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And that this state of affairs was due to the valor of our ancestors has been clearly shown in the fortunes of our city: for the very moment when we were deprived of our dominion marked the beginning of a dominionFor this play of words— a)rxh/, “beginning,” and arxh/, “dominion”—cf. Isoc. 3.28, Isoc. 8.101, Isoc. 5.61. of ills for the Hellenes. In fact, after the disaster which befell us in the Hellespont,Battle of Aegospotami 405 B.C. when our rivals took our place as leaders, the barbarians won a naval victory,At the battle of Cnidus, but with the help of Conon. became rulers of the sea, occupied most of the islands,See Xen. Hell. 4.8.7. made a landing in Laconia, took Cythera by storm, and sailed around the whole Peloponnesus, inflicting damage as
Again, in the Rhodian War,The war between Persia and Sparta which ended with the battle of Cnidus, 394 B.C. Conon, after the battle of Aegospotami in which he had been one of the generals, took service with the Persians, and was the captain of the fleet in this battle. the King had the good will of the allies of Lacedaemon because of the harshness with which they were governed, he availed himself of the help of our seamen; and at the head of his forces was Conon, who was the most competent of our generals, who possessed more than any other the confidence of the Hellenes, and who was the most experienced in the hazards of war; yet, although the King had such a champion to help him in the war, he suffered the fleet which bore the brunt of the defense of Asia to be bottled up for three years by only an hundred ships, and for fifteen months he deprived the soldiers of their pay; and the result would have been, had it depended upon the King alone, that they would have been disbanded mor
To put it briefly—and not to speak in detail but in general terms,— who of those that have fought against them has not come off with success, and who of those that have fallen under their power has not perished from their atrocities? Take the case of Conon,Conon was one of the Athenian generals at the battle of Aegospatomi. After that disaster he left Greece and took service with the Persians against Sparta, and was instrumental in the defeat of the Spartan fleet at the battle of Cnidus. For the treachery referred to here see Grote, Hist. ix. p. 187. who, as commander in the service of Asia, brought an end to the power of the Lacadaemonians: did they not shamelessly seize him for punishment by death? Take, on the other hand, the case of Themistocles,Themistocles, commander of the Athenian fleet at Salamis, was later ostracized and took refuge at the Persian court. See Grote, Hist. v. p. 138. who in the service of Hellas defeated them at Salamis: did they not think him worthy
It is well for me to speak to you also about the two Kings, the one against whom I am advising you to take the field, and the one against whom Clearchus made war, in order that you may know the temper and the power of each. In the first place, the fatherArtaxerxes II., 405-359 B.C. of the present King once defeated our cityThis is inexact. He is probably thinking of the defeat of the Athenians in the Peloponnnesian War in which Sparta had the assistance of Persia; but Artaxerxes II. came to the throne in the year of the battle of Aegospotami. and later the city of the Lacedaemonians,At the battle of Cnidus with the help of Conon, 394 B.C. while this KingArtaxerxes III., 359-339 B.C. has never overcome anyone of the armies which have been violating his territory.
Now since Jason by use of words alone advanced himself so far, what opinion must we expect the world will have of you if you actually do this thing; above all, if you undertake to conquer the whole empire of the King, or, at any rate, to wrest from it a vast extent of territory and sever from it—to use a current phrase—“Asia from Cilicia to Sinope”A catch phrase for the territory of Asia Minor. Cf. “Asia from Cnidus to Sinope” in Isoc. 4.162.; and if, furthermore, you undertake to establish cities in this region, and to settle in permanent abodes those who now, for lack of the daily necessities of life, are wandering from place to place and committing outrages upon whomsoever they encounter?See Isoc. Letter 9.9. Cf. 96; Isoc. 4.168;
Well, if I were trying to present this matter to any others before having broached it to my own country, which has thriceTwice from the barbarians—at Marathon and Salamis; once from the Spartans at the battle of Cnidus, where the navy under Conon put an end to the Spartan hegemony. freed Hellas—twice from the barbarians and once from the Lacedaemonian yoke—I should confess my error. In truth, however, it will be found that I turned to Athens first of all and endeavored to win her over to this cause with all the earnestness of which my nature is capable,In the Panegyricus. but when I perceived that she cared less for what I said than for the ravings of the platform orators,See General Introd. p. xxxviii. I gave her up, although I did not abandon my eff
Or that at the time when the people were in control of affairs, we placed our garrisons in the citadels of other states, whereas when the Thirty took over the government, the enemy occupied the Acropolis of Athens?Lysander kept a Spartan garrison on the Acropolis during the rule of the Thirty. See Isoc. 8.92; Isoc. 15.319. Or, again, that during the rule of the Thirty the Lacedaemonians were our masters, but that when the exiles returned and dared to fight for freedom, and Conon won his naval victory,The Battle of Cnidus, 394 B.C., re-established the power of Athens. ambassadors came from the Lacedaemonians and offered Athens the command of the sea?See Isoc. 9.68.