Herodotus Discussion Questions for Books IV & V

Hi Everyone,
I hope your reading has been going well.  Book IV is one of my favorites because it reminds me of a Scythian exhibit I saw at the Met many years ago which floored me.  The gold jewelry, statues, cups found in burial sites were fantastic.
In these two weeks leading up to our next conference call, please consider the following discussion questions below to help guide the rest of your reading.  I look forward to connecting with you all on Sunday April 1, 8-9:30pm NYC time!  – Andre

Herodotus Discussion Questions – Books IV & V

1.  As invaders, the Persians are considered a formidable foe.  In Book IV, how does Darius carry out the declaration of war against the Scythians?  What is Darius really after?  How do the Scythians and their neighbors prepare for the Persian invasion?  What might Herodotus be foreshadowing with respect to the eventual Persian invasion of Greece?

2.  Given that Ionians were willingly helping Darius in his invasion of Scythia in Book IV, what are the conditions that lead to their revolt in Book V?

3.  What does Herodotus reveal about the state of Greek city-state politics in Book V, especially between Sparta and Athens?  How might this foreshadow political relations in the larger Persian-Greek clashes of Books VII, VIII & IX?

4.  What are your favorite stories or passages from Books IV & V?


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