient world was torn apart by a conflict that was as dramatic, divisive, and destructive as the world wars of the twentieth century: the Peloponnesian War. Donald Kagan, one of the world's most respected classical, political, and military historians, here presents a new account of this vicious war of Greek against Greek, Athenian against Spartan.