Edward Gibbon: The Decline & Fall of the Roman Empire – Part 1 (abridged)

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Edward Gibbon: The Decline & Fall of the Roman Empire – Part 1 (abridged)

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Release date:

31st Oct 2000




7 hours 53 minutes


CD (download also available)
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Edward Gibbon: The Decline & Fall of the Roman Empire – Part 1 (abridged)

Read by Philip Madoc, and Neville Jason

CD - 6 discs


(also available to download from $48.00)

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Gibbon’s The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire is one of the greatest texts in the English language. In magisterial prose, Gibbon charts the gradual collapse of the Roman rule from Augustus (23 B.C. – A.D. 14) to the first of the Barbarian kings, Odoacer (A.D. 476 – A.D. 490). It is a remarkable account, with the extravagant corruption and depravity of emperors such as Commodus, Caracalla and Elagabalus contrasted by the towering work of Constantine, Julian and other remarkable men. It remains the standard work of scholarship on the subject two hundred years after it was written; yet equally important, in its sheer accessibility, it is an unforgettable story.

Edward Gibbon: The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire: Part I

The Most Civilised Portion Of Mankind

The Terror Of The Roman Arms - The Preservation Of Peace By A Constant Preparation For War

Every Useful Intrument Of War

An Empire United By Laws And Adorned By Arts

The Roman Language - An Influence Over National Manners

The Most Numerous Society Under The Same System Of Government

The Fate Of The Roman World Depended On The Will Of Augustus

A Succession Of Monsters With Uparalleled Vices

The Rule Of The Two Antonines - The Only Period Of History In Which The Happiness Of A Great People

Commodus - Revelling In The Licence Of Sovereign Power

Pertinax Accedes To Power

The Praetorian Guards And The Bribe Of Didius Julianus

Septimus Severus - A Pernicious Indulgence

The Two Sons Of Severus - Caracalla And Geta

Caracalla Becomes Sole Emperor

Antoninus Becomes Elagabalus, Supreme Emperor And Pontiff - And Licentious Despot

The Reign Of Alexander - An Auspicious Calm Of Thirteen Years

The Rise Of Maximin, Dark And Sanguinary

Confusion Of Power Between Maximus, Balbinus And Gordianus

Philip - A Period Of Games

Decius And The Appearance Of The Goths

Hostilianus And Gallus

Aemilianus, Valerian And Gallienus - An Empire Oppressed

Claudius - The First Of The Restorers Of The Roman World

Aurelian - Four Years Of Memorable Achievement

Zenobia Fights Back - The Fate Of The East Is Decided

The Death Of Aurelian And The Accession Of Tacitus

Probus And The Deliverance Of Gaul And 70 German Cities

Carus, Numerian And Carinus - Soft, Cruel, Devoted To Pleasure Yet Destitute Of Taste

The Illustrious Reign Of Diocletian And Maximian

The End Of Rome As The Capital Of The Empire

The Abdication Of Diocletian

Two New Augusti - Constantius And Galerius

The Elevation Of Constantine And A Time Of Confusion

The Final Battle Between Constantine And Maxentius

Constantine Overwhelms Licinius, A Victory Which Leads To The Foundation Of Constantinople

A Candid But Rational Inquiry Into The Progress And Establishment Of Christianity Under The Roman Em

A Dark And Unjust Record Righted

Nero - Mistakenly Judged One Of History's Most Vilified Figures

Protection For The Christians

Diocletian Introduces Systematic Repression

Gibbon's Conclusions On The Roman Persecution Of The Christians

Constantine - A New Capital But A Fatal Flaw In Defence

The Petty Abuse Of Power And Local Tyrannies

Asiatic Pomp And A Gradual Decline

Constantius, Gallus And The Eunuchs

Julian, A Caesar Of Very Different Ilk

The Establishment Of Christianity

The Rise In Popularity Of Julian

The Road To Civil War

Julian Assumes Supreme Power

The Apostasy Of Julian

The Death Of Julian

Jovian - A Brief Reign

Valentinian, Emperor Of The West And Valens, Emperor Of The East

Gratian, Emperor Of The West

The Humbling Of The Empire

The Incursion Of The Visigoth Fritigern And The Death Of Valens At Hadrianople

Theodosius, Emperor Of The East, Aims For A Modus Vivendi With The Visigoths

Maximus Takes Rule Of The Western Empire But Unadvisedly Marches Against Theodosius

Arcadius And Honorius And Their Commander Stilicho

The Power Of The Visigoths Under Alaric

The Execution Of Stilicho Opens The Goths' Road To Rome

The Decadence Of The Empire In The Reign Of Honorius And The Siege Of Rome

The Sound Of The Gothic Trumpet

The End Of The Roman Empire In The West

The Reign Of Odoacer, The First Barbarian King Of Italy

General Observations On The Fall Of The Roman Empire In The West

The Guardian

“Edward Gibbon is not an author to be taken lightly or hastily, which is probably why Naxos got Philip Madoc to read it. His voice has that orotund, authoritative quality (I dare say Moses had it too) that makes you stop whatever you are doing to listen.”

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