Greek historiography

Latin Historiography and rhetoric are related to Greek texts of the same type in two different ways: firstly, the Greek literary predecessors served as direct sources and models for Latin authors, who represent a later development in classical literature. Secondly, all Greek authors who wrote during the Roman period were inhabitants of the Roman Empire, resulting in an exchange of literary forms and ideas. The empire was bilingual, with Latin in the West and Greek in the East as official languages for imperial communication, and as vehicle for intellectual discourse.

Two authors are central to the project ‘Greek Historiography and Rhetoric’: Thucydides, who is the most important source for the Athenian statesman and orator Pericles, who lived in during the fifth century BC. A website was produced in cooperation with Richard Haasen, Willem van Maanen and Marco Poelwijk to open up the relevant texts with translation, commentary and historical context.

The second author is Pausanias, a second-century BC traveller who wrote about his journeys and observations, often with detailed descriptions of places, stories and historical persons or mythological figures. The entire text is presented in Dutch translation by Peter Burgersdijk. A revised and abridged version has been published by Athenaeum, Polak & Van Gennep. Introduction and index may be found in the book; an extensive bibliography is included on this website.