History of Rome, Volume II, Books 3-4

Front Cover
Harvard University Press, 1984 - History - 480 pages
3 Reviews

Livy (Titus Livius), the great Roman historian, was born at or near Patavium (Padua) in 64 or 59 BCE; he may have lived mostly in Rome but died at Patavium, in 12 or 17 CE.

Livy's only extant work is part of his history of Rome from the foundation of the city to 9 BCE. Of its 142 books, we have just 35, and short summaries of all the rest except two. The whole work was, long after his death, divided into Decades or series of ten. Books 110 we have entire; books 1120 are lost; books 2145 are entire, except parts of 41 and 4345. Of the rest only fragments and the summaries remain. In splendid style Livy, a man of wide sympathies and proud of Rome's past, presented an uncritical but clear and living narrative of the rise of Rome to greatness.

The Loeb Classical Library edition of Livy is in fourteen volumes. The last volume includes a comprehensive index.

From inside the book

What people are saying - Write a review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - JVioland - LibraryThing

This review is the same for each of his volumes: Livy is the quintessential historian of ancient Rome. He had his obvious flaws - no one could consider him unbiased in his approach, and he creates ... Read full review

Review: Livy I: History of Rome, Books 1-2 (Loeb Classical Library, #114)

User Review  - Paul - Goodreads

A good introduction to the early history of Rome. The reader should understand that the historical analysis that we expect of todays writters of history was not present then so much of what Livy ... Read full review

Common terms and phrases

About the author (1984)

Livius, a Roman historian, was born in Patavium. He settled in Rome sometime before 29 BC, when he began his history of Rome from her foundation tot he death of Nero Claudius Drusus (9 BC). This momentous work of 142 books became the foundation of historical writing through to the 18th-c, and placed him at the forefront of Latin writers.

Very little is known about the life of Livy (Titus Livius) other than that he was born in Patavium (modern-day Padua) and lived most of his life in Rome. It is clear from his writings that he was familiar with ancient Greek and Latin literature and was, in fact, influenced by Cicero. Although Livy produced several works on philosophy and literary criticism, his masterpiece and life work of 40 years was his "History of Rome", which covers a vast sweep of Rome's history from its origins to Livy's own time. Of the original 142 books that made up the work, only 35 are extant---Books 1--10 and 20--45---which treat the years 753--293 b.c. and 218--167 b.c. Fragments of others, however, do remain, and summaries exist of all but one. When he wrote the history, Livy, who extolled the virtues of discipline, piety, and patriotism, believed that Rome was in a state of decline and moral decay. Wealth and luxury, he wrote, had led to "the dark dawning of our modern day, when we can neither endure our vices nor face the remedies needed to cure them." According to modern standards, Livy was neither an impressive nor critical historian. He perpetuated many inaccuracies. This, however, does not greatly minimize the value of his writing. His acumen lay in his vibrant style, his keen eye for character, and his gift for dramatic composition.

Bibliographic information