King Rhampsinitus and the Thief

Herodotus (484—424 B.C.)

Herodotus, the Father of History, is celebrated as a teller of tales. These he introduced into his History partly for purposes of elucidation and example, but partly also because he enjoyed writing them. The story that follows is, according to Professor Murray “all but pure fairy” tale, and is probably based on an Indian original. For the first time in Greek literature we have a short story as unified and free from unessential details as the most rigid modern critic could desire.

The present version, which comprises Chapter CXXI of the Second Book of the History, is from the standard translation by George Rawimson, first published in 1858. There is no title in the original.

King Rhampsinitus and the Thief

King Rhampsinitus was possessed, they said, of great riches in silver—indeed to such an amount, that none of the princes, his successors, surpassed or even equaled his wealth. For the better custody of thi

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