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Ἀθηναῖοι ... ηὔξηντο ends, as is shown by the pluperfect, the theme begun ch. 66 Ἀθῆναι . . . ἐγίνοντο μέζονες.

δηλοῖ: probably personal (cf. ii. 116. 6, 149. 2) rather than = δῆλον ὅτι (cf. ii. 117).

ἰσηγορίη, ‘liberty,’ ‘equality,’ as shown in the right of free speech, especially in matters political. Cf. Xen. Rep. Ath. i. 12 ἰσηγορίαν καὶ τοῖς δούλοις πρὸς τοὺς ἐλευθέρους ἐποιήσαμεν καὶ τοῖς μετοίκοις πρὸς τοὺς ἀστούς. H. here, as usual, champions freedom and constitutional government against tyranny (cf. iii. 80 f. and Introd. § 7). His argument, though not conclusive, is interesting (Macan) as an early statement of the close relations between the political institutions and the foreign policy and fortunes of a state (cf. Polyb. vi. 3; Ar. Pol. v. 4. 8, 1304 a; vi. 7. 1, 1321 a). His prediction of military success for democracy may be true in a short national struggle for existence like the Persian war, but can hardly be extended to a career of conquest, still less to the maintenance of an empire (cf. Thuc. iii. 37).

ἐθελοκάκεον, ‘would not do their best’ (viii. 22. 2; ix. 67). Xerxes maintains the opposite view (vii. 103. 4). Hippocrates (de Aer. 23) supports H.: οἱ δὲ αὐτόνομοι, ὑπὲρ ἑωυτῶν γὰρ τοὺς κινδύνους αἱρεῦνται καὶ οὐκ ἄλλων, προθυμεῦνται ἑκόντες καὶ ἐς τὸ δεινὸν ἔρχονται . . . οὕτως οἱ νόμοι οὐκ ἥκιστα τὴν εὐψυχίην ἐργάζονται. H. does less than justice to the Pisistratid tyranny (cf. App. XVI, §§ 5-8.) But its successes were diplomatic rather than military, and H.'s statements (cf. 66. 1) are comparative. Pisistratus, no doubt, laid the foundations of the Athenian Empire, but the building was greater than its foundations.

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  • Commentary references from this page (2):
    • Aristotle, Politics, 6.1321a
    • Thucydides, Histories, 3.37
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