Across the pages of  THE RISE OF ATHENS: The Story of the World’s Greatest Civilization, author Anthony Everitt presents a magisterial account of how a tiny city-state in ancient Greece became history’s most influential civilization and how modern culture is still profoundly impacted by the Athenians to this day.

Mr. Everitt says,“I wanted to tell the story of the western world’s first great democratic experiment. In other words, the story of ancient Athens. But was the experiment a success? Yes and no. It produced a fine crop of geniuses, sure, but after every triumph a disaster followed. Democracy is indeed the least worst system of government yet invented. But remember, it’s an extreme sport.”

Random House Executive Editor Will Murphy, who edited the book, says, “Reading Anthony Everitt is always an incredible, immersive journey, whether his subject is Cicero, the ancient world’s sharpest politician, or, as now, when he takes us to the remarkable Greek city-state that seems to have almost single-handedly given birth to western civilization, from democracy to the highest forms of literature and philosophy.  I’ve always loved Anthony’s ability to sift through history and myth, his tremendous storytelling prowess, and the infectious energy of his writing, THE RISE OF ATHENS being no exception.  Reading it is like being in a room with the most interesting people who ever lived, at the most interesting moment in history, leaving one to wonder just how a time and place so distant from our own could feel so familiar – how the Athens of long ago so permeates who we are today.”   

In THE RISE OF ATHENS, Mr. Everett shows how Athenians established the concepts and language of philosophy, and raised issues with which today’s thinkers still wrestle. They shaped the arts of tragedy and comedy, architecture and sculpture, and are the birthplace of democracy. The book explores how a community of just 200,000 people gave birth to a civilization that is the foundation of our own contemporary and intellectual universe.

Mr. Everitt turns the city into the protagonist with other civilizations such as Sparta and Persia playing main characters as well. The allure of Athens will go on to impact Alexander the Great, the Romans, as well as the Founding Fathers shaping how we think and see the world today. The Athenians were creators, thinkers, inventors, visionaries who shared with the world, art, theatre, philosophy, architecture, and democracy – and Mr. Everitt brings their story to life.

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