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οὕτως—explained by παραγιγνόμενοι.

ἦρξαν is ‘ingressive’ aor.

ἡσυχάξοιεν—like quiescere, often opposed to armed intervention.

φυλοκρινοῖεν—this rare verb, besides being explained by Hesychius and Pollux and in Bekker's Anecdota, is used twice by Aristides, and, according to Bloomfield, by other late authors.

βραχὺ ἄν τι—‘while making only a small addition to the empire, we should be more likely to lose what we have already’; i.e. we, the Athenians, οἱ προύχοντες, should soon find ourselves isolated if all Athenians were to act on the prineiples re commended by Nicias; and thus in any undertaking, however slight, we should be more likely to lose than to gain. (This sentence is generally wrongly rendered.)

τὸν γὰρ προύχοντα—‘for against a superior power men not only defend themselves when attacked, but to eseape being attacked take action beforehand’; i.e. against a promincnt state which is isolated, smaller states can combine, and do so from fear of an attack, when they see that the superior power is bent on increasing its influence.

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