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February 08, 2009


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In case you didn't already know about this, but the RSS feed can only handle 50 podcasts(apperently). And since there are now 53 episodes this means that the first 3 (1,2 and 3a) aren't in the rss feed or showing up on iTunes.

Thought I'd tell you about it.

Best Wishes,



Mike, Excellent reply!!!! Thorough, specific, clear, direct, more than complete. Thank you!!

best regards



I love the podcast - I look forward to every new episode. Since this episode began with a question, here is one from me: How did the 'great' men of Rome build armies? Especially those who were outside of the city or the Italian penisula? As I listened to recent episodes, I kept thinking about how did they raise these armies? I understand mercenaries (1,000 Gallic calvary) but you can't win with mercenaries only - just ask Carthage!


Michael In Houston TX

A somewhat periodic update as to WHEN these episodes occurred:

Episode - Title - Dates Covered
01 - Birth of a Nation ?? BC - April 21, 753 BC
02 - Youthful Indiscretions 753 BC - 673 BC / 673 BC – 641 BC / 640 BC – 616 BC
03a- The Seven Kings of Rome 717 BC - 673 BC / 673 BC - 616 BC
03b- The Seven Kings of Rome 616 BC - 578 BC / 534 BC - 510 BC
04 - The Public Thing 510 BC - 509 BC
05 - Trials and Tribulations 509 BC - 450 BC
06 - The Twelve Tables 450 BC - 519 BC
07 - The Roman Washington 519 BC – 430 BC
08 - Decades of Gloom 450 BC - 446 BC
09 - A Trojan War 446 BC - 387 BC
10 - Barbarians at the Gates 387 BC - 386 BC
11 - The Morning After 386 BC - 343 BC
12 - The First Samnite War 343 BC - 341 BC
13 - The Latin War - 340 BC 338 BC
14a- A Phalanx With Joints 338 BC -
14b- A Phalanx With Joints - 326 BC
15a- The Second Samnite War 326 BC -
15b- The Second Samnite War - 298 BC
16 - The Third Samnite War 298 BC - 290 BC
17 - Pyrrhic Victories 290 BC - 272 BC
18 - A History of Rome Christmas * Christmas Special* Timeless
19 - Prelude to the First Punic War 272 BC - 264 BC
20a- The First Punic War 264 BC -
20b- The First Punic War - 241 BC
21 - Interbellum 241 BC -
22 - Prelude to the Second Punic War - 218 BC
23a- The War with Hannibal 218 BC -
23b- The War With Hannibal - 216 BC
23c- The War With Hannibal 216 BC - 212 BC
23d- The War With Hannibal 212 BC - 209 BC
23e- The War With Hannibal 209 BC - 201 BC
24 - The Second Macedonian War 200 BC - 196 BC
25 - The Syrian War 196 BC - 188 BC
26 - The Third Macedonian War 188 BC - 168 BC
27 - Mopping Up 168 BC ~ 193 BC
28 - Taking Stock 193 BC ~ 100 BC
29 - Tiberius Gracchus 168 BC - 154 BC
30 - Gaius Gracchus 160 BC - 121 BC
31a- Marius 157 BC – 109 BC
31b- Marius 109 BC - 100 BC
32 - The Social War 100 BC - 91 BC
33 - Marius and Sulla 91 BC - 84 BC
34 - No Greater Friend, No Worse Enemy 85 BC - 78 BC
35 - Crassus and Pompey 78 BC - 71 BC
36 - I Am Spartacus! 73 BC - 71 BC
37 - Go East Young Man 74 BC - 62 BC
38 - The Catiline Conspiracy 63 BC - 62 BC
39 - The Young Julius Caesar Chronicles 62 BC - 59 BC
40 - In the Consulship of Julius and Caesar 59 BC - 58 BC
41a- The Gallic Wars 58 BC
41b- The Gallic Wars 57 BC - 52 BC
42 - Meanwhile, Back in Rome 58 BC - 49 BC
43 - Insert Well Known Idiom Here 49 BC - 48 BC

Please verify my dates, Professor Duncan?

I have again donated $50.00 U.S. to your account.
Thank you for the hours of interesting

I listen to them again and again to gain the full import.

Please take the future Mrs. 'HistoryOfRome' somewhere nice?


Michael in Houston

Michael In Houston TX

Because, as we're about to see...LOVE has destroyed more than one Roman! ;)

Jared Croft

Great show. I finally caught up 2 weeks ago, though i'm still reviewing most of the episodes since it takes more than one listen to really master the material. The writing in particular is excellent. Its the best i've heard from any podcast; and i've listened to quite a few, albeit most of them are talk shows, but amongst them is 12 rulers.

In regards to Julius Ceasar being selfish, he probably was. But perhaps there was also an ends justifies the means rationale to his crossing the Rubicon. Perhaps he managed to convince himself that his planned reforms were worth tens of thousands of lives. Even if so however, I think it is undeniable that he, and for that matter most Ancients, had less regard for human life than we do. Ceasar in particular afterall committed genocide against Gallic peoples. Given Ceasar's merciful treatment of his Roman enemies and his regard for the poor, perhaps, like say Thomas Jefferson, Julius Ceasar was civilized for his time (at least by our moral standards as opposed to those of Cato) but barbaric relative to leaders of most modern nations.

John M.

The show is awesome, but I'm still having trouble downloading them from the websit. When I try to click "save link as", it tries to save an HTML file. Any ideas?


I know that since all my comments are just "OH LAWD, HOW I LOVE THIS SHOW" they really aren't necessary, but damn, I can't help it. This is an amazing series and I've loved every second of it.

I seriously hope someone with some power somewhere is listening and offers you some sort of high paying gig.

John M.

I figured out a way to get all the old shows. Yay! Now off for hours of listening to Mike's clever take on Roman History.

Michael In Houston TX

oooh! I loved Jared Croft's review:

"perhaps there was also an ends justifies the means rationale to his crossing the Rubicon."

Exactly! Demoncrats believe exactly that! That The End Justifies Any Means.

While, Republicans belive that the End is really only justified by The Means!

Demoncrats today are the National Socialists of tomorrow, while the Stahl-Helms of the German Republic stood by in amazement of a popular, tho Lethal Leader (Fuhrer) Hitler, (Messiah..Obama?).

Someone once said, "History repeats itself? No, it only echoes..."

I argue, that the Demoncrats are our own neuveu 'Hitler-Youth', 'Brown-Shirts'...while 'The Olde Guarde'...'The Doles', 'The McCains' become The Olde Rebublic...I.E. The Last Democracy.

Obama is our Clodius. FREE GRAIN! :)

Bush is our General Paul Von Hindenburg (he welcomed Hitler) Bush Welcomed Obama...

Welcome To 'The Decline and The Fall of The American Empire' :)

We shall need a new PodCast.

Title? 'The Rise and Fall of The American Empire', a mere 70 years.


Hi Mike,

Just a note to thank you for the ability to donate, I have done so as from Europe, how else could I show my appreciation?

It's the least I could do for this educational extravaganza!

Thanks again!


Insert well known idiom here... jerk... I've been waiting for that for months.


What is Mike in Houston TX talking about? Is there a logical arguement in there??

"While, Republicans belive that the End is really only justified by The Means!" ??WTF??? Is that like the end of getting into an unwinnable war in Iraq is justified by the means of lying to Congress and the United Statesian people about the presence of WMD's and Saddam's "links" to Alqueda so that a select few of Bush's cronies (eg Rummy and Darth Cheny) could get ridiculously rich??? or is it the end of "preserving freedom" justified by the Means of extra-judicial renditions and the torturing of innocents (eg Mahar Arar)???

"Demoncrats today are the National Socialists of tomorrow"???again W-T-F??? I'm not really a big fan of the Demo's( After all for all the promises of change Obama's still the CEO, ooops sorry, "President" of the United Corporations, oooops sorry again "States" of America) The Republicans under Bush (and probably under whoever comes next) are waaaaaay more like the National Socialists then the Demo's with all their subversion of Democracy (eg Bush's first win by vote rigging in Florida), stifling of dissent (eg look what happened to the Dixie Chicks who had the good sense to oppose the war in Iraq from the get go, unlike a lot of Demo's), the land/oil grab in Iraq/Czechoslovakia, and the whole "you're either with us or against us" crap.

As for the McCains being like Cato and the other defenders of "The Olde Rebublic", sure that makes some sense since McCain and the other Rebulicans are trying to maintain the power of the ruling oligarchy......which by this point in the story wasn't really a Democracy any more (go back and listen to what happened to the Gracchi brothers and compare it to what happened to X, King and the Kennedy brothers). Cato/McCain and their crews aren't as intrested in saving "The Last Democracy" as they were/are into preserving their privilaged places in their respective societies. Hopefully the Republican elite will get the same "reward" that Cato did.

For "'The Decline and The Fall of The American Empire' :)" , well, as a citizen of one of the other two countries in North America (and yes United Statesians there are TWO other countries in North Anmerica) I can always hope that this prediction comes true, and quickly, but I'm still skeptical that it will actually happen (I think it would have happened quicker if McCain had beat Obama, which is why I was rooting for him, as another unwinnable war in Iran would have helped to sped things up and further alienated the U.S. on the world stage. Now with Obama in, people might actually begin to believe that the U.S. is a force for "good" in the world again)

Finally Michael In Houston TX nothing smells as bad as a sore loser, and your boys (the Republicans) lost because they got less votes, so suck it up, that's "Democracy".


Oh by the way Mr Duncan, your podcast rocks


Oh by the way Mr Duncan, your podcast rocks

Alexanda Laesig

Mike I just wanted to tell you how much I apriciate you podcasts. I hope you continue soon.

To J.C.

As German who has lived in America I have to strongly disagree with you. The ends justify the means can not be attributed to one particular party, but is I believe applicable to many political activities. Of cause seldom as radical as Caesar or Hitler. How often do the politicians make false promises in order to get voted?

I remember that it was Trueman, a Republican, who decided to drop the atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Of cause Perl Harbor was a horrible occurrence, but it was a military base unlike Hiroshima. The atomic bomb has affected people even today.


Are those the actions of a men who values freedom and the rights of others. I will not even get started on the era of Bush, because I would have to go into an hour long rant on how he practicaly
steeped all over the Constitution with his Patriot Act. It is not worth the paper it is written on.

Of cause there are also Democrats who do not have a white vest like Clinton and that Democratic senator who tried to sell his senators seat on e bay. Gos save us all To put it in the words of Obi wan Kenobi They are politicians and not to be trusted. To often they serve only their own agenda and not that of the people.

But honestly imagine Sarah Palin in office. I believe America would be domed. She is a ultra conservative who would wreck the image of the US in the world even further. Lets face it, McCain is already old and would not survive his first year in office and than we would have been be stuck with Palin for the rest of the term.

Teddy and his cousin FDR intruded many social reforms and neither of them were socialist nor were they the next Hitler. As German I find this comparison more than offencive. Although I can see why Obama's popularity might cause some reservations especially in the light of the recent crisis. Quite honestly I myself am socked how much expectations people put in the poor man. I do not believe he can fulfill all the hopes people put in him.

I am sorry I descended into a rant. If want respond you can reach me at my E mail under save_canon@yahoo.com, so we do not spam the boards.

ours truly


Alexanda Laesig

I am sorry for my atrocious spelling and Grammar. I just noticed it but t was to late to change it. Please forgive me it will not happen again

Michael F

Great series Mike. I hope for our sakes the history channel doesn't steal you away from us before the conclusion of THoR. It seems that
Julius perfected political demagoguery. He said all things to all people as it suited his rise to power. The modern day parallels that are partially fueled by a glut of media outlets all competing to target
audiences are obvious. Did not Ceasar, actually pay off his legions when he decided to march on Rome by giving them his share of booty and spoils from his final campaigns in Gaul, thereby purchasing their loyalty in a calculated manner?

Andrew M

I have been listening to this show since almost the beginning and I absolutely love it. I am amazed at how similar our society is to the Romans, and not in the obvious government institutions way. People are still basically the same. Please keep the great shows coming, I really look forward to them

ep thorn

Don't feed the trolls or internet rangers will have to euthanize them.

Wait... go ahead and feed the trolls.

Alexanda Laesig

I am no trool and I just respondet to a comment

By the way Mike, I am reading Heropdotus but I keeep gettting confused. Would you be willing to do a History of Greece next? That would be amazing. Once again I would like to congratulate you to your amazing podcasts. Keep up the ´good work

yours truely ;-)




You might want to have a look at the History 4a course at Berkeley, which is also available as a podcast. I'll just post a link for you.




To Alexa,
I never said Obama = Hitler, I was responding to the comment from Michael In Houston TX.
I agree that the ends don't justify the means, ever
I am not a fan of the Democrats or Republicans (Tweedle Dumb and Tweedle Dumber)
Yes Bush sucked
Yes politicians are often liars/motivated solely by self interest no matter what political stripe
Is Obama really any better, We'll see........


To Ep Thorn
Fee Fi Foe Fum.....oh wait that was a griant not a troll


I love the podcast, even though I've only been listening for about 3 weeks. this was one of my favorite episodes... so far.
It is kind of interesting to be the only 8th grader at my school who knows anything about Rome that doesn't have to do with Julius Cesar. I don't know anyone else who knows who Scipio Africanus is.
Thanks for making the podcasts, and continue to make more.


Troll, giant, giant troll, whatever.

It's just so cliche to make overly simplistic comparisons between history and today as if the former repeats itself. Everytime someone mentions nazis in a political discussion/argument, Thor kills a unicorn.

Peter Lawson

G'day from Melbourne, Australia ... and echoing the comments above, you've made me very happy with your depiction of (so far) 700 years give or take of enthralling history. Your occasional sly humour makes me chuckle as I walk or take public transport to work.
As a labour of love this is brilliant.
Kind regards, Peter Lawson

Roy Thomas

Nice post, as always.

David Scarboro


I just want to say how much I am enjoying the History of Rome. I came in halfway through and started with Caesar and I'm now up to Hadrian. My favourite episodes are the ones dealing with the year of the four emperors, where I think you convey very well the chaos of those times. Imagine being caught up in something like that and having to try to choose the winning side! And what comes across so well overall is the nature of a political system in which ambitious men had to risk their lives for ambition -- so hard for us to imagine today. I'm going to go back to your archive and pick up the earlier episodes.

Have you read the two novels by Robert Harris, Imperium and Lustrum, based on the life of Cicero? The portrayal of Caesar is very compelling!

Best regards,

David Scarboro
Reading, England

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