This book, the second volume in Donald Kagan's tetralogy about the Peloponnesian War, is a provocative and tightly argued history of the first ten years of the war. Taking a chronological approach that allows him to present at each stage the choices that were open to both sides in the conflict, Kagan focuses on political, economic, diplomatic, and military developments. He evaluates the strategies used by both sides and reconsiders the roles played by several key individuals.
1. Plans and Resources
2. The First Year of the War
3. The Plague and Its Consequences
4. The Third Year of the War: Phormio
5. The Revolt at Lesbos
6. Sicily and Corcyra
8. Pylos and Sphacteria
9. Megara and Delium
10. The Coming of PeaceConclusions
Appendix A: Pericles and Athenian Income
Appendix B: Pericles' Last Speech
Index of Modem Authors
Index of Ancient Authors and Inscriptions
"The Archidamian War remains sober, judicious, and comprehensive. There is nothing else like it available in English—certainly nothing that takes all the modern scholarship into account.... But perhaps the most valuable achievement of the book is its carefully reasoned demolition of Thucydides's view—warmly embraced by too many scholars—that Pericles's war strategy was justifiable."
Times Literary Supplement
"The temptation to acclaim Kagan's four volumes as the foremost work of history produced in North America in the twentieth century is vivid.... Here is an achievement that not only honors the criteria of dispassion and of unstinting scruple which mark the best of modern historicism but honors its readers. To read Kagan's 'History of the Peloponnesian War' at the present hour is to be almost unbearably tested."
The New Yorker
"A profound analysis of the relation of strategy to politics, a sympathetic but searching critique of Thucydides' masterpiece, and a trenchant assessment of the voluminous modern literature on the war."
The Atlantic Monthly