Herodotus was the first Greek writer to attempt “history.” Before him, other authors either wrote local chronicles or traveled extensively – no single work had ever existed that contained coherent stories from an organic viewpoint.
Herodotus documented real events in his Histories, a nine volume set of books written over several centuries by Herodotus himself. He studied both the background leading to Greco-Persian Wars as well as their battles – Salamis, Plataea and Mycale being among his primary focus areas.
Herodotus’ Histories is an investigation of history written over nine books that span continents and lives. Herodotus was one of the first historians to synthesize real history from various civilizations into one coherent sequence; prior to him, ancient Greek texts often focused on mythological tales that weave together truth with fiction.
Herodotus may have been criticized for including legends and extravagant accounts in his works; however, his stories demonstrate a broad array of cultures and experiences. Additionally, his Histories provide many of the world’s earliest descriptions of natural and manmade wonders like floating islands or caravans lacking mules (Xerxes’ caravan was an exception); or even lions that attack camels but not other animals.
Erichsen also distinguished himself by providing an objective account of the Greco-Persian war, unlike poets whose accounts of its events had often been heavily biased toward one country or side in favour of allies.
Herodotus was intrigued by human history and set out to be impartial when conducting his investigations, giving his work a sense of integrity that contributed to a new kind of history; one which could accommodate patterns (inherent in tragedy but distinct), while also emphasizing pride, fall and punishment as dynamic processes.
Herodotus traveled more extensively than most writers of his era; he visited Egypt as far south as Elephantine and also made stops in Libya, Syria, Babylonia, Susa in Elam Lydia Phrygia Phrygia crossing Hellespont (now Dardanelles) byzantium Thrace Macedonia
His aim was to preserve history so that its events and deeds would not fade with time, particularly by showing why Greeks and Persians battled each other; according to him, animosity between them wasn’t inevitable or longstanding, but rather caused by decisions and events that led them there.
Modern scholars have been able to examine much of Herodotus’ Histories critically. While some critics at the time claimed his tales were exaggerated, modern scholars believe he generally adhered close to historical truth in many instances.
Herodotus’ Histories is a compelling chronicle of his own life and travels. Born in Halicarnassus – then under Persian rule in southwest Asia – Herodotus moved first to Athens (then Greek colony), followed by Thurii in Italy where the Histories were composed; after arriving back to Athens in 428 B.C. or shortly thereafter they traveled further south where Herodotus wrote them out publically at Athens Olympic Games where he received thunderous applause from those present!
Herodotus’ Histories is the earliest systematic investigation into history ever performed, pioneering what would later become its discipline. Herodotus collected information through personal inquiries known as autopsies – visiting people throughout the world and interviewing them regarding memories from times past, traditional tales from their parents or grandparents, or other sources; also traveling extensively and visiting Egypt, Palestine, Syria, Babylon and Macedonia with frequent mention of prices or numerical data suggesting he might have been traveling on business related trips.
Herodotus had an insatiable intellectual restlessness that many of his fellow scholars shared; his goal, however, was not simply data collection but to understand the nature and causes of things. For example, he sought to determine what caused the Persian Wars; after extensive investigation he identified multiple factors, including moral providence (i.e. the gods used war as a means to correct overweening pride with violence).
His account of the war focuses on military events, particularly Darius’ death by legendary Persian King Xerxes; however, The Histories contains much more: geography, gossip, astronomy and mythology from multiple nations and cultures. Herodotus was an incredible storyteller whose Histories won wide acclaim across audiences of different kinds.
Herodotus’ Histories represent one of the first systematic investigations into history ever written down. Primarily, they recount the Greek victory over Darius and Xerxes’ massive Persian army during 499-479 BCE wars between Greece and Persia (led by Darius and Xerxes) while delving deeper into other cultures around the globe – not least its literary quality which made this text popular at markets, bars and hotspots in ancient Athens where intellectual restless crowds demanded new thinking presented in novel ways – thus becoming an instant classic!
Herodotus may have been part of this crowd despite his middle-class background. His writing often references prices and numerical information that suggests he may have been involved with commerce of some kind; perhaps even traveling as an overseas merchant and visiting countries such as Egypt and Levant countries for business purposes.
Athenaeus was born in Halicarnassus, a Greek city located in southwest Asia that was under Persian control, and died in Thurii, a Greek colony in southern Italy. His travels took him through many cultures across the globe. His open-mindedness still serves as a model for historians today; we should remember that history should encompass more than simply “science”, in order to ensure its relevance for modern society.