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Book IX of Herodotus' Histories provides the conclusion and climax to his work, as the victories at Plataea and Mycale complete the improbable Greek victory over Persia. The major themes of the work are all here echoed, modified, and revisited, and Book IX is thus essential for exploring its meaning (or range of possible meanings). This commentary, the first in English devoted solely to Book IX in over a century, treats Herodotus' work as both an historical narrative and a work of literature, incorporating the results of recent scholarly work in the fields of Greek history and historiography. It contains a Greek text together with detailed philological, literary, and historical notes designed to assist the intermediate and advanced Greek student. It will also be of use to graduate students and scholars.
Herodotus, who is known as the father of history, lived in a time when there was no real notion of history as it is perceived today. He seems to have been inspired by Greek intellectuals and poets of the Ionian cities of Asia Minor, as well as by the prose of the early "historian" Hecataeus of Miletus. After the tyrant ruler Lygdamis forced Herodotus and others out of Halicarnassus, the city of his birth, he lived on the isle of Samos. He later made a series of lengthy journeys, where he observed the customs and characteristics of the people and places he visited: the Black Sea coast, Egypt, Syria, Babylon, and Palestine. He also visited Athens and became involved in the city's cultural life. He spent the last years of his life at the Athenian colony of Thurii in southern Italy. It is not known exactly when, where, or in what order Herodotus compiled his great "Histories", but the nine-volume work stands as one of the earliest historical narratives, offering a general history of the Greek world--politics, warfare, economics, geography, and sociology--starting from the mid-sixth century B.C. Herodotus wrote in Ionic dialect, in a clear and entertaining manner, which was well-suited to the oral tradition.
From the Publisher
Book IX of Herodotus' Histories is the conclusive climax to his work, as the victories at Plataea and Mycale complete the improbable Greek victory over Persia. This English commentary treats Herodotus' work as historical narrative and as literature, incorporating the results of recent scholarly research in Greek history and historiography. It contains a Greek text and detailed philological, literary, and historical notes designed to assist the intermediate Greek student.
This revised edition features a new introduction and additional notes, as well as a glossary, chronology, and bibliography.