Monday, August 25, 2014

Still opaque after all these years …

… Book Review: 'Pericles of Athens' by Vincent Azoulay — WSJ.

Where sources contradict each other, Mr. Azoulay is often forced to admit that both have a certain claim on truth. His cautious, balanced weighing of the evidence will fascinate scholars but frustrate those who want to know who, in the end, Pericles was. At times Mr. Azoulay appears to shuttle between opposing views rather than endorsing one or the other. He claims at one point that "Pericles refused to engage in warfare unless it was absolutely necessary," at another that "Pericles unhesitatingly resorted to force." A careful reader can perhaps trace both statements to particular sources or historical moments, but others will, understandably, feel slightly baffled.

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