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The Landmark Thucydides: A Comprehensive Guide to the Peloponnesian War Paperback – September 10, 1998

ISBN-13: 978-0684827902 ISBN-10: 0684827905 Edition: 1st

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 752 pages
  • Publisher: Free Press; 1 edition (September 10, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0684827905
  • ISBN-13: 978-0684827902
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 7.3 x 1.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (108 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #46,461 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Thucydides' History of the Peloponnesian War is one of the great books in the Western tradition, as well as its first true historical narrative. Editor Robert Strassler has annotated this classic text to make it more accessible to modern readers and added dozens of maps for easy reference. A helpful introduction places Thucydides in proper historical context and a series of short appendices focus on particular aspects of life and war during the period. But the bulk of the book itself, where Thucydides chronicles the long struggle between Athens and Sparta, enjoys an unexpected freshness on these pages--partly due to Strassler's magnificent editorial labors, but mostly because it's a great story resonant with heroes, villains, bravery, desperation, and tragedy. Every library should have a copy of Thucydides in it, especially libraries on military history, and The Landmark Thucydides is without question the best version available. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

Strassler, an unaffiliated scholar of classical studies, has remedied many of the flaws of Richard Crawley's 1874 translation of The Peloponnesian War. He has added descriptive paragraph-by-paragraph synopses, topic headers on every page, numerous maps keyed to the adjoining text, explanatory footnotes, an extensive index, an excellent introduction by Victor Davis Hanson (California State Univ.), and 11 appendixes (by various scholars) on politics, warfare, and society in the Greece of the fifth century B.C.E. What the editor has done he has done well, creating a valuable basic reference for students of ancient history. His work has only two flaws: it lacks a substantial bibliography, having only a two-page "concise" one; and the price will put it out of reach of many institutions. For academic libraries and others with large history collections.?James F. DeRoche, Alexandria, Va.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

This book presents a wonderful way to read Thucydides.
Kinnison
Strassler's excellent maps help bring the text to life - they are numerous and right there where you need them.
James W. Picht
I strongly recommend the print edition instead of the Kindle edition.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

152 of 153 people found the following review helpful By bibliomane01 on July 14, 2001
Format: Hardcover
Robert B. Strassler's edition of the famous Richard Crawley translation of Thucydides is a remarkable work, not only because of its intrinsic merit but also because it is quite simply unique. Mr. Strassler has provided the ultimate in critical apparatus, an exhaustive series of tools with which to understand and appreciate one of the great books of world civilisation. I have never seen anything like it. First of all, there is the index; if an index can be said to be a work of art, the Strassler index is a work of art in the way it organises and informs the text. Next there are the maps - dozens of them - not clumped together in the middle of the book or hidden away at the end, but strategically placed throughout the appropriate points in the text, right at the reader's fingertips when he or she needs them. The footnotes (yes footnotes, not those pesky and inconvenient endnotes!) would fill a small volume of their own and add immeasurably to one's understanding. And as if this were not enough, there are 11 appendices - short essays by prominent classical scholars on different aspects of the Greek world in the time of Thucydides, from "Athenian Government" and "Trireme Warfare" to "Religious Festivals" and "Classical Greek Currency." As far as I am concerned, the only problem with Mr. Strassler's edition is that is has made me greedy for more of the same - a similar edition of the Mahabharata, say, or Gibbon! Any takers?
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49 of 50 people found the following review helpful By nto62 on August 31, 2001
Format: Hardcover
Robert Strassler has done a remarkable editing job with Thucydides' Peloponnesian War. He has included three key features which provide the reader much luxury:
One, he has provided maps throughout the text, to the extent of repetition, to ensure that textual geographic references are always accompanied, in close proximity, cartographically.
Two, he has provided paragraph summaries on the margin throughout the work so that a reader, who has put the edition down for any length of time, may refresh their memories quickly by reading as many of these one to two sentence summaries as necessary.
Three, as Thucydides provides his narrative in chronological order, he must often leave one narrative to begin another. Strassler has provided a thread to follow each narrative through to its' end by way of footnotes.
These editorial enhancements greatly enrich the reading experience and would be a welcome addition to any historical text.
Thucydides, himself, presents the reader with a narrative unromanticized, strictly adhering to the events of the Peloponnesian War. His work possesses many passages that rivet the reader, but also contains areas where the sheer and voluminous recitation of fact can render one foggy. This is not a book for the light-hearted, though Strassler's editorial enhancements make for a pleasurable experience. It is, in short, a classic which has been classically edited.
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134 of 147 people found the following review helpful By Dale W. Boyer on April 21, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a superb edition of one of the greatest books ever written. However, there is a MAJOR CAVEAT: the paperback edition has a TERRIBLE BINDING, and will fall apart on you as you read it, guaranteed. This happened to every student in our class. Such a fantastic edition of a classic should obviously be sewn, rather than glued, but the publisher has apparently tried to cheap it out with an inferior glued binding which, I repeat, WILL NOT LAST. We wrote the publisher as a group, but did not receive an adequate reaponse. By all means, use this edition, but if you want to keep it, BUY THE HARDCOVER.
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65 of 73 people found the following review helpful By Daniel Myers VINE VOICE on December 13, 2000
Format: Hardcover
This is a review of Thucydides' The Peloponnesian War rather than Strassler's edition of it, as many of the other reviews more or less are. But hats off to Mr Strassler! He should receive an award, a salary increase, a villa on the Riviera...Something commensurate with his painstaking and infinitely helpful notes and elaborations and maps, maps, maps!-Now I know where everything is. The previous editions of Thucydides I've read were rather scanty on maps (i.e., They didn't have any.) All readers of this edition owe Strassler a bundle for making us more successful readers of an author who, at times, can be a bit on the difficult, if not to say inscrutable, side. What do we have to learn from Thucydides? As several reviwers have pointed out, Thucydides intended his opus as a work for the ages. But what were "the ages" supposed to glean from this first thorough account of war in the Western world?... Why men go to war? How to prevent war? How to be successful in war? What it means to go to war?...Just what did he intend? Nobody really knows the answer to the question. But I've read the work several times (never with a clearer understanding than after fnishing the Strassler edition) and have some ideas that might prove helpful. First off, one thing Thucydides almost certainly meant by declaring that his work was for the ages was that war is a permanent condition of mankind. Man has always and will always go to war. It's part of what we would call human nature or (if we wanted to be upscale about it), man's genetic make-up. This means that man is not, as Aristotle famously intoned, the rational animal, but irrational to the core. But, still, what does this really mean?Read more ›
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