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A Day in the Life of Ancient Rome

4.09 of 5 stars 4.09  ·  rating details  ·  996 ratings  ·  127 reviews
The roar of frenzied spectators inside the Coliseum during a battle between gladiators. A crowd of onlookers gathered around a slave driver. The wondrous plenty of banquets where flamingos are roasted whole and wine flows like rivers. The silence of the baths and the boisterous taverns . . . Many books have dealt with the history of ancient Rome, but none has been able to ...more
Paperback, 384 pages
Published May 26th 2009 by Europa Editions (first published May 26th 2007)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 2,283)
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Il successo di questi libri, e dei relativi documentari, è la prova che di tale divulgazione c'è necessità, e sete. Tra l'atteggiamento scontato dell'istruzione scolastica e quello auto-referente, lontano e concettuoso, delle Accademie, resta uno spazio vuoto, un silenzio, occupato dalla curiosità di molti. Angela lo riempie. Meritoriamente.
Non è un libro esaustivo. Non dice tutto. In qualche (raro) caso l'informazione resta vagamente imprecisa. Ma nel suo genere è ben fatto. È descrittivo e ac
Aug 18, 2009 Sjo rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: 2009
Maybe it's pulp, and maybe there might be some looseness in terms of prose...but the book gives you everything you're seeking in the title. Set in one 24 hour period in 115 AD Rome, under Emperor Trajan, at the height of the Roman empire, the reader time travels to a 'typical' (in a Jack Bauer sort of way) day into the gory details of everyday living for the Roman citizen. What's for breakfast? (a huge meal with last night's left overs, and some fruit, cheese, bread, honey, milk etc. coffee hasn ...more
Петър Стойков
Книги и филми за древния Рим има колкото щеш - и исторически, и литературна измислица, и археологически, със снимки и без. Интернетът е пълен със снимки на останалите древноримски руини. Направо ти писва по едно време.

Как обаче са живели римляните в най-големия град на света? Какво са обличали, какво са хапвали на път за работа, какви неприлични изрази са били надраскани по стените на обществените тоалетни?

Алберто Анжела успява да ни представи улиците на древния Рим така картинно, сякаш ги вижд
Io adoro quest’uomo! Alberto Angela con questo libro riesce a farmi provare la sensazione di trovarmi nella Roma di Traiano, in una giornata qualsiasi dell’anno 115 d.C. La narrazione comincia al principio di un’ipotetica giornata, e attraverso ciascun capitolo viene trattato un determinato tema: la struttura di una domus piuttosto che di un’insula, l’abbigliamento, il cibo, la vita (e la morte) dei gladiatori nel Colosseo, la schiavitù, le terme e i bagni pubblici, la giustizia, i costumi sessu ...more
Steven Peterson
This wonderful little work provides a fascinating way of learning about daily life in ancient Rome, based on the best knowledge of historians--by taking an hour by hour look at what the Romans do. The depiction of the day takes place in 115 AD, under the reign of the Emperor Trajan. After a very brief examination of the era 19-21, we begin with life a few hours before dawn. Streets are dark--as are houses. When night fell, darkness reigned in Rome; very few homes had lanterns or other forms of l ...more
Hristina Ivanova
I've been eyeing this book for several years and never got round to reading it until now. I must say, I'm impressed. Very well written, humorous, educational, intriguing. It offers an insight into Rome's everyday life and, what's more, it's based on thorough research and scientific evidence. I really liked the fact that the author constantly mentions where every piece of information comes from- either from a historical source, written evidence or artefacts.
I would strongly reccomend this book no
Historic novel set in Rome (an account of life in everyday 115 AD)

On a recent trip to Rome I decided to take “A Day in the Life of Ancient Rome” by Alberto Angela. The author’s objective is to “make the ruins of ancient Rome live again through an account of everyday life …” In other words, what might it have felt like to walk down the ancient streets, what did the average Roman hear, see and smell? We are taken back to 115 AD (the author prefers to use the terms BCE – Before the Common Era which
The book was good or bad depending on what you want from it. If you're a serious student of Rome, Alberto Angela is not going to give you much to use in a research project. He hardly ever gives details about his sources, whether they be quotes from Juvenal or Horace, or research theories from a modern Italian classicist. Most of his sources are one researcher, so the diversity of opinions isn't great either.

The publishers didn't opt to put in maps or many pictures, both of which would have been
Кремена Михайлова
Чудесно четиво за дните преди, по време и след пътуване в Рим. Разходка сред тълпата на Форума, подземните коридори на Колизеума, шишенцата с мазилата на масажистите, дори шкафчетата с подправки в домовете на хората. Мода, власт, секс, култове... Преди 2000 години или сега?! Дори жегата и екзотичната растителност са си все там. Самият град "говори" и сега за тези отминали времена. Затова изцяло повярвах на книгата. И съм човек, който много не се интересува от история. Рим ме привлече към история ...more
I love the approach this book takes. The author tells us about everyday life in ancient Rome by following the course of a typical day (he chooses a day in 115 AD, when the Roman Empire was at its height), describing the activities people would have been engaged in hour by hour. He covers upper class citizens, lower class, merchants, slaves; home life, commerce, entertainment, grooming, food... a very broad overview.

If I had to make a criticism here, it would be that the book's focus on a single
I was lucky enough to visit Rome this summer and it quickly became my favorite city on the planet. The huge monuments and relics of unbelievable beauty often made me daydream about what ancient Rome must have been like. I kept saying to my wife, "Oh wow can you imagine how this temple must have looked, how it must have felt to see all this marble and columns, it's like our version of heaven!".
This book does a fantastic job doing just this, bringing ancient Rome back to life. Alberto Angela does
Godibilissimo libro sulla vita nell'antica Roma: Angela (Alberto) da vita a una giornata all'epoca di Traiano, approfondendo alcuni aspetti della vita pubblica e di quella privata. Il risultato è un libro gradevole e ben documentato (grazie Diana per il consiglio!).
... per tutto il tempo ho letto il libro immaginando la sua voce...
I like this book because Mr. Angela knows how to give the people what they want. He covers the pedestrian details of ancient roman life that we all want to know but probably don't: where did they sleep? what did they eat for lunch? what did the city look like? ... and also the really shocking/interesting things we might not: how were slaves treated? what were executions and gladiator battles like? what did they think about sex? Somehow he manages to keep the whole thing tasteful and entertaining ...more
I sorta want everyone to read this book, even though there's no way everyone would enjoy this book. I mostly found it charming, especially being the Italophile that I am, though it got slightly draggy by the end of the "day" (as I kind of imagine any Roman's day might!). It definitely made me long to be back in Rome, and every few pages sent me scurrying to Google to look at pictures of porticos and basilicas and fora and obelisks and triumphal arches and insulae and even Roman womens' undergarm ...more
Martin Gibbs
This was a great, quick read, even given the flaws and the lack of any visuals. Rome was such a large city, even then, that a map would have been really helpful in following along. It was basically a pulp rad dressed up as history, but, seeing at it was on display at a Border's (now out of business), I really didn't expect much more.

A good read for a long plane ride, or a great start for someone beginning to dig into Roman history.
Hannah Notess
Highly recommended if you want to irritate a person you live with by beginning all of your sentences with "Did you know that in Ancient Rome blah blah blah?"

I found this compulsively readable. I love history, I just never care about how so and so conquered so and so on such and such a date, and instead I want to know things like:

How did they go to the bathroom?
How did they deal without electricity?
How did they eat lying down?
How did they give birth?
How did they bathe?
Why did they hang little pe
Mi è piaciuto il tentativo di Angela di sostituirsi alla videocamera e di accompagnarci nella Roma di Traiano. All'inizio sembra una favoletta ma non mancano capitoli scabrosi, come prevedibile, e piccanti.
L'ho scelto da leggere durante un lungo viaggio in macchina; ha assolto egregiamente il suo compito.
Celia Montgomery
I wish more history books were structured this way. I love being a fly on the wall in ancient Rome. This book is not as fascinating as the follow-up, The Reach of Rome, which takes the reader around the entire Roman Empire. That book covered more exotic territory and was more exciting. This one, which is grounded in a single Roman day during the era of Trajan, covers the mundane everyday life of Rome. I loved touring a Roman apartment complex, finding out about Roman cuisine, etc. The trip also ...more
It's written from a present-tense, "you are there" point of view and is the adult version of those "Life In Ancient Rome/Greece" books you read when you were a kid. Fascinating details emerge during your 24-hour visit. Urine is a quite versatile fluid.
Думата "луканка" била латинска... 295-а стр.

Приятно и полезно ретиво като цяло, макар малко да дразни желанието на автора да оправдава римляните за ексцесиите им и да доказва превъзходство в модерен контекст (плоски заяждания с Франция на едно-две места).
The book has a lot of interesting details about everyday life in ancient Rome. I enjoyed the examples and stories that were taken from archaeological evidence. There are points where the writer's phrasing doesn't make very much sense. I don't know if that is the translator's fault and he should have been less literal in his translation. There are definitely points where you see the old sexist/classist Italian guy who wrote the original text come through, and it seems like the book was written 10 ...more
Niki Costantini
La valutazione più giusta per questo libro è proprio "così-così". Piacevole lettura in qualche punto, abbastanza noiosetto in molti altri, è un libro tutto sommato trascurabile. L'idea era buona: descrivere una giornata dell'antica Roma "in diretta"; peccato che A.A. non si sia saputo staccare dallo stile televisivo e abbia lasciato il tutto a un livello molto superficiale; avrei voluto saperne molto di più. Ne sarebbe uscito un bel libro se avesse saputo coniugare lo stile semplice e immediato ...more
Con Alberto Angela non c'è affatto bisogno di una macchina del tempo. La macchina del tempo è la nostra mente che compie un viaggio nella Roma di Traiano, carica di profumi, sapori, emozioni.
Avevo molte aspettative per questo libro ma mi ha deluso tantissimo..
Indubbiamente è interessante, ma non mi è piaciuto per niente il modo in cui è stato scritto: il tutto è narrato con lo stesso linguaggio che Angela userebbe per fare un documentario, ma sulla pagina scritta non rende per niente e fa sì che la lettura sia scialba; inoltre ci sono punti che rimangono in sospeso, aneddoti che vengono introdotti e non finiti lasciando il lettore a bocca asciutta, il tutto contornato da molti conc
Noemi La Gatta
Questo libro ti fa veramente respirare l'aria dell'antica Roma!
La lettera ricorda molto un documentario televisivo proprio come "Ulisse" e "Passaggio a nord ovest"
Una giornata nell'antica Roma" è' stata una lettura leggera, rilassante,con qualche spunto interessante. Ma niente di più. Il coinvolgimento è solo parziale,c'è un insinstenza e un'inutile approfondimento su aspetti di cui francamente si sapeva già troppo (tipo i combattimenti gladiatori,dove le parti "narrative" fanno emergere tutti i limiti del buon Alberto e che tv verrebbero riassunti con qualche scena ricostruita o presa da un film). In conclusione non è una lettura che mi ha deluso,ma che ...more
Unterhaltsamer Spaziergang durch das kaiserliche Rom. Der Autor folgt dem Tagesablauf eines fiktiven Römers der Zeit und stellt Alltagsroutinen/-wissen wie Körperpflege, Imbiss, Unterhaltung, etc. der Einwohner Roms dar. Interessant war, dass er dabei nicht nur den reichsten Bürgern folgte, sondern auch das Leben von Sklaven, Gladiatoren, Freigelassenen und Frauen einbezogen hat. Wer sich mit römischer/antiker Geschichte auskennt, erfährt wohl nicht viel Neues, wird aber unterhalten. Obwohl es e ...more
Serge Pierro
As a huge "fan" of Ancient Rome, I was delighted by the amount of information contained within this book! It encompasses a wide range of activities contained within a "standard" day in 115 AD - complete with background details, and analysis on how things differ from contemporary society.

The one area where the book could have been improved upon, would have been to include more illustrations. The artwork included was nice, but there just wasn't enough of them to do the book justice.

Keeyon Upkins
This was a good overview of what ancient Rome was like. The English translation contained its fair share of typos, but those are easy enough to ignore since it did not make reading the book any more difficult. The presentation was based on the hours of the day. Therefore, the reader begins prior to dawn and ends around midnight. After finishing the book, I feel I have a fairly decent mental picture of what the average Roman city would have looked like and how it functioned. Easy and pretty fun r ...more

From pre-dawn to midnight, Angela takes the reader on a tour of Rome in the 2nd century, bringing it to vibrant life, showcasing the best, the worst, and the ordinary parts of the heart of the Roman Empire.

From sumptuous town houses to the worst of the tenant sublets, from high-ranking politicians to the most low ranking slaves, all levels of the social and economic scale are examined. The food, the living conditions, the varying levels of hygiene, and the amazing cosmopolitan center that house
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A Day in the Life..... 2 21 Dec 08, 2013 08:25PM  
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Alberto Angela is an Italian paleontologist and scientific popularizer.

He accompanied his father, the well-known Italian TV announcer Piero Angela, on his trips ever since he was a child, something that allowed him to learn many European languages and to acquire a cosmopolitan culture. After being a student in France, he enrolled in a course of Natural Sciences at the University "La Sapienza" of R
More about Alberto Angela...

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