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Diodorus Siculus: Historical Library



The "Historical Library" of Diodorus Siculus is a detailed account of Greek and Roman history down to the author's own time (about 60 B.C.). Unfortunately the second half (books 21-40) has only survived in fragments, but even these fragments represent one of the most important sources for the history of the period that they cover.

An English translation of books 1-32 is already available online, on the LacusCurtius site; but books 33-40 have not been available up to now, for the good reason that the standard translation (by Francis Walton) is still under copyright.

To fill the gap, this translation has been put together from various sources: from an old English translation by G.Booth (1814), from a French translation by F.Hoefer (1865), and where both of these are missing, from a completely new translation. Where old translations have been used, they have been thoroughly updated and compared with the Greek to ensure accuracy.



Book 33   Greek text   English translation     145 - 135 B.C.
  Books 34 & 35     Greek text (chapters 1-7)   English translation   134 - 105 B.C.
  Greek text (chapters 8-39)  
Book 36   Greek text   English translation   104 - 98 B.C.
Book 37   Greek text   English translation   91 - 88 B.C.
Books 38 & 39   Greek text   English translation   87 - 72 B.C.
Book 40   Greek text   English translation   71 - ? 60 B.C.


Almost all of the fragments come from one of two sources: summaries in the Bibliotheca of Photius; or excerpts made by order of the emperor Constantine Porphyrogenitus. The excerpts have survived in four collections:

  1. De Legationibus
  2. De Virtutibus et Vitiis
  3. De Insidiis
  4. De Sententiis
The source of each fragment is shown in green in the Greek text.


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