The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire

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The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire  (1776) 
by Edward Gibbon
London: Printed for W. Strahan; and T. Cadell, in the Strand.

Other editions include:

  • Preface
  • VOLUME THE FIRST
    • CHAP. I - The Extent and Military Force of the Roman Empire in the Age of the Antonines.
    • CHAP. II - Of the Union and internal Prosperity of the Roman Empire, in the Age of the Antonines.
    • CHAP. III - Of the Constitution of the Roman Empire, in the Age of the Antonines.
    • CHAP. IV - The cruelty, follies, and murder of Commodus.—Election of Pertinax—his attempts to reform the Senate—his assassination by the Prætorian Guards.
    • CHAP. V - Public sale of the empire to Didius Julianus by the Prætorian Guards.—Clodius Albinus in Britain, Pescennius Niger in Syria, and Septimus Severus in Pannonia, declare against the murderers of Pertinax.—Civil wars and victory of Severus over his three rivals.—Relaxations of discipline.—New maxims of government.
    • CHAP. VI - The death of Severus.—Tyranny of Caracalla.—Usurpation of Macrinus.—Follies of Elagabalus.—Virtues of Alexander Severus.—Licentiousness of the army.—General state of the Roman Finances.
    • CHAP. VII - The elevation and tyranny of Maximin.—Rebellion in Africa and Italy, under the authority of the Senate.—Civil Wars and Seditions.—Violent Deaths of Maximin and his Son, of Maximus and Balbinus, and of the three Gordians.—Usurpation and secular games of Philip.
    • CHAP. VIII - Of the state of Persia after the restoration of the monarchy by Artaxerxes.
    • CHAP. IX - The State of Germany till the invasion of the Barbarians, in the Time of the Emperor Decius.
    • CHAP. X - The Emperors Decius, Gallus, Æmilianus, Valerian, and Gallienus.—The general Irruption of the Barbarians.—The thirty Tyrants.
    • CHAP. XI - Reign of Claudius.—Defeat of the Goths.—Victories, triumph, and death, of Aurelian.
    • CHAP. XII - Conduct of the Army and Senate after the death of Aurelian.—Reigns of Tacitus, Probus, Carus and his sons.
    • CHAP. XIII - The reign of Diocletian and his three associates, Maximian, Gallerius, and Constantius.—General re-establishment of order and tranquility.—The Persian war, victory, and triumph.—The new form of administration.—Abdication and retirement of Diocletian and Maximian.
    • CHAP. XIV - Troubles after the abdication of Diocletian.—Death of Constantius.—Elevation of Constantine and Maxentius.—Six Emperors at the same time.—Death of Maximian and Gallerius.—Victories of Constantine over Maxentius and Licinius—Re-union of the Empire under the authority of Constantine.
  • VOLUME THE SECOND
    • CHAP. XV - The Progress of the Christian Religion, and the Sentiments, Manners, Numbers and Condition of the Primitive Christians.
    • CHAP. XVI - The conduct of the Roman Government towards the Christians, from the reign of Nero to that of Constantine.
    • CHAP. XVII - Foundation of Constantinople—Political System of Constantine, and his Successors—Military Discipline—The Palace—The Finances
    • CHAP. XVIII - Character of Constantine—Gothic War—Death of Constantine—Division of the Empire among his three Sons—Persian War—Tragic Death of Constantine the Younger, and Constans—Usurpation of Magnentius—Civil War—Victory of Constantius
    • CHAP. XIX - Constantius sole Emperor—Elevation and Death of Gallus—Danger and Elevation of Julian—Sarmatian and Persian Wars—Victories of Julian in Gaul
    • CHAP. XX - The Motives, Products, and Effects of the Conversion of Constantine—Legal Establishment of the Christian, or Catholic Church
    • CHAP. XXI - Persecution of Heresy—The Schism of the Donatists—The Arian Controversy—Athanasius—Distracted State of the Church and the Empire under Constantine and his Sons—Toleration of Paganism
    • CHAP. XXII - Julian is Declared Emperor by the Legions of Gaul—His March and Success—The Death of Constantius—Civil Administration of Julian
    • CHAP. XXIII - The Religion of Julian—Universal Toleration—He attempts to restore and reform the Pagan Worship; to rebuild the Temple of Jerusalem—His artful Persecution of the Christians—Mutual Zeal and Injustice
    • CHAP. XXIV - Residence of Julian at Antioch—His successful Expedition against the Persians—Passage of the Tigris—The Retreat and Death of Julian—Election of Jovian—He saves the Roman Army by a disgraceful Treaty
    • Appendix
This work was published before January 1, 1923, and is in the public domain worldwide because the author died at least 100 years ago.