By Author [ A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z |  Other Symbols ]
  By Title [ A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z |  Other Symbols ]
  By Language
all Classics books content using ISYS

Download this book: [ ASCII | HTML | PDF ]

Look for this book on Amazon

We have new books nearly every day.
If you would like a news letter once a week or once a month
fill out this form and we will give you a summary of the books for that week or month by email.

´╗┐Title: A Smaller history of Greece - From the earliest times to the Roman conquest
Author: Smith, William, Sir, 1813-1893
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.

*** Start of this LibraryBlog Digital Book "A Smaller history of Greece - From the earliest times to the Roman conquest" ***


from the earliest times to the Roman conquest.




In this Etext, printed text in italics has been written in capital

Many words in the printed text have accents, etc. which have been
omitted. Dipthongs have been expanded into two letters.


CHAPTER     I  . .  Geography of Greece.

CHAPTER    II  . .  Origin of the Greeks, and the Heroic Age.

CHAPTER   III  . .  General Survey of the Greek People.
                    National Institutions.

CHAPTER    IV  . .  Early History of Peloponnesus and Sparta to
                    the end of the Messenian Wars, B.C. 668.

CHAPTER     V  . .  Early History of Athens down to the
                    Establishment of Democracy by Clisthenes,
                    B.C. 510.

CHAPTER    VI  . .  The Greek Colonies.

CHAPTER   VII  . .  The Persian Wars.--From the Ionic Revolt to
                    the Battle of Marathon, B.C. 500-490.

CHAPTER  VIII  . .  The Persian Wars.--The Battles of Thermopylae
                    Salamis, and Plataea, B.C. 480-479.

CHAPTER    IX  . .  From the end of the Persian Wars to the
                    beginning of the Peloponnesian War,
                    B.C. 479-431.

CHAPTER     X  . .  Athens in the time of Pericles.

CHAPTER    XI  . .  The Peloponnesian War.--First Period, from the
                    commencement of the War to the Peace of Nicias,
                    B.C. 431-421.

CHAPTER   XII  . .  The Peloponnesian War.--Second Period, from
                    the Peace of Nicias to the Defeat of the
                    Athenians in Sicily, B.C. 421-413.

CHAPTER  XIII  . .  The Peloponnesian War.--Third Period, from the
                    Sicilian Expedition to the end of the War,
                    B.C. 413-404.

CHAPTER   XIV  . .  The Thiry Tyrants, and the death of Socrates,
                    B.C. 404-399.

CHAPTER    XV  . .  The Expedition of the Greeks under Cyrus, and
                    Retreat of the Ten Thousand, B.C. 401-400.

CHAPTER   XVI  . .  The Supremacy of Sparta, B.C. 404-371.

CHAPTER  XVII  . .  The Supremacy of Thebes, B.C. 371-361.

CHAPTER XVIII  . .  History of the Sicilian Greeks from the
                    Destruction of the Athenian Armament to the
                    Death of Timoleon.

CHAPTER   XIX  . .  Phillip of Macedon, B.C. 359-336.

CHAPTER    XX  . .  Alexander the Great, B.C. 336-323.

CHAPTER   XXI  . .  From the Death of Alexander the Great to the
                    Conquest of Greece by the Romans, B.C. 323-146.

CHAPTER  XXII  . .  Sketch of the History of Greek Literature
                    from the Earliest Times to the Reign of
                    Alexander the Great.



Greece is the southern portion of a great peninsula of Europe, washed
on three sides by the Mediterranean Sea.  It is bounded on the north by
the Cambunian mountains, which separate it from Macedonia.  It extends
from the fortieth degree of latitude to the thirty-sixth, its greatest
length being not more than 250 English miles, and its greatest breadth
only 180.  Its surface is considerably less than that of Portugal.
This small area was divided among a number of independent states, many
of them containing a territory of only a few square miles, and none of
them larger than an English county.  But the heroism and genius of the
Greeks have given an interest to the insignificant spot of earth
bearing their name, which the vastest empires have never equalled.

The name of Greece was not used by the inhabitants of the country.
They called their land HELLAS, and themselves HELLENES. At first the
word HELLAS signified only a small district in Thessaly, from which the
Hellenes gradually spread over the whole country.  The names of GREECE
and GREEKS come to us from the Romans, who gave the name of GRAECIA to
the country and of GRAECI to the inhabitants.

The two northerly provinces of Greece are THESSALY and EPIRUS,
separated from each other by Mount Pindus.  Thessaly is a fertile plain
enclosed by lofty mountains, and drained by the river Peneus, which
finds its way into the sea through the celebrated Vale of Tempe.
Epirus is covered by rugged ranges of mountains running from north to
south, through which the Achelous the largest river of Greece, flows
towards the Corinthian gulf.

In entering central Greece from Thessaly the road runs along the coast
through the narrow pass of Thermopylae, between the sea and a lofty
range of mountains.  The district along the coast was inhabited by the
EASTERN LOCRIANS, while to their west were DORIS and PHOCIS, the
greater part of the latter being occupied by Mount Parnassus, the abode
of the Muses, upon the slopes of which lay the town of Delphi with its
celebrated oracle of Apollo. South of Phocis is Boeotia, which is a
large hollow basin, enclosed on every side by mountains, which prevent
the waters from flowing into the sea.  Hence the atmosphere was damp
and thick, to which circumstance the witty Athenians attributed the
dullness of the inhabitants.  Thebes was the chief city of Boeotia.
South of Boeotia lies ATTICA, which is in the form of a triangle,
having two of its sides washed by the sea and its base united to the
land.  Its soil is light and dry and is better adapted for the growth
of fruit than of corn.  It was particularly celebrated for its olives,
which were regarded as the gift of Athena (Minerva), and were always
under the care of that goddess.  Athens was on the western coast,
between four and five miles from its port, Piraeus.  West of Attica,
towards the isthmus, is the small district of MEGARIS.

The western half of central Greece consists of WESTERN LOCRIS, AETOLIA
and ACARNANIA.  These districts were less civilised than the other
countries of Greece, and were the haunts of rude robber tribes even as
late as the Peloponnesian war.

Central Greece is connected with the southern peninsula by a narrow
isthmus, on which stood the city of Corinth.  So narrow is this isthmus
that the ancients regarded the peninsula as an island, and gave to it
the name of PELOPONNESUS, or the island of Pelops, from the mythical
hero of this name.  Its modern name, the MOREA, was bestowed upon it
from its resemblance to the leaf of the mulberry.

The mountains of Peloponnesus have their roots in the centre of the
country, from which they branch out towards the sea.  This central
region, called ARCADIA, is the Switzerland of the peninsula.  It is
surrounded by a ring of mountains, forming a kind of natural wall,
which separates it from the remaining Peloponnesian states.  The other
chief divisions of Peloponnesus were Achaia, Argolis, Laconia,
Messenia, and Elis.  ACHAIA is a narrow slip of country lying between
the northern barrier of Arcadia and the Corinthian gulf.  ARGOLIS, on
the east, contained several independent states, of which the most
important was Argos.  LACONIA and MESSENIA occupied the whole of the
south of the peninsula from sea to sea:  these two countries were
separated by the lofty range of Taygetus, running from north to south,
and terminating in the promontory of Taenarum (now Cape Matapan), the
southernmost point of Greece and Europe.  Sparta, the chief town of
Laconia, stood in the valley of the Eurotas, which opens out into a
plain of considerable extent towards the Laconian gulf. Messenia, in
like manner, was drained by the Pamisus, whose plain is still more
extensive and fertile than that of the Eurotas. ELIS, on the west of
Arcadia, contains the memorable plain of Olympia, through which the
Alpheus flows, and in which the city of Pisa stood.

Of the numerous islands which line the Grecian shores, the most
important was Euboea, stretching along the coasts of Boeotia and
Attica.  South of Euboea was the group of islands called the CYCLADES,
lying around Delos as a centre; and east of these were the SPORADES,
near the Asiatic coast.  South of these groups are the large islands of

The physical features of the country exercised an important influence
upon the political destinies of the people.  Greece is one of the most
mountainous countries of Europe.  Its surface is occupied by a number
of small plains, either entirely surrounded by limestone mountains or
open only to the sea.  Each of the principal Grecian cities was founded
in one of these small plains; and, as the mountains which separated it
from its neighbours were lofty and rugged, each city grew up in
solitary independence.  But at the same time it had ready and easy
access to the sea, and Arcadia was almost the only political division
that did not possess some territory upon the coast.  Thus shut out from
their neighbours by mountains, the Greeks were naturally attracted to
the sea, and became a maritime people.  Hence they possessed the love
of freedom and the spirit of adventure, which have always
characterised, more or less the inhabitants of maritime districts.



No nation possesses a history till events are recorded in written
documents; and it was not till the epoch known by the name of the First
Olympiad, corresponding to the year 776 B.C., that the Greeks began to
employ writing as a means for perpetuating the memory of any historical
facts.  Before that period everything is vague and uncertain; and the
exploits of the heroes related by the poets must not be regarded as
historical facts.

The PELASGIANS are universally represented as the most ancient
inhabitants of Greece.  They were spread over the Italian as well as
the Grecian peninsula; and the Pelasgic language thus formed the basis
of the Latin as well as of the Greek.  They were divided into several
tribes, of which the Hellenes were probably one:  at any rate, this
people, who originally dwelt in the south of Thessaly, gradually spread
over the rest of Greece.  The Pelasgians disappeared before them, or
were incorporated with them, and their dialect became the language of
Greece.  The Hellenes considered themselves the descendants of one
common ancestor, Hellen, the son of Deucalion and Pyrrha.  To Hellen
were ascribed three sons, Dorus, Xuthus, and AEolus.  Of these Dorus
and AEolus gave their names to the DORIANS and AEOLIANS; and Xuthus;
through his two sons Ion and Achaeus, became the forefather of the
IONIANS and ACHAEANS.  Thus the Greeks accounted for the origin of the
four great divisions of their race.  The descent of the Hellenes from a
common ancestor, Hellen, was a fundamental article in the popular
faith.  It was a general practice in antiquity to invent fictitious
persons for the purpose of explaining names of which the origin was
buried in obscurity.  It was in this way that Hellen and his sons came
into being; but though they never had any real existence, the tales
about them may be regarded as the traditional history of the races to
whom they gave their names.

The civilization of the Greeks and the development of their language
bear all the marks of home growth, and probably were little affected by
foreign influence.  The traditions, however, of the Greeks would point
to a contrary conclusion.  It was a general belief among them that the
Pelasgians were reclaimed from barbarism by Oriental strangers, who
settled in the country and introduced among the rude inhabitants the
first elements of civilization.  Attica is said to have been indebted
for the arts of civilized life to Cecrops, a native of Sais in Egypt.
To him is ascribed the foundation of the city of Athens, the
institution of marriage, and the introduction of religious rites and
ceremonies.  Argos, in like manner, is said to have been founded by the
Egyptian Danaus, who fled to Greece with his fifty daughters, to escape
from the persecution of their suitors, the fifty sons of his brother
AEgyptus.  The Egyptian stranger was elected king by the natives, and
from him the tribe of the Danai derived their name, which Homer
frequently uses as a general appellation for the Greeks.  Another
colony was the one led from Asia by Pelops, from whom the southern
peninsula of Greece derived its name of Peloponnesus.  Pelops is
represented as a Phrygian, and the son of the wealthy king Tantalus.
He became king of Mycenae, and the founder of a powerful dynasty, one
of the most renowned in the Heroic age of Greece.  From him was
descended Agamemnon, who led the Grecian host against Troy.

The tale of the Phoenician colony, conducted by Cadmus, and which
founded Thebes in Boeotia, rests upon a different basis.  Whether there
was such a person as the Phoenician Cadmus, and whether he built the
town called Cadmea, which afterwards became the citadel of Thebes, as
the ancient legends relate, cannot be determined; but it is certain
that the Greeks were indebted to the Phoenicians for the art of
writing; for both the names and the forms of the letters in the Greek
alphabet are evidently derived from the Phoenician.  With this
exception the Oriental strangers left no permanent traces of their
settlements in Greece; and the population of the country continued to
be essentially Grecian, uncontaminated by any foreign elements.

The age of the heroes, from the first appearance of the Hellenes in
Thessaly to the return of the Greeks from Troy, was supposed to be a
period of about two hundred years.  These heroes were believed to be a
noble race of beings, possessing a superhuman though not a divine
nature, and superior to ordinary men in strength of body and greatness
of soul.

Among the heroes three stand conspicuously forth:  Hercules, the
national hero of Greece; Theseus, the hero of Attica; and Minos, king
of Crete, the principal founder of Grecian law and civilization.

Hercules was the son of Zeus (Jupiter) and Alcmena; but the jealous
anger of Hera (Juno) raised up against him an opponent and a master in
the person of Eurystheus at whose bidding the greatest of all heroes
was to achieve those wonderful labours which filled the whole world
with his fame.  In these are realized, on a magnificent scale, the two
great objects of ancient heroism, the destruction of physical and moral
evil, and the acquisition of wealth and power.  Such, for instance, are
the labours in which he destroys the terrible Nemean lion and Lernean
hydra, carries off the girdle of Ares from Hippolyte, queen of the
Amazons, and seizes the golden apples of the Hesperides, guarded by a
hundred-headed dragon.

Theseus was a son of AEgeus, king of Athens, and of AEthra, daughter of
Pittheus, king of Troezen.  Among his many memorable achievements the
most famous was his deliverance of Athens from the frightful tribute
imposed upon it by Minos for the murder of his son.  This consisted of
seven youths and seven maidens whom the Athenians were compelled to
send every nine years to Crete, there to be devoured by the Minotaur, a
monster with a human body and a bull's head, which Minos kept concealed
in an inextricable labyrinth.  The third ship was already on the point
of sailing with its cargo of innocent victims, when Theseus offered to
go with them, hoping to put an end for ever to the horrible tribute.
Ariadne, the daughter of Minos, became enamoured of the hero, and
having supplied him with a clue to trace the windings of the labyrinth,
Theseus succeeded in killing the monster, and in tracking his way out
of the mazy lair.  Theseus, on his return, became king of Attica, and
proceeded to lay the foundations of the future greatness of the
country.  He united into one political body the twelve independent
states into which Cecrops had divided Attica, and made Athens the
capital of the new kingdom.  He then divided the citizens into three
classes, namely, EUPATRIDAE, or nobles; GEOMORI, or husbandmen; and
DEMIURGI, or artisans.

Minos, king of Crete, whose history is connected with that of Theseus,
appears, like him, the representative of an historical and civil state
of life.  Minos is said to have received the laws of Crete immediately
from Zeus; and traditions uniformly present him as king of the sea.
Possessing a numerous fleet, he reduced the surrounding islands,
especially the Cyclades, under his dominion, and cleared the sea of

The voyage of the Argonauts and the Trojan war were the most memorable
enterprises undertaken by collective bodies of heroes.

The Argonauts derived their name from the Argo, a ship built For the
adventurers by Jason, under the superintendence of Athena (Minerva).
They embarked in the harbour of Iolcus in Thessaly for the purpose of
obtaining the golden fleece which was preserved in AEa in Colchis, on
the eastern shores of the Black Sea, under the guardianship of a
sleepless dragon.  The most renowned heroes of the age took part in the
expedition.  Among them were Hercules and Theseus, as well as the
principal leaders in the Trojan war; but Jason is the central figure
and the real hero of the enterprise.  Upon arriving at AEa, after many
adventures, king AEtes promised to deliver to Jason the golden fleece,
provided he yoked two fire-breathing oxen with brazen feet, and
performed other wonderful deeds.  Here, also, as in the legend of
Theseus, love played a prominent part.  Medea, the daughter of AEtes,
who was skilled in magic and supernatural arts, furnished Jason with
the means of accomplishing the labours imposed upon him; and as her
father still delayed to surrender the fleece, she cast the dragon
asleep during the night, seized the fleece, and sailed away in the Argo
with her beloved Jason.

The Trojan war was the greatest of all the heroic achievements. It
formed the subject of innumerable epic poems, and has been immortalised
by the genius of Homer.  Paris, son of Priam, king of Troy, abused the
hospitality of Menelaus, king of Sparta, by carrying off his wife
Helen, the most beautiful woman of the age. All the Grecian princes
looked upon the outrage as one committed against themselves.
Responding to the call of Menelaus, they assembled in arms, elected his
brother Agamemnon, king of Mycenae, leader of the expedition, and
sailed across the AEgean in nearly 1200 ships to recover the faithless
fair one.  Several of the confederate heroes excelled Agamemnon in
fame.  Among them Achilles, chief of the Thessalian Myrmidons, stood
pre-eminent in strength, beauty, and valour; whilst Ulysses, king of
Ithaca; surpassed all the rest in the mental qualities of counsel and
eloquence.  Among the Trojans, Hector, one of the sons of Priam, was
most distinguished for heroic qualities and formed a striking contrast
to his handsome but effeminate brother Paris.  Next to Hector in valour
stood AEneas, son of Anchises and Aphrodite (Venus).  Even the gods
took part in the contest, encouraging their favourite heroes, and
sometimes fighting by their side or in their stead.

It was not till the tenth year of the war that Troy yielded to the
inevitable decree of fate; and it is this year which forms the subject
of the Iliad.  Achilles, offended by Agamemnon, abstains from the war;
and in his absence the Greeks are no match for Hector.  The Trojans
drive them back into their camp, and are already setting fire to their
ships, when Achilles gives his armour to his friend Patroclus, and
allows him to charge at the head of the Myrmidons.  Patroclus repulses
the Trojans from the ships, but the god Apollo is against him, and he
falls under the spear of Hector.  Desire to avenge the death of his
friend proves more powerful in the breast of Achilles than anger
against Agamemnon.  He appears again in the field in new and gorgeous
armour, forged for him by the god Hephrastus (Vulcan) at the prayer of
Thetis.  The Trojans fly before him, and, although Achilles is aware
that his own death must speedily follow that of the Trojan hero, he
slays Hector in single combat.

The Iliad closes with the burial of Hector.  The death of Achilles and
the capture of Troy were related in later poems. The hero of so many
achievements perishes by an arrow shot by the unwarlike Paris, but
directed by the hand of Apollo.  The noblest combatants had now fallen
on either side, and force of arms had proved unable to accomplish what
stratagem at length effects.  It is Ulysses who now steps into the
foreground and becomes the real conqueror of Troy.  By his advice a
wooden horse is built, in whose inside he and other heroes conceal
themselves.  The infatuated Trojans admit the horse within their walls.
In the dead of night the Greeks rush out and open the gates to their
comrades.  Troy is delivered over to the sword, and its glory sinks in
ashes.  The fall of Troy is placed in the year 1184 B.C.

The return of the Grecian leaders from Troy forms another series of
poetical legends.  Several meet with tragical ends.  Agamemnon is
murdered on his arrival at Mycenae, by his wife Clytaemnestra and her
paramour AEgisthus.  But of these wanderings the most celebrated and
interesting are those of Ulysses, which form the subject of the
Odyssey.  After twenty years' absence he arrives at length in Ithaca,
where he slays the numerous suitors who devoured his substance and
contended for the hand of his wife Penelope.

The Homeric poems must not be regarded as a record of historical
persons and events, but, at the same time, they present a valuable
picture of the institutions and manners of the earliest known state of
Grecian society.

In the Heroic age Greece was already divided into a number of
independent states, each governed by its own king.  The authority of
the king was not limited by any laws; his power resembled that of the
patriarchs in the Old Testament; and for the exercise of it he was
responsible only to Zeus, and not to his people.  But though the king
was not restrained in the exercise of his power by any positive laws,
his authority was practically limited by the BOULE; or council of
chiefs, and the Agora, or general assembly of freemen.  These two
bodies, of little account in the Heroic age, became in the Republican
age the sole depositories of political power.

The Greeks in the Heroic age were divided into the three classes of
nobles, common freemen, and slaves.  The nobles were raised far above
the rest of the community in honour, power, and wealth. They were
distinguished by their warlike prowess, their large estates, and their
numerous slaves.  The condition of the general mass of freemen is
rarely mentioned.  They possessed portions of land as their own
property, which they cultivated themselves; but there was another class
of poor freemen, called Thetes, who had no land of their own, and who
worked for hire on the estates of others.  Slavery was not so prevalent
in the Heroic age as at a later time, and appears in a less odious
aspect.  The nobles alone possessed slaves, and they treated them with
a degree of kindness which frequently secured for the masters their
affectionate attachment.

Society was marked by simplicity of manners.  The kings and nobles did
not consider it derogatory to their dignity to acquire skill in the
manual arts.  Ulysses is represented as building his own bed-chamber
and constructing his own raft, and he boasts of being an excellent
mower and ploughman.  Like Esau, who made savoury meat for his father
Isaac, the Heroic chiefs prepared their own meals and prided themselves
on their skill in cookery. Kings and private persons partook of the
same food, which was of the simplest kind.  Beef, mutton, and goat's
flesh were the ordinary meats, and cheese, flour, and sometimes fruits,
also formed part of the banquet; wine was drunk diluted with water, and
the entertainments were never disgraced by intemperance, like those of
our northern ancestors.  The enjoyment of the banquet was heightened by
the song and the dance, and the chiefs took more delight in the lays of
the minstrel than in the exciting influence of the wine.

The wives and daughters of the chiefs, in like manner, did not deem it
beneath them to discharge various duties which were afterwards regarded
as menial.  Not only do we find them constantly employed in weaving,
spinning and embroidery, but like the daughters of the patriarchs they
fetch water from the well and assist their slaves in washing garments
in the river.

Even at this early age the Greeks had made considerable advances in
civilization.  They were collected in fortified towns, which were
surrounded by walls and adorned with palaces and temples. The massive
ruins of Mycenae and the sculptured lions on the gate of this city
belong to the Heroic age, and still excite the wonder of the beholder.
Commerce, however, was little cultivated, and was not much esteemed.
It was deemed more honourable for a man to enrich himself by robbery
and piracy than by the arts of peace.  Coined money is not mentioned in
the poems of Homer.  Whether the Greeks were acquainted at this early
period with the art of writing is a question which has given rise to
much dispute, and must remain undetermined; but poetry was cultivated
with success, though yet confined to epic strains, or the narration of
the exploits and adventures of the Heroic chiefs.  The bard sung his
own song, and was always received with welcome and honour in the
palaces of the nobles.

In the battle, as depicted by Homer, the chiefs are the only important
combatants, while the people are an almost useless mass, frequently put
to rout by the prowess of a single hero. The chief is mounted in a war
chariot, and stands by the side of his charioteer, who is frequently a



The Greeks, as we have already seen, were divided into many independent
communities, but several causes bound them together as one people.  Of
these the most important were community of blood and
language--community of religious rites and festivals--and community of
manners and character.

All the Greeks were descended from the same ancestor and spoke the same
language.  They all described men and cities which were not Grecian by
the term BARBARIAN.  This word has passed into our own language, but
with a very different idea; for the Greeks applied it indiscriminately
to every foreigner, to the civilized inhabitants of Egypt and Persia,
as well as to the rude tribes of Scythia and Gaul.

The second bond of union was a community of religious rites and
festivals.  From the earliest times the Greeks appear to have
worshipped the same gods; but originally there were no religious
meetings common to the whole nation.  Such meetings were of gradual
growth, being formed by a number of neighbouring towns, which entered
into an association for the periodical celebration of certain religious
rites.  Of these the most celebrated was the AMPHICTYONIC COUNCIL.  It
acquired its superiority over other similar associations by the wealth
and grandeur of the Delphian temple, of which it was the appointed
guardian.  It held two meetings every year, one in the spring at the
temple of Apollo at Delphi, and the other in the autumn at the temple
of Demeter (Ceres) at Thermopylae.  Its members, who were called the
Amphictyons, consisted of sacred deputies sent from twelve tribes, each
of which contained several independent cities or states.  But the
Council was never considered as a national congress, whose duty it was
to protect and defend the common interests of Greece; and it was only
when the rights of the Delphian god had been violated that it invoked
the aid of the various members of the league.

The Olympic Games were of greater efficacy than the amphictyonic
council in promoting a spirit of union among the various branches of
the Greek race, and in keeping alive a feeling of their common origin.
They were open to all persons who could prove their Hellenic blood, and
were frequented by spectators from all parts of the Grecian world.
They were celebrated at Olympia, on the banks of the Alpheus, in the
territory of Elis.  The origin of the festival is lost in obscurity;
but it is said to have been revived by Iphitus, king of Elis, and
Lycurgus the Spartan legislator, in the year 776 B.C.; and,
accordingly, when the Greeks at a later time began to use the Olympic
contest as a chronological era, this year was regarded as the first
Olympiad. It was celebrated at the end of every four years, and the
interval which elapsed between each celebration was called an Olympiad.
The whole festival was under the management of the Eleans, who
appointed some of their own number to preside as judges, under the name
of the Hellanodicae.  During the month in which it was celebrated all
hostilities were suspended throughout Greece.  At first the festival
was confined to a single day, and consisted of nothing more than a
match of runners in the stadium; but in course of time so many other
contests were introduced, that the games occupied five days.  They
comprised various trials of strength and skill, such as wrestling
boxing, the Pancratium (boxing and wrestling combined), and the
complicated Pentathlum (including jumping, running, the quoit, the
javelin, and wrestling), but no combats with any kind of weapons.
There were also horse-races and chariot-races; and the chariot-race,
with four full-grown horses, became one of the most popular and
celebrated of all the matches.

The only prize given to the conqueror was a garland of wild olive; but
this was valued as one of the dearest distinctions in life.  To have
his name proclaimed as victor before assembled Hellas was an object of
ambition with the noblest and the wealthiest of the Greeks.  Such a
person was considered to have conferred everlasting glory upon his
family and his country, and was rewarded by his fellow-citizens with
distinguished honours.

During the sixth century before the Christian era three other national
festivals--the Pythian, Nemean, and Isthmian games--which were at first
only local became open to the whole nation. The Pythian games were
celebrated in every third Olympic year, on the Cirrhaean plain in
Phocis, under the superintendence of the Amphictyons.  The games
consisted not only of matches in gymnastics and of horse and chariot
races, but also of contests in music and poetry.  They soon acquired
celebrity, and became second only to the great Olympic festival.  The
Nemean and Isthmian games occurred more frequently than the Olympic and
Pythian.  They were celebrated once in two years--the Nemean in the
valley of Nemea between Phlius and Cleonae--and the Isthmian by the
Corinthians, on their isthmus, in honour of Poseidon (Neptune).  As in
the Pythian festival, contests in music and in poetry, as well as
gymnastics and chariot-races, formed part of these games.  Although the
four great festivals of which we have been speaking had no influence in
promoting the political union of Greece, they nevertheless were of
great importance in making the various sections of the race feel that
they were all members of one family, and in cementing them together by
common sympathies and the enjoyment of common pleasures.  The frequent
occurrence of these festivals, for one was celebrated every gear,
tended to the same result.

The Greeks were thus annually reminded of their common origin, and of
the great distinction which existed between them and barbarians.  Nor
must we forget the incidental advantages which attended them.  The
concourse of so large a number of persons from every part of the
Grecian world afforded to the merchant opportunities for traffic, and
to the artist and the literary man the best means of making their works
known.  During the time of the games a busy commerce was carried on;
and in a spacious hall appropriated for the purpose, the poets,
philosophers, and historians were accustomed to read their most recent

The habit of consulting the same oracles in order to ascertain the will
of the gods was another bond of union.  It was the universal practice
of the Greeks to undertake no matter of importance without first asking
the advice of the gods; and there were many sacred spots in which the
gods were always ready to give an answer to pious worshippers.  The
oracle of Apollo at Delphi surpassed all the rest in importance, and
was regarded with veneration in every part of the Grecian world.  In
the centre of the temple of Delphi there was a small opening in the
ground, from which it was said that a certain gas or vapour ascended.
Whenever the oracle was to be consulted, a virgin priestess called
PYTHIA took her seat upon a tripod which was placed over the chasm.
The ascending vapour affected her brain, and the words which she
uttered in this excited condition were believed to be the answer of
Apollo to his worshippers.  They were always in hexameter verse, and
were reverently taken down by the attendant priests.  Most of the
answers were equivocal or obscure; but the credit of the oracle
continued unimpaired long after the downfall of Grecian independence.

A further element of union among the Greeks was the similarity of
manners and character.  It is true the difference in this respect
between the polished inhabitants of Athens and the rude mountaineers of
Acarnania was marked and striking; but if we compare the two with
foreign contemporaries, the contrast between them and the latter is
still more striking.  Absolute despotism human sacrifices, polygamy,
deliberate mutilation of the person as a punishment, and selling of
children into slavery, existed in some part or other of the barbarian
world, but are not found in any city of Greece in the historical times.

The elements of union of which we have been speaking only bound the
Greeks together in common feelings and sentiments:  they never produced
any political union.  The independent sovereignty of each city was a
fundamental notion in the Greek mind.  This strongly rooted feeling
deserves particular notice.  Careless readers of history are tempted to
suppose that the territory of Greece was divided among comparatively
small number of independent states, such as Attica, Arcadia, Boeotia,
Phocis, Locris, and the like; but this is a most serious mistake, and
leads to a total misapprehension of Greek history.  Every separate city
was usually an independent state, and consequently each of the
territories described under the general names of Arcadia, Boeotia,
Phocis, and Locris, contained numerous political communities
independent of one another.  Attica, it is true, formed a single state,
and its different towns recognised Athens as their capital and the
source of supreme power; but this is an exception to the general rule.



In the heroic age Peloponnesus was occupied by tribes of Dorian
conquerors.  They had no share in the glories of the Heroic age; their
name does not occur in the Iliad, and they are only once mentioned in
the Odyssey; but they were destined to form in historical times one of
the most important elements of the Greek nation.  Issuing from their
mountain district between Thessaly, Locris and Phocis, they overran the
greater part of Peloponnesus, destroyed the ancient Achaean monarchies
and expelled or reduced to subjection the original inhabitants of the
land, of which they became the undisputed masters.  This brief
statement contains all that we know for certain respecting this
celebrated event, which the ancient writers placed eighty years after
the Trojan war (B.C. 1104).  The legendary account of the conquest of
Peloponnesus ran as follows:--The Dorians were led by the Heraclidae,
or descendants of the mighty hero Hercules.  Hence this migration is
called the Return of the Heraclidae.  The children of Hercules had long
been fugitives upon the face of the earth.  They had made many attempts
to regain possession of the dominions in the Peloponnesus, of which
their great sire had been deprived by Eurystheus, but hitherto without
success.  In their last attempt Hyllus, the son of Hercules, had
perished in single combat with Echemus of Tegea; and the Heraclidae had
become bound by a solemn compact to renounce their enterprise for a
hundred years.  This period had now expired; and the great-grandsons of
Hyllus--Temenus, Cresphontes, and Aristodemus--resolved to make a fresh
attempt to recover their birthright.  They were assisted in the
enterprise by the Dorians.  This people espoused their cause in
consequence of the aid which Hercules himself had rendered to the
Dorian king, AEgimius, when the latter was hard pressed in a contest
with the Lapithae.  The invaders were warned by an oracle not to enter
Peloponnesus by the Isthmus of Corinth, but across the mouth of the
Corinthian gulf.  The inhabitants of the northern coast of the gulf
were favourable to their enterprise. Oxylus, king of the AEtolians,
became their guide; and from Naupactus they crossed over to
Peloponnesus.  A single battle decided the contest.  Tisamenus, the son
of Orestes, was defeated and retired with a portion of his Achaean
subjects to the northern coast of Peloponnesus, then occupied by the
Ionians. He expelled the Ionians, and took possession of the country,
which continued henceforth to be inhabited by the Achaeans, and to be
called after them.  The Ionians withdrew to Attica, and the greater
part of them afterwards emigrated to Asia Minor.

The Heraclidae and the Dorians now divided between them the dominions
of Tisamenus and of the other Achaean princes.  The kingdom of Elis was
given to Oxylus as a recompense for his services as their guide; and it
was agreed that Temenus, Cresphontes, and Eurysthenes and Procles, the
infant sons of Aristodemus (who had died at Naupactus), should draw
lots for Argos, Sparta, and Messenia.  Argos fell to Temenus, Sparta to
Eurysthenes and Procles, and Messenia to Cresphontes.

Such are the main features of the legend of the Return of the
Heraclidae.  In order to make the story more striking and impressive,
it compresses into a single epoch events which probably occupied
several generations.  It is in itself improbable that the brave
Achaeans quietly submitted to the Dorian invaders after a momentary
struggle.  We have, moreover, many indications that such was not the
fact, and that it was only gradually and after a long protracted
contest that the Dorians became undisputed masters of the greater part
of Peloponnesus.

Argos was originally the chief Dorian state in Peloponnesus, but at the
time of the first Olympiad its power had been supplanted by that of
Sparta.  The progress of Sparta from the second to the first place
among the states in the peninsula was mainly owing to the military
discipline and rigorous training of its citizens. The singular
constitution of Sparta was unanimously ascribed by the ancients to the
legislator Lycurgus, but there were different stories respecting his
date, birth, travels, legislation, and death.  His most probable date
however is B.C. 776, in which year he is said to have assisted Iphitus
in restoring the Olympic games.  He was the son of Eunomus, one of the
two kings who reigned together in Sparta.  On the death of his father,
his elder brother, Polydectes, succeeded to the crown, but died soon
afterwards, leaving his queen with child.  The ambitious woman offered
to destroy the child, if Lycurgus would share the throne with her.
Lycurgus pretended to consent; but as soon as she had given birth to a
son, he presented him in the market-place as the future king of Sparta.
The young king's mother took revenge upon Lycurgus by accusing him of
entertaining designs against his nephew's life.  Hereupon he resolved
to withdraw from his native country and to visit foreign lands.  He was
absent many years, and is said to have employed his time in studying
the institutions of other nations, in order to devise a system of laws
and regulations which might deliver Sparta from the evils under which
it had long been suffering.  During his absence the young king had
grown up, and assumed the reins of government; but the disorders of the
state had meantime become worse than ever, and all parties longed for a
termination to their present sufferings.  Accordingly the return of
Lycurgus was hailed with delight, and he found the people both ready
and willing to submit to an entire change in their government and
institutions.  He now set himself to work to carry his long projected
reforms into effect; but before he commenced his arduous task he
consulted the Delphian oracle, from which he received strong assurances
of divine support.  Thus encouraged by the god, he suddenly presented
himself in the market-place, surrounded by thirty of the most
distinguished Spartans in arms.  His reforms were not carried into
effect without violent opposition, and in one of the tumults which they
excited, his eye is said to have been struck out by a passionate youth.
But he finally triumphed over all obstacles, and succeeded in obtaining
the submission of all classes in the community to his new constitution.
His last act was to sacrifice himself for the welfare of his country.
Having obtained from the people a solemn oath to make no alterations in
his laws before his return, he quitted Sparta for ever.  He set out on
a journey to Delphi, where he obtained an oracle from the god,
approving of all he had done, and promising prosperity to the Spartans
as long as they preserved his laws.  Whither he went afterwards, and
how and where he died, nobody could tell.  He vanished from earth like
a god, leaving no traces behind him but his spirit:  and his grateful
countrymen honoured him with a temple, and worshipped him with annual
sacrifices down to the latest times.

The population of Laconia was divided into the three classes of
Spartans, Perioeci and Helots.

I. The SPARTANS were the descendants of the leading Dorian
conquerors.  They formed the sovereign power of the state, and they
alone were eligible to honours and public offices.  They lived in
Sparta itself and were all subject to the discipline of Lycurgus.  They
were divided into three tribes,--the HYLLEIS, the PAMPHILI, and the
DYMANES,--which were not, however, peculiar to Sparta, but existed in
all the Dorian states.

II. The PERIOECI were personally free, but politically subject
to the Spartans.  [This word signifies literally DWELLERS AROUND THE
CITY, and was generally used to indicate the inhabitants in the country
districts, who possessed inferior political privileges to the citizens
who lived in the city.]  They possessed no share in the government, and
were bound to obey the commands of the Spartan magistrates.  They
appear to have been the descendants of the old Achaean population of
the country, and they were distributed into a hundred townships, which
were spread through the whole of Laconia.

III. The HELOTS were serfs bound to the soil, which they tilled
for the benefit of the Spartan proprietors.  Their condition was very
different from that of the ordinary slaves in antiquity, and more
similar to the villanage of the middle ages.  They lived in the rural
villages, as the Perioeci did in the towns, cultivating the lands and
paying over the rent to their masters in Sparta, but enjoying their
homes, wives, and families, apart from their master's personal
superintendence.  They appear to have been never sold, and they
accompanied the Spartans to the field as light armed troops.  But while
their condition was in these respects superior to that of the ordinary
slaves in other parts of Greece, it was embittered by the fact that
they were not strangers like the latter, but were of the same race and
spoke the same language as their masters, being probably the
descendants of the old inhabitants, who had offered the most obstinate
resistance to the Dorians, and had therefore been reduced to slavery.
As their numbers increased, they became objects of suspicion to their
masters, and were subjected to the most wanton and oppressive cruelty.

The functions of the Spartan government were distributed among two
kings, a senate of thirty members, a popular assembly, and an executive
directory of five men called the Ephors.

At the head of the state were the two hereditary kings.  The existence
of a pair of kings was peculiar to Sparta, and is said to have arisen
from the accidental circumstance of Aristodemus having left twin sons,
Eurysthenes and Procles.  This division of the royal power naturally
tended to weaken its influence and to produce jealousies and
dissensions between the two kings.  The royal power was on the decline
during the whole historical period, and the authority of the kings was
gradually usurped by the Ephors, who at length obtained the entire
control of the government, and reduced the kings to a state of
humiliation and dependence.

The Senate, called GERUSIA, or the COUNCIL OF ELDERS, consisted of
thirty members, among whom the two kings were included.  They were
obliged to be upwards of sixty years of age, and they held their office
for life.  They possessed considerable power and were the only real
check upon the authority of the Ephors.  They discussed and prepared
all measures which were to be brought before the popular assembly, and
they had some share in the general administration of the state.  But
the most important of their functions was, that they were judges in all
criminal cases affecting the life of a Spartan citizen.

The Popular Assembly was of little importance, and appears to have been
usually summoned only as a matter of form for the election of certain
magistrates, for passing laws, and for determining upon peace and war.
It would appear that open discussion was not allowed and that the
assembly rarely came to a division.

The Ephors were of later origin, and did not exist in the original
constitution of Lycurgus.  They may be regarded as the representatives
of the popular assembly.  They were elected annually from the general
body of Spartan citizens, and seem to have been originally appointed to
protect the interests and liberties of the people against the
encroachments of the kings and the senate.  They correspond in many
respects to the tribunes of the people at Rome.  Their functions were
at first limited and of small importance; but in the end the whole
political power became centred in their hands.

The Spartan government was in reality a close oligarchy, in which the
kings and the senate, as well as the people, were alike subject to the
irresponsible authority of the five Ephors.

The most important part of the legislation of Lycurgus did not relate
to the political constitution of Sparta, but to the discipline and
education of the citizens.  It was these which gave Sparta her peculiar
character, and distinguished her in so striking a manner from all the
other states of Greece.  The position of the Spartans, surrounded by
numerous enemies, whom they held in subjection by the sword alone,
compelled them to be a nation of soldiers.  Lycurgus determined that
they should be nothing else; and the great object of his whole system
was to cultivate a martial spirit, and to give them a training which
would make them invincible in battle.  To accomplish this the education
of a Spartan was placed under the control of the state from his
earliest boyhood.  Every child after birth was exhibited to public
view, and, if deemed deformed and weakly, was exposed to perish on
Mount Taygetus.  At the age of seven he was taken from his mother's
care, and handed over to the public classes. He was not only taught
gymnastic games and military exercises but he was also subjected to
severe bodily discipline, and was compelled to submit to hardships and
suffering without repining or complaint.  One of the tests to which he
was subjected was a cruel scourging at the altar of Artemis (Diana),
until his blood gushed forth and covered the altar of the goddess.  It
was inflicted publicly before the eyes of his parents and in the
presence of the whole city; and many Spartan youths were known to have
died under the lash without uttering a complaining murmur. No means
were neglected to prepare them for the hardships and stratagems of war.
They were obliged to wear the same garment winter and summer, and to
endure hunger and thirst, heat and cold.  They were purposely allowed
an insufficient quantity of food, but were permitted to make up the
deficiency by hunting in the woods and mountains of Laconia.  They were
even encouraged to steal whatever they could; but if they were caught
in the fact, they were severely punished for their want of dexterity.
Plutarch tells us of a boy, who, having stolen a fox, and hid it under
his garment, chose rather to let it tear out his very bowels than be
detected in the theft.

The literary education of a Spartan youth was of a most restricted
kind.  He was taught to despise literature as unworthy of a warrior,
while the study of eloquence and philosophy, which were cultivated at
Athens with such extraordinary success, was regarded at Sparta with
contempt.  Long speeches were a Spartan's abhorrence, and he was
trained to express himself with sententious brevity.

A Spartan was not considered to have reached the full age of manhood
till he had completed his thirtieth year.  He was then allowed to
marry, to take part in the public assembly, and was eligible to the
offices of the state.  But he still continued under the public
discipline, and was not permitted even to reside and take his meals
with his wife.  It was not till he had reached his sixtieth year that
he was released from the public discipline and from military service.

The public mess--called SYSSITIA--is said to have been instituted by
Lycurgus to prevent all indulgence of the appetite.  Public tables were
provided, at which every male citizen was obliged to take his meals.
Each table accommodated fifteen persons, who formed a separate mess,
into which no new member was admitted, except by the unanimous consent
of the whole company.  Each sent monthly to the common stock a
specified quantity of barley-meal, wine, cheese, and figs and a little
money to buy flesh and fish. No distinction of any kind was allowed at
these frugal meals. Meat was only eaten occasionally; and one of the
principal dishes was black broth.  Of what it consisted we do not know.
The tyrant Dionysius found it very unpalatable; but, as the cook told
him, the broth was nothing without the seasoning of fatigue and hunger.

The Spartan women in their earlier years were subjected to a course of
training almost as rigorous as that of the men, and contended with each
other in running, wrestling and boxing.  At the age of twenty a Spartan
woman usually married, and she was no longer subjected to the public
discipline.  Although she enjoyed little of her husband's society, she
was treated by him with deep respect, and was allowed a greater degree
of liberty than was tolerated in other Grecian states.  Hence she took
a lively interest in the welfare and glory of her native land, and was
animated by an earnest and lofty spirit of patriotism.  The Spartan
mother had reason to be proud of herself and of her children.  When a
woman of another country said to Gorgo, the wife of Leonidas, "The
Spartan women alone rule the men," she replied, "The Spartan women
alone bring forth men."  Their husbands and their sons were fired by
their sympathy to deeds of heroism.  "Return either with your shield,
or upon it," was their exhortation to their sons when going to battle.

Lycurgus is said to have divided the land belonging to the Spartans
into 9000 equal lots and the remainder of Laconia into 30,000 equal
lots, and to have assigned to each Spartan citizen one of the former of
these lots, and to each Perioecus one of the latter.

Neither gold nor silver money was allowed in Sparta, and nothing but
bars of iron passed in exchange for every commodity.  As the Spartans
were not permitted to engage in commerce, and all luxury and display in
dress, furniture, and food was forbidden, they had very little occasion
for a circulating medium, and iron money was found sufficient for their
few wants.  But this prohibition of the precious metals only made the
Spartans more anxious to obtain them; and even in the times of their
greatest glory the Spartans were the most venal of the Greeks, and
could rarely resist the temptation of a bribe.

The legislation of Lycurgus was followed by important results. It made
the Spartans a body of professional soldiers, all trained and well
disciplined, at a time when military training and discipline were
little known, and almost unpractised in the other states of Greece.
The consequence was the rapid growth of the political power of Sparta,
and the subjugation of the neighbouring states.  At the time of
Lycurgus the Spartans held only a small portion of Laconia:  they were
merely a garrison in the heart of an enemy's country.  Their first
object was to make themselves masters of Laconia, in which they finally
succeeded after a severe struggle.  They next turned their arms against
the Messenians, Arcadians, and Argives.  Of these wars the two waged
against Messenia were the most celebrated and the most important. They
were both long protracted and obstinately contested.  They both ended
in the victory of Sparta, and in the subjugation of Messenia.  These
facts are beyond dispute; but of the details we have no trustworthy

The FIRST MESSENIAN WAR lasted from B.C. 743 to 724.  During the first
four years the Lacedaemonians made little progress; but in the fifth a
great battle was fought, and although its result was indecisive, the
Messenians did not venture to risk another engagement, and retired to
the strongly fortified mountain of Ithome.  In their distress they sent
to consult the oracle at Delphi, and received the appalling answer that
the salvation of Messenia required the sacrifice of a virgin of the
royal house to the gods of the lower world.  Aristodemus, who is the
Messenian hero of the first war, slew his own daughter, which so
disheartened the Spartans, that they abstained from attacking the
Messenians for some years.  In the thirteenth year of the war the
Spartan king marched against Ithome, and a second great battle was
fought, but the result was again indecisive.  The Messenian king fell
in the action; and Aristodemus, who was chosen king in his place,
prosecuted the war with vigour.  In the fifth year of his reign a third
great battle was fought.  This time the Messenians gained a decisive
victory, and the Lacedaemonians were driven back into their own
territory.  They now sent to ask advice of the Delphian oracle, and
were promised success upon using stratagem.  They therefore had
recourse to fraud:  and at the same time various prodigies dismayed the
bold spirit of Aristodemus.  His daughter too appeared to him in a
dream, showed him her wounds, and beckoned him away.  Seeing that his
country was doomed to destruction, Aristodemus slew himself on his
daughter's tomb.  Shortly afterwards, in the twentieth year of the war,
the Messenians abandoned Ithome, which the Lacedaemonians razed to the
ground, and the whole country became subject to Sparta.  Many of the
inhabitants fled into other countries; but those who remained were
reduced to the condition of Helots, and were compelled to pay to their
masters half of the produce of their lands.

For thirty-nine years the Messenians endured this degrading yoke. At
the end of this time they took up arms against their oppressors.  The
SECOND MESSENIAN WAR lasted from B.C. 685 to 668.  Its hero is
Aristomenes, whose wonderful exploits form the great subject of this
war.  It would appear that most of the states in Peloponnesus took part
in the struggle.  The first battle was fought before the arrival of the
allies on either side, and, though it was indecisive, the valour of
Aristomenes struck fear into the hearts of the Spartans.  To frighten
the enemy still more, the hero crossed the frontier, entered Sparta by
night, and affixed a shield to the temple of Athena (Minerva), with the
inscription, "Dedicated by Aristomenes to the goddess from the Spartan
spoils."  The Spartans in alarm sent to Delphi for advice.  The god
bade them apply to Athens for a leader. Fearing to disobey the oracle,
but with the view of rendering no real assistance, the Athenians sent
Tyrtaeus, a lame man and a schoolmaster.  The Spartans received their
new leader with due honour; and he was not long in justifying the
credit of the oracle.  His martial songs roused their fainting courage;
and so efficacious were his poems that to them is mainly ascribed the
final success of the Spartan arms.

Encouraged by the strains of Tyrtaeus, the Spartans again marched
against the Messenians.  But they were not at first successful. A great
battle was fought at the Boar's Grave in the plain of Stenyclerus, in
which they were defeated with great loss.  In the third year of the war
another great battle was fought, in which the Messenians suffered a
signal defeat.  So greet was their loss, that Aristomenes no longer
ventured to meet the Spartans in the open field.  Following the example
of the Messenian leaders in the former war, he retired to the mountain
fortress of Ira. The Spartans encamped at the foot of the mountain; but
Aristomenes frequently sallied from the fortress, and ravaged the lands
of Laconia with fire and sword.  It is unnecessary to relate all the
wonderful exploits of this hero in his various incursions.  Thrice was
he taken prisoner; on two occasions he burst his bonds, but on the
third he was carried to Sparta, and thrown with his fifty companions
into a deep pit, called Ceadas. His comrades were all killed by the
fall; but Aristomenes reached the bottom unhurt.  He saw, however, no
means of escape, and had resigned himself to death; but on the third
day perceiving a fox creeping among the bodies, he grasped its tail,
and, following the animal as it struggled to escape, discovered an
opening in the rock, and on the next day was at Ira to the surprise
alike of friends and foes.  But his single prowess was not sufficient
to avert the ruin of his country.  One night the Spartans surprised
Ira, while Aristomenes was disabled by a wound; but he collected the
bravest of his followers, and forced his way through the enemy.  Many
of the Messenians went to Rhegium, in Italy, under the sons of
Aristomenes, but the hero himself finished his days in Rhodes.

The second Messenian war was terminated by the complete subjugation of
the Messenians, who again became the serfs of their conquerors.  In
this condition they remained till the restoration of their independence
by Epaminondas in the year 369 B.C. During the whole of the intervening
period the Messenians disappear from history.  The country called
Messenia in the map became a portion of Laconia, which thus extended
across the south of Pelponnesus from the eastern to the western sea.



Sparta was the only state in Greece which continued to retain the
kingly form of government during the brilliant period of Grecian
history.  In all other parts of Greece royalty had been abolished at as
early age, and various forms of republican government established in
its stead.  The abolition of royalty was first followed by an Oligarchy
or the government of the Few. Democracy, or the government of the Many,
was of later growth. It was not from the people that the oligarchies
received their first and greatest blow.  They were generally overthrown
by the usurpers, to whom the Greeks gave the name of TYRANTS.  [The
Greek word Tyrant does not correspond in meaning to the same word in
the English language.  It signifies simply an irresponsible ruler, and
may, therefore, be more correctly rendered by the term Despot.]

The rise of the Tyrants seems to have taken place about the same time
in a large number of the Greek cities.  In most cases they belonged to
the nobles, and they generally became masters of the state by espousing
the cause of the commonalty, and using the strength of the people to
put down the oligarchy by force.  At first they were popular with the
general body of the citizens, who were glad to see the humiliation of
their former masters. But discontent soon began to arise; the tyrant
had recourse to violence to quell disaffection; and the government
became in reality a tyranny in the modern sense of the word.

Many of the tyrants in Greece were put down by the Lacedaemonians.  The
Spartan government was essentially an oligarchy, and the Spartans were
always ready to lend their powerful aid in favour of the government of
the Few.  Hence they took an active part in the overthrow of the
despots, with the intention of establishing the ancient oligarchy in
their place. But this rarely happened; and they found it impossible in
most cases to reinstate the former body of nobles in their ancient
privileges.  The latter, it is true, attempted to regain them and were
supported in their attempts by Sparta.  Hence arose a new struggle.
The first contest after the abolition of royalty was between oligarchy
and the despot, the next was between oligarchy and democracy.

The history of Athens affords the most striking illustration of the
different revolutions of which we have been speaking.

Little is known of Athens before the age of Solon.  Its legendary tales
are few, its historical facts still fewer.  Cecrops, the first ruler of
Attica, is said to have divided the country into twelve districts,
which are represented as independent communities, each governed by a
separate king.  They were afterwards united into a single state, having
Athens as its capital and the seat of government.  At what time this
important union was effected cannot be determined; but it is ascribed
to Theseus, as the national hero of the Athenian people.

A few generations after Theseus, the Dorians are said to have invaded
Attica.  An oracle declared that they would be victorious if they
spared the life of the Athenian King; whereupon Codrus, who then
reigned at Athens, resolved to sacrifice himself for the welfare of his
country.  Accordingly he went into the invaders' camp in disguise,
provoked a quarrel with one of the Dorian soldiers and was killed by
the latter.  Upon learning the death of the Athenian king, the Dorians
retired from Attica without striking a blow:  and the Athenians, from
respect to the memory of Codrus, abolished the title of king, and
substituted for it that of Archon or Ruler.  The office, however, was
held for life, and was confined to the family of Codrus.  His son Medon
was the first archon, and he was followed in the dignity by eleven
members of the family in succession.  But soon after the accession
Alcmaeon, the thirteenth in descent from Medon, another change was
introduced, and the duration of the archonship was limited to ten years
(B.C. 752).  The dignity was still confined to the descendants of
Medon; but in the time of Hippomenes (B.C. 714) this restriction was
removed, and the office was thrown open to all the nobles in the state.
In B.C. 683 a still more important change took place.  The archonship
was now made annual, and its duties were distributed among nine
persons, all of whom bore the title.  The last of the decennial archons
was Eryxias, the first of the nine annual archons Creon.

Such is the legendary account of the change of government at Athens,
from royalty to an oligarchy.  It appears to have taken place peaceably
and gradually, as in most other Greek states. The whole political power
was vested in the nobles; from them the nine annual archons were taken,
and to them alone these magistrates were responsible.  The people, or
general body of freemen, had no share in the government.

The Athenian nobles were called EUPATRIDAE, the two other classes in
the state being the GEOMORI or husbandmen, and DEMIURGI or artisans.
This arrangement is ascribed to Theseus; but there was another division
of the people of still greater antiquity.  As the Dorians were divided
into three tribes, so the Ionians were usually distributed into four
tribes.  The latter division also existed among the Athenians, who were
Ionians, and it continued in full vigour down to the great revolution
of Clisthenes (B.C. 509).  These tribes were distinguished by the names
of GELEONTES (or TELEONTES) "cultivators," HOPLETES "warriors,"
AEGICORES "goat-herds," and ARGADES "artisans."  Each tribe contained
three Phratriae, each Phratry thirty Gentes, and each Gens thirty heads
of families.

The first date in Athenian history on which certain reliance can be
placed is the institution of annual archons, in the year 683 B.C.  The
duties of the government were distributed among the nine archons in the
following manner.  The first was called THE ARCHON by way of
pre-eminence, and sometimes the Archon Eponymus, because the year was
distinguished by his name.  The second archon was called THE BASILEUS
or THE KING, because he represented the king in his capacity as
high-priest of the nation.  The third archon bore the title of THE
POLEMARCH, or Commander-in-chief and was, down to the time of
Clisthenes, the commander of the troops.  The remaining six had the
common title of THESMOTHETAE, or Legislators.  Their duties seem to
have been almost exclusively judicial.

The government of the Eupatrids was oppressive; and the discontent of
the people at length became so serious, that Draco was appointed in 624
B.C. to draw up a written code of laws. They were marked by extreme
severity.  He affixed the penalty of death to all crimes alike; to
petty thefts, for instance, as well as to sacrilege and murder.  Hence
they were said to have been written not in ink but in blood; and we are
told that he justified this extreme harshness by saying that small
offences deserved death, and that he knew no severer punishment for
great ones.

The legislation of Draco failed to calm the prevailing discontent.  The
people gained nothing by the written code, except a more perfect
knowledge of its severity; and civil dissensions prevailed as
extensively as before.  The general dissatisfaction with the government
was favourable to revolutionary projects; and accordingly, twelve years
after Draco's legislation (B.C. 612), Cylon, one of the nobles,
conceived the design of depriving his brother Eupatrids of their power,
and making himself tyrant of Athens.  Having collected a considerable
force, he seized the Acropolis; but he did not meet with support from
the great mass of the people, and he soon found himself closely
blockaded by the forces of the Eupatrids.  Cylon and his brother made
their escape, but the remainder of his associates, hard pressed by
hunger, abandoned the defence of the walls, and took refuge at the
altar of Athena (Minerva).  They were induced by the archon Megacles,
one of the illustrious family of the Alcmaeonidae, to quit the altar on
the promise that their lives should be spared; but directly they had
left the temple they were put to death, and some of them were murdered
even at the altar of the Eumenides or Furies.

The conspiracy thus failed; but its suppression was attended with a
long train of melancholy consequences.  The whole family of the
Alcmaeonidae was believed to have become tainted by the daring act of
sacrilege committed by Megacles; and the friends and partisans of the
murdered conspirators were not slow in demanding vengeance upon the
accursed race.  Thus a new element of discord was introduced into the
state, In the midst of these dissensions there was one man who enjoyed
a distinguished reputation at Athens, and to whom his fellow citizens
looked up as the only person in the state who could deliver them from
their political and social dissensions, and secure them from such
misfortunes for the future.  This man was Solon, the son of
Execestides, and a descendant of Codrus.  He had travelled through many
parts of Greece and Asia, and had formed acquaintance with many of the
most eminent men of his time.  On his return to his native country he
distinguished himself by recovering the island of Salamis, which had
revolted to Megara (B.C. 600).  Three years afterwards he persuaded the
Alcmaeonidae to submit their case to the judgment of three hundred
Eupatridae, by whom they were adjudged guilty of sacrilege, and were
expelled from Attica.  The banishment of the guilty race did not,
however, deliver the Athenians from their religious fears.  A
pestilential disease with which they were visited was regarded as an
unerring sign of the divine wrath.  Upon the advice of the Delphic
oracle, they invited the celebrated Cretan prophet and sage,
Epimenides, to visit Athens, and purify their city from pollution and
sacrilege. By performing certain sacrifices and expiatory acts,
Epimenides succeeded in staying the plague.

The civil dissensions however still continued.  The population of
Attica was now divided into three hostile factions, consisting of the
PEDIEIS or wealthy Eupatrid inhabitants of the plains; of the DIACRII,
or poor inhabitants of the hilly districts in the north and east of
Attica; and of the PARALI, or mercantile inhabitants of the coasts, who
held an intermediate position between the other two.  Their disputes
were aggravated by the miserable condition of the poorer population.
The latter were in a state of abject poverty, They had borrowed money
from the wealthy at exorbitant rates of interest upon the security of
their property and their persons.  If the principal and interest of the
debt were not paid, the creditor had the power of seizing the person as
well as the land of his debtor, and of using him as a slave. Many had
thus been torn from their homes and sold to barbarian masters, while
others were cultivating as slaves the lands of their wealthy creditors
in Attica.  Matters had at length reached a crisis; the existing laws
could no longer be enforced; and the poor were ready to rise in open
insurrection against the rich.

In these alarming circumstances the ruling oligarchy were obliged to
have recourse to Solon; and they therefore chose him Archon in B.C.
594, investing him under that title with unlimited powers to effect any
changes he might consider beneficial to the state. His appointment was
hailed with satisfaction by the poor; and all parties were willing to
accept his mediation and reforms.

Solon commenced his undertaking by relieving the poorer class of
debtors from their existing distress.  He cancelled all contracts by
which the land or person of a debtor had been given as security; and he
forbad for the future all loans in which the person of the debtor was
pledged.  He next proceeded to draw up a new constitution and a new
code of laws.  As a preliminary step he repealed all the laws of Draco,
except those relating to murder.  He then made a new classification of
the citizens, distributing them into four classes according to the
amount of their property, thus making wealth and not birth the title to
the honours and offices of the state.  The first class consisted of
those whose annual income was equal to 500 medimni of corn and upwards,
and were called  PENTACOSIOMEDIMNI.  [The medimnus was one bushel and a
half.]  The second class consisted of those whose incomes ranged
between 300 and 500 medimni and were called KNIGHTS, from their being
able to furnish a war-horse.  The third class consisted of those who
received between 200 and 300 medimni, and were called ZEUGITAE from
their being able to keep a yoke of oxen for the plough.  The fourth
class, called THETES, included all whose property fell short of 200
medimni.  The first class were alone eligible to the archonship and the
higher offices of the state.  The second and third classes filled
inferior posts, and were liable to military service, the former as
horsemen, and the latter as heavy-armed soldiers on foot.  The fourth
class were excluded from all public offices, and served in the army
only as light-armed troops.  Solon, however, allowed them to veto in
the public assembly, where they must have constituted by far the
largest number.  He gave the assembly the right of electing the archons
and the other officers of the state; and he also made the archons
accountable to the assembly at the expiration of their year of office.

This extension of the duties of the public assembly led to the
institution of a new body.  Solon created the Senate, or Council of
Four Hundred with the special object of preparing all matters for the
discussion of the public assembly, of presiding at its meetings, and of
carrying its resolutions into effect.  No subject could be introduced
before the people, except by a previous resolution of the Senate.  The
members of the Senate were elected by the public assembly, one hundred
from each of the four ancient tribes, which were left untouched by
Solon.  They held their office for a year, and were accountable at its
expiration to the public assembly for the manner in which they had
discharged their duties.

The Senate of the Areopagus [It received its name from its place of
meeting, which was a rocky eminence opposite the Acropolis, called the
hill of Ares (Mars Hill)], is said by some writers to have been
instituted by Solon; but it existed long before his time, and may be
regarded as the representative of the Council of Chiefs in the Heroic
age.  Solon enlarged its powers, and intrusted it with the general
supervision of the institutions and laws of the state, and imposed upon
it the duty of inspecting the lives and occupations of the citizens.
All archons became members of it at the expiration of their year of

Solon laid only the foundation of the Athenian democracy by giving the
poorer classes a vote in the popular assembly, and by enlarging the
power of the latter; but he left the government exclusively in the
hands of the wealthy.  For many years after his time the government
continued to be an oligarchy, but was exercised with more moderation
and justice than formerly.

Solon enacted numerous laws, containing regulations on almost all
subjects connected with the public and private life of the citizens.
He encouraged trade and manufactures, and invited foreigners to settle
in Athens by the promise of protection and by valuable privileges.  To
discourage idleness a son was not obliged to support his father in old
age, if the latter had neglected to teach him some trade or occupation.

Solon punished theft by compelling the guilty party to restore double
the value of the property stolen.  He forbade speaking evil either of
the dead or of the living.

Solon is said to have been aware that he had left many imperfections in
his laws.  He described them not as the best laws which he could
devise, but as the best which the Athenians could receive.  Having
bound the government and people of Athens by a solemn oath to observe
his institutions for at least ten years, he left Athens and travelled
in foreign lands.  During his absence the old dissensions between the
Plain, the Shore, and the Mountain broke out afresh with more violence
than ever.  The first was headed by Lycurgus, the second by Megacles,
an Alcmaeonid, and the third by Pisistratus, the cousin of Solon. Of
these leaders, Pisistratus was the ablest and the most dangerous.  He
had espoused the cause of the poorest of the three classes, in order to
gain popularity, and to make himself master of Athens.  Solon on his
return to Athens detected the ambitious designs of his kinsman, and
attempted to disuade him from them. Finding his remonstrances
fruitless, he next denounced his projects in verses addressed to the
people.  Few, however, gave any heed to his warnings:  and Pisistratus,
at length finding his schemes ripe for action, had recourse to a
memorable strategem to secure his object.  One day he appeared in the
market-place in a chariot, his mules and his own person bleeding with
wounds inflicted with his own hands.  These he exhibited to the people,
telling them that he had been nearly murdered in consequence of
defending their rights.  The popular indignation was excited; and a
guard of fifty clubmen was granted him for his future security. He
gradually increased the number of his guard and soon found himself
strong enough to throw off the mask and seize the Acropolis (B.C. 560).
Megacles and the Alcmaeonidae left the city.  Solon alone had the
courage to oppose the usurpation, and upbraided the people with their
cowardice and their treachery. "You might," said he, "with ease have
crushed the tyrant in the bud; but nothing now remains but to pluck him
up by the roots." But no one responded to his appeal.  He refused to
fly; and when his friends asked him on what he relied for protection,
"On my old age," was his reply.  It is creditable to Pisistratus that
he left his aged relative unmolested, and even asked his advice in the
administration of the government.  Solon did not long survive the
overthrow of the constitution.  He died a year or two afterwards at the
advanced age of eighty.  His ashes are said to have been scattered by
his own direction round the island of Salamis, which he had won for the
Athenian people.

Pisistratus however did not retain his power long.  The leaders of the
factions of the Shore and the Plain combined and drove the usurper into
exile.  But the Shore and the Plain having quarrelled, Pisistratus was
recalled and again became master of Athens.  Another revolution shortly
afterwards drove him into exile a second time, and he remained abroad
ten years.  At length, with the assistance of mercenaries from other
Grecian states and with the aid of his partisans in Athens, he became
master of Athens for the third time, and henceforth continued in
possession of the supreme power till the day of his death.  As soon as
he was firmly established in the government, his administration was
marked by mildness and equity.  He maintained the institutions of
Solon, taking care, however, that the highest offices should always be
held by some members of his own family. He not only enforced strict
obedience to the laws, but himself set the example of submitting to
them.  Being accused of murder, he disdained to take advantage of his
authority, and went in person to plead his cause before the Areopagus,
where his accuser did not venture to appear.  He courted popularity by
largesses to the citizens and by throwing open his gardens to the poor.
He adorned Athens with many public buildings.  He commenced on a
stupendous scale a temple to the Olympian Zeus, which remained
unfinished for centuries, and was at length completed by the emperor
Hadrian.  He was a patron of literature, as well as of the arts.  He is
said to have been the first person in Greece who collected a library,
which he threw open to the public; and to him posterity is indebted for
the collection of the Homeric poems.  On the whole it cannot be denied
that he made a wise and noble use of his power.

Pisistratus died at an advanced age in 527 B.C., thirty-three years
after his first usurpation.  He transmitted the sovereign power to his
sons, Hippias and Hipparchus, who conducted the government on the same
principles as their father.  Hipparchus inherited his father's literary
tastes.  He invited several distinguished poets, such as Anacreon and
Simonides, to his court.  The people appear to have been contented with
their rule; and it was only an accidental circumstance which led to
their overthrow and to a change in the government.

Their fall was occasioned by the conspiracy of Harmodius and
Aristogiton, who were attached to each other by a most intimate
friendship.  Harmodius having given offence to Hippias, the despot
revenged himself by putting a public affront upon his sister.  This
indignity excited the resentment of the two friends, and they now
resolved to slay the despots at the festival of the Great Panathenaea,
when all the citizens were required to attend in arms.  Having
communicated their design to a few associates, the conspirators
appeared armed at the appointed time like the rest of the citizens, but
carrying concealed daggers besides.  Harmodius and Aristogiton had
planned to kill Hippias first as he was arranging the order of the
procession outside the city, but, upon approaching the spot where he
was standing, they were thunderstruck at beholding one of the
conspirators in close conversation with the despot.  Believing that
they were betrayed, they rushed back into the city with their daggers
hid in the myrtle boughs which they were to have carried in the
procession, and killed Hipparchus.  Harmodius was immediately cut down
by the guards.  Aristogiton died under the tortures to which he was
subjected in order to compel him to disclose his accomplices.

Hipparchus was assassinated in B.C. 514, the fourteenth year after the
death of Pisistratus.  From this time the character of the government
became entirely changed.  His brother's murder converted Hippias into a
cruel and suspicious tyrant.  He put to death numbers of the citizens,
and raised large sums of money by extraordinary taxes.

The Alcmaeonidae, who had lived in exile ever since the third and final
restoration of Pisistratus to Athens, now began to form schemes to
expel the tyrant.  Clisthenes, the son of Megacles, who was the head of
the family, secured the Delphian oracle by pecuniary presents to the
Pythia, or priestess, henceforth, whenever the Spartans came to consult
the oracle, the answer of the priestess was always the same, "Athens
must be liberated." This order was so often repeated, that the Spartans
at last resolved to obey.  Cleomenes, king of Sparta, defeated the
Thessalian allies of Hippias; and the tyrant, unable to meet his
enemies in the field, took refuge in the Acropolis.  Here he might have
maintained himself in safety, had not his children been made prisoners
as they were being secretly carried out of the country.  To procure
their restoration, he consented to quit Attics in the space of five
days.  He sailed to Asia, and took up his residence at Sigeum in the
Troad, which his father had wrested from the Mytilenaeans in war.

Hippias was expelled in B.C. 510, four years after the assassination of
Hipparchus.  These four years had been a time of suffering and
oppression for the Athenians, and had effaced from their minds all
recollection of the former mild rule of Pisistratus and his sons.
Hence the expulsion of the family was hailed with delight.  The memory
of Harmodius and Aristogiton was cherished with the fondest reverence;
and the Athenians of a later age, overlooking the four years which had
elapsed from their death to the overthrow of the despotism, represented
them as the liberators of their country and the first martyrs for its
liberty.  Their statues were erected in the market-place soon after the
expulsion of Hippias; their descendants enjoyed immunity from all taxes
and public burdens; and their deed of vengeance formed the favourite
subject of drinking songs.

The Lacedaemonians quitted Athens soon after Hippias had sailed away,
leaving the Athenians to settle their own affairs. Clisthenes, to whom
Athens was mainly indebted for its liberation from the despotism,
aspired to be the political leader of the state but he was opposed by
Isagoras, the leader of the party of the nobles.  By the Solonian
constitution, the whole political power was vested in the hands of the
nobles; and Clisthenes soon found that it was hopeless to contend
against his rival under the existing order of things.  For this reason
he resolved to introduce an important change in the constitution, and
to give to the people an equal share in the government.

The reforms of Clisthenes gave birth to the Athenian democracy, which
can hardly be said to have existed before this time.  His first and
most important measure was a redistribution of the whole population of
Attica into ten new tribes.  He abolished the four ancient Ionic
tribes, and enrolled in the ten new tribes all the free inhabitants of
Attica, including both resident aliens and even emancipated slaves.  He
divided the tribes into a certain number of cantons or townships,
called DEMI, which at a later time were 174 in number.  Every Athenian
citizen was obliged to be enrolled in a demus, each of which, like a
parish in England, administered its own affairs.  It had its public
meetings it levied rates, and was under the superintendence of an
officer called DEMARCHUS.

The establishment of the ten new tribes led to a change in the number
of the Senate.  It had previously consisted of 400 members, but it was
now enlarged to 500, fifty being selected from each of the ten new
tribes.  The Ecclesia, or formal assembly of the citizens, was now
summoned at certain fixed periods; and Clisthenes transferred the
government of the state, which had hitherto been in the hands of the
archons, to the senate and the ecclesia.  He also increased the
judicial as well as the political power of the people; and enacted that
all public crimes should be tried by the whole body of citizens above
thirty years of age, specially convoked and sworn for the purpose.  The
assembly thus convened was called HELIAEA and its members HELIASTS.
Clisthenes also introduced the OSTRACISM, by which an Athenian citizen
might be banished without special accusation, trial, or defence for ten
years, which term was subsequently reduced to five.  It must be
recollected that the force which a Greek government had at its disposal
was very small; and that it was comparatively easy for an ambitious
citizen, supported by a numerous body of partisans, to overthrow the
constitution and make himself despot.  The Ostracism was the means
devised by Clisthenes for removing quietly from the state a powerful
party leader before he could carry into execution any violent schemes
for the subversion of the government.  Every precaution was taken to
guard this institution from abuse.  The senate and the ecclesia had
first to determine by a special vote whether the safety of the state
required such a step to be taken.  If they decided in the affirmative,
a day was fixed for the voting, and each citizen wrote upon a tile or
oyster-shell [OSTRACON, whence the name OSTRACISM] the name of the
person whom he wished to banish.  The votes were then collected, And if
it was found that 6000 had been recorded against any one person, he was
obliged to withdraw from the city within ten days:  if the number of
votes did not amount to 6000, nothing was done.

The aristocratical party, enraged at these reforms called in the
assistance of Cleomenes, king of the Lacedaemonians.  Athens was
menaced by foreign enemies and distracted by party struggles.
Clisthenes was at first compelled to retire from Athens; but the people
rose in arms against Cleomenes, expelled the Lacedaemonians, who had
taken possession of the city, and recalled Clisthenes.  Thereupon
Cleomenes collected a Peloponnesian army in order to establish Isagoras
as a tyrant over the Athenians, and at the same time he concerted
measures with the Thebans and the Chalcidians of Euboea for a
simultaneous attack upon Attica.  The Peloponnesian army, commanded by
the two kings, Cleomenes and Demaratus, entered Attica, and advanced as
far as Eleusis; but when the allies became aware of the object for
which they had been summoned, they refused to march farther, and
strongly protested against the attempt to establish a tyranny at
Athens.  Their remonstrances being seconded by Demaratus, Cleomenes
found it necessary to abandon the expedition and return home.  At a
later period (B.C. 491) Cleomenes took revenge upon Demaratus by
persuading the Spartans to depose him upon the ground of illegitimacy.
The exiled king took refuge at the Persian court.

The unexpected retreat of the Peloponnesian army delivered the
Athenians from their most formidable enemy, and they lost no time in
turning their arms against their other foes.  Marching into Boeotia,
they defeated the Thebans and then crossed over into Euboea, where they
gained a decisive victory over the Chalcidians.  In order to secure
their dominion in Euboea, and at the same time to provide for their
poorer citizens, the Athenians distributed the estates of the wealthy
Chalcidian landowners among 4000 of their citizens, who settled in the
country under the name of CLERUCI.

The successes of Athens excited the jealousy of the Spartans, and they
now resolved to make a third attempt to overthrow the Athenian
democracy.  They had meantime discovered the deception which had been
practised upon them by the Delphic oracle; And they invited Hippias to
come from Sigeum to Sparta, in order to restore him to Athens.  The
experience of the last campaign had taught them that they could not
calculate upon the co-operation of their allies without first obtaining
their approval of the project; and they therefore summoned deputies
from all their allies to meet at Sparta, in order to determine
respecting the restoration of Hippias.  But the proposal was received
with universal repugnance; and the Spartans found it necessary to
abandon their project.  Hippias returned to Sigeum, and afterwards
proceeded to the court of Darius.

Athens had now entered upon her glorious career.  The institutions of
Clisthenes had given her citizens a personal interest in the welfare
and the grandeur of their country.  A spirit of the warmest patriotism
rapidly sprang up among them; and the history of the Persian wars,
which followed almost immediately, exhibits a striking proof of the
heroic sacrifices which they were prepared to make for the liberty and
independence of their state.



The vast number of the Greek colonies, their wide-spread diffusion over
all parts of the Mediterranean, which thus became a kind of Grecian
lake, and their rapid growth in wealth, power, and intelligence, afford
the most striking proofs of the greatness of this wonderful people.
Civil dissensions and a redundant population were the chief causes of
the origin of most of the Greek colonies.  They were usually undertaken
with the approbation of the cities from which they issued, and under
the management of leaders appointed by them.  But a Greek colony was
always considered politically independent of the mother-city and
emancipated from its control.  The only connexion between them was one
of filial affection and of common religious ties.  Almost every
colonial Greek city was built upon the sea-coast, and the site usually
selected contained a hill sufficiently lofty to form an acropolis.

The Grecian colonies may be arranged in four groups:  1. Those founded
in Asia Minor and the adjoining islands;  2. Those in the western parts
of the Mediterranean, in Italy, Sicily, Gaul, and Spain;  3. Those in
Africa;  4. Those in Epirus, Macedonia, and Thrace.

1. The earliest Greek colonies were those founded on the western shores
of Asia Minor.  They were divided into three great masses, each bearing
the name of that section of the Greek race with which they claimed
affinity.  The AEolic cities covered the northern part of this coast,
together with the islands of Lesbos and Tenedos; the Ionians occupied
the centre, with the islands of Chios and Samos; and the Dorians the
southern portion, with the islands of Rhodes and Cos.  Most of these
colonies were founded in consequence of the changes in the population
of Greece which attended the conquest of Peloponnesus by the Dorians.
The Ionic cities were early distinguished by a spirit of commercial
enterprise, and soon rose superior in wealth and in power to their
AEolian and Dorian neighbours.  Among the Ionic cities themselves
Miletus and Ephesus were the most flourishing, Grecian literature took
its rise in the AEolic and Ionic cities of Asia Minor.  Homer was
probably a native of Smyrna.  Lyric poetry flourished in the island of
Lesbos, where Sappho and Alcaeus were born.  The Ionic cities were also
the seats of the earliest schools of Grecian philosophy.  Thales, who
founded the Ionic school of philosophy, was a native of Miletus.
Halicarnassus was one of the most important of the Doric cities, of
which Herodotus was a native, though he wrote in the Ionic dialect.

2. The earliest Grecian settlement in Italy was Cumae in Campania,
situated near Cape Misenum, on the Tyrrhenian sea.  It is said to have
been a joint colony from the AEolic Cyme in Asia and from Chalcis in
Euboea, and to have been founded, according to the common chronology,
in B.C. 1050.  Cumae was for a long time the most flourishing city in
Campania; and it was not till its decline in the fifth century before
the Christian era that Capua rose into importance.

The earliest Grecian settlement in Sicily was founded in B.C. 735.  The
extraordinary fertility of the land soon attracted numerous colonists
from various parts of Greece, and there arose on the coasts of Sicily a
succession of flourishing cities.  Of these, Syracuse and Agrigentum,
both Dorian colonies, became the most powerful.  The former was founded
by the Corinthians in B.C. 734, and at the time of its greatest
prosperity contained a population of 500,000 souls, and was surrounded
by walls twenty-two miles in circuit.  Its greatness, however, belongs
to a later period of Grecian history.

The Grecian colonies in southern Italy began to be planted at nearly
the same time as in Sicily.  They eventually lined the whole southern
coast, as far as Cumae on the one sea and Tarentum on the other.  They
even surpassed those in Sicily in number and importance; and so
numerous and flourishing did they become, that the south of Italy
received the name of Magna Graecia.  Of these, two of the earliest and
most prosperous were Sybaris and Croton, both situated upon the gulf of
Tarentum, and both of Achaean origin.  Sybaris was planted in B.C. 720
and Croton in B.C. 710. For two centuries they seem to have lived in
harmony, and we know scarcely anything of their history till their
fatal contest in B.C. 510, which ended in the ruin of Sybaris.  During
the whole of this period they were two of the most flourishing cities
in all Hellas.  Sybaris in particular attained to an extraordinary
degree of wealth, and its inhabitants were so notorious for their
luxury, effeminacy, and debauchery, that their name has become
proverbial for a voluptuary in ancient and modern times.  Croton was
the chief seat of the Pythagorean philosophy.  Pythagroras was a native
of Samos, but emigrated to Croton, where he met with the most wonderful
success in the propagation of his views.  He established a kind of
religious brotherhood, closely united by a sacred vow.  They believed
in the transmigration of souls, and their whole training was designed
to make them temperate and self-denying.  The doctrines of Pythagoras
spread through many of the other cities of Magna Graecia.

Of the numerous other Greek settlements in the south of Italy, those of
Locri, Rhegium, and Tarentum were the meet important. Locri was founded
by the Locrians from the mother-country in B.C. 683.  The laws of this
city were drawn up by one of its citizens, named Zaleucus, and so
averse were the Locrians to any change in them, that whoever proposed a
new law had to appear in the public assembly with a rope round his
neck, which was immediately tightened if he failed to convince his
fellow-citizens of the necessity of the alteration.  Rhegium, situated
on the straits of Messina, opposite Sicily, was colonised by the
Chalcidians, but received a large body of Messenians, who settled here
at the close of the Messenian war.  Anaxilas, tyrant of Rhegium about
B.C. 500, was of Messenian descent.  He seized the Sicilian Zancle on
the opposite coast, and changed its name into Messana, which it still
bears.  Tarentum was a colony from Sparta and was founded about B.C.
708.  After the destruction of Sybaris it was the most powerful and
flourishing city in Magna Graecia, and continued to enjoy great
prosperity till its subjugation by the Romans.  Although of Spartan
origin, it did not maintain Spartan habits, and its citizens were noted
at a later time for their love of luxury and pleasure.

The Grecian settlements in the distant countries of Gaul and Spain were
not numerous.  The most celebrated was Massalia, the modern Marseilles,
founded by the Ionic Phocaeans in B.C. 600.

3. The northern coast of Africa, between the territories of Carthage
and Egypt, was also occupied by Greek colonists.  The city of Cyrene
was founded about B.C. 630.  It was a colony from the island of Thera
in the AEgean, which was itself a colony from Sparta.  The situation of
Cyrene was well chosen.  It stood on the edge of a range of hills, at
the distance of ten miles from the Mediterranean, of which it commanded
a fine view.  These hills descended by a succession of terraces to the
port of the town, called Apollonia.  The climate was most salubrious,
and the soil was distinguished by extraordinary fertility.  With these
advantages Cyrene rapidly grew in wealth and power; and its greatness
is attested by the immense remains which still mark its desolate site.
Cyrene planted several colonies in the adjoining district, of which
Barca, founded about B.C. 560, was the most important.

4. There were several Grecian colonies situated on the eastern side of
the Ionian sea, in Epirus and its immediate neighbourhood.  Of these
the island of Corcyra, now called Corfu, was the most wealthy and
powerful.  It was founded by the Corinthians about B.C. 700, and in
consequence of its commercial activity it soon became a formidable
rival to the mother-city. Hence a war broke out between these two
states at an early period; and the most ancient naval battle on record
was the one fought between their fleets in B.C. 664.  The dissensions
between the mother-city and her colony are frequently mentioned in
Grecian history, and were one of the immediate causes of the
Peloponnesian war.  Notwithstanding their quarrels they joined in
planting four Grecian colonies upon the same line of coast--Leucas,
Anactorium, Apollonia, and Epidamnus.

The colonies in Macedonia and Thrace were very numerous, and extended
all along the coast of the AEgean, of the Hellespont, of the Propontis,
and of the Euxine, from the borders of Thessaly to the mouth of the
Danube.  Of these we can only glance at the most important.  The
colonies on the coast of Macedonia were chiefly founded by Chalcis and
Eretria in Euboea; and the peninsula of Chalcidice, with its three
projecting headlands, was covered with their settlements, and derived
its name from the former city. The Corinthians likewise planted a few
colonies on this coast, of which Potidaea, on the narrow isthmus of
Pallene, most deserves mention.

Of the colonies in Thrace, the most flourishing were Selymbria and
Byzantium, both founded by the Megarians, who appear as an enterprising
maritime people at an early period.


B.C. 500-490.

The Grecian cities on the coast of Asia Minor were the neighbours of an
Asiatic power which finally reduced them to subjection. This was the
kingdom of Lydia, of which Sardis was the capital. Croesus, the last
and most powerful of the Lydian kings, who ascended the throne B.C.
560, conquered in succession all the Grecian cities on the coast.  His
rule, however, was not oppressive, and he permitted the cities to
regulate their own affairs.  He spoke the Greek language, welcomed
Greek guests, and reverenced the Greek oracles, which he enriched with
the most munificent offerings.  He extended his dominions in Asia Minor
as far as the river Halys, and he formed a close alliance with
Astyages, king of the Medes, who were then the ruling race in Asia.
Everything seemed to betoken uninterrupted prosperity, when a people
hitherto almost unknown suddenly became masters of the whole of western

The Persians were of the same race as the Medes and spoke a dialect of
the same language.  They inhabited the mountainous region south of
Media, which slopes gradually down to the low grounds on the coast of
the Persian gulf.  While the Medes became enervated by the corrupting
influences to which they were exposed, the Persians preserved in their
native mountains their simple and warlike habits.  They were a brave
and hardy nation, clothed in skins, drinking only water, and ignorant
of the commonest luxuries of life.  Cyrus led these fierce warriors
from their mountain fastnesses, defeated the Medes in battle, took
Astyages prisoner, and deprived him of his throne.  The other nations
included in the Median empire submitted to the conqueror, and the
sovereignty of Upper Asia thus passed from the Medes to the Persians.
The accession of Cyrus to the empire is placed in B.C. 559.  A few
years afterwards Cyrus turned his arms against the Lydians, took
Sardis, and deprived Croesus of his throne (B.C. 546).  The fall of
Croesus was followed by the subjection of the Greek cities in Asia to
the Persian yoke.  They offered a brave but ineffectual resistance, and
were taken one after the other by Harpagus the Persian general.  Even
the islands of Lesbos and Chios sent in their submission to Harpagus,
although the Persians then possessed no fleet to force them to
obedience. Samos, on the other hand, maintained its independence, and
appears soon afterwards one of the most powerful of the Grecian states.

During the reign of Cambyses (B.C. 529-521), the son and successor of
Cyrus, the Greek cities of Asia remained obedient to their Persian
governors.  It was during this reign that Polycrates, tyrant of Samos,
became the master of the Grecian seas.  The ambition and good fortune
of this enterprising tyrant were alike remarkable.  He possessed a
hundred ships of war, with which he conquered several of the islands;
and he aspired to nothing less than the dominion of Ionia, as well as
of the islands in the AEgean.  The Lacedaemonians, who had invaded the
island at the invitation of the Samian exiles, for the purpose of
overthrowing his government, were obliged to retire, after besieging
his city in vain for forty days.  Everything which he undertook seemed
to prosper; but his uninterrupted good fortune at length excited the
alarm of his ally Amasis, the king of Egypt.  According to the tale
related by Herodotus, the Egyptian king, convinced that such amazing
good fortune would sooner or later incur the envy of the gods, wrote to
Polycrates, advising him to throw away one of his most valuable
possessions and thus inflict some injury upon himself.  Thinking the
advice to be good, Polycrates threw into the sea a favourite ring of
matchless price and beauty; but unfortunately it was found a few days
afterwards in the belly of a fine fish which a fisherman had sent him
as a present.  Amasis now foresaw that the ruin of Polycrates was
inevitable, and sent a herald to Samos to renounce his alliance.  The
gloomy anticipations of the Egyptian monarch proved well founded.  In
the midst of all his prosperity Polycrates fell by a most ignominious
fate.  Oroetes, the satrap of Sardis, had for some unknown cause
conceived a deadly hatred against the Samian despot.  By a cunning
stratagem the satrap allured him to the mainland, where he was
immediately arrested and hanged upon a cross (B.C. 522).

The reign of Darius, the third king of Persia.  (B.C. 521-485), is
memorable in Grecian history.  In his invasion of Scythia, his fleet,
which was furnished by the Asiatic Greeks, was ordered to sail up the
Danube and throw a bridge of boats across the river. The King himself,
with his land forces, marched through Thrace; and, crossing the bridge,
placed it under the care of the Greeks, telling them that, if he did
not return within sixty days, they might break it down, and sail home.
He then left them, and penetrated into the Scythian territory.  The
sixty days had already passed away, and there was yet no sign of the
Persian army; but shortly afterwards the Greeks were astonished by the
appearance of a body of Scythians, who informed them that Darius was in
full retreat, pursued by the whole Scythian nation, and that his only
hope of safety depended upon that bridge.  They urged the Greeks to
seize this opportunity of destroying the Persian army, and of
recovering their own liberty, by breaking down the bridge.  Their
exhortations were warmly seconded by the Athenian Miltiades, the tyrant
of the Thracian Chersonesus, and the future conqueror of Marathon.  The
other rulers of the Ionian cities were at first disposed to follow his
suggestion; but as soon as Histiaeus of Miletus reminded them that
their sovereignty depended upon the support of the Persian king, and
that his ruin would involve their own, they changed their minds and
resolved to await the Persians.  After enduring great privations and
sufferings Darius and his army at length reached the Danube and crossed
the bridge in safety.  Thus the selfishness of these Grecian despots
threw away the most favourable opportunity that ever presented itself
of delivering their native cities from the Persian yoke.  To reward the
services of Histiaeus, Darius gave him the town of Myrainus, near the
Strymon.  Darius, on his return to Asia, left Megabazus in Europe with
an army of 80,000 men to complete the subjugation of Thrace and of the
Greek cities upon the Hellespont.  Megabazus not only subdued the
Thracians, but crossed the Strymon, conquered the Paeonians, and
penetrated as far as the frontiers of Macedonia.  He then sent heralds
into the latter country to demand earth and water, the customary
symbols of submission.  These were immediately granted by Amyntas, the
reigning monarch (B.C. 510); and thus the Persian dominions were
extended to the borders of Thessaly.  Megabazus, on his return to
Sardis, where Darius awaited him, informed the Persian monarch that
Histiaeus was collecting the elements of a power which might hereafter
prove formidable to the Persian sovereignty, since Myrcinus commanded
the navigation of the Strymon, and consequently the commerce with the
interior of Thrace.  Darius, perceiving that the apprehensions of his
general were not without foundation, summoned Histiaeus to his
presence, and, under the pretext that he could not bear to be deprived
of the company of his friend, carried him with the rest of the court to
Susa.  This apparently trivial circumstance was attended with important
consequences to the Persian empire and to the whole Grecian race.

For the next few years everything remained quiet in the Greek cities of
Asia; but about B.C. 502 a revolution in Naxos, one of the islands in
the AEgean Sea, first disturbed the general repose, and occasioned the
war between Greece and Asia.  The aristocratical exiles, who had been
driven out of Naxos by a rising of the people, applied for aid to
Aristagoras, the tyrant of Miletus and the son-in-law of Histiaeus.
Aristagoras readily promised his assistance, knowing that, if they were
restored by his means, he should become master of the island.  He
obtained the co-operation of Artaphernes, the satrap of western Asia by
holding out to him the prospect of annexing not only Naxos, but all the
islands of the AEgean sea, to the Persian empire.  He offered at the
same time to defray the expense of the armament. Artaphernes placed at
his disposal a fleet of 200 ships under the command of Megabates, a
Persian of high rank; but Aristagoras having affronted the Persian
admiral, the latter revenged himself by privately informing the Naxians
of the object of the expedition, which had hitherto been kept a secret.
When the Persian fleet reached Naxos they experienced a vigorous
resistance; and at the end of four months they were compelled to
abandon the enterprise and return to Miletus.  Aristagoras was now
threatened with utter ruin.  Having deceived Artaphernes, and incurred
the enmity of Megabates, he could expect no favour from the Persian
government, and might be called upon at any moment to defray the
expenses of the armament.  In these difficulties he began to think of
exciting a revolt of his countrymen; and while revolving the project he
received a message from his father-in-law, Histiaeus, urging him to
this very step.  Afraid of trusting any one with so dangerous a
message, Histiaeus had shaved the head of a trusty slave, branded upon
it the necessary words, and as soon as the hair had grown again sent
him off to Miletus.  His only motive for urging the Ionians to revolt
was the desire of escaping from captivity at Susa, thinking that Darius
would set him at liberty in order to put down an insurrection of his
countrymen.  The message from Histiaeus fixed the wavering resolution
of Aristagoras.  He forthwith called together the leading citizens of
Miletus, laid before them the project of revolt, and asked them for
advice.  They all approved of the scheme, with the exception of
Hecataeus, one of the earliest Greek historians.  Aristagoras laid down
the supreme power in Miletus, and nominally resigned to the people the
management of their own affairs.  A democratical form of government was
established in the other Greek cities of Asia, which thereupon openly
revolted from Persia (B.C. 500).

Aristagoras now resolved to cross over to Greece, in order to solicit
assistance.  The Spartans, to whom he first applied, refused to take
any part in the war; but at Athens he met with a very different
reception.  The Athenians sympathised with the Ionians as their kinsmen
and colonists, and were incensed against the satrap Artaphernes, who
had recently commanded them to recall Hippias.  Accordingly they voted
to send a squadron of twenty ships to the assistance of the Ionians;
and in the following year (B.C. 499) this fleet, accompanied by five
ships from Eretria in Euboea, crossed the AEgean.  The troops landed at
Ephesus, and, being reinforced by a strong body, of Ionians, marched
upon Sardis.  Artaphernes was taken unprepared; and not having
sufficient troops to man the walls, he retired into the citadel,
leaving the town a prey to the invaders.  Accordingly they entered it
unopposed; and while engaged in pillage, one of the soldiers set fire
to a house.  As most of the houses were built of wickerwork and
thatched with straw, the flames rapidly spread, and in a short time the
whole city was in flames.  The Greeks, on their return to the coast,
were overtaken by a large Persian force and defeated with great
slaughter.  The Athenians hastened on board their ships and sailed home.

When Darius heard of the burning of Sardis, he burst into a paroxysm of
rage.  It was against the obscure strangers who had dared to burn one
of his capitals that his wrath was chiefly directed.  "The Athenians!"
he exclaimed, "who are they?"  Upon being informed he took his bow,
shot an arrow high into the air, saying, "Grant me, Jove, to take
vengeance upon the Athenians!" And he charged one of his attendants to
remind him thrice every day at dinner "Sire, remember the Athenians."
Meantime the insurrection spread to the Greek cities in Cyprus, as well
as to those on the Hellespont and the Propontis, and seemed to promise
permanent independence to the Asiatic Greeks; but they were no match
for the whole power of the Persian empire, which was soon brought
against them.  Cyprus was subdued, and siege laid to the cities upon
the coast of Asia.  Aristagoras now began to despair, and basely
deserted his countrymen, whom he had led into peril. Collecting a large
body of Milesians, he set sail for the Thracian coast, where he was
slain under the walls of a town to which he had laid siege.  Soon after
his departure, his father-in-law, Histiaeus came down to the coast.
The artful Greek not only succeeded in removing the suspicions which
Darius first entertained respecting him, but he persuaded the king to
send him into Ionia, in order to assist the Persian generals in
suppressing the rebellion.  Artaphernes, however, was not so easily
deceived as his master, and plainly accused Histiaeus of treachery when
the latter arrived at Sardis.  "I will tell you how the facts stand"
said Artaphernes to Histiaeus; "it was you who made the shoe, and
Aristagoras has put it on."  Finding himself unsafe at Sardis, he
escaped to the island of Chios; but he was regarded with suspicion by
all parties.  At length he obtained eight galleys from Lesbos, with
which he sailed towards Byzantium, and carried on piracies as well
against the Grecian as the barbarian vessels.  This unprincipled
adventurer met with a traitor's death.  Having landed on the coast of
Mysia, he was surprised by a Persian force and made prisoner.  Being
carried to Sardis, Artaphernes at once caused him to be crucified, and
sent his head to Darius, who ordered it to be honourably buried,
condemning the ignominious execution of the man who had once saved the
life of the Great King.

In the sixth year of the revolt (B.C. 495), when several Grecian cities
had already been taken by the Persians, Artaphernes laid siege to
Miletus by sea and by land.  A naval engagement took place at Lade a
small island off Miletus, which decided the fate of the war.  The
Samians deserted at the commencement of the battle, and the Ionian
fleet was completely defeated.  Miletus was soon afterwards taken, and
was treated with signal severity. Most of the males were slain; and the
few who escaped the sword were carried with the women and children into
captivity (B.C. 494).  The other Greek cities in Asia and the
neighbouring islands were treated with the same cruelty.  The islands
of Chios, Lesbos, and Tenedos were swept of their inhabitants; and the
Persian fleet sailed up to the Hellespont and Propontis, carrying with
it fire and sword.  The Athenian Miltiades only escaped falling into
the power of the Persians by a rapid flight to Athens.

The subjugation of Ionia was now complete.  This was the third time
that the Asiatic Greeks had been conquered by a foreign power:  first
by the Lydian Croesus; secondly by the generals of Cyrus; and lastly by
those of Darius.  It was from the last that they suffered most, and
they never fully recovered their former prosperity.

Darius was now at liberty to take vengeance upon the Athenians. He
appointed Mardonius to succeed Artaphernes as satrap in western Asia,
and he placed under his command a large armament, with injunctions to
bring to Susa those Athenians and Eretrians who had insulted the
authority of the Great King.  Mardonius, after crossing the Hellespont,
commenced his march through Thrace and Macedonia, subduing, as he went
along, the tribes which had not yet submitted to the Persian power.  He
ordered the fleet to double the promontory of Mount Athos, and join the
land forces at the head of the gulf of Therma; but one of the
hurricanes which frequently blow off this dangerous coast overtook the
Persian fleet, destroyed 300 vessels and drowned or dashed upon the
rocks 20,000 men.  Meantime the land forces of Mardonius had suffered
so much from an attack made upon them by a Thracian tribe, that he
could not proceed farther.  He led his army back across the Hellespont,
and returned to the Persian court covered with shame and grief (B.C.

The failure of this expedition did not shake the resolution of Darius.
He began to make preparations for another attempt on a still larger
scale, and meantime sent heralds to most of the Grecian states to
demand from each earth and water as the symbol of submission.  Such
terror had the Persians inspired by their recent conquest of Ionia,
that a large number of the Grecian cities at once complied with the
demand; but the Athenians cast the herald into a deep pit, and the
Spartans threw him into a well bidding him take earth and water from

In the spring of B.C. 490 a large army and fleet were assembled in
Cilicia, and the command was given to Datis, a Median, and Artaphernes,
son of the satrap of Sardis of that name.  Warned by the recent
disaster of Mardonius in doubling the promontory of Mount Athos, they
resolved to sail straight across the AEgean to Euboea, subduing on
their way the Cyclades.  These islands yielded a ready submission; and
it was not till Datis and Artaphernes reached Euboea that they
encountered any resistance. Eretria defended itself gallantly for six
days, and repulsed the Persians with loss; but on the seventh the gates
were opened to the besiegers by the treachery of two of its leading
citizens. The city was razed to the ground, and the inhabitants were
put in chains.  From Eretria the Persians crossed over to Attica, and
landed on the ever memorable plain of Marathon, a spot which had been
pointed out to them by the despot Hippias, who accompanied the army.

As soon as the news of the fall of Eretria reached Athens, a courier
had been sent to Sparta to solicit assistance.  This was promised; but
the superstition of the Spartans prevented them from setting out
immediately, since it wanted a few days to the full moon, and it was
contrary to their religious customs to commence a march during this
interval.  Meantime the Athenians had marched to Marathon, and were
encamped upon the mountains which surrounded the plain.  They were
commanded, according to the regular custom, by ten generals, one for
each tribe, and by the Polemarch, or third Archon, who down to this
time continued to be a colleague of the generals.  Among these the most
distinguished was Miltiades, who, though but lately a tyrant in the
Chersonesus, had shown such energy and ability, that the Athenians had
elected him one of their commanders upon the approach of the Persian
fleet.  Upon learning the answer which the courier brought from Sparta,
the ten generals were divided in opinion.  Five of them were opposed to
an immediate engagement with the overwhelming number of Persians, and
urged the importance of waiting for the arrival of the Lacedaemonian
succours.  Miltiades and the remaining four contended that not a moment
should be lost in fighting the Persians, not only in order to avail
themselves of the present enthusiasm of the people, but still more to
prevent treachery from spreading among their ranks. Callimachus, the
Polemarch, yielded to the arguments of Miltiades, and gave his vote for
the battle.  The ten generals commanded their army in rotation, each
for one day; but they now agreed to surrender to Miltiades their days
of command, in order to invest the whole power in a single person.
While the Athenians were preparing for battle, they received unexpected
assistance from the little town or Plataea, in Boeotia.  Grateful to
the Athenians for the assistance which they had rendered them against
the Thebans, the whole force of Plataea, amounting to 1000 heavy-armed
men, marched to the assistance of their allies and joined them at
Marathon.  The Athenian army numbered only 10,000 hoplites, or
heavy-armed soldiers:  there were no archers or cavalry, and only some
slaves as light-armed attendants.  Of the number of the Persian army we
have no trustworthy account, but the lowest estimate makes it consist
of 110,000 men.

The plain of Marathon lies on the eastern coast of Attica, at the
distance of twenty-two miles from Athens by the shortest road. It is in
the form of a crescent, the horns of which consist of two promontories
running into the sea, and forming a semicircular bay.  This plain is
about six miles in length, and in its widest or central part about two
in breadth.  On the day of battle the Persian army was drawn up along
the plain about a mile from the sea, and their fleet was ranged behind
them on the beach.  The Athenians occupied the rising ground above the
plain, and extended from one side of the plain to the other.  This
arrangement was necessary in order to protect their flanks by the
mountains on each side, and to prevent the cavalry from passing round
to attack them in rear.  But so large a breadth of ground could not be
occupied with a small a number of men without weakening some portion of
the line.  Miltiades, therefore, drew up the troops in the centre in
shallow files, and resolved to rely for success upon the stronger and
deeper masses of his wings.  The right wing, which was the post of
honour in a Grecian army, was commanded by the Polemarch Callimachus;
the hoplites were arranged in the order of their tribes, so that the
members of the same tribe fought by each other's side; and at the
extreme left stood the Plataeans.

Miltiades, anxious to come to close quarters as speedily as possible,
ordered his soldiers to advance at a running step over the mile of
ground which separated them from the foe.  Both the Athenian wings were
successful, and drove the enemy before them towards the shore and the
marshes.  But the Athenian centre was broken by the Persians, and
compelled to take to flight. Miltiades thereupon recalled his wings
from pursuit, and charged the Persian centre.  The latter could not
withstand this combined attack.  The rout now became general along the
whole Persian line; and they fled to their ships, pursued by the

The Persians lost 6400 men in this memorable engagement:  of the
Athenians only 192 fell.  The aged tyrant Hippias is said to have
perished in the battle, and the brave Polemarch Callimachus was also
one of the slain.  The Persians embarked and sailed away to Asia.
Their departure was hailed at Athens with one unanimous burst of
heartfelt joy.  Marathon became a magic word at Athens. The Athenian
people in succeeding ages always looked back upon this day as the most
glorious in their annals, and never tired of hearing its praises
sounded by their orators and poets.  And they had reason to be proud of
it.  It was the first time that the Greeks had ever defeated the
Persians in the field.  It was the exploit of the Athenians alone.  It
had saved not only Athens but all Greece.  If the Persians had
conquered at Marathon, Greece must, in all likelihood, have become a
Persian province; the destinies of the world would have been changed;
and oriental despotism might still have brooded over the fairest
countries of Europe.

The one hundred and ninety-two Athenians who had perished in the battle
were buried on the field, and over their remains a tumulus or mound was
erected, which may still be seen about half a mile from the sea.

Shortly after the battle Miltiades requested of the Athenians a fleet
of seventy ships, without telling them the object of his expedition,
but only promising to enrich the state.  Such unbounded confidence did
the Athenians repose in the hero of Marathon, that they at once
complied with his demand.  This confidence Miltiades abused.  In order
to gratify a private animosity against one of the leading citizens of
Paros, he sailed to this island and laid siege to the town.  The
citizens repelled all his attacks; and having received a dangerous
injury on his thigh, he was compelled to raise the siege and return to
Athens. Loud was the indignation against Miltiades on his return.  He
was accused by Xanthippus, the father of Pericles, of having deceived
the people, and was brought to trial.  His wound had already begun to
show symptoms of gangrene.  He was carried into court on a couch, and
there lay before the assembled judges, while his friends pleaded on his
behalf.  They could offer no excuse for his recent conduct, but they
reminded the Athenians of the services he had rendered, and, begged
them to spare the victor of Marathon.  The judges were not insensible
to this appeal; and instead of condemning him to death as the accuser
had demanded, they commuted the penalty to a fine of fifty talents.
Miltiades was unable immediately to raise this sum and died soon
afterwards of his wound.  The fine was subsequently paid by his son
Cimon. The melancholy end of Miltiades must not blind us to his
offence. He had grossly abused the public confidence, and deserved his
punishment.  The Athenians did not forget his services at Marathon, and
it was their gratitude towards him which alone saved him from death.

Soon after the battle of Marathon a war broke out between Athens and
AEgina.  This war is of great importance in Grecian history, since to
it the Athenians were indebted for their navy, which enabled them to
save Greece at Salamis as they had already done at Marathon.  AEgina
was one of the chief maritime powers in Greece; and accordingly
Themistocles urged the Athenians to build and equip a large and
powerful fleet, without which it was impossible for them to humble
their rival.  There was at this time a large surplus in the public
treasury, arising from the produce of the silver-mines at Laurium.  It
had been recently proposed to distribute this surplus among the
Athenian citizens; but Themistocles persuaded them to sacrifice their
private advantage to the public good, and to appropriate the money to
building a fleet of 200 ships.

The two leading citizens of Athens at this period were Themistocles and
Aristides.  These two eminent men formed a striking contrast to each
other.  Themistocles possessed abilities of the most extraordinary
kind; but they were marred by a want of honesty.  Aristides was
inferior to Themistocles in ability, but was incomparably superior to
him in honesty and integrity.  His uprightness and justice were so
universally acknowledged that he received the surname of the "Just."
Themistocles was the leader of the democratical, and Aristides of the
conservative party at Athens.  After three or four years of bitter
rivalry, the two chiefs appealed to the ostracism, and Aristides was
banished (B.C. 483).  We are told that an unlettered countryman gave
his vote against Aristides at the ostracism, because he was tired of
hearing him always called the Just.


B.C. 480-479.

The defeat of the Persians at Marathon served only to increase the
resentment of Darius.  He now resolved to collect the whole forces of
his empire, and to lead them in person against Athens. For three years
busy preparations were made throughout his vast dominions.  In the
fourth year his attention was distracted by a revolt of the Egyptians;
and before he could reduce them to subjection he was surprised by
death, after a reign of 37 years (B.C. 485).  Xerxes, the son and
successor of Darius, had received the education of an eastern despot,
and been surrounded with slaves from his cradle.  In person he was the
tallest and handsomest man amidst the vast hosts which he led against
Greece; but there was nothing in his mind to correspond to this fair
exterior.  His character was marked by faint-hearted timidity and
childish vanity.  Xerxes had not inherited his father's animosity
against Greece; but he was surrounded by men who urged him to continue
the enterprise.  Foremost among these was Mardonius, who was eager to
retrieve his reputation, and to obtain the conquered country as a
satrapy for himself after subduing Egypt (B.C. 484), Xerxes began to
make preparations for the invasion of Greece. For four years the din of
preparation sounded throughout Asia. Troops were collected from every
quarter of the Persian empire, and were ordered to assemble in
Cappadocia.  As many as forty-six different nations composed the
land-force, of various complexions, languages, dresses, and arms.
Meantime Xerxes ordered a bridge to be thrown across the Hellespont,
that his army might march from Asia into Europe:  and he likewise gave
directions that a canal should be cut through the isthmus of Mount
Athos, in order to avoid the necessity of doubling this dangerous
promontory, where the fleet of Mardonius had suffered shipwreck.  The
making of this canal, which was about a mile and a half long employed a
number of men for three years.

In the spring of B.C. 480 Xerxes set out from Sardis with his vast
host.  Upon reaching Abydos on the Hellespont the army crossed over to
Europe by the bridge of boats.  Xerxes surveyed the scene from a marble
throne.  His heart swelled within him at the sight of such a vast
assemblage of human beings; but his feelings of pride and pleasure soon
gave way to sadness, and he burst into tears at the reflection that in
a hundred years not one of them would be alive.  Xerxes continued his
march through Europe along the coast of Thrace.  Upon arriving at the
spacious plain of Doriscus, which is traversed by the river Hebrus, he
resolved to number his forces.  He found that the whole armament, both
military and naval, consisted of 2,317,610 men.  In his march from
Doriscus to Thermopylae he received a still further accession of
strength; and accordingly when he reached Thermopylae the land and sea
forces amounted to 2,641,610 fighting men.  The attendants are said to
have been more in number than the fighting men; but if they were only
equal, the number of persons who accompanied Xerxes to Thermopylae
reaches the astounding figure of 5,283,220!  The number is quite
incredible; but though the exact number of the invading army cannot be
determined, we may safely conclude, from all the circumstances of the
case, that it was the largest ever assembled at any period of history.

From Doriscus Xerxes his march along the coast through Thrace and
Macedonia.  The principal cities through which he passed had to furnish
a day's meal for the immense host, and for this purpose had made
preparations many months before-hand.  The cost of feeding such a
multitude brought many cities to the brink of ruin.  At Acanthus his
fleet sailed through the isthmus of Athos and after doubling the
promontories of Sithonia and Pallene joined him at the city of Therma,
better known by its later name of Thessalonica.  Thence he continued
his march through the southern part of Macedonia and Thessaly, meeting
with no opposition till he reached the celebrated pass of Thermopylae.

The mighty preparations of Xerxes had been no secret in Greece; and
during the preceding winter a congress of the Grecian states had been
summoned by the Spartans and Athenians to meet at the isthmus of
Corinth.  But so great was the terror inspired by the countless hosts
of Xerxes that many of the Grecian states at once tendered their
submission to him, and others refused to take any part in the congress.
The only people, north of the isthmus of Corinth, who remained faithful
to the cause of Grecian liberty, were the Athenians and Phocians, and
the inhabitants of the small Boeotian towns of Plataea and Thespiae.
The other people in northern Greece were either partisans of the
Persians, like the Thebans, or were unwilling to make any great
sacrifices for the preservation of their independence.  In
Peloponnesus, the powerful city of Argos and the Achaeans stood aloof.
From the more distant members of the Hellenic race no assistance was
obtained.  Gelon, the ruler of Syracuse, offered to send a powerful
armament, provided the command of the allied forces was intrusted to
him; but the envoys did not venture to accept a proposal which would
have placed both Sparta and Athens under the control of a Sicilian

The desertion of the cause of Grecian independence by so many of the
Greeks did not shake the resolution of Sparta and of Athens. The
Athenians, especially, set a noble example of an enlarged patriotism.
They became reconciled to the AEginetans, and thus gained for the
common cause the powerful navy of their rival. They readily granted to
the Spartans the supreme command of the forces by sea as well as by
land, although they furnished two-thirds of the vessels of the entire
fleet.  Their illustrious citizen Themistocles was the soul of the
congress.  He sought to enkindle in the other Greeks some portion of
the ardour and energy which he had succeeded in breathing into the

The Greeks determined to make a stand at the pass of Thermopylae, which
forms the entrance from northern into southern Greece. This pass lies
between Mount OEta and the sea.  It is about a mile in length.  At each
of its extremities the mountains approach so near the sea as to leave
barely room for the passage of a single carriage.  The northern, or, to
speak more properly, the western Gate, was close to the town of
Anthela, where the Amphictyonic council held its autumnal meetings;
while the southern, or the eastern Gate, was near the Locrian town of
Alpeni.  These narrow entrances were called Pylae, or the Gates. The
space between the gates was wider and more open, and was distinguished
by its hot springs, from which the pass derived the name of
Thermopylae, or the "Hot-Gates."  The island of Euboea is here
separated from the mainland by a narrow strait, which in one part is
only two miles and a half in breadth; and accordingly it is easy, by
defending this part of the sea with a fleet, to prevent an enemy from
landing troops at the southern end of the pass.

The Grecian fleet, under the command of the Spartan Eurybiades, took up
its station off that portion of the northern coast of Euboea which
faces Magnesia and the entrance to the Thessalian gulf and which was
called Artemisium, from a neighbouring temple of Artemis (Diana).  It
was, however, only a small land-force that was sent to the defence of
Thermopylae.  When the arrival of Xerxes at Therma became known, the
Greeks were upon the point of celebrating the Olympic games, and the
festival of the Carnean Apollo, which was observed with great solemnity
at Sparta and in other Doric states.  The Peloponnesians therefore sent
forward only 300 Spartans and 3000 hoplites from other Peloponnesian
states, under the command of the Spartan king Leonidas, a force which
they thought would be sufficient to maintain the pass till the
festivals were over.  In his march northwards Leonidas received
additions from the Thespians, Phocians, and Locrians, so that he had
under his command at Thermopylae about 7000 men.

Meanwhile Xerxes had arrived within sight of Thermopylae.  He had heard
that a handful of desperate men, commanded by a Spartan, had determined
to dispute his passage, but he refused to believe the news.  He was
still more astonished when a horseman, whom he had sent to reconnoitre,
brought back word that he had seen several Spartans outside the wall in
front of the pass, some amusing themselves with gymnastic exercises,
and others combing their long hair.  In great perplexity, he sent for
the exiled Spartan king Demaratus, who had accompanied him from Persia,
and asked him the meaning of such madness.  Demaratus replied, that the
Spartans would defend the pass to the death, and that it was their
practice to dress their heads with peculiar care when they were going
to battle.  Later writers relate that Xerxes sent to them to deliver up
their arms.  Leonidas desired him "to come and take them."  One of the
Spartans being told that "the Persian host was so prodigious that their
arrows would conceal the sun:"--"So much the better" (he replied), "we
shall then fight in the shade."

At length, upon the fifth day, Xerxes ordered a chosen body of Medes to
advance against the presumptuous foes and bring them into his presence.
But their superior numbers were of no avail in such a narrow space, and
they were kept at bay by the long spears and steady ranks of the
Greeks.  After the combat had lasted a long time with heavy loss to the
Medes, Xerxes ordered his ten thousand "Immortals," the flower of the
Persian army, to advance.  But they were as unsuccessful as the Medes.
Xerxes beheld the repulse of his troops from a lofty throne which had
been provided for him, and was seen to leap thrice from his seat in an
agony of fear or rage.

On the following day the attack was renewed, but with no better
success:  and Xerxes was beginning to despair of forcing his way
through the pass, when a Malian, of the name of Ephialtes, betrayed to
the Persian king that there was an unfrequented path across Mount OEta,
ascending on the northern side of the mountain and descending on the
southern side near the termination of the pass.  Overjoyed at this
discovery, a strong detachment of Persians was ordered to follow the
traitor.  Meantime Leonidas and his troops had received ample notice of
the impending danger. During the night deserters from the enemy had
brought him the news; and their intelligence was confirmed by his own
scouts on the hills.  His resolution was at once taken.  As a Spartan
he was bound to conquer or to die in the post assigned to him; and he
was the more ready to sacrifice his life, since an oracle had declared
that either Sparta itself or a Spartan king must perish by the Persian
arms.  His three hundred comrades were fully equal to the same heroism
which actuated their King; and the seven hundred Thespians resolved to
share the fate of this gallant band.  He allowed the rest of the allies
to retire, with the exception of four hundred Boeotians, whom he
retained as hostages.  Xerxes delayed his attack till the middle of the
day, when it was expected that the detachment sent across the mountain
would arrive at the rear of the pass.  But Leonidas and his comrades,
only anxious to sell their lives as dearly as possible, did not wait to
receive the attack of the Persians, but advanced into the open space in
front of the pass, and charged the enemy with desperate valour.
Numbers of the Persians were slain; many were driven into the
neighbouring sea; and others again were trampled to death by the vast
hosts behind them.  As long as the Greeks could maintain their ranks
they repelled every attack; but when their spears were broken, and they
had only their swords left, the enemy began to press in between them.
Leonidas was one of the first that fell, and around his body the battle
raged fiercer than ever.  The Persians made the greatest efforts to
obtain possession of it; but four times they were driven back by the
Greeks with great slaughter.  At length, thinned in numbers, and
exhausted by fatigue and wounds, this noble band retired within the
pass, and seated themselves on a hillock.  Meanwhile the Persian
detachment, which had been sent across the mountains, began to enter
the pass from the south.  The Spartan heroes were now surrounded on
every side, overwhelmed with a shower of missiles, and killed to a man.

On the hillock, where the Greeks made their last stand, a marble lion
was set up in honour of Leonidas.  Another monument, erected near the
spot, contained the memorable inscription:--

  "Go, tell the Spartans, thou that passest by,
  That here obedient to their laws we lie."

While Leonidas had been fighting at Thermopylae, the Greek fleet had
also been engaged with the Persians at Artemisium.  The Persian fleet
set sail from the gulf of Therma, and arrived in one day at almost the
southern corner of Magnesia.  In this position they were overtaken by a
sudden hurricane, which blew upon the shore with irresistible fury.
For three days and three nights the tempest raged without intermission;
and when calm at length returned, the shore was seen strewed for many
miles with wrecks and corpses.  At least four hundred ships of war were
destroyed, together with a countless number of transports, stores, and
treasures.  The Greek fleet had been seized with a panic terror at the
approach of the Persians, and retreated to Chalcis in the narrowest
part of the Euboean straits; but upon hearing of the disaster of the
Persian fleet, they took courage, and sailed back with the utmost speed
to their former station at Artemisium.  Being now encouraged to attack
the enemy, they gained some success.  On the following night another
terrific storm burst upon the Persians.  All night long it blew upon
the Thessalian coast at Aphetae, where the Persian ships were
stationed, thus causing little inconvenience to the Greeks upon the
opposite shore.  Notwithstanding these losses, the Persian fleet still
had a vast superiority of numbers, and determined to offer battle to
the Greeks.  Quitting the Thessalian coast, they sailed towards
Artemisium in the form of a crescent.  The Greeks kept near the shore,
to prevent the Persians from bringing their whole fleet into action.
The battle raged furiously the whole day, and each side fought with
determined valour.  Both parties suffered severely; and though the
Persians lost a greater number of ships and men, yet so many of the
Greek vessels were disabled that they found it would be impossible to
renew the combat. Under these circumstances the Greek commanders saw
that it would be necessary to retreat; and their determination was
hastened by the news which they now received, that Leonidas and his
companions had fallen, and that Xerxes was master of the pass of
Thermopylae.  Having sailed through the Euboean strait, the fleet
doubled the promontory of Sunium, and did not stop till it reached the
island of Salamis.

Meanwhile the Peloponnesians had abandoned Attica and the adjoining
states to their fate, whilst they strained every nerve to secure
themselves by fortifying the isthmus of Corinth.  The Athenians,
relying upon the march of a Peloponnesian army into Boeotia, had taken
no measures for the security of their families and property, and beheld
with terror and dismay the barbarian host in full march towards their
city.  In six days it was calculated Xerxes would be at Athens--a short
space to remove the population of a whole city:  but fear and necessity
work wonders. Before the six days had elapsed, all who were willing to
abandon their homes had been safely transported, some to AEgina, and
others to Troezen in Peloponnesus; but many could not be induced to
proceed farther than Salamis.  It was necessary for Themistocles to use
all his art and all his eloquence on this occasion.  The oracle at
Delphi had told the Athenians that "the divine Salamis would make women
childless,"--yet, "when all was lost, a wooden wall should still
shelter the Athenians." Themistocles told his countrymen that these
words clearly indicated a fleet and a naval victory as the only means
of safety.  Some however gave to the words another meaning; and a few,
especially among the aged and the poor, resolved to shut themselves up
in the Acropolis, and to fortify its accessible or western front with
barricades of timber.

On his march towards Athens, Xerxes sent a detachment of his army to
take and plunder Delphi.  But this attempt proved unsuccessful.  The
god of the most renowned oracle of the Grecian world vindicated at once
the majesty of his sanctuary and the truth of his predictions.  As the
Persians climbed the rugged path at the foot of Mount Parnassus,
leading up to the shrine, thunder was heard to roll, and two crags,
suddenly detaching themselves from the mountain, rolled down upon the
Persians, and spread dismay and destruction in their ranks, Seized with
a sudden panic, they turned and fled, pursued, as they said, by two
warriors of superhuman size and prowess, who had assisted the Delphians
in defending their temple.

On arriving before Athens, Xerxes found the Acropolis occupied by a
handful of desperate citizens, who made a brave resistance; but they
were overpowered and put to the sword.  The temples and houses on the
Acropolis were pillaged and burnt; and Xerxes thus became undisputed
master of Athens.

About the same time the Persian fleet arrived in the bay of Phalerum.
Its strength is not accurately known, but it must have exceeded 1000
vessels.  The combined Grecian fleet at Salamis consisted of 366 ships,
of which 200 were Athenian.

At this critical juncture dissension reigned in the Grecian fleet.  In
the council of war which had been summoned by Eurybiades the Spartan
commander, Themistocles urged the assembled chiefs to remain at
Salamis, and give battle to the Persians in the narrow straits, where
the superior numbers of the Persians would be of less consequence.  The
Peloponnesian commanders, on the other hand, were anxious that the
fleet should be removed to the isthmus of Corinth, and thus be put in
communication with their land-forces.  The council came to a vote in
favour of retreat; but Themistocles prevailed upon Eurybiades to
convene another assembly upon the following day.  When the council met,
the Peloponnesian commanders loudly expressed their dissatisfaction at
seeing a debate re-opened which they had deemed concluded.  Adimantus,
the Corinthian admiral broke out into open rebukes and menaces.
"Themistocles," he exclaimed, "those who rise at the public games
before the signal are whipped."  "True," replied Themistocles; "but
they who lag behind it never win a crown."  Another incident in this
discussion has been immortalized by Plutarch.  Eurybiades, incensed by
the language of Themistocles, lifted up his stick to strike him,
whereupon the Athenian exclaimed, "Strike, but hear me!" Themistocles
repeated his arguments and entreaties; and at length threatened that he
and the Athenians would sail away to Italy and there found a new city,
if the Peloponnesians still determined to retreat.  Eurybiades now gave
way and issued orders for the fleet to remain and fight at Salamis; but
the Peloponnesians obeyed the order with reluctance.  A third council
was summoned and Themistocles, perceiving that the decision of the
assembly would be against him, determined to effect his object by
stratagem.  He secretly despatched a trusty slave with a message to
Xerxes, representing the dissensions which prevailed in the Grecian
fleet, and how easy a matter it would be to surround and vanquish an
armament both small and disunited.  Xerxes readily adopted the
suggestion, and ordered his captains to close up the straits of Salamis
at both ends during the night.  On the council assembling in the
morning, Aristides arrived with the news that the Grecian fleet was
completely surrounded by that of the Persians, and that retreat was no
longer possible.  As the veil of night rolled gradually away, the
Persian fleet was discovered stretching as far as the eye could reach
along the coast of Attica.  The Grecian fleet, being concentrated in
the harbour of Salamis, was thus surrounded by the Persians.  Xerxes
had caused a lofty throne to be erected upon one of the projecting
declivities of Mount AEgaleos, opposite the harbour of Salamis, whence
he could survey the combat, and stimulate by his presence the courage
of his men.

As a battle was now inevitable the Grecian commanders lost no time in
making preparations for the encounter.  The Greek seamen embarked with
alacrity, encouraging one another to deliver their country, their
wives, and children, and the temples of their gods, from the grasp of
the barbarians.  History has preserved to us but few details of the
engagement.  The Persian fleet, with the exception of some of the Ionic
contingents, fought with courage.  But the very numbers on which they
so confidently relied, proved one of the chief causes of their defeat.
Too crowded either to advance or to retreat, their oars broken or
impeded by collision with one another, their fleet lay like an inert
and lifeless mass upon the water, and fell an easy prey to the Greeks.
A single incident will illustrate the terror and confusion which
reigned among the Persians.  Artemisia, queen of Halicarnassus in
Caria, distinguished herself in it by deeds of daring bravery.  At
length she turned and fled, pursued by an Athenian galley.  Full in her
course lay the vessel of a Carian prince.  Instead of avoiding, she
struck and sunk it, sending her countryman and all his crew to the
bottom.  The captain of the Athenian galley, believing from this act
that she was a deserter from the Persian cause, suffered her to escape.
Xerxes, who from his lofty throne beheld the feat of the Halicarnassian
queen, but who imagined that the sunken ship belonged to the Greeks,
was filled with admiration at her courage, and exclaimed--"My men are
become women, my women men!"

Two hundred of the Persian ships were destroyed and sunk when night put
an end to the engagement.  But notwithstanding this loss the fleet was
still formidable by its numbers.  The Greeks themselves did not regard
the victory as decisive, and prepared to renew the combat.  But the
pusillanimity of Xerxes relieved them from all further anxiety.  He
became alarmed for his own personal safety; and his whole care was now
centred on securing his retreat by land.  The best troops were
disembarked from the ships, and marched towards the Hellespont, in
order to secure the bridge, whilst the fleet itself was ordered to make
for Asia. These dispositions of Xerxes were prompted by Mardonius.  He
represented to his master that the defeat, after all, was but slight;
that having attained one of the great objects of the expedition by the
capture of Athens, he might now retire with honour, and even with
glory; and that for the rest he (Mardonius) would undertake to complete
the conquest of Greece with 300,000 men.  While the Persian fleet
sailed towards Asia, Xerxes set out on his homeward march.  In Thessaly
Mardonius selected the 300,000 men with whom he proposed to conclude
the war; but as autumn was now approaching, he resolved to postpone all
further operations till the spring.

After forty-five days' march from Attica, Xerxes again reached the
shores of the Hellespont, with a force greatly diminished by famine and
pestilence.  On the Hellespont he found his fleet, but the bridge had
been washed away by storms.  Landed on the shores of Asia, the Persian
army at length obtained abundance of provisions, and contracted new
maladies by the sudden change from privation to excess.  Thus
terminated this mighty but unsuccessful expedition.

Greece owed its salvation to one man--Themistocles, This was virtually
admitted by the leaders of the other Grecian states, when they
assembled to assign the prizes of wisdom and conduct. Upon the altar of
Poseidon, at the isthmus of Corinth, each chief deposited a ticket
inscribed with two names, of those whom he considered entitled to the
first and second prizes.  But in this adjudication vanity and self-love
defeated their own objects. Each commander had put down his own name
for the first prize; for the second, a great majority preponderated in
favour of Themistocles.  From the Spartans, also, Themistocles received
the honours due to his merit.  A crown of olive was conferred upon him,
together with one of the most splendid chariots which the city could

On the very same day on which the Persians were defeated at Salamis the
Sicilian Greeks also obtained a victory over the Carthaginians.  There
is reason to believe that the invasion of Sicily by the Carthaginians
was concerted with Xerxes, and that the simultaneous attach on two
distinct Grecian peoples, by two immense armaments, was not merely the
result of chance.  Gelon, the powerful ruler of Syracuse, defeated
Hamilcar, the Carthaginian general, with the loss it is said of 150,000

In the spring of B.C. 479 Mardonius prepared to open the campaign.  He
was not without hopes of inducing the Athenians to join the Persian
alliance, and he despatched Alexander, king of Macedon, to conciliate
the Athenians, now partially re-established in their dilapidated city.
His offers on the part of the Persians were of the most seductive kind;
but the Athenians dismissed him with a positive refusal, whilst to the
Lacedaemonians they protested that no temptations, however great,
should ever induce them to desert the common cause of Greece and
freedom.  In return for this disinterested conduct all they asked was
that a Peloponnesian army should be sent into Boeotia for the defence
of the Attic frontier:  a request which the Spartan envoys promised to
fulfil.  No sooner, however, had they returned into their own country
than this promise was completely forgotten.

When Mardonius was informed that the Athenians had rejected his
proposal, he immediately marched against Athens, accompanied by all his
Grecian allies; and in May or June, B.C. 479, about ten months after
the retreat of Xerxes, the Persians again occupied that city.  With
feelings of bitter indignation against their faithless allies, the
Athenians saw themselves once more compelled to remove to Salamis.
Mardonius took advantage of his situation to endeavour once more to win
them to his alliance. Through a Hellespontine Greek, the same
favourable conditions were again offered to them, but were again
refused.  One voice alone, that of the senator Lycidas, broke the
unanimity of the assembly.  But his opposition cost him his life.  He
and his family were stoned to death by the excited populace.  In this
desperate condition the Athenians sent ambassadors to the Spartans to
remonstrate against their breach of faith, and to intimate that
necessity might at length compel them to listen to the proposals of the
enemy.  The Spartans became alarmed. That very night 5000 citizens,
each attended by seven Helots, were despatched to the frontiers; and
these were shortly followed by 5000 Lacedaemonian Perioeci, each
attended by one light-armed Helot.  Never before had the Spartans sent
so large a force into the field.  Their example was followed by other
Peloponnesian cities; and the Athenian envoys returned to Salamis with
the joyful news that a large army was preparing to march against the
enemy, under the command of Pausanias, who acted as regent for the
infant son of Leonidas.

Mardonius, on learning the approach of the Lacedaemonians, abandoned
Attica and crossed into Boeotia.  He finally took up a position on the
left bank of the Asopus, and not far from the town of Plataea.  Here he
caused a camp to be constructed of ten furlongs square, and fortified
with barricades and towers. Meanwhile the Grecian army continued to
receive reinforcements from the different states, and by the time it
reached Boeotia, it formed a grand total of about 110,000 men.  After
several days' manoeuvring a general battle took place near Plataea.
The light-armed undisciplined Persians, whose bodies were unprotected
by armour, maintained a very unequal combat against the serried ranks,
the long spears, and the mailed bodies of the Spartan phalanx.
Mardonius, at the head of his body-guard of 1000 picked men, and
conspicuous by his white charger, was among the foremost in the fight,
till struck down by the hand of a Spartan.  The fall of their general
was the signal for flight to the Persians, already wearied and
disheartened by the fruitless contest; nor did they once stop till they
lad again crossed the Asopus and reached their fortified camp.  The
glory of having defeated the Persians at Plataea rests with the
Lacedaemonians, since the Athenians were engaged in another part of the
field with the Thebans.  After repulsing the Thebans, the Athenians
joined the Lacedaemonians, who had pursued the Persians as far as their
fortified camp.  Upon the arrival of the Athenians the barricades were
stormed and carried, after a gallant resistance on the part of the
Persians.  The camp became a scene of the most horrible carnage.  The
Persian loss was immense, while that of the Greeks seems not to have
exceeded 1300 or 1400 men.

It remained to bury the dead and divide the booty, and so great was the
task that ten days were consumed in it.  The booty was ample and
magnificent.  Gold and silver coined, as well as in plate and trinkets,
rich vests and carpets, ornamented arms, horses, camels--in a word, all
the magnificence of Eastern luxury.  The failure of the Persian
expedition was completed by the destruction of their naval armament.
Laotychides, the Spartan admiral, having sailed across the AEgean,
found the Persian fleet at Mycale a promontory of Asia Minor near
Miletus. Their former reverses seem completely to have discouraged the
Persians from hazarding another naval engagement.  The ships were
hauled ashore and surrounded with a rampart, whilst an army of 60,000
Persians lined the coast for their defence.  The Greeks landed on the
very day on which the battle of Plataea was fought. A supernatural
presentiment of that decisive victory, conveyed by a herald's staff
which floated over the AEgean from the shores of Greece, is said to
have pervaded the Grecian ranks at Mycale as they marched to the
attack.  The Persians did not long resist: they turned their backs and
fled to their fortifications, pursued by the Greeks, who entered them
almost simultaneously.  A large number of the Persians perished; and
the victory was rendered still more decisive by the burning of the

The Grecian fleet now sailed towards the Hellespont with the view of
destroying the bridge; but hearing that it no longer existed,
Leotychides departed homewards with the Peloponnesian vessels.
Xanthippus however, the Athenian commander, seized the opportunity to
recover from the Persians the Thracian Chersonese, which had long been
an Athenian possession; and proceeded to blockade Sestos, the key of
the strait.  This city surrendered in the autumn, after a protracted
siege, whereupon the Athenians returned home, carrying with them the
cables of the bridge across the Hellespont, which were afterwards
preserved in the Acropolis as a trophy.


WAR, B.C. 479-431.

The Athenians, on their return to Attica, after the defeat of the
Persians, found their city ruined and their country desolate. They
began to rebuild their city on a larger scale than before, and to
fortify it with a wall.  Those allies to whom the increasing maritime
power of Athens was an object of suspicion, and especially the
AEginetans, to whom it was more particularly formidable, beheld her
rising fortifications with dismay.  They endeavoured to inspire the
Lacedaemonians with their fears, and urged them to arrest the work.
But though Sparta shared the jealousy of the allies, she could not with
any decency interfere by force to prevent a friendly city from
exercising a right inherent in all independent states.  She assumed
therefore the hypocritical garb of an adviser and counsellor.
Concealing her jealousy under the pretence of zeal for the common
interests of Greece, she represented to the Athenians that, in the
event of another Persian invasion, fortified towns would serve the
enemy for camps and strongholds, as Thebes had done in the last war;
and proposed that the Athenians should not only desist from completing
their own fortifications, but help to demolish those which already
existed in other towns.

The object of the proposal was too transparent to deceive so acute a
statesman as Themistocles.  Athens was not yet, however, in a condition
to incur the danger of openly rejecting it; and he therefore advised
the Athenians to dismiss the Spartan envoys with the assurance that
they would send ambassadors to Sparta to explain their views.  He then
caused himself to be appointed one of these ambassadors; and setting
off straightway for Sparta, directed his colleagues to linger behind as
long as possible.  At Sparta, the absence of his colleagues, at which
he affected to be surprised, afforded him an excuse for not demanding
an audience of the ephors.  During the interval thus gained, the whole
population of Athens, of both sexes and every age, worked day and night
at the walls, which, when the other ambassadors at length arrived at
Sparta, had attained a height sufficient to afford a tolerable defence.
Meanwhile the suspicions of the Spartans had been more than once
aroused by messages from the AEginetans respecting the progress of the
walls.  Themistocles, however, positively denied their statements; and
urged the Spartans to send messengers of their own to Athens in order
to learn the true state of affairs, at the same time instructing the
Athenians to detain them as hostages for the safety of himself and
colleagues. When there was no longer any motive for concealment,
Themistocles openly avowed the progress of the works, and his intention
of securing the independence of Athens, and enabling her to act for
herself.  The walls being now too far advanced to be easily taken, the
Spartans found themselves compelled to acquiesce, and the works were
completed without further hindrance.

Having thus secured the city from all danger of an immediate attack,
Themistocles pursued his favourite project of rendering Athens the
greatest maritime and commercial power of Greece.  He erected a town
round the harbour of Piraeus, distant between four and five miles from
Athens, and enclosed it with a wall as large in extent as the city
itself, but of vastly greater height and thickness.  Meanwhile an event
occurred which secured more firmly than ever the maritime supremacy of
Athens, by transferring to her the command of the allied fleet.

In the year after the battle of Plataea a fleet had been fitted out and
placed under the command of the Spartan regent, Pausanias, in order to
carry on the war against the Persians. After delivering most of the
Grecian towns in Cyprus from the Persians, this armament sailed up the
Bosporus and laid siege to Byzantium, which was garrisoned by a large
Persian force.  The town surrendered after a protracted siege; but it
was during this expedition that the conduct of the Spartan commander
struck a fatal blow at the interests of his country.

The immense booty, as well as the renown, which Pausanias had acquired
at Plataea, had filled him with pride and ambition. After the capture
of Byzantium he despatched a letter to Xerxes, offering to marry the
king's daughter, and to bring Sparta and the rest of Greece under his
dominion.  Xerxes was highly delighted with this letter, and sent a
reply in which he urged Pausanias to pursue his project night and day,
and promised to supply him with all the money and troops that might be
needful for its execution.  But the childish vanity of Pausanias
betrayed his plot before it was ripe for execution.  Elated by the
confidence of Xerxes, and by the money with which he was lavishly
supplied, he acted as if he had already married the Great King's
daughter.  He assumed the Persian dress; he made a progress through
Thrace, attended by Persian and Egyptian guards; and copied, in the
luxury of his table and the dissoluteness of his manners, the example
of his adopted country.  Above all, he offended the allies by his
haughty reserve and imperiousness. His designs were now too manifest to
escape attention.  His proceedings reached the ears of the Spartans,
who sent out Dorcis to supersede him.  Disgusted by the insolence of
Pausanias, the Ionians serving in the combined Grecian fleet addressed
themselves to Aristides, whose manners formed a striking contrast to
those of the Spartan leader, and begged him to assume the command.
This request was made precisely at the time when Pausanias was
recalled; and accordingly, when Dorcis arrived, he found Aristides in
command of the combined fleet (B.C. 478).

This event was not a mere empty question about a point of honour. It
was a real revolution, terminated by a solemn league, of which Athens
was to be the head.  Aristides took the lead in the matter, for which
his proverbial justice and probity eminently qualified him.  The league
obtained the name of "the Confederacy of Delos," from its being
arranged that deputies of the allies belonging to it should meet
periodically for deliberation in the temple of Apollo and Artemis
(Diana) in that island.  Each state was assessed in a certain
contribution, either of money or ships, as proposed by the Athenians
and ratified by the synod.  The assessment was intrusted to Aristides,
whose impartiality was universally applauded.  Of the details, however,
we only know that the first assessment amounted to 460 talents (about
106,000L sterling), that certain officers called Hellenotamiae were
appointed by the Athenians to collect and administer the contributions,
and that Delos was the treasury.

Such was the origin of the Confederacy of Delos.  Soon after its
formation Aristides was succeeded in the command of the combined fleet
by Cimon, the son of Miltiades.

Pausanias, on his return to Sparta, seems to have been acquitted of any
definite charges; but he continued his correspondence with Persia, and
an accident at length afforded convincing proofs of his guilt.  A
favourite slave, to whom he had intrusted a letter to the Persian
satrap at Sardis, observed with dismay that none of the messengers
employed in this service had ever returned. Moved by these fears, he
broke the seal and read the letter, and finding his suspicions of the
fate that awaited him confirmed, he carried the document to the ephors.
But in ancient states the testimony of a slave was always regarded with
suspicion.  The ephors refused to believe the evidence offered to them
unless confirmed by their own ears.  For this purpose they directed him
to plant himself as a suppliant in a sacred grove near Cape Taenarus,
in a hut behind which two of their body might conceal themselves.
Pausanias, as they had expected, anxious at the step taken by his
slave, hastened to the spot to question him about it.  The conversation
which ensued, and which was overheard by the ephors, rendered the guilt
of Pausanias no longer doubtful. They now determined to arrest him on
his return to Sparta.  They met him in the street near the temple of
Athena Chalcioecus (of the Brazen House), when Pausanias, either
alarmed by his guilty conscience, or put on his guard by a secret
signal from one of the ephors, turned and fled to the temple, where he
took refuge in a small chamber belonging to the building.  From this
sanctuary it was unlawful to drag him; but the ephors caused the doors
to be built up and the roof to be removed, and his own mother is said
to have placed the first stone at the doors.  When at the point of
death from starvation, he was carried from the sanctuary before he
polluted it with his corpse.  Such was the end of the victor of
Plataea.  After his death proofs were discovered among his papers that
Themistocles was implicated in his guilt.  But in order to follow the
fortunes of the Athenian statesman, it is necessary to take a glance at
the internal history of Athens.

The ancient rivalry between Themistocles and Aristides had been in a
good degree extinguished by the danger which threatened their common
country during the Persian wars.  Aristides had since abandoned his
former prejudices, and was willing to conform to many of the
democratical innovations of his rival.  The effect of this was to
produce, soon after their return to Attica, a still further
modification of the constitution of Clisthenes. The Thetes the lowest
of the four classes of Athenian citizens, were declared eligible for
the magistracy, from which they had been excluded by the laws of Solon.
Thus not only the archonship, but consequently the Council of
Areopagus, was thrown open to them; and, strange to say, this reform
was proposed by Aristides himself.

Nevertheless party spirit still ran high at Athens.  Cimon and Alcmaeon
were violent opponents of Themistocles, and of their party Aristides
was still the head.  The popularity of Aristides was never greater than
at the present time, owing not only to the more liberal spirit which he
exhibited, but also to his great services in establishing the
Confederacy of Delos.  Themistocles had offended the Athenians by his
ostentation and vanity.  He was continually boasting of his services to
the state; but worse than all this, his conduct was stained with
positive guilt.  Whilst, at the head of an Athenian squadron, he was
sailing among the Greek islands for the ostensible purpose of executing
justice, there is little room to doubt that he corrupted its very
source by accepting large sums of money from the cities which he
visited.  Party spirit at length reached such a height that it was
found necessary to resort to ostracism, and Themistocles was condemned
to a temporary banishment (B.C. 471).  He retired to Argos, where he
was residing when the Spartans called upon the Athenians to prosecute
their great statesman before a synod of the allies assembled at Sparta,
on the ground of treasonable correspondence with Persia.  Accordingly
joint envoys were sent from Athens and Sparta to arrest him (B.C. 466).
Themistocles avoided the impending danger by flying from Argos to
Corcyra. The Corcyraeans, however, not daring to shelter him, he passed
over to the continent; where, being still pursued, he was forced to
seek refuge at the court of Admetus, king of the Molossians, though the
latter was his personal enemy.  Fortunately, Admetus happened to be
from home.  The forlorn condition of Themistocles excited the
compassion of the wife of the Molossian king, who placed her child in
his arms, and bade him seat himself on the hearth as a suppliant.  As
soon as the king arrived, Themistocles explained his peril, and adjured
him by the sacred laws of hospitality not to take vengeance upon a
fallen foe.  Admetus accepted his appeal, and raised him from the
hearth; he refused to deliver him up to his pursuers, and at last only
dismissed him on his own expressed desire to proceed to Persia.  After
many perils, Themistocles succeeded in reaching in safety the coast of
Asia.  Artaxerxes, the son of Xerxes, was now upon the throne of
Persia, and to him Themistocles hastened to announce himself. The king
was delighted at his arrival, and treated him with the greatest
distinction.  In a year's time, Themistocles, having acquired a
sufficient knowledge of the Persian language to be able to converse in
it, entertained Artaxerxes with magnificent schemes for the subjugation
of Greece.  Artaxerxes loaded him with presents, gave him a Persian
wife, and appointed Magnesia, a town not far from the Ionian coast, as
his place of residence. After living there some time he was carried off
by disease at the age of sixty-five, without having realised, or
apparently attempted, any of those plans with which he had dazzled the
Persian monarch.  Rumour ascribed his death to poison, which he took of
his own accord, from a consciousness of his inability to perform his
promises; but this report, which was current in the time of Thucydides,
is rejected by that historian.

Aristides died about four years after the banishment of Themistocles.
The common accounts of his poverty are probably exaggerated, and seem
to have been founded on the circumstances of a public funeral, and of
handsome donations made to his three children by the state.  But
whatever his property may have been, it is at least certain that he did
not acquire or increase it by unlawful means; and not even calumny has
ventured to assail his well-earned title of THE JUST.

On the death of Aristides, Cimon became the undisputed leader of the
conservative party at Athens.  Cimon was generous, affable,
magnificent; and, notwithstanding his political views, of exceedingly
popular manners.  He had inherited the military genius of his father,
and was undoubtedly the greatest commander of his time.  He employed
the vast wealth acquired in his expeditions in adorning Athens and
gratifying his fellow-citizens. It has been already mentioned that he
succeeded Aristides in the command of the allied fleet.  His first
exploits were the capture of Eion on the Strymon, and the reduction of
the island of Scyros (B.C. 476).  A few years afterwards we find the
first symptoms of discontent among the members of the Confederacy of
Delos.  Naxos, one of the confederate islands, and the largest of the
Cyclades, revolted in B.C. 466, probably from a feeling of the growing
oppressiveness of the Athenian headship.  It was immediately invested
by the confederate fleet, reduced, and made tributary to Athens.  This
was another step towards dominion gained by the Athenians, whose
pretensions were assisted by the imprudence of the allies.  Many of the
smaller states belonging to the confederacy, wearied with perpetual
hostilities, commuted for a money payment the ships which they were
bound to supply; and thus, by depriving themselves of a navy, lost the
only means by which they could assert their independence.

The same year was marked by a memorable action against the Persians.
Cimon at the head of 200 Athenian triremes, and 100 furnished by the
allies, proceeded to the coast of Asia Minor. The Persians had
assembled a large fleet and army at the mouth of the river Eurymedon in
Pamphylia.  After speedily defeating the fleet, Cimon landed his men
and marched against the Persian army which was drawn up on the shore to
protect the fleet.  The land-force fought with bravery, but was at
length put to the rout.

The island of Thasos was the next member of the confederacy against
which the Athenians directed their arms.  After a siege of more than
two years that island surrendered, when its fortifications were razed,
and it was condemned to pay tribute (B.C. 463).

The expedition to Thasos was attended with a circumstance which first
gives token of the coming hostilities between Sparta and Athens.  At an
early period of the blockade the Thasians secretly applied to the
Lacedaemonians to make a diversion in their favour by invading Attica:
and though the Lacedaemonians were still ostensibly allied with Athens,
they were base enough to comply with this request.  Their treachery,
however, was prevented by a terrible calamity which befel themselves.
In the year B.C. 461 their capital was visited by an earthquake which
laid it in ruins and killed 20,000 of the citizens.  But this was only
part of the calamity.  The earthquake was immediately followed by a
revolt of the Helots, who were always ready to avail themselves of the
weakness of their tyrants.  Being joined by the Messenians, they
fortified themselves in Mount Ithome in Messenia.  Hence this revolt is
sometimes called the Third Messenian War (B.C. 464). after two or three
years spent in a vain attempt to dislodge them from this position, the
Lacedaemonians found themselves obliged to call in the assistance of
their allies, and, among the rest, of the Athenians.  It was with great
difficulty that Cimon persuaded the Athenians to comply with this
request; but he was at length despatched to Laconia with a force of
4000 hoplites. The aid of the Athenians had been requested by the
Lacedaemonians on account of their acknowledged superiority in the art
of attacking fortified places.  As, however, Cimon did not succeed in
dislodging the Helots from Ithome the Lacedaemonians, probably from a
consciousness of their own treachery in the affair of Thasos, suspected
that the Athenians were playing them false, and abruptly dismissed
them, saying that they had no longer any occasion for their services.
This rude dismissal gave great offence at Athens, and annihilated for a
time the political influence of Cimon.  The democratical party had from
the first opposed the expedition; and it afforded them a great triumph
to be able to point to Cimon returning not only unsuccessful but
insulted.  That party was now led by Pericles.  A sort of hereditary
feud existed between Pericles and Cimon; for it was Xanthippus, the
father of Pericles, who had impeached Miltiades, the father of Cimon.
The character of Pericles was almost the reverse of Cimon's.  Although
the leader of the popular party, his manners were reserved.  He
appeared but little in society, and only in public upon great
occasions.  His mind had received the highest polish which that period
was capable of giving.  He constantly conversed with Anaxagoras,
Protagoras, Zeno, and other eminent philosophers.  To oratory in
particular he had devoted much attention, as an indispensable
instrument for swaying the public assemblies of Athens.

Pericles seized the occasion presented by the ill success of Cimon,
both to ruin that leader and to strike a fatal blow at the
aristocratical party.  He deprived the Areopagus of its chief
functions, and left it a mere shadow of its former influence and power.
He rendered the election to magistracies dependent simply upon lot, so
that every citizen however poor, had an equal chance of obtaining the
honours of the state.  Other changes which accompanied this
revolution--for such it must be called--were the institution of paid
DICASTERIES or jury-courts, and the almost entire abrogation of the
judicial power of the Senate of Five Hundred.  It cannot be supposed
that such fundamental changes were effected without violent party
strife.  The poet AEschylus, in the tragedy of the EUMENIDIES, in vain
exerted all the powers of his genius in support of the aristocratical
party and of the tottering Areopagus; his exertions on this occasion
resulted only in his own flight from Athens.  The same fate attended
Cimon himself; and he was condemned by ostracism (B.C. 461) to a ten
years' banishment.  Nay, party violence even went the length of
assassination.  Ephialtes, who had taken the lead in the attacks upon
the Areopagus, fell beneath the dagger of a Boeotian, hired by the
conservative party to dispatch him.

It was from this period (B.C. 461) that the long administration of
Pericles may be said to have commenced.  The effects of his accession
to power soon became visible in the foreign relations of Athens.
Pericles had succeeded to the political principles of Themistocles, and
his aim was to render Athens the leading power of Greece.  The
Confederacy of Delos had already secured her maritime ascendency;
Pericles directed his policy to the extension of her influence in
continental Greece.  She formed an alliance with the Thessalians,
Argos, and Megara.  The possession of Megara was of great importance,
as it enabled the Athenians to arrest the progress of an invading army
from Peloponnesus, AEgina, so long the maritime rival of Athens, was
subdued and made tributary.  The Athenians marched with rapid steps to
the dominion of Greece.  Shortly afterwards the battle of OEnophyta
(B.C. 456), in which the Athenians defeated the Boeotians, gave Athens
the command of Thebes, and of all the other Boeotian towns.  From the
gulf of Corinth to the straits of Thermopylae Athenian influence was
now predominant.  During these events the Athenians had continued to
prosecute the war against Persia.  In the year B.C. 460 they sent a
powerful fleet to Egypt to assist Inarus, who had revolted against
Persia; but this expedition proved a complete failure, for at the end
of six years the revolt was put down by the Persians, and the Athenian
fleet destroyed (B.C. 455).  At a later period (B.C. 449) Cimon, who
had been recalled from exile, sailed to Cyprus with a fleet of 200
ships. He undertook the siege of Citium in that island; but died during
the progress of it, either from disease or from the effects of a wound.
Shortly afterwards a pacification was concluded with Persia, which is
sometimes, but erroneously, called "the peace of Cimon."  It is stated
that by this compact the Persian monarch agreed not to tax or molest
the Greek colonies on the coast of Asia Minor, nor to send any vessels
of war westward of Phaselis in Lycia, or within the Cyanean rocks at
the junction of the Euxine with the Thracian Bosporus; the Athenians on
their side undertaking to leave the Persians in undisturbed possession
of Cyprus and Egypt.  During the progress of these events, the states
which formed the Confederacy of Delos, with the exception of Chios,
Lesbos, and Samos, had gradually become, instead of the active allies
of Athens, her disarmed and passive tributaries. Even the custody of
the fund had been transferred from Delos to Athens.  The purpose for
which the confederacy had been originally organised disappeared with
the Persian peace; yet what may now be called Imperial Athens
continued, for her own ends, to exercise her prerogatives as head of
the league.  Her alliances, as we have seen, had likewise been extended
in continental Greece, where they embraced Megara, Boeotia, Phocis,
Locris, together with Troezen and Achaia in Peloponnesus.  Such was the
position of Athens in the year 448 B.C., the period of her greatest
power and prosperity.  From this time her empire began to decline;
whilst Sparta, and other watchful and jealous enemies, stood ever ready
to strike a blow.

In the following year (B.C. 447) a revolution in Boeotia deprived
Athens of her ascendency in that country.  With an overweening contempt
of their enemies, a small band of 1000 Athenian hoplites, chiefly
composed of youthful volunteers belonging to the best Athenian
families, together with a few auxiliaries, marched under the command of
Tolmides to put down the revolt, in direct opposition to the advice of
Pericles, who adjured them to wait and collect a more numerous force.
The enterprise proved disastrous in the extreme.  Tolmides was defeated
and slain near Chaeronea, a large number of the hoplites also fell in
the engagement, while a still larger number were taken prisoners. This
last circumstance proved fatal to the interests of Athens in Boeotia.
In order to recover these prisoners, she agreed to evacuate Boeotia,
and to permit the re-establishment of the aristocracies which she had
formerly overthrown.  But the Athenian reverses did not end here.  The
expulsion of the partisans of Athens from the government of Phocis and
Locris, and the revolt of Euboea and Megara, were announced in quick
succession.  The youthful Pleistoanax, king of Sparta, actually
penetrated, with an army of Lacedaemonians and Peloponnesian allies, as
far as the neighbourhood of Eleusis; and the capital itself, it is
said, was saved only by Pericles having bribed the Spartan monarch.
Pericles reconquered Euboea; but this was the only possession which the
Athenians succeeded in recovering. Their empire on land had vanished
more, speedily than it had been acquired; and they were therefore
induced to conclude, at the beginning of B.C. 445, a THIRTY YEARS'
TRUCE with Sparta and her allies, by which they consented to abandon
all the acquisitions which they had made in Peloponnesus, and to leave
Megara to be included among the Peloponnesian allies of Sparta.

From the Thirty Years' Truce to the commencement of the Peloponnesian
war, few political events of any importance occurred.  During these
fourteen years (B.C. 445-431) Pericles continued to enjoy the sole
direction of affairs.  His views were of the most lofty kind.  Athens
was to become the capital of Greece, and the centre of art and
refinement.  In her external appearance the city was to be rendered
worthy of the high position to which she aspired, by the beauty and
splendour of her public buildings, by her works of art in sculpture,
architecture, and painting, and by the pomp and magnificence of her
religious festivals.  All these objects Athens was enabled to attain in
an incredibly short space of time, through the genius and energy of her
citizens and the vast resources at her command.  No state has ever
exhibited so much intellectual activity and so great a progress in art
as was displayed by Athens in the period which elapsed between the
Thirty Years' Truce and the breaking out of the Peloponnesian war.  She
was the seat and centre of Grecian literature.  The three great tragic
poets of Greece were natives of Attica.  AEschylus, the earliest of the
three, had recently died in Sicily; but Sophocles was now at the full
height of his reputation, and Euripides was rapidly rising into notice.
Aristophanes, the greatest of the Grecian comic poets, was also born in
Attica, and exhibited plays soon after the beginning of the
Peloponnesian war.  Herodotus, the Father of History, though a native
of Halicarnassus in Asia Minor, resided some time at Athens, and
accompanied a colony which the Athenians sent to Thurii in Italy.
Thucydides, the greatest of Greek historians, was an Athenian, and was
a young man at this period.

Colonization, for which the genius and inclination of the Athenians had
always been suited, was another method adopted by Pericles for
extending the influence and empire of Athens.  The settlements made
under his auspices were of two kinds CLERUCHIES, and regular colonies.
The former mode was exclusively Athenian. It consisted in the allotment
of land in conquered or subject countries to certain bodies of
Athenians who continued to retain all their original rights of
citizenship.  This circumstance, as well as the convenience of entering
upon land already in a state of cultivation instead of having to
reclaim it from the rude condition of nature, seems to have rendered
such a mode of settlement much preferred by the Athenians.  The
earliest instance which we find of it is in the year B.C. 506, when
four thousand Athenians entered upon the domains of the Chalcidian
knights (see Ch.5).  But it was under Pericles that this system was
most extensively adopted.  During his administration 1000 Athenian
citizens were settled in the Thracian Chersonese, 500 in Naxos, and 250
in Andros.  The islands of Lemnos, Imbros, and Scyros, as well as a
large tract in the north of Euboea, were also completely occupied by
Athenian proprietors.

The most important colonies settled by Pericles were those of Thurii
and Amphipolis.  Since the destruction of Sybaris by the Crotoniates,
in B.C. 509, the former inhabitants had lived dispersed in the
adjoining territory along the gulf of Tarentum, In B.C. 443 Pericles
sent out a colony to found Thurii, near the site of the ancient
Sybaris.  The colony of Amphipolis was founded some years later (B.C.
437), under the conduct of Agnon.

But Pericles, notwithstanding his influence and power, had still many
bitter and active enemies, who assailed him through his private
connections, and even endeavoured to wound his honour by a charge of
peculation.  Pericles, after divorcing a wife with whom he had lived
unhappily, took his mistress Aspasia to his house, and dwelt with her
till his death on terms of the greatest affection.  She was
distinguished not only for her beauty, but also for her learning and
accomplishments.  Her intimacy with Anaxagoras, the celebrated Ionic
philosopher, was made a handle for wounding Pericles in his tenderest
relations.  Paganism, notwithstanding its licence, was capable of
producing bigots: and even at Athens the man who ventured to dispute
the existence of a hundred gods with morals and passions somewhat worse
than those of ordinary human nature, did so at the risk of his life.
Anaxagoras was indicted for impiety.  Aspasia was included in the same
charge, and dragged before the courts of justice. Anaxagoras prudently
fled from Athens, and thus probably avoided a fate which in consequence
of a similar accusation afterwards overtook Socrates.  Pericles himself
pleaded the cause of Aspasia.  He was indeed indirectly implicated in
the indictment; but he felt no concern except for his beloved Aspasia,
and on this occasion the cold and somewhat haughty statesman, whom the
most violent storms of the assembly could not deprive of his
self-possession, was for once seen to weep.  His appeal to the jury was
successful, but another trial still awaited him.  An indictment was
preferred against his friend, the great sculptor Phidias, for
embezzlement of the gold intended to adorn the celebrated ivory statue
of Athena; and according to some, Pericles himself was included in the
charge of peculation. Whether Pericles was ever actually tried on this
accusation is uncertain; but at all events, if he was, there can be no
doubt that he was honourably acquitted.  The gold employed in the
statue had been fixed in such a manner that it could be detached and
weighed, and Pericles challenged his accusers to the proof. But Phidias
did not escape so fortunately.  There were other circumstances which
rendered him unpopular, and amongst them the fact that he had
introduced portraits both of himself and Pericles in the sculptures
which adorned the frieze of the Parthenon.  Phidias died in prison
before the day of trial.

The Athenian empire, since the conclusion of the Thirty Years' Truce,
had again become exclusively maritime.  Yet even among the subjects and
allies united with Athens by the Confederacy of Delos, her sway was
borne with growing discontent.  One of the chief causes of this
dissatisfaction was the amount of the tribute exacted by the Athenians,
as well as their misapplication of the proceeds.  In the time of
Aristides and Cimon, when an active war was carrying on against the
Persians, the sum annually collected amounted to 460 talents.  In the
time of Pericles, although that war had been brought to a close, the
tribute had nevertheless increased to the annual sum of 600 talents.
Another grievance was the transference to Athens of all lawsuits, at
least of all public suits; for on this subject we are unable to draw
the line distinctly.  In criminal cases, at all events, the allies seem
to have been deprived of the power to inflict capital punishment.
Besides all these causes of complaint, the allies had often to endure
the oppressions and exactions of Athenian officers, both military and
naval, as well us of the rich and powerful Athenian citizens settled
among them.

In B.C. 440 Samos, one of the free independent allies already
mentioned, revolted from Athens; but even this island was no match for
the Athenian power.  Pericles, who sailed against the Samians in
person, defeated their fleet in several engagements, and forced the
city to capitulate.  The Samians were compelled to raze their
fortifications, to surrender their fleet, to give hostages for their
future conduct, and to pay the expenses of the war.

The triumphs and the power of Athens were regarded with fear and
jealousy by her rivals; and the quarrel between Corinth and Corcyra
lighted the spark which was to produce the conflagration. On the coast
of Illyria near the site of the modern Durazzo, the Corcyraeans had
founded the city of Epidamnus.  Corcyra (now Corfu) was itself a colony
of Corinth; and though long at enmity with its mother country, was
forced, according to the time-hallowed custom of the Greeks in such
matters, to select the founder of Epidamnus from the Corinthians.
Accordingly Corinth became the metropolis of Epidamnus as well as of
Corcyra.  At the time of which we speak, the Epidamnians, being hard
pressed by the Illyrians, led by some oligarchical exiles of their own
city, applied to Corcyra for assistance, which the Corcyraeans, being
connected with the Epidamnian oligarchy, refused.  The Epidamnians then
sought help from the Corinthians, who undertook to assist them.  The
Corcyraeans, highly resenting this interference, attacked the
Corinthian fleet off Cape Actium, and gained a signal victory (B.C.

Deeply humbled by this defeat, the Corinthians spent the two following
years in active preparations for retrieving it.  The Corcyraeans, who
had not enrolled themselves either in the Lacedaemonian or Athenian
alliance, and therefore stood alone, were greatly alarmed at these
preparations.  They now resolved to remedy this deficiency; and as
Corinth belonged to the Lacedaemonian alliance, the Corcyraeans had no
option, and were obliged to apply to Athens.  The majority of the
Athenians were ready to comply with their request; but in order to
avoid an open infringement of the Thirty Years' Truce, it was resolved
to conclude only a defensive alliance with Corcyra:  that is, to defend
the Corcyraeans in case their territories were actually invaded by the
Corinthians, but beyond that not to lend them any active assistance.  A
small Athenian squadron of only 10 triremes was despatched to the
assistance of the Corcyraeans.  Soon after their arrival a battle
ensued off the coast of Epirus, between the Corinthian and Corcyraean
fleets.  After a hard-fought day, victory finally declared in favour of
the Corinthians.  The Athenians now abandoned their neutrality, and did
all in their power to save the dying Corcyraeans from their pursuers.
This action took place early in the morning; and the Corinthians
prepared to renew the attack in the afternoon, when they saw in the
distance 20 Athenian vessels, which they believed to be the advanced
guard of a still larger fleet.  They accordingly sailed away to the
coast of Epirus; but finding that the Athenians did not mean to
undertake offensive operations against them, they departed homewards
with their whole fleet.  These events took place in the year B.C. 432.

The Corinthians were naturally incensed at the conduct of Athens; and
it is not surprising that they should have watched for an opportunity
of revenge.  This was soon afforded them by the enmity of the
Macedonian prince Perdiccas towards the Athenians. He incited her
tributaries upon the coast of Macedonia to revolt, including Potidaea,
a town seated on the isthmus of Pallene. Potidaea, though now a
tributary of Athens, was originally a colony of the Corinthians, and
received from them certain annual magistrates.  Being urged as well by
the Corinthians as by Perdiccas, the Potidaeans openly raised the
standard of revolt (B.C. 432).  A powerful Athenian armament was
despatched to the coast of Macedonia and laid siege to Potidaea.

Meanwhile the Lacedaemonians, urged on all sides by the complaints of
their allies against Athens, summoned a general meeting of the
Peloponnesian confederacy at Sparta.  The Corinthians took the most
prominent part in the debate; but other members of the confederacy had
also heavy grievances to allege against Athens.  Foremost among these
were the Megarians, who complained that their commerce had been ruined
by a recent decree of the Athenians which excluded them from every port
within the Athenian jurisdiction.  It was generally felt that the time
had now arrived for checking the power of Athens.  Influenced by these
feelings, the Lacedaemonians decided upon war; and the congress passed
a resolution to the same effect, thus binding the whole Peloponnesian
confederacy to the same policy.  This important resolution was adopted
towards the close of B.C. 432, or early in the following year.  Before
any actual declaration of war, hostilities were begun in the spring of
B.C. 431 by a treacherous attack of the Thebans upon Plataea.  Though
Boeotians by descent, the Plataeans did not belong to the Boeotian
league, but had long been in close alliance with the Athenians.  Hence
they were regarded with hatred and jealousy by the Thebans, which
sentiments were also shared by a small oligarchical faction in Plataea
itself.  The Plataean oligarchs secretly admitted a body of 300 Thebans
into the town at night; but the attempt proved a failure; the citizens
flew to arms, and in the morning all the Thebans were either slain or
taken prisoner.



[Note: The figures referred to in a few places in this chapter have had
to be omitted from the etext.]

At the commencement of the Peloponnesian war Athens was at the height
of its glory under the brilliant administration of Pericles.  We may
therefore here pause to take a brief survey of the city and of its most
important buildings.  Athens is situated about three miles from the
sea-coast, in the central plain of Attica.  In this plain rise several
eminences.  Of these the most prominent is a lofty insulated mountain,
with a conical peaked summit, now called the Hill of St. George, and
which bore in ancient times the name of LYCABETTUS.  This mountain,
which was not included within the ancient walls, lies to the north-east
of Athens, and forms the most striking feature in the environs of the
city.  It is to Athens what Vesuvius is to Naples, or Arthur's Seat to
Edinburgh.  South-west of Lycabettus there are four hills of moderate
height, all of which formed part of the city.  Of these the nearest to
Lycabettus and at the distance of a mile from the latter, was the
ACROPOLIS, or citadel of Athens, a square craggy rock rising abruptly
about 150 feet, with a flat summit of about 1000 feet long from east to
west, by 500 feet broad from north to south.  Immediately west of the
Acropolis is a second hill of irregular form, the AREOPAGUS.  To the
south-west there rises a third hill, the PNYX, on which the assemblies
of the citizens were held; and to the south of the latter is a fourth
hill, known as the MUSEUM.  On the eastern and western sides of the
city there run two small streams, which are nearly exhausted before
they reach the sea, by the heats of summer and by the channels for
artificial irrigation.  That on the east is the Ilissus, which flowed
through the southern quarter of the city:  that on the west is the
Cephissus.  South of the city was seen the Saronic gulf, with the
harbours of Athens.

Athens is said to have derived its name from the prominence given to
the worship of Athena by its king Erechtheus.  The inhabitants were
previously called Cranai and Cecropidae, from Cecrops, who according to
tradition, was the original founder of the city. This at first occupied
only the hill or rock which afterwards became the ACROPOLIS; but
gradually the buildings began to spread over the ground at the southern
foot of this hill.  It was not till the time of Pisistratus and his
sons (B.C. 560-514) that the city began to assume any degree of
splendour.  The most remarkable building of these despots was the
gigantic temple of the Olympian Zeus, which, however, was not finished
till many centuries later.  In B.C. 500 the theatre of Dionysus was
commenced on the south-eastern slope of the Acropolis, but was not
completed till B.C. 340; though it must have been used for the
representation of plays long before that period.

Xerxes reduced the ancient city almost to a heap of ashes.  After the
departure of the Persians, its reconstruction on a much larger scale
was commenced under the superintendence of Themistocles, whose first
care was to provide for its safety by the erection of walls.  The
Acropolis now formed the centre of the city, round which the new walls
described an irregular circle of about 60 stadia or 7 1/2 miles in
circumference.  The space thus enclosed formed the ASTY, or city,
properly so called.  But the views of Themistocles were not confined to
the mere defence of Athens:  he contemplated making her a great naval
power, and for this purpose adequate docks and arsenals were required.
Previously the Athenians had used as their only harbour the open
roadstead of PHALERUM on the eastern side of the Phaleric bay, where
the sea-shore is nearest to Athens.  But Themistocles transferred the
naval station of the Athenians to the peninsula of Piraeus, which is
distant about 4 1/2 miles from Athens, and contains three natural
harbours,--a large one on the western side, called simply Piraeus or
The Harbour, and two smaller ones an the eastern side, called
respectively ZEA and MUNYCHIA, the latter being nearest to the city.
It was not till the administration of Pericles that the walls were
built which connected Athens with her ports.  These were at first the
outer or northern Long Wall, which ran from Athens to Piraeus, and the
Phaleric wall connecting the city with Phalerum.  These were commenced
in B.C. 457, and finished in the following year.  It was soon found,
however, that the space thus enclosed was too vast to be easily
defended; and as the port of Phalerum was small and insignificant in
comparison with the Piraeus, and soon ceased to be used by the Athenian
ships of war, its wall was abandoned and probably allowed to fall into
decay.  Its place was supplied by another Long wall, which was built
parallel to the first at a distance of only 550 feet, thus rendering
both capable of being defended by the same body of men.  Their height
in all probability was not less than 60 feet.  In process of time the
space between the two Long Walls was occupied on each side by houses.

It will be seen from the preceding description that Athens, in its
larger acceptation, and including its port, consisted of two circular
cities, the Asty and Piraeus, each of about 7 1/2 miles in
circumference, and joined together by a broad street of between four
and five miles long.

Such was the outward and material form of that city, which during the
period between the Persian and Peloponnesian wars reached the highest
pitch of military, artistic, and literary glory.  The latter portion of
this period, or that comprised under the ascendency of Pericles,
exhibits Athenian art in its highest state of perfection, and is
therefore by way of excellence commonly designated as the age of
Pericles.  The great sculptor of this period--perhaps the greatest the
world has ever seen--was Phidias, to whom Pericles intrusted the
superintendence of all the works executed in his administration.

The first public monuments that arose after the Persian wars were
erected under the auspices of Cimon, who was, like Pericles, a lover
and patron of the arts.  The principal of these were the small Ionic
temple of Nike Apteros (Wingless Victory), and the Theseum, or temple
of Theseus.  The temple of Nike Apteros was only 27 feet in length by
18 in breadth, and was erected on the Acropolis in commemoration of
Cimon's victory at the Eurymedon. A view of it is given at the
beginning of this chapter, and its position on the Acropolis, on one
side of the Propylaea, is seen in the drawings on p. 91, as well as on
the Frontispiece of the work.

The Theseum is situated on a height to the north of the Areopagus, and
was built to receive the bones of Theseus, which Cimon brought from
Scyros in B.C. 469.  It was probably finished about 465, and is the
best preserved of all the monuments of ancient Athens.  It was at once
a tomb and temple, and possessed the privileges of an asylum.  It is of
the Doric order, 164 feet in length by 45 feet broad, and surrounded
with columns.

But it was the Acropolis which was the chief centre of the
architectural splendour of Athens.  After the Persian wars the
Acropolis had ceased to be inhabited, and was appropriated to the
worship of Athena and to the other guardian deities of the city. It was
covered with the temples of gods and heroes; and thus its platform
presented not only a sanctuary, but a museum, containing the finest
productions of the architect and the sculptor, in which the whiteness
of the marble was relieved by brilliant colours, and rendered still
more dazzling by the transparent clearness of the Athenian atmosphere.
It was surrounded with walls, and the surface seems to have been
divided into terraces communicating with one another by steps.  The
only approach to it was from the Agora on its western side at the top
of a magnificent flight of marble steps, 70 feet broad, stood the
Propylaea, constructed under the auspices of Pericles, and which served
as a suitable entrance to the exquisite works within.  The Propylaea
were themselves one of the masterpieces of Athenian art.  They were
entirely of Pentelic marble, and covered the whole of the western end
of the Acropolis, having a breadth of 168 feet.  The central portion of
them consisted of two porticoes, of which the western one faced the
city, and the eastern one the interior of the Acropolis, each
consisting of a front of six fluted Doric columns.  This central part
of the building was 58 feet in breadth, but the remaining breadth of
the rock at this point was covered by two wings, which projected 26
feet in front of the western portico.  Each of these wings was in the
form of a Doric temple.  The northern one, or that on the left of a
person ascending the Acropolis, was called the PINACOTHECA, from its
walls being covered with paintings.  The southern wing consisted only
of a porch or open gallery. Immediately before its western front stood
the little temple of Nike Apteros already mentioned.

On passing through the Propylaea all the glories of the Acropolis
became visible.  The chief building was the Parthenon (I.E. House of
the Virgin), the most perfect production of Grecian architecture.  It
derived its name from its being the temple of Athena Parthenos, or
Athena the Virgin, the invincible goddess of war.  It was also called
HECATOMPEDON, from its breadth of 100 feet.  It was built under the
administration of Pericles, and was completed in B.C. 438.  The
Parthenon stood on the highest part of the Acropolis near its centre,
and probably occupied the site of an earlier temple destroyed by the
Persians.  It was entirely of Pentelic marble, on a rustic basement of
ordinary limestone, and its architecture, which was of the Doric order,
was of the purest kind.  Its dimensions were about 228 feet in length,
101 feet in breadth, and 66 feet in height to the top of the pediment.
It consisted of a cella, surrounded by a peristyle. The cella was
divided into two chambers of unequal size, the eastern one of which was
about 98 feet long, and the western one about 43 feet.  The ceiling of
both these chambers was supported by rows of columns.  The whole
building was adorned with the most exquisite sculptures, executed by
various artists under the direction of Phidias.  These consisted of,
1. The sculptures in the tympana of the pediments (I.E. the inner
portion of the triangular gable ends of the roof above the two
porticoes), each of which was filled with about 24 colossal figures.
The group in the eastern or principal front represented the birth of
Athena from the head of Zeus, and the western the contest between
Athena and Poseidon (Neptune) for the land of Attica.   2. The metopes
between the triglyphs in the frieze of the entablature (I.E. the upper
of the two portions into which the space between the columns and the
roof is divided) were filled with sculptures in high relief,
representing a variety of subjects relating to Athena herself, or to
the indigenous heroes of Attica.  Each tablet was 4 feet 3 inches
square.  Those on the south side related to the battle of the Athenians
with the Centaurs.  One of the metopes is figured below.   3. The
frieze which ran along outside the wall of the cella, and within the
external columns which surround the building, at the same height and
parallel with the metopes, was sculptured with a representation of the
Panathenaic festival in very low relief.  This frieze was 3 feet 4
inches in height, and 520 feet in length.  A small portion of the
frieze is also figured below.   A large number of the slabs of the
frieze, together with sixteen metopes from the south side, and several
of the statues of the pediments, were brought to England by Lord Elgin,
of whom they were purchased by the nation and deposited in the British

But the chief wonder of the Parthenon was the colossal statue of the
Virgin Goddess executed by Phidias himself, which stood in the eastern
or principal chamber of the cella.  It was of the sort called
CHRYSELEPHANTINE, a kind of work said to have been invented by Phidias
in which ivory was substituted for marble in those parts which were
uncovered, while the place of the real drapery was supplied with robes
and other ornaments of solid gold.  Its height, including the base, was
nearly 40 feet.  It represented the goddess standing, clothed with a
tunic reaching to the ankles, with a spear in her left hand, and an
image of Victory in her right.

The Acropolis was adorned with another colossal figure of Athena, in
bronze, also the work of Phidias.  It stood in the open air, nearly
opposite the Propylaea, and was one of the first objects seen after
passing through the gates of the latter.  With its pedestal it must
have stood about 70 feet high, and consequently towered above the roof
of the Parthenon, so that the point of its spear and the crest of its
helmet were visible off the promontory of Sunium to ships approaching
Athens.  It was called the "Athena Promachus," because it represented
the goddess armed, and in the very attitude of battle.

The only other monument on the summit of the Acropolis which it is
necessary to describe is the Erechtheum, or temple of Erechtheus.  The
traditions respecting Erechtheus vary, but according to one set of them
he was identical with the god Poseidon.  He was worshipped in his
temple under the name of Poseidon Erechtheus, and from the earliest
times was associated with Athena as one of the two protecting deities
of Athens.  The original Erechtheum was burnt by the Persians, but the
new temple was erected on the ancient site.  This could not have been
otherwise; for on this spot was the sacred olive-tree which Athena
evoked from the earth in her contest with Poseidon, and also the well
of salt-water which Poseidon produced by a stroke of his trident, the
impression of which was seen upon the rock. The building was also
called the temple of Athena Polias, because it contained a separate
sanctuary of the goddess, as well as her most ancient statue.  The
building of the new Erechtheum was not commenced till the Parthenon and
Propylaea were finished, and probably not before the year preceding the
breaking out of the Peloponnesian war.  Its progress was no doubt
delayed by that event, and it was probably not completed before 393
B.C.  When finished it presented one of the finest models of the Ionic
order, as the Parthenon was of the Doric, It stood to the north of the
latter building and close to the northern wall of the Acropolis.  The
form of the Erechtheum differed from every known example of a Grecian
temple.  Usually a Grecian temple was an oblong figure with a portico
at each extremity.  The Erechtheum, on the contrary, though oblong in
shape and having a portico at the eastern or principal front, had none
at its western end, where, however, a portico projected north and south
from either side, thus forming a kind of transept.  This irregularity
seems to have been chiefly owing to the necessity of preserving the
different sanctuaries and religious objects belonging to the ancient
temple.  A view of it is given opposite.  The roof of the southern
portico, as shown in the view, was supported by six Caryatides.

Such were the principal objects which adorned the Acropolis at the time
of which we are now speaking.  Their general appearance will be best
gathered from the engraving on the Frontispiece.

Before quitting the city of Athens, there are two or three other
objects of interest which must be briefly described.  First, the
Dionysiac theatre, which occupied the slope at the south-eastern
extremity of the Acropolis.  The middle of it was excavated out of the
rock, and the rows of seats ascended in curves one above another, the
diameter increasing with the height.  It was no doubt sufficiently
large to accommodate the whole body of Athenian citizens, as well as
the strangers who flocked to Athens during the Dionysiac festival, but
its dimensions cannot now be accurately ascertained.  It had no roof,
but the spectators were probably protected from the sun by an awning,
and from their elevated seats they had a distinct view of the sea, and
of the peaked hills of Salamis in the horizon.  Above them rose the
Parthenon and the other buildings of the Acropolis, so that they sat
under the shadow of the ancestral gods of the country.

The Areopagus, or Hill of Ares (Mars), was a rocky height opposite the
western end of the Acropolis, from which it was separated only by some
hollow ground.  It derived its name from the tradition that Ares (Mars)
was brought to trial here before the assembled gods, by Poseidon
(Neptune), for murdering Halirrhothius the son of the latter.  It was
here that the Council of Areopagus met, frequently called the Upper
Council, to distinguish it from the Council of Five Hundred, which
assembled in the valley below.  The Areopagites sat as judges in the
open air, and two blocks of stone are still to be seen, probably those
which were occupied respectively by the accuser and the accused. The
Areopagus was the spot where the Apostle Paul preached to the men of

The Pnyx, or place for holding the public assemblies of the Athenians,
stood on the side of a low rocky hill, at the distance of about a
quarter of a mile from the Areopagus.  Projecting from the hill and
hewn out of it, still stands a solid rectangular block, called the Bema
or pulpit, from whence the orators addressed the multitude in the area
before them.  The position of the Bema commanded a view of the
Propylaea and the other magnificent edifices of the Acropolis, while
beneath it was the city itself studded with monuments of Athenian
glory.  The Athenian orators frequently roused the national feelings of
their audience by pointing to the Propylaea and to the other splendid
buildings before them.  Between the Pnyx on the west, the Areopagus on
the north, and the Acropolis on the east, and closely adjoining the
base of these hills, stood the Agora (or market-place).  In a direction
from north-west to south-east a street called the Ceramicus ran
diagonally through the Agora, entering it through the valley between
the Pnyx and the Areopagus.  The street was named after a district of
the city, which was divided into two parts, the Inner and Outer
Ceramicus. The former lay within the city walls, and included the
Agora. The Outer Ceramicus, which formed a handsome suburb on the
north-west of the city, was the burial-place of all persons honoured
with a public funeral.  Through it ran the road to the gymnasium and
gardens of the Academy which were situated about a mile from the walls.
The Academy was the place where Plato and his disciples taught.  On
each side of this road were monuments to illustrious Athenians,
especially those who had fallen in battle.

East of the city, and outside the walls, was the Lyceum, a gymnasium
dedicated to Apollo Lyceus, and celebrated as the place in which
Aristotle taught.



War was now fairly kindled.  All Greece looked on in suspense as its
two leading cities were about to engage in a strife of which no man
could forsee the end; but the youth, with which both Athens and
Peloponnesus then abounded, having had no experience of the bitter
calamities of war, rushed into it with ardour.  It was a war of
principles and races.  Athens was a champion of democracy, Sparta of
aristocracy; Athens represented the Ionic tribes, Sparta the Dorian;
the former were fond of novelty, the latter were conservative and
stationary; Athens had the command of the sea, Sparta was stronger upon
land.  On the side of Sparta was ranged the whole of Peloponnesus,
except Argos and Achaia, together with the Megarians, Boeotians,
Phocians, Opuntian Locrians, Ambraciots, Leucadians, and Anactorians.
The allies of Athens, with the exception of the Thessalians,
Acarnanians, Messenians at Naupactus, and Plataeans, were all insular,
and consisted of the Chians, Lesbians, Corcyraeans, and Zacynthians,
and shortly afterwards of the Cephallenians, To these must be added her
tributary towns on the coast of Thrace and Asia Minor, together with
all the islands north of Crete, except Melos and Thera.

The Peloponnesians commenced the war by an invasion of Attica, with a
large army, under the command of the Spartan King Archidamus (B.C.
431).  Pericles had instructed the inhabitants of Attica to secure
themselves and their property within the walls of Athens.  They obeyed
his injunctions with reluctance, for the Attic population had from the
earliest times been strongly attached to a rural life.  But the
circumstances admitted of no alternative.  Archidamus advanced as far
as Acharnae, a flourishing Attic borough situated only about seven
miles from Athens.  Here he encamped on a rising ground within sight of
the metropolis, and began to lay waste the country around, expecting
probably by that means to provoke the Athenians to battle.  But in this
he was disappointed.  Notwithstanding the murmurs and clamours of the
citizens Pericles remained firm, and steadily refused to venture an
engagement in the open held.  The Peloponnesians retired from Attica
after still further ravaging the country; and the Athenians retaliated
by making descents upon various parts of the coasts of Peloponnesus,
and ravaging the territory of Megara.

Such were the results of the first campaign.  From the method in which
the war was conducted it had become pretty evident that it would prove
of long duration; and the Athenians now proceeded to provide for this
contingency.  It was agreed that a reserve fund of 1000 talents should
be set apart, which was not to be touched in any other case than an
attack upon Athens by sea.  Any citizen who proposed to make a
different use of the fund incurred thereby the punishment of death.
With the same view it was resolved to reserve every year 100 of their
best triremes, fully manned and equipped.

Towards the winter Pericles delivered, from a lofty platform erected in
the Ceramicus, the funeral oration of those who had fallen in the war.
This speech, or at all events the substance of it, has been preserved
by Thucydides, who may possibly have heard it pronounced.  It is a
valuable monument of eloquence and patriotism, and particularly
interesting for the sketch which it contains of Athenian manners as
well as of the Athenian constitution.

In the following year (B.C. 430) the Peloponnesians, under Archidamus,
renewed their invasion of Attica.  At the same time the Athenians were
attacked by a more insidious and a more formidable enemy.  The plague
broke out in the crowded city. This terrible disorder, which was
supposed to have originated in AEthiopia, had already desolated Asia
and many of the countries around the Mediterranean.  A great proportion
of those who were seized perished in from seven to nine days.  It
frequently attacked the mental faculties, and left even those who
recovered from it so entirely deprived of memory that they could
recognise neither themselves nor others.  The disorder being new, the
physicians could find no remedy in the resources of their art. Despair
now began to take possession of the Athenians.  Some suspected that the
Peloponnesians had poisoned the wells; others attributed the pestilence
to the anger of Apollo.  A dreadful state of moral dissolution
followed.  The sick were seized with unconquerable despondency; whilst
a great part of the population who had hitherto escaped the disorder,
expecting soon to be attacked in turn, abandoned themselves to all
manner of excess, debauchery, and crime.  The numbers carried off by
the pestilence can hardly be estimated at less than a fourth of the
whole population.

Oppressed at once by war and pestilence, their lands desolated, their
homes filled with mourning, it is not surprising that the Athenians
were seized with rage and despair, or that they vented their anger on
Pericles, whom they deemed the author of their misfortunes.  But that
statesman still adhered to his plans with unshaken firmness.  Though
the Lacedaemonians were in Attica, though the plague had already seized
on Athens, he was vigorously pushing his schemes of offensive
operations.  A foreign expedition might not only divert the popular
mind but would prove beneficial by relieving the crowded city of part
of its population; and accordingly a fleet was fitted out, of which
Pericles himself took the command, and which committed devastations
upon various parts of the Peloponnesian coast.  But, upon returning
from this expedition, Pericles found the public feeling more
exasperated than before.  Envoys had even been despatched to Sparta to
sue for peace, but had been dismissed without a hearing; a
disappointment which had rendered the populace still more furious.
Pericles now found it necessary to call a public assembly in order to
vindicate his conduct, and to encourage the desponding citizens to
persevere.  But though he succeeded in persuading them to prosecute the
war with vigour; they still continued to nourish their feelings of
hatred against the great statesman.  His political enemies, of whom
Cleon was the chief, took advantage of this state of the public mind to
bring against him a charge of peculation.  The main object of this
accusation was to incapacitate him for the office of Strategus, or
general.  [The Strategi, or Generals, were ten in number, elected
annually, and were intrusted not only with the command on military
expeditions, but with the superintendence of all warlike preparations,
and with the regulation of all matters in any way connected with the
war department of the state.]  He was brought before the dicastery on
this charge, and sentenced to pay a considerable fine; but eventually a
strong reaction occurred in his favour.  He was re-elected general, and
apparently regained all the influence he had ever possessed.

But he was not destined long to enjoy this return of popularity. His
life was now closing in, and its end was clouded by a long train of
domestic misfortunes.  The epidemic deprived him not only of many
personal and political friends, but also of several near relations,
amongst whom were his sister and his two legitimate sons Xanthippus and
Paralus.  The death of the latter was a severe blow to him.  During the
funeral ceremonies, as he placed a garland on the body of this his
favourite son, he was completely overpowered by his feelings and wept
aloud.  His ancient house was now left without an heir.  By Aspasia,
however, he had an illegitimate son who bore his own name, and whom the
Athenians now legitimised and thus alleviated, as far as lay in their
power, the misfortunes of their great leader.

After this period it was with difficulty that Pericles was persuaded by
his friends to take any active part in public affairs; nor did he
survive more than a twelvemonth.  An attack of the prevailing epidemic
was succeeded by a low and lingering fever, which undermined both his
strength of body and vigour of intellect.  As Pericles lay apparently
unconscious on his death-bed, the friends who stood around it were
engaged in recalling his exploits.  The dying man interrupted them by
remarking: "What you praise in me is partly the result of good fortune,
and at all events common to me with many other commanders.  What I
chiefly pride myself upon you have not noticed--no Athenian ever wore
mourning through me."

The enormous influence which Pericles exercised for so long a period
over an ingenious but fickle people like the Athenians, is an
unquestionable proof of his intellectual superiority.  This hold on the
public affection is to be attributed to a great extent to his
extraordinary eloquence.  Cicero regards him as the first example of an
almost perfect orator, at once delighting the Athenians with his
copiousness and grace, and overawing them by the force and cogency of
his diction and arguments.  He seems, indeed, to have singularly
combined the power of persuasion with that more rapid and abrupt style
of oratory which takes an audience by storm and defies all resistance.
As the accomplished man of genius and the liberal patron of literature
and art, Pericles is worthy of the highest admiration.  By these
qualities he has justly given name to the most brilliant intellectual
epoch that the world has ever seen.  But on this point we have already
touched, and shall have occasion to refer hereafter in the sketch of
Grecian literature.

In the third year of the war (B.C. 429) Archidamus directed his whole
force against the ill-fated town of Plataea.  The siege that ensued is
one of the most memorable in the annals of Grecian warfare.  Plataea
was but a small city, and its garrison consisted of only 400 citizens
and 80 Athenians, together with 110 women to manage their household
affairs.  Yet this small force set at defiance the whole army of the
Peloponnesians.  The latter, being repulsed in all their attempts to
take the place by storm, resolved to turn the siege into a blockade,
and reduce the city by famine.  The Plataeans endured a blockade of two
years, during which the Athenians attempted nothing for their relief.
In the second year, however, about half the garrison effected their
escape; but the rest were obliged to surrender shortly afterwards (B.C.
427).  The whole garrison, consisting of 200 Plataeans and 25
Athenians, were now arraigned before five judges sent from Sparta.
Their indictment was framed in a way which precluded the possibility of
escape.  They were simply asked "Whether, during the present war, they
had rendered any assistance to the Lacedaemonians and their allies?"
Each man was called up separately before the judgment-seat, and the
same question having been put to him and of course answered in the
negative, he was immediately led away to execution.  The town of
Plataea was transferred to the Thebans, who a few months afterwards
levelled all the private buildings to the ground. Thus was Plataea
blotted out from the map of Greece (B.C. 427). In recording the fall of
Plataea we have anticipated the order of chronology.

The most important event in the fourth year of the war (B.C. 428) was
the revolt of Mytilene; the capital of Lesbos, and of the greater part
of that island.  The Athenians sent out a fleet which blockaded
Mytilene both by sea and land, The Peloponnesians promised their
assistance; but from various causes their fleet was unable to reach the
place.  Meanwhile the provisions of the town were exhausted, and it was
therefore resolved, as a last desperate expedient, to make a sally, and
endeavour to raise the blockade.  With this view even the men of the
lower classes were armed with the full armour of the hoplites.  But
this step produced a very different result from what had been expected
or intended.  The great mass of the Mytileneans regarded their own
oligarchical government with suspicion and now threatened that, unless
their demands were complied with, they would surrender the city to the
Athenians.  In this desperate emergency the Mytilenean government
perceived that their only chance of safety lay in anticipating the
people in this step.  They accordingly opened a negotiation with
Paches, the Athenian commander, and a capitulation was agreed upon by
which the city was to be surrendered and the fate of its inhabitants to
be decided by the Athenian Assembly.

At Athens the disposal of the prisoners caused great debate.  It was on
this occasion that the leather-seller Cleon first comes prominently
forward in Athenian affairs.  If we may trust the picture drawn by the
comic poet Aristophanes, Cleon was a perfect model of a low-born
demagogue; a noisy brawler, insolent in his gestures, corrupt and venal
in his principles.  Much allowance must no doubt be made for comic
licence and exaggeration in this portrait, but even a caricature must
have some grounds of truth for its basis.  It was this man who took the
lead in the debate respecting the disposal of the Mytileneans, and made
the savage and horrible proposal to put to death the whole male
population of Mytilene of military age, and to sell the women and
children into slavery.  This motion he succeeded in carrying and a
trireme was immediately despatched to Mytilene, conveying orders to
Paches to carry the bloody decree into execution.  This barbarous
decree made no discrimination between the innocent and the guilty; and
on the morrow so general a feeling prevailed of the horrible injustice
that had been committed, that the magistrates acceded to the prayer of
the Mytilenean envoys and called a fresh assembly.  Notwithstanding the
violent opposition of Creon, the majority of the assembly reversed
their former decree and resolved that the Mytileneans already in
custody should be put upon their trial, but that the remainder of the
population should be spared.  A second trireme was immediately
despatched to Mytilene, with orders to Paches to arrest the execution.
The utmost diligence was needful.  The former trireme had a start of
four-and-twenty hours, and nothing but exertions almost superhuman
would enable the second to reach Mytilene early enough to avert the
tragical catastrophe, The oarsmen were allowed by turns only short
intervals of rest, and took their food, consisting of barley-meal
steeped in wine and oil, as they sat at the oar.  Happily the weather
proved favourable; and the crew, who had been promised large rewards in
case they arrived in time, exerted themselves to deliver the reprieve,
whilst the crew of the preceding vessel had conveyed the order for
execution with slowness and reluctance.  Yet even so the countermand
came only just in time.  The mandate was already in the hands of
Paches, who was taking measures for its execution.  The fortifications
of Mytilene were razed, and her fleet delivered up to the Athenians.

The fate of the Plataeans and Mytileneans affords a fearful
illustration of the manners of the age; but these horrors soon found a
parallel in Corcyra.  A fearful struggle took place in this island
between the aristocratical and democratical parties. The people at
length obtained the mastery, and the vengeance which they took on their
opponents was fearful.  The most sacred sanctuaries afforded no
protection; the nearest ties of blood and kindred were sacrificed to
civil hatred.  In one case a father slew even his own son.  These
scenes of horror lasted for seven days, during which death in every
conceivable form was busily at work.

The seventh year of the war (B.C. 425) was marked by an important
event.  An Athenian fleet was detained by bad weather at Pylus in
Messenia, on the modern bay of Navarino.  Demosthenes, an active
Athenian officer, who was on board the fleet, thought it an eligible
spot on which to establish some of the Messenians from Naupactus, since
it was a strong position, from which they might annoy the
Lacedaemonians, and excite revolt among their Helot kinsmen.  As the
bad weather continued for some time, the soldiers on board amused
themselves, under the directions of Demosthenes, in constructing a sort
of rude fortification.  The nature of the ground was favourable for the
work, and in five or six days a wall was throws up sufficient for the
purposes of defence.  Demosthenes undertook to garrison the place; and
five ships and 200 hoplites were left behind with him.

This insult to the Lacedaemonian territory caused great alarm and
indignation at Sparta.  The Peloponnesian fleet was ordered to Pylus;
and the Lacedaemonian commander, on arriving with the fleet,
immediately occupied the small uninhabited and densely wooded island of
Sphacteria, which, with the exception of two narrow channels on the
north and south, almost blocked up the entrance of the bay.  Between
the island and the mainland was a spacious basin, in which the fleet
took up its station.  The Lacedaemonians lost no time in attacking the
fortress; but notwithstanding their repeated attempts they were unable
to effect a landing.

Whilst they were preparing for another assault, they were surprised by
the appearance of the Athenian fleet.  They had strangely neglected to
secure the entrances into the bay:  and, when the Athenian ships came
sailing through both the undefended channels, many of their triremes
were still moored, and part of their crews ashore.  The battle which
ensued was desperate.  Both sides fought with extraordinary valour; but
victory at length declared for the Athenians.  Five Peloponnesian ships
were captured; the rest were saved only by running them ashore, where
they were protected by the Lacedaemonian army.

The Athenians, thus masters of the sea, were enabled to blockade the
island of Sphacteria, in which the flower of the Lacedaemonian army was
shut up, many of them native Spartans of the highest families.  In so
grave an emergency messengers were sent to Sparta for advice.  The
Ephors themselves immediately repaired to the spot; and so desponding
was their view of the matter, that they saw no issue from it but a
peace.  They therefore proposed and obtained an armistice for the
purpose of opening negotiations at Athens.  But the Athenians, at the
instigation of Cleon, insisted upon the most extravagant demands, and
hostilities were accordingly resumed.  They were not however attended
with any decisive result.  The blockade of Sphacteria began to grow
tedious and harassing.  The force upon it continually received supplies
of provisions either from swimmers, who towed skins filled with linseed
and poppy-seed mixed with honey, or from Helots, who, induced by the
promise of large rewards, eluded the blockading squadron during dark
and stormy nights, and landed cargoes on the back of the island.  The
summer, moreover, was fast wearing away, and the storms of winter might
probably necessitate the raising of the blockade altogether.  Under
these circumstances, Demosthenes began to contemplate a descent upon
the island; with which view he sent a message to Athens to explain the
unfavourable state of the blockade, and to request further assistance.

These tidings were very distasteful to the Athenians, who had looked
upon Sphacteria as their certain prey.  They began to regret having let
slip the favourable opportunity for making a peace, and to vent their
displeasure upon Cleon, the director of their conduct on that occasion.
But Cleon put on a face of brass.  He abused the Strategi.  His
political opponent, Nicias, was then one of those officers, a man of
quiet disposition and moderate abilities, but thoroughly honest and
incorruptible.  Him Cleon now singled out for his vituperation, and,
pointing at him with his finger, exclaimed--"It would be easy enough to
take the island if our generals were MEN.  If I were General, I would
do it at once!"  This burst of the tanner made the assembly laugh. He
was saluted with cries of "Why don't you go, then?"  and Nicias,
thinking probably to catch his opponent in his own trap, seconded the
voice of the assembly by offering to place at his disposal whatever
force he might deem necessary for the enterprise.  Cleon at first
endeavoured to avoid the dangerous honour thus thrust upon him.  But
the more he drew back the louder were the assembly in calling upon him
to accept the office; and as Nicias seriously repeated his proposition,
he adopted with a good grace what there was no longer any possibility
of evading, and asserted that he would take Sphacteria within twenty
days, and either kill all the Lacedaemonians upon it, or bring them
prisoners to Athens.

Never did general set out upon an enterprise under circumstances more
singular; but, what was still more extraordinary, fortune enabled him
to make his promise good.  In fact, as we have seen, Demosthenes had
already resolved on attacking the island; and when Cleon arrived at
Pylus he found everything prepared for the assault.  Accident favoured
the enterprise.  A fire kindled by some Athenian sailors, who had
landed for the purpose of cooking their dinner, caught and destroyed
the woods with which the island was overgrown, and thus deprived the
Lacedaemonians of one of their principal defences.  Nevertheless such
was the awe inspired by the reputation of the Spartan army that
Demosthenes considered it necessary to land about 10,000 soldiers of
different descriptions, although the Lacedaemonian force consisted of
only about 420 men.  But this small force for a long while kept their
assailants at bay; till some Messenians, stealing round by the
sea-shore, over crags and cliffs which the Lacedaemonians had deemed
impracticable, suddenly appeared on the high ground which overhung
their rear.  They now began to give way, and would soon have been all
slain; but Cleon and Demosthenes, being anxious to carry them prisoners
to Athens, sent a herald to summon them to surrender.  The latter, in
token of compliance, dropped their shields, and waved their hands above
their heads.  They requested, however, permission to communicate with
their countrymen on the mainland; who, after two or three
communications, sent them a final message--"to take counsel for
themselves, but to do nothing disgraceful."  The survivors then
surrendered.  They were 292 in number, 120 of whom were native Spartans
belonging to the first families.  By this surrender the prestige of the
Spartan arms was in a great degree destroyed. The Spartans were not,
indeed, deemed invincible; but their previous feats, especially at
Thermopylae, had inspired the notion that they would rather die than
yield; an opinion which could now no longer be entertained.

Cleon had thus performed his promise.  On the day after the victory he
and Demosthenes started with the prisoners for Athens, where they
arrived within 20 days from the time of Cleon's departure.  Altogether,
this affair was one of the most favourable for the Athenians that had
occurred during the war. The prisoners would serve not only for a
guarantee against future invasions, which might be averted by
threatening to put them to death, but also as a means for extorting
advantageous conditions whenever a peace should be concluded.  Nay, the
victory itself was of considerable importance, since it enabled the
Athenians to place Pylus in a better posture of defence, and, by
garrisoning it with Messenians from Naupactus, to create a stronghold
whence Laconia might be overrun and ravaged at pleasure.  The
Lacedaemonians themselves were so sensible of these things, that they
sent repeated messages to Athens to propose a peace, but which the
Athenians altogether disregarded.

The eighth year of the war (B.C. 424) opened with brilliant prospects
for the Athenians.  Elate with their continued good fortune, they aimed
at nothing less than the recovery of all the possessions which they had
held before the Thirty Years' Truce. For this purpose they planned an
expedition against Boeotia.  But their good fortune had now reached its
culminatiug point.  They were defeated by the Boeotians with great loss
at the battle of Delium, which was the greatest and most decisive
engagement fought during the first period of the war an interesting
feature of the battle is that both Socrates and his pupil Alcibiades
were engaged in it, the former among the hoplites, the latter in the
cavalry.  Socrates distinguished himself by his bravery, and was one of
those who, instead of throwing down their arms, kept together in a
compact body, and repulsed the attacks of the pursuing horse.  His
retreat was also protected by Alcibiades.

This disastrous battle was speedily followed by the overthrow of the
Athenian empire in Thrace.  At the request of Perdiccas, King of
Macedonia, and of the Chalcidian towns, who had sued for help against
the Athenians, Brasidas was sent by the Lacedaemonian government into
Macedonia, at the head of a small body of troops. On his arrival in
Macedonia he proclaimed that he was come to deliver the Grecian cities
from the tyrannous yoke of Athens. His bravery, his kind and
conciliating demeanour, his probity, moderation, and good faith, soon
gained him the respect and love of the allies of Athens in that
quarter.  Acanthus and Stagirus hastened to open their gates to him;
and early in the ensuing winter, by means of forced marches, he
suddenly and unexpectedly appeared before the important Athenian colony
of Amphipolis on the Strymon.  In that town the Athenian party sent a
message for assistance to Thucydides, the historian, who was then
general in those parts.  Thucydides hastened with seven ships from
Thasos, and succeeded in securing Eion at the mouth of the Strymon; but
Amphipolis, which lay a little higher up the river, allured by the
favourable terms offered, had already surrendered to Brasidas.  For his
want of vigilance on this occasion, Thucydides was, on the motion of
Cleon, sentenced to banishment, and spent the following twenty years of
his life in exile.  Torone, Scione, and other towns also revolted from

In the following year (B.C. 422) Cleon was sent to Macedonia to recover
the Athenian dependencies, and especially Amphipolis.  He encamped on a
rising ground on the eastern side of the town. Having deserted the
peaceful art of dressing hides for the more hazardous trade of war, in
which he was almost totally inexperienced, and having now no
Demosthenes to direct his movements, Cleon was thrown completely off
his guard by a very ordinary stratagem on the part of Brasidas, who
contrived to give the town quite a deserted and peaceful appearance.
Cleon suffered his troops to fall into disorder, till he was suddenly
surprised by the astounding news that Brasidas was preparing for a
sally.  Cleon at once resolved to retreat.  But his skill was equal to
his valour.  He conducted his retreat in the most disorderly manner.
His left wing had already filed off and his centre with straggling
ranks was in the act of following, when Brasidas ordered the gates of
the town to be flung open, and, rushing out at the head of only 150
chosen soldiers, charged the retreating columns in flank.  They were
immediately routed; but Brasidas received a mortal wound and was
carried off the field. Though his men were forming on the hill, Cleon
fled as fast as he could on the approach of the enemy, but was pursued
and slain by a Thracian peltast.  In spite, however, of the disgraceful
flight of their general, the right wing maintained their ground for a
considerable time, till some cavalry and peltasts issuing from
Amphipolis attacked them in flank and rear, and compelled them to fly.
On assembling again at Eion it was found that half the Athenian
hoplites had been slain.  Brasidas was carried into Amphipolis, and
lived long enough to receive the tidings of his victory.  He was
interred within the walls with great military pomp in the centre of
what thenceforth became the chief agora; he was proclaimed oecist, or
founder of the town; and was worshipped as a hero with annual games and

By the death of Brasidas and Cleon the two chief obstacles to a peace
were removed; for the former loved war for the sake of its glory, the
latter for the handle which it afforded for agitation and for attacking
his political opponents.  The Athenian Nicias, and the Spartan king
Pleistoanax, zealously forwarded the negotiations, and in the spring of
the year B.C. 421 a peace for 50 years, commonly called the PEACE OF
NICIAS, was concluded on the basis of a mutual restitution of prisoners
and places captured during the war.



Several of the allies of Sparta were dissatisfied with the peace which
she had concluded; and soon afterwards some of them determined to
revive the ancient pretensions of Argos, and to make her the head of a
new confederacy, which should include all Greece, with the exception of
Sparta and Athens.  The movement was begun by the Corinthians, and the
league was soon joined by the Eleans, the Mantineans, and the

Between Sparta and Athens themselves matters were far from being on a
satisfactory footing.  Sparta confessed her inability to compel the
Boeotians and Corinthians to accede to the peace, or even to restore
the town of Amphipolis.  Athens consequently refused to evacuate Pylus,
though she removed the Helots and Messenians from it.  In the
negotiations which ensued respecting the surrender of Pylus, Alcibiades
took a prominent part.  This extraordinary man had already obtained
immense influence at Athens.  Young, rich, handsome, profligate, and
clever, Alcibiades was the very model of an Athenian man of fashion.
In lineage he was a striking contrast to the plebeian orators of the
day.  He traced his paternal descent from Ajax, whilst on his mother's
side he claimed relationship with the Alcmaeonidae and consequently
with Pericles.  On the death of his father Clinias Pericles had become
his guardian.  From early youth the conduct of Alcibiades was marked by
violence, recklessness, and vanity. He delighted in astonishing the
more sober portion of the citizens by his capricious and extravagant
feats.  He was utterly destitute of morality, whether public or
private.  But his vices were partly redeemed by some brilliant
qualities.  He possessed both boldness of design and vigour of action;
and, though scarcely more than thirty at the time of which we are now
speaking, he had already on several occasions distinguished himself by
his bravery.  His more serious studies were made subservient to the
purposes of his ambition, for which some skill as an orator was
necessary.  In order to attain it he frequented the schools of the
sophists, and exercised himself in the dialectics of Prodicus,
Protagoras, and above all of Socrates.

Such was the man who now opposed the application of the Lacedaemonian
ambassadors.  Their reception had been so favourable, that Alcibiades
alarmed at the prospect of their success, resorted to a trick in order
to defeat it.  He called upon the Lacedaemonian envoys, one of whom
happened to be his personal friend; and he advised them not to tell the
Assembly that they were furnished with full powers, as in that case the
people would bully them into extravagant concessions, but rather to say
that they were merely come to discuss and report.  He promised, if they
did so, to speak in their favour, and induce the Assembly to grant the
restitution of Pylus, to which he himself had hitherto been the chief
obstacle.  Accordingly on the next day, when the ambassadors were
introduced into the Assembly, Alcibiades, assuming his blandest tone
and most winning smile, asked them on what footing they came and what
were their powers. In reply to these questions, the ambassadors, who
only a day or two before had told Nicias and the Senate that they were
come as plenipotentiaries, now publicly declared, in the face of the
Assembly, that they were not authorized to conclude, but only to
negotiate and discuss.  At this announcement, those who had heard their
previous declaration could scarcely believe their ears.  A universal
burst of indignation broke forth at this exhibition of Spartan
duplicity; whilst, to wind up the scene, Alcibiades, affecting to be
more surprised than any, distinguished himself by being the loudest and
bitterest in his invectives against the perfidy of the Lacedaemonians.

Shortly afterwards Alcibiades procured the completion of a treaty of
alliance for 100 years with Argos, Elis, and Mantinea (B.C. 420).  Thus
were the Grecian states involved in a complicity of separate and often
apparently opposite alliances.  It was evident that allies so
heterogeneous could not long hold together; nevertheless, nominally at
least, peace was at first observed.

In the July which followed the treaty with Argos, the Olympic games,
which recurred every fourth year, were to be celebrated. The Athenians
had been shut out by the war from the two previous celebrations; and
curiosity was excited throughout Greece to see what figure Athens would
make at this great Pan-Hellenic festival.  War, it was surmised, must
have exhausted her resources, and would thus prevent her from appearing
with becoming splendour.  But from this reproach she was rescued by the
wealth and vanity, if not by the patriotism, of Alcibiades. By his
care, the Athenian deputies exhibited the richest display of golden
ewers, censers, and other plate to be used in the public sacrifice and
procession; whilst for the games he entered in his own name no fewer
than the unheard-of number of seven four-horsed chariots, of which one
gained the first, and another the second prize.  Alcibiades was
consequently twice crowned with the olive, and twice proclaimed victor
by the herald.

The growing ambition and success of Alcibiades prompted him to carry
his schemes against Sparta into the very heart of Peloponnesus,
without, however, openly violating the peace.

The Lacedaemonians now found it necessary to act with more vigour; and
accordingly in B.C. 418 they assembled a very large army, under the
command of the Spartan king, Agis.  A decisive battle was fought near
Mantinea, in which Agis gained a brilliant victory over the Argives and
their allies.  This battle and that of Delium were the two most
important engagements that had yet been fought in the Peloponnesian
war.  Although the Athenians had fought on the side of the Argives at
Mantinea, the peace between Sparta and Athens continued to be nominally

In B.C. 416 the Athenians attacked and conquered Melos, which island
and Thera were the only islands in the AEgean not subject to the
Athenian supremacy.  The Melians having rejected all the Athenian
overtures for a voluntary submission, their capital was blockaded by
sea and land, and after a siege of some months surrendered.  On the
proposal, as it appears, of Alcibiades, all the adult males were put to
death, the women and children sold into slavery, and the island
colonized afresh by 500 Athenians. This horrible proceeding was the
more indefensible, as the Athenians, having attacked the Melians in
full peace, could not pretend that they were justified by the custom of
war in slaying the prisoners.  It was the crowning act of insolence and
cruelty displayed during their empire, which from this period began
rapidly to decline.

The event destined to produce that catastrophe--the intervention of the
Athenians in the affairs of Sicily--was already in progress.  A quarrel
had broken out between Egesta and Selinus, both which cities were
seated near the western extremity of Sicily; and Selinus, having
obtained the aid of Syracuse, was pressing very hard upon the
Egestaeans.  The latter appealed to the interests of the Athenians
rather than to their sympathies. They represented how great a blow it
would be to Athens if the Dorians became predominant in Sicily, and
joined the Peloponnesian confederacy; and they undertook, if the
Athenians would send an armament to their assistance, to provide the
necessary funds for the prosecution of the war.  Their most powerful
advocate was Alcibiades, whose ambitious views are said to have
extended even to the conquest of Carthage.  The quieter and more
prudent Nicias and his party threw their weight into the opposite
scale.  But the Athenian assembly, dazzled by the idea of so splendid
an enterprise, decided on despatching a large fleet under Nicias,
Alcibiades, and Lamachus, with the design of assisting Egesta, and of
establishing the influence of Athens throughout Sicily, by whatever
means might be found practicable.

For the next three months the preparations for the undertaking were
pressed on with the greatest ardour.  Young and old, rich and poor, all
vied with one another to obtain a share in the expedition.  Five years
of comparative peace had accumulated a fresh supply both of men and
money; and the merchants of Athens embarked in the enterprise as in a
trading expedition.  It was only a few of the wisest heads that escaped
the general fever of excitement, The expedition was on the point of
sailing, when a sudden and mysterious event converted all these
exulting feelings into gloomy foreboding.

At every door in Athens, at the corners of streets, in the market
place, before temples, gymnasia, and other public places, stood Hermae,
or statues of the god Hermes, consisting of a bust of that deity
surmounting a quadrangular pillar of marble about the height of the
human figure.  When the Athenians rose one morning towards the end of
May, 415 B.C., it was found that all these figures had been mutilated
during the night, and reduced by unknown hands to a shapeless mass.
The act inspired political, as well as religious, alarm.  It seemed to
indicate a widespread conspiracy, for so sudden and general a
mutilation must have been the work of many hands.  The sacrilege might
only be a preliminary attempt of some powerful citizen to seize the
despotisn, and suspicion pointed its finger at Alcibiades. Active
measures were taken and large rewards offered for the discovery of the
perpetrators.  A public board was appointed to examine witnesses, which
did not, indeed, succeed in eliciting any facts bearing on the actual
subject of inquiry, but which obtained evidence respecting similar acts
of impiety committed at previous times in drunken frolics.  In these
Alcibiades himself was implicated; and though the fleet was on the very
eve of departure, a citizen rose in the assembly and accused Alcibiades
of having profaned the Eleusinian mysteries by giving a representation
of them in a private house, producing in evidence the testimony of a
slave.  Alcibiades denied the accusation, and implored the people to
have it investigated at once.  His enemies, however, had sufficient
influence to get the inquiry postponed till his return; thus keeping
the charge hanging over his head, and gaining time to poison the public
mind against him.

The Athenian fleet, consisting of 100 triremes, and having on board
1500 chosen Athenian hoplites, as well as auxiliaries, at length set
sail, and proceeded to Corcyra, where it was joined by the other allies
in the month of July, 415 B.C.  Upon arriving at Rhegium the generals
received the discouraging news that Egesta was unable to contribute
more than thirty talents.  A council of war was now held; and it was
finally resolved to gain as many allies as they could among the Greek
cities in Sicily, and, having thus ascertained what assistance they
could rely upon, to attack Syracuse and Selinus.

Naxos joined the Athenians, and shortly afterwards they obtained
possession by surprise of the important city of Catana, which was now
made the head-quarters of the armament.  Here an unwelcome message
greeted Alcibiades.  After his departure from Athens, Thessalus, the
son of Cimon, preferred an indictment against him in consequence of his
profanation of the Eleusinian mysteries. The Salaminian, or state,
trireme was despatched to Sicily, carrying the decree of the assembly
for Alcibiades to come home and take his trial.  The commander of the
Salaminia was, however, instructed not to seize his person, but to
allow him to sail in his own trireme.  Alcibiades availed himself of
this privilege to effect his escape.  When the ships arrived at Thurii
in Italy, he absconded, and contrived to elude the search that was made
after him, Nevertheless, though absent, he was arraigned at Athens, and
condemned to death; his property was confiscated; and the Eumolpidae,
who presided ever the celebration of the Eleusinian mysteries,
pronounced upon him the curses of the gods.  On hearing of his sentence
Alcibiades is said to have exclaimed, "I will show them that I am still

Three months had now been frittered away in Sicily, during which the
Athenians had done little or nothing, if we except the acquisition of
Naxos and Catana.  Nicias now resolved to make an attempt upon
Syracuse.  By a false message that the Catanaeans were ready to assist
in expelling the Athenians, he induced the Syracusans to proceed
thither in great force, and he availed himself of their absence to sail
with his whole fleet into the Great Harbour of Syracuse, where he
landed near the mouth of the Anapus.  The Syracusans, when they found
that they had been deceived at Catana, marched back and offered Nicias
battle in his new position.  The latter accepted it, and gained the
victory; after which he retired to Catana, and subsequently to Naxos
into winter quarters.

The Syracusans employed the winter in preparations for defence. They
also despatched envoys to Corinth and Sparta to solicit assistance, in
the latter of which towns they found an unexpected advocate.
Alcibiades, having crossed from Thurii to Cyllene in Peloponnesus,
received a special invitation to proceed to Sparta. Here he revealed
all the plans of Athens, and exhorted the Lacedaemonians to frustrate
them.  For this purpose he advised them to send an army into Sicily,
under the command of a Spartan general, and, by way of causing a
diversion, to establish a fortified post at Decelea in the Attic
territory.  The Spartans fell in with these views, and resolved to send
a force to the assistance of Syracuse in the spring, under the command
of Gylippus.

Nicias, having received reinforcements from Athens, recommenced
hostilities as soon as the season allowed of it, and resolved on
besieging Syracuse.  That town consisted of two parts--the inner and
the outer city.  The former of these--the original settlement was
comprised in the island of Ortygia; the latter afterwards known by the
name of Achradina, covered the high ground of the peninsula north of
Ortygia, and was completely separate from the inner city.  The island
of Ortygia, to which the modern city is now confined, is of an oblong
shape, about two miles in circumference, lying between the Great
Harbour on the west, and the Little Harbour on the east, and separated
from the mainland by a narrow channel.  The Great Harbour is a splendid
bay, about five miles in circumference, and the Little Harbour was
spacious enough to receive a large fleet of ships of war.  The outer
city was surrounded on the north and east by the sea and by sea-walls
which rendered an assault on that side almost impracticable.  On the
land side it was defended by a wall, and partly also by the nature of
the ground, which in some part was very steep.  West and north-west of
the wall of the outer city stood two unfortified suburbs, which were at
a later time included within the walls of Syracuse under the names of
Tyche and Neapolis. Between these two suburbs the ground rose in a
gentle acclivity to the summit of the ranges of hills called Epipolae.

It was from the high ground of Epipolae that Syracuse was most exposed
to attack.  Nicias landed at Leon, a place upon the bay of Thapsus, at
the distance of only six or seven stadia from Epipolae, took possession
of Epipolae, and erected on the summit a fort called Labdalum.  Then
coming farther down the hill towards Syracuse, he built another fort of
a circular form and of considerable size at a place called Syke.  From
the latter point he commenced his line of circumvallation, one wall
extending southwards from Syke to the Great Harbour, and the other wall
running northwards to the outer sea.  The Athenians succeeded in
completing the circumvallation towards the south, but in one of their
many engagements with the Syracusans they lost the gallant Lamachus.
At the same time, the Athenian fleet entered the Great Harbour, where
it was henceforth permanently established.  The northern wall was never
completed, and through the passage thus left open the besieged
continued to obtain provisions.  Nicias, who, by the death of Lamachus,
had become sole commander, seemed now on the point of succeeding.  The
Syracusans were so sensible of their inferiority in the field that they
no longer ventured to show themselves outside the walls.  They began to
contemplate surrender, and even sent messages to Nicias to treat of the
terms.  This caused the Athenian commander to indulge in a false
confidence of success, and consequent apathy; and the army having lost
the active and energetic Lamachus, operations were no longer carried on
with the requisite activity.

It was in this state of affairs that the Spartan commander, Gylippus,
passed over into Italy with a little squadron of four ships, with the
view merely of preserving the Greek cities in that country, supposing
that Syracuse, and, with her, the other Greek cities in Sicily, were
irretrievably lost.  At Tarentum he learned to his great surprise and
satisfaction that the Athenian wall of circumvallation at Syracuse had
not yet been completed on the northern side.  He now sailed through the
straits of Messana, which were left completely unguarded, and arrived
safely at Himera on the north coast of Sicily.  Here he announced
himself as the forerunner of larger succours, and began to levy an army
which the magic of the Spartan name soon enabled him to effect; and in
a few days he was in a condition to march towards Syracuse with about
3000 men.  The Syracusans now dismissed all thoughts of surrender, and
went out boldly to meet Gylippus, who marched into Syracuse over the
heights of Epipolae, which the supineness of Nicias had left unguarded.
Upon arriving in the city, Gylippus sent a message to the Athenians
allowing them a five days' truce to collect their effects and evacuate
the island. Nicias returned no answer to this insulting proposal; but
the operations of Gylippus soon showed that the tide of affairs was
really turned.  His first exploit was to capture the Athenian fort at
Labdalum, which made him master of Epipolae.  He next commenced
constructing a counter-wall to intersect the Athenian lines on the
northern side.  This turn of affairs induced those Sicilian cities
which had hitherto hesitated to embrace the side of Syracuse.  Gylippus
was also reinforced by the arrival of thirty triremes from Corinth,
Leucas, and Ambracia.  Nicias now felt that the attempt to blockade
Syracuse with his present force was hopeless.  He therefore resolved to
occupy the headland of Plemmyrium, the southernmost point of the
entrance to the Great Harbour, which would be a convenient station for
watching the enemy, as well as for facilitating the introduction of
supplies. Here he accordingly erected three forts and formed a naval
station.  Some slight affairs occurred in which the balance of
advantage was in favour of the Syracusans.  By their change of station
the Athenians were now a besieged rather than a besieging force.  Their
triremes were becoming leaky, and their soldiers and sailors were
constantly deserting.  Nicias himself had fallen into a bad state of
health; and in this discouraging posture of affairs he wrote to Athens
requesting to be recalled, and insisting strongly on the necessity of
sending reinforcements.

The Athenians refused to recall Nicias, but they determined on sending
a large reinforcement to Sicily, under the joint command of Demosthenes
and Eurymedon.  The news of these fresh and extensive preparations
incited the Lacedaemonians to more vigorous action.  The peace, if such
it can be called, was now openly broken; and in the spring of 413 B.C.
the Lacedaemonians, under King Agis, invaded Attica itself, and,
following the advice of Alcibiades, established themselves permanently
at Decelia, a place situated on the ridge of Mount Parnes about 14
miles north of Athens, and commanding the Athenian plain.  The city was
thus placed in a state of siege.  Scarcity began to be felt within the
walls; the revenues were falling off, whilst on the other hand expenses
were increasing.

Meanwhile in Sicily the Syracusans had gained such confidence that they
even ventured on a naval engagement with the Athenians. In the first
battle the Athenians were victorious, but the second battle, which
lasted two days, ended in their defeat.  They were now obliged to haul
up their ships in the innermost part of the Great Harbour, under the
lines of their fortified camp.  A still more serious disaster than the
loss of the battle was the loss of their naval reputation.  It was
evident that the Athenians had ceased to be invincible on the sea; and
the Syracusans no longer despaired of overcoming them on their own

Such was the state of affairs when, to the astonishment of the
Syracusans, a fresh Athenian fleet of 75 triremes, under Demosthenes
and Eurymedon, entered the Great Harbour with all the pomp and
circumstance of war.  It had on board a force of 5000 hoplites, of whom
about a quarter were Athenians, and a great number of light-armed
troops.  The active and enterprising character of Demosthenes led him
to adopt more vigorous measures than those which had been hitherto
pursued.  He saw at once that whilst Epipolae remained in the
possession of the Syracusans there was no hope of taking their city,
and he therefore directed all his efforts to the recapture of that
position.  But his attempts were unavailing.  He was defeated not only
in an open assault upon the Syracusan wall, but in a nocturnal attempt
to carry it by surprise.  These reverses were aggravated by the
breaking out of sickness among the troops.  Demosthenes now proposed to
return home and assist in expelling the Lacedaemonians from Attica,
instead of pursuing an enterprise which seemed to be hopeless.  But
Nicias, who feared to return to Athens with the stigma of failure,
refused to give his consent to this step.  Demosthenes then urged
Nicias at least to sail immediately out of the Great Harbour, and take
up their position either at Thapsus or Catana, where they could obtain
abundant supplies of provisions, and would have an open sea for the
manoeuvres of their fleet.  But even to this proposal Nicias would not
consent; and the army and navy remained in their former position.  Soon
afterwards, however, Gylippus received such large reinforcements, that
Nicias found it necessary to adopt the advice of his colleague.
Preparations were secretly made for their departure, the enemy appear
to have had no suspicion of their intention and they were on the point
of quitting their ill-fated quarters on the following morning, when on
the very night before (27 Aug. 413 B.C.) an eclipse of the moon took
place.  The soothsayers who were consulted said that the army must wait
thrice nine days, a full circle of the moon, before it could quit its
present position; and the devout and superstitious Nicias forthwith
resolved to abide by this decision.

Meanwhile the intention of the Athenians became known to the
Syracusans, who determined to strike a blow before their enemy escaped.
They accordingly attacked the Athenian station both by sea and land.
On land the attack of Gylippus was repulsed; but at sea the Athenian
fleet was completely defeated, and Eurymedon, who commanded the right
division, was slain The spirits of the Symcusans rose with their
victories; and though they would formerly have been content with the
mere retreat of the Athenians, they now resolved on effecting their
utter destruction.  With this view they blocked up the entrance of the
Great Harbour with a line of vessels moored across it.  All hope seemed
now to be cut off from the Athenians, unless they could succeed in
forcing this line and thus effecting their escape. The Athenian fleet
still numbered 110 triremes, which Nicias furnished with
grappling-irons, in order to bring the enemy to close quarters, and
then caused a large proportion of his land-force to embark.

Never perhaps was a battle fought under circumstances of such intense
interest, or witnessed by so many spectators vitally concerned in the
result.  The basin of the Great Harbour, about 5 miles in
circumference, in which nearly 200 ships, each with crews of more than
200 men, were about to engage, was lined with spectators.  The
Syracusan fleet was the first to leave the shore.  A considerable
portion was detached to guard the barrier at the mouth of the harbour.
Hither the first and most impetuous attack of the Athenians was
directed, who sought to break through the narrow opening which had been
left for the passage of merchant vessels.  Their onset was repulsed,
and the battle then became general.  The shouts of the combatants, and
the crash of the iron heads of the vessels as they were driven
together, resounded over the water, and were answered on shore by the
cheers or wailings of the spectators as their friends were victorious
or vanquished.  For a long time the battle was maintained with heroic
courage and dubious result.  At length, as the Athenian vessels began
to yield and make back towards the shore, a universal shriek of horror
and despair arose from the Athenian army, whilst shouts of joy and
victory were raised from the pursuing vessels, and were echoed back
from the Syracusans on land.  As the Athenian vessels neared the shore
their crews leaped out, and made for the camp, whilst the boldest of
the land army rushed forward to protect the ships from being seized by
the enemy.  The Athenians succeeded in saving only 60 ships, or about
half their fleet.  The Syracusan fleet, however, had been reduced to 50
ships; and on the same afternoon, Nicias and Demosthenes, as a last
hope of escape, exhorted their men to make another attempt to break the
enemy's line, and force their way out of the harbour.  But the courage
of the crews was so completely damped that they positively refused to

The Athenian army still numbered 40,000 men; and as all chance of
escape by sea was now hopeless, it was resolved to retreat by land to
some friendly city, and there defend themselves against the attacks of
the Syracusans.  As the soldiers turned to quit that fatal encampment,
the sense of their own woes was for a moment suspended by the sight of
their unburied comrades, who seemed to reproach them with the neglect
of a sacred duty; but still more by the wailings and entreaties of the
wounded, who clung around their knees, and implored not to be abandoned
to certain destruction.  Amid this scene of universal woe and
dejection, a fresh and unwonted spirit of energy and heroism seemed to
be infused into Nicias.  Though suffering under an incurable complaint,
he was everywhere seen marshalling his troops and encouraging them by
his exhortations.  The march was directed towards the territory of the
Sicels in the interior of the island.  The army was formed into a
hollow square with the baggage in the middle; Nicias leading the van,
and Demosthenes bringing up the rear.  The road ascended by a sort of
ravine over a steep hill called the Acraean cliff on which the
Syracusans had fortified themselves.  After spending two days in vain
attempts to force this position, Nicias and Demosthenes resolved during
the night to strike off to the left towards the sea.  But they were
overtaken, surrounded by superior forces, and compelled to surrender at
discretion.  Out of the 40,000 who started from the camp only 10,000 at
the utmost were left at the end of the sixth day's march, the rest had
either deserted or been slain.  The prisoners were sent to work in the
stone-quarries of Achradina and Epipolae.  Here they were crowded
together without any shelter, and with scarcely provisions enough to
sustain life. The numerous bodies of those who died were left to
putrify where they had fallen, till at length the place became such an
intolerable centre of stench and infection that, at the end of seventy
days, the Syracusans, for their own comfort and safety, were obliged to
remove the survivors, who were sold as slaves. Nicias and Demosthenes
were condemned to death in spite of all the efforts of Gylippus and
Hermocrates to save them.

Such was the end of two of the largest and best appointed armaments
that had ever gone forth from Athens.  Nicias, as we have seen, was
from the first opposed to the expedition in which they were employed,
as pregnant with the most dangerous consequences to Athens; and, though
it must be admitted that in this respect his views were sound, it
cannot at the same time be concealed that his own want of energy, and
his incompetence as a general, were the chief causes of the failure of
the undertaking. His mistakes involved the fall of Demosthenes, an
officer of far greater resolution and ability than himself, and who,
had his counsels been followed, would in all probability have conducted
the enterprise to a safe termination, though there was no longer room
to hope for success.


THE END OF THE WAR, B.C. 413-404.

The destruction of the Sicilian armament was a fatal blow to the power
of Athens.  It is astonishing that she was able to protract the war so
long with diminished strength and resources.  Her situation inspired
her enemies with new vigour; states hitherto neutral declared against
her; her subject-allies prepared to throw off the yoke; even the
Persian satraps and the court of Susa bestirred themselves against her.
The first blow to her empire was struck by the wealthy and populous
island of Chios. This again was the work of Alcibiades, the implacable
enemy of his native land, at whose advice a Lacedaemonian fleet was
sent to the assistance of the Chians.  Their example was followed by
all the other Athenian allies in Asia, with the exception of Samos, in
which the democratical party gained the upper hand.  In the midst of
this general defection the Athenians did not give way to despair.
Pericles had set apart a reserve of 1000 talents to meet the
contingency of an actual invasion.  This still remained untouched, and
now by an unanimous vote the penalty of death, which forbad its
appropriation to any other purpose, was abolished, and the fund applied
in fitting out a fleet against Chios.  Samos became the head-quarters
of the fleet, and the base of their operations during the remainder of
the war.

After a time the tide of success began to turn in favour of the
Athenians.  They recovered Lesbos and Clazomenae, defeated the Chians,
and laid waste their territory.  They also gained a victory over the
Peloponnesians at Miletus; while the Peloponnesian fleet had lost the
assistance of Tissaphernes, the Persian satrap, through the intrigues
of Alcibiades.  In the course of a few months Alcibiades had completely
forfeited the confidence of the Lacedaemonians.  The Spartan king Agis,
whose wife he had seduced, was his personal enemy; and after the defeat
of the Peloponnesians at Miletus, Agis denounced him as a traitor, and
persuaded the new Ephors to send out instructions to put him to death.
Of this, however, he was informed time enough to make his escape to
Tissaphernes at Magnesia.  Here he ingratiated himself into the
confidence of the satrap, and persuaded him that it was not for the
interest of Persia that either of the Grecian parties should be
successful, but rather that they should wear each other out in their
mutual struggles, when Persia would in the end succeed in expelling
both.  This advice was adopted by the satrap; and in order to carry it
into execution, steps were taken to secure the inactivity of the
Peloponnesian armament, which, if vigorously employed, was powerful
enough to put a speedy end to the war.  In order to secure his return
to Athens, Alcibiades now endeavoured to persuade Tissaphernes that it
was more for the Persian interest to conclude a league with Athens than
with Sparta; but the only part of his advice which the satrap seems to
have sincerely adopted was that of playing off one party against the
other. About this, however, Alcibiades did not at all concern himself.
It was enough for his views, which had merely the selfish aim of his
own restoration to Athens, if he could make it appear that he possessed
sufficient influence with Tissaphernes to procure his assistance for
the Athenians.  He therefore began to communicate with the Athenian
generals at Samos, and held out the hope of a Persian alliance as the
price of his restoration to his country. But as he both hated and
feared the Athenian democracy, he coupled his offer with the condition
that a revolution should be effected at Athens, and an oligarchy
established.  The Athenian generals greedily caught at the proposal;
and though the great mass of the soldiery were violently opposed to it,
they were silenced, if not satisfied, when told that Athens could be
saved only by means of Persia.  The oligarchical conspirators formed
themselves into a confederacy, and Pisander was sent to Athens to lay
the proposal before the Athenian assembly.  It met, as it might be
supposed, with the most determined opposition.  The single but
unanswerable reply of Pisander was, the necessities of the republic;
and at length a reluctant vote for a change of constitution was
extorted from the people.  Pisander and ten others were despatched to
treat with Alcibiades and Tissaphernes.

Upon their arrival in Ionia they informed Alcibiades that measures had
been taken for establishing an oligarchical form of government at
Athens, and required him to fulfil his part of the engagement by
procuring the aid and alliance of Persia.  But Alcibiades knew that he
had undertaken what he could not perform, and he now resolved to escape
from the dilemma by one of his habitual artifices.  He received the
Athenian deputation in the presence of Tissaphernes himself, and made
such extravagant demands on behalf of the satrap that Pisander and his
colleagues indignantly broke off the conference.

Notwithstanding the conduct of Alcibiades the oligarchical conspirators
proceeded with the revolution at Athens, in which they had gone too far
to recede.  Pisander, with five of the envoys, returned to Athens to
complete the work they had begun.

Pisander proposed in the assembly, and carried a resolution, that a
committee of ten should be appointed to prepare a new constitution,
which was to be submitted to the approbation of the people.  But when
the day appointed for that purpose arrived, the assembly was not
convened in the Pnyx, but in the temple of Poseidon at Colonus, a
village upwards of a mile from Athens. Here the conspirators could
plant their own partisans, and were less liable to be overawed by
superior numbers.  Pisander obtained the assent of the meeting to the
following revolutionary changes:--1. The abolition of all the existing
magistracies;  2. The cessation of all payments for the discharge of
civil functions;  3. The appointment of a committee of five persons,
who were to name ninety-five more; each of the hundred thus constituted
to choose three persons; the body of Four Hundred thus formed to be an
irresponsible government, holding its sittings in the senate house.
The four hundred were to convene a select body of five thousand
citizens whenever they thought proper.  Nobody knew who these five
thousand were, but they answered two purposes, namely, to give an air
of greater popularity to the government, as well as to overawe the
people by an exaggerated notion of its strength.

Thus perished the Athenian democracy, after an existence of nearly a
century since its establishment by Clisthenes The revolution was begun
from despair of the foreign relations of Athens, and from the hope of
assistance from Persia; but it was carried out through the machinations
of the conspirators after that delusion had ceased.

At Samos the Athenian army refused to recognise the new government.  At
the instance of Thrasybulus and Thrasyllus a meeting was called in
which the soldiers pledged themselves to maintain the democracy, to
continue the war against Peloponnesus, and to put down the usurpers at
Athens.  The soldiers, laying aside for a while their military
character, constituted themselves into an assembly of the people,
deposed several of their officers, and appointed others whom they could
better trust.  Thrasybulus proposed the recall of Alcibiades,
notwithstanding his connection with the oligarchical conspiracy,
because it was believed that he was now able and willing to aid the
democratic cause with the gold and forces of Persia.  After
considerable opposition the proposal was agreed to; Alcibiades was
brought to Samos and introduced to the assembly, where by his
magnificent promises, and extravagant boasts respecting his influence
with Tissaphernes, he once more succeeded in deceiving the Athenians.
The accomplished traitor was elected one of the generals, and, in
pursuance of his artful policy, began to pass backwards and forwards
between Samos and Magnesia, with the view of inspiring both the satrap
and the Athenians with a reciprocal idea of his influence with either,
and of instilling distrust of Tissaphernes into the minds of the

At the first news of the re-establishment of democracy at Samos,
distrust and discord had broken out among the Four Hundred. Antiphon
and Phrynichus, at the head of the extreme section of the oligarchical
party, were for admitting a Lacedaemonian garrison.  But others,
discontented with their share of power, began to affect more popular
sentiments, among whom were Theramenes and Aristocrates.  Meantime
Euboea, supported by the Lacedaemonians and Boeotians, revolted from
Athens.  The loss of this island seemed a death-blow.  The
Lacedaemonians might now easily blockade the ports of Athens and starve
her into surrender; whilst the partisans of the Four Hundred would
doubtless co-operate with the enemy.  But from this fate they were
saved by the characteristic slowness of the Lacedaemonians, who
confined themselves to securing the conquest of Euboea.  Thus left
unmolested, the Athenians convened an assembly in the Pnyx. Votes were
passed for deposing the Four Hundred, and placing the government in the
hands of the 5000, of whom every citizen who could furnish a panoply
might be a member.  In short, the old constitution was restored, except
that the franchise was restricted to 5000 citizens, and payment for the
discharge of civil functions abolished.  In subsequent assemblies, the
Archons, the Senate, and other institutions were revived; and a vote
was passed to recall Alcibiades and some of his friends. The number of
the 5000 was never exactly observed, and was soon enlarged into
universal citizenship.  Thus the Four Hundred were overthrown after a
reign of four months, B.C. 411.

While these things were going on at Athens, the war was prosecuted with
vigour on the coast of Asia Minor.  Mindarus, who now commanded the
Peloponnesian fleet, disgusted at length by the often-broken promises
of Tissaphernes, and the scanty and irregular pay which he furnished,
set sail from Miletus and proceeded to the Hellespont, with the
intention of assisting the satrap Pharnabazus, and of effecting, if
possible, the revolt of the Athenian dependencies in that quarter.
Hither he was pursued by the Athenian fleet under Thrasyllus.  In a few
days an engagement ensued (in August, 411 B.C.), in the famous straits
between Sestos and Abydos, in which the Athenians, though with a
smaller force, gained the victory and erected a trophy on the
promontory of Cynossema, near the tomb and chapel of the Trojan queen
Hecuba.  The Athenians followed up their victory by the reduction of
Cyzicus, which had revolted from them.  A month or two afterwards
another obstinate engagement took place between the Peloponnesian and
Athenian fleets ness Abydos, which lasted a whole day, and was at
length decided in favour of the Athenians by the arrival of Alcibiades
with his squadron of eighteen ships from Samos.

Shortly after the battle Tissaphernes arrived at the Hellespont with
the view of conciliating the offended Peloponnesians.  He was not only
jealous of the assistance which the latter were now rendering to
Pharnabarzus, but it is also evident that his temporizing policy had
displeased the Persian court.  This appears from his conduct on the
present occasion, as well as from the subsequent appointment of Cyrus
to the supreme command on the Asiatic coast as we shall presently have
to relate.  When Alcibiades, who imagined that Tissaphernes was still
favourable to the Athenian cause waited on him with the customary
presents, he was arrested by order of the satrap, and sent in custody
to Sardis.  At the end of a month, however, he contrived to escape to
Clazomenae, and again joined the Athenian fleet early in the spring of
410 B.C. Mindaras, with the assistance of Pharnabazas on the land side,
was now engaged in the siege of Cyzicus, which the Athenian admirals
determined to relieve.  Here a battle ensued, in which Mindarus was
slain, the Lacedaemonians and Persians routed, and almost the whole
Peloponnesian fleet captured.  The severity of this blow was pictured
in the laconic epistle in which Hippocrates, the second in command,
[Called Epistoteus or "Secretary" in the Lacedaemonian fleet.  The
commander of the fleet had the title of NAVARCHUS.]  announced it to
the Ephors:  "Our good luck is gone; Mindarus is slain; the men are
starving; we know not what to do."

The results of this victory were most important.  Perinthus and
Selymbria, as well as Cyzicus, were recovered; and the Athenians, once
more masters of the Propontis, fortified the town of Chrysopolis, over
against Byzantium, at the entrance of the Bosporus; re-established
their toll of ten per cent, on all vessels passing from the Euxine; and
left a squadron to guard the strait and collect the dues.  So great was
the discouragement of the Lacedaemonians at the loss of their fleet
that the Ephor Endius proceeded to Athens to treat for peace on the
basis of both parties standing just as they were.  The Athenian
assembly was at this time led by the demagogue Cleophon, a lamp-maker,
known to us by the later comedies of Aristophanes.  Cleophon appears to
have been a man of considerable ability; but the late victories had
inspired him with too sanguine hopes and he advised the Athenians to
reject the terms proposed by Endius.  Athens thus throw away the golden
opportunity of recruiting her shattered forces of which she stood so
much in need; and to this unfortunate advice must be ascribed the
calamities which subsequently overtook her.

The possession of the Bosporus reopened to the Athenians the trade of
the Euxine.  From his lofty fortress at Decelea the Spartan king Agris
could descry the corn-ships from the Euxine sailing into the Harbour of
the Piraeus, and felt how fruitless it was to occupy the fields of
Attica whilst such abundant supplies of provisions were continually
finding their way to the city.

In B.C. 408 the important towns of Chalcedon, Selymbria, and Byzantium
fell into the hands of the Athenians, thus leaving them undisputed
masters of the Propontis.

These great achievements of Alcibiades naturally paved the way for his
return to Athens.  In the spring of 407 B.C. he proceeded with the
fleet to Samos, and from thence sailed to Piraeus.  His reception was
far more favourable than he had ventured to anticipate.  The whole
population of Athens flocked down to Piraeus to welcome him, and
escorted him to the city.  He seemed to be in the present juncture the
only man capable of restoring the grandeur and the empire of Athens:
he was accordingly named general with unlimited powers, and a force of
100 triremes, 1500 hoplites, and 150 cavalry placed at his disposal.
Before his departure he took an opportunity to atone for the impiety of
which he had been suspected.  Although his armament was in perfect
readiness, he delayed its sailing till after the celebration of the
Eleusinian mysteries at the beginning of September.  For seven years
the customary procession across the Thriasian plain had been suspended,
owing to the occupation of Decelea by the enemy, which compelled the
sacred troop to proceed by sea.  Alcibiades now escorted them on their
progress and return with his forces, and thus succeeded in reconciling
himself with the offended goddesses and with their holy priests, the

Meanwhile a great change had been going on in the state of affairs in
the East.  We have already seen that the Great King was displeased with
the vacillating policy of Tissaphernes, and had determined to adopt
more energetic measures against the Athenians.  During the absence of
Alcibiades, Cyrus, the younger son of Darius, a prince of a bold and
enterprising spirit, and animated with a lively hatred of Athens, had
arrived at the coast for the purpose of carrying out the altered policy
of the Persian court; and with that view he had been invested with the
satrapies of Lydia, the Greater Phrygia, and Cappadocia.  The arrival
of Cyrus opens the last phase of the Peloponnesian war.  Another event,
in the highest degree unfavourable to the Athenian cause, was the
accession of Lysander, as NAVARCHUS, to the command of the
Peloponnesian fleet.  Lysander was the third of the remarkable men whom
Sparta produced during the war.  In ability, energy, and success he may
be compared with Brasidas and Gylippus, though immeasurably inferior to
the former in every moral quality.  He was born of poor parents, and
was by descent one of those Lacedaemonians who could never enjoy the
full rights of Spartan citizenship.  His ambition was boundless, and he
was wholly unscrupulous about the means which he employed to gratify
it.  In pursuit of his objects he hesitated at neither deceit, nor
perjury, nor cruelty, and he is reported to have laid it down as one of
his maxims in life to avail himself of the fox's skin where the lion's

Lysander had taken up his station at Ephesus, with the Lacedaemonian
fleet of 70 triremes; and when Cyrus arrived at Sardis, in the spring
of 407 B.C., he hastened to pay his court to the young prince, and was
received with every mark of favour. A vigorous line of action was
resolved on.  Cyrus at once offered 500 talents, and affirmed that, if
more were needed, he was prepared even to coin into money the very
throne of gold and silver on which he sat.  In a banquet which ensued
Cyrus drank to the health of Lysander, and desired him to name any wish
which he could gratify.  Lysander immediately requested an addition of
an obolus to the daily pay of the seamen.  Cyrus was surprised at so
disinterested a demand, and from that day conceived a high degree of
respect and confidence for the Spartan commander.  Lysander on his
return to Ephesus employed himself in refitting his fleet, and in
organising clubs in the Spartan interest in the cities of Asia.

Alcibiades set sail from Athens in September.  Being ill provided with
funds for carrying on the war, he was driven to make predatory
excursions for the purpose of raising money.  During his absence he
intrusted the bulk of the fleet at Samos to his pilot, Antiochus, with
strict injunctions not to venture on an action.  Notwithstanding these
orders, however, Antiochus sailed out and brought the Peloponnesian
fleet to an engagement off Notium, in which the Athenians were defeated
with the loss of 15 ships, and Antiochus himself was slain.  Among the
Athenian armament itself great dissatisfaction was growing up against
Alcibiades.  Though at the head of a splendid force, he had in three
months time accomplished literally nothing.  His debaucheries and
dissolute conduct on shore were charged against him, as well as his
selecting for confidential posts not the men best fitted for them, but
those who, like Antiochus were the boon companions and the chosen
associates of his revels.  These accusations forwarded to Athens, and
fomented by his secret enemies, soon produced an entire revulsion in
the public feeling towards Alcibiades.  The Athenians voted that he
should be dismissed from his command, and they appointed in his place
ten new generals, with Conon at their head.

The year of Lysander's command expired about the same time as the
appointment of Conon to the Athenian fleet.  Through the intrigues of
Lysander, his successor Callicratidas was received with dissatisfaction
both by the Lacedaemonian seamen and by Cyrus.  Loud complaints were
raised of the impolicy of an annual change of commanders.  Lysander
threw all sorts of difficulties into the way of his successor, to whom
he handed over an empty chest, having first repaid to Cyrus all the
money in his possession under the pretence that it was a private loan.
The straightforward conduct of Callicratidas, however, who summoned the
Lacedaemonian commanders, and after a dignified remonstrance, plainly
put the question whether he should return home or remain, silenced all
opposition.  But he was sorely embarrassed for funds.  Cyrus treated
him with haughtiness; and when he waited on that prince at Sardis, he
was dismissed not only without money, but even without an audience.
Callicratidas, however, had too much energy to be daunted by such
obstacles.  Sailing with his fleet from Ephesus to Miletus, he laid
before the assembly of that city, in a spirited address, all the ill
they had suffered at the hands of the Persians, and exhorted them to
bestir themselves and dispense with the Persian alliance.  He succeeded
in persuading the Milesians to make him a large grant of money, whilst
the leading men even came forward with private subscriptions.  By means
of this assistance he was enabled to add 50 triremes to the 90
delivered to him by Lysander; and the Chians further provided him with
ten days' pay for the seamen.

The fleet of Callicratidas was now double that of Conon.  The latter
was compelled to run before the superior force of Callicratidas.  Both
fleets entered the harbour of Mytilene at the same time, where a battle
ensued in which Conon lost 30 ships, but he saved the remaining 40 by
hauling them ashore under the walls of the town.  Callicratidas then
blockaded Mytilene both by sea and land; but Conon contrived to
despatch a trireme to Athens with the news of his desperate position.

As soon as the Athenians received intelligence of the blockade of
Mytilene; vast efforts were made for its relief; and we learn with
surprise that in thirty days a fleet of 110 triremes was equipped and
despatched from Piraeus.  The armament assembled at Samos, where it was
reinforced by scattered Athenian ships, and by contingents from the
allies, to the extent of 40 vessels.  The whole fleet of 150 sail then
proceeded to the small islands of Arginusae, near the coast of Asia,
and facing Malea, the south-eastern cape of Lesbos.  Callicratidas, who
went out to meet them, took up his station at the latter point, leaving
a squadron of 50 ships to maintain the blockade of Mytilene.  He had
thus only 120 ships to oppose to the 150 of the Athenians, and his
pilot advised him to retire before the superior force of the enemy.
But Callicratidas replied that he would not disgrace himself by flight,
and that if he should perish Sparta would not feel his loss.  The
battle was long and obstinate.  All order was speedily lost, and the
ships fought singly with one another, In one of these contests,
Callicratidas, who stood on the prow of his vessel ready to board the
enemy, was thrown overboard by the shock of the vessels as they met,
and perished.  At length victory began to declare for the Athenians.
The Lacedaemonians, after losing 77 vessels, retreated with the
remainder to Chios and Phocaea.  The loss of the Athenians was 25

The battle of Arginusae led to a deplorable event, which has for ever
sullied the pages of Athenian history.  At least a dozen Athenian
vessels were left floating about in a disabled condition after the
battle; but, owing to a violent storm that ensued, no attempt was made
to rescue the survivors, or to collect the bodies of the dead for
burial.  Eight of the ten generals were summoned home to answer for
this conduct; Conon, by his situation at Mytilene, was of course
exculpated, and Archestratus had died. Six of the generals obeyed the
summons, and were denounced in the Assembly by Theramenes, formerly one
of the Four Hundred, for neglect of duty.  The generals replied that
they had commissioned Theramenes himself and Thrasybulus, each of whom
commanded a trireme in the engagement, to undertake the duty, and had
assigned 48 ships to them for that purpose.  This, however, was denied
by Theramenes.  There are discrepancies in the evidence, and we have no
materials for deciding positively which statement was true; but
probability inclines to the side of the generals. Public feeling,
however, ran very strongly against them, and was increased by an
incident which occurred during their trial. After a day's debate the
question was adjourned; and in the interval the festival of the
APATURIA was celebrated, in which, according to annual custom, the
citizens met together according to their families and phratries.  Those
who had perished at Arginusae were naturally missed on such an
occasion; and the usually cheerful character of the festival was
deformed and rendered melancholy by the relatives of the deceased
appearing in black clothes and with shaven heads.  The passions of the
people were violently roused.  At the next meeting of the Assembly,
Callixenus, a senator, proposed that the people should at once proceed
to pass its verdict on the generals, though they had been only
partially heard in their defence; and, moreover, that they should all
be included in one sentence, though it was contrary to a rule of Attic
law, known as the psephisma of Canonus, to indict citizens otherwise
than individually.  The Prytanes, or senators of the presiding tribe,
at first refused to put the question to the Assembly in this illegal
way; but their opposition was at length overawed by clamour and
violence.  There was, however, one honourable exception.  The
philosopher Socrates, who was one of the Prytanes, refused to withdraw
his protest.  But his opposition was disregarded, and the proposal of
Callixenus was carried, The generals were condemned, delivered over to
the Eleven for execution, and compelled to drink the fatal hemlock.
Among them was Pericles, the son of the celebrated statesman.

In the following year (B.C. 405), through the influence of Cyrus and
the other allies of Sparta, Lysander again obtained the command of the
Peloponnesian fleet, though nominally under Aracus as admiral; since it
was contrary to Spartan usage that the same man should be twice
NAVARCHUS.  His return to power was marked by more vigorous measures.
He sailed to the Hellespont, and laid siege to Lampsacus.  The Athenian
fleet arrived too late to save the town, but they proceeded up the
strait and took post at AEgospotami, or the "Goat's River;" a place
which had nothing to recommend it, except its vicinity to Lampsacus,
from which it was separated by a channel somewhat less than two miles
broad.  It was a mere desolate beach, without houses or inhabitants, so
that all the supplies had to be fetched from Sestos, or from the
surrounding country, and the seamen were compelled to leave their ships
in order to obtain their meals.  Under these circumstances the
Athenians were very desirous of bringing Lysander to an engagement.
But the Spartan commander, who was in a strong position, and abundantly
furnished with provisions, was in no hurry to run any risks.  In vain
did the Athenians sail over several days in succession to offer him
battle; they always found his ships ready manned, and drawn up in too
strong a position to warrant an attack; nor could they by all their
manoeuvres succeed in enticing him out to combat.  This cowardice, as
they deemed it, on the part of the Lacedaemonians, begat a
corresponding negligence on theirs; discipline was neglected and the
men allowed to straggle almost at will.  It was in vain that
Alcibiades, who since his dismissal resided in a fortress in that
neighbourhood, remonstrated with the Athenian generals on the exposed
nature of the station they had chosen, and advised them to proceed to
Sestos.  His counsels were received with taunts and insults.  At
length, on the fifth day, Lysander, having watched an opportunity when
the Athenian seamen had gone on shore and were dispersed over the
country, rowed swiftly across the strait with all his ships.  He found
the Athenian fleet, with the exception of 10 or 12 vessels, totally
unprepared, and he captured nearly the whole of it, without having
occasion to strike a single blow.  Of the 180 ships which composed the
fleet, only the trireme of Conon himself, the Paralus, and 8 or 10
other vessels succeeded in escaping.  Conon was afraid to return to
Athens after so signal a disaster, and took refuge with Evagoras,
prince of Salamis in Cyprus.

By this momentous victory (September, B.C. 405) the Peloponnesian war
was virtually brought to an end.  Lysander, secure of an easy triumph,
was in no haste to gather it by force.  The command of the Euxine
enabled him to control the supplies of Athens; and sooner or later, a
few weeks of famine must decide her fall.  He now sailed forth to take
possession of the Athenian towns, which fell one after another into his
power as soon as he appeared before them.  About November he arrived at
AEgina, with an overwhelming fleet of 150 triremes, and proceeded to
devastate Salamis and blockade Piraeus.  At the same time the whole
Peloponnesian army was marched into Attica and encamped in the
precincts of the Academus, at the very gates of Athens.  Famine soon
began to be felt within the walls, and at the end of three months it
became so dreadful, that the Athenians saw themselves compelled to
submit to the terms of the conqueror.  These terms were:  That the long
walls and the fortifications of Piraeus should be demolished; that the
Athenians should give up all their foreign possessions, and confine
themselves to their own territory; that they should surrender all their
ships of war; that they should readmit all their exiles; and that they
should become allies of Sparta.

It was about the middle or end of March, B.C. 404, that Lysander sailed
into Piraeus, and took formal possession of Athens; the war, in
singular conformity with the prophecies current at the beginning of it,
having lasted for a period of thrice nine, or 27 years.  The insolence
of the victors added another blow to the feelings of the conquered.
The work of destruction, at which Lysander presided, was converted into
a sort of festival.  Female flute-players and wreathed dancers
inaugurated the demolition of the strong and proud bulwarks of Athens;
and as the massive walls fell piece by piece exclamations arose from
the ranks of the Peloponnesians that freedom had at length begun to
dawn upon Greece.



The fall of Athens brought back a host of exiles, all of them the
enemies of her democratical constitution.  Of these these most
distinguished was Critias, a man of wealth and family, the uncle of
Plato, and once the intimate friend of Socrates, distinguished both for
his literary and political talents, but of unmeasured ambition and
unscrupulous conscience.  Critias and his companions soon found a party
with which they could co-operate; and supported by Lysander they
proposed in the assembly that a committee of thirty should be named to
draw up laws for the future government of the city, and to undertake
its temporary administration.  Among the most prominent of the thirty
names were those of Critias and Theramenes.  The proposal was of course
carried.  Lysander himself addressed the Assembly, and contemptuously
told them that they had better take thought for their personal safety,
which now lay at his mercy, than for their political constitution.  The
committee thus appointed soon obtained the title of the Thirty Tyrants,
the name by which they have become known in all subsequent time.  After
naming an entirely new Senate, and appointing fresh magistrates, they
proceeded to exterminate their most obnoxious opponents.  But Critias,
and the more violent party among them, still called for more blood; and
with the view of obtaining it, procured a Spartan garrison, under the
harmost Callibius, to be installed in the Acropolis.  Besides this
force, they had an organized band of assassins at their disposal.
Blood now flowed on all sides. Many of the leading men of Athens fell,
others took to flight.

Thus the reign of terror was completely established.  In the bosom of
the Thirty, however, there was a party, headed by Theramenes, who
disapproved of these proceedings.  But his moderation cost him his
life.  One day as he entered the Senate-house, Critias rose and
denounced him as a public enemy, and ordered him to be carried off to
instant death.  Upon hearing these words Theramenes sprang for refuge
to the altar in the Senate-house; but he was dragged away by Satyrus,
the cruel and unscrupulous head of the "Eleven," a body of officers who
carried into execution the penal sentence of the law.  Being conveyed
to prison, he was compelled to drink the fatal hemlock.  The constancy
of his end might have adorned a better life after swallowing the
draught, he jerked on the floor a drop which remained in the cup,
according to the custom of the game called COTTABOS, exclaiming, "This
to the health of the GENTLE Critias!"

Alcibiades had been included by the Thirty in the list of exiles; but
the fate which now overtook him seems to have sprung from the fears of
the Lacedaemonians, or perhaps from the personal hatred of Agis.  After
the battle of AEgospotami, Pharnabazus permitted the Athenian exile to
live in Phrygia, and assigned him a revenue for his maintenance.  But a
despatch came out from Sparta, to Lysander, directing that Alcibiades
should be put to death. Lysander communicated the order to Pharnabazus,
who arranged for carrying it into execution.  The house of Alcibiades
was surrounded with a band of assassins, and set on fire.  He rushed
out with drawn sword upon his assailants, who shrank from the attack,
but who slew him from a distance with their javelins and arrows.
Timandra, a female with whom he lived, performed towards his body the
last offices of duty and affection.  Thus perished miserably, in the
vigour of his age, one of the most remarkable, but not one of the
greatest, characters in Grecian history.  With qualities which,
properly applied, might have rendered him the greatest benefactor of
Athens, he contrived to attain the infamous distinction of being that
citizen who had inflicted upon her the most signal amount of damage.

Meantime an altered state of feeling was springing up in Greece. Athens
had ceased to be an object of fear or jealousy, and those feelings
began now to be directed towards Sparta.  Lysander had risen to a
height of unparalleled power.  He was in a manner idolized.  Poets
showered their praises on him, and even altars were raised in his
honour by the Asiatic Greeks.  In the name of Sparta he exercised
almost uncontrolled authority in the cities he had reduced, including
Athens itself.  But it was soon discovered that, instead of the freedom
promised by the Spartans, only another empire had been established,
whilst Lysander was even meditating to extort from the subject cities a
yearly tribute of one thousand talents.  And all these oppressions were
rendered still more intolerable by the overweening pride and harshness
of Lysander's demeanour.

Even in Sparta itself the conduct of Lysander was beginning to inspire
disgust and jealousy.  Pausanias, son of Plistoanax, who was now king
with Agis, as well as the new Ephors appointed in September, B.C. 404,
disapproved of his proceedings.  The Thebans and Corinthians themselves
were beginning to sympathise with Athens, and to regard the Thirty as
mere instruments for supporting the Spartan dominion; whilst Sparta in
her turn looked upon them as the tools of Lysander's ambition.  Many of
the Athenian exiles had found refuge in Boeotia:  and one of them
Thrasybulus, with the aid of Ismenias and other Theban citizens,
starting from Thebes at the head of a small band of exiles, seized the
fortress of Phyle in the passes of Mount Parnes and on the direct road
to Athens.  The Thirty marched out to attack Thrasybulus, at the head
of the Lacedaemonian garrison and a strong Athenian force.  But their
attack was repulsed with considerable loss.

Shortly afterwards Thrasybulus marched from Phyle to Piraeus which was
now an open town, and seized upon it without opposition.  When the
whole force of the Thirty, including the Lacedaemonians, marched on the
following day to attack him, he retired to the hill of Munychia, the
citadel of Piraeus, the only approach to which was by a steep ascent.
Here he drew up his hoplites in files of ten deep, posting behind them
his slingers and dartmen.  He exhorted his men to stand patiently till
the enemy came within reach of the missiles.  At the first discharge
the assailing column seemed to waver; and Thrasybulus, taking advantage
of their confusion, charged down the hill, and completely routed them,
killing seventy, among whom was Critias himself.  The loss of their
leader had thrown the majority into the hands of the party formerly led
by Theramenes, who resolved to depose the Thirty and constitute a new
oligarchy of Ten.  Some of the Thirty were re-elected into this body;
but the more violent colleagues of Critias were deposed and retired for
safety to Eleusis.  The new government of the Ten sent to Sparta to
solicit further aid; and a similar application was made at the same
time from the section of the Thirty at Eleusis.  Their request was
complied with; and Lysander once more entered Athens at the head of a
Lacedaemonian force.  Fortunately, however, the jealousy of the
Lacedaemonians towards Lysander led them at this critical juncture to
supersede him in the command.  King Pausanias was appointed to conduct
an army into Attica, and when he encamped in the Academus he was joined
by Lysander and his forces.  It was known at Athens that the views of
Pausanias were unfavourable to the proceedings of Lysander; and the
presence of the Spartan king elicited a vehement reaction against the
oligarchy, which fear had hitherto suppressed.  All parties sent envoys
to Sparta.  The Ephors and the Lacedaemonian Assembly referred the
question to a committee of fifteen, of whom Pausanias was one.  The
decision of this board was:  That the exiles in Piraeus should be
readmitted to Athens, and that there should be an amnesty for all that
had passed, except as regarded the Thirty and the Ten.

When these terms were settled and sworn to, the Peloponnesians quitted
Attica; and Thrasybulus and the exiles, marching in solemn procession
from Piraeus to Athens, ascended to the Acropolis and offered up a
solemn sacrifice and thanksgiving.  An assembly of the people was then
held, and after Thrasybulus had addressed an animated reproof to the
oligarchical party, the democracy was unanimously restored.  This
important counter-revolution took place in the spring of 403 B.C.  The
archons, the senate of 500, the public assembly, and the dicasteries
seem to have been reconstituted in the same form as before the capture
of the city.

Thus was terminated, after a sway of eight months, the despotism of the
Thirty.  The year which contained their rule was not named after the
archon, but was termed "the year of anarchy."  The first archon drawn
after their fall was Euclides, who gave his name to a year ever
afterwards memorable among the Athenians.

For the next few years the only memorable event in the history of
Athens is the death of Socrates.  This celebrated philosopher was born
in the year 468 B.C., in the immediate neighbourhood of Athens.  His
father, Sophroniscus, was a sculptor, and Socrates was brought up to,
and for some time practised, the same profession.  He was married to
Xanthippe, by whom he had three sons; but her bad temper has rendered
her name proverbial for a conjugal scold.  His physical constitution
was healthy, robust, and wonderfully enduring.  Indifferent alike to
heat and cold the same scanty and homely clothing sufficed him both in
summer and winter; and even in the campaign of Potidaea, amidst the
snows of a Thracian winter, he went barefooted.  But though thus gifted
with strength of body and of mind, he was far from being endowed with
personal beauty.  His thick lips, flat nose, and prominent eyes, gave
him the appearance of a Silenus, or satyr.  He served with credit as an
hoplite at Potidaea (B.C. 432), Delium (B.C. 424), and Amphipolis (B.C.
422); but it was not till late in life, in the year 406 B.C., that he
filled any political office. He was one of the Prytanes when, after the
battle of Arginusae, Callixenus submitted his proposition respecting
the six generals to the public Assembly, and his refusal on that
occasion to put an unconstitutional question to the vote has been
already recorded.  He had a strong persuasion that he was intrusted
with a divine mission, and he believed himself to be attended by a
daemon, or genius, whose admonitions he frequently heard, not, however,
in the way of excitement, but of restraint.  He never WROTE anything,
but he made oral instruction the great business of his life.  Early in
the morning he frequented the public walks, the gymnasia, and the
schools; whence he adjourned to the market-place at its most crowded
hours, and thus spent the whole day in conversing with young and old,
rich and poor,--with all in short who felt any desire for his

That a reformer and destroyer, like Socrates, of ancient prejudices and
fallacies which passed current under the name of wisdom should have
raised up a host of enemies is only what might be expected; but in his
case this feeling was increased by the manner in which he fulfilled his
mission.  The oracle of Delphi, in response to a question put by his
friend Chaerephon, had affirmed that no man was wiser than Socrates.
No one was more perplexed at this declaration than Socrates himself,
since he was conscious of possessing no wisdom at all.  However, he
determined to test the accuracy of the priestess, for, though he had
little wisdom, others might have still less.  He therefore selected an
eminent politician who enjoyed a high reputation for wisdom, and soon
elicited by his scrutinising method of cross-examination, that this
statesman's reputed wisdom was no wisdom at all.  But of this he could
not convince the subject of his examination; whence Socrates concluded
that he was wiser than this politician, inasmuch as he was conscious of
his own ignorance, and therefore exempt from the error of believing
himself wise when in reality he was not so.  The same experiment was
tried with the same result on various classes of men; on poets,
mechanics, and especially on the rhetors and sophists, the chief of all
the pretenders to wisdom.

The first indication of the unpopularity which he had incurred is the
attack made upon him by Aristophanes in the 'Clouds' in the year 423
B.C.  That attack, however, seems to have evaporated with the laugh,
and for many years Socrates continued his teaching without molestation.
It was not till B.C. 399 that the indictment was preferred against him
which cost him his life.  In that year, Meletus, a leather-seller,
seconded by Anytus, a poet, and Lycon, a rhetor, accused him of impiety
in not worshipping the gods of the city, and in introducing new
deities, and also of being a corrupter of youth.  With respect to the
latter charge, his former intimacy with Alcibiades and Critias may
have, weighed against him.  Socrates made no preparations for his
defence, and seems, indeed, not to have desired an acquittal.  But
although he addressed the dicasts in a bold uncompromising tone, he was
condemned only by a small majority of five or six in a court composed
of between five and six hundred dicasts.  After the verdict was
pronounced, he was entitled, according to the practice of the Athenian
courts, to make some counter-proposition in place of the penalty of
death, which the accusers had demanded, and if he had done so with any
show of submission it is probable that the sentence would have been
mitigated.  But his tone after the verdict was higher than before.
Instead of a fine, he asserted that he ought to be maintained in the
Prytaneum at the public expense, as a public benefactor.  This seems to
have enraged the dicasts and he was condemned to death.

It happened that the vessel which proceeded to Delos on the annual
deputation to the festival had sailed the day before his condemnation;
and during its absence it was unlawful to put any one to death.
Socrates was thus kept in prison during thirty days, till the return of
the vessel.  He spent the interval in philosophical conversations with
his friends.  Crito, one of these, arranged a scheme for his escape by
bribing the gaoler; but Socrates, as might be expected from the tone of
his defence, resolutely refused to save his life by a breach of the
law.  His last discourse, on the day of his death, turned on the
immortality of the soul.  With a firm and cheerful countenance he drank
the cup of hemlock amidst his sorrowing and weeping friends.  His last
words were addressed to Crito:--"Crito, we owe a cock to AEsculapius;
discharge the debt, and by no means omit it."

Thus perished the greatest and most original of the Grecian
philosophers, whose uninspired wisdom made the nearest approach to the
divine morality of the Gospel.  His teaching forms an epoch in the
history of philosophy.  From his school sprang Plato, the founder of
the Academic philosophy; Euclides, the founder of the Megaric school;
Aristippus, the founder of the Cyrenaic school; and many other
philosophers of eminence.


THOUSAND, B.C. 401-400.

The assistance which Cyrus had rendered to the Lacedaemonians in the
Peloponnesian war led to a remarkable episode in Grecian history.  This
was the celebrated expedition of Cyrus against his brother Artaxerxes,
in which the superiority of Grecian to Asiatic soldiers was so
strikingly shown.

The death of Darius Nothus, king of Persia, took place B.C. 404,
shortly before the battle of AEgospotami.  Cyrus, who was present at
his father's death, was charged by Tissaphernes with plotting against
his elder brother Artaxerxes, who succeeded to the throne.  The
accusation was believed by Artaxerxes, who seized his brother, and
would have put him to death, but for the intercession of their mother,
Parysatis, who persuaded him not only to spare Cyrus but to confirm him
in his former government. Cyrus returned to Sardis burning with
revenge, and fully resolved to make an effort to dethrone his brother.

From his intercourse with the Greeks Cyrus had become aware of their
superiority to the Asiatics, and of their usefulness in such an
enterprise as he now contemplated.  The peace which followed the
capture of Athens seemed favourable to his projects. Many Greeks, bred
up in the practice of war during the long struggle between that city
and Sparta, were now deprived of their employment, whilst many more had
been driven into exile by the establishment of the Spartan oligarchies
in the various conquered cities.  Under the pretence of a private war
with the satrap, Tissaphernes, Cyrus enlisted large numbers of them in
his service.  The Greek in whom he placed most confidence was
Clearchus, a Lacedaemonian, and formerly harmost of Byzantium, who had
been condemned to death by the Spartan authorities for disobedience to
their orders.

It was not, however, till the beginning of the year B.C. 401 that the
enterprise of Cyrus was ripe for execution.  The Greek levies were then
withdrawn from the various towns in which they were distributed, and
concentrated in Sardis, to the number of about 8000; and in March or
April of this year Cyrus marched from Sardis with them, and with an
army of 100,000 Asiatics.  The object of the expedition was proclaimed
to be an attack upon the mountain-freebooters of Pisidia; its real
destination was a secret to every one except Cyrus himself and
Clearchus.  Among the Greek soldiers was Xenophon, an Athenian knight,
to whom we owe a narrative of the expedition.  He went as a volunteer,
at the invitation of his friend Proxenus, a Boeotian, and one of the
generals of Cyrus.

The march of Cyrus was directed through Lydia and Phrygia.  After
passing Colossae he arrived at Colaenae, where he was joined by more
Greek troops, the number of whom now amounted to 11,000 hoplites and
2000 peltasts.  The line of march, which had been hitherto straight
upon Pisidia, was now directed northwards. Cyrus passed in succession
the Phrygian towns of Peltae, Ceramon Agora, the Plain of Cayster,
Thymbrium, Tyriaeum, and Iconium, the last city in Phrygia.  Thence he
proceeded through Lycaonia to Dana, and across Mount Taurus into

On arriving at Tarsus, a city on the coast of Cilicia, the Greeks
plainly saw that they had been deceived, and that the expedition was
designed against the Persian king.  Seized with alarm at the prospect
of so long a march, they sent a deputation to Cyrus to ask him what his
real intentions were.  Cyrus replied that his design was to march
against his enemy, Abrocomas, satrap of Syria, who was encamped on the
banks of the Euphrates.  The Greeks, though they still suspected a
delusion, contented themselves with this answer in the face of their
present difficulties, especially as Cyrus promised to raise their pay
from one Daric to one Daric and a half a month.  The whole army then
marched forwards to Issus, the last town in Cilicia, seated on the gulf
of the same name.  Here they met the fleet, which brought them a
reinforcement of 1100 Greek soldiers, thus raising the Grecian force to
about 14,000 men.

Abrocomas, who commanded for the Great King in Syria and Phoenicia,
alarmed at the rapid progress of Cyrus, fled before him with all his
army, reported as 300,000 strong; abandoning the impregnable pass
situated one day's march from Issus, and known as the Gates of Cilicia
and Syria.  Marching in safety through this pass, the army next reached
Myriandrus, a seaport of Phoenicia.  From this place Cyrus struck off
into the interior, over Mount Amanus.  Twelve days' march brought him
to Thapsacus on the Euphrates, where for the first time he formally
notified to the army that he was marching to Babylon against his
brother Artaxerxes, The water happened to be very low, scarcely
reaching to the breast; and Abrocomas made no attempt to dispute the
passage.  The army now entered upon the desert, where the Greeks were
struck with the novel sights which met their view, and at once amused
and exhausted themselves in the chase of the wild ass and the antelope,
or in the vain pursuit of the scudding ostrich. After several days of
toilsome march the army at length reached Pylae, the entrance into the
cultivated plains of Babylonia, where they halted a few days to refresh

Soon after leaving that place symptoms became perceptible of a vast
hostile force moving in their front.  The exaggerated reports of
deserters stated it at 1,200,000 men; its real strength was about
900,000.  In a characteristic address Cyrus exhorted the Greeks to take
no heed of the multitude of their enemies; they would find in them, he
affirmed nothing but numbers and noise, and, if they could bring
themselves to despise these, they would soon find of what worthless
stuff the natives were composed.  The army then marched cautiously
forwards, in order of battle, along the left bank of the Euphrates.
They soon came upon a huge trench, 30 feet broad and 18 deep, which
Artaxerxes had caused to be dug across the plain for a length of about
42 English miles, reaching from the Euphrates to the wall of Media.
Between it and the river was left only a narrow passage about 20 feet
broad; yet Cyrus and his army found with surprise that this pass was
left entirely undefended.  This circumstance inspired them with a
contempt of the enemy, and induced them to proceed in careless array;
but on the next day but one after passing the trench, on arriving at a
place called Cunaxa, they were surprised with the intelligence that
Artaxerxes was approaching with all his forces.  Cyrus immediately drew
up his army in order of battle.  The Greeks were posted on the right,
whilst Cyrus himself, surrounded by a picked body-guard of 600 Persian
cuirassiers, took up his station in the centre.  When the enemy were
about half a mile distant, the Greeks engaged them with the usual
war-shout.  The Persians did not await their onset, but turned and
fled.  Tissaphernes and his cavalry alone offered any resistance; the
remainder of the Persian left was routed without a blow.  As Cyrus was
contemplating the easy victory of the Greeks, his followers surrounded
him, and already saluted him with the title of king.  But the centre
and right of Artaxerxes still remained unbroken; and that monarch,
unaware of the defeat of his left wing, ordered the right to wheel and
encompass the army of Cyrus.  No sooner did Cyrus perceive this
movement than with his body-guard he impetuously charged the enemy's
centre, where Artaxerxes himself stood, surrounded with 6000 horse.
The latter were routed and dispersed, and were followed so eagerly by
the guards of Cyrus, that he was left almost alone with the select few
called his "Table Companions."  In this situation he caught sight of
his brother Artaxerxes, whose person was revealed by the flight of his
troops, when, maddened at once by rage and ambition, he shouted out, "I
see the man!"  and rushed at him with his handful of companions.
Hurling his javelin at his brother, he wounded him in the breast, but
was himself speedily overborne by superior numbers and slain on the

Meanwhile Clearchus had pursued the flying enemy upwards of three
miles; but hearing that the king's troops were victorious on the left
and centre, he retraced his steps, again routing the Persians who
endeavoured to intercept him.  When the Greeks regained their camp they
found that it had been completely plundered, and were consequently
obliged to go supperless to rest.  It was not till the following day
that they learned the death of Cyrus; tidings which converted their
triumph into sorrow and dismay.  They were desirous that Ariaeus who
now commanded the army of Cyrus, should lay claim to the Persian crown,
and offered to support his pretensions; but Ariaeus answered that the
Persian grandees would not tolerate such a claim; that he intended
immediately to retreat; and that, if the Greeks wished to accompany
him, they must join him during the following night. This was
accordingly done; when oaths of reciprocal fidelity were interchanged
between the Grecian generals and Ariaeus, and sanctified by a solemn

On the following day a message arrived from the Persian King, with a
proposal to treat for peace on equal terms.  Clearchus affected to
treat the offer with great indifference, and made it an opportunity for
procuring provisions.  "Tell your king," said he to the envoys, "that
we must first fight; for we have had no breakfast, nor will any man
presume to talk to the Greeks about a truce without first providing for
them a breakfast."  This was agreed to, and guides were sent to conduct
the Greeks to some villages where they might obtain food.  Here they
received a visit from Tissaphernes, who pretended much friendship
towards them, and said that ha had come from the Great King to inquire
the reason of their expedition.  Clearchus replied--what was indeed
true of the greater part of the army--that they had not come hither
with any design to attack the king, but had been enticed forwards by
Cyrus under false pretences; that their only desire at present was to
return home; but that, if any obstacle was offered, they were prepared
to repel hostilities.  In a day or two Tissaphernes returned and with
some parade stated that he had with great difficulty obtained
permission to SAVE the Greek army; that he was ready to conduct them in
person into Greece; and to supply them with provisions, for which,
however, they were to pay.  An agreement was accordingly entered into
to this effect; and after many days delay they commenced the homeward
march.  After marching three days they passed through the wall of
Media, which was 100 feet high and 20 feet broad.  Two days more
brought them to the Tigris, which they crossed on the following morning
by a bridge of boats.  They then marched northward, arriving in four
days at the river Physcus and a large city called Opis.  Six days'
further march through a deserted part of Media brought them to some
villages belonging to queen Parysatis, which, out of enmity to her as
the patron of Cyrus, Tissaphernes abandoned to be plundered by the
Greeks.  From thence they proceeded in five days to the river Zabatus,
or Greater Zab, having previously crossed the Lesser Zab, which
Xenophon neglects to mention.  In the first of these five days they saw
on the opposite side of the Tigris a large city called Caenae, the
inhabitants of which brought over provisions to them.  At the Greater
Zab they halted three days.  Mistrust, and even slight hostilities, had
been already manifested between the Greeks and Persians, but they now
became so serious that Clearchus demanded an interview with
Tissaphernes.  The latter protested the greatest fidelity and
friendship towards the Greeks, and promised to deliver to the Greek
generals, on the following day, the calumniators who had set the two
armies at variance.  But when Clearchus, with four other generals,
accompanied by some lochages or captains, and 200 soldiers, entered the
Persian camp, according to appointment; the captains and soldiers were
immediately cut down; whilst the five generals were seized, put into
irons, and sent to the Persian court.  After a short imprisonment, four
of them were beheaded; the fifth, Menon, who pretended that he had
betrayed his colleagues into the hands of Tissaphernes, was at first
spared; but after a year's detention was put to death with tortures.

Apprehension and dismay reigned among the Greeks.  Their situation was,
indeed, appalling.  They were considerably more than a thousand miles
from home, in a hostile and unknown country, hemmed in on all sides by
impassable rivers and mountains, without generals, without guides,
without provisions. Xenophon was the first to rouse the captains to the
necessity for taking immediate precautions.  Though young, he possessed
as an Athenian citizen some claim to distinction; and his animated
address showed him fitted for command.  He was saluted general on the
spot; and in a subsequent assembly was, with four others, formally
elected to that office.

The Greeks, having first destroyed their superfluous baggage, crossed
the Greater Zab, and pursued their march on the other bank.  They
passed by the ruined cities of Larissa and Mespila on the Tigris, in
the neighbourhood of the ancient Nineveh.  The march from Mespila to
the mountainous country of the Carduchi occupied several days in which
the Greeks suffered much from the attacks of the enemy.

Their future route was now a matter of serious perplexity.  On their
left lay the Tigris, so deep that they could not fathom it with their
spears; while in their front rose the steep and lofty mountains of the
Carduchi, which came so near the river as hardly to leave a passage for
its waters.  As all other roads seemed barred, they formed the
resolution of striking into these mountains, on the farther side of
which lay Armenia, where both the Tigris and the Euphrates might be
forded near their sources. After a difficult and dangerous march of
seven days, during which their sufferings were far greater than any
they had experienced from the Persians the army at length emerged into
Armenia.  It was now the month of December, and Armenia was cold and
exposed, being a table-land raised high above the level of the sea.
Whilst halting near some well-supplied villages, the Greeks were
overtaken by two deep falls of snow, which almost buried them in their
open bivouacs.  Hence a five days' march brought them to the eastern
branch of the Euphrates.  Crossing the river, they proceeded on the
other side of it over plains covered with a deep snow, and in the face
of a biting north wind.  Here many of the slaves and beasts of burthen,
and even a few of the soldiers, fell victims to the cold.  Some had
their feet frost-bitten; some were blinded by the snow; whilst others,
exhausted with cold and hunger, sunk down and died.  On the eighth day
they proceeded on their way, ascending the banks of the Phasis, not the
celebrated river of that name, but probably the one usually called

From thence they fought their way through the country of the Taochi and
Chalybes.  They next reached the country of the Scythini, in whose
territory they found abundance in a large and populous city called
Gymnias.  The chief of this place having engaged to conduct them within
sight of the Euxine, they proceeded for five days under his guidance;
when, after ascending a mountain, the sea suddenly burst on the view of
the vanguard. The men proclaimed their joy by loud shouts of "The sea!
the sea!"  The rest of the army hurried to the summit, and gave vent to
their joy and exultation in tears and mutual embraces.  A few days'
march through the country of the Macrones and Colchians at length
brought them to the objects for which they had so often pined, and
which many at one time had never hoped to see again--a Grecian city and
the sea.  By the inhabitants of Trapezus or Trebizond, on the Euxine,
where they had now arrived, they were hospitably received, and, being
cantoned in some Colchian villages near the town, refreshed themselves
after the hardships they had undergone by a repose of thirty days.

The most difficult part of the return of the Ten Thousand was now
accomplished, and it is unnecessary to trace the remainder of their
route.  After many adventures they succeeded in reaching Byzantium, and
they subsequently engaged to serve the Lacedaemonians in a war which
Sparta had just declared against the satraps Tissaphernes and

In the spring of B.C. 399, Thimbron, the Lacedaemonian commander,
arrived at Pergamus, and the remainder of the Ten Thousand Greeks
became incorporated with his army.  Xenophon now returned to Athens,
where he must have arrived shortly after the execution of his master
Socrates.  Disgusted probably by that event, he rejoined his old
comrades in Asia, and subsequently returned to Greece along with



After the fall of Athens, Sparta stood without a rival in Greece. In
the various cities which had belonged to the Athenian empire Lysander
established an oligarchical Council of Ten, called a DECARCHY or
Decemvirate, subject to the control of a Spartan HARMOST or governor.
The Decarchies, however, remained only a short time in power, since the
Spartan government regarded them with jealousy as the partisans of
Lysander; but harmosts continued to be placed in every state subject to
their empire. The government of the harmosts was corrupt and
oppressive; no justice could be obtained against them by an appeal to
the Spartan authorities at home; and the Grecian cities soon had cause
to regret the milder and more equitable sway of Athens.

On the death of Agis in B.C. 398, his half-brother Agesilaus was
appointed King, to the exclusion of Leotychides, the son of Agis. This
was mainly effected by the powerful influence of Lysander, who
erroneously considered Agesilaus to be of a yielding and manageable
disposition and hoped by a skilful use of those qualities to extend his
own influence, and under the name of another to be in reality king

Agesilaus was now forty years of age, and esteemed a model of those
virtues more peculiarly deemed Spartan.  He was obedient to the
constituted authorities, emulous to excel, courageous, energetic,
capable of bearing all sorts of hardship and fatigue, simple and frugal
in his mode of life.  To these severer qualities he added the popular
attractions of an agreeable countenance and pleasing address.  His
personal defects at first stood in the way of his promotion.  He was
not only low in stature, but also lame of one leg; and there was an
ancient oracle which warned the Spartans to beware of "a lame reign."
The ingenuity of Lysander, assisted probably by the popular qualities
of Agesilaus, contrived to overcome this objection by interpreting a
lame reign to mean not any bodily defect in the king, but the reign of
one who was not a genuine descendant of Hercules.  Once possessed of
power, Agesilaus supplied any defect in his title by the prudence and
policy of his conduct; and, by the marked deference which he paid both
to the Ephors and the senators, he succeeded in gaining for himself
more real power than had been enjoyed by any of his predecessors.

The affairs of Asia Minor soon began to draw the attention of Agesilaus
to that quarter.  The assistance lent to Cyrus by the Spartans was no
secret at the Persian court; and Tissaphernes, who had been rewarded
for his fidelity with the satrapy of Cyrus in addition to his own, no
sooner returned to his government than he attacked the Ionian cities,
then under the protection of Sparta.  A considerable Lacedaemonian
force under Thimbron was despatched to their assistance, and which, as
related in the preceding chapter, was joined by the remnant of the
Greeks who had served under Cyrus.  Thimbron, however, proved so
inefficient a commander, that he was superseded at the end of 399 or
beginning of 398 B.C., and Dercyllidas appointed in his place. But
though at first successful against Pharnabazus in AEolis, Dercyllidas
was subsequently surprised in Caria in such an unfavourable position
that he would have suffered severely but for the timidity of
Tissaphernes, who was afraid to venture upon an action.  Under these
circumstances an armistice was agreed to for the purpose of treating
for a peace (397 B.C.).

Pharnabazus availed himself of this armistice to make active
preparations for a renewal of the war.  He obtained large
reinforcements of Persian troops, and began to organize a fleet in
Phoenicia and Cilicia.  This was intrusted to the Athenian admiral
Conon, of whom we now first hear again after a lapse of seven years
since his defeat at AEgospotami.  After that disastrous battle Conon
fled with nine triremes to Cyprus, where he was now living under the
protection of Evagoras, prince of Salamis.

It was the news of these extensive preparations that induced Agesilaus,
on the suggestion of Lysander, to volunteer his services against the
Persians.  He proposed to take with him only 30 full Spartan citizens,
or peers, to act as a sort of council, together with 2000 Neodamodes,
or enfranchised Helots, and 6000 hoplites of the allies.  Lysander
intended to be the leader of the 30 Spartans, and expected through them
to be the virtual commander of the expedition of which Agesilaus was
nominally the head.

Since the time of Agamemnon no Grecian king had led an army into Asia;
and Agesilaus studiously availed himself of the prestige of that
precedent in order to attract recruits to his standard.  The Spartan
kings claimed to inherit the sceptre of Agamemnon; and to render the
parallel more complete, Agesilaus proceeded with a division of his
fleet to Aulis, intending there to imitate the memorable sacrifice of
the Homeric hero.  But as he had neglected to ask the permission of the
Thebans, and conducted the sacrifice and solemnities by means of his
own prophets and ministers, and in a manner at variance with the usual
rites of the temple, the Thebans were offended, and expelled him by
armed force:--an insult which he never forgave.

It was in 396 B.C. that Agesilaus arrived at Ephesus and took the
command in Asia.  He demanded of the Persians the complete independence
of the Greek cities in Asia; and in order that there might be time to
communicate with the Persian court, the armistice was renewed for three
months.  During this interval of repose, Lysander, by his arrogance and
pretensions, offended both Agesilaus and the Thirty Spartans.
Agesilaus, determined to uphold his dignity, subjected Lysander to so
many humiliations that he was at last fain to request his dismissal
from Ephesus, and was accordingly sent to the Hellespont, where he did
good service to the Spartan interests.

Meanwhile Tissaphernes, having received large reinforcements, sent a
message to Agesilaus before the armistice had expired, ordering him to
quit Asia.  Agesilaus immediately made preparations as if he would
attack Tissaphernes in Caria; but having thus put the enemy on a false
scent, he suddenly turned northwards into Phrygia, the satrapy of
Pharnabazus, and marched without opposition to the neighbourhood of
Dascylium, the residence of the satrap himself.  Here, however, he was
repulsed by the Persian cavalry.  He now proceeded into winter quarters
at Ephesus, where he employed himself in organizing a body of cavalry
to compete with the Persians.  During the winter the army was brought
into excellent condition; and Agesilaus gave out early in the spring of
395 B.C. that he should march direct upon Sardis.  Tissaphernes
suspecting another feint, now dispersed his cavalry in the plain of the
Maeander.  But this time Agesilaus marched as he had announced, and in
three days arrived unopposed on the banks of the Pactolus, before the
Persian cavalry could be recalled.  When they at last came up, the
newly raised Grecian horse, assisted by the peltasts, and some of the
younger and more active hoplites, soon succeeded in putting them to
flight.  Many of the Persians were drowned in the Pactolus, and their
camp, containing much booty and several camels, was taken.

Agesilaus now pushed his ravages up to the very gates of Sardis, the
residence of Tissaphernes.  But the career of that timid and
treacherous satrap was drawing to a close.  The queen-mother,
Parysatis, who had succeeded in regaining her influence over
Artaxerxes, caused an order to be sent down from Susa for his
execution; in pursuance of which he was seized in a bath at Colossae,
and beheaded.  Tithraustes, who had been intrusted with the execution
of this order, succeeded Tissaphernes in the satrapy, and immediately
reopened negotiations with Agesilaus. An armistice of six months was
concluded; and meanwhile Tithraustes, by a subsidy of 30 talents,
induced Agesilaus to move out of his satrapy into that of Pharnabazus.

During this march into Phrygia Agesilaus received a new commission from
home, appointing him the head of the naval as well as of the land
force--two commands never before united in a single Spartan.  He named
his brother-in-law, Pisander, commander of the fleet.  But in the
following year (B.C. 394), whilst he was preparing an expedition on a
grand scale into the interior of Asia Minor, he was suddenly recalled
home to avert the dangers which threatened his native country.

The jealousy and ill-will with which the newly acquired empire of the
Spartans was regarded by the other Grecian states had not escaped the
notice of the Persians; and when Tithraustes succeeded to the satrapy
of Tissaphernes he resolved to avail himself of this feeling by
exciting a war against Sparta in the heart of Greece itself.  With this
view he despatched one Timocrates, a Rhodian, to the leading Grecian
cities which appeared hostile to Sparta, carrying with him a sum of 50
talents to be distributed among the chief men in each for the purpose
of bringing them over to the views of Persia.  Timocrates was
successful in Thebes, Corinth, and Argos but he appears not to have
visited Athens.

Hostilities were at first confined to Sparta and Thebes.  A quarrel
having arisen between the Opuntian Locrians and the Phocians respecting
a strip of border land, the former people appealed to the Thebans, who
invaded Phocis.  The Phocians on their side invoked the aid of the
Lacedaemonians, who, elated with the prosperous state of their affairs
in Asia, and moreover desirous of avenging the affronts they had
received from the Thebans, readily listened to the appeal.  Lysander,
who took an active part in promoting the war, was directed to attack
the town of Haliartus; and it was arranged that King Pausanias should
join him on a fixed day under the walls of that town, with the main
body of the Lacedaemonians and their Peloponnesian allies.

Nothing could more strikingly denote the altered state of feeling in
Greece than the request for assistance which the Thebans, thus menaced,
made to their ancient enemies and rivals the Athenians. Nor were the
Athenians backward in responding to the appeal. Lysander arrived at
Haliartus before Pausanias.  Here, in a sally made by the citizens,
opportunely supported by the unexpected arrival of a body of Thebans,
the army of Lysander was routed, and himself slain.  His troops
disbanded and dispersed themselves in the night time.  Thus, when
Pausanias at last came up, he found no army to unite with; and as an
imposing Athenian force had arrived, he now, with the advice of his
council took the humiliating step--always deemed a confession of
inferiority--of requesting a truce in order to bury the dead who had
fallen in the preceding battle.  Even this, however, the Thebans would
not grant except on the condition that the Lacedaemonians should
immediately quit their territory.  With these terms Pausanias was
forced to comply; and after duly interring the bodies of Lysander and
his fallen comrades, the Lacedaemonians dejectedly pursued their
homeward march.  Pausanias, afraid to face the public indignation of
the Spartans took refuge in the temple of Athena Alea at Tegea; and
being condemned to death in his absence, only escaped that fate by
remaining in the sanctuary.  He was succeeded by his son Agesipolis.

The enemies of Sparta took fresh courage from this disaster to her
arms.  Athens, Corinth, and Argos now formed with Thebes a solemn
alliance against her.  The league was soon joined by the Euboeans, the
Acarnanians, and other Grecian states.  In the spring of 394 B.C. the
allies assembled at Corinth, and the war, which had been hitherto
regarded as merely Boeotian, was now called the CORINTHIAN, by which
name it is known in history. This threatening aspect of affairs
determined the Ephors to recall Agesilaus, as already related.

The allies were soon in a condition to take the field with a force of
24,000 hoplites, of whom one-fourth were Athenians, together with a
considerable body of light troops and cavalry. The Lacedaemonians had
also made the most active preparations. In the neighbourhood of Corinth
a battle was fought, in which the Lacedaemonians gained the victory,
though their allied troops were put to the rout.  This battle, called
the battle of Corinth, was fought in July 394 B.C.

Agesilaus, who had relinquished with a heavy heart his projected
expedition into Asia, was now on his homeward march.  By the promise of
rewards he had persuaded the bravest and most efficient soldiers in his
army to accompany him, amongst whom were many of the Ten Thousand, with
Xenophon at their head.  The route of Agesilaus was much the same as
the one formerly traversed by Xerxes, and the camels which accompanied
the army gave it somewhat of an oriental aspect.  At Amphipolis he
received the news of the victory at Corinth; but his heart was so full
of schemes against Persia, that the feeling which it awakened in his
bosom was rather one of regret that so many Greeks had fallen, whose
united efforts might have emancipated Asia Minor, than of joy at the
success of his countrymen.  Having forced his way through a desultory
opposition offered by the Thessalian cavalry, he crossed Mount Othrys,
and marched unopposed the rest of the way through the straits of
Thermopylae to the frontiers of Phocis and Boeotia.  Here the evil
tidings reached him of the defeat and death of his brother-in-law,
Pisander, in a great sea-fight off Cnidus in Caria (August 394 B.C.)
Conon, with the assistance of Pharnabazus, had succeeded in raising a
powerful fleet, partly Phoenician and partly Grecian, with which he
either destroyed or captured more than half of the Lacedaemonian fleet.
Agesilaus, fearing the impression which such sad news might produce
upon his men, gave out that the Lacedaemonian fleet had gained a
victory; and, having offered sacrifice as if for a victory, he ordered
an advance.

Agesilaus soon came up with the confederate army, which had prepared to
oppose him in the plain of Coronea.  The Thebans succeeded in driving
in the Orchomenians, who formed the left wing of the army of Agesilaus,
and penetrated as far as the baggage in the rear.  But on the remainder
of the line Agesilaus was victorious, and the Thebans now saw
themselves cut off from their companions, who had retreated and taken
up a position on Mount Helicon.  Facing about and forming in deep and
compact order, the Thebans sought to rejoin the main body, but they
were opposed by Agesilaus and his troops.  The shock of the conflicting
masses which ensued was one of the most terrible recorded in the annals
of Grecian warfare.  The shields of the foremost ranks were shattered,
and their spears broken, so that daggers became the only available arm.
Agesilaus, who was in the front ranks, unequal by his size and strength
to sustain so furious an onset, was flung down, trodden on, and covered
with wounds; but the devoted courage of the 50 Spartans forming his
body-guard rescued him from death.  The Thebans finally forced their
may through, but not without severe loss.  The victory of Agesilaus was
not very decisive; but the Thebans tacitly acknowledged their defeat by
soliciting the customary truce for the burial of their dead.

Agesilaus, on his arrival at Sparta, was received with the most lively
demonstrations of gratitude and esteem, and became hence-forward the
sole director of Spartan policy.

Thus in less than two months the Lacedaemonians had fought two battles
on land, and one at sea; namely, those of Corinth, Coronea, and Cnidus.
But, though they had been victorious in the land engagements, they were
so little decisive as to lead to no important result; whilst their
defeat at Cnidus produced the most disastrous consequences.  It was
followed by the loss of nearly all their maritime empire, even faster
than they had acquired it after the battle of AEgospotami.  For as
Conon and Pharnabazus sailed with their victorious fleet from island to
island, and from port to port, their approach was everywhere the signal
for the flight or expulsion of the Spartan harmosts.

In the spring of the following year (B.C. 393) Conon and Pharnabazus
sailed to the isthmus of Corinth, then occupied as a central post by
the allies.  The appearance of a Persian fleet in the Saronic gulf was
a strange sight to Grecian eyes, and one which might have served as a
severe comment on the effect of their suicidal wars.  Conon dexterously
availed himself of the hatred of Pharnabazus towards Sparta to procure
a boon for his native city.  As the satrap was on the point of
proceeding homewards, Conon obtained leave to employ the seamen in
rebuilding the fortifications of Piraeus and the long walls of Athens.
Pharnabazus also granted a large sum for the same purpose; and Conon
had thus the glory of appearing, like a second Themistocles, the
deliverer and restorer of his country.  Before the end of autumn the
walls were rebuilt.  Having thus, as it were, founded Athens a second
time, Conon sailed to the islands to lay again the foundations of an
Athenian maritime empire.

During the remainder of this and the whole of the following year (B.C.
392) the war was carried on in the Corinthian territory.

One of the most important events at this time was the destruction of a
whole Lacedaemonian MORA, or battalion, by the light-armed mercenaries
of the Athenian Iphicrates.  For the preceding two years Iphicrates had
commanded a body of mercenaries, consisting of peltasts, [So called
from the pelta, or kind of shield which they carried.]  who had been
first organised by Conon after rebuilding the walls of Athens.  For
this force Iphicrates introduced those improved arms and tactics which
form an epoch in the Grecian art of war.  His object was to combine as
far as possible the peculiar advantages of the hoplites and light-armed
troops.  He substituted a linen corslet for the coat of mail worn by
the hoplites, and lessened the shield, while he rendered the light
javelin and short sword of the peltasts more effective by lengthening
them both one-half These troops soon proved very effective.  After
gaining several victories he ventured to make a sally from Corinth, and
attacked a Lacedaemonian mora in flank and rear.  So many fell under
the darts and arrows of the peltasts that the Lacedaemonian captain
called a halt, and ordered the youngest and most active of his hoplites
to rush forward and drive off the assailants.  But their heavy arms
rendered them quite unequal to such a mode of fighting; nor did the
Lacedaemonian cavalry, which now came up, but which acted with very
little vigour and courage, produce any better effect. At length the
Lacedaemonians succeeded in reaching an eminence, where they
endeavoured to make a stand; but at this moment Callias arrived with
some Athenian hoplites from Corinth, whereupon the already disheartened
Lacedaemonians broke and fled in confusion, pursued by the peltasts,
who committed such havoc, chasing and killing some of them even in the
sea, that but very few of the whole body succeeded in effecting their

The maritime war was prosecuted with vigour.  Thrasybulus, and after
his death Iphicrates, were successful upon the coast of Asia Minor, and
made the Athenians again masters of the Hellespont.  Under these
circumstances the Lacedaemonians resolved to spare no efforts to regain
the good will of the Persians.  Antalcidas, the Lacedaemonian commander
on the Asiatic coast, entered into negotiations with Tiribazus, who had
succeeded Tithraustes in the satrapy of Ionia, in order to bring about
a general peace under the mediation of Persia.  Conducted by Tiribazus,
Antalcidas repaired to the Persian court, and prevailed an the Persian
monarch both to adopt the peace, and to declare war against those who
should reject it.  Antalcidas and Tiribazus returned to the coasts of
Asia Minor, not only armed with these powers, but provided with an
ample force to carry them into execution.  In addition to the entire
fleet of Persia, Dionysius of Syracuse had placed 20 triremes at the
service of the Lacedaemonians; and Antalcidas now sailed with a large
fleet to the Hellespont, where Iphicrates and the Athenians were still
predominant.  The overwhelming force of Antalcidas, the largest that
had been seen in the Hellespont since the battle of AEgospotami,
rendered all resistance hopeless.  The supplies of corn from the Euxine
no longer found their way to Athens:  and the Athenians, depressed at
once both by what they felt and by what they anticipated, began to long
for peace.  As without the assistance of Athens it seemed hopeless for
the other allies to struggle against Sparta, all Greece was inclined to
listen to an accommodation.

Under these circumstances deputies from the Grecian states were
summoned to meet Tiribazus; who, after exhibiting to them the royal
seal of Persia, read to them the following terms of a peace:  "King
Artaxerxes thinks it just that the cities in Asia and the islands of
Clazomenae and Cyprus should belong to him. He also thinks it just to
leave all the other Grecian cities, both small and great,
independent--except Lemnos, Imbros, and Scyros, which are to belong to
Athens, as of old.  Should any parties refuse to accept this peace, I
will make war upon them, along with those who are of the same mind,
both by land and sea, with ships and with money."  All the Grecian
states accepted these terms.

This disgraceful peace, called the PEACE OF ANTALCIDAS, was concluded
in the year B.C. 387.  By it Greece seemed prostrated at the feet of
the barbarians; for its very terms, engraven on stone and set up in the
sanctuaries of Greece, recognised the Persian king as the arbiter of
her destinies.  Although Athens cannot be entirely exonerated from the
blame of this transaction, the chief guilt rests upon Sparta, whose
designs were far deeper and more hypocritical than they appeared.
Under the specious pretext of securing the independence of the Grecian
cities, her only object was to break up the confederacies under Athens
and Thebes, and, with the assistance of Persia, to pave the way for her
own absolute dominion in Greece.

No sooner was the peace of Antalcidas concluded than Sparta, directed
by Agesilaus, the ever-active enemy of Thebes, exerted all her power to
weaken that city.  She began by proclaiming the independence of the
various Boeotian cities, and by organizing in each a local oligarchy,
adverse to Thebes and favourable to herself.  Lacedaemonian garrisons
were placed in Orchomenus and Thespiae, and Plataea was restored in
order to annoy and weaken Thebes.  Shortly afterwards the
Lacedaemonians obtained possession of Thebes itself by an act of
shameful treachery. They had declared war against Olynthus, a town
situated at the head of the Toronaic gulf, in the peninsula of the
Macedonian Chalcidice, the head of a powerful confederation which
included several of the adjacent Grecian cities.  The Thebans had
entered into an alliance with Olynthus, and had forbidden any of their
citizens to join the Lacedaemonian army destined to act against it; but
they were not strong enough to prevent its marching through their
territory.  Phoebidas, who was conducting a Lacedaemonian force against
Olynthus, halted on his way through Boeotia not far from Thebes; where
he was visited by Leontiades, one of the polemarchs of the city, and
two or three other leaders of the Lacedaemonian party in Thebes.  It
happened that the festival of the Thesmophoria was on the point of
being celebrated, during which the Cadmea, or Theban Acropolis, was
given up for the exclusive use of the women.  The opportunity seemed
favourable for a surprise; and Leontiades and Phoebidas concerted a
plot to seize it.  Whilst the festival was celebrating, Phoebidas
pretended to resume his march, but only made a circuit round the city
walls; whilst Leontiades, stealing out of the senate, mounted his
horse, and, joining the Lacedaemonian troops, conducted them towards
the Cadmea.  It was a sultry summer's afternoon, so that the very
streets were deserted; and Phoebidas, without encountering any
opposition, seized the citadel and all the women in it, to serve as
hostages for the quiet submission of the Thebans (B.C. 382).  This
treacherous act during a period of profound peace awakened the
liveliest indignation throughout Greece.  Sparta herself could not
venture to justify it openly, and Phoebidas was made the scape-goat of
her affected displeasure.  As a sort of atonement to the violated
feeling of Greece, he was censured, fined, and dismissed.  But that
this was a mere farce is evident from the fact, of his subsequent
restoration to command; and, however indignant the Lacedaemonians
affected to appear at the act of Phoebidas, they took care to reap the
fruits of it by retaining their garrison in the Cadmea.

The once haughty Thebes was now enrolled a member of the Lacedaemonian
alliance, and furnished her contingent--the grateful offering of the
new Theban government--for the war which Sparta was prosecuting with
redoubled vigour against Olynthus. This city was taken by the
Lacedaemonians in B.C. 379; the Olynthian confederacy was dissolved;
the Grecian cities belonging to it were compelled to join the
Lacedaemonian alliance; whilst the maritime towns of Macedonia were
reduced under the dominion of Amyntas, the king of Macedon.

The power of Sparta on land had now attained its greatest height. Her
unpopularity in Greece was commensurate with the extent of her harshly
administered dominion.  She was leagued on all slides with the enemies
of Grecian freedom--with the Persians, with Amyntas of Macedon, and
with Dionysius of Syracuse.  But she had now reached the turning-point
of her fortunes, and her successes, which had been earned without
scruple, were soon to be followed by misfortunes and disgrace.  The
first blow came from Thebes, where she had perpetrated her most signal

That city had been for three years in the hands of Leontiades and the
Spartan party.  During this time great discontent had grown up among
the resident citizens; and there was also the party of exasperated
exiles, who had taken refuge at Athens.  Among these exiles was
Pelopidas, a young man of birth and fortune, who had already
distinguished himself by his disinterested patriotism and ardent
character.  He now took the lead in the plans formed the the liberation
of his country, and was the heart and soul of the enterprise.  His warm
and generous heart was irresistibly attracted by everything great and
noble; and hence he was led to form a close and intimate friendship
with Epaminondas, who was several years older than himself and of a
still loftier character.  Their friendship is said to have originated
in a campaign in which they served together, when, Pelopidas having
fallen in battle apparently dead, Epaminondas protected his body at the
imminent risk of his own life.  Pelopidas afterwards endeavoured to
persuade Epaminondas to share his riches with him; and when he did not
succeed, he resolved to live on the same frugal fare as his great
friend.  A secret correspondence was opened with his friends at Thebes,
the chief of whom were Phyllidas, secretary to the polemarchs, and
Charon.  The dominant faction, besides the advantage of the actual
possession of power, was supported by a garrison of 1500
Lacedaemonians.  The enterprise, therefore, was one of considerable
difficulty and danger.  In the execution of it Phyllidas took a leading
part. It was arranged that he should give a supper to Archias and
Philippus, the two polemarchs, and after they had partaken freely of
wine the conspirators were to be introduced, disguised as women, and to
complete their work by the assassination of the polemarchs.  On the day
before the banquet, Pelopidas, with six other exiles, arrived at Thebes
from Athens, and, straggling through the gates towards dusk in the
disguise of rustics and huntsmen, arrived safely at the house of
Charon, where they remained concealed till the appointed hour.  While
the polemarchs were at table a messenger arrived from Athens with a
letter for Archias, in which the whole plot was accurately detailed.
The messenger, in accordance with his instructions, informed Archias
that the letter related to matters of serious importance.  But the
polemarch, completely engrossed by the pleasures of the table, thrust
the letter under the pillow of his couch, exclaiming, "Serious matters

The hour of their fate was now ripe.  The conspirators, disguised with
veils, and in the ample folds of female attire, were ushered into the
room.  For men in the state of the revelers the deception was complete;
but when they attempted to lift the veils from the women, their passion
was rewarded by the mortal thrust of a dagger.  After thus slaying the
two polemarchs, the conspirators went to the house of Leontiades whom
they also despatched.

The news of the revolution soon spread abroad.  Proclamations were
issued announcing that Thebes was free, and calling upon all citizens
who valued their liberty to muster in the market-place. As soon as day
dawned, and the citizens became aware that they were summoned to
vindicate their liberty, their joy and enthusiasm were unbounded.  For
the first time since the seizure of their citadel they met in public
assembly; the conspirators, being introduced, were crowned by the
priests with wreaths, and thanked in the name of their country's gods;
whilst the assembly, with grateful acclamation, unanimously nominated
Pelopidas, Charon, and Mellon as the first restored Boeotarchs.

Meanwhile the remainder of the Theban exiles, accompanied by a body of
Athenian volunteers, assembled on the frontiers of Boeotia; and, at the
first news of the success of the conspiracy, hastened to Thebes to
complete the revolution.  The Thebans, under their new Boeotarchs, were
already mounting to the assault of the Cadmea, when the Lacedaemonians
capitulated, and were allowed to march out with the honours of war.
The Athenians formed an alliance with the Thebans, and declared war
against Sparta.

From this time must be dated the era of a new political combination in
Greece.  Athens strained every nerve to organize a fresh confederacy.
Thebes did not scruple to enrol herself as one of its earliest members.
The basis on which the confederacy was formed closely resembled that of
Delos.  The cities composing it were to be independent, and to send
deputies to a congress at Athens, for the purpose of raising a common
fund for the support of a naval force.  Care was taken to banish all
recollections connected with the former unpopularity of the Athenian
empire. The name of the tribute was no longer PHOROS, but SYNTAXIS, or
"contribution."  The confederacy, which ultimately numbered 70 cities,
was chiefly organised through the exertions of Chabrias, and of
Timotheus the son of Conon.  Nor were the Thebans less zealous, amongst
whom the Spartan government had left a lively feeling of antipathy.
The military force was put in the best training, and the famous "Sacred
Band" was now for the first time instituted.  This band was a regiment
of 300 hoplites.  It was supported at the public expense and kept
constantly under arms. It was composed of young and chosen citizens of
the best families, and organized in such a manner that each man had at
his side a dear and intimate friend.  Its special duty was the defence
of the Cadmea.

The Thebans had always been excellent soldiers; but their good fortune
now gave them the greatest general that Greece had hitherto seen.
Epaminondas, who now appears conspicuously in public life, deserves the
reputation not merely of a Theban but of a Grecian hero.  Sprung from a
poor but ancient family, Epaminondas possessed all the best qualities
of his nation without that heaviness, either of body or of mind, which
characterized and deteriorated the Theban people.  By the study of
philosophy and by other intellectual pursuits his mind was enlarged
beyond the sphere of vulgar superstition, and emancipated from that
timorous interpretation of nature which caused even some of the leading
men of those days to behold a portent in the most ordinary phenomenon.
A still rarer accomplishment for a Theban was that of eloquence, which
he possessed in no ordinary degree.  These intellectual qualities were
matched with moral virtues worthy to consort with them. Though
eloquent, he was discreet; though poor, he was neither avaricious nor
corrupt; though naturally firm and courageous, he was averse to
cruelty, violence, and bloodshed; though a patriot, he was a stranger
to personal ambition, and scorned the little arts by which popularity
is too often courted.  Pelopidas, as we have already said, was his
bosom friend.  It was natural therefore, that, when Pelopidas was named
Boeotarch, Epaminondas should be prominently employed in organizing the
means of war; but it was not till some years later that his military
genius shone forth in its full lustre.

The Spartans were resolved to avenge the repulse they had received; and
in the summer of B.C. 378 Agesilaus marched with a large army into
Boeotia.  He was unable, however, to effect any thing decisive, and
subsequent invasions were attended with the like result.  The Athenians
created a diversion in their favour by a maritime war, and thus for two
years Boeotia was free from Spartan invasion, Thebes employed this time
in extending her dominion over the neighbouring cities.  One of her
most important successes during this period was the victory gained by
Pelopidas over a Lacedaemonian force near Tegyra, a village dependent
upon Orchomenus (B.C. 375).  Pelopidas had with him only the Sacred
Band and a small body of cavalry when he fell in with the
Lacedaemonians, who were nearly twice as numerous.  He did not,
however, shrink from the conflict on this account; and when one of his
men, running up to him, exclaimed, "We are fallen into the midst of the
enemy," he replied, "Why so, more than they into the midst of us?"  In
the battle which ensued the two Spartan commanders fell at the first
charge, and their men were put to the rout.  So signal a victory
inspired the Thebans with new confidence and vigour, as it showed that
Sparta was not invincible even in a pitched battle, and with the
advantage of numbers on her side.  By the year 374 B.C. the Thebans had
succeeded in expelling the Lacedaemonians from Boeotia, and revived the
Boeotian confederacy.  They also destroyed the restored city of
Plataea, and obliged its inhabitants once more to seek refuge at Athens.

The successes of the Thebans revived the jealousy and distrust of
Athens.  Prompted by these feelings, the Athenians opened negotiations
for a peace with Sparta; a resolution which was also adopted by the
majority of the allies.

A congress was accordingly opened in Sparta in the spring of 371 B.C.
The Athenians were represented by Callias and two other envoys; the
Thebans by Epaminondas, then one of the polemarchs. The terms of a
peace were agreed upon, by which the independence of the various
Grecian cities was to be recognised; and the Spartan harmosts and
garrisons everywhere dismissed.  Sparta ratified the treaty for herself
and her allies; but Athens took the oaths only for herself, and was
followed separately by her allies.  As Epaminondas refused to sign
except in the name of the Boeotian confederation, Agesilaus directed
the name of the Thebans to be struck out of the treaty, and proclaimed
them excluded from it.

The peace concluded between Sparta, Athens, and their respective
allies, was called the PEACE OF CALLIAS.  The result with regard to
Thebes and Sparta will appear in the following chapter.



In pursuance of the treaty, the Lacedaemonians withdrew their harmosts
and garrisons, whilst the Athenians recalled their fleet from the
Ionian sea.  Only one feeling prevailed at Sparta--a desire to crush
Thebes.  This city was regarded as doomed to destruction; and it was
not for a moment imagined that, single-handed, she would be able to
resist the might of Sparta.  At the time when the peace was concluded
Cleombrotus happened to be in Phocis at the head of a Lacedaemonian
army; and he now received orders to invade Boeotia without delay.  The
Thebans on their side, were equally determined on resistance.  The two
armies met on the memorable plain of Leuctra, near Thespiae.  The
forces on each side are not accurately known, but it seems probable
that the Thebans were outnumbered by the Lacedaemonians.  The military
genius of Epaminondas, however, compensated any inferiority of numbers
by novelty of tactics.  Up to this time Grecian battles had been
uniformly conducted by a general attack in line. Epaminondas now first
adopted the manoeuvre, used with such success by Napoleon in modern
times, of concentrating heavy masses on a given point of the enemy's
array.  Having formed his left wing into a dense column of 50 deep, so
that its depth was greater than its front, he directed it against the
Lacedaemonian right, containing the best troops in their army, drawn up
12 deep, and led by Cleombrotus in person.  The shock was terrible.
Cleombrotus himself was mortally wounded in the onset, and with
difficulty carried off by his comrades.  Numbers of his officers, as
well as of his men, were slain, and the whole wing was broken and
driven back to their camp.  The loss of the Thebans was small compared
with that of the Lacedaemonians.  Out of 700 Spartans in the army of
the latter, 400 had fallen; and their king also had been slain, an
event which had not occurred since the fatal day of Thermopylae.

The victory of Leuctra was gained within three weeks after the
exclusion of the Thebans from the peace of Callias.  The effect of it
throughout Greece was electrical.  It was everywhere felt that a new
military power had arisen--that the prestige of the old Spartan
discipline and tactics had departed.  Yet at Sparta itself though the
reverse was the greatest that her arms had ever sustained, the news of
it was received with an assumption of indifference characteristic of
the people.  The Ephors forbade the chorus of men, who were celebrating
in the theatre the festival of the Gymnopaedia, to be interrupted.
They contented themselves with directing the names of the slain to be
communicated to their relatives, and with issuing an order forbidding
the women to wail and mourn.  Those whose friends had fallen appeared
abroad on the morrow with joyful countenances, whilst the relatives of
the survivors seemed overwhelmed with grief and shame.

Immediately after the battle the Thebans had sent to Jason of Pherae in
Thessaly to solicit his aid against the Lacedaemonians. This despot was
one of the most remarkable men of the period.  He was Tagus, or
Generalissimo, of all Thessaly; and Macedonia was partially dependent
on him.  He was a man of boundless ambition, and meditated nothing less
than extending his dominion over the whole of Greece, for which his
central situation seemed to offer many facilities.  Upon receiving the
invitation of the Thebans, Jason immediately resolved to join them.
When he arrived the Thebans were anxious that he should unite with them
in an attack upon the Lacedaemonian camp; but Jason dissuaded them from
the enterprise, advising them not to drive the Lacedaemonians to
despair, and offering his mediation.  He accordingly succeeded in
effecting a truce, by which the Lacedaemonians were allowed to depart
from Boeotia unmolested.

According to Spartan custom, the survivors of a defeat were looked upon
as degraded men, and subjected to the penalties of civil infamy.  No
allowance was made for circumstances.  But those who had fled at
Leuctra were three hundred in number; all attempt to enforce against
them the usual penalties might prove not only inconvenient, but even
dangerous; and on the proposal of Agesilaus, they were, for this
occasion only, suspended.  The loss of material power which Sparta
sustained by the defeat was great.  The ascendency she had hitherto
enjoyed in parts north of the Corinthian gulf fell from her at once,
and was divided between Jason of Pherae and the Thebans.  Jason was
shortly afterwards assassinated.  His death was felt as a relief by
Greece, and especially by Thebes.  He was succeeded by his two
brothers, Polyphron and Polydorus; but they possessed neither his
ability nor his power.

The Athenians stood aloof from the contending parties.  They had not
received the news of the battle of Leuctra with any pleasure, for they
now dreaded Thebes more than Sparta.  But instead of helping the
latter, they endeavoured to prevent either from obtaining the supremacy
in Greece, and for this purpose called upon the other states to form a
new alliance upon the terms of the peace of Antalcidas.  Most of the
Peloponnesian states joined this new league.  Thus even the
Peloponnesian cities became independent of Sparta.  But this was not
all.  Never did any state fall with greater rapidity.  She not only
lost the dominion over states which she had exercised for centuries;
but two new political powers sprang up in the peninsula, which
threatened her own independence.

In the following year (B.C. 370) Epaminondas marched into Laconia, and
threatened Sparta itself.  The city, which was wholly unfortified, was
filled with confusion and alarm.  The women, who had never yet seen the
face of an enemy, gave vent to their fears in wailing and lamentation.
Agesilaus, however, was undismayed, and saved the state by his
vigilance and energy.  He repulsed the cavalry of Epaminondas as they
advanced towards Sparta; and so vigorous were his measures of defence,
that the Theban general abandoned all further attempt upon the city,
and proceeded southwards as far as Helos and Gythium on the coast, the
latter the port and arsenal of Sparta after laying waste with fire and
sword the valley of the Eurotas, he retraced his steps to the frontiers
of Arcadia.

Epaminondas now proceeded to carry out the two objects for which his
march had been undertaken; namely, the consolidation of the Arcadian
confederation, and the establishment of the Messenians as an
independent community.  In the prosecution of the former of these
designs the mutual jealousy of the various Arcadian cities rendered it
necessary that a new one should be founded, which should be regarded as
the capital of the confederation. Consequently, a new city was built on
the banks of the Helisson, called Megalopolis, and peopled by the
inhabitants of forty distinct Arcadian townships.  Here a synod of
deputies from the towns composing the confederation, called "The Ten
Thousand" was to meet periodically for the despatch of business.
Epaminondas next proceeded to re-establish the Messenian state.  The
Messenians had formerly lived under a dynasty of their own kings; but
for the last three centuries their land had been in the possession of
the Lacedaemonians, and they had been fugitives upon the face of the
earth.  The restoration of these exiles, dispersed in various Hellenic
colonies, to their former rights, would plant a bitterly hostile
neighbour on the very borders of Laconia.  Epaminondas accordingly
opened communications with them, and numbers of them flocked to his
standard during his march into Peloponnesus.  He now founded the town
of Messene. Its citadel was placed on the summit of Mount Ithome, which
had three centuries before been so bravely defended by the Messenians
against the Spartans.  The strength of its fortifications was long
afterwards a subject of admiration.  The territory attached to the new
city extended southwards to the Messenian gulf, and northwards to the
borders of Arcadia, comprising some of the most fertile land in

So low had Sparta sunk, that she was fain to send envoys to beg the
assistance of the Athenians.  This request was acceded to; and shortly
afterwards an alliance was formed between the two states, in which
Sparta waived all her claims to superiority and headship.  During the
next two years the Thebans continued steadily to increase their power
and influence in Greece, though no great battle was fought.  In B.C.
368 Pelopidas conducted a Theban force into Thessaly and Macedonia.  In
Thessaly he compelled Alexander, who, by the murder of his two
brothers, had become despot of Pherae and Tagus of Thessaly, to
relinquish his designs against the independence of Larissa and other
Thessalian cities, and to solicit peace.  In Macedonia he formed an
alliance with the regent Ptolemy:  and amongst the hostages given for
the observance of this treaty was the youthful Philip, son of Amyntas,
afterwards the celebrated king of Macedon, who remained for some years
at Thebes.

In the following year Pelopidas and Ismenias proceeded on an embassy to
Persia.  Ever since the peace of Antalcidas the Great King had become
the recognised mediator between the states of Greece; and his fiat
seemed indispensable to stamp the claims of that city which pretended
to the headship.  The recent achievements of Thebes might entitle her
to aspire to that position:  and at all events the alterations which
she had produced in the internal state, of Greece, by the establishment
of Megalopolis and Messene, seemed to require for their stability the
sanction of a Persian rescript.  This was obtained without difficulty,
as Thebes was now the strongest state in Greece; and it was evidently
easier to exercise Persian ascendency there by her means, than through
a weaker power.  The Persian rescript pronounced the independence of
Messene and Amphipolis; the Athenians were directed to lay up their
ships of war in ordinary; and Thebes was declared the head of Greece.

It was, in all probability, during a mission undertaken by Pelopidas
and Ismonias, for the purpose of procuring the acknowledgment of the
rescript in Thessaly and the northern parts of Greece, that they were
seized and imprisoned by Alexander of Pherae.  The Thebans immediately
despatched an army of 8000 hoplites and 600 cavalry to recover or
avenge their favourite citizen.  Unfortunately, however, they were no
longer commanded by Epaminondas.  Their present commanders were utterly
incompetent.  They were beaten and forced to retreat, and the army was
in such danger from the active pursuit of the Thessalians and
Athenians, that its destruction seemed inevitable.  Luckily, however,
Epaminondas was serving as a hoplite in the ranks.  By the unanimous
voice of the troops he was now called to the command, and succeeded in
conducting the army safely back to Thebes.  Here the unsuccessful
Boeotarchs were disgraced; Epaminondas was restored to the command, and
placed at the head of a second Theban army destined to attempt the
release of Pelopidas.  Directed by his superior skill the enterprise
proved successful, and Pelopidas (B.C. 367) returned in safety to

In B.C. 364 Pelopidas again marched into Thessaly against Alexander of
Pherae.  Strong complaints of the tyranny of that despot arrived at
Thebes, and Pelopidas, who probably also burned to avenge his private
wrongs, prevailed upon the Thebans to send him into Thessaly to punish
the tyrant.  The battle was fought on the hills of Cynoscephalae; the
troops of Alexander were routed: and Pelopidas, observing his hated
enemy endeavouring to rally them, was seized with such a transport of
rage that, regardless of his duties as a general, he rushed impetuously
forwards and challenged him to single combat.  Alexander shrunk back
within the ranks of his guards, followed impetuously by Pelopidas, who
was soon slain, fighting with desperate bravery.  Although the army of
Alexander was defeated with severe loss, the news of the death of
Pelopidas deprived the Thebans and their Thessalian allies of all the
joy which they would otherwise have felt at their victory.

Meantime a war had been carried on between Elis and Arcadia which had
led to disunion among the Arcadians themselves.  The Mantineans
supported the Eleans, who were also assisted by the Spartans; whilst
the rest of the Arcadians, and especially the Tegeans, favoured Thebes.
In B.C. 362 Epaminondas marched into Peloponnesus to support the Theban
party in Arcadia, The Spartans sent a powerful force to the assistance
of the Mantineans in whose territory the hostile armies met.  In the
battle which ensued Epaminondas formed his Boeotian troops into a
column of extraordinary depth, with which he bore down all before them.
The Mantineans and Lacedaemonians turned and fled, and the rest
followed their example.  The day was won; but Epaminondas, who fought
in the foremost ranks, fell pierced with a mortal wound. His fall
occasioned such consternation among his troops, that, although the
enemy were in full flight, they did not know how to use their
advantage, and remained rooted to the spot. Epaminondas was carried off
the field with the spear-head still fixed in his breast.  Having
satisfied himself that his shield was safe, and that the victory was
gained, he inquired for Iolaidas and Daiphantus, whom he intended to
succeed him in the command.  Being informed that both were slain:
"Then" he observed "you must make peace."  After this he ordered the
spear-head to be withdrawn; when the gush of blood which followed soon
terminated his life.  Thus died this truly great man; and never was
there one whose title to that epithet has been less disputed. Antiquity
is unanimous in his praise, and some of the first men of Greece
subsequently took him for their model.  With him the commanding
influence of Thebes began and ended.  His last advice was adopted, and
peace was concluded probably before the Theban army quitted
Peloponnesus.  Its basis was a recognition of the STATUS QUO--to leave
everything as it was, to acknowledge the Arcadian constitution and the
independence of Messene.  Sparta alone refused to join it on account of
the last article, but she was not supported by her allies.

Agesilaus had lived to see the empire of Sparta extinguished by her
hated rival.  Thus curiously had the prophecy been fulfilled which
warned Sparta of the evils awaiting her under a "lame sovereignty."
But Agesilaus had not yet abandoned all hope; and he now directed his
views towards the east as the quarter from which Spartan power might
still be resuscitated.  At the age of 80 the indomitable old man
proceeded with a force of 1000 hoplites to assist Tachos, king of
Egypt, in his revolt against Persia.  He died at Cyrene on his return
to Greece.  His body was embalmed in wax and splendidly buried in



The affairs of the Sicilian Greeks, an important branch of the Hellenic
race, deserve a passing notice.  A few years after the destruction of
the Athenian armament, Dionysius made himself master of Syracuse, and
openly seized upon the supreme power (B.C. 405).  His reign as tyrant
or despot was long and prosperous.  After conquering the Carthaginians,
who more than once invaded Sicily, he extended his dominion over a
great part of the island, and over a considerable portion of Magna
Graecia. He raised Syracuse to be one of the chief Grecian states,
second in influence, if indeed second, to Sparta alone.  Under his sway
Syracuse was strengthened and embellished with new fortifications,
docks, arsenals, and other public buildings, and became superior even
to Athens in extent and population.

Dionysius was a warm patron of literature, and was anxious to gain
distinction by his literary compositions.  In the midst of his
political and military cares he devoted himself assiduously to poetry,
and not only caused his poems to be publicly recited at the Olympic
games, but repeatedly contended for the prize of tragedy at Athens.  In
accordance with the same spirit we find him seeking the society of men
distinguished in literature and philosophy.  Plato, who visited Sicily
about the year 389 from a curiosity to see Mount AEtna, was introduced
to Dionysius by Dion.  The high moral tone of Plato's conversation did
not however prove so attractive to Dionysius as it had done to Dion;
and the philosopher was not only dismissed with aversion and dislike,
but even, it seems through the machinations of Dionysius, seized,
bound, and sold for a slave in the island of AEgina.  He was, however,
repurchased by Anniceris of Cyrene, and sent back to Athens.

Dionysius died in B.C. 367, and was succeeded by his eldest son,
commonly called the younger Dionysius, who was about 25 years of age at
the time of his father's death.  At first he listened to the counsels
of Dion, who had always enjoyed the respect and confidence of his
father.  At the advice of Dion he invited Plato to Syracuse, where the
philosopher was received with the greatest honour.  His illustrious
pupil immediately began to take lessons in geometry; superfluous dishes
disappeared from the royal table; and Dionysius even betrayed some
symptoms of a wish to mitigate the former rigours of the despotism.
But now the old courtiers took the alarm.  It was whispered to
Dionysius that the whole was a deep-laid scheme on the part of Dion for
the purpose of effecting a revolution and placing his own nephews on
the throne. [The elder Dionysius had married two wives at the same
time:  one of these was a Locrian woman named Doris; the other,
Aristomache, was a Syracusan, and the sister of Dion.  The younger
Dionysius was his elder son by Doris; but he also had children by
Aristomache.]  These accusations had the desired effect on the mind of
Dionysius, who shortly afterwards expelled Dion from Sicily.  Plato
with difficulty obtained permission to return to Greece (B.C. 366).
Dionysius now gave way to his vices without restraint, and became an
object of contempt to the Syracusans. Dion saw that the time had come
for avenging his own wrongs as well as those of his country.
Collecting a small force, he sailed to Sicily, and suddenly appeared
before the gates of Syracuse during the absence of Dionysius on an
expedition to the coasts of Italy.  The inhabitants, filled with joy,
welcomed Dion as their deliverer:  and Dionysius on his return from
Italy found himself compelled to quit Syracuse (B.C. 356), leaving Dion
undisputed master of the city.  The latter was now in a condition to
carry out all those exalted notions of political life which he had
sought to instil into the mind of Dionysius.  He seems to have
contemplated some political changes; but his immediate and practical
acts were tyrannical, and were rendered still more unpopular by his
overbearing manners.  His unpopularity continued to increase, till at
length one of his bosom friends--the Athenian Callippus--seized the
opportunity to mount to power by his murder, and caused him to be
assassinated in his own house. This event took place in 353, about
three years after the expulsion of the Dionysian dynasty.  Callippus
contrived to retain the sovereign power only a twelvemonth.  A period
of anarchy followed, during which Dionysius made himself master of the
city by treachery, about B.C. 346.  Dionysius, however, was not able to
re-establish himself firmly in his former power. Most of the other
cities of Sicily had shaken off the yoke of Syracuse, and were governed
by petty despots.  Meantime the Carthaginians prepared to take
advantage of the distracted condition of Sicily.  In the extremity of
their sufferings, several of the Syracusan exiles appealed for aid to
Corinth, their mother-city.  The application was granted, and Timoleon
was appointed to command an expedition destined for the relief of

Timoleon was distinguished for gentleness as well as for courage, but
towards traitors and despots his hatred was intense.  He had once saved
the life of his elder brother Timophanes in battle at the imminent
peril of his own; but when Timophanes, availing himself of his
situation as commander of the garrison in the Acrocorinthus,
endeavoured to enslave his country, Timoleon did not hesitate to
consent to his death.  Twice before had Timoleon pleaded with his
brother, beseeching him not to destroy the liberties of his country;
but when Timophanes turned a deaf ear to those appeals, Timoleon
connived at the action of his friends, who put him to death, whilst he
himself, bathed in a flood of tears, stood a little way aloof.  The
great body of the citizens regarded the conduct of Timoleon with love
and admiration.  In the mind of Timoleon, however, their approving
verdict was far more than outweighed by the reproaches and execrations
of his mother.  For many years nothing could prevail upon him to return
to public life.  He buried, himself in the country far from the haunts
of men, till a chance voice in the Corinthian assembly nominated him as
the leader of the expedition against Dionysius.

Roused by the nature of the cause, and the exhortations of his friends,
Timoleon accepted the post thus offered to him.  His success exceeded
his hopes.  As soon as he appeared before Syracuse, Dionysius, who
appears to have abandoned all hope of ultimate success, surrendered the
citadel into his hands, on condition of being allowed to depart in
safety to Corinth (B.C. 343).  Dionysius passed the remainder of his
life at Corinth, where he is said to have displayed some remnants of
his former luxury by the fastidious taste which he showed in the choice
of his viands, unguents, dress, and furniture; whilst his literary
inclinations manifested themselves in teaching the public singers and
actors, and in opening a school for boys.

Timoleon also expelled the other tyrants from the Sicilian cities, and
gained a great victory over the Carthaginians at the river Crimesus (or
Crimissus).  He restored a republican constitution to Syracuse; and his
first public act was to destroy the impregnable fortifications of the
citadel of Ortygia, the stronghold of the elder and the younger
Dionysius.  All the rewards which Timoleon received for his great
services were a house in Syracuse, and some landed property in the
neighbourhood of the city.  He now sent for his family from Corinth,
and became a Syracusan citizen.  He continued, however, to retain,
though in a private station, the greatest influence in the state.
During the latter part of his life, though he was totally deprived of
sight, yet, when important affairs were discussed in the assembly, it
was customary to send for Timoleon, who was drawn in a car into the
middle of the theatre amid the shouts and affectionate greetings of the
assembled citizens.  When the tumult of his reception had subsided he
listened patiently to the debate.  The opinion which he pronounced was
usually ratified by the vote of the assembly; and he then left the
theatre amidst the same cheers which had greeted his arrival.  In this
happy and honoured condition he breathed his last in B.C. 336, a few
years after the battle of Crimesus.  He was splendidly interred at the
public cost, whilst the tears of the whole Syracusan population
followed him to the grave.



The internal dissensions of Greece produced their natural fruits; and
we shall have now to relate the downfall of her independence and her
subjugation by a foreign power.  This power was Macedonia, an obscure
state to the north of Thessaly, hitherto overlooked and despised, and
considered as altogether barbarous, and without the pale of Grecian
civilization.  But though the Macedonians were not Greeks, their
sovereigns claimed to be descended from an Hellenic race, namely, that
of Temenus of Argos; and it is said that Alexander I. proved his Argive
descent previously to contending at the Olympic games.  Perdiccas is
commonly regarded as the founder of the monarchy; of the history of
which, however, little is known till the reign of Amyntas I., his fifth
successor, who was contemporary with the Pisistratidae at Athens.
Under Amyntas, who submitted to the satrap Megabyzus, Macedonia became
subject to Persia, and remained so till after the battle of Plataea.
The reigns of the succeeding sovereigns present little that is
remarkable, with the exception of that of Archelaus (B.C. 413).  This
monarch transferred his residence from AEgae to Pella, which thus
became the capital.  He entertained many literary men at his court,
such as Euripides, who ended his days at Pella.  Archelaus was
assassinated in B.C. 399, and the crown devolved upon Amyntas II., a
representative of the ancient line.  Amyntas left three sons, the
youngest being the celebrated Philip, of whom we have now to speak.

It has been already mentioned that the youthful Philip was one of the
hostages delivered to the Thebans as security for the peace effected by
Pelopidas.  His residence at Thebes gave him some tincture of Grecian
philosophy and literature; but the most important lesson which he
learned at that city was the art of war, with all the improved tactics
introduced by Epaminondas. Philip succeeded to the throne at the age of
23 (B.C. 359), and displayed at the beginning of his reign his
extraordinary energy and abilities.  After defeating the Illyrians he
established a standing army, in which discipline was preserved by the
severest punishments.  He introduced the far-famed Macedonian phalanx,
which was 16 men deep, armed with long projecting spears.

Philip's views were first turned towards the eastern frontiers of his
dominions, where his interests clashed with those of the Athenians.  A
few years before the Athenians had made various unavailing attempts to
obtain possession of Amphipolis, once the jewel of their empire, but
which they had never recovered since its capture by Brasidas in the
eighth year of the Peloponnesian war.  Its situation at the mouth of
the Strymon rendered it also valuable to Macedonia, not only as a
commercial port, but as opening a passage into Thrace.  The Olynthians
were likewise anxious to enrol Amphipolis as a member of their
confederacy, and accordingly proposed to the Athenians to form an
alliance for the purpose of defending Amphipolis against their mutual
enemy.  An alliance between these two powerful states would have proved
an insurmountable obstacle to Philip's views:  and it was therefore
absolutely necessary to prevent this coalition.  Here we have the first
instance of Philip's skill and duplicity in negotiation. By secretly
promising the Athenians that he would put Amphipolis into their hands
if they would give him possession of Pydna, he induced them to reject
the overtures of the Olynthians; and by ceding to the latter the town
of Anthemus, he bought off their opposition.  He now laid siege to
Amphipolis, which, being thus left unaided, fell into his hands (B.C.
358).  He then forthwith marched against Pydna, which surrendered to
him; but on the ground that it was not the Athenians who had put him in
possession of this town, he refused to give up Amphipolis to them.

Philip had now just reason to dread the enmity of the Athenians, and
accordingly it was his policy to court the favour of the Olynthians,
and to prevent them from renewing their negotiations with the
Athenians.  In order to separate them more effectually, he assisted the
Olynthians in recovering Potidaea, which had formerly belonged to their
confederacy, but was now in the hands of the Athenians.  On the capture
of the town he handed it over to the Olynthians.  Plutarch relates that
the capture of Potidaea was accompanied with three other fortunate
events in the life of Philip, namely, the prize gained by his chariot
at the Olympic games, a victory of his general Parmenio over the
Illyrians, and the birth of his son Alexander.  These events happened
in B.C. 356.

Philip now crossed the Strymon, on the left bank of which lay Pangaeus,
a range of mountains abounding in gold-mines.  He conquered the
district, and founded there a new town called Philippi, on the site of
the ancient Thracian town of Crenides. By improved methods of working
the mines he made them yield an annual revenue of 1000 talents, nearly

Meanwhile Athens was engaged in a war with her allies, which has been
called the SOCIAL WAR; and which was, perhaps, the reason why she was
obliged to look quietly on whilst Philip was thus aggrandizing himself
at her expense.  This war broke out in B.C. 357.  The chief causes of
it seem to have been the contributions levied upon the allies by the
Athenian generals.  The war lasted three years; and as Artaxerxes, the
Persian king, threatened to support the allies with a fleet of 300
ships, the Athenians were obliged to consent to a disadvantageous
peace, which secured the independence of the more important allies
(B.C. 355).

Another war, which had been raging during the same time, tended still
further to exhaust the Grecian states, and thus pave the way for
Philip's progress to the supremacy.  This was the SACRED WAR, which
broke out between Thebes and Phocis in the same year as the Social War
(B.C. 357).  An ill-feeling had long subsisted between those two
countries.  The Thebans now availed themselves of the influence which
they possessed in the Amphictyonic council to take vengeance upon the
Phocians and accordingly induced this body to impose a heavy fine upon
the latter people, because they had cultivated a portion of the
Cirrhaean plain, which had been consecrated to the Delphian god, and
was to lie waste for ever. The Phocians pleaded that the payment of the
fine would ruin them; but instead of listening to their remonstrances,
the Amphictyons doubled the amount, and threatened, in case of their
continued refusal to reduce them to the condition of serfs.  Thus
driven to desperation, the Phocians resolved to complete the sacrilege
with which they had been branded, by seizing the very temple of Delphi
itself.  The leader and counsellor of this enterprise was Philomelus,
who, with a force of no more than 2000 men, surprised and took Delphi.
At first, however, he carefully abstained from touching the sacred
treasure; but being hard pressed by the Thebans and their allies, he
threw off the scruples which he had hitherto assumed, and announced
that the sacred treasures should be converted into a fund for the
payment of mercenaries.  On the death of Philomelus, who fell in
battle, the command was assumed by his brother Onomarchus, who carried
on the war with vigour and success.  But he was checked in his career
by Philip, who had previously been extending his dominion over
Thessaly, and who now assumed the character of a champion of the
Delphic god, and made his soldiers wear wreaths of laurel plucked in
the groves of Tempe.  He penetrated into Thessaly, and encountered the
Phocians near the gulf of Pagassae.  In the battle which ensued,
Onomarchus was slain, and his army totally defeated (B.C. 352).  This
victory made Philip master of Thessaly.  He now directed his march
southwards with the view of subduing the Phocians; but upon reaching
Thermopylae he found the pass guarded by a strong Athenian force, and
was compelled, or considered it more prudent, to retreat.

After his return from Thessaly Philip's views were directed towards
Thrace and the Chersonese.  It was at this juncture that Demosthenes
stepped forwards as the proclaimed opponent of Philip, and delivered
the first of those celebrated orations which from their subject have
been called "the Philippics."  This most famous of all the Grecian
orators was born in B.C. 382-381. Having lost his father at the early
age of seven, his guardians abused their trust, and defrauded him of
the greater part of his paternal inheritance.  This misfortune,
however, proved one of the causes which tended to make him an orator.
Demosthenes, as he advanced towards manhood, perceived with indignation
the conduct of his guardians, for which he resolved to make them
answerable when the proper opportunity should arrive, by accusing them
himself.  His first attempt to speak in public proved a failure, and he
retired from the bema amidst the hootings and laughter of the citizens.
The more judicious and candid among his auditors perceived, however,
marks of genius in his speech, and rightly attributed his failure to
timidity and want of due preparation.  Eunomus, an aged citizen, who
met him wandering about the Piraeus in a state of dejection at his ill
success, bade him take courage and persevere.  Demosthenes now withdrew
awhile from public life, and devoted himself perseveringly to remedy
his defects.  They were such as might be lessened, if not removed, by
practice, and consisted chiefly of a weak voice, imperfect
articulation, and ungraceful and inappropriate action. He derived much
assistance from Satyrus the actor, who exercised him in reciting
passages from Sophocles and Euripides.  He studied the best rhetorical
treatises and orations, and is said to have copied the work of
Thucydides with his own hand no fewer than eight times.  He shut
himself up for two or three months together in a subterranean chamber
in order to practise composition and declamation.  His perseverance was
crowned with success; and he who on the first attempt had descended
from the bema amid the ridicule of the crowd, became at last the most
perfect orator the world has ever seen.

Demosthenes had established himself as a public speaker before the
period which we have now reached; but it is chiefly in connexion with
Philip that we are to view him as a statesman as well as an orator.
Philip had shown his ambition by the conquest of Thessaly, and by the
part he had taken in the Sacred War; and Demosthenes now began to
regard him as the enemy of the liberties of Athens and of Greece.  In
his first "Philippic" Demosthenes tried to rouse his countrymen to
energetic measures against this formidable enemy; but his warnings and
exhortations produced little effect, for the Athenians were no longer
distinguished by the same spirit of enterprise which had characterized
them in the days of their supremacy.  No important step was taken to
curb the growing power of Philip; and it was the danger of Olynthus
which first induced the Athenians to prosecute the war with a little
more energy.  In 350 B.C., Philip having captured a town in Chalcidice,
Olynthus began to tremble for her own safety, and sent envoys to Athens
to crave assistance.  Olynthus was still at the head of thirty-two
Greek towns, and the confederacy was a sort of counterpoise to the
power of Philip.  It was on this occasion that Demosthenes delivered
his three Olynthaic orations, in which he warmly advocated an alliance
with Olynthus.

Demosthenes was opposed by a strong party, with which Phocion commonly
acted.  Phocion is one of the most singular and original characters in
Grecian history.  He viewed the multitude and their affairs with a
scorn which he was at no pains to disguise; receiving their anger with
indifference, and their praises with contempt.  His known probity also
gave him weight with the assembly.  He was the only statesman of whom
Demosthenes stood in awe; who was accustomed to say, when Phocion rose,
"Here comes the pruner of my periods."  But Phocion's desponding views,
and his mistrust of the Athenian people, made him an ill statesman at a
period which demanded the most active patriotism.  He doubtless injured
his country by contributing to check the more enlarged and patriotic
views of Demosthenes; and though his own conduct was pure and
disinterested, he unintentionally threw his weight on the side of those
who, like Demades and others, were actuated by the basest motives.
This division of opinion rendered the operations of the Athenians for
the aid of the Olynthians languid and desultory.  Town after town of
the confederacy fell before Philip; and in 347 Olynthus itself was
taken.  The whole of the Chalcidian peninsula thus became a Macedonian

The prospects of Athens now became alarming, her possessions in the
Chersonese were threatened, as well as the freedom of the Greek towns
upon the Hellespont.  The Athenians had supported the Phocians in the
Sacred War, and were thus at war with Thebes.  In order to resist
Philip the attention of the Athenians was now directed towards a
reconciliation with Thebes, especially since the treasures of Delphi
were nearly exhausted, and on the other hand the war was becoming every
year more and more burthensome to the Thebans.  Nor did it seem
improbable that a peace might be concluded not only between those two
cities, but among the Grecian states generally.  It seems to have been
this aspect of affairs that induced Philip to make several indirect
overtures to the Athenians in the summer of B.C. 347.  In spite of
subsidies from Delphi the war had been very onerous to them, and they
received these advances with joy, and eventually agreed to the terms of
a peace.  Having thus gained over the Athenians, Philip marched through
Thermopylae, and entered Phocis, which surrendered unconditionally at
his approach.  He then occupied Delphi, where he assembled the
Amphictyons to pronounce sentence upon those who bad been concerned in
the sacrilege committed there.  The council decreed that all the cities
of Phocia, except Abae, should be destroyed, and their inhabitants
scattered into villages containing not more than fifty houses each.
Sparta was deprived of her share in the Amphictyonic privileges; the
two votes in the council possessed by the Phocians were transferred to
the kings of Macedonia; and Philip was to share with the Thebans and
Thessalians the honour of presiding at the Pythian games (B.C. 346).

The result of the Sacred War rendered Macedon the leading state in
Greece.  Philip at once acquired by it military glory, a reputation for
piety, and an accession of power.  His ambitious designs were now too
plain to be mistaken.  The eyes of the blindest among the Athenians
were at last opened; the promoters of the peace which had been
concluded with Philip incurred the hatred and suspicion of the people;
whilst on the other hand Demosthenes rose higher than ever in public

Philip was now busy with preparations for the vast projects which he
contemplated, and which embraced an attack upon the Athenian colonies,
as well as upon the Persian empire.  For this purpose he had organized
a considerable naval force as well as an army; and in the spring of 342
B.C. he set out on an expedition against Thrace.  His progress soon
appeared to menace the Chersonese and the Athenian possessions in that
quarter; and at length the Athenian troops under Diopithes came into
actual collision with the Macedonians.  In the following year Philip
began to attack the Greek cities north of the Hellespont.  He first
besieged and captured Selymbria on the Propontis, and then turned his
arms against Perinthus and Byzantium.  This roused the Athenians to
more vigorous action.  War was formally declared against Philip, and a
fleet equipped for the immediate relief of Byzantium. Philip was forced
to raise the siege not only of that town but of Perinthus also, and
finally to evacuate the Chersonesus altogether.  For these acceptable
services the grateful Byzantians erected a colossal statue in honour of

After this check Philip undertook an expedition against the Thracians;
but meantime his partisans procured for him an opportunity of marching
again into the very heart of Greece.

Amphissa, a Locrian town, having been declared by the Amphictyonic
council guilty of sacrilege, Philip was appointed by the council as
their general to inflict punishment on the inhabitants of the guilty
town.  Accordingly he marched southwards early in B.C. 338; but instead
of proceeding in the direction of Amphissa, he suddenly seized Elatea,
the chief town in the eastern part of Phocis, thus showing clearly
enough that his real design was against Boeotia and Attica.
Intelligence of this event reached Athens at night, and caused
extraordinary alarm, In the following morning Demosthenes pressed upon
the assembly the necessity for making the most vigorous preparations
for defence, and especially recommended them to send an embassy to
Thebes, in order to persuade the Thebans to unite with them against the
common enemy.

The details of the war that followed are exceedingly obscure. Philip
appears to have again opened negotiations with the Thebans, which
failed; and we then find the combined Theban and Athenian armies
marching out to meet the Macedonians.  The decisive battle was fought
on the 7th of August, in the plain of Chaeronea in Boeotia, near the
frontier of Phocis (B.C. 338).  In the Macedonian army was Philip's
son, the youthful Alexander, who was intrusted with the command of one
of the wings; and it was a charge made by him on the Theban sacred band
that decided the fortune of the day.  The sacred band was cut to
pieces, without flinching from the ground which it occupied, and the
remainder of the combined army was completely routed.  Demosthenes, who
was serving as a foot-soldier in the Athenian ranks, has been absurdly
reproached with cowardice because he participated in the general flight.

The battle of Chaeronea crushed the liberties of Greece, and made it in
reality a province of the Macedonian monarchy.  To Athens herself the
blow was almost as fatal as that of AEgospotami.  But the manner in
which Philip used his victory excited universal surprise.  He dismissed
the Athenian prisoners without ransom, and voluntarily offered a peace
on terms more advantageous than the Athenians themselves would have
ventured to propose.  Philip, indeed, seems to have regarded Athens
with a sort of love and respect, as the centre of art and refinement,
for his treatment of the Thebans was very different, and marked by
great harshness and severity.  They were compelled to recall their
exiles, in whose hands the government was placed, whilst a Macedonian
garrison was established in the Cadmea.

A congress of the Grecian states was now summoned at Corinth, in which
war was declared against Persia, and Philip was appointed generalissimo
of the expedition.

In the spring of B.C. 336 Philip sent some forces into Asia, under the
command of Attalus, Parmenio, and Amyntas, which were designed to
engage the Greek cities of Asia in the expedition. But before quitting
Macedonia, Philip determined to provide for the safety of his dominions
by celebrating the marriage of his daughter with Alexander of Epirus.
It was solemnized at AEgae, the ancient capital of Macedonia, with much
pomp, including banquets, and musical and theatrical entertainments.
The day after the nuptials was dedicated to theatrical entertainments.
The festival was opened with a procession of the images of the twelve
Olympian deities, with which was associated that of Philip himself.
The monarch took part in the procession, dressed in white robes, and
crowned with a chaplet.  Whilst thus proceeding through the city, a
youth suddenly rushed out of the crowd, and, drawing a long sword which
he had concealed under his clothes, plunged it into Philip's side, who
fell dead upon the spot.  The assassin was pursued by some of the royal
guards, and, having stumbled in his flight, was despatched before he
could reach the place where horses had been provided for his escape.
His name was Pausanias.  He was a youth of noble birth, and we are told
that his motive for taking Philip's life was that the king had refused
to punish an outrage which Attalus had committed against him.

Thus fell Philip of Macedon in the twenty-fourth year of his reign and
forty-seventh of his age (B.C. 336).  When we reflect upon his
achievements, and how, partly by policy and partly by arms, he
converted his originally poor and distracted kingdom into the mistress
of Greece, we must acknowledge him to have been an extraordinary, if
not a great man, in the better sense of that term.  His views and his
ambition were certainly as large as those of his son Alexander, but he
was prevented by a premature death from carrying them out; nor would
Alexander himself have been able to perform his great achievements had
not Philip handed down to him all the means and instruments which they



Alexander, at the time of his father's death, was in his twentieth
year, having been born in B.C. 356.  His early education was entrusted
to Leonidas, a kinsman of his mother, a man of severe and parsimonious
character, who trained him with Spartan simplicity and hardihood;
whilst Lysimachus, a sort of under-governor, early inspired the young
prince with ambitious notions, by teaching him to love and emulate the
heroes of the Iliad.  According to the traditions of his family, the
blood of Achilles actually ran in the veins of Alexander; [His mother
Olympias was the daughter of Neoptolemus, king of Epirus who claimed
descent from Pyrrhus, the son of Achilles.]  and Lysimachus nourished
the feeling which that circumstance was calculated to awaken by giving
him the name of that hero, whilst he called Philip Peleus, and himself
Phoenix.  But the most striking feature in Alexander's education was,
that he had Aristotle for his teacher, and that thus the greatest
conqueror of the material world received the instructions of him who
has exercised the most extensive empire over the human intellect.  It
was probably at about the age of thirteen that he first received the
lessons of Aristotle, and they can hardly have continued more than
three years, for Alexander soon left the schools for the employments of
active life.  At the age of sixteen we find him regent of Macedonia
during Philip's absence; and at eighteen we have seen him filling a
prominent military post at the battle of Chaeronea.

On succeeding to the throne Alexander announced his intention of
prosecuting his father's expedition into Asia; but it was first
necessary for him to settle the affairs of Greece, where the news of
Philip's assassination, and the accession of so young a prince, had
excited in several states a hope of shaking off the Macedonian yoke.
Athens was the centre of these movements. Demosthenes, although in
mourning for the recent loss of an only daughter, now came abroad
dressed in white, and crowned with a chaplet, in which attire he was
seen sacrificing at one of the public altars.  He also moved a decree
that Philip's death should be celebrated by a public thanksgiving, and
that religious honours should be paid to the memory of Pausanias.  At
the same time he made vigorous preparations for action.  He despatched
envoys to the principal Grecian states for the purpose of inciting them
against Macedon.  Sparta, and the whole Peloponnesus, with the
exception of Megalopolis and Messenia, seemed inclined to shake off
their compulsory alliance.  Even the Thebans rose against the dominant
oligarchy, although the Cadmea was in the hands of the Macedonians.

The activity of Alexander disconcerted all these movements. Having
marched through Thessaly, he assembled the Amphictyonic council at
Thermopylae, who conferred upon him the command with which they had
invested his father during the Sacred War.  He then advanced rapidly
upon Thebes, and thus prevented the meditated revolution, The Athenians
sent ambassadors to deprecate his wrath, who were graciously accepted.
He then convened a general congress at Corinth, where he was appointed
generalissimo for the Persian war in place of his father.  Most of the
philosophers and persons of note near Corinth came to congratulate him
on this occasion; but Diognes of Sinope who was then living in one of
the suburbs of Corinth, did not make his appearance.  Alexander
therefore resolved to pay a visit to the eccentric cynic, whom he found
basking in the sun.  On the approach of Alexander with a numerous
retinue, Diogenes raised himself up a little, and the monarch affably
inquired how he could serve him?  "By standing out of my sunshine,"
replied the churlish philosopher.  Alexander was stung with surprise at
a behaviour to which he was so little accustomed; but whilst his
courtiers were ridiculing the manners of the cynic, he turned to them
and said, "Were I not Alexander, I should like to be Diogenes."

The result of the Congress might be considered a settlement of the
affairs of Greece.  Alexander then returned to Macedonia in the hope of
being able to begin his Persian expedition in the spring of B.C. 335;
but reports of disturbances among the Thracians and Triballians
diverted his attention to that quarter. He therefore crossed Mount
Haemus (the Balkan) and marched into the territory of the Triballians,
defeated their forces, and pursued them to the Danube, which he
crossed.  After acquiring a large booty he regained the banks of the
Danube, and thence marched against the Illyrians and Taulantians, whom
he speedily reduced to obedience.

During Alexander's absence on these expeditions no tidings were heard
of him for a considerable time, and a report of his death was
industriously spread in Southern Greece.  The Thebans rose and besieged
the Macedonian garrison in the Cadmea, at the same time inviting other
states to declare their independence. Demosthenes was active in aiding
the movement.  He persuaded the Athenians to furnish the Thebans with
subsidies and to assure them of their support and alliance.  But the
rapidity of Alexander again crushed the insurrection in the bud.
Before the Thebans discovered that the report of his death was false he
had already arrived at Onchestus in Boeotia.  Alexander was willing to
afford them an opportunity for repentance, and marched slowly to the
foot of the Cadmea.  But the leaders of the insurrection, believing
themselves irretrievably compromised, replied with taunts to
Alexander's proposals for peace, and excited the people to the most
desperate resistance.  An engagement was prematurely brought on by one
of the generals of Alexander, in which some of the Macedonian troops
were put to the rout; but Alexander, coming up with the phalanx, whilst
the Thebans were in the disorder of pursuit, drove them back in turn
and entered the gates along with them, when a fearful massacre ensued
committed principally by the Thracians in Alexander's service.  Six
thousand Thebans are said to have been slain, and thirty thousand were
made prisoners.  The doom of the conquered city was referred to the
allies, who decreed her destruction.  The grounds of the verdict bear
the impress of a tyrannical hypocrisy.  They rested on the conduct of
the Thebans during the Persian war, on their treatment of Plataea, and
on their enmity to Athens.  The inhabitants were sold as slaves, and
all the houses, except that of Pindar, were levelled with the ground.
The Cadmea was preserved to be occupied by a Macedonian garrison.
Thebes seems to have been thus harshly treated as an example to the
rest of Greece, for towards the other states, which were now eager to
make their excuses and submission, Alexander showed much forbearance
and lenity.  The conduct of the Athenians exhibits them deeply sunk in
degradation.  When they heard of the chastisement indicted upon Thebes,
they immediately voted, on the motion of Demosthenes, that ambassadors
should be sent to congratulate Alexander on his safe return from his
northern expeditions, and on his recent success.  Alexander in reply
wrote a letter, demanding that eight or ten of the leading Athenian
orators should be delivered up to him.  At the head of the list was
Demosthenes.  In this dilemma, Phocion, who did not wish to speak upon
such a question, was loudly called upon by the people for his opinion;
when he rose and said that the persons whom Alexander demanded had
brought the state into such a miserable plight that they deserved to be
surrendered, and that for his own part he should be very happy to die
for the commonwealth.  At the same time he advised them to try the
effect of intercession with Alexander; and it was at last only by his
own personal application to that monarch with whom he was a great
favourite, that the orators were spared.  According to another account,
however, the wrath of Alexander was appeased by the orator Demades, who
received from the Athenians a reward of five talents for his services.
It was at this time that Alexander is said to have sent a present of
100 talents to Phocion.  But Phocion asked the persons who brought the
money--"Why he should be selected for such a bounty?"   "Because," they
replied, "Alexander considers you the only just and honest man."
"Then," said Phocion, "let him suffer me to be what I seem, and to
retain that character." And when the envoys went to his house and
beheld the frugality with which he lived, they perceived that the man
who refused such a gift was wealthier than he who offered it.

Having thus put the affairs of Greece on a satisfactory footing,
Alexander marched for the Hellespont in the spring of B.C. 334, leaving
Antipater regent of Macedonia in his absence, with a force of 12,000
foot and 1500 horse.  Alexander's own army consisted of only about
50,000 foot and 5000 horse.  Of the infantry about 12,000 were
Macedonians, and these composed the pith of the celebrated Macedonian
phalanx.  Such was the force with which he proposed to attack the
immense but ill-cemented empire of Persia, which, like the empires of
Turkey or Austria in modern times, consisted of various nations and
races with different religions and manners, and speaking different
languages; the only bond of union being the dominant military power of
the ruling nation, which itself formed only a small numerical portion
of the empire.  The remote provinces, like those of Asia Minor, were
administered by satraps and military governors who enjoyed an almost
independent authority.  Before Alexander departed he distributed most
of the crown property among his friends, and when Perdiccas asked him
what he had reserved for himself he replied, "My hopes."

A march of sixteen days brought Alexander to Sestos, where a large
fleet and a number of transports had been collected for the embarkation
of his army.  He steered with his own hand the vessel in which he
sailed towards the very spot where the Achaeans were said to have
landed when proceeding to the Trojan war.  He was, as we have said, a
great admirer of Homer, a copy of whose works he always carried with
him; and on landing on the Asiatic coast he made it his first business
to visit the plain of Troy.  He then proceeded to Sigeum, where he
crowned with a garland the pillar said to mark the tumulus of his
mythical ancestor Achilles, and, according to custom, ran round it
naked with his friends.

Alexander then marched northwards along the coast of the Propontis.
The satraps of Lydia and Ionia, together with other Persian generals,
were encamped on the river Granicus, with a force of 20,000 Greek
mercenaries, and about an equal number of native cavalry, with which
they prepared to dispute the passage of the river.  A Rhodian, named
Memnon, had the chief command. The veteran general Parmenio advised
Alexander to delay the attack till the following morning; to which he
replied, that it would be a bad omen at the beginning of his
expedition, if, after passing the Hellespont, he should be stopped by a
paltry stream. Thereupon he directed his cavalry to cross the river,
and followed himself at the head of the phalanx.  The passage, however,
was by no means easy.  The stream was in many parts so deep as to be
hardly fordable, and the opposite bank was steep and rugged.  The
cavalry had great difficulty in maintaining their ground till Alexander
came up to their relief.  He immediately charged into the thickest of
the fray, and exposed himself so much that his life was often in
imminent danger, and on one occasion was saved only by the
interposition of his friend Clitus.  Having routed the Persians, he
next attacked the Greek mercenaries, 2000 of whom were made prisoners,
and the rest nearly all cut to pieces, In this engagement he killed two
Persian officers with his own hand.

Alexander now marched southwards towards Sardis, which surrendered
before he came within sight of its walls.  Having left a garrison in
that city, he arrived after a four days' march before Ephesus, which
likewise capitulated on his approach. Magnesia, Tralles, and Miletus
next fell into his hands, the last after a short siege.  Halicarnassus
made more resistance.  It was obliged to be regularly approached; but
at length Memnon, finding it no longer tenable, set fire to it in the
night, and crossed over to Cos.  Alexander caused it to be razed to the
ground, and pursued his march along the southern coast of Asia Minor,
with the view of seizing those towns which might afford shelter to a
Persian fleet.  The winter was now approaching, and Alexander sent a
considerable part of his army under Parmenio into winter-quarters at
Sardis.  He also sent back to Macedonia such officers and soldiers as
had been recently married, on condition that they should return in the
spring with what reinforcements they could raise; and with the same
view he despatched an officer to recruit in the Peloponnesus.
Meanwhile he himself with a chosen body proceeded along the coasts of
Lycia and Pamphylia, having instructed Parmenio to rejoin him in
Phrygia in the spring, with the main body.  After he had crossed the
Xanthus most of the Lycian towns tendered their submission.  On the
borders of Lycia and Pamphylia, Mount Climax, a branch of the Taurus
range, runs abruptly into the sea, leaving only a narrow passage at its
foot, which is frequently overflowed.  This was the case at the time of
Alexander's approach.  He therefore sent his main body by a long and
difficult road across the mountains to Perge; but he himself who loved
danger for its own sake, proceeded with a chosen band along the shore,
wading through water that was breast-high for nearly a whole day.  Then
forcing his way northwards through the barbarous tribes which inhabited
the mountains of Pisidia, he encamped in the neighbourhood of Gordium
in Phrygia.  Here he was rejoined by Parmenio and by the new levies
from Greece.  Gordium had been the capital of the early Phrygian kings,
and in it was preserved with superstitious veneration the chariot or
waggon in which the celebrated Midas, the son of Gordius, together with
his parents, had entered the town, and in conformity with an oracle had
been elevated to the monarchy.  An ancient prophecy promised the
sovereignty of Asia to him who should untie the knot of bark which
fastened the yoke of the waggon to the pole.  Alexander repaired to the
Acropolis, where the waggon was preserved, to attempt this adventure.
Whether he undid the knot by drawing out a peg, or cut it through with
his sword, is a matter of doubt; but that he had fulfilled the
prediction was placed beyond dispute that very night by a great storm
of thunder and lightning.

In the spring of 333 Alexander pursued his march eastwards, and on
arriving at Ancyra received the submission of the Paphlagonians.  He
then advanced through Cappadocia without resistance; and forcing his
way through the passes of Mount Taurus (the PYLAE CILICIAE), he
descended into the plains of Cilicia.  Hence he pushed on rapidly to
Tarsus, which he found abandoned by the enemy.  Whilst still heated
with the march Alexander plunged into the clear but cold stream of the
Cydnus, which runs by the town.  The result was a fever, which soon
became so violent as to threaten his life.  An Acarnanian physician,
named Philip, who accompanied him, prescribed a remedy; but at the same
time Alexander received a letter informing him that Philip had been
bribed by Darius, the Persian king, to poison him.  He had however, too
much confidence in the trusty Philip to believe the accusation and
handed him the letter whilst he drank the draught.  Either the
medicine, or Alexander's youthful constitution, at length triumphed
over the disorder. After remaining some time at Tarsus, he continued
his march along the coast to Mallus, where he first received certain
tidings of the great Persian army, commanded by Darius in person.  It
is said to have consisted of 600,000 fighting men, besides all that
train of attendants which usually accompanied the march of a Persian
monarch.  Alexander found Darius encamped near Issus on the right bank
of the little river Pinarus.  The Persian king could hardly have been
caught in a more unfavourable position, since the narrow and rugged
plain between Mount Amanus and the sea afforded no scope for the
evolutions of large bodies, and thus entirely deprived him of the
advantage of his numerical superiority.  Alexander occupied the pass
between Syria and Cilicia at midnight, and at daybreak began to descend
into the plain of the Pinarus, ordering his troops to deploy into line
as the ground expanded and thus to arrive in battle-array before the
Persians.  Darius had thrown 30,000 cavalry and 20,000 infantry across
the river, to check the advance of the Macedonians; whilst on the right
bank were drawn up his choicest Persian troops to the number of 60,000,
together with 30,000 Greek mercenaries, who formed the centre, and on
whom he chiefly relied.  These, it appears, were all that the breadth
of the plain allowed to be drawn up in line.  The remainder of the vast
host were posted in separate bodies in the farther parts of the plain,
and were unable to take any share in the combat.  Darius placed himself
in the centre of the line in a magnificent state chariot.  The banks of
the Pinarus were in many parts steep, and where they were level Darius
had caused them to be intrenched.  As Alexander advanced, the Persian
cavalry which had been thrown across the river were recalled; but the
20,000 infantry had been driven into the mountains, where Alexander
held them in check with a small body of horse.  The left wing of the
Macedonians, under the command of Parmenio, was ordered to keep near
the sea, to prevent being outflanked.  The right wing was led by
Alexander in person, who rushed impetuously into the water, and was
soon engaged in close combat with the Persians.  The latter were
immediately routed; but what chiefly decided the fortune of the day was
the timidity of Darius himself, who, on beholding the defeat of his
left wing, immediately took to flight.  His example was followed by his
whole army.  One hundred thousand Persians are said to have been left
upon the field.  On reaching the hills Darius threw aside his royal
robes his bow and shield, and, mounting a fleet courser, was soon out
of reach of pursuit.  The Persian camp became the spoil of the
Macedonians; but the tent of Darius, together with his chariot, robes,
and arms, was reserved for Alexander himself.  It was now that the
Macedonian king first had ocular proof of the nature of Eastern
royalty.  One compartment of the tent of Darius had been fitted up as a
bath, which steamed with the richest odours; whilst another presented a
magnificent pavilion, containing a table richly spread for the banquet
of Darius.  But from an adjoining tent issued the wail of female
voices, where Sisygambis the mother, and Statira the wife of Darius,
were lamenting the supposed death of the Persian monarch. Alexander
sent to assure them of his safety, and ordered them to be treated with
the most delicate and respectful attention.

Such was the memorable battle of Issus, fought in November, B.C. 333.
A large treasure which Parmenio was sent forward with a detachment to
seize, fell into the hands of the Macedonians at Damascus.  Another
favourable result of the victory was that it suppressed some attempts
at revolt from the Macedonian power, which with the support of Persia,
had been manifested in Greece. But, in order to put a complete stop to
all such intrigues, which chiefly depended on the assistance of a
Persian fleet, Alexander resolved to seize Phoenicia and Egypt, and
thus to strike at the root of the Persian maritime power.

Meanwhile, Darius, attended by a body of only 4000 fugitives, had
crossed the Euphrates at Thapsacus.  Before he had set out from Babylon
the whole forces of the empire had been summoned; but he had not
thought it worth while to wait for what he deemed a merely useless
encumbrance; and the more distant levies, which comprised some of the
best troops of the empire, were still hastening towards Babylon.  In a
short time, therefore, he would be at the head of a still more numerous
host than that which had fought at Issus; yet he thought it safer to
open negotiations with Alexander than to trust to the chance of arms.
With this view he sent a letter to Alexander, who was now at Marathus
in Phoenicia, proposing to become his friend and ally; but Alexander
rejected all his overtures, and told him that he must in future be
addressed not in the language of an equal, but of a subject.

As Alexander advanced southwards, all the towns of Phoenicia hastened
to open their gates; the inhabitants of Sidon even hailed him as their
deliverer.  Tyre, also, sent to tender her submission; but coupled with
reservations by no means acceptable to a youthful conqueror in the full
tide of success.  Alexander affected to receive their offer as an
unconditional surrender, and told them that he would visit their city
and offer sacrifices to Melcart, a Tyrian deity, who was considered as
identical with the Grecian Hercules.  This brought the matter to an
issue.  The Tyrians now informed him that they could not admit any
foreigners within their walls, and that, if he wished to sacrifice to
Melcart, he would find another and more ancient shrine in Old Tyre, on
the mainland.  Alexander indignantly dismissed the Tyrian ambassadors,
and announced his intention of laying siege to their city.  The Tyrians
probably deemed it impregnable.  It was by nature a place of great
strength, and had been rendered still stronger by art.  The island on
which it stood was half a mile distant from the mainland; and though
the channel was shallow near the coast, it deepened to three fathoms
near the island.  The shores of the island were rocky and precipitous,
and the walls rose from the cliffs to the height of 150 feet in solid
masonry.  As Alexander possessed no ships, the only method by which he
could approach the town was by constructing a causeway, the materials
for which were collected from the forests of Libanus and the ruins of
Old Tyre.  After overcoming many difficulties the mole was at length
pushed to the foot of the walls; and as soon as Alexander had effected
a practicable breach, he ordered a general assault both by land and
sea.  The breach was stormed under the immediate inspection of
Alexander himself; and though the Tyrians made a desperate resistance,
they were at length overpowered, when the city became one wide scene of
indiscriminate carnage and plunder.  The siege had lasted seven months,
and the Macedonians were so exasperated by the difficulties and dangers
they had undergone that they granted no quarter.  Eight thousand of the
citizens are said to have been massacred; and the remainder, with the
exception of the king and some of the principal men, who had taken
refuge in the temple of Melcart, were sold into slavery to the number
of 30,000.  Tyre was taken in the month of July in 332.

Whilst Alexander was engaged in the siege of Tyre, Darius made him
further and more advantageous proposals.  He now offered 10,000 talents
as the ransom of his family, together with all the Provinces west of
the Euphrates, and his daughter Barsine in marriage, as the conditions
of a peace.  When these offers were submitted to the council Parmenio
was not unnaturally struck with their magnificence, and observed, that
were he Alexander he would accept them.  "And so would I," replied the
king, "were I Parmenio."  Darius, therefore, prepared himself for a
desperate resistance.

After the fall of Tyre, Alexander marched with his army towards Egypt,
whilst his fleet proceeded along the coast.  Gaza, a strong fortress on
the sea-shore, obstinately held out, and delayed his progress three or
four months.  After the capture of this city Alexander met his fleet at
Pelusium, and ordered it to sail up the Nile as far as Memphis, whither
he himself marched with his army across the desert.  He conciliated the
affection of the Egyptians by the respect with which he treated their
national superstitions, whilst the Persians by an opposite line of
conduct had incurred their deadliest hatred.  He then sailed down the
western branch of the Nile, and at its mouth traced the plan of the new
city of Alexandria, which for many centuries continued to be not only
the grand emporium of Europe, Africa, and India, but also the principal
centre of intellectual life.  Being now on the confines of Libya,
Alexander resolved to visit the celebrated oracle of Zeus (Jupiter)
Ammon, which lay in the bosom of the Libyan wilderness.  The conqueror
was received by the priests with all the honours of sacred pomp.  He
consulted the oracle in secret, and is said never to have disclosed the
answer which he received; though that it was an answer that contented
him appeared from the magnificence of the offerings which he made to
the god.  Some say that Ammon saluted him as the son of Zeus.

Alexander returned to Phoenicia in the spring of 331.  He then directed
his march through Samaria, and arrived at Thapsacus on the Euphrates
about the end of August.  After crossing the river he struck to the
north-east through a fertile and well-supplied country.  On his march
he was told that Darius was posted with an immense force on the left
bank of the Tigris; but on arriving at that river he found nobody to
dispute his passage.  He then proceeded southwards along its banks, and
after four days' march fell in with a few squadrons of the enemy's
cavalry.  From some of these who were made prisoners Alexander learned
that Darius was encamped with his host on one of the extensive plains
between the Tigris and the mountains of Kurdistan, near a village
called Gaugamela (the Camel's House).  The town of Arbela, after which
the battle that ensued is commonly named, lay at about twenty miles
distance, and there Darius had deposited his baggage and treasure.
That monarch had been easily persuaded that his former defeat was owing
solely to the nature of the ground; and, therefore, he now selected a
wide plain for an engagement, where there was abundant room for his
multitudinous infantry, and for the evolutions of his horsemen and
charioteers.  Alexander, after giving his army a few days' rest, set
out to meet the enemy soon after midnight, in order that he might come
up with them about daybreak.  On ascending some sand-hills the whole
array of the Persians suddenly burst upon the view of the Macedonians,
at the distance of three or four miles.  Darius, as usual, occupied the
centre, surrounded by his body-guard and chosen troops.  In front of
the royal position were ranged the war-chariots and elephants, and on
either side the Greek mercenaries, to the number, it is said, of
50,000.  Alexander spent the first day in surveying the ground and
preparing for the attack; he also addressed his troops, pointing out to
them that the prize of victory would not be a mere province, but the
dominion of all Asia.  Yet so great was the tranquillity with which he
contemplated the result, that at daybreak on the following morning,
when the officers came to receive his final instructions, they found
him in a deep slumber. His army, which consisted only of 40,000 foot
and 7000 horse, was drawn up in the order which he usually observed,
namely, with the phalanx in the centre in six divisions, and the
Macedonian cavalry on the right, where Alexander himself took his
station. The Persians, fearful of being surprised, had stood under arms
the whole night, so that the morning found them exhausted and
dispirited.  Some of them, however, fought with considerable bravery;
but when Alexander had succeeded in breaking their line by an impetuous
charge, Darius mounted a fleet horse and took to flight, as at Issus,
though the fortune of the day was yet far from having been decided.  At
length, however, the rout became general.  Whilst daylight lasted
Alexander pursued the flying enemy as far as the banks of the Lycus, or
Greater Zab, where thousands of the Persians perished in the attempt to
pass the river.  After resting his men a few hours Alexander continued
the pursuit at midnight in the hope of overtaking Darius at Arbela. The
Persian monarch, however, had continued his flight without stopping;
but the whole of the royal baggage and treasure was captured.

Finding any further pursuit of Darius hopeless, Alexander now directed
his march towards Babylon.  At a little distance from the city the
greater part of the population came out to meet him, headed by their
priests and magistrates, tendering their submission and bearing with
them magnificent presents.  Alexander then made his triumphant entry
into Babylon, riding in a chariot at the head of his army.  The streets
were strewed with flowers, incense smoked on either hand on silver
altars, and the priests celebrated his entry with hymns.  Nor was this
a mere display of a compulsory obedience.  Under the Persian sway the
Chaldaean religion had been oppressed and persecuted; the temple of
Belus had been destroyed and still lay in ruins; and both priests and
people consequently rejoiced at the downfall of a dynasty from which
they had suffered so much wrong.  Alexander observed here the same
politic conduct which he had adopted in Egypt.  He caused the ruined
temples to be restored, and proposed to offer personally, but under the
direction of the priests, a sacrifice to Belus.  Alexander contemplated
making Babylon the capital of his future empire.  His army was rewarded
with a large donative from the Persian treasury; and after being
allowed to indulge for some time in the luxury of Babylon, was again
put in motion, towards the middle of November, for Susa.  It was there
that the Persian treasures were chiefly accumulated, and Alexander had
despatched one of his generals to take possession of the city
immediately after the battle of Arbela.  It was surrendered without a
blow by the satrap Abulites.  The treasure found there amounted to
40,000 talents in gold and silver bullion, and 9000 in gold Darics.
But among all these riches the interest of the Greeks must have been
excited in a lively manner by the discovery of the spoils carried off
from Greece by Xerxes.  Among them were the bronze statues of Harmodius
and Aristogiton, which Alexander now sent back to Athens, and which
were long afterwards preserved in the Ceramicus.

At Susa Alexander received reinforcements of about 15,000 men from
Greece.  He then directed his march south-eastwards towards Persepolis.
His road lay through the mountainous territory of the Uxians, who
refused him a passage unless he paid the usual tribute which they were
in the habit of extorting even from the Persian kings.  But Alexander
routed them with great slaughter. He then advanced rapidly to
Persepolis, whose magnificent ruins still attest its ancient splendour.
It was the real capital of the Persian kings, though they generally
resided at Susa during the winter, and at Ecbatana in summer.  The
treasure found there exceeded that both of Babylon and Susa, and is
said to have amounted to 120,000 talents or nearly 30,000,000l.
sterling.  It was here that Alexander is related to have committed an
act of senseless folly, by firing with his own hand the ancient and
magnificent palace of the Persian kings; of which the most charitable
version is that he committed the act when heated with wine at the
instigation of Thais, an Athenian courtezan.  By some writers, however,
the story is altogether disbelieved, and the real destruction of
Persepolis referred to the Mahommedan epoch. Whilst at Persepolis,
Alexander visited the tomb of Cyrus, the founder of the Persian
monarchy, which was situated at a little distance, at a city called

Thus in between three and four years after crossing the Hellespont
Alexander had established himself on the Persian throne.  But Darius
was not yet in his power.  After the battle of Arbela that monarch had
fled to Ecbatana.  It was not till about four months after the battle
of Arbela, and consequently early in 330, that Alexander quitted
Persepolis to resume the pursuit of Darius.  On approaching Ecbatana he
learned that the Persian monarch had already fled with the little army
which still adhered to him.  Alexander, with his main body, then
pursued Darius through Media by forced marches and reached Rhagae, a
distance of three hundred miles from Ecbatana, in eleven days. Such was
the rapidity of the march that many men and horses died of fatigue.  At
Rhagae he heard that Darius had already passed the defile called the
"Caspian Gates," leading into the Bactrian provinces; and, as that pass
was fifty miles distant, urgent pursuit was evidently useless.  He
therefore allowed his troops five days' rest, and then resumed his
march.  Soon after passing the Gates he learned that Darius had been
seized and loaded with chains by his own satrap Bessus, who entertained
the design of establishing himself in Bactria as an independent
sovereign. This intelligence stimulated Alexander to make still further
haste with part of his cavalry and a chosen body of foot.  On the
fourth day he succeeded in overtaking the fugitives with his cavalry,
having been obliged to leave the infantry behind, with directions to
follow more at leisure.  The enemy, who did not know his real strength,
were struck with consternation at his appearance, and fled
precipitately.  Bessus and his adherents now endeavoured to persuade
Darius to fly with them, and provided a fleet horse for that purpose.
But the Persian monarch, who had already experienced the generosity of
Alexander in the treatment of his captive family, preferred to fall
into his hands, whereupon the conspirators mortally wounded him in the
chariot in which they kept him confined, and then took to flight.
Darius expired before Alexander could come up, who threw his own cloak
over the body.  He then ordered him to be magnificently buried in the
tomb of his ancestors, and provided for the fitting education of his

The next three years were employed by Alexander in subduing Hyrcania,
Drangiana, Bactria, and Sogdiana, and the other northern provinces of
the Persian empire.  In these distant regions he founded several
cities, one of which in Aria, called after him (Alexandria Ariorum), is
still, under the name of HERAT, one of the chief cities in central
Asia.  Alexander's stay in Prophthasia, the capital of Drangiana, was
signalized by a supposed conspiracy against his life, formed by
Philotas, the son of Parmenio.  Alexander had long entertained
suspicions of Philotas.  But the immediate subject of accusation
against him was that he had not revealed a conspiracy which was
reported to be forming against Alexander's life, and which he had
deemed too contemptible to notice.  He was consequently suspected of
being implicated in it; and on being put to the torture he not only
confessed his own guilt in his agonies, but also implicated his father.
Philotas was executed, and an order was sent to Ecbatana, where
Parmenio then was, directing that veteran general to be put to death.
A letter, purporting to be from his son, was handed to him; and whilst
the old man was engaged in reading it, Polydamus, his intimate friend,
together with some others of Alexander's principal officers, fell upon
and slew him.  His head was carried to Alexander.

Meantime Bessus had assumed the royal dignity in Bactria; but upon
Alexander's approach he fled across the Oxus into Sogdiana. Early in
the summer of 329 Alexander followed him across the Oxus; and shortly
afterwards Bessus was betrayed by two of his own officers into the
hands of Alexander.  Bessus was carried to Zariaspa, the capital of
Bactria, where he was brought before a Persian court, and put to death
in a cruel and barbarous manner.

Alexander even crossed the river Jaxartes (SIR), and defeated the
Scythians.  Sogdiana alone of the northern provinces offered any
serious resistance to his arms.  Accordingly in 328 he again crossed
the Oxus.  He divided his army into five bodies, ordering them to scour
the country in different directions.  With the troops under his own
command he marched against the fortress called the Sogdian Rock, seated
on an isolated hill, so precipitous as to be deemed inaccessible, and
so well supplied with provisions as to defy a blockade.  The summons to
surrender was treated with derision by the commander, who inquired
whether the Macedonians had wings?  But a small body of Macedonians
having succeeded in scaling some heights which overhung the fortress,
the garrison became so alarmed that they immediately surrendered.  To
this place a Bactrian named Oxyartes, an adherent of Bessus, had sent
his daughters for safety.  One of them, named Roxana, was of surpassing
beauty, and Alexander made her the partner of his throne (B.C. 328).

At Maracanda (now SAMARCAND) he appointed his friend Clitus satrap of
Bactria.  On the eve of the parting of the two friends Alexander
celebrated a festival in honour of the Dioscuri (Castor and Pollux),
though the day was sacred to Dionysus (Bacchus). The banquet was
attended by several parasites and literary flatterers, who magnified
the praises of Alexander with extravagant and nauseous flattery.
Clitus, whom wine had released from all prudent reserve, sternly
rebuked their fulsome adulation; and, as the conversation turned on the
comparative merits of the exploits of Alexander and his father Philip,
he did not hesitate to prefer the exploits of the latter.  He reminded
Alexander of his former services, and, stretching forth his hand,
exclaimed, "It was this hand Alexander, which saved your life at the
battle of the Granicus!"  The king, who was also flushed with wine, was
so enraged by these remarks, that he rushed at Clitus with the
intention of killing him on the spot, but he was held back by his
friends, whilst Clitus was at the same time hurried out of the room.
Alexander, however, was no sooner released than, snatching a spear, he
sprang to the door, and meeting Clitus, who was returning in equal fury
to brave his anger, ran him through the body.  But when the deed was
done he was seized with repentance and remorse.  He flung himself on
his couch and remained for three whole days in an agony of grief,
refusing all sustenance, and calling on the names of Clitus and of his
sister Lanice who had been his nurse.  It was not till his bodily
strength began to fail through protracted abstinence that he at last
became more composed, and consented to listen to the consolations of
his friends, and the words of the soothsayers, who ascribed the murder
of Clitus to a temporary frenzy with which Dionysus had visited him as
a punishment for neglecting the celebration of his festival.

After reducing Sogdiana, Alexander returned into Bactria in 327, and
began to prepare far his projected expedition into India. While he was
thus employed a plot was formed against his life by the royal pages,
incited by Hermolaus, one of their number, who had been punished with
stripes for anticipating the king during a hunting party in slaying a
wild boar.  Hermolaus and his associates, among whom was Callisthenes,
a pupil of Aristotle, were first tortured, and then put to death.  It
seems certain that a conspiracy existed; but no less certain that the
growing pride and haughtiness of Alexander were gradually alienating
from him the hearts of his followers.

Alexander did not leave Bactria till late in the spring.  He crossed
the Indus by a bridge of boats near Taxila, the present ATTOCK, where
the river is about 1000 feet broad, and very deep. He now found himself
in the district at present called the PENJ-AB (or the FIVE RIVERS).
Taxiles, the sovereign of the district, at once surrendered Taxila, his
capital and joined the Macedonian force with 5000 men.  Hence Alexander
proceeded with little resistance to the river Haydaspes (BEHUT or
JELUM).  On the opposite bank, Porus, a powerful Indian king, prepared
to dispute his progress with a numerous and well-appointed force.
Alexander, however, by a skilful stratagem conveyed his army safely
across the river.  An obstinate battle then ensued.  In the army of
Porus were many elephants, the sight and smell of which frightened the
horses of Alexander's cavalry.  But these unwieldy animals ultimately
proved as dangerous to the Indians as to the Greeks; for when driven
into a narrow space they became unmanageable, and created great
confusion in the ranks of Porus. By a few vigorous charges the Indians
were completely routed, with the loss of 12,000 slain and 9000
prisoners.  Among the latter was Porus himself, who was conducted into
the presence of Alexander.  The courage which he had displayed in the
battle had excited the admiration of the Macedonian king.  Mounted on
an enormous elephant, he retreated leisurely when the day was lost, and
long rejected every summons to surrender; till at length, overcome by
thirst and fatigue, he permitted himself to be taken. Even in this
situation Porus still retained his majestic bearing, the effect of
which was increased by the extraordinary height of his stature.  On
Alexander's inquiring how he wished to be treated, he replied, "Like a
king."   "And have you no other request?"  asked Alexander.  "No,"
answered Porus; "everything is comprehended in the word king."  Struck
by his magnanimity, Alexander not only restored him to his dominions,
but also considerably enlarged them; seeking by these means to retain
him as an obedient and faithful vassal.

Alexander rested a month on the banks of the Hydaspes, where he
celebrated his victory by games and sacrifices, and founded two towns
one of which he named Nicaea, and the other Bucephala, in honour of his
gallant charger Bucephalus, which is said to have died there.  He then
overran the whole of the PENJ-AB, as far as the Hyphasis (GHARRA), its
southern boundary.  Upon reaching this river, the army, worn out by
fatigues and dangers, positively refused to proceed any farther;
although Alexander passionately desired to attack a monarch still more
powerful than Porus, whose dominions lay beyond the Hyphasis.  All his
attempts to induce his soldiers to proceed proving ineffectual, he
returned to the Hydaspes, when he ordered part of his army to descend
the river on its opposite banks; whilst he himself at the head of 8000
men, embarked on board a fleet of about 2000 vessels, which he had
ordered to be prepared with the view of sailing down the Indus to its

The army began to move in November 327.  The navigation lasted several
months, but was accomplished without any serious opposition, except
from the tribe of the Malli, who are conjectured to have occupied the
site of the present MOOLTAN.  At the storming of their town the life of
Alexander was exposed to imminent danger.  He was the first to scale
the walls of the citadel, and was followed by four officers; but before
a fifth man could mount, the ladder broke, and Alexander was left
exposed on the wall to the missiles of the enemy.  Leaping down into
the citadel among the enemy, he placed his back to the wall, where he
succeeded in keeping the enemy at bay, and slew two of their chiefs who
had ventured within reach of his sword.  But an arrow which pierced his
corslet brought him to the ground, fainting with loss of blood.  Two of
his followers, who had jumped down after him, now stood over and
defended him; till at length, more soldiers having scaled the walls and
opened one of the gates, sufficient numbers poured in not only to
rescue their monarch, but to capture the citadel; when every living
being within the place was put to the sword.  Upon arriving at the
mouth of the Indus, Nearchus with the fleet was directed to explore the
Indian Ocean, the Persian Gulf, and the mouths of the Tigris and
Euphrates, with the view of establishing a maritime communication
between India and Persia.  Alexander himself proceeded with his army,
in the autumn of 326, through the burning deserts of Gedrosia towards
Persepolis; marching himself on foot, and sharing the privations and
fatigues of the meanest soldier.  In these regions the very atmosphere
seems to be composed of a fine dust which, on the slightest wind,
penetrates into the mouth and nose, whilst the soil affords no firm
footing to the traveller. The march through this inhospitable region
lasted 60 days, during which numbers of the soldiers perished from
fatigue or disease. At length they emerged into the fertile province of
Carmania. Whilst in this country Alexander was rejoined by Nearchus,
who had arrived with his fleet at Harmozia (ORMUZ); but who
subsequently prosecuted his voyage to the head of the Persian Gulf.

Upon reaching Susa (B.C. 325) Alexander allowed his soldiers to repose
from their fatigues, and amused them with a series of brilliant
festivities.  It was here that he adopted various measures with the
view of consolidating his empire.  One of the most important was to
form the Greeks and Persians into one people by means of
intermarriages.  He himself celebrated his nuptials with Statira the
eldest daughter of Darius, and bestowed the hand of her sister,
Drypetis, on Hephaestion.  Other marriages were made between
Alexander's officers and Asiatic women, to the number, it is said, of
about a hundred; whilst no fewer than 10,000 of the common soldiers
followed their example and took native wives.  As another means of
amalgamating the Europeans and Asiatics, he caused numbers of the
latter to be admitted into the army, and to be armed and trained in the
Macedonian fashion.  But these innovations were regarded with a jealous
eye by most of the Macedonian veterans; and this feeling was increased
by the conduct of Alexander himself, who assumed every day more and
more of the state and manners of an eastern despot.  Their long-stifled
dissatisfaction broke out into open mutiny and rebellion at a review
which took place at Opis on the Tigris.  But the mutiny was quelled by
the decisive conduct of Alexander.  He immediately ordered thirteen of
the ringleaders to be seized and executed, and then, addressing the
remainder, pointed out to them how, by his own and his father's
exertions, they had been raised from the condition of scattered
herdsmen to be the masters of Greece and the lords of Asia; and that,
whilst he had abandoned to them the richest and most valuable fruits of
his conquest, he had reserved nothing but the diadem for himself, as
the mark of his superior labours and more imminent perils.  He then
secluded himself for two whole days, during which his Macedonian guard
was exchanged for a Persian one, whilst nobles of the same nation were
appointed to the most confidential posts about his person.  Overcome by
these marks of alienation on the part of their sovereign, the
Macedonians now supplicated with tears to be restored to favour.  A
solemn reconciliation was effected, and 10,000 veterans were dismissed
to their homes under the conduct of Craterus.  That general was also
appointed to the government of Macedonia in place of Antipater, who was
ordered to repair to Asia with fresh reinforcements.

Soon after these occurrences Alexander proceeded to Ecbatana, where
during the autumn he solemnised the festival of Dionysus with
extraordinary splendour.  But his enjoyment was suddenly converted into
bitterness by the death of his friend Hephaestion, who was carried off
by a fever.  This event threw Alexander into a deep melancholy, from
which he never entirely recovered.  The memory of Hephaestion was
honoured by extravagant marks of public mourning, and his body was
conveyed to Babylon, to be there interred with the utmost magnificence.

Alexander entered Babylon in the spring of 324, notwithstanding the
warnings of the priests of Belus, who predicted some serious evil to
him if he entered the city at that time.  Babylon was now to witness
the consummation of his triumphs and of his life. Ambassadors from all
parts of Greece, from Libya, Italy, and probably from still more
distant regions, were waiting to salute him, and to do homage to him as
the conqueror of Asia; the fleet under Nearchus had arrived after its
long and enterprising voyage; whilst for the reception of this navy,
which seemed to turn the inland capital of his empire into a port, a
magnificent harbour was in process of construction.  The mind of
Alexander was still occupied with plans of conquest and ambition; his
next design was the subjugation of Arabia; which, however, was to be
only the stepping-stone to the conquest of the whole known world. He
despatched three expeditions to survey the coast of Arabia; ordered a
fleet to be built to explore the Caspian sea; and engaged himself in
surveying the course of the Euphrates, and in devising improvements of
its navigation.  The period for commencing the Arabian campaign had
already arrived; solemn sacrifices were offered up for its success, and
grand banquets were given previous to departure.  At these carousals
Alexander drank deep; and at the termination of the one given by his
favourite, Medius, he was seized with unequivocal symptoms of fever.
For some days, however, he neglected the disorder, and continued to
occupy himself with the necessary preparations for the march.  But in
eleven days the malady had gained a fatal strength, and terminated his
life on the 28th of June, B.C. 323, at the early age of 32.  Whilst he
lay speechless on his deathbed his favourite troops were admitted to
see him; but he could offer them no other token of recognition than by
stretching out his hand.

Few of the great characters of history have been so differently judged
as Alexander.  Of the magnitude of his exploits, indeed, and of the
justice with which, according to the usual sentiments of mankind, they
confer upon him the title of "Great," there can be but one opinion.
His military renown, however, consists more in the seemingly
extravagant boldness of his enterprises than in the real power of the
foes whom he overcame.  The resistance he met with was not greater than
that which a European army experiences in the present day from one
composed of Asiatics; and the empire of the East was decided by the two
battles of Issus and Arbela.  His chief difficulties were the
geographical difficulties of distance, climate, and the nature of the
ground traversed.  But this is no proof that he was incompetent to meet
a foe more worthy of his military skill; and his proceedings in Greece
before his departure show the reverse.  His motive, it must be allowed,
seem rather to have sprung from the love of personal glory and the
excitement of conquest, than from any wish to benefit his subjects.
Yet on the whole his achievements, though they undoubtedly occasioned
great partial misery, must be regarded as beneficial to the human race.
By his conquests the two continents were put into closer communication
with one another; and both, but particularly Asia, were the gainers.
The language, the arts, and the literature of Greece were introduced
into the East; and after the death of Alexander, Greek kingdoms were
formed in the western parts of Asia, which continued to exist for many


ROMANS, B.C. 323-146.

The vast empire of Alexander the Great was divided, at his death, among
his generals; but, before relating their history, it is necessary to
take a brief retrospective glance at the affairs of Greece.  Three
years after Alexander had quitted Europe the Spartans made a vigorous
effort to throw off the Macedonian yoke. They were joined by most of
the Peloponnesian states; but though they met with some success at
first, they were finally defeated with great slaughter by Antipater
near Megalopolis.  Agis fell in the battle, and the chains of Greece
were riveted more firmly than ever.  This victory, and the successes of
Alexander in the East, encouraged the Macedonian party in Athens to
take active measures against Demosthenes; and AEschines revived an old
charge against him which had lain dormant for several years.  Soon
after the battle of Chaeronea, Ctesiphon had proposed that Demosthenes
should be presented with a golden crown in the theatre during the great
Dionysiac festival, on account of the services he had conferred upon
his country.  For proposing this decree AEschines indicted Ctesiphon;
but though the latter was the nominal defendant, it was Demosthenes who
was really put upon his trial. The case was decided in 330 B.C., and
has been immortalised by the memorable and still extant speeches of
AEschines 'Against Ctesiphon' and of Demosthenes 'On the Crown.'
AEschines, who did not obtain a fifth part of the votes, and
consequently became himself liable to a penalty, was so chagrined at
his defeat that he retired to Rhodes.

In B.C. 325 Harpalus arrived in Athens.  He had been left by Alexander
at Ecbatana in charge of the royal treasures, and appears also to have
held the important satrapy of Babylon. During the absence of Alexander
in India he gave himself up to the most extravagant luxury and
profusion, squandering the treasures intrusted to him, at the same time
that he alienated the people subject to his rule by his lustful
excesses and extortions.  He had probably thought that Alexander would
never return from the remote regions of the East into which he had
penetrated; but when he at length learnt that the king was on his march
back to Susa, and had visited with unsparing rigour those of his
officers who had been guilty of any excesses during his absence, he at
once saw that his only resource was in flight. Collecting together all
the treasures which he could, and assembling a body of 6000
mercenaries, he hastened to the coast of Asia, and from thence crossed
over to Attica, At first the Athenians refused to receive him; but
bribes administered to some of the principal orators induced them to
alter their determination.  Such a step was tantamount to an act of
hostility against Macedonia itself; and accordingly Antipater called
upon the Athenians to deliver up Harpalus, and to bring to trial those
who had accepted his bribes.  The Athenians did not venture to disobey
these demands.  Harpalus was put into confinement, but succeeded in
making his escape from prison.  Demosthenes was among the orators who
were brought to trial for corruption.  He was declared to be guilty,
and was condemned to pay a fine of 50 talents.  Not being able to raise
that sum, he was thrown into prison; but he contrived to make his
escape, and went into exile. There are, however, good grounds for
doubting his guilt; and it is more probable that he fell a victim to
the implacable hatred of the Macedonian party.  Upon quitting Athens
Demosthenes resided chiefly at AEgina or Troezen, in sight of his
native land, and whenever he looked towards her shores it was observed
that he shed tears.

When the news of Alexander's death reached Athens, the anti-Macedonian
party, which, since the exile of Demosthenes, was led by Hyperides,
carried all before it.  The people in a decree declared their
determination to support the liberty of Greece. Envoys were despatched
to all the Grecian states to announce the determination of Athens, and
to exhort them to struggle with her for their independence.  This call
was responded to in the Peloponnesus only by the smaller states, whilst
Sparta, Arcadia, and Achaia kept aloof.  In northern Greece the
confederacy was joined by most of the states except the Boaotians; and
Leosthenes was appointed commander-in-chief of the allied forces.

The allied army assembled in the neighbourhood of Thermopylae.
Antipater now advanced from the north, and offered battle in the vale
of the Spercheus; but being deserted by his Thessalian cavalry, who
went over to his opponents during the heat of the engagement, he was
obliged to retreat and threw himself into Lamia, a strong fortress on
the Malian gulf.  Leosthenes, desirous to finish the war at a blow,
pressed the siege with the utmost vigour; but his assaults were
repulsed, and he was compelled to resort to the slower method of a
blockade.  From this town the contest between Antipater and the allied
Greeks has been called the Lamian War.

The novelty of a victory over the Macedonian arms was received with
boundless exultation at Athens, and this feeling was raised to a still
higher pitch by the arrival of an embassy from Antipater to sue for
peace.  But the Athenians were so elated with their good fortune, that
they would listen to no terms but the unconditional surrender of
Antipater.  Meantime Demosthenes, though still an exile, exerted
himself in various parts of the Peloponnesus in counteracting the
envoys of Antipater, and in endeavouring to gain adherents to the cause
of Athens and the allies.  The Athenians in return invited Demosthenes
back to his native country, and a ship was sent to convey him to
Piraeus, where he was received with extraordinary honours.

Meanwhile Leonnatus, governor of the Hellespontine Phrygia, had
appeared on the theatre of war with an army of 20,000 foot and 2500
horse.  Leosthenes had been slain at Lamia in a sally of the besieged;
and Antiphilus, on whom the command of the allied army devolved,
hastened to offer battle to Leonnatus before he could arrive at Lamia.
The hostile armies met in one of the plains of Thessaly, where
Leonnatus was killed and his troops defeated. Antipater, as soon as the
blockade of Lamia was raised, had pursued Antiphilus, and on the day
after the battle he effected a junction with the beaten army of

Shortly afterwards Antipater was still further reinforced by the
arrival of Craterus with a considerable force from Asia; and being now
at the head of an army which outnumbered the forces of the allies, he
marched against them and gained a decisive victory over them near
Crannon in Thessaly, on the 7th of August, B.C. 322.  The allies were
now compelled to sue for peace; but Antipater refused to treat with
them except as separate states, foreseeing that by this means many
would be detached from the confederacy.  The result answered his
expectations.  One by one the various states submitted, till at length
all had laid down their arms.  Athens, the original instigator of the
insurrection, now lay at the mercy of the conqueror.  As Antipater
advanced, Phocion used all the influence which he possessed with the
Macedonians in favour of his countrymen; but he could obtain no other
terms than an unconditional surrender.  On a second mission Phocion
received the final demands of Antipater; which were, that the Athenians
should deliver up a certain number of their orators, among whom were
Demosthenes and Hyperides; that their political franchise should be
limited by a property qualification; that they should receive a
Macedonian garrison in Munychia; and that they should defray the
expenses of the war. Such was the result of the Lamian war, which
riveted the Macedonian fetters more firmly than ever.

After the return of the envoys bringing the ultimatum of Antipater, the
sycophant Demades procured a decree for the death of the denounced
orators.  Demosthenes, and the other persons compromised, made their
escape from Athens before the Macedonian garrison arrived.  AEgina was
their first place of refuge, but they soon parted in different
directions.  Hyperides fled to the temple of Demeter (Ceres) at
Hermione in Peloponnesus, whilst Demosthenes took refuge in that of
Poseidon (Neptune) in the isle of Calaurea, near Troezen.  But the
satellites of Antipater, under the guidance of a Thurian named Archias
who had formerly been an actor, tore them from their sanctuaries.
Hyperides was carried to Athens, and it is said that Antipater took the
brutal and cowardly revenge of ordering his tongue to be cut out, and
his remains to be thrown to the dogs.  Demosthenes contrived at least
to escape the insults of the tyrannical conqueror.  Archias at first
endeavoured to entice him from his sanctuary by the blandest promises,
But Demosthenes, forewarned, it is said, by a dream, fixing his eyes
intently on him, exclaimed, "Your acting, Archias, never touched me
formerly, nor do your promises now." And when Archias began to employ
threats, "Good," said Demosthenes; "now you speak as from the
Macedonian tripod; before you were only playing a part.  But wait
awhile, and let me write my last directions to my family."  So taking
his writing materials, he put the reed into his mouth, and bit it for
some time, as was his custom when composing; after which he covered his
head with his garment and reclined against a pillar.  The guards who
accompanied Archias, imagining this to be a mere trick, laughed and
called him coward, whilst Archias began to renew his false persuasions.
Demosthenes, feeling the poison work--for such it was that he had
concealed in the reed now bade him lead on.  "You may now," said he,
"enact the part of Creon, and cast me out unburied; but at least, O
gracious Poseidon, I have not polluted thy temple by my death which
Antipater and his Macedonians would not have scrupled at."  But whilst
he was endeavouring to walk out, he fell down by the altar and expired.

The history of Alexander's successors is marked from first to last by
dissension, crimes, and unscrupulous ambition.  It is only necessary
for the purpose of the present work to mention very briefly the most
important events.

Alexander on his death-bed is said to have given his signet-ring to
Perdiccas, but he had left no legitimate heir to his throne, though his
wife Roxana was pregnant.  On the day after Alexander's death a
military council was assembled, in which Perdiccas assumed a leading
part; and in which, after much debate, an arrangement was at length
effected on the following basis:  That Philip Arrhidaeus, a young man
of weak intellect, the half-brother of Alexander (being the son of
Philip by a Thessalian woman named Philinna), should be declared king,
reserving however to the child of Roxana if a son should be born, a
share in the sovereignty:  that the government of Macedonia and Greece
should be divided between Antipater and Craterus:  that Ptolemy should
preside over Egypt and the adjacent countries: that Antigonus should
have Phrygia Proper, Lycia, and Pamphylia: that the Hellespontine
Phrygia should be assigned to Leonnatus: that Eumenes should have the
satrapy of Paphlagonia and Cappadocia, which countries, however, still
remained to be subdued:  and that Thrace should be committed to
Lysimachus. Perdiccas reserved for himself the command of the
horse-guards, the post before held by Hephaestion, in virtue of which
he became the guardian of Philip Arrhidaeus, the nominal sovereign.  It
was not for some time after these arrangements had been completed that
the last rites were paid to Alexander's remains.  They were conveyed to
Alexandria, and deposited in a cemetery which afterwards became the
burial-place of the Ptolemies.  Nothing could exceed the magnificence
of the funeral car, which was adorned with ornaments of massive gold,
and was so heavy, that it was more than a year in being conveyed from
Babylon to Syria, though drawn by 84 mules.  In due time Roxana was
delivered of a son, to whom the name of Alexander was given, and who
was declared the partner of Arrhidaeus in the empire.  Roxana had
previously inveigled Statira and her sister Drypetis to Babylon, where
she caused them to be secretly assassinated.

Perdiccas possessed more power than any of Alexander's generals, and he
now aspired to the Macedonian throne.  His designs, however, were not
unknown to Antigonus and Ptolemy; and when he attempted to bring
Antigonus to trial for some offence in the government of his satrapy,
that general made his escape to Macedonia, where he revealed to
Antipater the full extent of the ambitious schemes of Perdiccas, and
thus at once induced Antipater and Craterus to unite in a league with
him and Ptolemy, and openly declare war against the regent.  Thus
assailed on all sides, Perdiccas resolved to direct his arms in the
first instance against Ptolemy.  In the spring of B.C. 321 he
accordingly set out on his march against Egypt, at the head of a
formidable army, and accompanied by Philip Arrhidaeus, and Roxana and
her infant son.  He advanced without opposition as far as Pelusium, but
he found the banks of the Nile strongly fortified and guarded by
Ptolemy, and was repulsed in repeated attempts to force the passage of
the river; in the last of which, near Memphis, he lost great numbers of
men by the depth and rapidity of the current.  Perdiccas had never been
popular with the soldiery, and these disasters completely alienated
their affections.  A conspiracy was formed against him, and some of his
chief officers murdered him in his tent.

The death of Perdiccas was followed by a fresh distribution of the
provinces of the empire.  At a meeting of the generals held at
Triparadisus in Syria, towards the end of the year 321 B.C., Antipater
was declared regent, retaining the government of Macedonia and Greece;
Ptolemy was continued in the government of Egypt; Seleucus received the
satrapy of Babylon; whilst Antigonus not only retained his old
province, but was rewarded with that of Susiana.

Antipater did not long survive these events.  He died in the year 318,
at the advanced age of 80, leaving Polysperchon, one of Alexander's
oldest generals, regent; much to the surprise and mortification of his
son Cassander, who received only the secondary dignity of Chiliarch, or
commander of the cavalry. Cassander was now bent on obtaining the
regency; but seeing no hope of success in Macedonia, he went over to
Asia to solicit the assistance of Antigonus.

Polysperchon, on his side, sought to conciliate the friendship of the
Grecian states, by proclaiming them all free and independent, and by
abolishing the oligarchies which had been set up by Antipater.  In
order to enforce these measures, Polysperchon prepared to march into
Greece, whilst his son Alexander was despatched beforehand with an army
towards Athens to compel the Macedonian garrison under the command of
Nicanor to evacuate Munychia.  Nicanor, however, refused to move
without orders from Cassander, whose general he declared himself to be.
Phocion was suspected of intriguing in favour of Nicanor, and being
accused of treason, fled to Alexander, now encamped before the walls of
Athens.  Alexander sent Phocion to his father, who sent him back to
Athens in chains, to be tried by the Athenian people.  The theatre,
where his trial was to take place, was soon full to overflowing.
Phocion was assailed on every side by the clamours of his enemies,
which prevented his defence; from being heard, and he was condemned to
death by a show of hands.  To the last Phocion maintained his calm and
dignified, but somewhat contemptuous bearing.  When some wretched man
spat upon him as he passed to the prison, "Will no one," said he,
"check this fellow's indecency?"  To one who asked him whether he had
any message to leave for his son Phocus, he answered, "Only that he
bear no grudge against the Athenians."  And when the hemlock which had
been prepared was found insufficient for all the condemned, and the
jailer would not furnish more unless he was paid for it, "Give the man
his money," said Phocion to one of his friends, "since at Athens one
cannot even die for nothing."  He died in B.C. 317, at the age of 85.
The Athenians afterwards repented of their conduct towards Phocion.
His bones, which had been cast out on the frontiers of Megara, were
brought back to Athens, and a bronze statue was erected to his memory.

Whilst Alexander was negotiating with Nicanor about the surrender of
Munychia, Cassander arrived in the Piraeus with a considerable army,
with which Antigonus had supplied him.  Polysperchon was obliged to
retire from Athens, and Cassander established an oligarchical
government in the city under the presidency of Demetrius of Phalerus.

Although Polysperchon was supported by Olympias, the mother of
Alexander the Great, he proved no match for Cassander, who became
master of Macedonia after the fall of Pydna in B.C. 316.  In this city
Olympias had taken refuge together with Roxana and her son; but after a
blockade of some months it was obliged to surrender. Olympias had
stipulated that her life should be spared, but Cassander soon
afterwards caused her to be murdered, and kept Roxana and her son in
custody in the citadel of Amphipolis. Shortly afterwards Cassander
began the restoration of Thebes (B.C. 315), in the twentieth year after
its destruction by Alexander, a measure highly popular with the Greeks.

A new war now broke out in the East.  Antigonus had become the most
powerful of Alexander's successors.  He had conquered Eumenes, who had
long defied his arms, and he now began to dispose of the provinces as
he thought fit.  His increasing power and ambitious projects led to a
general coalition against him, consisting of Ptolemy, Seleucus,
Cassander, and Lysimachus, the governor of Thrace.  The war began in
the year 315, and was carried on with great vehemence and alternate
success in Syria, Phoenicia, Asia Minor, and Greece.  After four years
all parties became exhausted with the struggle, and peace was
accordingly concluded in 311, on condition that the Greek cities should
be free, that Cassander should retain his authority in Europe till
Alexander came of age, that Ptolemy and Lysimachus should keep
possession of Egypt and Thrace respectively, and that Antigonus should
have the government of all Asia.  This hollow peace, which had been
merely patched up for the convenience of the parties concerned, was not
of long duration.  It seems to have been the immediate cause of another
of those crimes which disgrace the history of Alexander's successors.
His son, Alexander, who had now attained the age of sixteen, was still
shut up with his mother Roxana in Amphipolis; and his partisans, with
injudicious zeal, loudly expressed their wish that he should be
released and placed upon the throne.  In order to avert this event
Cassander contrived the secret murder both of the mother and the son.

This abominable act, however, does not appear to have caused a breach
of the peace.  Ptolemy was the first to break it (B.C. 310), under the
pretext that Antigonus, by keeping his garrisons in the Greek cities of
Asia and the islands, had not respected that article of the treaty
which guaranteed Grecian freedom. After the war had lasted three years
Antigonus resolved to make a vigorous effort to wrest Greece from the
hands of Cassander and Ptolemy, who held all the principal towns in it.
Accordingly, in the summer of 307 B.C. he despatched his son Demetrius
from Ephesus to Athens, with a fleet of 250 sail, and 5000 talents in
money.  Demetrius, who afterwards obtained the surname of
"Poliorcetes," or "Besieger of Cities," was a young man of ardent
temperament and great abilities.  Upon arriving at the Piraeus he
immediately proclaimed the object of his expedition to be the
liberation of Athens and the expulsion of the Macedonian garrison.
Supported by the Macedonians, Demetrius the Phalerean had now ruled
Athens for a period of more than ten years.  Of mean birth, Demetrius
the Phalerean owed his elevation entirely to his talents and
perseverance.  His skill as an orator raised him to distinction among
his countrymen; and his politics, which led him to embrace the party of
Phocion, recommended him to Cassander and the Macedonians.  He
cultivated many branches of literature, and was at once an historian, a
philosopher, and a poet; but none of his works have come down to us.
The Athenians heard with pleasure the proclamations of the son of
Antigonus his namesake, the Phalerean was obliged to surrender the city
to him, and to close his political career by retiring to Thebes.  The
Macedonian garrison in Munychia offered a slight resistance, which was
soon overcome, Demetrius Poliorcetes then formally announced to the
Athenian assembly the restoration of their ancient constitution, and
promised them a large donative of corn and ship-timber.  This
munificence was repaid by the Athenians with the basest and most abject
flattery.  Both Demetrius and his father were deified, and two new
tribes, those of Antigonias and Demetrias, were added to the existing
ten which derived their names from the ancient heroes of Attica.

Demetrius Poliorcetes did not, however, remain long at Athens. Early in
306 B.C. he was recalled by his father, and, sailing to Cyprus,
undertook the siege of Salamis.  Ptolemy hastened to its relief with
140 vessels and 10,000 troops.  The battle that ensued was one of the
most memorable in the annals of ancient naval warfare, more
particularly on account of the vast size of the vessels engaged.
Ptolemy was completely defeated; and so important was the victory
deemed by Antigonus, that on the strength of it he assumed the title of
king, which he also conferred upon his son.  This example was followed
by Ptolemy, Seleucus, and Lysimachus.

Demetrius now undertook an expedition against Rhodes, which had refused
its aid in the attack upon Ptolemy.  It was from the memorable siege of
Rhodes that Demetrius obtained his name of "Poliorcetes."  After in
vain attempting to take the town from the sea-side, by means of
floating batteries, from which stones of enormous weight were hurled
from engines with incredible force against the walls, he determined to
alter his plan and invest it on the land-side.  With the assistance of
Epimachus, an Athenian engineer, he constructed a machine which, in
anticipation of its effect, was called Helepolis, or "the city-taker."
This was a square wooden tower, 150 feet high, and divided into nine
stories, filled with armed men, who discharged missiles through
apertures in the sides.  When armed and prepared for attack, it
required the strength of 2300 men to set this enormous machine in
motion.  But though it was assisted by the operation of two
battering-rams, each 150 feet long and propelled by the labour of 1000
men, the Rhodians were so active in repairing the breaches made in
their walls, that, after a year spent in the vain attempt to take the
town, Demetrius was forced to retire and grant the Rhodians peace.

In 301 B.C., the struggle between Antigonus and his rivals was brought
to a close by the battle of Ipsus in Phrygia, in which Antigonus was
killed, and his army completely defeated.  He had attained the age of
81 at the time of his death.  A third partition of the empire of
Alexander was now made.  Seleucus and Lysimachus shared between them
the possessions of Antigonus. Lysimachus seems to have had the greater
part of Asia Minor, whilst the whole country from the coast of Syria to
the Euphrates, as well as a part of Phrygia and Cappadocia, fell to the
share of Seleucus.  The latter founded on the Orontes a new capital of
his empire, which he named Antioch, after his father Antiochus, and
which long continued to be one of the most important Greek cities in
Asia.  The fall of Antigonus secured Cassander in the possession of

Demetrius was now a fugitive, but in the following year he was
agreeably surprised by receiving an embassy from Seleucus, by which
that monarch solicited his daughter Stratonice in marriage. Demetrius
gladly granted the request, and found himself so much strengthened by
this alliance, that in the spring of the year 296 he was in a condition
to attack Athens, which he captured after a long siege, and drove out
the bloodthirsty tyrant Lachares, who had been established there by

Meanwhile Cassander had died shortly before the siege of Athens, and
was succeeded on the throne of Macedon by his eldest son, Philip IV.
[Philip Arrhidaeus is called Philip III.] But that young prince died in
295, and the succession was disputed between his two brothers,
Antipater and Alexander.  Demetrius availed himself of the distracted
state of Macedonia to make himself master of that country (B.C. 294).
He reigned over Macedonia, and the greater part of Greece, about seven
years.  He aimed at recovering the whole of his father's dominions in
Asia; but before he was ready to take the field, his adversaries,
alarmed at his preparations, determined to forestall him.  In the
spring of B.C. 287 Ptolemy sent a powerful fleet against Greece, while
Pyrrhus on the one side and Lysimachus on the other simultaneously
invaded Macedonia.  Demetrius had completely alienated his own subjects
by his proud and haughty bearing, and by his lavish expenditure on his
own luxuries; while Pyrrhus by his generosity, affability, and daring
courage, had become the hero of the Macedonians, who looked upon him as
a second Alexander.  The appearance of Pyrrhus was the signal for
revolt: the Macedonian troops flocked to his standard and Demetrius was
compelled to fly.  Pyrrhus now ascended the throne of Macedonia; but
his reign was of brief duration; and at the end of seven months he was
in turn driven out by Lysimachus.  Demetrius made several attempts to
regain his power in Greece, and then set sail for Asia, where he
successively endeavoured to establish himself in the territories of
Lysimachus, and of his son-in-law Seleucus. Falling at length into the
hands of the latter, he was kept in a kind of magnificent captivity in
a royal residence in Syria; where, in 283, at the early age of 55, his
chequered career was brought to a close, partly by chagrin, and partly
by the sensual indulgences with which he endeavoured to divert it.

Lysimachus, Seleucus, and Ptolemy now divided the empire of Alexander
between them.  In Egypt the aged Ptolemy had abdicated in 285 in favour
of his son by Berenice afterwards known as Ptolemy Philadelphus, and to
the exclusion of his eldest son, Ptolemy Ceraunus, by his wife
Eurydice.  Ptolemy Ceraunus quitted Egypt in disgust, and fled to the
court of Lysimachus; and Arsinoe, the wife of Lysimachus, jealous of
her stepson Agathocles, the heir apparent to the throne, and desirous
of securing the succession for her own children, conspired with Ptolemy
Ceraunus against the life of Agathocles.  She even procured the consent
of Lysimachus to his murder; and after some vain attempts to make away
with him by poison, he was flung into prison, where Ptolemy Ceraunus
despatched him with his own hand. Lysandra, the mother of Agathocles,
fled with the rest of her family to Seleucus, to demand from him
protection and vengeance; and Seleucus, induced by the hopes of
success, inspired by the discontent and dissensions which so foul an
act had excited among the subjects of Lysimachus, espoused her cause.
The hostilities which ensued between him and Lysimachus were brought to
a termination by the battle of Corupedion, fought near Sardis in 281,
in which Lysimachus was defeated and slain.  By this victory,
Macedonia, and the whole of Alexander's empire, with the exception of
Egypt, southern Syria, Cyprus, and part of Phoenicia, fell under the
sceptre of Seleucus.

That monarch, who had not beheld his native land since he first joined
the expedition of Alexander, now crossed the Hellespont to take
possession of Macedonia.  Ptolemy Ceraunus, who after the battle of
Corupedion had thrown himself on the mercy of Seleucus, and had been
received with forgiveness and favour, accompanied him on this journey.
The murder of Agathocles had not been committed by Ptolemy merely to
oblige Arsinoe.  He had even then designs upon the supreme power, which
he now completed by another crime.  As Seleucus stopped to sacrifice at
a celebrated altar near Lysimachia in Thrace, Ptolemy treacherously
assassinated him by stabbing him in the back (280).  After this base
and cowardly act, Ptolemy Ceraunus, who gave himself out as the avenger
of Lysimachus, was, by one of those movements wholly inexplicable to
our modern notions, saluted king by the army; but the Asiatic dominions
of Seleucus fell to his son Antiochus, surnamed Soter. The crime of
Ptolemy, however, was speedily overtaken by a just punishment.  In the
very same year his kingdom of Macedonia and Thrace was invaded by an
immense host of Celts, and Ptolemy fell at the head of the forces which
he led against them.  A second invasion of the same barbarians
compelled the Greeks to raise a force for their defence, which was
intrusted to the command of the Athenian Callippus (B.C. 279).  On this
occasion the Celts attracted by the report of treasures which were now
perhaps little more than an empty name, penetrated as far southwards as
Delphi, with the view of plundering the temple.  The god, it is said,
vindicated his sanctuary on this occasion in the same supernatural
manner as when it was attacked by the Persians:  it is at all events
certain that the Celts were repulsed with great loss, including that of
their leader Brennus.  Nevertheless some of their tribes succeeded in
establishing themselves near the Danube; others settled on the
sea-coast of Thrace whilst a third portion passed over into Asia, and
gave their name to the country called Galatia.

After the death of Ptolemy Ceraunus, Macedonia fell for some time into
a state of anarchy and confusion, and the crown was disputed by several
pretenders.  At length, in 278, Antigonus Gonatas, son of Demetrius
Poliorcetes, succeeded in establishing himself on the throne of
Macedonia; and, with the exception of two or three years (274-272)
during which he was temporarily expelled by Pyrrhus, he continued to
retain possession of it till his death in 239.  The struggle between
Antigonus and Pyrrhus was brought to a close at Argos in 272.  Pyrrhus
had marched into the Peloponnesus with a large force in order to make
war upon Sparta, but with the collateral design of reducing the places
which still held out for Antigonus.  Pyrrhus having failed in an
attempt to take Sparta, marched against Argos, where Antigonus also
arrived with his forces.  Both armies entered the city by opposite
gates; and in a battle which ensued in the streets Pyrrhus was struck
from his horse by a tile hurled by a woman from a house-top, and was
then despatched by some soldiers of Antigonus.  Such was the inglorious
end of one of the bravest and most warlike monarchs of antiquity; whose
character for moral virtue, though it would not stand the test of
modern scrutiny, shone out conspicuously in comparison with that of
contemporary sovereigns.

Antigonus Gonatas now made himself master of the greater part of
Peloponnesus, which he governed by means of tyrants whom he established
in various cities.

While all Greece, with the exception of Sparta, seemed hopelessly
prostrate at the feet of Macedonia, a new political power, which sheds
a lustre on the declining period of Grecian history, arose in a small
province in Peloponnesus, of which the very name has been hitherto
rarely mentioned since the heroic age.  In Achaia, a narrow slip of
country upon the shores of the Corinthian gulf, a league, chiefly for
religious purposes, had existed from a very early period among the
twelve chief cities of the province.  The league, however, had never
possessed much political importance, and it had been suppressed by the
Macedonians.  At the time of which we are speaking Antigonus Gonatas
was in possession of all the cities formerly belonging to the league,
either by means of his garrisons or of the tyrants who were subservient
to him.  It was, however, this very oppression that led to a revival of
the league.  The Achaean towns, now only ten in number, as two had been
destroyed by earthquakes, began gradually to coalesce again; but Aratus
of Sicyon, one of the most remarkable characters of this period of
Grecian history, was the man who, about the year 251 B.C., first called
the new league into active political existence.  He had long lived in
exile at Argos, whilst his native city groaned under the dominion of a
succession of tyrants.  Having collected a band of exiles, he surprised
Sicyon in the night time, and drove out the last and most unpopular of
these tyrants.  Instead of seizing the tyranny for himself, as he might
easily have done, Aratus consulted only the advantage of his country,
and with this view united Sicyon with the Achaean league.  The
accession of so important a town does not appear to have altered the
constitution of the confederacy.  The league was governed by a
STRATEGUS, or general, whose functions were both military and civil; a
GRAMMATEUS, or secretary; and a council of ten DEMIURGI.  The
sovereignty, however, resided in the general assembly, which met twice
a year in a sacred grove near AEgium. It was composed of every Achaean
who had attained the age of thirty, and possessed the right of electing
the officers of the league, and of deciding all questions of war,
peace, foreign alliances, and the like.  In the year 245 B.C. Aratus
was elected STRATEGUS of the league, and again in 243.  In the latter
of these years he succeeded in wresting Corinth from the Macedonians by
another nocturnal surprise, and uniting it to the league.  The
confederacy now spread with wonderful rapidity.  It was soon joined by
Troezen, Epidaurus, Hermione and other cities; and ultimately embraced
Athens, Megara, AEgina, Salamis, and the whole Peloponnesus, with the
exception of Sparta, Elis, and some of the Arcadian towns.

Sparta, it is true, still continued to retain her independence, but
without a shadow of her former greatness and power.  The primitive
simplicity of Spartan manners had been completely destroyed by the
collection of wealth into a few hands, and by the consequent progress
of luxury.  The number of Spartan citizens had been reduced to 700; but
even of these there were not above a hundred who possessed a sufficient
quantity of land to maintain themselves in independence.  The young
king, Agis IV., who succeeded to the crown in 244, attempted to revive
the ancient Spartan virtue, by restoring the institutions of Lycurgus,
by cancelling all debts, and by making a new distribution of lands; and
with this view he relinquished all his own property, as well as that of
his family, for the public good. But Agis perished in this attempt, and
was put to death as a traitor to his order.  A few years afterwards,
however, Cleomenes, the son of Leonidas, succeeded in effecting the
reforms which had been contemplated by Agis, as well as several others
which regarded military discipline.  The effect of these new measures
soon became visible in the increased success of the Spartan arms.
Aratus was so hard pressed that he was compelled to solicit the
assistance of the Macedonians.  Both Antigonus Gonatas and his son
Demetrius II.--who had reigned in Macedonia from 239 to 229 B.C. were
now dead, and the government was administered by Antigonus Doson, as
guardian of Philip, the youthful son of Demetrius II.  Antigonus Doson
was the grandson of Demetrius Poliorcetes, and the nephew of Antigonus
Gonatas. The Macedonians compelled him to accept the crown; but he
remained faithful to his trust as guardian of Philip, whose mother he
married; and though he had children of his own by her, yet Philip
succeeded him on his death.  It was to Antigonus Doson that Aratus
applied for assistance; and though Cleomenes maintained his ground for
some time, he was finally defeated by Antigonus Doson in the fatal
battle of Sellasia in Laconia (B.C. 221).  The army of Cleomenes was
almost totally annihilated; he himself was obliged to fly to Egypt; and
Sparta, which for many centuries bad remained unconquered, fell into
the hands of the victor.

The succession of Macedonian kings from Alexander the Great to the
extinction of the monarchy will be seen from the following table:--

  Philip III. Arrhidaeus      . .   . .   . .   . .    323-316
  Cassander                   . .   . .   . .   . .    316-296
  Philip IV.                  . .   . .   . .   . .    296-295
  Demetrius I. Poliorcetes    . .   . .   . .   . .    294-287
  Pyrrhus                     . .   . .   . .   . .    287-286
  Lysimachus                  . .   . .   . .   . .    286-280
  Ptolemy Ceraunus and others . .   . .   . .   . .    280-277
  Antigonus Gonatas           . .   . .   . .   . .    277-239
  Demetrius II                . .   . .   . .   . .    239-229
  Antigonus Doson             . .   . .   . .   . .    229-220
  Philip V                    . .   . .   . .   . .    220-178
  Perseus                     . .   . .   . .   . .    178-167

In the following year Antigonus was succeeded by Philip V., the son of
Demetrius II., who was then about sixteen or seventeen years of age.
His youth encouraged the AEtolians to make predatory incursions into
the Peloponnesus.  That people were a species of freebooters, and the
terror of their neighbours; yet they were united, like the Achaeans, in
a confederacy or league. The Aetolian League was a confederation of
tribes instead of cities, like the Achaean.  The diet or council of the
league, called the Panaetolicum, assembled every autumn, generally at
Thermon, to elect the strategus and other officers; but the details of
its affairs were conducted by a committee called APOCLETI, who seem to
have formed a sort of permanent council, The AEtolians had availed
themselves of the disorganised state of Greece consequent upon the
death of Alexander to extend their power, and had gradually made
themselves masters of Locris, Phocis, Boeotia, together with portions
of Acarnania, Thessaly, and Epirus.  Thus both the Amphictyonic Council
and the oracle of Delphi were in their power.  They had early wrested
Naupactus from the Achaeans, and had subsequently acquired several
Peloponnesian cities.

Such was the condition of the AEtolians at the time of Philip's
accession.  Soon after that event we find them, under the leadership of
Dorimachus, engaged in a series of freebooting expeditions in Messenia,
and other parts of Peloponnesus.  Aratus marched to the assistance of
the Messenians at the head of the Achaean forces, but was totally
defeated in a battle near Caphyae.  The Achaeans now saw no hope of
safety except through the assistance of Philip.  That young monarch was
ambitious and enterprising possessing considerable military ability and
much political sagacity.  He readily listened to the application of the
Achaeans, and in 220 entered into an alliance with them.  The war which
ensued between the AEtolians on the one side, and the Achaeans,
assisted by Philip, on the other, and which lasted about three years,
has been called the Social War.  Philip gained several victories over
the AEtolians, but he concluded a treaty of peace with them in 217,
because he was anxious to turn his arms against another and more
formidable power.

The great struggle now going on between Rome and Carthage attracted the
attention of the whole civilized world.  If was evident that Greece,
distracted by intestine quarrels, must be soon swallowed up by
whichever of those great states might prove successful; and of the two,
the ambition of the Romans, who had already gained a footing on the
eastern shores of the Adriatic was by far the more formidable to
Greece.  After the conclusion of the peace with the AEtolians Philip
prepared a large fleet, which he employed to watch the movements of the
Romans, and in the following year (216) he concluded a treaty with
Hannibal, which, among other clauses, provided that the Romans should
not be allowed to retain their conquests on the eastern side of the
Adriatic.  He even meditated an invasion of Italy, and with that view
endeavoured to make himself master of Apollonia and Oricum. But though
he succeeded in taking the latter city, the Romans surprised his camp
whilst he was besieging Apollonia, and compelled him to burn his ships
and retire.  Meanwhile Philip had acted in a most arbitrary manner in
the affairs of Greece; and when Aratus remonstrated with him respecting
his proceedings, he got rid of his former friend and counsellor by
means of a slow and secret poison (B.C. 213).

In B.C., 209 the Achaeans, being hard pressed by the AEtolians, were
again induced to call in the aid of Philip.  The spirit of the Achaeans
was at this time revived by Philopoemen, one of the few noble
characters of the period, and who has been styled by Plutarch "the last
of the Greeks."  He was a native of Megalopolis in Arcadia, and in 208
was elected Strategus of the league.  In both these posts Philopoemen
made great alterations and improvements in the arms and discipline of
the Achaean forces, which he assimilated to those of the Macedonian
phalanx. These reforms, as well as the public spirit with which he had
inspired the Achaeans were attended with the most beneficial results.
In 207 Philopoemen gained at Mantinea a signal victory over the
Lacedaemonians, who had joined the Roman alliance; 4000 of them were
left upon the field, and among them Machanidas who had made himself
tyrant of Sparta.  This decisive battle, combined with the withdrawal
of the Romans, who, being desirous of turning their undivided attention
towards Carthage, had made peace with Philip (205), secured for a few
years the tranquillity of Greece. It also raised the fame of
Philopoemen to its highest point; and in the next Nemean festival,
being a second time general of the league, he was hailed by the
assembled Greeks as the liberator of their country.

Upon the conclusion of the second Punic war the Romans renewed their
enterprises in Greece, and declared war against Philip (B.C. 200).  For
some time the war lingered on without any decided success on either
side; but in 198 the consul T. Quinctius Flamininus succeeded in
gaining over the Achaean league to the Roman alliance; and as the
AEtolians had previously deserted Philip, both those powers fought for
a short time on the same side.  In 197 the struggle was brought to a
termination by the battle of Cynoscephalae, near Scotussa, in Thessaly,
which decided the fate of the Macedonian monarchy.  Philip was obliged
to sue for peace, and in the following year (196) a treaty was ratified
by which the Macedonians were compelled to renounce their supremacy, to
withdraw their garrisons from the Grecian towns, to surrender their
fleet, and to pay 1000 talents for the expenses of the war.  At the
ensuing Isthmian games Flamininus solemnly proclaimed the freedom of
the Greeks, and was received by them with overwhelming joy and

The AEtolians, dissatisfied with these arrangements, persuaded
Antiochus III., king of Syria, to enter into a league against the
Romans.  He passed over into Greece with a wholly inadequate force, and
was defeated by the Romans at Thermopylae (B.C. 191). The AEtolians
were now compelled to make head against the Romans by themselves.
After some ineffectual attempts at resistance they were reduced to sue
for peace, which they at length obtained, but on the most humiliating
conditions (B.C. 189). They were required to acknowledge the supremacy
of Rome, to renounce all the conquests they had recently made, to pay
an indemnity of 500 talents and to engage in future to aid the Romans
in their wars.  The power of the AEtolian league was thus for ever
crushed, though it seems to have existed, in name at least, till a much
later period.

The Achaean league still subsisted but was destined before long to
experience the same fate as its rival.  At first, indeed, it enjoyed
the protection of the Romans, and even acquired an extension of members
through their influence, but this protectorate involved a state of
almost absolute dependence. Philopoemen also had succeeded, in the year
192, in adding Sparta to the league, which now embraced the whole of
Peloponnesus.  But Sparta having displayed symptoms of insubordination,
Philopoemen marched against it in 188, and captured the city; when he
put to death eighty of the leading men, razed the walls and
fortifications, abolished the institutions of Lycurgus, and compelled
the citizens to adopt the democratic constitution of the Achaeans.
Meanwhile the Romans regarded with satisfaction the internal
dissensions of Greece, which they foresaw would only render her an
easier prey, and neglected to answer the appeals of the Spartans for
protection.  In 183 the Messenians, under the leadership of Dinocrates,
having revolted from the league, Philopoemen, who had now attained the
age of 70, led an expedition against them; but having fallen from his
horse in a skirmish of cavalry, he was captured, and conveyed with many
circumstances of ignominy to Messene, where, after a sort of mock
trial, he was executed.  His fate was avenged by Lycortas, the
commander of the Achaean cavalry, the father of the historian Polybius.

In B.C. 179 Philip died, and was succeeded by his son Perseus, the last
monarch of Macedonia.  The latter years of the reign of Philip had been
spent in preparations for a renewal of the war, which he foresaw to be
inevitable; yet a period of seven years elapsed after the accession of
Perseus before the mutual enmity of the two powers broke out into open
hostilities.  The war was protracted three years without any decisive
result; but was brought to a conclusion in 168 by the consul L.
AEmilius Paulus, who defeated Perseus with great loss near Pydna.
Perseus was carried to Rome to adorn the triumph of Paulus (167), and
was permitted to spend the remainder of his life in a sort of
honourable captivity at Alba.  Such was the end of the Macedonian
empire, which was now divided into four districts, each under the
jurisdiction of an oligarchical council.

The Roman commissioners deputed to arrange the affairs of Macedonia did
not confine their attention to that province, but evinced their design
of bringing all Greece under the Roman sway. In these views they were
assisted by various despots and traitors in different Grecian cities,
and especially by Callicrates, a man of great influence among the
Achaeans, and who for many years lent himself as the base tool of the
Romans to effect the enslavement of his country.  After the fall of
Macedonia, Callicrates denounced more than a thousand leading Achaeans
who had favoured the cause of Perseus.  These, among whom was Polybius
the historian, were apprehended and sent to Rome for trial.  A still
harder fate was experienced by AEtolia, Boeotia, Acarnania, and Epirus.
In the last-named country, especially, no fewer than seventy of the
principal towns were abandoned by Paulus to his soldiers for pillage,
and 150,000 persons are said to have been sold into slavery.

A quarrel between the Achaeans and Sparta afforded the Romans a
pretence for crushing the small remains of Grecian independence by the
destruction of the Achaean league.

The Spartans, feeling themselves incompetent to resist the Achaeans,
appealed to the Romans for assistance; and in 147 two Roman
commissioners were sent to Greece to settle the disputes between the
two states.  These commissioners decided that not only Sparta, but
Corinth, and all the other cities, except those of Achaia, should be
restored to their independence.  This decision occasioned serious riots
at Corinth, the most important city of the league.  All the Spartans in
the town were seized, and even the Roman commissioners narrowly escaped
violence.  On their return to Rome a fresh embassy was despatched to
demand satisfaction for these outrages.  But the violent and impolitic
conduct of Critolaus, then Strategus of the league, rendered all
attempts at accommodation fruitless, and after the return of the
ambassadors the Senate declared war against the league.  The cowardice
and incompetence of Critolaus as a general were only equalled by his
previous insolence.  On the approach of the Romans under Metellus from
Macedonia he did not even venture to make a stand at Thermopylae; and
being overtaken by them near Scarphea in Locris, he was totally
defeated, and never again heard of.  Diaeus, who succeeded him as
Strategus, displayed rather more energy and courage.  But a fresh Roman
force under Mummius having landed on the isthmus, Diaeus was overthrown
in a battle near Corinth; and that city was immediately evacuated not
only by the troops of the league, but also by the greater part of the
inhabitants.  On entering it Mummius put the few males who remained to
the sword; sold the women and children as slaves and having carried
away all its treasures, consigned it to the flames (B.C. 146).  Corinth
was filled with masterpieces of ancient art; but Mummius was so
insensible to their surpassing excellence as to stipulate with those
who contracted to convey them to Italy, that, if any were lost in the
passage, they should be replaced by others of equal value!  Mummius
then employed himself in chastising and regulating the whole of Greece;
and ten commissioners were sent from Rome to settle its future
condition. The whole country, to the borders of Macedonia and Epirus,
was formed into a Roman province, under the name of ACHAIA, derived
from that confederacy which had made the last struggle for its
political existence.



The Greeks possessed two large collections of epic poetry.  The one
comprised poems relating to the great events and enterprises of the
Heroic age, and characterised by a certain poetical unity; the other
included works tamer in character and more desultory in their mode of
treatment, containing the genealogies of men and gods, narratives of
the exploits of separate heroes, and descriptions of the ordinary
pursuits of life.  The poems of the former class passed under the name
of Homer; while those of the latter were in the same general way
ascribed to Hesiod.  The former were the productions of the Ionic and
AEolic minstrels in Asia Minor, among whom Homer stood pre-eminent and
eclipsed the brightness of the rest:  the latter were the compositions
of a school of bards in the neighbourhood of Mount Helicon in Boeotia,
among whom in like manner Hesiod enjoyed the greatest celebrity. The
poems of both schools were composed in the hexameter metre and in a
similar dialect; but they differed widely in almost every other feature.

Of the Homeric poems the Iliad and the Odyssey were the most
distinguished and have alone come down to us.  The subject of the Iliad
was the exploits of Achilles and of the other Grecian heroes before
Ilium or Troy; that of the Odyssey was the wanderings and adventures of
Odysseus or Ulysses after the capture of Troy on his return to his
native island.  Throughout the flourishing period of Greek literature
these unrivalled works were universally regarded as the productions of
a single mind; but there was very little agreement respecting the place
of the poet's birth the details of his life, or the time in which he
lived.  Seven cities laid claim to Homer's birth, and most of them had
legends to tell respecting his romantic parentage, his alleged
blindness, and his life of an itinerant bard acquainted with poverty
and sorrow.  It cannot be disputed that he was an Asiatic Greek; but
this is the only fact in his life which can be regarded as certain.
Several of the best writers of antiquity supposed him to have been a
native of the island of Chios; but most modern scholars believe Smyrna
to have been his birthplace. His most probable date is about B.C. 850.

The mode in which these poems were preserved has occasioned great
controversy in modern times.  Even if they were committed to writing by
the poet himself, and were handed down to posterity in this manner, it
is certain that they were rarely read.  We must endeavour to realise
the difference between ancient Greece and our own times.  During the
most flourishing period of Athenian literature manuscripts were
indifferently written, without division into parts, and without marks
of punctuation.  They were scarce and costly, could be obtained only by
the wealthy, and read only by those who had had considerable literary
training. Under these circumstances the Greeks could never become a
reading people; and thus the great mass even of the Athenians became
acquainted with the productions of the leading poets of Greece only by
hearing them recited at their solemn festivals and on other public
occasions.  This was more strikingly the case at an earlier period.
The Iliad and the Odyssey were not read by individuals in private, but
were sung or recited at festivals or to assembled companies.  The bard
originally sung his own lays to the accompaniment of his lyre.  He was
succeeded by a body of professional reciters, called Rhapsodists, who
rehearsed the poems of others, and who appear at early times to have
had exclusive possession of the Homeric poems.  But in the seventh
century before the Christian era literary culture began to prevail
among the Greeks; and men of education and wealth were naturally
desirous of obtaining copies of the great poet of the nation.  From
this cause copies came to be circulated among the Greeks; but most of
them contained only separate portions of the poems, or single
rhapsodes, as they were called.  Pisistratus, the tyrant or despot of
Athens, is said to have been the first person who collected and
arranged the poems in their present form, in order that they might be
recited at the great Panathenaic festival at Athens.

Three works have come down to us bearing the name of Hesiod--the 'Works
and Days,' the 'Theogony,' and a description of the 'Shield of
Hercules.' Many ancient critics believed the 'Works and Days' to be the
only genuine work of Hesiod, and their opinion has been adopted by most
modern scholars.  We learn from this work that Hesiod was a native of
Ascra, a village at the foot of Mount Helicon, to which his father had
migrated from the AEolian Cyme in Asia Minor.  He further tells us that
he gained the prize at Chalcis in a poetical contest; and that he was
robbed of a fair share of his heritage by the unrighteous decision of
judges who had been bribed by his brother Perses. The latter became
afterwards reduced in circumstances, and applied to his brother for
relief; and it is to him that Hesiod addresses his didactic poem of the
'Works and Days,' in which he lays down various moral and social maxims
for the regulation of his conduct and his life.  It contains an
interesting representation of the feelings, habits, and superstitions
of the rural population of Greece in the earlier ages.  Respecting the
date of Hesiod nothing certain can be affirmed.  Modern writers usually
suppose him to have flourished two or three generations later than

The commencement of Greek lyric poetry as a cultivated species of
composition dates from the middle of the seventh century before the
Christian era.  No important event either in the public or private life
of a Greek could dispense with this accompaniment; and the lyric song
was equally needed to solemnize the worship of the gods, to cheer the
march to battle, or to enliven the festive board.  The lyric poetry,
with the exception of that of Pindar, has almost entirely perished, and
all that we possess of it; consists of a few songs and isolated

The great satirist ARCHILOCHUS was one of the earliest and most
celebrated of all the lyric poets.  He was a native of the island of
Paros, and flourished about the year 700 B.C.  His fame rests chiefly
on his terrible satires, composed in the Iambic metre, in which he gave
vent to the bitterness of a disappointed man.

TYRTAEUS and ALCMAN were the two great lyric poets of Sparta, though
neither of them was a native of Lacedaemon.  The personal history of
Tyrtaeus, and his warlike songs which roused the fainting courage of
the Spartans during the second Messenian war, have already been
mentioned.  Alcman was originally a Lydian slave in a Spartan family,
and was emancipated by his master.  He lived shortly after the second
Messenian war.  His poems partake of the character of this period,
which was one of repose and enjoyment after the fatigues and perils of
war.  Many of his songs celebrate the pleasures of good eating and
drinking; but the more important were intended to be sung by a chorus
at the public festivals of Sparta.

ARION was a native of Methymna in Lesbos, and lived some time at the
court of Periander, tyrant of Corinth, who began to reign B.C. 625.
Nothing is known of his life beyond the beautiful story of his escape
from the sailors with whom he sailed from Sicily to Corinth.  On one
occasion, thus runs the story, Arion went to Sicily to take part in a
musical contest.  He won the prize, and, laden with presents, he
embarked in a Corinthian ship to return to his friend Periander.  The
rude sailors coveted his treasures, and meditated his murder.  After
imploring them in vain to spare his life, he obtained permission to
play for the last time on his beloved lyre.  In festal attire he placed
himself on the prow of the vessel, invoked the gods in inspired
strains, and then threw himself into the sea.  But many song-loving
dolphins had assembled round the vessel, and one of them now took the
bard on its back, and carried him to Taenarum, from whence he returned
to Corinth in safety, and related his adventure to Periander.  Upon the
arrival of the Corinthian vessel, Periander inquired of the sailors
after Arion, who replied that he had remained behind at Tarentum; but
when Arion, at the bidding of Periander, came forward, the sailors
owned their guilt, and were punished according to their desert.  The
great improvement in lyric poetry ascribed to Arion is the invention of
the Dithyramb.  This was a choral song and dance in honour of the god
Dionysus, and is of great interest in the history of poetry, since it
was the germ from which sprung at a later time the magnificent
productions of the tragic Muse at Athens.

ALCAEUS and SAPPHO were both natives of Mytilene in the island of
Lesbos, and flourished about B.C. 610-580.  Their songs were composed
for a single voice, and not for the chorus, and they were each the
inventor of a new metre, which bears their name, and is familiar to us
by the well-known odes of Horace.  Their poetry was the warm outpouring
of the writers' inmost feelings, and present the lyric poetry of the
AEolians at its highest point.

Alcaeus took an active part in the civil dissensions of his native
state, and warmly espoused the cause of the aristocratical party, to
which he belonged by birth.  When the nobles were driven into exile, he
endeavoured to cheer their spirits by a number of most animated odes,
full of invectives against the popular party and its leaders.

Of the events of Sappho's life we have scarcely any information; and
the common story that, being in love with Phaon and finding her love
unrequited, she leaped down from the Leucadian rock, seems to have been
an invention of later times.

ANACREON was a native of the Ionian city of Teos.  He spent part of his
life at Samos, under the patronage of Polycrates; and after the death
of this despot he went to Athens at the invitation of Hipparchus.  The
universal tradition of antiquity represents Anacreon as a consummate
voluptuary; and his poems prove the truth of the tradition.  His death
was worthy of his life, if we may believe the account that he was
choked by a grape-stone.

SIMONIDES, of the island of Ceos, was born B.C. 556, and reached a
great age.  He lived many years at Athens, both at the court of
Hipparchus, together with Anacreon, and subsequently under the
democracy during the Persian wars.  The struggles of Greece for her
independence furnished him with a noble subject for his muse. He
carried away the prize from AEschylus with an elegy upon the warriors
who had fallen at the battle of Marathon.  Subsequently we find him
celebrating the heroes of Thermopylae, Artemisium, Salamis, and
Plataea.  He was upwards of 80 when his long poetical career at Athens
was closed with the victory which he gained with the dithyrambic chorus
in B.C. 477, making the 56th prize that he had carried off.  Shortly
after this event he repaired to Syracuse at the invitation of Hiero.
Here he spent the remaining ten years of his life, not only
entertaining Hiero with his poetry, but instructing him by his wisdom;
for Simonides was a philosopher as well as a poet, and is reckoned
amongst the sophists.

PINDAR, though the contemporary of Simonides, was considerably his
junior:  He was born either at, or in the neighbourhood of, Thebes in
Boeotia, about the year 522 B.C.  Later writers tell us that his future
glory as a poet was miraculously foreshadowed by a swarm of bees which
rested upon his lips while he was asleep, and that this miracle first
led him to compose poetry.  He commenced his professional career at an
early age, and soon acquired so great a reputation, that he was
employed by various states and princes of the Hellenic race to compose
choral songs. He was courted especially by Alexander, king of
Macedonia, and by Hiero, despot of Syracuse.  The praises which he
bestowed upon Alexander are said to have been the chief reason which
led his descendant, Alexander the Great, to spare the house of the poet
when he destroyed the rest of Thebes.  The estimation in which Pindar
was held is also shown by the honours conferred upon him by the free
states of Greece.  Although a Theban, he was always a great favourite
with the Athenians, whom he frequently praised in his poems, and who
testified their gratitude by making him their public guest, and by
giving him 10,000 drachmas.  The only poems of Pindar which have come
down to us entire are his Epinicia or triumphal odes, composed in
commemoration of victories gained in the great public games.  But these
were only a small portion of his works.  He also wrote hymns, paeans,
dithyrambs, odes for processions, songs of maidens, mimic dancing
songs, drinking songs, dirges and encomia, or panegyrics on princes.

The Greeks had arrived at a high pitch of civilization before they can
be said to have possessed a HISTORY.  The first essays in literary
prose cannot be placed earlier than the sixth century before the
Christian aera; but the first writer who deserves the name of an
historian is HERODOTUS, hence called the Father of History.  Herodotus
was born in the Dorian colony of Halicarnassus in Caria, in the year
484 B.C., and accordingly about the time of the Persian expeditions
into Greece.  He resided some years in Samos, and also undertook
extensive travels, of which he speaks in his work.  There was scarcely
a town in Greece or on the coasts of Asia Minor with which he was not
acquainted; he had explored Thrace and the coasts of the Black Sea; in
Egypt he had penetrated as far south as Elephantine; and in Asia he had
visited the cities of Babylon, Ecbatana, and Susa.  The latter part of
his life was spent at Thurii, a colony founded by the Athenians in
Italy in B.C. 443. According to a well-known story in Lucian,
Herodotus, when he had completed his work, recited it publicly at the
great Olympic festival, as the best means of procuring for it that
celebrity to which he felt that it was entitled.  The effect is
described as immediate and complete.  The delighted audience at once
assigned the names of the nine Muses to the nine books into which it is
divided.  A still later author (Suidas) adds, that Thucydides, then a
boy, was present at the festival with his father Olorus, and was so
affected by the recital as to shed tears; upon which Herodotus
congratulated Olorus on having a son who possessed so early such a zeal
for knowledge.  But there are many objections to the probability of
these tales.

Herodotus interwove into his history all the varied and extensive
knowledge acquired in his travels, and by big own personal researches.
But the real subject of the work is the conflict between the Greek
race, in the widest sense of the term, and including the Greeks of Asia
Minor, with the Asiatics.  Thus the historian had a vast epic subject
presented to him, which was brought to a natural and glorious
termination by the defeat of the Persians in their attempts upon
Greece.  The work concludes with the reduction of Sestos by the
Athenians, B.C. 478. Herodotus wrote in the Ionic dialect, and his
style is marked by an ease and simplicity which lend it an
indescribable charm.

THUCYDIDES, the greatest of the Greek historians, was an Athenian, and
was born in the year 471 B.C.  His family was connected with that of
Miltiades and Cimon.  He possessed gold-mines in Thrace, and enjoyed
great influence in that country.  He commanded an Athenian squadron of
seven ships at Thasos, in 424 B.C., at the time when Brasidas was
besieging Amphipolis; and having failed to relieve that city in time,
he went into a voluntary exile, in order probably to avoid the
punishment of death.  He appears to have spent 20 years in banishment,
principally in the Peloponnesus, or in places under the dominion or
influence of Sparta.  He perhaps returned to Athens in B.C. 403, the
date of its liberation by Thrasybulus.  According to the unanimous
testimony of antiquity he met with a violent end, and it seems probable
that he was assassinated at Athens, since it cannot be doubted that his
tomb existed there.  From the beginning of the Peloponnesian war he had
designed to write its history, and he employed himself in collecting
materials for that purpose during its continuance; but it is most
likely that the work was not actually composed till after the
conclusion of the war, and that he was engaged upon it at the time of
his death. The first book of his History is introductory, and contains
a rapid sketch of Grecian history from the remotest times to the
breaking out of the war.  The remaining seven books are filled with the
details of the war, related according to the division into summers and
winters, into which all campaigns naturally fall; and the work breaks
off abruptly in the middle of the 21st year of the war (B.C. 411).  The
materials of Thucydides were collected with the most scrupulous care;
the events are related with the strictest impartiality; and the work
probably offers a more exact account of a long and eventful period than
any other contemporary history, whether ancient or modern, of an
equally long and important aera. The style of Thucydides is brief and
sententious, and whether in moral or political reasoning, or in
description, gains wonderful force from its condensation.  But this
characteristic is sometimes carried to a faulty extent, so as to render
his style harsh, and his meaning obscure.

XENOPHON, the son of Gryllus, was also an Athenian, and was probably
born about B.C. 444.  He was a pupil of Socrates, who saved his life at
the battle of Delium (B.C. 424).  His accompanying Cyrus the younger in
his expedition against his brother Artaxerxes, king of Persia, formed a
striking episode in his life, and has been recorded by himself in his
ANABASIS.  He seems to have been still in Asia at the time of the death
of Socrates in 399 B.C., and was probably banished from Athens soon
after that period, in consequence of his close connexion with the
Lacedaemonians.  He accompanied Agesilaus, the Spartan king, on the
return of the latter from Asia to Greece; and he fought along with the
Lacedaemonians against his own countrymen at the battle of Coronea in
394 B.C.  After this battle he went with Agesilaus to Sparta, and soon
afterwards settled at Scillus in Elis, near Olympia.  He is said to
have lived to more than 90 years of age, and he mentions an event which
occurred as late as 357 B.C.

Probably all the works of Xenophon are still extant.  The ANABASIS is
the work on which his fame as an historian chiefly rests.  It is
written in a simple and agreeable style, and conveys much curious and
striking information.  The HELLENICA is a continuation of the history
of Thucydides, and comprehends in seven books a space of about 48
years; namely, from the time when Thucydides breaks off, B.C. 411, to
the battle of Mantinea in 362.  The subject is treated in a very dry
and uninteresting style; and his evident partiality to Sparta, and
dislike of Athens, have frequently warped his judgment, and must cause
his statements to be received with some suspicion.  The CYROPAEDIA, one
of the most pleasing and popular of his works, professes to be a
history of Cyrus, the founder of the Persian monarchy, but is in
reality a kind of political romance, and possesses no authority
whatever as an historical work.  The design of the author seems to have
been to draw a picture of a perfect state; and though the scene is laid
in Persia, the materials of the work are derived from his own
philosophical notions and the usages of Sparta engrafted on the
popularly current stories respecting Cyrus.  Xenophon displays in this
work his dislike of democratic institutions like those of Athens, and
his preference for an aristocracy, or even a monarchy.  Xenophon was
also the author of several minor works; but the only other treatise
which we need mention is the MEMORABILIA of Socrates, in four books,
intended as a defence of his master against the charges which
occasioned his death, and which undoubtedly contains a genuine picture
of Socrates and his philosophy.  The genius of Xenophon was not of the
highest order; it was practical rather than speculative; but he is
distinguished for his good sense, his moderate views, his humane
temper, and his earnest piety.

The DRAMA pre-eminently distinguished Athenian literature.  The
democracy demanded a literature of a popular kind, the vivacity of the
people a literature that made a lively impression; and both these
conditions were fulfilled by the drama.  But though brought to
perfection among the Athenians, tragedy and comedy, in their rude and
early origin, were Dorian inventions.  Both arose out of the worship of
Dionysus.  There was at first but little distinction between these two
species of the drama, except that comedy belonged more to the rural
celebration of the Dionysiac festivals, and tragedy to that in cities.
The name of TRAGEDY was far from signifying any thing mournful, being
derived from the goat-like appearance of those who, disguised as
Satyrs, performed the old Dionysiac songs and dances.  In like manner,
COMEDY was called after the song of the band of revellers who
celebrated the vintage festivals of Dionysus, and vented the rude
merriment inspired by the occasion in jibes and extempore witticisms
levelled at the spectators.  Tragedy, in its more perfect form, was the
offspring of the dithyrambic odes with which that worship was
celebrated.  These were not always of a joyous cast.  Some of them
expressed the sufferings of Dionysus; and it was from this more
mournful species of dithyramb that tragedy, properly so called, arose.
The dithyrambic odes formed a kind of lyrical tragedy, and were sung by
a chorus of fifty men, dancing round the altar of Dionysus.  The
improvements in the dithyramb were introduced by Arion at Corinth; and
it was chiefly among the Dorian states of the Peloponnesus that these
choral dithyrambic songs prevailed.  Hence, even in attic tragedy, the
chorus, which was the foundation of the drama, was written in the Doric
dialect, thus clearly betraying the source from which the Athenians
derived it.

In Attica an important alteration was made in the old tragedy in the
time of Pisistratus, in consequence of which it obtained a new and
dramatic character.  This innovation is ascribed to THESPIS, a native
of the Attic village of Icaria, B.C. 535.  It consisted in the
introduction of an actor for the purpose of giving rest to the chorus.
Thespis was succeeded by Choerilus and Phrynichus, the latter of whom
gained his first prize in the dramatic contests in 511 B.C.  The Dorian
Pratinas, a native of Philius, but who exhibited his tragedies at
Athens, introduced an improvement in tragedy by separating the Satyric
from the tragic drama.  As neither the popular taste nor the ancient
religious associations connected with the festivals of Dionysus would
have permitted the chorus of Satyrs to be entirely banished from the
tragic representations, Pratinas avoided this by the invention of what
is called the Satyric drama; that is, a species of play in which the
ordinary subjects of tragedy were treated in a lively and farcical
manner, and in which the chorus consisted of a band of Satyrs in
appropriate dresses and masks.  After this period it became customary
to exhibit dramas in TETRALOGIES, or sets of four; namely, a tragic
trilogy, or series of three tragedies, followed by a Satyric play.
These were often on connected subjects; and the Satyric drama at the
end served like a merry after-piece to relieve the minds of the

The subjects of Greek tragedy were taken, with few exceptions, from the
national mythology.  Hence the plot and story were of necessity known
to the spectators, a circumstance which strongly distinguished the
ancient tragedy from the modern.  It must also be recollected that the
representation of tragedies did not take place every day, but only,
after certain fixed intervals, at the festivals of Dionysus, of which
they formed one of the greatest attractions.  During the whole day the
Athenian public sat in the theatre witnessing tragedy after tragedy;
and a prize was awarded by judges appointed for the purpose to the poet
who produced the best set of dramas.

Such was Attic tragedy when it came into the hands of AESCHYLUS, who,
from the great improvements which he introduced, was regarded by the
Athenians as its father or founder, just as Homer was of Epic poetry,
and Herodotus of History.  AEschylus was born at Eleusis in Attica in
B.C. 525, and was thus contemporary with Simonides and Pindar.  He
fought with his brother Cynaegirus at the battle of Marathon, and also
at those of Artemisium, Salamis, and Plataea.  In B.C. 484 he gained
his first tragic prize.  In 468 he was defeated in a tragic contest by
his younger rival Sophocles; shortly afterwards he retired to the court
of king Hiero, at Syracuse, He died at Gela, in Sicily, in 456, in the
69th year of his age.  It is unanimously related that an eagle,
mistaking the poet's bald head for a stone, let a tortoise fall upon it
in order to break the shell, thus fulfilling an oracle predicting that
he was to die by a blow from heaven.  The improvements introduced into
tragedy by AEschylus concerned both its form and composition, and its
manner of representation.  In the former his principal innovation was
the introduction of a second actor; whence arose the dialogue, properly
so called, and the limitation of the choral parts, which now became
subsidiary. His improvements in the manner of representing tragedy
consisted in the introduction of painted scenes, drawn according to the
rules of perspective.  He furnished the actors with more appropriate
and more magnificent dresses, invented for them more various and
expressive masks, and raised their stature to the heroic size by
providing them with thick-soled cothurni or buskins.  AEschylus excels
in representing the superhuman, in depicting demigods and heroes, and
in tracing the irresistible march of fate.  His style resembles the
ideas which it clothes: it is bold, sublime, and full of gorgeous
imagery, but sometimes borders on the turgid.

SOPHOCLES, the younger rival and immediate successor of Aeschylus in
the tragic art, was born at Colonus, a village about a mile from
Athens, in B.C. 495.  We have already adverted to his wresting the
tragic prize from AEschylus in 468, from which time he seems to have
retained the almost undisputed possession of the Athenian stage, until
a young but formidable rival arose in the person of Euripides.  The
close of his life was troubled with family dissensions.  Iophon, his
son by an Athenian wife, and therefore his legitimate heir, was jealous
of the affection manifested by his father for his grandson Sophocles,
the offspring of another son, Ariston, whom he had had by a Sicyonian
woman.  Fearing lest his father should bestow a great part of his
property upon his favourite, Iophon summoned him before the Phratores,
or tribesmen, on the ground that his mind was affected.  The old man's
only reply was--"If I am Sophocles I am not beside myself; and if I am
beside myself I am not Sophocles." Then taking up his OEDIPUS AT
COLONUS, which he had lately written, but had not yet brought out, he
read from it a beautiful passage, with which the judges were so struck
that they at once dismissed the case.  He died shortly afterwards, in
B.C. 406, in his 90th year.  As a poet Sophocles is universally allowed
to have brought the drama to the greatest perfection of which it is
susceptible.  His plays stand in the just medium between the sublime
but unregulated flights of AEschylus, and the too familiar scenes and
rhetorical declamations of Euripides.  His plots are worked up with
more skill and care than the plots of either of his great rivals.
Sophocles added the last improvement to the form of the drama by the
introduction of a third actor; a change which greatly enlarged the
scope of the action.  The improvement was so obvious that it was
adopted by AEschylus in his later plays; but the number of three actors
seems to have been seldom or never exceeded.

EURIPIDES was born in the island of Salamis, in B.C. 480 his parents
having been among those who fled thither at the time of the invasion of
Attics by Xerxes.  He studied rhetoric under Prodicus, and physics
under Anaxagoras and he also lived on intimate terms with Socrates.  In
441 he gained his first prize, and he continued to exhibit plays until
408, the date of his Orestes.  Soon after this he repaired to the court
of Macedonia, at the invitation of king Archelaus, where he died two
years afterwards at the age of 74 (B.C. 406).  Common report relates
that he was torn to pieces by the king's dogs, which, according to some
accounts, were set upon him by two rival poets out of envy.  In
treating his characters and subjects Euripides often arbitrarily
departed from the received legends, and diminished the dignity of
tragedy by depriving it of its ideal character, and by bringing it down
to the level of every-day life.  His dialogue was garrulous and
colloquial, wanting in heroic dignity, and frequently frigid through
misplaced philosophical disquisitions.  Yet in spite of all these
faults Euripides has many beauties, and is particularly remarkable for
pathos, so that Aristotle calls him "the most tragic of poets."

Comedy received its full development at Athens from Cratinus, who lived
in the age of Pericles.  Cratinus, and his younger contemporaries
Eupolis and Aristophanes, were the three great poets of what is called
the Old Attic Comedy.  The comedies of Cratinus and Eupolis are lost;
but of Aristophanes, who was the greatest of the three, we have eleven
dramas extant. ARISTOPHANES was born about 444 B.C.  Of his private
life we know positively nothing.  He exhibited his first comedy in 427,
and from that time till near his death, which probably happened about
380, he was a frequent contributor to the Attic stage.  The OLD ATTIC
COMEDY was a powerful vehicle for the expression of opinion; and most
of the comedies of Aristophanes turned either upon political
occurrences, or upon some subject which excited the interest of the
Athenian public.  Their chief object was to excite laughter by the
boldest and most ludicrous caricature; and provided that end was
attained the poet seems to have cared but little about the justice of
the picture.  Towards the end of the career of Aristophanes the
unrestricted licence and libellous personality of comedy began
gradually to disappear.  The chorus was first curtailed and then
entirely suppressed, and thus made way for what is called the Middle
Comedy, which had no chorus at all.  The latter still continued to be
in some degree political; but persons were no longer introduced upon
the stage under their real names, and the office of the chorus was very
much curtailed. It was, in fact, the connecting link between the Old
Comedy and the New, or the Comedy of Manners.  The NEW COMEDY arose
after Athens had become subject to the Macedonians.  Politics were now
excluded from the stage, and the materials of the dramatic poet were
derived entirely from the fictitious adventures of persons in private
life.  The two most distinguished writers of this school were PHILEMON
and MENANDER.  Philemon was probably born about the year 360 B.C., and
was either a Cilician or Syracusan, but came at an early age to Athens.
He is considered as the founder of the New Comedy, which was soon
afterwards brought to perfection by his younger contemporary Menander.
The latter was an Athenian, and was born in B.C. 312.  He was drowned
at the age of 52, whilst swimming in the harbour of Piraeus.  He wrote
upwards of 100 comedies, of which only fragments remain; and the
unanimous praise of posterity awakens our regret for the loss of one of
the most elegant writers of antiquity.  The comedies, indeed, of
Plautus and Terence may give us a general notion of the New Comedy of
the Greeks, from which they were confessedly drawn; but there is good
reason to suppose that the works even of the latter Roman writer fell
far short of the wit and elegance of Menander.

The latter days of literary Athens were chiefly distinguished by the
genius of her ORATORS and PHILOSOPHERS.  There were ten Attic orators,
whose works were collected by the Greek grammarians, and many of whose
orations have come down to us.  Their names are Antiphon, Andocides,
Lysias, Isocrates, Isaeus, AEschines, Lycurgus, Demosthenes, Hyperides
and Dinarchus.  ANTIPHON, the earliest of the ten was born B.C. 480.
He opened a school of rhetoric, and numbered among his pupils the
historian Thucydides. Antiphon was put to death in 411 B.C. for the
part which he took in establishing the oligarchy of the Four Hundred.

ANDOCIDES, who was concerned with Alcibiades in the affair of the
Hermae, was born at Athens in B.C. 467, tend died probably about 391.

LYSIAS, also born at Athens in 458, was much superior to Andocides as
an orator, but being a METIC or resident alien, he was not allowed to
speak in the assemblies or courts of justice, and therefore wrote
orations for others to deliver.

ISOCRATES was born in 436.  After receiving the instructions of some of
the most celebrated sophists of the day, he became himself a
speech-writer and professor of rhetoric; his weakly constitution and
natural timidity preventing him from taking a part in public life.  He
made away with himself in 338, after the fatal battle of Chaeronea, in
despair, it is said, of his country's fate.  He took great pains with
his compositions, and is reported to have spent ten, or, according to
others, fifteen years over his Panegyric oration.

ISAEUS flourished between the end of the Peloponnesian war and the
accession of Philip of Macedon.  He opened a school of rhetoric at
Athens, and is said to have numbered Demosthenes among his pupils.  The
orations of Isaeus were exclusively judicial, and the whole of the
eleven which have come down to us turn on the subject of inheritances.

AESCHINES was born in the year 389, and he was at first a violent
anti-Macedonian; but after his embassy along with Demosthenes and
others to Philip's court, he was the constant advocate of peace,
Demosthenes and AEschines now became the leading speakers on their
respective sides, and the heat of political animosity soon degenerated
into personal hatred.  In 343 Demosthenes charged AEschines with having
received bribes from Philip during a second embassy; and the speech in
which he brought forward this accusation was answered in another by
AEschines.  The result of this charge is unknown, but it seems to have
detracted from the popularity of AEschines.  We have already adverted
to his impeachment of Ctesiphon, and the celebrated reply of
Demosthenes in his speech DE CORONA.  After the banishment of AEschines
on this occasion (B.C. 330), he employed himself in teaching rhetoric
at Rhodes.  He died in Samos in 314.  As an orator he was second only
to Demosthenes.

Of the life of his great rival, DEMOSTHENES, we have already given some
account.  The verdict of his contemporaries, ratified by posterity, has
pronounced Demosthenes the greatest; orator that ever lived.  The
principal element of his success must be traced in his purity of
purpose, which gave to his arguments all the force of conscientious
conviction.  The effect of his speeches was still further heightened by
a wonderful and almost magic force of diction.  The grace and vivacity
of his delivery are attested by the well-known anecdote of AEschines,
when he read at Rhodes his speech against Ctesiphon.  His audience
having expressed their surprise that he should have been defeated after
such an oration  "You would cease to wonder," he remarked, "if you had
heard Demosthenes."

The remaining three Attic orators, viz. LYCURGUS, HYPERIDES, and
DINARCHUS, were contemporaries of Demosthenes.  Lycurgus and Hyperides
both belonged to the anti-Macedonian party, and were warm supporters of
the policy of Demosthenes.  Dinarchus, who is the least important of
the Attic orators, survived Demosthenes, and was a friend of Demetrius

The history of Greek PHILOSOPHY, like that of Greek poetry and history,
began in Asia Minor.  The earliest philosopher of distinction was
THALES of Miletus, who was born about B.C. 640, and died in 554 at the
age of 90.  He was the founder of the IONIC school of philosophy, and
to him were traced the first beginnings of geometry and astronomy.  The
main doctrine of his philosophical system was, that water, or fluid
substance was the single original element from which everything came
and into which everything returned.  ANAXIMANDER, the successor of
Thales in the Ionic school, lived from B.C. 610 to 547.  He was
distinguished for his knowledge of astronomy and geography, and is said
to have been the first to introduce the use of the sun-dial into
Greece. ANAXIMENES, the third in the series of the Ionian philosophers,
lived a little later than Anaximander.  He endeavoured, like Thales, to
derive the origin of all material things from a single element; and,
according to his theory, air was the source of life.

A new path was struck out by ANAXAGORAS Of Clazomenae, the most
illustrious of the Ionic philosophers.  He came to Athens in 480 B.C.,
where he continued to teach for thirty years, numbering among his
hearers Pericles, Socrates, and Euripides.  He abandoned the system of
his predecessors, and, instead of regarding some elementary form of
matter as the origin of all things, he conceived a supreme mind or
intelligence, distinct from the visible world, to have imparted form
and order to the chaos of nature.  These innovations afforded the
Athenians a pretext for indicting Anaxagoras of impiety, though it is
probable that his connexion with Pericles was the real cause of that
proceeding (see Ch. IX).  It was only through the influence and
eloquence of Pericles that he was not put to death; but he was
sentenced to pay a fine of five talents and quit Athens.  The
philosopher retired to Lampsacus, where he died at the age of 72.

The second school of Greek philosophy was the ELEATIC which derived its
name from Elea or Velia, a Greek colony on the western coast of
Southern Italy.  It was founded by XENOPHANES of Colophon, who fled to
Elea on the conquest of his native land by the Persians.  He conceived
the whole of nature to be God.

The third school of philosophy was the PYTHAGOREAN, founded by
PYTHAGORAS.  He was a native of Samos and was born about B.C. 580.  His
father was an opulent merchant, and Pythagoras himself travelled
extensively in the East.  He believed in the transmigration of souls;
and later writers relate that Pythagoras asserted that his own soul had
formerly dwelt in the body of the Trojan Euphorbus, the son of
Panthous, who was slain by Menelaus, and that in proof of his assertion
he took down, at first sight, the shield of Euphorbus from the temple
of Hera (Juno) at Argos, where it had been dedicated by Menelaus.
Pythagoras was distinguished by his knowledge of geometry and
arithmetic; and it was probably from his teaching that the Pythagoreans
were led to regard numbers in some mysterious manner as the basis and
essence of all things.  He was however more of the religious teacher
than of the philosopher; and he looked upon himself as a being destined
by the gods to reveal to his disciples a new and a purer mode of life.
He founded at Croton in Italy a kind of religious brotherhood, the
members of which were bound together by peculiar rites and observances.
Everything done and taught in the fraternity was kept a profound secret
from all without its pale. It appears that the members had some private
signs, like Freemasons, by which they could recognise each other, even
if they had never met before.  His doctrines spread rapidly over Magna
Graecia, and clubs of a similar character were established at Sybaris,
Metapontum, Tarentum, and other cities.

At Athens a new direction was given to the study of philosophy by
Socrates, of whom an account has been already given.  To his teaching
either directly of indirectly may be traced the origin of the four
principal Grecian schools:  the ACADEMICIANS, established by Plato; the
PERIPATETICS, founded by his pupil Aristotle; the EPICUREANS, so named
from their master Epicurus; and the STOICS, founded by Zeno.

PLATO was born at Athens in 429 B.C., the year in which Pericles died.
His first literary attempts were in poetry; but his attention was soon
turned to philosophy by the teaching of Socrates, whose lectures he
began to frequent at about the age of twenty.  From that time till the
death of Socrates he appears to have lived in the closest intimacy with
that philosopher.  After that event Plato withdrew to Megara, and
subsequently undertook some extensive travels, in the course of which
he visited Cyrene, Egypt, Sicily, and Magna Graecia.  His intercourse
with the elder and the younger Dionysius at Syracuse has been already
related His absence from Athens lasted about twelve years; on his
return, being then upwards of forty, he began to teach in the gymnasium
of the Academy.  His doctrines were too recondite for the popular ear,
and his lectures were not very numerously attended.  But he had a
narrower circle of devoted admirers and disciples, consisting of about
twenty-eight persons, who met in his private house; over the vestibule
of which was inscribed--"Let no one enter who is ignorant of geometry."
The most distinguished of this little band of auditors were Speusippus,
his nephew and successor, and Aristotle.  He died in 347, at the age of
81 or 82, and bequeathed his garden to his school.

ARISTOTLE was born in 381 B.C., at Stagira, a seaport town of
Chalcidice, whence he is frequently called THE STAGIRITE.  At the age
of 17, Aristotle, who had then lost both father and mother, repaired to
Athens.  Plato considered him his best scholar, and called him "the
intellect of his school."  Aristotle spent twenty years at Athens,
during the last ten of which he established a school of his own.  In
342 he accepted the invitation of Philip of Macedon to undertake the
instruction of his son Alexander.  In 335, after Alexander had ascended
the throne, Aristotle quitted Macedonia, to which he never returned.
He again took up his abode at Athens, where the Athenians assigned him
the gymnasium called the Lyceum; and from his habit of delivering his
lectures whilst walking up and down in the shady walks of this place,
his school was called the PERIPATETIC.  In the morning he lectured only
to a select class of pupils, called ESOTERIC.  His afternoon lectures
were delivered to a wider circle, and were therefore called EXOTERIC.
It was during the thirteen years in which he presided over the Lyceum
that he composed the greater part of his works, and prosecuted his
researches in natural history, in which he was most liberally assisted
by the munificence of Alexander. The latter portion of Aristotle's life
was unfortunate.  He appears to have lost from some unknown cause the
friendship of Alexander; and, after the death of that monarch, the
disturbances which ensued in Greece proved unfavourable to his peace
and security.  Being threatened with a prosecution for impiety, he
escaped from Athens and retired to Chalcis; but he was condemned to
death in his absence, and deprived of all the rights and honours which
he had previously enjoyed.  He died at Chalcis in 322, in the 63rd year
of his age.

Of all the philosophical systems of antiquity, that of Aristotle was
best adapted to the practical wants of mankind.  It was founded on a
close and accurate observation of human nature and of the external
world; but whilst it sought the practical and useful, it did not
neglect the beautiful and noble.  His works consisted of treatises on
natural, moral and political philosophy, history, rhetoric, criticism,
&c.; indeed there is scarcely a branch of knowledge which his vast and
comprehensive genius did not embrace.

EPICURUS was born at Samos in 342, and settled at Athens at about the
age of 35.  Here he purchased a garden, where he established his
philosophical school.  He taught that pleasure is the highest good; a
tenet, however, which he explained and dignified by showing that it was
mental pleasure that he intended.  The ideas of atheism and sensual
degradation with which the name of Epicurus has been so frequently
coupled are founded on ignorance of his real teaching.  But as he
denied the immortality of the soul, and the interference of the gods in
human affairs,--though he held their existence,--his tenets were very
liable to be abused by those who had not sufficient elevation of mind
to love virtue for its own sake.

ZENO was a native of Citium in the island of Cyprus, and settled at
Athens about B.C. 299.  Here he opened a school in the Poecile Stoa, or
painted porch, whence the name of his sect.  He inculcated temperance
and self-denial, and his practice was in accordance with his precept.

*** End of this LibraryBlog Digital Book "A Smaller history of Greece - From the earliest times to the Roman conquest" ***

Copyright 2023 LibraryBlog. All rights reserved.