Cover art for Alexander the Great

Alexander the Great

97 ratings

Summary

Alexander was born into the royal family of Macedonia, the kingdom that would soon rule over Greece. Tutored as a boy by Aristotle, Alexander had an inquisitive mind that would serve him well when he faced formidable obstacles during his military campaigns. Shortly after taking command of the army, he launched an invasion of the Persian Empire, and continued his conquests as far south as the deserts of Egypt and as far east as the mountains of present-day Pakistan and the plains of India. In his lively and authoritative biography of Alexander, Philip Freeman describes Alexander's astonishing achievements and provides insight into the mercurial character of the great conqueror. Alexander could be petty and magnanimous, cruel and merciful, impulsive and farsighted. Above all, he was ferociously, intensely competitive and could not tolerate losing - which he rarely did. As Freeman explains, without Alexander, the influence of Greece on the ancient world would surely not have been as great as it was, even if his motivation was not to spread Greek culture for beneficial purposes, but instead to unify his empire.

©2011 Philip Freeman (P)2017 Tantor

Narrator: Michael Page
Length: 12 hrs and 34 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Celtic Mythology

Celtic Mythology

23 ratings

Summary

Most people have heard of the Celts - the elusive, ancient tribal people who resided in present-day England, Ireland, Scotland and France. Paradoxically characterized as both barbaric and innocent, the Celts appeal to the modern world as a symbol of a bygone era, a world destroyed by the ambition of empire and the spread of Christianity throughout Western Europe. Despite the pervasive cultural and literary influence of the Celts, shockingly little is known of their way of life and beliefs, because very few records of their stories exist. In this book, for the first time, Philip Freeman brings together the best stories of Celtic mythology. Everyone today knows about the gods and heroes of the ancient Greeks, such as Zeus, Hera, and Hercules, but how many people have heard of the Gaulish god Lugus or the magical Welsh queen Rhiannon or the great Irish warrior Cú Chulainn? We still thrill to the story of the Trojan War, but the epic battles of the Irish Táin Bó Cuailgne are known only to a few. And yet those who have read the stories of Celtic myth and legend - among them writers like J. R. R. Tolkien and C. S. Lewis - have been deeply moved and influenced by these amazing tales, for there is nothing in the world quite like them. In these stories a mysterious and invisible realm of gods and spirits exists alongside and sometimes crosses over into our own human world; fierce women warriors battle with kings and heroes, and even the rules of time and space can be suspended. Captured in vivid prose these shadowy figures - gods, goddesses, and heroes - come to life for the modern listener.

©2017 Philip Freeman (P)2017 Brilliance Audio, all rights reserved.

Length: 7 hrs and 31 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Julius Caesar

Julius Caesar

4 ratings

Summary

More than 2,000 years after his death, Julius Caesar remains one of the great figures of history. He shaped Rome for generations, and his name became a synonym for "emperor" - not only in Rome but as far away as Germany and Russia. He is best known as the general who defeated the Gauls and doubled the size of Rome's territories. But, as Philip Freeman describes in this fascinating new biography, Caesar was also a brilliant orator, an accomplished writer, a skilled politician, and much more.    Julius Caesar was a complex man, both hero and villain. He possessed great courage, ambition, honor, and vanity. Born into a noble family that had long been in decline, he advanced his career cunningly, beginning as a priest and eventually becoming Rome's leading general. He made alliances with his rivals and then discarded them when it suited him. He was a spokesman for the ordinary people of Rome, who rallied around him time and again, but he profited enormously from his conquests and lived opulently. Eventually he was murdered in one of the most famous assassinations in history.    In this splendid biography, Freeman presents Julius Caesar in all his dimensions and contradictions. This book will captivate listeners discovering Caesar and ancient Rome for the first time, as well as those who have a deep interest in the classical world.

©2008 Philip Freeman (P)2019 Tantor

Length: 14 hrs and 44 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for St. Patrick of Ireland

St. Patrick of Ireland

Summary

Ireland's patron saint has long been shrouded in legend: he drove the snakes out of Ireland; he triumphed over Druids and their super-natural powers; he used a shamrock to explain the Christian mystery of the Trinity. But his true story is more fascinating than the myths. Late in the 4th century Irish pirates captured a young, British citizen named Patricius from his parents' Roman villa. The boy was sold into slavery and sent to tend sheep in Ireland. After walking nearly 200 miles across bogs and mountains to the coast, he managed to escape on a ship full of pagan sailors and returned home to the astonishment of his family. Patrick was destined for the privileged life of nobility but, when he experienced a profound religious awakening, he decided to become a priest and return to Ireland to convert the Irish to Christianity. The Patrick who emerges is even more extraordinary than the patron saint of legend, a passionate, courageous, and very human figure who exerted an incalculable impact on the course of Irish history.

©2004 Philip Freeman (P)2004 Tantor Media, Inc.

Narrator: Alan Sklar
Length: 6 hrs and 17 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Saint Brigid's Bones

Saint Brigid's Bones

Summary

In an evocative Celtic novel set in a time when druids roamed the land, lively young Sister Deirdre embarks on a mission to find the stolen bones of her convent's patron saint. In ancient Ireland, an island ruled by kings and druids, the nuns of Saint Brigid are fighting to keep their monastery alive. When the bones of Brigid go missing from their church, the theft threatens to destroy all they have worked for. No one knows the danger they face better than Sister Deirdre, a young nun torn between two worlds. Trained as a bard and raised by a druid grandmother, she must draw upon all of her skills, both as a bard and as a nun, to find the bones before the convent begins to lose faith.

©2014 Philip Freeman (P)2014 Blackstone Audio

Length: 6 hrs and 34 mins
Available on Audible