The Peloponnesian War

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  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 1998-06-01
  • Publisher: Hackett Pub Co Inc

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The text is that of the new and spirited translation by Walter Blanco. Jennifer Tolbert Roberts's introduction and annotations provide vital background information. Backgrounds and Contexts provides supplementary selections from Xenophon, Herodotus, Plato, Machiavelli, Hobbes, and the twentieth-century journalist, Walter Karp. Interpretations includes richly varied assessments of Thucydides. The contributors include Theodor Gomperz, Francis M. Cornford, Charles H. Chochrane, R. G. Collingwood, Albert Cook, Cynthia Farrar, Adam Parry, Glen Bowersock, Robert Gilpin, Michael Doyle, and Gregory Crane.

Table of Contents

Introduction xiii
Book 1 1(71)
1-24 Introduction. Conditions in early Greece. The author's subject, methods, and aims.
24-65 The immediate causes of the war; clashes between Athens and Corinth.
65-88 Meeting of the Peloponnesian alliance at Sparta; general condemnation of Athenian aggression, sentiments in favor of war.
89-117 The underlying causes of the war; growth of Athenian power after the defeat of the Persians.
118-25 Second meeting of the Peloponnesians at Sparta; preparations for war.
126-46 Exchange of complaints between Sparta and Athens; stories of Kylon, Pausanias, and Themistokles. Athenian rejection of Spartan ultimatum.
Book 2 72(58)
1-9 Theban attack on Plataia and outbreak of war (431 B.C.E.); sentiments of most Greeks pro-Spartan.
10-33 Peloponnesian invasion of Attica, large-scale Athenian counteroffensive elsewhere.
34-46 Oration over Athenian war dead by Perikles.
47-70 Beginning of the second year of the war. The plague in Athens. Thucydides' summing up of Perikles and his policies. End of the second year of the war.
71-94 Plataia besieged by the Peloponnesians and Boiotians. Athenian naval victories in the Gulf of Corinth.
95-102 Macedon invaded by a Thracian ally of Athens. End of the third year of the war.
Book 3 130(57)
1-35 Lesbian revolt against Athens, led by Mytilene. Escape of many of the besieged Plataians. End of the fourth year of the war. Unsuccessful Peloponnesian attempts to help Mytilenians; surrender of Mytilene.
36-50 Debate at Athens between Kleon and Diodotos over the punishment of the Mytilenians; Athenian decision to spare the lives of most of the population.
51-68 Surrender of Plataia; trial and execution of the Plataians.
69-90 Civil war on Corcyra; author's observations on the psychology of political revolution. Athenian actions in Sicily. End of the fifth year of the war.
91-104 Demosthenes and the Athenians defeated in Aitolia. Athenian purification of Delos.
105-16 Victories of Athenians under Demosthenes in Ambracia. End of the sixth year of the war.
Book 4 187(65)
1-51 Athenian victories at Pylos; Spartan offer of peace and alliance refused. Surrender of Spartan soldiers and their imprisonment at Athens. Massacre of oligarchic faction on Corcyra, ending the civil war. End of the seventh year of the war.
52-74 Athenian successes against Sparta. General peace agreement among the Greeks of Sicily. Civil war at Megara, ending in Athenian failure, establishment of enduring oligarchy at Megara.
53-116 Spartan expedition under Brasidas to Thrace; revolt of some Athenian allies there. Athenians defeated by Boiotians at Delion. Capture of Amphipolis by Brasidas. End of the eighth year of the war.
117-35 Armistice between the Athenians and the Spartans. Further revolts against Athens by the Greeks in Thrace. End of the ninth year of the war.
Book 5 252(50)
1-12 Unsuccessful Athenian attempt to recover Amphipolis; deaths in battle of Brasidas and Kleon.
13-39 Peace and fifty-year alliance between Athens and Sparta. End of the tenth year of the war. Intrigues among disaffected Spartan allies. End of the eleventh year of the war.
40-83 Alliance between the Athenians and the Argives and some other Peloponnesians. End of the twelfth year of the war. War between Argos, aided by Athens, and Epidauros. End of the thirteenth year of the war. Athenians, Argives, and their allies defeated by Spartans at Mantinea; peace and fifty-year alliance between Argives and Spartans. End of the fourteenth year of the war. Shift of Argos away from Sparta and toward Athens. End of the fifteenth year of the war.
84-116 Athenian expedition against Melos, dialogue between Athenian and Melian representatives; Melian resistance. Surrender of Melos; execution or enslavement of population.
Book 6 302(58)
1-7 Athenian plans to invade Sicily. Account of the island's inhabitation. End of the sixteenth year of the war.
8-32 Expedition to Sicily launched; Nikias and Alcibiades generals, despite Nikias' public misgivings against the expedition; accusations of sacrilege against Alcibiades.
33-61 Debate at Syracuse over the likelihood of the reported Athenian expedition. Athenian arrival and efforts to gain local support and funding. Recall of Alcibiades; his escape and exile.
62-88 Syracusans defeated by Athenians; reorganization of Syracusan defenses under Hermokrates. Debate at Kamarina between Hermokrates and Athenian envoy Euphemos, both seeking alliance; Kamarinaian choice of neutrality.
89-105 Alcibiades' defection to Spartans; his role in persuading them to attack Athenians in both Sicily and Attica. End of the seventeenth year of the war. Athenian victory over Syracuse and investment of the city. Arrival of Peloponnesian relief force under Spartan Gylippos.
Book 7 360(48)
1-30 Revival of Syracusan war effort. Nikias' letter asking the Athenians to reinforce the expedition or else withdraw it; Athenian dispatch of reinforcements in response. End of the eighteenth year of the war. Spartan invasion of Attica; establishment of fortified Spartan outpost. Destruction of Mykalessos by Thracian auxiliaries of Athens.
31-49 Athenian navy defeated by Syracusans and their allies in harbor of Syracuse. Arrival of Athenian reinforcements under Demosthenes. Athenian attempt to capture Syracusan fortifications by night attack; near success and catastrophic defeat. Departure for Athens urged by Demosthenes but delayed by Nikias.
50-71 Desperate attempt of the Athenians to escape by sea, determination of the Syracusans to prevent them; decisive Syracusan naval victory.
72-87 Athenian retreat by land under constant enemy attack. Surrender after great slaughter, Demosthenes and Nikias put to death; survivors imprisoned under terrible conditions.
Book 8 408(61)
1-6 Decision of Athenian people to fight on. Peloponnesian enthusiasm and confidence about quick and final victory; numerous prospects of revolt among Ionians, possibility of Persian subsidies for Peloponnesian forces. End of the nineteenth year of the war.
7-18 Renewed fighting; Spartans discouraged by defeat at sea. Revolt of Chios, engineered by Alcibiades, followed by that of Miletos and others. Treaty concluded between the Persian king and his governor Tissaphernes and the Spartan alliance.
19-44 Constant, indecisive fighting, mainly in Ionia. Persian subsidies begin, in return for concession of some territory formerly ruled by Persia; revisions of Spartan-Persian treaty.
45-60 Rupture between Spartans and Alcibiades; his defection to Tissaphernes and his advice that the Persians play the Greeks off against one another. Oligarchic intrigues among Athenian armed forces in hopes of gaining Persian subsidies through Alcibiades' offices; people of Athens reluctantly persuaded. End of the twentieth year of the war.
61-88 Democracy at Athens replaced by narrow and violent oligarchy; strong opposition among Athenian armed forces, threat of civil war. Strained relations between Peloponnesians and Persians.
89-109 Disintegration and overthrow of oligarchy at Athens. Peloponnesian victory at sea neutralized by Spartan lack of enterprise. Major Athenian naval victory at Kynossema.
Abbreviations 469(1)
Glossary 470(3)
Works Cited 473(11)
Index of Speeches 484(8)
Index 492(17)

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