When Livy began his epic The History of Rome, he had no idea of the fame and fortune he would eventually attain. He would go on to become the most widely read writer in the Roman Empire and was eagerly sought out and feted like a modern celebrity. And his fame continued to grow after his death. His bombastic style, his intricate and complex sentence structure, and his flair for powerfully recreating the searing drama of historical incidents made him a favorite of teachers and pupils alike.
Livy's splendid adventure of Rome's rise to dominance comes to a close in this concluding volume of his magnificent history. Sadly, the work abruptly halts near the completion of book 45, which concerns events in Greece in the year 168 BC. The missing portions, numbering 107 books, have never been found. The original text of this monumental history, which came to 142 books when he completed it, carried the story to 9 BC.
Livy's purpose in writing his famous history was to show how Rome had started out as a city state full of brave, idealistic and virtuous citizens, but had then descended into the voracious, debauched, and immoral empire it had become by his own time in the late 1st century B.C. And the evidence was compelling.
The incredible saga of Hannibal and his invasion of Italy in 218 B.C. is the subject of this third volume of Livy's magnificent history. As only Livy can describe it, we are swept into the era of the Second Punic War and given a ringside view of the leadership of both sides. The stirring account of Hannibal crossing the Alps, the brutal description of Cannae, and the relentless Roman siege of Syracuse are some of the highlights of this remarkable story.
"Great story, terrible performance"
In this volume, Hannibal and Carthage are finally worn down by the grim determination of the Roman people, and their army is destroyed at Zama by Publius Scipio. And hardly is this over before the vengeful Romans cast their eyes eastward to Philip of Macedon, who had made the fatal error of backing the Carthaginians.
Livy continues his magnificent epic, with Rome in complete ruin after the Gallic invasion and sack of the city in 310 B.C. Led by Camillus, one of Rome's great heroic patricians, the city regains her self-confidence and once more becomes the leader of the Latin people. Painstakingly rebuilding alliances, forging friendships, cementing relations among her own people, and fighting endless wars, Rome soon becomes the dominant power among the fractious Italic tribes on the Latin plain.
"Titus Livius Patavinus comes alive!!!!"
Hannibal’s military campaign against Rome inspired its citizens with the same panic that would later terrify Europeans beset by Mongol invaders from the East. A sworn enemy of Rome, Hannibal succeeded as leader of the Carthaginian forces at the age of 26, following the death of his brother-in-law Hasdrubal. On joining his troops, Hannibal launched an attack on the Roman-held city of Saguntum, beginning the Second Punic War and a process that seemed almost predestined as his army swept like a scourge round the Mediterranean shores.