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  • SPQR

  • A History of Ancient Rome
  • By: Mary Beard
  • Narrated by: Phyllida Nash
  • Length: 18 hrs and 30 mins
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars (214 ratings)

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SPQR cover art

SPQR

By: Mary Beard
Narrated by: Phyllida Nash
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Summary

Sunday Times top 10 best seller.

Shortlisted for a British Book Industry Book of the Year Award 2016.

The new series Ultimate Rome: Empire Without Limit is on BBC2.

Ancient Rome matters.

Its history of empire, conquest, cruelty and excess is something against which we still judge ourselves. Its myths and stories - from Romulus and Remus to the Rape of Lucretia - still strike a chord with us. And its debates about citizenship, security and the rights of the individual still influence our own debates on civil liberty today.

SPQR is a new look at Roman history from one of the world's foremost classicists. It explores not only how Rome grew from an insignificant village in Central Italy to a power that controlled territory from Spain to Syria, but also how the Romans thought about themselves and their achievements, and why they are still important to us. Covering 1,000 years of history and casting fresh light on the basics of Roman culture from slavery to running water, as well as exploring democracy, migration, religious controversy, social mobility and exploitation in the larger context of the empire, this is a definitive history of ancient Rome.

SPQR is the Romans' own abbreviation for their state: Senatus Populusque Romanus, 'the Senate and People of Rome'.

©2016 Mary Beard (P)2016 Hachette Audio UK
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Categories: History

What listeners say about SPQR

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Great addition

Good addition to any roman history fan, it goes in depth into most important things and I'm sure it could have been twice as long if the author wrote down all she wanted to.
Arguabally a must have for any amateur roman historian where some healthy amounts of perspective are a key feature. Great to have a book that romantacises very little about roman culture and brings us facts and findings!

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    5 out of 5 stars

A good account by a great historian, excellent narration

For the true fan of Ancient Rome, Mary Beard is a requirement. While other books presents it as narrative history, enrapturing for sure, it is Beard who reminds you how difficult it truly is to say much with any certainty- but at the same time demonstrates how historians can draw great images from systematically adding one piece of the puzzle at the time.

Narration was spot on and captures Beards tone, and even rhythm, so perfectly I actually had to double check it wasn’t the author herself reading.

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I waited a long time

I waited a long time for this to be available in Poland on Audible. it was worth the wait. A fine collection of essays well presented.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

great book - very quiet.

I absolutely loved the book, but the narration is so quiet it makes it almost impossible to listen to in public, which is a shame as I listen most often while commuting to work. I've never had this problem with any other audio book.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

A very intriguing and insightful look into Roman history

I really enjoyed this book and found it to be a great introduction to Roman history. I’m far from expert on Roman history but managed to keep up really well thank to Mary Beard’s story telling.

My only issue is the chapters are a little long (I wish audible had a setting for sub-chapters) so you I sometimes lose my place if I got distracted.

Still, a really good book and it really immersed me in an ancient world.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Fantastic intro for anyone to try Roman History

When I first began I was a little disappointed that Mary focused so little on huge events with the history of Rome such as Hannibal's campaign or Ceasars demise, however it dawned on me that for those events a book could been written entirely on them alone. Due to this I realised that Mary is pushing to give the reader/listener as much info on the entirety of Rome as a single stand alone piece of work. Mary does a fantastic job of this and gives the reader a diving board to jump off into the elements of Roman history they may enjoy the most. If you enjoyed the pre Republic era she covers than that's the pool you aim for when jumping off. in addition to this she focuses a lot on the ordinary people of Rome. The slaves, the craftsmen, the politicians and people within the wider reaches of the empire. I found this amazing as I'm so used to the almost celebrity status that Ceasar, Mark Anthony, Nero etc recieve. They did live very interesting lives I can't argue with that but they don't represent identity or Rome and its history like the every day people who loved and died there. 5 stars from me.

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Brilliantly laid out work.

From beginner to expert, this book explains the history of Rome simply and keeps one engaged throughout.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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SPQR Audio book

I enjoyed reading the book so when it was released by Audible I decided to listen to it. Phyllida Nash provides an excellent reading of the book which provides a slightly different look at Rome and the Romans than other authors. I would heartily recommend listening as it is NOT a dull retelling.
Brilliant

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Enlightening history

Measured delivery of an apparently balanced account of a vast sprawling story. I feel so much better educated; Thankyou. It’s been a pleasure .

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Rome wasn't listened to in a day

voice acting was great. info great. what a book. sensational stuff all round guys

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