You are not currently logged in. Please create an account or log in to view the full course.

Classics & Ancient History   >   Herodotus: Histories

What are the Histories about?

  • About
  • Transcript
  • Cite

Herodotus: Histories

In this course, Professor Robin Osborne (University of Cambridge) explores the Histories of Herodotus. In the first module, we discuss what the Histories are actually about, before thinking about the form of the Histories—its overall structure, as well as Herodotus’ use of source—in the second module. In the third module, we explore how Herodotus presents Greeks and non-Greeks by considering his presentation of the Battle of Marathon, before thinking in the fourth module about the purpose of the various seemingly ‘irrelevant’ stories that can be found throughout the Histories.

What are the Histories about?

In this module, we focus on the question of what the Histories are about, thinking in particular about the peculiar set of stories that ‘frame’ the whole work—the story of Candaules and Gyges at the beginning, and that of Xerxes, Xanthippus and Cyrus at the end.

Cite this Lecture

APA style

Osborne, R. (2018, August 15). Herodotus: Histories - What are the Histories about? [Video]. MASSOLIT.

MLA style

Osborne, R. "Herodotus: Histories – What are the Histories about?." MASSOLIT, uploaded by MASSOLIT, 15 Aug 2018,


Prof. Robin Osborne

Prof. Robin Osborne

University of Cambridge