Phormio or Phormion, the son of Asopius (or Asopichus, as Pausania calls him) , was an Athenian general and admiral during the Peloponnesian War. He belonged to the deme Paeania. Nothing is known of him except for the information provided by Thucydides in his History of the Peloponnesian War.
At the beginning of the Peloponnesian War he was assigned to lead the Athenian troops against Potidaea. He blockaded the town and pillaged the surrounding land. Later in 432 BC he shared command of the Athenian fleet with Thucydides and Hagnon against Samos.
In 431 BC he led 1600 Athenians against Chalcidice, along with Perdiccas of Macedon. In 430 BC he led the Athenian fleet sent to help Ambracia and Acarnania at the Battle of Potidaea. He stationed the fleet of twenty ships at Naupactus to blockade Corinth. Phormio defeated the Corinthian fleet at the Battle of Naupactus in 429 BC, trapping them in the narrow strait and capturing twelve of their ships. A larger Corinthian and Spartan fleet attempted to attack him again a few days later, and although he lost many of his own ships he forced them to withdraw for a second time.
After these victories he landed 400 Athenians in Acarnania, engaged in some fighting with the inhabitants, and then returned to Athens in 428 BC.
His son, also named Asopius, also commanded naval expeditions during the war. Phormio is not mentioned after 428.
Another Phormio was a freed slave of Pasion the banker. After the death of the latter he married his widow, and became guardian to his younger son Pasicles. It was not however till eleven years after the death of Pasion that he received the franchise of an Athenian citizen. (Dem. adu. Steph. p. 1126.) He was a ship-owner; and on one occasion, when the people of Byzantium had detained some of his ships, he sent Stephanus to complain of the wrong. (Ib. p. 1121.) Apollodorus, the eldest son of Pasion, brought an action against Phormion, who was defended by Demosthenes in the speech huper Phormiônos. Subsequently Apollodorus brought the witnesses of Phormion to trial for perjury, when Demosthenes supported the other side, and composed posed for Apollodorus the speeches against Stephanus.(Demosth. l. c. ; Aesch. de fals. Leg. p. 50; Phut. Demosth. c. 15; Clinton, F. H. vol. ii. p. 358.)
Phormio is also a comedy by the Roman playwright Terence.
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