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Publisher's Summary

Titus Livy's only known surviving work is a monumental history of Rome that was originally written in Latin. It is estimated that Livy's The History of Rome was written between 27 and 9 BC and covers the legends of Aeneas, the fall of Troy, the city's founding in 753 BC, and Livy's account ends with the reign of Emperor Augustus.

The History of Rome is a must-have for anyone interested in ancient history and the Roman era. With colorful detail and intriguing insight, Titus brings to life some of the most turbulent times in human history. Most scholars believe Titus Livy was born sometime between 64 and 59 BC. He is estimated to have died between AD 12 to 17, leaving behind one of the most complete works on ancient Rome available to modern historians.

Public Domain (P)2018 A.R.N. Publications
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Categories: History

What listeners say about The History of Rome: The Complete Works

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The horrible book

The worst book I have ever listened to. Narrative is bad, subject would be interesting if you can get through the way it was written and read by.

13 people found this helpful

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A Fascinating 126 Hours of Listening

Judging the accuracy of Edmunds’ and McDevitt’s translation is beyond my ability, but it is certainly beautiful. Cameron’s reading is very good, although his voice often seems somewhat “tight” or strained. As presented, the recording is eighty-eight hours long; however, 70% is a comfortable listening speed, so the work is really about 126 hours long.

2 people found this helpful

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Navigation is atrocious!

It’s a Pity this is the only complete copy of Livy’s History. As a work of historiography, it’s one of the most comprehensive accounts of early Roman history from antiquity. And as a subject as a whole, Rome is by far my all-time favorite civilization to study, and I’d even go as far as admitting Ira an obsession. These are the only reasons I haven’t rated this recording lower! Narration is poor, navigation is abysmal! Good luck using it as a reference guide

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Good version. Negatives for the eminent Livy

Titus Livius, who modern people call Livy, was a friend and contemporary of Caesar Augustus. He wrote this book in Classical Greek, which makes it very awkward. I think the translation probably allows itself to keep some of the foibles, the most glaring of which is the tense. I can't think of another author who uses tense so strangely, but I think it is probably a good rendering of the style.

One reason to read this book: If you are curious about 'Discourses on Livy' by Machiavelli, shouldn't you read Livy himself first?

One reason to delay reading this one: There are a lot of ancient historians who were more thought provoking than he was, in my opinion.

Still, this isn't a bad read. The later books are disappointingly fragmentary. This version has what remains of Livy's complete works. He wrote 146 books shortly following the Battle of Actium, in which he participated and here bears witness. This prolific writer takes us from the founding of Rome to events during his own life. So does Cassius Dio. I think Cassius Dio is somewhat more trustworthy, personally. Perhaps too much can be made of Livy's friendship with Augustus, but there is a potential motive of propagandizing for Augustus in the entire work. There is also a certain sincerity here-- if you ever thought about writing a history of a country from its earliest origins, Livy accomplished that. It's a great accomplishment. One striking feature of the narrative is how often ancestors of later emperors are subjects in it. Livy will give you an introduction to Sextus Julius Caesar, illustrious ancestor of Julius Caesar. The families of Augustus, Galba, and Nero are described. Livy wrote during the reign of Augustus and did not know about these latter two emperors. He also talks about a certain Flaccus, ancestor of a much later infamous Egyptian governor. There was a continuity between the Republican period and the Imperial period in terms of which families had access to power. One thing that is just very strange, but charming, about most ancient historians is how they report about miracles and dreams. Winston Churchill once wrote a book about his dreams during WWII, but few world leaders tell us what their dreams are anymore. Livy loves to tell us about weird miracles that some people say happened. I thought that one highlight of Livy, and it was something I don't remember from another source, was about the worshipers of Bacchus. They were banned from practicing their religion at one time and the accusations were really shocking. Livy tells that story with skill and detail.

The narrator did a great job. Livy loves writing run-on sentences. Luckily, the chapter breaks are short. If you want a stopping place, pause at chapter breaks.

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Narrator is pretty good

narrator is pretty good, atleast he's not mono tone and boring like most other history narrators are. This is as far as I understand and exact translation so don't expect any context or to understand it at all if you haven't done prior research, the Roman people at the time it was written would have understood it but we are 2000 years removed from their time

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 11-18-18

Takes patient attention.

A very important document. The only thing wrong I found are the datings in the fragments where the reader has mistaken AUC for BC, for example, Book xlvi, the reader says 586 BC, however it is AUC, or from the founding of the city 753 BC, so what is here called 586 BC is actually 166BC. Confusing it you did not figure it out.

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  • M A Courtney
  • 02-28-21

performance so poor

so sad about this reading, he robotically pumps thru this book at high speed. no feeling, straight off the page he reads without emotion. even slowed to .75 a lot of the picture is lost. so many of these ancient books have great readers but not this . it’s such a shame because the only alternative is the painful foghorn leghorn style alternative American reading.
A classic, interesting book severely reduced by an uninterested reader.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 09-29-19

Magnificent & momentus, with Romanesque delivery.

It is truly a privilege to be included, through this recording, among those people who have become familiar with the complete surviving works of Livy’s The History of Rome. It is unquestionably one of the great histories, and one of the great works of antiquity. This recording gives the listener not only an exceptional understanding of Ancient Roman history, but an appreciation of how the Romans saw themselves as they grew to dominate the Mediterranean World. The recording is delivered by Alastair Cameron in a direct and non-emotive manner, which brings to mind the Roman priority given to manly virtue, and which creates the effect of listening to Livy’s style as well as his substance. A copy of the books themselves is likely to assist the listener, as well as access to maps of the locations involved.

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  • Rowan Crouch
  • 12-25-20

priceless

This is a history of Rome told by a Roman himself. The narrator has a very appropriate voice for the job. If you find it too long you could skip to the second Punic war. I have greater understanding and respect for the Romans now and other ancient peoples.