Sophist Kings: Persians as Other in Herodotus

Category: Nonfiction


Posted on 2020-05-23, by books_lover.

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Sophist Kings: Persians as Other in Herodotus Sophist Kings: Persians as Other sets forth a reading of Herodotus' Histories that highlights the consistency with which the Persians are depicted as sophists and Persian culture is infused with a sophistic ideology. The Persians as the Greek 'other' have a crucial role throughout Herodotus' Histories, but their characterisation is far divorced from historical reality. Instead, from their first appearance at the beginning of the Histories, Herodotus presents the Persians as adept in the argumentation of Greek sophists active in mid-5th century Athens. Moreover, Herodotus' construct of the Sophist King, in whom political reason serves human ambition, is used to explain the Achaemenid model of kingship whose rule is grounded in a theological knowledge of cosmic order and of divine justice as the political good. This original and in-depth study explores how the ideology which Herodotus ascribes to the Persians comes directly from fifth-century sophists whose arguments served to justify
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