Any scholar of history will have recognised the similarities between Ancient Rome and the National Socialist movement of the 20th century. Aside from the obvious expansionist policies of empire governed by a single autocratic leader, the Nazis adopted the Roman style extended arm salute, the verbal greeting of hailing the leader and the eagle adorned banners and standards. Another parallel was the introduction of the SS - a modern Praetorian Guard, easily recognisable by the unique attire and consisting of the largest, strongest and fittest men available. Never before has an organisation engendered wide-ranging emotion as on the scale of Hitler's SS - lead by Heinrich Himmler, who found his true metier upon his appointment by Hitler in 1929 with his natural organisational and administrative skills. This remarkable book - the first of two volumes - turns the spotlight upon those characters at the pinnacle of the pyramid that formed the SS. Illustrated with well over 1000 photographs, these two volumes are the author's life's work, and present an unique perspective on this feared organisation.