Polybius’ Histories (Greek: Ἱστορίαι Historíai) were originally written in 40 volumes, only the first five of which are extant in their entirety. The bulk of the work was passed down through collections of excerpts kept in libraries in Byzantium. Polybius, a historian from the Greek city of Megalopolis in Arcadia, was taken as a hostage to Rome after the Roman defeat of the Achaean League in Achaean War, and there he began to write an account of the rise of Rome to a world power.
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