Home | Texts by category | | Quick Search:   
Works by Thucydides
Pages of History of The Peloponnesian War - Book IV

Previous | Next

History of The Peloponnesian War - Book IV   

welcomed Brasidas with all possible honours, publicly crowning him
with a crown of gold as the liberator of Hellas; while private persons
crowded round him and decked him with garlands as though he had been
an athlete. Meanwhile Brasidas left them a small garrison for the
present and crossed back again, and not long afterwards sent over a
larger force, intending with the help of the Scionaeans to attempt
Mende and Potidaea before the Athenians should arrive; Scione, he
felt, being too like an island for them not to relieve it. He had
besides intelligence in the above towns about their betrayal.
In the midst of his designs upon the towns in question, a galley
arrived with the commissioners carrying round the news of the
armistice, Aristonymus for the Athenians and Athenaeus for the
Lacedaemonians. The troops now crossed back to Torone, and the
commissioners gave Brasidas notice of the convention. All the
Lacedaemonian allies in Thrace accepted what had been done; and
Aristonymus made no difficulty about the rest, but finding, on
counting the days, that the Scionaeans had revolted after the date
of the convention, refused to include them in it. To this Brasidas
earnestly objected, asserting that the revolt took place before, and
would not give up the town. Upon Aristonymus reporting the case to
Athens, the people at once prepared to send an expedition to Scione.
Upon this, envoys arrived from Lacedaemon, alleging that this would be
a breach of the truce, and laying claim to the town upon the faith
of the assertion of Brasidas, and meanwhile offering to submit the
question to arbitration. Arbitration, however, was what the
Athenians did not choose to risk; being determined to send troops at
once to the place, and furious at the idea of even the islanders now
daring to revolt, in a vain reliance upon the power of the
Lacedaemonians by land. Besides the facts of the revolt were rather as
the Athenians contended, the Scionaeans having revolted two days after
the convention. Cleon accordingly succeeded in carrying a decree to
reduce and put to death the Scionaeans; and the Athenians employed the
leisure which they now enjoyed in preparing for the expedition.
Meanwhile Mende revolted, a town in Pallene and a colony of the
Eretrians, and was received without scruple by Brasidas, in spite of
its having evidently come over during the armistice, on account of
certain infringements of the truce alleged by him against the
Athenians. This audacity of Mende was partly caused by seeing Brasidas
forward in the matter and by the conclusions drawn from his refusal to
betray Scione; and besides, the conspirators in Mende were few, and,
as I have already intimated, had carried on their practices too long
not to fear detection for themselves, and not to wish to force the
inclination of the multitude. This news made the Athenians more
furious than ever, and they at once prepared against both towns.
Brasidas, expecting their arrival, conveyed away to Olynthus in
Chalcidice the women and children of the Scionaeans and Mendaeans, and
sent over to them five hundred Peloponnesian heavy infantry and
three hundred Chalcidian targeteers, all under the command of
Leaving these two towns to prepare together against the speedy
arrival of the Athenians, Brasidas and Perdiccas started on a second
joint expedition into Lyncus against Arrhabaeus; the latter with the
forces of his Macedonian subjects, and a corps of heavy infantry
composed of Hellenes domiciled in the country; the former with the
Peloponnesians whom he still had with him and the Chalcidians,
Acanthians, and the rest in such force as they were able. In all there
were about three thousand Hellenic heavy infantry, accompanied by
all the Macedonian cavalry with the Chalcidians, near one thousand
strong, besides an immense crowd of barbarians. On entering the
country of Arrhabaeus, they found the Lyncestians encamped awaiting
them, and themselves took up a position opposite. The infantry on
either side were upon a hill, with a plain between them, into which
the horse of both armies first galloped down and engaged a cavalry
action. After this the Lyncestian heavy infantry advanced from their

Previous | Next
Site Search