Non-Book Review: Rome Spreads Her Wings

Rome Spreads Her Wings:  Territorial Expansion Between The Punic Wars, by Gareth C. Sampson

When I had the chance to request another new book from De Re Militari after finishing the disappointing repackaging from Thucydides that I last read, I turned to a book on Roman history that I was hoping would fill in some information from other books that I had read on the period relating to the tense period between the First and Second Punic Wars when both Rome and Carthage engaged in their own territorial expansion with the feeling that there would likely be some conflict in the future, and also as it relates to my interest in imperialism in general [1].  Many books on military history tend to focus on the wars themselves, not necessarily on the areas between wars where states maneuver and seek to regain strength or increase their territorial or cultural influence or deal with that business that was held in abeyance because of the previous conflict.  As was the case with the famous twenty years’ truce between World War I and World War II, sometimes a relatively evenly fought war left one side embittered  by war guilt, indemnities, and social dislocations, and seeks to undo the verdict of the previous war through alliances with other disaffected powers and a focus on greater military preparedness for the next conflict.  So it was between the First and Second Punic Wars as well.

So, having made my choice and being interested in a book that discussed this often forgotten period between wars, I looked briefly through the book to see that it answered my expectation so far in discussing areas that are often unknown by the casual student of the history of the Roman Republic, including the Gallic Wars and Illyrian Wars that did much to expand Rome’s interest both into Northern Italy and Gaul and also into Illyria and later Greece, both of which would have immensely fateful consequences for the Mediterranean world as a whole during the second century AD after the second Punic War was fought and won.  With about 250 pages of solid material, this looks like a book that should be fairly quick to read and also of significant informational value in providing context to my studies of the more familiar wars of the time as well that I expect to do as part of my ongoing work in building up more knowledge about the history of the classical world of the Greeks and Romans.  This is a book I definitely look forward to reading and hope to be able to review in an enthusiastically positive fashion.

[1] See, for example:

About nathanalbright

I'm a person with diverse interests who loves to read. If you want to know something about me, just ask.
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