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Please read Herodotus’ account of the Battle of Plataea (Plataiai), which was fought in 479 and was the culminating battle of the Greco-Persian Wars. Herodotus’ account of the battle is at 9.25-89 of his Histories, in other words, Book Nine, sections 25 through 89 of the Histories. This account of Plataea can be easily found, in a decent translation, here
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. While you’re reading Herodotus’ account of Plataea, look especially for the quality and kind of military resistance that the Persians put up against the assembled Greeks. After you’re done reading the relevant passages from Herodotus, please answer the following question: why, do you think, were the Greeks ultimately militarily successful against the Persians in this battle? Please state your thesis clearly, early on in your paper, and defend it throughout the rest of paper by frequent references to Herodotus’ text.
As for your writing, let me emphasize two things. First, please write as clearly as possible. Please assume that your reader is an intelligent and educated person, but also a person who knows nothing about the subject you’re treating in your paper. Second, there’s a really excellent site for all aspects of undergraduate writing, which is published by UNC Chapel Hill’s Writing Center; it can be read here
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I’ll tell you how to cite the given primary source(s).
you’ll cite as follows, always parenthetically, in the text (that is, you won’t need to use footnotes). On Herodotus, you’ll just cite by enclosing your citation in parentheses. This citation will include the book number, the chapter number, and the section number(s). For example if you wrote the following sentence about the Athenian generals informing the Spartan general Pausanias about their encounter with Alexander the Macedonian, you’d cite in the following manner: “The Athenian generals then went to the right wing of the Greek army and told Pausanias what they had heard from Alexander (9.46.1).”

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