24.Whilst these things passed, the Syracusians and their confederates in Sicily, adding to those galleys that lay in garrison at Messana the rest of the fleet which they had prepared, made war out of Messana,
instigated thereto chiefly by the Locrians, as enemies to the Rhegians, whose territory they had also invaded with their whole forces by land;
and seeing the Athenians had but a few galleys present and hearing that the greater number which were to come to them were employed in the siege of the island, desired to try with them a battle by sea.
For if they could get the better with their navy, they hoped, lying before Rhegium, both with their land-forces on the field side and with their fleet by sea, easily to take it into their hands and thereby strengthen their affairs.For Rhegium, a promontory of Italy, and Messana in Sicily lying near together, they might both hinder the Athenians from lying at anchor there against them and make themselves masters of the strait.
This strait is the sea between Rhegium and Messana where Sicily is nearest to the continent, and is that which is called Charybdis, where Ulysses is said to have passed through.Which, for that it is very narrow, and because the sea falleth in there from two great mains, the Tyrrhene and Sicilian, and is rough, hath therefore not without good cause been esteemed dangerous.
The English works of Thomas Hobbes of Malmesbury. Thucydides. Thomas Hobbes. translator. London. Bohn. 1843.
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