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Uniting past and present: Sicily as a locus of identity between Greece and Rome

  • Maria do Céu Fialho

Basing on the accounts of Thucydides and Plutarch, the paper analyses the way Sicily and the proposed Athenian expedition to Sicily, as a strategic bridge to advance over Carthage, define Nicias and Alcibiades, and what they represent: old Athens, comprised of experienced rulers and devoted, thoughtful citizens, who retreat, aware of the madness and threat of disaster that will lead to the ruinous outcome of the civil war. Forced to join the expedition, Nicias, as the embodiment of this polis, will stay until the end, in a campaign with which he does not agree, trying to save his fellow citizens. Alcibiades together with what he represents are fighting fiercely for the realisation of a megalomaniacal dream that will bring fortune and power for their own advantage. While Nicias accepts the command out of duty and imitation, Alcibiades yearns for it. In this background, Sicily and Carthage, waving from afar with their wealth and promise of power, constitute the stimulus for action that ultimately destroys an Athens close to defeat. On the other hand, in the young Roman republic, Sicily and Carthage offer natural encouragement of the conquest and submission of their power, as an imperative of the logic of expansion, affirmation and survival of Rome as a nascent power. It is the generation of the old Roman nobility that claims Carthago delenda est.

  • Keywords:
  • Sicily,
  • Carthage,
  • Athens,
  • Rome,
  • Nicias,
  • Alcibiades,
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Maria do Céu Fialho

University of Coimbra, Portugal - ORCID: 0000-0003-2115-9638

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  • Publication Year: 2022
  • Pages: 93-108
  • Content License: CC BY 4.0
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  • Publication Year: 2022
  • Content License: CC BY 4.0
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Chapter Information

Chapter Title

Uniting past and present: Sicily as a locus of identity between Greece and Rome

Authors

Maria do Céu Fialho

Language

English

DOI

10.36253/978-88-5518-612-4.07

Peer Reviewed

Publication Year

2022

Copyright Information

© 2022 Author(s)

Content License

CC BY 4.0

Metadata License

CC0 1.0

Table of Contents

Book Title

Crises (Staseis) and Changes (Metabolai)

Book Subtitle

Athenian Democracy in the Making

Editors

Breno Battistin Sebastiani, Delfim Ferreira Leão

Peer Reviewed

Number of Pages

140

Publication Year

2022

Copyright Information

© 2022 Author(s)

Content License

CC BY 4.0

Metadata License

CC0 1.0

Publisher Name

Firenze University Press

DOI

10.36253/978-88-5518-612-4

ISBN Print

978-88-5518-611-7

eISBN (pdf)

978-88-5518-612-4

eISBN (epub)

978-88-5518-613-1

eISBN (xml)

978-88-5518-614-8

Series Title

Studi e saggi

Series ISSN

2704-6478

Series E-ISSN

2704-5919

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