Anabasis is the most famous book of the Ancient Greek professional soldier and writer Xenophon.
The seven-tome book of the Anabasis was composed around the year 370 BC, and, in translation, Anabasis is rendered as “The March of the Ten Thousand” and as “The March Up Country. The narration of the journey is Xenophon’s best known work”, and “one of the great adventures in human history”.
The Anabasis is his story of the march to Persia to aid Cyrus, who enlisted Greek help to try and take the throne from Artaxerxes, and the ensuing return of the Greeks, in which Xenophon played a leading role. This occurred between 401 B.C. and March 399 B.C.
Xenophon of Athens (c. 431BC – 354 BC) was an ancient Greek philosopher, historian, soldier, mercenary, and student of Socrates.
As a soldier, Xenophon became commander of the Ten Thousand at about 30, with noted military historian Theodore Ayrault Dodge saying of him, “the centuries since have devised nothing to surpass the genius of this warrior.”
He established the precedent for many logistical operations and was among the first to use flanking maneuvers, feints and attacks in depth. He was among the greatest commanders of antiquity. As a historian, Xenophon is known for recording the history of his time, the late-5th and early-4th centuries BC, in such works as the Hellenica, which covered the final seven years and the aftermath of the Peloponnesian War (431–404 BC), thus representing a thematic continuation of Thucydides’ History of the Peloponnesian War.
Translated by H. G. Dakyns
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