Thucydides Paper

Topics: Peloponnesian War, Sparta, Thucydides Pages: 3 (753 words) Published: April 19, 2015
“Thucydides: Method of Historical Inquiry”
Thucydides, one of the great historians, recorded several years of war between Sparta and Athens. “History of the Peloponnesian War,” in which he was the writer, used different methods of investigating and writing his history. He combined several sources into one fascinating voice that is his own. Thucydides methods included balance, accuracy and objectivity, and how he reached his findings that makes it an historical classification.

One method would be that he is balanced. Thucydides participated in appropriate speeches from both sides. He relied on the testimony of eye witnesses. He made used of set speeches some that came before and others during. Thucydides does note that at times he records a little portion of what was said, or what he thinks should have been said. “My methods has been, while keeping, as closely as possible to the general sense of the words that were actually used, to make the speakers say what, in my opinion, was called for by each situation”(2). He goes on to say it was difficult to remember the precise words used in these speeches.

Another method of Thucydides is how he is accurate and objective. Seems like Thucydides objective is to give an accurate account of the war and to provide knowledge that will guide future readers. He goes on to talk about how he made it a principle to not write down the first story that came to him and not to be even guided by his own general impressions. His accuracy comes in to play when he says that he reported factual reports of the events of the war in ones that he was either present at or heard accounts of eye witnesses. Thucydides goes on to say that the truth wasn’t easy to discover given different accounts from different eye witnesses.

Another point to be made is how he set forth his findings and how he reached it from his evidence. Thucydides goes on to talk about how he does not think that someone will be wrong in accepting his...
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