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Il sogno di Roma: La lezione dell'antichità per capire l'Europa di oggi

3.83  ·  Rating details ·  193 ratings  ·  26 reviews
La storia dell'antica Roma e del suo gigantesco impero colpiscono ancora oggi per due aspetti: in primo luogo per la forza di un esercito che fece di un villaggio sui colli del Lazio la prima superpotenza mondiale, assoggettando popoli diversissimi per lingua, storia, cultura, religione, costumi, tradizioni... Perché il secondo straordinario successo di Roma fu quello di u ...more
Hardcover, Saggi, 284 pages
Published 2010 by Garzanti (first published 2006)
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3.83  · 
Rating details
 ·  193 ratings  ·  26 reviews

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Andy Wixon
Apr 07, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The danger when talking about The Dream of Rome, at the moment anyway, is that you start by reviewing the book and end by reviewing the author, for he is journalist, writer, TV personality, politician and Great Blonde Hope of the Tory Party Boris Johnson. Who knows, readers of the future, by the time you read this Boris Johnson may actually have become Prime Minister of Britain (or possibly just England, depending on how that referendum goes).
Johnson cuts such an instinctively endearing figure
Gumble's Yard
Feb 23, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2007

Short and clearly written (although sometimes with too populist a style and too elitist a content) review of the Roman Empire from Augustus onwards.

The theme of the book is that ever since the fall of the Empire European leaders such as Charlemagne, Napoleon, and Hitler have appropriated its symbols and ideas in a conscious attempt to recreate its centuries of success (even while at the same time celebrating as nati
Jun 14, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: english, history, politics
Interesting view, although totally wrong on Turkey. Had Turkey joined the EU and we would be having a far more serious crisis now, since the country has become increasingly authoritarian and anti-Western under Erdogan. Not only is Turkey incompatible with the EU, but it is putting NATO's cohesion at risk.

Regarding the EU's lack of appeal compared to Rome, perhaps it is because European integration was born out of weakness, whilst Rome emanated power and triumph (such as the US, until now). Germa
Lory Masters
Feb 12, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Johnson is a great writer and his descriptions bring the past vividly to the mind. As a classics scholar (many years ago), this was both a great refresher in history and a thoughtful look at the European Union in contrast to the Roman Empire - all the more interesting given the current state of Europe. I had not heard some of the stories he describes and I enjoyed adding to my classical knowledge.
Jeroen Van de Crommenacker
Pretty bland and seems a bit formulaic, but easy read with some witty asides.
Boris Johnson has a charming, avuncular style of writing, weaving hundreds of interesting stories of the Roman empire together to trace its history, through its apotheosis under Augustus to its decline. Johnson always treats the reader as an intellectual equal, leading them gently through a complex tangle of issues, which Johnson has dotted with facts in the same way that one might sprinkle dressing on a salad, to arrive at the conclusion that any reasonable person should make — i.e. the one wh ...more
Conor McWade
Easy read with great style. Don't bother if you want to learn or are not anti EU.
Joseph Hargreaves
Fantastic introduction to Roman History, would absolutely recommend it to anyone. It really is accessible to all. This is one of the first factual History books I have read, but I lent it to a friend who has a History degree and both absolutely loved it.

I think a lot of the credit goes to the author, who clearly defines the fundamental foundations of a successful empire without once inflicting boredom. Although I would disagree with some of his points (some of the comparisons between the milita
Nov 23, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Fantastic book, I don't really share some of the ideas, but it's an interesting analysis about Europe and the Union and it's differences with the Roman Empire and why they got so much cultural leverage (and cultural/political cohesion) in the past and still nowadays.
It completely changed my opinion about him and the people in the "Sexpectator", excuse me LOL, "Spectator".
As a person he's a very interesting mixture of traditional British and actual/modern man.
I was happy he won the London elec
Peter Rooijmans
This book highlights the lack of a common European identity as a ground to claim, that a European Community can never become as integrated as the Roman empire was.
In the cause of his argument the author doesn't mention any of the traits, which European have in common, such as culture, a shared history, the Enlightenment.
Although here and there interesting facts about the Roman empire and its history and remains are mentioned this book is ultimately very one-sided, unbalanced and therefore shorts
Oct 15, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a delightful book.

It is the first book about ancient Rome that has really captured my imagination and curiosity. Rather than focus solely on armies, gory games and power, Boris evokes a varied picture of practical and political Roman life. His sense of humor and tone are casual and engaging.

The main flaw that I am choosing to overlook is that Boris is a bit heavy-handed with his parallels to modern European politics.
Apr 08, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: other
I thought an excellent book written by the current conservative candidate for Mayor of London, comparing and contrasting how Rome managed to unite the peoples of Europe together for 400 years, and create a single identity, and how the EU is trying to do that same thing today, and finding it difficult to achieve.
Stephen Harker
Sep 17, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A ripping yarn. Boris writes beautifully and engagingly. If you agree with him the modern parallels are obvious and compelling. Just like companies, countries and empires usually go bust slowly and the rot sets in from inside. We have our very own coin clipper destroying money and inevitably destroying much else in the process.

I plan to read this again as it left such a strong impression.
John Pendrey
Oct 31, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My background has very study of history but Boris's style kept me enthralled and amused. He was relevant, had a broad sweep and makes me want to know more. Though I'm now more aware of the historical origins of our present position I realise we do not need to be imprisoned by them. Boris recommends we move forward with reconciliation to something of the unity of the Roman Empire.
May 12, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history
Excellent, fun, read. Johnson knows his subject and writes well. His turn of phrase is often delightful, "Chimpanzees' Tea Party" is clearly a phrase that should be used more.

The final part of the book, Johnson's section on Islam is nuanced and worth reading.

The book also succeeds in making the reader want to learn more about Rome and Constantinople.
Eric Pape
Boris's scholarship is excellent and he writes just as he speaks so its an interesting well paced read. The sections about Rome as excellent. Less engaging is is recurring comparison to the current EU and his championing the cause of Turkish membership.
Dec 30, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Boris is a bit of a genius when it comes to communicating enthusiasm for Ancient History. This is a warm and amusing account of Roman history but some of his contemporary parallels may irritate you if you don't share Boris' political opinion of the European Union.
Jan 03, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Why do I like BoJo? Because he can write such a book as this...informative,amusingly jagged & amiably controversial...such a blessed relief after so many po-faced apparatchiks of government.Ken Livingstone writes about newts;Boris Johnson writes about everything! The boy Johnson done good!
Dec 16, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history
Excellent really enjoyed Boris's take on the Roman Empire and similarities/differences to the EU. Every now and then the rabid conservative shows through but mostly it is conversational entertaining and enlightening.
Dec 30, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Great pre-read for a trip to Rome!
Maria Hardie
May 27, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
v readable and enjoyable after recent trip to Rome. Learnt more about places & historical characters.
Ruth Dipple
Jul 24, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
An engaging romp through Roman history, written in typical Boris style, with broad brush and humour. Boris would have made a wonderful Classics teacher.
Feb 11, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
First history related book I have read, very insightful. although it does end with there may be mistakes it puts a good perspective of the similarities between the Roman Empire and modern Europe
Jul 15, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history
I got this after watching his TV special of the same name. The special was OUTSTANDING and this is a nice accompaniment though no where near as good.
Aug 11, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A really interesting intro to Rome.
Jun 14, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Boris Johnson uses the Roman empire to make a strong case that Turkey should be embraced into the European Union.
Laura Guadagnoli
rated it it was amazing
Feb 17, 2017
rated it really liked it
Feb 08, 2012
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Jan 10, 2018
Kieran MacCallum
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Jun 09, 2014
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Boris Johnson is a British politician in the Conservative Party and the former Mayor of London. Due to his public school, blustering, comedic style, he is generally either loved or loathed by members of the British public.