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



Previous | Next
                  

History of The Peloponnesian War - Book VIII   


Moreover, they had but to grant him security for his person and his
recall, and Alcibiades would be only too glad to procure them the
alliance of the King. And above all if they failed altogether, with
the navy which they possessed, they had numbers of places to retire to
in which they would find cities and lands.
Debating together and comforting themselves after this manner,
they pushed on their war measures as actively as ever; and the ten
envoys sent to Samos by the Four Hundred, learning how matters stood
while they were still at Delos, stayed quiet there.
About this time a cry arose among the soldiers in the
Peloponnesian fleet at Miletus that Astyochus and Tissaphernes were
ruining their cause. Astyochus had not been willing to fight at
sea- either before, while they were still in full vigour and the
fleet of the Athenians small, or now, when the enemy was, as they were
informed, in a state of sedition and his ships not yet united- but
kept them waiting for the Phoenician fleet from Tissaphernes, which
had only a nominal existence, at the risk of wasting away in
inactivity. While Tissaphernes not only did not bring up the fleet in
question, but was ruining their navy by payments made irregularly, and
even then not made in full. They must therefore, they insisted, delay
no longer, but fight a decisive naval engagement. The Syracusans were
the most urgent of any.
The confederates and Astyochus, aware of these murmurs, had
already decided in council to fight a decisive battle; and when the
news reached them of the disturbance at Samos, they put to sea with
all their ships, one hundred and ten in number, and, ordering the
Milesians to move by land upon Mycale, set sail thither. The Athenians
with the eighty-two ships from Samos were at the moment lying at
Glauce in Mycale, a point where Samos approaches near to the
continent; and, seeing the Peloponnesian fleet sailing against them,
retired into Samos, not thinking themselves numerically strong
enough to stake their all upon a battle. Besides, they had notice from
Miletus of the wish of the enemy to engage, and were expecting to be
joined from the Hellespont by Strombichides, to whom a messenger had
been already dispatched, with the ships that had gone from Chios to
Abydos. The Athenians accordingly withdrew to Samos, and the
Peloponnesians put in at Mycale, and encamped with the land forces
of the Milesians and the people of the neighbourhood. The next day
they were about to sail against Samos, when tidings reached them of
the arrival of Strombichides with the squadron from the Hellespont,
upon which they immediately sailed back to Miletus. The Athenians,
thus reinforced, now in their turn sailed against Miletus with a
hundred and eight ships, wishing to fight a decisive battle, but, as
no one put out to meet them, sailed back to Samos.

CHAPTER XXVI.

Twenty-first Year of the War - Recall of Alcibiades
to Samos - Revolt of Euboea and Downfall
of the Four Hundred - Battle of Cynossema


IN the same summer, immediately after this, the Peloponnesians
having refused to fight with their fleet united, through not
thinking themselves a match for the enemy, and being at a loss where
to look for money for such a number of ships, especially as
Tissaphernes proved so bad a paymaster, sent off Clearchus, son of
Ramphias, with forty ships to Pharnabazus, agreeably to the original
instructions from Peloponnese; Pharnabazus inviting them and being
prepared to furnish pay, and Byzantium besides sending offers to
revolt to them. These Peloponnesian ships accordingly put out into the
open sea, in order to escape the observation of the Athenians, and
being overtaken by a storm, the majority with Clearchus got into
Delos, and afterwards returned to Miletus, whence Clearchus
proceeded by land to the Hellespont to take the command: ten, however,

Previous | Next
Site Search