The History of Rome

Book Details

Author  Thomas Keightley
Publisher  Forgotten Books
Publication Date   June 5, 2015
ISBN  1440061777
Pages  524

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Excerpt from The History of Rome: To Which Is Added, a Chronological Table of Contemporary History

Encouraged by the success of my History of Greece, I now present to the public, and particularly to those who are engaged in the task of education, that of Rome similarly executed. The inadequacy of Goldsmith's and other compilations to convey correct historical knowledge is now generally felt and acknowledged, and works of a higher order are required for education.

Most readers are aware that in consequence of the labors of Niebuhr (a man of whom I never can either think or speak but with admiration and respect) the history of the early centuries of Rome has assumed an entirely new character. These new views should be known, and I have therefore introduced them; but as every one may not be disposed to acquiesce in them, I have, though convinced of their general soundness, kept them distinct from the common narrative, which I have given in all the fulness that my limits would allow; and teachers will use their discretion with respect to the chapters which contain them. In the Second Part of this work I have followed this writer's narrative, as it would have been presumption in me to do otherwise. The study of Niebuhr's own work I however most strongly recommend to every one; and I can answer with confidence for the correctness and fidelity of the translation of it by MM. Hare and Thirlwall.

It may startle some readers to find so much of the early Roman history treated as fabulous, and Rome's first two kings presented as the mere creations of imagination. Their surprise I can assure them arises entirely from ignorance of mythology as a science; for were they well acquainted with its principles, it would probably be of another kind, and they would wonder how such palpable fictions ever came to pass for realities.

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