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Presently their diviners announced to the Syracusans that the sacrifices indicated a splendid victory for them if only they did not begin the fighting, but acted on the defensive. Heracles also, they said, always won the day because he acted on the defensive and suffered himself to be attacked first. Thus encouraged, they put out from shore.

This proved the greatest and hottest sea fight they had yet made, and roused as many tumultuous emotions in those who were mere spectators as in those who did the fighting, because the whole action was in plain sight, and took on shifts and turns which were varied, unexpected, and sudden. Their own equipment wrought the Athenians no less harm than did that of their enemy;

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load focus Greek (Bernadotte Perrin, 1916)
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