Polybius of Megalopolis

The Greek historian Polybius of Megalopolis (second century BCE) wrote a number of historical works, including his Histories, a Life of Philopoemen, A Treatise on Tactics, and a History of the Numantine War. Of these, only his Histories survives. To cite Polybius’s Histories, one should use the following abbreviation:

Hist. Polybius, Historiae

Note that, as with other classical authors and works, we use the Latin title (see SBLHS 2 §8.3.14.3).

References to the work should include the name Polybius (including his city is unnecessary, unless confusion with another Polybius is likely), an abbreviation for the work, and the specific part of the text being referenced:

(Polybius, Hist. 2.2)

Polybius’s Histories included forty books. Only books 1–5 are fully still extant; the remaining books are available only in excerpts. Each book is further subdivided into chapters and sections. The example above cites chapter 2 of book 2; to cite section 4 of chapter 2, one would write: Polybius, Hist. 2.2.4.

When an English translation of the work is quoted, the translator’s name should be included in brackets (see SBLHS 2 §6.4.2):

(Polybius, Hist. 2.2 [Paton])

The Greek text and English translations of Polybius’s Histories are available through the Loeb Classical Library and online in the Perseus digital collection (Greek, English).

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