Old and Young in Thucydides: Experience, Learning, and Themistocles

Antonis Tsakmakis


Although Thucydides does not shed light on the reasons and the historical
facts relating to his departure from Athens, he is certainly far clearer on the
effects that this event had on his work. He explicitly recognizes that the
condition of exile offered him the rather unique possibility to observe the
conflict from the Peloponnesian side as well and to follow the course of events
without being distracted by troubles or other activities (καθ’ ἡσυχίαν). In this
study I emit the hypothesis that in 5.26 Thucydides makes an indirect allusion
to the fact that a life of quietude, which liberates the eminent thinker from
engagement in political life, is the path leading to intellectual production. This
reading can help us recognize the intellectual affinities between Thucydides and
the Athenian thinkers of the end of the fifth century BC and more particularly
with Socrates’s circle.

Palabras clave

Exile; Intellectual; Tranquillity; Philosophers; Pericles

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ISSN de la edición impresa: 1575-6823
ISSN digital: 2340-2199
Depósito legal: SE 235-2015
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