Alcibiades - mercurial soldier and charismatic commander without peer on land and sea, a man whom fortune always favoured.
Raised as a ward of Pericles, later a protege of Socrates, and compared to Achilles by the adoring Athenian masses, he was to become the key figure in the Peloponnesian War - the tumultuous 27-year civil war between Athens and Sparta that would devastate Greece in the last quarter of the 5th century BC.
At the outset, for all his Spartan upbringing, Alcibiades remained loyal to Athens.
But his popularity - and his arrogance - fuelled the bitter resentment of rivals who secured his death warrant on a charge of treason.
Encouraged to flee for his life (and showing masterful pragmatism for which he joined the enemy, the Spartans, and went on to lead their legendary scarlet-cloaked ranks from one military triumph to the next.
What became clear to the opposing states was that whoever had Alcibiades at the head of their army would control Greece.
It was Aristophanes once wrote that Athenians 'love, hate and cannot do without him' and to the end, their glory and downfall were shared. Recounted by one Polemides, a seasoned soldier accused of assassinating the great leader, Tides of War is an epic, thrilling retelling of ancient, near-forgotten history.
From devastating battles on land and sea to the vicious political infighting and back-stabbing in the city of Athena herself, Steven Pressfield again succeeds in bringing historical precision and human scale to those dark, dangerous times, and paints an extraordinary portrait of this remarkable man whose fortunes were to mirror the ebb and flow of the tides of war...
- Format: Paperback
- Pages: 608 pages, maps
- Publisher: Transworld Publishers Ltd
- Publication Date: 05/03/2001
- Category: Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)
- ISBN: 9780553813326