The History of Ancient Greece, Its Colonies and Conquests, from the Earliest Accounts Till the Division of the Macedonian Empire in the East: Including the History of Literature, Philosophy, and the Fine Arts (Classic Reprint)

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Fb&c Limited, 16 jul. 2017 - 506 pagina's
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Excerpt from The History of Ancient Greece, Its Colonies and Conquests, From the Earliest Accounts Till the Division of the Macedonian Empire in the East: Including the History of Literature, Philosophy, and the Fine Arts

In the execution of this extensive plan, might I assume any merit to myself, it would be that of having diligently studied the Greek writers, without adopting their prejudices, or copying their narratives with servility. Many events, highly interesting' to the citizens of Athens or of Sparta, now interest no more; concerning many important transactions, anciently too familiar to be explained, the Modern Reader will reasonably expect informa tion. On some occasions, therefore, I found it necessary to concentrate and abridge; on others, to dilate and expatiate; but have never sacrificed that due relation of parts to the Whole, and to each other, or violated that unity of design which I was ambitious to attain in the present History, by condescending to copy or translate.' In the Work throughout, I have ventured to think for myself; and my opinions, whether well or ill founded, are, at least, my own.

The present History was undertaken, and a considerable part of it written, many years ago, by the advice of some persons of taste and learning; who, having read my historical Introduction to the Orations of Lysias and Isocrates, wished to see the whole series of Grecian story, treated on the same plan. My situation, and my leisure, enabled me to meet their wish; but before my manuscript was prepared for the Press, my studies were interrupted by the only employment, not enjoined by some positive duty, which I should have allowed (such are the sanguine hopes of authors!) to suspend my literary labours. During that long interval, different portions of Grecian history have been ably treated in English, as well as in *foreign languages. Yet, as most of those works still remain incomplete, and asnone of them embrace the whole extent of my subject, or at all pre occupy my plan, I venture to offer the present History, deeply sensible as I am of its imperfections, to the indulgence of the Public.

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