An analysis of Thucydides’ most famous statements on the origins of the war between Athens and Sparta (1.23.4-6) and on the methodology of research of the facts (1.22.2. Cf. 1.20-21) shows a philosophical approach to history and historical research. A critically assessed comparison with some of Heraclitus of Ephesus’ statements also suggests that Thucydides’ own knowledge of early ancient philosophy helped him to shape his view on fundamental issues of historical research. Thucydides appears to have introduced himself in a similar way as one might expect a philosopher would have done. Besides the rhetoric of self-presentation and self- definition, Thucydides was indeed a philosopher: he conceived his own political science as a hidden "sophia" which showed the invisible forces that, by reciprocal interaction, shaped historical development.

Thucydides on Aetiology and Methodology and Some Links with the Philosophy of Heraclitus

Giovanni Parmeggiani
2018-01-01

Abstract

An analysis of Thucydides’ most famous statements on the origins of the war between Athens and Sparta (1.23.4-6) and on the methodology of research of the facts (1.22.2. Cf. 1.20-21) shows a philosophical approach to history and historical research. A critically assessed comparison with some of Heraclitus of Ephesus’ statements also suggests that Thucydides’ own knowledge of early ancient philosophy helped him to shape his view on fundamental issues of historical research. Thucydides appears to have introduced himself in a similar way as one might expect a philosopher would have done. Besides the rhetoric of self-presentation and self- definition, Thucydides was indeed a philosopher: he conceived his own political science as a hidden "sophia" which showed the invisible forces that, by reciprocal interaction, shaped historical development.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11368/2921783
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