A history of the founding, rise and fall of the world power of its day. From 330 to 1453 -- always under the influence of religions -- from the early struggles for supremacy of Christian orthodoxy against the still current pagan beliefs to the ravages wrought by the Crusaders at the end. Colorful, dramatic, scandalous saga -- the background well filled in with intimate details of the life. The complexities of early Christianity makes this tough going for the popular imagination, but the glitter is pretty interesting, especially for those who enjoy Robert Graves, etc. Plenty of spice to counterbalance the harder parts.