Most of the books in the Ancient Rome library
are part of a series, either by a single author, or by a group of authors under
the direction of a specific publisher. Some of these series
focus mainly on ancient history, while others cover a broad range of civilizations.
Whether a series contains only one book about Ancient Rome or several,
it has been included in the table below. A short
description of each series is followed by a complete list of book titles.
Roman History related titles are highlighted, but all other titles
are listed as well, along with the Compact Libraries on which they can be found.
We have provided this information because when a student does find
an author or a series he enjoys, he often desires to locate similar books.
These series descriptions are intended to help interested students identify
books and authors of interest to them on other topics besides ancient Rome.
Although an overall description
of each series is provided, the content of specific books is not indicated.
To see a short synopsis of individual books included in the Ancient Rome
library, see the Book Summaries page.
Famous Men of the Ages
by John Haaren and A.B. Poland
As an introduction to classical history for students of any age, one can hardly do better than the
well-known Famous Men series, by written by John H. Haaren and A. B. Poland. Both men
were school teachers and administrators for many years and understood very well the
best way to interest young people in their historical roots.
These books are exceptionally well written and beautifully illustrated with many reproductions
from classical artwork. They can be easily read by a reasonably sophisticated grammar school student, and
simply introduce the main characters of
Western Civilization, beginning in Ancient Greece and ending in the mid 19th century.
two volumes in the series are Famous Men of Greece and Famous Men of Rome. Although these books
are organized as a collection of biographies, they can be read as an introductory history
because the characters are part of a single civilization, and their lives are woven together
in a fairly seamless manner. The later two books, Famous Men of the Middle Ages and Famous
Men of Modern Times, provide excellent portraits of many of the most important characters in
British and European history. They are just as well written and interesting as the former two,
but are unable to weave the lives of the characters into a coherent narrative simply because
they occur over such disparate times and societies.
Famous Men of the Ages by John Haaren and A. B. Poland
| Title || Compact Library|| sheets |
| Famous Men of Greece ||Ancient Greece || 94|
| Famous Men of Rome ||Ancient Rome || 93|
| Famous Men of the Middle Ages || Christian Europe || 98 |
| Famous Men of Modern Times ||Modern Europe || 117 |
Guerber's Elementary Histories
Helene Guerber was an American author who wrote a series of juvenile histories
that provides an excellent introduction to several of the major civilizations in western history.
She writes specifically for a late grammar school/middle school audience, and every book
is divided into very short chapters, each of which deals with a specific character or event.
Guerber is an excellent writer who tells her stories with great interest. She understands her
students mindset well, and states in one of her introductions:
This elementary history of Greece . . .is made up principally of stories about persons; for,
while history proper is largely beyond the comprehension of children, they are able at an early age
to understand and enjoy anecdotes of people, especially of those in the childhood of civilization. At the
same time, these stories will give a clear idea of the most important events that have taken place in the
ancient world, and, it is hoped, will arouse a desire to read further.
Guerber wrote around the turn of the century, primarily for the American Book Company, which
at the time, supplied a great many textbooks for use in American public schools. Her histories were therefore
very popular with American students in the early decades of the 20th century.
Classical Histories for Young People by Helene Guerber
| Title || Compact Library || sheets |
| Story of the Greeks || Ancient Greece || 116|
| Story of the Romans || Ancient Rome|| 114 |
| Story of the English || British Middle Ages || 146 |
| Story of Old France || Christian Europe || 165 |
| Story of Modern France || Modern Europe || 142 |
| Story of Thirteen Colonies || Early America || 141 |
| Story of Great Republic || Early America || 151 |
Macgregor Intermediate Histories
Mary Macgregor was one of the principle authors of juvenile history,
who wrote for the British Publishing House, E. C. & T. C. Jack
during the early years of the twentieth century.
She collaborated on several children's series of books, including Told to the Children and
Children's Heroes. She also write storybook histories for middle school children,
focusing mainly on Ancient Civilizations.
At the time Macgregor wrote, her publishing house was the premier producer of historical and
literary works for children in Britain. Many of her books were widely read classics,
republished for many years in both the British Empire and the United States.
Macgregor's histories were beautifully illustrated with dozens of original color plates,
and were in print more or less continually from the earliest years of the 20th century until
Macgregor's Histories of Greece and Rome begin with the legendary past of these classic
civilizations, and focus mainly on the more romantic earlier years. Her Story of Greece begins
with a thorough review of many of the most famous Greek myths and covers all of the well-known
incidents, characters and battles of Classical Greece. Her history ends at the age of Alexander.
Likewise, her Story of Rome begins with the founding of Rome by Romulus and Remus and continues
through the kingdom and republican periods, ending during the reign of Caesar Augustus.
Intermediate Histories by Mary Macgregor
| Title || Compact Library|| sheets |
| The Story of Greece || Ancient Greece|| 167 |
| The Story of Rome || Ancient Rome || 201 |
| The Story of France || Christian Europe || 226 |
| The Netherlands || Christian Europe || 132 |
Stories of Ancient Peoples
by Eva March Tappan
Eva March Tappan was one of the most prolific American authors of juvenile history in the early years
of the 20th century. She authored over fifty books, and edited many more. Her Ancient Histories,
which focus on the stories of Greece and Rome, were used extensively in schools for dozens of years and
were republished for at least forty years after they were written.
Tappan was a classroom teacher for 20 years, and her books take a slightly more
"textbook" approach to teaching than some other histories offered by Heritage History. At the
end of each chapter, for example, she highlights the main points and
offers suggestions for study questions. Her chapters are somewhat longer than the
"storybook" style histories of Guerber and Macgregor, and she emphasize social and lifestyle
issue to a greater degree than some other authors.
In spite of the longer chapters, and greater emphasis on social factors, Tappan's books are
exceptionally enjoyable and easy to read. They are richly illustrated, well-organized and
considerably shorter than some of the other comprehensive histories of the Ancients.
Stories of Ancient Peoples by Eva March Tappan
Morris Historical Tales
Charles Morris was a prolific American writer of the late 19th century. After a
brief career in academics, he began publishing a great number of books and
articles under various pseudonyms, but his piece de resistance was his
Historical Tales, a collection of romantic and entertaining stories from
history in twelve volumes.
Although these tales are organized by civilization, and the stories occur in
roughly chronological order, these books cannot be read as comprehensive
histories, as he makes no particular attempt to tie them together, contenting
himself to jump from one fascinating episode in history to another. For this
reason, they are best read after one is already familiar with the basic outline
of the history of a particular civilization.
On the other hand, Morris is an outstanding writing, and he picks fascinating
subjects for his stories. The stories are selected largely for their
entertainment value rather than purely for historical significance so Morris
provides a compelling introduction of many "secondary"
characters and events. He tells all of his stories in enough depth to make them
truly entertaining, even when he is dealing with already well-known events. The
Historical Tales are an entertaining treat, and though they are not recommended
for introductory reading, they are terrifically rewarding for intermediate or
advanced readers of history.
Only two of Morris's Historical Tales are included in the Greek and Roman
Collection. The complete set may be found in our collection for
Historical Tales by Charles Morris
| Title || Compact Library|| sheets|
| Historical Tales: Greek || Ancient Greece || 141 |
| Historical Tales: Roman || Ancient Rome|| 131 |
| Historical Tales: American I || Early America || 139 |
| Historical Tales: American II || Early America || 138 |
| Historical Tales: Latin American || Spanish Empire || 129 |
| Historical Tales: English || British Middle Ages || 142 |
| Historical Tales: German || Christian Europe || 134 |
| Historical Tales: French || Christian Europe || 136 |
| Historical Tales: Spanish || Spanish Empire || 130 |
| Historical Tales: Russian || Modern Europe || 136 |
| Historical Tales: Scandinavian || || 144 |
| Historical Tales: Japanese and Chinese || || 143 |
Sometimes small incidents, rather than glorious exploits, give us the best evidence of
character. So, as portrait painters are more exact in doing the face, where the character
is revealed, than the rest of the body, I must be allowed to give my more particular
attention to the marks of the souls of men." —Plutarch
The following books are not part of a uniform series, but were published by several
different authors who sought to retell the great Lives of Plutarch for young people.
Plutarch, of course, was one of the most influential authors of all time. His biographies
of famous Greeks and Romans and his comparisons of their lives, were read with enthusiasm
by classical scholars from the time they were written in the first century A.D. until
fairly recently. He was likely the most popular classical author read in Europe during
the Middle Ages, and unquestionably influenced Dante, Chaucer, Shakespeare and many other
great literary figures.
Plutarch was, to a large degree, the very archetype of classical wisdom,
but his brilliant and sympathetic understanding of human nature is now, unfortunately,
shunted aside by the modern aspiration of trying to understand human behavior by means of
"scientific" observation instead of thoughtful insight.
The problem with "re-telling" and simplifying Plutarch of course, is precisely the same
problem of "re-telling" Shakespeare: One can competently retell the stories, but it is
difficult to simplify the works of either author and retain that which make their work a
masterpiece. Plutarch's works are not simply biographies, but "lives"—rich in anecdote and
commentary, much of which must inevitably be stripped out in order to make them accessible
to young people.
The following books are all greatly simplified, but each author takes a different approach.
Gould's Children's Plutarch volumes are severely abridged, for fairly young
audiences. Gould leaves out a great deal, but retains some anecdotes, and delivers a few
moral lessons that are easily understood by elementary students. Kaufman's Our Young
Folks' Plutarch provides very through biographies, and could almost be used for a standard
reference, but omits much of the commentary that makes Plutarch, with his vivid insights into
human nature, so fascinating.
Both Gould and Kaufman cover all fifty or so of Plutarch's lives, and shorten their
versions correspondingly. Weston, on the other hand, in his Plutarch's Lives focuses only
on fourteen men—probably the most famous of Plutarch's subjects—and is therefore able to
retain more of the original tone of Plutarch. His versions eliminate detail, extraneous
secondary characters and side plots, but retain more of the commentary for which Plutarch
is best known. It is therefore, most likely, the best of the lot.
Plutarch Lives for Young People
Church's Adapted Classics
Rev. Alfred J. Church is one of the most prolific authors that can be found on the pages
of Heritage History, and is without peer in his ability to transmit a great interest
in the Ancient classics to an intermediate student. His intended audience is not
beginners, or unenthusiastic readers, but rather, young people with some background
in Greek and Roman History who desire to become familiar with the great works as
painlessly as possible.
Educated as a classicist, Church began writing books for a general reading
audience in the late 1870’s. His first books were simplified classics, and although he
wrote in many other genres, he is most well-known as an author who rewrote a variety of
classical works, mostly from Latin and Greek, in manner that is accessible and
entertaining to the non-scholar, and yet retains a great deal of the flavor and scope of
His two books based on Herodotus for example, Story of the Persian War, and
Stories of the East are a reworking of much of the most famous sections of
Herodotus’ Histories. Church’s versions are much less cumbersome than the original, but
retain the same flavor, humor, and style of the original. His Stories from the Greek
Tragedians, and Stories from the Greek Comedians, likewise provide significantly abridged versions
of many famous Greek plays, but use excerpts from some of the best English translations at
key points in order to preserve the humor, depth and cadence of the original. His
summaries communicate not only the basic plot line, but also the poetry of the classical
Two of Church’s first works, translated and simplified from the original Latin, were
Stories From Livy and Stories from Virgil. In the Last Days of Jerusalem
Church recounts the fall of Jerusalem, as told by the historian Josephus. Other works from
Greek and Latin sources include Nicias and the Sicilian Expedition which is based on
Thucydides account, and The Greek Gulliver based on Lucan.
Adapted Classics by Alfred J. Church
| Title || Compact Library|| sheets |
| The Persian War (from Herodotus) || Ancient Greece || 82 |
| Stories from the East (from Herodotus) || Ancient Greece || 79 |
| The Greek Tragedians (from Sophocles, et al) || Ancient Greece || 78 |
| The Greek Comedians (from Aristophanes) || Ancient Greece || 137 |
| The Sicilian Expedition (from Thucydides) || Ancient Greece || 43 |
| Stories from Livy (from Livy) || Ancient Rome || 75 |
| Last Days of Jerusalem (from Josephus) || Ancient Rome || 47 |
Although most of Church's revised classics are directed toward young adults, he also wrote significantly
abridged versions of the Aeneid, Iliad, and Odyssey for elementary age students. These versions are completely
rewritten from the original, as they inevitably must be to make them accessible to younger children,
but they benefit from the authors thorough learning of the subject, and are highly faithful to the originals.
All three are action-packed and have no difficulty holding a reader's attention.
The Boys and Girls Classics was one of Church’s best-selling and most widely read series.
Homer and Virgil for Boys and Girls by Alfred J. Church
| Title ||Compact Library|| sheets |
| The Iliad for Boys and Girls (Homer) || Ancient Greece || 63 |
| The Odyssey for Boys and Girls (Homer) || Ancient Greece || 63 |
| The Aeneid for Boys and Girls (Virgil) || Ancient Rome || 59 |
Church's Historical Vignettes
Alfred Church was a classical scholar, and one of the world's most eminent writers of juvenile
history for college prep students during the late 19th century.
He is especially gifted at exciting a real interest in history in the intermediate
student; and his books provide an excellent transition from introductory level history to
in this series can be considered episodic history, rather than comprehensive history.
Most cover only a specific era, rather than attempting to cover the whole
breadth of the civilization, and each chapter tells the story of a
particularly interesting person or event, in moderate detail. These books are most
enjoyable for an intermediate or advanced student who is already familiar with
the basics of Greek or Roman history, and desires to increase his knowledge.
In Roman Life in the Days of Cicero, Church provides insights into characters
who lived during the decline of the Roman Empire, based partly on the observations
of Cicero. In addition to his famous contemporaries, Caesar and Pompey, we read about
Verres, one of the most corrupt magistrates in Ancient Rome, who Cicero prosecuted,
Clodius, a demagogue and enemy of Cicero, and Atticus, Cicero's banker and a close
In Pictures from Roman Life and Story Church tells stories about Livia, the wife of
Augustus, the Piso Conspiracy during Nero's reign, and tells detailed stories of Otho,
Galba, and Vitellius, the three emperors who each reigned briefly in 69 A.D. In his book
on Greek Life and Story he also gives interesting accounts of such heroes as
Cimon, Thucydides, Pausanias, and others, that are sometimes passed over in
Helmet and Spear covers both Greek and Roman history, but
focuses entirely on famous battles of antiquity that changed the course of history.
The final book in this collection, Stories from Ancient Rome, covers only the
earliest years of Rome, particularly those incidents related in Livy's famous history.
Vignettes from Ancient Times by Alfred J. Church
Church's Historical Fiction
For anyone interested in a classical education, the Historical Fiction of Alfred J.
Church is an invaluable resource. He is especially gifted at exciting a real interest in
history in the intermediate student, who is already superficially familiar
with the history of Greece, Rome, or England, but would like more
interesting and in depth knowledge of these areas. Church's works are full of many of the
fascinating details of history that introductory courses must leave out, and they inspire an
abiding interest in the ancients.
Church's approach to Historical fiction is to introduce as much history as possible into
an action packed narrative. The plotlines may be outrageously contrived, but they are never
dull. His heroes are buffeted from one historically significant event to another, with
just a few asides for love interest and dramatic escapes and rescues. Church's ability to
weave tremendous amounts of historical detail into his stories without becoming tedious is
Church’s two major fiction works relating to Greece are Callias: The Fall of Athens,
set during and after the Peloponnesian War, and Young Macedonian in the Army of Alexander
the Great, set during the Wars of Macedonian Conquest. In both cases, the fictional heroes
are involved in almost every major event of the period, and meet almost all the major
Fiction work involving Rome includes Lucius, Adventures of a Roman Boy, set in
the period of the late republic after Sulla but before Caesar. Its hero is rescued by
Spartacus, kidnapped by pirates, and held captive by Mithridates among other adventures.
Lords of the World is set during the third Punic war and covers the destruction
of Carthage as well as the nearly simultaneous fall of Corinth in Greece. The Burning of Rome
is one of Church's most exciting stories. Its
coverage of a failed assassination conspiracy against Nero reads like a romance novel, when
it was, in fact based largely on historical accounts.
Several of Church’s books may be of particular interest to Christian readers, since they cover
events that are important in Church history, as well as political history. To the Lions is
the story of an early Christian community in Asia Minor that is persecuted during the
governorship of Pliny the Younger.
Crown of Pine, set in Greece during the early years of the Roman Empire, also
has a Christian subplot. Finally, The Hammer is the story of the Maccabee
rebellion against the Macedonian overlords of Judea a few hundred years before Christ.
Church only wrote one historical fiction book intended for younger children. Three Greek Children
recounts several important stories from Greek History, as they are communicated to young children who lived
in Athens during the Peloponnesian War. Church's real gift, however, is as a story teller to mature
audiences rather than to youngsters, and most of his best work is in that area.
Historical Fiction from Greece and Rome by Alfred J. Church
Abbott's Makers of History
"I want to thank you and your brother for Abbott’s series of Histories. I have not
education enough to appreciate the profound works of voluminous historians, and if I had,
I have no time to read them. But your series of Histories gives me, in brief compass, just
that knowledge of past men and events which I need. I have read them with the greatest
interest. To them I am indebted for about all the historical knowledge I have."
As the quote from above shows, even Abraham Lincoln was a fan of the Abbott Histories.
Their famous series was so well-known and widely read that they were staples of virtually
every American library from the time they were published in the mid-nineteenth century
until after the First World War. Both informative and terrifically entertaining, the
Abbott brothers had an enormous talent for writing biographies, and selecting those
stories and anecdotal episodes from histories that are of most interest to the general
Jacob Abbott (1803-1879) was possibly the most prolific American writer of juvenile
literature of the nineteenth century. He was born in Maine, the second of seven children.
He and each of his four brothers graduated from Bowdoin College, studied theology, and
became teachers or ministers. Three of the five boys became authors and with his brother
John Steven Charles, Jacob authored the famous and widely read Makers of
History series of biographies.
It was not until about 1848 that he and his brother embarked on the idea of doing a series
of biography aimed at young people. His target audience was age "15 to 25", and the Abbott
brothers eventually produced a set of biographies that were critically acclaimed, and
widely read. Within a few years of their publication, the Abbott biographies became
standard reference works of juvenile history, and were available in libraries throughout
America. They were originally published as the Illustrated History series, but were
republished many times during the next sixty years in various collections, entitled
Famous Characters of History, Famous Queens of History, and others. They were most
recently republished in the early 1900’s as the Makers of History series.
The Abbotts had a terrific gift for narrative, and their books all read as if they were
high suspense novels. Although the vocabulary level is relatively high, more appropriate
for high school or college than elementary schools, the writing style is not difficult,
and the stories move along at a fast pace. The Abbott biographies have a delightful
combination of action and adventure, along with truly interesting personality portraits,
intriguing subplots, and fascinating secondary characters which should be appealing to
both young men and women.
The complete collection of the Maker so History Series includes over 32 volumes. Only the
ten related to Ancient History are included here. The complete set of Abbott Biographies
can be found in our Mature Readers collection.
Makers of History by Jacob Abbott
| Title || Compact Library|| sheets|
| Cyrus the Great ||Ancient Greece|| 77 |
| Darius ||Ancient Greece|| 78 |
| Xerxes ||Ancient Greece|| 82|
| Alexander the Great ||Ancient Greece|| 75 |
| Pyrrhus ||Ancient Greece|| 83 |
| Romulus ||Ancient Rome || 80 |
| Hannibal ||Ancient Rome || 78 |
| Julius Caesar ||Ancient Rome || 72 |
| Cleopatra ||Ancient Rome || 84 |
| Nero ||Ancient Rome || 82 |
Story of the Nations
The Story of the Nation series was produced by G. P. Putnam & Son. The
complete series contains over fifty volumes each dedicated to telling the tale
of a specific nation in detail. It includes volumes on well-known
nations, such as Rome and France, but also includes a great many
volumes on lesser known peoples, such as the Goths and Phoenicians.
It is primarily
valuable for assembling all known information on some of these secondary
nations, and presenting it in an engaging manner.
Although the authors of most of these books are professional historians,
the books themselves are written for a general rather than an academic audience.
Most volumes are between 300 and 350 pages and include many pages of
illustrations. Obscure details are relegated to the footnotes so that
they don't detract from the narrative, and all of the authors are skilled
story tellers who do an excellent job of relating the most interesting
points of history, while avoiding tedious details and academic controversies.
Because the Story of the Nations is a large series, we have only listed
those volumes included in the Ancient Rome collection.
Story of the Nations by various authors
Stories from History Series
The Stories from History series, in common with the Children Heroes series from the same publisher,
is a short, nicely illustrated series of books that introduce elementary readers to some of the most
famous stories from history.
The series features tales from the history of Greece, Rome, France and England, as well as stories
from the Vikings and Crusades during the middle ages.
Instead of attempting to tell the entire history of each country in such a short book, the authors
selected between six and ten especially famous stories to tell with enough detail to be of interest.
By carefully selecting their stories, each writer manages to get across the most important events
and characters of their subject civilization in a manner that is appealing even for young children.
The books are short enough to be read in only a few hours by an older elementary school student,
or read aloud to a younger one.
Stories from History by various authors
| Title || Compact Library ||sheets|
| Stories from the Crusades || Christian Europe || 31|
| Stories of the Vikings || Christian Europe || 43|
| Stories from Roman History || Ancient Rome || 37|
| Stories from French History || Christian Europe || 35|
| Stories from Greek History || Ancient Greece || 36|
| Stories from English History || British Middle Ages|| 39|
Lake History Series
This series of introductory history readers is directed at
sixth and seventh graders, but might be enjoyed by students of
any age. The series includes brief, introductory histories
of Greece, Rome, the Middle Ages, and England, assumes no
previous knowledge of world events, and relates interesting
and informative stories of many of the most important
characters and events of western history. It's author
was a well-known writer of histories for both children
The series was published by a company that specialized in
school textbooks, and later versions of each of the books
include study questions and outlines that might be helpful
for formal instruction. Even without these aids however,
the books read very well, cover important topics, and can
easily hold the interest of most students. The series was
very popular in public schools throughout the United States
in the early years of the 20th century.
Lake History Series by Samuel Harding
| Title || Compact Library ||size|
| Greek Gods, Heroes and Men || Ancient Greece ||59|
| The City of the Seven Hills || Ancient Rome || 116|
| Story of the Middle Ages || Christian Europe || 100|
| Story of England || British Middle Ages || 170|
Cousins of Long Ago
The Our Little Cousin series was introduced by the Page Company in the early 1900's.
It was based on the idea of introducing world geography through the stories of children who
live in various countries. After its initial success, a new series was initiated, entitled
Our Little Cousin of Long Ago. These books differed from the original in that they
were centered on ancient civilizations instead of modern ones. Most were set in the midst
of important historical events, but the central drama is always fictional, and the historical
events and characters play out in the background, rather than the foreground of the story.
Like the original series, the books are intended to focus on the every-day life, beliefs,
customs, and livelihoods, of the characters rather than to tell a particular historical tale.
In many cases however, the character is present at an important battle, or during the
sacking of monastery, or during some other key historical event. But the main plot typically
involves the curious adventures of a ten-year-old boy rather than a particular historical
Little Cousins of Long Ago by various authors
| Title || Compact Library|| sheets |
| Our Little Spartan Cousin of Long Ago || Ancient Greece|| 43|
| Our Little Athenian Cousin of Long Ago || Ancient Greece|| 36|
| Our Little Roman Cousin of Long Ago || Ancient Rome|| 37 |
| Our Little Carthaginian Cousin of Long Ago || Ancient Rome|| 36 |
| Our Little Saxon Cousin of Long Ago || British Middle Ages || 34 |
| Our Little Viking Cousin of Long Ago || Christian Europe || 49|
| Our Little Celtic Cousin of Long Ago || British Middle Ages || 37|
| Our Little Norman Cousin of Long Ago || British Middle Ages || 41|
| Our Little Crusader Cousin of Long Ago || Christian Europe || 48|
Story of the World Series
The Story of the World series comprises a set of five volumes, written at an introductory reading
level, that cover all major events in the history of Western Civilization, from stories of Biblical
history to the close of the nineteenth century. Each of the fifty or so chapters
in each volume, tells the story of some individual or event that is key to understanding the major
developments of the era. While statesmen and military commanders figure heavily in the narrative,
stories of explorers, scientists, artists, authors, and religious figures are also presented.
M. B Synge writes in an engaging fashion, using dialog frequently to bring scenes to life. She
juxtaposes events happening at the same time in different parts of the world in a style similar
to the "World" Series by Genevieve Foster. This series is an excellent introduction to world
history for older readers as well as for children.
The first book in the series, On the Shores of the Great Sea, begins in old testament times,
and covers the whole history of Ancient Greece and the years of the Republic of Rome.
The second book in the series, The Discovery of New Worlds begins around the time of the birth
of Christ and covers the rise and fall of the Roman Empire, and the early middle ages. It ends
with Columbus and the Discovery of America. The third book, The Awakening of Europe, covers
the settlement of the colonies in the Americas, and the Reformation throughout Europe and in the
early 18th century. The fourth book, The Struggle for Sea Power, begins during the age of
Empires, as France and England struggle for control of colonies in the New World and India and
ends with the battle of Waterloo, which culminated the Napoleonic Wars. The final volume,
The Growth of the British Empire, covers the 19th century, beginning with the
liberation of Latin America, and concluding with the Boer War in Africa, at the turn of
the 20th century.
Story of the World by M. B. Synge
| Title || Compact Library|| size |
| Shores of the Great Sea || Ancient Greece, Rome|| 74|
| Discovery of New Worlds || Christian Europe|| 78|
| Awakening of Europe || Christian Europe|| 83|
| Struggle for Sea Power || British Empire|| 87|
| Growth of British Empire || British Empire|| 89|
Life Stories for Young People
The Life Stories Series is a collection of short biographies written for
intermediate students that were originally published in
Germany. At the time, the German national school system was widely admired by
educational reformers in the United States, and many of its features were
incorporated into the American public school system.
The subjects of these books are mostly European, but they cover a wide variety
of personalities and interests. There are a number of famous national heroes, of
course, such as William the Silent, Frederick the Great, and Eugene of Savoy.
But there are also explorers, musicians, and legendary heroes. At least five of
the books in the collection are written primarily from the point of view the
queen or Empress of a prominant European monarch, rather than principle ruler
himself. A number focus on the childhood of famous personages, rather than their
political career. In all cases, an effort has been made to maximize the interest
for younger students in the lives of the subjects, rather than to emphasize
The original German for many of these books were published in the 1880's and
1890's but the American translations, done by the Chicago Music critic, George
P. Upton, were not completed until 1907 through 1914. The collection was very
well received, and was gaining popularity in children's libraries when the first
world war broke out. Because of anti-German sentiment, however, publication was
stopped during the First World War and never resumed.
The original series was written by a variety of authors in German, but the translator
of the entire series was George P. Upton, a well-known music critic and self-taught
expert on European culture.
Life Stories for Young People Translated by George P. Upton
| Title || Compact Library|| size |
| Herman and Thusnelda || Ancient Rome, Christian Europe|| 41|
| Barbarossa || Christian Europe || 55 |
| Charlemagne || Christian Europe || 30 |
| The Little Dauphin || Modern Europe || 46 |
| Youth of the Great Elector || Christian Europe || 46 |
| Elizabeth - Empress of Austria || Modern Europe || 48 |
| Eric the Red || Christian Europe, Early America || 40 |
| Prince Eugene || Christian Europe || 50 |
| Eugenie - Empress of the French || Modern Europe || 50 |
| Frederick the Great || Modern Europe || 50 |
| Gudrun || Christian Europe || 46 |
| Joseph Haydn || Modern Europe || 57|
| Louise - Queen of Prussia || Modern Europe || 39 |
| Maximilian in Mexico || Modern Europe, Spanish Empire || 42 |
| Mozart's Youth || Modern Europe || 36 |
| Nibelungs || Christian Europe || 64 |
| William of Orange || Christian Europe || 41 |
| The Swiss Heroes History || Christian Europe || 43 |
| William Tell Biography || Christian Europe || 36 |
| Maria Theresa of Austria || Modern Europe || 43 |
| Undine || Christian Europe || 46 |
| Emperor William First || Modern Europe || 40 |
Heroes of All Time
This outstanding series of biographies is of special interest to the intermediate student.
The subjects of this series tend to be individuals of important historical consequence,
rather than merely men or women of action. Their stories are told with great interest,
but also with enough explanation of circumstance so that a middle school or older
student can begin to understand the dilemmas faced by these heroes and the consequences
of their actions. The biographies are told in enough detail to give valuable insights
into the subjects' lives, but they are not overly long. Each book is slightly less than
This series was originally produced in Great Britain, so a good number of its subjects
are Englishmen and women. However, characters from all of world history are considered,
from Julius Caesar and Augustus, to Washington and Lincoln. In addition to political
figures a number of important religious leaders are also considered. Some of these
include Buddha, Mohammed, Luther, and Anselm.
Heroes of All Time by Various Authors
| Title || Compact Library|| size |
| Alexander the Great || Ancient Greece|| |
| Augustus || Ancient Rome|| 56|
| Julius Caesar || Ancient Rome|| |
| Anselm || Christian Europe || |
| Jeanne d'Arc || Christian Europe || |
| Thomas Becket || British Middle Ages || |
| William Caxton || British Middle Ages || |
| Martin Luther || Christian Europe || |
| Oliver Cromwell || British Middle Ages || 68 |
| William the Silent || Christian Europe || |
| Garibaldi and his Red Shirts || Modern Europe || 75 |
| Marie Antoinette || Modern Europe || 58|
| Peter the Great || Modern Europe || |
| Heroes of Modern Europe || Modern Europe || 102 |
| George Washington || Early America ||81 |
| Buddha || || 59 |
| Mohammed || || 64 |
The size listed indicates the number of 8½ by 11 sheets of paper required to print the entire book,
single-sided. This number is about half the number of pages in the original book, since approximately
two "pages" of text are reproduced on every sheet.