Egypt was the last of the Macedonian Successor states to be swallowed up by Roman expansion. The Ptolemaic rulers had allied themselves to Rome while their rivals went down fighting. However, Cleopatra's famous love affair with Marc Antony ensured she was on the wrong side of the Roman civil war between him and Octavian (later to become Caesar Augustus). After the defeat of Antony and Cleopatra at the naval battle of Actium, Octavian swiftly brought it under direct Roman control, though it took several campaigns to fully subjugate the whole country. These campaigns have previously been largely neglected. Judaea was a constant source of trouble for the Romans, as it had been for the Seleucids, the previous overlords of the region. The Romans at first were content to rule through client kings like the infamous Herod but were increasingly sucked in to direct military involvement to suppress religiously-inspired revolts. Like the other volumes in this series, this book gives a clear narrative of the course of these campaigns, explaining how the Roman war machine coped with formidable new foes and the challenges of unfamiliar terrain and climate.
Specially-commissioned colour plates by the renowned Graham Sumner bring the main troop types vividly to life in meticulously-researched detail.
John D Grainger, a former teacher, is a well established historian with around two-dozen previous works across various periods including: The Battle of Yorktown, 1781: A Reassessment (Boydell); The Battle for Palestine 1917 (Boydell) and Alexander the Great Failure (Hambledon Continuum, 2006). This is his third book for Pen & Sword's ancient list, following Hellenistic and Roman Naval Wars (2011) and The Wars of the Maccabees (forthcoming, 2011).