Arrian, Anabasis of Alexander

LCL 236: 2-3

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1Πτολεμαῖος ὁ Λάγου καὶ Ἀριστόβουλος ὁ Ἀριστοβούλου ὅσα μὲν ταὐτὰ ἄμφω περὶ Ἀλεξάνδρου τοῦ Φιλίππου συνέγραψαν, ταῦτα ἐγὼ ὡς πάντῃ ἀληθῆ ἀναγράφω, ὅσα δὲ οὐ ταῦτά, τούτων τὰ πιστότερα ἐμοὶ φαινόμενα καὶ ἅμα ἀξιαφηγητότερα 2ἐπιλεξάμενος. ἄλλοι μὲν δὴ ἄλλα ὑπὲρ Ἀλεξάνδρου ἀνέγραψαν, οὐδ᾿ ἔστιν ὑπὲρ ὅτου πλείονες ἢ ἀξυμφωνότεροι ἐς ἀλλήλους· ἀλλ᾿ ἐμοὶ Πτολεμαῖός τε καὶ Ἀριστόβουλος πιστότεροι ἔδοξαν ἐς τὴν ἀφήγησιν, ὁ μὲν ὅτι συνεστράτευσε βασιλεῖ Ἀλεξάνδρῳ, Ἀριστόβουλος, Πτολεμαῖος δὲ πρὸς τῷ ξυστρατεῦσαι ὅτι καὶ αὐτῷ βασιλεῖ ὄντι αἰσχρότερον ἤ τῳ ἄλλῳ ψεύσασθαι ἦν· ἄμφω δέ, ὅτι τετελευτηκότος ἤδη Ἀλεξάνδρου ξυγγράφουσιν [ὅτε] αὐτοῖς ἥ τε ἀνάγκη καὶ ὁ μισθὸς τοῦ 3ἄλλως τι ἤ ὡς συνηνέχθη ξυγγράψαι ἀπῆν. ἔστι δὲ ἃ καὶ πρὸς ἄλλων ξυγγεγραμμένα, ὅτι καὶ αὐτὰ ἀξιαφήγητά τέ μοι ἔδοξε καὶ οὐ πάντῃ ἄπιστα, ὡς λεγόμενα μόνον ὑπὲρ Ἀλεξάνδρου ἀνέγραψα. ὅστις δὲ θαυμάσεται ἀνθ᾿ ὅτου ἐπὶ τοσοῖσδε συγγραφεῦσι καὶ ἐμοὶ ἐπὶ νοῦν ἦλθεν ἥδε ἡ συγγραφή,


Anabasis of Alexander I

Arrian Anabasis of Alexanderx

Book I

Wherever Ptolemy son of Lagus and Aristobulus son of Aristobulus have both given the same accounts of Alexander son of Philip, it is my practice to record what they say as completely true, but where they differ, to select the version I regard as more trustworthy and also better worth telling. In fact other2 writers have given a variety of accounts of Alexander, nor is there any other figure of whom there are more historians who are more contradictory of each other, but in my view Ptolemy and Aristobulus are more trustworthy in their narrative, since Aristobulus took part in king Alexander’s expedition, and Ptolemy not only did the same, but as he himself was a king, mendacity would have been more dishonourable for him than for anyone else; again, both wrote when Alexander was dead and neither was under any constraint or hope of gain to make him set down anything but what actually happened. However, I have also3 recorded some statements made in other accounts of others, when I thought them worth mention and not entirely untrustworthy, but only as tales told of Alexander. Anyone who is surprised that with so many historians already in the field it should have

DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.arrian-anabasis_alexander.1976