Thalassocracies, The

By Molly Miller

Hardcover : 9780873950626, 185 pages, June 1971

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Table of contents


The Problem

Part 1. The Historical Thalassocracies
A. The Texts
i. The Diodoran Register
ii. The Eusebian Canons
a. the evidence of the Armenian Canons
b. the evidence of the Syriac derivatives
c. the evidence of the Greek derivative
d. the evidence of the Latin Canons
iii. earlier texts of the Canons
iv. the original text

B. The Historiography
i. Samos
a. Herodotus and the Register
b. the history of thalassocratic Samos:
   1. the policy of Polykrates
   2. the beginning of the tyranny
   3. Polykrates' Ionian policy
   4. relations with Athens
   5. investment and welfare policies
   6. the Persian alliance
   7. the mutineers' thalassocracy
   8. Sparta and the mutineers' thalassocracy
c. the historiography of the Samian thalassocracies
ii. Sparta
iii. Naxos
iv. Eretria
v. Aigina
vi. the concept of thalassocracy

Part 2. The Ante-Historiographic Thalassocracies
A. The Texts
i. the Diodoran Register
a. Pliny and the power of 'free Mitylene'
b. 'Suidas' on Kastor of Rhodes
ii. the derivatives of the Eusebian Canons
a. the dated sources
b. undated sources
   1. Synkellos
   Rhodes and Phrygia
   2. Michael of Syria
iii. the original text of Eusebius-Jerome
iv. the original text of the Register
v. the chronographic structure of the Diodoran Register
vi. the chronographic structure of the list of Eusebius-Jerome
vii. the residue patterns in the lists
B. The Historiography
i. the author of the Eusebius-Jerome
a. the general problem of identifying the calculations
b. the author as a critic of Kastor
c. the author as constructionist
d. Kephalion (Jac 93)
ii. the separate items from Egypt to Phokaia a. Kastor's Egypt 774/3-745/4
b. Kastor's Miletos 724/3-707/6
c. Kastor's Caria 706/5-646/5
d. Kastor's Lesbos 645/4-(?)602/1
e. Diodorus' Lesbos 645/4-578/7
f. Kastor's Phokaia 577/5-534/3
g. Kephalion's Egypt 783/2-750/49
h. Kephalion's Miletos 749/8-722/1
i. Kephalion's Carion 721/0-671/0
j. Kephalion's Lesbos 670/69-578/7
k. Kephalion's Phokaia 577/6-534/3
iii. Phoenicia
a. the synchronism with free Media
b. Greek documents on Media
   1. Herodotus
   2. Ktesias
   3. Alexander Polyhistor
   4. Thallos(?) and Synkellos
   5. Kastor(?) and Porphyry
c. development of historiography
iv. the traditional thalassocracies after the migrations
a. Cyprus
b. Rhodes
c. Thrace-in-Asia and Phrygia
v. the traditional thalassocracies of the migration period
a. Thrace-in-Europe
b. Pelasgoi
   1. Kastor's Pelasgos
   2. Kastor's Asiatic Greeks
     α. the Dorian emigration
     β. the Ionian emigration
     γ. the Aiolic emigration
     δ. the Magnetes
     ε. Lesbos
c. Lydo-Maiones or Lydoi
   1. Mopsos
   2. Herakleid Lydia
   3. thalassocracy and the Tyrrhenes

Part 3. General Historiography of the Thalassocracies
A. The Traditional Thalassocracies

B. The Eastern Adventure

C. Thalassocracies and Colonies

D. Thalassocratic and Orthodox Historiography

Ancient Sources


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.