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Thucydides on early Greek history

Van Wees, H; (2017) Thucydides on early Greek history. In: Forsdyke, S and Foster, E and Balot, R, (eds.) The Oxford Handbook of Thucydides. (pp. 39-62). Oxford University Press: Oxford, UK. Green open access

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Abstract

This chapter studies Thucydides’ account of early Greek history in the “Archaeology” (1.1.2–1.21.2). It shows that Thucydides’ criteria of development and his reconstruction of history are heavily influenced by power relations in Greece during the early stages of the Peloponnesian War. Comparison with other sources for both the legendary and the historical past reveals the extent to which Thucydides, by means of omission, selective emphasis, and skewed interpretation, manipulates traditions that were well known to Athenian audiences, in order to create his distinctive vision of history as reaching a peak of military and economic development and “modernity” in the Greece of his own day. The chapter concludes by exploring the ways in which Thucydides’ influential model of Greek history fails to do justice to the historical realities of archaic Greece.

Type: Book chapter
Title: Thucydides on early Greek history
ISBN: 0199340382
ISBN-13: 9780199340385
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199340385.013.2
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199340385.013...
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: archaeology, navy, public finance, Greek warfare, modernity, tyranny, historiography, Archaic Greece
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS > Dept of History
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1544227
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