Charon of Lampsakos

from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Charon of Lampsakos (* around 480/477 BC in Lampsakos ; † probably 2nd half of the 5th century BC) was an ancient Greek historian .

Almost nothing is known about his life. Dionysius of Halicarnassus assigns him to the older group in a list of historians drawn up by him (together with, for example, Akusilaos of Argos and Hecataus of Miletus ). That would mean that it would have been more in the 6th century BC. Than in the 5th century BC Lived. An entry concerning him in the Byzantine Suda lexicon reports that he was the son of a Pythocles. The chronological order of his birth is contradictory: We learn that he was born during the reign of Great King Darius (521–485 BC) in the 79th Olympiad (464–461 BC!); But it is also reported that he lived at the time of the Persian Wars in the 75th Olympiad (480–477 BC). In more recent research, following Felix Jacoby , the later date, also represented by the Suda, is assumed to be in the 5th century; accordingly, the main creative period is in the second half of the 5th century BC. To apply. In the fragments of the Greek historians 262 Jacoby not only represents this dating, but also describes the Suda list of writings as authentic:

  • Chronicle of Lampsakos (four books, only one fragment preserved)
  • About Lampsakos (original title unknown, two books, perhaps epitoms of the chronicle, not preserved)
  • Regional writings: Ethiopian history (s) (Aithiopika), Persian history (s) ( Persika , two books), Libyan history (s) (Libyka), Cretan history (three books, contain laws of Minos )
  • Periplus journey behind the pillars of Heracles ,
  • Greek stories ( Hellenika, four books)
  • Prytans / Archons of the Lacedaemonians (four books, chronicle, perhaps already annalistic , only title known)
  • Founding cities (two books)

Only a few fragments, if any, of all works have been preserved by other authors (collected in FGrHist 262). Athenaios Naukratios has a longer quote from the chronicle :

“The Bisalts carried out a campaign to Kardia and achieved victory. The leader of the Bisalts was Naris. He had been sold [into slavery] as a boy in Kardia. When he was a slave to a Kardian, he became a beard trimmer. There was an oracle among the Cardians that the Bisalts would attack them, and those in the barber shop often talked about it. And he escaped from Kardia to his fatherland and let the Bisalten advance against the Kardians after he had been appointed leader by the Bisalts. All the Cardians, however, had taught their horses to dance to the game of flutes at symposia. They stood on their back legs and danced with their front legs (like dancers who gesticulate with their hands) because they knew the flute melodies very well. Naris knew that and got a flute player from Kardia, and after the flute player had arrived with the Bisalts, she trained many flute players with whom he went on the campaign to Kardia. And when the battle was on, he ordered all the flute tunes to be played that the Cardian horses knew well. And when the horses heard the flute, they stood on their hind legs and turned to the dance. The main strength of the Cardians, however, lay in the cavalry, and so they were defeated. "

Text output

Paola Ceccarelli (Ed.) In Brill's New Jacoby , No. 262 (with English translation, commentary and research discussion).


Web links


  1. See Lendle, p. 71.
  2. Quoted from Lendle, p. 72 f.