Herodotus and Samos: Personal or Political?
This article addresses the reasons behind Herodotus' interest in the island of Samos. Taking as its starting point the famous passage about Samian erga (3.60), I examine Herodotus' stated and implicit reasons for his extended Samian logoi. Scholars tend to explain his interest in Samos as lying in details of his biography. I argue that any such biographical connection to the island merely reinforces stronger unstated reasons for going on long about Samos: these have to do with Periclean Athens' competition with Polycratean Samos as a historical antecedent for thalassocracy, and--not unrelated--the Samian revolt.
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- The Classical World
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- The Johns Hopkins University Press
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- July 2, 2015