The History of Government from the Earliest Times: Ancient monarchies and empires, Volume 1

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Oxford University Press, 1997 - Civilization, Ancient - 1701 pages
No one has hitherto had the breadth of imagination and intellectual boldness to describe and analyse government throughout recorded history and throughout the world. This unique study of government is the culmination of the work of the late S. E. Finer, one of the leading political scientistsof the twentieth century.Ranging over 5,000 years, from the Sumerian city state to the modern European nation state, five themes emerge: state-building, military formats, belief systems, social stratification, and timespan. The three volumes examine both representative and exceptional polities, and focus on politicalelites of different types.Ancient Monarchies and Empires opens with Finer's masterly Conceptual Prologue, setting out the entire scope and structure of The History. Books One and Two then consider early examples of the predominantly `palace' type of polity, notably in respect of the Kingdoms of Egypt and the Empires ofAssyria, Persia, Han China, and Rome; interspersed with consideration of the `exceptional' Jewish Kingdoms and the Greek and Roman Republics.Professor Finer's cogent descriptive analysis offers both an invaluable reference resource and an exhilarating journey across time and space.

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User Review  - thcson - LibraryThing

A fabulously well-written account of government in ancient civilizations, ranging from mesopotamia and egypt to persia, greece, han china and rome. And incredibly this is only the first of three ... Read full review


The Conceptual Prologue

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About the author (1997)

S. E. Finer is at University of Oxford.

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