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τὸ καθ᾽ αὑτούς—τό is inserted in order to get a contrast between Corcyreans and Athenians. καθ᾽ αὑτούς alone =‘by, or among, themselves.’ ἁθρόαις—with ταῖς . . τ.: the Athenians shrink from attacking the enemy thirty-three strong in the centre.
μὴ ὅπερ ἐν Ναυπάκτῳ γένοιτο—in 429 B.C. when the Athenian admiral Phormio with twenty ships gained a great suceess over forty-seven Peloponnesian ships by similar tactics. Then, too, the enemy had adopted a similar circular formation.
ὅτι μάλιστα with προκαταφυγεῖν, ‘as much as possible.’ It might be taken equally well with ἐβούλοντο, but the general sense of the passage favours the former. ἑαυτῶν—cf. c. 13, 7.
τοιαύτη—cf. c. 97, 3. (Heitland's idea that there is some irony in τοιαύτη is quite groundless: ἦν δὲ οὐδεὶς κόσμος in c. 77 refers to only one incident in the battle.)
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