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Germanicus (Paperback)

The Magnificent Life and Mysterious Death of Rome's Most Popular General

Ancient History Rome Photo Books Colour Books

By Lindsay Powell, Foreword by Philip Matyszak
Imprint: Pen & Sword Military
Pages: 338
ISBN: 9781473881983
Published: 20th June 2016

in_stock

£14.99


Peer Reviews

Biographies of Germanicus Caesar – arguably one of Rome’s finest generals – are few and far between, sadly. When one is published, therefore, it gives cause for celebration – particularly when it’s as good as the volume penned by Lindsay Powell. Meticulously researched, absorbing and well written, this is no dusty, academic tome, but a ‘must have’ text for any reader with an interest in Rome. Powell knows his subject matter inside out, and is to be highly commended on a most welcome addition to the biographies of Rome’s most famous sons.

- Ben Kane, The Forgotten Legion Chronicles and Spartacus series.

 

GERMANICUS brings the reader face to bloody face with serious history and tells the story of a Roman emperor that might have been - principled, courageous and, above all else, sane! Excellent fare, and highly recommended.

Anthony Riches, Empire Series

 

A modern, impartial study of the life of Germanicus is not only timely but overdue. For, apart from the enduring mystery of his death, Germanicus did come as close as anyone in the attempt to re-establish Roman rule from the Rhine to the Elbe. Had he succeeded, the history of the Roman Empire - and therefore of subsequent ages - would have been greatly different. It is worth examining how and why the attempt failed, and learning more about the man who made it.

- Philip Matyszak, author of The Sons of Caesar and Legionary: The Roman Soldier's Handbook.

 

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GERMANICUS (a.k.a. Germanicus Julius Caesar) was regarded by many Romans as a hero in the mould of Alexander the Great. His untimely death, in suspicious circumstances, ended the possibility of a return to a more open republic and ambitions for the outright conquest of Germania Magna (Germany and The Netherlands). This, the first modern biography of Germanicus Caesar, is in parts a growing-up story, a history of war, a tale of political intrigue and a murder mystery. It is a natural sequel to the author's acclaimed book, EAGER FOR GLORY, which, for the first time, discussed the life of Germanicus' birth father, Nero Claudius Drusus.

Born in 16 BC, Germanicus grew up to be a skilled diplomat and a bold general, but also a formidable courtroom advocate, poet and playwright. Marked out to be a successor to Augustus, he married Agrippina, the first emperor's granddaughter by whom he fathered nine children, including the future Emperor Caligula. His reputation and popularity were immense. He put down a mutiny of the Rhine legions, was responsible for avenging Rome's humiliating defeat at the Battle of Teutoburg Forest through victory at Idistaviso (AD 16), and the recovery of two of the three lost legionary eagle standards. Recognizing his achievements, the Emperor Tiberius – his adoptive father – granted him a full triumph, but refused to let him complete the reconquest of Germania, sending him instead to command the provinces in the East. Did Tiberius feel jealous and threatened?

Germanicus' good fortune waned when he fell out with one of Tiberius' gubernatorial appointees, the arrogant patrician Calpurnius Piso. Germanicus' death in Syria under mysterious circumstances, aged 34, brought great outpourings of public grief and anger, with many suspecting murder on the orders of Tiberius. As Romans demanded justice Piso was put on trial, but he committed suicide – or was he murdered? – before the senate could reach a verdict.

In this highly readable, fast paced account, historical detective Lindsay Powell details Germanicus' campaigns and battles in Illyricum and Germania; tracks him on his epic tour of the Eastern Mediterranean to Armenia and down the Nile; evaluates the possible causes of his death; and reports on the cruel fate his wife Agrippina and their children suffered at the hands of Praetorian Guard commander, and Tiberius' infamous deputy, Aelius Seianus.

Four solid stars for a book that is well-worth reading.

Amazon Reviewer - JPS

I think germanicus to be an excellent book and an excellent successor to 'eager for glory' (the book about drusus the elder)

Powell does his utmost to describe the live of germanicus from birth until death. he does this in the most neutral manner possible, highlighting both good and bad characteristics of his subject.

In his book, he also takes the necessary time to explain terms to his reader which makes this a most readable book, even for the people who have no previous knowledge on the roman world during augustus' time.

I would highly recommend it to all people interested in roman military history.

Amazon Customer

Powell gives us a comprehensive account of the life, character, campaigns, and curious death of Germanicus... This book is an excellent read for anyone interested in the Roman Empire.

StrategyWorld.com

I particularly like Powell's narrative style. It is extremely readable, providing an educational narrative on a fascinating period of history. ... Powell has done an exemplary job of shedding light upon the character and accomplishments of this noteworthy Roman. I strongly recommend this book.

Major Chris Buckham, Ancient Warfare, issue VIII.4 Sept 2014

I particularly like Powell's narrative style. It is extremely readable, providing an educational narrative on a fascinating period of history. Mr Powell has crafted an excellent biography of the man and his world. Germanicus was a soldier and statesman of outstanding ability who set service to Rome above all else. Powell has done an exemplary job at shedding light upon the character and accomplishments of this noteworthy Roman. I strongly recommend this book.

Ancient History Magazine

Well written and researched, I would highly recommend this book to anyone who is even vaguely interested in Roman history. I enjoyed it immensely.

Miniature Wargames

What the author has achieved here is to describe not only a personality, but to carefully place that individual within the context of his time.
A well written account and a good read.

United Nations of Roma Victrix

The author digs through the literary record and archaeological evidence to chronicle the period's political machinations and military maneuvers. The result is a book that is both meticulously scholarly and absorbing to read as it delves into a great man's life marked by military glory, political intrigue and a murder mystery.

Toy Soldier & Model Figure Magazine

Lindsay Powell's Germanicus is undoubtedly, a masterful biography.

Amazon.fr

This is an engaging book that holds the reader's attention and the author ably argues the case. The standard of illustration is also high. Any reader with an interest in Roman history and personalities will find this a rewarding book.

FIRE Reviews

The story of a Roman Emperor that might have been, Germanicus is a thorough, unbiased account of a man who is often overlooked despite the great impact he made on Ancient Rome. It is a fascinating study and well worth reading if you have an interest in the Roman Empire.

Amy Durant, The Fighting Times

A 'murder' mystery unsolved for nearly 2000 years could finally have been cracked by a Wokingham historical detective. Lindsay Powell has been investigating the death of Germanicus Julius Caesar some 1,994 years ago in Antioch, Syria. Mr Powell's latest book, Germanicus, delves into the circumstances surrounding the death, and examines new evidence.

Bracknell News

A modern, impartial study of the life of Germanicus is not only timely but overdue. For, apart from the enduring mystery of his death, Germanicus did come as close as anyone in the attempt to re-establish Roman rule from the Rhine to the Elbe. Had he succeeded, the history of the Roman Empire - and therefore of subsequent ages - would have been greatly different. It is worth examining how and why the attempt failed, and learning more about the man who made it.

Philip Matyszak, author of The Sons of Caesar and Legionary: The Roman Soldier's Handbook.

GERMANICUS brings the reader face to bloody face with serious history and tells the story of a Roman emperor that might have been - principled, courageous and, above all else, sane! Excellent fare, and highly recommended.

Anthony Riches, Empire Series

Biographies of Germanicus Caesar – arguably one of Rome’s finest generals – are few and far between, sadly. When one is published, therefore, it gives cause for celebration – particularly when it’s as good as the volume penned by Lindsay Powell. Meticulously researched, absorbing and well written, this is no dusty, academic tome, but a ‘must have’ text for any reader with an interest in Rome. Powell knows his subject matter inside out, and is to be highly commended on a most welcome addition to the biographies of Rome’s most famous sons.

Ben Kane, The Forgotten Legion Chronicles and Spartacus series

 Lindsay Powell

About Lindsay Powell

LINDSAY POWELL writes for Ancient Warfare magazine and his articles have also appeared in Military Heritage and Strategy and Tactics. He is author of the highly acclaimed Marcus Agrippa: Right-Hand Man of Caesar Augustus, Germanicus: The Magnificent Life and Mysterious Death of Rome's Most Popular General and Eager for Glory: The Untold Story of Drusus the Elder, Conqueror of Germania, all published by Pen & Sword Books. His appearances include BBC Radio, British Forces Broadcasting Service and History Channel.
He divides his time between Austin, Texas and Wokingham, England.


About Philip Matyszak

Dr Philip 'Maty' Matyszak has a doctorate in ancient history from St John's College, Oxford University and has been studying, teaching and writing on the subject for the past twenty years. He specializes in ancient Rome, especially the Late Republic and Early Imperial periods, and his previous works include the best-selling Ancient Rome on Five Denarii a Day, Ancient Greece on Five Drachmae a Day and, for Pen & Sword, Mithridates the Great: Rome's Indomitable Enemy (2008) and Roman Conquests: Greece and Macedon (2009). He has personal military experience both as a conscript in Africa and with the territorial army in Britain, and he splits his time between writing in his home in Canada's Rocky Mountains and providing distant learning courses at Cambridge University.

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