Thucydides, a Greek historian, born in Athens probably about 471 B. C, died about 400. He was the son of Olorus, and was probably connected with the family of Cimon. He tells us that he owned gold mines in Thrace, opposite Thasos. In 424 B. C. he was the commander of an Athenian squadron of seven ships, and charged with the general authority on the coast of Thrace; but as he failed to arrive in time to prevent the surrender of the important city of Amphipolis to the Spartan general Brasidas, he was condemned to exile, which continued 20 years. He spent much of this time in Thrace; but he must also have visited various parts of Greece, and it is certain from his own writings that he frequently visited the states under Lacedaemonian rule. He returned to Athens about the time the city was freed by Thrasybulus. The accounts of his death are uncertain. According to Pau-sanias, he was assassinated after his return; according to Plutarch, he was said to have been killed in Thrace, though his remains were carried to his native city. The work by which Thucydides is known is the history of the Pelo-ponnesian war, a work equally distinguished by truthfulness, historical insight, excellence of narration, and masterly arrangement of parts.
The first edition was published by Aldus at Venice in 1502. Of the numerous later editions, the best are those of J. Bekker (3 vols., Berlin, 1821), Haack (2 vols. 8vo, Leipsic, 1820), Poppo (10 vols. 8vo, Leipsic, 1821-'38), Arnold (3 vols. 8vo, Oxford, 1830-'35), and Stahl's revised edition of Poppo (Leipsic, 1843-'75). There have been English versions by Nicolls (London, 1550), Hobbes, W. Smith (1753), Bloomfield (1829), Dale (1856), and Richard Crawley (1874).