Herodotus is a colossus of ancient history, from whose major work the Histories, much of our knowledge of the Persian Wars and other events of the period derives. Writing in the third quarter of the fifth century B.C., he is the earliest Greek historian whose work survives and he was the first to produce an accomplished treatment of a major theme. Setting it in the context of conflict between Europe and Asia, Herodotus gives an account which traces the rise and expansion of the Persian empire and its dealings with the Greeks, and culminates in the Persians’ unsuccessful invasions of Greece in 490 and 480–479 B.C.
This is the first part to be included in the Aris & Phillips Classical Texts series of the Histories. Book V covers the beginning of the revolt of the Ionian Greeks against Persia in the 490s, with digressions on the history of Athens and Sparta at that time. As with other volumes in the series this volume comprises Introduction, Greek text with selective critical apparatus, English translation and a Commentary which focuses particularly on the history which Herodotus narrates, and how and why he narrates it as he does.
'This edition marks an auspicious beginning for Herodotus in the Aris and Phillips series; it provides a lucid and learned introduction to an author whose boundless curiosity requires informed explication by a “wise advisor” indeed, and Professor Rhodes unquestionably fills the bill. It is difficult for me to imagine, on this scale, a more informative historical commentary on book five.'
Charles Chiasson, Bryn Mawr Classical Review