Herodotean Decontextualization and Recodification: A Possible Reference to the Samian War in Hdt. VII 162, 1-2
This paper analyzes Hdt. VII 162, 1-2 in the broader context of Herodotus’ account of the negotiations between Gelon of Syracuse and the Greek coalition against the Persians in 481 BC (VII 157-162). The adnotatio interpretationis in VII 162, 2 is to be regarded as an authentic Herodotean passage. By putting Pericles’ famous image of «the year deprived of the spring» (from Pericles’ logos epitaphios for the dead of the Samian War, 440-39 BC) into Gelon’s mouth, Herodotus aims to make his audience reflect on the internal strife in the Greek world as a feature of Greek history in a broad span of time, from the past of the Persian Wars to the contemporary struggle between Athens and Sparta and their respective coalitions. The Samian War may have been exemplary for him of an ongoing and dramatically destructive drift within the Greek world.
Keywords: Herodotus, Gelon, Pericles, Samian War, Stesimbrotus of Thasos.
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