The Story of Civilization

"Explore the captivating journey of human history with 'The Story of Civilization' book series by Will and Ariel Durant. Engaging narratives reveal the rise and fall of civilizations, cultural achievements, and interconnectedness of cultures. Discover the essence of human progress in this acclaimed historical masterpiece."
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Ariel Durant and Will Durant
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“The Story of Civilization” is a monumental series of historical works written by historian Will Durant and his wife Ariel Durant. Spanning over eleven volumes, this series provides a comprehensive and engaging exploration of the history of human civilization from its earliest origins to the 20th century. With meticulous research, captivating prose, and insightful analysis, the Durants take readers on an enlightening journey through the highs and lows, triumphs and tragedies, and the evolution of human society.

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“The Story of Civilization” series begins with “Our Oriental Heritage,” which delves into the ancient civilizations of the East, and progresses through volumes covering various historical periods and regions, including Greece, Rome, the Middle Ages, the Renaissance, and beyond. The Durants’ writing captures the essence of each era, portraying the cultural, political, religious, and intellectual developments that have shaped human progress.

Through their narratives, readers gain insight into the lives of notable figures, pivotal events, and societal shifts that have left an indelible mark on civilization. The Durants explore the rise and fall of empires, the clash of ideologies, and the emergence of artistic and scientific achievements, all while emphasizing the interconnectedness of different cultures and societies.


“The Story of Civilization” has received widespread acclaim for its engaging storytelling and scholarly rigor. Critics and readers alike have praised the Durants for their ability to distill complex historical information into accessible narratives. The series has been celebrated for its sweeping scope, meticulous research, and the Durants’ insightful interpretations of historical events. Many laud the Durants’ skill in making history come alive, allowing readers to immerse themselves in the diverse tapestry of human experiences.


“Civilization exists by geological consent, subject to change without notice.” – Will Durant
“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.” – Will Durant (quoting Aristotle)
“Culture is the sum of all the forms of art, of love, and of thought, which, in the course of centuries, have enabled man to be less enslaved.” – Will Durant


Q : What is the main focus of “The Story of Civilization” series?
A : The series aims to provide a comprehensive exploration of human history, highlighting cultural, political, and intellectual developments across various civilizations and time periods.

Q : How many volumes are there in the series, and do I need to read them in order?
A : The series comprises eleven volumes, but readers can choose to read them out of order based on their interests. Each volume focuses on a distinct historical period, allowing readers to delve into specific eras.

Q : What sets “The Story of Civilization” apart from other history books?
A : The Durants’ series is renowned for its engaging narrative style that combines historical accuracy with a storytelling approach. It offers a holistic view of history, emphasizing the interconnectedness of cultures and civilizations.

Q : Is the series accessible to non-historians?
A : Yes, the Durants’ writing style makes the series accessible to a wide range of readers, from history enthusiasts to those new to the subject. The series presents historical facts in a compelling and engaging manner.

Q : Does the series cover modern history?
A : The series concludes in the 20th century, providing insights into the development of modern societies, ideologies, and global events.

“The Story of Civilization” by Will and Ariel Durant is a captivating and intellectually stimulating series that offers readers a profound understanding of the journey of human civilization. With its engaging narratives, meticulous research, and insightful analysis, this series stands as a testament to the enduring impact of human endeavors throughout history.