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Jacob Abbott

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .Persian army reached the pass of Thermopylæ, which was the great avenue of entrance, on the north, into the territories of the Greeks, they found only three hundred men ready there to oppose their passage!

Pause in the assembly.

When Mardonius had concluded his speech, he sat down, and quite a solemn pause ensued. The nobles and chieftains generally were less ready than he to encounter the hazards and uncertainties of so distant a campaign. Xerxes would acquire, by the success of the enterprise, a great accession to his wealth and to his dominion, and Mardonius, too, might expect to [Pg 66]reap very rich rewards; but what were they themselves to gain? They did not dare, however, to seem to oppose the wishes of the king, and, notwithstanding the invitation which he had given them to speak, they remained silent, not knowing, in fact, exactly what to say.

All this time Artabanus, the venerable uncle of Xerxes, sat silent like the rest, hesitating w. . . Read More

Community Reviews

I didn't know what to expect when I first started reading this book. The first pages were mainly descriptive and they were a bit of a bore. But then as I sank my teeth into it more, the book came alive. Jacob Abbott is a very skilled narrator, breaking down huge chunks of time into bite size bits fo

A-Z Challenge 2022. X.

I'm sure this text is incredibly outdated, but that doesn't mean that Jacob Abbott doesn't do a good job of explaining the reign of Xerxes. Simple pros told in a chronological order about the Persian king, from his ascent to the thrown after his father, Darius The Great's death

A decent account of the life of Xerxes. Abbott seems to lack the sympathy for him that he shows to many historical figures and once again bemoans the fact that the most famous figures in history are famous for wholesale slaughter and creating vast amounts of human misery.

Classical history, told in a old voice.

Abbott makes reading history easy. Xerxes the Great is the Ahaseurus of the Book of Esther in the Bible. He was also the one whose army was drastically reduced by the famous 300! This is a fascinating insight into the man and life at that time.

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