Thebes: The Forgotten City of Ancient Greece

Thebes: The Forgotten City of Ancient Greece

by Paul Cartledge
Thebes: The Forgotten City of Ancient Greece

Thebes: The Forgotten City of Ancient Greece

by Paul Cartledge


(Not eligible for purchase using B&N Audiobooks Subscription credits)
$25.99 $30.00 Save 13% Current price is $25.99, Original price is $30. You Save 13%.
Choose Expedited Shipping at checkout for delivery by Thursday, December 15


The riveting, definitive account of the ancient Greek city of Thebes, by the acclaimed author of The Spartans

Among the extensive writing available about the history of ancient Greece, there is precious little about the city-state of Thebes. At one point the most powerful city in ancient Greece, Thebes has been long overshadowed by its better-known rivals, Athens and Sparta. In Thebes: The Forgotten City of Ancient Greece, acclaimed classicist and historian Paul Cartledge brings the city vividly to life and argues that it is central to our understanding of the ancient Greeks’ achievements—whether politically or culturally—and thus to the wider politico-cultural traditions of western Europe, the Americas, and indeed the world.

From its role as an ancient political power, to its destruction at the hands of Alexander the Great as punishment for a failed revolt, to its eventual restoration by Alexander’s successor, Cartledge deftly chronicles the rise and fall of the ancient city. He recounts the history with deep clarity and mastery for the subject and makes clear both the differences and the interconnections between the Thebes of myth and the Thebes of history. Written in clear prose and illustrated with images in two color inserts, Thebes is a gripping read for students of ancient history and those looking to experience the real city behind the myths of Cadmus, Hercules, and Oedipus.

Related collections and offers

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781468316063
Publisher: Abrams Press
Publication date: 09/22/2020
Pages: 336
Sales rank: 544,868
Product dimensions: 6.10(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.30(d)

About the Author

Paul Cartledge is the A. G. Leventis Professor of Greek Culture Emeritus at the University of Cambridge, and a Fellow of Clare College. He has written and edited more than 20 books, many of which have been translated into foreign languages, including The Spartans, Alexander the Great, and Thermopylae, all published by The Overlook Press/Abrams Press, and most recently Democracy: A Life. He is an honorary citizen of modern Sparta and holds the Gold Cross of the Order of Honor awarded by the president of Greece.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgements ix

Note on Spelling xi

Timeline xiii

List of Illustrations xxi

Maps xxiv

Preface xxix

Part I Pre-History

Chapter 1 Introduction: From Myth to History 3

Chapter 2 City of Myth: the Theban Cycle 22

Chapter 3 City of Prehistory and Protohistory: Archaeology, the Linear B Tablets and Homer 32

Part II Archaic Thebes

Chapter 4 Religion 47

Chapter 5 Politics 65

Part III Classical Thebes

Chapter 6 Foreign Affairs 89

Chapter 7 City of Song: Pindar and Athenian Tragedy 110

Chapter 8 The Peloponnesian and Corinthian Wars 132

Chapter 9 Theban Heyday: City of Epaminondas and Pelopidas 184

Part IV Downfall

Chapter 10 Battle of Chaeronea, 338 217

Chapter 11 The Destruction of Thebes, 335 234

Part V Afterlife: The Persistence of Oedipus

Chapter 12 Thebes Rebuilt 243

Chapter 13 Mythic Revivals: the 'pigs' bite back 253

Chapter 14 Conclusion 272

Afterword: A Tribute to Peter Mayer 275

Sources and Further Reading (a selection) 278

Index 287

Customer Reviews