From Aristotle to Zoroaster: An A to Z Companion to the Classical World

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Free Press, 1998 - History - 483 pages
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A groundbreaking and authoritative reference tool, From Aristotle to Zoroaster provides the first comprehensive guide to the classical world as a whole. Never before have the key peoples, places, institutions, and events of Greece, Rome, Persia, India, and China been encompassed in a single volume, highlighting the fascinating similarities and differences, tensions and compound effects that laid the foundations of presentday Europe and Asia. Students, experts, and classical history buffs alike will discover a wealth of information in this easy-to-use volume. For too long, Greece and Rome have defined the classical world, and we have studied these civilizations in isolation from even the major powers they confronted in Iran and India. As we learn more about the complex interrelations that once existed between the Persians, the Macedonians, and the Indians, the Romans, the Parthians, and the Sasanians, we have a more nuanced, complete, and accurate portrayal of our shared past. The persistent isolation of China, on the other hand, cut off by mountains and desert from India, makes the classical experience there extremely useful for comparison and contrast. The virtual absence of slavery, almost unique in the classical world, is but one of the Chinese Empire's startling features. This detailed and completely accessible volume covers historical milestones from 600 BC through AD 600. Its alphabetical entries are supplemented by cross-references, a chronological table, 19 maps, 174 illustrations, and a thorough index -- all carefully designed to provide the essential aspects of the classical world in a convenient yet richly informative package. Bringing into clear focus the impact of the rise and fall of the Greek city-states, the conquests of Alexander the Great, the world empire forged by Persia, the unification of China by the First Emperor, and the rich civilizations of early India, From Aristotle to Zoroaster provides new insights and a broader perspective to the study of classics. From Christ to Confucius, Cleopatra to Hannibal, Pythagoras to Shang Yang, the great cast of characters is chronicled and compared. Comprehensive, wide-ranging, and fully illustrated, From Aristotle to Zoroaster provides a fascinating overview and a detailed analysis of the ancient civilizations of the classical world, making it indispensable for students, scholars, and the general reader.

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About the author (1998)

Arthur Cotterell was educated at Ashmead School, Reading, and St. John's College, Cambridge. Currently Principal of Kingston College of Further Education in Surrey, England, he has written extensively about civilizations and their histories. Cotterell is the author of The Minoan World, A Dictionary of the Minoan World, A Dictionary of World Mythology, The First Emperor of China, and China: A Concise Cultural History and editor of The Penguin Encyclopaedia of Classical Civilisations.

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