Herodotus Literature Selections

For all of our upper level courses, the assigned literature provides background for the student's analysis and imitation work, and is highly recommended. Most of the books assigned are available online (links provided below).

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Assigned Literature for Herodotus


The Histories by Herodotus  -  Herodotus is known as the father of history, and reading this work is an indispensable part of Classical Writing–Herodotus. The Landmark version translated by by Andrea L. Purvis that makes Herodotus even more accessible. It is illustrated, annotated, and filled with maps and topical essays to guide the students. There are less expensive versions of The Histories which you may use, but we think the extra money for this version is well spent. Available online.

Oresteia by Aeschuylus
The Libation Bearers continues the tale with Orestes, son of Agamemnon, murdering his mother Clytemnaestra to avenge his father's death, and his subsequent exile. The cycle is completed with The Eumenides, in which Orestes returns to his home and stands trial for his crime. This play cycle is key to judicial rhetoric and is mandatory for understanding the lessons in Herodotus. Agamemnon, The Libation Bearers, and The Eumenides are all available online.

On the Incarnation by Athanasius
This book explains the theology behind the Incarnation of Christ. This book is a key document to understanding the Nicene Creed. This book is short and is easily printed or read from the Internet (about 50 pages).

The Prince by Machiavelli
This book discusses political hard-ball tactics used for a prince to stay in power. The chapters are short, and the book is a fast read. We draw selections from this book for analysis and refutation essays, but this selection can be optional. Available online.

The Ecclesiastical History of the English People by Bede
This tells the story of the English people from the perspective of a seventh and eighth century monk, who carefully records the conversion of the English to the Christian faith. We use the more fantastical legends in this book for refutation and confirmation exercises. Available online.


Supplemental Literature for Herodotus

See also Supplemental Literature for Diogenes




Primer: Resources and Literature   

Aesop & Homer: Assigned and Supplemental Reading

Diogenes: Assigned and Supplemental Reading

Plutarch: Assigned and Supplemental Reading

Demosthenes: Assigned and Supplemental Reading

Poetry: Assigned and Supplemental Reading

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