The Historical Value of Speeches and toasts in Thucydides

The famous value of speeches in Thucydides

On paper his record as a whole, it is fair to state that Thucydides has always been praised for his relative historical accuracy, be that as a result of his genuine presence for events, his use of eyewitness testimony or perhaps his noted checking of facts. In fashion Thucydides held his story sections alternatively impersonal thus allowing the storyline to unfold itself. Yet , to then lay simple what stood behind the narrative, the moral choices, the mistakes, the fears and the reasons, the device he used was the speech, a mechanism he employed with supreme mastery.

Perhaps the easiest way to begin to resolve the question available, we should analyze the definition Thucydides himself provides us in the statement of methodology for his messages that looks in 1 ) 22. 1 . of his History of the Peloponnesian Battle.

‘In this history I have made use of set messages some of which had been delivered right before and others throughout the war. I have discovered it difficult to keep in mind the precise terms used in the speeches that we listened to myself and my personal various informants have experienced similar difficulty; and so my approach has been whilst keeping while closely as is possible to the basic sense from the words that were actually utilized, to make the loudspeakers say what, in my opinion, was called for by simply each situation''

It is not uncommon to interpret that in face worth this assertion is not at all a ringing recommendation for famous accuracy. This idea is usually taken up simply by Plant who have correctly claims that there is deficiencies in correlation between the first and second regions of the affirmation. He goes on that it has long been debated perhaps the historian believed and/or attempted to present verbatim accounts with the arguments put forward by the audio speakers on each event as best he could, or whether he felt free to modify as well as to invent particular arguments or maybe whole messages. And the controversy has been

fuelled by what continues to be widely considered to be the...

Bibliography: Connor Watts. Robert, Thucydides (1984) web pages 146-158, http://www.humanitiesebook.org

Garrity Thomas F., Thucydides 1 . twenty-two. 1: Content material and Kind in the Speeches' The American Journal of Philology, Volume. 119, Number 3 (Autumn 1998), pp. 361-384. JSTOR: http://www.jstor.org/stable/156676

Flower Ian Meters. ‘The Impact of Forensic Otatory upon Thucydides' Rules of Method' Theh Vintage Quarterly, New Series, Vol. 49, Number 1 (1999), pp. 62-73. JSTOR: http://jstor.org/stable/639489

Thucydides, Great The Peloponnesian War (1954), Trans. Rex Warner, Penguin Classics (London)

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