Herodotus and the topography of Xerxes' invasion: Place and memory in Greece and Anatolia

Herodotus and the topography of Xerxes' invasion: Place and memory in Greece and Anatolia

by Jan Zacharias Van Rookhuijzen

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Overview

In his Histories, Herodotus of Halicarnassus gave an account of Xerxes’ invasion of Greece (480 BCE). Among the information in this work features a rich topography of the places visited by the army, as well as of the battlefields. Apparently there existed a certain demand among the Greeks to behold the exact places where they believed that the Greeks had fallen, gods had appeared, or Xerxes had watched over his men.
This book argues that Herodotus’ topography, long taken at face value as if it provided unambiguous access to the historical sites of the war, may partly be a product of Greek imagination in the approximately fifty years between the Xerxes’ invasion and its publication, with the landscape functioning as a catalyst. This innovative approach leads to a new understanding of the topography of the invasion, and of the ways in which Greeks in the late fifth century BCE understood the world around them. It also prompts new suggestions about the real-world locations of various places mentioned in Herodotus’ text.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9783110610208
Publisher: De Gruyter
Publication date: 11/19/2018
Pages: 389
Product dimensions: 6.69(w) x 9.45(h) x (d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Jan Zacharias van Rookhuijzen, Leiden University, Leiden, Netherlands.

Table of Contents

Preface IX

List of maps and figures XV

1 Introduction 1

1.1 Topic 1

1.2 Hypothesis & scope 2

1.3 Mnemotopes 5

1.3.1 The choice of a term 5

1.3.2 Forms and limits of mnemotopes 7

1.3.3 Collectivity and symbolism 9

1.3.4 Tourism 11

1.3.5 Spatial densification 13

1.3.6 Mnemotopes and historicity 15

1.3.7 Summary 19

1.4 Mnemotopes and Herodotus 20

1.4.1 Herodotus' Histories as a source of mnemotopes 20

1.4.2 Mnemotopes of eastern kings in the Histories 24

1.4.3 Mnemotopes of the Persian Wars: a new and controversial perspective 28

1.4.4 Summary 38

2 Topographical Case Studies 39

2.1 The march through Anatolia 39

2.1.1 The Halys river 40

2.1.2 The waterfall and cave at Kelainai 42

2.1.3 Croesus' stele at Kydrara 48

2.1.4 The plane tree of Kallatebos 51

2.1.5 Sardis 56

2.1.6 Summary 60

2.2 The Troad and the Hellespont 61

2.2.1 Mount Ida 62

2.2.2 The Scamander river 65

2.2.3 Troy: the temple of Athena Ilias and the tombs of the heroes 67

2.2.4 Abydos: Xerxes' throne (I) and the Hellespont bridges 78

2.2.5 Agore and Helle's grave 86

2.2.6 Summary 89

2.3 The march through northern Greece 89

2.3.1 The 'Royal Road' through Thrace 91

2.3.2 The cape of Sarpedon and lake Stentoris 92

2.3.3 Doriskos 93

2.3.4 The Strymon river and Ennea Hodoi 95

2.3.5 The canal through the Athos peninsula 101

2.3.6 The tomb of Artachaies 105

2.3.7 The Tempe valley 107

2.3.8 The Macedonian mountain 110

2.3.9 The temple of Zeus Laphystios at Halos 113

2.3.10 Summary 117

2.4 The advance of the armada and the battle of Artemision 118

2.4.1 The Myrmex reef 120

2.4.2 The beach where the Persian armada moored and Sepias 122

2.4.3 Artemision 136

2.4.4 Aphetai 140

2.4.5 The Koila of Euboea 143

2.4.6 Summary 148

2.5 The battle of Thermopylae 148

2.5.1 The pass, the Persian base at Trachis and Xerxes' throne (II) 150

2.5.2 The Phocian wall 156

2.5.3 The Anopaia path 158

2.5.4 The hill of the last stance of the three hundred Spartans 162

2.5.5 Summary 169

2.6 The march through Phocis 169

2.6.1 The destruction of Phocis; Abai 170

2.6.2 Tithorea 175

2.6.3 The sanctuary of Athena Pronaia at Delphi 177

2.6.4 The Korykian cave 186

2.6.5 Summary 188

2.7 The destructions of Athens and Eleusis 189

2.7.1 The Areopagus 191

2.7.2 The sanctuary of Aglauros 197

2.7.3 The μεγαρον 201

2.7.4 The temple of Erechtheus and Athena's olive tree 207

2.7.5 The Anaktoron of Demeter in Eleusis 210

2.7.6 Summary 214

2.8 The battle of Salamis and Xerxes' escape 214

2.8.1 Psyttaleia 216

2.8.2 Artemis' coast and Mounichia: the trophy and the tomb 222

2.8.3 Xerxes' throne (III) 228

2.8.4 The temple of Athena Skiras 231

2.8.5 The beach of Kolias 233

2.8.6 Xerxes' causeway and ship bridge 234

2.8.7 Cape Zoster 237

2.8.8 Xerxes' flight to Abdera 239

2.8.9 The siege of Potidaia 240

2.8.10 Summary 243

2.9 The battle of Plataea 244

2.9.1 The Persian fort 246

2.9.2 Erythrai; the pass of the 'Oak Heads' 249

2.9.3 The shrine of Androkrates and the Gargaphie spring 250

2.9.4 The 'island' 257

2.9.5 The temple of Hera 259

2.9.6 Argiopion and the temple of Demeter 262

2.9.7 The necropolis 269

2.9.8 Summary 272

2.10 The battle of Mykale and the fall of Sestos 273

2.10.1 Kalamoi and the temple of Hera at Samos 274

2.10.2 Skolopoeis and the temple of Demeter 275

2.10.3 The landing place of the Athenians and the route of the Spartans 281

2.10.4 Protesilaos' grave 282

2.10.5 Sestos and the place of Artaÿktes' crucifixion 286

2.10.6 Summary 288

3 A Typology of Mnemotopes 290

3.1 General mnemotopical processes 290

3.1.1 Speaking toponyms 290

3.1.2 Accumulation 291

3.1.3 Infrastructural mnemotopes 294

3.2 Temple mnemotopes 295

3.2.1 Persian vandalism 296

3.2.2 Divine intervention 298

3.2.3 Persian participation in Greek cult 301

3.3 Military mnemotopes 302

3.3.1 Usual battle sites 302

3.3.2 Concatenation; vantage points 303

3.3.3 Monumentalisation and tombs 304

3.3.4 Places of refuge 305

3.3.5 Pass lore: The enemy's bypass and blockades 306

3.3.6 Thrones 308

4 Conclusion 309

Bibliography 310

Literature and scholia 310

Inscriptions 315

Secondary sources 317

Index Locorum 351

General Index 365

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