428 AD: An Ordinary Year at the End of the Roman Empire

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Princeton University Press, 2009 - History - 203 pages
6 Reviews

"The history of late antiquity has inspired some of the most vital historical writing of the last half-century. Giusto Traina sustains the tradition with his vivid snapshot of a year. The very ordinariness of 428 AD makes us see the period afresh. In transcending the partisan language of 'transformation' and 'decline, ' Traina reimagines in ecstasy a world racked by agony."--Felipe Fernandez-Armesto, author of "The Americas: A History of Two Continents" and "Pathfinders: A Global History of Exploration"

"This is one of those books for which one has longed for a very long time. Only by the decision to place one year on the map of an entire segment of Europe and the Middle East is it possible to seize the full dynamics of the history of the later Roman Empire. I have read nothing like it and I have benefitted from it on every page. It is the sense of different landscapes that lingers with the reader, and also the sense of a common imperial energy that pulses through the entire world as here described. It is a tour de force to have found, in this way, a new Archimedes point from which to move the great mass of the history of the fifth century and in such a way that it does not splinter. This is truly a book which opens a window on to the world of late antiquity."--Peter Brown, author of "Augustine of Hippo: A Biography"

"Giusto Traina's "428 AD" demands attention. Not only is it a first-rate piece of scholarship, it is engaging, original, and a pleasure to read. Focusing his book on the year 428 is a brilliant idea. Traina is completely successful in using this device to give a synoptic view of late antiquity, not just the late Roman Empire. The narrative is never forced; his journey progresses quite naturally, delighting the reader with fascinating information at every step. This is a commendable achievement in the same spirit as Peter Brown's "The World of Late Antiquity." 428 will be an 'anonymous' year no more."--Michael Maas, Rice University

"This is one of those books for which one has longed for a very long time. Only by the decision to place one year on the map of an entire segment of Europe and the Middle East is it possible to seize the full dynamics of the history of the later Roman Empire. I have read nothing like it and I have benefitted from it on every page."--Peter Brown, author of "Augustine of Hippo: A Biography"

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Review: 428 AD: An Ordinary Year at the End of the Roman Empire

User Review  - Scott - Goodreads

Absolutely fascinating read and a great idea. Bringing events in one part of the Empire into the Context of events in the rest of the empire. A great book. Read full review

Review: 428 AD: An Ordinary Year at the End of the Roman Empire

User Review  - Shane - Goodreads

In a unique approach, Traina examines Late Antiquity through the lens of a single year in the Fifth Century. In what first appear to be an unrelated set narratives, the reader follows several figures ... Read full review

About the author (2009)

Giusto Traina is professor of Greek history at the University of Rouen. He is the author of several previous books on Roman and Greek history.

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