The Athenian statesman Cimon was ostracised from Athens for ten years (461-451 BC), after the Athenian expedition led by him and sent to help Sparta during the helot uprisings was dismissed by the suspicious Spartans.

Other than a little appearance at the Battle of Tanagra, in Boeotia, the quick Google sources (Wikipedia, Britannica, Ancient History Encyclopedia) don't mention anything about him during this time.

Is it known where did Cimon spend his time in exile?

  • 1
    I don't think ancient sources say anything on this but he probably wasn't far away as he turned up uninvited on the battlefield at Tanagra in 457 BC. Dec 28, 2018 at 14:06
  • Plutarch's Life of Cimon doesn't say anything about this matter, I should have started adressing that, how embarrasing :).
    – Brasidas
    Dec 28, 2018 at 17:04

1 Answer 1


I think I've found it: the Chersonese.

Googling for "Cimon exile Attica" landed me in the Perseus site.

Andocides, in On the Peace says this:

Now take the days when we were fighting Euboea and controlled Megara, Pegae, and Troezen. We were seized with a longing for peace; and, in virtue of his being Sparta's representative at Athens, we recalled Cimon's son, Miltiades, who had been ostracized and was living in the Chersonese, for the one purpose of sending him to Sparta to make overtures for an armistice.

Andoc. 3 3

The edition - Harvard University Press, 1968 - has this note:

A double historical error. (a) Andocides means Cimon, son of Miltiades. (b)...

Then, searching for "Cimon exile Chersonese", I found History of Ancient and Modern Greece, by John Frost:

About the same time the two great parties in Athens were reconciled, and Cimon was recalled at the motion of Pericles, having completed only five years of his term of banishment, which he spent on his inherited lordship in the Chersonese.

This seems to confirm the Chersonese, although the book is from 1851 and the idea of Cimon being exiled for "only" five years is, from what I've read, somewhat debatable today.

  • Nice find. I should have checked Andocides. Dec 30, 2018 at 8:39

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