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Author of The Histories

644+ Works 16,396 Members 150 Reviews 57 Favorited

About the Author

Herodotus was the inventor of universal history. Often called the Father of History, his histories are divided into nine books named after the nine muses. A native of Halicarnassus on the coast of Asia Minor (modern Bodrum, Turkey), he traveled extensively, writing lively descriptions of the lands show more he saw and the peoples he encountered. Herodotus set out to relate the story of the conflict of the Greeks of his own time against the "barbarian" Asiatic empire of Achaemenid Persia. His long narrative, titled by modern convention The Histories, begins with the earliest traditions he believed reliable. It ends with a highly colored account of the defeat of the Persian emperor Xerxes and his immense army of slaves by a much smaller number of Greeks fighting to preserve their freedom. Herodotus wrote history, but his methods and assumptions were not those of a modern historian, and his work was unjustly rejected by his successor Thucydides as factually highly unreliable and full of inappropriate romance. By his own admission, Herodotus retold the stories of other peoples without necessarily believing them all. This allowed him total artistic freedom and control to create a picture of the world that corresponded entirely to his own view of it. The result is a picture of Herodotus's world that is also a picture of his mind and, therefore, of many other Greek minds during the period known as "late Archaic." During this period, the Greek mind was dominated by reason, the domain of the first philosophers and the observant and thoughtful medical theorists of the Hippocratic school. Traditional beliefs in the gods of Homer and in their Oracles, especially the Oracle at Delphi, also dominated during this period. The literary genius of Herodotus consisted in the art of the storyteller. The stories he chose to tell, and the order in which he told them, provide his readers with a total view of his world and the way in which the will of the gods and the ambitions of humans interacted to produce what is known as history. For this reason the ancient critic Longinus justly called Herodotus "the most Homeric of all authors." Like Homer, Herodotus strove to understand the world theologically---a goal that makes his work difficult for the reader to understand at first. But, in place of Homer's divine inspiration, Herodotus used his eyes and ears and wrote not poetry but prose. Rejecting what is commonly known as myth, he accepted instead "oral tradition" about remembered events. For example, although he believed that the Trojan War had been fought, he could not investigate it beyond what the poets had said. In his view this "ancient history" of the Greeks and the peoples of Asia was not like contemporary history, because the heroes of old who had created it were beings of a different and superior order who had had a different, direct, and personal relationship with the gods. In recognizing this distinction, Herodotus defined for all time the limits of the historian's discipline. (Bowker Author Biography) show less
Image credit: Roman copy of a Greek original of the early 4th century BC,
Museo Nazionale Romano, Rome, Italy
(Credit: Marie Lan-Nguyen, 2006)


Works by Herodotus

The Histories (0420) 9,706 copies
The Persian Wars (0425) 447 copies
Herodoti Historiae Libri V-IX (1915) — Author — 147 copies
Madness of Cambyses (1600) 135 copies
Historiae 1: Clio (1909) 126 copies
The Histories (Books 5 to 9) (0425) 120 copies
The Histories (1998) 100 copies
An Account of Egypt (0430) 85 copies
Historiae 8: Urania (1970) 63 copies
The Struggle for Greece (1900) 47 copies
Herodoti Historiae (1997) 44 copies
Historia. Libros V-VI (1988) 37 copies
Historiae 3: Thalia (1977) 36 copies
Historiae 7: Polymnia (1994) 34 copies
Historiae 6: Erato (1896) 30 copies
Herodotus (1868) 25 copies
The Penguin Herodotus (1941) 23 copies
Complete Works of Herodotus (2013) 18 copies
Herodotus, book II (1959) 18 copies
Història. Llibre II (2009) 18 copies
Historiae 5: Terpsichore (1977) 13 copies
L'enquête 13 copies
Historiae 2: Euterpe (1978) 12 copies
Tarih (2006) 11 copies
Zeer korte verhalen (1987) 11 copies
The Masterpiece Library of Short Stories Volumes 1 & 2 (1940) — Contributor — 10 copies
Història : Llibres I-III (1988) 9 copies
Veertig verhalen (1998) 9 copies
Historiae 4: Melpomene (1978) 9 copies
Història. II (2009) 8 copies
Le storie di Erodoto (1992) — Author — 8 copies
Historia (2015) 8 copies
HISTORIA IV . Libro VII (2011) 5 copies
A Batalha das Termópilas (2007) 5 copies
Storie vol. II Libri 5-9 (2007) 5 copies
Herodotus Book 1 (1986) 4 copies
The History (2010) 4 copies
L' ||Egypte : histoires (2010) 4 copies
Herodot i udvalg (1983) 4 copies
Història. II 3 copies
Vita Homeri Herodotea (2013) 3 copies
Histórias - Livro I (2007) 3 copies
Historia 3 copies
Histories. Book VI (2017) 3 copies
Història. I 3 copies
Historia 3 copies
Historia 3 copies
História 3 copies
Historia 3 copies
El club del hachís (1999) 3 copies
Storici greci (1993) 3 copies
The Histories 3 copies
Historiae: Libri V-IX (1962) 3 copies
2: Libri 5.-9. (1998) 2 copies
Histories of Herodotus (1958) 2 copies
Història III 2 copies
Herodotos (2012) 2 copies
Historias - Livro VI (2007) 2 copies
Histoires 2 copies
Loeb: Herodotus (4 vols.) (1971) 2 copies
The History 2 copies
Return to Atlantis (1992) 2 copies
Historiarum Libri ix (2010) 2 copies
Història (2001) 2 copies
Història (2000) 2 copies
Dějiny 2 copies
Historias (1990) 2 copies
Història : llibres IV-VI (2003) 2 copies
Historias I 1 copy
Historia V 1 copy
Historias II 1 copy
Historia IV 1 copy
Découverte du Monde (1996) 1 copy
Historien. Buch 3 (2007) 1 copy
Historia III 1 copy
Historia II 1 copy
Historia I 1 copy
Historias (1977) 1 copy
Libri I, II 1 copy
Zgodbe (2006) 1 copy
Καλλιό 1 copy
Historia. Libros III-V (2020) 1 copy
Història 1 copy
Auswahl aus Herodot. (1948) 1 copy
Herodotos 1 copy
Dějiny 1 copy
Histories. Book 1 (2022) 1 copy
Book IX 1 copy
Book VIII 1 copy
Book VIII (1993) 1 copy
Herodot (2010) 1 copy
Historiae 1 copy
Histories (2016) 1 copy
Muzen 1 copy
Història IX 1 copy
Història V 1 copy
Història IV 1 copy
Història II 1 copy
Història I (2000) 1 copy
Storie vol I 1 copy
Història (VI) (2009) 1 copy
˜Les œbarbares (2015) 1 copy
Història (VII) (2010) 1 copy
Book VI: Erato (1959) 1 copy
Elder-God Conspiracy (1988) 1 copy
Il Nilo 1 copy
Introduction 1 copy
L'anello di Policrate. (2009) 1 copy

Associated Works

The Mammoth Book of Historical Whodunits Volume 1 (1993) — Contributor — 560 copies
The Portable Greek Historians (1959) — Contributor — 541 copies
Britannica Great Books: Herodotus and Thucydides (1952) — Contributor — 343 copies
Voyages and Travels (1909) — Contributor — 210 copies
Greek Civilization and Character (1924) — Contributor — 147 copies
The Norton Book of Travel (1987) — Contributor — 109 copies
Classic Travel Stories (1994) — Contributor — 63 copies
The Book of the Sea (1954) — Contributor — 36 copies
Komt een Griek bij de dokter humor in de oudheid (2007) — Contributor — 25 copies
The Lock and Key Library (Volume 2: Mediterranean) (1909) — Contributor — 18 copies
The Gold of the Scythians: Treasures from the Hermitage (1991) — Contributor — 15 copies
Cat Encounters: A Cat-Lover's Anthology (1979) — Contributor — 10 copies
Selections from Greek Historians (1878) — Contributor — 10 copies
Stories from Herodotus (1965) — Story — 9 copies
The Realm of the Impossible (2017) — Contributor — 6 copies
Griekse geschiedschrijvers (1951) — Contributor — 6 copies
Evergreen Stories (1998) — Contributor — 5 copies
Égypte — Composer — 1 copy


Common Knowledge

Canonical name
Legal name
Ήρόδοτος Άλικαρνάσσεως
Other names
484 BCE (circa)
Date of death
425 BCE (circa)
Burial location
Ancient Greece
Persian Empire
Country (for map)
Place of death
Places of residence



Herodotus Reread of Book I in Ancient History (February 2021)
New Herodotus in Ancient History (November 2013)
Herodotus (Anything and Everything) in Ancient History (December 2008)
Herodotus vs. Thucydides in Ancient History (March 2007)


I love history,especially concerning the antiquities. So honestly this would have gotten 4 stars no matter what. That being said,the pairing of classical music and Roy Marsden's smooth and unencumbered narration of all the epic battles, speeches, military stratagem and geography made it truly 3 dimensional. Xerxes as the English would say was a true c@#t. His ascension to the throne is mini series material.
OnniAdda | 3 other reviews | Nov 22, 2023 |
A small excerpt from Herodotus` Histories about a mad Persian king. It might be the translation but it`s a very boring and bumpy read.
TheCrow2 | 3 other reviews | Oct 16, 2023 |
I approached this book with trepidation. I have never read any Greek or Roman histories and assumed that it would be a book i would read a page or 2 a day as a worthy, thing to do. It was highly recommended by Tom Holland on The Rest is History but he would wouldn't he ( he is the translator).
It is actually amazing- a page turner- his insights and thoughts are really modern and Herodotus has a great sense of humour.
Recommended even for people who usually only read popular history books.… (more)
stanleykaye | 82 other reviews | Jun 24, 2023 |



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