The Isolationist Approach of Nicias As Seen in Thucydides

School: Emory University           Price: $10.00 USD

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History 301: This 4 page double-spaced essay with citations discusses Nicias' isolationist approach against the Sicilian Expedition. His speech was delivered in Book 6 of "History Of The Peloponnesian War" against that of Alcibiades.

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Taylor 1Niciass Isolationist ApproachIn Book 6, Thucydides relates the events surrounding the return of the Atheniandelegation from Sicily which was accompanied by the Egestaeans seeking aid in theirconflict against the Selinunites. In keeping with their imperialistic tendenciescharacteristic of the 5th century BCE, such as the movement of the Delian Leagues treasuryto Athens in 454 BCE, the Athenian assembly voted in favor of sending sixty ships to Sicilyunder the command of Alcibiades, Lamachus, and Nicias, son of Niceratus, in an effort tosubdue their allies adversaries and conquer the entire island of Sicily. Alcibiades, the mostoutspoken proponent of the Sicilian Expedition, argued that as a result of suffering frompolitical instability, a strong Sicilian military response would be unlikely and victory wascertain.Despite the popular sentiment toward a violent intervention endorsed by anoverwhelming majority of those presiding at the assembly, the reconvened fivedays later to reassess their decree. Nicias, the reluctant leader rose to dissuade theAthenians from embarking on the Sicilian Expedition, according to Plutarch in PlutarchsL
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