Read History of the Peloponnesian War: Bk. 5-6 by Thucydides Free Online
Book Title: History of the Peloponnesian War: Bk. 5-6|
The author of the book: Thucydides
Edition: Harvard University Press
Date of issue: January 1st 1921
ISBN 13: 9780674991224
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 577 KB
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Reader ratings: 6.3
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Thucydides of Athens, one of the greatest of historians, was born about 471 BCE. He saw the rise of Athens to greatness under the inspired leadership of Pericles. In 430, the second year of the Peloponnesian War, he caught and survived the horrible plague which he described so graphically. Later, as general in 423 he failed to save Amphipolis from the enemy and was disgraced. He tells about this, not in volumes of self-justification, but in one sentence of his history of the war that it befell him to be an exile for twenty years. He then lived probably on his property in Thrace, but was able to observe both sides in certain campaigns of the war, and returned to Athens after her defeat in 404. He had been composing his famous history, with its hopes and horrors, triumphs and disasters, in full detail from first-hand knowledge of his own and others.
The war was really three conflicts with one uncertain peace after the first; and Thucydides had not unified them into one account when death came sometime before 396. His history of the first conflict, 431 421, was nearly complete; Thucydides was still at work on this when the war spread to Sicily and into a conflict (415 413) likewise complete in his awful and brilliant record, though not fitted into the whole. His story of the final conflict of 413 404 breaks off (in the middle of a sentence) when dealing with the year 411. So his work was left unfinished and as a whole unrevised. Yet in brilliance of description and depth of insight this history has no superior.
The Loeb Classical Library edition of Thucydides is in four volumes.
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Read information about the authorThucydides (c. 460 B.C. – c. 395 B.C.) (Greek Θουκυδίδης, Thoukydídēs) was a Greek historian and author of the History of the Peloponnesian War, which recounts the 5th century B.C. war between Sparta and Athens to the year 411 B.C. Thucydides has been dubbed the father of "scientific history" due to his strict standards of evidence-gathering and analysis in terms of cause and effect without reference to intervention by the gods, as outlined in his introduction to his work.
He has also been called the father of the school of political realism, which views the relations between nations as based on might rather than right. His classical text is still studied at advanced military colleges worldwide, and the Melian dialogue remains a seminal work of international relations theory.
More generally, Thucydides showed an interest in developing an understanding of human nature to explain behaviour in such crises as plague, genocide (as practised against the Melians), and civil war.
Excerpted from Wikipedia.
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