Nominated for the 2017 Pen Hessell-Tiltman Daily Telegraph's Best History Books of 2017 Sunday Times' Best History Books of 2017
A sweeping history of the city of Rome, seen through the eyes of its most significant sackings, from the Gauls to the Nazis and everything in between.
No city on earth has preserved its past as Rome has. Visitors can cross bridges that were crossed by Julius Caesar and explore temples visited by Roman emperors. These architectural survivals are all the more remarkable considering the city has been repeatedly ravaged by roving armies.
From the Gauls to the Nazis, Matthew Kneale tells the stories behind the seven most important of these attacks and reveals, with fascinating insight, how they transformed the city - and not always for the worse.
A meticulously researched, magical blend of travelogue, social and cultural history, Rome: A History in Seven Sackings is a celebration of the fierce courage, panache and vitality of the Roman people. Most of all, it is a passionate love letter to this incomparable city.
A sumptuously produced volume -- Shots Magazine
Ingenious and wholly enjoyable history of the city. -- Daily Telegraph
Fascinating... A delight -- The Times `Book of the Week'
Utterly compelling, brilliant... Wonderfully moving and inspiring -- Literary Review
A stirring portrait of a city at war... brings Rome's fractious past to life. -- Observer
Gripping and ingenious... Kneale's account is a masterpiece of pacing and suspense. Characters from the city's history spring to life in his hands. -- Sunday Times
From the Author
Matthew Kneale was born in London in 1960, the son and grandson of writers. He studied Modern History at Magdalen College, Oxford. Fascinated with diverse cultures, he travelled to more than eighty countries and tried his hand at learning a number of foreign languages, including Japanese, Ethiopian Amharic, Romanian and Albanian. He has written five novels, including English Passengers, which was shortlisted for the Booker Prize and won the Whitbread Book of the Year Award. His latest was a non-fiction history book, An Atheist's History of Belief. For the last fifteen years he has lived in Rome with his wife and two children.