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Book III

This webpage reproduces a Book of
The Histories


published in Vol. II
of the Loeb Classical Library edition,

The text is in the public domain.

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Book V

(Vol. II) Polybius
The Histories

 p297  Book IV

1 1 In the preceding Book after pointing out the causes of the second war between Rome and Carthage, I described the invasion of Italy by Hannibal, and the engagements which took place between the belligerents up to the battle on the river Aufidus at the town of Cannae. I shall now give an account of the contemporary events in Greece from the 140th Olympiad onwards, after briefly recalling to the minds of my readers the sketch I gave in my second Book​1 of Greek affairs and especially of the growth of the Achaean League, the progress of that state having been surprisingly rapid in my own time and earlier. 5 Beginning their history with Tisamenus, one of Orestes' sons, I stated that they were ruled by kings of his house down to the reign of Ogygus, after which they adopted a most admirable democratical constitution, until for a time their League was dissolved into cities and villages by the kings of Macedon. 6 Next I went on to tell how they subsequently  p299 began to reunite, and which were the first cities to league therefore, and following on this I pointed out in what manner and on what principle they tried to attract other cities and formed the design of uniting all the Peloponnesians in one polity and under one name. After a general survey of this design, I gave a brief but continuous sketch of events in detail up to the dethronement of Cleomenes, king of Sparta. Summarizing, next, the occurrences dealt with in my introductory sketch up to the deaths of Antigonus Doson, Seleucus Ceraunus, and Ptolemy Euergetes, which all took place about the same time, I announced that I would enter on my main history with the events immediately following the above period. 2 1 This I considered to be the best starting-point, because in the first place, Aratus's book terminates just at this period and I had decided on taking up and carrying on the narrative of Greek affairs from the date at which he leaves off, and secondly because the period following on this date and included in my history coincides with my own and the preceding generation, so that I have been present at some of the events and have the testimony of eyewitnesses for others. It seemed to me indeed that if I comprised events of an earlier date, repeating mere hearsay evidence, I should be safe neither in my estimates nor in my assertions. But my chief reason for beginning at this date, was that Fortune had then so to speak rebuilt the world.  p301 5 For Philip, son of Demetrius, being still quite a boy, had inherited the throne of Macedonia, Achaeus, the ruler of all Asia on this side of the Taurus, had now not only the state, but power of a king, Antiochus surnamed "The Great" who was still very young had but a short time previously, on the death of his brother Seleucus, succeeded him in Syria, Ariarathes at the same time had become king of Cappadocia, and Ptolemy Philopator king of Egypt, while not long afterwards began the reign of Lycurgus, king of Sparta. The Carthaginians also had but recently appointed Hannibal to be their general in the campaign I mentioned. Since therefore the personalities of the rulers were everywhere new, it was evident that a new series of events would begin, this being the natural and usual consequence. And such indeed was the case; for the Romans and Carthaginians now entered on the war I mentioned, Antiochus and Ptolemy on that for Coele-Syria, and the Achaeans and Philip on that against the Aetolians and Spartans.

3 1 The causes of the latter were as follows. The Aetolians had for long been dissatisfied with peace and with an outlay limited to their own resources, as they had been accustomed to live on their neighbours, and required abundance of funds, owing to that natural covetousness, enslaved by which they always led a life of greed and aggression, like beasts of prey, with no ties of friendship but regarding everyone as an enemy. 2 Nevertheless up to now,  p303 as long as Antigonus was alive, they kept quiet owing to their fear of Macedonia, but when that king died leaving Philip still a child to succeed him, they thought they could ignore this king and began to look out for pretexts and grounds for interfering in the affairs of the Peloponnese, giving way to their old habit of looking for pillage from that country and thinking they were a match for the Achaeans now the latter were isolated. Such being their bent and purpose, and chance favouring them in a certain measure, they found the following pretext for putting their design in execution.

5 Dorimachus of Trichonium was the son of that Nicostratus who broke the solemn truce at the Pamboeotian congress. He was a young man full of the violent and aggressive spirit of the Aetolians and was sent on a public mission to Phigalea, a city in the Peloponnese near the Messenian border and at that time in alliance with the Aetolian League; professedly to guard the city and its territory, but really to act as a spy on Peloponnesian affairs. When a recently formed band of brigands came to join him there, and he could not provide them with any legitimate pretext for plundering, as the general peace in Greece established by Antigonus still continued, he finally, finding himself at a loss, gave them leave to make forays on the cattle of the Messenians who were friends and allies of the Aetolians. At first, then, they only raided the flocks on the border, but later, growing ever more insolent, they took to breaking into the country houses, surprising the unsuspecting inmates by  p305 night. 11 When the Messenians grew indignant at this and sent envoys to Dorimachus to complain, he at first paid no attention, as he wished not only to benefit the men under him but himself also by taking his share of their captives. 12 But when such embassies began to arrive more frequently, owing to the continuance of the outrages, he announced that he would come himself to Messene to plead his cause against those who accused the Aetolians, and on appearing there when the victims approached him, he ridiculed and jeered at some of them, attacked some by recrimination and intimidated others by abusive language.

4 1 While he was still staying in Messene the banditti approached the city by night, and with the aid of scaling-ladders broke into the farm called Chron's, where after killing those who offered resistance they bound the rest of the slaves and carried them off together with the cattle. The Messenian Ephors, who had long been annoyed by all that took place and by Dorimachus' stay in the town, thought this was adding insult to injury and summoned him before their college. On this occasion Scyron, then one of the ephors, and otherwise highly esteemed by the citizens, advised them not to let Dorimachus escape from the city, unless he made good all the losses of the Messenians and delivered up to justice those guilty of murder. When all signified their approval of what Scyron said, Dorimachus flew into a passion, and said they were utter simpletons if they thought it was Dorimachus they were now affronting and not the Aetolian  p307 League. He thought the whole affair altogether outrageous, and they would receive such public chastisement for it as would serve them right. There was at this time a certain lewd fellow at Messene, one of those who had in every way renounced his claim to be a man, called Babrytas. If anyone had dressed this man up in Dorimachus' sun-hat and chlamys it would have been impossible to distinguish the two, so exact was the resemblance both in voice and in person, and of this Dorimachus was perfectly aware. Upon his speaking now in this threatening and overbearing manner, Scyron grew very angry and said, "Do you think we care a fig for you or your threats, Babrytas?" Upon his saying this Dorimachus, yielding for the moment to circumstances, consented to give satisfaction for all damage inflicted on the Messenians, but on his return to Aetolia he continued to resent this taunt so bitterly, that without having any other plausible pretext he stirred up a war against Messene on account of this alone.

5 1 The Strategus of the Aetolians at this time was Ariston. Being himself incapacitated for service in the field by certain bodily infirmities and being related to Dorimachus and Scopas, he had more or less ceded his whole office to the latter. Dorimachus did not venture to exhort the Aetolians by public speeches to make war on Messene, since he really had no valid pretext, but, as everybody knew, his animus was due to his own lawless violence and his resentment of a jibe. 3 So he desisted from any such plan, and took to urging on Scopas in private to join  p309 him in his project against the Messenians, pointing out to him that they were safe as regards Macedonia owing to the youth of its ruler — Philip being now not more than seventeen — calling his attention to the hostility of the Lacedaemonians owing to the Messenians, and reminding him that Elis was the friend and ally of the Aetolians; from all which facts he deduced that they would be quite safe in invading Messenia. But next — this being the most convincing argument to an Aetolian — he pictured to him the great booty that they would get from Messenia, the country being without warning of invasion and being the only one in Greece that the Cleomenic war had spared. Finally he dwelt on the popularity they themselves would gain in Aetolia. The Achaeans, he said, if they opposed their passage, could not complain if the Aetolians met force by force, but if they kept quiet they would not stand in the way of the project. 8 Against the Messenians they would have no difficulty in finding a grievance, for they had long been inflicting wrong on the Aetolians by promising to ally themselves with the Achaeans and Macedonians. By these arguments and others in the same sense, he made Scopas and his friends so eager for the enterprise that without waiting for the General Assembly of the Aetolians, without taking the Special Council into their confidence, without in fact taking any proper steps, but acting solely as their own passion and their private judgement dictated, they made war all at once on the Messenians, Epirots, Achaeans, Acarnanians, and Macedonians.

6 1 By sea they immediately sent out privateers, who falling in with a ship of the royal Macedonian  p311 navy near Cythera brought her to Aetolia with all her crew, and there sold the officers, the troops, and the ship herself. 2 Afterwards they pillaged the coast of Epirus, being aided in these outrages by the Cephallenian fleet. They also made an attempt to seize Thyrium in Acarnania. At the same time, sending a small force secretly through the Peloponnese, they occupied the forts called Clarium in the middle of the territory of Megalopolis, and continued to use it as a base for forays and a market for the sale of booty. This place, however, was shortly afterwards besieged and captured in a few days by Timoxenus, the Achaean Strategus, with the aid of Taurion, the officer left by Antigonus in charge of Peloponnesian affairs. I should explain that Antigonus continued to hold Corinth, which the Achaeans had given up to him, to further his purposes in the Cleomenic war, but that after storming Orchomenus he did not restore it to the Achaeans, but annexed and occupied it, wishing, as I think, not only to be master of the entrance into the Peloponnese, but to safeguard his interests in the interior by means of his garrison and arsenal at Orchomenus. Dorimachus and Scopas waited for the time when Timoxenus' year of office had nearly expired, and Aratus, who had been appointed Strategus for the ensuing year by the Achaeans, would not yet be in office, and then, collecting the whole of the Aetolian forces at Rhium and preparing ferry-boats as well as the Cephallenian ships, they conveyed their men over to the Peloponnese and  p313 began to advance towards Messenia. 9 On their march through the territory of Patrae, Pharae, and Tritaea, they pretended indeed not to wish to inflict any hurt on the Achaeans, but as the men could not keep their hands off the country, owing to their passion for pillaging, they went through it, spoiling and damaging, until they reached Phigalea. Thence by a bold and sudden rush they invaded Messenia, utterly regardless both of their long-existing alliance and friendship with the Messenians and of the established law of nations. Subordinating everything to their own selfish greed, they pillaged the country unmolested, the Messenians not daring to come out at all to attack them.

7 1 This being the time fixed by law for the meeting of their Federal Assembly, the Achaean deputies gathered at Aegium; and when the assembly met, the members from Patrae and Pharae gave an account of the injuries done to their country during the passage of the Aetolians, while an embassy from Messene arrived begging for help, as they had been treacherously and unjustly attacked. The Achaeans listened to these statements, and as they shared the indignation of the people of Patrae and Pharae, and sympathized with the Messenians in their misfortune, but chiefly since they thought it outrageous that the Aetolians without getting leave of passage from anyone and without making the least attempt to justify the action, had ventured to enter Achaea in arms contrary to treaty, they were so exasperated by all these considerations that they voted that help should be given to the Messenians,  p315 that the Strategus should call a general levy of the Achaeans, and that this levy when it met should have full power to decide on what was to be done. Now Timoxenus, who was still Strategus, both because his term of office had very nearly expired, and because he had little confidence in the Achaean forces which had latterly much neglected their drilling, shrank from taking the field and even from levying the troops. For the fact is that ever since the fall of King Cleomenes of Sparta all the Peloponnesians, worn out as they were by the previous wars and trusting to the permanency of the present state of tranquillity, had paid no attention at all to preparations for war. But Aratus, incensed and exasperated by the audacity of the Aetolians, entered upon the business with much greater warmth, especially as he had a difference of long standing with that people. He therefore was in a hurry to call the levy of the Achaeans and to take the field against the Aetolians, and at length receiving the public seal from Timoxenus five days before the proper date of his entering office, wrote to the different cities with orders that all citizens of military age should present themselves in arms at Megalopolis.

11 Before proceeding I think I should say a few words about Aratus owing to the singularity of his character. 8 1 He had in general all the qualities that go to make a perfect man of affairs. He was a power­ful speaker and a clear thinker and had the faculty of keeping his own counsel. In his power of dealing suavely with political opponents, of attaching friends to himself and forming fresh alliances he was second to none. He also had a  p317 marvellous gift for devising coups de main, stratagems, and ruses against the enemy, and for executing such with the utmost personal courage and endurance. Of this we have many clear proofs, but the most conspicuous instances are the detailed accounts we possess of his seizure of Sicyon and Mantinea, his expulsion of the Aetolians from Pellene, and first and foremost his surprise of the Acrocorinthus. But this very same man, when he undertook field operations, was slow in conception, timid in performance, and devoid in personal courage. The consequence was that he filled the Peloponnese with trophies commemorating his defeats, and in this respect the enemy could always get the better of him. So true it is that there is something multiform in the nature not only of men's bodies, but of their minds, so that not merely in pursuits of a different class the same man has a talent for some and none for others, but often in the case of such pursuits as are similar the same man may be most intelligent and most dull, or most audacious and most cowardly. Nor is this a paradox, but a fact familiar to careful observers. For instance some men are most bold in fa­cing the charge of savage beasts in the chase but are poltroons when they meet an armed enemy, and again in war itself some are expert and efficient in a single combat, but inefficient when in a body and when standing in the ranks and sharing the risk with their comrades. For example the Thessalian cavalry are irresistible when in squadrons and brigades, but slow and awkward when dispersed and  p319 engaging the enemy single-handed as they chance to encounter them. The Aetolian horse are just the reverse. 12 The Cretans both by land and sea are irresistible in ambuscades, forays, tricks played on the enemy, night attacks, and all petty operations which require fraud, but they are cowardly and down-hearted in the massed face-to‑face charge of an open battle. It is just the reverse with the Achaeans and Macedonians. I say this in order that my readers may not refuse to trust my judgement, because in some cases I make contrary pronouncements regarding the conduct of the same men even when engaged in pursuits of a like nature.

9 1 When the men of military age had assembled in arms at Megalopolis in accordance with the decree of the Achaeans — it was at this point that I digressed from my narrative — and when the Messenians again presented themselves before the people, entreating them not to disregard the flagrant breach of treaty committed against them, and at the same time offering to join the general alliance and begging that they should at once be enrolled among the members, the Achaean magistrates refused the latter request on the ground that they were not empowered to receive additional members without consulting Philip and the rest of the allies. For the alliance was still in force which Antigonus had concluded during the Cleomenic war between the Achaeans, Epirots, Phocians, Macedonians, Boeotians, Acarnanians,º and Thessalians. They, however, agreed to march out to their assistance on condition that the envoys deposited in Sparta their own sons as hostages, to ensure that the Messenians should not come to terms with the Aetolians without the consent of the Achaeans. I  p321 should mention that the Spartans, too, had marched out according to the terms of the alliance, and were encamped on the borders of the territory of Megalopolis, in the position rather of reserves and spectators than of allies. Aratus having thus carried out his intentions regarding the Messenians, sent a message to the Aetolians informing them of the resolutions, and demanding that they should evacuate Messenia and not set foot in Achaea, or he would treat trespassers as enemies. Scopas and Dorimachus, having listened to this message and knowing that the Achaean forces were assembled, thought it best for the time to cede to this demand. They therefore at once sent dispatches to Ariston, the Aetolian Strategus at Cyllene, begging him to send them the transports as soon as possible to the island called Pheias off the coast of Elis. After two days they themselves took their departure loaded with booty and advanced towards Elis; for the Aetolians have always courted the friendship of the Eleans, as through them they could get in touch with the rest of the Peloponnese for purposes of foraying and raiding.

10 1 Aratus waited two days: and thinking foolishly that the Aetolians would return by the way they had indicated, dismissed to their homes all the rest of the Achaeans and Lacedaemonians, and taking with him three thousand foot, three hundred horse, and Taurion's troops, advanced in the direction of Patrae with the intention of keeping on the flank of the Aetolians. Dorimachus, on learning that Aratus was hanging on his flank and had not broken  p323 up all his force, fearful on the one hand lest he should attack them while occupied in embarking and eager also to stir up war, sent his booty off to the ships, under charge of a sufficient force of competent men to superintend the passage, ordering those in charge of the ships to meet him at Rhium where it was his intention to embark, while he himself at first accompanied the booty to protect it during its shipment and afterwards reversed the direction of his march and advanced towards Olympia. There he heard that Taurion with the forces I mentioned above was in the neighbourhood of Cleitor, and judging that, this being so, he would not be able to embark at Rhium in security and without an engagement, he thought it most in his interest to make all haste to encounter Aratus, whose army was still weak and who had no suspicion of his intention. He thought that if he defeated him, he could first ravage the country and then embark safely at Rhium, while Aratus was occupied in taking measures for again mustering the Achaeans, whereas, if Aratus were intimidated and refused a battle, he could safely withdraw whenever he thought fit. Acting therefore on these considerations he advanced and encamped near Methydrium in the territory of Megalopolis.

11 1 The Achaean commanders, when they became aware of the approach of the Aetolians, mismanaged matters to such an extent that it was impossible for anyone to have acted more stupidly. 2 For, returning from the territory of Cleitor, they encamped near  p325 Caphyae, 3 and when the Aetolians began to march from Methydrium past Orchomenus, they led out the Achaean forces and drew them up in the plain of Caphyae, with the river which traverses it in their front. 4 The Aetolians, both owing to the difficulties of the ground between the two armies — for besides the river there were several awkward ditches — n owing to the display of readiness for battle on the part of the Achaeans, were afraid of attacking the enemy as they had intended, but marched in admirable order towards the heights by Olygyrtus, thinking themselves lucky if no one attacked them and forced them to fight. But Aratus, when the van of the Aetolians was already beginning to mount the heights, and while their cavalry were protecting their rear and approaching the spot at the foot of the hill called Propous, or Foothill, sent out his cavalry and light-armed infantry under the command of the Acarnanian Epistratus, ordering him to get into touch with the enemy's rear and harass them. Now if he had decided to engage the enemy, he should not have attacked their rear after they had already got over the level ground, but their van the moment they entered the plain; for thus the whole battle would have been on flat ground, where the Aetolians are very inefficient, owing to their accoutrement and general tactics, while the Achaeans, owing to their total difference in both these respects, are very capable and strong. But now neglecting to avail themselves of the time and place that suited  p327 them they yielded up every advantage to the enemy. In consequence the result of the battle was what naturally follows on such an opening. 12 1 For when the light-armed troops got in touch with them, the Aetolian cavalry retired to the foot of the hill in good order with the object of joining their infantry. But Aratus, who had neither observed well what was happening nor calculated properly what would follow, thinking, the moment he saw the cavalry retreating, that they were in flight, sent the cuirassed troops from his wings with orders to join and support his light-armed force, while he himself, forming his men in column, led them on at the double. The Aetolian horse, having traversed the plain, joined their infantry, and while halting there, themselves under the shelter of the hill, began to collect the infantry on their flanks by calling on them, the men on the march giving a ready ear to their shouts and running back and falling in to help. When they thought they were sufficiently strong, they formed up close and fell upon the leading lines of the Achaean horse and light infantry. As they were superior in number, and as they were charging from higher ground, after a somewhat lengthy struggle they at length put their adversaries to flight. When these gave way and ran, the cuirassed men who were hurrying up to help them, and kept arriving in no order and in batches, some of them being at a loss to know what was the matter and others coming into collision with the fugitives, were compelled to turn round and take to flight also. The consequence was that  p329 while those routed on the field were not above five hundred, the number of those in flight exceeded two thousand. The circumstances of the moment making it clear to the Aetolians what was to be done, they followed on the heel of the enemy with insolent and continued shouts. The retreat of the Achaeans was at first an honourable retirement, as it seemed, to a position of safety, since they imagined they were falling back on their heavy-armed troops whom they supposed to be still strong in their original position. But upon seeing that the latter also had quitted their strong position and were already far off and marching in a straggling line, some of them at once dispersed and fled in disorder to the neighbouring towns, while those who encountered the men of their own phalanx marching in the opposite direction, had no need of the enemy, but threw their comrades as well as themselves into a panic and forced them to headlong flight. They fled, as I said, to the towns, Orchomenus and Caphyae being quite near and affording refuge to many: for if this had not been the case the whole force would have run the risk of a destruction as complete as unexpected.

14 Such was the issue of the battle at Caphyae. 13 1 The Megalopolitans, on hearing that the Aetolians were encamped at Methydrium, summoned two whole levy by trumpet and arrived to help the day after the battle, so that they were compelled to bury, slain by the foe, the very men side by side with whom they had expected to stand and meet that foe in battle. Digging a trench in the plain of Caphyae, they collected the bodies and interred the unfortunates with all due honours.

 p331  The Aetolians, having in this remarkable manner won a battle with their cavalry and light infantry alone, continued to advance henceforth in safety through the middle of the Peloponnese. After making an attempt on Pellene during their march and pillaging the territory of Sicyon, they finally withdrew by way of the Isthmus.

6 Such was the cause and origin of the Social War, its beginning being the resolution passed by all the allies, who assembling at Corinth under the presidency of King Philip, confirmed this measure.​2 14 1 A few days afterwards the Achaean Federal Assembly held its regular general meeting, at which both the whole body and the individual members showed themselves very bitterly disposed towards Aratus as having indisputably caused the late disaster, and so when his political opponents accused him, produ­cing clear proofs of his culpability, the assembly became still more exasperated and embittered against him. For the general opinion was that he had manifestly erred in the first place in usurping his predecessor's office before the time in order to undertake the sort of enterprise in which to his own knowledge he had often failed. His second and graver error lay in his having disbanded the Achaeans while the Aetolians were still in the very heart of the Peloponnese, especially as he had been previously aware that Scopas and Dorimachus were doing their best to disturb the existing settlement and stir up war. Thirdly, he had engaged the enemy with such a small force, when there was no urgent necessity to do so, as he might  p333 have retired safely to the towns close at hand and reassembled the Achaean forces before giving battle. 6 But his fourth and greatest error was, that when he had decided to fight he managed matters so casually and inconsiderately, that neglecting to avail himself of the plain and make a proper use of his hoplites, he elected to fight on the hill, with only his light-armed troops, against Aetolians to whom nothing is more advantageous and familiar than such conditions. Nevertheless, when Aratus rose, and after reminding them of his conduct of affairs and achievements in the past, defended himself against the accusations, maintaining that he was not responsible for what occurred; and when he asked their pardon if he had possibly been guilty of any oversight in the battle, and said he thought that in general it was better to view facts in no spirit of bitterness, but with human charity: he produced such a rapid and generous revulsion of feeling in the Assembly, that they remained for long displeased with those of his political opponents who had joined in the attack on him, and as to the immediate future adopted Aratus' opinion in every matter. 9 This took place in the previous Olympiad; what follows falls in the 140th.

15 1 The resolution passed by the Achaeans was as follows: To send embassies to the Epirots, Boeotians, Phocians, Acarnanians, and to Philip, pointing out how the Aetolians had twice, in direct breach owing to the treaty, entered Achaea in arms, and begging for assistance according to the terms of their alliance and also for the admission of the Messenians into the confederacy. The Strategus of the Achaeans  p335 was to levy a force of five thousand foot and five hundred horse, and to go to the assistance of the Messenians, should the Aetolians invade their country. 4 He was further to arrange with Sparta and Messene how many cavalry and infantry each state should contribute for the needs of the League. Having passed this resolution the Achaeans continued to bear their late reverse bravely, and neither abandoned the Messenians nor their own purpose. The ambassadors sent to the allies executed their instructions, and the Strategus enrolled in Achaea the number of men decided on, and arranged with the Lacedaemonians and Messenians that they should each send two thousand five hundred foot and two hundred and fifty horse, so that the whole force available for the coming campaign amounted to ten thousand foot and a thousand horse.

8 The Aetolians, when the time came for their regular annual Assembly to meet, voted to maintain peace with the Lacedaemonians, Messenians and all the other states, with the mischievous design of corrupting and spoiling the allies of the Achaeans. As regards the Achaeans themselves they voted to be at peace with them if they abandoned the Messenian alliance, but if this alliance were maintained to go to war with them. Nothing could have been more unreasonable. For they were themselves allies of both the Achaeans and Messenians, and now if these two states remained in alliance with each other they threatened to declare war on the Achaeans, but they offered a separate peace to the Achaeans if they chose to be at enmity with the Messenians. So that no reasonable explanation can be given of their iniquity, so utterly wrong-headed were their designs.

 p337  16 1 The Epirots and Philip, after listening to the envoys, agreed to receive the Messenians into the alliance. They felt a momentary indignation at the proceedings of the Aetolians, but were not deeply shocked at them, as the Aetolians had not acted in a manner to surprise anyone, but simply as is their habit. 3 Consequently their resentment was of brief duration, and they voted to remain at peace with the Aetolians. So true is it that persistent wrongdoing is more readily pardoned than occasional and startling acts of iniquity. The Aetolians at least, continuing to behave in this manner, constantly pillaging Greece and committing frequent acts of war without declaration, not only never thought it worth the trouble to defend themselves against complaints, but ridiculed anyone who called them to account for their past offences or even for their future designs. As for the Lacedaemonians, though they had been so recently set free through Antigonus, and through the spirited action of the Achaeans, and should not have in any way acted against the Macedonians and Philip, they sent privately to the Aetolians and made a secret alliance with them.

6 The Achaean levy had been enrolled, and the Lacedaemonians and Messenians had contracted to send their contingents, when Scerdilaïdas, together with Demetrius of Pharos, sailed from Illyria with a fleet of ninety boats and passed Lissus, thus breaking the treaty with Rome. They touched first at Pylos and made some attacks on it which failed. Demetrius now with fifty of the boats started for the islands, and sailing through the Cyclades pillaged or levied  p339 blackmail on some of them. Scerdilaïdas on his voyage home touched at Naupactus with his forty boats at the request of Amynas, the king of Athamania, who was his connexion by marriage. 10 Here, having come to terms with the Aetolians through Agelaus about the division of the spoil, he promised to join them in invading Achaea.

Agelaus, Dorimachus, and Scopas were negotiating for the betrayal to them of the city of Cynaetha, and having made this arrangement with Scerdilaïdas, they collected the Aetolian forces en masse and invaded Achaea with the Illyrians. 17 1 Meanwhile Ariston, the Aetolian Strategus, in pretended ignorance of what was going on, kept quiet in Aetolia, asserting that he was not making war on the Achaeans but keeping the peace; which was most foolish and childish on his part. For it is obvious that a man who thinks he can cloak by words the clear evidence of facts must be regarded as a foolish and futile person. 3 Dorimachus, marching through Achaea, appeared suddenly before Cynaetha. The people of Cynaetha, who are Arcadians, had been for many years vexed by the never-ending and embittered strife of factions; there had been constant massacres, expulsions, robbery of goods, and confiscation of lands by the one party or the other, and now at length the Achaean party had the upper hand and were in possession of the city, the Achaeans furnishing them with a garrison to hold the walls and a military governor of the city. 6 Such was the state of affairs, when a short time before the arrival of the Aetolians, upon the exiles sending frequent  p341 messages to those in the city entreating them to be reconciled and permit them to return home, 7 the party in possession sent envoys to the Achaean League, wishing the reconciliation to be with their consent. 8 The Achaeans readily agreed, as they felt sure that they would thus gain the goodwill of both factions, since those who were masters of the city were entirely devoted to them and the home-coming exiles would owe their safe return to the consent of the League. Accordingly, the Cynaetheans dismissed the garrison and commandant from the city and recalled the exiles, who numbered about three hundred, exacting from them such pledges as are generally regarded among mankind as most binding. But these repatriated citizens, not because they had any cause or pretext subsequent to their readmission for suspecting that other contentions were imminent, but on the contrary from the very moment of their return, set about conspiring against their city and their preservers. I am even inclined to think that at the very instant when they were mutually pledging their faith by solemn oaths over the sacrifice, their minds were full of the impious project of breaking their faith to heaven and to those who trusted in them. For no sooner were they again associated in the government than they began to solicit the Aetolians and offer to betray the city to them, taking the safest and swiftest means of bringing to utter destruction those to whom they owed their safety and the city in whose lap they had been nourished.

18 1 The coup de main by which they executed their project was as follows. 2 Some among the returned  p343 exiles held the office of Polemarch. It is the duty of these magistrates to shut the gates: they keep the keys in their custody until the gates are reopened and by day reside in the gate-houses. The Aetolians then lay in readiness with their scaling-ladders awaiting the moment for attack. The Polemarchs of the party which had been in exile, after murdering their colleagues at one of the gate-houses, opened the gate, upon which some of the Aetolians rushed in through it, while others, planting their ladders against the wall, took forcible possession of the fortifications by this means. All the inhabitants were seized with consternation at this and knew not what course to take in these difficult circumstances. For neither were their hands free to oppose those who were streaming in through the gate, owing to the attack on the walls, nor could they defend the walls properly owing to the forcing of the gate. For these reasons the Aetolians soon made themselves masters of the town, and thereupon, amid all their iniquities, performed one act of exemplary justice. For in the first place they killed and plundered the property of the traitors who had introduced them into the city. All the rest of the citizens were treated in the same way. Finally, they quartered themselves in the houses and thoroughly pillaged all the property, putting to the torture many of the Cynaetheans whom they suspected of having concealed money, plate, or other valuables.

9 After this cruel treatment of the Cynaetheans, they took their departure, leaving a garrison to guard the walls and advanced towards Lusi. 10 On arriving at the temple of Artemis which lies between Cleitor  p345 and Cynaetha, and is regarded as inviolable by the Greeks, they threatened to lift the cattle of the goddess and plunder the other property about the temple. 11 But the people of Lusi very wisely induced them to refrain from their impious purpose and commit no serious outrage by giving them some of the sacred furniture. 12 On receiving this they at once left the place and encamped before Cleitor.

19 1 Meanwhile Aratus, the Achaean Strategus, had sent to Philip begging for help, was collecting the Achaean levy, and had sent for the contingent which the Messenians and Lacedaemonians had agreed to furnish.

2 The Aetolians in the first place invited the Cleitorians to abandon their alliance with the Achaeans and form one with themselves. 3 When the Cleitorians absolutely refused to listen to them, they began an assault, and attempted to take the town by escalading. 4 But on meeting with a gallant and determined resistance from the inhabitants they yielded to the force of circumstances, and breaking up their camp advanced again towards Cynaetha, raiding and driving off the sacred cattle in spite of having undertaken not to do so. At first they wished to hand over Cynaetha to the Eleans; but on the latter declining they decided to hold the town themselves, appointing Euripidas commandant. But afterwards, as they were afraid from the intelligence they received of a relief force coming from Macedonia, they burnt the city and withdrew, marching again  p347 to Rhium, whence they had decided to make the crossing. 7 Taurion had learnt of the Aetolian invasion and the fate of Cynaetha; and seeing that Demetrius of Pharos had sailed back from the islands to Cenchreae, begged him to assist the Achaeans, and after conveying his boats across the Isthmus, to fall upon the Aetolians during their crossing. 8 Demetrius, whose return from his expedition to the islands had been much to his advantage indeed, but somewhat ignominious, as the Rhodians were sailing to attack him, lent a ready ear to Taurion, who had engaged to meet the expense of transporting the boats. 9 But having traversed the Isthmus and missed the crossing of the Aetolians by two days, he returned again to Corinth, after raiding some places on the Aetolian coast. 10 The Lacedaemonians had culpably omitted to send the stipulated contingent of men, but dispatched quite an insignificant number of horse and foot to save appearances. 11 But Aratus who had his Achaeans, displayed rather on this occasion the caution of a politician than the courage of a general; 12 for he made no move, fearful of committing himself and mindful of his recent reverse, until Scopas and Dorimachus, having accomplished all they had purposed, returned home, and this although their march had taken them through narrow defiles, most advantageous for an attacking force and where a call of the bugle would have been sufficient.

13 The Cynaetheans, on whom the Aetolians had brought this terrible disaster, were, however, generally esteemed to have deserved their fate more  p349 than any men ever did. 20 1 Since the Arcadian nation on the whole has a very high reputation for virtue among the Greeks, due not only to their humane and hospitable character and usages, but especially to their piety to the gods, 2 it is worth while to give a moment's consideration to the question of the savagery of the Cynaetheans, and ask ourselves why, though unquestionably of Arcadian stock, they so far surpassed all other Greeks at this period in cruelty and wickedness. 3 I think the reason was that they were the first and indeed only people in Arcadia to abandon an admirable institution, introduced by their forefathers with a nice regard for the natural conditions under which all the inhabitants of that country live. 4 For the practice of music, I mean real music, is beneficial to all men, but to Arcadians it is a necessity. 5 For we must not suppose, as Ephorus, in the Preface to his History, making a hasty assertion quite unworthy of him, says, that music was introduced by men for the purpose of deception and delusion; 6 we should not think that the ancient Cretans and Lacedaemonians acted at haphazard in substituting the flute and rhythmic movement for the bugle in war, or that the early Arcadians had no good reason for incorporating music in their whole public life to such an extent that not only boys, but young men up to the age of thirty were compelled to study it constantly, although in other matters their lives were most austere. 8 For it is a well-known fact, familiar to all, that it is hardly known except in Arcadia, that in the first place the boys from their earliest childhood are trained to sing in measure the hymns and paeans in which by traditional usage they celebrated the heroes and gods of each particular  p351 place: later they learn the measures of Philoxenus and Timotheus, and every year in the theatre they compete keenly in choral singing to the accompaniment of professional flute-players, the boys in the contest proper to them and the young men in what is called the men's contest. 10 And not only this, but through their whole life they entertain themselves at banquets not by listening to hired musicians but by their own efforts, calling for a song from each in turn. 11 Whereas they are not ashamed of denying acquaintance with other studies, in the case of singing it is neither possible for them to deny knowledge of it because they all are compelled to learn it, nor, if they confess to such knowledge can they excuse themselves, so great a disgrace is this considered in that country. 12 Besides this the young men practise military parades to the music of the flute and perfect themselves in dances and give annual performances in the theatres, all under state supervision and at the public expense. 21 1 Now all these practices I believe to have been introduced by the men of old time, not as luxuries and superfluities but because they had before their eyes the universal practice of personal manual labour in Arcadia, and in general the toilsomeness and hardship of the men's lives, as well as the harshness of character resulting from the cold and gloomy atmospheric conditions usually prevailing in these parts — conditions to which all men by their very nature must perforce assimilate themselves; 2 there being no other cause than this why separate nations and peoples dwelling widely apart differ so much from each other in character, feature, and colour as well as in the most of their pursuits. 3 The primitive  p353 Arcadians, therefore, with the view of softening and tempering the stubbornness and harshness of nature, introduced all the practices I mentioned, and in addition accustomed the people, both men and women, to frequent festivals and general sacrifices, and dances of young men and maidens, and in fact resorted to every contrivance to render more gentle and mild, by the influence of the customs they instituted, the extreme hardness of the natural character. The Cynaetheans, by entirely neglecting these institutions, though in special need of such influences, as their country is the most rugged and their climate the most inclement in Arcadia, and by devoting themselves exclusively to their local affairs and political rivalries, finally became so savage that in no city of Greece were greater and more constant crimes committed. As an indication of the deplorable condition of the Cynaetheans in this respect and the detestation of the other Arcadians for such practices I may mention the following: at the time when, after the great massacre, the Cynaetheans sent an embassy to Sparta, the other Arcadian cities which they entered on their journey gave them instant notice to depart by cry of herald, 9 but the Mantineans after their departure even made a solemn purification by offering piacular sacrifices and carrying them round their city and all their territory.

10 I have said so much on this subject firstly in order that the character of the Arcadian nation should not suffer for the crimes of one city, secondly to deter any other Arcadians from beginning to neglect music under the impression that its extensive practice in Arcadia serves no necessary purpose. I  p355 also spoke for the sake of the Cynaetheans themselves, in order that, if Heaven ever grant them better fortune, they may humanize themselves by turning their attention to education and especially to music; for by no other means can they hope to free themselves from that savagery which overtook them at this time. 12 Having now said all that occurred to me on the subject of this people I return to the point whence I digressed.

22 1 The Aetolians, after those exploits in the Peloponnese, had returned home in safety, when Philip appeared at Corinth with an army to help the Achaeans. As he arranged too late for this, he sent couriers to all the allies, begging them to send as soon as possible to Corinth representatives to discuss the measures necessary for the common service. 3 He himself quitting Corinth advanced towards Tegea, as he had heard that intestine disturbances accompanied by massacres had broken out at Sparta. 4 For the Lacedaemonians, who had been accustomed to be ruled by kings and to unconditional obedience to their rulers, now having recently gained their liberty through Antigonus and finding themselves without a king, began to fall into factions, as they all thought they should have an equal share of political power. 5 At first two of the ephors did not pronounce for either side, but the other three threw in their lot with the Aetolians, as they were convinced that owing to his tender age Philip would not yet be able to control Peloponnesian affairs. 6 But when, contrary to their expectation, the Aetolians made a hasty retreat from the Peloponnese, and Philip was even quicker in arriving from Macedonia, the three ephors in question, very suspicious  p357 of one of the other two, Adeimantus, as he was privy to all their projects and did not highly approve their attitude, were in much fear of his revealing all their designs to the king on his approach. 8 Therefore, after a private conference with some of the younger men, they ordered by proclamation all those of military age to assemble in arms at the temple of Athene of the Brazen House as the Macedonians were advancing on the city. 9 At an order so strange and unexpected all rapidly assembled, upon which Adeimantus, who disapproved of the proceeding, came forward and tried to address the people, pointing out that "These proclamations and orders to assemble in arms should have been made of late when we heard that our enemies the Aetolians were near our frontier, and not now when we learn that the Macedonians, our benefactors and preservers, are approaching with their king." 11 While he was still haranguing in this fashion, those young men who had been appointed to the task by the ephors fell upon him and ran him through as well as Sthenelaus, Alcamenes, Thyestes, Bionidas, and a good many other citizens. 12 Polyphyontas, however, and a few with him, foreseeing what was likely to occur, had wisely withdrawn and joined Philip. 23 1 After these proceedings the ephors now in power at once sent messengers to Philip bringing accusations against their victims, begging him to delay his arrival until the present disturbance had subsided and the town had returned to normal condition, and informing him that it was their intention to maintain all their obligations to Macedonia and remain friendly. 2 These messengers met the king near Mt. Parthenium and spoke  p359 according to their instructions. 3 After listening to them, he bade them return home at once, and inform the ephors that for his own part he would continue his march and take up his quarters in Tegea, where he demanded that they should send him as soon as possible some persons of sufficient weight to discuss the present situation with him. 4 The messengers obeyed, and the Lacedaemonian magistrates, on receiving the king's communication, dispatched ten envoys to Philip, the chief of the mission being Omias, who on reaching Tegea and presenting themselves before the king's council, laid the responsibility of the late disturbance on Adeimantus, and engaged themselves to observe faithfully the terms of the alliance with Philip, and be second to none of those who were regarded as his true friends in their devotion to him. So the Lacedaemonians after these and other similar assurances withdrew, upon which there was a difference of opinion among the members of the council. 8 Some knowing the evil disposition of the Spartan government, and convinced that Adeimantus and the others had met their fate owing to their favouring Macedonia, and that the project of the Lacedaemonians was to join the Aetolians, advised Philip to make an example of Sparta, treating it in the same way as Alexander had treated Thebes at the outset of his reign. 9 But some of the older councilors declared that such  p361 vengeance was heavier than the offence deserved. Philip, they said, should punish the guilty parties and, removing them from office, place the government in the hands of his own friends. 24 1 Finally the king spoke, if indeed we are to suppose that the opinion he delivered was his own; for it is scarcely probable that a boy of seventeen should be able to decide about such grave matters. 2 It is, however, the duty of us writers to attribute to the supreme ruler the expression of opinion which prevailed at his council, while it is open for the reader to suspect that such decisions and the arguments on which they rest are due to his associates and especially to those closest to his person. 3 Among those in the present case Aratus is the one to whom we may most plausibly attribute the opinion delivered by the king. Philip said that, as far as regarded injuries inflicted by the allies on themselves, it was not incumbent on him to go beyond correcting and censuring such either by word of mouth or by letter; but that only injuries inflicted on the whole alliance called for punishment and redress by the joint action of all. As the Lacedaemonians had not committed any manifest offence against the alliance as a whole, and had engaged to meet faithfully all their obligations to himself, it would not be right to treat them with excessive harshness. 7 Considering indeed that his father after conquering them as enemies, had done them no hurt, it would ill become himself to take extreme vengeance on them for such a trifling fault. 9 When the council had voted to act thus and overlook the incident, the king sent Petraeus, one of his friends, together with Omias, to exhort the people in Sparta to remain faithful to their friendship  p363 with himself and the Macedonians and to exchange oaths confirming the alliance. 9 He himself broke up his camp and began to march back to Corinth, having in his decision about the Spartans given the allies an excellent specimen of the policy he meant to pursue.

25 1 As he found the deputies from the allied cities assembled at Corinth, he held a Council to deliberate on the measures to be taken with regard to the Aetolians. 2 The Boeotians accused the Aetolians of having plundered the temple of Athene Itonia in time of peace, the Phocians of having marched upon Ambrysus and Daulium and attempted to seize both cities, 3 and the Epirots of having pillaged their territory. The Arcadians pointed out how they had organized a coup de main against Thyrium and had gone so far as to attack the city under cover of night. 4 The Achaeans related how they had occupied Clarium in the territory of Megalopolis, and during their passage through Achaea ravaged the country of Patrae and Pharae, how they had sacked Cynaetha and despoiled the temple of Artemis at Lusi, laid siege to Cleitor, and made attempts by sea on Pylos and by land on Megalopolis, which was only just in process of being repopulated, intending to reduce it again to desolation with the help of the Illyrians. 5 The deputies of the allies, after hearing all these complaints, decided unanimously to make war on Aetolia. 6 After reciting the above reasons in the preamble of their decree, they subjoined a declaration that they would recover for the allies any city  p365 or land occupied by the Aetolians since the death of Demetrius, father of Philip; 7 and likewise concerning those who had been compelled by circumstances to join the Aetolian League against their will, they pledged themselves that they should be reinstated in their ancient form of government, and should remain in possession of their cities and lands, without garrisons, exempt from tribute, and completely independent, in the enjoyment of their traditional constitution and laws. 8 They also added a clause engaging to recover for the Amphictyonic Council its ancient laws, and its authority over the Delphic temple, of which it had been deprived by the Aetolians, who wished to control the affairs of the temple themselves.

26 1 This decree was passed in the first year of the 140th Olympiad and the war known as the Social War thus began, a just war and a fitting sequel to the crimes that had been committed. 2 The Congress at once sent envoys to the allies, so that on the confirmation of the decree by the popular Assembly in each state they might all join in the war against the Aetolians. 3 Philip also sent a letter to the Aetolians, informing them that, if they had any just defence against the accusations with which they had been charged, they still had time to meet and arrive at a settlement by conference. 4 If, however, they imagined that because they pillaged and despoiled every part of Greece without any previous declaration of war by their League, the injured parties were not to retaliate, or if they retaliated should be considered to have broken the peace, they were the most simple-minded people in the world. 5 The Aetolian magistrates on the receipt of this letter  p367 at first, in the hope that Philip would not come, named a day on which they would meet him at Rhium, but on hearing that he was come there sent a courier to inform him that before the General Assembly of the Aetolians met they could take no steps on their own responsibility concerning any matters of state. 7 The Achaeans, meeting in their regular annual Assembly, unanimously confirmed the decree and made a proclamation authorizing reprisals on the Aetolians. 8 Upon the king's attending the Council at Aegium and addressing them at length, they received his speech favourably and renewed with Philip in person their friendly relations with the kings, his ancestors.

27 1 Meanwhile, it being the date of their annual election, the Aetolians elected as Strategus that very Scopas who had been the chief cause of all the outrages I have narrated above. 2 I really scarcely find words in which to express myself about this matter. After declaring by a public decree that they were not going to war, to make an expedition in full force and pillage the countries of their neighbours and then, instead of punishing any of the guilty persons, to honour by electing to their chief offices the directors of these proceedings seems to me the very height of villainy; 3 for how can we characterize otherwise such base conduct? — 4 conduct the nature of which the following examples will serve to illustrate. When the Lacedaemonians gained possession of the Cadmea by the treachery of Phoebidas, they punished the guilty general but did not withdraw the garrison, as if the injustice of the act were atoned for by the perpetrator being made to suffer for it, while if they had chosen, they might have done just the reverse, for the Thebans  p369 were concerned about the garrison, not about the man. 3 Again by the terms of the peace of Antalcidas the same people proclaimed all Greek cities free and autonomous, but did not withdraw their harmosis from them, and again in expelling from their home the Mantineans, who were their friends and allies, 6 they maintained that they inflicted no wrong on them by transferring them from one city to several. 7 In all this they exhibited their folly as well as their knavery, they evidently thought that if a man shuts his own eyes his neighbours too are blind. 8 Now to both states, the Aetolians and the Spartans, this unscrupulous policy resulted in the greatest calamities, and it should never be an object of imitation in the public or private life of men who are well advised.

9 King Philip now having finished his business with the Achaeans left with his army for Macedonia to hasten on the preparations for the war, 10 having given by the above decree not only to the allies, but to all the Greeks a happy prospect of mildness in his rule and of that magnanimity which befits a king.

28 1 This took place at the same time that Hannibal, after subduing all Iberia south of the Ebro, began his attack on Saguntum. 2 Now had there been any connexion at the outset between Hannibal's enterprise and the affairs of Greece it is evident that I should have included the latter in the previous Book, and, following the chronology, placed my narrative of them side by side in alternate sections with that of the affairs of Spain. 3 But the fact being that the circumstances of Italy, Greece, and Asia  p371 were such that the beginnings of these wars were particular to each country, while their ends were common to all, I thought it proper to give a separate account of them, until reaching the date when these conflicts came into connexion with each other and began to tend towards one end — both the narratives of the beginnings of each war being thus made more lucid, and a conspicuous place being given to that subsequent interconnexion of all three, which I mentioned at the outset, indicating when, how, and for what reason it came about — and, then upon reaching this point to comprise all three wars in a single narrative. The interconnexion I speak of took place towards the end of the Social War in the third year of the 140th Olympiad. After this date therefore I shall give a general history of events in chronological order; 6 but up to it, as I said, a separate account of each war, merely recapitulating the contemporary occurrences set forth in the previous Book, so that the whole narrative may not only be easy to follow but may make a due impression on my readers.

29 1 While wintering in Macedonia Philip spent his time in diligently levying troops for the coming campaign, and in securing his frontiers from attack by the barbarians of the interior. 2 In the next place he met Scerdilaïdas, fearlessly putting himself in his power, and made him offers of friendship and alliance. By promising on the one hand to aid him in subduing Illyria and on the other hand by bringing accusations against the Aetolians, which was no difficult matter, he easily persuaded him to agree to his proposals. 4 Public crimes, as a fact, differ from private ones only in the extent and quantity of their  p373 results. In private life also the whole tribe of thieves and swindlers come to grief most frequently by not treating their confederates justly and generally speaking by perfidy towards each other, and this was what happened now to the Aetolians. They had agreed with Scerdilaïdas to give him a part of the spoil if he joined them in their invasion of Achaea, and when he consented and did so and they had sacked Cynaetha, carrying off a large booty of slaves and cattle, they gave him no share at all of their captures. As he had been nursing anger against them for this ever since, it only required a brief mention by Philip of this grievance to make him at once consent and agree to adhere to the general alliance on condition of receiving an annual sum of twenty talents, in consideration of which he was to attack the Aetolians by sea with thirty boats.

30 1 Philip, then, was thus occupied. Meanwhile the envoys sent to the allies proceeded first to Acarnania and communicated with the people. 2 The Acarnanians acted with perfect straightforwardness, confirming the decree and agreeing to make war on the Aetolians from Acarnania although they, if any people, might have been excused for deferring and hesitating and generally for dreading a war with a neighbouring state, 3 and this for three reasons: the first being the immediate neighbourhood of Aetolia, the next and more important, their military weakness when isolated, but the gravest of all, the terrible suffering they had recently undergone owing to their hostility to the Aetolians. 4 But really straight and honourable men, both in public and private, value, I think, no  p375 considerations above their duty, and this principle the Acarnanians are found to have mentioned on most occasions more firmly than any other people in Greece, although their resources were but slender. 5 No one, then, should hesitate to seek the alliance of this people in a crisis; rather it should be embraced with more eagerness than that of any other Greek people; for both in public and in private they are characterized by steadfastness and love of liberty. 6 The Epirots, on the contrary, after receiving the envoys, while they also confirmed the decree and voted to make war on the Aetolians as soon as King Philip himself took the field, 7 in their reply to the Aetolian embassy stated that they had passed a resolution to maintain peace with them, thus playing a part as ignoble as it was double-faced. 8 Envoys were also sent to King Ptolemy requesting him neither to send funds to the Aetolians, nor to furnish them with any other supplies for use against Philip and the allies.

31 1 The Messenians, on whose account the war began, replied to the envoys sent to them, that seeing that Phigalea lay on their borders and was subject to the Aetolians, they would not undertake the war until this city had been detached from the Aetolians. 2 This resolution was by no means generally approved, but was forced through by the ephors Oenia and Nicippus and certain other members of the oligarchical party, who in my opinion were much mistaken and took a course which was far from being correct. 3 That war is a terrible thing I agree, but it is not so terrible that we should submit to anything in order to avoid it. 4 For why do we  p377 all vaunt our civic equality and liberty of speech and all that we mean by the word freedom, if nothing is more advantageous than peace? 5 We do not indeed praise the Thebans because at the time of the Persian invasion they deserted Greece in the hour of peril and took the side of the Persians from fear, nor do we praise Pindar for confirming them in their resolution to remain inactive by the verses

6 Stablish in calm, the common weal,

Ye burghers all, and seek the light of lordly Peace that ever beameth bright.​3

7 For though at the time this advice seemed plausible it was not long before the decision he recommended proved to be the source of the deepest disaster and disgrace. 8 Peace indeed, with justice and honour is the fairest and most profitable of possessions, but when joined with baseness and disgraceful cowardice, nothing is more infamous and hurtful.

32 1 The oligarchs who were then in power in Messenia, aiming at their own immediate advantage, were always too warm advocates of peace. 2 Consequently though they often found themselves in critical situations and were sometimes exposed to grave peril, they always managed to slip through without friction. But the sum of the evils caused by this policy of theirs continued to accumulate, and at last their country was forced to struggle with the worst calamities. 3 The cause of this I believe to be, that living as they did on the borders of two of the greatest nations in the Peloponnese or even in Greece, the Arcadians and Laconians, of whom  p379 4 the latter had been their implacable enemies ever since their first occasion of the country, while the former were their friends and protectors, they were never thoroughly frank and whole-hearted either in their enmity to the Lacedaemonians or in their friendship to the Arcadians. 5 Consequently when the attention of these two peoples was distracted by wars between themselves or against other states, the Messenians were not ill treated, for they enjoyed tranquillity and peace owing to their country lying outside the theatre of war. 6 But whenever the Lacedaemonians, finding themselves again at leisure and undistracted, took to maltreating them, 7 they could neither face the might of Sparta alone, nor had they secured for themselves friends who would be ready to stand by them in all circumstances, and consequently they were compelled either to be the slaves and carriers of the Lacedaemonians, or if they wished to avoid slavery, to break up their homes and abandon their country with their wives and children, 8 a fate which has overtaken them more than once in a comparatively short period of time. 9 Heaven grant that the present tranquillity of the Peloponnese may be firmly established, so that the advice I am about to give may not be required; 10 but should there be a change and a recurrence of disturbances the only hope I see for the Messenians and Megalopolitans of being able to continue in possession of their countries, is for them, as Epaminondas advised, to be of one mind and resolve on whole-hearted co-operation in all circumstances and in all action.

33 1 This counsel may perhaps find some support from circumstances that took place many years previously. 2 For besides many other things I might  p381 mention, the Messenians set up in the time of Aristomenes, as Callisthenes tells us, a pillar beside the altar of Zeus Lycaeus bearing the inscription:


Time faileth ne'er to find the unjust and bring

A righteous doom on an unrighteous king.

Messene now, with ease, for Zeus did speed,

Found out the traitor. Yea, 'tis hard indeed

For the forsworn to hide him from God's eye.

All hail, O Zeus, the king; save Arcady.

4 It was, as a fact, after they had lost their own country that they dedicated this inscription praying the gods to save Arcadia as if it were a second fatherland to them. 5 And in this they were quite justified; for the Arcadians not only received them on their expulsion from Messenia in the Aristomenean War, taking them to their homes and making them citizens, but passed a resolution to give their daughters in marriage to those Messenians who were of proper age. 6 In addition to this, after holding an inquiry into the treachery of the king Aristocrates in the battle of the Trench, they put him and his whole family to death.​4 7 But, apart from these remote events, my assertion derives sufficient support from the circumstances that followed the recent foundation of the cities of Megalopolis and Messene. 8 For at the time when, after the battle of Mantinea, the result of which was doubtful owing to the death of Epaminondas, the Spartans refused to allow the Messenians to participate in the truce, as they still hoped to re-annex Messenia, 9 the Megalopolitans and all the Arcadians in alliance with them were so active in  p383 their efforts, that the Messenians were received by the allies and included in the general treaty of peace, while the Lacedaemonians alone among the Greeks were excluded from it. 10 Anyone in the future who takes this into consideration will agree that the opinion I advanced a little above is correct. 11 I have spoken at such length on the subject for the sake of the Arcadians and Messenians, in order that, bearing in mind the misfortunes that have befallen their countries at the hands of the Lacedaemonians, they may adhere in the spirit as well as in the letter to their alliance 12 and neither from fear of consequences or from a desire for peace desert each other in critical times.

34 1 To continue my account of the reception of the envoys, the Lacedaemonians acted in the manner usual with them, dismissing the envoys without making any reply at all; so utterly incapable were they of arriving at a decision owing to the absurdity and viciousness of their late policy. 2 Indeed it seems to me very true the saying that excessive daring ends in mere senselessness and nothingness. 3 Subsequently, however, on the appointment of new ephors, the original movers of the sedition and authors of the massacre I described above sent messengers to the Aetolians inviting them to negotiate. 4 The Aetolians were quite happy to agree to this, and shortly afterwards Machatas arrived in Sparta as their envoy and at once presented himself before the ephors accompanied by members of the party which had invited him who 5 demanded that they should grant Machatas access to the general assembly and appoint kings in accordance with the ancient constitution, for  p385 they must no longer permit the royal house of the Heraclidae to be dethroned in defiance of law. 6 The ephors, who were displeased by the whole proceeding, but were incapable of boldly confronting the party of violence as they were intimidated by the mob of young men, said that they would take time to decide about re-establishing the kings, but agreed to allow Machatas to address a meeting of the commons. 7 On the people assembling, Machatas came forward and in a speech of some length exhorted them to declare for alliance with the Aetolians, bringing random and audacious accusations against the Macedonians and praising the Aetolians in terms as absurd as they were false. On his withdrawal an animated discussion took place, some speaking on behalf of the Aetolians and advising the conclusion of an alliance with them, while other speakers took the opposite view. 9 However when some of the elder citizens reminded the people of the benefits conferred on them by Antigonus and the Macedonians and of the injuries they had received at the hands of Charixenus and Timaeus — when the Aetolians invading Laconia in full force devastated the country, enslaved the villages of the Perioeci and formed a plot to capture Sparta, combining fraud and force to reinstate the exiles — 10 the people were brought round to another opinion, and finally persuaded to maintain their alliance with Philip and the Macedonians. 11 Hereupon Machatas returned home without effecting his purpose; 35 1 but the original authors of the sedition had no mind to give way and again resolved to commit a most impious crime, having debauched for this purpose some of the younger men. 2 At a certain sacrifice of ancient  p387 institution the citizens of military age had to form a procession in arms and march to the temple of Athene of the Brazen House, while the ephors remained in the sanctuary to perform the sacrificial rites. 3 Certain of the young men who took part in the procession chose the moment when the ephors were sacrifi­cing for suddenly attacking and slaying them. It must be remembered that the holy place secured the safety of anyone who took sanctuary in it, even if he were condemned to death; 4 and yet its sanctity was held in such slight esteem by those who had the heart to do this savage deed, that all the ephors were butchered at the very altar and table of the goddess. 5 Continuing to pursue their purpose, they next killed Gyridas, one of the elders, expelled those who had spoken against Aetolians, chose new ephors from their own faction and concluded the alliance with the Aetolians. 6 Their chief motive for all these proceedings and for exhibiting enmity to the Achaeans, ingratitude to Macedonia, and a general lack of consideration in their conduct to all mankind, was their attachment to Cleomenes, to whose safe return they were always looking forward with confidence. 7 So true is it that men who have the faculty of tactfully treating those about them do not only arouse devotion to their persons when present, but even when far away keep the spark of loyalty bright and alive in the hearts of their adherents. 8 These men, apart from other considerations, had now during the three years they had passed under their old constitution since the dethronement of Cleomenes never thought of appointing new kings of Sparta; 9 but the moment the report of his death reached them they at once  p389 urged the people and the ephors to create kings. 10 The ephors belonging to the faction of disorder whom I mentioned above, the same who had concluded the alliance with the Aetolians, hereupon made a choice which was legal and proper in the case of the one king, Agesipolis, still a minor, but the son of Agesipolis son of Cleombrotus 11 who had succeeded to the throne on the deposition of Leonidas as being the next in blood of that house. They appointed to be the boy's guardian Cleomenes, the son of Cleombrotus and brother of Agesipolis. But as for the other house, notwithstanding that Archidamus, the son of Eudamidas, had left two sons born to him by the daughter of Hippomedon and that Hippomedon, who was the son of Agesilaus and grandson of Eudamidas, was still alive, there being also other members of the house more distant than these, but of the blood royal, they passed over all these and nominated as king Lycurgus, none of whose ancestors had borne this title, but he by giving each of the ephors a talent became a descendant of Heracles and king of Sparta, so cheap everywhere had distinctions become. But it happened in consequence that not their children's children, but the very men who made the appointment were the first to suffer for their folly.

36 1 When Machatas heard what had happened in Sparta, he returned there and urged the ephors and kings to make war on the Achaeans, 2 for that he said was the only means of putting a stop to the factious policy of those Lacedaemonians who wished by any and every means to break the alliance with  p391 the Aetolians and of those in Aetolia who were working for the same end. 3 Upon the ephors and kings consenting, Machatas returned, having accomplished his purpose owing to the blindness of those who supported him. Lycurgus now, taking the regular army and some others of the citizens, invaded Argolis, the Argives being quite off their guard owing to the prevailing tranquillity. 5 By a sudden assault he seized Polichna, Prasiae, Leucae, and Cyphanta, but was repulsed in his attack on Glympes and Zarax. 6 After these achievements of the king the Lacedaemonians proclaimed the right of reprisal against the Achaeans. Machatas also persuaded the Eleans by the same arguments that he had used at Sparta to make war on the Achaeans.

7 Owing to their cause having thus prospered beyond their expectations the Aetolians entered on the war with confidence. But it was quite the opposite with the Achaeans; for Philip, in whom they chiefly trusted, had not completed his preparations, the Epirots were putting off the commencement of hostilities, the Messenians were entirely inactive, and the Aetolians, supported by the mistaken policy of Elis and Sparta, had enclosed them in a circle of war. 37 1 Aratus' term of office was now expiring, and his son Aratus who had been elected in his place was on the point of succeeding him as strategus. 2 Scopas was still the Aetolian strategus, his term of office being now about half through; for the Aetolians hold their elections after the autumn equinox, but the Achaeans in  p393 early summer at about the time of the rising of the Pleiades. 3 The date at which the younger Aratus assumed office, summer being than well advanced, marked the commencement of activity in all quarters. 4 As I narrated in the previous Book, Hannibal at this date was opening the siege of Saguntum and the Romans were dispatching Lucius Aemilius to Illyria against Demetrius of Pharos. 5 Simultaneously Antiochus, Ptolemais and Tyre having been surrendered to him by Theodotus, was about to invade Coele-Syria, Ptolemy was preparing for the war against Antiochus, Lycurgus, wishing to rival Cleomenes at the outset of his campaign, had encamped before the Athenaeum in the territory of Megalopolis and was investing it, the Achaeans were collecting mercenaries both horse and foot for the war which threatened them, and finally Philip was moving out of Macedonia with his forces consisting of ten thousand heavy-armed infantry, five thousand peltasts, and eight hundred horse, all the above being Macedonians.

8 Such were the projects and preparations on all sides, and at the same time the Rhodians went to war with the Byzantines for the following reasons. 38 1 The site of Byzantium is as regards the sea more favourable to security and prosperity than that of any other city in the world known to us, but as regards the land it is most disadvantageous in both respects. 2 For, as concerning the sea, it completely blocks the mouth of the Pontus in such a manner that no one can sail in or out without the consent of the Byzantines. 3 So that they have complete  p395 control over the supply of all those many products furnished by the Pontus which men in general require in their daily life. 4 For as regards necessities it is an undisputed fact that most plenti­ful supplies and best qualities of cattle and slaves reach us from the countries lying round the Pontus, while among luxuries the same countries furnish us with abundance of honey, wax, and preserved fish, 5 while of the superfluous produce of our countries they take olive-oil and every kind of wine. As for cornº there is a give-and‑take, they sometimes supplying us when we require it and sometimes importing it from us. 6 The Greeks, then, would entirely lose all this commerce or it would be quite unprofitable to them, if the Byzantines were disposed to be deliberately unfriendly to them, and had made common cause formerly with the Gauls and more especially at present with the Thracians, or if they had abandoned the place altogether. 7 For, owing to the narrowness of the strait and the numbers of the barbarians on its banks, it would evidently be impossible for our ships to sail into the Pontus. Though perhaps the Byzantines themselves are the people who derive most financial benefit from the situation of their town, since they can readily export all their superfluous produce and import whatever they require on advantageous terms and without any danger or hardship, yet, as I said, they are of great service to other peoples. 10 Therefore, as being the common benefactors of all, they naturally not only should meet with gratitude from the Greeks, but with general support when they are exposed to peril from the barbarians.

11 Now since the majority of people are unacquainted  p397 with the peculiar advantages of this site, as it lies somewhat outside those parts of the world which are generally visited, 12 and as we all wish to have information about such matters, if possible visiting personally places so peculiar and interesting, but if this be out of our power, acquiring impressions and ideas of them as near the truth as possible, I had better state the facts of the case and explain what is the cause of the singular prosperity of this city.

39 1 The sea known as the Pontus is very nearly twenty-two thousand stades in circumference and has two mouths exactly opposite each other, one communicating the Propontis and the other with the Palus Maeotis, which itself has a circumference of eight thousand stades. 2 As many large rivers from Asia and still more numerous and larger ones from Europe fall into these two basins, the Maeotis being thus replenished flows into the Pontus and the Pontus into the Propontis. The mouth of the Palus Maeotis is called the Cimmerian Bosporus; it is thirty stades in width and sixty in length and is all of no great depth. 4 The mouth of the Pontus is similarly called the Thracian Bosporus and is a hundred and twenty stades long and not of the same width throughout. 5 From the side of the Propontis its beginning is the passage between Calchedon and Byzantium which is fourteen stades in width. 6 On the side of the Pontus it begins at the so‑called Holy Place, where they say that Jason on his voyage back from Colchis first sacrificed to the twelve gods.  p399 This lies in Asia and is about twelve stades distant from the opposite point in Thrace the temple of Sarapis. 7 There are two causes of the constant flow from the Palus Maeotis and the Pontus, one, at once evident to all, being that where many streams fall into basins of limited circumference the water constantly increases and, if there were no outlets, would continue to mount higher and occupy a larger area of the basin. In the case, however, of there being outlets the surplus water runs off by these channels. The second cause is that as the rivers carry down into these basins after heavy rains quantities of all kinds of alluvial matter, the water in the seas is forcibly displaced by the banks thus formed and continues to mount and flow out in like manner through the existing outlets. 10 As the influx and deposit of alluvium by the rivers is constant, the outflow through the mouths must likewise be constant.

11 The true reasons then of the current flowing from the Pontus are these, depending as they do not on the reports of traders but on reasoning from the facts of nature, a more accurate method than which it is not easy to find. 40 1 But since our attention is now fixed on this subject, I must leave no point unelaborated and barely stated, as is the habit of most writers, but must rather give a description of the facts supported by proofs, so that no doubts may be left in the reader's mind. 2 For this is the  p401 characteristic of the present age, in which, all parts of the world being accessible by land or sea, it is no longer proper to cite the testimony of poets and mythographers regarding matters of which we are ignorant, "offering," as Heraclitus says, "untrustworthy sureties for disputed facts," but we should aim at laying before our readers a narrative resting on its own credit.

4 I say then that the silting up of the Pontus has gone on from time immemorial and still continues, and that in course of time both this sea and the Palus Maeotis will be entirely filled, if the existing local conditions remain the same and the causes of the alluvial deposit continue to act. 5 For time being infinite, and the area of these basins being certainly limited, it is evident that even if the accretions were quite insignificant, the seas will be filled up in time; for by the law of nature if a finite quantity continually grows or decreases in infinite time, even if the increase or decrease be infinitesimal — for this is what I now assume — it stands to reason that the process must finally be completed. 7 But when, as in this case, the increase is no small one, but a very large quantity of soil is being deposited, it is evident that what I state will not happen at some remote date, but very shortly. 8 And it is indeed visibly happening. As for the Palus Maeotis it is already silted up, the great part of it varying in depth between five and seven fathoms, so that large ships can no longer navigate it without a pilot. 9 And while it was once, as all ancient authorities agree, a sea continuous with the Pontus, it is now a fresh-water lake, the salt water having beenº forced out by the deposits and the inflow from the rivers prevailing.  p403 10 Some day it will be the same with the Pontus; in fact the thing is actually taking place, and although not very generally noticed owing to the large size of the basin, it is apparent to anyone who gives some slight attention to the matter. 41 1 For the Danube flowing from Europe and falling into the Pontus by several mouths, a bank formed of the matter discharged from these mouths and reaching out to sea for a day's journey, stretches for about a hundred miles opposite them, 2 and ships navigating the Pontus, while still far out at sea, often at night when sailing unwarily run aground on certain parts of this belt, which are known to sailors as "The Paps." 3 The reason why the deposit is not formed closer to land but is projected so far with must consider to be as follows. 4 As far as the current of the rivers prevail owing to their strength and force a way through the sea, the earth and all other matter carried down by the stream must continue to be pushed forward and not suffered to rest or subside at all; but when owing to the increasing depth and volume of the sea the rivers lose their force, then of course the earth sinks by its natural weight and settles. 6 This is why in the case of large and swift rivers the deposits are formed at a distance, the sea near the coast being deep, but in that of small and sluggish streams the sand-banks are close to their mouths. 7 This becomes especially evident during heavy rains; for then insignificant streams when they have over­powered the surge at their mouths push forward their mud out to sea for a  p405 distance exactly proportionate to the force of their currents. 8 We must not at all refuse to believe in the extent of the bank at the mouth of the Danube and in the quantity of stones, timber, and earth carried down by the rivers in general. 9 It would be folly to do so when we often see with our own eyes an insignificant torrent scooping out a bed and forcing its way through high ground, carrying down every kind of wood, stones, and earth and forming such vast deposits that the spot may in a short space of time be so changed in aspect as to be unrecognizable. 42 1 We should not therefore be surprised if such great rivers flowing continuously produce some such effect as I have stated, and finally fill up the Pontus; 2 we must indeed anticipate this not as a probability but as a certainty if we reason rightly. 3 The following is an indication of what may be expected. The Palus Maeotis is at present less salt than the Pontus, and we find that the Pontus correspondingly is decidedly less salt than the Mediterranean. From which it is evident that when a period has elapsed which stands to the time it takes to fill up the Palus Maeotis in the same proportion as the cubic capacity of the larger basin to that of the smaller, the Pontus will become, like the Palus Maeotis, a shallow breeding-place lake. 5 We must indeed anticipate this result still earlier, since the rivers that fall into the Pontus are larger and more numerous.

6 What I have said may suffice to satisfy the doubts of those who are unwilling to believe that the Pontus is filling up and will be filled up, and that so large a sea will be converted into a shallow lake. 7 But I speak especially in view  p407 of the falsehoods and sensational tales of seafarers, so that we may not be obliged owing to ignorance to listen greedily like children to anything that is told us, but having now some traces of the truth in our minds may be more or less able to form an independent judgement as to the truth or falsehood of the reports made by this or that person.

43 1 I must now resume my account of the specially favourable situation of Byzantium. The channel connecting the Pontus and the Propontis being a hundred and twenty stades in length, as I just said, the Holy Place marking its termination towards the Pontus and the strait of Byzantium that towards the Propontis, 2 halfway between these on the European side stands the Hermaeum on a promontory running out into the channel at a distance of about five stades from Asia and situated at the narrowest part of the whole. It is here, they say, that Darius bridged the straits when he crossed to attack the Scythians. 3 Now the force of the current from the Pontus has been so far uniform owing to the similarity of the country on each bank of the channel, 4 but when it reaches the Hermaeum on the European side, which is, as I said, the narrowest point, this current from the Pontus being confined and sweeping strongly against the headland, rebounds as if from a blow, and dashes against the opposite coast of Asia. 5 It now again recoils from this coast and is carried against the promontory on the European bank known as the Hearths, 6 from which its force is once more deflected to the place on the Asiatic bank called the Cow, where legend says that Io first  p409 found a footing after crossing. 7 Finally the current runs rapidly from the Cow to Byzantium itself, and dividing into two near the city, sends off its smaller branch into the gulf known as the Horn, while the larger branch is again deflected. 8 It has however, no longer sufficient force to reach the coast opposite, on which stands Calchedon; 9 for as it has now several times crossed and recrossed the channel, which here is already of considerable width, the current has now become feebler, and ceases to make short rebounds to the opposite coast at an acute angle, but is rather deflected at an obtuse angle. 10 It therefore fails to reach Calchedon and flows out through the strait. 44 1 What therefore makes the situation of Byzantium so favourable and that of Calchedon the reverse is the fact here stated. To look at them indeed you would say they were equally well placed, but nevertheless it is not easy to reach Calchedon by sea, if one wishes, while to Byzantium the current carries one whether one wishes or not, as I just said. 2 Evidence of this is that those who wish to cross from Calchedon to Byzantium cannot sail in a straight course owing to the current between, but steer obliquely for the Cow and the place called Chrysopolis — which the Athenians once occupied by the advice of Alcibiades and used it when they first attempted to levy toll on vessels bound for the Pontus — and from hence commit themselves to the current which perforce carries them to Byzantium. 5 The approaches by sea to Byzantium from the other side are equally favourable. 6 For those sailing with a south wind from the Hellespont, or from the Pontus to the  p411 Hellespont with the Etesian winds, find the course from Byzantium along the European coast to the commencement of the narrows at Sestus and Abydus a straight and easy one, and so is the return voyage to Byzantium. 7 But the voyage from Calchedon along the Asiatic coast is the reverse of this, because one must follow the shores of a deep gulf, and the headland formed by the territory of Cyzicus runs out to a great distance. 8 Nor can ships sailing from the Hellespont to Calchedon easily coast along Europe and then on approaching Byzantium turn and make for Calchedon, as the current and the circumstances mentioned above make it difficult. 9 And similarly it is quite impossible for a ship leaving Calchedon to make the coast of Thrace at once owing to the current between, and owing to the wind. 10 Both the south and north winds are adverse to both the attempts, since the south wind will carry one towards the Pontus and the north wind away from it, and these are the winds one must avail oneself of for the voyage from Calchedon to Hellespont or for the voyage back.

11 Such are the causes of the favourable position of Byzantium as regards the sea; its disadvantages on the land side being as follows. 45 1 As Thrace encompasses their territory so effectually as to extend from one sea to the other, they are engaged in perpetual and most difficult warfare with its inhabitants. 2 They cannot on the one hand rid themselves of the war once for all by a carefully prepared attack resulting in victory, owing to the number of the chieftains and their followers. 3 For if they get the better of one, three other more power­ful chieftains are sure to invade their territory.  p413 4 Nor are they at all better off if they give way and agree to terms and the payment of tribute; for the very fact of their making concessions to one chief raises against them enemies many times more numerous. 5 So that they are, as I said, involved in a warfare both perpetual and most difficult; for what can be more full of peril, what more terrible than a war with near neighbours who are at the same time barbarians? Nay, such being in general the adverse circumstances against which they have to struggle on land, they have in addition to the other evils attendant on war to suffer too something like the torments of Tantalus that Homer describes; for, owners as they are of a fertile country, when they have carefully cultivated it and a superb harvest is the result, and when the barbarians now appear and destroy part of the crops, collecting and carrying off the rest, then indeed, apart from their lost toil and expense, the very beauty of the harvest when they witness its destruction adds to their indignation and distress.

9 In spite of all, however, they continued to bear the burden to which they had grown accustomed of the war with the Thracians, without departing from their ancient engagements to the Greek states. But when they were attacked also by the Gauls under Comontorius, they found themselves in very grave danger. 46 1 These Gauls had quitted their homes together with Brennus and his Gauls, and after escaping from the disaster at Delphi reached the Hellespont, where instead of crossing to Asia, they remained on the spot, as they took a fancy to the country near Byzantium. 2 Here when they had conquered the Thracians and had established  p415 their capital at Tylis, they placed the Byzantines in extreme danger. 3 At first, during the inroads made under Comontorius the first king, the Byzantines continued to pay on each occasion three thousand, five thousand, and sometimes even ten thousand gold pieces to save their territory from being laid waste, 4 and finally they were compelled to consent to pay an annual tribute of eighty talents down to the reign of Cavarus, during which the kingdom came to an end and the whole tribe were in their turn conquered by the Thracians and annihilated. 5 It was in these times that, being hard pressed by the tribute, they at first sent embassies to the Greeks imploring them in their distress and danger. 6 But when most states paid no attention to their solicitations they were driven by sheer necessity to begin exacting duties from vessels trading with the Pontus. 47 1 When general inconvenience and loss of profit was caused by the Byzantines levying duties on exports from the Pontus, all the traders were aggrieved and brought their complaint before the Rhodians who were considered the supreme authority in maritime matters. 2 This was the origin of the war the history of which I am about to tell.

3 For the Rhodians, roused to action by the loss they suffered themselves and the detriment to neighbouring states, at first together with their allies sent an embassy to Byzantium demanding the abolition of the duty. 4 The Byzantines were not disposed to make any concession, being convinced of the justice of their cause by the terms in which Hecatodorus and Olympiodorus, their chief magistrates at the time,  p417 replied to the Rhodian envoys. The Rhodians therefore took their departure without having accomplished anything, and on their return war was declared by Rhodes on Byzantium for the reasons above stated. 7 They at once sent envoys to Prusias pressing him to take part in the war, for they knew that for various reasons he was offended with the Byzantines. 48 1 The Byzantines took similar measures, sending envoys asking for help to Attalus and Achaeus. 2 Attalus was heartily disposed to help, but his support at this time was of very little weight, as he had been confined within the limits of his ancestral dominions by Achaeus. 3 But Achaeus, who was now master of all the country on this side of the Taurus and had recently assumed the royal title, promised his aid, and his decision to do so greatly raised the hopes of the Byzantines, while on the contrary, it alarmed Prusias and the Rhodians. 5 Achaeus was a relative of that Antiochus who had just succeeded to the throne of Syria and had acquired the dominion I stated by the following means. 6 When on the death of Seleucus, father of this Antiochus, his eldest son Seleucus succeeded him, Achaeus in his quality of a kinsman accompanied the king on his expedition across the Taurus about two years before the time I am speak of. For the young Seleucus, immediately on ascending the throne, having learnt that Attalus had appropriated all his dominions on this side of theº Taurus hastened there to defend his interests. 8 He crossed  p419 the Taurus at the head of a great army, but perished assassinated by the Gaul Apaturius and Nicanor. 9 Achaeus, as his kinsman, at once avenged his murder by putting Nicanor and Apaturius to death, and taking the command of the army and the direction of affairs in his hands, conducted both with prudence and magnanimity. 10 For though the opportunity was favourable and he was eagerly urged by the troops to assume the diadem, he decided not to do so, and holding the throne for the younger brother Antiochus, advanced energetically and recovered the whole of the country on this side of Taurus. But when he met with a success that surpassed his expectations, having shut up Attalus in Pergamus itself and made himself master of all the rest of the country he was so elated by his good fortune that in a very short space of time he swerved clean away from rectitude, and having assumed the diadem and styled himself king he was at this moment the most imposing and formidable of all the kings and potentates on this side of theº Taurus. 13 This was the man on whom the Byzantines most relied when they undertook the war against Rhodes and Prusias.

49 1 One of Prusias's grievances against the Byzantines was that after having voted certain statues of him they had never erected them, but had neglected and finally forgotten the matter. 2 He was likewise displeased with them for having employed every effort to reconcile Achaeus with Attalus and put an end to the war between them, thinking that a friendship between these two princes was in many ways prejudicial to his own interests. 3 He was also irritated because it was said that the Byzantines had sent to Attalus representatives to take part in the  p421 sacrifice held at the festival of Athene, whereas they had sent none to himself when he celebrated the Soteria. 4 Therefore as he continued to nurse resentment for all these offences, he gladly availed himself of the pretext offered by the Rhodians and came to an agreement with their envoys demanding that they should undertake to carry on the war by sea, while he himself hoped to be able to damage the enemy no less severely on land.

5 Such were the causes and such was the beginning of the war between Rhodes and Byzantium. 50 1 The Byzantines at first fought with great vigour, being confident that Achaeus would come to help them and trusting by bringing Tiboetes from Macedonia to throw Prusias in his turn into alarm and peril. 2 For Prusias having begun the war with the feelings I have indicated had taken the place called "The Holy Place" on the Bosporus, 3 which a few years previously they had acquired by purchase for a large sum, owing to its favourable situation, as they did not wish to leave anyone any base from which to attack traders with the Pontus or interfere with the slave-trade or the fishing. 4 He had also seized their Asiatic territory, a part of Mysia which had long been in their possession. The Rhodians, manning six ships and getting four others from the allies, appointed Xenophantus admiral and sailed for the Hellespont with the ten ships. 6 Anchoring the rest off Sestos to prevent the passage of vessels bound for the Pontus, the admiral left in one to find out if the Byzantines were already sufficiently alarmed at the war to have changed their minds.  p423 7 But as they paid no attention to his overtures, he sailed away and picking up the rest of his ships, left for Rhodes with the whole squadron. The Byzantines kept on sending to Achaeus, demanding succour, and sent a mission to bring Tiboetes from Macedonia; 9 for Tiboetes was considered to have just as good a claim to the throne of Bithynia as Prusias, as he was his uncle on the father's side. 10 The Rhodians seeing that the Byzantines stood firm, thought of a plan for attaining their purpose likely to prove very efficient. 51 1 For observing that the chief cause of the Byzantines' resolute endurance of the war lay in their hopes of support from Achaeus, and knowing that Achaeus' father was a prisoner at Alexandria and that Achaeus above all things desired his deliverance, they decided to send an embassy to Ptolemy begging him to give up Andromachus. 2 They had indeed previously made this request without insisting much on it, but now they pressed it most seriously, in order that by doing this favour to Achaeus they might put him under such an obligation that he would do all they demanded. 3 Ptolemy, on the arrival of the embassy, deliberated as to retaining Andromachus, whom he hoped to make use of at the proper time, considering that his differences with Antiochus had not yet been decided, and that Achaeus, who had just proclaimed himself king, could exercise a decisive influence in certain important matters; 4 for Andromachus was Achaeus' father and brother of Laodice the wife of Seleucus. 5 But nevertheless, as his sympathies in general were with the Rhodians and he was anxious to do them any favour, he yielded and gave up Andromachus  p425 to them to conduct back to his son. 6 Having accomplished this and in addition conferred certain honours on Achaeus they deprived the Byzantines of their most important source of hope. 7 At the same time the Byzantines met with another mischance; for Tiboetes on his way from Macedonia foiled their hopes by his death, upon which the Byzantines relaxed their efforts, while Prusias, fortified in his expectations of success in the war, at one and the same time was himself attacking the enemy from Asia with his whole energy, and on the European side, by hiring the services of the Thracians, prevented the Byzantines from venturing out of their gates. 9 The Byzantines, all their hopes being now defeated, were suffering on all sides from the war and began to look about for an honourable solution of the questions at issue. 52 1 Accordingly when Cavarus, the Gallic king, came to Byzantium and did his best to put an end to the war, intervening heartily to part the combatants, both Prusias and the Byzantines yielded to his exhortations. 2 The Rhodians, on hearing of Cavarus's efforts and Prusias's compliance and being anxious to effect their purpose at once, appointed Aridices as envoy to Byzantium and at the same time dispatched Polemocles with three triremes, wishing, as we say, to send Byzantines the spear and the herald's staff at once.​5 Upon their appearance treaties were made in the year of Cothon, son of Calligeiton, hieromnemon​6 in Byzantium, that with the Rhodians being simple and as follows: "The Byzantines engage not to levy toll on ships bound  p427 for the Pontus, and on this condition the Rhodians and their allies shall be at peace with the Byzantines." 6 The terms they made with Prusias were these: "There is to be peace and friendship for all time between Prusias and the Byzantines and in no manner are the Byzantines to make war on Prusias or Prusias on the Byzantines. 7 Prusias is to give up to the Byzantines the lands, the fortresses, the people, and the slaves taken from the enemy free from ransom, and in addition the ships taken at the outset of the war, the missiles captured in the forts; likewise the timbers, building stones, and tiles taken from the Holy Place" — for Prusias, 9 dreading the return of Tiboetes, had destroyed all strong places that seemed favourably situated for any hostile design — "Prusias is to compel any Bithynians occupying lands in that part of Mysia subject to Byzantium to give these up to the farmers."

10 Such was the beginning and such the end of the war of Prusias and the Rhodians with Byzantium. 53 1 At about the same time the Cnossians sent an embassy to the Rhodians and persuaded them to send the squadron under Polemocles to them with three undecked vessels in addition. 2 Upon this, when the fleet arrived in Crete, the people of Eleuthernae, conceiving a suspicion that Polemocles to please the Cnossians had killed Timarchus one of their citizens, first of all proclaimed reprisals against the Rhodians and next made open war on them.

3 A little before this the people of Lyttus had met  p429 with an irremediable disaster. The general condition of affairs in Crete had been as follows. 4 The Cnossians in alliance with the Gortynians had subjected the whole of Crete with the exception of Lyttus. This being the only city that refused obedience, they undertook a war against it with the object of its final extermination as an example and terror to the rest of Crete. 5 At first all the Cretans took part in the war against Lyttus, but jealousy having sprung up from some trifling cause, as is common with the Cretans, some separated from the rest, 6 the people of Polyrrhenia, Ceraeae, Lappa, Horium, and Arcadia​7 unanimously abandoning the alliance with Cnossus and deciding to take the part of Lyttus, while Gortyna was in a state of civil war, the elder citizens taking the part of Cnossus and the younger that of Lyttus. The Cnossians, whom these disturbances among their allies took by surprise, obtained the assistance of a thousand Aetolians in virtue of their alliance, and once these had arrived the elder Gortynians, seizing the citadel and introdu­cing the Cnossians and Aetolians, exiled or put to death the younger men and delivered the city to the Cnossians. 54 1 At about the same time the Lyttians having left with their whole force for an expedition into the enemy's country, the Cnossians getting word of it seized on Lyttus which was left without defenders, 2 and having sent off the women and children to Cnossus, and burnt, demolished, and in every way they could wrecked the town, returned  p431 home. 3 When the Lyttians came back to their city from the expedition and saw what had happened, they were so much affected that none of them had the heart even to enter his native town, but one and all after marching round it and many times bewailing and lamenting the fate of their country and themselves, turned their backs on it and retired to Lappa. 5 The Lappaeans received them with the utmost kindness and cordiality; and thus having become in one day cityless aliens instead of citizens they went on fighting against Cnossus with the other allies. 6 Thus was Lyttus, a colony of the Spartans and allied to them by blood, the most ancient city in Crete, and ever, as all acknowledged, the breeding-place of her bravest men, utterly and unexpectedly made away with.

55 1 The Polyrrhenians, Lappaeans, and all their allies seeing that the Cnossians clung to the alliance of the Aetolians who were the enemies of King Philip and the Achaeans, sent envoys to the king and to the League requesting their assistance and alliance. 2 The Achaeans and Philip hereupon received them into the general confederacy and sent them as support four hundred Illyrians under the command of Plator, two hundred Achaeans and one hundred Phocians. The arrival of this force was of the greatest advantage to the Polyrrhenians and their allies; 4 for in a very short space of time they shut the Eleutherians, Cydoniats, and Apteraeans  p433 inside their walls and compelled them to desert the alliance of Cnossus and share their fortunes. 5 After this success the Polyrrhenians and their allies sent to Philip and the Achaeans five hundred Cretans, while the Cnossians had a little earlier sent a thousand to the Aetolians and both these Cretan forces continued to take part in the present war. 6 The Gortynian exiles seized on the harbour of Phaestus and even audaciously continued to hold that of Gortyna itself, and from both these positions made war on those in the city.

56 1 Such was the state of affairs in Crete. At the same period Mithridates too went to war with Sinope, and this proved as it were the beginning and first occasion of the misfortunes which finally befell this city. 2 The Sinopeans sent an embassy to Rhodes begging for assistance towards this war and the Rhodians passed a decree to appoint three commissioners and to place in their hands a sum of 140,000 drachmae on receiving which they were to supply the requirements of the Sinopeans. 3 The commissioners got ready ten thousand jars of wine, three hundred talents of prepared hair, a hundred talents of prepared bow-string, a thousand complete suits of armour, three thousand gold pieces, and four catapults with their artillerymen, 4 on receiving which the Sinopean envoys returned home. These things were sent because the Sinopeans were in great dread of Mithridates undertaking the siege of the city by land and sea, and they therefore were making all their preparations with this view. 5 Sinope lies  p435 on the southern shore of the Pontus on the route to the Phasis and is situated on a peninsula running out to the open sea. The neck of this peninsula connecting it with Asia is not more than two stades in width and is absolutely closed by the city which is situated upon it; 6 the rest of the peninsula runs out to the open sea and is flat and affords an easy approach to the town, but on its sea face it is very steep, difficult to anchor off, and with very few approaches from the sea. 7 The Sinopeans were fearful lest Mithridates should lay siege to them by throwing up works on the side of the city next Asia, while at the same time effecting a disembarkation on the opposite side and occupying the flat ground over­looking the city; 8 and consequently they busied themselves with strengthening all round that part of the peninsula which was washed by the sea, blocking up the approaches from the sea by means of stakes and stockades and pla­cing soldiers and stores of missiles at suitable spots, the whole peninsula being of no great size but quite easily defensible by a moderate force.

57 1 Such was the situation at Sinope. But King Philip starting from Macedonia with his army — for it was here that I interrupted my account of operations in the Social War — marched on Thessaly and Epirus with the view of invading Aetolia from thence.

2 Alexander and Dorimachus at this time having formed a project for surprising Aegeira, had collected about twelve hundred Aetolians at Oeantheia in Aetolia, which is situated just opposite Aegeira, and  p437 having provided transports for this force were waiting for favourable weather to cross and make the attack. 3 For a certain Aetolian deserter, who had spent some time at Aegeira and had noticed that the guards of the Aegium gate were constantly drunk and neglect­ful of their watch, had several times at some risk crossed over to Dorimachus and urged him to make the attempt, well knowing that such an enterprise was quite in his line. 5 Aegeira is situated in the Peloponnese on the gulf of Corinth between Aegium and Sicyon and is built on steep hills difficult of access, looking towards Parnassus and that part of the opposite coast, its distance from the sea being about seven stades. 6 The weather being now favourable, Dorimachus set sail and anchored while it was still night at the mouth of the river which flows by the town. 7 Then those with Alexander and Dorimachus and with them Archidamus the son of Pantaleon, now took the main body of the Aetolians and approached the city by the road leading from Aegium. 8 The deserter with twenty picked men, leaving the path and mounting the precipice quicker than the others as he knew the ground, got in through an aqueduct and found the guard of the gate still asleep. 9 Having killed them before they could rise from their beds and cut through the bolts with axes, he opened the gates to the Aetolians. 10 They dashed brilliantly into the city, but afterwards conducted matters with such an entire lack of caution that finally the Aegeiratans were saved and they themselves destroyed.  p439 11 For considering that the occupation of a foreign city is finished when one is once within the gates, they acted on this principle, 58 1 so that, after keeping together for only quite a short time in the neighbourhood of the market-place, their passion for plunder caused them to disperse, and, breaking into the houses, they began to plunder the property, it being now daylight. 2 The people of Aegeira had been entirely taken by surprise, and now those whose houses had been attacked by the enemy were all in the utmost state of terror and consternation, and fled out of the town in which they supposed the enemy to be already securely established. 3 Those, however, who came to assist on hearing the shouting and whose houses were still intact, all ran to the citadel. 4 Here they gradually increased in numbers and gained courage, while the collected force of the Aetolians on the contrary became ever smaller and more disordered for the reasons above-mentioned. 5 But Dorimachus, seeing now the danger that menaced them, got his men together and attacked the occupants of the citadel, thinking that by this bold and vigorous effort he would intimidate and put to flight those who had gathered to defend the city. 6 But the Aegiratans, cheering each other on, resisted and met the Aetolian attack most gallantly. 7 The citadel was unwalled, and the combat was a hand-to‑hand one between man and man, so that at first there was a struggle as desperate as one would expect when the one side is fighting for their country and children and the other for their lives, but at the end the Aetolian invaders were put to flight. 8 The pursuit of the enemy by the Aegiratans, who took advantage of their higher  p441 position, was so vigorous and formidable, that most of the Aetolians owing to the state of panic they were in trampled each other to death in the gate. 9 Alexander fell fighting in the actual engagement and Archidamus perished in the suffocating crush at the gate. 10 The rest of the Aetolians were either trampled to death there or were dashed to pieces in their attempt to escape down the cliffs where there was no path. 11 The survivors who reached the ships after throwing away their shields managed, beyond hope and with the stigma of this disgrace, to sail away. 12 Thus did the Aegiratans lose their city by their negligence, and recover it again beyond hope by their courage and valour.

59 1 About the same time Euripidas, whom the Aetolians had sent to the Eleans to command their forces, after an inroad on the territory of Dyme, Pharae, and Tritaea, in which he had collected a considerable amount of booty, was on his way back to Elis. 2 But Miccus of Dyme, who was at this time the sub-strategus of the Achaeans, taking with him the complete levies of Dyme, Pharae, and Tritaea, marched out and attacked the enemy as they were retiring. 3 Pressing on too vigorously he fell into an ambush and was defeated with considerable loss, forty of his infantry being killed and about two hundred taken prisoners. 4 Euripidas, elated by this success, made another expedition a few days afterwards and took a fort of the Dymaeans called "The Wall," favourably situated near the Araxus and  p443 fabled to have been built long ago by Heracles when he was making war on the Eleans to use as a place of arms against them. 60 1 The Dymaeans, Pharaeans, and Tritaeans, thus worsted in their attack on the invaders and afraid of what might happen owing to the occupation of the fort, at first dispatched messengers to the strategus of the Achaeans informing him of what had occurred and begging for help, and subsequently sent a formal embassy with the same request. 2 Aratus could not get a foreign force together, as after the Cleomenic War the Achaeans had not paid their mercenaries in full, and in general he exhibited a great lack of daring and energy in his plans and his whole conduct of the war. 3 So that Lycurgus took the Athenaeum in the territory of Megalopolis, and Euripidas, in addition to his previous successes, captured Gortyna in the territory of Telphusa. 4 Hereupon the peoples of Dyme, Pharae, and Tritaea, despairing of help from the strategus, came to an agreement with each other to refuse to pay their contributions to the Achaean League and to collect a private mercenary force of three hundred foot and fifty horse with which to secure the safety of their lands. 6 In acting thus they were thought to have taken a proper course as regards their own affairs, but the reverse of this as regards the League; for they thus became the initiators and establishers of an evil precedent and pretext of which anyone who wished to dissolve the League could avail himself. 7 It is true that the greater part of the blame for this action of theirs rested on the Strategus, guilty as he was of habitual negligence, delay, and inattention to  p445 requests. 8 For everyone in the hour of danger, as long as he keeps up any hope of assistance from his allies and friends, reposes his confidence on this, but when he abandons it in his distress he is forced to do all in his power to help himself. 9 We should therefore not find fault with the Tritaeans, Pharaeans and Dymaeans for hiring a private force when the Head of their confederacy delayed to take action, but they must be blamed for refusing to pay their contribution to the League. 10 While duly considering their own interests, especially as they could well afford to do so, they should have observed their engagements to the League; especially as according to the common laws they were perfectly assured of recovery; and above all considering they were the actual founders of the Confederacy.

61 1 Such was the state of affairs in the Peloponnese. Meanwhile King Philip, after passing through Thessaly, had arrived in Epirus. 2 Uniting with his Macedonians the complete levy of the Epirots, three hundred slingers who had joined him from Achaea and five hundred​a Cretans sent by the Polyrrhenians, he advanced and passing through Epirus reached Ambracia. 3 Had he only not turned aside but advanced rapidly into the interior of Aetolia, he would by thus suddenly and unexpectedly invading with so formidable a force have put an end to the whole war. 4 But as it was, letting himself be persuaded by the Epirots to take Ambracus in the first place, he gave the Aetolians leisure to collect themselves, to take precautionary measures and to make preparations for the future. 5 For the Epirots, setting their own particular advantage above all that of the  p447 allies and exceedingly eager to get Ambracus into their possession, implored Philip to besiege and capture this place in the first instance. 6 They regarded it as of the highest importance to recover Ambracia from the Aetolians, and the only way they hoped to do so was by making themselves masters of this place and laying siege to the city of Ambracia from it. 7 For Ambracus is a place strongly fortified by outworks and a wall and lies in a lake with only one narrow approach from the town, and it is so situated as to command effectually both the country and the town.

8 Philip, then, acting as the Epirots wished and encamping before Ambracus, began to make preparations for the siege. 62 1 But while he was thus employed, Scopas raised a general levy of the Aetolians and marching through Thessaly invaded Macedonia, where he destroyed the crops in Pieria and after collecting a quantity of booty, turned back and marched towards Dium. 2 On its inhabitants deserting this place he entered it and demolished the walls, houses, and gymnasium, burning also the colonnade round the sanctuary and destroying all the other monuments of piety which served for adornment or for the convenience of those who frequented the festival. He also threw down all the royal statues. 3 Having thus at the very outset of the war and by his first action made war not only on men but on the gods, he now returned, 4 and on reaching Aetolia, just as if he had not been guilty  p449 of an impious outrage, but had done a great public service, he was universally honoured and admired, having succeeded in filling the Aetolians with empty hopes and foolish arrogance. 5 For henceforth they had the notion that no one would ever dare even to approach Aetolia, but that they themselves might pillage unhindered not only the Peloponnese, as had been their constant practice, but Thessaly and Macedonia also. 63 1 Philip received the news from Macedonia, and having thus at once reaped the fruits of the folly and selfishness of the Epirots, began to besiege Ambracus. 2 Pushing on his earthworks and other operations energetically he soon intimidated the defenders and in forty days captured the place. 3 Letting the garrison, consisting of five hundred Aetolians, depart on terms, he satisfied the desire of the Epirots by handing over Ambracus to them, 4 and himself advanced with his army by way of Charadra, with the object of crossing the gulf of Ambracia at its narrowest point by the Acarnanian temple called Actium. 5 For this gulf is an inlet of the Sicilian sea between Epirus and Acarnania, entered by a quite narrow mouth, 6 less than five stades across, but as it advances into the interior it expands to a width of a hundred stades from the sea. It divides Epirus from Acarnania, Epirus lying north of it and Acarnania south. 7 After taking his army across at its mouth and passing through  p451 Acarnania Philip reached the Aetolian city called Phoetiae, having been reinforced by two thousand Acarnanian foot and two hundred horse. 8 He encamped before this city and delivered for two days a series of assaults so vigorous and formidable that the Aetolian garrison surrendered upon conditions and were dismissed unhurt. 9 During the following night a force of five hundred Aetolians arrived to help under the impression that the city still held out. The king got word of their approach and, pla­cing an ambuscade in a favourable spot, killed the greater number of them and took all the rest prisoners, except a very few. 10 After this, having distributed enough of the captured cornº to his troops to last thirty days — a large quantity having been found stored at Phoetiae — he advanced, marching on the territory of Stratus. 11 Stopping at a distance of ten stades from the town he encamped by the river Achelous, and making forays from there, laid waste the country unopposed, none of the enemy venturing to come out to attack him.

64 1 The Achaeans at this time, finding themselves hard pressed by the war and learning that the king was close at hand, sent envoys asking for help. 2 Encountering the king while still before Stratus they delivered the message with which they had been charged, and pointing out to him the large booty that his army would take in the enemy's country, tried to persuade him to cross at Rhium and invade Elis. 3 The king after listening to them kept the envoys with him, saying he would give their request consideration, and breaking up his camp advanced in the direction of Metropolis and  p453 Conope. 4 The Aetolians held to the citadel of Metropolis, abandoning the town, which the king burnt and then continued his advance on Conope. 5 When a body of Aetolian cavalry ventured to meet him, at the ford of the river which runs in front of the town at a distance of about twenty stades from it, trusting either to prevent his passage entirely or to inflict considerable damage on the Macedonians as they were crossing, the king, perceiving their design, ordered his peltasts to enter the river first and land on the other bank in close order shield to shield and company to company. 7 His orders were obeyed, and as soon as the first company had passed, the Aetolian cavalry, after a feeble attack on it, finding that it stood firm with shields interlocked and that the second and third companies as they landed closed up with it, were unable to effect anything, and seeing that they were getting into difficulties made off for the town; and henceforth the Aetolians, with all their haughty spirit, kept quiet within the shelter of their walls. 9 Philip crossed with his army, and having pillaged this country too unopposed, advanced on Ithoria. This is a place absolutely commanding the road through the pass and of singular natural and artificial strength; 10 but on his approach the garrison were terror-stricken and abandoned it. The king on obtaining possession of it razed it to the ground, and ordered his advanced guards to demolish likewise the other small forts in the country. 65 1 Having passed through the defile he continued to advance slowly and quietly, giving his troops leisure  p455 to pillage the country, 2 and when he reached Oeniadae his army was abundantly furnished with provisions of every kind. 3 Encamping before Paeonium he determined to capture the city in the first place and after several assaults took it by storm. It is a town of no great size, being less than seven stades in circumference, but inferior to none in the fine construction of its houses, walls, and towers. 4 Philip razed the wall to the ground, and taking down the houses made the timbers and tiles into rafts and sent down the stones on them with the greatest care to Oeniadae. 5 The Aetolians at first determined to hold the citadel of Oeniadae, feeling themselves safe behind walls furnished with all other defences, but on Philip's approach took fright and retired. 6 The king, taking possession of this town too, advanced from it and encamped before a strong place in the territory of Calydon called Elaus admirably fortified by walls and other defences, Attalus having undertaken for the Aetolians the expense of construction. 7 The Macedonians assaulted and took this place also and after laying waste the whole territory of Calydon returned to Oeniadae. 8 But Philip, observing the natural advantages of the spot both in other respects and as a point from which to cross to the Peloponnese, conceived the plan of fortifying the town. 9 Oeniadae lies at the extreme border of Acarnania on the coast of Aetolia, just at the entrance of the Corinthian Gulf. 10 The part of the Peloponnese fa­cing it is the coast  p457 territory of Dyme, the nearest point being the promontory of Araxus which is not more than a hundred stades distant. 11 Looking to these facts Philip fortified the citadel separately and surrounding the harbour and dockyards with a wall he intended to connect them with the citadel, using the building material he had brought down from Paeonium for the work.

66 1 But while the king was still thus engaged, a post arrived from Macedonia informing him that the Dardani, understanding that he contemplated a campaign in the Peloponnese, were collecting forces and making great preparations with the intention of invading Macedonia. 2 On hearing this, he thought it necessary to hasten back to the help of Macedonia, and now dismissing the Achaean envoys with the reply that when he had done what was called for by the intelligence he had received he would make it his first object to assist them as far as was within his power, 3 he broke up his camp and returned home with all speed by the same route as that by which he had come. 4 As he was about to cross the Gulf of Ambracia from Acarnania to Epirus, Demetrius of Pharus appeared in a single frigate, having been driven by the Romans from Illyria, as I narrated in a previous Book. 5 Philip received him kindly and bade him sail for Corinth and from thence make his way to Macedonia through Thessaly, while he himself crossed to Epirus and continued his advance. 6 When he reached Pella in Macedonia, the Dardani, hearing of his arrival from some Thracian deserters,  p459 took fright and at once dismissed their army, although they were now close to Macedonia. 7 Philip, on learning that the Dardani had abandoned their project, sent home all his Macedonians to gather in the harvest and returning to Thessaly spent the rest of the summer at Larisa.

8 It was at this time that Aemilius, on his return from Illyria, celebrated a splendid triumph in Rome, that Hannibal after taking Saguntum by assault dismissed his army to winter quarters, that the Romans on hearing of the fall of Saguntum sent ambassadors to Carthage demanding that Hannibal should be given up to them, and at the same time began to prepare for war after electing as Consuls Publius Cornelius Scipio and Tiberius Sempronius Longus. 10 All these matters I have dealt with in detail in my previous Book, and now merely recall them to my readers in pursuance of my original plan that they may know what events were contemporary.

11 And so the first year of this Olympiad was drawing to its close. 67 1 It was now the date for the elections in Aetolia, and Dorimachus was chosen strategus. As soon as he entered on office he summoned the Aetolians to arms and invading upper Epirus laid the country waste, carrying out the work of destruction in a thoroughly vindictive spirit; 2 for the measures he took were all not so much meant to secure booty for himself as to inflict damage on the Epirots. 3 On reaching the temple of Dodona he burnt the porticoes, destroyed many of the votive offerings and demolished the sacred building, 4 so that  p461 we may say that for the Aetolians no restrictions exist either in peace or war, but that in both circumstances they pursue their designs in defiance of the common usages and principles of mankind.

5 Dorimachus after this and similar exploits returned home. 6 As the winter was now advanced, everyone had given up any hope of Philip's reappearance owing to the season, but suddenly the king taking with him three thousand of his brazen-shielded hoplites, two thousand peltasts, three hundred Cretans, and about four hundred of his horse guards, started from Larisa. 7 Transporting this force from Thessaly to Euboea and thence to Cynus, he passed through Boeotia and Megaris and reached Corinth about the winter solstice, having marched with such expedition and secrecy that no one in the Peloponnese was aware of what had happened. 8 Shutting the gates of Corinth and posting patrols in the streets, he sent next day to Sicyon for the elder Aratus, at the same time dispatching letters to the strategus of the Achaeans and to the different cities informing them at what date and place he required them all to meet him in arms. 9 After making these arrangements he left Corinth, and advancing encamped near the temple of the Dioscuri in the territory of Phlius. 68 1 Just at this time Euripidas with two companies of Eleans together with his freebooters and mercenaries, so that his whole force of infantry numbered about two thousand two hundred, and with a hundred horsemen, had left Psophis and was marching through the territories of Pheneus and Stymphalus, knowing nothing of Philip's arrival, but bent on laying waste  p463 the district round Sicyon. 2 On the very night on which Philip was encamped near the temple of the Dioscuri, he passed close by the king's camp in the early morning and was just about to invade the territory of Sicyon. 3 But some of Philip's Cretans, who had left their ranks and were prowling about in search of plunder, fell in with Euripidas' force. 4 He questioned them, and on learning of the arrival of the Macedonians, without revealing the news to a soul, he led his force back by the road along which he had come, 5 with the wish and hope of getting a start of the Macedonians and thus passing through the territory of Stymphalus and gaining the difficult highland country above it. 6 The king, quite ignorant also of the enemy's vicinity and simply in pursuance of his plan, broke up his camp early in the morning and advanced, intending to march past Stymphalus itself in the direction of Caphyae; for it was there that he had written to the Achaeans to assemble in arms. 69 1 As the advanced guard of the Macedonians was coming over the hill near the place called Apelaurus, about ten stades before you come to Stymphalus, it so happened that the advanced guard of the Eleans converged on the pass also. 2 Euripidas, who understood what had happened from the intelligence he had previously received, took a few horsemen with him and escaping from the danger retreated across country to Psophis. 3 The rest of the Eleans, thus deserted by their commander and thoroughly alarmed by what had occurred, remained in marching order at a loss what to do or  p465 what direction to take. 4 At first, I must explain, their officers thought it was an Achaean force which had come to opposite them, taken in chiefly by the brazen-shielded hoplites 5 whom they supposed to be Megalopolitans, as the contingent from there had carried such shields in the battle at Sellasia against Cleomenes, King Antigonus having thus armed them for the occasion. 6 They therefore kept their ranks and began to retire to some higher ground, not despairing of safety. But as soon as the Macedonians advancing on them drew close, they realized the truth and all took to flight throwing away their shields. 7 About twelve hundred of them were made prisoners and the remainder perished, either at the hands of the Macedonians or by falling down the precipices, only about a hundred escaping. 8 Philip, sending the prisoners and captured arms back to Corinth, continued his march. 9 This event exceedingly astonished all the Peloponnesians, who heard at one and the same time of the king's arrival and of his victory.

70 1 Marching through Arcadia and encountering heavy snowstorms and many hardships in crossing the pass of Mount Olygyrtus, he reached Caphyae in the night of the third day. 2 Having rested his troops here for two days and being joined by the young Aratus and the Achaeans he had collected, so that his whole force was now about ten thousand strong, he advanced on Psophis through the territory of Cleitor, collecting missiles and ladders from the towns he passed through. 3 Psophis is an undisputably  p467 Arcadian foundation of great antiquity in the district of Azanis lying in the interior of the Peloponnese taken as a whole, but on the western borders of Arcadia itself and coterminous with the up-country of western Achaea. 4 It commands with great advantage the territory of the Eleans, with whom it was then politically united. 5 Philip, reaching it in three days from Caphyae, encamped on the hills opposite, from which one can securely view the whole town and its environs. 6 When he observed the great strength of Psophis, the king was at a loss what to do; 7 for on its western side there descends a violent torrent, impassable for the greater part of the winter, and rendering the city very strongly protected and difficult of approach on this side, owing to the depth of the bed it has gradually formed for itself, descending as it does from a height. 8 On the eastern side of the town flows the Eymantus, a large and rapid stream of which many fables are told by various authors. 9 The torrent falls into the Erymanthus to the south of the city, so that three faces of the city are surrounded and protected by the rivers in the manner I have described. 10 On the fourth or northern side rises a steep hill protected by walls, serving very efficiently as a natural citadel. The town has also walls of unusual size and admirable construction, 11 and besides all these advantages it had just received a reinforcement  p469 of Eleans, and Euripidas was present having taken refuge there after his flight.

71 1 Philip observing and reflecting on all this, was on the one hand deterred by his judgement from any attempt to carry the town by force or besiege it, 2 but was again strongly disposed thereto when he considered the advantages of its situation. For just as it was now a menace to Achaea and Arcadia and a secure place of arms for the Eleans, so, if it were taken, it would be a bulwark defending Arcadia and an excellent base of operations for the allies against Elis. 3 These considerations finally prevailed, and he gave orders to the Macedonians to get all of them their breakfasts at daybreak and then prepare for action and hold themselves in readiness. 4 This having been done, he crossed the bridge over the Erymanthus, no one opposing him owing to the unexpectedness of the movement, and unhesitatingly marched on the town in formidable array. 5 Euripidas and all in the town were wholly take aback by this, as they had been convinced that the enemy would neither venture to attempt to assault by storm such a strong city, nor would open a lengthy siege at this disadvantageous season of the year. 6 In this very conviction they now began to entertain suspicions of each other, fearing lest Philip had arranged with some of those inside the city for its betrayal. But when they saw no signs of such project among themselves, the greater number of them ran to the walls for help, while the mercenaries of the Eleans issued from one of the gates higher up the hill to attack the enemy. 8 The king ordered the bearers of the scaling-ladders to set them up at three separate  p471 spots, and similarly dividing the rest of his Macedonians into three bodies, gave the signal by the sound of trumpet and attacked the wall simultaneously from every side. 9 At first the holders of the city offered a stout resistance and threw down many of the assailants from the ladders, 10 but when their supply of missiles and other requisites began to fall short — their preparations having been made on the spur of the moment — and the Macedonians were showing no sign of fear, the place of each man thrown off the ladder being instantly taken by the man next behind him, the defenders at length turned their backs and all fled to the citadel, while of the king's forces the Macedonians mounted the wall, and the Cretans, attacking the mercenaries who had sallied from the upper gate, forced them to fly in disorder, throwing away their shields. 12 Pressing close on their heels and cutting them down, they entered the gate together with them, and thus the city was taken from every side at once. 13 The Psophidians with their wives and children retreated to the citadel together with Euripidas' force and the rest of the fugitives, 72 1 and the Macedonians, breaking of the houses, pillaged them at once of all their contents and afterwards lodged in them and took regular possession of the town. The fugitives in the citadel, as they were not prepared for a siege, decided to anticipate matters by surrendering to Philip. 3 They therefore sent a herald to the king; and on obtaining a safe-conduct for an embassy dispatched the magistrates accompanied by Euripidas on this  p473 mission, who made terms with the king, securing the lives and liberties of all the fugitives both natives and foreigners. 4 They then returned whence they came with orders for all to remain where they were until the departure of the army, lest any of soldiery might disobey orders and plunder them. 5 The king, owing to a snow-fall, was obliged to remain here for several days, in the course of which he called a meeting of the Achaeans present, and first of all pointing out to them the strength of the town and its excellent situation for the purposes of the present war, 6 and next protesting his affection and esteem for their state, finally told them that he now handed over the city to the Achaeans as a free fit, it being his purpose to favour them by all means in his power and never fail to consult their interests. 7 Aratus and the Achaean troops having expressed their thanks to him for this, Philip dismissed the meeting and departed with his army, marching towards Lasion. 8 Hereupon, the Psophidians coming down from the citadel, their city and houses were restored to them, and Euripidas went away to Corinth and thence back to Aetolia. 9 The Achaean magistrates present put Prolaus of Sicyon in command of the citadel with an adequate garrison and Pythias of Pellene in command of the town.

10 So ended the incident of Psophis. 73 1 The Elean garrison of Lasion, hearing of the approach of the Macedonians and learning what had befallen Psophis, at once abandoned the town. 2 The king took the city immediately on his arrival and, as a further testimony of his generous intentions towards the  p475 League, gave up Lasion also to the Achaeans. He likewise restored to the Telphusians the town of Stratus, which had been evacuated by the Eleans, 3 and after completing these arrangements reached Olympia five days later, where he sacrificed to the god and entertained his captains, and, having given all his army a three days' rest, again moved on. 4 Advancing into Elis he sent out foraging parties to scour the country, and himself encamped at the place called the Artemisium, 5 where he waited for the booty and then went on to the Dioscurium.

When the country was plundered, the number of captives was great, and still more numerous were those who escaped to the neighbouring villages and strong places. 6 For Elis is much more thickly inhabited and more full of slaves and farm stock than any other part of the Peloponnese. 7 Some of the Eleans in fact are so fond of country life, that though men of substance, they have not for two or three generations shown their faces in the law-courts, and this because those who occupy themselves with politics show the greatest concern for their fellow-citizens in the country and see that justice is done to them on the spot, and that they are plentifully furnished with all the necessaries of life. 9 As it seems to me, they have adopted such a system from old time and legislated accordingly in a measure because of the large extent of their territory, but chiefly owing to the sacrosanct life they formerly led, 10 having, ever since the Greeks conferred immunity on them owing to the Olympian games, dwelt in a country which was holy and safe from pillage, with no experience of danger and entirely unmenaced  p477 by war. 74 1 But later, when, owing to the Arcadians disputing their possession of Lasion and all the territory of Pisa, they were compelled to defend their country and change their mode of life, they never afterwards showed the least concern to recover from the Greeks their ancient heritage of inviolability, but remained as they now were, acting wrongly in my judgement in this neglecting their future interests. 3 Peace is a blessing for which we all pray to the gods; we submit to every suffering from the desire to attain it, and it is the only one of the so‑called good things in life to which no man refuses this title. If then there be any people which, while able by right and with all honour to obtain from the Greeks perpetual and undisputed peace, neglect this object or esteem any other of greater importance, everyone would surely agree that they are much in the wrong. 4 Perhaps indeed they might plead that such a manner of life exposes them to the attack of neighbours bent on war and regardless of treaties. 5 But this is a thing not likely to happen often and claiming if it does occur the aid of all the Greeks; 6 while to secure themselves against any local and temporary damage, amidst a plenti­ful supply of wealth, such as will probably be theirs if they enjoy constant peace, they will be in no want of foreign mercenary soldiers to protect them at the place and time required. 7 But now simply from fear of rare and improbable perils they expose their country and their properties to constant war and devastation. 8 Let this be taken as said to remind the Eleans of the duty they owe themselves; since a more favourable opportunity never offered itself than the present for  p479 recovering by universal consent their immunity from pillage.

But, as I said above, since some sparks of their old habits are still alive, Elis is an exceedingly populous country; 75 1 and therefore, upon Philip's entering it, the number of captives was enormous, and the fugitives were still more numerous. 2 A quantity of property and a vast crowd of slaves and cattle were collected at a place they call Thalamae or The Recess, because the approaches to it are narrow and difficult and the place itself secluded and not easily entered. 3 The king, hearing of the numbers of fugitives who had taken refuge in this place and deciding to leave nothing unattempted or half-accomplished, occupied with his mercenaries such spots as commanded the approach, and himself, leaving his baggage and the greater part of his forces in the camp, advanced through the defile with his peltasts and light-armed infantry. He reached the place without encountering any opposition, and the fugitives, thrown into great dismay by the attack, as they had no knowledge of military matters and had made no preparations, and as it was a mixed rabble which had collected in the place, soon surrendered, among them being two hundred mercenaries of various nationalities brought there by Amphidamus the Elean Strategus. 7 Philip, having captured a large amount of movable property, and more than five thousand persons, and having also driven off vast numbers of cattle, now returned to his camp, and shortly, as his army was loaded with booty of every variety and had become unwieldy  p481 and useless in the field, for this reason retired and again encamped at Olympia.

76 1 One of the guardians of the young Philip left by Antigonus was Apelles, who had at this time very great influence with the king. He now entered on the base project of redu­cing the Achaeans to a position similar to that of the Thessalians. 2 For the Thessalians, though supposed to be governed constitutionally and much more liberally than the Macedonians, were as a fact treated in just the same way and obeyed all the orders of the king's ministers. 3 Apelles, therefore, in furtherance of this design began to test the temper of the Achaean contingent. 4 He began by allowing the Macedonians to eject from their quarters such Achaeans as had secured billets, and also to appropriate their share of the booty. 5 He next began to inflict personal chastisement on Achaeans by the hands of his subordinates for quite trivial reasons, and himself carried off to bondage anyone who protested against the floggings or attempted to help the victims, being persuaded that by these means he would gradually and imperceptibly accustom them to submit without remonstrance to any treatment the king chose to inflict on them — and this in spite of the fact that he had shortly before made the campaign with Antigonus, and seen how the Achaeans were ready to face any danger rather than obey the behest of Cleomenes. 8 Some of the young Achaeans, however, met together, and coming before Aratus, pointed out the design that Apelles was pursuing, whereupon Aratus approached  p483 Philip, judging it better in such a matter to express his disapproval at the outset and without delay. 9 He laid the matter before the king, who, when made aware of the circumstances, bade the young men lay aside all fear, since nothing of the kind would occur again, and ordered Apelles to issue no orders to the Achaeans without consulting their strategus.

77 1 Philip, then, both by his behaviour to those with whom he was associated in the camp and by his ability and daring in the field, was winning a high reputation not only among those serving with him but among all the rest of the Peloponnesians. 2 For it would be difficult to find a prince more richly endowed by nature with the qualities requisite for the attainment of power. 3 He possessed a quick intelligence, a retentive memory, and great personal charm, as well as the presence and authority that becomes a king, and above all ability and courage as a general. 4 What indeed it was that defeated all these advantages, and turned a king of such good natural parts into a savage tyrant, is not easy to explain in a few words, and therefore the examination and discussion of the matter must be left for a more suitable occasion than the present.

5 Setting out from Olympia by the road leading to Pharaea, Philip reached first Telphusa and thence Heraea. Here he held a sale of the booty and repaired the bridge over the Alphaeus, intending to invade Triphylia by this road. 6 At about the same time Dorimachus, the Aetolian strategus, on the Eleans requesting him to come to the aid of their country which was being ravaged, dispatched six hundred Aetolians under the command of Phillidas. 7 On reaching Elis, he took over the Elean mercenaries,  p485 about five hundred in number, and one thousand citizen soldiers, as well as the Tarentines,​8 and came to help Triphylia. 8 This district derives its name from Triphylus, one of the sons of Arcas, and lies on the coast of the Peloponnese between Elis and Messenia, fa­cing the Libyan Sea and forming the extreme south-west portion of Arcadia. 9 It contains the following towns: Samicum, Lepreum, Hypana, Typanae, Pyrgus, Aepium, Bolax, Stylangium, and Phrixa, 10 all of which the Eleans had annexed, adding to them Alipheira which had originally belonged to Arcadia proper, but had been given to the Eleans during his tyranny by Lydiades of Megalopolis in return for certain private services they rendered him.

78 1 Phillidas now sent the Eleans to Lepreum and the mercenaries to Alipheira, and remained himself with his Aetolians in Typaneae to see what would happen. 2 The king, after ridding himself of his heavy baggage, crossed by the bridge the Alpheus which runs past Herae and arrived at Alipheira. 3 This city lies on a hill defended on all sides by precipices, the ascent of which is more than ten stades. It has a citadel on the summit of the whole hill and a bronze statue of Athena, remarkable for its size and beauty. 4 The origin of this statue — from what motive and at whose expense it was made — is a subject of dispute among the natives themselves, as there is nothing to show definitely who dedicated it and why; 5 but all agree as to the  p487 excellence of the workman­ship, it being one of the most magnificent and artistic statues in existence, the work of Hecatodorus and Sostratus.

6 The next day broke bright and cloudless, and at early dawn the king distributed at various points the ladder-bearers supported by the mercenaries in front, 7 and dividing his Macedonians placed a body of them in the rear of each party. As soon as the sun was visible, he ordered them all to advance on the hill, 8 and the Macedonians, executing his orders with great alacrity and in formidable style, the Alipheirians kept always running to whatever spots they saw the Macedonians approaching. 9 But the king meanwhile with a picked force managed by climbing some precipitous rocks to reach unperceived the suburb of the citadel. 10 The signal was now given and all at one and the same time planted the ladders against the walls and began the assault of the town. 11 The king was the first to enter, taking the suburb of the citadel, which he found unoccupied, and when this suburb was in flames, the defenders of the walls, seeing what was likely to happen and in dread lest with the fall of the citadel they should find their last hope gone, left the walls and rushed to take refuge within it. 12 Upon this the Macedonians at once captured the walls and the town; 13 and afterwards the garrison of the citadel sent commissioners to Philip and, on his promising to spare their lives, they surrendered it to him by treaty.

79 1 All the people of Triphylia were much alarmed  p489 by this achievement of Philip and began to consider how best to save themselves and their own cities. 2 Phillidas now returned to Lepreum, evacuating Typaneae after plundering some of the houses. 3 For this was the reward that the allies of the Aetolians used then to receive; not only to be barefacedly deserted in the hour of need, but to be plundered or betrayed and suffer at the hands of their allies the treatment that the vanquished may expect from their enemies. 4 The people of Typaneae now gave up their city to Philip and those of Hypana followed their example. 5 At the same time the Phigalians, hearing the news from Triphylia and ill-pleased with the Aetolian alliance, rose in arms and seized on the ground round the Polemarch's office. 6 The Aetolian freebooters, who had quartered themselves in the city for the purpose of plundering Messenia, were at first disposed to put a bold face on it and attack the Phigalians, 7 but when the citizens came flocking with one accord to the rescue, they desisted from their project, and came to terms, leaving the city with their possessions, 8 upon which the Phigalians sent deputies to Philip and delivered themselves and the town into his hands.

80 1 While these transactions were in progress, the people of Lepreum, seizing on a certain position in the city, demanded the evacuation of the citadel and city by the Eleans, Aetolians, and Lacedaemonians (for a reinforcement had come from Sparta also). 2 Phillidas at first paid no heed to the request but remained where he was, thinking to overawe  p491 the citizens. 3 But when the king, having sent Taurion with some troops to Phigalia, advanced in person to Lepreum was approaching the town, Phillidas on hearing of it lost his assurance, while the people of the town were strengthened in their resolution. 4 It was indeed a fine action on the part of the Lepreates, with no less than a thousand Eleans, a thousand Aetolians counting the freebooters, five hundred mercenaries and two hundred Lacedaemonians within the walls and with the citadel occupied, yet to strive to vindicate their country's freedom and not abandon hope. 5 Phillidas, when he saw that the Lepreatans were gallantly holding out and that the Macedonians were approaching, quitted the city accompanied by the Eleans and the Lacedaemonian contingent. 6 Those Cretans whom the Spartans had sent returned home by way of Messenia, while Phillidas retired in the direction of Samicum. 7 The people of Lepreum being now masters of their city, sent envoys to Philip pla­cing it in his hands. 8 The king, on hearing of what had taken place, sent the rest of his forces to Lepreum, but pla­cing himself at the head of his peltasts and light infantry, started in the hope of encountering Phillidas. 9 He came up with him and captured all his baggage-train, but Phillidas and his men succeeded in throwing themselves into Samicum in time. 10 Encamping before this place and fetching up the rest of his forces from Lepreum, Philip gave those within the impression of being about to besiege them. 11 The Aetolians and Eleans had nothing  p493 wherewith to meet a siege but their numbers only, and alarmed by the prospect began to treat with Philip for their lives and liberties. 12 On receiving permission to withdraw with their arms they marched off for Elis; and the king thus at once became master of Samicum, 13 and afterwards, when representatives of the other towns came begging for grace, he took possession of Phrixa, Stylangium, Aepium, Bolax, Pyrgus, and Epitalium, 14 and after these achievements returned again to Lepreum, having in the space of six days subdued the whole of Triphylia. 15 After addressing the Lepreates in a manner suitable to the occasion, and pla­cing a garrison in the citadel, he left with his army for Heraea, leaving Ladicus the Acarnanian in charge of Triphylia. 16 On his arrival at Heraea he divided all the booty, and picking up here his heavy baggage reached Megalopolis in mid-winter.

81 1 At the same time that Philip was operating in Triphylia, Chelion, the Lacedaemonian, considering that he was the lawful heir to the throne and deeply resenting having been passed over by the ephors when they selected Lycurgus as king, resolved to bring about a revolution. 2 Thinking that if he followed in Cleomenes' footsteps and held out to the multitude the hope of allotments and redivision of the land, he would soon have the masses behind him, he set to work on his design. 3 Having come to an understanding with his friends on this subject  p495 and secured the co-operation of about two hundred in the venture, he entered on the execution of the project. 4 Perceiving that the greatest hindrance to the success of his plot lay in Lycurgus and the ephors who had set him on the throne, he directed his attack first on them. Falling on the ephors while they were at supper he slew them all on the spot, chance thus visiting them with the fitting penalty for their crime. For when we consider the person at whose hands and the person for whose sake they suffered death we must confess that they met with their deserts. 6 Cheilon, after thus disposing of the ephors, hastened to the house of Lycurgus, where he found the king, but failed to get possession of his person; for he was smuggled out by some servants and neighbours, and got away unperceived, escaping afterwards across country to Pellene in the Tripolis. 8 Chelion, thus baulked of his most important object, had now little heart for his enterprise, but still was forced to continue his pursuit. 9 He therefore advanced into the agora, cutting down his enemies, calling upon his relatives and friends to join him, and tempting the rest of the people by those hopes and promises I just spoke of. 10 But as no one listened to him, but on the contrary a hostile crowd collected, as soon as he perceived how matters stood, he left Sparta secretly, and passing through Laconia arrived in Achaea, alone and an exile. 11 The Lacedaemonians, now dreading the arrival of Philip, brought in all property from the country and evacuated the Athenaeum in the territory of Megalopolis after razing it to the ground.

12 Thus the Lacedaemonians who ever since the legislation of Lycurgus had enjoyed the best form  p497 of government and had the greatest power until the battle of Leuctra, when chance henceforth turned against them, and their system of government instead of improving began to go rapidly from bad to worse, 13 finally had more experience than any other people of civic trouble and discord. No other nation was so harassed by banishment of citizens and confiscations of property, none had to submit to more cruel servitude culminating in the tyranny of Nabis, although formerly they could not even bear to hear the word "tyrant" mentioned. 14 However, the ancient history of Sparta and the subsequent history of her elevation and decline had been narrated by many. The progress of the latter is most conspicuous since the entire subversion of the ancient constitution by Cleomenes; and I shall continue to speak of it whenever the occasion offers.

82 1 Leaving Megalopolis and passing through Tegea, Philip arrived at Argos, where he spent the rest of the winter, having won in this campaign universal admiration for a correctness of conduct and a brilliancy of achievement beyond his years. 2 Apelles, however, had by no means given up his project, but was bent on gradually bringing the Achaeans under the yoke. 3 Seeing that the elder and younger Aratus stood in the way of this design and that Philip paid great regard to them, especially to the elder owing to his former friendship with Antigonus and his great influence with the Achaeans, but still more owing to his talent and discernment, he formed a plan of damaging their credit in the following manner. 4 Inquiring first of all the names of Aratus' political opponents in each city, he sent for them, and when he made their acquaintance  p499 began to cajole them and solicit their friendship. 5 He also presented them to Philip pointing out to him in the case of each that if he gave ear to Aratus he must deal with the Achaeans according to the letter of the treaty of alliance; "but" he would say, "if you listen to me and secure the friendship of such men as this, you will be able to treat all the Peloponnesians exactly as you wish." 6 He at once began to occupy himself with the approaching election, wishing to procure the office of strategus for one of these men and oust Aratus and his son from affairs. 7 With this object he persuaded Philip to be present at Aegium for the Achaean elections, under the pretence that it was a station on his march to Elis. 8 The king having consented to this, Apelles himself came for the occasion, and partly by solicitations partly by threats contrived, with difficulty it is true, to bring in as strategus Eperatus of Pharae. Timoxenus, the candidate nominated by Aratus, being defeated.

83 1 After this the king left Aegium and marching through Patrae and Dyme came to a fort called "The Wall," which defends the territory of Dyme, but which, as I said above, had been a short time before seized by Euripidas. 2 Being anxious at all hazards to recover this place for Dyme, he encamped before it with his whole army. 3 The Elean garrison in dismay surrendered the fort, which, though not a large place, was admirably fortified. 4 Its circumference did not exceed one and a half stades, but the wall was nowhere less than thirty cubits in height.  p501 5 Handing over to the Dymeans he advanced, laying waste the territory of Elis. After pillaging it and collecting a quantity of booty he returned with his army to Dyme.

84 1 Apelles, thinking that he had succeeded so far in his plan, by the election of the Achaean strategus through his influence, renewed his attack on Aratus with the view of entirely alienating Philip from him. He devised the following plan for trumping up a false accusation against him. 2 Amphidamus, the Elean strategus, had been captured at Thalamae together with the other fugitives, as I above narrated, and when he was brought to Olympia with the rest of the prisoners begged urgently through certain persons for an interview with Philip, and on this being granted, 3 he discoursed at some length stating that it was in his power to gain over the Eleans to the king's side and persuade them to enter into alliance with him. 4 Philip, believing this, sent back Amphidamus without ransom, bidding him promise the Eleans that if they joined him he would return all captured men and animals without ransom, would assure the future safety of the country from any outside attack, 5 and would maintain the Eleans in freedom without garrison or tribute and in the enjoyment of their own form of government. 6 Attractive and generous as these offers seemed, the Eleans refused to listen to them, 7 and Apelles, founding his false accusation on this circumstance, brought it before Philip, telling him that Aratus was not sincere in his friendship for the  p503 Macedonians or really attached to the king; for it was to him on the present occasion that the coldness of the Eleans was due: 8 for he had when Amphidamus was sent from Olympia to Elis taken him apart and set him against the project, saying that it was by no means in the interest of the Peloponnesians that Philip should become master of Elis; 9 this was why the Eleans had ignored all the king's offers and remaining faithful to their alliance with the Aetolians, chosen to persist in the war against the Macedonians. 85 1 On receiving this report, Philip first ordered Apelles to summon Aratus and say the same thing in his presence, 2 and when Aratus arrived, Apelles repeated his accusation in a confident and threatening manner, adding, before the king had spoken, some such words as these: 3 "Since, Aratus, the king finds you to be so ungrateful and to have shown so little consideration for him he has decided to call a meeting of the Achaeans and after laying this matter before them to return to Macedonia." 4 Hereupon the elder Aratus, interrupting him, exhorted Philip to make it a general principle never to give credence to reports rashly or without duly weighing the evidence; 5 and especially when it was a friend or ally against whom he heard anything said, to examine most closely into the accusation, before accepting it. This he said was conduct becoming a king and in every way to his interest. 6 Therefore he begged him now as regarded Apelles' allegation to summon those who had heard the words attempted to him spoken, to demand the attendance of Apelles' informant, and to take every possible means of getting at the truth before making any public statement to the Achaeans. 86 1 Upon the  p505 king's consenting to this and engaging not to neglect the matter, but to make inquiries, they separated. 2 During the days that followed Apelles produced no proof of his assertions, and now a happy accident, most helpful to Aratus, occurred. 3 The Eleans, at the time when Philip was ravaging their country, conceived suspicions of Amphidamus and formed the design of arresting him and sending him in chains to Aetolia. But, getting intelligence of their project, he first fled to Olympia and then, when he heard that Philip was in Dyme engaged in dealing with the booty, he hastened to escape to him there. 5 Aratus, in consequence, when he heard that Amphidamus had fled from Elis and arrived, was exceedingly joyful, as he had nothing on his conscience, and coming to the king, demanded that Amphidamus should be summoned: 6 "For the man," he said, "who knew best about the accusation was he to whom he was said to have spoken the words, and Amphidamus would be sure to tell the truth, as he had been exiled from his home for Philip's sake and depended on him now for his safety." 7 On the Greek's consenting and sending for Amphidamus, he found the charge to be false, 8 and henceforward he continued to like and esteem Aratus more and more, while becoming a little suspicious of Apelles. Prepossessed, however, as he was by his long prejudice in favour of this minister, he could not but overlook many of his errors.

87 1 Apelles, however, by no means desisted from his design, but in the first place began to traduce Taurion, who had been entrusted with the supervision  p507 of Peloponnesian affairs, 2 not indeed by finding fault with him, but by praising him and saying that he was a most proper person to be attached to the king's person in the camp, his object being to get some one else appointed by his influence to this post. 3 This is indeed a new kind of calumny, to damage the fortunes of one's neighbours not by blame but by praise, and this variety of malice, envy, and trickery is especially and primarily the invention of courtiers to serve their mutual jealousies and ambitions. 5 He also, whenever he had an opportunity, used to traduce Alexander, the Captain of the Body-guard, wishing to be himself charged with the protection of the king's person, and generally to subvert all the arrangements established by the testament of Antigonus. 6 For not only was Antigonus during his lifetime a good ruler and an excellent guardian of his son, but on his death, he made admirable dispositions for the future regarding everything. 7 In his will he gave to his people an account of his administration, and left orders how and by whom each matter was to be managed with the view of leaving no pretext for rivalries and quarrels among the courtiers. 8 Of those officers who were on Antigonus' staff at the time Apelles was left one of the king's guardians, Leontius was made Captain of the Peltasts, Megaleas Secretary in Chief, Taurion High Commissioner for the Peloponnese, and Alexander Captain of the Body-guard. 9 Apelles had Leontius and Megaleas entirely at his disposal, and his purpose was to remove Alexander and Taurion  p509 from their posts and direct these and all other matters through himself and his friends. 10 And he would easily have accomplished this, had he not invited the opposition of Aratus; but as it was he was soon to experience the consequence of his folly and greed of power; 11 for what he had plotted to bring upon his colleagues, he had to suffer himself within a very short space of time. 12 As to how and by what means this happened, I shall defer speaking for the present and bring this Book to a close; but in subsequent ones I shall try to give a clear account of the whole matter.º 13 Philip, after making the arrangements I mentioned, returned to Argos and there spent the remainder of the winter with his friends, dismissing his troops to Macedonia.

The Loeb Editor's Notes:

1 Chapters 41‑71.

2 See Chapter 25.

3 Pindar probably means civic peace and Polybius accuses him unjustly.

4 For details see the account of the second Messenian war in Pausanias IV.14‑24.

5 That is, war and peace; the iron hand in the velvet glove.

6 The eponymous annual magistrate.

7 The town in Crete of that name.

8 A particular kind of light mercenary cavalry were so called, whether they came from Tarentum or not.

Thayer's Note:

a Thank you to Stephanie Craven for the following:

This is based on the Schweighäuser critical edition of Polybius, and it runs contrary to the manuscript tradition, which states that three hundred Cretans joined Philip. Walbank accepted this in his commentary (1957: I.515), and the 2010 Loeb has printed three hundred in line with the manuscript tradition (p487, no. 140).

The passage can serve an example, by the way, of how every word of ancient authors has by now been subjected to intense scrutiny and often debate by scholars from the Renaissance to our own day. Summarizing the background information sent to me by Ms. Craven, the medieval MSS. tradition has

§55: 500 Cretans from Polyrrhenian alliance to Philip and the Achaeans

§61: 300 Cretans from the Messenians join Philip at Epirus

Around the turn of the 17c, the great pioneering scholar Casaubon emended:

§61: 300 Cretans from the Polyrrhenians join Philip at Epirus

Building on that, Johann Schweighäuser, who produced the first modern critical edition of Polybius in the early 19c, further emended as follows, to remove the discrepancy in the numbers:

§61: 500 Cretans from the Polyrrhenians join Philip at Epirus

His text was the one used by the 1922 Loeb editors. Now most of the Loeb editions of Greek and Roman texts, being intended for a general public, do not add to the march of scholar­ship, but that scholar­ship does march on, and the text of Polybius received the attention of a man who made it his life's work: F. W. Walbank — see the 1978 Bibliographical Note — who was made to realize, in Ms. Craven's words, that

500 Cretans may have started from Polyrrhenia, but the numbers don't have to match because 300 went to Philip and the other 200 would have gone to the Achaeans, who were also in the alliance and had sent 200 soldiers as allies to Crete (see 55). This solution accounted for all the Cretans.

A new Loeb edition, thoroughly redone, was published in 2010; Prof. Walbank († 2008) was one of its editors, and the number in §61 is now taken to be 300 once again. As in any rigorous logical discipline that has to butt its head against messy facts and incomplete information, however, this number is no more graven in stone than the 500 in the 1922 Loeb edition, and the arguments do continue.

Multiply this one case hundreds of times over — wherever manuscripts disagree, or are unreadable, or are felt to be manifestly in error, or when new manuscripts or new archaeological evidence come to light, or a scholar has a flash of insight — and we now have a more balanced view of the text of Polybius, or indeed any of the primary sources preciously transmitted to us from Antiquity: uncertain, and best described as probabilistic clouds of information.

As to why a little discrepancy in so small a number might matter, that part is easy: the world had fewer people twenty-odd centuries ago, and Crete isn't so large a place even now; 300 or 500 soldiers was a large contingent, about a thousandth of the population. By way of comparison, British forces in Afghanistan at their recent peak numbered about 6,000; if a thousandth of the UK's population had been sent there, the number would have been 64,000.

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