A dazzling new history of the world through ten major empires.
RISE AND FALL opens with the Akkadian Empire, which ruled over a vast expanse of the region of ancient Mesopotamia, then turns to the immense Roman Empire, where we trace back our western and eastern roots. Next Strathern describes how a great deal of western classical culture was developed in the Abbasid and Umayyid Caliphates. Then, while Europe was beginning to emerge from a period of cultural stagnation, it almost fell to a whirlwind invasion from the East, at which point we meet the Emperors of the Mongol Empire . . .
Combining breathtaking scope with masterful concision, Paul Strathern traces connections across four millennia and sheds new light on these major civilizations - from the Mongol Empire and the Yuan Dynasty to the Aztec and Ottoman, through to the most recent and biggest Empires: the British, Russo-Soviet and American. Charting 5,000 years of global history in ten succinct chapters, RISE AND FALL makes comprehensive and inspiring reading to anyone fascinated by the history of the world.
'I find them hard to stop reading . . . seductive . . . Mr. Strathern's books are well-written, clear and informed; they have a breezy wit about them' - The New York Times on PHILOSOPHERS IN 90 MINUTES
'Strathern combines diligent archival research with an exemplary narrative verve and keeps the pages turning' - Financial Times on DEATH IN FLORENCE
'Lust and greed is a fascinating study in itself, and Paul Strathern's Death in Florence grips the reader from the first page . . . It is an arresting and horrifying tale, and Strathern tells it with immense skill and verve' - New Statesman on DEATH IN FLORENCE