Description of Greece, Volume 1

Front Cover
Harvard University Press, 1918 - History - 496 pages

Pausanias, born probably in Lydia in Asia Minor, was a Greek of the 2nd century CE, about 120¬-180, who travelled widely not only in Asia Minor, Palestine, Egypt and North Africa, but also in Greece and in Italy, including Rome. He left a description of Greece in ten books, which is like a topographical guidebook or tour of Attica, the Peloponnese, and central Greece, filled out with historical accounts and events and digressions on facts and wonders of nature. His chief interest was the monuments of art and architecture, especially the most famous of them; the accuracy of his descriptions of these is proved by surviving remains.

The Loeb Classical Library edition of Pausanias is in five volumes; the fifth volume contains maps, plans, illustrations, and a general index.

 

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User Review  - Colby_Glass - LibraryThing

Fascinating like Herodotus. Many diversions and trivia. Read full review

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About the author (1918)

Pausanias traveled through Greece in the middle of the second century a.d. On the way, he wrote about his travels in 10 rich books, beginning at Athens and ending up at Delphi, the site of Apollo's ancient oracle. From his writings, it is clear that Pausanias also knew Palestine, Syria, Asia Minor (now Turkey), Egypt, and parts of Italy, including Rome. Pausanias liked especially to describe monumental art and architecture, much of it religious in nature. Pausanias routinely gave attention to the history and topography of the most important cities he visited. His descriptions of the wonders of nature reveal his own attitude of personal curiosity. Especially significant for the study of religions are his accounts of local ceremonies, superstitions, legends, and folklore. These are often not as detailed as one might like, but they are invaluable clues to the religious life of Greece in the middle of the second century.

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