Through the Pillars of Herakles: Greco-Roman Exploration of the Atlantic

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Taylor & Francis, 2006 - History - 163 pages
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In this first study of the Greek and Roman exploration for over half a century, Duane W. Roller presents an important examination of the impact of the Greeks and Romans on the world through the Pillars of Herakles and beyond the Mediterranean.

Roller chronicles a detailed account of the series of explorers who were to discover the entire Atlantic coast; north to Iceland, Scandinavia and the Baltic, and south into the Africa tropics. His account examines these early pioneers and their discoveries, and contributes a brand new chapter to the history of exploration.

Based not only on the literary evidence, but also personal knowledge of the areas from the Arctic to west Africa, the book looks at the people, from the earliest Greeks, through the Carthaginians to the Romans, and examines their exploration of this vast and largely unfamiliar territory.

Discussing for the first time the relevance of Iceland and the Arctic to Greco-Roman culture, this groundbreaking work is an enthralling and informative read that will be an invaluable study resource for Greek and Roman history courses


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Greek exploration before 500BC
The Carthaginians north and south of the Pillars
The Atlantic islands and beyond
Pytheas of Massalia
Hellenistic exploration on the coasts of Africa
Late Hellenistic exploration

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About the author (2006)

Duane W. Roller is Professor of Greek and Latin at The Ohio State University.

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