Lives That Made Greek History

ISBN-10: 1603848460
ISBN-13: 9781603848466
Edition: 2012
List price: $13.00 Buy it from $9.12
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Description: Although Plutarch did not intend his Lives as a historical record, they sometimes furnish the best account we have of events in classical Greece. In many instances they are the only account available to those exploring ancient history through  More...

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Book details

List price: $13.00
Copyright year: 2012
Publisher: Hackett Publishing Company, Incorporated
Publication date: 9/16/2012
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 312
Size: 5.50" wide x 8.25" long x 0.75" tall
Weight: 0.792
Language: English

Although Plutarch did not intend his Lives as a historical record, they sometimes furnish the best account we have of events in classical Greece. In many instances they are the only account available to those exploring ancient history through primary sources. In this compilation from Plutarch's Greek Lives, James Romm gathers the material of greatest historical significance from fifteen biographies, ranging from Theseus in earliest times to Phocion in the late fourth century BCE. While preserving the outlines of Plutarch's character portraits, Romm focuses on the central stories of classical Greece: the rivalry between Athens, Sparta, and Thebes, the rise of Macedon, and the conflicts between these European states and the Achaemenid Persian empire. Bridging Plutarch's gaps with concise summaries, Romm creates a coherent narrative of the classical Greek world. This edition features the elegant new translation of Pamela Mensch. Footnotes provide the historical context often omitted by Plutarch and plentiful and detailed cross-references. Also included are a bibliography, maps, a chronological chart, a glossary, and an index.

The translations of Pamela Mensch appear in Alexander the Great (Hackett) and The Landmark Arrian: The Campaigns of Alexander (Pantheon). Her translation of Diogenes Laertius' Lives and Doctrines of Eminent Philosophers is forthcoming from Harvard University Press.

PLUTARCH. c.46--c.125 Considered by many the most important Greek writer of the early Roman period, Plutarch was a member of a well-to-do Greek family, a chief magistrate, a priest at Delphi, and an exceptionally well-read individual. His philosophical views were based on those of Plato (see Vol. 4) and, although a Greek, he esteemed the achievements and attributes of the Romans. By the time Plutarch's works were published for the first time in the eleventh century, some had already been lost. He wrote innumerable essays on philosophical, historical, political, religious, and literary subjects, 78 of which survive today and are known collectively as the "Moralia." He is known primarily, however, for his Parallel Lives of Greeks and Romans, which consists of 50 biographies---23 of prominent Greeks, 23 of Roman leaders, and 4 separate lives---accompanied at intervals by short comparative essays. Although historical information is included in the work, Plutarch wrote it originally to inspire emulation in youth, so the emphasis is on character, moral choice, and anecdote. Sir Thomas North's 1579 translation into English of Parallel Lives became an important source for William Shakespeare which he used for three plays, Julius Caesar, Antony and Cleopatra, and Coriolanus.

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