9780195325416

The Fall of the Roman Empire A New History of Rome and the Barbarians

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  • ISBN13:

    9780195325416

  • ISBN10:

    0195325419

  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2007-06-11
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press
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Summary

The death of the Roman Empire is one of the perennial mysteries of world history. Now, in this groundbreaking book, Peter Heather proposes a stunning new solution-centuries of imperialism turned the neighbors Rome called barbarians into an enemy capable of dismantling an empire that had dominated their lives for so long. A leading authority on the late Roman Empire and on the barbarians, Heather relates the extraordinary story of how Europe's barbarians, transformed by centuries of contact with Rome on every possible level, eventually pulled the empire apart. He shows first how the Huns overturned the existing strategic balance of power on Rome's European frontiers to force the Goths and others to seek refuge inside the empire. This prompted two generations of struggle, during which new barbarian coalitions, formed in response to Roman hostility, brought the Roman west to its knees. The Goths first destroyed a Roman army at the battle of Hadrianople in 378 and went on to sack Rome in 410, The Vandals spread devastation in Gaul and Spain before conquering North Africa, the breadbasket of the western empire, in 439. We then meet Attila the Hun, whose reign of terror swept from Constantinople to Paris, but whose death in 453 ironically precipitated a final desperate phase of Roman collapse, culminating in the Vandals' defeat of the massive Byzantine Armada, the west's last chance for survival. Peter Heather convincingly argues that the Roman Empire was not on the brink of social or moral collapse. What brought it to an end were the barbarians. Book jacket.

Author Biography


Peter Heather teaches at Worcester College, University of Oxford. A leading authority on the barbarians, he is the author of The Goths, Goths and Romans, and The Huns.

Table of Contents

List of Mapsp. vii
Acknowledgementsp. ix
Introductionp. xi
Pax Romana
Romansp. 3
Barbariansp. 46
The Limits of Empirep. 100
Crisis
War on the Danubep. 145
The City of Godp. 191
Out of Africap. 251
Attila the Hunp. 300
Fall of Empires
The Fall of the Hunnic Empirep. 351
End of Empirep. 385
The Fall of Romep. 431
Dramatis Personaep. 461
Timelinep. 481
Glossaryp. 488
Notesp. 495
Bibliographyp. 537
Indexp. 553
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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