Forgotten Peoples of the Ancient World by Philip Matyszak

Check out if you’re into ancient history, civilizations, and the impact various cultures can have on life today.

What causes a group of people to be forgotten? Perhaps these tribes were illiterate and did not keep historical records. While fighting in various wars they might have had their cities razed and built upon by different cultures. Possibly they merged, intermarried, lived under the ruling of or even coexisted with major societies of that time. This book illustrates the many tribes and peoples that lived long ago that seem to have vanished from the popular historical record. The book is divided into four sections, in which each forgotten group is given descriptive pages of their origins, rise, and where they ended up (if they did end up anywhere at all). Pictures are dotted throughout showing art, weapons, and ruins of the places these cultures inhabited.

I enjoy reading about ancient civilizations, so this book piqued my interest right away. My favorite part of each description was the “Future Echoes” portion, where it describes the influence these forgotten societies have had on the world, which can be seen even in modern times. The epilogue provides a stark reminder that “The people and events filling our mental horizons will eventually become footnotes in obscure texts. That sense of permanence and importance we enjoy today was once also felt by the Akkadians.” I found it to be a quick, engaging page turner packed with relevant information. Pick this one up today!


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