Thucydides’ History, Book 6

I’m a bad student, and I missed the class for Chapters 41 and 42.

Chapter 43

After this, the Athenians, with a great deal of preparation, having already set out from Corcyra were crossing over against Sicily, with thirty and four and a hundred triremes in all, and two Rhodian fifty-oared ships (of these, a hundred were Atticans, of which sixty were swift-ships, the others troop-transport ships, and the rest the naval power of Chios and the other allies), a hundred and five-thousand hoplites in all (and of the Athenians five-hundred and a thousand were from their rolls, seven-hundred were bonded ship-board soldiers of the ships, and others the allies who joined in the expedition, some of them subjects, but of Argives, five-hundred and of Mantineans and mercenaries, fifty and two-hundred), eighty and four-hundred archers in all (and of these, the eighty were Cretans), and seven-hundred slingers from Rhodes, and twenty and a hundred lightly-armed Megaran fugitives, and one cavalry transport ship bringing thirty knights.

Chapter 44

Thus did the first preparation for the war sail through. At hand leading these were thirty merchantmen bearing corn, and they bore millers and stone-masons and carpenters and as many tools as for building walls, a hundred ships, which by necessity sailed together with the merchantmen ; and many, both other ships and merchantmen voluntarily followed with the army for the sake of mercantile interest ; all of which then sailed together from Corcyra across the Ionian bay. And the entire preparation having made land, made for the Iapygian promontory and for Tarentum, and howsoever each found their way, they sailed alongside Italy, where the cities welcomed them neither at the agora nor at the town, but for water and anchorage, but Tarentum and Lokros not even these, until they arrived at Rhegion, the promontory of Italy. And there they now mustered, again outside of the city, as they were not welcomed within, and they constructed an encampment at a temple of Artemis, where there was also an agora for them, and once they hauled up the ships they were at rest. And they made conference with the Rhegians, expecting them to help Leontinoi, being Chalcideans for Chalcideans ; but they said they were not with the others, but rather that they would do whatever also seemed good to the other Italians. Concerning affairs in Sicily, they were examining which way they would be best brought to bear ; and all the while they were waiting for the ships sent ahead from Egesta, since wished to see about the wealth, whether it was what the messengers said in Athens.

Chapter 45

To the Syracusians, in this way, from many sources but especially from scouts, it was clearly announced that in Rhegion there were ships, and thus they made preparations against them in all expectation and no longer disbelieved. And they were sending ’round to the Sikels, guards from there to some, and to others ambassadors, and they brought in guards for the forts in the countryside, and they also inspected the matters in the city by close examination of the weapons and the horses, whether they were in good condition and everything else as swiftly as possible for war and whatever was not at hand, they were set up.

Chapter 46

The three ships from Egesta that had been sent ahead came to the Athenians at Rhegion, announcing among other things that the wealth they maintained was there, was not, and thirty talents alone were revealed. The generals fell immediately into despondancy, both because this had been a hindrance for them from the start and because the Rhegians were not willing to campaign with them, whom they first began to persuade and had been the most likely, being kinsmen of the Leontinoi and having always been at hand for themselves. But the situation with the Egestaioi was as Nikias expected, whereas by the other two it was most unreckoned. The Egestaioi there had contrived a thing with cunning at that time when the first ambassadors of the Athenians came to them to inspect the wealth. Leading them to the temple of Aphrodite in Eryx, they showed them the votive offerings, pans and carafes and censers and other fixtures, no small amount, which, since they were mostly silver, furnished from a small display a much greater spectacle of quantity of wealth [than there actually was] ; and lodging their guests from the triremes in private homes, having collected all the cups from Egesta itself, whether silver or gold, and also borrowing from nearby cities, both those of Hellenes and of the Phoenicians, they brought them in for the feasts, as if each home were thus. With everyone, for the most part, using these cups and  much on display everywhere, this produced great astonishment in the Athenians from the triremes, and when they arrived at Athens they spread the report that they saw a great deal of wealth. And those same men who had been deceived and had persuaded others, when the word came around that there was no wealth in Egesta, they received a lot of blame from the soldiers ; and the generals made plans for the present situation.

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