Books

Review: Infancy and Earliest Childhood in the Roman World

Infancy and Earliest Childhood in the Roman World Maureen Carroll Oxford University Press, £75 ISBN 978-0199687633 Review by: Matthew Symonds It is received wisdom that Roman parents did not see infants as people, and so were unmoved by the death of newborns, insulating them from the high infant-mortality rate. This argument is seemingly borne out […]

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Review: Scribbling through History

Scribbling through History: graffiti, places, and people from antiquity to modernity Chloé Ragazzoli, Ömür Harmansah, Chiara Salvador, Elizabeth Frood (eds) Bloomsbury, £85 ISBN 978-1474288811 Review by: Lucia Marchini For thousands of years, people have been leaving their mark on their surroundings through informal but intentional inscriptions. Graffiti today are both revered and reviled; the practice is […]

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Review: The Science of Roman History

The Science of Roman History: biology, climate, and the future of the past Walter Scheidel (ed.) Princeton University Press, £27 ISBN 978-0691162560 Review by: Hella Eckardt The study of the Roman past is often thought of as a conservative discipline, but this book demonstrates the enormous potential of historians and archaeologists engaging with new types […]

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Review: Greece in the Ancient World

Greece in the Ancient World Jeremy McInerney Thames & Hudson, £35 ISBN 978-0500252260 Review by: Matthew Symonds The story of Greece from the Minoans to the arrival of the Romans is one of great powers rising and falling, trade networks flourishing and fading, and artistic highs set against the darker work of the arts of […]

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Review: Rethinking Prehistoric Central Asia

Rethinking Prehistoric Central Asia: shepherds, farmers, and nomads Claudia Chang Routledge, £105 ISBN 978-1138737082 Review by: George Nash Until relatively recently, evidence for later prehistoric and protohistoric communities of Central Asia has been interpreted as representing a fragmented history, partly as a result of the geopolitics of the region (especially during the 20th century). From […]

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Review: Materialising Roman Histories

Materialising Roman Histories Astrid Van Oyen and Martin Pitts (eds) Oxbow Books, £40 ISBN 978-1785706769 Review by: Matthew Fittock Your possessions can tell people a lot about who you are, but this only makes up a small part of what objects do and mean: all have hidden stories that have quietly shaped lives in ways that […]

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Review: Archaeology of the Night

Archaeology of the Night: life after dark in the ancient world Nancy Gonlin and April Nowell (eds) University Press of Colorado, $75 ISBN 978-1607326779 Review by: Lucia Marchini With easy access in modern homes to instant illumination and streetlights a common feature in the outside world, it can be difficult to relate to how people […]

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Review: China – visions through the ages

China: visions through the ages Lisa C Niziolek, Deborah A Bekken, and Gary M Feinman (eds) University of Chicago Press, $45 ISBN 978-0226385372 People across China’s vast and diverse landscape have long been creating works in a range of materials, such as bronze, jade, porcelain, and paint, and the results of their handiwork can be […]

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Byzantine Anatolia

The Archaeology of Byzantine Anatolia Edited by Philipp Niewohner Oxford University Press, £94 ISBN 978-0190610463 Review by: Andrew Selkirk Just what happened in the Eastern Roman Empire in the period following the fall of Rome? We tend to think that the story is that of Constantinople, holding out alone against the Arab onslaught, but that […]

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Review: The Fate of Rome

The Fate of Rome: climate, disease, and the end of an empire Kyle Harper Princeton University Press, £27.95 ISBN 978-0691166834 Review by: Nadia Durrani By AD 650, the Roman Empire was but a shadow of its former self. Many have explored the reasons for its demise, but no one has yet considered the joint contribution […]

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Review: Egyptian Art

Egyptian Art Bill Manley Thames & Hudson, £12.95 ISBN 978-0500204283 Review by: Lucia Marchini The arts of ancient Egypt have had enduring popularity, inspiring Roman frescoes and funerary monuments, Egyptian revival architecture in the 19th century, and Art Deco jewellery. Tutankhamun’s mask remains one of the most familiar images of archaeology, and this new guide […]

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Review: The Diversity of Hunter-Gatherer Pasts

The Diversity of Hunter-Gatherer Pasts Bill Finlayson and Graeme Warren (eds) Oxbow Books, £36 ISBN 978-1785705885 Review by: George Nash In the recent past, there has been a tendency to be cautious when applying anthropology to assist in understanding archaeology. While many will agree with this notion per se, anthropology can be a useful tool […]

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