During the spring and about the same time, before the corn was in full ear, the Peloponnesians1
and their allies invaded Attica, under the command of Agis the son of Archidamus, the Lacedaemonian king. They encamped and ravaged the country.
The Athenians sent to Sicily the forty ships2
, which were-now ready, under the command3
general, Pythodorus, having gone thither beforehand.
Orders were given to them, as they passed Corcyra, to assist the Corcyraeans in the city, who were harassed by the exiles in the mountain4
. The Peloponnesians had already sent sixty ships to the assistance of the exiles, expecting to make themselves masters of the situation with little difficulty; for there was a great famine in the city.
Demosthenes, since his return from Acarnania, had been in no command, but now at his own request the Athenians allowed him to make use of the fleet about the Peloponnese according to his judgment.