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Extract from the Preface

SUCH are the most conspicuous transactions of this
142d Olympiad, B. C. 212-208.
Olympiad, that is, of the four years which an Olympiad must be reckoned to contain; and I shall endeavour to include the history of them in two books.

I am quite aware that my history has an element of austerity in it, and is adapted to, and will be approved by only one class of readers, owing to the uniformity of its plan. Nearly all other historians, or at any rate most, attract a variety of readers by entering upon all the various branches of history. The curious reader is attracted by the genealogical style; the antiquarian by the discussion of colonisations, origins of cities, and ties of blood, such as is found in Ephorus; the student of polities by the story of tribes, cities, and dynasties. It is to this last branch of the subject that I have had a single eye, and have devoted my whole work; and accordingly have, as I said before, accommodated all my plans to one particular class of narrative. The result is that I have made my work by no means attractive reading to the majority. Why I thus neglected other departments of history, and deliberately resolved to confine myself to chronicling actions, I have already stated at length; however, there is no reason why I should not briefly remind my readers of it again in this place, for the sake of impressing it upon them.

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