In 1872, Jacob Burckhardt, one of the preeminent historians of classical and Renaissance culture, presented this revolutionary work, which portrays ancient Greek culture as an aristocratic world based on a ruthless competition for honor, a competition that led, in turn, to a tyranous state with minimal personal freedoms. Burckhardt's landmark project, the culmination of thirty years of scholarlship by leading Oxford historian, Oswyn Murray, offers a rich cultural history of a fascinating society.
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