Empires and Barbarians
The Fall of Rome and the Birth of Europe
Reviews and Awards
"An amiable and learned companion through the centuries of migrations."-Library Journal "
"An awesomely ambitious work: an attempt, in the heroic tradition of Pirenne, to make sense of nothing less than the reshaping of antiquity, and the origins of modern Europe.... Heather is a wonderfully fluent writer, with a consistent ability to grab hold of his reader's attention.... The result is a book which richly merits reading by those interested in the future of Europe as well as its past." - Tom Holland, BBC History Magazine
"Most immediately impressive is Heather's easy command of detail. A jaunty, man of the people prose style masks a sure and scholarly grip on the history and archaeology of the first millenniem A.D. One of Heather's most attractive strengths is his eye for comparision. He neatly sets his thinking about first-millennium migration against modern experiences of the lure of the New World or the desperate flight of Kosovar or Rwandan refugees." - Christopher Kelly, Literary Review
"Peter Heather's book is an important contribution to the field — the first up-to-date book that compares the Germanic and the Slav migrations of the early middle ages. It is lucid and it has a complex argument, but it is grippingly written." - Chris Wickham, author of The Inheritance of Rome: Illuminating the Dark Ages, 400-1000
"This is a major work on the political and ethnic shaping of Europe during the first millennium A.D., embracing not just the Germanic and sub-Roman peoples, but also the Slavs and the Vikings. No one interested in the formation of European states and identities will be able to ignore this book." - Bryan Ward-Perkins, author of The Fall of Rome and the End of Civilization
"Impressive in its ambition and its scope."-The New Yorker "
"Heather manages to robustly balance the need for both breadth and depth. A superior piece of scholarship."-DiscoverMagazine.com "
"While ambitious in scope, one of the delightful aspects of this hefty volume is its eminent readability. Heather's writing is often playful in style. This conversational and sometimes humorous tone, combined with a knack for explaining complex ideas clearly, belies the complexity of his argument and the sheer amount of information conveyed." -Laura Wangerin, World History Bulletin "
"In addition to offering a new way of looking at the broad trends of European history, Heather also makes a major contribution to a long-standing debate about the role of migration in the first millennium…[Empire and Barbarians'] range, its highly important themes, and the boldness and clarity of its writing should stimulate argument and advance debate for years to come." -Edward James, American Historical Review "
"Empires and Barbarians is a significant accomplishment and a welcome gateway for the curious as well as the deeply informed."" - HNN.com