Pericles Funeral Oration And The Plague Summary

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The reading of “Pericles’ Funeral Oration” and “The Plague” are situated perfectly in the story “History of the Peloponnesian War” by Thucydides. The setting of the “Pericles’ Funeral Oration” is at the end of the first year of war and the beginning of the plague. “Pericles’ Funeral Oration” is showing the customs of how Athenians buried their dead. “The Athenians, following their annual custom, gave a public funeral for those who had been the first to die in the war” (Thucydides, p. 143). Two days prior to the ceremony the bones of the fallen men were brought into a tent for the families and friends to pay respect. A funeral process of wagons carrying coffins of cypress wood was lead down the road. A coffin from each tribe was presented with the bones of their fallen. There was one coffin that was empty in the procession, that was for the bodies that could not be recovered, men left on the field of battle. As the bones are laid in the most beautiful quarter of the city, a person who was highly intelligent and of good reputation is picked to give the speech for the dead. This year it was Pericles. Usually the main topics of this kind of speech are about how the soldiers were valiant in action, and how their glories would be proclaimed. These men were courageous and manliness. Pericles speech was different. It’s main topic of the speech was the ancestors that came before them. He explains how if it for these ancestors, who were not only honor for what they did

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