The Storm Before the Storm: The Beginning of the End of the Roman Republic by Mike Duncan

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Read The Storm Before the Storm: The Beginning of the End of the Roman Republic Online Free - The Roman Republic was one of the most remarkable achievements in the history of civilization. After its founding in 509 BCE, Rome grew from an unremarkable Italian city-state to the dominant superpower of the Mediterranean world. Through it all, the Romans never allowed a single man to seize control of the state. Every year for four hundred years the annually elected consuls voluntarily handed power to their successors. Not once did a consul give in to the temptation to grab absolute power and refuse to let it go. It was a run of political self-denial unmatched in the history of the world. The disciplined Roman republicans then proceeded to explode out of Italy and conquer a world filled with petty tyrants, barbarian chieftains, and despotic kings.

But the very success of the Republic proved to be its undoing. The republican system was unable to cope with the vast empire Rome ruled. Bankrolled by mountains of imperial wealth and without a foreign enemy to keep them united, ambitious Roman leaders began to stray from the republican austerity of their ancestors. Almost as soon as they had conquered the Mediterranean, Rome would become engulfed in violent political conflicts and civil wars that would destroy the Republic less than a century later.

The Storm Before the Storm tells the story of the beginning of the end of the Roman Republic--the story of the first generation that had to cope with the dangerous new political environment made possible by Rome's unrivaled domination over the known world. The tumultuous years from 133-80 BCE set the stage for the fall of the Republic.

The Republic faced issues like rising economic inequality, increasing political polarization, the privatization of the military, endemic social and ethnic prejudice, rampant corruption, ongoing military quagmires, and the ruthless ambition and unwillingness of elites to do anything to reform the system in time to save it--a situation that draws many parallels to present-day America. These issues are among the reasons why the Roman Republic would fall. And as we all know, those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it.



Title : The Storm Before the Storm: The Beginning of the End of the Roman Republic
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 1610397215
Edition Language : English
Format Type : Hardcover
Number of Pages : 327 pages


Reviews


Mike rated it ★★★★★

November 13, 2017

We truly live in an amazing age when someone can go from releasing a podcast about history before people really knew what podcasts were (2007) to getting a book publishing deal on the subject. If you have not been clued into Mike Duncan's amazing Roman History podcast series The History of Rome o...


Margaret rated it ★★★★☆

July 23, 2017

This is a solid popular history of the generation and a half before the First Triumvirate--the period from the Gracchi brothers to the death of Sulla, which is usually simplified in popular forms or skipped in order to get to Julius Caesar or Augustus. Instead, this is an easily digestible accoun...


Hilary rated it ★★★★★

August 22, 2017

"These echoes could be mere coincidence, of course, but the great Greek biographer Plutarch certainly believed it possible that 'if, on the other hand, there is a limited number of elements from which events are interwoven, the same things must happen many times, being brought to pass by the same...


Andrew rated it ★★★★★

August 14, 2017

*4.5 stars* At the time, everyone thought that just one more push for their personal agenda would win the day. Collectively, they ended up pushing the republic over the edge. Oh, I'm sorry. This is Ancient Rome, not modern America. But here is the story of the fall of a republic as it gallops towar...


Michael rated it ★★★★☆

November 29, 2017

The shocking story of the Oligarchy ruthlessly cracking down on populists Tribunes (considered traitors), who advocated for the poor and disenfranchised masses (via the Lex Agraria). The next era would bring the rise of Caesar and the virtual elimination of the middle class, with the reduction of...


Darcia rated it ★★★★★

December 17, 2017

I am endlessly amazed at the amount of detail uncovered from events that took place more than 2,000 years ago. Mike Duncan managed to piece together an entire narrative, introducing us to the main players in a society whose climb to greatness seemed to be its undoing. I've read a lot about this p...


Dominic rated it ★★★★★

October 15, 2017

The late Roman Republic is one of the most studied and most familiar periods of history. Even the average American - famously ignorant of history - could probably tell you what happened to Julius Caesar or the name of Cleopatra's lover (thanks in no small part to Shakespeare's plays). But there's...


Michael rated it ★★★★☆

October 29, 2017

Everybody know the story of the Fall of the Roman Republic. Julius Caesar, Mark Antony, Cicero, Cato, Octavian, Brutus, civil war, assassination, the last grasp of liberty, and the foundation of both tyranny and centuries of peace and prosperity. Roman politics are a common metaphor for our own t...


Karla rated it ★★☆☆☆

December 31, 2017

Aside: In prepping for this review to liken it (negatively) to Dan Carlin's Hardcore History podcast on The Roman Republic, I noticed that all the HH podcasts that I had rated and reviewed were NO LONGER IN MY BOOKS. The book pages seem to have all been recreated on Dec 27th. WTF, Goodreads!??!?!...


Nic rated it ★★★★★

October 30, 2017

I absolutely loved this book. While it's a great story about the civil war between Marius and Sulla, and the events that lead up to it, it's also presented masterfully as a case study in how the erosion of norms can create irreparable cracks in a political system. As norms and customs that form t...





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