previous next

οὐχ οἷόν τε εἶναι—prob. Thuc. meant to say ‘it was impossible for him to delay without experiencing’; this would require either οὐχ οἶόν τε εἶναι διατρίβειν μέν, παθεῖν δὲ μή, or οὐχ οἶόν τε εἶναι διατρίβοντα μὴ οὐ παθεῖν. But the words as they stand mean it is impossible to delay and to suffer, and this, after all, is more mcisive than ‘it is impossible to delay, and then not to suffer.’

φοβερός—with ἀφικόμενος. The act, sense of φοβερός, causing terror, is the commoner. The passive meaning timid occurs in II. 3.4; IV. 128.4; Soph. OT 153 φοβερὰν φρένα δείματι πάλλων.

αὐτοὺς—object of ὠφελεῖν, the subject of which is τὸ μεταπέμψαι.

ταῦτα—there is a similar parenthesis followed by ταῦτα δὲ πάντα σκοπῶν in Andoc. I. 58 fol.

οὖν—resumes after the long parenthesis, just as igitur, sed, autem are commonly used, e.g. Cic. pro Mur. 50 meministis enim, cum illius nefarii gladiatoris voces percrebruissent . . . tum igitur, his rebus auditis meministis.

τῇ πρώτῃ ἡμέρᾳ μάλιστα δεινότατος—this is labelled as an instance of the double superl., as in Eur. Med. μέγιστον ἐχθίστη γύναι, but Classen rightly takes μάλιστα closely with τῇ πρώτη̣ ἡμέρᾳ, for ‘especially on the first day’; but, if he understood the passage, he did not make it clear. Why are there three superlatives, πρώτη̣, μάλιστα, δεινότατος? Thuc. surely means that D. saw after his arrival that the nearer the day of his arrival was the greater was the awe he inspired. Hence trans. ‘realising that at present, while his arrival was quite recent, he filled the enemy with awe.’

μάλιστα—serves to bring the two superlatives, πρώτῃ and δεινότατος, into relation. The whole is an example of his love of elaborate, composite, and co-ordinate expressions instead of subordinate clauses. For the use of superlatives in such expressions, cf. II. 11.1 ἐπὶ πόλιν δυνατωτάτην νῦν ἐρχόμεθα, καὶ αὐτοὶ πλεῖστοι καὶ ἄριστοι στρατεύοντες, and perhaps the constant use of μάλἰστα in ‘proportions,’ as in II. 47.4 μάλιστα ἔθνη̣σκον ὅσῳ καὶ μἀλιστα προσῇσαν.

ὅτι τάχος—found also in Herod. 9.33, and equivalent to ὡς τάχος=ὡς τάχιστα.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: