The Fall of the Roman Republic: Six Lives

The Fall of the Roman Republic Six Lives Dramatic artist natural scientist and philosopher Plutarch is widely regarded as the most significant historian of his era writing sharp and succinct accounts of the greatest politicians and states

  • Title: The Fall of the Roman Republic: Six Lives
  • Author: Plutarch
  • ISBN: null
  • Page: 102
  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • Dramatic artist, natural scientist and philosopher, Plutarch is widely regarded as the most significant historian of his era, writing sharp and succinct accounts of the greatest politicians and statesman of the classical period Taken from the Lives, a series of biographies spanning the Graeco Roman age, this collection illuminates the twilight of the old Roman Republic frDramatic artist, natural scientist and philosopher, Plutarch is widely regarded as the most significant historian of his era, writing sharp and succinct accounts of the greatest politicians and statesman of the classical period Taken from the Lives, a series of biographies spanning the Graeco Roman age, this collection illuminates the twilight of the old Roman Republic from 157 43 bc Whether describing the would be dictators Marius and Sulla, the battle between Crassus and Spartacus, the death of political idealist Crato, Julius Caesar s harrowing triumph in Gaul or the eloquent oratory of Cicero, all offer a fascinating insight into an empire wracked by political divisions Deeply influential on Shakespeare and many other later writers, they continue to fascinate today with their exploration of corruption, decadence and the struggle for ultimate power.

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    About "Plutarch"

    1. Plutarch

      Plutarch, later named, upon becoming a Roman citizen, Lucius Mestrius Plutarchus AD 46 AD 120 was a Greek historian, biographer, and essayist, known primarily for his Parallel Lives and Moralia He is classified as a Middle Platonist Plutarch s surviving works were written in Greek, but intended for both Greek and Roman readers.

    538 thoughts on “The Fall of the Roman Republic: Six Lives”

    1. This Penguin Classic covers 6 Roman lives - Marius, Sulla, Crassus, Pompey, Caesar, Cicero -- written by Platonist philosopher Plutarch (AD 46-Ad 120), the great biographer from the ancient world. These were chaotic, bloody times when, fueled by treachery and ruthless violence, the Roman republic fell and was replaced by the Roman Empire. Since all six lives are synopsized exceedingly well by another reviewer (/review/show), I will focus on one of my all-time favorite people from the ancient wo [...]



    2. I think these six Roman Lives can be regarded as the best ancient biographies I've ever read since Plutarch, as a second to none biographer, wrote the Lives vividly, lively and professionally. In other words, few could surpass him. In fact I started with his Caesar first because I would like to know more about his life and deeds militarily and politically, and his version doesn't disappoint me. For instance, "The reported size of the island (i.e. Britain) had appeared incredible and it had becom [...]


    3. The thing about Plutarch's Lives, is that it gives a timeless insight into the inner workings of humankind's motivations and weaknesses. It quite frankly is pretty scary to read because there are moments where you will see some of your own traits inside the men that Plutarch highlights and realize that those same traits contributed to the fall of a civilization. Nevertheless it is a book that every human being should read. You'll not only gain a greater insight into yourself but also others. It' [...]


    4. It's probably not possible to add much of anything significant to what's been written about Plutarch, but while reading this a several things really hit home with me.First is the nature of, and reason for the disaster that befell the Roman Republic. It basically tore itself to pieces because individual men were allowed to maintain their own personal armies to promote their careers by brute force, and the resulting disaster was so profound that the population of Rome was only half of what it was [...]


    5. Plutarch's Lives are classic biographies of famous individuals, usually written with a moral lesson in mind. They are fascinating, gripping narratives that read like a great novel, attempting to get at the character and moral fiber underneath his subject, in order to inspire the reader to emulate or avoid certain characteristics. This penguin collection includes six lives that are key to understanding the fall of the Roman Republic: Marius, Sulla, Crassus, Pompey, Caesar, and Cicero. Plutarch's [...]


    6. Having been a student of Latin and Ancient Rome I’d often encountered Plutarch and read a few sections of his work, but never delved too deeply into his writings. Seeing this book on the shelf of a second-hand bookshop I knew it was time. He writes well and concisely, with many interesting insights into Roman society and the historical times – the end of the republic – while focusing on the chief characters of the changes that brought the empire. I don’t fully agree with his insistence, [...]


    7. The events outlined in these lives are a horrifying spectacle. The battle over Rome between Marius and Sulla set in motion a political sequence that included purges, deliberately orchestrated famines, martial law, and endless conquest-foreign and domestic (I think it poetic that the home of the mother of the Gracchi, the founders of socialism, should've been so enviously fought over). As a result, Spartacus led his fellow slaves to some incredible victories, and more than half of Rome's populati [...]


    8. Plutarch's grasp of politics is grand instead of minute. His emphasis on warfare and personality no doubt does not endear him to contemporary historians. Some of his contentions are flat out wrong. Yet he is the master of the fair biography, good at pointing out a man's strengths and weaknesses, and giving it all a dramatic and even tragic touch. Sympathy is given when warranted as is condemnation. In this volume the best lives presented are Sulla and Pompey. Cicero is a bit dull, hurt by Plutar [...]


    9. Plutarch on Marius:Nor did he ever allow the enemy to get a hold over him. Even when he was surrounded by their entrenchments he bided his time, quite unmoved by challenges or by insults. They say that once Publius Silo, the most powerful of the enemy commanders and the one with the greatest reputation, said to him: 'If you really are a great general, Marius, come down and fight it out.' To which Marius replied: 'If you are, make me.'


    10. Between 3 & 4. I like this kind of book. It is interesting how you can read two different authors who address the same subject and get totally different accounts of the subject matter. Hmmm. I think I would probably go with Plutarch this time. But, who knows. This was a college text.


    11. Fall of the Roman Republic tells of one of the most dramatic periods of Roman history marking Rome’s change from republic to monarchy. This story is told through of the biographies of Marius, Sulla, Crassus, Pompey, Caesar, Cicero, men who headed various factions in the numerous civil wars and revolutions that shook Rome during this period. Plutarch, the Greek author of these works, made no attempt to explain how and why these events took place. Rather he was far more interested in the men th [...]


    12. I read the section on Julius Caesar, and it didn't really tempt me to read any further. It isn't really fair to hold Plutarch to the standards of a modern historian, but even if you don't, it's still hard to deny that Plutarch's histories just don't have much value for a modern reader, except as an historical study on Rome. This is very much 'great man' history, focused just as much - if not more - on mythologizing as it is on really documenting an era or a series of events. As such, it's pretty [...]


    13. As an old Latin student I was very interested in these 6 guys (actually read the book for an old folks class at University of Richmond). For today's reader this book is somewhat difficult since there are references to personalities we have never heard of and geographical places which have changed names several times over. However I now have Marius, Sulla, Crassus, Pompey and Caesar in the right order; I understand a lot better about their overlap in time. I wonder if the Roman Republic ever was [...]


    14. As a historian with a special interest in Rome, I thoroughly enjoyed this book. The book is archaic, but its themes are timeless. The six biographies of great men give you a great template to live a great life.


    15. Certainly a book I'll need on my shelf in the future. It actually manages to make the time period palatable.


    16. What an amazing historical time this was! Reading it, I was constantly amazed at how much of this stuff has actually come down to us. It's enthralling and mesmerizing to see how far back people have been dealing with political and interpersonal problems which we still see todayI couldn't put this book down. If you have any even passing interest in Roman history, I think you'll be similarly engaged. Plutarch has a wonderful style and is much livelier a writer than I recall from, say, my high scho [...]


    17. The Fall of the Roman Republic by Plutarch is a collection of biographies about six men important in the fall of the Roman Republic. These men are Gaius Marius (Marius), Lucius Cornelius Sulla Felix (Sulla), Marcus Licinius Crassus (Crassus), Gnaeus Pompeius Magnus (Pompey), Gaius Julius Caesar (Caesar), and Marcus Tullius Cicero (Cicero). Plutarch's belief is that history is mainly concerned with a few individuals, so instead of writing generally about the time period with important characters, [...]


    18. A selection from Plutarch's wide-ranging Lives series, The Fall of the Roman Republic focuses on six of the pivotal figures of the Roman Republic changing into the Empire: Gaius Marius, Sulla, Crassus, Pompey, Julius Caesar and Cicero. Writing in the first century AD, Plutarch compiled biographies of famous Romans and paired them with figures from Greek history: Alexander the Great to Caesar, for example. Here, the format is a little different - the lives are grouped by era - but it's still easy [...]


    19. I studied Roman history about 15 years ago so had this book from then. I don't think I actually read it at the time though. Not having studied Roman history in awhile, it was a good refresher. Plutarch wrote several "lives" or biographies of Greek and Roman men. This volume contains the lives of Marius, Sulla, Crassus, Pompey, Caesar and Cicero. I struggled through Marius and Sulla. I never really understood that period in Roman history. However, the last four lives brought back a lot of what I [...]


    20. Plutarch has his faults -- principally, he is not interested in discussing the social and political causes for the behavior of the subjects of his biographies, or just social and political events generally, which is a big gap if you are trying to figure out why all of these people are fighting each other, and what, if any, differences there are in their policies. Without knowing what is at stake, it comes across as one egotistical jerk fighting another - which is one way to look at things, but c [...]


    21. An adroit selection of Plutarch's "Parallel Lives" without the annoying parallels. And the lives here are of those luminaries who had a hand or an influence on the fall of the Roman Republic. Reading them though, one cannot help notice the aristocratic bend and bias of Plutarch. As Robin Seagar points out, Plutarch was more interested in a juicy story than the true causes of the ailment of the republic and the true nature of the reactionary aristocracy who, in my humble opinion, were the root of [...]


    22. It is not difficult to see why Plutarch is well-regarded by scholars of ancient times. He has an eye for the dramatic and is the best Roman storyteller. While the Parallel Lives or comparing Greek and Roman figures in terms of quality of character is flawed in my opinion, Plutarch still entertains. He tries to select moments in each person's life that show their genius or character. While many of the most important Republic and Imperator era Roman figures are represented in this book, my two fav [...]


    23. Cheated on this a little; I didn't actually read this Penguin collection, but instead read the relevant six Lives from the edition that's free on Project Gutenberg (so, the Dryden/Clough translation instead of the Warner/Seager), and I skipped the Comparisons. Whatever. I probably would have been totally lost if I hadn't had some more accessible background exposure to the whole story first (in the form of Dan Carlin's "Death Throes of the Republic" podcast and Tom Holland's "Rubicon", in particu [...]


    24. Plutarch wrote biographies about the greatest Romans and Greeks of their respective empires, and then compared similar people from both countries and contrasted them together. In this book, the biographies of Marius, Sulla, Crassus, Pompey, Caesar and Cicero are included as well as comparisons with their Greek counterparts (The Greek biographies are not included). Essentially, these 6 Romans helped shape the demise of the Roman Republic into dictatorship and monarchy and Plutarch gives a history [...]


    25. Read this book after undertaking the topic 'Fall of the Roman Republic (78-31BC)' for my ancient history class. My first reading of any Plutarch material, and his preceding reputation did not disappoint. Starting off with the rebelling Marius, then going through Sulla, Pompey, Crassus, Caesar and then finally the great orator Cicero, this book offers valuable knowledge and opinion of definitive figures.My only recommendation would be to have basic knowledge of Roman society beforehand, I did and [...]


    26. Good on Cicero and Marius. Also on Caesar. As might be expected from a series of biographical portraits that were only artificially pressed into service as "The Fall of the Roman Republic", cause and effect are sometimes a little vague. I still don't quite understand Sulla (though, on Plutarch's account, what's there to understand?) Highly readable. Shocking in places. Overall, you get the impression - despite virtually every historian who's every lived - that the Romans just weren't that civili [...]


    27. This was required reading for the class on Republican Rome during my first year at uni. A marvelous read which opened up the subject for me. Great biographies of the main players of the republic, liberally sprinkled with anecdotes and musings on morality. It never gets stale, and I can see why Shakespeare liked them so much (apart from this being the only relevant source material publicly available at the time).


    28. This book contains Plutarch's series of biographies that deal with the pivotal figures—i.e Marius, Sulla, Crassus, Pompey, Caesar, and Cicero—during the period leading up to the collapse of the Roman Republic. It is essential reading for a better understanding of late Roman Republican history, despite Plutarch’s numerous factual flaws and artistic imbellishments.


    29. I would recommend Plutarch to anyone who loves characters. Even if you don't enjoy history, you can enjoy Plutarch for his wonderfully crafted portraits of characters. It is the little things that make up a personality that Plutarch cares about; kindnesses, cruelties, strengths and flaws that he writes about, not dates and battles.


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