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εἰ δ᾽ αὖ—‘on the other hand, if they transfer their baggage (to the transports), and attack us with their fast ships in a body’—i.e. if they leave behind the transports and do not attempt to cross from Corcyra μετὰ πάσης τῆς παρασκευῆς. εἰ δὲ μὴ δοκοίη—se. ὴμῖν ἐπιθέσθαι, if we found that they had not been rowing hard, and so decided not to attack them. ἔστι—so the Athenians would reflect when the Syr. were off Tarentum. ἔστι ὑποχωρῆσαι is equivalent to ὑποχωροῖμεν ἂν εἰ βουλοίμεθα. μετ᾽ ὀ. ἐφοδίων—the result of κουφίσαντες ὡς ἐπὶ ναυμαχίᾳ. κατὰ χωρία ἐρῆμα—‘the enemy,’ says Freeman, ‘will have to shift for himself how he can along desert or unfriendly coasts, where the Sikeliots will be able to attack, or harass, or bloekade him at pleasure.’ By χωρία ἐρῆμα Bloomfield rightly says that the eoast from Tarentum to Rhegium is meant: ‘the country itself was doubtless then, what it is now described as being, alike uncultivated and savage.’ Finding themselves ἐν ἀπορίᾳ κατὰ χωρία ἐρῆμα, they will have to choose between two eourses: (1) waiting for their transports, (2) trying to gain admission to eities—Thurii, Croton, Locri, Rhegium. πολιορκοῖντο ἄν—se. ὑφ̓ ἡμῶν. The Syr. would of course not remain inaetive in the harbour of Tarentum if the Athenians lay off the coast awaiting the arrival of their transports. ‘The sanguine orator does not stop to discuss how or where the Athenian fleet is to be blockaded by any force which the Sieiliaus could bring against it’ (note in Jowett). πειρώμενοι παραπλεῖν—if, instead of waiting for the rest of the fleet, they try to continue their voyage along the coast (of the Gulf of Tarentum, it being necessary for them to get supplies, if not by waiting, then by sailing along the coast and seeking them), they would be disheartened by the uncertainty whether the cities along the coast would receive them. οὐκ ἂν κτλ = οὐκ ἃν βέβαια ἔχοιεν καὶ ἀθυμοῖεν (ἄν). “οὐκ εἰδότες βεβαίως εἰ αἱ πόλεις ὑποδἐξονται” (Schol.).
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