Diodorus Siculus

BOOK XI - The Library of History

Page 241 Thero in like manner considering how Himera was in a great measure depopulated, planted the Doreans there, and ordered that whosoever would, should be inroll'd Citizens of that Place. These govern'd the Commonwealth with great Commendation for the space of Fifty Eight Years: Not long after which time, the Carthaginians raz'd the City to the Ground, which hath continu'd ruin'd and in its Rubbish to this Day.


The Lacedemonians quarrel with the Athenians for the Dominion of the Sea.

WHen Dromoclides was Archon of Athens, and Marcus Fabius, and Caius Manlius Consuls of Rome, the Lacedemonians were highly concern'd for their loss of the Sovereignty of the Sea, and therefore being greatly exasperated against the Grecians, who had deserted them, they breath'd out Revenge, with just Indignation against them. A General Council therefore being call'd, they advis'd together concerning War to be proclaim'd against the Athenians, in order to the Recovery of their Dominion at Sea: And in several other Assemblies of the People, most of them (especially the Young Men) were very hot and eager for the War, vaunting every where how rich they should be if they succeeded in their Design, and how all would be encouraged in the Service of their Country, when every private Family hath had such advantages and occasions to enrich and advance themselves.

And they call'd to mind an old Prophesie from the Oracle, which bid them beware of having but an half Empire, which could signifie nothing else (as they alledg'd) but the present Circumstances they were in. For being there were Two Sovereignties, the one at Land, and the other at Sea, if they lost the one, they must needs be Masters but of a Lame Government.

The whole City almost being of the Opinion for a War, the matter was again referr'd to the Senate, supposing none would dare to contradict the general Sense of the Citizens. But one of the Senators, of the Family of Hercules, call'd Hetaemaridas, (a Man of great Esteem among the Citizens for his Virtue) advised quite otherwise, and declar'd his Opinion that they should suffer the Athenians quietly to enjoy the Dominion of the Sea, for that it was not the Custom of the Commonwealth of Sparta, to contend about that Sovereignty. And urging many Reasons for the confirmation of his Opinion (which was not at first very grateful) he at length prevail'd both with the Senate and People to wave the War. And so it was concluded, according to his Advice, as most advantagious to desist.

The Athenians at the first were in great fear of a bloody War with the Spartans about this Command at Sea, and therefore they built many Gallies for that purpose, and provided a great Mass of Treasure, and sought to gain all their Neighbours and Confederates with the greatest Demonstrations of kindness and courtesie imaginable. But hearing of what was resolv'd and determin'd by the Lacedemonians, all fear of War being now vanish'd, they wholly bent their Minds to advance the power and greatness of their City.

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