IF we should imitate others in the compiling of their Histories, we shouldfirst in the Preface of every Book, observe some things pertinent to the Occasion and Subject in Hand, and then descend to the continuation of our Discourse, upon the Actions and Affairs that follow next in order: For by some small intermission from writing, we gain a breathing fit; the fruit and advantage by Prefaces. But in as much as we have promis'd to endeavour in a few Books, not only to relate things that have been done, but likewise to comprehend in that Relation, the time of above Eleven Hundred Years, it's necessary to avoid Prefaces, and come presently to the matters in Hand. Only promising this to inform the Reader, that in the Six former Books, are contain'd the things done in all Parts of the World, from the Trojan War, to the time the Athenians decreed the War against the Syracusians, to which from the Destruction of Troy, is Seven Hundred and Threescore Years: And that we shall begin this Book with that Expedition against the Syracusians, and end it at the beginning of the Second Carthaginian War against Dionysius the Tyrant of Syracuse.
The Athenian Fleet rigg'd out for Sicily. Alcibiades accus'd; Flies; Is Condemned; Goes to Sparta out of Italy. The Syracusians send for Aid to Lacedemon. Gylippus is sent to them. The Battel at Syracuse.
WHen Cabrias bore the Office of Archon at Athens, and the Romans invested Lucius Sergius, Marcus Servilius, and Marcus Papyrius, Three Military Tribunes, with Consular dignity, the Athenians having decreed War against the Syracusians, rigg'd out a Fleet, rais'd Money, and prepar'd with great diligence all other things necessary for the Expedition. To this end they commission'd Three Generals, Alcibiades, Nicias, and Lamachus, to whom they committed the management of the whole War. The richer sort to ingratiate themselves with the People, some of them supply'd the Fleet with Arms, others promis'd to advance Money towards the Victualling the Navy, and providing Pay for the Souldiers. Many likewise of the People, both Citizens and Strangers, freely offer'd themselves to the Generals, to be listed and inroll'd: And all were so confident, that they were ready to divide the Country of Sicily amongst themselves by Lot.
And now the Navy was ready to set sail; when on the sudden in one Night, all the Statues of the Goddess Minerva through the City (which were very many) had their Heads struck off. The Populacy conceiv'd this not to be done by any of the meaner sort, but by some in authority, with a design to destory the Democracy, and therefore they were highly incens'd at the wickedness of the fact, and promis'd great Rewards to find out the Authors. In the mean time, one of the Citizens came to the Senate, and told them, that in the new Moon about Midnight, he saw several Persons go into the House of a Foreigner, amongst whom Alcibiades was one. And when the Senate askt him how he could know him at such a time of the Night? He answered, he discerned him by the light of the Moon: By which Contradiction he detected his own Falshood, and never after could the least Discovery be made of that Fact by any Person whatsoever.
However notwithstanding this Accident, an Hundred and Forty Gallies were rigg'd out, besides Ships of Burden and other Ships, for transporting of Horses, Provisions and other Necessaries, whereof there was a very great number. In this Expedition there went forth with them above Seven Thousand Men at Arms, and Slingers, and Horsemen sent from their Confederates, besides those belonging to their Fleet.
During this time, the Officers had a private Consult with the Senate, concerning the Administration of Affairs in Sicily, in case they should conquer the Island. Where at length it was determined, that they of Selinuntium and Syracuse should be carry'd away as Captives and Slaves, and that the rest should have only a Yearly Tribute impos'd upon them. The next day the Officers with the Army, march'd down into the Piraeum, and were follow'd with a great Multitude, both of Citizens and Strangers throughout the whole City; every one making it his business to take leave of his Friend or Relation. The Ships lay on every side of the Harbour with their Fore-decks adorn'd with Flags and Streamers erect, and shining with the splendor of the Arms. The Shoar round the Harbour was fill'd with Altars of Incense, and Silver Bowls, out of which were poured out into Golden Cups, Drink-Offerings to the Gods, by them who worshipped the Deity, and earnestly pray'd for the happy Success of the Expedition.
At length they set sail from the Pyraeum, and sailing round the Coasts of Peloponesus, arriv'd at Corcyra: For here they were commanded to stay, till they were join'd by some others of their Neighbour Confederates. Being all come up to them, passing through the Ionian Sea, they came to the Promontory of Japygia; hence sailing along the Coasts of Italy, they were refused by the Tarrentines;Page 301 and passing by the likewise of Metapontum and Heraclea, they came to the Thurians, by whom they were courteously received: Loosing from thence, they made for Crotona, and there bought some Provisions: And sailing by the Temple of Juno Lacinia, pass'd under the Promontory call'd Dioscurias. After this, leaving Tesasletius (as it is call'd) and Locris behind them, they anchor'd near Rhegium and invited the Rhegians to join with them; who answered, that they must first advise with the other Italians.
As soon as the Syracusians heard that the Athenians were within their Seas, they made Three Generals, invested with Absoute Power, Hermocrates, Sicanus and Heraclides, who rais'd Souldiers and sent Messengers through all the Cities of Sicily, to press them with all earnestness to join with them in Arms for the common safety of their Country; For that the Athenians (under Colour of a War against the Syracusians) had no other Design but to subdue the whole Island. To which the Acragentines and Naxians, answered, that they were resolv'd to abide firm in their League with the Athenians. The Camarians and Messenians, declared they were for Peace, and refused to return any Answer to what was propos'd. The Himereans and Seluntians, with them of Gela and Catanea, promis'd their Assistance. The Cities of the Siculi (though they favoured the Syracusians) yet desired to be at ease, and not knowing what to resolve, judg'd it most advisable to consider a while of the business, that they might be better able to discern what was like to be the issue of so great a War.
The Aegistines plainly declaring they could not contribute to the Athenians above Thirty Talents, the Athenian Generals accused them of Treachery; and setting Sail from Rhegium with their whole Fleet, arriv'd at Naxus in Sicily, where they were friendly and courteously received by the Citizens; and from thence they made to Catana. But they of Catana refus'd entrance to the Souldiers, yet admitted the Generals, and call'd a common Assembly; where the Athenian Generals treated with them concerning the entring into a mutual League offensive and defensive; but whilst Alcibiades was making an Harangue to court the People, the Souldiers broke through a little Gate into the City, by which means the Cataneans were forc'd to join with the Athenians in the War against the Syracusians.
Whilst these things were acting Abroad, they who were Enemies to Alcibiades, (through private Peaks and Grudges) at Athens took Occasion, from the maiming and spoiling of the Images, and accused him in the Common Assemblies of a Conspiracy against the Democracy; which Accusation was much supported and further'd by what had then lately happen'd at Argos: For some of the chief of the City, conspiring with others of their Dependents, to overturn the Democracy in Argos, were all destroy'd by the Citizens. This Attempt of innovation there, caus'd the Accusation at Athens to be more readily believed, and therefore the People being with all earnestness stir'd up by the Orators, sent a Ship from Salamis to Sicily, to recall Alcibiades, in order to abide his Trial.
As soon as it arriv'd at Catana, Alcibiades was made acquainted by the Messengers, what Order they had from the People; upon which, he (with those who were accused with him) went on Ship-board into his own Gally, and together with that from Salamis set Sail from Catana. As soon as he arriv'd at Thurium, either through Consciousness of the Guilt of his Impiety, or through the fear of the greatness of the Danger, he and all those accused with him made their Escape. Those who were on Board the Salamian Vessel, made great inquiry after Alcibiades; but when he could not be found, they Sail'd back to Athens, and there gave an Account what had happen'd.
Upon which, the Athenians gave Judgment of Death upon Alcibiades, and all his Fellow Fugitives, (their Names being only put up to the Court) without being further heard.
But Alcibiades fled out of Italy to Sparta, and there perswaded the Lacedemonians to invade the Athenians: But the Generals that remain'd in Sicily, sail'd with their Forces to Aegista, and took Hyccara, a small Town of the Siculi; out of whose Spoils they rais'd an Hundred Talents. And having receiv'd Thirty Talents more from the Aegistines, they sail'd back to Catana; where having consulted how to posses themselves of a Place near to the chief Port of Syracuse, with-little or no hazard, they sent thither a Trusty Fellow of Catana, not Page 302 suspected by the Syracusian Officers, with Orders to acquaint them that some of the Cataneans had plotted upon a sudden to set upon the Athenian Souldiers in the Night, when they had laid aside their Arms, and to burn all their Shipping in their Harbour: And that this might be the better effected, they desir'd the Commanders to appear with their Army, that the Design might not be defeated. As soon as the Catanean came to Syracuse, he delivered his Message. The Generals believing what he said, appointed a Night when they would march out with their Forces, and sent back the Man to Catana. At the Night appointed, the Syracusians led forth their Men towards Catana; and the Athenians (with great Silence) made out with their Fleet to the great Port of Syracuse; and seizing upon Olympius; and all the Places bordering round about, they there fortify'd their Camp. But the Syracusians understanding the Treachery, return'd with a swift March, and set upon their Enemies Camp. They on the other side issued forth, and Battel was join'd, in which the Athenians kill'd Four Hundred of their Enemies, and put the rest to flight: But the Athenian Generals discerning that the Enemy exceeded them in the number of their Horse (that they might be the better provided for the Siege,) sail'd back to Catana.
Messengers likewise were sent to Athens, with Letters to the Democracy to desire more Horse and Moneys, because the Siege they were about to begin, would be long and tedious. Upon which, it was decreed, that Three Hundred Talents and some Troops of Horse should be sent into Sicily.
During these things, Diagoras surnamed the Atheist, accused for his Impiety, for fear of the People, fled out of Attica; and a Talent of Silver was promis'd as a Reward by the Voice of the common Cryer, to any that should kill him. In Italy the Romans had War with the Aequi, and took Lavinium by Assault: And these were the Actions produc'd this Year.
Pisander now executed the Office of Archon at Athens, and the Romans created Four Military Tribunes as Consuls, Publius Lucretius, Caius Servilius, Agrippa Memenius, and Spurius Veturius. At this time the Syracusians sent Embassadors to Corinth and Lacedemon, to desire Aid, and earnestly intreated that they would not suffer them to be reduc'd to the utmost extremity. The Lacedemonians stirr'd up by Alcibiades, determin'd to assist the Syracusians, and made Gylippus General. The Corinthians sent only Two Gallies under Pythes to go along with Gylippus into Sicily for the present, while they were preparing a greater Fleet to be sent after them. Nicias and Lamachus the Athenian Generals at Catana, having receiv'd Three Hundred Talents, and re-inforc'd with Two Hundred and Fifty Horse from Athens, set Sail for Syracuse, and arriving there in the Night unsuspected by them of Syracuse, possess themselves of Epipole; which they of Syracuse perceiving, made a Sally with all speed to drive them thence, but were forc'd back within their Walls, with the loss of Three Hundred Men.
After this, there came to the Athenians Three Hundred Horse from Aegina, and Two Hundred and Fifty from the Sicilians, which made up a Body of above Eight Hundred Horse: Being inforc'd, they drew a Trench round Labdalus, and blockt up the City Syracuse on every side with a Wall. At which the Syracusians were greatly terrify'd, and to prevent the building of the Wall, they sally'd out; but after a Skirmish with Horse on both sides, the Syracusians were beaten back with great loss. Then the Athenians with a part of their Army possess'd themselves of a Place call'd Polichna, commanding the Port, and drew a Wall about it, wherein they included the Temple of Jupiter: So that now Syracuse was Besieg'd on both sides. With these many Misfortunes, the Syracusians were greatly discouraged; but when they heard that Gylippus was arriv'd at Himera, and raising Men, they began to take Heart. For Gylippus as soon as he came to Himera, with Four Gallies only, after he had secur'd his Ships, brought in them of Himera to join with the Syracusians; and from them and the Geleans, Selinuntians and Sicanians, he rais'd and listed Men, who when they were all mustered, made up a Body of Three Thousand Foot, and Two Hundred Horse; with which he march'd through the midst of the Country, and entred into Syracuse: And after a few Days, led forth his Forces, with those Page 303 of the Syracusians, against the Enemy. Whereupon a sharp Battel was fought, wherein Lamachus the Athenian General was kill'd. But at length (after many kill'd on both sides) the Athenians got the Day.
After this Fight, came in Thirteen Gallies from Corinth, whereupon Gylippus having drawn the Souldiers out of these Ships, with them, and the Syracusians set upon the Enemies Camp, and assaulted the Epipole: And though the Athenians made a Sally, yet after a sharp Dispute, and many of them kill'd, they were routed by the Syracusians; who presently demolish'd the Walls and Fortifications through all the Epipole. The Athenians having lost this Place, led away their Army to another Post.
These things thus perform'd, the Syracusians sent Embassadors a Second time to Corinth and Lacedemon for further Supplies. To whom were sent a Thousand Men from Corinth, Beotia and Sicyon; and from Sparta Six Hundred. In the mean time, Gylippus traversing the Country about from Town to Town in several Parts of Sicily, brought in many to join with him in the War; and being reinforc'd with Three Thousand Men from the Himereans and Sicanians, he march'd his Army through the Heart of the Country: But the Athenians having intelligence of their coming, cut off one half of them by an Ambush; the rest came safe to Syracuse.
And now they of Syracuse being incouraged with fresh Supplies, determin'd to try their Fortune in a Sea-Fight: What Shipping they had left, they set forth, and built others, which they made use and trial of in the little Harbour.
Nicias the Athenian General, acquainted the People of Athens by Letters, that the Syracusians were much inforc'd, and that they were putting forth a great Fleet, with an intent to come to a Sea-Fight; and therefore desir'd more Shipping and Moneys to be sent him, and a Collegue to bear part of the Burden and Care of the War. For Alcibiades being fled, and Lamachus kill'd, he only remain'd, and that very infirm and unhealthful. Upon this the Athenians sent into Sicily about the Summer Solstice, Ten Gallies, under the Command of Eurymedon, with an Hundred and Forty Talents of Silver: But withal preparing and designing to send a greater Fleet at the Spring. And to that end, they rais'd Men and Money in every Place from among their Confederates. In Peloponesus the Lacedemonians by the instigation of Alcibiades, broke the League they had made with the Athenians, and the heat of this War continu'd for the space of Twelve Years.
The Lacedemonians invade Attica. The Fight at Sea between the Syracusians and Athenians. Eurymedon and Demosthenes arrive in Sicily. A Plague in the Athenian Camp. Another Fight between the Syracusians and Athenians. The latter routed at Sea. The Athenians ruin'd in Sicily. Nicholaus's long Oration. Gylippus his Answer.
THis Year ended, Cleocritus governed in chief at Athens, and at Rome Four Military Tribunes executed the Authority of Consuls; that is to say, Aulus Sempronius, Marcus Papyrius, Quintus Fabius, and Spurius Nautius. At this time the Lacedemonians invaded Attica under Agis their General, and Alcibiades the Athenian. They seize upon Decelia, a Place very strong and fit for a Garrison, and there they built a Fort; from whence this War was call'd the Decelian War. On the other side, the Athenians sent Charides with Thirty Sail into Laconia, and decreed Fourscore Gallies, and Five Thousand Souldiers to be sent into Sicily.
Page 304 In the mean time the Syracusians in order to a Sea-Fight before determin'd, made out with a Fleet of Fourscore Sail well Mann'd, against the Enemy; whom the Athenians met with a Fleet of Sixty Sail, whereupon began a fierce Fight: And now the Athenians came running to the Sea-side from every Quarter, from their Posts and Forts, some out of Curiosity to see the Engagement, others to be assistant to their Countrymen in their Flight, in case they should be worsted. The Syracusian Officers foreseeing the Athenians were likely to do, as now they did, had before given secret Orders to those that were left as a Guard for the City, to Assault the Forts of the Athenians which were full of Money, Naval Preparations, and other Provisions. The Syracusians therefore easily possess'd themselves of the Forts, which were slightly guarded, and made a great Slaughter of them that came from the Sea-shoar in aid of their Fellows. Hereupon a great Noise and Clamour being made about the Forts, and in the Camp, the Athenians Souldiers now engag'd at Sea, were struck with great Terrour, and gave back, and at length betook themselves to the defence of the Forts and Fortresses that were left; whom the Syracusians pursu'd, without observing any order. Whereupon the Athenians discerning there was no hope nor way left of escaping at Land, (for that the Syracusians had possess'd themselves of Two of their Forts) tackt about, and were forc'd to renew the Fight: Upon which, with their whole Fleet, in a Line of Battel, they fell upon the Syracusians (who were separated one from another, and had their Line broken and disordered by the Pursuit) and sunk Eleven of their Ships, pursuing the rest to the Island. After the Fight, both sides set up a Trophy, the Athenians for their Victory at Sea, and the Syracusians for their Success at Land. The Fight at Sea having this Issue, and the Victory so hardly obtain'd, the Athenians (understanding that Demosthenes within a few Days would be with them with a Fleet, were resolved not to attempt any thing further, till those Forces arriv'd. The Syracusians on the contrary resolv'd to lay all at stake, and try the utmost by force of Arms, before the Army of Demosthenes came up. And to that end, they fac'd the Athenian Fleet, and did all they could every Day to provoke them to a Battel.
About that time Aristo a Corinthian Commander of a Vessel, advis'd the Syracusians to make the Fore-Castles of their Ships shorter and lower, which was of great advantage to them in Fights at Sea afterwards: For the Fore-Castles of the Athenian Gallies were both very slender and high built, by reason whereof their Beaks made no impression, but where they met with those equal in height; and therefore the Enemy receiv'd no great Prejudice by them. But the Vessels of the Syracusians (having their Fore-Decks low and strong built,) often at the first Stroke sunk the Athenian Gallies.
The Syracusians (as is before related) many Days dar'd the Athenians to Fight both by Sea and Land, but all to no purpose; for they kept close, and would not be drawn forth by any means. But afterwards (some of the Officers of the Fleet not being able longer to indure the Insolencies of the Syracusians) part of the Navy set upon them in the great Haven, which at length engag'd the whole Fleet. The Athenians indeed excell'd the other in the swiftness of their Gallies, and in the expertness and diligence of the Sea-men: But because the fight was in a strait and narrow Place, this advantage was of no use to them.
The Syracusians therefore being confusedly mixt with their Enemies, and giving them no respite or time to withdraw, they drove them from off their Decks and their Fore-Castles, with Stones and Spears. And when they had with the Beaks of their Ships pierc'd through many of the Enemy's Gallies, they boarded them, and the Fight seem'd within the Ships, just like a Battel at Land. All things thus going to rack on the Athenians side, they fled outright with great precipitation; whom the Syracusians pursu'd close, and sunk Seven of their Gallies, and disabled many more.
The Syracusians being now grown confident, by their late Victories both at Sea and Land, presently arrives Eurimedon and Demosthenes, with a great Army from Athens, and with many Auxiliaries from Thurium and Page 305Messapia which join'd them in their Passage. These Generals brought with them more than Three Hundred and Ten Gallies, and Five Thousand Men, besides Seamen: But Arms, Moneys, Engines for a Siege and other Provisions were on board other Transport Ships. Upon this the Syracusians were again discourag'd, judging they were never able for the future to cope with so potent an Enemy.
Demosthenes having now persuaded his Collegues to seise upon the Epipole, (for• otherwise he could never straiten the City on every side) set upon the Syracusians in the night with Ten Thousand heavy Arm'd Men, and as many light Arm'd; and the Assault being unexpected they took some Forts, and entring within the Fortifications, demolish'd part of the Wall. But the Syracusians running together from all parts to the Place assaulted, and Hermocrates with a choice Band of lusty Young Men hasting in with aid and assistance; the Athenians were driven out, and through the darkness of the Night and ignorance of the Passages were dispers'd and scatter'd far from one another, so that the Syracusians with their Auxiliaries with a close persuit kill'd Two Thousand Five Hundred of them, and wounded many that got off, and possess'd themselves of a great Number of Arms.
After this encounter, the Syracusians sent Sicanus one of the Officers with twelve Gallies to the rest of the Cities both to inform them of the Victory and likewise to desire further Aid.
The Athenians (their affairs now declining so much to the worse, and the Plague breaking forth in the Army by reason of a stinking marsh Ground near adjoyning) consulted what was sit to be done in the present exigency. Demosthenes was of Opinion without delay to return to Athens, saying it was far more commendable to venture their Lives for their Country against the Lacedemonians than to lie still in Sicily doing nothing. But Nicias said it was base and dishonourable to leave the Siege when they were so plentifully supply'd, both with Shipping Men and Money. And moreover, that they should be involv'd in great Danger by those whose common practice it was, to asperse the Generals, if they should make Peace with the Syracusians, and return to their Country without the order and command of the People. Among those that were then present at the Consult some approv'd of the Advice of Demosthenes for returning; others agreed with Nicias. But nothing being determin'd, they lay idle without any Action.
In the mean time, great Aids and Supplies came to them of Syracuse from the Siculi, Selenuntians, Geleans, Himereans and Camarineans, which encourag'd them as much as it discourag'd the Athenians. And besides the Plague so rag'd and increas'd that a great part of the Army Perish'd, which caus'd them all now to repent that they had not return'd before. The Athenian Army therefore being in a tumult, and hasting to their Shipping, Nicias himself was forc'd to a Compliance. And now both the Generals agreeing in Opinion, the Souldiers Shipt their Baggage and Lumber, and having all Aboard their Ships, hoist up Sail. And the Generals caus'd it to be Proclaim'd that upon a Sign given all should be ready, and if any loytred they should be left behind. But the Night before they intended to set Sail, the Moon was Ecclips'd, which occasion'd Nicias (who was naturally Superstitious, and then in great uneasiness by reason of the Plague) to advise with the Sooth-sayers. By whom Answer was given, that they must not by any means Sail of three Days: Into which Opinion Demosthenes and those of his party likewise were led through their Superstition. The Syracusians understanding by Deserters the cause of the stay, Man'd all their Gallies, to the Number of Seventy Four. And drawing out their Land-Forces, set upon the Athenians both by Sea and Land. On the other side the Athenians Man'd Fourscore and Six Gallies and gave the Command of the Right Wing to Eurymedon, against whom was oppos'd Agatharcus the Syracusian General. In the left Wing they plac'd Euthydemus, in opposition to Sicanus, who Commanded for the Syracusians. Menander Commanded the middle Battle on the Athenians side, and Pithes the Corinthian for the Syracusians. And altho' the Athenians Line of Battel stretch'd out further in length than the Syracusians because their Ships were more; yet that which seem'd to be their advantage prov'd to be their ruin in the Issue.
Page 306 For Eurymedon striving to surround the Wing opposite to him (by that means being sever'd from the rest of the Fleet) was driven by the Syracusians (who bore down upon him) into the Creek Dascones, before possess'd by other Syracusians; where being hemm'd in within the Straits, and forc'd upon the Shoar, (upon a mortal Wound given) he fell down Dead, and there seven of his Ships were destroy'd. In the heat of the Fight, the report spread abroad that the General was kill'd, and many of his Ships lost; upon which the chiefest of the Gallies which were next in place and order to the Vessels lost, began to give back, and thereupon the Syracusians press'd forward and (heated by their late success) fell with great fury upon the Athenians and forc'd them to an absolute Flight, and driving them into the Shallows of the Haven, many of the Vessels were stranded among the Shelvs and Sands. Upon which Sicanus the Syracusian Admiral fill'd a Ship with Fagots, Fire-brands and Pitch, and set it on Fire among the Ships floating upon the Shallows. On the other hand the Athenians with all expedition extinguish'd the Flames, and when they saw there was no other way left to escape, they valiantly grappled with their Enemies, and threw them overboard. In the mean time the Land-forces of the Athenians were ready upon the Shoar to Aid them that fled that way, and bestirring themselves with extraordinary Valour and contempt of all Dangers routed the Syracusians at Land. But they being Victors at Sea return'd into the City, having not lost many Men in the Sea-Fight. But the Athenians lost no less than Two Thousand Men and Eighty Gallies.
The Syracusians now conceiving that their City was safe, and that their business remaining was to break into the Enemies Camp and ruin their Army, block'd up the Mouth of their Haven with Ships join'd, and fastned together, to hinder the Flight of the Athenians by Sea. To which end they made a Bridge with Boats, Gallies, and other Sihps fixt with Anchors, compacted and fastned together with Iron Chains. The Athenians perceiving that they were penn'd up on every side, and no way of escape remaining, consulted and resolv'd to sill what Ships they had remaing with the best of their Souldiers, that with the multitude of their Shipping, and resoulteness of their Souldiers (now ready to Fight as Men in a desperate condition) they might strike a Terror into the Syracusians. Hereupon the chiefest of the Officers and best and most expert Souldiers Imbark'd and Man'd an Hundred and Fifteen Gallies. The rest of the Army they plac'd in order upon the Shoar. On the other side the Syracusians (being furnish'd with Land-Souldiers for the Defence of their Walls) fitted out Seventy Four Gallies, attended by many of the young Boys of the City, (not yet of full Age) in other Ships as Auxiliaries to be ready to aid and assist their Parents. The Walls of the Harbour and every high Place within the City were fill'd with Multitudes of Spectators. For both Women and Children and all others unfit to bear Arms (with great concern and trembling of Heart) stood to view the Fight in in order to judge how things were like to go with them. At the same time Nicias, the Athenian General, viewing the Fleet, and seriously considering the greatness of the danger, left his Post upon the Shoar, and went on board a Vessel, and sail'd round the Athenian Fleet, and call'd to the Commanders and Captains of every Gally, earnestly intreating them with his Hands lift up to Heaven, that every one would strive to out-do another, and improve to the utmost the present opportunity, being the last ground of hope they were ever like to injoy, for in their valour in the Sea-Fight now approaching, lay the safety and preservation both of them and of their Country. Those that were Fathers he put in mind of their Children: Those that were nobly born he earnestly press'd and exhorted that they would be careful to avoid what ever would stain the Honor and Glory of their Families: Those that had been advanc'd by the People for their former good Services, he advis'd now to approve themselves worthy of those marks of Honor they then bore. Lastly, he put them in mind of the Trophies at Salamis, earnestly adjuring them that they would not prostitute the Glory of their Country, and become Slaves to the Syracusians. After this Speech, Nicias return'd to the Army at Land. When they in the Fleet had Sung the Paean, they made out with a Design to break the Blockade at the Mouth of the Harbour. But the Syracusians sail'd up in order of Battle against them, with that speed that they drove them off the Page 307 Bomb and forc'd them to Fight. In this confusion some Sail'd towards the Shoar, others made into the middle of the Harbour, and others towards the Fortifications; and thus their Lines being broke, the Fleet was presently separated and dispers'd, by which means the Athenians, in this manner disappointed, were forc'd to Fight here and there, up and down in the Harbour it little Squadrons and small Parties: However the Fight was obstinate on both sides. The Athenians exceeding in Number of Ships, seeing no other hopes of safety, undauntedly despis'd all Dangers, and resolv'd to die Valiantly. On the other hand, the Syracusians knowing their Parents and Children were observing them, put themselves forth to the utmost, every one striving to improve his Valour, to gain the Victory for his Country. Many there were, that when their Ships were pierced through by the violent Assault of the Enemy, leapt into the Ships that pierc'd them, and fought bravely upon their Fore-castles in the midst of their Enemies. Others with grappling Irons, so join'd the Ships together, that they forc'd their Enemy to fight on Board, as if they had been at Land. And there were not a few that when their own Ships were disabled, boarded their Adversaries, and kill'd and threw them overboard, and so possess'd themselves of their Vessels. And now the crashing of Ships one against another, and the Cries and Shouts of the Combatants and Dying Men, was heard in every Place throughout the whole Harbour: For sometimes one single Vessel was surrounded, and struck through with the Beaks of many, and so the Water forcing in at the Breaches, the Ship with all the Men in it, sunk together. And many (after their Ships were sunk) endeavour'd to save themselves by Swimming, but were struck through with Darts, and wounded with Spears, and so miserably perish'd. In the mean time, the Masters of the Ships were amazed, to see the Confusion and Disorder of the Fight, seeing nothing but tumult and horror about them, one Ship often set upon by many, and what was commanded, not regarded, and the Advice to one, disagreeable to the Circumstances of another; and after all, none attending to what was said. For what by Storms of Darts, crashing of Ships, brushing off of Oars, increase of Noise and Clamour of them that were engag'd, and loud Shouts of the Army upon the Shoar, incouraging them upon the Sea, none heard what Orders were given: For the Shoar was full of Souldiers, the Syracusians in one part, and the Athenians in another. By which means, they that were driven in the Fight near to the Land, were sometimes succour'd by them upon the Shoar. The Spectators upon the Walls, gave great Shouts when they discerned any advantage gain'd by their Friends; but when they were in danger to be overcome, they fill'd the Air with doleful Groans and Lamentations, calling upon their Gods for deliverance. Sometimes some of the Gallies of the Syracusians were destroy'd under the very Walls, and their Kindred and Relations Butcher'd before their Faces; so that Parents were the Eye-Witnesses of the Death of their Children, Wives of the miserable end of their Husbands, and Brothers of their Brothers.
And after the Fight had lasted long (with much Slaughter on both sides) yet the Battel was still carry'd on, for none (never so greatly press'd) durst fly to Land. For the Athenians ask'd them which made towards the Shoar, whether they intended to Sail to Athens by Land? So the Syracusians on the Shoar, demanded of them that fled towards them,
Why they were now ready to betray their Country, who would not suffer them that staid on Shoar to imbarque with them? Did they shut up the Mouth of the Harbour, as if they would prevent the Escape of the Enemy, to the end that they themselves might have the better Excuse to fly to the Shoar? And being that every Man must of necessity die, what more honourable Death could they desire, than that for their Country, which is now a witness of the Engagement, and whom they basely and sordidly desert?
With these and the like Reproaches did they who fled to Land, meet with from the Souldiers plac'd on the Shoar: Whereupon they return'd to the Battel, though greatly disabled in their Shipping, and their Bodies so wounded, that they were scarce able to defend themselves. At length the Athenians nearest to the City were forc'd to fly. Presently after, they that were next gave back, till at length the whole Fleet made away. Whereupon the Syracusians pursu'd with a great Shout. Those of the Athenians that escap'd (being driven upon the Shelves and Sands) leap'd out of their broken and shatter'd Page 308 Vessels, and fled to the Land Army. The Harbour was now full of Arms and Wrecks of Ships every where. Threescore of the Athenian Ships were absolutely destroy'd, of the Syracusians Eight were lost, and Eleven disabled.
The Syracusians tow'd as many of their Gallies to the Shoar as they could, and took out the Dead Bodies of their Citizens and Confederates, and gave them an Honourable Burial. The Athenians throng'd together to the Generals Tents, desiring them not so much to regard the Ships, as the preservation both of themselves and the Souldiers. Thereupon Demostbenes declar'd that more Ships were forthwith to be man'd, in order to force the Blockade, which if done presently, they might all easily escape.
Nicias was of a contrary Opinion, and advis'd the leaving the Ships, and to march up into the heart of the Country to the Cities of their Confederates; whose Opinion all embrac'd: And having burnt some of their Ships, they forthwith made it their business to march away. Their Design of Decamping in the Night being known to the Enemy, Hermocrates advis'd the Syracusians to draw out all their Forces in the Night, and stop all the Passes on the High-Ways. But the Officers not approving of this, because many of the Souldiers were wounded, and all wearied and tir'd out by the late Engagement, sent some Horsemen to the Athenians Camp, to inform them that the Syracusians had laid all the Ways with Souldiers to intrap them in their March. The Horse coming in late in the Night, (the Athenians believing they were sent out of kindness to them from the Leontines) were in a great perplexity, and thereupon stay'd at present where they were; though they might have pass'd with great safety, if they had not been thus deluded. The Syracusians therefore as soon as it was light, sent out Souldiers, and secur'd all the narrow Passes on the Road. The Athenians divided the Army into Two Parts, their Sick Men and Carriages they plac'd in the middle; those that were strong and able to fight, were in the Front and Rear: Demosthenes led these, and Nicias the other, and so they march'd towards Catana. In the mean time, the Syracusians drew Fifty Gallies left behind, with Ropes into the City, and ordered all their Sea-men and Souldiers out of the Gallies, and arm'd them, and so pursu'd after the Athenians with all their Forces, and continually vexed, galled, and even tir'd out the Rear. Pressing thus upon their Backs for Three Days together, and possessing all the Passes before them, the Way to Catana was quite blockt up. At length being chas'd through the Helorine Way, to the River Assinarus, where there was no going forward, they were absolutely coup'd up, and there the Syracusians kill'd Eighteen Thousand of them, and took Seven Thousand Prisoners, among whom were Demosthenes and Nicias the Generals. The rest were given as a Prey to the Souldiers; for the Athenians (no Way being left to escape) were forc'd to deliver up, not only their Arms but themselves, as Captives to their Enemy's Mercy.
Upon this happy Success, the Syracusians erected Two Trophies, and fixt to them the Arms of the Generals, and then return'd to the City. Hereupon the whole City gave publick Thanks unto the Gods. The next Day an Assembly was call'd, to consider what was to be done with the Prisoners. There Diocles, one of the highest Esteem among the People, deliver'd his Opinion,
When the Decree was read, Hermocrates then in the Assembly began to speak, and say, That it was more commendable to use a Victory with Moderation and Humanity, than to overcome.
The People murmuring and grumbling at this, as not pleasing to them, one Nicholaus, who had lost Two Sons in this War, ascends the Desk, supported by his Servants, by reason of his Age. At which the People ceas'd their Murmuing, supposing he would be sharp against the Prisoners. Silence being made, the Old Man began thus,
Nicholaus having thus spoken to the Syracusians, ended his Oration, and much affected his Auditors with Pity and Compassion.
But Gylippus the Laconian burning with implacable Hatred against the Athenians, ascends the Tribunal, and speaks thus;
At which, when many more manifested their Sorrow;
Thus spoke the Laconian; upon which the People chang'd their Minds, and confirm'd the Advice of Diocles, and without delay the Generals with all their Confederates were put to Death. But the Citizens of Athens were adjudg'd, and thrust down into the Quarries. But some of them that had been well bred and instructed in several useful Arts, were by the young Men loos'd from their Fetters and discharg'd. All the rest almost dy'd miserably through ill usage in their Imprisonment.
Diocles instituted Laws for Sicily; suffer'd by one of his own Laws. Three Hundred appointed to govern in Athens. The Athenians beaten at Sea by the Lacedemonians at Oropus. Alcibiades recall'd from Banishment.
THE War now ended, Diocles prescrib'd Laws for the Syracusians. But one thing very remarkable happened concerning this Man: For being of an inexorable Nature, and rigid and severe against the Offenders, amongst other Laws which he made, one was this; That if any Man came arm'd into the Court, he should be put to Death, without any exception of Ignorance, or of any other Circumstance of the Fact whatsoever. It happened that some Enemies made a sudden Incursion into the Borders of the Syracusians, and he was to go forth against them. In the mean time, a Seditious Tumult arose near the Court; upon which he hasten'd thither with his Sword by his Side; which being taken notice of by a Private Man, who cry'd out, that he violated the Laws he himself had made. No by Jove (says he) I'll confirm them: And so drawing his Sword, ran himself through. These were the Actions of this Year.
After this, when Callias govern'd in chief at Athens, the Romans chose Four Military Tribunes to execute the Office of Consuls, Publius Cornelius, Caius Valerius, Cneius Fabius Vibulanus, and Quintius Cincinnatus. At the same time the Ninety Second Olympiad was celebrated at Elis, where Exaenetus of Agrigentum was Victor. At this time the Athenians began to be in contempt by reason of their Misfortunes in Sicily. For soon after the Chians, Samians, Byzantines and a great part of their Confederates, fell off to the Lacedemonians. The People of Athens being upon this Account in great perplexity, laid aside the Democratical Government, and chose Four Hundred to manage the Affairs of the Commonwealth. The Sovereign Power being now devolv'd upon a few, they built more Gallies, and rigg'd out a Fleet of Forty Sail. After some Disagreement amongst the Officers, they sail'd to Oropus, where the Enemies Gallies lay at Anchor: Hereupon a Battel was fought, and the Lacedemonians prevail'd, and took Two and Twenty Sail.
As for the Syracusians, when the War was ended with the Athenians, they rewarded the Lacedemonians their Confederates (of whom Gylippus was General) with the Spoils taken in the War, and sent with them Five and Thirty Gallies to assist them against the Athenians, of which Hermocrates, a great Man among the Citizens, was Admiral. Then all the Booty and Prey was brought together, and out of the Spoils they adorn'd the Temples, and rewarded every Souldier according to his Demerit.
Page 316 After these things, Diocles a Man of great Authority amongst the People, prevail'd to have the Administration of the Government altered, by chusing the Magistrates by Lot, and ordered that there should be Law-makers appointed both to settle the Commonwealth, and to make new Laws for the future Government. The Syracusians therefore chose such from among the Citizens as they judg'd most prudent, of whom the chiefest was Diocles: He was a Man of such excellent Parts, and of so great Reputation, that the Laws (though made with the joint help of others) were call'd from him the Dioclean Laws. And he was not only admir'd by the Syracusians whilst he liv'd, but when he was dead, they honour'd him as an Hero, and built a Temple to his Memory, which Dionysius afterwards pull'd down when he built the new Wall. All the rest likewise of the Siculi highly valu'd this Man: And upon that account many of the Cities through Sicily used the same Laws that he had instituted, till such time as the Romans brought all Sicily under the power of Rome. And though in times long after Diocles, Cephalus in the time of the Government of Timoleon and Polydorus, when Hiero reign'd, instituted Laws for the Syracusians, yet neither of them were ever call'd Lawmakers, but Interpreters of the Law-maker; because the former Laws being written in old and obsolete Language, were scarce to be understood. And whereas there are many things in these Laws very remarkable, yet the great Hatred against Knavery and Dishonesty appears chiefly from this, That the bitterest and severest Punishments are levell'd against all those that violate Justice. His great dexterity in Civil Affairs is evident hence, That he appointed a certain Mulct or Fine almost for every Offence or Cause Private or Publick, proportionable to the nature of the thing. He's very concise in his Expressions, leaving much to the disquisition of the Learned Reader. The sad manner of his Death is a sufficient Testimony of the Virtuous Resolution of his Mind. I am the rather desirous to speak more than ordinary of these things, in regard most Authors heretofore mention very little concerning him.
But to return to the Athenians, when they heard of the ruin of their Army in Sicily, they took it most grievously, yet slackt nothing in their Contests with the Lacedemonians about the Sovereignty, but prepar'd a greater Fleet, and let their Money fly Abroad amongst all their Confederates that were resolved to stick by them to the utmost extremity, to gain and keep the Sovereign Power. And to that end they gave full Authority to Four Hundred Persons chosen out of the Citizens to rule and govern the Commonwealth: For in their present circumstances, they preferr'd an Oligarchy before their former Democracy. But the thing did not in the least answer their Expectations; for they were much more unsuccessful afterwards, for they sent forth Two Generals that were at Dissention between themselves, with a Fleet of Forty Sail against the Enemy. And although the present distressed Condition, and bad state of Affairs with the Athenians call'd aloud for Peace and Concord amongst themselves, yet the Generals did all they could to widen the breach, and cherish the Enmities and Animosities they bore one against another. At length sailing to Oropus, unawares and unprepared, they fought with the Peloponesians, where through their carelesness at the beginning, and their sloath and inadvertency in the heat of the Fight, they lost Two and Twenty Ships, and brought the rest with great difficulty into Eretria.
Upon this the Confederates of the Athenians (considering the Overthrow in Sicily, and the late ill Management of the Two Commanders) join'd with the Lacedemonians. Darius likewise the King of Persia, sought earnestly to enter into a League with the Lacedemonians: And to that end, Pharnabazus his Lieutenant upon the Sea-Coasts supply'd the Lacedemonians with Money, and sent for Three Hundred Ships from Phenicia, which he had before ordered to be sent to them to Beotia. And now when the Athenians were involv'd in so many Mischiefs at one time, all Men thought the War at an end. For none had the least hopes that the Athenians could make any further opposition, not for the least moment of time. But the thing had a far different issue from that which was commonly suppos'd; for such was the brave Spirit of the Athenians, that the event was quite contrary, which happened upon this occasion. Alcibiades being Banished from Athens, aided the Lacedemonians for some time in the War, and was very useful to them, being an eloquent Orator, daring and bold, of the most Page 317 noble Family, and the greatest Estate of any of the Citizens, and therefore esteemed the chief Man of Athens. This Man having a great desire to be re-call'd from his Banishment, did all he could to ingratiate himself into the People of Athens, by doing them some remarkable Service, at such a time as when they seem'd to be in the lowest ebb of Fortune. And therefore having a great interest in Pharnabazus, Darius's Lieutenant, and understanding that he design'd to send Three Hundred Ships to aid the Lacedemonians, prevail'd with him to alter his Resolution. For he suggested to him that it was not safe for the King to make the Lacedemonians too strong, nor for the advantage of the Persians: And that it was much more their interest to keep the Ballance equal, that so the Two Commonwealths might be in continual War one with another.
Pharnabazus conceiving Alcibiades had given him sound and wholsome Advice, sends back the Fleet to Phenicia: And thus the Aid intended for the Lacedemonians, was prevented by Alcibiades. A little time after, he was recall'd, and made General of the Army, and overcame the Lacedemonians in several Battels, and rais'd up his Country from their low Estate, to their former height of glory. But of these matters we shall speak more fully hereafter, lest we should transgress the due order of an History by too much Anticipation.
The Government by Four Hundred abrogated in Athens. The Victory by the Athenians over the Lacedemonians at Sea, between Sestus and Abydus. The Persian Garrison driven out of Antandris by the help of the Lacedemonians. Twenty Two Years of the Peloponesian War ended. Here Thucydides ends his History.
AFter this Year was ended, Theopompus govern'd Athens, and the Romans invested Four Military Tribunes with Consular Dignity, Tiberius Posthumius, Caius Cornelius, Caius Valerius, and Caeso Fabius. At this time the Athenians abrogated the authority of the Four Hundred, and restor'd the Democracy. Theramenes was the Author of this Change (a sober and prudent Man) who was the only Person that advis'd the recalling of Alcibiades (by whom they recover'd their Strength) and by many other good Offices perform'd by Theramenes, to the advantage of the Publick, he gain'd great Authority and Favour with the People. But not long after, the following things happened.
At this time, in order to carry on the War, Two Generals were chosen by the Athenians, Thrasyllus and Thrasybulus, who randevouz'd a Fleet at Samos, and there train'd and exercis'd the Souldiers every Day to inure them to Fighting at Sea. Mindarus the Lacedemonian Admiral, in the mean while lay for some time at Miletus, expecting the Aids from Pharnabazus, and hearing that Three Hundred Gallies were arriv'd from Phenicia, was confident now he should be able with so great Supplies, utterly to ruin the Athenian State. But presently after having intelligence that the Fleet was return'd to Phenicia, through the persuasions of Alcibiades (being now out of all hopes of any assistance from him) he furnish'd some Ships he had with him, from Peloponesus, and from other Foreign Confederates, and sends Dorieus with Thirteen Sail, (which some of the Grecians had lately sent him out of Italy) to Rhodes: For he had heard that some innovations were contriving there; with the rest of the Fleet (to the number of Eighty Three) he made to the Hellespont, because he heard that the Athenian Navy lay at Samos. When the Athenian Commanders saw them pass by, they hasted after them with Threescore Sail. But the Lacedemonians arriving at Chios, the Athenians determined to sail to Lesbos, to be supplied with Page 318 more Ships from their Confederates, lest they should be overpower'd by Number.
While the Athenians were thus busied, Mindarus with the Lacedemonian Fleet in the Night, with all speed makes for the Hellespont, and the next Day arriv'd at Sigeum. The Athenians hearing that they were sail'd off from Chios, having receiv'd from their Confederates at the present only Three Gallies, made after the Lacedemonians; but when they came to Sigeum, they found the Lacedemonians were sail'd from thence, save only Three Gallies, which fell forthwith into their Hands. Loosing from thence, they came to Eleuntis, where they prepar'd themselves for a Sea-Fight. On the other side the Lacedemonians when they saw their Enemies were fitting themselves for a Conflict, they likewise for Five Days together imploy'd themselves in exercising and trying their Rowers, and then order'd their Fleet, which consisted of Eighty Eight Sail, into a Line of Battel, and stood towards the Asian Shoar. The Athenians on the other side, drew out theirs all along the Tract lying upon the Borders of Europe; they were indeed fewer in number, but far more skilful in Sea-Affairs. The Lacedemonians plac'd the Syracusians in the Right Wing, commanded by Hermocrates; the Peloponesians in the Left, under the Command of Mindarus. On the part of the Athenians, Thrasyllus commanded the Right, and Thrasybulus the Left Wing. At the first the great Contest was for the Tide, each striving to gain that. For a long time therefore they sail'd round one another; at length being in a narrow Sea, they fought for a commodious Station. For the Battel being between Sestus and Abydus, the Tide in those Streights was a great disadvantage to that side it forc'd upon. But the Athenian Pilots far excelling the other, by that means did notable Service, in many respects for the obtaining of the Victory.
For although the Peloponesians exceeded the other in Number of their Ships, and Valour of the Assailants, yet the Skill and Diligence of the Athenian Pilots over-ballanc'd all this, and made it of no effect; for when the Peloponesians with all their Force strove to pierce them, the Athenian Ships were plac'd in such excellent order, that no part of their Ships could be toucht, save only the very end of their Beaks. Upon which, Mindarus considering that they assaulted them in vain, commanded that a few Ships, singly by themselves should cope with the Enemy: But neither in this case was the diligence of the Pilots wanting; for with a little motion they easily declin'd the strokes of the Beaks of their Enemies Ships, and so pierced them in their broad-sides, that they disabled many. At length the Dispute waxing very hot, they not only pierc'd one another's Ships with their Beaks, but the Souldiers on the Decks Fought Hand to Hand: But neither side as yet could prevail. And now in the very heat of the Battel, there appear'd beyond a Promontory Five and Twenty Sail sent from Athens. Upon which the Peloponesians being in a Consternation at this suddain reinforcement, tackt about for Abydus, and were closely and eagerly pursu'd by the Athenians. And thus ended the Battel, in which all the Ships of the Syracusians, Palleneans and Leucadians, Eight of the Chians, Five of the Corinthians, and Eleven of the Ambraciats were taken by the Athenians, who on the other side lost Five, which were sunk. After this, the Army under Thrasybulus, erected a Trophy in the Promontory, where stands the Monument of Hecuba; and Messengers were sent to Athens, to give intelligence of the Victory; and he himself sail'd with the whole Fleet to Cyzion: For this City a little before the Battel, had revolted to Pharnabazus, Governour under Darius, and to Clearchus the Lacedemonian General. This Place not being fortify'd, was presently surrender'd, and after the Tribute agreed upon, was paid by them of Cyzium, the Fleet return'd to Sestus.
In the mean time, Mindarus the Laoedemonian Admiral, who fled to Abydus, resits the Shipping, and orders Epicles the Spartan to Eubea, to bring to him Gallies from thence; who hastens thither, and gets together Fifty Sail, and fothwith made to Sea; but in passing under Mount Athos, was overtaken with such a violent Tempest, that all the Fleet was lost, and not a Man escap'd, save only Twelve. In memory of this, there is an Inscription on a Monument at Coronea, as Ephorus observes in these Words.
About the same time Alcibiades with Thirteen Gallies, sail'd to them that lay at Anchor at Samos. The Athenians had before been inform'd, that (through the Persuasions of Alcibiades) Pharnabazus would not send the Three Hundred Ships (as he intended) in aid of the Lacedemonians. Being therefore courteously receiv'd by them that lay at Samos, he made some Proposals for his Return, and made many Promises to serve his Country to the utmost of his power, absolutely denying the Crimes laid to his Charge, and complain'd of his hard Fortune that he was compell'd (through the crafty Designs of the Enemies) to make use of his Arms against his Country. His Speech was highly applauded by the common Souldiers, and by Messengers reported at Athens; upon which he was absolv'd and created one of their Generals; for considering his Valour and great Interest every where amongst the Grecians, they hop'd it would be much for their advantage if they again receiv'd him into his favour. And besides, Theramenes one of the greatest authority in the Commonwealth, a Man eminent for Wisdom and Prudence as ever any before him, advis'd the recalling of Alcibiades. When the Messengers return'd to Samos with this account, Alcibiades joining Nine Ships more to these Thirteen he brought with him, sail'd to Halicarnassus, and there forc'd the City to pay him a great Sum of Money. And then making great devastations in Meropides, he returns with much Spoil to Samos; and there divides the Spoil as a common Booty, not only amongst his own Souldiers, but amongst them in Samos, and by that means gains them all over to his interest.
About this time, Antandros with the assistance of the Lacedemonians, drove the Garrison out of their City, and so restor'd their Country to their Liberty: For the Spartans being angry at Pharnabazus, for sending the Three Hundred Ships into Phenicia, entred into League with the Antandrians.
Here Thucydides breaks off his History, containing in Eight Books (which some divide into Nine) the Affairs of Two and Twenty Years. Xenophon and Theopompus begin theirs, where Thucydides ends. Xenophon continues his History for the term of Forty Eight Years; but Theopompus goes on with the Affairs of Greece Seventeen Years, and ends his History at the Sea-Fight at Cnidus, compriz'd in Twelve Books. Thus stood the state of Affairs in Greece and Asia at this time. In the mean time the Romans were in War with the Aequi, and entred their Country with a great Army, and besieg'd their City call'd Bolasus, and took it.
Commotions in Sicily. The Carthaginians invited thither by the Aegistines. A Sea-Fight at Darclanum between the Athenians and Lacedemonians. A Sedition in Corcyra. The Sea-Fight at Cyzicum; and at Cleros by Land, wherein the Athenians were Victors.
THE former Year ended, Glaucippus was created Archon at Athens, and at Rome, Marcus Cornelius, and Lucius Furius were again chosen Consuls. About this time the Aegistines (who had confederated with the Athenians) after the War was ended in Sicily against the Syracusians) were in great fear (as they had just cause) lest the Siculi should revenge themselves upon them for the many acts of Hostility they committed against them. And therefore when the Selinuntines made War upon them concerning some Boundaries that were in Dispute, they submitted, lest the Syracusians should take that occasion to join with the Selinuntines, and so hazard the loss of their Country. But when they encroached farther upon their Territories than was agreed upon, the Aegistines desir'd aid of the Carthaginians, and freely offer'd their City to their Protection. When the Embassadors came to Carthage, and had deliver'd their Message to the Senate, the Carthaginians were much perplexed what to resolve: The desire of so convenient a City strongly inclin'd them upon one hand, and the fear of the Syracusians who had lately destroy'd so powerful an Army of the Athenians, discourag'd them on the other. But at length their Ambition to gain the City previal'd. The Answer therefore to the Embassadors was, that they would send them aid. For the management of this Affair (in case it should break out into a War) they made Hannibal General, who was then according to their Law chief Magistrate of Carthage. He was the Grandchild of Amilcar (who was kill'd at Himera at the Battel fought with Gelon) and Son of Ges•on, who for killing of his Father, was Banish'd, and liv'd at Selinunta. Hannibal therefore in regard he bore a natural Hatred against the Grecians, and desired by his own Valour to wipe off the stain of his Family, was very earnest to make himself remarkable by some eminent Service for the advantage of his Country. Therefore when he understood that the Selinuntines were not satisfy'd with that part of Land which was yielded to them, he together with the Aegistines sends Embassadors to the Syracusians, referring the Controversie to their Determination; in Words seeming to propose all things fair and just; but in Truth with hopes that if the Selinuntines should decline the Arbitration, the Syracusians would cast off their Confederacy and League with them. But when the Selinuntines (who sent likewise their Embassadors) refused to stand to their Decision, and strongly opposed both the Carthaginean and Aegistean Embassadors, the Syracusians were at length resolved both to be at peace with the Carthaginians, and likewise to stand to their League with the Selinuntines. Upon which, when the Embassadors were return'd, the Carthaginians sent to the Aegistines Five Thousand Men from Africa, and Eight Hundred from Campania. These were formerly hired by the Calcideans for the assistance of the Athenians against the Syracusians, but after their overthrow sailing back, they knew not under whom to serve. The Carthaginians therefore bought them all Horses, and giving them large Pay, plac'd them in a Garrison at Aegista. But the Selinuntines who were then both Rich and Populous, valu'd not the Aegistines one jot.
At the first with a well form'd Army, they spoil'd the Country next adjoining to them; at length in regard they far exceeded the Aegistines in number, they despis'd them, and dispers'd themselves, ravaging all over the Country. The Aegistean Commanders watching their opportunity, with the help of the Carthagineans and Campanians, set upon them unawares: And the Assault being sudden and unexpected, they easily routed and put them to flight. They kill'd a Thousand, and took all their Baggage. After this Fight, both sides sent forth their Embassadors, the Selinuntines to the Syracusians, and the AegistinesPage 321 to the Carthaginians for Aid; which being readily promis'd on both sides, this was the beginning of the Carthaginian War. The Carthaginians foreseeing the greatness of the War, committed the whole management thereof to Hannibal, giving him power to raise what Forces he thought sit, they themselves in the mean time providing all things necessary. Hannibal all that Summer, and the next Winter, raises many Mercenary Souldiers in Spain, and lists a great number of his own Citizens; and besides these, raises Men in every City throughout all Africa, and equips out a Fleet, intending the next Spring to pass over all his Forces into Sicily. In this Condition were the Affairs of Sicily at that time.
In the mean time Dorieus the Rhodean Admiral of the Italian Gallies, as soon as he had quieted the Tumult in Rhodes, passed over to the Hellespont, with a purpose to join Mindarus, who then lay at Abydus, getting together from all Parts, what Vessels he could from the Peloponesian Confederates. When Dorieus was come as far as Sigeum of Troas, the Athenians (who then lay at Anchor at Sestos) having intelligence of his Course, made out against him with their whole Fleet of Seventy Four Sail. Dorieus altogether ignorant of the Preparations against him, sails on securely: But when he understood what a powerful Navy was making towards him, he was in great Consternation, and seeing no other means left to escape, fled to Dardanum, where he landed his Men; and placing a Garrison in the City, he forthwith furnish'd the Place with abundance of Arms, and plac'd his Souldiers, some upon the Foredecks of his Vessels, and others all along upon the Shoar. But the Athenians making up suddenly upon them; endeavour'd to hale off the Ships from the Shoar; and by pressing upon the Enemy in so many Places at once, they almost wearied them out. Mindarus the Peloponesian Admiral, hearing the Distress Dorieus was in, forthwith set Sail from Abidos with his whole Fleet, and made for the Promontory of •Dardanum, with Fourscore and Four Sail to assist him. The Land Forces likewise of Pharnabazus were near at Hand, to support the Lacedemonian Fleet. When the Navies came near one to another, both sides prepar'd to Fight. Mindarus commanding a Fleet of Ninety Seven Sail, plac'd the Syracusians in the Left Wing, and he himself commanded the Right. On the Athenians, Thrasybulus led the Right, and Thrasyllus the Left Wing. The Lines of Battel being thus disposed on both sides, and the Sign given by the Admirals, the Trumpets all at once sounded a Charge. And now the Rowers neglecting nothing on their part, and the Pilots every where minding with all diligence their several Helms, a Bloody Fight began. For as often as the Ships forc'd forwards to pierce one another, so often did the Pilots at the same instant of time carefully move and turn the Ship, that the Stroaks only fell upon the Beaks of the Vessels. The Souldiers upon the Decks when at first they saw their Broad-sides lye open to the Assaults of the Enemy, began to be discourag'd, but then again presently when they discern'd that the Charge made by the Enemy upon them was eluded by the Art of the Pilot, their Spirits and Courage reviv'd. Neither were they less active, who fought upon the Decks, for they who were at a distance, ply'd the Enemy continually with Darts, so that the Place where they fell, seem'd to be covered over. They who fought at Hand, threw their Launces one at another, sometimes piercing through the Bodies of their Opposers, and sometimes the Bodies of the Pilots themselves. If the Ships fell fowl upon one another, then they disputed it with their Spears: And many times when they came close, they would board one another, and fight it out with their Swords. What with the doleful Complaints of them that were hastening in to the Succour of those that were worsted, and the triumphing Shouts of them that were Conquerors, every Place was full of Noise and Confusion. The Fight continu'd a long time with great obstinacy on both sides, till on a sudden Alcibiades (who was meerly by chance sailing from Samos to the Hellespont with Twenty Ships) came in view. Before he came near, both sides hop'd to have Succour from them. And both being confident, they fought with more Resolution on both sides. When he drew near (the Lacedemonians being still in the dark) he presently set up a Purple Flag from his own Ship as a Sign to the Athenians, as it was before order'd and agreed. Upon which, the Lacedemonians in a great Fright forthwith fled. But the Athenians incouraged with this happy success, pursu'd them with all their might, and presently Page 322 took Ten of their Ships; but afterwards a great Storm arose, which much obstructed them in the Pursuit: For the Sea was so raging, that the Pilots were not able to manage the Helm, nor could they make any impression with the Beaks of their Ships upon the Enemy, because the Ships aim'd at, were born back by the violence of the Waves.
At length the Lacedemonians came safe to Shoar, and March'd to the Land-Army of Pharnabazus: The Athenians in the mean time endeavour'd to gain the Empty Ships, and press'd on with great Valour and Confidence through many hazards and difficulties; but being kept off by the Persian Army, they were forc'd to return to Sestus. Pharnabazus was the more earnest in opposing the Athenians, to the end he might convince the Lacedemonians that he had no ill Design against them, when he sent back the Three Hundred Gallies to Phenicia: For he told them he did it, because at that time the King of Egypt and Arabia had some Designs upon Phenicia. After this issue of the Fight at Sea, the Athenian Fleet arriv'd at Sestus in the Night: And as soon as it was Day, and all their Fleet was got up together, they set up another Trophy near to the former. Mindarus arriv'd at Abydus about the First watch of the Night, and falls a repairing his shatter'd and disabled Ships, and sends to the Lacedemonians for Supplies both of Land and Sea-Forces. For whilst his Fleet was repairing, he determin'd with his Land Souldiers to join with Pharnabazus, and to besiege the Confederate Cities of the Athenians in Asia: The Calcideans, and almost all the Eubeans had deserted the Athenians, and therefore were now in great fear (in regard they inhabited an Island) lest the Athenians being Masters at Sea, would invade them; they solicited therefore the Beotians to assist them to stop up Euripus, by which Eubea might be annexed to the Continent of Beotia. To which the Beotians agreed, beause by this means Eubea would be but as the Continent to them, and an Island to others. Hereupon all the Cities set upon the Work, and every one strove with all diligence to perfect it. And Orders were sent forth not only to the Citizens, but all Foreigners and Strangers, to attend upon the Business; and all Hands were to be at Work, that it might be with all speed effected. The Mould began at Calcis in Eubea on the one side, and at Aulis in Beotia on the other: For here it was the narrowest. In these straits the Sea was very boisterous and rugged, but after this Work much more unquiet and raging, the Passage being made so very strait and narrow: For there was left only room for one Ship to pass. There were Forts built on both sides upon the extremities of the Mould, and Wooden Bridges made over the Current for Communication.
Theramenes, indeed at the first being sent thither with Thirty Sail, endeavour'd to hinder the Project, but being over-power'd with the Number of those that defended them that were imploy'd, he gave over his Design, and made away towards the Islands. And purposing to relieve the Confederate Cities who were under the burden of Contributions, he wasted and spoiled the Enemies Country, and return'd loaden with much Spoil and Plunder. He went likewise to some of the Confederate Cities, and impos'd upon them great Mulcts and Fines, because he understood that they were secretly contriving some Changes and Innovations. Thence he sail'd to Paros, and freeing the People from the Oligarchy there, he restor'd the Democracy, and exacted a great Sum of Money from them who set up the Oligarchy.
About the same time, a cruel and bloody Sedition arose in Corcyra, which is said to be occasion'd through private Grudges and Animosities, as much as any other Cause. In no City of that time, were ever such horrid Murthers of the Citizens committed, nor ever was more Rage to the destruction of Mankind heard of: For once before this, in their quarrelling one with another, there were Fifteen Hundred Slaughter'd, and all of them the chiefest of the Citizens. But these Murders following were much more miserable, the Sparks of old Discords being blown up into a devouring Flame: For they in authority at Corcyra, aspiring to an Oligarchy, sided with the Lacedemonians, but the People favour'd the Athenians.
These Two People contending for the Sovereignty, took different measures: The Lacedemonians set up an Oligarchy in the Cities of their Confederates; but the Athenians establish'd every where in theirs, a Democracy.
Page 323 The Corcyrians therefore discerning that the great Men of their City intended to betray them into the Hands of the Lacedemonians, sent to Athens for a Garrison, for the defence of their City; upon which, Conon the Athenian Admiral, sails to Corcyra, and leaves there Six Hundred Messenians drawn out from Naupactus; and passing from thence with the Fleet, anchor'd at Juno's Temple.
In the mean time, Six Hundred of them that were for the Democracy, rush'd into the Forum, and forthwith set upon them that sided with the Lacedemonians, casting some into Prisons, killing others, and driving above a Thousand out of the City. And because they feared the number and strength of the Exiles, they manumitted all the Slaves, and infranchiz'd all the Strangers. The Exiles presently fly into the Continent to Epirus, lying over against them. A few Days after, some of the People who favour'd them that were ejected, enter'd the Forum in Arms, and sending for the Exiles into the City, laid all at stake, and fought it out. When Night parted them, Proposals were made for a Pacification, which taking effect, they all continu'd in their Country with equal Priviledges. And this was the issue of the flight of the Exiles from Corcyra.
At the same time Archelaus King of Macedonia march'd against the Pydneans, who had revolted, and besieg'd their City with a great Army; to whose assistance Theramenes came with some Ships; but the Siege continuing longer than he expected, he return'd to Thrace to Thrasybulus the Admiral of the whole Fleet. But Archelaus at length takes Pydnea after a strait Siege, and removes the Inhabitants Twenty Furlongs further from the Sea.
The Winter now near an end, Mindarus randezouzes his Shipping from all Quarters; for many came both from Peloponesus, and other Confederates. The Athenian Generals who lay at Sestus, hearing of the great Preparations of their Enemies, were in no small fear lest if they should be set upon with their whole Fleet at once, they should lose all their Navy; and therefore hailing down those Ships they had laid up at Sestus, they sail'd round Chersonesus, and Anchor'd at Cardia, and thence sent to Thrace to Thrasibulus and Theramenes to come to them with the whole Fleet with all speed: Alcibiades likewise they re-call'd from Lesbos. So that now the Fleet was brought together with that Expedition, that the Admirals long'd to fight, and put all to the hazard of a Battel.
In the mean time Mindarus the Lacedemonian Admiral sails in a direct Course for Cyzicum, and there lands all his Forces, and besieges the City. Pharnabazus joins him with a great Army, and by his Assistance takes the Place by Storm. Upon which the Athenian Admirals were resolv'd to make for Cyzicum; and to that end they advanced with their whole Fleet, and sailing round Chersonesus, arriv'd at Eleuntis. Then they contriv'd all they could to pass by Abydus in the Night, lest the Enemy should have intelligence of the number of their Ships: Sailing thence to Preconnesus, they there lay at Anchor all Night. The next day they landed their Men in the Territories at Cyzicum, with a command to Chareas (who led the Army) to march strait to Cyzicum. The Fleet was divided into Three Squadrons, one under the Command of Alcibiades, another under Theramenes, and the Third commanded by Thrasybulus. Alcibiades made out with his Squadron far from the rest, and dar'd the Lacedemonians to Fight. Theramenes and Thrasybulus us'd their utmost endeavour to close in the Enemy, so as to prevent their Sailing back to the City. When Mindarus saw only that part of the Fleet which was with Alcibiades, (having no intelligence of the rest) he despised them, and with Fourscore Sail (in great Confidence) attacks them. When he came near to Alcibiades, the Athenians (as they were commanded) counterfeited a Flight: Whereupon the Peloponesians with great joy hotly pursu'd them as Conquerors: But when Alcibiades saw that he had decoy'd and drawn them far off from the City, he lifts up his Sign from his Ship. At which, all his Squadron at one instant tackt about full in front upon the Enemy: Theramenes and Thrasybuls in the mean time making to the City, left them no way to return. Upon this, they that were with Mindarus, considering the strength of their Enemies, and perceiving how they were outwitted, were in a great Consternation. At length the Athenians appearing on every side, and the return of the Peloponesians to the City intercepted, Mindarus was forc'd to fly to a Place upon that Coast call'd Cleros, where Pharnabazus was encamp'd with his Army. But Alcibiades making a hot Pursuit after them, sunk and took many Page 324 of their Ships, and forcing the rest upon the Shoar, endeavour'd to hale them thence with grapling Irons. Upon this, there was a greater Slaughter among the Athenians, in regard the Army upon the Shoar assisted the Peloponesians. And indeed the Athenians (lifted up with their Victory) evidenc'd more Valour than Prudence; for the Peloponesians far exceeded them in number; and the Army of Pharnabazus assisted the Lacedemonians with great resolution, and fighting from Land, had the advantage of a certain and fixt station. But when Thrasybulus saw the aid that was given to the Enemy from the Land, he landed the rest of his Men with all speed, in order to succour Alcibiades; and commanded Theramenes, that with all expedition he should join the Foot under the Command of Chares, and fight the Enemy at Land. Whilst these Orders were in executing, Mindarus the Lacedemonian General, bore all the brunt in preserving of the Ships Alcibiades had laid hold on. Clearchus the Spartan, with the Peloponesians and Mercenary Persians fought with Thrasybulus, who for some considerable time, with his Seamen and Archers bore up with great Valour against the Enemy, killing many of them, but not without great loss of his own: And just when the Athenians were inclos'd round with the Souldiers of Pharnabazus, on a sudden falls in Theramenes with his own and Chares his Foot. Upon this, those with Thrasybulus, who were before almost spent, and quite out of Heart, gather'd Courage; so the Fight was renew'd, and continu'd very hot and sharp a long time after; till the first that gave ground were the Persians, and by little and little their whole Body began to break in pieces. At length the Peloponesians with Clearchus being forsaken of their Fellows (after many Wounds given and receiv'd, and Slaughters on both sides) were forc'd likewise to give Ground. These being thus broken and dispers'd, Theramenes hasted to assist Alcibiades, who was sorely press'd in another part. And though now all the Athenian Forces were join'd together, yet Mindarus was not at all startled at the approach of Theramenes, but divides the Peloponesians into Two Bodies, and commands the one to ingage the fresh Supply, and keeping the other with himself, earnestly adjures them that they would not stain the honour of the Spartan Name; especially when the business was now to be disputed with Alcibiades by a Fight at Land. And now the Battel for the safety of the Ships was renew'd with great Gallantry; and Mindarus in the Head of his Men, exposing himself to all manner of Dangers, beats down many of his Enemies; but at length was kill'd by the Souldiers of Alcibiades, though he fought with that Valour as was agreeable to the fame and glory of his Country. Upon his Death the Peloponesians and their consederates all as one Man fled with great consternation. The Athenians pursu'd them for a while, but understanding that Pharnabazus was hastning after them with a great Party of Horse, they return'd to their Ships; and having regain'd the * City, they set up Two Trophies, one for their Victory at Sea near the Island Polydorus, as it is call'd, the other for that at Land, where the Enemy first began to fly. The Peloponesians who were left to guard the City, with those that escap'd out of the Battel, march'd away to Pharnabazus his Camp. The Athenians being now possess'd of all the Ships, and of a great number of Prisoners, were loaden with abundance of Spoil, the Fruits of the Conquest of Two Potent Armies.
When the News of this Victory was brought to Athens, the Success was so unexpected after all their former Losses, that the People were surpriz'd with Joy at such a happy turn of Fortune, and offered Sacrifices to the Gods, and instituted Festivals: And upon this was rais'd a Thousand-Foot, and a Hundred Horse of the most Valiant of the Citizens for the carrying on of the War. The City likewise sent to Alcibiades a Supply of Thirty Sail, to incourage him with greater Confidence (especially now when they were Masters at Sea) to set upon the Cities who sided with the Lacedemonians.
The Spartans seek for Peace. The Speech of Endius. The Athenians refuse.
THe Lacedemonians receiving certain intelligence of their rout at Cyzicum, sent Embassadors to Athens to treat of Peace, the chief of whom was Endius. When he was admitted Audience, he came in, and spoke in the Laconick manner, in a short and pithy Stile; whose Oration I judge not fitting to omit.
WE have determin'd to make Proposals of Peace to you, O ye Athenians, upon these Conditions, That the Cities gain'd on either side be retain'd: That the Garrisons every where be dismiss'd: That all Prisoners be releas'd, one Athenian for one Laconian: For we are not ignorant that the War is very mischievous to us both, but much more to you, which I shall make apparent from the things themselves, if you hearken a while to what I say. For our use all Peloponesus is improv'd and sow'd, but of Attica which is not so large, you have but a part in Tillage. This War has brought over many Confederates to the Laconians; on the contrary, the Athenians have lost as many as we have gain'd. The richest King of the World maintains our Armies, but you force the charge of the War from the poorest of the Nations. Our Souldiers therefore being so well paid, fight chearfully, but yours (being forc'd every one to bear their own Charges) seek to avoid both the Toyl and the Expence. Moreover, when our Fleet is out at Sea, we are more in want of Ships than Men; but the greatest part of your Men are in your Ships. And that which is most considerable, although we are inferior to you at Sea, yet by the Agreement of all we are your Superiors at Land; for the Spartan knows not how to fly in a Battel at Land. On the other hand you fight at Sea, not with any hopes to gain the Sovereignty at Land, but to preserve your selves from utter Destruction. Now it remains that I give you satisfaction, why when we thus far excel you in feats of Arms, we should seek to you for Peace. In truth, though I cannot say, that Sparta has gain'd any thing by this War, yet I dare affirm their Damage has not been so great as that of the Athenians. But it's the height of folly, to take pleasure in common Calamities, because our Enemies are Fellow Sufferers; whereas it had been much better neither of us had had the Experience. Neither does the content and satisfaction by the destruction of thine Enemy, ballance the sorrow that is conceiv'd at the loss of thy Friend. But it is not for these Reasons only that we desire to put an end to the War, but we are prompted hereunto by the Custom of our Country; for when we saw by these Wars so many horrid Murthers, and so much Blood lamentably shed, we conceiv'd it our duty to make it manifest both to the Gods and Men, that we are the least concern'd in the causing of it.
When the Laconian had spoke this and some other things to the like effect, the more moderate of the Athenians were inclin'd to Peace; but those who were accustom'd to sow the Seeds of Dissention, and to make a private gain of the publick Disorders, were for War. Of this Opinion was Cleopho, a Man of great interest among the People, who coming into the Assembly after he had said many things pertinent to the business in hand, he chiefly incourag'd the People, by magnifying the greatness of their late Successes, and urging all in such a manner as if Fortune (contrary to her usual Custom) had now forgot to dispose and order the Successes of War, by turns and mutual Changes to each Page 326 side. But the Athenians at length ru'd this mischievous Advice which was so little to their advantage; for being thus deceiv'd with flattering Discourses fram'd only to please, they were brought so low, that they could never after recover their former Strength and Grandeur; but these things shall be hereafter related in their due Place. The Athenians therefore (being thus puff'd up with their Victories, and being very confident because Alcibiades was their General) concluded they should recover their former Esteem and Reputation in a short time.
Hannibal the Carthaginian invades Sicily. The miserable destruction of Selinunte. The ruin likewise of Himera. The Acts of Hermocrates in Sicily.
THE Affairs of this Year thus ended, Diocles was chosen Magistrate of Athens, and at Rome, Quintus Fabius and Caius Furius were Consuls. At that time Hannibal the Carthaginian General musters an Army out of Spain and Africa, and puts them on Borad Threescore long Gallies, and provides Fifteen Hundred Transport Ships, to convey Provision, Engines, Weapons, and all other things necessary for a Siege. Passing over the African Sea with his Navy, he arriv'd at Lilibeum, a Promontory in Sicily over against Africa. About the same time, some Selinuntine Horsemen being in those Parts, when they saw so great a Fleet make towards them, speeded away in all haste, to give intelligence to their Countrymen of the Approach of the Enemy. Upon which, the Selinuntines dispatch'd Messengers to Syracuse, to desire Aid. In the mean time Hannibal landed his Army, and markt out his Camp, beginning at a Pond call'd at that time Lilibeum; but many Years after, it gave name to a Town built in that Place.
Hannibal's whole Army (as Ephorus relates) consisted of Two Hundred Thousand Foot, and Four Thousand Horse. Timeus says, they were not much above an Hundred Thousand. He drew up all his Ships into the Creek near Motys, intending the Syracusians should hereby be assur'd, that he invaded not Sicily with a design to make War upon them either by Sea or Land. Then being join'd by the Aegestines and other Confederates, he rais'd his Camp from Lilibeum, and march'd towards Selinunte. When he came to the River Mazarus, he takes Emporium at the first Assault. Approaching afterwards nearer to the City, he divides his Army into Two Parts, and encamping round the City, raises his Engines and Batteries, and begins to assault the Town with great Vigour: For he built Six high Towers, and brought as many Battering Rams to the Walls, and with the multitude of his Darters and Slingers forc'd the Citizens from the Forts and Bulwarks. The Selinuntines had been now a long time disus'd from Sieges; and in regard they were the only People of Sicily that sided with the Carthaginians against Gelon, they little expected they should have been brought into such Dangers by them whom they had so far engag'd; and therefore were in great Consternation and Amazement, seeing the abundance of Engines, the greatness of the Army and imminent Danger wherewith they were inviron'd. Yet they were not altogether without hope; but expecting speedy Aid from Syracuse and other Confederate Cities, all the People as one Man join'd together, and drove the Enemy from the Walls. The Young Men couragiously slighted all Hazards: The Old Men ran from Place to Place upon the Walls to furnish the other from time to time with all things necessary for the defence, beseeching them not to suffer the Enemy to enter. The Women and Children brought Meat and Weapons to them who were fightfor their Country, not regarding that Modesty and Sobriety which in times Page 327 of Peace they were commendable for: The Fear was so great, that even Women were regardless of the Dangers.
Hannibal promis'd the Plunder of the Town to his Souldiers, applies his Engines to the Walls, and with the best of his Souldiers (whom he reliev'd from time to time with fresh Supplies) begins the Assault. At the first Word of Command, at one instant the Trumpets sounded to Battel, and the whole Army with a great Shout ran up to their several Posts; the Walls were batter'd by the Rams, and the Souldiers from the High Towers, gall'd the Selinuntines with their Darts: For the Selinuntines injoying a long Peace, their Hands were not inur'd to Action, and therefore were easily driven from thence, the Wooden Towers being far higher than they. In the mean time, part of the Wall being batter'd down, the Campanians willing to make themselves remarkable, on a sudden, rush'd into the City, and at the first greatly terrify'd those that were in that part of it; but presently many coming in to assist them, the Enemy was repuls'd with great Loss: For the Rubbish lying in the way where they enter'd, when they were driven back to the Breach, they were so cumber'd, that many were cut off. Night approaching, the Carthaginians drew off.
In the mean time the Selinuntines sent forth some Horsemen in the Night to Agrigentum, Gela and Syracuse, to desire aid with all speed; for that they were not able any longer to stand it out against so great an Army. The Geleans and Agrigentines thought it best to wait for the Aids from Syracuse, that with conjoin'd Forces they might set upon the Carthaginians. But the Syracusians having certain intelligence that Selinunte was Besieg'd, without delay struck a Peace with the Chalcideans (with whom they were then in War) and gather'd all their Forces together from every Place. But because they suppos'd that the City was only Besieg'd, and not in any danger to be suddenly taken, they protracted the time to make the greater Preparation. In the mean time, Hannibal as soon as it was light, renew'd the Assault on every side of the Town, and presently possess'd himself of that part of the Wall where the Breach was made, and of another Breach made in another part near adjoining; and when he had remov'd the Rubbish, with the choicest of his fresh Men he sets upon the Selinuntines, and forces them by degrees to give Ground, but was not able quite to break them, who now had all at stake. Many fell on both sides. The Carthaginians were still supply'd with fresh Men, but the Selinuntines had none to reinforce them. And thus the Assault was renew'd every Day, for the space of Nine Days, with great Resolution and Courage, and much loss on both sides. At length when the Iberians began to enter at the Breaches, the Women from the tops of the Houses, fill'd all Places with Cries and Lamentations. And the Selinuntines now judging the Town to be lost, endeavour'd to block up all the nar̄row Passages and Streets, and by that means the Contest continu'd a long time. But while the Carthaginians were making their way by force, the Women and Children from the Tops of the Houses mawl'd them with Tiles and Stones; so that the Carthaginians for a long time were sorely gall'd, not being able to come up together in those narrow Passages, the Walls on both sides being strongly man'd; and besides being so vex'd with those that cast down Stones upon the Tops of the Houses. This throwing down of Darts and other things from the Roofs of the Houses, continu'd till Evening: But the Carthaginians still renewing the Fight, by pouring fresh Men into the City, the other were tir'd out, their number decreasing, and their Enemies still increasing, so that the Selinuntines were at last forc'd to desert the Straits.
The City thus taken, nothing was to be seen but weeping and wailing among the Grecians; and on the other side among the Barbarians, exultation and shouts of Victory: Those were terrify'd with the greatness of their Misery every where before their Eyes; These now Victorious, commanded to kill and destroy where and whom they pleas'd: At length the Selinuntines got in a Body together in the Market-Place, and there fought it out to the last Man. The Barbarians raging in all Parts of the City, rifled all the Houses: The Persons they found there, they either burnt them and their Houses together, or dragging them into the Streets, without any respect to Age or Sex, whether they were Women or Children, Young or old, without the least pity or commiseration, they put them all to the Sword, and after the barbarous manner of their Page 328 Country, they mangled their Carcases; some carry'd about multitudes of Hands tied round their Bodies; others in Ostentation, bore about the Heads of the Slain upon the Points of their Swords and Spears. They only spar'd Wives who fled with their Children to the Temples; and to these only was Favour shew'd, not out of any Compassion to the Miserable, but out of a fear they had lest the Women being desperate, without any hopes of Mercy, should burn the Temples, and by that means they should lose the Riches and Treasures that were laid up in those Places. For these Barbarians so far exceed all other Men in Impiety, that whereas others (lest they should offend the Deity) always spare them who fly to their Temples, the Carthaginians on the contrary moderate their Cruelty towards their Enemies, for that very end and purpose that they may have a better opportunity sacrilegiously to rob the Temples. The razing and ruining of the City continu'd till late in the Night; all the Houses were burnt or pull'd down; every Place was full of Blood and dead Bodies, Sixteen Thousand being there put to the Sword, and more than Five Thousand carry'd away Captives. The Grecians who sided with the Carthaginians, seeing the inconstancy of the things of this Life, greatly commiserated the condition of these miserable People; for the Matrons in want of Food and Sustenance amongst the Flouts and Jeers of an insulting Enemy, pass'd all that Night in sorrow and sadness. Some of them were forc'd to be Eye-Witnesses of the sufferings of their Daughters in such a kind as is shameful to relate; for the cruel Lust of the Barbarians sparing neither Girls nor Virgins grown up, afflicted these poor People with unspeakable Misery. The Mothers while they considered the Slavery they were to undergo in Lybia, and how they and their Children were subjected in great Contempt and Disgrace to the brutish Lusts of domineering Masters (whose Language they understood not, and whose Actions were altogether Beastly) were in Grief and Sorrow even to see their Children alive; for every Injury and Disgrace offer'd to them, affected them, as if a Dagger had pierc'd their own Hearts, when they were not able to yield them any other Relief but Groans and Lamentations; in so much as they accounted their Parents and Kindred that had lost their Lives in the defence of their Country, to be happy, whose Eyes saw not those Brutish and Beastly acts of Barbarous Cruelty. There were notwithstanding, Two Thousand Six Hundred that escap'd and fled to Agrigentum, where they were received with all manner of Humanity and Tenderness; for the Agrigentines distributed to every Family, Corn out of the Publick Stores, and desir'd every private Person (who yet were very ready on their own accord) liberally to supply them with all necessaries for their Sustenance.
While these things were doing, Three Thousand of the best Souldiers sent from Syracuse to assist the Selinuntines, came to Agrigentum. But when they heard that the City was taken, they sent Embassadors to Hannibal, to demand the Redemption of the Prisoners, and that he would forbear robbing of the Temples of the Gods. They return'd with this Answer from Hannibal, that in regard the Selinuntines were not able to preserve their own Liberty, they were now justly brought into the condition of Slaves. That the Gods were angry at the Inhabitants, and therefore had forsaken Selinunte. But when they sent Empediones Embassador a Second time, Hannibal restor'd to him all his Estate, because he always favour'd the Carthaginians, and sometime before the City was taken, had advised the Citizens not to withstand: He pardon'd likewise all those Prisoners that were of his Kindred, and permitted those that fled to Agrigentum to repeople the City, and till the Lands, upon paying Tribute to the Carthaginians. Thus was this City taken, Two Hundred and Fifty Two Years after the Building of it.
After Hannibal had demolish'd it, he march'd away with all his Army toward Himera, with a longing desire to ruin this City. For this Town occasion'd the Banishment of his Father; and here it was that his Grandfather Amilcar was routed by Gelon, who kill'd an Hundred and Fifty Thousand of the Carthaginians, and took almost as many Prisoners. In revenge whereof, Hannibal speeds away with Forty Thousand Men, and incamps upon an Hill at some distance from the City, and with the rest of his Army (to whom join'd the Sicilians and Sicanians, to the number of Twenty Thousand Men) he Besieges Page 329 the Place, and Batters the Walls with his Engines in several Places at once; and with fresh Succours even wearies out the Besieg'd; to the effecting of which, the forwardness of his Men (through the late Successes) was of no small advantage. Whilst he was undermining the Walls, he supported them with great Pieces of Timber, and then setting them on Fire, a great part of the Walls on a sudden tumbled down; upon which there was a sharp Conflict: These striving to enter by force, the other in dread of undergoing the same fate and destruction with them of Selinunte; so that the Besieged endeavouring with all their might, to defend their Parents, Children and Country, beat the Barbarians off, and with all speed repair'd the Wall. For there had before come to their assistance Four Thousand Syracusians, and some other Confederates from Agrigentum, under the Command of Diocles the Syracusian. Then Night coming on, it gave a check to the Fury of the Besiegers, and so there was an intermission of the Assault.
But as soon as it was Day, the Besieged resolving not to be pen'd up as the Selinuntines were (through Sloathfulness) plac'd the Guards upon the Walls, and with the rest of their own, and the Forces of their Confederates, to the number of Ten Thousand, made a Sally, and broke in on a suddain upon the Enemy. Whereupon the Barbarians were struck with Terror and Amazement, conceiving that all the Confederates of the Besieg'd were come to their Relief. The Salliants therefore being far more daring and skilful in their Weapons, and especially the last hope of their safety lying in the good Success of the present Engagement, they cut off all those that first opposed them. And though the whole force of the Barbarians in great disorder and confusion fell upon them (for they never suspected that the Besiegd durst ever have attempted any such thing) yet they were under no small disadvantages; for Fourscore Thousand Men running in Confusion together, beat down one another, and more incommodated themselves than their Enemies. The Himereans in the mean time being in sight of their Parents, Children, and all their Friends and Relations upon the Walls, exposed themselves without fear, to all dangers for the common safety. The Barbarians therefore astonish'd with the Valour of the Enemy, and unexpectedness of the Onset, turn'd their Backs, and fled in great precipitation to their Fellows incampt upon the Hill, whom the Himereans pursu'd, calling one to another not to give any Quarter. In this Encounter there were kill'd of the Carthaginians above Six Thousand (as Timeus relates) but Ephorus says Twenty Thousand. Hannibal when he saw his Souldiers so distressed, drew out those that were encamped, and came to the Relief of his shattered Troops, setting upon the Himereans now in disorder by the Pursuit: Upon which, there began another sharp Dispute, in which, at length the Himereans were put to flight; but Three Thousand of them stood their Ground, and bore the brunt of the whole Carthaginian Army; and after they had signaliz'd their Valour, all died upon the Spot.
After this Fight, Five and Twenty Gallies which were sometime before sent to the aid of the Lacedemonians from the Siculi, now returning Home, arriv'd at Himera; but a Rumour spread through the City, that the Syracusians with all their Forces and Confederates were come to the Relief of the Himereans. Hannibal in the mean time imbarques many of his best Souldiers in his Gallies which lay at Motys, in order to Sail for Syracuse, to surprize the City now that it wanted sufficient •trength to defend it as he suppos'd. And therefore Diocles, Commander in chief of them who were sent in aid of the Himereans, advis'd the Captains of the Vessels to sail with all speed to Syracuse, lest when they had lost the best of their Souldiers, in the next Fight, their own City should be taken by force. To which end it was thought advisable to leave the City for a while, and to imbarque one half of Diocles's Forces to go along with the Fleet till they were past the Coasts of Himera, and to leave the other half for the defence of the City till the Gallies return'd. The Himereans took this grievously, but being it was not in their power to do otherwise, Gallies were fill'd in the Night, with Women and Children, and other things to be transported to Messena.
Then Diocles with those under his Command, prepar'd for his Journey back into his own Country, leaving the Bodies of them that were slain unbury'd. And so many of the Himereans with their Wives and Children went along with him, Page 330 as could not be otherwise transported for want of Shipping. But they that were left for the defence of the City, watcht every Night in Arms upon the Bulwarks. And although the Carthaginiaus constantly upon the approach of Day made frequent Assaults in every Place found the City, yet they upon the Walls indefatigably bore the brunt, believing the Ships would return speedily; to which very Day they held it out couragiously: But the next Day after that the Fleet was in sight far off, at that instant the Wall was batter'd down by the Engines, and the Spanish Regiment in a full Body, rusht into the City, part of the Barbarians forcing the Guard from the Walls, and another part that possessing the Breaches, made way for the rest of the Army to enter. At length the City was enter'd, and the Barbarians with all Savage Cruelty, kill'd all in their way, till by the Command of Hannibal they forbore their Butcheries: In the mean time, the Souldiers plunder'd all the Houses of all things valuable. Here Hannibal robb'd and spoil'd all the Temples, and after he had taken out those that fled thither for Refuge, he set them on Fire, and raz'd the City to the Ground, Two Hundred and Forty Years after the setling of the Inhabitants there. Among the Prisoners, the Women and Children he commanded to be kept safe; but the Men, to the number of Three Thousand, he caus'd to be brought to a rising Ground there near at Hand, where Amilcar his Grandfather perish'd by the Army of Gelon, and there with all sorts of Taunts, and marks of Disgrace, put them all to the Sword. Afterwards he disbanded many of his Forces, among the rest, he sent the Sicilians, who sided with him, to their several Countries, and with them the Campanians, who made great complaint of the Injustice of the Carthaginians, for that they contributing so much to their Successes, had not rewarded them proportionably to the Services they had done them in the War.
However Hannibal ship'd his Army, leaving a small Guard with his Confederates, and with his Transport Ships and Gallies loos'd from Sicily, and arriv'd at Carthage, loaden with abundance of Prey. The whole City came out to meet him, and receiv'd him with loud and joyful Acclamations, as a General that had performed greater things by far in so short a time than ever any before him.
At this time Hermocrates the Syracusian returned into Sicily. He was in great Esteem among the Syracusians, because in the War against the Athenians, he was remarkably serviceable to his Country. He was afterwards sent as Admiral with Thirty Five Sail to the aid of the Lacedemonians; but by a contrary Faction at Home, being condemn'd to Banishment, he deliver'd up the Command of the Fleet in Peloponesus, to those who were deputed by the Government. Afterwards having receiv'd a considerable Sum of Money from Pharnabazus, whose Favourite he was, he sail'd to Messina, and there built Five Gallies, and hir'd a Thousand Souldiers with his own Money; and taking likewise with him a Thousand of those that were forc'd from Himera, he attempted with the help of his Friends to return to Syracuse: But being prevented in this Design, he march'd up into the Country to Selinunte, and took in part of the City with a Wall, and got together as many of the Selinuntines as surviv'd the late Destruction, and with them and many others which he receiv'd into the Place, he made up a Body of Six Thousand choice Men. From thence he made an Excursion, and spoil'd the Country of the Moty•ans, overcame them that issu'd out of the City against them, and kill'd many of them, driving the rest within their Walls. Presently after, he broke into the Borders of the Panormitans, and carry'd away abundance of Plunder. He kill'd likewise Five Hundred of the Citizens that stood in Battalia before their City to oppose him, and shut up the rest within their Walls, and wasted and spoil'd likewise all the other Countries that were subject to the Carthaginians, for which he was in high Esteem among the Sicilians. Hereupon the Syracusians likewise presently began to repent, when they saw that they had Banisht one whose Valour merited so much to the contrary: So that when he was often nam'd and discours'd of in Publick Assemblies, the People gave many hints and signs of their desire to have him recall'd. Hermocrates therefore understanding that his Name was up among the Syracusians, us'd his utmost endeavour to return, knowing that his Enemies and Rivals would oppose it with all their Might: And thus stood things in Sicily at this time.
Thrasybulus assaults Ephesus. The Lacedemonians besiege Pylus; surrender Chalcedon, besieg'd by Theramenes; and afterward Byzantium, which was betray'd to Alcibiades.
IN Greece, Thrasybulus sent from Athens with a Fleet of Thirty Sail well man'd, and with a great Army of Foot, and an Hundred Horse, sail'd to Ephesus; where landing his Men in two places, he assaulted the City; but the Townsmen making a brisk Sally, there began a sharp Engagement; in which four hundred of the Athenians were kill'd, for the whole Strength of the City fell upon them, the rest getting to their Ships. Thrasybulus loos'd from thence to Lesbos. But the Athenian Generals, who lay at Cyzicum, pass'd over to Chalcedon, and built a Fort call'd Chrysopolis, putting into it a sufficient Garrison; and commanded the Governors to exact the Tenth part of all Shipping, that pass'd that way from Pontus. Afterwards the Forces were divided, and Theramenes was left with fifty Sail to besiege Chalcedon and Byzantium. But Thrasybulus was sent into Thrace, and brought the Cities of that Country, under the Power of the Athenians. Alcibiades having sent away Thrasybulus with thirty Sail with the rest of the Fleet, arriv'd at the Province of Pharnabasus. There they wasted and spoil'd all that large Tract, and fill'd the Souldiers with Plunder, and the Generals themselves got together a great sum of Mony, by the Sale of the Spoils, with a Design to case the People of the burden of their Contributions.
The Lacedemonians understanding that the Athenian Forces were still about the Hellespont, sent Forces against Pylus, where the Messenians were in Garrison. At Sea indeed they had Eleven Ships, of which Five were of Sicily, man'd with Spartans; but their Land Army was but small. With these they besieg'd the Fort, both by Land and Sea. But when Intelligence was brought of this, the Athenians sent out Thirty Sail, under the Command of Anytus, the Son of Anthemion, to the Relief of the Besieg'd. In his Passing thither, a great Storm arose, so that not being able to recover Malea, he return'd to Athens. Upon which the People of Athens were so incens'd, that they condemn'd him to die as a Traitor: Anytus brought into this imminent Danger, redeem'd his Life with a Sum of Money; who is reported to be the First Athenian that ever revers'd a Sentence for Money. In the mean time, the Besieg'd Messenians in Pylus, stood it out against all Assaults for a time, in hopes of Relief from Athens: But being press'd by fresh and renew'd Succors from the Assailants, by the Loss of Men on the one hand, and through want of Provision on the other, they were forc'd to surrender upon Terms. Thus Pylus was reduc'd, and brought into the Hands of the Lacedemonians; the Athenians having had Possession of it Fifteen Years, from the time it was fortify'd by Demosthenes.
During these Affairs, the Megareans took Nisea, then belonging to the Athenians. Upon which the Athenians sent against them Leotrophides and Timarchus, with a Thousand Foot, and four Hundred Horse. Against whom all the Megareans, with the Assistance of some from Sicily, marched out, and drew up in Battalia, upon the Hills call'd the Horns. There the Athenians fought with that Valour, that they put the Enemy to Flight, tho' far more in number than themselves. In this Battle, great Slaughter was made amongst the Megareans; but there were only Twenty kill'd of the Lacedemonians: For the Athenians, taking the Loss of Nicea very grievously, wav'd the Lacedemonians, and bent all the Heat of their Pursuit after the Megareans, and in a great Rage cut down multitudes of them. About this time, the Lacedemonians made Cratesipidas Admiral, and man'd five and twenty Sail, with Supplies sent from their Confederates, and Commanded him to succour their Allies; who spent a long time about Ionia, doing nothing Considerable. Afterwards, being furnish'd with Mony, by the Exiles of Chius, he both restor'd them, and took the Citadel of the Chians.
When the Exiles were •eturn'd, they expell'd those that Banish'd them, to the Number of six Hundred, who possess'd Themselves of a place call'd Atarneus,Page 332 opposite upon the Continent, naturally fortify'd; from whence afterwards (growing Strong) they they weary'd the Chians with frequent Invasions. During these things, Alcibiades and Thrasybulus, having fortify'd Labsacus, left there a sufficient Garrison; and then sail'd with the whole Army to Theramenes, who was then besieging Chalcedon, having a Fleet of Seventy Sail, and five Thousand Men under his Command. The Generals, drawing up the whole Army together in a Body, Block't up the City by a Wall of Timber, drawn from Sea to Sea. Upon which Hippocrates, made Governor there by the Lacedemonians (whom the Laconians call Harmostis) made a Sally both with the Lacedemonians, and all the Chalcedonians: And joyning Battle with Alcibiades (whose Souldiers fought with great Resolution) Hippocrates was slain, and many more kill'd and wounded, and the rest fled back into the City. Afterwards Alcibiades pass'd over into the Hellespont, and Chersonesus, with a Design to raise Monies. But Theramenes came to Terms with the Chalcedonians, and agreed that they should pay the same Tribute that they did before; and so drew off his Forces, and came before Byzantium, designing to block up that place.
In the mean time, Alcibiades having got together a vast Sum of Mony, procured many of the Thracians to joyn with him; and then making a League and Association with all them of Chersonesus, he loosed from thence with his whole Amy, and gain'd Selymbria by Surrender, from whence he exacted a great Sum of Mony; and placing there a Garrison, hasten'd away to Theramenes at Byzantium, where they joyntly assault the Town with their whole Strength: For they were to subdue a City that was very large, and full of Resolute Men; for besides the Byzantines, who were very numerous, Clearchus Harmostes the Lacedemonian, had with him in the City a Strong Garrison, both of Peloponesians and of Mercenaries; insomuch that (tho' they violently assaulted it) for a long time they were not able to make any considerable Impression upon the Besieg'd. But the Governor of the City, being gone to Pharnabazus for Mony, some of the Byzantines, who had taken a Distaste at his Government (For Clearchus was sharp and rigid) betray'd the City into the Hands of Alcibiades, in this Manner: The Besiegers made as if they would raise the Siege, and Ship off their Army into Ionia; and to that purpose, in the Evening, they Sail'd away with their whole Fleet, and drew off their Land-Forces at some Distance from the Town; but at Midnight the Army march'd back close to the City; and having before sent back their Gallies with Orders, that they should hale the Ships of the Byzantines out of the Harbour, and set up a great Shout, as if all the Army were there present, they themselves with the Land-Forces kept ready drawn up in a Body, close to the Walls, in Expectation of the Sign. In the Execution of these Commands, whilst some of the Ships were broken in pieces by the Beaks of the Ships of the Athenians, and others by Grappling-Irons were hal'd forth, and a great and terrible Shout was made, the Peloponesians in the City, ignorant of the Treachery, sally'd out to the Harbour, for the Defence of the City. In the mean time the Traitors gave the Sign from the Walls, and by Ladders took in the Souldiers of Alcibiades, while they of the Garrison were out at the Port. But the Peloponesians being inform'd of the Treachery, left half the Forces in the Port, and with the rest, ran with all Speed to guard the Walls, of which the Enemy was now disposess'd. And altho' the whole Athenian Army was broke in, yet the Besieg'd were not in the least discourag'd for a long time; but with the help of the Byzantines so couragiously oppos'd the Athenians, that the City had never come into their Hands, if Alcibiades had not made Proclamation that none of the Byzantines should be injur'd; which was a thing very seasonably advis'd: upon which the Townsmen turn'd their Arms upon the Lacedemonians, so that many of them (fighting it out with great Gallantry) were kill'd. The rest, to the number of five Hundred, fled, as Suppliants; to the Altars of the Gods. The Athenians restor'd the City to the Byzantines, and renew'd the League and Confederacy. The Suppliants likewise were receiv'd upon Terms, that they should deliver up their Arms, and that their Persons should be Transported to Athens, there to be dispos'd of, as the People should think fit.
Theremenes and Alcibiades return to Athens; are admir'd by the People. Lysander made General by the Lacedemonians. Antiochus, one of the Athenian Generals, beaten at Ephesus, in a Sea-Fight. Agis surprizes part of the Walls of Athens; but was beaten off. Alcibiades accus'd for Assaulting Cuma, a Confederate City. Conon made Admiral in his place.
AFTER the End of the Year, Euctemones was made Archon of Athens, and the Romans constituted Marcus Papyrius, and Spurius Nautius Consuls. Then was celebrated the Ninety-third Olympiad, in which Eubatus of Cyrene got the Victory. At this time the Athenian Generals (now possess'd of Byzantium) gain'd all the Cities of the Hellespont, except Abydus. Then they left Diodorus and Mantitheus, with sufficient Forces, Governours in the Hellespont; and they themselves (after they had perform'd many Famous Exploits, for the Honour and Safety of their Country) return'd with the Fleet, loaden with Spoils to Athens. When they drew near, all the People throng'd out with great Joy to meet them, and a great number of Strangers, both Women and Children ran together into the Pyreum; the Arrival of the Generals filling all Persons with Admiration. For they brought along with them no less than two hundred Ships, which they had taken, and a multitude of Prisoners, with much Spoil; and their own Ships were gloriously adorn'd with Arms, Rich Spoils, and Golden Crowns, and such like. Every Body throng'd one upon another to see Alcibiades, so as the City was even left without an Inhabitant, whilst both Bond and Free long'd to have a View of Him. For he was so highly Admir'd at that time, that none of the former Athenians were judg'd comparable to this Man, who so openly and confidently had stood it out against the People. They who were Poor, and under Mulcts and Fines, now hop'd they had an Excellent Advocate, who by raising Tumults and Disturbances in the City, could free them from their Penuries and pressing Necessities. He was a Man daring above all others, and an Excellent Speaker: In times of War a Brave Souldier, and as Skilful a Commander; ready in undertaking any Desperate Enterprize, of a very Comly and Bautiful Countenance, of a Noble Spirit, and Aspiring Mind. All were so fill'd with Expectation from him, that they concluded his Return, and the Prosperity of the City, were coupl'd together. For, as the Lacedemoniuns were Successful and Victorious whilst he Assisted them, so they hop'd that by his Return, their Affairs would change to the Better.
As soon as the Fleet entred into the Harbour, all Eyes were fix'd upon Alcibiades's Ship; and upon his Landing, they receiv'd him with great Acclamations, and Congratulated his Return and Victories. After he had with all Courteous Behaviour Saluted the People, he call'd an Assembly, where having made a long Defeence for the Clearing of his Innocency, he so insinuated himself into the Good-will of the People, that all cast the Blame of the Dooms and Judgments against him upon the City it self: And therefore they restor'd all his Estate, not long before Consiscated, and threw the Records of his Condemnation into the Sea; and Revers'd all other things that were Decreed against him: And a Decree was made, That the Eumolpides should take away, and absolve him from that Curse they had pronounc'd against him, when he was suppos'd to have been guilty of Prophaning the Sacred Mysteries. At last they made him General, and gave him full Power, both by Sea and Land; and committed all their Forces to his Command; upon which he Constituted. other Generals, as he thought fit: That is to say, Adimantus and Thrasybulus; and He Himself, with an Hundred Sail, pass'd over to Andros, and there possess'd Himself of the Fort Gaurium, and took it in with a Wall. But the Andrians, with the whole Strenth of the City, and the Succours, sent to them from Peloponesus, sally'd out against them, whereupon a sharp Engagement follow'd, in which the Athenians were Conquerors; a great part of them that came out of the Town, being cum off. Of those that escap'd, some were scatter'd abroad in the Fields, others got within the Walls. After he had several times attempted to take the City by Assault, and saw he could not he prevail, left a sufficient Garrison in the Fort (by him Page 334 before fortify'd) under the Command of Thrasybulus, and he Himself sail'd away with the rest of the Army, and wasted and spoil'd, Coos, and Rhodes, and there got a great deal of provision for his Souldiers. As for the Lacedemonians, although they had lost most of their Fleet, and the Command of the Sea, together with their General Mindarus; yet they were not discourag'd, but created Lysander Admiral of their Navy; a most Expert Souldier, Bold and Daring, and ready to undertake any thing, through all Hazards whatsoever. As soon as he enter'd upon his Command, he rais'd no small number of Souldiers, throughout all Pelopenesus, and furnish'd the Eleet with Seamen, as well as in the present Circumstances he was able; and presently arriving at Rhodes, he got together as many Ships from thence and the rest of the Towns, as he could, and then sail'd away with what Ships hehad, to Ephesus and Miletus; where being further supply'd from these Cities, and with others from Chios, he set forth from Ephesus with a Fleet of Seventy Sail. But when he understood that Cyrus; the Son of Darius, was sent from his Father, with Orders to assist the Lacedemonians in the War, he made a Journy to him to Sardis; and after several Arguments made to encourage the Young Man, to prosecute the War against the Athenians, he forthwith receiv'd from him Ten thousand Daricans for Pay of his Souldiers, with Command from Cyrus to proceed, without doubting his Assistance; for that he was commanded by his Father to spare no Costs for the Supply of the Lacedemonians, in whatsoever they should undertake.
From thence he return'd to Ephesus, and sent for the Principal Men of every Neighbouring Town; and having enter'd into a League and Confederacy with them, promis'd if the War succeeded, he would make every one of them a Prince in his own City. Upon this each strove to exceed another, and supply'd him with more than was requir'd; in so much as they abundantly furnish'd Lysander with all things Necessary for the War, sooner than could in reason be imagin'd.
When Alcibiades understood that Lysander was preparing a Fleet at Ephesus, he made away with his whole Navy thither; where he enter'd the Port without Opposition, and Anchor'd with many of his Vessels near Notium, and gave the Command to Antiochus, the Captain of his own Vessel, with strict Charge not to Fight till he return'd. In the mean time, He Himself sail'd with several Men of War to Clazomenes; which City (yet standing firm to the Athenians) was greatly oppress'd by the Devastations made by some Exiles. But Antiochus, naturally Rash and Hasty, earnestly desirous to perform something Remarkable by his own Contrivance, without any Regard to the Command of Alcibiades, Mans Ten of the Best Gallies, and Commands the Captains and Officers of the Fleet, to be ready and prepar'd, with the rest of the Ships, to fall in where there should be Occasion: Upon this he makes up to the Enemy, and dares 'em to Battle. Lysander, being inform'd by some Deserters, that Alcibiades, with the Best of the Men of War, were gone off, now conceiv'd he had a sit Opportunity put into his Hands, to do something worthy of the Spartan Name: In Order thereunto, he makes forth the whole Fleet against Antiochus; and one of the Ten (which sail'd before the rest, and in which Antiochus was) he presently sinks, and puts all the rest to Flight, and pursues them till the Athenian Officers in the other Vessels, in great Confusion, came up to their Assistance. And now the Fleets on both sides were wholly engag'd, not far off from the Land: In short, the Athenians (by reason of the Disorder they were in) were beaten, with the Loss of two and twenty of their Ships. Some few of the Men were taken, but the rest swam to Shore. As soon as Alcibiades heard of the Defeat, he sail'd back with all Speed to Notium; and having sufficiently Man'd, and Refitted his Gallies, he sail'd into the Enemies Port; but Lysander, not daring to Engage, it was determin'd to sail away for Samos.
While these things were done, Thrasybulus the Athenian General, with fifteen Gallies came up to Thasus, where he routed the Citizens, and kill'd about two hundred of them; and then so straitly besieg'd them, that at length they were inforc'd to receive again those that favour'd the Athenians, into the City, and to take in a Garrison, and renew their Confederacy with the Athenians. Thence he sail'd to Abdera, the most Potent City of Thrace, and brought them over to the Athenians. These were the things done by the Athenian Generals from the time they left Athens.
Page 335 About this time Agis, the Lacedemonian King, lay incamp'd with his Army at Deoelea; where having Intelligence, that the Flower and Strength of the Athenians were gone away with Alcibiades, he march'd up to Athens silently in a dark Night, having with him eight and twenty thousand Foot, half of which were Old Souldiers, very well arm'd; the other half were but Raw, and Lightly Arm'd: Besides these, there follow'd him twelve hundred Horse, nine of which were Beotians, and the rest from Peloponesus. He was not discern'd by the Watch, till he was close at hand; and so fell upon them unawares, and slew some, and forc'd the rest within the Walls. Hereupon the Athenians, both Young and Old, were commanded generally to betake themselves to Arms, to oppose the Enemy; upon which, the Walls round the City were presently fill'd with them that ran thither from all Quarters. As soon as it was Light, and the Athenian Commanders saw the Army of the Enemy drawn up into a Body, four in Depth, and eight Furlongs or Stages in Front; they were at first not little terrify'd, especially two parts of the Walls being now possess'd by the Enemy.
But after some time, they sent out a Body of Horse, equal in number to the Lacedemonians: Upon which the Horse on both sides engag'd, in the face of them upon the Walls: and the Contest was sharp for a considerable time: For the Foot drawn up, as is said before, were as yet five Stages from the Walls; and the Horse fought close under them. On the one side the Beotians, who had formerly routed the Athenians at Delium, look'd upon it as a Dishonourable thing, to be worsted by them, whom they had before Conquer'd. On the other, the Athenians in regard they were known by all them upon the Walls, who were then Eye-witnesses either of their Valour, or Cowardize, resolv'd, through all difficulties whatsoever, to be Conquerours: Accordingly at length they routed the Lacedemonians, and made a great Slaughter, and pursu'd those that fled, even close up to the Body of their Foot; who making up to them, the Horse return'd into the City. Hereupon Agis (not conceiving it now a fit time to besiege the City) incamp'd in Academia. The next Day, when the Athenians erected a Trophy, he drew out his Army in Battalia, and Challeng'd them to Battel. Upon which the Athenians march'd out, and drew up in a Body under the Walls. The Lacedemonians gave the Onset; but by reason of the showers of Darts, wherewith they were gall'd from the Walls, they were forc'd to draw off from the City. And, after great Devastations made in the rest of Attica, they return'd to Peloponesus.
As for Alcibiades, he sails with his whole Fleet, from Samos to Cuma, where under colour and pretence of feign'd Crimes, lay'd to the Charge of the Inhabitants, he wasts and spoils the Country. And at the first takes a great multitude of Prisoners, and forces them away to his Ships; but the Cumeans, with the whole Power of the City, made out against him, for the Defence and Rescue of their Country-men: Alcibiades for a while bore the Brunt, but being overcome by fresh Supplies, both out of the City, and from the Country, the Army was forc'd to fly to their Ships, and leave their Captives behind them.
Alcibiades, being much troubled to be thus baffled, sent for the Regiments from Mitylene, and drew up his Army against the City, challenging the Cumeans to a Battle. But none coming, forth, after many Devastations, he return'd to Mitylene: But the Cumeans sent to Athens, and put in their Bill against Alcibiades, in form of Law, for that he had wasted and spoiled, a Confederated City and Country, which had not in the least done them any Injury; and many other Accusations they brought against him: For some of the Garrison in Samos (bearing him a Grudge) pass'd over to Athens, and accus'd him in the Publick Assembly, that he was a secret Friend to the Lacedemonians, and kept a close and intimate Correspondence with Pharnabasus, for this very purpose; that when the War was ended, he might gain the Sovereignty of Athens. These Calumnies being easily credited by the Common People, the Glory of Alcibiades began to wain; and the rather by reason of his late Ill-success at Sea, and his Miscarriages at Cuma.
Henceforward the People of Athens began to be jealous of Alcibiades, and created ten other Commanders, Conon, Lysanias, Diomedon, Pericles, Erasmides, Aristocrates,Archestratus, Protomachus, Thrasybulus, and Aristogenes. From among these they chose out Conon to be Admiral; and forthwith sent him to Alcibiades, to demand the Fleet from him, who gave up his Charge accordingly; but not daring to return to Athens, sail'd only with one Ship to Padyen in Thrace. For, besides the Rage Page 336 of the Common People, he was afraid many Crimes would be laid to his charge; many (now he lay under the hatches) contriving how to load him with Accusations, and to upbraid him with his former Faults; the greatest of which was that concerning the Horses, for which there was set upon him a Mulct of Fifty Talents. For when Diomedes his Friend, lent him a Chariot with four Horses, to go along with him, to Olympia, when he subscrib'd his Name (as the Custom was) he affirm'd the Horses to be his own; and when he was Victor by that Chariot and Horses, he not only carry'd away the Glory, but detain'd the Horses from him that so friendly and kindly repos'd a Trust in him. Revolving therefore all these things in his Mind, he was afraid the Athenians, now they had an Advantage against him, would rip up all his former Miscarriages, and lay the greater load upon him. Therefore he banish'd himself.
Hermocrates kill'd at Syracuse, attempting to surprize it.
IN this Olympiad, the Synouris was added to the Olympian Games. And Plistonax, King of the Lacedemonians, died, when he had reign'd Fifty Years. To whom succeeded Pausanias, who Govern'd fourteen Years. The Inhabitants of Rhodes, out of Ialysus, Lindus and Camirus, Incorporated themselves into one City, now call'd Rhodes. Hermocrates the Syracusian, march'd out of Selinunte with his Forces to Himera, and Encamp'd in the Suburbs of that late ruin'd City. Where after he had by diligent Enquiry, found out in what place the Syracusians had their Post, he gather'd up the dead Bodies of the Syracusians, and put them in Chariots richly adorn'd, and sent them to Syracuse; and he himself accompany'd them, as far as it was lawful for a Banish'd Man to go, who was not to set a Foot within the Confines of the Country; and there he committed the Care of Conveying them to Syracuse to others. He did this to bring an Odium upon Diocles (who oppos'd his Return) for his Neglect in not Burying the Dead; and to regain the Good-will of the People to himself, for his Humanity.
When the Bodies were brought to the City, there arose a Dissention amongst the People. Diocles oppos'd the Burial of them, but the People were unanimously against him. At length it was resolv'd, That they should be bury'd, and the whole City grac'd the Solemnity with their Presence, and Diocles was Banish'd. However Hermocrates was never the nearer being Restor'd; for they were very jealous of him, that if ever he came into Authority, he would usurp the Sovereignty. When therefore he understood that for the present, it was to no purpose to strive against the Stream, he return'd to Selinunte: But not long after, being sent to some of his Faction, he hastens away with three thousand Armed Men, and marching through Geloa in the Night, comes to the Place before appointed, where all his Souldiers could not readily follow him; so that with a few he comes up to the Gate in Acridana; where he finds some of his Friends, who had before possess'd themselves of the Places; there he stay'd for the rest of his Men, who came slowly on, and at length joyn'd him. But the Design being discover'd, the Syracusians ran Arm'd into the Forum; where (a great multitude of People being got together) they kill'd Hermocrates, and the most of his Accomplices. The rest that escap'd (after they had cited them to Appear, in order for their several Tryals) they condemn'd to Banishment. Some therefore that were ill wounded, were by their Friends reported to be dead, to avoid the present Fury of the People. Amongst whom was Dionysius, who usurpt the Tyranny.
The Acts of Callicratides, the Lacedemonian General. The Fight at Sea in the Harbour at Mitylene, between Conon and Callicratides.
THUS things pass'd for this Year, at the close of which Antigenes was chosen Magistrate of Athens; and Manius Aemilius, and Caius Valerius, Roman Consuls. About this time Conon the Athenian Admiral, made up a Fleet of those Ships that lay at Samos, and sent for others from the Confederates; and having now got together a considerable Navy, he hasted away to fight the Enemy.
The Lacedemonians appointed Callicratides Admiral; Lysander being discharg'd of that Command for some time. This Callicratides was a very Young Man, of a Plain and Honest Mind, and an Innocent Conversation; not as yet tainted with the Vices and ill Manners of other Nations, and was highly esteem'd among the Spartans, for his Justice and Integrity; and every Man own'd, that he never swerv'd from the Rules of Justice, either in Publick or Private Affairs: But on the contrary, if at any time any offer'd to corrupt him with Bribes, he highly resented it, and punish'd them accordingly. Having now receiv'd his Commission, he sails to Ephesus, and there had the Fleet deliver'd up to him by Lysander; which with the rest that he got together from other parts, made up a Navy of an hundred and forty Sail. The Athenians then lay at Anchor at Delphinum in Chios: Against whom he made with his whole Fleet, and in his way besieg'd a Fort of the Athenians; the Garrison there, being about five hundred, were terrify'd at the greatness of the Navy, and surrender'd the Place upon Articles of Safe Conduct. Then Callicratides demolish'd the Fort, and sail'd against Teios; and surprizing the Place in the Night, got within the Walls, and sack'd the City. Passing thence to Lesbos, he lay with his Army before Methymna, wherein was an Athenian Garrison. At first he prevail'd little, tho' he press'd hard upon it with daily Assaults: But not long after, being let in by the Treachery of some within, he sack'd the City, but put none to the Sword, and restor'd the Place to the Methymneans. Things thus prosperously succeeding, he hasten'd to Mitylene, and committing the Heavy-Armed Men, to Thorax the Lacedemonian, commanded him to march with all speed with the Land-Army, whilst he himself made with the Fleet, to the Shoar. In the mean time Conon, the Athenian Admiral, so prepar'd his Fleet, (which consisted of seventy Sail) for a Sea-fight, that he excell'd all the Admirals that were ever before him. With these he came to the Aid of Methymna; but when he found it was taken, he lay with his Fleet at an Island, one of those call'd the Hundred Islands. About Break of day next Morning, when he discern'd the Enemy's Fleet making up to him, conceiving it not advisable to fight with a Fleet that was more than double his number, he resolv'd to sail off; and having snapt up some of the Enemy's Gallies by the way, determin'd to fight rather at Mitylene; concluding that if he were Conqueror, he could there pursue them with greater Advantage; and if he were Conquer'd, he had the Port near at hand, wherein to shelter himself. Upon this he Embarks all his Souldiers, and commands the Rowers to row but gently and slowly, that the Enemy might come up nearer to him. The Lacedemonians, the nearer they came, were more eager to press on, in confidence that they should overtake and destroy those that were behind in the Rear. But Conon, by degrees falling down behind the rest, the Commanders of the best of the Peloponesian Ships, pursu'd with all Eagerness. By this Means, the Rowers now wax'd faint, and were drawn away far from the rest of the Fleet: which Advantage being observ'd by Conon, and that they now approch'd near to Mitylene, he set up the Purple Flag from his own Ship, which was a Sign to the Officers to joyn Battle. Upon which the Athenians all at one time tack't suddenly about, and made upon the Enemy; and the whole Fleet, reiterated the Pean, and the Trumpets sounded a Charge.
Upon this sudden Change, the Peloponesians were amaz'd, and made what hast they could in this Extremity, to put themselves into a Line of Battle; but having so little time to tack about, they were in great Confusion; especially in regard the Ships, where their proper place was, which they had deserted, were so far behind. Conon therefore, improving the Opportunity put into his Hands, makes straight upon them; and before they could put themselves in Order of Battle, pierces some of their Ships through, and brushes off the Oars of others. But not one of those Ships that engag'd Page 338 on that Wing against Conon, stirr'd; but with their Oars revers'd, bravely kept still in one place, till their whole Fleet came up. But the left Wing of the Athenian Fleet put them (with whom they were engag'd) to flight, and hotly pursu'd them a long time. But when all the Peloponesian Fleet came up together, Conon considering the multitude of his Enemies, drew off, and with forty Ships return'd to Mitylene. In the mean time the whole Peloponesian Fleet, which had spread themselves every way, greatly amaz'd the Athenians (who had before pursu'd them that fled) and lying in their way to prevent their Return to the City, forc'd them upon Shoar; whither being closely pursu'd by the Peloponesians, the Athenians (seeing no other Remedy) forsook their Ships, and got to Land, and so fled to Mitylene.
Callicratides having thus possess'd himself of thirty Ships, and seeing that the Enemy's Fleet was now broken, concluded that for the future he was to fight upon Land; and therefore sail'd straight to the City. Upon which Conon expecting the City would be besieg'd, made what Preparation he could to block up the Mouth of the Haven. For in that part where it was shallow, he sunk small Vessels, loaden with Stones; where it was deep, he fill'd great Ships of burden with Stones, and sixt them with Anchors. The Athenians, and a great number of Mitylenes, out of the Country, flockt into the City through fear of the War, and forthwith prepar'd all things necessary for their Defence in the Siege.
And now Callicratides commanded his Men to Land, and incamp'd near the City, and there erects a Trophy for his Naval Victory. The next Day, with some of his best Ships, he made towards the City, with a Design both to enter the Port, and to break the Enemy's Boom; giving strict Command that none of them should be far from his own Ship. Conon on the other hand Mans the Smaller Gallies, with some of his Souldiers, and places them in the Mouth of the Haven in Front, against the Enemy, and puts on Board the longer Vessels the other part of his Army. Some likewise were order'd to guard the Shallows, that so the Port might be defended on every side, both by Sea and by Land: And he himself with his own Squadron, fought in that part which was open into the Harbour. They that were in the great Ships, pelted the Enemies with Stones from the Main-Yard: Those that were plac'd near the Shoar, oppos'd them that endeavour'd to Land. The Peloponesians all this while were nothing Inferior to their Enemies, in Courage and Resolution; for, Charging with their Ships in a full Body, and with the Best of thir Men upon the Decks, it resembled both a Fight at Sea and Land together: And they fell on with such Fury, that they even Dar'd to hurl themselves upon the Fore-Castles of the Athenian Ships; judging that they whom they had so lately beaten, were not able to stand the Shock. On the other hand, the Athenians and Mitylenes concluding there was no other hopes for Safety left but in Victory, resolv'd to die rather than to desert their Posts. This Obstinacy on both sides continu'd the Fight a long time; whilst every one, without the least Fear, expos'd himself to all manner of Dangers: Many upon the Decks, were sorely gall'd by showers of Darts on every hand: Some mortally wounded, fell from the Decks into the Sea; those that were yet untouch'd, or at least unsensible of their Wounds, were resolv'd notwithstanding to stand it out to the last. Many were kill'd by Stones cast down upon them from the Main-yards, which being both very big, and thrown from an high place, fell with the greater force and violence, At length, after the Fight had continu'd a long time, and many fell on both sides, Callicratides commanded a Retreat to be sounded, in order to refresh his Men: But not long after he puts them on board again, and renews the Fight. And after a long Conflict, by the multitude of his Ships (which overpower'd the Athenians) and Valour of those upon the Decks, he so far prevail'd, that he drave the Athenians from their Post: Upon which they fled into the inner part of the Harbour; and now the Passage being open, Callicratides casts Ancho• close to Mitylene: For, gaining the Place about which the Contest was, he was possess'd of the whole Harbour, which yet was out of the Walls of the City. For the Old City is a little Island, but that which is added of latter tim••, lies straight beyond into the Land: Between those two runs a certain Euripus, or Current of the Sea, by which the City is more strong and defensible. Callicratides therefore, having landed his Men, besieg the City, and begirt it on every side. And this was the Condition of Mitylene at this time.
Therma built in Sicily by the Carthaginians. They raise Forces to invade Italy. The noble Temple at Agrigentum. The ancient Grandeur of that City. The Riches of Gellias a Citizen there, and some others. Agrigentum besieg'd. The Syracusians under Daphneus rout the Carthaginians near Agrigentum. Imilcar seizes the Syracusian Fleet, and takes all the Provision going to Agrigentum, which was afterwards quit by the Inhabitants: Their miserable Condition. The Phalarian Bull.
IN Sicily the Syracusians sent Embassadors to Carthage, to complain of the late War made upon them, and to persuade them to Peace for the time to come. To which the Carthaginians return'd a doubtful Answer. In the mean time they raise again a numerous Army, and were unanimously resolv'd to do their utmost to subdue all the Cities of Sicily: But before they transported their Armies, having got together out of Carthage, and other Cities in Africa many that were willing to transplant themselves, they built a new City call'd Therma, near the hot Baths in Sicily.
The Affairs of this Year concluded; at Athens Callias was made chief Magistrate, and at Rome, Lucius Furius, and Cneius Pompeius were created Consuls. At this time the Carthaginians pusst up with their Successes in Sicily, and coveting the gaining of the whole Island, determin'd to that end, to raise a great Army; and thereof made Hannibal General (the same that had raz'd Selinunte and Himera) and invested him with full power for the management of the War. But because he endeavour'd to excuse himself by reason of his Age, they join'd Imilco in Commission with him, the Son of Hanno, one of the same Family. These Generals consulted together, and sent some eminent Carthaginians with great Sums of Money, to raise Souldiers both out of Spain and the Baleary Islands. They rais'd likewise throughout Lybia, Carthaginians and Africans, and out of every City such as were most able for War. There came likewise to them from the Nations and Princes of their Confederates Abroad, both Mauritanians and Numidians, and some from the Parts near to Cyrene. Besides these, there were transported into Africa, Campanians hired out of Italy. These Campanians they had experienc'd to be very useful to them, when those whom they had left in Sicily, by reason of some old Grudge they bore the Carthaginians, were suspected to be ready to side with the Sicilians. At length, when all the Forces together were mustered at Carthage, Timeus reports they were not much above an Hundred and Twenty Thousand Men; but Ephorns affirms that they were Three Hundred Thousand.
The Carthaginians now prepare all things necessary for the Transporting of the Army; they equipt out all their Men of War, and brought together no less than a Thousand Transport Ships. Forty of their Gallies were sent before into Sicily, which were presently encounter'd with as many by the Syracusians at Eryx, where after a long and sharp Dispute, Fifteen of the Carthaginian Ships were sunk, the rest by the advantage of Night fled clear away. When the News of this Defeat was brought to Carthage, Hannibal the General sail'd away with Fifty Gallies, contriving both to make the Enemy's Victory fruitless, and the better likewise to secure the transport of his Army. When the coming of Hannibal was nois'd through the Island, all were of Opinion that he intended forthwith to transport all his Forces thither: Upon which, all the Cities (hearing of the greatness of his Preparations, and that they were now like to lay all at stake) were struck with fear and amazement. The Syracusians therefore sent Embassadors both to the Grecians in Italy, and to the Lacedemonians, to desire aid and assistance. They sent Letters likewise to all the Magistrates of the Cities up and down, to intreat them that they would stir up the People to join every where in Arms for the common Defence of the Liberty of their Country. The Agrigentines considering the greatness of the CarthaginianPage 340 Army, concluded (as the thing was in truth) that they were likeliest first to feel and undergo the pressure and weight of the War; and therefore determin'd that all the Corn and other Fruits of the Field, and every thing else that was valuable, should be brought out of the Country into the City: For at that time both the City and Country of the Agrigentines were very rich; of which it will not be inconvenient to say something here more largely. Their Vineyards were large and very pleasant, and most part of the Country abounded with Olives, so much as that they were transported and sold at Carthage. For inasmuch as Africa at that time was not planted with this sort of Fruit, the Agrigentines grew very rich by their Trading with the Lybians. Many Marks of their great Wealth remain to this very Day; to speak a little of which, I conceive will not be a digression from the present Subject.
And First, The stately. Buildings and Ornaments of their Temples, especially the Temple of Jupiter, do sufficiently witness the Grandeur and Riches of the Men of that Age. The rest of the Sacred Buildings, are either burnt or destroy'd by the frequent Stormings of that City. When the Temple of Jupiter Olympus was near to the laying on the Roof, a stop was put to the Building by the War; and the City being afterwards sackt, the Agrigentines were never able (from that time to this Day) to finish it. This Temple at Agrigentum was Three Hundred and Forty Foot in length, Threescore in breadth, and in height (besides the Foundation,) an Hundred and Twenty. It's the greatest in the Island, and for the largeness of its Foundation, may compare with any other elsewhere: For though the Design was never finished, yet the ancient Platform is still visible; for whereas some build up their Temples only with Walls, or compass them round with Pillars, this is built both with the one and the other; for together with the Walls, there rise lofty Pillars round on the outside of the Wall, and Foursquare within. The Compass of every one of these Pillars on the outside, are Twenty Foot, and so far distant one from another, as that a Man may well stand between each; within they are of the compass of Twelve Foot. The largeness and height of the Portico's are wonderful; on the East Side of which, is carv'd the Giants War; of exquisite and incomparable Workmanship. On the West Side is carv'd the Destruction of Troy, where may be seen all the brave Heroes and Commanders in their proper Habits, most admirably represented. In those former times likewise there was a Pond out of the Walls of the City cut by Art, Seven Furlongs in Compass and Twenty Cubits in depth: Into this, with wonderful Art, were drawn Currents of Water, by which they were abundantly supply'd with all sorts of Fish ready for their use, at all publick Entertainments. Upon this Pond likewise fell Multitudes of Swans and other Fowl which entertain'd the Spectators with great Delight.
The Grandeur of the City was likewise apparent, by the stateliness of the Sepulchers, some of which were adorn'd with the charging Horses of the Heroes there interr'd; others with those little Birds that the Children, both Girls and Boys fed and bred up in their Parents Houses. All which, Timeus affirms he saw in his time. In the Ninety Second Olympiad there were no less than Three Hundred Chariots of Agrigentum all with white Horses, that attended upon Exenetus, the Victor at the Olypmick Games, and brought him mounted in a stately Chariot with great Pomp into the City. Their nice and delicate way of Living (till it came to their very Children) both as to their Food and Raiment, was to that degree, that they wore Garments of Cloth of Gold, and had their Water-Pots and Boxes of Ointment, of Gold and Silver. There was one Gellias the Richest Man of all the Agrigentines, at that time, who built several Rooms for publick Entertainment in his own House, and plac'd Porters at his Gates, charging them to invite all Strangers that pass'd by, to come in to be his Guests. Many others of the Agrigentines imitated his Example, who made it their business (after the ancient manner) to converse freely and courteously with them they thus invited. And therefore Empedocles says thus of them—
Page 341 It happen'd once, that Five Hundred Gelonian Horsemen came to his House in Winter-time; whom he liberally entertain'd, and furnish'd every one of 'em out of his Wardrobe with Cloaks and Coats. Polyclitus in his History declares, that when he was a Souldier in Agrigentum, he saw a Wine-Cellar in his House, in which were contain'd Three Hundred great Vessels cut out of one and the same Rock, each of which receiv'd an Hundred Hogsheads. And that near to these was plac'd a Cistern of pure white temper'd Mortar, containing a Thousand Hogsheads, out of which the Liquor ran into the Vessels. It's said that this Gellias was of a very mean Presence, but of admirable Parts and Ingenuity. Being once sent an Embassador to the Centuripines; when he enter'd into the Assembly, all the People fell a Laughing, seeing the mean Aspect of the Man, so disagreeable to his great Fame and Reputation in the World. Upon which, he made this sharp Retort, That what they saw in him was not to be wonder'd at, because the Agrigentines always send the comliest and handsomest Men to the noblest Cities, but to those that were mean and of little note such as himself.
And not only Gellias, but likewise many other Agrigentines were very rich. Antisthenes surnam'd Rhodes, at the Marriage of his Daughter, feasted all the Citizens through every Street, and procur'd above Eight Hundred Chariots to attend upon the Bride: And not only Horsemen out of the City, but many who were invited out of the Country, went before the new Marry'd Lady in great Pomp and Splendour. To add to the Solemnity of the Day, there were great Preparations for Illuminations in the City; for he order'd that as soon as they saw a Flame of Fire upon the top of the Castle, the Altars in all the Temples, and the Piles of Wood in all the Streets, and the Fewel he had prepar'd and provided in the Taverns, should be kindled together all at the same moment: Whose Command being observ'd at the very same instant, when the Bride was led forth by a Multitude that bore Torches before her, the whole City was as it were in a Flame, and the common Streets and Ways of the City were not able to contain those that attended at this Solemnity; all were so zealous to further and incourage the Gallantry and Magnificence of the Man. At that time there were more than Twenty Thousand Citizens of Agrigentum; but taking in Strangers with them, they were no less than Two Hundred Thousand.
It is reported of Antisthenes, when he saw his Son pressing upon a poor Man his Neighbour, and would force him to sell a little Spot of Land to him, he chid his Son, and advis'd him to forbear a while; but his covetous Desire encreasing the more, he told him he should not strive to make his Neighbour Poor, but rather desire he should become Rich; for being Rich, he would covet a greater piece of Land, which when he was not able to pay for lack of ready Money, he would be content to raise Money by the Sail of that which he then had.
In short, the Excess and Luxury of the Agrigentines, by reason of their Riches was such, that not long after, in the very height of the Siege, which ended in the Sacking of the City, a Decree was made, that none of them that were upon the Guard in the Night, should have above a Bed, a Tent, a Woollen Mantle and Two Pillows. When this seem'd a hard Law, and disturbance to their Ease and Repose, we may easily judge how soft and luxurious they were in all other things. As we were not willing to let these things pass altogether, so we shall now break off, lest we omit things more useful and necessary.
The Carthaginians having landed their Forces in Sicily, marcht straight against the Agrigentines, and divided their Army into Two Parts, and incamp'd in Two several Places; one Camp was upon certain Hills, where were plac'd Forty Thousand Spaniards and Africans; the other was near the City, fortify'd with a deep Trench and a Wall. At the first they sent Embassadors to the Agrigentines, to invite them to join with them as Confederates, and if they did not approve of that, then that they would be neuters, and enter into League of Peace and Amity with the Carthaginians. When both Offers were rejected, they forthwith press'd on the Siege with all Vigour. Upon this, the Agrigentines listed all that were able to bear Arms, and marshall'd them, some of which they plac'd upon the Walls, and others were appointed as Reserves to relieve Page 342 their Fellows as occasion offered. Dexippus the Lacedemonian was the Man that directed them in all things, who was lately come to their Assistance with Five Hundred Souldiers from Gela: For he liv'd about that time (as Timeus relates) at Gela, in great Esteem for the sake of his Country: And therefore Application was made to him by them of Agragentum, that he would hire as many Souldiers as possibly he could, and come to their Relief: Besides these, they hir'd Eight Hundred Campanians who had formerly serv'd under Imilcar. These kept the Hill Athenea which lay over, and commanded the City, a very commodious Post.
Imilcar and Hannibal the Carthaginian Generals having view'd the Walls, and found out a Place where it was most easie to enter, brought Two Towers of incredible bigness against the City: The first Day out of these they made an Assault, and after they had kill'd and cut off many of the Citizens, sounded a Retreat. The next Night the Besieg'd made a Sally and burnt the Engines: But Hannibal intending to assault the Town in several Places at once, commanded his Souldiers to pull down all the Monuments and Tombs, and with the Rubbish to raise Mounts as high as the Walls, which was presently done, forwarded by so great a Multitude. But then a sudden Pang of Religion seiz'd upon the Army; for Thero's Monument (a large and stately Structure) was beaten down by a Thunderbolt, which by the advice of some of the Soothsayers then present, put a stop to the perfecting of the Design, and forthwith the Plague broke out in the Army, by which many were destroyed in a short time, and not a few seiz'd with tormenting and miserable Pains, among whom Hannibal himself perish'd. Some that were upon the Watch, reported they saw in the Night, the Apparitions of them that were dead. Upon this, Imilcar seeing the Souldiers were possess'd with the fear and awe of the Gods, first forbore to demolish the Sepulchers: Afterwards he made (according to the Custom of his Country) Supplications to the Deities, and sacrific'd a Boy to Saturn, and threw a Company of Priests into the Sea, as a Sacrifice to Neptune. Notwithstanding all this, Imilcar forsook not the Siege, but choaking up the River with Rubbish close to the Walls, brought up his Engines, and renew'd his Assaults every Day.
In the mean time, the Syracusians weighing the Condition of the Agrigentines, and fearing lest they should undergo the same Fate with them of Himera and Selinunte, were desirous to send them aid; And to that end having encreas'd their Army by the Forces of their Confederates from Italy and Messina, they made Daphneus General, and having mustered the Army, they set forwards, and in their March were join'd by the Camarineans, Geleans, and some others out of the heart of the Country, and all marcht strait for Agrigentum, having a Fleet of Thirty Gallies, which sail'd all along over against them near the Shoar. Daphneus had with him above Thirty Thousand Foot, and no less than Five Thousand Horse. Imilcar upon intelligence of the approach of the Enemy, sent forth against them the Iberians and Campanians, and no less than Forty Thousand out of the rest of the Army. When the Syracusians had pass'd the River Himera, they were met by the Barbarians: Upon which, Battel was join'd, and after the Dispute had continu'd a long time, at length the Syracusians got the Day, who routed the whole Army, with the Slaughter of above Six Thousand Men, and pursu'd the rest to the very City. But the Syracusian General perceiving his Men to be in disorder and confusion by their Pursuit, began to fear lest Imilcar breaking in upon them with the rest of his Army should recover the Day; for he remembred how Himereus had formerly lost all by such an Oversight. The Barbarians flying into that part of the Camp which lay nearest to Agrigentum, the Besieged concluded they were beaten and fled, and therefore earnestly desir'd their Commanders that they would lead them forth, crying out, Now was the time come for the utter ruin and destruction of their Enemies. But the Officers (whether corrupted by Money (as it was reported) or possess'd with fear lest Imilcar should slip into the Town when the Souldiers were gone forth) would not stir, but commanded the Souldiers to abide within the Town; by which means they that fled, came safe into the Camp. But Daphneus march'd forward, and incamp'd in the place where the Enemy before lay; to whom flockt presently the Souldiers out of the Town with Dexippus, and forthwith a Council of War was held, where all shew'd themselves very uneasie and discontented, Page 343 that the opportunity was neglected in taking full. Revenge of the Conquer'd Barbarians, and that their Officers when they might have so easily destroy'd them by a Sally out of the Town, had suffer'd so many Ten Thousands clearly to escape. Hereupon a Tumult arising in the Assembly with a great noise and clamour, one Menes a Camarinean, one of the Officers, stood up, and accused the Commanders of Agrigentum to such a degree, that he so exasperated the whole Assembly, that they that were accus'd, could not be heard to speak for themselves; but Four of them were out of hand ston'd by the inraged Multitude. The Fifth call'd Argeus, in favour of his Youth, was discharged. Dexippus likewise the Lacedemonian was ill spoken of, that he who was General of so considerable a Body of Men, and ever esteem'd a Man more expert in Martial Affairs than most others, should carry it so basely and treacherously. After the Council was broke up, Daphneus endeavour'd to force the Carthaginians Camp; but discerning it to be excellently well Fortify'd, drew off. Then he blockt up all the Passages with his Horse, intercepted the Forragers, and prevented all Provision being brought in to the Enemy, whereby they were reduc'd to great straits and necessities; for not daring to ingage, and yet in the mean time starving for want of Bread, their Misery was the greater, and many were famish'd to Death.
Upon this, the Campanians, and almost all the rest of the Mercenaries in a Body came to Imilcar's Tent, to demand their allowance of Bread, and threatned to fall off to the Enemy if they had it not. But Imilcar being inform'd that the Syracusians had loaded their Ships with abundance of Corn for Agrigentum (upon which he rely'd as his last shift) persuaded the Souldiers to be patient a few Days, and in the mean time, pawn'd to them the drinking Vessels of the Carthaginian Souldiers: Hereupon he sent for Forty Gallies from Panormus and Motya, and lay in wait for the Ships that brought the Provision. For the Syracusians never suspected the Carthaginians durst appear at Sea, being now Winter, and who had some time before lost their Power and Dominion there. Therefore sailing on with great assurance, they were on a sudden attack'd by Imilcar, with Forty Sail; who presently sunk Eight of their Ships, and drave the rest upon the Shoar: All which being thus taken, the Scene of Affairs was so chang'd on both sides, that the Campanians that were with the Agrigentines (perceiving the desperate Condition of the Grecians) corrupted with Fifteen Talents, fell away to the Carthaginians. Besides, the Agrigentines at the beginning of the Siege, when things went ill with the Carthaginians, were very profuse and prodigal, both in their Corn and other things, and therefore when the Affairs of the Barbarians were much alter'd to their advantage, the Besieg'd (being so many Thousands penn'd up together) were insensibly and by degrees brought into great want. It's reported that Dexippus the Lacedemonian also was brib'd with Fifteen Talents; for he on a sudden told the Italian Commanders, that it was better to withdraw, and carry on the War in some other Place, for here they were likely to be starv'd. The Officers therefore considering of what he had said, march'd away with the Army to the Sea, as if now the time limited by their Commissions had been determin'd.
After their departure, the Generals with the other Officers met in a Council of War, and ordered that an Account should be taken what Provision was left in the City; and when a Return was made of the Scarcity, they saw it was absolutely necessary to quit the Place; whereupon they commanded all to be ready to be gone the next Night. Upon this, there was a lamentable outcry in every House throughout the whole City, of Men, Women and Children, being in a distraction through fear and dread of the Enemy on the one hand, and care of their Goods and Estates on the other, which now they must be forc'd in a great measure to leave to the Rapine of the Barbarians, and as an aggravation, being those very things wherein a little before they plac'd their happiness. However, at length, seeing that Fortune had stript them of all their Riches, they judg'd it was wisdom to do what they could to save their Lives. Then might be seen not only the mighty wealth of a flourishing City forsaken, but also a multitude of miserable People left behind; for those that were sick and infirm, were disregarded by them of their own Family, whilst every one sought to preserve himself; and those that through Old Age could Page 344 not remove, were in the like condition. Many that preferr'd Death before the leaving of their Country, kill'd themselves, chusing rather to dye in their own Houses. But that multitude of People that did go forth, were guarded by the Souldiers to Gela, so that all the Ways and Country towards Gela, swarm'd with a promiscuous multitude of Women and Children; amongst whom, were young Ladies, who though they had now chang'd their former soft and delicate way of Living, into the fatigues and sorrows of tedious Journeys, yet being quickned and stirr'd up by fear, bore all Difficulties with eminent Patience. They all came at length safe to Gela; and afterwards Leontium was given to them by the Syracusians to inhabit.
Imilcar entring the City with his Army, not without some fear and jealousie, kill'd almost all he found in it, not sparing those that fled into the Temples for refuge, but haling of them from the Altars, slew them with great cruelty. There (its said) Gellias, who was so eminent above the rest of his Countrymen, in the greatness of his Wealth, and integrity of his Conversation, ended his Life with the Loss of his Country: For he with some others fled to the Temple of Minerva, hoping the Carthaginians would not commit any outrages against the Gods: But when he perceiv'd the cursed Impiety of the Men, he set Fire to the Temple, and together with the Wealth that was there (consecrated to the Gods) burnt himself; by one act preventing Three Evils as he conceiv'd; the Impiety of the Enemy against the Gods, the Rapine and Plunder of the vast Treasure that was there, and (that which was the greatest) the abuse of his own Body.
Imilcar having spoil'd and plunder'd all Places both Religious and Prophane, got together from the Spoil so much Riches as a City that had been inhabited by Two Hundred Thousand Men, and never taken before since it was built; and that was the richest of all the Grecian Cities, might by an easie Computation in that time heap together; especially since the Citizens made it their business to be stately and magnificent in a wonderful manner in every thing they undertook: For many curious Pictures drawn with admirable Art, and an infinite number of Statues of all sorts, cut and wrought with singular ingenuity, were found here by the Conqueror. The best and choicest things (among which was the Phalarian Bull) he sent to Carthage; the rest of the Spoil he caus'd to be sold under the Spear. Timeus in his History, with great earnestness denies that there ever was any such Bull, when as Fortune since has disprov'd him; for Scipio Africanus Two Hundred and Threescore Years after this destruction when Carthage was raz'd, amongst other things which were then at Carthage, restor'd that famous Bull to the Agrigentines, which remains at Agrigentum now at the time of the writing of this History; of which I have been the more desirous to speak, because Timeus with much bitterness inveighs against the Historians that were before him as altogether unpardonable; and yet he himself in those things wherein he most pretends an earnest and diligent search after Truth, does nothing but meerly trifle; for in my Opinion we ought to have a favourable regard and respect to those Authors we differ from, because they are but Men, and the truth of things that are long before past, are not easie to be discover'd. On the other Hand, those Writers that are careless and negligent in their Inquiries, are justly to be censur'd; and those especially may be well judg'd regardless of Truth, who make it their Business to flatter some, and out of Envy to cast Dirt upon others.
The Syracusian Officers accus'd. Dionysius made General of the Syracusians. He moves to have the Exiles recall'd. He's invested with the sole Command. At length by several Artifices gains the Sovereignty.
IMilcar having gain'd the City after Eight Months Siege, a little before the Winter Solstice, did not presently sack it, to the end the Souldiers might quarter there all the Winter. When the ruin of Agrigentum was nois'd Abroad, the whole Island was struck with such Terror, that some of the Sicylians fled to Syracuse, and others transported themselves, their Wives, Children and Moveables into Italy. When the Agrigentines that had escap'd, came to Syracuse, they accus'd the Commanders, affirming that they had betrayed their Country into the Enemies Hand; but the Syracusians cast the blame upon the other Sicilians, because they chose such a sort of Officers who endanger'd the loss of all Sicily by their Treachery.
But when a Senate was call'd at Syracuse, they were in such a Consternation as none durst move or advise any thing concerning the War. And being all thus at a stand Dionysius the Son of Hermocrates renew'd the Accusation against the Officers, That they had Betrayed Agrigentum to the Carthaginians, and stirred up the People forthwith to take Revenge, and not to wait for Formalities of Law in execution of Justice. But Dionysius being Fin'd according to Law by the Magistrates as a disturber of the publick Peace, Philistus (who afterwards writ a History, a very rich Man) paid the Fine for him, and bid him speak his Mind freely, and promis'd him to pay whatever was impos'd upon him, if they fin'd him all the Day long.
Dionysius being thus encouraged, he stirr'd up the People, and fill'd the Assembly with Tumult by his Criminations, charging the Commanders, that for Bribes they had drawn off and forsaken the Agrigentines. He accus'd likewise many others of the best of the Citizens, traducing them that they aim'd to introduce an Oligarchy; and told the Senate, That Commanders were not to be chosen according to their greatness in Power, but according to the Good Will and Regard they bore towards the People: For the Great Ones Lording it over them, had them in Contempt, and inrich'd themselves by the Losses of their Country; but Men of Low Fortunes never attempt any thing of such a nature, knowing their own disability.
When he had spoken what he had design'd, and so agreeable to the Humour of the People, he set all the Assembly on a Flame; for the People before bore a secret Hatred to the Commanders, because they were suspected to have dealt falsly in the management of the War, and now being the more exasperated by the Speech of Dionysius, they forthwith depriv'd them of their Commands, and chose others in their room, amongst whom was Dionysius, a Man of great Esteem and Reputation with the Syracusians, for his approved Valour in several Battles against the Carthaginians.
Having gain'd this step of Preferment, he contriv'd all ways imaginable how to advance to the Sovereign Power over his Country; for after he was invested with the Command, he never associated with the other Commanders, nor join'd with them in any Council of War. In the mean time he caus'd Rumours to be spread Abroad, that they kept secret Correspondence with the Enemy, hoping thereby to get them laid aside, and so to have the sole Command of the Army lodg'd in himself. While he was executing these Projects, the most prudent Citizens suspected him, and every Assembly gave very hard and ill Words. On the other hand, the common People ignorant of his Deceit and Fraud, prais'd every thing he did, and published every where, that now at length they had got a faithful and constant Guardian and Defender of the City.
Page 346 The Consults concerning Preparations for War being very frequent, and Dionysius discerning that the Syracusians were in a great Fright, he advised to recall the Exiles: For he said it was a very absurd thing to receive Aids of Strangers from Italy and Peloponesus, and yet to be backward in making use of their own Countrymen to withstand the common Danger, who are solicited by the Enemy with great Promises of Reward to join with them, and yet are content to wander up and down amongst Strangers, and dye rather than do any thing prejudical to their Country. For though they were Banish'd for stirring up Sedition in the City, yet such kindness shew'd 'em, would in gratitude oblige them to fight chearfully for their Country. When he had spoken many things to this purpose, he at length procur'd the Suffrages of the People; for none of his Collegues durst contradict him, for that they both fear'd the Rage of the People, and likewise plainly saw, that nothing would redound thence, but hatred to themselves, and more love and favour to him.
Dionysius did this, for that he look'd upon the Exiles to be Men fit for his purpose, such as were given to change, and therefore ready Tools to make use of to serve his Ambition; who would delight to see their Enemies Throats cut, their Goods and Estates confiscate, and themselves restor'd. The Decree therefore for the recalling the Banish'd being publish'd, they presently return'd.
And now Letters coming from Gela, to desire Assistance to be speedily sent them, Dionysius made use of this fair opportunity for the carrying on his Design; for he forthwith marched to Gela with Two Thousand Foot, and Four Hundred Horse, where Dexippus the Lacedemonian was Governor, with a strong Garrison: When he found the City in a Seditious Uproar rais'd by some against the People, he condemns them that were accus'd in a Publick Assembly, puts them to Death, and confiscates their Estates, and with part of the Mony paid the Souldiers, that were in Garrison under Dexippus, all their old Arrears, and the rest he distributed amongst the Souldiers that came with him from Syracuse, declaring their Pay order'd by the City should be double. By this means he wan both the Hearts of the Souldiers at Gela, and of those that went with him thither. The Geleans likewise cry'd him up to the Skies, as one that had freed them from Slavery: So that out of Envy to the great Men of the City, they decreed the Supream Power to Dionysius: Upon which, they sent Ambassadors to Syracuse to publish there his Praises, and likewise to shew the Decrees of the City, by which they had honour'd him with many marks of respect.
In the mean time Dionysius endeavour'd to bring over Dexippus into his Councils, but not being able to prevail, he determin'd to return to Syracuse with all his Forces. But the Geleans hearing that the Carthaginians had determin'd to set upon their City with their whole Power before any other, earnestly intreated Dionysius that he would not leave them, nor suffer their City to undergo the same Calamity with them of Agrigentum. To whom he promis'd to return in a short time with greater Forces; and so left Gela.
Afterwards when the People came from the Theater from the Plays, Dionysius at that very Hour return'd into Syracuse; whereupon the Citizens came thronging about him, and inquir'd what News he brought concerning the Carthaginians: To whom he answer'd,
That he had nothing to say of them, in regard their own Officers and Governors were more mischievous to the Commonwealth than the Enemies themselves; for whilst the Citizens led away by their Flatteries, were diverted with Sports and Plays, they themselves impoverished the Commonwealth, and defrauded the Souldiers of their Pay. And now, that the Enemy at this very time, is making incredible Preparation for War, and are even upon the Borders of Syracuse, with a mighty Army, yet it is not at all by them regarded. To what end they acted thus, he suspected long since, but now he saw clearly their Drift. For Imilcar (he said) had sent by an Herald to him, pretending to redeem some Captives, but in truth secretly to persuade him not to use that Authority he had, to pry too narrowly into things that were in doing, or at least not to obstruct them, if he was not willing to join in the Execution. Therefore he declar'd he was not willing any longer to be General, but Page 347 was ready to lay down his Commission. For it was altogether intollerable that he only should hazard the loss of all he had with the rest of the Citizens, whilst others made Merchandize of their Country: Yea, by this means, he should become Partaker with them in their Treachery.
The People being inrag'd by what he had said, and his Words divulg'd through the whole Army, every one went to his own House, in great fear and perplexity.
The next Day an Assembly was called, where he loaded his Fellow Commanders with many Accusations; and by stirring up the People against them, greatly advanced his own Reputation. At length some in the Assembly cry'd out, to make him Generalissimo; and not to have the thing to be done when the Enemy was even Battering the Walls; alledging that the greatness of the War requir'd a General that was able to do eminent Service for the Commonwealth. And for the Traitors, it was better to inquire of them in another Assembly hereafter; being now it was not so agreeable to the present posture of Affairs. It was also remembred, that heretofore, when Gelon had sole the Command, they had overcome Three Hundred Thousand Carthaginians.
Upon this, the People (who are always apt to close with the worst Advice) suddenly made Dionysius General with sole and absolute Power.
After things thus succeeded according to his Hearts Desire, he sign'd an Order, that the Souldiers should receive double Pay; alledging, that hereby they would be encouraged to fight more readily and chearfully; and bid the Syracusians not trouble or disturb themselves about Money, for there would be ways readily found out to bring in sufficient Supplies. But when the Assembly was broken up, there were many of the Syracusians that condemn'd what was done, as if they had had no hand in confirming it: For after they had more seriously considered the thing, they foresaw Tyranny would follow. Thus while they sought after Freedom, they most imprudently plac'd a Tyrant over their Country.
Dionysius therefore to prevent the change of the Peoples Minds, began to contrive how he might procure a Guard for his Person: If he could gain this point, he concluded he could easily fix himself in the Sovereignty. Upon this, he commanded all that were able to bear Arms, not above Forty Years of Age, with Thirty Days Provision and their Arms, to march to the City Leontium: For this City was a Garrison belonging to the Syracusians, full of Strangers and Exiles; whom he hop'd would be assistant to him, being Men given to Innovations; and to this he was the more encouraged, for that he knew but few of the Syracusians would be there. For the better effecting of this Design, he encamp'd all Night in the Field; and as he lay there, he feign'd a Plot against his own Person, and caus'd a great Noise and Clamour to be made by his Servants and Attendants, upon which he fled to the Castle: Where after he had kindled several Fires, he sent for a strong Guard, and so pass'd that Night.
As soon as it was Day, and the Multitude were got together into the City, he used many probable Arguments suted to the matter in Hand, and brought over the People to give him liberty to chuse Six Hundred Men, such as he thought best for his Guard. And herein Dionysius is said to imitate Pisistratus the Athenian, for he wilfully wounding himself (as if he had been assaulted by Treachery) came forthwith into the Assembly, and by that means (as it's reported) got a Guard from the Citizens, by whose help he gain'd the Supream Authority.
By the same Fraud, Dionysius cheating the People, became absolute Lord and Master over his Country; for he presently chose above a Thousand Men, such as were strong in Body, and low in Purse, and put them in Arms, and encouraged them with many large and glorious Promises. Then he brought all the Mercenary Souldiers to an intire Observance, and Obedience to him, by his winning and courteous Speeches. He made an alteration likewise in the Regiments, giving Commissions to them that he could most trust. Then he sent away Dexippus the Lacedemonian into Greece, for he suspected him, lest he should become an Head to the Syracusians, in case they should take an occasion Page 348 to seek to recover their Liberty. And now he sends for the Mercenaries from Gela, and gets together from every Place, all the Exiles and Lewd Fellows, not doubting but by the help of these to establish himself in the Kingdom.
After his Return to Syracuse, when he had lodg'd his Forces in the Arsenal, he openly declar'd himself King: The Syracusians took this grievously, but were necessitated to be silent, because it was not in their power to do any thing else: For the whole City was full of Strangers that were in Arms, and all were in fear of the Carthaginians, who had a vast Army near at Hand.
Dionysius now presently marries the Daughter of Hermocrates (he who had routed the Athenians in Sicily) and gave his own Sister in Marriage to Polyxenus, Hermocrates his Brother in Law. This he did to strengthen himself, by matching into an Honourable Family. After this, he summon'd a General Council, and contrived all ways imaginable, how to be rid of Daphneus and Demarchus, the most powerful of all his Adversaries.
Thus Dionysius from a Scrivener, and a Man of poor and mean Abstract, got the Sovereignty of the greatest City among the Grecians, and maintain'd his Dominion all the Days of his Life for the space of Thirty Eight Years. What things he afterwards did, and how he inlarged his Dominion, we shall relate in its proper Place: For very probably he gain'd the largest Dominion, and of the longest continuance of any that ever hath been compass'd by Usurpation.
After the Taking of the City Agrigentum, the Carthaginians transported to Carthage all the dedicated things laid up in the Temples, the Statues and Things of greatest value; and having burnt all the Temples to Ashes, and plunder'd the City, they quarter'd there all Winter: And in the mean time furnish'd themselves with Engines and all sorts of Weapons, with a Design to Besiege Gela, the first thing they did the next Spring.
The Famous Battle of Arginuse at Sea, wherein the Athenians, were Victors. The Officers accus'd for not Burying the Dead. The Speech of Diomedon. The Death of Sophocles.
THE Athenians weaken'd with continual Losses, made all Strangers and Foreigners Free of their City that would engage with them in the War. When a great multitude were Incorporated into the City, the Commanders Listed all that were fit for War, Equip'd out of a Fleet of Sixty Sail, with which (every way well provided) they sail'd to Samos, where they found other Commanders, who had brought together Fourscore more Gallies from other Islands; and having procured ten more from the Samians, they weighed Anchor, and made with their whole Fleet (consisting of an Hundred and Fifty Sail) to the Islands Arginuse, with a Design to raise the Siege at Mitylene. But Callicratides, the Lacedemonian General, having Intelligence of the Approach of the Enemy, left Etonicus with a great Force, to maintain the Siege, and sail'd himself with all Speed, with a Fleet of one Hundred and forty Sail, well Man'd, to Arginuse. These Islands were then inhabited, and had a little Town in them Peopl'd by the Eolians. They lye between Mitylene and Cuma, near to the Continent and the Promontory Catanides. The Athenians, in regard their Navy, lay not far from thence, heard time enough of the Advance of the Enemy's Fleet: yet because the Wind was very high, they wav'd fighting that day, and prepar'd to engage the next. The like did the Lacedemonians; for the Augures on both sides disswaded each from fighting. For the Head of the Lacedemonians Sacrifice, being laid upon the Shore, was suddainly wash'd away by the violence of the Waves. Upon Page 349 which the Priest foretold the death of the Admiral: To which it is reported Callicratides made Answer, That the Glory of Sparta would not be obscur'd by his Death. Thrasybulus likewise, the Athenians Admiral, who had the Chief Command that Day, had this Dream; the Night before, he dreamt that he, and six other Commanders, in a full Theater at Athens, acted the Tragedy of Euripides, call'd Phenissa, and that the Enemies acted that call'd The Suppliants; and that at length he obtain'd a Cadmean Victory, and all of them were kill'd, like those at the Siege of Thebes: which when the Sooth-sayer heard, he interpreted it, That seven of the Chief Commanders should fall in the Fight. But in regard that the Intrails portended Victory, they commanded nothing should be said of their Deaths, but only to their Friends; but that they should publish abroad to the whole Army, that Victory was certainly promis'd by the View of the Sacrifices.
Then Callicratides calling the Souldiers together, made a Speech to them suited to the Occasion; and further added,
I am so chearful and ready to undergo all hazards for the sake of my Country, that altho' the Augur has foretold my Death, by the Portents of the Sacrifice; yet inasmuch as he has also pronounc'd assured Victory to You, I am impatient of delay, and ready and willing presently to die. And that the Army may not be disturb'd, and in confusion by the Death of their Admiral, I now appoint another, who may succeed me, in case I fall; and that is Clearchus, a Man known to be an experienc'd good Souldier.
Callicratides stirr'd up many with these words, to imitate his Valour, and to hasten the Battle. The Lacedemonians now encouraging one another, imbarqu'd; so likewise the Athenians (hearten'd by their Officers) went aboard, and every one plac'd themselves according to their Squadrons. Thrasybulus and Pericles commanded the Right Wing, (this was Pericles the Son of that Pericles, the Famous Orator, whose Surname was Olympus.) But the Command of part of this Wing he deliver'd to Theramenes, who was at first but a Common Souldier, but afterwards at several times, commanded considerable Forces: the rest of the Officers he plac'd in their Order throughout the whole Fleet; and compassing the Islands call'd Arginuse, he drew out his Fleet in a Line, as long as possibly he could. On the other side, Callicratides advancing into the open Sea, commanded the Right Wing: The Beotians were in the Left, commanded by Thrasonidas the Theban. But when they saw that they could not reach to equal the Line of the Enemy, because the Islands stretcht out so far, he divided his Navy into two parts, and fought in two places. This amaz'd the Beholders from all parts, as if four Fleets, with no less than three hundred Sail, close together, were hotly engag'd. For this was the greatest Sea-Fight that ever was fought, by Grecians against Grecians, that any History commemorates. And now at one instant all the Trumpets were commanded by the Admirals to sound a Charge, and the Armies on both sides set up great Shouts in their turns, one against another, and plying their Oars with great heat and earnestness, every one strove who should be the first in making the Onset. For there were many, that by reason of the long continuance of the War, were well instructed for Fights at Sea; and the Battle was very hot and obstinate on both sides, in regard the Best and Stoutest Men were got together to fight, in order to get or lose all at once: For none doubted but this Battle would put an end to the War, which side soever got the Victory. But Callicratides, knowing by the Predictions of the Augurs, that he was to die, endeavour'd to make his Death Honourable and Glorious. Therefore he made up fiercely upon the Gallies of Nausias, the Vice-Admiral, whom he sunk, with those next to him, at the first Charge; others he disabled, striking them through with the Beaks of his Ships, and others he made useless for Fight, by brushing off their Oars. At length he struck the Ship of Pericles with such violence, that he tore off one great part from another. But the Fore-part of his own Ship was so fix'd by the Fierceness of the Stroak in the Prow of his Enemies Ship, that he could not clear himself off: Upon which Pericles cast Grappling-Irons into Callicratides his Vessel, and so forc'd him up close side to side; and thereupon the Athenians in a great Body, boarded him, and put all in the Ship to the Sword. Here it is reported, that Callicratides (after he had behav'd himself with great Gallantry a long time, and receiv'd many Wounds in all parts of his Body) at length weary'd out, fell down dead: The Report of his Death, running through the Fleet, the Peloponesians struck with a Pannick Fear, began presently to fly: But tho' the Right Wing fled, yet the Beotians in the Left, stuck to it, and fought stoutly for some time; for they of Eubea (being in the same common Danger) were very Faithful to them, and all those Page 350 that had revolted from the Athenians, were afraid lest they (if they recover'd their former Power) would revenge themselves upon them that had deserted 'em. But when the Beotians saw that the greatest part of the Fleet was routed and broken in pieces, and that they were more and more press'd upon by multitudes that made up upon them, they fled outright. Some of the Peloponesians fled to Chius, others to Cumea. But the Athenians pursu'd 'em very far, and fill'd all the Sea-Coasts with Carcasses of the Dead, and Wrecks of Ships. After this, some of the Commanders advis'd, that the Bodies of those that were slain, should be taken up, because the Athenians us'd severely to punish them, who neglected that last Office. Others were rather for sailing back forthwith to Mitylene, and in the first place to raise the Siege: But presently arose a most violent Tempest, by which the Ships were greatly shatter'd and broken; so that by this, and the toil of the late Engagement, the Spirits of the Souldiers were very low, so that the taking up the Bodies of the Dead was defer'd. Atlength, the Storm rag'd and increas'd to that degree, that they could neither gain Mitylene, nor perform what they ought for the Dead: So that being driven back by the Storm, they arriv'd with the Fleet at Arginuse. In this Fight the Athenians lost five and twenty of their Ships, and most of their Men in them. But the Peloponesians seventy seven. There were so many Ships and Men destroy'd, that all the Sea-Coasts of Cumea and Phocea, seem'd to be fill'd with Carcasses and Wrecks.
Eleonicus, who was besieging Mitylene, having certain Intelligence of the Defeat of the Peloponesians, sent away all the Shipping to Chios; he himself march'd away with the Land-Army, to a Confederate City of the Tyrrenians, being afraid, lest, by a Sally out of the Town, when the Athenian Fleet came up, his whole Army should be cut off. When the Athenians arriv'd at Mitylene, they took thence Conon along with them, with forty Sail, and pass'd over to Samos, and there wasted and spoil'd all their Enemy's Country.
After these thing, the Lacedemonians in Eolis and Ionia, and the dispers'd Islands, met in a Common Council at Ephesus; and after many Bandings and Discourses, pro and con, they at length resolv'd to send an Ambassador to Sparta, to desire that Lysander might be constituted Admiral of the Navy: For that he approv'd himself with great Commendation, when he was in Command, and was judg'd to be the most Shilful General.
But because the Lacedemonians would not alter the Ancient Custom of their Country, they made Aratus Admiral; and sent Lysander with him, as a Private Man, to be his Assistant; with this strict Command, That the General should always follow his Advice and Councel. Thus being sent forth to manage the Command of the Fleet, they got togetherfrom Peloponesus and their Confederates, as many Gallies as possibly they could.
The Athenians when they receiv'd the happy Tydings of their Success at Arginuse, highly applauded the Commanders for the Victory; but were very angry that they neglected to bury those, who had lost their Lives in the Defence of the Government.
Theramenes and Thrasybulus, coming before the rest to Athens, the other Officers suspecting they would accuse 'em to the People for their Neglect, in not Burying the Dead, sent Letters against them, whereby they signify'd, that the Care of Interring them that were slain, was committed to them, which was the Chief Cause of all the Mischief that afterwards fell upon the other Officers. For whereas they might before have easily made Theramenes, and the rest of his Party, their Patrons and Advocats in the Accusations laid against them, being Men that were excellent Speakers, and of great Interest; and that which was most considerable, were best acquainted with every thing that was done in the Battle; Now on the contrary, they had so far disoblig'd 'em, that they became their most bitter Enemies and Prosecutors. For when the Letters were read to the People, they were presently all on fire against Theramenes: But he having clear'd himself, their Rage was all turn'd again upon the other Officers. The People therefore assign'd 'em a Day to be heard, and order'd the Forces to be deliver'd over to Conon, whom they exempted from this Bill; all the rest they commanded by an Absolute Decree forthwith to return: Among whom Aristogenes and Protomachus, fearing the Rage of the People, fled: But Thrasyllus, Calliades, Lysias, Pericles, and Aristocrates, return'd to Athens, with agreat number of Ships, upon this Confidence, that by the Mediation of those they had brought along with them, who were very many, they should be acquit. But after the Assembly came together, the People yielded a quick Ear to the Accusations, and whatever the Demagogues said, it was well taken; but when the Accus'd began to speak, a Tumult arose, and Page 351 they could not be heard in their own Defence. And besides, the Relations of them that were kill'd, did no little further their Ruin; who came weeping and wailing into the Senate, earnestly desiring that the Commanders might suffer for their Neglect, in not Burying them, who had valiantly lost their Lives for their Country. At length, the Friends of the Dead, and those that prosecuted with Theramenes (of whom many were then present) prevail'd. And thereupon the Commanders were condemn'd to die, and their Estates to be conficate. Sentence being thus given, just as they were leading to Execution by the Lictors, Diomedon, one of them, an Excellent Souldier, and reputed a Just Man, and Eminent in all other Virtuous Qualifications, stood up, and Silence being made through the whole Assembly, thus began:—
Ye Men of Athens, we heartily wish that the Sentence now pronounc'd against us, may issue in the Prosperity and Happiness of this City: But since Fortune has prevented us from paying our Vows, and giving Thanks to the Gods, for the Victory, 'tis most just and fit You should perform it: See therefore that Ye do it to Jove, to Apollo, and the Glorious Goddesses; for by Prayers to them, we have overcome the Enemy.
When he had said this, he was hurry'd away with the rest to Execution; many of the Best of the Citizens bemoaning his Fate with Tears, For he who now went to suffer, never in the least complain'd of the Hardness of his Case, but only advis'd his Countrymen: (who then acted so wickedly) to make their Addresses to the Gods; which was a clear Indication of a Man of a Pious and Generous Spirit, little deserving such base and unworthy Usage. In short, the Eleven Commanders were all put to Death, by the Officers appointed by Law, tho' they had never done the City the least Injury; but on the contrary, benefited their Country, by a Victory gain'd in a Sea-Fight, the Greatest that was ever fought, by Grecians against Grecians; and besides were Men whose Valour had been remarkable, in several Battles, and who had had Statues before erected in Memory of their Victories. The People were then so desperately mad and enrag'd by the Orators, beyond all Bounds of Justice, that they gratify'd their Anger and Revenge, upon Men that were not only Innocent, but deserv'd rather Honour and Rewards.
But not long after, both the Accusers that stir'd up the People, and the People themselves, who gave Credit to their Criminations, sorely Repented of what was done, as if God himself had taken Revenge of them for the Fact: For they that were so willing to be deluded by these Malicious Instigations, not long after receiv'd the Reward of their Folly; when not One, but thirty Domineering Masters were by force set over them. Then was Callixeus (he that gave Sentence of Death against the Accus'd) upon this Change of the People, charg'd as one that had deceiv'd them, and without being admitted to any Defence, was Committed, and carry'd to the Common-Goal; but by the help of some Friends, breaking through the Walls, he fled to the Enemy at Deoelea; so that by the Avoiding of Death at this time, he was pointed at, as it were, by the Finger, for his Notorious Wickedness, not only at Athens, but amongst all the other Grecians abroad, all the Days of his Life after.
These are almost all the Things that are reported to be done this Year. Amongst the Writers, Philistus concludes the First Part of the Affairs of Sicily with this Year, and with the Taking of Agrigentum; comprehending in seven Volumes; the History of above Eight hundred Years. He begins the other Part where the former ended, and proceeds in his Relations contain'd in four Books. About this Time died Sophocles, the Tragedian, the Son of Theophilus, ninety Years of Age. He gain'd eighteen Victories upon the Stage: It's reported of him, That when he Acted his last Tragedy, and came off Conqueror, he fell into so violent a Laughter, that he fell down dead. Appollodorus, a Writer of Chronicles, reports that Euripides likewise died this Year. But others relate, That being entertain'd with Archelaus, King of Macedonia, once walking abroad into the Fields, some Dogs met him, by whom he was torn in pieces; and so miserably perish'd, a little before this Year.
Lysander made Sole Admiral of the Lacedemonian Fleet. He takes Caramium. The Ruin of the Athenian Fleet at Aegos Potamos. Athens taken by Lysander. The End of the Peloponesian War.
THE Year next before being ended, Alexias was made Archon of Athens this Year; and at Rome three Military Tribunes again executed the Places of Consuls, Caius Julius, Publius Cornelius, and Caius Servilius. During their Magistracy, after the Commanders were put to Death, the Athenians made Philocles General of the Army; and delivering the Fleet to him, sent him away to Conon, Commissioning them with a Joynt-Power, in the Management of the War. When he came to Conon at Samos, he Man'd all the Ships to the number of an hundred seventy three. Twenty of these he left there, and with the rest he and Conon set Sail for the Hellespont.
Lysander, in the mean time, High-Admiral of the Lacedemonian Fleet, with 35 Sail, which he had got together from Peloponesus, and their Confederates, next adjoyning, pass'd over to Ephesus; and fitted out a Fleet, which he sent for from Chios. Then he goes to Cyrus, the Son of Darius, and receives from him a great Sum of Mony, for Payment of the Army. Cyrus being sent for by his Father into Persia, intrusts the Management of the Affairs of his Provinces to Lysander; and commands all the Tribute to be pay'd to him: who being now fully supply'd with all things necessary for the War, returns to Ephesus. At this Time some in Miletus, that favour'd an Oligarchy, by the help of the Lacedemonians, abolish'd the Democracy. And to that End, in the beginning of the Sedition, when the Dionysian Festivals were celebrated, forty that were the Greatest Enemies against their Faction, were surpriz'd in their Houses, and murther'd. Afterwards, observing their Opportunity, when the Forum was full of People, they cut off the Heads of 300 of the Richest of the Citizens. In the mean time, above 1000 of the most Considerable Persons of Quality, who were for the Democracy, afraid of the Present imminent Danger, fled to Pharnabasus, the Persian Lord-Lieutenant, who receiv'd them very courteously, and bestow'd upon every one a Stater of Gold, and order'd Clauda, a Castle of Claudia for their Residence.
Lysander, with a great Navy, making for Thasus, a City of Caria, in League with the Athenians, takes it by Storm, and puts all the Men to the number of 800 to the Sword, and sold all the Women and Children for Slaves, and raz'd the City to the Ground. After this he sail'd to Attica, and many other Places; but did nothing memorable. Therefore we have nothing to write further concerning these Matters. The Sum of all is, having taken Lampsatus, he dismiss'd the Athenian Garrison there, and sent them Home; and after he had plunder'd the City, restor'd it to the Inhabitants.
The Athenian Admirals, having Intelligence that the Lacedemonians had besieg'd Lampsacus with all their Forces, got together all their Fleet from every place, and with all speed made for Lampsacus, with an hundred and fourscore Sail; but hearing that it was taken, they Anchor'd at Aegos Potamos, and there lay. Not long after they weigh'd Anchor, and made out against the Enemy, and dar'd them every Day to a Battle; but when the Peloponesians would not stir, the Athenians began to consider what was best to be done, for that they could not stay long there with the Fleet. Hereupon Alcibiades came to them, and assur'd them that Medocus and Seuthes, Kings of the Thracians, who were his special Friends, had offer'd him a great Army, if he would fight against the Lacedemonians; and therefore, if he might have some share in the Command, he ingag'd either to force the Lacedemonians to sight at Sea, or to fight them at Land, by an Army out of Thrace. This Alcibiades did to evidence how great his desire was to procure some Eminent Advantage to his Country, and by fresh Service, to regain their former good Opinion of him. But the Athenian Commanders concluded, that if matters fell out ill, all the Blame would be laid upon them; and if well, Alcibiades would reap all the Honour of the Victory. Therefore they order'd him to withdraw, and not to come near the Army for the future.
Page 353 The Enemy still avoiding a Fight, and Provision growing scarce in the Army Philocles, who commanded that day, order'd the rest of the Officers of the Fleet, to ship their Men, and follow him, who having thirty Sail in readiness, forthwith loos'd out of the Harbour. Lysander having Intelligence of this, by some Deserters, makes out to Sea with his whole Navy, puts Philocles to Flight, and sails up to the rest of the Athenian Fleet. Hereupon the Athenians which lay there (in regard they had but few of their Men on Board) were all in a great Fear, and Consternation, through the unexpected Approach of the Enemy. Lysander therefore, understanding the Confusion and Disorder of his Enemy's Fleet, commanded Etonicus on Shoar with the Land-Army, who forthwith being now landed, judg'd it highly necessary to improve the present Opportunity; and therefore suddainly forces into part of the Enemy's Camp: And Lysander himself coming up with all his Fleet, well Man'd and provided, hal'd as many of the Athenian Vessels as there were in the Harbour, with Grappling-Irons, to the Shoar. Upon this the Athenians were so amaz'd, and struck with such a suddain astonishment, (not having time either to make out to Sea with their Ships, or to form themselves into a Body at Land) so that after a short Resistance, they turn'd their Backs. Hereupon some forsook their Ships, others fled out of the Camp; every one seeking where he could best preserve himself. Scarce ten of all the Commanders and Officers of the Fleet escap'd; amongst whom was Conon, who not daring to return to Athens, out of fear of the People, fled to Evagoras, Prince of Cyprus, his special góod Friend. Many of the Souldiers fled by Land to Sestos. Lysander possess'd himself of all the rest of the Fleet, and took Philocles, one of the Generals, prisoner, and carry'd him to Lampsacus, where he put him to death. Then he commanded Messengers to Lacedemon to carry the News of the Victory; and order'd one of the Best of the Gallies to transport 'em, magnificently, adorning it with the Arms and Spoils taken from the Enemy.
Next, he march'd with his whole Army to Sestos, in pursuit of those that fled thither, took the City, and dismiss'd the Athenians upon Terms. From thence he sail'd with all speed to Samos, and forthwith prepares to besiege the City; but sent away Gylippus (he who so eminently assisted the Syracusians at Sea) to Sparta, with fifteen hundred Talents of Silver, besides the Spoils. The Mony was made up in little Bags, and to every Bag was fix'd a Seytale, upon which was written the Sum of Mony therein contain'd. Gylippus, being ignorant of what was done, unties the Bags, and takes out three hundred Talents; but his Theft being discover'd to the Ephori, by the Scytales, he fled, and thereupon was condem•'d to die. Clearchus, the Father of Gylippus, in former times, for his having receiv'd Mony of Pericles, not to invade Attica, likewise fled, and was adjudg'd to die, and liv'd all his Days a Banish'd Man among the Thurians in Italy. These two Men, who were otherwise Virtuous; yet by these sordid Acts, stain'd and blemish'd all the Worthy Actions of the rest of their Lives.
When the Athenians were fully satisfy'd that they were totally ruin'd, they determin'd to strive no longer to be Masters at Sea; but now employ'd all their Care to repair their Walls; and block't up the Haven, expecting nothing more certain than a Siege, which happen'd accordingly; for presently both Agis and Pausanias, the Lacedemonian Generals, broke into Attica with great Forces, and incamp'd under the very Walls of Athens. And Lysander entred the Pyraeum, with above two hundred Sail. The Athenians, tho' they were press'd on every side with so many Mischiefs, yet stood out, and easily defended the City for some time. But the Peloponesians resolv'd in Council, in regard it would be very difficult to force the Place, to withdraw their Forces out of Attica, and by their Navy, to hinder all Provision from being brought into the City: Which being put in Execution, the Athenians were reduc'd into extream Want of all things, especially of Food; which was us'd to be imported to them by Sea.
Want pressing upon them every day more and more, the City was fill'd with the Dead. Upon which, those that surviv'd sent forth Ambassadors, and procur'd the Terms and Conditions following; viz. That the Long Fortifications of the Piraeum, and their Walls should be demolish'd: That they should never have above ten Long Ships: That they should leave all the Cities, and be Subject to the Lacedemonians. And thus ended the Peloponesian War, after it had continu'd Seven and twenty Years; a War of the longest Duration of any come to our Knowledge.
Agrigentum sackt by Imilcar the Carthaginian. The Carthaginians besiege Gela. Dionysius goes to the aid of Gela. The Skirmishes before Gela. Camarina deserted by the Order of Dionysius. The Souldiers inrag'd at Dionysius, he hastens to Syracuse. Imilcar makes Peace with Dionysius, and returns to Carthage. The end of the first Carthaginian War with Dionysius.
A Little while after. Darius King of Asia died, having reigned Nineteen Years; Artaxerxes his Eldest Son succeeded him in the Kingdom, and reign'd 43 Years. About this time Apollodorus the Athenian reports, that Antimachus the Poet flourish'd. Imilcar the Carthaginian General, at the return of the Spring, sack'd the City Agrigentum in Sicily, and carry'd away the Carv'd Work, and richest Furniture out of all those Temples that were not utterly consum'd by the Fire. From hence he made an inroad with his whole Army into the Country of Geloa. From whence, and from the Camarineans (having made great Devastations,) he fill'd his Camp with all sorts of Plunder. Then marching for Gela, he incampt at a River of the same Name. There was a brazen Statue of Apollo, of a wonderful bigness at Gela in the Suburbs of the City, which the Carthaginians took and sent away to Tyre. The Geleans had dedicated it by the Command of the Oracle of Apollo. But the Tyrians some time after, when they were Besieg'd by Alexander the Macedonian, reproach'd the Image, as if it sided with the Enemy. But after that Alexander had taken the City, the very same Day of the Week, and the very Hour (as Timeus reports) that the Carthaginians committed the Sacriledge against Apollo at Gela, the Grecians honour'd the God with many magnificent Gifts and costly Sacrifices, as he by whose help they had won the City. Though these things happen'd in times far distant one from another, yet because the thing was very remarkable, I thought it no digression to compare one Event with the other in this Place.
The Carthaginians when they had cut down all the Trees about Gela, fortify'd themselves by a Wall and deep Trench drawn round their Camp; for they expected that Dionysius would come to the aid of the Besieg'd with a great Army. They of Gela had at the beginning of the Siege to avoid Danger, determin'd to send away their Wives and Children to Syracuse; but when the Women all ran together to the Altars in the Forum, earnestly praying that they might undergo the same Fate with their Husbands, they were suffered to stay. After this, the Souldiers in the Town dividing themselves into several Squadrons, sent out part Abroad; who being well acquainted with all the Ways and Passages, fell upon the Enemy that were straggling here and there, and not only brought in Prisoners every Day, but kill'd many. And when the Carthaginians had batter'd down part of the Walls with their Rams, the Besieg'd stoutly defended them, and what was beaten down in the Day, both Women and Children join'd with the rest and repair'd in the Night: For they that were young and able, were continually in Arms, and ingag'd with the Enemy; the rest were diligently imploy'd in working and other necessary Services. To conclude, they bore the brunt with that Valour and Resolution, that though their City was unfortify'd, and they receiv'd no Aid from their Confederates, and their Walls were broke down in many Places, yet Fear did not at all abate their Courage.
In the mean time Dionysius Tyrant of Syracuse, sent for the Grecian Succours in Italy, and Aids from his Confederates, and imploy'd every one almost that was able to bear Arms in Syracuse, and join'd the Army of the Mercenaries with the rest. The whole amounted not to above Fifty (as some report) but (as Timeus relates) not above Thirty Thousand Foot, and a Thousand Horse, with Fifty Sail of Ships. With these Forces he hastens to the Aid of Gela. When he arriv'd at the City, he encamp'd near the Sea: This he did that his Forces might not be divided, but might fall upon the Enemy both by Sea and Land at once; for by skirmishing with his light Arm'd Men, he prevented their Foraging. And by his Horse, and the help of his Shipping, he endeavour'd to intercept all Provisions that should be brought to the Carthaginians from any part of their Dominions. However he effected nothing, after he had continu'd there Twenty Days. After this, he divided his Foot into Three Page 355 Bodies; one he deliver'd into the Hands of the Sicilians, with a Command that having the City on the Left, they should fall upon the Trenches and Fortifications of the Enemy: Another Body made up of Succours from the Confederates, he order'd should leave the City on the Right, and march to the Shoar. He himself with the Mercenaries design'd to pass through the City, to the Place where the Carthaginian Engines were plac'd; and commanded the Horse, that as soon as a Sign was given by the Foot, they should pass the River, and disperse themselves over the Fields; and if they discern'd that their own Party prevail'd, they should join 'em, and if worsted, should succour them. He commanded likewise the Officers of the Fleet, that as soon as the Italian Bands came up, they should sail near to the Enemies Camp. While every one was executing the Orders given him in charge, the Carthaginians oppos'd the Enemies landing, and made it their business to defend that part of their Camp towards the Shoar where it was not fortify'd. At the very same instant, the Italians coming in near the Shoar, set upon the Carthaginians Camp, and there intercepted many that had issu'd out to prevent the Landing: And when they had put them to flight that were left to guard that part, they assaulted the whole Camp. Upon which the Carthaginians with the greatest part of their Army (now return'd) hotly ingag'd them, and with much ado drave them back beyond the Trenches which they had gain'd, and pass'd. The Italians being overpowr'd with the multitude of the Barbarians, were forc'd to retreat, and fell into a straight and narrow Pass within the Lines, none of their Fellows advancing to support them; for the Siculi who were far off, came not up in convenient time; and Dionysius's Mercenaries because they could not march swift enough through the Streets of the City, could not succour them. Indeed the Gel••ns for a little way made a Sally to relieve the Italians, but fearing the Walls would be left naked, they halted and return'd; so that the Iberians and Campanians, with the Carthaginian Auxiliaries, fell very sharply upon the Greeks of Italy, and kill'd above a Thousand of them; but the Pursuers being driven back by Darts and other Shot from the Ships, the rest came safe into the Town. In the mean time the Siculi being ingag'd with the Carthaginians in another part, kill'd many of them, and pursu'd the rest up to their very Camp. But both the Iberians, Campanians and Carthaginians coming to the aid of the Africans, the Siculi having lost Six Hundred Men, return'd into the City. The Horse likewise when they saw all was lost, made to the City, especially for that the Enemy was pressing upon them on every side. Dionysius having passed through the City with his Mercenaries with great difficulty, when he understood that his Army was broken, marcht back, and shelter'd himself within the Walls of the Town: Then calling a Senate of those that were Friends, they consulted concerning the present state of the War; where it was concluded by all, that (because the Enemy was so strong) that was now no Place to put all to hazard. Dionysius therefore sent forth a Trumpet in the Evening, to gain a Cessation of Arms for the burying of the Dead till the next Day. Then about the first Watch of the Night, he sent a Multitude of People out of the Town, and he himself about Midnight march'd forth with the Army, leaving behind him 2000 light Arm'd Men, commanding them to make Fires all the Night long, and set up continual Shouts that the Enemy might believe that the whole Army was still in the Town; but as soon as it began to be light, those left behind with a swift March follow'd Dionysius's Army. When the Carthaginians understood the Cheat, they led the Army into the City, and made a Prey of whatever was left in the Houses.
When Dionysius came to Camarina, he caus'd all the Citizens, with their Wives and Children to remove to Syracuse; and because Fear would not admit of any delay, some carry'd what Gold and Silver they were able; others with their Parents and little Children hasten'd away, without the least regard to their Estates. Some who were old and sick, were left behind by their Friends and Relations, every one thinking that the Carthaginians were at his Heels: For the late ruin and destruction of Sclinunte, Himera and Agrigentum struck all with such a terrour, and fill'd every one with such an apprehension of the Beastly cruelty of the Barbarians, as if it had been then present before their Eyes; for they put all the Captives to the Sword, shew'd no Compassion to any; some they crucify'd, and others they tormented with intolerable Scoffs and Reproaches. The Souldiers of Dionysius seeing Men, Women and Children driven in Droves from Two several Cities in one and the same Country, were much incens'd, pitying the sad Condition of the miserable People: For when they saw young Gentlemen and Ladies in marriagable Estate, unbecoming their State and Age, tumultuously and regardlesly to be driven, led and drag'd in Droves Page 356 through the High-ways, the time not allowing any regard or respect either to old and grave Men, or young and tender Women, they were not a little affected: And especially it greatly griev'd them, to see decrepit old People forc'd beyond the strength of nature, to go as fast as those that were young. These were the things that enflam'd the Souldiers with Rage against Dionysius; for they suspected that he did this on purpose, that he might gain the Sovereignty over the rest of the Cities, through their fear of the Carthaginians: For they mutter'd among themselves, how small a time he gave his Assistance; that none of his Mercenary Souldiers were kill'd; that he fled so hastily when he had suffer'd so little Loss, and especially when no Enemy pursu'd. Therefore all those who had long wisht for an opportunity to revolt, now did their utmost to shake off the Yoke of his Tyranny, prompted thereunto as it were by the instinct of a Divine Providence. So that all the Italians forthwith left his Camp, and marcht homewards through the Heart of the Country. The Syracusian Horsemen likewise watch'd for an opportunity how they might readily kill the Tyrant on the Road: But observing the Mercenaries constantly to attend close to his Person (unanimously with one consent) they set Spurs to their Horses, and rode away to Syracuse, where they enter'd into the Arsenal without any opposition; the Guard being altogether ignorant of what was done at Gela. Upon their coming there, they forthwith rifled Dionysius's Palace, and carry'd away all his Gold, Silver and rich Furniture out of his House, and most cruelly and filthily abus'd his Wife, to vex and molest the Tyrant the more, and that this sort of Revenge might be a clear Evidence to him, of the Conspiracy against him.
Dionysius suspecting upon his March what was done, hastens to the City with all the Horse and Foot he could confide in, with all possible speed; for he concluded he had no better course to take to disappoint the Horsemen that were gone, than to prevent all intelligence, judging his Design would be more easily accomplish'd, if he were sooner at Syracuse than they could believe; which happen'd accordingly: For the Horsemen thought that Dionysius durst neither stay with, nor be far from his Army. And therefore now as confident that they had gain'd their purpose, they nois'd Abroad that Dionysius pretended to fly from Gela for fear of the Carthaginians, but in truth he fled from the Syracusians. In the mean time Dionysius having marcht without stop almost 400 Furlongs, came about Midnight to the Gates of Acradine, with 100 Horse, and 500 Foot, and finding them shut against him, caused Reeds there ready gather'd out of the Fenns (with which the Syracusians used to burn Lime) to be put to the Gates: While the Gates were on Fire, those that marcht flower came up to him: And when they were burnt down, he forthwith entred through Acradine with all the Forces with him. Upon which, those Horsemen (who were very few) that were of the Noblest Birth, and greatest Wealth (without staying for the Peoples help) got together in the Market-Place to oppose the Enemy; but were presently surrounded with the Mercenaries, and every Man kill'd with Darts and Pikes. Then Dionysius scouring the Streets of the City, put all to the Sword he met that were running here and there to aid their Fellows; and not only so, but enter'd likewise into the Houses of those he took to be his Enemies, of whom, he cut the Throats of some, and banish'd others. The rest of the Horsemen escap'd out of the Walls to that part of the City call'd Acradine. About break of Day the next Morning, all the rest of the Mercenaries, and the whole Sicilian Army came to Syracuse; but the Geleans and Camarineans incens'd against Dionysius, turn'd off to Leontium.
Imilcar at length forc'd by the Circumstances of his Affairs, sends an Herald to Syracuse, to offer Terms of Peace to the Conquer'd: This was very acceptable News to Dionysius, and thereupon Peace was made upon these Conditions, That besides the ancient Colonies the Sicanians, Selinuntes, Agrigentines and the Himereans, should be under the Power of the Carthaginians: That they of Gela and Camerine should be suffer'dto inhabit in their own Cities, yet without Walls, and be Tributary for the future to the Carthaginians: That the Leontines, Messenians and all the Sicilians should be free, and injoy all their own Laws and Liberties, save that the Syracusians should be subject to Dionysius. When all these Articles were ratify'd, the Carthaginians past over to Lybia, after they had lost above one half of their Army by the Plague, which afterwards raging through Lybia, Multitudes perish'd both of the Carthaginians and their Confederates.
And now we are come to the end of the Wars; of the Peloponosian War in Greece, and of the first Carthaginian War with Dionysius in Sicily: And so having finished what we hitherto design'd, we shall treat in the next Book of those Affairs thar fell out afterwards.
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