Narrative and Speech Problems in Thucydides Book I
This chapter examines Thucydides' presentation of the pre-history and causes of the Peloponnesian War in his Book 1. It explores the interplay of various key-words in Thucydides' explanatory scheme (especially arche, diaphora, prophasis and aitia), and the ways in which the narrative of the Pentekontaetia (1.89-118) is moulded to support the analysis. Thucydides' methods owe something, and in some cases allude, to Homer, Hesiod, Herodotus, and the Hippocratics. Punning and word-play, e.g. on arche as beginning and arche as empire or on Pausanias as ‘stopper’, are seen as important; so is the tracing of events back to Pausanias and Themistocles. The chapter finally discusses how far this may be seen as an ‘open’ text: not very, it argues.
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