The History of Thucydides. Newly tr. into English...with very copious annotations...Prefixed, is an entirely new life of Thucydides: with a memoir of the state of Greece, civil & military, at the beginning of the Peloponnesian war online

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the Myletidae.^ Their language was a mixture of the Chal-
cidic and Doric, but the Chalcidic institutions prevailed.

10 Zancle.] To the hooked form of the promontory which forms the port
of Messena, all travellers bear testimony, llie term Zanclos is, if I mis-
take not, of Hebrew, or, at least, Oriental origin.

1 1 By some Samiant, ^c] Among these was Cadmus Coos, as appears
from rierod. 7, 164, 5. clxfTO kc Xuctkiriv iv^ofurd ^ofiimf c^^c rt xai imx-
roki}<re JSaycXijv ri}v Ic Mcffo^vijv fura€a\ov9av rd ovvofia,

1 Messena.] A city at all times of celebrity, and now the second in the
island. The former colonisers had, it seems, retained the antient name ;
while Mess, was, it seems, the new one.

a Himera,] On the north coast of the island, about twenty miles north-
east of Soloeis, and at the mouth of the river Himera» from which Doris
ap. Stepb. Thes. observes that it wbb named. Perhaps, the river obtained
&tkt name from its pleasantness. The city was one of considerable conse-
quence. On the right bank of the river is situated the modem Termini,
one of the principal cities.of the island.

The period of the colonisation of this city is said, by Diodorus, to have
been the fourth year of the thirty-second Olympiad.

9 Mjfletida,] A powerful family so called.

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Acrae * and Casmenae ^ were founded by the Syracusans,
Acrse seventy years after Syracuse, Casmense nearly twenty
years after Acrae.

Camarina ^ was first settled by the Syracusans, nearly an
hundred and thirty-five years after the foundation of Syra-
cuse ; and the leaders of the colony were Dasco and Mene-
colos. The citizens being, however, expelled by the Sy-
racusans in a war which arose from revolt, in process of
time Hippocrates, tyrant of Gela, having received the terri-
tory as the price of redemption for some Syracusan prisoners,
again settled Camarina, becoming himself the leader of the
colony. And on being again destroyed by Gelon, it was
settled, for the third time, by Gelon. ^

VI. By so many nations, Grecians and barbarians, was
Sicily inhabited ; and upon so considerable a country were
the Athenians bent on making an expedition, aiming (for that
was the true and real motive) at its total reduction, and will-
ing to make a specious pretext for the attempt, by affording
assistance to those who were related by affinity, or connected
by previous alliance. They had been especially incited to
the undertaking by some ambassadors of the Egestaeans, who

4 Acr€B,] Situated somewhat in the interior, and upon a hi^h ridge, and
about twenty-four miles west of Syracuse. Its name is derived from its
situation, which is alluded to by Sil. Ital. ap. Ciuver. : ** e tumulis glacia-
libus Acrae.*?

5 Casmerug.] This city was situated about nine miles from the sea, on the
river Mot^'cannus, which is about twenty-five miles west of Pachynum.

As to Its situation, Chtverius supposes it to have been where is the
modern town Sci/aH, I find no such place in the recent maps ; but the
situation of Acrae has lately been exactly ascertained by the Sicilian anti-
quaries, as appears from Duppa's travels. The place, he tells us, is a mOe
. from Pelazzolo ; and a museum of antiquities has been formed by the
owners of the site, from excavations.

The name (which is found in the singular in Herodotus and Steph. Byz.)
seems to have been derived from the participle past of ko^w, adorno, in-

Camarina,] One of the latest of the Greek colonies, and which was
almost ruined when it had advanced to a considerable height of prosperity;
yet by the time of the Peloponnesian war it had arrived at a high d^ee of
wealth and power. The name yet remains, though dwindled to a village
called Camarana, on which Poppo refers to Munter, p. 307. seqq. The
origin of the appellation is uncertain.

7 B^ Gelon.] Or rather by the Geloans ; for I cannot but embrace the
conjecture of Dodwell and Wesscling, TeXwyV*

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were then present^ and earnestly entreated their assistance.
For being borderers on the territory of the Selinuntians, they
had been engaged in a war with them, about certain contracts
respecting marriages S and a tract of debatable border-
land^; wherein the Selinantians calling in the assistance of
the Syracusans, pressed them hard ^, assailing them both by
land and sea. Insomuch that the Egestasans, reminding the
/ Athenians of the alliance in the former war made by Laches
with the Leontines, entreated them to send a fleet to their
aid, urging many other arguments for persuasion, and this
as the sum of the whole : — That if the Syracusans should,
after expelling the Leontines, go unpunished, and, destroying
such as remained of tlie Athenian allies, should get into their
hands the dominion of all Sicily, there would be danger lest,
being Dorians, they should, because of kindred, send power-
fill assistance to the Peloponnesians, as Dorians, and more-
over as colonies, to those who had planted them, and co-
operate in bringing down the Athenian power. It was prudent,
therefore, for them, in conjunction willi the remaining allies,
to make a stand against the Sjnracusans, especially as they
themselves (they said) would furnish ample fimds for the war.
On hearing these arguments often urged in the assemblies
by the £gestffians, and those who promoted their cause, the

On the second establishment of Camarina by Hippocrates, see Herod.
7, 155. and the notes of the editors.

I Certain contracts respecting marriages,] Such is the sense, if the Scho-
liast's subaudition, wvaXkayfidrkw, may be admitted. These were, it seems,
certain agreements regulating the intermarriages of the inhabitants of the
two colonies. *

Dionysius, 19, 82. omits this cause of disagreement; only mentioning
the other respecting the tract of debatable border-land. May we ascribe
this to hb not understanding the expression ? Formerly, indeed, I con-
jectured for yafwciav, yvfivucwv, scil, aywfwv I and I have elsewhere observed
the two words to be confounded.

B A tract of debatable border4andJ] On this cause of dissension Diodorus
b more explicit than Thucydides. He tells us, ** that though there was a
river which separated the respective territory of the two states, yet the
Selinuntians would pass it, and claimed the occupation first of the opfiosite
bank, and then of some adjoining territon^.** What river this was, it is not
easv to say. Poppo thinks it was the Acithius. Or, perhaps, it was the

3 Pressed them hardA Kardpyt is here used as at 4, 98. Goeller refers
to Wesseling on Herod. 6, 102.

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Athenians decreed first to send ambassadors to Egesta in order
to make examination concerning the inoney^ whether the sums
they spoke of were deposited in the treasury and the temples *,
and moreover to know the state of things as to the war
with the Selinuntians.

VI L Thus the Athenian ambassadors were sent to Sicily*
And during the same winter the Lacedaemonians and their
allies, except the Corinthians, making an expedition into the
Argive territory, ravaged some not very considerable part of
the country,, and carried off the corn in some waggons *
which they had brought They also settled some Argive
exiles at Ornese, leaving with them a few of the rest of the
army.^ And having concluded a treaty for a certain time,
during which the Orneates and Argives should not molest
each other's lands, they returned home with the army.

And not long after, the Athenians having arrived ^ with
thirty ships, and six thousand heavy infantry, the Argives, in
conjunction with the Athenians, went on an expedition with
their whole force, and for one day besieged those in Orneae,
But as the army was encamped at some distance, the Or-
neates, under cover of the night, effect their escape from
the place. On the following day the Argives, on perceiving
this, razed Ornese to the ground, and departed, as also did
the Athenians soon after with their fleet.

And now the Athenians having transported by sea to Me*
thone (which is bordering on Macedonia) some horsemen ^

* The trensury and the temples."] Here we have another proof that
money or raluables laid up in the temples were regarded as a resource in
ereat emergencies. Thus, in some respects, the temples were the national
banks. See 1. 2, 13, and the notes.

6 In some waggons.] The only instance I remember of such being
done. In the irruptions into Attica this was impracticable, from the dis-
tance and the difficulty of crossing Geranea and other mountains.

* 77ie rest of the army.] By this it is plain that the Argive exiles had
carried arms with them in the expedition.

7 The Athenians having arrived, ^c.] This expedition is thus alluded
to by Aristoph. A v. 599. ^rjffofitv — fiaxofiivtit rolg iroXefiionnv 'Airo^avtiv h

* Horsemen.] I have not rendered horse, for that implies horses as
well as men ; whereas in the present case I aoprehend only the men were
conveyed, the horses being procured in Macedonia or Thrace.


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of themselves, and some exiles of the Maeedonians, ravaged
th« territory of Perdiccas. The Lacedsemonians, on their
part^ sent to the Chalddasans in Thrace, who were at truces
often days'* continuance with the Athenians, and urged them
to join arms with Perdiccas ; but they refused. And thus
terminated the winter, and the sixteenth year of the war
wfai^ Thucydides hath narrated.

YEAR XVII. B. C. 415.

VIII. Early in the spring of the subsequent summer,^ the
Athenian ambassadors came from Sicily, accompanied by the
Egestasans, who were charged with sixty talents of uncoined
silver, as being a month's pay for sixty ships ^, which they
i^ete about to entreat might be sent them. And the Athe-
nians having convoked an assembly, and heard both from the
Egestsedns, and from their own ambassadors, besides other
alluring bat untrue representations, especially concerning the
inoney, that large sums were laid up both in the temples and
thfe common treasury ®, they decreed to send sixty ships to

9 Ten days.] Of the same length as those which were made with the
Boeotians ; and we may suppose it a usual term.

1 The spritig of the subsequent summer.] The English reader may stum-
ble at this expression, unless he has learnt that the Greeks divided the year
into two parts, summer and winter, the former of which comprehended the

« As being a month*s pay for sixty ships.] Or, as Goeller renders, ** in
order to afibrd pay for." This passage is of importance in assisting to de-
termine the pay and the number of men on board the Athenian triremes.
On calculation it will appear that the Egestseans reckoned for two hundred
men on board each ship, and the pay at one drachma per diem.

3 TVeasury.] Notwithstanding that the far greater part of the MSS.
have U role koivoTc, I have followed the common reading, as being supported
by all the MSS. at the parallel passage, supra, c. 6. ; not to mention the
improbability of supposing more than one common treasury at a small city.
Indeed, we scarcely any where read of more. Goeller, indeed, maintains
that nothing is decided by passages which have the singular, lliat, how-
ever, would only hold good if the plural were as frequent as the singular.
The preceding passage, at least, must affect the question. Besides, we
can easily account for the plural immediately^ after a preceding plural,
but not vice versa. Fim^|ly, the common reading is defended by Pausan.
10, 19,5. (a very similar passage), wg xprjiiara noSXd. /liv iv rif Koivif
irKiiova H iv UpoXs rd re Ava^rjixara, koI dpyvpog xai xpvvoQ ktrriv STrifftifiog,
where for xp^*'^ ifmv iviaiifioc^ I would read xpwaof in aariftjoQ, adhuc non

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Sidly, appointing as commanders Alcihiades son of Clinias,
Nicias son of Niceratus, and Lamachus % to be invested witk
full powers to act according to the emergency \ with instruc-
tions to aid the Egestseans against the Selinuntians, and also^
if Acre were- lime^ left them t» the -war, to establish the
Leontines in their former seats, and to transact such other
business as might occur in Sicily, as they should judge most
for the advantage of the Athenians.

On the fifth day ^ afier this, an assembly was again held,
on the best methods for expediting the equipment ^ of the fleet*
and in order to vote whatever the commanders might think
necessary for setting forth the armament And now Nicias^

4 AlcUnades, Nicias, and Lamachiu,] Mitford, l}y a strange inadyertence,
narrates that Nicias was the first in command. And as the whole measure
was carried by the party of Alcibiades, he attributes it to deep policy;
namely, that he mignt not appear the opponent of Nicias, but u^ the weight
and influence of Nicias aeamst Nicias iiimself. This, however, as well t»
bis other speculations on the policy of Alcihiades, must be considered un-
founded. In truth, there seems to have been very little policy at all in the
case. Alcihiades had the support of the whole of the deroocratical party^
and even such of the aristocratical as were young men, restless and want-
ing employment. By means of which predominant influence he was named
first in command ; and probably Lamachus was brought in by the contriv-
ance of Alcihiades, in oraer that he himself might have the predominance is
counsel ; for, notwithstanding the merit and worth of Lamachus, he was, bv
his poverty and dissipated turn, not only disqualified from having much
weight, but would be peculiarly obnoxious to corruption on the part of Al-
dbiades. As to Nicias, he was brought in by the aristocratical party as a
check on Alcihiades.

^ To be invested tml/t, ^r^,"] Such appears to be the full sense of a^o«;|0<iro|oac^
which is not well rendered by Hobbes, ** with authority absolute.** Com-
manders of armaments always had authority d>soIute over their troops.
But that is not here meant. The term seems to refer to the use of the
armament ; namely, when and how to employ it ; to withdraw it, if neces-
sary, to act for the Athenian people in negotiations with any Sicilian or
Italian states.

Of these (Trpartfyoi avTOKp&roptq we read in Aristoph. Av. 1495. So also
in .£schin. p. 62, 35. npka^oQ ahroKparoptQ, and <rrpaTfiy6v dvroKpdropa in
Pausan. 1. 4. p. 241. ^>anheim on Julian, p. 76. has a learned dissertation
on them.

6 On the fifth day\ Mitford thinks ** that this early period was fixed on
for the second assembly by Alcihiades, in order that the popular passions
might not have time to cool.** Perhaps, too, this measure of a second
assembly eame from the party of Nicias, who thought that thus the thing
might be got rid of.

7 On the best methods for, ^c.] i. e. (as Mitford expresses it) " to decide
upon the details of the armament, and to grant any requisitions of tha
general for which a vote of the people might be necessary.

C «

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having been appointed to the command against his will ^, and
conceiving that the state had wrongly decided — nay, that on
a slender, though specious pretext, they were aiming at an
arduous undertaking, even the conquest of all Sicily — wished
to divert them from their purpose, and, stepping forward, he
addressed to them the following admonition.

IX. " This assembly has indeed been called together for the
purpose of determining the forces and equipments, and set-
tling the mode of expediting the armament for Sicily. To
me, however, it seems that we should, even yet, deliberate on
the measttre itself^ and consider whether it be advisable to send
the fleet at all ; and whether we should, with so superficial a
deliberation on affairs of vast moment, undertake, at the per-
suasion of foreigners, a war in which we have no concern.
And yet I, for my part, derive honour from the measure,
and as for personal danger, I care as little lor it as any man ' ;
though I must think that he is an equally good citizen who
takes some provident thought for his persou and property ^ ;

* Having been appointed agmntt his will.] I have here followed the rend-
ing of the late ediuons, aKovatoQ, which was proved by Duker to be the
true one.

» / care at little for it at any man,] Hobbes renders, ** I esteem it the
least of all men ;" and Smith expresses the very same sense. But though
that may seem agreeable to the words of the original, ^et I cannot think it
the true one. Could so peculiarly modest a man as Isicias intend so vain-
glorious a speech ? Unless, therefore, we suppose (as Goeller does) that he
here only meant Alcitnadett we must recognise one of those idiovu ^^hich
are not to be too rigorously interpreted.

3 Though I mutt think, S^c] In expressing the sense of the obscure
words ofioiufc — TrpovQtjrait I have seen reason to deviate from the recent
interpreters, and to take the same view of the passage as did theantient com-
mentators. See the Schol. Such, however, Goeller maintains is not the sense.
«* At non hoc dicit (writes he) seque bonum civem esse, qui rei suae et-vitse
parcat, atque qui vitse suse non timet, sed hoc : se minus quam alios (Alci-
biadem oblique carpit) vitse suae metuere et pariter existimare tamen, bonum
civem et ilium esse, oui rei familiar! et sibi, ubi officium majus non obstet»
prospicere soleat." That sense, however, is so harsh and frigid, that few
will hesitate to prefer the more natural interpretation of the Scholiast,
which is, moreover, confirmed by an imitation of the passage in Dio Cass.
432, 98. vofilZ^ ydp av^poQ Aya^ov ofioiw^ ipyov ilvai toXq rt rijc varpUoQ
eviA^povei TtipCiv kavrhv^ (pvXaTTofitvov fit) fiaTrjv inroXiiTaC Kai,K,T,\, and
another in Dionys. Hal. Ant. 454, 10. aXX' ovk oiofiai h7v r^c oiiuias da^Xtiac
irXcco* TOuXff^ai irpdvoiav r; r^g Koivijc w^tXf mf.

At vofil^iov (for which I formerly conjectured vouiZtMP y\ scilicet) we must
supply KMwtp, Or the participle may be resolvea into the verb and con-'

Digitized by



for such a one would wish that the afiairs of the city should
go right, for his own sake. ^ However % neither aforetime
have I spoken aught contrary to my opinion, in order to ao-
quire preeminence of honour \ nor will I now do so ; but the
counsel which I esteem the best, that I shall offer. And now
were I to advise you to preserve what you hold, and not to
put to hazard what is already in your possession, for what is
uncertain and contingent, my words would, I know, be too
weak to prevail over your tempers ^ ; — but that your ei^er-
ness is unseasonable, and the objects you are so bent on are
not easy of attainment^ this I may and shall show you.

X. " I affirm, then ^ that by going thither you will be
leaving behind many enemies here, and acting as if you de-
sired ^ to go and bring others from thence. You think, pro-

The passage is well paraphrased by Mitford, thus : — **For myself, at my
vears, and after the long course of services in which my fellow-citizens
hafe been witnesses of my conduct, I may venture to say that no ma» is
less anxious for his personal safety. I have large property, through which
my welfare is intimately connected with that of the commonwealth. But
we owe both life and fortune to our country ; and I hold that man to be a
good citizen who is duly careful of both."

On the senHmenty I would compare Soph. (Ed. Col. 309. tiq yi\p i<T^X^
oifX oirrt^ ^iXoc: where the Scholiast remarks: 6 vdp dya^bc airrtfi re Kcd
^cXoic i<m xp^}<rtp)C' Eurip. Antiop. frag. 11. iEscnyl. Theb. 695. ieaic6c off
KtKXri<Tii (ignavus) (5iov d> Kvprjcrac,

3 Such a one wotUd^ 4"^.] There is a similar sentiment at 1. 2, 60. ** I, for
my part, am persuaded that a state which enjoys public prosperity is more
promotive of the welfare of private persons than one in prosperity, indeed,
incHvidtuxlly, but coilectively brought to ruin."

< However.] Literally, though (I receive honour from the appointment)
yet, &c.

^ Have I tpoken aught, 4"^.] Here he seems to glance at AlcibiadeSy
who was doing so ; for nis understanding was too good to allow us to sup-
pose that he could really approve of the measure.

* Tempers.] Or humours. So, in his Epistle, 7, 9 ; Nicias says : ItrUna"
fiai r^c ^v(Tetc vfjtwv. There is the same use of rpovoQ at Soph. Elect. 597
and 1051. Nicias, it seems, thought it hopeless to urge on the mercurid
tempers of the Athenians that kind of homely counsel which is compre-
hended in a well-known English proverb.

This passage was doubtless in the mind of Plutarch Cat. 8. ^IXX<i»v i^iiov
upfitifUvov ixaipdi*^ — dirorpk-Truv.

' Then.] Fdp has here the inchoative force, on which see Hoogev. de

« And acting as if you desired.] Such is here the sense of ix'i^^lv,
though it has been unperceived by the translators. It was, perhaps, for
want of seeing this that tne scribes, or librarii, wrote Mnpov, which, strongly
as it is supported by MSS., is justly rejected by Bekker and Goeller.


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baU J, that the treaty you at present have is something secure
aend stable; a treaty which, as long as you keep quiet, may be
nominally such (for sn^ alone certaiin persons both here and
of the enemy have contributed to make it °) ; bat sfaottld any
disaster befal a considerable part of our fi>rces \ our enemies
will speedily make their attack upon us; inasmuch as they ^
first entered into the treaty from misfortunes, and it was to them
»ore a matter of oompulsion, and was concluded under terms
less creditable to them than to us. Then, again, we have in the
treaty itself many points which are controverted ; nor are there
wanting some states, and those not the weakest ^, who have not
even acceded to this accommodation."^ Nay, part are at open
war with as ®, and the rest, only because the Lacedaemonians
are as yet quiet, are themselves restrained by ten -day traces*^

3 For such alone certain, <$^.] This seems to be the tnte sense o^ the-
obscure words oCrw ydp — ivavriuv, which have been well explained by the
Scholiast and Duker, though ill rendered by Hobbes and Smith. The per-
sons meant are, as the Scholiast says, Alcibiades and his party on the one
hand, and Cleobulus and Xenares, &c. on the other. See 1. 5, 36. As t^'
Alcibiades, he is said to have urged the measure of attacking Melos, in
order to provoke the Lacedaemonians to bueak the treaty.

* But should any disaster, 4-c.] The whole passage is well paraphrased
by Mitford, thus : " In short, it is not a peace, but merely a dubious sus«
pension of hostilities, prolonged by ten-day truces, which will hold only till
some misfortune be&l us, or till Lcicedsmon give the word for war.*'

^ Inasmuch as they.] The relative must here, as a little before at ac, be
resolved into its constituent parts, a pronoun demonstrative and a participle.

6 And those not the weakest.] i. e. (by meiosis) some of the strongest ; as
,the Boeotians, Corinthians, Thracians, Eleans, Megaraeans. The passage i»
imitated bv Dionys.Hal. Ant.381, U. iroWol xai, fjiA At' t^ (ita), oitxi ^v*
\6raray where I would read ^avX&rctrot, which emendation is confirmed by
a kindred passage at 629. 32, ffvav d^ voXKoi xai ovx^ ^avXSraroi, k. r. X.

7 Accomntodation.] Hobbes has done wrong in omitting to render this'
word, which has much meaning. 'OfioXoyia, it may be observed, is a terra
here designedly chosen, as far Cess significant than ffTrovdac, denoting not a
treaty, but a slight composition, or armistice.

' Nay, part are at open war tinth us,] As the Corinthians.

Bestrained by ten-day truces^ One can hardly, however, imagine that
the parties would take tne trouble to conclude a fresh truce every ten days.
I am therefore inclined to suspect that this sort of armistice, though nomi-
nally for ten days, yet, in fact, was very like our modern armistices, and
only reauired ten days* notice on either side, previous to the recommence-
ment ot hostilities. Nor is there any thing in the plural airovhdiQ to con-^
tradict this, since that is one of those words which, with a plural form, have
a singular sense.

The above view of dtxvf^potg owov^tg (which I formed many years agoy
is, I find, supported by the opinion of Goeller. 1 cannot, however, axree
with that commentator that for this reason the armistice is at 5, S8. ciuM

Online LibraryThucydidesThe History of Thucydides. Newly tr. into English...with very copious annotations...Prefixed, is an entirely new life of Thucydides: with a memoir of the state of Greece, civil & military, at the beginning of the Peloponnesian war → online text (page 3 of 59)