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Melpomene   


their adversaries, expecting that they too would retreat through
regions where these things were to be obtained. The Persians, however,
kept strictly to the line of their former march, never for a moment
departing from it; and even so gained the bridge with difficulty. It
was night when they arrived, and their terror, when they found the
bridge broken up, was great; for they thought that perhaps the Ionians
had deserted them.
Now there was in the army of Darius a certain man, an Egyptian,
who had a louder voice than any other man in the world. This person
was bid by Darius to stand at the water's edge, and call Histiaeus the
Milesian. The fellow did as he was bid; and Histiaeus, hearing him
at the very first summons, brought the fleet to assist in conveying
the army across, and once more made good the bridge.
By these means the Persians escaped from Scythia, while the Scyths
sought for them in vain, again missing their track. And hence the
Scythians are accustomed to say of the Ionians, by way of reproach,
that, if they be looked upon as freemen, they are the basest and
most dastardly of all mankind- but if they be considered as under
servitude, they are the faithfullest of slaves, and the most fondly
at. to their lords.
Darius, having passed through Thrace, reached Sestos in the
Chersonese, whence he crossed by the help of his fleet into Asia,
leaving a Persian, named Megabazus, commander on the European side.
This was the man on whom Darius once conferred special honour by a
compliment which he paid him before all the Persians. was about to eat
some pomegranates, and had opened the first, when his brother
Artabanus asked him "what he would like to have in as great plenty
as the seeds of the pomegranate?" Darius answered- "Had I as many
men like Megabazus as there are seeds here, it would please me
better than to be lord of Greece." Such was the compliment wherewith
Darius honoured the general to whom at this time he gave the command
of the troops left in Europe, amounting in all to some eighty thousand
men.
This same Megabazus got himself an undying remembrance among the
Hellespontians, by a certain speech which he made. It came to his
knowledge, while he was staying at Byzantium, that the Chalcedonians
made their settlement seventeen years earlier than the Byzantines.
"Then," said he, "the Chalcedonians must at that time have been
labouring under blindness- otherwise, when so far more excellent a
site was open to them, they would never have chosen one so greatly
inferior." Megabazus now, having been appointed to take the command
upon the Hellespont, employed himself in the reduction of all those
states which had not of their own accord joined the Medes.
About this very time another great expedition was undertaken
against Libya, on a pretext which I will relate when I have premised
certain particulars. The descendants of the Argonauts in the third
generation, driven out of Lemnos by the Pelasgi who carried off the
Athenian women from Brauron, took ship and went to Lacedaemon,
where, seating themselves on Mount Taygetum, they proceeded to
kindle their fires. The Lacedaemonians, seeing this, sent a herald
to inquire of them "who they were, and from what region they had
come"; whereupon they made answer, "that they were Minyae, sons of the
heroes by whom the ship Argo was manned; for these persons had
stayed awhile in Lemnos, and had there become their progenitors." On
hearing this account of their descent, the Lacedaemonians sent to them
a second time, and asked "what was their object in coming to
Lacedaemon, and there kindling their fires?" They answered, "that,
driven from their own land by the Pelasgi, they had come, as was
most reasonable, to their fathers; and their wish was to dwell with
them in their country, partake their privileges, and obtain allotments
of land. It seemed good to the Lacedaemonians to receive the Minyae
among them on their own terms; to assign them lands, and enrol them in
their tribes. What chiefly moved them to this was the consideration
that the sons of Tyndarus had sailed on board the Argo. The Minyae, on

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