In Alcibiades, first published in 1989, one of the most colourful and controversial figures of fifth-century Athens is presented in a sympathetic light. The author sets out to demonstrate how, in his manipulation of the Spartan representatives in 420 BC, in his successful formation of an Athenian-Argive alliance, and in his plan for the conquest of Syracuse, Alcibiades developed a style of leadership that was characterised by audacity, ingenuity and skilful diplomacy. Further, his outstanding generalship during the Hellespontine War prompts speculation on how the Sicilian expedition might have ended had he also been in command.
In many respects the story of Alcibiades is the history of Athens in the twilight of its power; Alcibiades succeeds in constructing a continuous narrative of his political career without duplicating more conventional accounts, always focussing on his involvement in the course of the Peloponnesian War and his troubled relationship with his Athenian compatriots.
Table of Contents
Table of figures; Abbreviations and short titles; Acknowledgements; Preface 1. Family, youth, and early influences 2. Alcibiades and the early stages of the Peloponnesian War 3. Alcibiades and the peace of Nicias, 421-426 4. Sicily and defection 5. Recall, triumph, and death; Appendix: Alcibiades, Genos, and Eupatridae; Chronological Table; Notes; Select Bibliography