(PDF) Review of Ian Hughes: The Vandal Who Saved Rome | Korneel Van Lommel - gyqacyxaja.cf
Hughes has his own very clear opinions on these matters, and a comprehensive grasp of the details. So for example, when he describes why Stilicho launched his disastrous attempt to conquer Illyria, he gives a highly convincing description of the personal and strategic incentives which drove Stilicho to do so. Stilicho the man and the general is viewed dispassionately in the text. Hughes makes no attempt to magnify Stilicho's achievements or to hide his faults.
The sub-title of the book 'the Vandal who saved Rome' is not developed as a thesis, and is perhaps intended more to catch the attention of a potential reader browsing the bookshelves.
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That Stilicho should be considered a 'Vandal' is something Hughes himself dismisses. One of the interesting features of this book is Hughes' treatment of Alaric, the Gothic leader with whom Stilicho's career was intimately intertwined.
In this portrayal, Alaric is not an opportunistic barbarian who selfishly leapt at any opportunity for enrichment whatever the consequences for Rome. Instead Alaric is a major player in a complex political situation, who needs to meet the demands of his men. His attacks on the Roman Empire are shown as efforts to force the Romans to take him seriously rather than as attempts to bring down the empire. Indeed, Hughes on occasion makes a point of reminding readers that although we are well aware that the western empire was on the verge of collapse, this was by no means apparent to those who were there at the time, and consequently we see events from a very different perspective.
If Alaric is not one of the book's villains, the senators of Rome certainly are. Hughes seldom has anything good to say about the senate.
ISBN 13: 9781844159697
In his opinion they expected Stilicho to crush Rome's enemies while constantly denying him the money and manpower with which to do so. When Stilicho quite reasonably responded by refusing to fight battles unless he could do so without losing any of the men he already had, the senate despised him for it. The senate also objected vigorously to Stilicho's use of barbarian troops, especially the wholesale recruitment of barbarians whom he had recently defeated.
Yet he is also the individual who helped maintain the integrity of the West before the rebellion of Constantine III in Britain and the crossing of the Rhine by a major force of Vandals, Sueves and Alans - both in AD - set the scene for both his downfall and execution in and the later disintegration of the West.
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Despite his role in this fascinating and crucial period of history, there is no other full-length biography of him in print. Have doubts regarding this product?
Post your question. Safe and Secure Payments. It is surprising that despite the recent surge of interest in the history of the Late Roman Empire this is the first definitive biography that has been attempted in English.
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In a large part this is due to the fact that the story of his life is poorly recorded by ancient sources. Although in some respects the conclusions reached go against some of the accepted theories concerning his life, they are explained in full and some of the opposing theories are explained, allowing the reader to make up their own mind as to which of the different ideas to follow.
Although hypothetical, it follows the descriptions in the sources and explains the reasons for the rapid changes of direction of the invaders. Armen M. About Dr.