Hegel on Thucydides

In the Introduction to the Philosophy of History (Rauch 1988; Nisbet 1975), Hegel claims that Thucydides conjures a picture of a certain method of dealing with history, namely, the method of original history. The class of original historians includes Herodotus and Guiccardini.

This class of historians, claims Hegel, “primarily describe the actions, events, and situations they themselves have witnessed, and whose spirit they shared in.” (Rauch 1998, 3). Hegel holds that the “content of these histories … cannot be of great external scope” and “their essential material is what is present and alive in their surrounding world.” (Rauch 1988, 4, 5).

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