The Peloponnesian War, according to Thucydides, was the result of the growth of Athenian power. Beginning with the battle of Abydos in 411, this edition covers the Ionian or Dekeleian War, whose end in 404 also brings to a close the Peloponnesian War as a whole. The narrative is all the more valuable for the fact that Xenophon is likely to have been present at a number of the events described. In his very first sentence he mentions a naval battle in which the Athenians are defeated, and in doing so heralds their eventual defeat in the war. It is a tale of decline, and of expansionism gone awry.