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Carla Toby The first to approach history from a scientific perspective. Herodotus vectored away from the Homerian style of compilation,and attempted to put history in order, backed with facts rather than the traditional collections of oral histories put to paper. Seminal work which should be required reading, not only for the history itself, but for the beauty of the language. Magnificent book.
Thomas T for sure, at the start the names and the places can seem confusing but once you get past that this is a fascination read chronicling the epic struggle between the Persian Empire and the Greeks headed up by Athens & Sparta, Herodotus goes way back before that and lays out the origins of the beef, who the key players were and their backgrounds, how it escalated into full blown war etc, he also often goes off on interesting side stories and tangents for example like providing commentary on how it was noticed that the skulls of dead Persian Soldiers are so much weaker when compared to the skulls of dead Egyptian Soldiers?, how the Tribes of the Thracian's lament and mourn when a new child is born to the tribe and celebrate and rejoice when one of the tribe dies, the reason being that for the first his woes and struggles have only just begun, for the latter all his struggles and worries are behind him, This book is a fountain of information to a world long gone yet remains as contemporary as ever in its observations on the exercise of power and the scheming and machinations of Men, an absolute classic in the truest sense of the word, only thing i would add is that i read the "Landmark Herodotus" edition and found all the Maps and side notes hugely beneficial in getting my head around the places and names, for example when the Persians invaded Scythia and the Scythian's engaged in a fighting retreat/ scorched Earth Policy to defeat them knowing the Scythia is modern day Ukraine and therefore part of the Eurasian Steppe made more sense and interestingly made me wonder if the Russians got their Scorched Earth idea that they used against Napoleon and later the Germans from the Scythian's via Herodotus? anyhow i'm rambling a bit now so ill say goodbye but definitely do give it a go, its a hugely rewarding read.
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