About the Author(s)
Elizabeth Speller is a freelance writer and lecturer. Long fascinated with the ancient world, she has pursued this interest in both undergraduate and graduate work in the classics at Cambridge University as well as in independent research. She wrote the libretto to "Farewell," which was commissioned by Paul McCartney to commemorate his late wife Linda. She lives in the U.K.
"Wonderful and entrancing...Anyone interested in the ancient world will want to read this book."--Literary Review
"A clear-headed and accessible narrative of Hadrian's wandering reign, informed and enlivened by some of the best modern work on the politics of the Roman Empire--which she manages to cast much more elegantly than most professional ancient historians themselves."--Mary Beard, Times Literary Supplement
"A pleasing introduction to the ancient world."--Publishers Weekly
"Cambridge-educated classicist Speller's first book, which is part biography and part travelog, examines the many facets of Hadrian's personality. What results is a fascinating and learned account of both his life and the ancient world during his supremacy. Hadrian was a 'passionate and incessant traveler' who, amazingly, spent half his reign abroad. Naturally, the book focuses on his travels, with particular emphasis on his sojourn in Egypt. The most famous attributes of his personality are also explored, such as his love of all things Greek, his tragic homosexual relationship with the young Antonius, his alleged anti-Semitism, and his architectural achievements...Lively and interesting."--Library Journal
"An engaging, thoughtful, knowledgeable and fascinating essay on Roman history, as well as a perceptive exploration of the Roman empire of the second century CE...Speller has chosen a subject that well repays the kind of personal, psychological investigation she undertakes...She skillfully synthesizes the appropriate scholarship and ancient sources to weave together an enthralling and informative narrative."--Mary T. Boatwright, author of Hadrian and the Cities of the Roman Empire and Hadrian and the City of Rome