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The Literary Sources For The Regime Of Demetrius

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Chapter Summary

This appendix discusses the literary sources for the regime of Demetrius of Phalerum. Among the Greek city-states, Athens' pre-eminence in antiquity is continued in the unique wealth of information preserved about it for later generations. This wealth is, however, relative. Documentation for Demetrius' regime is a mixed affair, much of it fragmentary and devoid of its original context; we have no continuous account of Athens during his time in power. Narrative accounts covering the late fourth century-notably books 18-20 of Diodorus' histories, and some lives of Plutarch (especially his Demetrius)-are focused instead on a bigger stage: the battle for power among Alexander's marshals. These overarching narratives do at least provide us with an external framework in which to set some of the individual snippets about Demetrius' Athens itself, a luxury unknown to students of Athens a century on.

Keywords: Athens; Demetrius of Phalerum; literary sources



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