In this revealing and entertaining guide to how the Romans confronted their own mortality, Peter Jones shows us that all the problems associated with old age and death that so transfix us today were already dealt with by our ancient ancestors two thousand years ago.
Romans inhabited a world where man, knowing nothing about hygiene let alone disease, had no defences against nature. Death was everywhere. Half of all Roman children were dead by the age of five. Only eight per cent of the population made it over sixty. One bizarre result was that half the population consisted of teenagers.
From the elites' philosophical take on the brevity of life to the epitaphs left by butchers, bakers and buffoons, Memento Mori ('Remember you die') shows how the Romans faced up to this world and attempted to take the sting out of death.
Fascinating... It is learned but an easy read, a rare combination. -- Christopher Howse, Daily Telegraph
An often amusing, always illuminating, guide which offers an intriguing vantage point at which to examine Roman life., All About History
An enjoyable, engaging and educational book that makes ancient attitudes on mortality accessible to us all., Lucia Marchini, Minerva
'Like everything else Jones writes, Eureka! is packed with intriguing nuggets for novices and experts alike... He flits between the beautiful and the banal, never missing a good story' Natalie Haynes, The Times, Natalie Haynes, The Times, on Eureka!
Jones is a storyteller at heart, unashamed to entertain while educating by stealth, as all the best teachers do., Spectator on Eureka