'I tell you that in going to Sicily you are leaving many enemies behind you, and seem to be bent on bringing new ones hither.
You are perhaps relying upon the treaty recently made, which if you remain quiet may retain the name of a treaty; for to a mere name the intrigues of certain persons both here and at Lacedaemon have nearly succeeded in reducing it. But if you1
meet with any serious reverse, your enemies will be upon you in a moment, for the agreement was originally extracted from them by the pressure of misfortune, and the discredit of it was on their side not on ours2
. In the treaty itself there are many disputed points;
and, unsatisfactory as it is, to this hour several cities, and very powerful cities too, persist in rejecting it. Some of these are at open war with us already3
; others may declare war at ten days' notice4
; and they only remain at peace because the Lacedaemonians are indisposed to move.
And in all probability, if they find our power divided (and such a division is precisely what we are striving to create), they will eagerly join the Sicilians, whose alliance in the war they would long ago have given anything to obtain.
These considerations should weigh with us. The state is far from the desired haven, and we should not run into danger and seek to gain a new empire before we have fully secured the old. The Chalcidians in Thrace have been rebels all these years and remain unsubdued, and there are other subjects of ours in various parts of the mainland who are uncertain in their allegiance. And we forsooth cannot lose a moment in avenging the wrongs of our allies the Egestaeans, while we still defer the punishment of our revolted subjects, whose offences are of long standing.