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The study of chronography is a relatively new field, and Dr. Miller has once again contributed to its advancement with The Thalassocracies, her second original investigation in which she attempts to establish the chronography of events in the ancient world. This is an extension of Dr. Miller's Sicilian Colony Dates, in which she examined the ability of the ancient Greek historians to cite dates for historical events occurring before the advent of Greek historiography in the fifth century B. C.
A well-organized, carefully developed study, The Thalassocracies depends almost completely upon evidence of early Greek history and historiography from diverse and rarely treated ancient sources rather than from derivative modern works. It is an important contribution to research in the fields of history and historiography because of Dr. Miller's perceptive observations and interpretations of events in antiquity. She presents a wealth of information about ancient sources of early Greek and Near Eastern history and demonstrates thorough scholarship in handling her subject which, although highly technical, she presents clearly enough to make it accessible to the nonspecialist reader. The value in both of Dr. Miller's studies lies in her penetration beyond the mass of secondary sources to determine the origins of the various dates that are found there and to decide upon the reliability of the general chronology that had become canonical by Herodotus's time.
Molly Broadbent Miller graduated with a B. A. degree in classics from the University of Manchester and received a Ph. D. degree from the University of Glasgow in 1953, completing her dissertation on "Prologomena to the Study of Greek Chronography. " She has taught at the University of Glasgow and, as visiting professor of classics, at State University of New York at Buffalo. Her Sicilian Colony Dates (Albany: State University of New York Press, 1970) is the companion piece to The Thalassocracies. She is the author of Studies in Greek Genealogy (Leiden; E. J. Brill, 1968), and several learned articles on chronographic and demographic aspects of Greek history.