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From the first civilizations to the 21st century this wide-ranging, compulsively readable book encompasses all of world history-- great ages and monumental events; the rise and fall of cultures; names, dates, and statistics,a nd stories galore. Designed as an authroritative reference that's also irresistible to browse, it's a brilliant blend of narrative, analysis, detailed facts, and visual varei- ty including sdebars, time lines, and more than 200 maps and illustrations. The book offers four revealing ways to look at the human epic. In Milestones, 12 essays address key developments from agricul- ture to writing, globalization, and the revolution in communications that is changing the world and other important themes; next, Major Eras takes a chronological approach, examining 11 eras from prehistory to the present. WOrld at Glance traces specific subjects through the centureies, with entries on Wars, Religions, Human Accomplishments, Leaders, Artists, and more. An expansive appendix, listing presidents, popes, and other world figures, as well as a biograhy, a glossary, as well as an index, round out this amazing reference. A book that meets the most demanding standards of accuray and graphic excellence, this is an indispensable tool for students and an illuminating, engrossing exploration for anyone interested in the who, what, when, when, and where of world history.