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XX.73‑90

This webpage reproduces a section of
The Library of History

of
Diodorus Siculus

published in Vol. X
of the Loeb Classical Library edition, 1954

The text is in the public domain.

This page has been carefully proofread
and I believe it to be free of errors.
If you find a mistake though,
please let me know!


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Book XXI

(Vol. X) Diodorus Siculus
Library of History

(Book XX, end)

p381 91 1 When that year had passed, Pherecles became archon in Athens and in Rome Publius Sempronius and Publius Sulpicius received the consulship;1 and in Elis the Olympian Games were celebrated for the one hundred and nineteenth time, at which celebration Andromenes of Corinth won the footrace. While p383these held office, Demetrius,2 who was besieging Rhodes, failing in his assaults by sea, decided to make his attacks by land. 2 Having provided therefore a large quantity of material of all kinds, he built an engine called the helepolis,3 which far surpassed in size those which had been constructed before it. Each side of the square platform he made almost fifty cubits in length,4 framed together from squared timber and fastened with iron; the space within he divided by bars set about a cubit5 from each other so that there might be standing space for those who were to push the machine forward. 3 The whole structure was movable, mounted on eight great solid wheels; the width of their rims was two cubits and these were overlaid with heavy iron plates. To permit motion to the side, pivots had been constructed,6 by means of which the whole device was easily moved in any direction. 4 From each corner there extended upward beams equal in length and little short of a hundred cubits long, inclining toward each other in such a way that, the whole structure being nine storeys high, the first storey had an area of forty-three hundred square feet and the topmost p385storey of nine hundred.7 5 The three exposed sides of the machine he covered externally with iron plates nailed on so that it should receive no injury from fire carriers. On each storey there were ports on the front, in size and shape fitted to the individual characteristics of the missiles that were to be shot forth. 6 These ports had shutters, which were lifted by a mechanical device and which secured the safety of the men on the platforms who were busy serving the artillery; for the shutters were of hides stitched together and were filled with wool so that they would yield to the blows of the stones from the ballistae. 7 Each of the storeys had two wide stairways, one of which they used for bringing up what was needed and the other for descending, in order that all might be taken care of without confusion. Those who were to move the machine were selected from the whole army, three thousand four hundred8 men excelling in strength; 8 some of them were enclosed within the machine while others were stationed in its rear, and they pushed it forward, the skilful design aiding greatly in its motion. He also constructed penthouses — some to protect the men who were filling the moat, others to carry rams — and covered passages through which those who were going to their labours might go and return safely. Using the crews of the ships, he cleared a space four stades wide through which he planned to advance the siege engines he p387had prepared, wide enough so that it covered a front of six curtains and seven towers. The number of craftsmen and labourers collected was not much less than thirty thousand.

92 1 As everything, therefore, because of the many hands was finished sooner than was expected, Demetrius was regarded with alarm by the Rhodians; for not only did the size of the siege engines and the number of the army which had been gathered stun them, but also the king's energy and ingenuity in conducting sieges. 2 For, being exceedingly ready in invention and devising many things beyond the art of the master builders, he was called Poliorcetes;9 and he displayed such superiority and force in his attacks that it seemed that no wall was strong enough to furnish safety from him for the besieged. 3 Both in stature and in beauty he displayed the dignity of a hero, so that even those strangers who had come from a distance, when they beheld his comeliness arrayed in royal splendour, marvelled at him and followed him as he went abroad in order to gaze at him. 4 Furthermore, he was haughty in spirit and proud and looked down not only upon common men but also upon those of royal estate; and what was most peculiar to him, in time of peace he devoted his time to winebibbing and to drinking bouts accompanied by dancing and revels, and in general he emulated the conduct said by mythology to have been that of Dionysus among men; but in his wars he was active and sober, so that beyond all others who practised this profession he devoted both body p389and mind to the task. 5 For it was in his time that the greatest weapons were perfected and engines of all kinds far surpassing those that had existed among others; and this man launched the greatest ships after this siege10 and after the death of his father.

93 1 When the Rhodians saw the progress of the enemy's siege works, they built a second wall inside parallel to the one that was on the point of failing under the attacks. They used stones obtained by tearing down the theatre's outer wall and the adjacent houses, and also some of the temples, vowing to the gods that they would build finer ones when the city had been saved. 2 They also sent out nine of their ships, giving the commanders orders to sail in every direction and, appearing unexpectedly, to sink some of the ships they intercepted and bring others to the city. After these had sailed out and had been divided into three groups, Damophilus, who had ships of the kind called by the Rhodians "guard-ships," sailed to Carpathos;11 and finding there many of Demetrius' ships, he sank some, shattering them with his rams, and some he beached and burnt after selecting the most useful men from their crews, and not a few of those that were transporting the grain from the island, he brought back to Rhodes. 3 Menedemus, who commanded three light undecked ships,12 sailed to Patara in Lycia; and finding at anchor there a ship whose crew was on shore, he set the hull on fire; and he took many of the freighters that were carrying provisions to the army and dispatched them p391to Rhodes. 4 He also captured a quadrireme that was sailing from Cilicia and had on board royal robes and the rest of the outfit that Demetrius' wife Phila had with great pains made ready and sent off for her husband.13 The clothing Damophilus sent to Egypt since the garments were purple and proper for a king to wear; but the ship he hauled up on land, and he sold the sailors, both those from the quadrireme and those from the other captured ships. 5 Amyntas, who was in command of the three remaining ships, made for islands where he fell in with many freighters carrying to the enemy materials useful for the engines of war; he sank some of these and some he brought to the city. On these ships were also captured eleven famous engineers, menº of outstanding skill in making missiles and catapults.

6 Thereafter, when an assembly had been convened, some advised that the statues of Antigonus and Demetrius should be pulled down, saying that it was absurd to honour equally their besiegers and their benefactors. At this the people were angry and censured these men as erring, and they altered none of the honours awarded to Antigonus, having made a wise decision with a view both to fame and to self interest. 7 For the magnanimity and the soundness of this action in a democracy won plaudits from all others and repentance from the besiegers; for while the latter were setting free the cities throughout Greece, which had displayed no goodwill at all toward their benefactors, they were manifestly trying to enslave the city that in practice showed itself most p393constant in repaying favours; and as protection against the sudden shift of fortune if the war should result in the capture of Rhodes, the Rhodians retained as a means of gaining mercy the memory of the friendship that they had preserved. These things, then, were done prudently by the Rhodians.

94 1 When Demetrius had undermined the wall by using his sappers, one of the deserters informed the besieged that those who were working underground were almost within the walls. 2 Therefore the Rhodians by digging a deep trench parallel to the wall which was expected to collapse and by quickly undertaking mining operations themselves, made contact with their opponents underground and prevented them from advancing farther. 3 Now the mines were closely watched by both sides, and some of Demetrius' men tried to bribe Athenagoras, who had been given command of the guard by the Rhodians. This man was a Milesian by descent, sent by Ptolemy as commander of the mercenaries.14 4 Promising to turn traitor he set a day on which one of the ranking leaders should be sent from Demetrius to go by night through the mine up into the city in order to inspect the position where the soldiers would assemble. 5 But after leading Demetrius on to great hopes, he disclosed the matter to the council; and when the king sent one of his friends, Alexander the Macedonian, the Rhodians captured him as he came up through the mine. They crowned Athenagoras with a golden crown and gave him a gift of five talents of silver, their object being to stimulate loyalty to the city on the part of the other men who were mercenaries and foreigners.

p395 95 1 Demetrius, when his engines of war were completed and all the space before walls was cleared, stationed the helepolis in the centre, and assigned positions to the penthouses, eight in number, which were to protect the sappers. He placed four of these on each side of the helepolis and connected with each of them one covered passage so that the men who were going in and out might accomplish their assigned tasks in safety; and he brought up also two enormous penthouses in which battering rams were mounted. For each shed held a ram with a length of one hundred and twenty cubits, sheathed with iron and striking a blow like that of a ship's ram; and the ram was moved with ease, being mounted on wheels and receiving its motive power in battle from not less than a thousand men.15 2 When he was ready to advance the engines against the walls, he placed on each storey of the helepolis ballistae and catapults of appropriate size,16 3 stationed his fleet in position to attack the harbours and the adjacent area, and distributed his infantry along such parts of the wall as could be attacked. 4 Then, when all at a single command and signal had raised the battle cry together, he launched attacks on the city from every side. While he was shaking the walls with the rams and the ballistae, Cnidian envoys arrived, asking him to withhold his attack and promising to persuade the Rhodians to accept the most feasible of his demands. 5 The king broke off the attack, and the envoys carried on p397negotiations back and forth at great length; but in the end they were not able to reach any agreement, and the siege was actively resumed. Demetrius also overthrew the strongest of the towers, which was built of squared stones, and shattered the entire curtain, so that the forces in the city were not able to maintain a thoroughfare on the battlements at this point.

96 1 At this same period King Ptolemy dispatched to the Rhodians a large number of supply ships in which were three hundred thousand measures17 of grain and legumes. 2 While these ships were on their way to the city, Demetrius attempted to dispatch ships to bring them to his own camp. But a wind favourable to the Egyptians sprang up, and they were carried along with full sails and brought into the friendly harbours, but those sent out by Demetrius returned with their mission unaccomplished. 3 Cassander also sent to the Rhodians ten thousand measures of barley, and Lysimachus sent them forty thousand measures of wheat and the same amount of barley. Consequently, when those in the city obtained such large supplies, the besieged, who were already disheartened, regained their courage. Deciding that it would be advantageous to attack the siege engines of the enemy, they made ready a large supply of fire-bearing missiles and placed all their ballistae and catapults upon the wall. 4 When night had fallen, at about the second watch, they suddenly began to strike the helepolis with an unremitting shower of the fire missiles, and by using other missiles of all kinds, they shot down any who rushed to the p399spot. 5 Since the attack was unforeseen, Demetrius, alarmed for the siege works that had been constructed, hurried to the rescue. 6 The night was moonless; and the fire missiles shone bright as they hurtled violently through the air; but the catapults and ballistae, since their missiles were invisible, destroyed many who were not able to see the impending stroke. 7 It also happened that some of the iron plates of the helepolis were dislodged, and where the place was laid bare the fire missiles rained upon the exposed wood of the structure. Therefore Demetrius, fearing that the fire would spread and the whole machine be ruined, came quickly to the rescue, and with the water that had been placed in readiness on the platforms he tried to put out the spreading fire. He finally assembled by a trumpet signal the men who were assigned to move the apparatus and by their efforts dragged the machine beyond range.

97 1 Then when day had dawned he ordered the camp followers to collect the missiles that had been hurled by the Rhodians, since he wished to estimate from these the armament of the forces with in the city. 2 Quickly carrying out his orders, they counted more than eight hundred fire missiles of various sizes and not less than fifteen hundred catapult bolts. Since so many missiles had been hurled in a short time at night, he marvelled at the resources possessed by the city and at their prodigality in the use of these weapons.

3 Next Demetrius repaired such of his works as had p401been damaged, and devoted himself to the burial of the dead and the care of the wounded. 4 Meanwhile the people of the city, having gained a respite from the violent attacks of the siege engines, constructed a third crescent-shaped wall and included in its circuit every part of the wall that was in a dangerous condition; but none the less they dug a deep moat around the fallen portion of the wall so that the king should not be able to break into the city easily by an assault with a heavily armed force. 5 They also sent out some of their fastest ships, installing Amyntas as commander; he, sailing to Peraea18 in Asia, suddenly confronted some pirates who had been sent out be by Demetrius. These had three deckless ships and were supposed to be the strongest of the pirates who were fighting as allies of the king. In the brief naval battle that ensued, the Rhodians overpowered the foe and took the ships with their crews, among whom was Timocles, the chief pirate. 6 They also encountered some of the merchants and, seizing a fair number of light craft loaded with grain, they sent these and the undecked ships of the pirates to harbour in Rhodes by night, escaping the notice of the enemy. 7 Demetrius, after he had repaired such of his equipment as was damaged, brought his siege engines up to the wall. By using all his missiles without stint, he drove back those who were stationed on the battlements, and striking with his rams a continuous portion of the wall, he overthrew two curtains; but as the city's forces fought obstinately for the tower that was between them, there were bitter and continuous encounters, one after another, with the p403result that their leader Ananias was killed fighting desperately and many of the soldiers were slain also.

98 1 While these events were taking place, King Ptolemy sent to the Rhodians grain and other supplies in no less quantity than those formerly sent,19 and fifteen hundred soldiers, whose leader was Antigonus, the Macedonian. 2 At this very time there came to Demetrius more than fifty envoys from the Athenians and the other Greek cities, all of them asking the king to come to terms with the Rhodians. 3 A truce, therefore, was made; but although many arguments of all sorts were presented to the city and to Demetrius, they could in no way agree; and so the envoys returned without accomplishing their aim.20

4 Demetrius, having determined to attack the city at night through the breach in the wall, selected the strongest of his fighting men and of the rest those fitted for his purpose to the number of fifteen hundred. 5 These, then, he ordered to advance to the wall in silence during the second watch; as for himself, when he had made his preparations, he gave orders to those stationed on each side that when he gave the signal they should raise the battle cry and make attacks both by land and sea. 6 When they all carried out the order, those who had advanced against breaches in the walls, after dispatching the advance guards at the moat, charged past into the city and occupied the region of the theatre; 7 but the magistrates of the Rhodians, learning what had happened p405and seeing that the whole city had been thrown into confusion, sent orders to those at the harbour and the walls to remain at their own posts and oppose the enemy outside if he should attack; and they themselves, with their contingent of selected men and the soldiers who had recently sailed in from Alexandria, attacked the troops who had go the within the walls. 8 When day returned and Demetrius raised the ensign, those who were attacking the port and those who had been stationed about the while on all sides shouted the battle cry, giving encouragement to the men who had occupied part of the region of the theatre; but in the city the throng of children and women were in fear and tears, thinking that their native city was being taken by storm. 9 Nevertheless, fighting began between those who had made their way within the wall and the Rhodians, and many fell on both sides. At first neither side withdrew from its position; but afterwards, as the Rhodians constantly added to their numbers and were prompt to face danger — as is the way with men fighting for their native land and their most precious things, — and on the other hand the king's men were in distress, Alcimus and Mantias, their commanders, expired after receiving many wounds, most of the others were killed in hand-to‑hand fighting or were captured, and only a few escaped to the king and survived. Many also of the Rhodians were slain, among whom was the president Damoteles, who had won great acclaim for his valour.

99 1 When Demetrius realized that Fortune had snatched from his hand the capture of the city, he made new preparations for the siege. When his p407father thereafter wrote to him to come to terms with the Rhodians as best he could, he awaited a favourable opportunity that would provide a specious excuse for the settlement. 2 Since Ptolemy had written to the Rhodians, first saying that he would send them a great quantity of grain and three thousand soldiers, but then advising them, if it should be possible, to make equitable terms with Antigonus, everyone inclined toward peace. 3 At just this time the Aetolian League sent envoys to urge a settlement, and the Rhodians came to terms with Demetrius on these conditions: that the city should be autonomous and ungarrisoned and should enjoy its own revenue; that the Rhodians should be allies of Antigonus unless he should be at war with Ptolemy; and that they should give as hostages a hundred of their citizens whom Demetrius should select, those holding office being exempt.21

100 1 In this way, then, the Rhodians, after they had been besieged for a year, brought the war to an end. Those who had proved themselves brave men in the battles they honoured with the prizes that were their due, and they granted freedom and citizenship to such slaves as had shown themselves courageous. 2 They also set up statues of King Cassander and King Lysimachus, who though they held second place in general opinion, yet had made great contributions to the salvation of the city. 3 In the case of Ptolemy, since they wanted to surpass his record by repaying his kindness with a greater one, they sent a sacred mission into Libya to ask the oracle at p409ammon if it advised the Rhodians to honour Ptolemy as a god. 4 Since the oracle approved, they dedicated in the city a square precinct, building on each of its sides a portico a stade22 long, and this they called the Ptolemaeum. They also rebuilt the theatre, the fallen portions of the walls, and the buildings that had been destroyed in the other quarters in a manner more beautiful than before.

5 Now that Demetrius, in accordance with injunctions of his father, had made peace with the Rhodians, he sailed out with his whole force; and after passing through the islands, he put in at Aulis in Boeotia. 6 Since he was intent on freeing the Greeks (for Cassander and Polyperchon having up to this time enjoyed impunity were engaged in plundering the greater part of Greece), he first freed the city of the Chalcidians, which was garrisoned by Boeotians, and by striking fear into the Boeotians, he forced them to renounce their friendship with Cassander; and after this he made an alliance with the Aetolians and began his preparations for carrying on war against Polyperchon and Cassander.23

7 While these events were taking place, Eumelus, the king of Bosporus, died in the sixth year of his reign,24 and his son Spartacus25 succeeded to the throne and reigned for twenty years.

101 1 Now that we have carefully passed in review the happenings in Greece and Asia, we shall turn our narrative toward the other parts of the inhabited world.

p411 In Sicily,26 although the inhabitants of the Liparaean Islands were at peace with him, Agathocles sailed against them without warning and exacted from men who had done him no prior injury whatever, fifty talents of silver. 2 To many, indeed, what I am about to relate seemed the work of a god, since his crime received its brand from the divinity. When the Liparaeans begged him to grant them time for what was lacking in the payment and said that they had never turned the sacred offerings to profane uses, Agathocles forced them to give him the dedications in the Prytaneum, of which some bore inscriptions to Aeolus and some to Hephaestus; and taking these he at once sailed away. But a wind came up and the eleven of his ships that were carrying the money were sunk. 3 And so it seemed to many that the god who was said in that region to be master of the winds at once on his first voyage exacted punishment from him, and that at the end Hephaestus punished him in his own country in a way that matched the tyrant's impious actions and the god's own name by burning him alive on hot coals;27 for it belonged to the same character and the same justice to refrain from touching those who were saving their own parents on Aetna,28 and with his proper power to search after those who had been guilty of impiety toward his shrine.

4 However, as regards the disaster that befell Agathocles, when we come to the proper time, the action itself will confirm what we now have said; but we p413must now tell of events in the adjacent parts of Italy.29

5 The Romans and the Samnites interchanged envoys and made peace after having fought for twenty-two years and six months;30 and one of the consuls, Publius Sempronius, invading the country of the Aecli31 with an army, captured forty cities in a total of fifty days, and after forcing the entire tribe to submit to Rome, returned home and celebrated a triumph with great applause. The Roman people made alliances with the Marsi, the Paligni,º and the Marrucini.32

102 1 When the year had come to its end, Leostratus was archon in Athens, and in Rome the consuls were Servius Cornelius and Lucius Genucius.33 While these held office Demetrius proposed to carry on his war with Cassander and to free the Greeks; and first he planned to establish order in the affairs of Greece, for he believed that the freeing of the Greeks would bring him great honour, and at the same time he thought it necessary to wipe out Prepelaüs34 and the other leaders before attacking Cassander, and then to go on against Macedonia itself if Cassander did not march against him. 2 Now p415the city of Sicyon was garrisoned by King Ptolemy's soldiers, commanded by a very distinguished general, Philip. Attacking this city suddenly by night, Demetrius broke his way inside the walls. Then the garrison fled to the acropolis, but Demetrius took possession of the city and occupied the region between the houses and the acropolis. While he hesitated to bring up his siege engines, the garrison in panic surrendered the acropolis on terms and the men themselves sailed off to Egypt. After Demetrius had moved the people of Sicyon into their acropolis, he destroyed the part of the city adjacent to the harbour, since its site was quite insecure; then, after he had assisted the common people of the city in building their houses and had re-established free government for them, he received divine honours from those whom he had benefited; 3 for they called the city Demetrias, and they voted to celebrate sacrifices and public festivals and also games in his honour every year and to grant him the other honours of a founder. Time, however, whose continuity has been broken by changes of conditions, has invalidated these honours; but the people of Sicyon, having thus obtained a much better location, continue to live there down to our times.35 4 For the enclosed area of the acropolis is level and of ample size, and it is surrounded on all sides by cliffs difficult to scale, so that on no side can engines of war be brought near; moreover, it has plenty of water by the aid of which they developed rich gardens, so that the king in his design seems to have made excellent provision both for comfort in time of peace and for safety in time of war.

103 1 After Demetrius had settled the affairs of the p417people of Sicyon, he set out with his whole army for Corinth, which was held by Prepelaüs, a general of Cassander. At first, after he had been admitted at night by certain citizens through a postern gate, Demetrius gained possession of the city and its harbours. 2 The garrison, however, fled, some to the place called Sisyphium,36 some to Acrocorinth; but he brought up engines of war to the fortifications and took Sisyphium by storm after suffering heavy losses. Then, when the men there fled to those who had occupied Acrocorinth, he intimidated them also and forced them to surrender the citadel; 3 for this king was exceedingly irresistible in his assaults, being particularly skilled in the construction of siege equipment. Be that as it may, when once he had freed the Corinthians he brought a garrison into Acrocorinth, since the citizens wished the city to be protected by the king until the war with Cassander should be brought to an end. 4 Prepelaüs, ignominiously driven out of Corinth, withdrew to Cassander, but Demetrius, advancing into Achaia, took Bura by storm and restored autonomy to its citizens; then, capturing Scyrus in a few days, he cast out its garrison. 5 After this, making a campaign against Arcadian Orchomenus, he ordered the garrison commander, Strombichus, to surrender the city. When he paid no attention to the orders but even poured much abuse upon him from the wall in an insulting manner, the king brought up engines of war, overthrew the walls, and took the city by storm. 6 As for Strombichus, who had been made garrison-commander by Polyperchon, p419and at least eighty of the others who were hostile to him, Demetrius crucified them in front of the city, but having captured at least two thousand of the other mercenaries, he incorporated them with his own men. 7 After the capture of this city, those who commanded the forts in the vicinity, assuming that it was impossible to escape the might of the king, surrendered the strongholds to him. In like fashion those also who guarded the cities withdrew of their own accord, since Cassander, Prepelaüs, and Polyperchon failed to come to their aid but Demetrius was approaching with a great army and with overwhelming engines of war.

This was the situation of Demetrius.37

104 1 In Italy38 the people of Tarentum were waging war with the Lucanians and the Romans; and they sent envoys to Sparta asking for assistance and for Cleonymus as general.39 2 When the Lacedaemonians willingly granted them the leader whom they requested and the Tarentines sent money and ships, Cleonymus enrolled five thousand mercenaries at Taenarum in Laconia40 and sailed at once to Tarentum. After collecting there other mercenaries no less in number than those previously enrolled, he also enlisted more than twenty thousand citizens as foot-soldiers and two thousand as mounted troops. He won the support also of most of the Greeks in Italy and of the tribe of the Messapians.41 3 Then, since p421he had a strong army under his command, the Lucanians in alarm established friendship with the Tarentines; and when the people of Metapontum did not come over to him, he persuaded the Lucanians to invade the territory of the Metapontines and, by making a simultaneous attack himself, intimidated them. Then, entering their city as a friend, he exacted more than six hundred talents of silver; and he took two hundred maidens of the best families as hostages, not so much as a guarantee of the city's faith as to satisfy his own lust.42 4 Indeed, having discarded the Spartan garb, he lived in continued luxury and made slaves of those who had trusted in him; for although he had so strong an army and such ample supplies, he did nothing worthy of Sparta. He planned to invade Sicily as if to overthrow the tyranny of Agathocles and restore their independence to the Siciliots; but postponing this campaign for the present, he sailed to Corcyra, and after getting possession of the city exacted a great sum of money and installed a garrison, intending to use this place as a base and to await a chance to take part in the affairs in Greece.

105 1 But soon, when envoys did come to him both from Demetrius Poliorcetes and from Cassander proposing alliances, he joined with neither of them; but when he learned that the Tarentines and some of the others were in revolt, he left an adequate garrison in Corcyra, and with the rest of his army sailed at top speed to Italy in order to punish those who defied his commands. Putting in to land in the district that was defended by the barbarians, he took p423the city,43 sold its people into slavery, and plundered the countryside. 2 He likewise took by siege the city called Triopium,44 capturing about three thousand prisoners. But at this very time the barbarians throughout the region came together and attacked his camp by night, and in the battle that took place they slew more than two hundred of Cleonymus' men and made prisoners about a thousand. 3 A storm rising at the time of the battle destroyed twenty of the ships that lay at anchor near his encampment. Having met with two such disasters, Cleonymus sailed away to Corcyra with his army.45

106 1 When this year had passed, Nicocles was archon in Athens, and in Rome Marcus Livius and Marcus Aemilius received the consulship.46 While these held office, Cassander, the king of the Macedonians, on seeing that the power of the Greeks47 was increasing and that the whole war was directed against Macedonia, became much alarmed about the future. 2 He therefore sent envoys into Asia to Antigonus, asking him to come to terms with him. But when Antigonus replied that he recognized only one basis for a settlement — Cassander's surrender of whatever he possessed, — Cassander was alarmed and summoned Lysimachus from Thrace to take concerted p425action in regard to their highest interests; 3 for it was his invariable custom when facing the most alarming situations to call on Lysimachus for assistance, both because of his personal character and because his kingdom lay next to Macedonia. When these kings had taken counsel together about their common interest, they sent envoys to Ptolemy, the king of Egypt, and to Seleucus, who was ruler of the upper satrapies, revealing the arrogance of Antigonus' answer and showing that the danger arising from the war was common to all. 4 For they said, if Antigonus should gain control of Macedonia, he would at once take their kingdoms from the others also; indeed he had given proof many times that he was grasping and regarded any command as a possession not to be shared. 5 It would therefore, they said, be advantageous for all to make plans in common and jointly undertake a war against Antigonus. Now Ptolemy and Seleucus, believing that the statements were true, eagerly agreed and arranged with Cassander to assist one another with strong forces.

107 1 Cassander, however, thought it best not to await the attack of his enemies but to get the start of them by opening the campaign himself and seizing what he could use to advantage. Therefore Cassander gave to Lysimachus a part of his army and sent with it Prepelaüs as general,48 while he himself moved with the rest of the army into Thessaly to carry on the war with Demetrius and the Greeks. p4272 Lysimachus with his army crossed from Europe to Asia, and since the inhabitants of Lampsacus and Parium came over to him willingly, he left them free, but when he took Sigeum by force, he installed a garrison there. Next, giving his general Prepelaüs six thousand foot-soldiers and a thousand horse, he sent him to win over the cities throughout Aeolis and Ionia; as for himself, he first attempted to invest Abydus and set about preparing missiles and engines and the other equipment; 3 but when there arrived by sea to assist the besieged a large body of soldiers sent by Demetrius, a force sufficient to secure the safety of the city, he gave up this attempt and won over Hellespontine Phrygia, and also laid siege to the city of Synnada,49 which possessed a great royal treasure. 4 It was at this very time that he even persuaded Docimus, the general of Antigonus, to make common cause with him, and by his aid he took Synnada and also some of the strongholds that held the royal wealth. Prepelaüs, the general who had been sent by Lysimachus to Aeolis and Ionia, mastered Adramyttium as he passed by, and then, laying siege to Ephesus and frightening its inhabitants, he took the city. The hundred Rhodian hostages50 whom he found there he sent back to their native land; and he left the Ephesians free but burned all the ships in the harbour, since the enemy controlled the sea p429and the whole outcome of the war was uncertain. 5 After this he secured the adherence of the people of Teos and of Colophon, but since reinforcements came by sea to Erythrae and Clazomenae, he could not capture these cities; however, he plundered their territory and then set out for Sardis. There, by persuading Antigonus' general Phoenix to desert the king, he gained control of the city except the acropolis; for Philip,51 one of the friends of Antigonus, who was guarding the citadel, held firm his loyalty toward the man who had placed trust in him.

The affairs of Lysimachus were in this position.

108 1 Antigonus, who had made preparations to celebrate great games and a festival in Antigonia, had collected from all sides the most famous athletes and artists to compete for great prizes and fees. But when he heard of the crossing of Lysimachus and the desertion of his own generals, he abandoned the games but distributed to the athletes and artists not less than two hundred talents as compensation. 2 He himself taking his army set out from Syria and made a rapid march against the enemy. Arriving at Tarsus in Cilicia, he paid the army for three months from the money he had brought down from Cyinda.52 3 Apart from this fund, he was carrying three thousand talents with the army in order that he might have this provision whenever he had need of money. Then, crossing the Taurus Range, he marched toward p431Cappadocia; and, advancing upon those who had deserted him in upper Phrygia and Lycaonia, he restored them again to the former alliance. 4 At this very time Lysimachus, on hearing of the presence of the enemy, held a council considering how he ought to meet the approaching dangers. 5 They decided not to join in battle until Seleucus should come down from the upper satrapies, but to occupy strong positions and, after making their encampment safe with palisade and ditch, to await the onslaught of the enemy. They therefore carried out their decision with vigour; but Antigonus, when he came near the enemy, drew up his army and challenged them to battle. 6 When no one dared to issue forth, he himself occupied certain places through which it was necessary that the provisions of his opponents should be transported; and Lysimachus, fearing that if their food supply should be cut off, they would then be at the mercy of the enemy, broke camp at night, made a forced march of four hundred stades,53 and camped near Dorylaeum; 7 for the stronghold had an ample store of grain and other supplies, and a river ran by it that could give protection to those who camped beside it. Pitching camp, they strengthened their encampment with a deep ditch and a triple stockade.

109 1 When Antigonus learned of the departure of the enemy he at once pursued them; and, after he had approached their encampment, since they did not come out for battle, he began to surround their camp with a trench, and he sent for catapults p433and missiles, intending to storm it. When shots were exchanged about the excavation and Lysimachus' men tried to drive away with missiles those who were working, in every case Antigonus had the better of it. 2 Then as time passed and the work was already nearing completion, since food was growing scarce for the besieged, Lysimachus, after waiting for a stormy night, set out from the camp and departed through the higher land to go into winter quarters. But when at daybreak Antigonus saw the departure of the enemy, he himself marched parallel with them through the plains. 3 Great rainstorms occurred, with the result that, as the country had deep soil and became very muddy, he lost a considerable number of his pack animals and a few of his men, and in general the whole army was in serious difficulty. 4 Therefore the king, both because he wished to restore his soldiers after their sufferings and because he saw that the winter season was at hand, gave up the pursuit; and selecting the places best suited for wintering, he divided his army into sections. 5 But when he learned that Seleucus was coming down from the upper satrapies with a great force, he sent some of his friends into Greece to Demetrius, bidding him come to him with his army as soon as possible; for, since all the kings had united against him, he was taking every precaution not to be forced to decide the whole war in battle before the army in Europe came to join him. 6 Similarly Lysimachus also divided his army in order to go into winter quarters in the plain called that of Salonia. He obtained ample p435supplies from Heraclea, having made a marriage alliance with the Heracleotes; 7 for he had married Amestris, the daughter of Oxyartes and niece of King Darius. She had been wife of Craterus, given him by Alexander, and at the time in question was ruler of the city.54

Such was the situation in Asia.

110 1 In Greece Demetrius, who was tarrying in Athens, was eager to be initiated and to participate in the mysteries at Eleusis.55 Since it was a considerable time before the legally established day on which the Athenians were accustomed to celebrate the mysteries, he persuaded the people because of his benefactions to change the custom of their fathers. And so, giving himself over unarmed to the priests, he was initiated before the regular day and departed from Athens. 2 And first he gathered together his fleet and his land army in Chalcis of Euboea; then, learning that Cassander had already occupied the passes in advance, he gave up the attempt to advance into Thessaly by land, but sailed along the coast with the army into the port of Larisa.56 Disembarking the army, he captured the city at once; and taking the acropolis, he imprisoned the garrison and put them under guard, but he restored their autonomy to the people of Larisa. 3 Thereafter he won over Antrones and Pteleum,57 and when Cassander would have transported p437the people of Dium and Orchomenus58 into Thebes, he prevented the transplanting of the cities. But when Cassander saw that Demetrius' undertakings were prospering, he first protected Pherae and Thebes with stronger garrisons; and then, after collecting his whole army into one place, he encamped over against Demetrius. 4 He had in all twenty-nine thousand foot-soldiers and two thousand horsemen. Demetrius was followed by fifteen hundred horsemen, not less than eight thousand Macedonian foot-soldiers, mercenaries to the number of fifteen thousand, twenty-five thousand from the cities throughout Greece, and at least eight thousand of the light armed troops and of the freebooters of all sorts such as gather where there is fighting and plundering; so that there were in all about fifty-six thousand foot-soldiers. 5 For many days the camps were pitched opposite each other, and the battle lines were drawn up on both sides, but neither came forward into battle since each was awaiting the decision of the whole matter that would take place in Asia. 6 Demetrius, however, when the people of Pherae called upon him, entering their city with part of his army and taking the citadel, dismissed the soldiers of Cassander on terms and restored their liberty to the people of Pherae.

111 1 While affairs in Thessaly were in this state, there came to Demetrius the messengers sent by Antigonus, accurately detailing the orders of his p439father and bidding him take his army across into Asia as swiftly as possible. 2 Since he regarded obedience to his father's orders as obligatory, the king came to terms with Cassander, making the condition that the agreements should be valid only if they were acceptable to his father; for although he very well knew that his father would not accept them since he had definitely made up his mind to bring an end by force of arms the war which had set in, yet Demetrius wished to make his withdrawal from Greece appear respectable and not like a flight. Indeed, it was written among other conditions in the agreement that the Greek cities were to be free, not only those of Greece but also those of Asia. 3 Then Demetrius, after preparing ships for the transportation of the soldiers and the equipment, set sail with his whole fleet and, going through the islands, put in at Ephesus. Disembarking his army and camping near the walls, he forced the city to return to its former status; then he dismissed on terms the garrison that had been introduced by Prepelaüs, the general of Lysimachus, and after stationing his own garrison on the acropolis, he went on to the Hellespont. He also recovered Lampsacus and Parium, likewise some of the other cities that had changed sides; and when he arrived at the entrance of the Pontus, he constructed a camp beside the shrine of the Chalcedonians59 and left to guard the region three thousand foot-soldiers and thirty warships. Then he sent the rest of the p441army into winter quarters, dividing it among the cities.

4 At about this time Mithridates,60 who was subject to Antigonus but appeared to be shifting his allegiance to Cassander, was slain at Cius in Mysia after having ruled that city and Myrlea61 for thirty-five years; and Mithridates,62 inheriting the kingdom, added many new subjects and was king of Cappadocia and Paphlagonia for thirty-six years.

112 1 In these same days Cassander, after the departure of Demetrius, took possession of the cities of Thessaly and sent Pleistarchus with an army into Asia to aid Lysimachus. Those sent with him were twelve thousand foot-soldiers and five hundred horsemen. 2 But when Pleistarchus came to the entrance of the Pontus, he found that the region had already been taken over by the enemy and, abandoning the crossing, he turned aside to Odessus, which lies between Apollonia and Callantia, directly opposite to Heraclea on the opposite shore, where a part of the army of Lysimachus was quartered. 3 Since he did not have ships enough for transporting his soldiers, he divided his army into three contingents. Now the first force sent out came safe to Heraclea, but the second was captured by the guard-ships at the entrance to the Pontus. When Pleistarchus himself p443set sail with the third group, so great a tempest rose that most of the vessels and the men on them were lost; 4 and indeed the large warship63 that carried the general sank, and of the not less than five hundred men who sailed in her, only thirty-three were saved. Among these was Pleistarchus who, holding to a piece of wreckage, was cast ashore half dead. He was carried to Heraclea and after recovering from the misfortune went to Lysimachus at winter quarters, having lost the larger part of his army.

113 1 During these same days King Ptolemy, setting out from Egypt with an army of considerable size, subjugated all the cities of Coelê-Syria; but while he was besieging Sidon certain men came to him with the false report that a battle had taken place between the kings in which Lysimachus and Seleucus had been defeated, that they had withdrawn to Heraclea, and that Antigonus, after winning the victory, was advancing with an army against Syria. 2 Consequently Ptolemy, deceived by them and believing that their report was true, made a four-month's truce with the Sidonians, secured with garrisons the cities that he had captured, and went back to Egypt with his army. 3 At the same time as this was taking place, some of the soldiers of Lysimachus, having left their winter quarters as deserters, went over to Antigonus, namely two thousand Autariatae and about eight hundred Lycians and Pamphylians. Now Antigonus, receiving these men p445in kindly fashion, not only gave them the pay which they said was due them from Lysimachus but also honoured them with gifts. 4 At this time Seleucus also arrived, having crossed over from the upper satrapies into Cappadocia with a large army, and after making huts for the soldiers he went into winter quarters near by. He had foot-soldiers to the number of about twenty thousand, about twelve thousand horsemen including his mounted archers, four hundred and eighty elephants, and more than a hundred scythed chariots.

5 In this way, then, the forces of the kings were being gathered together, since they all had determined to decide the war by force of arms during the coming summer. But, as we proposed in the beginning, we shall make the war that these kings waged against each other for supreme rule the beginning of the following book.


The Loeb Editor's Notes:

1 Pherecles was archon in 304/3 B.C. Livy, 9.45.1, gives the consuls of 304 B.C. as P. Sulpicius Saverrio and P. Sempronius Sophus.

2 Continued from chap. 88. For the siege of Rhodes cp. Plutarch, Demetrius, 21‑22.

3 Literally, "taker of cities." Cp. the helepolis described in chap. 48.2. According to Vitruvius, 10.16.4, this helepolis was built by Epimachus of Athens. Cp. Plutarch, Demetrius, 21.1, and Athenaeus in Wescher, Poliorcétique, pp27 ff.

4 About 75 feet. Tarn (Hellenistic Military and Naval Developments, pp15‑16) suggests that there was a shorter Macedonian cubit of about 13 inches. This would reduce all the figures given in the notes by about 30 per cent, which seems probable in most cases, but impossible in the spacing of the crossbeams, see next note.

5 About 18 inches. Probably these crossbars or beams were below the platform, which would protect the men who stood on the ground and moved the tower by pushing on the bars. It is possible, however, that the "platform" was simply an open frame of cross timbers, between which the men stood.

6 i.e. the axles were connected to the frame by vertical pivots, castor fashion.

7 The tower then would be nearly 150 feet high, about 30 feet square at the top and 65½ feet square at the base. If the platform was 75 feet square, a ledge about 5 feet wide would be left about the base of the tower.

8 Either they worked in relays or this figure includes all the men employed for moving the various machines, towers, and penthouses. Allowing five square feet to the man, a minimum if they were to work effectively, 3400 men would occupy 17,000 sq. ft., three times the area of the helepolis.º

9 i.e. stormer of cities." Cp. Plutarch, Demetrius, 2‑4, for his character.

10 Cp. Plutarch, Demetrius, 31.1, 32.2, 43.3‑5.

11 An island between Rhodes and Crete.

12 Literally, three "one and a halves," perhaps ships with one and one half banks of oars; or more probably, with half the oars manned by two men, half by one.

13 Cp. chap. 53.

14 Cp. chap. 88.9.

15 A ram 180 feet long would probably buckle in use in spite of the iron reinforcement; but see the footnote on chap. 91.2 for the possibility that the cubit used here is shorter than the Attic standard. Cp. the rams used by the Romans before Carthage in 149 B.C., Appian, Punic Wars, 98.

16 Cp. chap. 48.3.

17 This Egyptian measure, like the Greek medimnus (the measure referred to below), was somewhat more than a bushel.

18 Literally, "the opposite land," the Rhodian territory in Caria directly opposite the island.

19 Cp. chap. 96.1.

20 According to Plutarch, Demetrius, 22.4, Demetrius, who was looking for a pretext to end the siege, was induced by the Athenians to make terms on condition that the Rhodians should be allies of Antigonus and Demetrius except in a war with Ptolemy. Cp. chap. 99.3.

21 Cp. Plutarch, Demetrius, 22.4.

22 600 feet.

23 Continued in chap. 102.1.

24 For the reign of Eumelus cp. chaps. 22.1‑26.2.

25 The name is spelled Σπάρτοκος on coins and inscriptions, e.g. the Athenian inscription of 289/8 honouring this king for a gift of grain to the city (IG, 22.6543 = Dittenberger, Syll.2 370).

26 Continued from chap. 90.2.

27 For the death of Agathocles cp. Book 21, frag. 16.

28 The reference is to Amphinomus and Anapia. While they were rescuing their parents from an eruptionº of Aetna, the volcanic fires opened and made a way for them to pass. Cp., e.g., Seneca, de Beneficiis, 3.37.2; Pausanias, 10.28.4.

Thayer's Note: Among the poets, Claudian, Carm. Min. 17 (where the editor gives further references); and the anonymous Aetna, 625 ff.

29 The next reference to Sicilian affairs is in Book 21.2.1.

30 Cp. Livy, 9.45.1‑4; the narrative is continued from chap. 90.4.

31 The Aequi or Aequiculi in Latin writers; usually called the Aikoi or Aikanoi by the Greek historians. Cp. Livy, 9.45.5‑18.

32 Continued in chap. 104.1.

33 Leostratus was archon in 303/2. Livy, 10.1.1, gives as consuls for 303 B.C. L. Genucius and Ser. Cornelius. In the Fasti Capitolini only Lentulus, the cognomen of Cornelius, can be read. The narrative is continued from chap. 100.6. Cp. Plutarch, Demetrius, 25.

34 Cp. Book 19.64.3.

35 Cp. Pausanias, 2.7.1; Strabo 8.6.25.

36 Sisyphium is on the slope of Acrocorinth below Peirenê, Strabo, 8.6.21.

37 Continued in chap. 106.1.

38 Continued from chap. 101.5.

39 Son of King Cleomenes II, but passed over in favour of Areus I because of his violent and tyrannical character. Cp. Plutarch, Pyrrhus, 26.8; Pausanias, 3.6.2. Originally Tarentum was a colony of Sparta.

40 For Taenarum as a recruiting ground for mercenaries cp. Book 18.21.1‑3.

41 The Messapians, an Italic tribe occupying the heel of the Italian peninsula, were the closest neighbours of the Tarentines.

42 Cp. Duris, FGrH, 76.18; Athenaeus, 13.84 (p. 605E).

43 The context (if, indeed, Tarentines above is right) suggests that the city is Tarentum; but no enslavement of its population is known, and it is most probable that some city name has fallen out. Cleonymus' raid upon Thuriae (Livy, 10.2.1), an otherwise unknown city on the east coast of the Bay of Tarentum, belongs in the next year.

44 The exact site is not known.

45 There is nothing more about Cleonymus in what remains of Diodorus. For his further adventures cp. Livy 10.2.

46 Nicocles was archon in 302/1. Livy, 10.1.7, gives the consuls of 302 B.C. as M. Livius Denter and Aemilius (without praenomen).

47 i.e. the alliance under Demetrius Poliorcetes. The narrative is continued from chap. 103.7. Cp. Justin, 15.2.15; Orosius, 3.23.41.

48 But cp. critical note.

The critical note to the Greek text (καὶ στρατηγὸν Πρεπέλαον συνεξέπεμψεν) reads:

Πρεπέλαον added by Beloch (Griechische Geschichte2, 4.1.162, note 3).

49 Since Synnada is not in Hellespontine Phrygia, we may suppose either an error on Diodorus' part or the loss of some such words as those suggested by Fischer: "and then advancing into Upper Phrygia, he laid siege to Synnada."

50 Cp. chap. 99.3.

51 This is probably the same Philip as the adviser given to Demetrius by Antigonus in 314 B.C., Book 19.69.1.

52 For the treasury of Alexander at Cyinda cp. Book 18.62.2; 19.56.5.

53 About 44 miles.

54 After Craterus deserted Amestris (or Amastris) in order to marry Phila (Book 18.18.7), she married Dionysius, the ruler of Heraclea. On his death she continued to rule that city for their minor children until her marriage with Lysimachus (Strabo, 12.3.10). Lysimachus in his turn soon deserted her to marry Arsinoë.

55 Cp. Plutarch, Demetrius, 26.

56 This is Larisa Cremastê in Phthiotis.

57 Antron (or Antrones) and Pteleum are also in Phthiotis, a little north-east of Larisa.

58 Dium and Orchomenus in this region are unknown; but since the Thebes in question must be Thebae Phthiotides (cp. Pherae and Thebes below), Demetrius can hardly have returned to Boeotia.

59 The shrine of the Chalcedonians may be identical with the place on the shore of the Pontus called Hieron, Book 19.73.6.

60 Mithridates II of Cius in Bithynia, son of Ariobarzanes, cp. Book 16.90.2.

61 Myrlea, later called Apamea, was an important port near Cius; but see critical note.

The critical note to the Greek text (ἄρξας αὐτῆς καὶ Μυρλείας) reads:

Μυρλείας Post; Ἀρρίνης RX, Μαρίνης F.

62 Mithridates III of Cius and I of Pontus, if identical with the Mithridates of Book 19.40.2, and Plutarch, Demetrius, 4, is son of an Ariobarzanes who is probably the brother of Mithridates II. In our passage, then, the nephew succeeds his uncle.

63 The hexeres was probably a ship with a single row of oars on each side, each oar manned by six men, rather than a ship with six superimposed banks of oars on each side. Cp. Tarn, Hellenistic Militaryº and Naval Developments, 122‑141.


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