A little while ago, I was delighted to discover that one of the few books to survive the inferno that destroyed my home in early March this was Livy’s magnificent and engrossing ‘Ab Urbe Condita‘, a volume I don’t believe I’ve read since my children were born, over two decades ago. Ive been pleased to find any books from my former library, but a few are more special than others and this is one of them.
Furthermore, by a happy coincidence, I’ve just read that the makers of a Game of Thrones are to make an as-yet untitled prequel, set thousands of years before the first series, at the end of the golden age of heroes. It has long been known that the genius creator of Game of Thrones, George R.R. Martin, drew inspiration from the murky and frequently lethal courts of imperial Rome for his engrossing tales of intrigue, treachery and murder in Westeros, so anyone with an interest in these matters can delve, for example, into De vita Caesarum by Suetonius if they wish to enjoy historical accounts of the fictional lies and carnage that has graced our screens in recent years.
I understand that the prequel to Game of Thrones will deal with such matters as the founding of House Stark and House Lannister. Livy’s wonderful book, dealing with the earliest days of Rome, likewise deals with the founding of ancient clans, families, military orders, religious rites and Rome itself, so I would suggest that if you wish to be entertained by such things prior to the final season of Game of Thrones and its greatly anticipated prequels being broadcast, you may well enjoy perusing a detailed history that an ancient author painstakingly put together around 2,000 years ago.
This book also tells of the building of the Poemerium, the ‘Great Wall’ that separated Rome from the less sanctified territories beyond, but there are all manner of other wonders contained in its pages. And finally, it is simply impossible for me to create a post like this without posting a photo of me and my great friend Rowley Irlam, who has deservedly won two Emmy awards for his breathtaking work as the Stunt Co-Ordinator on Game of Thrones.
“Hear Me Roar“.