Historians universally agree that Thucydides was the greatest historian who has ever lived, and that his story of the Peloponnesian conflict is a marvel of forensic science and fine literature. That such a triumph of intellectual accomplishment was created at the end of the fifth century B.C. in Greece is, perhaps, not so surprising, given the number of original geniuses we find in that period. But that such an historical work would also be simultaneously acknowledged as a work of great literature and a penetrating ethical evaluation of humanity is one of the miracles of ancient history. For in the pages of Thucydides we find examples of every ethical and political problem ever faced by democratic governments in the last 2,400 years. And it was all organized and written with a breathtaking skill and dramatic intensity which have never been equalled.
Thucydides was an Athenian noble born around 455 B.C. whose antecedents could be traced back to the great Peisitratus and Cimon. In 424 B.C., Thucydides was in command of naval forces attempting to defend Amphipolis in Thrace. Although unsuccessful through no fault of his own, his enemies in Athens blamed him for failure and engineered his exile. It was a fortunate event, for it was upon this accident of history that Thucydides gained the opportunity to become the chronicler of events in Greece. In complete contrast to the furious passions which raged around him, he described events with a cool detachment and an absolute impartiality that is little short of miraculous. He is believed to have died violently, perhaps while writing, in about 400 B.C. His manuscript simply breaks off in mid paragraph.
The Peloponnesian War is organized into eight parts (“books”). This recording uses the highly esteemed translation of Benjamin Jowett. There are several essays preceding and following the work.
(P)2012 Audio Connoisseur
"You better know the events before listening"
No. You really need maps and an appendix. So many names are thrown around with little explanation that if your attention wavers for a second you can find yourself pretty disoriented, not knowing if the people being described are with Athens or the Pelloponesians.
Stephen Pressfield's Tides of War is a fictionalized retelling of some of the events surrounding Alcibiades. Might be a good place to start for an entertaining listen.
He is an excellent reader. Great pronunciation. Great dramatic flair.
No way no how.
I had to keep wikipedia opened, as well as have maps available to make sense of a lot of the events. This is not a casual listen if you are unfamiliar with the war.
"A must read"
Thucydides was one of the best authors of history I have ever read, but the narrative and the way he writes is not very suitable for a audiobook without having studied the ancient greeks and this book before. For 2000 years, greater minds than me have struggled with this book, I could not follow it in audio, but had to get the Landmark edition reading it instead. But I will relisten it at a later time when I have a better grip of the narrative.
Brasidas the Spartan.
I really enjoy all of his work. Normally I choose him if there are more than one version of the book at Audible
The melian dialog
For me, Thucydides was to complex as a audio book. I had to get the Landmark edition Thucydides to understand and follow the narrative.
"Like a Father, True."
In college I discovered this book and have read it since, but as a frequent audiobook user (I walk in major cities) this is the most surprisingly beautiful ancient hx book read. I was a hx minor with an interest in classics and I am not a scholar, but in my humble opinion this is the most important book in HX. Save, the bible, Plato, Polybius and Herodotus.
"Great performance of a lengthy classic."
This unabridged version of Thucydides' history is made digestible and easy-on-the-ears by the narrator. This edition also includes some essays at the beginning and end which are excellent for context.
"Remarkable Work of History; Difficult but Worth It"
This is an amazing work of history written centuries ago. It is not easy to read, but it is worth it if you can get through it.
Unless you are very familiar with ancient Greece, this is going to be a chore to read. The many names and places are hard to keep up with. To be honest, there are going to be many names and places referenced that you won't know anything about and you just have to accept that.
The great thing is that there are several introductions to the book which help give you an idea of what's going on. I would encourage everyone to listen to all of the introductions and the afterward.
The narration is perfect. Perhaps the best narrating job I've come across on Audible.
One knows, or should know, Thucydides. What is important here is the fact that the listening is as rewarding as the reading. The narrator, too, is exceptional for clarity of diction,
"Nothing new under the sun"
A thorough history by the first historian...a narrative of strategic, operational, and tactical events in this epic war.
This is can be a daunting book for any except students of ancient Greece, but it is surprisingly clear when it comes to delivery. Charlton Griffin is one of the best...I would recommend learning something about the people and the geography before listening to this...it is easy to miss a lot of you are not familiar with the many locations discussed.
"Well read, fascinating look into ancient Greeks"
Very consistent and engaging reading. Fascinating the parallels in politics to today. We can learn from their failures with oligarchies.
"Fantastic & full! Valued added cntnt. x1.25 speed."
Great rendition, fair length (as unabridged) and enjoyed throughout. Having read the text it was fantastic, as listening gives a slightly different tack on visualising the battles / events as described. Recommend listening at x1.25 speed. Additional post analysis was good addition. Obv. purely ornamental, but enjoyed the musical interludes that punctuate the volumes greatly, and they add nicely to the athmosphere.
the annoyingly singing voice made me stop listening soon,what a shame. Will look for another version
"helps get through the text"
useful to keep focus on the text. Helped me finish the reading. pleased with purchase would recommend the purchase
Report Inappropriate Content
If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.