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In the Shadow of the Sword: The Birth of Islam and the Rise of the Global Arab Empireby Tom Holland
Synopses & Reviews
The acclaimed author of Rubicon and other superb works of popular history now produces a thrillingly panoramic (and incredibly timely) account of the rise of Islam.
No less significant than the collapse of the Roman Republic or the Persian invasion of Greece, the evolution of the Arab empire is one of the supreme narratives of ancient history, a story dazzlingly rich in drama, character, and achievement. Just like the Romans, the Arabs came from nowhere to carve out a stupefyingly vast dominion—except that they achieved their conquests not over the course of centuries as the Romans did but in a matter of decades. Just like the Greeks during the Persian wars, they overcame seemingly insuperable odds to emerge triumphant against the greatest empire of the day—not by standing on the defensive, however, but by hurling themselves against all who lay in their path.
A thrillingly panoramic and incredibly timely account of the rise of Islam, from the acclaimed author of Rubicon and Persian Fire.
The evolution of the Arab empire is one of the supreme narratives of ancient history, a story dazzlingly rich in drama, character, and achievement. In this exciting and sweeping history—the third in his trilogy of books on the ancient world—Holland describes how the Arabs emerged to carve out a stupefyingly vast dominion in a matter of decades, overcoming seemingly insuperable odds to create an imperial civilization aspects of which endure to the present day. With profound bearing on the most consequential events of our time, Holland ties the exciting story of Islam’s ascent to the crises and controversies of the present.
About the Author
Historian Tom Holland is the author of the nonfiction works of history Rubicon, Persian Fire, and The Forge of Christendom. Rubicon was short-listed for the Samuel Johnson Prize and won the 2004 Hessell-Tiltman Prize for History, and Persian Fire won the Anglo-Hellenic League’s 2006 Runciman Award.
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History and Social Science » Middle East » General History