Tuesday, August 16, 2022

21st Century Classical Greek -- a verb and some vocabulary

Book I section 41.

‘δικαιώματα μὲν οὖν τάδε πρὸς ὑμᾶς ἔχομεν ἱκανὰ κατὰ τοὺς Ἑλλήνων νόμους, παραίνεσιν δὲ καὶ ἀξίωσιν χάριτος τοιάνδε, ἣν οὐκ ἐχθροὶ ὄντες ὥστε βλάπτειν οὐδ᾽ αὖ φίλοι ὥστ᾽ ἐπιχρῆσθαι, ἀντιδοθῆναι ἡμῖν ἐν τῷ παρόντι φαμὲν χρῆναι.

[2] νεῶν γὰρ μακρῶν σπανίσαντές ποτε πρὸς τὸν Αἰγινητῶν ὑπὲρ τὰ Μηδικὰ πόλεμον παρὰ Κορινθίων εἴκοσι ναῦς ἐλάβετε: καὶ ἡ εὐεργεσία αὕτη τε καὶ ἡ ἐς Σαμίους, τὸ δι᾽ ἡμᾶς Πελοποννησίους αὐτοῖς μὴ βοηθῆσαι, παρέσχεν ὑμῖν Αἰγινητῶν μὲν ἐπικράτησιν, Σαμίων δὲ κόλασιν, καὶ ἐν καιροῖς τοιούτοις ἐγένετο οἷς μάλιστα ἄνθρωποι ἐπ᾽ ἐχθροὺς τοὺς σφετέρους ἰόντες τῶν ἁπάντων ἀπερίοπτοί εἰσι παρὰ τὸ νικᾶν:

[3] φίλον τε γὰρ ἡγοῦνται τὸν ὑπουργοῦντα, ἢν καὶ πρότερον ἐχθρὸς ᾖ, πολέμιόν τε τὸν ἀντιστάντα, ἢν καὶ τύχῃ φίλος ὤν, ἐπεὶ καὶ τὰ οἰκεῖα χεῖρον τίθενται φιλονικίας ἕνεκα τῆς αὐτίκα.

This section mostly has some vocabulary that you’ve seen before.

Notice the hopos purpose clause in subsection 1.

Learn makros.

Go to Wiktionary and learn βοηθέω.

The last argument that the Korinthians make in this section is, again, unfortunate. The Kerkyraeans didn’t have a treaty with Athins, but they were not out and out enemies. The Korinthians had a treaty with Athins, but were threatening to become enemies if Athins helped the Kerkyraeans. Again, it’s shooting themselves in the foot to refer to how easily alliances can change; all it takes is the right circumstances.

Tuesday, August 9, 2022

21 Century Classical Greek -- what the grammarians missed

Book I section 40.3 has some grammar I want to point out.

[3] οὐ γὰρ τοῖσδε μόνον ἐπίκουροι ἂν γένοισθε, ἀλλὰ καὶ ἡμῖν ἀντὶ ἐνσπόνδων πολέμιοι: ἀνάγκη γάρ, εἰ ἴτε μετ᾽ αὐτῶν, καὶ ἀμύνεσθαι μὴ ἄνευ ὑμῶν τούτους.

There are two issues here. First, examine the wording before the first comma. We have our categorical ou relating to toisde, our “benefit” -ois case, and then we have our an. Jowett translates this as a protasis, but an is supposed to mark the apodosis. So one point off there.

What Mr. T actually says is “not for those alone that you may become allies of…” The an marks off the switch in focus from “those” to “you”.

Genoisthe is the epistemic. The Korinthians don’t want the Athinaians to ally with the Kerkyraeans, and an oblique would admit that the Athinaians probably will.

Up to the colon, the Korinthians say “but [also] for us along with [“over against”] those who are part of the treaty, [you will be] enemies.”

The second issue is, do we have a conditional, “for it is necessary, if you go with them, [our] warding off them without you.”

Now, if Jowett had been smart, he would have tried to construe this as “if you go with them, then you become their allies,” which would be in line with all his other transpositions. But remember, Goodwin says that when the protasis has an indicative and there’s no evidence to contradict it, the apodosis should be a customary or repeated action or general truth.

The protasis does not express repetition; instead, we have a progressive for a situation.

There’s another problem, too. We can’t call this a “future less vivid” because that would require the protasis to be in the epistemic, but that’s in the an clause which would normally be an apodosis.

Remember, Thucydides is using grammar he learned on the street and in the literature available to him. We know that masses of Classical Greek literature have disappeared in the last 25 centuries – but to find things in Thucydides that are ignored in 25 centuries of grammar explanations, shows that 25 centuries of scholars haven’t done their job.

Tuesday, August 2, 2022

21st Century Classical Greek -- how not to argue your case

Book I section 40.

‘ὡς μὲν οὖν αὐτοί τε μετὰ προσηκόντων ἐγκλημάτων ἐρχόμεθα καὶ οἵδε βίαιοι καὶ πλεονέκται εἰσὶ δεδήλωται: ὡς δὲ οὐκ ἂν δικαίως αὐτοὺς δέχοισθε μαθεῖν χρή.

[2] εἰ γὰρ εἴρηται ἐν ταῖς σπονδαῖς ἐξεῖναι παρ᾽ ὁποτέρους τις βούλεται τῶν ἀγράφων πόλεων ἐλθεῖν, οὐ τοῖς ἐπὶ βλάβῃ ἑτέρων ἰοῦσιν ἡ ξυνθήκη ἐστίν, ἀλλ᾽ ὅστις μὴ ἄλλου ἑαυτὸν ἀποστερῶν ἀσφαλείας δεῖται καὶ ὅστις μὴ τοῖς δεξαμένοις, εἰ σωφρονοῦσι, πόλεμον ἀντ᾽ εἰρήνης ποιήσει: ὃ νῦν ὑμεῖς μὴ πειθόμενοι ἡμῖν πάθοιτε ἄν.

[3] οὐ γὰρ τοῖσδε μόνον ἐπίκουροι ἂν γένοισθε, ἀλλὰ καὶ ἡμῖν ἀντὶ ἐνσπόνδων πολέμιοι: ἀνάγκη γάρ, εἰ ἴτε μετ᾽ αὐτῶν, καὶ ἀμύνεσθαι μὴ ἄνευ ὑμῶν τούτους.

[4] καίτοι δίκαιοί γ᾽ ἐστὲ μάλιστα μὲν ἐκποδὼν στῆναι ἀμφοτέροις, εἰ δὲ μή, τοὐναντίον ἐπὶ τούτους μεθ᾽ ἡμῶν ἰέναι (Κορινθίοις μέν γε ἔνσπονδοί ἐστε, Κερκυραίοις δὲ οὐδὲ δι᾽ ἀνοκωχῆς πώποτ᾽ ἐγένεσθε), καὶ τὸν νόμον μὴ καθιστάναι ὥστε τοὺς ἑτέρων ἀφισταμένους δέχεσθαι.

[5] οὐδὲ γὰρ ἡμεῖς Σαμίων ἀποστάντων ψῆφον προσεθέμεθα ἐναντίαν ὑμῖν, τῶν ἄλλων Πελοποννησίων δίχα ἐψηφισμένων εἰ χρὴ αὐτοῖς ἀμύνειν, φανερῶς δὲ ἀντείπομεν τοὺς προσήκοντας ξυμμάχους αὐτόν τινα κολάζειν.

[6] εἰ γὰρ τοὺς κακόν τι δρῶντας δεχόμενοι τιμωρήσετε, φανεῖται καὶ ἃ τῶν ὑμετέρων οὐκ ἐλάσσω ἡμῖν πρόσεισι, καὶ τὸν νόμον ἐφ᾽ ὑμῖν αὐτοῖς μᾶλλον ἢ ἐφ᾽ ἡμῖν θήσετε..

In subsection 2 the Korinthians make a mistake no legally savvy person would make. No court of law will go behind the text of an agreement to get at the intent of the parties without hard evidence of that intent. Or as Samuel Goldwyn famously said, a verbal contract isn’t worth the paper it’s written on. The Kerkyraeans allowed as how the Athinaians knew what the treaty said; if true, then it’s obvious that the Korinthians are lying.

 

Jowett mistranslates this. The beginning goes, “if it says,” using perfective conceptual aspect. This is the same aspect Thucydides uses about poets of prior times. So, “if it says in the treaty about going out to whomever they want, those cities not subscribed can go (using an impersonal gerundive), then it is not licit for those planning to harm others [that] the agreement is [about].

The next part is a little weird again and suggests somebody is making fun of how Korinthians are in the habit of speaking.

καὶ ὅστις μὴ τοῖς δεξαμένοις, and those will not accept as allies,

εἰ σωφρονοῦσι, if they are wise

πόλεμον ἀντ᾽ εἰρήνης ποιήσει: those who make war instead of peace:

ὃ νῦν ὑμεῖς μὴ πειθόμενοι ἡμῖν πάθοιτε ἄν. Which now you, not persuaded, we, you may decide on.

The last part apparently means that the Athinaians, not having been persuaded by the Kerkyraeans, may decide to agree with the Korinthians. But himin is nominative and that an at the end of the subsection is just weird.

In subsection 5 the Korinthians make another grave error of logic. Kerkyraea refused to help rebellious underlings against their expelled leaders. Korinth tacitly approves that and shoots themselves in the foot about supporting those rebellious underlings. It is not possible for Athins to agree with Korinth about the Kerkyraeans based on the Korinthian argument.

Tuesday, July 26, 2022

21st Century Classical Greek -- the Korinthians go on and on...

Book I section 39.

‘καὶ φασὶ δὴ δίκῃ πρότερον ἐθελῆσαι κρίνεσθαι, ἥν γε οὐ τὸν προύχοντα καὶ ἐκ τοῦ ἀσφαλοῦς προκαλούμενον λέγειν τι δοκεῖν δεῖ, ἀλλὰ τὸν ἐς ἴσον τά τε ἔργα ὁμοίως καὶ τοὺς λόγους πρὶν διαγωνίζεσθαι καθιστάντα.

[2] οὗτοι δὲ οὐ πρὶν πολιορκεῖν τὸ χωρίον, ἀλλ᾽ ἐπειδὴ ἡγήσαντο ἡμᾶς οὐ περιόψεσθαι, τότε καὶ τὸ εὐπρεπὲς τῆς δίκης παρέσχοντο. καὶ δεῦρο ἥκουσιν οὐ τἀκεῖ μόνον αὐτοὶ ἁμαρτόντες, ἀλλὰ καὶ ὑμᾶς νῦν ἀξιοῦντες οὐ ξυμμαχεῖν, ἀλλὰ ξυναδικεῖν καὶ διαφόρους ὄντας ἡμῖν δέχεσθαι σφᾶς:

[3] οὓς χρῆν, ὅτε ἀσφαλέστατοι ἦσαν, τότε προσιέναι, καὶ μὴ ἐν ᾧ ἡμεῖς μὲν ἠδικήμεθα, οὗτοι δὲ κινδυνεύουσι, μηδ᾽ ἐν ᾧ ὑμεῖς τῆς τε δυνάμεως αὐτῶν τότε οὐ μεταλαβόντες τῆς ὠφελίας νῦν μεταδώσετε καὶ τῶν ἁμαρτημάτων ἀπογενόμενοι τῆς ἀφ᾽ ἡμῶν αἰτίας τὸ ἴσον ἕξετε, πάλαι δὲ κοινώσαντας τὴν δύναμιν κοινὰ καὶ τὰ ἀποβαίνοντα ἔχειν..

Subsection 1 is complicated.

‘καὶ φασὶ δὴ δίκῃ πρότερον ἐθελῆσαι κρίνεσθαι,

            The word tool wants ethelisai to be an impersonal gerundive in executive voice, indicative modality, meaning that while the Korinthians are not being definite about what the Kerkyraeans said, the Korinthians are subscribing to the truth of what the Kerkyraeans said. This is the opposite of what section 38 said: the Korinthians would not sign up to the truth of why the Kerkyraeans were sent out to Epidamnos. However, the number of this verb is wrong if it’s an epistemic. We would have to find an example of Thucydides using fasi plus a singular conjugated verb for a collective noun subject. While we have that in Biblical Hebrew, I haven’t noticed it in Classical Greek.

ἥν γε οὐ τὸν προύχοντα καὶ ἐκ τοῦ ἀσφαλοῦς προκαλούμενον λέγειν τι δοκεῖν δεῖ,

            “which…somebody ought to expect to say”, under specific circumstances. Those circumstances are not when “a pretext is proposed from a position of safety”,  

ἀλλὰ τὸν ἐς ἴσον τά τε ἔργα ὁμοίως καὶ τοὺς λόγους πρὶν διαγωνίζεσθαι καθιστάντα.

            “…but for the sake of fairness offered words before picking up arms.”

In fact this is Freudian projection. The Korinthians did not notify the Kerkyraeans of what they were going to do but acted first. Now they have been soundly beaten and pretend that their multi-polis fleet was unfairly beaten.

Subsection 2 is similar, “these, not before starting a siege, but after we acted [so as] not to let it go on”, offered to arbitrate.

Subsection 3 has a nonsensical statement. Look at a map. Kerkyraea is now called Corfu, and it is well north and on the opposite side of the Peloponnese from Athins, whose colony of Ionia is to their east, within easy reach of their large navy. Epidamnus is north of Corfu in what is now Albania. Why would Kerkyraea bother Athins about Epidamnus? Why, with a history of having no alliances, would it share power with Athins? What would Korinth have done if such a thing had happened, sit on their thumbs? Not very likely.

And finally, the Korinthians having been soundly whipped, why do they claim that Kerkyraea is in danger? This is bad policy. The Kerkyraeans have just shown Athins that if Korinth gets control of Kerkyraea’s navy, they will have the power to destroy Athins. The Korinthians are actually underlining that they believe they can beat Athins anyway even if its navy is as big as that of Kerkyraea, and will do so after trumping up a reason.

Korinth has one more mistake to make, relative to the actual treaty. What do they say?


Friday, July 22, 2022

Mendel Beilis -- a contemporary document

I found this posted on the Online Books page this morning; it went online last night. You can read it online; if you belong to Hathi Trust member organizations you can print and download it. I'd love to have a download but I don't want to jeopardize your membership or privileges.

https://babel.hathitrust.org/cgi/pt?id=nnc1.cr60954140&view=1up&seq=6

Rabbi Harry Mayer published this in 1913, just after the trial ended. One of the first things in it is a detailed history of the 1840 Damascus case that Pranaitis referred to on Day 28 (IIRC). 

Notice that the first two cases are not ritual murder in the sense that was used at the Beilis trial. The first two cases involved adults, not children.

The German work that Rabbi Mayer has is probably Johann Eisenmenger's work, which Justinas Pranaitis copied for his thesis (rejected by the Russian diocese of the Catholic church). Pranaitis came from a German-speaking part of Lithuania. It was proven at trial that he never learned any of what Eisenmenger said; the prosecution had to ask leading questions and sometimes Pranaitis even answered those wrong. 

http://pajheil.blogspot.com/2016/12/fact-checking-torah-sources.html

My take on the trial is here. There are short items about it as well as a translation of the transcript.

https://pajheil.blogspot.com/p/mendel-beilis.html

Now for a final chilling note. The current "adenochrome" conspiracy theory about the COVID vaccine is the same wording as the blood libel -- torturing children to obtain something from them. The people promoting this conspiracy theory -- like Qanon and possibly OANN before it deleted the article -- are fronts for Putin outside Russia. Government officials are promoting the lie. 

https://www.thedailybeast.com/how-qanon-became-obsessed-with-adrenochrome-an-imaginary-drug-hollywood-is-harvesting-from-kids?source=articles&via=rss

We know how this works. It only takes a few shifts in wording, and Putin is now attacking the Jews, something he has held off on because, worshipper of Hitler that he is, he knows Hitler should have won the war before wasting so much of his logistics material on genocide. Yet Putin is waging genocide and committing crimes against humanity in Ukraine -- site of the Beilis trial and the Babi Yar massacre -- and he is getting dumped keyn ahora. 

Tuesday, July 19, 2022

21st Century Classical Greek -- who is at fault?

Book I section 38.

ἀλλ᾽ οὔτε πρὸς τοὺς ἄλλους οὔτε ἐς ἡμᾶς τοιοίδε εἰσίν, ἄποικοι δ᾽ ὄντες ἀφεστᾶσί τε διὰ παντὸς καὶ νῦν πολεμοῦσι, λέγοντες ὡς οὐκ ἐπὶ τῷ κακῶς πάσχειν ἐκπεμφθεῖεν.

[2] ἡμεῖς δὲ οὐδ᾽ αὐτοί φαμεν ἐπὶ τῷ ὑπὸ τούτων ὑβρίζεσθαι κατοικίσαι, ἀλλ᾽ ἐπὶ τῷ ἡγεμόνες τε εἶναι καὶ τὰ εἰκότα θαυμάζεσθαι.

[3] αἱ γοῦν ἄλλαι ἀποικίαι τιμῶσιν ἡμᾶς, καὶ μάλιστα ὑπὸ ἀποίκων στεργόμεθα:

[4] καὶ δῆλον ὅτι, εἰ τοῖς πλέοσιν ἀρέσκοντές ἐσμεν, τοῖσδ᾽ ἂν μόνοις οὐκ ὀρθῶς ἀπαρέσκοιμεν, οὐδ᾽ ἐπιστρατεύομεν ἐκπρεπῶς μὴ καὶ διαφερόντως τι ἀδικούμενοι.

[5] καλὸν δ᾽ ἦν, εἰ καὶ ἡμαρτάνομεν, τοῖσδε μὲν εἶξαι τῇ ἡμετέρᾳ ὀργῇ, ἡμῖν δὲ αἰσχρὸν βιάσασθαι τὴν τούτων μετριότητα: ὕβρει δὲ καὶ ἐξουσίᾳ πλούτου πολλὰ ἐς ἡμᾶς ἄλλα τε ἡμαρτήκασι καὶ Ἐπίδαμνον ἡμετέραν οὖσαν κακουμένην μὲν οὐ προσεποιοῦντο, ἐλθόντων δὲ ἡμῶν ἐπὶ τιμωρίᾳ ἑλόντες βίᾳ ἔχουσιν..

The bolded word at the end of subsection 1 is not only epistemic, it’s passive (imperfective eventive) and conjugated. It’s definite, but the Korinthians are not signing up to some truth here. What could it be?

Well, this is reported speech, and according to the grammars, it’s supposed to copy the tense of the original speech. But we just saw how the Kerkyraeans said it, and they used the progressive conceptual indicative (conjugated) in base voice for this same verb. They signed up to their truth. The Korinthians are undermining the idea that it is true.

There are two ways to jump with this, tell me if you can think of a third. The first is that, as usual, Goodwin copied from his source grammars and so have all the other grammarians, right down to Baugh here in the 21st century, without examining the corpus carefully. This is supported by last week’s post which shows that the “final” clause doesn’t always come at the end of the sentence. So it's Goodwin's fault that his grammar differs from the Korinthians.

The second possibility is that Thucydides is representing the Korinthians as bad speakers and this is a breakdown in their grammar, as they broke down in logic in the previous section. So it's their fault that they can't think or speak right.

In subsection 4 the Korinthians make another logical error. The conditional says that if their other colonies love them, there’s no reason for the Kerkyraeans not to love them. This begs the question, do the Korinthians treat all their colonies the same. The noteworthy issue is that colonies generally go out from the mitropolis. In the case of Epidamnus, part of the colony came from Kerkyraea. This means that as joint founders, Kerkyraea deserves equal treatment with Korinth, but Korinth did not even consult them.

The other problem with this conditional is that it doesn’t fit into Goodwin’s categories. The protasis is claimed to be true and ought to have ean instead of ei, and the apodosis should be in the indicative – the progressive conceptual indicative at that – and not the epistemic. So again, is Goodwin a bad grammarian or are the Korinthians bad speakers.

The Korinthians have the same grammatical problem in the conditional in subsection 5. Look back at section 24 where this narrative began. Epidamnus did not appeal to its mitropolis, Kerkyraea, against barbarian (Persian) attacks. The rebels who threw out the nobility sent their embassy only when the nobles were on the brink of taking back power over the city, backed by those barbarians. The exiled nobles probably were descended from the Kerkyraeans sent out to run the colony in the first place. It’s a bit much to throw these people out and then ask for help keeping them out.

But Korinth was willing to help out if only to poke a sharp stick in Kerkyraean eyes. The consequence in section 26 was predictable, and the Korinthians had to form a coalition of a number of polises to feel they could stand off the Kerkyraeans who fought alone and won.

At the end of subsection 5 the Korinthians make another claim that they fail to back up with examples.

]

Tuesday, July 12, 2022

21st Century Classical Greek -- purpose clauses again

Book I section 37. In which I get to argue against Goodwin again.

‘ἀναγκαῖον Κερκυραίων τῶνδε οὐ μόνον περὶ τοῦ δέξασθαι σφᾶς τὸν λόγον ποιησαμένων, ἀλλ᾽ ὡς καὶ ἡμεῖς τε ἀδικοῦμεν καὶ αὐτοὶ οὐκ εἰκότως πολεμοῦνται, μνησθέντας πρῶτον καὶ ἡμᾶς περὶ ἀμφοτέρων οὕτω καὶ ἐπὶ τὸν ἄλλον λόγον ἰέναι, ἵνα τὴν ἀφ᾽ ἡμῶν τε ἀξίωσιν ἀσφαλέστερον προειδῆτε καὶ τὴν τῶνδε χρείαν μὴ ἀλογίστως ἀπώσησθε.

[2] ‘φασὶ δὲ ξυμμαχίαν διὰ τὸ σῶφρον οὐδενός πω δέξασθαι: τὸ δ᾽ ἐπὶ κακουργίᾳ καὶ οὐκ ἀρετῇ ἐπετήδευσαν, ξύμμαχόν τε οὐδένα βουλόμενοι πρὸς τἀδικήματα οὐδὲ μάρτυρα ἔχειν οὔτε παρακαλοῦντες αἰσχύνεσθαι.

[3] καὶ ἡ πόλις αὐτῶν ἅμα αὐτάρκη θέσιν κειμένη παρέχει αὐτοὺς δικαστὰς ὧν βλάπτουσί τινα μᾶλλον ἢ κατὰ ξυνθήκας γίγνεσθαι, διὰ τὸ ἥκιστα ἐπὶ τοὺς πέλας ἐκπλέοντας μάλιστα τοὺς ἄλλους ἀνάγκῃ καταίροντας δέχεσθαι.

[4] καὶ τοῦτο τὸ εὐπρεπὲς ἄσπονδον οὐχ ἵνα μὴ ξυναδικῶσιν ἑτέροις προβέβληνται, ἀλλ᾽ ὅπως κατὰ μόνας ἀδικῶσι καὶ ὅπως ἐν ᾧ μὲν ἂν κρατῶσι βιάζωνται, οὗ δ᾽ ἂν λάθωσι πλέον ἔχωσιν, ἢν δέ πού τι προσλάβωσιν ἀναισχυντῶσιν:

[5] καίτοι εἰ ἦσαν ἄνδρες,ὥσπερ φασίν, ἀγαθοί, ὅσῳ ἀληπτότεροι ἦσαν τοῖς πέλας, τόσῳ δὲ φανερωτέραν ἐξῆν αὐτοῖς τὴν ἀρετὴν διδοῦσι καὶ δεχομένοις τὰ δίκαια δεικνύναι..

Go to Wiktionary and look up φημί. Then go down to Synonyms and click on λέγω. Now scroll down to the second set of usage notes, which apply to its meaning of “say, speak”. Notice that lego is a suppletive like erkhomai. Learn both these verbs because there are a lot more speeches in Thucydides.

Subsection 3 is supposed to talk about the wrong the Kerkyraeans do, but the law of the sea awards wrecks to whoever finds them. If the Kerkyraeans put out false signals to lure ships onto the rocks, that would be illegal. So this is a pointless point.

Subsection 4 has, first a “final” clause with hina, and then an object clause with hopos. So “final” clauses don’t come at the end of a subsection, sentence, or thought; the labels contradict how Thucydides actually uses the material – or else he is making fun of the Korinthians by pretending that they use bad grammar. Frankly, given what we’ve been doing for over 100 weeks now, I tend to think the label should be changed to “purpose clause”.

Now what is an object clause? It’s the object of some verb. What do the bolded verbs (all obliques) hang off of? Ir’s the copula, which is unexpressed since there’s an equational clause, καὶ τοῦτο τὸ εὐπρεπὲς ἄσπονδον.

An equational clause does not take an object, it takes a predicate.

What’s more, an object clause should use imperfective conceptual indicative, not oblique like adikosi or kratosi, etc. (See Goodwin page 292, section 1372ff.) At the bottom of the page, Goodwin admits that object clauses can use oblique or epistemic.

In a final mess, on page 293, section 1378ff, Goodwin claims that mi should not be here unless the main verb has to do with fearing something. I already talked about how these verb categorizations are useless and misleading. The plain fact in subsection 4 is a negation.

What is Thucydides really doing in subsection 4? He’s using the verbs as true obliques, the way Biblical Hebrew does: to express a purpose and to hang belief in this purpose from the verb of the main clause. If the Athinaians accept that the Kerkyraean neutrality is euprepes, “specious”, then they will go along with the Korinthians’ ad hominem argument.

Because remember, the Korinthians haven’t presented any facts yet. And subsection 5 is a really stupid argument to make. The Kerkyraeans did propose arbitration. The Korinthians forgot to add “before attacking Epidamnus”, and so they are confusing the Athinaians about what the real complaint is.