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"What Alkibiades Did and Suffered" — But Not What He Looked Like: Physical Appearance in the Ancient Greek Historians

"What Alkibiades Did and Suffered" — But Not What He Looked Like: Physical Appearance in the... Abstract: Sociology teaches us that good looks and height confer advantages in the 'workplace'. Ancient Greek historians and poets usually show awareness of looks and dress, often in ethnographic contexts, but Thucydides does not, except in medical passages. He never tells us what anybody looked like, not even the sexually attractive Alkibiades, or the sick, emaciated Nikias near the end of his life. Explanations are offered for this reticence, which may be a deliberate reaction against other genres, or a clever way of leaving it to our imaginations. Growing interest in physiognomy may help to explain Hellenistic attention to physical appearance. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Syllecta Classica Department of Classics @ the University of Iowa

"What Alkibiades Did and Suffered" — But Not What He Looked Like: Physical Appearance in the Ancient Greek Historians

Syllecta Classica , Volume 27 – May 17, 2017

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Publisher
Department of Classics @ the University of Iowa
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Copyright © The University of Iowa
ISSN
2160-5157
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Abstract

Abstract: Sociology teaches us that good looks and height confer advantages in the 'workplace'. Ancient Greek historians and poets usually show awareness of looks and dress, often in ethnographic contexts, but Thucydides does not, except in medical passages. He never tells us what anybody looked like, not even the sexually attractive Alkibiades, or the sick, emaciated Nikias near the end of his life. Explanations are offered for this reticence, which may be a deliberate reaction against other genres, or a clever way of leaving it to our imaginations. Growing interest in physiognomy may help to explain Hellenistic attention to physical appearance.

Journal

Syllecta ClassicaDepartment of Classics @ the University of Iowa

Published: May 17, 2017

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