#FridayReads: History

Happy Friday! This weekend, we’ll be brushing up on history. Keep reading to check out our #FridayReads picks. 


The Roman Empire and the Silk Routes

9781473833746The Roman Empire and the Silk Routes investigates the trade routes between Rome and the powerful empires of inner Asia, including the Parthian regime which ruled ancient Persia (Iran). It explores Roman dealings with the Kushan Empire which seized power in Bactria (Afghanistan) and laid claim to the Indus Kingdoms. Further chapters examine the development of Palmyra as a leading caravan city on the edge of Roman Syria and consider trade ventures through the Tarim territories that led Roman merchants to Han China.
The Han Empire of ancient China matched that of Rome in scale and possessed military technology surpassing that of Roman legions. The Han established a system of Central Asian trade routes known as the Silk Road that carried eastern products as far as Persia and the frontiers of the Roman Empire.
This is the first book to address these subjects in a single comprehensive study. It explores Rome’s impact on the ancient world economy and reveals what the Chinese and Romans knew about their rival Empires.
Purchase your copy here>>>

The Scourge of Henry VIII

9781473848382Although Mary, Queen of Scots continues to fascinate both historians and the general public alike, the story of her mother, Marie de Guise, is much less well known. A political power in her own right, she was born into the powerful and ambitious Lorraine family, spending her formative years at the dazzling and licentious court of François I. Although briefly courted by Henry VIII, she instead married his nephew, James V of Scotland, in 1538.
James’ premature death four years later left their six day old daughter, Mary, as Queen and presented Marie with the formidable challenge of winning the support of the Scottish people and protecting her daughter’s threatened birthright. Content until now to remain in the background and play the part of the obedient wife, Marie spent the next eighteen years effectively governing Scotland, devoting her considerable intellect, courage and energy to safeguarding her daughter’s inheritance by using a deft mixture of cunning, charm, determination and tolerance.
The last serious biography of Marie de Guise was published in 1977 and whereas plenty of attention has been paid to the mistakes of her daughter’s eventful but brief reign, the time has come for a fresh assessment of this most fascinating and under appreciated of sixteenth century female rulers.
Purchase your copy here>>>

King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table

9781782743743“Here lies entombed the renowned King Arthur in the island of Avalon.” — Inscription found at Glastonbury in the late 12th century
King Arthur most probably never existed and if he did we know precious little about him, and yet he is one of the most famous Britons, while Excalibur and Camelot are perhaps the world’s best known sword and castle, and Hollywood doesn’t tire of returning to the world of Arthurian romance – another major movie is to be released in 2016. So, what’s the truth behind King Arthur? How did the legends take hold? And why have they endured for so long?
Long before the Marvel Universe there was the universe of Arthurian romance and King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table examines the fact and the fiction behind Arthur, Lancelot, Merlin, Guinevere, Galahad, among others, as well as the quest for the Holy Grail. Beginning in the 12th century, the book explores what factual basis there is for the tales and how the characters, stories and motifs developed through histories, epic poems and prose tellings. The book also charts the revived interest in Arthurian romance in the 19th century and considers how the tales still hold the popular imagination today.
Illustrated with more than 180 color and black-and-white artworks and photographs and maps, King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table is an expertly written account of where literature, mythology and history meet.
Purchase your copy here>>>

Dark History of the American Presidents

9781782740278Detailing the disgraces of all 44 Presidents, from sexual skirmishes to CIA cover-ups, Dark History of the American Presidents covers every dirty deed committed behind the White House fence, from financial profiteering and insider trading to illicit bugging of the opposition. The book also tells the story of a nation’s advancement: from post Revolutionary days of anti-monarchy and slavery, through the bitter strife of internal wars, reconstruction, boom and the Depression, to the United States’ emergence onto the world stage as a superpower. Using reproductions of portraits in oil, period caricature and cartoons, as well as telling photojournalism, this book reveals the true face behind the most powerful job in the world.
Purchase your copy here>>>

 

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