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The Athenians, in the warlike and hopeful temper caused by their success at Pylos, now begin a series of attempts to occupy points on the enemy's coast. The command is taken by Nicias, who was both encouraged to action and incited to rivalry by the glory which Cleon had gained.

εὑθύς—with μετὰ ταῦτα: i. 56, μετὰ ταῦτα δ᾽ εὐθύς.

ἐν ἱππαγωγοῖς ναυσί—‘in horse-transports’; first mentioned by Thuc. in 430, when they were made by the Athenians out of old ships (ii. 56): ἰππαγωγὰ πλοῖα were used by the invading Persians under Xerxes (Hdt. vii. 79). Aristophanes, lauding the services of the cavalry in this expedition to Corinth, says of the horses (Eq. 599), εἰς τὰς ἱππαγωγοὺς εἰσεπήδων ἀνδρικῶς.

πλέοντες—‘in their voyage’, imperf. part., as in ch. 3, 1, referring to the progress of the whole enterprise: the aor. ἔσχον denotes the first operation attempted. ἅμα ἕῳ goes with ἔσχον: if it referred to the departure from Athens πλεύσαντες would be required.

μεταξὺ Χερσονήσου καὶ Ῥείτου—see the map in Arnold's edition. The Chersonesus, or peninsula, was a promontory formed by a low ridge of mount Oneion, which intercepted the view between Cenchreae and the beach where the Athenians landed. Rheitus, ‘the beck’, was not quite two miles to the south.

τὸ πάλαι—at the time of the Dorian conquest of Peloponnesus, known as ‘the return of the Heraclidae’. The legend is that the Dorians under Aletes reduced Corinth by incessant attacks, expelled the Aeolian dynasty of Sisyphus, and became thenceforth the dominant race. ἱδρυθέντες—‘having established themselves’, with πρός: so i. 131, ές Κολωνὰς ἱδρυθείς.

ἐπ᾽ αὐτοῦ—note the demonstrative form of the second clause in a relative sentence.

κατέσχον—so κατασχόντες, ch. 54, 1; 57, 13.

δὲ Ἰσθμὸς εἴκοσι—reckoning to the extreme south of the isthmus where Cenchreae stands.

ἐκ πλείονος—‘from some time back’: ch. 103, 15, ἔπραξάν τε ἐκ πλείονος: so v. 82: viii. 88. The order of the sentence will admit of taking ἐκ πλείονος either with the words which follow it or with those which go before, while in sense either connexion is right. Timely warning enabled the Corinthians to take timely precautions. τῶν ἔξω Ἰσθμοῦ—i. e. those on the north towards Megara, who had their own coast to watch. Note the absence of the article with Ἰσθμοῦ: cf. ch 18, 11 note.

ἀπῆσαν—a correction for ἀπῄεσαν: cf. ch. 39, 5. Poppo retains ἀπῄεσαν έν as being equivalent to ἀπῆλθον καὶ ἀπῆσαν ἐν.

νυκτὸς καταπλεύσαντες—the Athenians made the coast (κατά) while it was still night, and landed at daybreak, line 8. τὸ σημεῖα—if it was still night these were fire-signals raised by the watchers on the coast: so ii. 94 and iii. 22, φρυκτοὶ ᾕροντο πολέμιοι: iii. 80, ἐφρυκτωρήθησαν ἐξήκοντα νῆες: cf. ch. 111, 4. σημεῖα ἤρθη is used i. 49; i. 63; vii. 34, of a signal for battle; and viii. 95 of a signal for embarkation.

Κεγχρειᾷ—sing. as in ch. 44, 16: viii. 10 etc. Κεψχρειαί. ἣν ἀρα—cf. ch. 8, 24.

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hide References (15 total)
  • Commentary references from this page (15):
    • Aristophanes, Knights, 599
    • Herodotus, Histories, 7.79
    • Thucydides, Histories, 1.131
    • Thucydides, Histories, 1.49
    • Thucydides, Histories, 1.56
    • Thucydides, Histories, 1.63
    • Thucydides, Histories, 2.56
    • Thucydides, Histories, 2.94
    • Thucydides, Histories, 3.22
    • Thucydides, Histories, 3.80
    • Thucydides, Histories, 5.82
    • Thucydides, Histories, 7.34
    • Thucydides, Histories, 8.10
    • Thucydides, Histories, 8.88
    • Thucydides, Histories, 8.95
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