This is Justinian's story and that of Theodora and of Belisarius -- the story of an era cloaked in legend. With his accustomed skill in lending drama to remote history without seeming to embellish it unduly, Harold Lamb has traced through tenuous sources the record of Peter Babbatius, a mountain lad who became an emperor, who from his study welded remote frontiers into a great empire, who rewrote laws and gave people a sense of their own rights as citizens, who rebuilt a city, saved the glories that are Home, and created in Constantinople the church that was one of the Seven Wonders of the World. Theodora, his empress, was even more of a nobody --a circus brat, who kept herself alive by her wits and who won through to the world's most powerful throne -- and the devotion of Justinian -- the hatred and jealousy of many- and a mature wisdom which provided the Emperor with needed balances. Belisarius, scarcely more than a common soldier, was third of this triangle,- a military genius, single-hearted, single-minded, he achieved the impossible with a handful of men. More history than story here.