Thomas Ashby's enthusiasm for the Roman Campagna was kindled at an early age, when his family settled in Rome and his father began to explore the low-lying area surrounding the Italian capital. After graduating in classics from Oxford, Ashby (1874-1931) became the first student at the newly founded British School of Archaeology at Rome, and became the third director, holding that post from 1906 to 1925. During this period, foreign archaeologists were not permitted to excavate in Italy, so the School's activities focused on topographical and museum studies; this 1927 work was a result. The book is organised around the roads leading out of Rome, 'beginning on the left bank of the Tiber, and moving southwards (clockwise)'. Ashby provides a detailed guide to the visible remains, in particular of the villas of the noble and wealthy families who retreated to the Campagna from the turmoil of the city.