The Persian Expedition

Paperback | June 30, 1950

byRex XenophonTranslated byRex WarnerIntroduction byGeorge Cawkwell

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‘The only things of value which we have at present are our arms and our courage’

In The Persian Expedition, Xenophon, a young Athenian noble who sought his destiny abroad, provides an enthralling eyewitness account of the attempt by a Greek mercenary army – the Ten Thousand – to help Prince Cyrus overthrow his brother and take the Persian throne. When the Greeks were then betrayed by their Persian employers, they were forced to march home through hundreds of miles of difficult terrain – adrift in a hostile country and under constant attack from the unforgiving Persians and warlike tribes. In this outstanding description of endurance and individual bravery, Xenophon, one of those chosen to lead the retreating army, provides a vivid narrative of the campaign and its aftermath, and his account remains one of the best pictures we have of Greeks confronting a ‘barbarian’ world.

Rex Warner’s distinguished translation captures the epic quality of the Greek original and George Cawkwell’s introduction sets the story of the expedition in the context of its author’s life and tumultuous times.

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From Our Editors

 The exploration narrative was essentially created with Xenophon’s The Persian Expedition. Written possibly from diaries compiled at the time, this paints a spectacular picture of the Greeks confronting the “barbarian” world. The time and place is brought to the imagination with remarkable descriptive prowess that renders history real ...

From the Publisher

‘The only things of value which we have at present are our arms and our courage’In The Persian Expedition, Xenophon, a young Athenian noble who sought his destiny abroad, provides an enthralling eyewitness account of the attempt by a Greek mercenary army – the Ten Thousand – to help Prince Cyrus overthrow his brother and take the Persi...

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‘The only things of value which we have at present are our arms and our courage’In The Persian Expedition, Xenophon, a young Athenian noble who sought his destiny abroad, provides an enthralling eyewitness account of the attempt by a Greek mercenary army – the Ten Thousand – to help Prince Cyrus overthrow his brother and take the Persi...

Xenophon was an Athenian country gentleman born about 430 BC. He may have helped to publish Thucydides’ History, and certainly wrote his own Hellenica as a continuation of it. By his own (probably reliable) account he was a fine officer and outstanding leader, but his admiration for Sparta and devotion to Socrates, among other causes, ...

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:384 pages, 7.76 × 5.2 × 0.87 inPublished:June 30, 1950Publisher:Penguin Publishing Group

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0140440070

ISBN - 13:9780140440072

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Table of Contents

The Persian ExpeditionIntroduction
Translator's Note
Map

Book I: The Attempt of Cyrus
1. Cyrus Builds up His Army
2. The March from Sardis to Tarsus
3. Clearchus Deals with a Mutiny
4. Through the Syrian Gates and Across the Euphrates
5. The Arabian Desert. Quarrel Between Menon and Clearchus
6. Cyrus Deals with a Traitor
7. Cyrus Prepares for Battle, but the King Retreats
8. The Battle of Cunaxa and Death of Cyrus
9. The Character of Cyrus
10. After the Battle

Book II: The Greeks are Isolated
1. The King's Messenger
2. The Greeks Join Arieaeus
3. The Greeks sign a Treaty with Tissaphernes
4. The March Begins with Mutual Suspicion
5. Tissaphernes' Treachery
6. Characters of the Five Generals

Book III: The March to Kurdestan
1. Xenophon Takes the Initiative
2. The Council of War
3. The Greeks Suffer from Slings and Arrows
4. Tissaphernes Still in Pursuit
5. Between the Tigris and the Mountains

Book IV: The March to the Sea
1. The Entry into Kurdestan
2. Fighting in the Mountains
3. The Crossing into Armenia
4. They Sack the Camp of Tiribazus
5. Marching Through the Snow
6. They Capture a Pass by a Manoeuvre
7. The Greeks Catch Sight of the Sea
8. They Arrive at Trapezus

Book V: The March to Paphlagénia
1. Chirisophus Goes to Get Ships
2. A Plundering Expedition
3. The Greeks Leave Trapezus, Xenophon's Estate in Later Years
4. The Barbarous Mossynoeici
5. Xenophon Speaks for the Army
6. Xenophon Thinks of Founding a City
7. Xenophon Defends Himself
8. Xenophon Justifies Discipline in Emergency

Book VI: The March to the Bosporus
1. Xenophon Refuses the Offer of the Supreme Command
2. The Army Splits into Three
3. Xenophon Rescues the Arcadians
4. The Army Reunited. Difficulties About Provisions
5. A Greek Victory
6. Some Trouble with the Spartans

Book VII: Byzantium, Thrace and Asia Minor
1. Trouble at Byzantium
2. Xenophon Negotiates with Seuthes
3. The Greeks March with Seuthes
4. Successful Fighting with Seuthes
5. Trouble About the Pay
6. Xenophon is Attacked and Defends Himself
7. Xenophon Speaks to Seuthes
8. Xenophon Leaves the Army

Glossary
Index

From Our Editors

 The exploration narrative was essentially created with Xenophon’s The Persian Expedition. Written possibly from diaries compiled at the time, this paints a spectacular picture of the Greeks confronting the “barbarian” world. The time and place is brought to the imagination with remarkable descriptive prowess that renders history real in a way that readers can almost touch. Share the rigours of the march to Babylon, the dismay of unexpected defeat and the uncertainty that spread along the long road home.