Since the time of the ancient Greeks we have been fascinated by accounts of the Amazons, an elusive tribe of ruthless, hard-fighting, horse-riding female warriors. Equal to men in battle, legend has it they would cut off their breasts to improve their archery skills and routinely killed their boy children to purify their ranks. For centuries these powerful, sexually liberated female soldiers were believed to be the fantastical invention of Greek myth and storytelling; a chimera, frequently the subject of choice for artists and poets, reflecting back the worst fears of a civilized patriarchy: the independent barbarian woman. Until now. Following decades of new research and a series of groundbreaking archeological discoveries, we now know these powerful warrior queens did indeed exist. Examining the evidence, John Man travels to the grasslands of Central Asia, from the edge of the ancient Greek world to the borderlands of China, to discover the truth about the warrior women mythologized as Amazons. In this deeply researched, sweeping historical epic, Man redefines our understanding of the Amazons and their culture, and examines the significance of their legend today.
John Man is a historian with a special interest in Asia and the nature of leadership. His books, published in over twenty languages, include bestselling biographies of Genghis Khan, Kublai Khan and Attila the Hun, as well as histories of the Great Wall of China and the Mongol Empire. He is fast becoming one of the world's most widely read historians.