vir litterarum wrote:There seems to be a scholarly debate over the structure of this passage according to Marchant:
17. οἷς τε αὐτὸς παρῆν--i.e. (ἠξίωσα γράφειν ἐκεῖνἀοἷς: I described facts which I myself witnessed and (I described facts) after inquiring about each detail from others, thus ἐπεξελθών is parallel to οἷς αὐτὸς παρῆν, which, as Mr. Forbes says, is equivalent to αὐτὸς παραγενόμενος. (Another way is to make ἐπεξελθών govern οἶς αὐτὸς παρῆν, but this has the great disadvantage of making οἷς αὐτὸς παρῆν and παρὰ τῶν ἄλλων parallel phrases. See crit. note.)
Do not be confusud at all! "ἔργα" here does not mean "acts", it means "battles, war acts". That's why he sais "ἔργα τῶν πραχθέντων..."= the battles among things done... See also 1.23 "τῶν δὲ πρότερον ἔργων μέγιστον ἐπράχθη τὸ Μηδικόν... "
The contrast is between "πυνθανόμενος" and "ἐπεξελθών" (see "ούκ... ἀλλά..."). There is no contradiction in "έκ τοῦ παρατυχόντος" and "παρὰ τῶν ἄλλων". The meaning is ... to write down the battles not simply by inquiring imformation from any random person, and not from my point of view, but after examining (care)fully whatever (battle) I myself experienced and after examining (care)fully in every possible detail whatever information I got about each one (battle) from other (present) people...
τὰ δ' ἔργα τῶν πραχθέντων ἐν τῷ πολέμῳ οὐκ ἐκ τοῦ παρατυχόντος πυνθανόμενος ἠξίωσα γράφειν, οὐδ' ὡς ἐμοὶ ἐδόκει, ἀλλ' (ἐπεξελθών ταῦτα
) οἷς τε αὐτὸς παρῆν καὶ (ἐπεξελθών) παρὰ τῶν ἄλλων (τῶν παρόντων
) ὅσον δυνατὸν ἀκριβείᾳ περὶ ἑκάστου. Among the things done during the war, I thought worthy to write down the battles not by inquiring information from any random person, and not (also) from my point of view, but after examining carefully those battles, in which I myseslf was present, and (after examining carefully) about each one (battle) in every possible detail from other (present) people's information.
There is some kind of "brachylogy", if I am not wrong, in the sentence above.
And if you combine these with the next passage, as cited from IreneY, I think that you can understand fully what Thucydides wanted to say about examining the battles of the Peloponnesian war...EDIT: The initial parenthesis was missing before "ἐπεξελθών ταῦτα"...
Dives qui sapiens est...