By Simon Hornblower
This is often the 1st quantity of a two-volume historic and literary statement at the 8 books of Thucydides, the nice fifth-century B.C. historian of the Peloponnesian conflict among Athens and Sparta. Exploring either the historic and literary elements of the paintings, this observation presents translations of each passage or word of Greek commented on and permits readers with little wisdom of the language to understand the element of Thucydides' paintings. Making available the element of Thucydides' proposal and subject material, this can be the 1st whole statement written by way of a unmarried writer this century.
Read or Download A Commentary on Thucydides, Volume 1: Books I - III PDF
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Extra info for A Commentary on Thucydides, Volume 1: Books I - III
Difficulties come up if we take ‘possession for ever’ too actually: Th. isn't systematic approximately explaining technical phrases ( Thucydides, ninety six ff) and takes very much without any consideration. by means of ‘prize recitation’ (dyw viofia) sixty one 1. 22. four advent i suppose Th. capacity sophistic screens of the type Kleon speaks of at iii. 38. 7, cf. three (prizes), four (contests). For the observe cf. iii. eighty two. 7. 23. Greatness o fthe Peloponnesian struggle: its motives 1. S u o lv vau|xaxiaiv Kai Tre£o|i. axiaiv: ‘two battles through sea (vavfxaxiaiv)’, Salamis and both Artemisium or Mykale; ‘two through land’ (■7Te(o/j. axMLv), Thermopylae and Plataia (Marathon is definitely excluded as now not being a part of the Persian struggle proper). David Lewis has famous that Th. can have reduced the Persian struggle even more successfully by way of attacking Hdt. ’s inflated numbers for the Persian host (over 5,000,000! ). See Thucydides, 108, 202. Th. ’s view that the Peloponnesian conflict was once extra vital than the Persian struggle is defended by way of Gomme in ‘The maximum warfare in Greek History’, Essays in Greek background and Literature (Oxford, 1937), n 6 ff. See, besides the fact that, 1. 2n. on kivtjois: Th. would possibly not were claiming as a lot for ‘his’ battle as is usually concept. observe at least that assorted and extra ordinary priorities are implied at iv. 36. three. There Th. apologizes for evaluating small (Sphakteria) with nice (Thermopylai). 2 - three. out€ y^ P 'n’dXtis T o aaiSe Xri«j>0 eiCTai ^pr||a. aj0 r|CTav . . . 1^ Aoi(j. u8r|s voctos: ‘Never have been such a lot of towns captured and depopu lated . . . the plague’. circumstances of every one of these phenomena may be pointed out from Th. ’s narrative, e. g. earthquakes at iii. 87. four, 89; iv. fifty six. 2; v. forty five. four, 50. five; vi. ninety five. 1; viii. 6. five, forty-one. 2; sun eclipses at ii. 28 and iv. fifty two. 1. we must always upload that he mentions a few phenomena right here which don't function within the narrative, e. g. droughts, avx/J-oC; yet both another phenomena characteristic within the narrative yet aren't pointed out the following as we might count on, comparable to the eruption of Mt. Etna at iii. 116 . So Th. ’s comments may be roughly justified by means of connection with his narrative. yet we may well, whereas estab lishing this aspect, lose sight of a extra primary one, particularly that those chapters organize us for a truly diverse form of narrative from what, for the main half, we'll really get. They recommend a sensational and rhetorical narrative with lots of typical failures, vividly defined human anguish, and portents within the demeanour of Livy. (For Tacitus, see extra lower than. ) yet in reality, the phenomena the following indexed via Th. are not often, sporadically, and extremely in brief recorded in his narrative, aside from the good Plague, with which this part ends and that's absolutely written up at ii. forty seven ff. (And probably