Rome and Persia in Late Antiquity: Neighbours and Rivals by Beate Dignas
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I picked this book up in the spring because I was really looking for materials for Rome's interactions with the surrounding civilizations. It is a combination of a short monograph and a selection of sources on the relationship of the Romans and the Sasanian Persians from the foundation of Sasanian rule in the third century to the collapse of Persia in the face of the Islamic invasions. The scholarship is sound and gives a good picture of this relationship from both sides.
The only caveat I have about this book is that I would have liked more Persian sources. There are some, don't get me wrong, but the majority are Roman-Byzantine which tends to imbalance the document section a bit. I should also note here that I'm by no means an expert on Persian sources for this period, so it may be that there aren't many more that are available. However, more, if possible, would work against the prevalent bias towards the Roman point of view.
However, even with that caveat, this is a superb book and worth spending time with. It gives a good view of Persian-Roman relations and many of the important sources for them.
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