By P J Rhodes
Alcibiades is among the most renowned (or notorious) characters of Classical Greece. a tender Athenian aristocrat, he got here to prominence throughout the Peloponnesian struggle (429-404 BC) among Sparta and Athens. Flamboyant, charismatic (and wealthy), this shut affiliate of Socrates persuaded the Athenians to try to face as much as the Spartans on land as a part of an alliance he was once instrumental in bringing jointly. even supposing this resulted in defeat on the conflict of Mantinea in 418 BC, his status remained excessive. He was once additionally a chief mover in Athens' subsequent substantial strategic gambit, the Sicilian excursion of 415 BC, for which he was once elected as one of many leaders. presently after arrival in Sicily, even though, he used to be recalled to stand fees of sacrilege allegedly dedicated in the course of his pre-expedition reveling. leaping send at the go back trip, he defected to the Spartans.
Alcibiades quickly ingratiated himself with the Spartans, encouraging them to assist the Sicilians (ultimately leading to the utter destruction of the Athenian day trip) and to maintain year-round strain at the Athenians. He then turns out to have overstepped the boundaries of hospitality by way of slumbering with the Spartan queen and was once quickly at the run back. He then performed a devious and hazardous online game of transferring loyalties among Sparta, Athens and Persia. He had a hand in engineering the overthrow of democracy at Athens in prefer of an oligarchy, which allowed him to come back from exile, even though he then adverse the increasingly-extreme excesses of that regime. For a time he appeared to have restored Athens' fortunes within the warfare, yet went into exile back after being held chargeable for the defeat of 1 of his subordinates in a naval conflict. This time he took safe haven with the Persians, yet as they have been now allied to the Spartans, the cuckolded King Agis of Sparta used to be capable of manage his assassination through Persian brokers.
There has been no complete size biography of this colourful and demanding personality for 20 years. Professor Rhodes brings the authority of an the world over well-known specialist within the box, making sure that it will be a very major addition to the literature on Classical Greece.
“…this therapy of Alcibiades via P. J. Rhodes, probably the most impressive Greek historians of our time, is winning in bringing essentially the most fascinating and arguable characters to a much wider viewers in an clever demeanour that are supposed to additionally turn out precious as a lecture room textual content… with a masterful regulate of literary and epigraphic resources, he areas Alcibiades in his right context as an finally disastrous determine who used to be, besides the fact that, profoundly winning in convincing his contemporaries―and posterity as a result―of his significance. This booklet is very worthy not just to the overall reader, yet as a school room textual content for upper-level classes. I should still upload that it additionally presents a good precis of fifth-century political and armed forces heritage; the unavoidably shut insurance of the interval from 412-406 BC, that's fraught with controversy, is mainly good.”
Bryn Mawr Classical evaluation
“…quite informative…a transparent and multifaceted portrait of Alcibiades that are supposed to be informative and invaluable for newcomer and veteran reader alike. The booklet has a special educational aspect and obviously does it most sensible to attempt for medical objectivity, however it by no means is going as far as to turn into a dry read…”
Ancient conflict, VI factor three