This edited collection looks at two of the most important ancient Greek historians living in the 5th Century BCE who are considered to be the founders of the western tradition of historiography. Thucydides and Herodotus examines the relevant relationship between these historians which isconsidered, especially nowadays, by historians and philologists to be more significant than previously realized. The volume includes an introduction by the editors which addresses our changing view of how the historians relate to one another, and twelve papers written by leading experts in the field of ancient history and philology. Nine of the papers discuss either comprehensive issues pertaining to thehistorians' relationship or their common themes and practices, while three further papers discuss the ancient reception of Herodotus and Thucydides and investigate the historians' debt to Homer.
Edith Foster compares Thucydides' narrative explanations and descriptions of the Peloponnesian War in Books One and Two of the History with the arguments about warfare and war materials offered by the Athenian statesman Pericles in those same books. In Thucydides' narrative presentations, she argues, the aggressive deployment of armed force is frequently unproductive or counterproductive, and even the threat to use armed force against others causes consequences that can be impossible for the aggressor to predict or contain. By contrast, Pericles' speeches demonstrate that he shared with many other figures in the History a mistaken confidence in the power, glory, and reliability of warfare and the instruments of force. Foster argues that Pericles does not speak for Thucydides, and that Thucydides should not be associated with Pericles' intransigent imperialism.