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When the Lacedaemonians, men of Athens, had the supremacy of land and sea, and were holding with governors and garrisons all the frontiers of Attica, Euboea, Tanagra, all Boeotia, Megara, Aegina, Ceos, and the other islands, for at that time Athens had no ships and no walls, you marched out to Haliartus,Haliartus, 395 B.C.; Corinth, 394 B.C.; Decelean war, the last period, 4l3-404, of the Peloponnesian war, when the Spartans held the fortified position of Decelea in Attica. and again a few days later to Corinth. The Athenians of those days had good reason to bear malice against the Corinthians and the Thebans for their conduct during the Decelean War; but they bore no malice whatever.
that, instead of the seat of war being in Attica, it was seven hundred furlongs away on the far side of Boeotia; that, instead of privateers from Euboea harrying us, Attica was at peace on the sea-frontier throughout the war; and that, instead of Philip taking Byzantium and holding the Hellespont, the Byzantines fought on our side against him.
What course of action was proper for a patriotic citizen who was trying to serve his country with all possible prudence and energy and loyalty? Surely it was to protect Attica on the sea-board by Euboea, on the inland frontier by Boeotia, and on the side towards Peloponnesus by our neighbors in that direction; to make provision for the passage of our corn-supply along friendly coasts all the way to Peiraeus;
For he declared that he had completely converted Philip to the interests of Athens in respect of the Amphictyonic question and of everything else. He went through a long diatribe against the Thebans, which he said he had addressed to Philip himself, recapitulating the main points. He offered you a calculation that, thanks to his diplomacy, without leaving your homes, without any campaigning or worry, within two or three days you would hear the news of the beleaguerment of Thebes, independently of the rest of Boeotia,
For he did not allege in his report that, but for the Lacedaemonians, but for their refusal to receive Proxenus, but for Hegesippus, but for this or that, the Phocians would have been delivered. He passed over all that, and declared explicitly that before his return he had persuaded Philip to deliver the Phocians, to repopulate Boeotia, and to put the whole business into your hands; that it would all be accomplished within two or three days, and that in revenge the Thebans had set a price upon his head.
then at last, at that crisis, when the city was encompassed with confusion and terror, off marched this wise, clever, smooth-tongued gentleman, without waiting for Council or Assembly to reappoint him, on his embassy to the court of the chief malefactor. He forgot that he had sworn that he was too ill to travel; forgot that another ambassador had been chosen in his stead, and that the law visits such conduct with death; forgot that, with the Thebans not only holding all Boeotia but in possession of the territory of Phocis,
For if he should accept the Phocians as allies, and with your help take the oath of friendship to them, he must at once violate the oaths he had already sworn to the Thessalians and the Thebans, with the latter of whom he had covenanted to help them in the subjugation of Boeotia, and with the former to restore their rights at the Amphictyonic Council. If, on the other hand, he was loth to accept them—and in fact the prospect did not please him—he expected that you would send troops to Thermopylae to stop his passage, as indeed you would have done if you had not been outwitted. In that event, he calculated that he would be unable to get throu