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Ancient

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Darwin8u

Darwin8u Mesa, AZ, United States Member Since 2011

A part-time buffoon and ersatz scholar specializing in BS, pedantry, schmaltz and cultural coprophagia.

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  • "A mythic & complicated life of a ch..."

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    A fascinating piece of Persian/Roman/Asia Minor history/biography. Mithradates makes almost every other challenger to the status quo seem inept, uncreative and not really committed. He isn't, however, a warrior king/leader you can completely admire. His methods for removing the Romans from Asia Minor were not even remotely reasonable ('Kill them all and let Zeus sort them out' wasn't tolerable even in 88 BC). However, his life was mythic. He was a brilliant linguist, military commander, scientist, and absolutely machismo to boot. He wasn't interested in playing a minor character on the world stage. He wanted to be a Darius or an Alexander the Great type of leader and for much of his life he was. The Romans were terrified of him. He fought them using terror, direct action (both naval and military), statecraft, and asymmetric warfare. He was rich, charismatic and ruthless.

    The shortcoming of this book is one that would probably be the shortcoming of any historical biography of Mithradates: the lack of complete records. So much of Mithradates life is shrouded in rumor, speculation and second and third-hand sources. Those materials that exist are often biased because they were written by Romans. So Mayor is stuck, she can either try to sort out the fact from the fable and sometimes get a little loose with her narrative, or she can write a book that no one but Classical Historians would probably want to read. She chose readability, and the book was VERY readable, but it did come at a cost. The "what ifs and alternate endings and he might haves" get to be a little too much, or at least enough that I couldn't see giving this biography five stars.

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    The Poison King: The Life and Legend of Mithradates, Rome’s Deadliest Enemy

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By Adrienne Mayor
    • Narrated By Paul Hecht
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (310)
    Performance
    (251)
    Story
    (255)

    A National Book Award finalist for this epic work, Adrienne Mayor delivers a gripping account of Mithradates, the ruthless visionary who began to challenge Rome’s power in 120 B.C. Machiavelli praised his military genius. Kings coveted his secret elixir against poison. Poets celebrated his victories, intrigues, and panache. But until now, no one has told the full story of his incredible life.

    Darwin8u says: "A mythic & complicated life of a charismatic King"
  • "One of the great adventures in huma..."

    Overall
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    Herodotus might have been the Father of History, but Xenophon was the cool, older brother. This one-time pupil of Socrates is one of those soldier/scholars who makes both intellectuals and warriors feel inadequate. 'The Persian Expedition' or 'The March of the Ten Thousand' or 'Anabasis' (all depending on your version or translation) relates the story told by Xenophon of his experiences fighting with and leading the 10,000 Hellene mercenaries hired by Cyrus the Younger and the army's 3000+ mile march into Persian.

    This experience, which Will Durrant once called "one of the great adventures in human history," can be read as history, adventure story, leadership manual, or a real-life application of Socratic philosophy.

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    The March of the Ten Thousand

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By Xenophon
    • Narrated By Charlton Griffin
    Overall
    (290)
    Performance
    (111)
    Story
    (115)

    Translated by W. E. D. Rouse, The March of the Ten Thousand is one of the most admired and widely read pieces of ancient literature to come down to us. Xenophon employs a very simple, straightforward style to describe what is probably the most exciting military adventure ever undertaken. It is an epic of courage, faith and democratic principle.

    Benedict says: "An intelligent leader"
  • "An Amazing Piece of History"

    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    There was some drudgery with the minor, post Constantine emperors. I was also not as excited by the HRE sections as I was by the sections on the Rise of Islam, the Mongols, the Ottoman Empire, and the Crusades. Those sections alone are why I rated the second half 5 stars and not 4. Anyway, a fantastic read. Ironic to finish it right after S&P lowers our national credit rating and our senators again fail to do anything productive. Thrilled that so much effort was put into making this available in Audio format.

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    The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, Volume 3

    • UNABRIDGED (39 hrs and 3 mins)
    • By Edward Gibbon
    • Narrated By Bernard Mayes
    Overall
    (83)
    Performance
    (52)
    Story
    (48)

    This third volume of Gibbon's masterpiece covers the years A.D. 1185 to A.D. 1453 and explores the rise of Islam, the Crusades, the invention of gunpowder, Genghis Khan and the Mongol invasions, the Turkish conquests, and the beginning of the Renaissance.

    Darwin8u says: "An Amazing Piece of History"
  1. The Poison King: The Life...
  2. The March of the Ten Thou...
  3. The Decline and Fall of t...
  4. .

A Peek at R. E. O'leary's Bookshelf

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Lewiston, NY USA 2 REVIEWS / 2 ratings Member Since 2012 1 Followers / Following 0
 
R. E. O'leary's greatest hits:
  • The Fall and Rise of China

    "Excellent course on modern Chinese History"

    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This course offers a fairly in depth history lesson for the last century in China. It starts out with a summation of the previous events, ideas and principles that led up to the collapse of the dynastic system. The author provides analysis of the events by referring to other historical references. During the more modern era the author is able to add in his own experiences to give the listener a more personal look at the daily realities of the Chinese today. Though there was less of an analysis on the financial history then I would have hoped for, particularly the financial practices of several groups in modern day China. I will admit this is simply my own preference and likely not a notable deficit for most listeners.

Jefferson

Jefferson 07-03-11 Member Since 2010

I love reading and listening to books, especially fantasy, science fiction, children's, historical, and classics.

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  • "Fascinating and Well-Read History"

    17 of 17 helpful votes

    I really enjoyed Herodotus' The Histories, about the background and main events of the epic wars between the ancient Persians and Greeks (translated by George Rawlinson). I was hooked by "the Father of History's" enthusiastic accounts of interesting historical and cultural information and impressed by his appealing balance of objectivity and subjectivity. And I savored his many digressions amplifying the historical context, as well as his detailed accounts of the different ancient exotic cultures (like the Egyptians shaving their eyebrows when their housecats died or the Scythians making capes from the scalps of their fallen enemies), which were in a sense all similar in their violence, heroism, treachery, brutality, ethnocentrism, and superstitious following of prodigies and omens and oracles. We haven't changed so much in 2000 plus years???

    Despite some listeners complaining about the reader, Bernard Mayes, I quickly came to enjoy his handling of The Histories, easily imagining myself listening to an elderly, experienced, and decent Herodotus. I appreciated Mayes' subtle changes in tone to express a variety of moods, from Xerxes' waxing wroth at some unpleasant advice and the Athenians getting peeved by the Spartans worrying that they would ally with the Persians, to the suspenseful accounts of battles like those at Marathon, Thermopylae, and Salamis that helped decide the course of world history. I found Mayes always to be right on task, always speaking with effective clarity and rhythm, always perfectly expressing Herodotus' humor, disbelief, admiration, and criticism of his historical subjects.

    The only flaw in the audiobook is the too frequent, sudden flash of a kind of static, which distracts from the overall experience to the point that I'm giving what should be a five star audiobook four stars. I highly recommend it.

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    The Histories

    • UNABRIDGED (28 hrs and 35 mins)
    • By Herodotus
    • Narrated By Bernard Mayes
    Overall
    (263)
    Performance
    (113)
    Story
    (111)

    Herodotus is not only the father of the art and the science of historical writing, but also one of the Western tradition's most compelling storytellers. In tales such as that of Gyges, who murders Candaules, the king of Lydia, and usurps his throne and his marriage bed, thereby bringing on, generations later, war with the Persians, Herodotus laid bare the intricate human entanglements at the core of great historical events.

    Jefferson says: "Fascinating and Well-Read History"

What's Trending in Ancient:

  • 4.9 (16 ratings)
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UNABRIDGED) by Edward Gibbon Narrated by David Timson

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    • UNABRIDGED (22 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Edward Gibbon
    • Narrated By David Timson
    Overall
    (16)
    Performance
    (16)
    Story
    (16)

    Some 250 years after its first publication, Gibbon's Decline and Fall is still regarded as one of the greatest histories in Western literature. He reports on more than 1,000 years of an empire which extended from the most northern and western parts of Europe to deep into Asia and Africa and covers not only events but also the cultural and religious developments that effected change during that time.

    Allen L. Harris says: "DAVID TIMSON IS AMAZING!"
  • 4.3 (949 ratings)
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    • By The Great Courses, Robert Garland
    • Narrated By Professor Robert Garland
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    Story
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    Look beyond the abstract dates and figures, kings and queens, and battles and wars that make up so many historical accounts. Over the course of 48 richly detailed lectures, Professor Garland covers the breadth and depth of human history from the perspective of the so-called ordinary people, from its earliest beginnings through the Middle Ages.

    Mark says: "Tantalizing time trip"
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    Lost to the West: The Forgotten Byzantine Empire That Rescued Western Civilization

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 3 mins)
    • By Lars Brownworth
    • Narrated By Lars Brownworth
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    In AD 476 the Roman Empire fell - or rather, its western half did. Its eastern half, which would come to be known as the Byzantine Empire, would endure and often flourish for another 11 centuries. Though its capital would move to Constantinople, its citizens referred to themselves as Roman for the entire duration of the empire's existence.

    Joseph M. Dolan says: "Excellent Book about Little Known History"
  • 4.7 (292 ratings)
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    Nassir says: "Incomprehensibly complete"
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    The Fall and Rise of China  by The Great Courses Narrated by Professor Richard Baum

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    Yu-Chin says: "Offers excellent objective perspective!"
  • 4.3 (234 ratings)
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    • ORIGINAL (17 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By The Great Courses
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    As raiders and explorers, the Vikings played a decisive role in the formation of Latin Christendom, and particularly of western Europe. Now, in a series of 36 vivid lectures by an honored teacher and classical scholar, you have the opportunity to understand this remarkable race as never before, studying the Vikings not only as warriors, but in all of the other roles in which they were equally extraordinary - merchants, artists, kings, raiders, seafarers, shipbuilders, and creators of a remarkable literature of myths and sagas.

    Peter says: "Good Informational Listen"
  • 4.3 (191 ratings)
    Rubicon: The Triumph and Tragedy of the Roman Republic (






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    Rubicon: The Triumph and Tragedy of the Roman Republic

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By Tom Holland
    • Narrated By Steven Crossley
    Overall
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    Performance
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    The Roman Republic was the most remarkable state in history. What began as a small community of peasants camped among marshes and hills ended up ruling the known world. Rubicon paints a vivid portrait of the Republic at the climax of its greatness - the same greatness which would herald the catastrophe of its fall. It is a story of incomparable drama.

    Emily says: "Connects the Dots and Fills In the Gaps"
  • 1177 B.C.: The Year Civilization Collapsed (






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    1177 B.C.: The Year Civilization Collapsed

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 3 mins)
    • By Eric H. Cline
    • Narrated By Andy Caploe
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    Performance
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    Story
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    In 1177 B.C., marauding groups known only as the "Sea Peoples" invaded Egypt. The pharaoh’s army and navy managed to defeat them, but the victory so weakened Egypt that it soon slid into decline, as did most of the surrounding civilizations. After centuries of brilliance, the civilized world of the Bronze Age came to an abrupt and cataclysmic end. Kingdoms fell like dominoes over the course of just a few decades. No more Minoans or Mycenaeans. No more Trojans, Hittites, or Babylonians.

    Emily says: "But it was all going so well....."
  • Caesar: Life of a Colossus (






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    Caesar: Life of a Colossus

    • UNABRIDGED (24 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Adrian Goldsworthy
    • Narrated By Derek Perkins
    Overall
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    Performance
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    Story
    (4)

    Tracing the extraordinary trajectory of Julius Caesar's life, Adrian Goldsworthy covers not only the great Roman emperor's accomplishments as charismatic orator, conquering general, and powerful dictator but also lesser-known chapters. Ultimately, Goldsworthy realizes the full complexity of Caesar's character and shows why his political and military leadership continues to resonate some 2,000 years later.

  • The Other Side of History: Daily Life in the Ancient World  by The Great Courses, Robert Garland Narrated by Professor Robert Garland

    The Other Side of History: Daily Life in the Ancient World

    • ORIGINAL (24 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By The Great Courses, Robert Garland
    • Narrated By Professor Robert Garland
    Overall
    (949)
    Performance
    (854)
    Story
    (845)

    Look beyond the abstract dates and figures, kings and queens, and battles and wars that make up so many historical accounts. Over the course of 48 richly detailed lectures, Professor Garland covers the breadth and depth of human history from the perspective of the so-called ordinary people, from its earliest beginnings through the Middle Ages.

    Mark says: "Tantalizing time trip"
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    Mythology

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Edith Hamilton
    • Narrated By Suzanne Toren
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (89)
    Performance
    (75)
    Story
    (78)

    Since its original publication by Little, Brown and Company, in 1942, Edith Hamilton's Mythology has sold millions of copies throughout the world and established itself as a perennial best-seller in its various available formats. Mythology succeeds like no other audiobook in bringing to life for the modern listener the Greek, Roman, and Norse myths and legends that are the keystone of Western culture - the stories of gods and heroes that have inspired human creativity from antiquity to the present.

    Kathi says: "Good reading of classical myths"
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    36 Revolutionary Figures of History

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    Performance
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    Story
    (0)

    Alexander the Great, Jesus, Darwin, and Churchill are just a few of the many politicians, religious leaders, scientists, philosophers, authors, inventors, and generals who transformed our world in ways that still resonate today. Now, with this unique collection of 36 lectures from our extensive course catalog, meet the remarkable people without whom the world would never be the same.

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    • UNABRIDGED (26 hrs and 26 mins)
    • By Susan Wise Bauer
    • Narrated By John Lee
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    Amazon Customer says: "A Fantastic Overview!"
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    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By Reza Aslan
    • Narrated By Reza Aslan
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    Performance
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    Charles says: "Palastinian Politics 4 B.C.E. - 70 C.E."
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    The Story of Human Language

    • ORIGINAL (18 hrs and 15 mins)
    • By The Great Courses, John McWhorter
    • Narrated By Professor John McWhorter
    Overall
    (176)
    Performance
    (167)
    Story
    (163)

    Language defines us as a species, placing humans head and shoulders above even the most proficient animal communicators. But it also beguiles us with its endless mysteries, allowing us to ponder why different languages emerged, why there isn't simply a single language, how languages change over time and whether that's good or bad, and how languages die out and become extinct.

    Saud says: "You'll Never Look at Languages the Same Way Again"
  •  
  • The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, Volume I (






UNABRIDGED) by Edward Gibbon Narrated by David Timson

    The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, Volume I

    • UNABRIDGED (22 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Edward Gibbon
    • Narrated By David Timson
    Overall
    (16)
    Performance
    (16)
    Story
    (16)

    Some 250 years after its first publication, Gibbon's Decline and Fall is still regarded as one of the greatest histories in Western literature. He reports on more than 1,000 years of an empire which extended from the most northern and western parts of Europe to deep into Asia and Africa and covers not only events but also the cultural and religious developments that effected change during that time.

    Allen L. Harris says: "DAVID TIMSON IS AMAZING!"
  • The History of Ancient Egypt  by The Great Courses Narrated by Professor Bob Brier

    The History of Ancient Egypt

    • ORIGINAL (24 hrs and 25 mins)
    • By The Great Courses
    • Narrated By Professor Bob Brier
    Overall
    (292)
    Performance
    (275)
    Story
    (276)

    Ancient Egyptian civilization is so grand our minds sometimes have difficulty adjusting to it. It lasted 3,000 years, longer than any other on the planet. Its Great Pyramid of Cheops was the tallest building in the world until well into the 19th century and remains the only Ancient Wonder still standing. And it was the most technologically advanced of the ancient civilizations, with the medical knowledge that made Egyptian physicians the most famous in the world.

    Nassir says: "Incomprehensibly complete"
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    The Story of Medieval England: From King Arthur to the Tudor Conquest

    • ORIGINAL (19 hrs and 7 mins)
    • By The Great Courses
    • Narrated By Professor Jennifer Paxton
    Overall
    (140)
    Performance
    (131)
    Story
    (129)

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    Jake says: "I was happily surprised!"
  • How Jesus Became God: The Exaltation of a Jewish Preacher from Galilee (






UNABRIDGED) by Bart D. Ehrman Narrated by Walter Dixon

    How Jesus Became God: The Exaltation of a Jewish Preacher from Galilee

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By Bart D. Ehrman
    • Narrated By Walter Dixon
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (130)
    Performance
    (123)
    Story
    (120)

    In a book that took eight years to research and write, leading Bible scholar Bart D. Ehrman explores how an apocalyptic prophet from the backwaters of rural Galilee crucified for crimes against the state came to be thought of as equal with the one God Almighty Creator of all things. Ehrman sketches Jesus's transformation from a human prophet to the Son of God exalted to divine status at his resurrection. Only when some of Jesus's followers had visions of him after his death - alive again - did anyone come to think that he, the prophet from Galilee, had become God.

    Emily P says: "Monotone Excitement"
  • 36 Revolutionary Figures of History  by The Great Courses Narrated by Professor Allen C. Guelzo, Professor Bob Brier, Professor Dennis Dalton, Professor Stephen A. Erickson

    36 Revolutionary Figures of History

    • ORIGINAL (18 hrs and 35 mins)
    • By The Great Courses
    • Narrated By Professor Allen C. Guelzo, Professor Bob Brier, Professor Dennis Dalton, and others
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    Alexander the Great, Jesus, Darwin, and Churchill are just a few of the many politicians, religious leaders, scientists, philosophers, authors, inventors, and generals who transformed our world in ways that still resonate today. Now, with this unique collection of 36 lectures from our extensive course catalog, meet the remarkable people without whom the world would never be the same.

  • Introducing the Ancient Greeks: From Bronze Age Seafarers to Navigators of the Western Mind (






UNABRIDGED) by Edith Hall Narrated by Sian Thomas

    Introducing the Ancient Greeks: From Bronze Age Seafarers to Navigators of the Western Mind

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By Edith Hall
    • Narrated By Sian Thomas
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    Acclaimed classics scholar Edith Hall's Introducing the Ancient Greeks is the first book to offer a synthesis of the entire ancient Greek experience, from the rise of the Mycenaean kingdoms of the sixteenth century BC to the final victory of Christianity over paganism in AD 391. Each of the ten chapters visits a different Greek community at a different moment during the twenty centuries of ancient Greek history.

  • Easter Island's Silent Sentinels: The Sculpture and Architecture of Rapa Nui (






UNABRIDGED) by Kenneth Treister, Patricia Vargas Casanova, Claudio Cristino Narrated by Michael Lenz

    Easter Island's Silent Sentinels: The Sculpture and Architecture of Rapa Nui

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 26 mins)
    • By Kenneth Treister, Patricia Vargas Casanova, Claudio Cristino
    • Narrated By Michael Lenz
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    It may be the most interesting and yet loneliest spot on Earth: a volcanic rock surrounded by a million square miles of ocean, named for the day Dutch explorers discovered it, Easter Sunday, April 5, 1722. Here, people created a complex society, sophisticated astronomy, exquisite wood sculpture, monumental stone architecture, roads, and a puzzling ideographic script. And then they went about sculpting amazing, giant human figures in stone.

  • Breve historia de Jesús de Nazaret (






UNABRIDGED) by Francisco José Gómez Narrated by Gonzalo Otero

    Breve historia de Jesús de Nazaret

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 14 mins)
    • By Francisco José Gómez
    • Narrated By Gonzalo Otero
    Overall
    (1)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    Sobre su figura se han escrito infinidad de tratados, manuales, crónicas y testimonios, pero aún así, podemos encontrar hoy en día autores que dudan de la existencia de Jesús de Nazaret. Un análisis riguroso, basado en las fuentes más fidedignas y en las investigaciones más novedosas, nunca está de más a la hora de acercarse a un personaje histórico que está presente día a día en la vida de millones de personas.

  •  
  • Oman: Under Arabian Skies (






UNABRIDGED) by Rory Patrick Allen Narrated by Alan Pelz-Sharpe

    Oman: Under Arabian Skies

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By Rory Patrick Allen
    • Narrated By Alan Pelz-Sharpe
    Overall
    (1)
    Performance
    (1)
    Story
    (1)

    The Sultanate of Oman is a land of oases,deserts, rolling sands, shifting dunes, and mountains upon which ancient cities have been carved from stone. A land that boasts the Queen of Sheba, Sindbad the Sailor, and The Lost City of Ubar buried for millennia under the Arabian Sands. A country that was heralded for its wealth in frankincense, and it is from here that ancient frankincense caravans began carrying their precious cargoes to the classical world.

    Red says: "THE LAND OF THE SULTANS"
  • Breve historia de las ciudades del mundo clásico (






UNABRIDGED) by Ángel Luis Vera Aranda Narrated by Joan Mora

    Breve historia de las ciudades del mundo clásico

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By Ángel Luis Vera Aranda
    • Narrated By Joan Mora
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    Breve Historia de las Ciudades del Mundo Antiguo viene a aclarar todos los mitos que se han ido creando alrededor de estas metrópolis y que han ido oscureciendo la majestuosidad y la inmensidad de estos colosos asentados en los márgenes de los ríos. Ángel Luis Vera acomete la tarea de levantar ante nuestros ojos, de nuevo, los Jardines Colgantes de Babilonia, el Gran Templo de Jerusalén del que sólo se conserva el muro de las Lamentaciones o la faraónica Tebas que albergaba el templo de Luxor.

  • Rise of an Empire: How One Man United Greece to Defeat Xerxes's Persians (






UNABRIDGED) by Stephen Dando-Collins Narrated by Dennis Holland

    Rise of an Empire: How One Man United Greece to Defeat Xerxes's Persians

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 15 mins)
    • By Stephen Dando-Collins
    • Narrated By Dennis Holland
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    The action-filled movie 300 focused on Ancient Greece's epic battle of Thermopylae, in which King Leonidas led 300 Spartans into battle against Xerxes and his million-strong Persian forces. In the sequel, 300: Rise of an Empire, the action moves to the sea, covering 10 years starting with the Battle of Marathon and ending with naval engagement the Battle of Artemisium, which occurred the same day as Thermopylae. Rise of an Empire tells the story of the real men and events depicted in the movie.

  • Breve historia de Babilonia (






UNABRIDGED) by Juan Luis Montero Fenollós Narrated by José Carlos Domínguez

    Breve historia de Babilonia

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 13 mins)
    • By Juan Luis Montero Fenollós
    • Narrated By José Carlos Domínguez
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    Una ciudad tan majestuosa como Atenas o Roma pero absolutamente desconocida. Es poco lo que se sabe de Babilonia a parte de unas cuantas anécdotas, este audio libro es fundamental para comprender poemas épicos como Gilgamesh, figuras bíblicas y de la música clásica como Nabucodonosor o auténticos enigmas arquitectónicos como la Torre de Babel sobre la que se conocen no pocas leyendas.

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