Another is the final chapter, in which the extravagant depiction of a contrast between the morally and physically enfeebled mid-fourth century Persians and their ancestors provides a sort of corrective editorial gloss to the main text, stressing that the Persians from whom lessons might be learned are not contemporary ones. Herodotus said that many stories were told of Cyrus 1. But this is not the end of the story: one must discriminate about degrees of historicity.
Somewhere in between is the long description 8. Statements about satrapal imitatio regis 8.
Those unsympathetic to Xenophon assume that the capacity for arbitrary choice and invention suggested by the story line extends into this part of the text which is constructed as narrative, not as synchronic description of a system. Any historian who trusts Oeconomicus 4 where Xenophon could have had no reason to adduce Persia save a belief that what he says was true and pertinent should be prepared to give Cyropaedia the benefit of many doubts.
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Most of the corpus not Cyropaedia is available in English translation in the series of Penguin Classics. Anabasis , ed. Anabase , Paris, 2 vols. Commentaries: J. Apology and Memorabilia, tr. Macleod, Warminster, Cyropaedia , ed. Hellenica , tr. H iero the Tyrant and Other Treatises , tr. Scripta Minora , tr.
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Xenophon: Ethical Principles and Historical Enquiry
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Symposium , tr. Anthony J. Recent Xenophontic scholarship has established the general truth of these claims. The current volume will not only reinforce them but also contribute to greater understanding of a voice that is neither simply ironic nor simply ingenuous and of a view of the world that is informed by an engagement with history. Plutarchs Reading of Xenophon. Preliminary Observations. Xenophon and the Picturesque. Relative Chronology Politics and Religion. You Cannot Be Cyrus. Ideal Leaders or Ideal Losers? Xenophon on Arrogant Pride.
Xenophon on Slavery.