The Classical World

An Epic History from Homer to Hadrian


By Robin Lane Fox

Formats and Prices





  1. Trade Paperback $28.99
  2. ebook $14.99

The classical civilizations of Greece and Rome once dominated the world, and they continue to fascinate and inspire us. Classical art and architecture, drama and epic, philosophy and politics — these are the foundations of Western civilization. In The Classical World, eminent classicist Robin Lane Fox brilliantly chronicles this vast sweep of history from Homer to the reign of Augustus. From the Peloponnesian War through the creation of Athenian democracy, from the turbulent empire of Alexander the Great to the creation of the Roman Empire and the emergence of Christianity, Robin Lane Fox serves as our witty and trenchant guide. He introduces us to extraordinary heroes and horrific villains, great thinkers and blood-thirsty tyrants. Throughout this vivid tour of two of the greatest civilizations the world has ever known, we remain in the hands of a great master. Request Desk/Exam Copy


  • "A magnificent, panoramic introduction to the ancient world. The Classical World is a terrific read."
    Sunday Times (London)
  • "A sweeping and stylish history ranging from Homer's Greece to Rome in the second century A.D. Fox's command of his material seems effortlessly complete, and the events of his narrative feel surprisingly immediate."
    The Atlantic
  • "Brilliant... soldiers, poets, and orators fight for attention in a story that is never cluttered and always stimulating."
    The Economist
  • With erudition, drive, and wit, [Fox] triumphantly brings the Greeks' and Romans' civilizations to life."
    Washington Post Book World, Top Ten nonfiction Book of the Year
  • "A lucid, comprehensive narrative of an awesome world."
    Houston Chronicle

On Sale
Apr 8, 2008
Page Count
672 pages
Basic Books

Robin Lane Fox

About the Author

Robin Lane Fox is an emeritus fellow at New College, Oxford. His books include The Invention of Medicine, Augustine (winner of the major Wolfson History Prize), and The Classical World. He lives near Oxford, England. 

Learn more about this author