Friday, November 13, 2009

The Life Span of a City

Just a got a copy of Douglas Wilson's new book: Five Cities that Ruled the World (Thanks, Doug!).

He writes in the introduction: Cities, like the men and women who live in them, have life spans, and that life span is approximately 250 years. John Glubb pointed to this seemingly obvious truth, but one that is still routinely missed: "Any regime which attains great wealth and power seems with remarkable regularity to decay and fall apart in some ten generations." (Introduction, xviii)


Matthew N. Petersen said...

Bejing? Rome? Constantinople?

Anonymous said...

Best not to take the book literally?

Mark B said...

Matt- that's regime, not postal code that Doug's talking about. New regimes always take advantage of old, well-used foundation stones.