Lectures on Ancient History, from the Earliest...

Book Details

Author  Barthold Georg Niebuhr
Publisher  Forgotten Books
Publication Date   June 16, 2012
ISBN  1440066175
Pages  538

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It might be asked,i wliether the Greeks who, after the battle of Chaeronea, were so degenerate and dissolute, and had long ceased to be animated by that lofty spirit of freedom which had distinguished their fathers, are at all worthy of being made the subject of serious historical inquiries. I answer in the affirmative; for notwithstanding all their political insignificance, their national history still presents much that is attractive, and deserves to be known, and Greece still continued to manifest herself in the characters of individual men. They still remained a people that was great even in its fallen state, and radiant, as it were, with the reflex of the lofty genius of the extraordinary men who adorn its earlier history. Whatever may have been the ancient freedom of theM acedonian people, the history of theM acedonian state differs in no respect from that of an eastern despotism; it records only military occurrences, and the personal adventures, and sometimes the crimes, of the ruler and his family. Although the brilliant flowers are withered, yet the history of the Greeks, even during their less illustrious period, remains that of a nation which, though it is sunk low, though it is demoralised and unhappy, yet is still powerful in intellect, and is raised far above every other nation, through its glorious history of the past. Having found the history of that nation during the period of its greatness, delightful and elevating, is it right that we should refuse our attention to its decline? It The whole of what here follows down to the end of theL ecture (with the exception of a few sentences from the course of 1826), is taken from theL ectures delivered iu 1825. Ed.
(Typographical errors above are due to OCR software and don't occur in the book.)

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