Król gniewny czy król szalony? Herodotowy portret Kambizesa
AN ANGRY KING OR A MADMAN? HERODOTUS' PORTRAIT OF CAMBYSES
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Delineating various characters in his Histories, Herodotus is influenced by his theories on national character. This is why he presents Cambyses as a cruel barbarian despot. Many of the king’s deeds result from anger which the historian tries to justify. Other crimes, such as cruel treatment of his family and friends, and profanation of Persian and foreign religious cults, Herodotus seems to treat as signs of madness. In this article, it is shown that some of these actions could have stemmed from cultural misunderstandings: the king did not know enough about foreign religions and customs.
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