—‘after attacking’: ποιεῖσθαι
with substantives is very commonly used by Thucydides instead of the simple verb; as φυγὴν ποιεῖσθαι
= ‘to fly’. The article is often added to give further definiteness: ch. 11, 13, τοὺς ἐπίπλους ἐποιοῦντο
, ‘they made their attack’: i. 6
, τὴν δίαιταν ἐποιήσαντο
, ‘they passed their lives’: i. 8
, μᾶλλον τὴν κτῆσιν τῶν χρημάτων ποιούμενοι
, ‘increasing their wealth’, etc.
—the pluperfect shows that the Lacedaemonians had already given up the attempt to force a landing when they sent to Asine. Arnold has a good note on a similar pluperfect, ch. 47, 3, παρεδέδοντο
. This construction occurs, he says, ‘when the writer wishes to describe the first in time of two events, as not only preceding the other, but as preparing the way for it; so that in describing the second event he may place the prior event before the reader's mind at the same time, as that without which the notion of the second event would be incomplete’.
ἐπὶ ξύλα ἐς μηχανάς
—meaning especially scalingladders (Poppo). παρέπεμψαν
—‘sent along the coast’. Asine appears to have been round the promontory of Acritas (cape Gallo) on the shore of the Messenian bay. It is mentioned again as a Peloponnesian port, vi. 93
—‘expecting that though the wall over against the harbour was of some height, yet as landing was here most practicable they could take it by means of engines’. In construction ἐλπίζοντες
governs both ἔχειν
, though in sense the idea of hoping refers only to ἑλεῖν
. So far as the connecting particles are concerned this is one of the sentences in which the clause with μέν
is subordinate in sense to that with δὲ
: see note on ch. 80, 18. There is however a further difficulty, that τεῖχος
is the subject of ἔχειν
and the object of ἑλεῖν
. Classen adopts the reading ἔχον
in agreement with τεῖχος
, giving two antithetical clauses, the second a gen. absolute. There are no doubt instances of similar construction, but the run of the sentence is decidedly against the proposed change in the present passage.
—‘hoping to take’: for the aorist infinitive see note on ch. 9, 22. μάλιστα οὔσης
—so ch. 10, 15, μὴ ῥᾳδίως οὔσης. τὸ κατὰ τὸν λίμενα τεῖχος
—that part of the fortress which faced south, inside the entrance to the harbour.
—‘arrive, to the number of fifty’. τεσσαράκοντα
has the best manuscript authority, but fifty is the number required, for we find that the arrival of twenty ships made the fleet amount to seventy, ch. 23, 18. Thirty-five ships had sailed to Zacynthus (ch. 5) and two had been despatched thither by Demosthenes. Naupactus had been an Athenian naval station since its capture thirty years back, i. 103
ἀπορήσαντες ὄπῃ καθορμίσωνται
—‘finding no place in which to come to anchor’: so i. 107
, νομίσαντες ἀπορεῖν ὄπῃ διέλθωσι. καθορμίσωνται
is the subj. of doubt or deliberation. It is not uncommon after a past tense, as well as after a present: see note on ch. 1, 13.
—‘took up their quarters’; the Greeks if possible landing from their ships not only at night, but even to take their meals: see ch. 26, 11; 30, 4.
—‘in case the enemy should be willing to sail out against them into the open sea, but if not, intending themselves to sail in to attack them’. After εὐρυχωρίαν
is implied ‘ready to fight there’; the former of the two alternatives not being expressed: so iii. 3
, ἢν μὲν ξυμβῇ ἡ πεῖρα, εἰ δὲ μὴ κ.τ.λ.
, if the attempt succeed (well and good), but if not, etc.’
οὔτε ἃ διενοήθησαν
—‘nor as it happened had they carried out what they proposed, viz. to block the entrances’; see ch. 8, 34 The Lacedaemonians seem to have been disheartened by the failure of their sea attacks; nor indeed were they ever much at home in naval operation, or ready to encounter an equal Athenian force. Moreover Brasidas, the soul of their enterprise, was now probably disabled by his wounds.
ἢν ἐσπλέῃ τις
—so εἴ τις ὐπομένοι
, ch. 10, 27.
ὄντι οὐ σμικρῷ
—‘which was of considerable size’, being in fact much the largest harbour in Greece. οὐ σμικρὸς
, by the figure called by grammarians λιτότης
‘plainness’ or μείωσις
‘lessening’: so ch. 25, 23, οὐκ ἔλασσον ἔχοντες
, ‘having the advantage’. The form σμικρός
has good authority in vii. 75
and viii. 81
, in both instances with οὐ