The Persian Wars to the Fall of Athens: Books 11-14.34 (480-401 BCE)

The Persian Wars to the Fall of Athens: Books 11-14.34 (480-401 BCE)

Diodorus Siculus

Language: English

Pages: 349


Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

Only one surviving source provides a continuous narrative of Greek history from Xerxes' invasion to the Wars of the Successors following the death of Alexander the Great--the Bibliotheke, or "Library," produced by Sicilian historian Diodorus Siculus (ca. 90-30 BCE). Yet generations of scholars have disdained Diodorus as a spectacularly unintelligent copyist who only reproduced, and often mangled, the works of earlier historians. Arguing for a thorough critical reappraisal of Diodorus as a minor but far from idiotic historian himself, Peter Green published Diodorus Siculus, Books 11-12.37.1, a fresh translation, with extensive commentary, of the portion of Diodorus's history dealing with the period 480-431 BCE, the so-called "Golden Age" of Athens. This is the only recent modern English translation of the Bibliotheke in existence. In the present volume--the first of two covering Diodorus's text up to the death of Alexander--Green expands his translation of Diodorus up to Athens' defeat after the Peloponnesian War. In contrast to the full scholarly apparatus in his earlier volume (the translation of which is incorporated) the present volume's purpose is to give students, teachers, and general readers an accessible version of Diodorus's history. Its introduction and notes are especially designed for this audience and provide an up-to-date overview of fifth-century Greece during the years that saw the unparalleled flowering of drama, architecture, philosophy, historiography, and the visual arts for which Greece still remains famous.
















solidity of its construction. The entire population accompanied his cortege from the city, though the site was two hundred stadioi [some twenty-five miles] distant. [5] Here Gelon was buried, and a fine tomb built for him at public expense, and civic honors granted him of the sort proper for heroes; later, however, his monument was torn down by the Carthaginians during a campaign against Syracuse [396: Ͼ14.63.3], while Agathocles 52 out of envy demolished the towers. Yet neither the hostility of

contribute to their greater security. [2] The Lacedaemonians, however, seeing that the Athenians had acquired a great reputation through the activities of their navy, eyed their increasing power with suspicion, and resolved to stop them from rebuilding their city walls. [3] They therefore at once sent ambassadors to Athens, who were to counsel them against fortifying their city at this time, ostensibly because to do so would not be to the general advantage of the Greeks: should Xerxes, they

Lacedaemonians therefore moored their ships with prows facing the harbor mouth, so that they could use them to block any attempt by the enemy to force a passage in. Then, by hurling their infantry in relays at the wall, and displaying the most extraordinary competitive zeal, they brought to the engagement a rare and extraordinary fighting spirit. [4] There is an island called Sphacteria, which stretches lengthwise across the face of the harbor and ensures calm waters inside it. Here [the

Lacedaemon and the other Peloponnesian [states], marched on Megara. He gave the Athenians a bad scare and drove them out of Nisaea;101 after which he liberated Megara and restored it to the Lacedaemonian alliance [Thuc. 4.70 –73]. He and his army then made the long march through Thessaly and reached Dium in Macedonia. [2] From there he went on to Acanthus and made a fighting alliance with the cities of Chalcidice [late summer 424]. This city of the Acanthians was the first that he induced—by a

Varr. 428 (matched to archon year 421/0) and Varr. 427 (below, 78.1; Liv. 4.30.12, matched to archon year 419/8). For archon year 420/19, however, he lists as consuls men who were in fact military tribunes three years later (81.1). From archon year 419/8 he is thus eight, rather than seven, years ahead of the Varronian system. 117. In the summer of 421, according to Thuc. 5.32.1: Diodorus is here once more running a year ahead. 118. For the diplomacy leading up to this treaty (in which Alcibiades

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