An Analysis of the History Book Life in Ancient Rome by F.R. Cowell

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In this well-written and well-researched special history book, the author F.R. Cowell, succeeds in making Life in Ancient Rome alive and dynamic. The combination of historical fact and detail with the use of supplementary illustrations makes this an easy to read and useful book for students or just about anyone to explore and learn about the classics of Rome as well as the 20th century Rome. Overall, Life in Ancient Rome is a good book to get someone familiar with the once greatness of Rome.

Whether you are inquiring about with rise and the growth of the city or you want to know about the meals, food, and drink, this book outlines all the common facts of roman life and explains and illustrates it in great detail. I also think the author does a great job in showing the settings and the limits of the main qualities or features of everyday in Ancient Rome, as it developed from the rustic simplicity of the farmer-soldiers of the early Roman Republic, down to the sophistication in the second century of out era.

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The author, Cowell, gave a good detailed summary of the way Roman doctors practiced medicine. Thus, showing the reader that the Romans had a little advancement in medicine. The author gave examples from the first century A.D., got along without doctors for 600 years. (p.130) Also in 46 B.C. when Ceasar reigned and just about any quack could claim to be a doctor which led to 91 B.C. when they thought nothing of medicine and only of nutrition diet, I will like the way the author explains the Roman medicine practiced from the very fist century and gives the reader examples as the years of Roman times passed.

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In addition to, the author also explains the Roman baths, which I found very interesting. I like the way the author pointed out that the Romans thought that their splendor fails to do them justice to the impression they must have make to all who saw them. There is also an illustration to show what the Romans used to scraped and remove bodily impurities that they would throw off as they sweat. In doing this the wealthier Romans would bring slaves with them and have them do the scarping for them, however, the less fortunate Roman would have to do it themselves.

In the middle of the book I lost interest when the author talked about treatment of slaves. I felt like the paragraphs were drawn out and the facts just were not as interesting as the rest of the book. I felt that his description of the way Roman slaves were treated was really no different than the way any other slaves would have been treated anywhere else. He makes it sound like Rome was the only place who had slaves and the way they treated their slaves was any different from the way other cultures of societies have treated their slaves. Then the author goes on about slave revolts, which I found no interest in. Naturally when there are slaves who are being treated inhumane by cruel, heartless people you are going to have some of the slaves fight back and stand up for themselves and what they believe in. Needless to say, this section of the book did not have my full attention.

However, toward the end of the book the author explains some miscellaneous subjects such as astrology, and mystery cults. He also admits that it is impossible to give and adequate account of all the mixed traditional faiths, ancients rites, customs, new imported religion and old superstitions throughout Rome during a thousand years time period. By him admitting it, this makes me feel like he is a very honest author. Even though it wasnt an adequate amount of information, I still found it entertaining to read of the Roman astrology and the mixed faiths.

I also found it easy to relate to the section on the way Rome viewed books and reading. I thought the author made it easy to relate to, he explained how only a small part of Rome was touched by literature. He compared it to the united Stated where personal expenditure on books is deplorably low. I feel that the way he compared roman books and reading to the way the United Stated is today made this section of the book much easier to related to roman times.

Overall, I felt that the book Life in Ancient Rome by F.R. Cowell is a well-written and very easy to read book. This book actually seemed to make learning about Rome fun for me. The author usedsome great examples and had some wonderful illustrations. I found the illustrations to be very helpful in understanding what some of their things looked like.

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An Analysis of the History Book Life in Ancient Rome by F.R. Cowell. (2023, Feb 23). Retrieved from

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