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Original Essays | September 15, 2014

Lois Leveen: IMG Forsooth Me Not: Shakespeare, Juliet, Her Nurse, and a Novel



There's this writer, William Shakespeare. Perhaps you've heard of him. He wrote this play, Romeo and Juliet. Maybe you've heard of it as well. It's... Continue »
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    Juliet's Nurse

    Lois Leveen 9781476757445

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The First Clash: The Miraculous Greek Victory at Marathon and Its Impact on Western Civilization

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The First Clash: The Miraculous Greek Victory at Marathon and Its Impact on Western Civilization Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Marathon—one of history’s most pivotal battles. Its very name evokes images of almost superhuman courage, endurance, and fighting spirit. But until now, the story of what happened at Marathon has been told exclusively through the narrow viewpoint of specialists in antiquity. In this eye-opening new book, acclaimed journalist Jim Lacey, both a military historian and a combat veteran, takes a fresh look at Marathon and reveals why the battle happened, how it was fought, and whether, in fact, it saved Western civilization.

Lacey brilliantly reconstructs the world of the fifth century B.C. leading up to the astonishing military defeat of the Persian Empire by the vastly undermanned but determined Greek defenders. Using the seminal work of Herodotus as his starting point, Lacey reconstructs the tactical and strategic scenario of the battle, including how many combatants each side might have used and who actually led the Greeks. He also disputes the long-repeated myths of Athenian inexperience and effete Persian arrogance.

With the kind of vivid detail that characterizes the best modern war reportage, Lacey shows how the heavily armed Persian army was shocked, demoralized, and ultimately defeated by the relentless assault of the Athenian phalanx, which battered the Persian line in a series of brutal attacks. He reveals the fascinating aftermath of Marathon, how its fighters became the equivalent of our “Greatest Generation,” and challenges the view of many historians that Marathon ultimately proved the Greek “Western way of war” to be the superior strategy for fighting—and winning—battles to the present day.

Immediate, visceral, and full of new analyses that defy decades of conventional wisdom, The First Clash is a superb interpretation of a conflict that indeed made the world safe for Aristotle, Plato, and our own modern democracy. But it was also a battle whose legacy and lessons have often been misunderstood—perhaps, now more than ever, at our own peril.

About the Author

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

“A compelling and provocative read . . . With a soldier’s eye, Jim Lacey re-creates the battle of Marathon in all its brutal simplicity.”—Barry Strauss, author of Masters of Command

 

Marathon—one of history’s most pivotal battles. Its name evokes images of almost superhuman courage, endurance, and fighting spirit. In this eye-opening book, military analyst James Lacey takes a fresh look at Marathon and reveals why the battle happened, how it was fought, and whether, in fact, it saved Western civilization. Lacey brilliantly reconstructs the world of the fifth century B.C. leading up to the astonishing military defeat of the Persian Empire by the vastly undermanned Greek defenders. With the kind of vivid detail that characterizes the best modern war reportage, he shows how the heavily armed Persian army was shocked and demoralized by the relentless assault of the Athenian phalanx. He reveals the fascinating aftermath of Marathon, how its fighters became the equivalent of our “Greatest Generation,” and challenges the legacy and lessons that have often been misunderstood—perhaps, now more than ever, at our own peril.

 

Immediate, visceral, and full of new analyses that defy decades of conventional wisdom, The First Clash is a superb interpretation of a conflict that indeed made the world safe for Aristotle, Plato, and our own modern democracy.

 

“With a fresh eye to tactics, strategy, and military organization, and with his text grounded in direct experience of the troops on the battlefield, James Lacey gives us not only new understanding of how the Athenians managed to win but also a greater appreciation of the beginning of a long tradition of Western military dynamism that we take for granted today.”—Victor Davis Hanson, author of Carnage and Culture

 

“Lacey’s swords-and-shields approach will absorb readers ever fascinated by the famous battles of antiquity.”—Booklist

 

“A lively and rewarding read.”—Charleston Post and Courier

 

“Exemplary . . . Lacey, a veteran of the 82nd and 101st Airborne divisions and a professor at the Marine War College, brings to the tale of Marathon the practical experiences of the combat soldier and an intellectual sensibility.”—The New Criterion

Product Details

ISBN:
9780553385755
Author:
Lacey, Jim
Publisher:
Bantam
Author:
Lacey, James
Subject:
Ancient - Greece
Subject:
World History-Ancient Near East
Subject:
Military-General History
Subject:
battle of marathon;greek history;ancient greece;ancient history;persian empire;greek empire;ancient civilizations
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Publication Date:
20130431
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Language:
English
Illustrations:
1 CHART, 5 PHOTOS, 2 MAPS
Pages:
272
Dimensions:
8.22 x 5.44 x 0.55 in 0.46 lb

Related Subjects

Health and Self-Help » Health and Medicine » Medical Specialties
History and Social Science » Western Civilization » Ancient Greece
History and Social Science » World History » Ancient History
History and Social Science » World History » Ancient Near East
History and Social Science » World History » Classical
History and Social Science » World History » General
Humanities » Philosophy » General
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