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Exile: The Making Of The Greek Historian

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Chapter Summary

Many observers, both ancient and modern, have noted the beneficial effects of exile. One can argue that if exile is "the making of the historian", it would appear that a person could not be one without it in the ancient Greek world, at least one worth talking about. Exile must have profoundly affected the lives and output of the historians who experienced it. This chapter shows that we must be on guard not to be careless in our use of the word 'exile', a term that can cover a variety of experiences, some of which would not have shaped the historian's views in quite the way Ronald Syme, for one, seems to imagine. It generates at least some cause for doubt regarding some of the pieces of testimony used by ancients and moderns to claim that particular Greek historians were exiled.

Keywords: exile; Greek historians; Ronald Syme



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