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ναυτικῷ, after ὑποχωρῆσαι, ‘to give way to a naval force.’ The union of the word with Ἀθηναίους is significant: the sea was the Athenian element.

μετὰ καιροῦ . . . μεθ᾽ ὁτουοῦν τρόπου The antithetical effort rather disarranges the sentence. ‘But there would be the deepest dishonour under any circumstances in a defeat’ (J.) καὶ emphasises ὁτουοῦν. μετὰ τρόπου instead of τρόπῳ for the antithesis.

αἴσχιον For the comparative opposed to the positive αἰσχρόν cf. ii. 40, τὸ πένεσθαι οὐχ ὁμολογεῖν τινι αἰσχρόν, ἀλλὰ μὴ διαφεύγειν ἔργῳ αἴσχιον. Here αἴσχιον is probably an adverb. ‘It is not disgraceful for Athenians to retire before a navy amid proper circumstances, but it will be a more disgraceful event (no matter what the circumstances) if we are defeated.’

περιπίπτειν P-S and Cl. give κἂν for καὶ in order to obtain a future sense. But Phrynichus said πόλις περιπίπτει by an imaginary realisation of the result. ‘Our country is entangling itself in . . .’ These words cannot be joined to ξυμβήσεσθαι, inasmuch as μὴ μόνον (not οὐ) would be required.

. . . ἐνδέχεσθαι the oblique of ἐνδέχεται. The more common construction would have been ἣν . . . προτέραν, like the accus. in i. 124, and elsewhere in Thucydides. The dat. here and Xen. Hiero, iv. 9, and Dem. (?) 859 (50).

πάνυ γε ἀνάγκῃ an afterthought qualification. The sense is clear but the expression lax. ‘Our country, after its mishaps, can hardly (even with secure preparation) voluntarily — or at least only under absolute compulsion — take the initiative.’ With καθ᾽ ἑκουσίαν and ἐνδέχεται the qualification comes in illogically, so far as its grammatical position is concerned. The obvious meaning, however, is ‘our state is hardly in a position, even after proper preparation, to take the initiative of its own accord—at any rate only absolute compulsion should drive it to such a step.’

πάνυ qualifies the adverb ἀνάγκῃ = πάνυ ἠναγκασμένῃ; cf. c. 89, § 2, σπουδῇ πάνυ. ποῦ δὴ κ.τ.λ. The various MS. readings other than this can readily be referred to a common origin in ποῦ δὴ, the force of which was not understood. ‘Which you scarcely . . ., how then possibly seek danger when not compelled?’ ποῦ = πῶς in inferential expressions, cf. Soph. Aj. 1100, O. T. 390, Dem. 978 (41), etc., and especially Hdt. ii. 11, κοῦ γε δή, ἐν τῷ προαναισιμωμένῳ χρόνῳ πρότερον ἐμὲ γενέσθαι, οὐκ ἂν χωσθεἰη κόλπος καὶ πολλῷ μέζων ἔτι τούτου; Lindau and P-S give που δὴ, comparing i. 142 ( που δὴ = ‘much more’), vi. 37 ( πού γε δὴ=‘much less’). The omission of H after N is very easy, and the parallel passages are very attractive, though not convincing. It must at the same time be confessed that the infinitive construction in the question with ποῦ δὴ is very rare.

μὴ βιαζομένῃ γε (‘and without the said preparation’) implied.

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