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I giorni della gloria (Masters of Rome #2)

4.25 of 5 stars 4.25  ·  rating details  ·  6,702 ratings  ·  156 reviews
An aging, ailing Gaius Marius, heralded conqueror of Germany & Numidia, longs for that which was prophesied many years before: an unprecedented 7th consulship of Rome. It's a prize to be won only thru treachery & with blood, pitting Marius against a new generation of assassins, powerseekers & Senate intriguers.
Paperback, 944 pages
Published 1996 by BUR Rizzoli (first published January 1st 1992)
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Karla
I used to think this book was greater than The First Man in Rome, but now that I've re-read it again, I have to say that it's not exactly as good as I thought it was. First Man rose in my estimation on a re-read, this was slightly lowered, so now I think they're pretty much even.

The elements that make it great are all here, except for one. I'd forgotten that Publius Rutilius Rufus' letters barely make an appearance and I sorely missed them. Not that he dies, but he's in no position to be informi
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Nate
Edit 9/12/14: I'm kind of doing a quick run through of this again before tackling Fortune's Favorites to refresh myself on the billion people, places and events and I have to admit I was probably being a bad-moody, picky little bitch when I gave this four stars originally. Shameful! It certainly deserves five stars. When you have a book that veers from vicious, sprawling oratorial battles in the Senate to profound psychological portraits of truly legendary people to scenes like the one in which ...more
Jeff
Sep 07, 2014 Jeff rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone, especially fans of historical fiction
This is the second book in McCullough's series of books on the fall of the Roman Republic and rise of the empire under the Caesars. In terms of style and substance, it's similar to The First Man in Rome, dealing with the same characters and themes, albeit later in their lives.

Where as Marius was the primary character and Sulla was secondary in the first book of the series, the two trade places here. Marius is older and will soon be sidelined by a younger generation - and a stroke. Moreover, his
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Tom
Wow, 800 pages and where did it go? Ms. McCullough does an outstanding job of bringing Republic Rome to life. Excellent character development, fast-moving, hooking plot... and all based on true events and historic reasearch.

This second book in the series covers Lucius Cornelius Sulla's rise to being First Man, and then things go nuts!!! Blood, blood and more blood.

McCullough creates vivid, believable and lovable characters, and avoids getting bogged down in historical detail "showing off", but w
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Douglas
Ok, I can admit it - I'm an ancient Rome junkie, and Colleen McCullough is my dealer. Nobody - not even the venerable Robert Graves, or Marguerite Yourcenar, can write a crackling, entertaining AND factually nails-on story of Ancient Roman politics, history and characters like McCullough. Thanks to her books I can describe the difference between a praetor and a consul, and understand that great Roman leaders didn't just start with Julius Caesar. This book mostly covers the period of the dictator ...more
Christin
I was a horrible classics student. I barely read the books and I couldn't remember the dates or names of anything other than the obvious characters and events. But I could remember fun details and things that were amusing to me. Killing someone by pouring molten gold down their throat is one of those things.

So when Mithridiates tells a consul (who knows what his name was, SEE? SEE?!) "you'll get your precious gold," I squealed "OH SHIT!" clapped my hands with glee, and giggled for the rest of t
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Brandt
The easiest way to become an expert in the end of the roman republic, and later, the end of Ceasar, is to read this series.
Historical novels always walks a line of historical correctness and entertainment, i thought this series managed to provide both, which is an impressive feat considering the extensive amount of information available for this time-period.

This series follows the most important romans and their families for two generations.
The rise to power of the succesful battlecommander Gaiu
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Murray
In this, the second of the Masters of Rome series, we learn more about the remarkable Sulla. His ability to casually murder those who will thereby aid his rise to power, has already been established in the first book. His pursuit of the Grass Crown - recognition by a Legion of the brilliance of its commander - provides the theme for this tale of a ruthless but strangely attractive man. Again it is McCullough's understanding of Rome of this time and the details she provides that add to rather tha ...more
Ivana Azap
Whoa!!! OK, I have always wanted to read this book until the end - I have tried earlier but I guess I was not brave enough. But now... Fantastic point of view for the time in history where Great Man delivered chess games of high class, where "dignitas" and "auctoritas" were the thing that truly great personalities were thriving for... I am amazed and can not wait to read the Fortune's Favorites.
Great recommendations ;)
Phil
In this second book in the Masters Of Rome series the characters that were introduced in 'First Man In Rome' continue to move the narrative forward. The aging Gaius Marius declines and his legate Sulla, an impoverished patrician who gained money and power through marriage and murder rises to prominence as the Italian states revolt in what is called the Social War. Mithradates of Pontus schemes against Rome in the eastern Mediterranean. The conflict between the aristocrats and the equestrians int ...more
Colleen Martin
Final update 11/6/12: It only took a year and two months but I FINALLY finished this behemoth. The delay wasn't because it wasn't good - quite the contrary, it's an incredibly entertaining history lesson disguised as a novel - but because I had so much going on personally that I just didn't have time to sit and immerse myself in this world. Even if I'd had the time, it wouldn't have been a quick or easy read. It's an old-school historical fiction epic, written in archaic, old-fashioned language, ...more
Andrew Flynn
Aug 10, 2008 Andrew Flynn rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone interested in historical Rome
Recommended to Andrew by: My father
The Grass Crown,book 2 in the Masters of Rome Series by Colleen McCullough tells the story of the Rome through the eyes of the major historical figures of the period.

Running from the end of the German invasion through the Italian War, Colleen McCollough masterfully blends the historical facts with a blending of fiction to give her readers a amazing journey that not only tells about the major events of the period but also blends in a picture of everyday life in late republic Rome.

Additionally, th
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Becky


This is the second book in Colleen McCullough's Masters of Rome series, following The First Man in Rome. It covers the period from 99 -86 B.C. Since I know very little about the history of ancient Rome I learned a great deal from this detailed account which is largely a story of political intrigue, civil war and upheaval. I also found it to be very suspenseful and proved that truth can be stranger than fiction. The central characters are Lucius Cornelius Sulla and Gaius Marius, both of whom were
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Brandon
The Grass Crown by Colleen McCullough is a monster of a book. Coming it at just under 1000 pages of reading, it is quite an undertaking. The undertaking is well worth the effort.

The Grass Crown takes to us those days of internal strife during the Late Roman Republic. Here we get to read about the great historical figures of Gaius Marius, Lucius Cornelius Sulla, Young Julius Caesar, Young Pompey, Young Cicero, and many others. Collen McCullough does a superb job of writing historical Rome that it
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Don
This book was long and covered a lot of territory, literally. It was like enrolling in a geography class, a history course (on ancient Rome), and mostly a rhapsody about politics and economics that caused friction in the Republic (not yet an Empire). Sulla is an outstanding character, albeit of an individually flawed character, because he always puts Rome's best interests in heart, which makes him heroic and obsessional. Gaius, his senior and mentor, has passed his prime and displays moral weakn ...more
Carrie Slager
It goes without saying that we get to see things from the POVs of our old favourite characters Marius and Sulla but I for one welcomed the introduction of other characters. Livia Drusa was a fantastic female character and her situation really gave me more insight into the plight of aristocratic women in Rome. And of course who can forget the precocious young Gaius Julius Caesar, who is feared by Marius because of old Martha’s prophecy that he would surpass his uncle? As with how it actually happ ...more
Ron
Well-developed fictional series.
Konstanze
I am, quite frankly, in awe of the amount of research and detail that went into this book. This is how historical fiction should be: respecting the uniqueness of cultures far removed from ours, but unflinching in the face of the alienness and brutality that were inherent to these periods - unlike the pretty costume fests that historical fiction is usually. Quite frankly, after studying Greek and Roman history for a semester I vowed I'd never spent a single minute on it again (less due to the sub ...more
Liviu
finished another reread of Grass Crown (like with First man in Rome and Fortune's Favorites I forgot how many, but I would say over 10 end to end reads) and it was still engrossing - starting in 98 BC, so 2 years after First Man in Rome's end with both main protagonists now in political decline.

After unprecedented 6 consulships and the decisive defeat of Jugurtha and then of the Germans, Marius was outplayed politically in the Senate and had his first stroke which incapacitated him at a crucial
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Jeremy Hurd
I kept Wikipedia handy so that I could look up the endless list of ancient foreign cities, and I was never able to keep track of the revolving cast of Quinti (Quintuses?), but beyond that, the second volume of McCullough's epic Masters of Rome series rivals the first in quality historic fiction writing.

McCullough deftly moves her characters into a new era--Rome is seemingly on the decline due to corruption and greed within its government, and various foreign and domestic wars. She uses this as t
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Lisa (Harmonybites)
Dec 07, 2011 Lisa (Harmonybites) rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Lovers of Historical Fiction
This is the second book in the Masters of Rome series begun in The First Man in Rome. That first man was unmistakenly Gaius Marius, a flawed but still admirable figure who married Julia, an aunt of Julius Caesar, making him a brother-in-law to Lucius Cornelius Sulla. A secondary character in the first book, he's on the rise in this one, as Marius is in decline.

It makes for a sad book, seeing that decline of a character I grew fond of in the first book. Sulla, as in the first book, is shown as bo
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Manu Prasad
Quite a superb sequel to "The First Man in Rome" with an expanded set of characters and perhaps a canvass larger than its predecessor.
Centered around the war against Italia, the growing rift between two towering personalities and former friends, and the depths to which a person's ego can lead him, this book also sets up Julius Caesar perfectly, illustrating his character wonderfully.
Gaius Marius, in search of his seventh consulship (which others have deemed impossible), with a fervour that fina
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Nick Van der Graaf
A fantastic, but somewhat depressing sequel to McCullough's "The First Man in Rome." Here she continues the stories of Gaius Marius and Lucius Conelius Sulla, and their friends, family and enemies. Late Republican Rome is brought vividly to life as the republic rots from within, allowing strong men to undermine government institutions through bribery and murder.
Rome must confront the rebellion of her Italian allies, an event known to us as the Social War, and the frightening eruption of Pontus,
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Scott Franklin
Fascinating continuation of Colleen McCullough's Master's of Rome series. This is the second book in the series of seven and it covers the Civil/Social war under the eventual leadership of Lucius Cornelius Sulla. It deals largely with the rise of Sulla to leadership both in military campaigns as well as policital power. It finishes with the fall of Gauis Marius, the third founder of Rome, as his mind fails following two strokes and he takes over Rome in a blood bath, killing anyone in Rome who o ...more
Daisy
This book focus more on the roman civil war, the war between Italians who was mistreated by Romans and the Romans who thought themselves as entitled and superior, as was seen by servilia, carpio's daughter, but I honestly don't think she is as devious as the book put it. The civil war was kind if caused by the Italians who was sick and tired of the Romans enlisting young Italians in the roman army to fight roman wars, and mistreat them afterwards, many young italians died and no one was left to ...more
Linda Harkins
Excellent! There seems to be a problem in saving the five stars I've awarded this historical novel. This is the story of Lucius Cornelius Sulla, a handsome soldier and patrician as brilliant as Gaius Marius, who served as consul of Rome 667 years after its founding. Julius Caesar and Cicero were quite young at the time. Cicero had completed his military duty as a scribe under Roman general Strabo Pompey while the young Caesar assisted Marius in Rome after he'd suffered his second debilitating st ...more
Duc
Longue lecture, très longue lecture. Mais j'ai pris grand plaisir à me retrouver dans ses temps décisifs de l'histoire de Rome. La guerre sociale et la question de l'accessibilité des Italiens à la citoyenneté romaine, la montée en puissance de Mithridate en Orient, la lutte entre l'ordre équestre et le Sénat, etc. Tout est superbement décrit.
Mais...
On ne peut pas nier à Colleen McCullough sa grande connaissance de la Rome antique. Mais parfois cette connaissance se fait malheureusement au détr
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Lance Ramsey
I read this as a kid and then again more recently. While I still enjoy the way the author brought to life these looming historical figures, the way she portrays Sulla and Metrobius (which I'd remembered as refreshing as a younger guy) now bothers me.

I feel sceptical of the gulf she draws between 'Sulla the great general' and 'Sulla the man-loving man', and that the degree of self-loathing attributable to this. I don't doubt that gay self-loathing is common (and in Sulla's case, a healthy dose of
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Matimate
The birth of the Roman empire was long process which was as bloody as it was humanly possible. The powerful men changed in the lead of the Roman republic and they were putting the seeds of its downfall. Marius once powerful is facing the slow fall and one of his most trusted men was behind it. The novel is dark and showed Roman politic and the family life of the actors in the twisted light, which add the spice to it. The general feeling it almost the same as from TV series Rome, which deals with ...more
Jessica
McCullough truly brings the ancient Roman republic to life. You care deeply about these characters, even when they're being despicable, and you can understand how they moved and shaped the ancient world. In The First Man in Rome, the republic was so strong that I couldn't imagine how it became an empire under Julius Caesar (a newborn in that book). But now, as Caesar grows up, things are escalating rapidly, and it's clear how a combination of civil war and internal corruption are undermining the ...more
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Colleen McCullough AO (born 1 June 1937) is an internationally acclaimed Australian author. Colleen was born in Wellington in central west New South Wales to James and Laurie McCullough.

McCullough was born in Wellington, in outback central west New South Wales, in 1937 to James and Laurie McCullough. She grew up during World War II. Before entering tertiary education, she previously earned a livin
...more
More about Colleen McCullough...
The Thorn Birds The First Man in Rome (Masters of Rome, #1) Fortune's Favorites (Masters of Rome, #3) Caesar (Masters of Rome, #5) Caesar's Women (Masters of Rome, #4)

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“His sudden and utterly overwhelming panic was over almost before it began; but not quickly enough. In the midst of his brief yet total terror, the King of Pontus shat himself. It went everywhere, solid faeces mixed with what seemed an incredible amount of more liquid bowel contents, a stinking brown mess all over the gold-encrusted purple cloth of his cushion, trickling down the legs of his throne, running down his own legs into the manes of the golden lions upon the flaps of his boots, pooling and plopping on the deck around his feet when he jumped up. And there was nowhere to go! He could not conceal it from the amazed eyes of his attendants and officers, he could not conceal it from the sailors below amidships who had looked up instinctively to make sure their King was safe.” 2 likes
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