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The Ancient Paths: Discovering the Lost Map of Celtic Europe (Anglais) Broché – 3 juillet 2014

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Graham Robb's new book will change the way you see European civilization. Inspired by a chance discovery, Robb became fascinated with the world of the Celts: their gods, their art, and, most of all, their sophisticated knowledge of science. His investigations gradually revealed something extaordinary: a lost map, of an empire constructed with precision and beauty across vast tracts of Europe. The map had been forgotten for almost two millennia and its implications were astonishing. Minutely researched and rich in revelations, The Ancient Paths brings to life centuries of our distant history and reinterprets pre-Roman Europe. Told with all of Robb's grace and verve, it is a dazzling, unforgettable book.

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Très agréable à lire, l'auteur évoque des faits de l'antiquité gallo-romaine selon un point de vue attrayant. Sa perception transcende le temps. Dommage que l'hypothèse de base soit si fragile et probablement inexacte. Tout faire reposer sur les Mediolanum sans remonter au-delà, bien que l'auteur ait l'intuition que quelque chose existait avant, expose à des conclusions délicates à soutenir et très honnêtement il le signale. Quant à s'orienter sur le soleil couchant de solstice, cela ne permet d'avancer qu'une fois par an par beau temps et en terrain plat. Dommage encore une fois que l'auteur ne soit pas parti d'une ligne avérée et ''perannuelle'' comme la transeuropéenne Delphes-Pirchiriano-Mont Saint Michel
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As they say, if this is true it's important. Another fascinating book from Graham Robb - this one tells us what archaeologists have known for a long time : the Romans were not all they are cracked up to be; many of their achievements were put in place by the Celts. The sheer level of sophistication of the Celts is breath taking. A thought-provoking book.
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Ce livre enthousiasmant vient défier des siècles de propagande romaine anti- celte cuisinée par Jules César .Education, communications, échanges, sont démontrés par Graham Robb, cycliste émerite qui truffe ce véritable polar historique de cartes et de plans qui permettent au lecteur de suivre les traces de cette civilisation retrouvée grâce â lui.
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Amazon.com: HASH(0x9418f7a4) étoiles sur 5 10 commentaires
16 internautes sur 18 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x93efaaf8) étoiles sur 5 Needs a Good Edit to Tackle Some Awkward Questions 26 mars 2015
Par B. J. O'Brien - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Format Kindle
Just for fun I’ve been writing the memo that the publisher’s editor should have sent to the author a couple of years ago.

Mr Robb, I have seen far worse from other writers, but I do think you should restructure your text to make the logic of the book easier to follow. I warn you though that by presenting the material more clearly you will then be exposing some awkward weaknesses, which will need further work to repair.
What follows is my three-paragraph summary of the book’s thesis:

The configuration of the main pre-Roman settlements all over Gaul looks as if it was planned in certain very specific ways. Thus, for example, there is as a matter of geography a certain notional straight line, due north and south through Gaul, which is the longest line that is physically possible given the shape of the land; a number of settlements are located exactly on that line. As another example, a number of settlements are located relative to each other on a compass bearing of 57.53 degrees from due north. As a matter of astronomy, on the longest day of the year in Gaul in that epoch the point on the horizon where the sun rose happened to be 57.53 degrees from due north.
The predominance of these and a couple of other analogous relations between settlement locations is so striking that one must assume that the configuration of the whole was consciously designed. It seems that whenever a new settlement was needed its location was carefully chosen to be on a certain standard bearing from other locations. Over the centuries a configuration of settlements developed, that was very rich in cases of this 57.53 degrees bearing and a couple of others.
Why did the Gauls do this? For religious reasons.

One minimum requirement of any improved draft of this book is that the reader should grasp with absolute clarity that the above is the thesis that the book is conveying. Moreover, the reader should always clearly see which bits of detail in the book serve to support which part of the thesis, and how.
Now once that thesis is expressed in a concise, neutral way a number of fundamental matters will occur to the thoughtful editor helping you make your book as robust as possible. Here are some:

1 Exactly what set of ‘settlements’ in Gaul does the thesis claim to embrace? (Surely not merely those settlements which happen to fit the thesis, while ignoring those that don’t.) Is the claim that every one of the 300 most notable Gaulish settlements fits into the configuration? Or all those of a certain type but none of some other type? Or all those of some defined type but with only a 95% success rate? Or what? This is really a very important point. It is not very respectable to come up with a new theory about the properties of all things of type X and then to be bashful about what things you are counting as being a type- X and what you are not. This matter of the scope of the thesis needs to be cleared up once and for all.

2 What possible geometric relations between settlement locations are needed in order to explain the full configuration: due-north lines and 57.53 degree lines are two of the relations used, as mentioned above, and the maps in the book show a couple more. But what precisely is the minimum set of possible relations that is sufficient to explain the whole configuration? (Plainly the fewer there are the better for the plausibility of the thesis.) Stating that prominently would dispel any impression that the author has used whatever geometric relations he happened to need to fit everything into the configuration.

3 Within the constraints of the possible geometric relations just mentioned, what determines why some particular relations between settlements exist and some others do not? For example, the settlement of Alessia is related to certain other settlements by 57.53 degree lines and to some other settlements by lines at a couple of other angles, but to none does it have a relation in a due north-south or east-west relation; why? Poitiers on the other hand has relatively few relations to other settlements and then only due east-west. Can such things be explained? If so, it would make a richer thesis.

4 With any thesis of this type the null hypothesis is that all or most of the observed regularities arose by chance. I don’t think you’ve done enough yet to take on this awkward objection. People have used statistical techniques to study the validity of the comparable (though of course quite different) case of lay lines. Perhaps you could look into that work and see whether your own thesis can withstand the statistical tests that lay lines, it seems, cannot.

5 How did the Gauls’ beliefs about the sun and gods and heroes lead them to the project of building a configuration of settlements of this general character and specifically this configuration? It isn’t obvious. After all, many other people worshipped the sun without designing configurations of settlements. In the three-paragraph summary of the thesis above I wrote with deliberate lameness that the Gauls did all this for religious reasons, and more than this I couldn’t get out of the book’s text. This aspect I find the the weakest part of the book. There is to be sure some stuff about Celtic mythology but it is so metaphorical and whimsical that it is no use at all in explaining why the Gauls build their settlements in their particular configuration. This part of the thesis is seriously in need of improvement.

6 The book’s thesis entails that the Gauls performed prodigies of skilful surveying, in order, for example, to align one new settlement exactly on a notional line with another far away across some mountains. The current text says very little to justify that ability. Can you do something to strengthen that part of the thesis?

7 How special is this Gaulish phenomenon? Is it the case that these Gauls were complete outliers and no other people in history ever did anything at all similar to the settlement configuration of the Gauls? Probably not. Well then, where do the Gauls stand relative to other cultures that did things that are in any way similar? The reader needs some insight here in order to help him assess the plausibility of the thesis about the Gauls. I realise that such intellectual exploration as this may cause you a lot of extra work.

So, Mr Robb, I’d recommend reorganising the book to make its thesis much clearer, and in so doing to confront explicitly the tricky matters just mentioned and perhaps a few others. This will surely produce a more coherent book. Unfortunately it may not be a more commercially successful one. The very coherence may well make some of the weak points difficult to hide. However, perhaps you already have new material available to repair those weaknesses; I can’t tell.
6 internautes sur 7 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x93ef85a0) étoiles sur 5 Long distance trading routes of the Celts. 5 mars 2015
Par Nya Murray - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
This is an excellent exposition and a realistic view of a defining period in European history, as the late Iron Age gave way to the conquest by the Romans of large swathes of the Celtic world. According to Robb, the tribes of the Celtic alliances were the surveyors and the original road builders, in use for centuries by their horse drawn chariots. The Romans, opportunistically, having conquered by force, used the existing routes, paving over the established Celtic roads, using local slave labour, including Celtic engineers. Robb found that Celtic place names lie in abundance along straight lines angled to the summer and winter solstices of the era, across those regions that eventually became France, Britain, northern Italy and Switzerland. So many Celtic places aligned over hundreds of kilometers in straight line trajectories by chance is in the realm of the fantastically improbable. Scores of European place names with a Celtic etymology, scattered far afield, are traceable to the term ‘Mediolanum’, including Milan. Robb's theory is that these places scattered throughout ancient Gaul and Britain were used for solar and astronomical measurements to aid Celtic traders along the proto travel routes of Europe. A great read.
HASH(0x93f74a98) étoiles sur 5 Excellent 25 mai 2016
Par Edward G. Anglin - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié Achat vérifié
The condition of the book itself, rated by the seller as VG+ was conservative, arrived in excellent condition. The author's style I've enjoyed in another of his works and this 'discover' is just as fun to read and reflect over the graphics & all important maps.
2 internautes sur 3 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x94081f6c) étoiles sur 5 "Lost Civilization" Found 22 mars 2015
Par David P. Crews - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
It's amazing how quickly and completely entire massive cultures of humanity can simply disappear from the face of the Earth. Great work bringing this story of early Europe back into the light.
9 internautes sur 14 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x93d2875c) étoiles sur 5 Before you buy 17 janvier 2015
Par Amber Polo - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
Before you buy...
Note that this is the same book as "The Discovery of Middle Earth." Nowhere in the information is it clear this is the paperback edition of "Discovery of Middle Earth". Perhaps the new title is better but I purchased it after I had already consulted the same book under its first title.
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