Reading List

Below you will find a recommended reading list for the Ancient period military historian.  I have attempted to categorize the list into different eras, although as the later periods all seem to flow into one, please forgive any inaccuracies.

I have also included a more general list of military history texts, some recommended fiction of the period, and a list of my favourite "Ancients" movies.

Oh, and by the way, should anyone feel inspired enough by my recommendations to purchase a title, please do so via the link provided to Amazon so that I can earn a small micro-payment.  Look after the pennies...

In Association with Amazon.co.uk

General Ancient (Military) History

The Chariot Period (The Bible, Trojan War)

The Classical Period (Greeks, Macedonians & Romans)

The Barbarians (Sackers of Rome, Early Viking-types)

The Dark Ages (Normans, Arab Invaders)

The Mediaevals

Asia & the East

General Military History

Fiction from the Ancients period

Recommended Movies

 

 


General Ancient Military History

Title Author Review
Warfare in the Ancient World Edited by Hackett, General Sir John

Collection of essays on the various periods from Akkad to the Late Roman Empire.  A good overview.

In Association with Amazon.co.uk

Suggest a title

Back to Top

The Chariot Period

Title Author Review
The Times Concise Atlas of the Bible Edited by James B. Pritchard

Lavishly illustrated overview of the biblical period.  Good value for the wargamer.

Battle of the Bible Herzog, Chaim, and Gichon, Mordechai

A good overview of the biblical period, but quite Israel-centric.  Worth getting though.

In Association with Amazon.co.uk

Suggest a title

Back to Top

The Classical Period

Title Author Review
Warfare in the Classical World Warry, John

A superbly illustrated summary of the weapons and warfare of ancient Greece and Rome.  My love of the Ancients period stems from this book.  Highly recommended.

The Punic Wars Goldsworthy, Adrian

An eminently readable account of the 1st and 2nd Punic wars.  

Alexander the Great's Campaigns Barker, Phil

Beautifully written summary of the career of the late, great Alexandros of Makedonia.

The Generalship of Alexander the Great Fuller, JFC Recommended by"Sam", a Vis Bellica player.
Greece & Rome at War Connelly, Peter Recommended by"Sam", a Vis Bellica player.

In Association with Amazon.co.uk

Suggest a title

Back to Top

The Barbarians

Title Author Review

In Association with Amazon.co.uk

Suggest a title

Back to Top

The Dark Ages

Title Author Review
1066 McLynn, Frank

Superb account of the lead up to and three battles of 1066.  Borrowed it from my little brother, no intention of giving it back!  A must for the wargamer of the period.

In Association with Amazon.co.uk

Suggest a title

Back to Top

The Medievals

Title Author Review
Medieval Warfare Source Book - Volume One: Warfare in Western Christendom Nicolle, David

Less encyclopedia-like than the others in the "Source Book" series, but a good read nevertheless.

In Association with Amazon.co.uk

Suggest a title

Back to Top
 

Asia & the East

Title Author Review
The Art of War Sun Tzu

Military strategy from ancient China.  A classic.

The Book of Five Rings Miyamoto Musashi

Sword-fighting strategies from the greatest Japanese swordsmen ever.  Can be pro-ed up for military strategy.  Another classic.

In Association with Amazon.co.uk

Suggest a title

Back to Top
 

General Military History

Title Author Review
The Art of War in the Western World Jones, Archer

Analysis of the development of warfare from Ancient Greece to the modern day.  Full of matrices and charts if you like that sort of thing, but not very inspiring.

In Association with Amazon.co.uk

Suggest a title

Back to Top
 

Fiction

Title Author Review
Count Belisarius Robert Graves Factional biography recommended by Nick Salmon.  Both reviewers on Amazon give it a rave review as well, so I must put it on my "to read" list!
Gates of Fire Stephen Pressfield

The book that began Vis Bellica!  A great 'factional' account of the Spartan defence of Thermopylae.  If this doesn't bring a tear to your sentimental eye, then you don't deserve to be a wargamer anyway!

Gods & Legions Michael Curtis Ford

Factional biography of Justinius (Julian the Apostate), Emperor of Rome in the 4th Century AD.  Not bad as an introduction to the period, but I had a hard time caring about any of the characters:  not very inspiring.

Hannibal Ross Leckie

Factional autobiography from Hannibal Barca.  Not bad as a refresher on his life story, but the characters are perhaps never really brought to life.

Under the Eagle Simon Scarrow

Excellent Sharpe-like novel set in an Augustan Roman Legion.  Quite enough to get the fingers itching to paint up those Romans you've got at the back of the cupboard!  Followed by the equally good The Eagle's Conquest and The Eagle Hunts, which continue the story with the invasion of Britain under Claudius.

In Association with Amazon.co.uk

Suggest a title

Back to Top

Movies

Title Review
Amazons & Gladiators What you'd expect from the title.
Ben-Hur Charlton Heston epic with superb chariot race.
Gladiator Russell Crowe as the wronged General Maximus.  Great opening battle scene.
Land of the Pharoahs Still gives me nightmares about being shut up in a pyramid!
Spartacus Kirk Douglas as the gladiator turned rebel turned general.

In Association with Amazon.co.uk

Suggest a title

Back to Top

Copyright 2002  Robert Avery. All rights reserved.
Revised: August 31, 2004 .