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ὑποτείνοντος . . . ποήσειν. Cf. Hdt. vii. 158, ὑποτείνοντος τὰ ἐμπόρια συνελευθεροῦν; Dem. 625 (14), ὑποτείνειν ὑποσχέσεις; Arist. Ach. 657, οὐ θωπεύων οὐδ᾽ ὑποτείνων μισθούς. This use, of suggesting hopes, is similar to that of ὑποτίθημι.

αὐτοί θ᾽ ἑαυτοῖς These words go closely with ἐλπίδας εἶχον, while ἐς ἑαυτοὺς is part of a phrase with περιποήσειν. Moreover, αὐτοί θ᾽ ἑαυτοῖς is in contrast with καὶ τῶν πολεμίων . . . Thus we have no mere pleonasm: ‘they entertained great hopes both for themselves personally (to wit that they would get the control of affairs into their own hands), and also that they would overcome the enemy.’ There was in this new proposal a double chance (1) to get power for themselves, (2) to crush the Peloponnesians.

οἵπερ καὶ ταλαιπωροῦνται μάλιστα, the relative clause in the present tense to express a general truth. In point of position the clause might have been expected to come immediately after πολιτῶν; but it is not merely descriptive or attributive, and is put after τὰ πράγματα for the reason that the antithesis is between powers and burdens: ‘they hoped to get the greatest powers just as they bore the greatest burdens.’ The greater burdens of the aristocrats are alluded to in the same terms, c. 63, § 4, ἐσφέρειν ἐκ τῶν ἰδίων οἴκων προθύμως χρήματα, ὡς οὐκέτι ἄλλοις σφίσιν αὐτοῖς ταλαιπωροῦντας. The δυνατοὶ are of course the rich, as οἱ ἀσθενεῖς are the poor in Xen. Cyr. viii. 1, 30; Eur. Suppl. 434, etc.

περιποήσειν The active because of the reflexive expressed (ἐς ἑαυτοὺς). Cf. Isaeus, 64, 6, πάντα εἰς αὑτὸν περιεπόησε. Without the reflexive the middle occurs in i. 9, δύναμιν περιποησάμενος; i. 15, ἰσχὺν περιεποήσαντο. In other writers, however, the middle and reflexive are combined often enough, e.g. Xen. Anab. v. 6, 17.

ξυνίστασαν, ‘set about combining.’ For ξυνωμοσίαι and ἑταιρεῖαι see c. 54, § 4, and cf. c. 81, § 2.

διὰ τὸ εὔπορον τῆς ἐλπίδος κ.τ.λ., lit. ‘on account of the comfortableness of their expectations of such pay from the king’: ‘the attractive prospect of the promised payment.’ In other words, ‘the expectation of wages from the king made things look easy for them.’

τοῦ . . . μισθοῦ ‘the promised pay,’ cf. χρήματα παρέξοι, § 2.

ξυνιστάντες ‘trying to establish.’

ἐκοίνωσαν See c. 8, § 1. The variant ἐκοινώνησαν is just possible here in the sense ‘had held communication with,’ i.e. after they had tested the temper of the people.

κἀν σφίσιν αὐτοῖς Dobree's reading, accepted by nearly all editors, appears necessary: ‘among themselves and the greater part of the members of the club.’ The difficulty of accepting καὶ with the simple dat. commodi lies in the words καὶ τῷ πλέονι (τοῦ ἑταιρικοῦ). If they deliberated for, they would do so for the good of the league and not for that of a majority. For ἐν cf. c. 63, § 4, ἐν σφίσιν αὐτοῖς . . κοινολογούμενοι ἐσκέψαντο; c. 76, § 3, παραινέσεις ἐποιοῦντο ἐν σφίσιν αὐτοῖς; vi. 103, λόγους ἔν τε σφίσιν αὐτοῖς ἐποιοῦντο καὶ πρὸς τὸν Νικίαν.

τοῦ ἑταιρικοῦ like τὸ ξυμμαχικόν, τὸ ναυτικόν, etc. Cf. iii. 82. On the nature and purposes of ἑταιρεῖαι v. c. 54, § 4. σφίσιν αὐτοῖς = the chief plotters, τὸ ἑταιρικόν = the main body of the ξυνωμοσία.

ἔτι ὄντι, by an anticipation of his deposition (c. 54, § 3), like that in εὐπόρως ἔτι εἷχον ἅπαντα, c. 36, § 1.

τε Ἀλκιβιάδης . . .)(. . . βασιλεῖ τε . . .

κόσμου Cf. c. 24, § 4, ἐκοσμοῦντο ἐχυρώτερον; iv. 76, μεταστῆσαι τὸν κόσμον καὶ ἐς δημοκρατίαν τρέψαι.

ὑπὸ τῶν ἑταίρων παρακληθεὶς κάτεισι Cobet (Var. Lect. p. 56) does not resist the temptation to erase παρακληθεὶς for the sake of the idiom κάτεισιν ὑπὸ (= καταχθήσεται ὑπὸ), for which cf. c. 35, § 1, ἀφειστήκει ὑπὸ Τισσαφέρνους. We should, however, keep παρακληθεὶς and still join ὑπὸ with κάτεισι. So far from being an interpolation, the participle is necessary. Alcibiades wants to be invited back (by the Athenians, ὑπὸ τῶν Ἀθηναίων or τῆς πόλεως), thanks to the efforts of his friends; he does not wish to be merely allowed to return.

περιοπτέον from περιορᾶσθαι, not περιορᾶν. περιορῶμαι of circumspection, iv. 73, 124; vi. 93, 103; vii. 33. For ὅπως μὴ with subjunctive aorist v. Goodwin, M. and T. § 364.

καὶ Πελοποννησίων i.e. as well as the Athenians; further expressed by ὁμοίως: ‘the P. also, quite as much as the Athenians.’

ἐν τῇ θαλάσσῃ ὄντων. ἐν of the sphere of action or concern. Cf. Hdt. ii. 82, οἱ ἐν ποιήσι γενόμενοι. Plat. Phaed. 59 A, ἐν φιλοσοφίᾳ εἶναι; iii. 28, οἱ ἐν τοῖς πράγμασι.

αὐτοῦ ipsius. Such cities were Miletus, Erythrae, Cnidus.

αἷς ὑπεσχῆσθαι. Bohme's ὑποσχήσεσθαι is accepted by P-S on the ground that nothing has yet been promised. This reason is searcely certain enough to be sufficient. The negotiations have been going on for some time, the Athenian army is at present in a ξυμμαχὶς πόλις (Samos), and the leaders of the ξυνωμοσία may well have been in communication with the leaders of the oligarchical parties in the allied states.

δὴ . . . ὅτι δὴ Each δὴ is ironical. Cf. c. 9, § 1 on λύειν δὴ, and with ὅτι δὴ cf. Plat. Phaedr. 268 D. Phrynichus would say αἷς ὑπεσχήμεθα δὴ ὀλιγαρχίαν, ὅτι δὴ καὶ αὐτοὶ οὐ δημοκρατησόμεθα: ‘to whom we have been so kindly promising oligarchical government for the laudable reason that we ourselves are no longer to be a democracy.’

σφᾶς see note c. 32, § 3.

οὐ βουλήσεσθαι . . . μᾶλλον =ἧσσον βουλήσεσθαι . . . .

μεθ᾽ ὁποτέρου ἂν τύχωσι τούτων i.e. ἐλευθέρους εἶναι μεθ᾽ ὁποτέρου ἂν τούτων (ἐλεύθεροι ὄντες) τύχωσι. Cf. iii. 43, πρὸς ὀργὴν ἥντιν᾽ ἂν τύχητε . . . ζημιοῦτε. τύχωσι has no part in the regimen of the genitives.

τοὺς καλοὺς κἀγαθοὺς, see on τοὺς βελτίστους, c. 47, § 2. ὀνομαζομένους, named so, but not proving themselves so. The construction is usually taken to be (ἔφη) αὐτοὺς (sc. the allies) νομίζειν τοὺς καλοὺς κἀγαθοὺς κ.τ.λ., the important words being put first, ‘and as for the so-called good and true men, etc.’ [For a different view of the whole passage see note on ἄκριτοι (infra).]

ποριστὰς ὄντας καὶ ἐσηγητὰς ‘providers and proposers’ of mischief, with an allusion to the technical use of the board of πορισταί; cf. Ar. Ran 1505, whence Poppo quotes the scholiast's explanation οἱ περὶ πόρου χρημάτων εἰσηγούμενοι. As those of money, so these of mischief, concoct the ways and means and propose them to the people. In vi. 89 Alcibiades says of certain such persons ἐπὶ τὰ πονηρότερα ἐξῆγον τὸν δῆμον, οἵπερ καὶ ἐμὲ ἐξήλασαν.

τῶν κακῶν the mischief to which it was prone.

αὐτοὺς ipsos (the ποριστὰς).

τὸ ἐπ᾽ ἐκείνοις εἶναι The variant ἐκείνους might also stand. Cf. iv. 28, τὸ ἐπὶ σφᾶς εἶναι; Eur. Or. 1345; Hec. 514, etc. Yet there is a difference of conception. τὸ ἐπὶ σὲ=‘as far as concerns you’; τὸ ἐπὶ σοὶ=‘as far as lies in your power.’ The former can therefore always be used for the latter, but not the latter always for the former. Thus in Soph. Ant. 889, ἡμεῖς γὰρ ἁγνοὶ τοὐπὶ τήνδε τὴν κόρην, the dative could not be substituted.

καὶ ἄκριτοι καὶ βιαιότερον ‘not only without trial but also with less scruple’ = ‘more unfairly and frequently.’

ἄκριτοι It is usual to admit that the accusative is the only grammatical case, the subject being the allies (αὐτοὺς). But, say Poppo, Jowett, etc., Thucydides writes ‘as if ὅτι νομίζουσι and not αὐτοὺς νομίζειν had preceded.’ This explanation can scarcely be called scientific or satisfactory. Poppo's vi. 21, § 2 is no parallel, nor is one readily to be found. In this rendering σφῶν = the subject peoples, and ἐκείνων = the oppressive oligarchs. [One may venture to suggest another view of the passage τούς τε καλοὺς . . . σωφρονιστήν, which will give to ἄκριτοι a proper syntax and otherwise afford a suitable sense. First, it should be noted that τε, as usual, introduces a new point. Those which have preceded are (1) τε Ἀλκιβιάδης . . . στασιάσωσιν, (2) βασιλεῖ τε . . . ποήσασθαι, (3) τάς τε ξυμμαχίδας . . . ἐλευθέρους εἶναι. The fourth argument should begin here. Second, the nominative ἄκριτοι should refer to the speaker and his party. Third, the reference in ἄκριτοι ἀποθνῄσκειν as applied to the allied states is not satisfactory. These difficulties would all disappear together if we rendered (in oratio recta) ‘and I think that the so-called good and true men will themselves (αὐτοὺς) cause us (sc. the generals and responsible persons) quite as much trouble as the people . . . and, if the matter lay with them, we should be put to death (on occasion) without trial and with less scruple, whereas the people is our refuge, and a check upon them.’ The arguments of Phrynichus then are—(1) Alcibiades is only seeking selfish ends, (2) the king is not likely to adopt any such policy, (3) the allies will not be attracted by the proposal, (4) the proposed government at Athens will not suit the interests of men like himself (Phrynichus). The only objection to this rendering, which the grammatical structure seems to render absolutely inevitable, lies in the following words, ἐπισταμένας τὰς πόλεις κ.τ.λ., which at first sight appear to be so connected with τὰς ξυμμαχίδας πόλεις above that all intervening words must necessarily express the thought and knowledge of those πόλεις. Such necessity, however, does not exist, for after the argument about the allies, followed by the argument about the interests of the generals, P. might well add ‘and I am quite certain that this is the opinion of the allied states.’ [I cannot, however, refrain from suggesting on other grounds, viz. the strong σαφῶς and αὐτὸς, and the general trend of the passage, that Thucydides wrote ἐπισταμένους τοὺς πολλοὺς. ‘And he said he had personally positive information (not εὖ but σαφῶς εἰδέναι) that this was the opinion of the great majority, who had learned the lesson from experience.’]

καὶ ταῦτα παρ᾽ αὐτῶν τῶν ἔργων κ.τ.λ. The order is καὶ ταῦτα ἐπιστ.-παρ᾽ αὐτῶν-τῶν-ἔργων σαφῶς αὐτὸς οἶδα, ὅτι οὕτω νομίζουσιν. By the unusual παρὰ for ἀπὸ the ‘facts’ (ἔργων) are personified as the teacher.

αὐτὸς either of immediate personal information, or as a subject to εἰδέναι in order to avoid the danger of ambiguity in that respect. The latter is less likely.

τῶν ἀπ᾽ Ἀλκ. καὶ ἐν τῷ παρόντι πρασσομένων ‘of the proposals of Alc. and the present negotiations.’ τῶν is not repeated because καὶ . . . πρασσομένων is merely exegetical.

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hide References (40 total)
  • Commentary references from this page (40):
    • Demosthenes, Against Aristocrates, 14
    • Euripides, Hecuba, 514
    • Euripides, Orestes, 1345
    • Euripides, Suppliants, 434
    • Herodotus, Histories, 2.82
    • Herodotus, Histories, 7.158
    • Isaeus, Apollodorus, 6
    • Plato, Phaedo, 59a
    • Plato, Phaedrus, 268d
    • Sophocles, Antigone, 889
    • Thucydides, Histories, 1.15
    • Thucydides, Histories, 1.9
    • Thucydides, Histories, 3.28
    • Thucydides, Histories, 3.43
    • Thucydides, Histories, 3.82
    • Thucydides, Histories, 4.124
    • Thucydides, Histories, 4.28
    • Thucydides, Histories, 4.73
    • Thucydides, Histories, 4.76
    • Thucydides, Histories, 6.103
    • Thucydides, Histories, 6.21.2
    • Thucydides, Histories, 6.89
    • Thucydides, Histories, 6.93
    • Thucydides, Histories, 7.33
    • Thucydides, Histories, 8.24.4
    • Thucydides, Histories, 8.32.3
    • Thucydides, Histories, 8.35.1
    • Thucydides, Histories, 8.36.1
    • Thucydides, Histories, 8.47.2
    • Thucydides, Histories, 8.48.2
    • Thucydides, Histories, 8.54.3
    • Thucydides, Histories, 8.54.4
    • Thucydides, Histories, 8.63.4
    • Thucydides, Histories, 8.76.3
    • Thucydides, Histories, 8.81.2
    • Thucydides, Histories, 8.8.1
    • Thucydides, Histories, 8.9.1
    • Xenophon, Anabasis, 5.6.17
    • Xenophon, Cyropaedia, 8.1.30
    • Aristophanes, Acharnians, 657
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