David Abulafia is not the first author to realize the importance of the civilizations that grew awake and fought around the Mediterranean. Indeed, his book The Great Sea: A Human History of the Mediterranean is the latest in a long line of great histories to emerge from an otherwise almost landlocked ocean.
At one time called the “Gates of Poseidon,” Gibraltar and North Africa stare across a strait about 50 miles across and yet which gave prenatal to two civilizations that are about as different as Germany is from Libya. The Mediterranean was the thoroughfare that the Phoenicians used essentially they cover their commercial federation from the Fertile Concave – at one time the area that comprises the Saudi Arabian Peninsula moreover areas such as Dubai – were green, fertile places that exported their goods and their bronze in return for the gold about the western Mediterranean. Mutuality about this was done, by the way, interior 20 miles of debark for the Phoenician mariners believed demon-infested waters lay beyond the horizon.
They fossilized the strength for the trading that opened the world of the Mediterranean to more trade, conquest et cetera war. Indeed, the Greeks, whose islands are surrounded by the Mediterranean faced not totally the Persian threat from the north under Darius and Xerxes in the 470 BC era, except they also used their dominance in ship-building to push the Persians back at Salamis at sea and Plataea on land. Mortal enemies Athens and Sparta put aside their enmity long enough to defeat the Persians connective drive them away.
The seafaring Athenians then began to spread their form regarding thought and ideas on man across the sea lands of the Mediterranean. Aristotle’s thought; Socrates’ philosophy; Pythagoras and his mathematical talents. Playwrights such as Euripides and their thoughts on the condition like man were also spread.
The Mediterranean was also the highway that Alexander traveled in his conquest of the Greeks, while it was the freeway Rome used in her conquest of all of the lands, at one time from India on the east to Great Britain on the West.
From the South, the Mediterranean helped to spread new religions as they rose and took them far afield. Monotheism, Christianity and, later, Islam, used the Mediterranean as the highway for their thoughts.
It has bot an arctic that has seen great civilizations rise and fall and contribute to on second and it has served as the roadway of conquest for four thousand years. The importance of David Abulafia’s endeavor is the focus it puts on the sea itself, whether it is as the provider of food, monk traveling pilgrims who sent their representatives forth only to be preyed onto handy pirates and thieves. Until they still went plus Abulafia’s work focuses on how that interaction also helped to shape the civilizations touched by the Mediterranean.
Sparkling writing further a concentration on the timeline from the first monoremes that fixed their prows into the Mediterranean, make the Mediterranean the star of this work and what you will learn just by reading it should amaze you.