The Great Sea: A Human History of the Mediterranean and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more
Usually ships within 2 to 4 weeks.
Ships from and sold by Amazon.ca.
Gift-wrap available.
Quantity:1
The Great Sea: A Human Hi... has been added to your Cart
+ CDN$ 6.49 shipping
Used: Very Good | Details
Sold by PaperbackshopCA
Condition: Used: Very Good
Comment: Used -Very Good Book. Shipped from UK in 18-26 days. Established seller since 2000.
Have one to sell?
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See this image

The Great Sea: A Human History of the Mediterranean Hardcover – Oct 13 2011


See all 6 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle Edition
"Please retry"
Hardcover
"Please retry"
CDN$ 37.95
CDN$ 37.95 CDN$ 12.60



Product Details

  • Hardcover: 816 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press (Oct. 13 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0195323343
  • ISBN-13: 978-0195323344
  • Product Dimensions: 23.9 x 6.4 x 16.8 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 Kg
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #312,922 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description

Review


"This magnificent book ...is teeming with colourful characters. Over the course of nearly 800pp, we follow faiths; sail with fleets; trade with bankers, financiers and merchants; raid with pirates and observe battles and sieges; watch cities rise and fall and see peoples migrate in triumph and tragedy. But at its heart, this is a history of mankind - gripping, worldly, bloody, playful - that radiates scholarship and a sense of wonder and fun, using the Mediterranean as its medium, its watery road much travelled." -- Simon Sebag-Montefiore, Financial Times


"This memorable study, its scholarship tinged with indulgent humour and an authorial eye for bizarre detail, celebrates the swirling changeability at the heart of that wonderful symbiosis of man and nature which once took place long Mediterranean shores" -- Jonathan Keates, The Sunday Telegraph


"An Everest of a book, brocaded with studious observation and finely-tuned scholarship...the effect is mesmerising, as detail accumulates meticulously." -- Ian Thomson, The Independent


"David Abulafia's marvellous history of the Mediterranean is an excellent corrective to oversimplified views of geopolitics." -- The Economist


"New, highly impressive book...magisterial work..." -- Prospect


"Engagingly written, precisely documented, and liberally studded with tales of the fantastic and absurd, the book has much to offer the casual reader and is indispensible for specialists in the region." -- Publishers Weekly


"Abulafia writes in a popular style with an eye for interesting sidelights on history, such as the backdating of the Trojan War by Homer and Virgil, and quirky asides about modern Mediterranean culture...this comprehensive, scholarly study contains much food for thought." -- Kirkus


"A comprehensive, fair-minded history." -- The National Interest


"The Great Sea deserves a place on the shelf next to Braudel's classic work." -- Shelf Awareness


"David Abulafia's new book about the Mediterranean Sea, The Great Sea, has everything a major work of history requires. An important theme, solid research, magnificent writing and a perceptive insight into human nature...As an introduction to this story - and as a cautionary tale of what happens when the darkness in the human soul crowds out the light - there is no better place to start than David Abulafia's The Great Sea." - The California Literary Review


"For both specialists and interested general readers, this book will be a treasure and become the standard work on the topic." -- Booklist Online


"Book of the Year" selection, History category -- he Economist


"David Abulafia, Professor of Mediterranean History at Cambridge University, brings historians and interested readers the ultimate biography of this unique sea, as seen and used and experienced by the people who lived and still live on its long coastline."-- Bookbanter


"This magnificent history, at once sweeping and precise, spans the period from 22,000 B.C. to 2010 A.D. to explicate the history of human activity on and around the Mediterranean Sea... [Abulafia] is a superb writer with a gift for lucid compression and an eye for the telling detail...He has taken on a grand subject, and has related and interpreted it with authority, exactitude, and verve. His work deserves a wide and appreciative audience." -- The Atlantic


About the Author

David Abulafia is Professor of Mediterranean History at Cambridge University and the author of The Mediterranean in History.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
Browse Sample Pages
Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index
Search inside this book:

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
Share your thoughts with other customers

Most helpful customer reviews

Format: Hardcover
This book, the cover tells me, `is the first complete history of the Mediterranean from the erection of the mysterious temples on Malta around 3500 BC to the recent invention of the Mediterranean's shores as a tourist destination'. I was immediately fascinated: how does a history of a sea read? People interact with the sea in a number of ways, but they don't live on it. What facts become important, which aspects of human civilisation will feature, and why?

David Abulafia is professor of Mediterranean history at Cambridge and in this book he sets out the presence of the people who have lived around the Mediterranean from around 22000 BC to 2010 AD. This is a history of the people who `dipped their toes in the sea, and, best of all, took journeys across it.' The book is divided into five chronological sections:

The First Mediterranean 22000 BC - 1000 BC
The Second Mediterranean 1000 BC - 600 AD
The Third Mediterranean 600 AD - 1350 AD
The Fourth Mediterranean 1350 AD - 1830 AD
The Fifth Mediterranean 1830 AD - 2010 AD

Each section of the book opens and closes a period of the sea's history during which trade, cultural exchanges and empires act as unifiers before the process stops or reverses. Some of those significant events include the collapse of the Roman Empire, the impact of the Black Death and more recently the building of the Suez Canal.

`The history of the Mediterranean has been presented in this book as a series of phases in which the sea was, to a greater or lesser extent, integrated into a single economic and even political area. With the coming of the Fifth Mediterranean the whole character of this process changed.
Read more ›
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Vlad Thelad TOP 500 REVIEWER on April 12 2012
Format: Hardcover
Here is a history book with overwhelming details and scholarly depth, and yet it is an easy and pleasurable read. Abulafia intersperses comments and opinions that are both witty and opportune, increasing the appeal of his narrative. This is as thorough an account of the history of the Mediterranean as one could possible dream of, covering the civilizations and peoples whose interactions, be it through trade or war, or both, have given life to centuries of vibrant existence to this body of water and its shores. To top it all, we also get a Rosencrantz and Guildenstern view of the histories of Europe, the Balkans, Eurasia, the Middle East and North Africa. This is a highly recommendable, remarkable and truly fascinating book.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again.
By Rodge TOP 50 REVIEWER on April 22 2014
Format: Hardcover
Abulafia manages, in about 650 pages, to tell us the story of the Mediterranean. This book is truly an achievement. It is well written, pulling you into the flow of several thousand years of history without losing you in the process. Obviously, it helps to have some knowledge of different eras and peoples - Abulafia is often only able to reference a tribe or an event without going into great detail. Nonetheless, the narrative remains clear, and the organization of this book helps the reader to understand the profound changes happening as we move forward in time.

This is an admirably focused book. Abulafia resists the near-constant temptation to go wandering far afield from the Mediterranean and stays focused on that space, even when it may seem the main action is happening elsewhere. The effect is one of sharpened perspective, as we see the sweep of world history from a place that waxes and wanes in importance on the global scale.

In short, this is definitely a must-read for anyone who loves a good history read.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again.


Feedback