Lords of the Sea: The Epic Story of the Athenian Navy and the Birth of Democracy

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Penguin, 2009 - History - 395 pages
A stirring history of the world's first dominant navy and the towering empire it built

The navy created by the people of Athens in ancient Greece was one of the finest fighting forces in the history of the world and the model for all other national navies to come. The Athenian navy built a civilization, empowered the world's first democracy, and led a band of ordinary citizens on a voyage of discovery that altered the course of history. Its defeat of the Persian fleet at Salamis in 480 BCE launched the Athenian Golden Age and preserved Greek freedom and culture for centuries. With Lords of the Sea, renowned archaeologist John Hale presents, for the first time, the definitive history of the epic battles, the indomitable ships, and the men-from extraordinary leaders to seductive rogues-who established Athens's supremacy. With a scholar's insight and a storyteller's flair, Hale takes us on an illustrated tour of the heroes and their turbulent careers and far-flung expeditions and brings back to light a forgotten maritime empire and its majestic legacy.

 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - kaitanya64 - LibraryThing

Fast moving with enough detail to intrigue but not so much that it drags. Explains how the development of the navy and naval strategies led to the Athenian dominance of the ancient world. Fast paced, skillful narrative. Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - charlie68 - LibraryThing

A great read following wily Greeks and more specifically Athenians, as they battle with triremes against, Spartans, Persians whoever, and they win more than they lose. Read full review

Contents

Part
1
Building the Fleet 483481 B C
15
Part
75
Boundless Ambition 462446 B C
95
Part Three EMPIRE
123
The Imperial Navy 446433 B C
125
War and Pestilence 433430 B C
138
Fortune Favors the Brave 430428 B C
154
Of Heroes and Hemlock 407406 B C
221
Rowing to Hades 405399 B C
233
REBIRTH
247
Triremes of Atlantis 370354 B C
269
The Voice of the Navy 354339 B C
280
In the Shadow of Macedon 339324 B C
294
The Last Battle 324322 B C
311
Chronology
319

Masks of Comedy Masks of Command 428421 B C
171
The Sicilian Expedition 415413 B C
185
Part Four CATASTROPHE
203
The Rogues Return 412407 B C
205
Glossary m
333
Note on Sources
341
Acknowledgments
375
Copyright

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About the author (2009)

John R. Hale studied at Yale and Cambridge before embarking on an archaeological career that includes extensive underwater searches for ancient warships. He has written for Antiquity, Journal of Roman Archaeology, and Scientific American and has been profiled by NPR and The New York Times. He has also been featured in documentaries broadcast by The Discovery Channel and The History Channel. He is currently the director of liberal studies at the University of Louisville.

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