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διὰ τό—asyndeton after a demonstrative (which is here replaced by ὅπερ) is fairly common. Cf. II. 60, 4 νῦν ὑμεῖς δρᾶτε: ταῖς κατ᾽ οἶκον κακοπραγίαις . . ἀφίεσθε.

παρὰ γνώμην=παρ᾽ ἐλπίδα, ‘contrary to your expectation’; contrast c. 9, 2. αὐτῶν probably belongs to περιγεγενῆσθαι, but is put early in order to contrast it with Σικελίας. Stein thinks παρὰ γ. αὐτῶν=praeter vestram ipsorum opinionem.

πρὸς . τὸ πρῶτον—this use of πρός, ‘in comparison with,’ is commoner in Thuc. than in other Attic prose writers. (These words are inserted because Nicias does not mean ‘having, contrary to your expectation, attained the mastery,’ as Bloomfield renders: but, on the contrary, that the success of Athens has been considerable if viewed in the light of her fears at the beginning of the war, in the days when Pericles strove to calm her fears)

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