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A History of the Archaic Greek World, ca. 1200-479 BCE, 2nd Edition



A History of the Archaic Greek World, ca. 1200-479 BCE, 2nd Edition

Jonathan M. Hall

ISBN: 978-1-118-34046-2 July 2013 Wiley-Blackwell 392 Pages


A History of the Archaic Greek World offers a theme-based approach to the development of the Greek world in the years 1200-479 BCE.

  • Updated and extended in this edition to include two new sections, expanded geographical coverage, a guide to electronic resources, and more illustrations
  • Takes a critical and analytical look at evidence about the history of the archaic Greek World
  • Involves the reader in the practice of history by questioning and reevaluating conventional beliefs
  • Casts new light on traditional themes such as the rise of the city-state, citizen militias, and the origins of egalitarianism
  • Provides a wealth of archaeological evidence, in a number of different specialties, including ceramics, architecture, and mortuary studies

List of Maps x

List of Figures xi

List of Documents xiii

Preface xv

Preface to the Second Edition xvii

Timeline xix

1 The Practice of History 1

The Lelantine War 1

The Lelantine War Deconstructed 4

What Is History? 8

History as Literature 11

Method and Theory 12

2 Sources, Evidence, Dates 16

Evaluating Sources 16

Dating Archaic Poets 21

Non-Literary Evidence 26

Ancient Chronography 29

Archaeological Dating 33

3 The End of the Mycenaean World and Its Aftermath 41

Mycenaean Greece 41

Gauging the Historicity of the Dorian Migration 44

Alternative Explanations 51

The Loss and Recovery of Writing 56

Whose Dark Age? 59

4 Communities of Place 68

Defining the Polis 68

The Urban Aspect of the Polis: Houses, Graves, and Walls 72

Political and Economic Functions 81

Cultic Communities 85

Polis and Ethnos 90

5 New Homes Across the Seas 96

On the Move 99

The Credibility of Colonial Foundation Stories 105

Pots and Peoples 111

A Spartan Foundation? Taras, Phalanthos, and the Partheniai 116

Hunger or Greed? 120

6 The Changing Nature of Authority 126

Charting the Genesis of the State 126

Kings or “Big-Men”? 127

The Emergence of an Aristocracy 134

Laws and Institutions 138

The Return of the “Big-Man” 144

Excursus I. A Cautionary Tale: Pheidon of Argos 154

7 Fighting for the Fatherland 165

A Hoplite Revolution? 165

Some More Equal Than Others 174

Conquest, Territory, and Exploitation 181

Excursus II. Archaeological Gaps: Attica and Crete 190

8 Defining the Political Community 200

Looking to the End 200

The Role of the Dêmos and the Great Rhetra 205

Drawing Boundaries 211

Land, Labor, and the Crisis in Attica 214

The “Second Sex” 220

Excursus III. Evaluating the Spartan Mirage 227

9 The City of Theseus 235

The End of the Tyranny 235

The Birth of Democracy? 238

The Unification of Attica 243

Theseus: Democrat or Autocrat? 251

The (A)typicality of Athens 255

10 Making a Living 260

Conceptualizing Ancient Economic Activity 260

A Peasant Economy? 262

Plying the Seas 268

The Introduction of Coinage 275

Excursus IV. The Rise of Persia and the Invasions of Greece 282

11 Imagining Greece 290

“Greek” Culture: Unity and Diversity 290

Greeks and Others: The External Dimension 293

The Emergence of Panhellenism: The Internal Dimension 301

The Invention of the Barbarian 308

12 Writing the History of Archaic Greece 312

The First Sacred War: Fact or Fiction? 312

The Limits of Narrative History 317

Dividing up Time and Space 320

Abbreviations and Glossary of Literary Sources 326

Works Cited in the Further Reading 330

Guide to Electronic Resources 339

Index 342