Full Text Archive logoFull Text Archive — Free Classic E-books


Part 3 out of 7

Adobe PDF icon
Download this document as a .pdf
File size: 0.8 MB
What's this? light bulb idea Many people prefer to read off-line or to print out text and read from the real printed page. Others want to carry documents around with them on their mobile phones and read while they are on the move. We have created .pdf files of all out documents to accommodate all these groups of people. We recommend that you download .pdfs onto your mobile phone when it is connected to a WiFi connection for reading off-line.

speedily as they could, and they arrived there before the Barbarians
came; and having arrived from the temple of Heracles at Marathon they
encamped at another temple of Heracles, namely that which is in
Kynosarges. The Barbarians however came and lay with their ships in
the sea which is off Phaleron, (for this was then the seaport of the
Athenians), they anchored their ships, I say, off this place, and then
proceeded to sail back to Asia.

117. In this fight at Marathon there were slain of the Barbarians
about six thousand four hundred men, and of the Athenians a hundred
and ninety and two. Such was the number which fell on both sides; and
it happened also that a marvel occurred there of this kind:--an
Athenian, Epizelos the son of Cuphagoras, while fighting in the close
combat and proving himself a good man, was deprived of the sight of
his eyes, neither having received a blow in any part of his body nor
having been hit with a missile, and for the rest of his life from this
time he continued to be blind: and I was informed that he used to tell
about that which had happened to him a tale of this kind, namely that
it seemed to him that a tall man in full armour stood against him,
whose beard overshadowed his whole shield; and this apparition passed
him by, but killed his comrade who stood next to him. Thus, as I was
informed, Epizelos told the tale.

118. Datis, however, as he was going with his army to Asia, when he
had come to Myconos saw a vision in his sleep; and of what nature the
vision was it is not reported, but as soon as day dawned he caused a
search to be made of the ships, and finding in a Phenician ship an
image of Apollo overlaid with gold, he inquired from whence it had
been carried off. Then having been informed from what temple it came,
he sailed in his own ship to Delos: and finding that the Delians had
returned then to the island, he deposited the image in the temple and
charged the men of Delos to convey it back to Delion in the territory
of the Thebans, which is situated by the sea-coast just opposite
Chalkis. Datis having given this charge sailed away: the Delians
however did not convey the statue back, but after an interval of
twenty years the Thebans themselves brought it to Delion by reason of
an oracle. 119. Now as to those Eretrians who had been reduced to
slavery, Datis and Artaphrenes, when they reached Asia in their
voyage, brought them up to Susa; and king Dareios, though he had great
anger against the Eretrians before they were made captive, because the
Eretrians had done wrong to him unprovoked, yet when he saw that they
had been brought up to him and were in his power, he did them no more
evil, but established them as settlers in the Kissian land upon one of
his own domains, of which the name is Ardericca: and this is distant
two hundred and ten furlongs from Susa and forty from the well which
produces things of three different kinds; for they draw from it
asphalt, salt and oil, in the manner which here follows:--the liquid
is drawn with a swipe, to which there is fastened half a skin instead
of a bucket, and a man strikes this down into it and draws up, and
then pours it into a cistern, from which it runs through into another
vessel, taking three separate ways. The asphalt and the salt become
solid at once, and the oil[108] which is called by the Persians
/rhadinake/, is black and gives out a disagreeable smell. Here king
Dareios established the Eretrians as settlers; and even to my time
they continued to occupy this land, keeping still their former
language. Thus it happened with regard to the Eretrians.

120. Of the Lacedemonians there came to Athens two thousand after the
full moon, making great haste to be in time, so that they arrived in
Attica on the third day after leaving Sparta: and though they had come
too late for the battle, yet they desired to behold the Medes; and
accordingly they went out to Marathon and looked at the bodies of the
slain: then afterwards they departed home, commending the Athenians
and the work which they had done.

121. Now it is a cause of wonder to me, and I do not accept the
report, that the Alcmaionidai could ever have displayed to the
Persians a shield by a previous understanding, with the desire that
the Athenians should be under the Barbarians and under Hippias; seeing
that they are evidently proved to have been haters of despots as much
or more than Callias the son of Phainippos and father of Hipponicos,
while Callias for his part was the only man of all the Athenians who
dared, when Peisistratos was driven out of Athens, to buy his goods
offered for sale by the State, and in other ways also he contrived
against him everything that was most hostile: [122. Of this Callias it
is fitting that every one should have remembrance for many reasons:
first because of that which has been before said, namely that he was a
man of excellence in freeing his country; and then also for that which
he did at the Olympic games, wherein he gained a victory in the horse-
race and was second in the chariot-race, and he had before this been a
victor at the Pythian games, so that he was distinguished in the sight
of all Hellenes by the sums which he expended; and finally because he
showed himself a man of such liberality towards his daughters, who
were three in number; for when they came to be of ripe age for
marriage, he gave them a most magnificent dowry and also indulged
their inclinations; for whomsoever of all the Athenians each one of
them desired to choose as a husband for herself, to that man he gave
her.][109] 123, and similarly,[110] the Alcmaionidai were haters of
despots equally or more[111] than he. Therefore this is a cause of
wonder to me, and I do not admit the accusation that these they were
who displayed the shield; seeing that they were in exile from the
despots during their whole time, and that by their contrivance the
sons of Peisistratos gave up their rule. Thus it follows that they
were the men who set Athens free much more than Harmodios and
Aristogeiton, as I judge: for these my slaying Hipparchos exasperated
the rest of the family of Peisistratos, and did not at all cause the
others to cease from their despotism; but the Alcmaionidai did
evidently set Athens free, at least if these were in truth the men who
persuaded the Pythian prophetess to signify to the Lacedemonians that
they should set Athens free, as I have set forth before. 124. It may
be said however that they had some cause of complaint against the
people of the Athenians, and therefore endeavoured to betray their
native city. But on the contrary there were no men in greater repute
than they, among the Athenians at least, nor who had been more highly
honoured. Thus it is not reasonable to suppose that by them a shield
should have been displayed for any such purpose. A shield was
displayed, however; that cannot be denied, for it was done: but as to
who it was who displayed it, I am not able to say more than this.

125. Now the family of Alcmaionidai was distinguished in Athens in the
earliest times also, and from the time of Alcmaion and of Megacles
after him they became very greatly distinguished. For first Alcmaion
the son of Megacles showed himself a helper of the Lydians from Sardis
who came from Crťsus to the Oracle at Delphi, and assisted them with
zeal; and Crťsus having heard from the Lydians who went to the Oracle
that this man did him service, sent for him to Sardis; and when he
came, he offered to give him a gift of as much gold as he could carry
away at once upon his own person. With a view to this gift, its nature
being such, Alcmaion made preparations and used appliances as follows:
--he put on a large tunic leaving a deep fold in the tunic to hang
down in front, and he draw on his feet the widest boots which he could
find, and so went to the treasury to which they conducted him. Then he
fell upon a heap of gold-dust, and first he packed in by the side of
his legs so much of the gold as his boots would contain, and then he
filled the whole fold of the tunic with the gold and sprinkled some of
the gold dust on the hair of his head and took some into his mouth,
and having so done he came forth out of the treasury, with difficulty
dragging along his boots and resembling anything in the world rather
than a man; for his mouth was stuffed full, and every part of him was
swelled out: and upon Crťsus came laughter when he saw him, and he not
only gave him all that, but also presented him in addition with more
not inferior in value to that. Thus this house became exceedingly
wealthy, and thus the Alcmaion of whom I speak became a breeder of
chariot-horses and won a victory at Olympia. 126. Then in the next
generation after this, Cleisthenes the despot of Sikyon exalted the
family, so that it became of much more note among the Hellenes than it
had been formerly. For Cleisthenes the son of Arisonymos, the son of
Myron, the son of Andreas, had a daughter whose name was Agariste; and
as to her he formed a desire to find out the best man of all the
Hellenes and to assign her to him in marriage. So when the Olympic
games were being held and Cleisthenes was victor in them with a four-
horse chariot, he caused a proclamation to be made, that whosoever of
the Hellenes thought himself worthy to be the son-in-law of
Cleisthenes should come on the sixtieth day, or before that if he
would, to Sikyon; for Cleisthenes intended to conclude the marriage
within a year, reckoning from the sixtieth day. Then all those of the
Hellenes who had pride either in themselves or in their high
descent,[112] came as wooers, and for them Cleisthenes had a running-
course and a wrestling-place made and kept them expressly for their
use. 127. From Italy came Smindyrides the son of Hippocrates of
Sybaris, who of all men on earth reached the highest point of luxury
(now Sybaris at this time was in the height of its prosperity), and
Damasos of Siris, the son of that Amyris who was called the Wise;
these came from Italy: from the Ionian gulf came Amphimnestos the son
of Epistrophos of Epidamnos, this man from the Ionian gulf: from
Aitolia came Males, the brother of that Titormos who surpassed all the
Hellenes in strength and who fled from the presence of men to the
furthest extremities of the Aitolian land: from Peloponnesus, Leokedes
the son of Pheidon the despot of the Argives, that Pheidon who
established for the Peloponnesians the measures which they use, and
who went beyond all other Hellenes in wanton insolence, since he
removed from their place the presidents of the games appointed by the
Eleians and himself presided over the games at Olympia,--his son, I
say, and Amiantos the son of Lycurgos an Arcadian from Trapezus, and
Laphanes an Azanian from the city of Paios, son of that Euphorion who
(according to the story told in Arcadia) received the Dioscuroi as
guests in his house and from thenceforth was wont to entertain all men
who came, and Onomastos the son of Agaios of Elis; these, I say, came
from Peloponnesus itself: from Athens came Megacles the son of that
Alcmaion who went to Crťsus, and besides him Hippocleides the son of
Tisander, one who surpassed the other Athenians in wealth and in
comeliness of form: from Eretria, which at that time was flourishing,
came Lysanias, he alone from Eubťa: from Thessalia came Diactorides of
Crannon, one of the family of the Scopadai: and from the Molossians,
Alcon. 128. So many in number did the wooers prove to be: and when
these had come by the appointed day, Cleisthenes first inquired of
their native countries and of the descent of each one, and then
keeping them for a year he made trial continually both of their manly
virtue and of their disposition, training and temper, associating both
with each one separately and with the whole number together: and he
made trial of them both by bringing out to bodily exercises those of
them who were younger, and also especially in the common feast: for
during all the time that he kept them he did everything that could be
done, and at the same time he entertained them magnificently. Now it
chanced that those of the wooers pleased him most who had come from
Athens, and of these Hippocleides the son of Tisander was rather
preferred, both by reason of manly virtues and also because he was
connected by descent with the family of Kypselos at Corinth. 129. Then
when the appointed day came for the marriage banquet and for
Cleisthenes himself to declare whom he selected from the whole number,
Cleisthenes sacrificed a hundred oxen and feasted both the wooers
themselves and all the people of Sikyon; and when the dinner was over,
the wooers began to vie with one another both in music and in speeches
for the entertainment of the company;[113] and as the drinking went
forward and Hippocleides was very much holding the attention of the
others,[114] he bade the flute-player play for him a dance-measure;
and when the flute-player did so, he danced: and it so befell that he
pleased himself in his dancing, but Cleisthenes looked on at the whole
matter with suspicion. Then Hippocleides after a certain time bade one
bring in a table; and when the table came in, first he danced upon it
Laconian figures, and then also Attic, and thirdly he planted his head
upon the table and gesticulated with his legs. Cleisthenes meanwhile,
when he was dancing the first and the second time, though he abhorred
the thought that Hippocleides should now become his son-in-law,
because of his dancing and his shamelessness, yet restrained himself,
not desiring to break out in anger against him; but when he saw that
he thus gesticulated with his legs, he was no longer able to restrain
himself, but said: "Thou hast danced away thy marriage however,[115]
son of Tisander!" and Hippocleides answered and said: "Hippocleides
cares not!" 130, and hence comes this saying. Then Cleisthenes caused
silence to be made, and spoke to the company as follows: "Men who are
wooers of my daughter, I commend you all, and if it were possible I
would gratify you all, neither selecting one of you to be preferred,
nor rejecting the remainder. Since however it is not possible, as I am
deliberating about one maiden only, to act so as to please all,
therefore to those of you who are rejected from this marriage I give
as a gift a talent of silver to each one for the worthy estimation ye
had of me, in that ye desired to marry from my house, and for the time
of absence from your homes; and to the son of Alcmaion, Megacles, I
offer my daughter Agariste in betrothal according to the customs of
the Athenians." Thereupon Megacles said that he accepted the
betrothal, and so the marriage was determined by Cleisthenes.

131. Thus it happened as regards the judgment of the wooers, and thus
the Alcmaionidai got renown over all Hellas. And these having been
married, there was born to them that Cleisthenes who established the
tribes and the democracy for the Athenians, he being called after the
Sikyonian Cleisthenes, his mother's father; this son, I say, was born
to Megacles, and also Hippocrates: and of Hippocrates came another
Megacles and another Agariste, called after Agariste, the daughter of
Cleisthenes, who having been married to Xanthippos the son of Ariphron
and being with child, saw a vision in her sleep, and it seemed to her
that she had brought forth a lion: then after a few days she bore to
Xanthippos Pericles.

132. After the defeat at Marathon, Miltiades, who even before was well
reputed with the Athenians, came then to be in much higher estimation:
and when he asked the Athenians for seventy ships and an army with
supplies of money, not declaring to them against what land he was
intending to make an expedition, but saying that he would enrich them
greatly if they would go with him, for he would lead them to a land of
such a kind that they would easily get from it gold in abundance,--
thus saying he asked for the ships; and the Athenians, elated by these
words, delivered them over to him. 133. Then Miltiades, when he had
received the army, proceeded to sail to Paris with the pretence that
the Parians had first attacked Athens by making expedition with
triremes to Marathon in company with the Persian: this was the pretext
which he put forward, but he had also a grudge against the Parians on
account of Lysagoras the son of Tisias, who was by race of Paros, for
having accused him to Hydarnes the Persian. So when Miltiades had
arrived at the place to which he was sailing, he began to besiege the
Parians with his army, first having shut them up within their wall;
and sending in to them a herald he asked for a hundred talents, saying
that if they refused to give them, his army should not return
back[116] until it had conquered them completely. The Parians however
had no design of giving any money to Miltiades, but contrived only how
they might defend their city, devising various things besides and also
this,--wherever at any time the wall proved to be open to attack, that
point was raised when night came on to double its former height. 134.
So much of the story is reported by all the Hellenes, but as to what
followed the Parians alone report, and they say that it happened thus:
--When Miltiades was at a loss, it is said, there came a woman to
speech with him, who had been taken prisoner, a Parian by race whose
name was Timo, an under-priestess[117] of the Earth goddesses;[118]
she, they say, came into the presence of Miltiades and counselled him
that if he considered it a matter of much moment to conquer Paros, he
could do that which she should suggest to him; and upon that she told
him her meaning. He accordingly passed through to the hill which is
before the city and leapt over the fence of the temple of Demeter
Giver of Laws,[119] not being able to open the door; and then having
leapt over he went on towards the sanctuary[120] with the design of
doing something within, whether it were that he meant to lay hands on
some of the things which should not be touched, or whatever else he
intended to do; and when he had reached the door, forthwith a
shuddering fear came over him and he set off to go back the same way
as he came, and as he leapt down from the wall of rough stones his
thigh was dislocated, or, as others say, he struck his knee against
the wall. 135. Miltiades accordingly, being in a wretched case, set
forth to sail homewards, neither bringing wealth to the Athenians nor
having added to them the possession of Paros, but having besieged the
city for six-and-twenty days and laid waste the island: and the
Parians being informed that Timo the under-priestess of the goddesses
had acted as a guide to Miltiades, desired to take vengeance upon her
for this, and they sent messengers to Delphi to consult the god, so
soon as they had leisure from the siege; and these messengers they
sent to ask whether they should put to death the under-priestess of
the goddesses, who had been a guide to their enemies for the capture
of her native city and had revealed to Miltiades the mysteries which
might not be uttered to a male person. The Pythian prophetess however
forbade them, saying that Timo was not the true author of these
things, but since it was destined that Miltiades should end his life
not well, she had appeared to guide him to his evil fate. 136. Thus
the Pythian prophetess replied to the Parians: and the Athenians, when
Miltiades had returned back from Paros, began to talk of him, and
among the rest especially Xanthippos the son of Ariphron, who brought
Miltiades up before the people claiming the penalty of death and
prosecuted him for his deception of the Athenians: and Miltiades did
not himself make his own defence, although he was present, for he was
unable to do so because his thigh was mortifying; but he lay in public
view upon a bed, while his friends made a defence for him, making
mention much both of the battle which had been fought at Marathon and
of the conquest of Lemnos, namely how he had conquered Lemnos and
taken vengeance on the Pelasgians, and had delivered it over to the
Athenians: and the people came over to his part as regards the
acquittal from the penalty of death, but they imposed a fine of fifty
talents for the wrong committed: and after this Miltiades died, his
thigh having gangrened and mortified, and the fifty talents were paid
by his son Kimon.

137. Now Miltiades son of Kimon had thus taken possession of the
Lemnos:--After the Pelasgians had been cast out of Attica by the
Athenians, whether justly or unjustly,--for about this I cannot tell
except the things reported, which are these:--Hecataois on the one
hand, the son of Hegesander, said in his history that it was done
unjustly; for he said that when the Athenians saw the land which
extends below Hymettos, which they had themselves given them[121] to
dwell in, as payment for the wall built round the Acropolis in former
times, when the Athenians, I say, saw that this land was made good by
cultivation, which before was bad and worthless, they were seized with
jealousy and with longing to possess the land, and so drove them out,
not alleging any other pretext: but according to the report of the
Athenians themselves they drove them out justly; for the Pelasgians
being settled under Hymettos made this a starting-point and committed
wrong against them as follows:--the daughters and sons of the
Athenians were wont ever to go for water to the spring of Enneacrunos;
for at that time neither they nor the other Hellenes as yet had
household servants; and when these girls came, the Pelasgians in
wantonness and contempt of the Athenians would offer them violence;
and it was not enough for them even to do this, but at last they were
found in the act of plotting an attack upon the city: and the
narrators say that they herein proved themselves better men than the
Pelasgians, inasmuch as when they might have slain the Pelasgians, who
had been caught plotting against them, they did not choose to do so,
but ordered them merely to depart out of the land: and thus having
departed out of the land, the Pelasgians took possession of several
older places and especially of Lemnos. The former story is that which
was reported by Hecataios, while the latter is that which is told by
the Athenians. 138. These Pelasgians then, dwelling after that in
Lemnos, desired to take vengeance on the Athenians; and having full
knowledge also of the festivals of the Athenians, they got[122] fifty-
oared galleys and laid wait for the women of the Athenians when they
were keeping festival to Artemis in Brauron; and having carried off a
number of them from thence, they departed and sailed away home, and
taking the women to Lemnos they kept them as concubines. Now when
these women had children gradually more and more, they made it their
practice to teach their sons both the Attic tongue and the manners of
the Athenians. And these were not willing to associate with the sons
of the Pelasgian women, and moreover if any of them were struck by any
one of those, they all in a body came to the rescue and helped one
another. Moreover the boys claimed to have authority over the other
boys and got the better of them easily. Perceiving these things the
Pelasgians considered the matter; and when they took counsel together,
a fear came over them and they thought, if the boys were indeed
resolved now to help one another against the sons of the legitimate
wives, and were endeavouring already from the first to have authority
over them, what would they do when they were grown up to be men? Then
they determined to put to death the sons of the Athenian women, and
this they actually did; and in addition to them they slew their
mothers also. From this deed and from that which was done before this,
which the women did when they killed Thoas and the rest, who were
their own husbands, it has become a custom in Hellas that all deeds of
great cruelty should be called "Lemnian deeds." 139. After the
Pelasgians had killed their own sons and wives, the earth did not bear
fruit for them, nor did their women or their cattle bring forth young
as they did before; and being hard pressed by famine and by
childlessness, they sent to Delphi to ask for a release from the evils
which were upon them; and the Pythian prophetess bade them pay such
penalty to the Athenians as the Athenians themselves should appoint.
The Pelasgians came accordingly to Athens and professed that they were
willing to pay the penalty for all the wrong which they had done: and
the Athenians laid a couch in the fairest possible manner in the City
Hall, and having set by it a table covered with all good things, they
bade the Pelasgians deliver up to them their land in that condition.
Then the Pelasgians answered and said: "When with a North Wind in one
single day a ship shall accomplish the voyage from your land to ours,
then we will deliver it up," feeling assured that it was impossible
for this to happen, since Attica lies far away to the South of Lemnos.
140. Such were the events which happened then: and very many years
later, after the Chersonese which is by the Hellespont had come to be
under the Athenians, Miltiades the son of Kimon, when the Etesian
Winds blew steadily, accomplished the voyage in a ship from Elaius in
the Chersonese to Lemnos, and proclaimed to the Pelasgians that they
should depart out of the island, reminding them of the oracle, which
the Pelasgians had never expected would be accomplished for them. The
men of Hephaistia accordingly obeyed; but those of Myrina, not
admitting that the Chersonese was Attica, suffered a siege, until at
last these also submitted. Thus it was that the Athenians and
Miltiades took possession of Lemnos.


1. {proboulous}.

2. See i. 148.

3. {epi keras}.

4. {diekploon poieumenos tesi neusi di alleleon}.

5. {tou Dareiou}: a conjecture based upon Valla's translation. The
MSS. have {ton Dareion}.

6. {prophasios epilabomenoi}.

6a. {en stele anagraphenai patrothen}.

7. "were very roughly handled."

8. {epibateuontas}.

8a. {nuktos te gar}: so Stein for {nuktos te}.

9. {kat akres}, lit. "from the top downwards," i.e. town and citadel both.

10. See ch. 77.

11. See i. 92 and v. 36.

11a. {Kalen akten}.

12. Possibly the reading should be {Inuka}, "Inyx."

13. {ton en te naumakhie}: perhaps we should read {ten en te
naumakhin}, "which took place in the sea-fight."

14. {en Koiloisi kaleomenoisi}.

15. {grammata didaskomenoisi}.

16. {limainouses}: a conjectural reading for {deimainouses}.

17. Lit. "and it became in fact the work of the cavalry."

18. {esagenouon}.

19. Or (according to some good MSS.) "Thelymbria."

20. Cp. iii. 120.

21. {stadioi}: the distances here mentioned are equal to a little more
than four and a little less than fifty miles respectively.

22. {en gnome gegonos}.

23. {pituos tropon}: the old name of the town was Pityussa.

24. That is to say, Kimon was his half-brother, and Stesagoras and the
younger Miltiades his nephews.

25. See ch. 103.

26. {delade}.

27. {eleluthee}, but the meaning must be this, and it is explained by
the clause, {trito men gar etei k.t.l.}

28. {stadia}: see v. 52, note 40.

29. See iii. 80.

30. {entos Makedonon}, "on their side of the Macedonians."

30a. Or (according to some MSS.) "about three hundred."

31. Or "Scaptesyle." (The Medicean MS. however has {skaptes ules}, not
{skaptesules}, as reported by Stein.)

32. {ta proiskheto aiteon}, "that which he put forward demanding it."

33. i.e. "ram."

34. {ton geraiteron}.

35. {en to demosio}.

36. This is commonly understood to mean, leaving out of account the
god who was father of Perseus; but the reason for stopping short
at Perseus is given afterwards, and the expression {tou theou
apeontos} refers perhaps rather to the case of Heracles, the
legend of whose birth is rejected by Herodotus (see ii. 43), and
rejected also by this genealogy, which passes through Amphitryon
up to Perseus. I take it that {tou theou apeontos} means
"reckoning Heracles" (who is mentioned by name just below in this
connexion) "as the son of Amphitryon and not of Zeus."

37. i.e. "of heaven."

38. {medimnon}, the Lacedemonian {medimnos} being equal to rather more
than two bushels.

39. {tetarten Lakomiken}, quantity uncertain.

40. {proxeinous}.

41. {khoinikas}. There were 48 {khoinikes} in the {medimnos}.

42. {kotulen}.

42a. The loose manner in which this is expressed, leaving it uncertain
whether each king was supposed by the writer to have two votes
given for him (cp. Thuc. i. 20), or whether the double vote was
one for each king, must of course be reproduced in the

43. {perioikon}.

44. See ch. 51.

45. {proergazomenon}: a conjectural emendation of {prosergazomenon}.

46. {tes apates te paragoge}, "by the misleading of the deception."

47. i.e. lunar months.

48. {en thoko katemeno}.

49. {pandemei}.

50. {aren}.

51. i.e. "prayed for by the people."

52. {di a}: a conjectural emendation of {dia ta}. Some Editors suppose
that other words have dropped out.

53. {promantin}: cp. vii. III.

54. {ton splagkhnon}.

55. {tou erkeiou}.

56. {ton mataioteron logon legontes}.

57. Lit. "on the third night after the first," but the meaning is as

58. Most of the MSS. have "Astrobacos," which may be right.

59. Or "to the honour of the Lacedemonians."

60. i.e. any more than his predecessor.

61. See ch. 50.

62. {neotera epresse pregmata}.

63. {up Arkadon}: several good MSS. have {ton Arkadon}, which is
adopted by some Editors. The meaning would be "near this city it
is said that there is the Styx water of the Arcadians."

64. {upomargoteron}.

65. Demeter and Core.

66. The MSS. give also "Sepeia" and "Sipeia." The place is not
elsewhere mentioned.

67. See ch. 19.

68. {duo mneai}: cp. v. 77.

69. {o theos}, i.e. Hera: cp. i. 105.

70. {kalliereumeno}.

71. {kat akres}: cp. ch. 18.

72. i.e. was acquitted of the charge brought against him.

73. {episkuthison}.

74. {bouleuesthe}: some MSS. and editions have {boulesthe},

75. {en khrono ikneumeno}.

76. i.e. take an oath to that effect.

77. See v. 80.

78. {penteteris}. The reading {penteres}, which is given by most of
the MSS. and by several Editors, can hardly be defended.

79. {kai en gar}, "and since there was."

80. {Knoithou kaleomenos}: cp. vii. 143.

81. {thesmophorou}.

82. {pentaethlon epaskesas}.

83. {mounomakhien epaskeon}, "practising single combat," as if
training for the games.

84. {para te Ikarion}: the use of {para} and the absence of the
article may justify the conjecture {para te Ikarion} (or {Ikaron})
"by Icaria" (or "Icaros"), the island from which the Icarian Sea
had its name.

85. This perhaps should be emended, for the event referred to occurred
two years before, cp. ch. 46 and 48. The reading {trito proteron
etei} has been proposed.

86. See v. 33 ff.

86a. i.e. Apollo: or perhaps more generally, "God," as in ch. 27.

87. This in brackets is probably an interpolation. It is omitted by
some of the best MSS. Some Editors suspect the genuineness of the
next four lines also, on internal grounds.

88. {erxies}, perhaps meaning "worker."

89. {areios}.

90. {megas areios}.

91. {ippoboteon}, lit. "horse-breeding": see v. 77.

91a. Or (according to some MSS.), "having come to shore at these

92. {katergontes}: the word is not elsewhere found intransitive, yet
it is rather difficult to supply {tous Athenaious}. Some
alterations have been proposed, but none probable.

93. Lit. "and it happened that in winning this victory he won the same
victory as his half-brother Miltiades." See ch. 36.

94. Or, according to some authorities, "Philippides."

95. Lit. "except the circle were full."

96. Or "Aigileia."

97. Lit. "by violence, having coughed."

98. "by the bean."

99. {es se toi}, a conjectural emendation of {es se ti}.

100. {prutaneie tes emeres}.

101. Some Editors propose to omit {gar} or alter it. If it be allowed
to stand, the meaning must be that the importance of the place is
testified by the commemoration mentioned.

102. {es tas panegurias}, some MSS. have {kai panegurias}, "hold
sacrifices and solemn assemblies."

103. {penteterisi}.

104. Lit. "the good things."

105. {stadioi}: the distance would be rather over 1600 yards.

106. Whether this is thrown in here by the historian as an explanation
of the rapid advance, or as an additional source of wonder on the
part of the Persians at the boldness of the Athenians, is not

107. Or (according to some MSS.) "having taken hold."

108. The account of how the oil was dealt with has perhaps dropt out:
one MS. and the Aldine edition have "the oil they collect in
vessels, and this," etc.

109. This chapter is omitted by several of the best MSS., and is
almost certainly an interpolation. (In the Medicean MS. it has
been added in the margin by a later hand.)

110. Answering to "Callias for his part" at the end of ch. 121, the
connexion being broken by the interpolated passage.

111. {ouden esson}.

112. {patre}, "family," or possibly "country," as in ch. 128.

113. {to legomeno es to meson}: perhaps only "general conversation."

114. {katekhon pollon tous allous}.

115. i.e. "though the dancing may be good."

116. {aponostesein}: some MSS. have {apanastesein}, "he would not take
away his army thence."

117. {upozakoron}.

118. {ton khthonion theon}, i.e. Demeter and Persephone: cp. vii. 153.

119. {thesmophorou}.

120. {to megaron}.

121. {sphi autoi}: a conjectural rendering of {sphisi autoisi}, which
can only be taken with {eousan}, meaning "belonging to them" i.e.
the Athenians, and involves the insertion of {Pelasgoisi} or
something equivalent with {edosan}.

122. {ktesamenoi}: some MSS. and editions have {stesamenoi}, "set
fifty-oared galleys in place."



1. Now when the report came to Dareios the son of Hystaspes of the
battle which was fought at Marathon, the king, who even before this
had been greatly exasperated with the Athenians on account of the
attack made upon Sardis, then far more than before displayed
indignation, and was far more desirous of making a march against
Hellas. Accordingly at once he sent messengers to the various cities
and ordered that they should get ready a force, appointing to each
people to supply much more than at the former time, and not only ships
of war, but also horses and provisions and transport vessels;[1] and
when these commands were carried round, all Asia was moved for three
years, for all the best men were being enlisted for the expedition
against Hellas, and were making preparations. In the fourth year
however the Egyptians, who had been reduced to subjection by Cambyses,
revolted from the Persians; and then he was even more desirous of
marching against both these nations.

2. While Dareios was thus preparing to set out against Egypt and
against Athens, there arose a great strife among his sons about the
supreme power; and they said that he must not make his expeditions
until he had designated one of them to be king, according to the
custom of the Persians. For to Dareios already before he became king
three sons had been born of his former wife the daughter of Gobryas,
and after he became king four other sons of Atossa the daughter of
Cyrus: of the first the eldest was Artobazanes, and of those who had
been born later, Xerxes. These being not of the same mother were at
strife with one another, Artobazanes contending that he was the eldest
of all the sons, and that it was a custom maintained by all men that
the eldest should have the rule, and Xerxes arguing that he was the
son of Atossa the daughter of Cyrus, and that Cyrus was he who had won
for the Persians their freedom. 3. Now while Dareios did not as yet
declare his judgment, it chanced that Demaratos also, the son of
Ariston, had come up to Susa at this very same time, having been
deprived of the kingdom in Sparta and having laid upon himself a
sentence of exile from Lacedemon. This man, hearing of the difference
between the sons of Dareios, came (as it is reported of him) and
counselled Xerxes to say in addition to those things which he was wont
to say, that he had been born to Dareios at the time when he was
already reigning as king and was holding the supreme power over the
Persians, while Artobazanes had been born while Dareios was still in a
private station: it was not fitting therefore nor just that another
should have the honour before him; for even in Sparta, suggested
Demaratos, this was the custom, that is to say, if some of the sons
had been born first, before their father began to reign, and another
came after, born later while he was reigning, the succession of the
kingdom belonged to him who had been born later. Xerxes accordingly
made use of the suggestion of Demaratos; and Dareios perceiving that
he spoke that which was just, designated him to be king. It is my
opinion however that even without this suggestion Xerxes would have
become king, for Atossa was all-powerful. 4. Then having designated
Xerxes to the Persians as their king, Dareios wished to go on his
expeditions. However in the next year after this and after the revolt
of Egypt, it came to pass that Dareios himself died, having been king
in all six-and-thirty years; and thus he did not succeed in taking
vengeance either upon the revolted Egyptians or upon the Athenians.

5. Dareios being dead the kingdom passed to his son Xerxes. Now Xerxes
at the first was by no means anxious to make a march against Hellas,
but against Egypt he continued to gather a force. Mardonios however,
the son of Gobryas, who was a cousin of Xerxes, being sister's son to
Dareios, was ever at his side, and having power with him more than any
other of the Persians, he kept continually to such discourse as this
which follows, saying: "Master, it is not fitting that the Athenians,
after having done to the Persians very great evil, should not pay the
penalty for that which they have done. What if thou shouldest[2] at
this present time do that which thou hast in thy hands to do; and when
thou hast tamed the land of Egypt, which has broken out insolently
against us, then do thou march an army against Athens, that a good
report may be made of thee by men, and that in future every one may
beware of making expeditions against thy land." Thus far his speech
had to do with vengeance,[3] and to this he would make addition as
follows, saying that Europe was a very fair land and bore all kinds of
trees that are cultivated for fruit, and was of excellent fertility,
and such that the king alone of all mortals was worthy to possess it.
6. These things he was wont to say, since he was one who had a desire
for perilous enterprise and wished to be himself the governor of
Hellas under the king. So in time he prevailed upon Xerxes and
persuaded him to do this; for other things also assisted him and
proved helpful to him in persuading Xerxes. In the first place there
had come from Thessaly messengers sent by the Aleuadai, who were
inviting the king to come against Hellas and were showing great zeal
in his cause, (now these Aleuadai were kings of Thessaly): and then
secondly those of the sons of Peisistratos who had come up to Susa
were inviting him also, holding to the same arguments as the Aleuadai;
and moreover they offered him yet more inducement in addition to
these; for there was one Onomacritos an Athenian, who both uttered
oracles and also had collected and arranged the oracles of Musaios;[4]
and with this man they had come up, after they had first reconciled
the enmity between them. For Onomacritos had been driven forth from
Athens by Hipparchos the son of Peisistratos, having been caught by
Lasos of Hermion interpolating in the works of Musaios an oracle to
the effect that the islands which lie off Lemnos should disappear[5]
under the sea. For this reason Hipparchos drove him forth, having
before this time been very much wont to consult him. Now however he
had gone up with them; and when he had come into the presence of the
king, the sons of Peisistratos spoke of him in magnificent terms, and
he repeated some of the oracles; and if there was in them anything
which imported disaster to the Barbarians, of this he said nothing;
but choosing out of them the most fortunate things he told how it was
destined that the Hellespont should be yoked with a bridge by a
Persian, and he set forth the manner of the march. He then thus urged
Xerxes with oracles, while the sons of Peisistratos and the Aleuadai
pressed him with their advice.

7. So when Xerxes had been persuaded to make an expedition against
Hellas, then in the next year after the death of Dareios he made a
march first against those who had revolted. Having subdued these and
having reduced all Egypt to slavery much greater than it had suffered
in the reign of Dareios, he entrusted the government of it to
Achaimenes his own brother, a son of Dareios. Now this Achaimenes
being a governor of Egypt was slain afterwards by Inaros the son of
Psammetichos, a Libyan. 8. Xerxes then after the conquest of Egypt,
being about to take in hand the expedition against Athens, summoned a
chosen assembly of the best men among the Persians, that he might both
learn their opinions and himself in the presence of all declare that
which he intended to do; and when they were assembled, Xerxes spoke to
them as follows: (a) "Persians, I shall not be the first to establish
this custom in your nation, but having received it from others I shall
follow it: for as I am informed by those who are older than myself, we
never yet have kept quiet since we received this supremacy in
succession to the Medes, when Cyrus overthrew Astyages; but God thus
leads us, and for ourselves tends to good that we are busied about
many things. Now about the nations which Cyrus and Cambyses and my
father Dareios subdued and added to their possessions there is no need
for me to speak, since ye know well: and as for me, from the day when
I received by inheritance this throne upon which I sit[6] I carefully
considered always how in this honourable place I might not fall short
of those who have been before me, nor add less power to the dominion
of the Persians: and thus carefully considering I find a way by which
not only glory may be won by us, together with a land not less in
extent nor worse than that which we now possess, (and indeed more
varied in its productions), but also vengeance and retribution may be
brought about. Wherefore I have assembled you together now, in order
that I may communicate to you that which I have it in my mind to do.
(b) I design to yoke the Hellespont with a bridge, and to march an
army through Europe against Hellas, in order that I may take vengeance
on the Athenians for all the things which they have done both to the
Persians and to my father. Ye saw how my father Dareios also was
purposing to make an expedition against these men; but he has ended
his life and did not succeed in taking vengeance upon them. I however,
on behalf of him and also of the other Persians, will not cease until
I have conquered Athens and burnt it with fire; seeing that they did
wrong unprovoked to me and to my father. First they went to Sardis,
having come with Aristagoras the Milesian our slave, and they set fire
to the sacred groves and the temples; and then secondly, what things
they did to us when we disembarked in their land, at the time when
Datis and Artaphrenes were commanders of our army, ye all know well,
as I think.[7] (c) For these reasons[8] I have resolved to make an
expedition against them, and reckoning I find in the matter so many
good things as ye shall hear:--if we shall subdue these and the
neighbours of these, who dwell in the land of Pelops the Phrygian, we
shall cause the Persian land to have the same boundaries as the heaven
of Zeus; since in truth upon no land will the sun look down which
borders ours, but I with your help shall make all the lands into one
land, having passed through the whole extent of Europe. For I am
informed that things are so, namely that there is no city of men nor
any race of human beings remaining, which will be able to come to a
contest with us, when those whom I just now mentioned have been
removed out of the way. Thus both those who have committed wrong
against us will have the yoke of slavery, and also those who have not
committed wrong. (d) And ye will please me best if ye do this:--
whensoever I shall signify to you the time at which ye ought to come,
ye must appear every one of you with zeal for the service; and
whosoever shall come with a force best equipped, to him I will give
gifts such as are accounted in our land to be the most honourable.
Thus must these things be done: but that I may not seem to you to be
following my own counsel alone, I propose the matter for discussion,
bidding any one of you who desires it, declare his opinion."

Having thus spoken he ceased; 9, and after him Mardonios said:
"Master, thou dost surpass not only all the Persians who were before
thee, but also those who shall come after, since thou didst not only
attain in thy words to that which is best and truest as regards other
matters, but also thou wilt not permit the Ionians who dwell in Europe
to make a mock of us, having no just right to do so: for a strange
thing it would be if, when we have subdued and kept as our servants
Sacans, Indians, Ethiopians, Assyrians, and other nations many in
number and great, who have done no wrong to the Persians, because we
desired to add to our dominions, we should not take vengeance on the
Hellenes who committed wrong against us unprovoked. (a) Of what should
we be afraid?--what gathering of numbers, or what resources of money?
for their manner of fight we know, and as for their resources, we know
that they are feeble; and we have moreover subdued already their sons,
those I mean who are settled in our land and are called Ionians,
Aiolians, and Dorians. Moreover I myself formerly made trial of
marching against these men, being commanded thereto by thy father; and
although I marched as far as Macedonia, and fell but little short of
coming to Athens itself, no man came to oppose me in fight. (b) And
yet it is true that the Hellenes make wars, but (as I am informed)
very much without wise consideration, by reason of obstinacy and want
of skill: for when they have proclaimed war upon one another, they
find out first the fairest and smoothest place, and to this they come
down and fight; so that even the victors depart from the fight with
great loss, and as to the vanquished, of them I make no mention at
all, for they are utterly destroyed. They ought however, being men who
speak the same language, to make use of heralds and messengers and so
to take up their differences and settle them in any way rather than by
battles; but if they must absolutely war with one another, they ought
to find out each of them that place in which they themselves are
hardest to overcome, and here to make their trial. Therefore the
Hellenes, since they use no good way, when I had marched as far as the
land of Macedonia, did not come to the resolution of fighting with me.
(c) Who then is likely to set himself against thee, O king, offering
war, when thou art leading both all the multitudes of Asia and the
whole number of the ships? I for my part am of opinion that the power
of the Hellenes has not attained to such a pitch of boldness: but if
after all I should prove to be deceived in my judgment, and they
stirred up by inconsiderate folly should come to battle with us, they
would learn that we are the best of all men in the matters of war.
However that may be, let not anything be left untried; for nothing
comes of itself, but from trial all things are wont to come to men."

10. Mardonios having thus smoothed over the resolution expressed by
Xerxes had ceased speaking: and when the other Persians were silent
and did not venture to declare an opinion contrary to that which had
been proposed, then Artabanos the son of Hystaspes, being father's
brother to Xerxes and having reliance upon that, spoke as follows: (a)
"O king, if opinions opposed to one another be not spoken, it is not
possible to select the better in making the choice, but one must
accept that which has been spoken; if however opposite opinions be
uttered, this is possible; just as we do not distinguish the gold
which is free from alloy when it is alone by itself, but when we rub
it on the touchstone in comparison with other gold, then we
distinguish that which is the better. Now I gave advice to thy father
Dareios also, who was my brother, not to march against the Scythians,
men who occupied no abiding city in any part of the earth. He however,
expecting that he would subdue the Scythians who were nomads, did not
listen to me; but he made a march and came back from it with the loss
of many good men of his army. But thou, O king, art intending to march
against men who are much better than the Scythians, men who are
reported to be excellent both by sea and on land: and the thing which
is to be feared in this matter it is right that I should declare to
thee. (b) Thou sayest that thou wilt yoke the Hellespont with a bridge
and march an army through Europe to Hellas. Now supposing it chance
that we are[9] worsted either by land or by sea, or even both, for the
men are reported to be valiant in fight, (and we may judge for
ourselves that it is so, since the Athenians by themselves destroyed
that great army which came with Datis and Artaphrenes to the Attic
land),--suppose however that they do not succeed in both, yet if they
shall attack with their ships and conquer in a sea-fight, and then
sail to the Hellespont and break up the bridge, this of itself, O
king, will prove to be a great peril. (c) Not however by any native
wisdom of my own do I conjecture that this might happen: I am
conjecturing only such a misfortune as all but came upon us at the
former time, when thy father, having yoked the Bosphorus of Thracia
and made a bridge over the river Ister, had crossed over to go against
the Scythians. At that time the Scythians used every means of entreaty
to persuade the Ionians to break up the passage, to whom it had been
entrusted to guard the bridges of the Ister. At that time, if
Histiaios the despot of Miletos had followed the opinion of the other
despots and had not made opposition to them, the power of the Persians
would have been brought to an end. Yet it is a fearful thing even to
hear it reported that the whole power of the king had come to depend
upon one human creature.[10] (d) Do not thou therefore propose to go
into any such danger when there is no need, but do as I say:--at the
present time dissolve this assembly; and afterwards at whatever time
it shall seem good to thee, when thou hast considered prudently with
thyself, proclaim that which seems to thee best: for good counsel I
hold to be a very great gain; since even if anything shall prove
adverse, the counsel which has been taken is no less good, though it
has been defeated by fortune; while he who took counsel badly at
first, if good fortune should go with him has lighted on a prize by
chance, but none the less for that his counsel was bad. (e) Thou seest
how God strikes with thunderbolts the creatures which stand above the
rest and suffers them not to make a proud show; while those which are
small do not provoke him to jealousy: thou seest also how he hurls his
darts ever at those buildings which are the highest and those trees
likewise; for God is wont to cut short all those things which stand
out above the rest. Thus also a numerous army is destroyed by one of
few men in some such manner as this, namely when God having become
jealous of them casts upon them panic or thundering from heaven, then
they are destroyed utterly and not as their worth deserves; for God
suffers not any other to have high thoughts save only himself. (f)
Moreover the hastening of any matter breeds disasters, whence great
losses are wont to be produced; but in waiting there are many good
things contained, as to which, if they do not appear to be good at
first, yet one will find them to be so in course of time. (g) To thee,
O king, I give this counsel: but thou son of Gobryas, Mardonios, cease
speaking foolish words about the Hellenes, since they in no way
deserve to be spoken of with slight; for by uttering slander against
the Hellenes thou art stirring the king himself to make an expedition,
and it is to this very end that I think thou art straining all thy
endeavour. Let not this be so; for slander is a most grievous thing:
in it the wrongdoers are two, and the person who suffers wrong is one.
The slanderer does a wrong in that he speaks against one who is not
present, the other in that he is persuaded of the thing before he gets
certain knowledge of it, and he who is not present when the words are
spoken suffers wrong in the matter thus,--both because he has been
slandered by the one and because he has been believed to be bad by the
other. (h) However, if it be absolutely needful to make an expedition
against these men, come, let the king himself remain behind in the
abodes of the Persians, and let us both set to the wager our sons; and
then do thou lead an army by thyself, choosing for thyself the men
whom thou desirest, and taking an army as large as thou thinkest good:
and if matters turn out for the king as thou sayest, let my sons be
slain and let me also be slain in addition to them; but if in the way
which I predict, let thy sons suffer this, and with them thyself also,
if thou shalt return back. But if thou art not willing to undergo this
proof, but wilt by all means lead an army against Hellas, then I say
that those who are left behind in this land will hear[11] that
Mardonios, after having done a great mischief to the Persians, is torn
by dogs and birds, either in the land of the Athenians, or else
perchance thou wilt be in the land of the Lacedemonians (unless indeed
this should have come to pass even before that upon the way), and that
thou hast at length been made aware against what kind of men thou art
persuading the king to march."

11. Artabanos thus spoke; and Xerxes enraged by it made answer as
follows: "Artabanos, thou art my father's brother, and this shall save
thee from receiving any recompense such as thy foolish words deserve.
Yet I attach to thee this dishonour, seeing that thou art a coward and
spiritless, namely that thou do not march with me against Hellas, but
remain here together with the women; and I, even without thy help,
will accomplish all the things which I said: for I would I might not
be descended from Dareios, the son of Hystaspes, the son of Arsames,
the son of Ariaramnes, the son of Te´spes, or from Cyrus,[12] the son
of Cambyses, the son of Te´spes, the son of Achaimenes, if I take not
vengeance on the Athenians; since I know well that if we shall keep
quiet, yet they will not do so, but will again[13] march against our
land, if we may judge by the deeds which have been done by them to
begin with, since they both set fire to Sardis and marched upon Asia.
It is not possible therefore that either side should retire from the
quarrel, but the question before us is whether we shall do or whether
we shall suffer; whether all these regions shall come to be under the
Hellenes or all those under the Persians: for in our hostility there
is no middle course. It follows then now that it is well for us,
having suffered wrong first, to take revenge, that I may find out also
what is this terrible thing which I shall suffer if I lead an army
against these men,--men whom Pelops the Phrygian, who was the slave of
my forefathers, so subdued that even to the present day both the men
themselves and their land are called after the name of him who subdued

12. Thus far was it spoken then; but afterwards when darkness came on,
the opinion of Artabanos tormented Xerxes continually; and making
night his counsellor he found that it was by no means to his advantage
to make the march against Hellas. So when he had thus made a new
resolve, he fell asleep, and in the night he saw, as is reported by
the Persians, a vision as follows:--Xerxes thought that a man tall and
comely of shape came and stood by him and said: "Art thou indeed
changing thy counsel, O Persian, of leading an expedition against
Hellas, now that thou hast made proclamation that the Persians shall
collect an army? Thou dost not well in changing thy counsel, nor will
he who is here present with thee excuse thee from it;[13a] but as thou
didst take counsel in the day to do, by that way go." 13. After he had
said this, Xerxes thought that he who had spoken flew away; and when
day had dawned he made no account of this dream, but gathered together
the Persians whom he had assembled also the former time and said to
them these words: "Persians, pardon me that I make quick changes in my
counsel; for in judgment not yet am I come to my prime, and they who
advise me to do the things which I said, do not for any long time
leave me to myself. However, although at first when I heard the
opinion of Artabanos my youthful impulses burst out,[14] so that I
cast out unseemly words[15] against a man older than myself; yet now I
acknowledge that he is right, and I shall follow his opinion. Consider
then I have changed my resolve to march against Hellas, and do ye
remain still." 14. The Persians accordingly when they heard this were
rejoiced and made obeisance: but when night had come on, the same
dream again came and stood by Xerxes as he lay asleep and said: "Son
of Dareios, it is manifest then that thou hast resigned this
expedition before the assembly of the Persians, and that thou hast
made no account of my words, as if thou hadst heard them from no one
at all. Now therefore be well assured of this:--if thou do not make
thy march forthwith, there shall thence spring up for thee this
result, namely that, as thou didst in short time become great and
mighty, so also thou shalt speedily be again brought low." 15. Xerxes
then, being very greatly disturbed by fear of the vision, started up
from his bed and sent a messenger to summon Artabanos; to whom when he
came Xerxes spoke thus: "Artabanos, at the first I was not discreet,
when I spoke to thee foolish words on account of thy good counsel; but
after no long time I changed my mind and perceived that I ought to do
these things which thou didst suggest to me. I am not able however to
do them, although I desire it; for indeed, now that I have turned
about and changed my mind, a dream appears haunting me and by no means
approving that I should do so; and just now it has left me even with a
threat. If therefore it is God who sends it to me, and it is his
absolute will and pleasure that an army should go against Hellas, this
same dream will fly to thee also, laying upon thee a charge such as it
has laid upon me; and it occurs to my mind that this might happen
thus, namely if thou shouldst take all my attire and put it on, and
then seat thyself on my throne, and after that lie down to sleep in my
bed." 16. Xerxes spoke to him thus; and Artabanos was not willing to
obey the command at first, since he did not think himself worthy to
sit upon the royal throne; but at last being urged further he did that
which was commanded, first having spoken these words: (a) "It is
equally good in my judgment, O king, whether a man has wisdom himself
or is willing to follow the counsel of him who speaks well: and thou,
who hast attained to both these good things, art caused to err by the
communications of evil men; just as they say that the Sea, which is of
all things the most useful to men, is by blasts of winds falling upon
it prevented from doing according to its own nature. I however, when I
was evil spoken of by thee, was not so much stung with pain for this,
as because, when two opinions were laid before the Persians, the one
tending to increase wanton insolence and the other tending to check it
and saying that it was a bad thing to teach the soul to endeavour
always to have something more than the present possession,--because, I
say, when such opinions as these were laid before us, thou didst
choose that one which was the more dangerous both for thyself and for
the Persians. (b) And now that thou hast turned to the better counsel,
thou sayest that when thou art disposed to let go the expedition
against the Hellenes, a dream haunts thee sent by some god, which
forbids thee to abandon thy enterprise. Nay, but here too thou dost
err, my son, since this is not of the Deity;[16] for the dreams of
sleep which come roaming about to men, are of such nature as I shall
inform thee, being by many years older than thou. The visions of
dreams are wont to hover above us[17] in such form[18] for the most
part as the things of which we were thinking during the day; and we in
the days preceding were very much occupied with this campaign. (c) If
however after all this is not such a thing as I interpret it to be,
but is something which is concerned with God, thou hast summed the
matter up in that which thou hast said: let it appear, as thou sayest,
to me also, as to thee, and give commands. But supposing that it
desires to appear to me at all, it is not bound to appear to me any
the more if I have thy garments on me than if I have my own, nor any
more if I take my rest in thy bed than if I am in thy own; for
assuredly this thing, whatever it may be, which appears to thee in thy
sleep, is not so foolish as to suppose, when it sees me, that it is
thou, judging so because the garments are thine. That however which we
must find out now is this, namely if it will hold me in no account,
and not think fit to appear to me, whether I have my own garments or
whether I have thine, but continue still to haunt thee;[19] for if it
shall indeed haunt thee perpetually, I shall myself also be disposed
to say that it is of the Deity. But if thou hast resolved that it
shall be so, and it is not possible to turn aside this thy resolution,
but I must go to sleep in thy bed, then let it appear to me also, when
I perform these things: but until then I shall hold to the opinion
which I now have." 17. Having thus said Artabanos, expecting that he
would prove that Xerxes was speaking folly, did that which was
commanded him; and having put on the garments of Xerxes and seated
himself in the royal throne, he afterwards went to bed: and when he
had fallen asleep, the same dream came to him which used to come to
Xerxes, and standing over Artabanos spoke these words: "Art thou
indeed he who endeavours to dissuade Xerxes from making a march
against Hellas, pretending to have a care of him? However, neither in
the future nor now at the present shalt thou escape unpunished for
trying to turn away that which is destined to come to pass: and as for
Xerxes, that which he must suffer if he disobeys, hath been shown
already to the man himself." 18. Thus it seemed to Artabanos that the
dream threatened him, and at the same time was just about to burn out
his eyes with hot irons; and with a loud cry he started up from his
bed, and sitting down beside Xerxes he related to him throughout the
vision of the dream, and then said to him as follows: "I, O king, as
one who has seen before now many great things brought to their fall by
things less, urged thee not to yield in all things to the inclination
of thy youth, since I knew that it was evil to have desire after many
things; remembering on the one hand the march of Cyrus against the
Massagetai, what fortune it had, and also that of Cambyses against the
Ethiopians; and being myself one who took part with Dareios in the
campaign against the Scythians. Knowing these things I had the opinion
that thou wert to be envied of all men, so long as thou shouldest keep
still. Since however there comes a divine impulse, and, as it seems, a
destruction sent by heaven is taking hold of the Hellenes, I for my
part am both changed in myself and also I reverse my opinions; and do
thou signify to the Persians the message which is sent to thee from
God, bidding them follow the commands which were given by thee at
first with regard to the preparations to be made; and endeavour that
on thy side nothing may be wanting, since God delivers the matter into
thy hands." These things having been said, both were excited to
confidence by the vision, and so soon as it became day, Xerxes
communicated the matter to the Persians, and Artabanos, who before was
the only man who came forward to dissuade him, now came forward to
urge on the design.

19. Xerxes being thus desirous to make the expedition, there came to
him after this a third vision in his sleep, which the Magians, when
they heard it, explained to have reference to the dominion of the
whole Earth and to mean that all men should be subject to him; and the
vision was this:--Xerxes thought that he had been crowned with a
wreath of an olive-branch and that the shoots growing from the olive-
tree covered the whole Earth; and after that, the wreath, placed as it
was about his head, disappeared. When the Magians had thus interpreted
the vision, forthwith every man of the Persians who had been assembled
together departed to his own province and was zealous by all means to
perform the commands, desiring each one to receive for himself the
gifts which had been proposed: and thus Xerxes was gathering his army
together, searching every region of the continent. 20. During four
full years from the conquest of Egypt he was preparing the army and
the things that were of service for the army, and in the course of the
fifth year[20] he began his campaign with a host of great multitude.
For of all the armies of which we have knowledge this proved to be by
far the greatest; so that neither that led by Dareios against the
Scythians appears anything as compared with it, nor the Scythian host,
when the Scythians pursuing the Kimmerians made invasion of the Median
land and subdued and occupied nearly all the upper parts of Asia, for
which invasion afterwards Dareios attempted to take vengeance, nor
that led by the sons of Atreus to Ilion, to judge by that which is
reported of their expedition, nor that of the Mysians and Teucrians,
before the Trojan war, who passed over into Europe by the Bosphorus
and not only subdued all the Thracians, but came down also as far as
the Ionian Sea[21] and marched southwards to the river Peneios. 21.
All these expeditions put together, with others, if there be any,
added to them,[22] are not equal to this one alone. For what nation
did Xerxes not lead out of Asia against Hellas? and what water was not
exhausted, being drunk by his host, except only the great rivers? For
some supplied ships, and others were appointed to serve in the land-
army; to some it was appointed to furnish cavalry, and to others
vessels to carry horses, while they served in the expedition
themselves also;[23] others were ordered to furnish ships of war for
the bridges, and others again ships with provisions.

22. Then in the first place, since the former fleet had suffered
disaster in sailing round Athos, preparations had been going on for
about three years past with regard to Athos: for triremes lay at
anchor at Elaius in the Chersonese, and with this for their starting
point men of all nations belonging to the army worked at digging,
compelled by the lash; and the men went to the work regularly in
succession: moreover those who dwelt round about Athos worked also at
the digging: and Bubares the son of Megabazos and Artachaies the son
of Artaios, Persians both, were set over the work. Now Athos is a
mountain great and famous, running down to the sea and inhabited by
men: and where the mountain ends on the side of the mainland the place
is like a peninsula with an isthmus about twelve furlongs[24] across.
Here it is plain land or hills of no great size, extending from the
sea of the Acanthians to that which lies off Torone; and on this
isthmus, where Athos ends, is situated a Hellenic city called Sane:
moreover there are others beyond Sane[25] and within the peninsula of
Athos, all which at this time the Persian had resolved to make into
cities of an island and no longer of the mainland; these are, Dion,
Olophyxos, Acrothoon, Thyssos, Cleonai. 23. These are the cities which
occupy Athos: and they dug as follows, the country being divided among
the Barbarians by nations for the work:--at the city of Sane they drew
a straight line across the isthmus, and when the channel became deep,
those who stood lowest dug, while others delivered the earth as it was
dug out to other men who stood above, as upon steps, and they again to
others when it was received, until they came to those that were
highest; and these bore it away and cast it forth. Now the others
except the Phenicians had double toil by the breaking down of the
steep edges of their excavation; for since they endeavoured to make
the opening at the top and that at the bottom both of the same
measure, some such thing was likely to result, as they worked: but the
Phenicians, who are apt to show ability in their works generally, did
so in this work also; for when they had had assigned to them by lot so
much as fell to their share, they proceeded to dig, making the opening
of the excavation at the top twice as wide as the channel itself was
to be; and as the work went forward, they kept contracting the width;
so that, when they came to the bottom, their work was made of equal
width with that of the others. Now there is a meadow there, in which
there was made for them a market and a place for buying and selling;
and great quantities of corn came for them regularly from Asia, ready
ground. 24. It seems to me, making conjecture of this work, that
Xerxes when he ordered this to be dug was moved by a love of
magnificence and by a desire to make a display of his power and to
leave a memorial behind him; for though they might have drawn the
ships across the isthmus with no great labour, he bade them dig a
channel for the sea of such breadth that two triremes might sail
through, propelled side by side. To these same men to whom the digging
had been appointed, it was appointed also to make a bridge over the
river Strymon, yoking together the banks.

25. These things were being done by Xerxes thus; and meanwhile he
caused ropes also to be prepared for the bridges, made of papyrus and
of white flax,[26] appointing this to the Phenicians and Egyptians;
and also he was making preparations to store provisions for his army
on the way, that neither the army itself nor the baggage animals might
suffer from scarcity, as they made their march against Hellas.
Accordingly, when he had learnt by inquiry of the various places, he
bade them make stores where it was most convenient, carrying supplies
to different parts by merchant ships and ferry-boats from all the
countries of Asia. So they conveyed the greater part of the corn[27]
to the place which is called Leuke Acte in Thrace, while others
conveyed stores to Tyrodiza of the Perinthians, others to Doriscos,
others to E´on on the Strymon, and others to Macedonia, the work being
distributed between them.

26. During the time that these were working at the task which had been
proposed to them, the whole land-army had been assembled together and
was marching with Xerxes to Sardis, setting forth from Critalla in
Cappadokia; for there it had been ordered that the whole army should
assemble, which was to go with Xerxes himself by the land: but which
of the governors of provinces brought the best equipped force and
received from the king the gifts proposed, I am not able to say, for I
do not know that they even came to a competition in this matter. Then
after they had crossed the river Halys and had entered Phrygia,
marching through this land they came to Kelainai, where the springs of
the river Maiander come up, and also those of another river not less
than the Maiander, whose name is Catarractes;[28] this rises in the
market-place itself of Kelainai and runs into the Maiander: and here
also is hanging up in the city the skin of Marsyas the Silenos, which
is said by the Phrygians to have been flayed off and hung up by
Apollo. 27. In this city Pythios the son of Atys, a Lydian, was
waiting for the king and entertained his whole army, as well as Xerxes
himself, with the most magnificent hospitality: moreover he professed
himself ready to supply money for the war. So when Pythios offered
money, Xerxes asked those of the Persians who were present, who
Pythios was and how much money he possessed, that he made this offer.
They said: "O king, this is he who presented thy father Dareios with
the golden plane-tree and the golden vine; and even now he is in
wealth the first of all men of whom we know, excepting thee only." 28.
Marvelling at the conclusion of these words Xerxes himself asked of
Pythios then, how much money he had; and he said: "O king, I will not
conceal the truth from thee, nor will I allege as an excuse that I do
not know my own substance, but I will enumerate it to thee exactly,
since I know the truth: for as soon as I heard that thou wert coming
down to the Sea of Hellas, desiring to give thee money for the war I
ascertained the truth, and calculating I found that I had of silver
two thousand talents, and of gold four hundred myriads[29] of daric
staters[30] all but seven thousand: and with this money I present
thee. For myself I have sufficient livelihood from my slaves and from
my estates of land." 29. Thus he said; and Xerxes was pleased by the
things which he had spoken, and replied: "Lydian host, ever since I
went forth from the Persian land I have encountered no man up to this
time who was desirous to entertain my army, or who came into my
presence and made offer of his own free will to contribute money to me
for the war, except only thee: and thou not only didst entertain my
army magnificently, but also now dost make offer of great sums of
money. To thee therefore in return I give these rewards,--I make thee
my guest-friend, and I will complete for thee the four hundred myriads
of staters by giving from myself the seven thousand, in order that thy
four hundred myriads may not fall short by seven thousand, but thou
mayest have a full sum in thy reckoning, completed thus by me. Keep
possession of that which thou hast got for thyself, and be sure to act
always thus; for if thou doest so, thou wilt have no cause to repent
either at the time or afterwards."

30. Having thus said and having accomplished his promise, he continued
his march onwards; and passing by a city of the Phrygians called Anaua
and a lake whence salt is obtained, he came to Colossai, a great city
of Phrygia, where the river Lycos falls into an opening of the earth
and disappears from view, and then after an interval of about five
furlongs it comes up to view again, and this river also flows into the
Maiander. Setting forth from Colossai towards the boundaries of the
Phrygians and Lydians, the army arrived at the city of Kydrara, where
a pillar[30a] is fixed, set up by Crťsus, which declares by an
inscription that the boundaries are there. 31. From Phrygia then he
entered Lydia; and here the road parts into two, and that which goes
to the left leads towards Caria, while that which goes to the right
leads to Sardis; and travelling by this latter road one must needs
cross the river Maiander and pass by the city of Callatebos, where men
live whose trade it is to make honey of the tamarisk-tree and of
wheat-flour. By this road went Xerxes and found a plane-tree, to which
for its beauty he gave an adornment of gold, and appointed that some
one should have charge of it always in undying succession;[31] and on
the next day he came to the city of the Lydians. 32. Having come to
Sardis he proceeded first to send heralds to Hellas, to ask for earth
and water, and also to give notice beforehand to prepare meals for the
king; except that he sent neither to Athens nor Lacedemon to ask for
earth, but to all the other States: and the reason why he sent the
second time to ask for earth and water was this,--as many as had not
given at the former time to Dareios when he sent, these he thought
would certainly give now by reason of their fear: this matter it was
about which he desired to have certain knowledge, and he sent

33. After this he made his preparations intending to march to Abydos:
and meanwhile they were bridging over the Hellespont from Asia to
Europe. Now there is in the Chersonese of the Hellespont between the
city of Sestos and Madytos, a broad foreland[32] running down into the
sea right opposite Abydos; this is the place where no long time
afterwards the Athenians under the command of Xanthippos the son of
Ariphron, having taken Arta ctes a Persian, who was the governor of
Sestos, nailed him alive to a board with hands and feet extended (he
was the man who was wont to take women with him to the temple of
Protesilaos at Elaius and to do things there which are not lawful).
34. To this foreland they on whom this work was laid were making their
bridges, starting from Abydos, the Phenicians constructing the one
with ropes of white flax, and the Egyptians the other, which was made
with papyrus rope. Now from Abydos to the opposite shore is a distance
of seven furlongs. But when the strait had been bridged over, a great
storm came on and dashed together all the work that had been made and
broke it up. Then when Xerxes heard it he was exceedingly enraged, and
bade them scourge the Hellespont with three hundred strokes of the
lash and let down into the sea a pair of fetters. Nay, I have heard
further that he sent branders also with them to brand the Hellespont.
However this may be, he enjoined them, as they were beating, to say
Barbarian and presumptuous words as follows: "Thou bitter water, thy
master lays upon thee this penalty, because thou didst wrong him not
having suffered any wrong from him: and Xerxes the king will pass over
thee whether thou be willing or no; but with right, as it seems, no
man doeth sacrifice to thee, seeing that thou art a treacherous[33]
and briny stream." The sea he enjoined them to chastise thus, and also
he bade them cut off the heads of those who were appointed to have
charge over the bridging of the Hellespont. 36. Thus then the men did,
to whom this ungracious office belonged; and meanwhile other chief-
constructors proceeded to make the bridges; and thus they made them:--
They put together fifty-oared galleys and triremes, three hundred and
sixty to be under the bridge towards the Euxine Sea, and three hundred
and fourteen to be under the other, the vessels lying in the direction
of the stream of the Hellespont (though crosswise in respect to the
Pontus), to support the tension of the ropes.[34] They placed them
together thus, and let down very large anchors, those on the one
side[35] towards the Pontus because of the winds which blow from
within outwards, and on the other side, towards the West and the
Egean, because of the South-East[36] and South Winds. They left also
an opening for a passage through, so that any who wished might be able
to sail into the Pontus with small vessels, and also from the Pontus
outwards. Having thus done, they proceeded to stretch tight the ropes,
straining them with wooden windlasses, not now appointing the two
kinds of rope to be used apart from one another, but assigning to each
bridge two ropes of white flax and four of the papyrus ropes. The
thickness and beauty of make was the same for both, but the flaxen
ropes were heavier in proportion,[38] and of this rope a cubit weighed
one talent. When the passage was bridged over, they sawed up logs of
wood, and making them equal in length to the breadth of the bridge
they laid them above the stretched ropes, and having set them thus in
order they again fastened them above.[39] When this was done, they
carried on brushwood, and having set the brushwood also in place, they
carried on to it earth; and when they had stamped down the earth
firmly, they built a barrier along on each side, so that the baggage-
animals and horses might not be frightened by looking out over the

37. When the construction of the bridges had been finished, and the
works about Athos, both the embankments about the mouths of the
channel, which were made because of the breaking of the sea upon the
beach, that the mouths of it might not be filled up, and the channel
itself, were reported to be fully completed, then, after they had
passed the winter at Sardis, the army set forth from thence fully
equipped, at the beginning of spring, to march to Abydos; and when it
had just set forth, the Sun left his place in the heaven and was
invisible, though there was no gathering of clouds and the sky was
perfectly clear; and instead of day it became night. When Xerxes saw
and perceived this, it became a matter of concern to him; and he asked
the Magians what the appearance meant to portend. These declared that
the god was foreshowing to the Hellenes a leaving[40] of their cities,
saying that the Sun was the foreshower of events for the Hellenes, but
the Moon for the Persians. Having been thus informed, Xerxes proceeded
on the march with very great joy. 38. Then as he was leading forth his
army on its march, Pythios the Lydian, being alarmed by the appearance
in the heavens and elated by the gifts which he had received, came to
Xerxes, and said as follows: "Master, I would desire to receive from
thee a certain thing at my request, which, as it chances, is for thee
an easy thing to grant, but a great thing for me, if I obtain it."
Then Xerxes, thinking that his request would be for anything rather
than that which he actually asked, said that he would grant it, and
bade him speak and say what he desired. He then, when he heard this,
was encouraged, and spoke these words: "Master, I have, as it chances,
five sons, and it is their fortune to be all going together with thee
on the march against Hellas. Do thou, therefore, O king, have
compassion upon me, who have come to so great an age, and release from
serving in the expedition one of my sons, the eldest, in order that he
may be caretaker both of myself and of my wealth: but the other four
take with thyself, and after thou hast accomplished that which thou
hast in thy mind, mayest thou have a safe return home." 38. Then
Xerxes was exceedingly angry and made answer with these words: "Thou
wretched man, dost thou dare, when I am going on a march myself
against Hellas, and am taking my sons and my brothers and my relations
and friends, dost thou dare to make any mention of a son of thine,
seeing that thou art my slave, who ought to have been accompanying me
thyself with thy whole household and thy wife as well? Now therefore
be assured of this, that the passionate spirit of man dwells within
the ears; and when it has heard good things, it fills the body with
delight, but when it has heard the opposite things to this, it swells
up with anger. As then thou canst not boast of having surpassed the
king in conferring benefits formerly, when thou didst to us good deeds
and madest offer to do more of the same kind, so now that thou hast
turned to shamelessness, thou shalt receive not thy desert but less
than thou deservest: for thy gifts of hospitality shall rescue from
death thyself and the four others of thy sons, but thou shalt pay the
penalty with the life of the one to whom thou dost cling most." Having
answered thus, he forthwith commanded those to whom it was appointed
to do these things, to find out the eldest of the sons of Pythios and
to cut him in two in the middle; and having cut him in two, to dispose
the halves, one on the right hand of the road and the other on the
left, and that the army should pass between them by this way.

40. When these had so done, the army proceeded to pass between; and
first the baggage-bearers led the way together with their horses, and
after these the host composed of all kinds of nations mingled together
without distinction: and when more than the half had gone by, an
interval was left and these were separated from the king. For before
him went first a thousand horsemen, chosen out of all the Persians;
and after them a thousand spearmen chosen also from all the Persians,
having the points of their spears turned down to the ground; and then
ten sacred horses, called "Nesaian,"[41] with the fairest possible
trappings. Now the horses are called Nesaian for this reason:--there
is a wide plain in the land of Media which is called the Nesaian
plain, and this plain produces the great horses of which I speak.
Behind these ten horses the sacred chariot of Zeus was appointed to
go, which was drawn by eight white horses; and behind the horses again
followed on foot a charioteer holding the reins, for no human creature
mounts upon the seat of that chariot. Then behind this came Xerxes
himself in a chariot drawn by Nesaian horses, and by the side of him
rode a charioteer, whose name was Patiramphes, son of Otanes a
Persian. 41. Thus did Xerxes march forth out of Sardis; and he used to
change, whenever he was so disposed, from the chariot to a carriage.
And behind him went spearmen, the best and most noble of the Persians,
a thousand in number, holding their spear-points in the customary
way;[42] and after them another thousand horsemen chosen out from the
Persians; and after the horsemen ten thousand men chosen out from the
remainder of the Persians. This body went on foot; and of these a
thousand had upon their spears pomegranates of gold instead of the
spikes at the butt-end, and these enclosed the others round, while the
remaining nine thousand were within these and had silver pomegranates.
And those also had golden pomegranates who had their spear-points
turned towards the earth, while those who followed next after Xerxes
had golden apples. Then to follow the ten thousand there was appointed
a body of ten thousand Persian cavalry; and after the cavalry there
was an interval of as much as two furlongs. Then the rest of the host
came marching without distinction.

42. So the army proceeded on its march from Lydia to the river Ca´cos
and the land of Mysia; and then setting forth from the Ca´cos and
keeping the mountain of Cane on the left hand, it marched through the
region of Atarneus to the city of Carene. From this it went through
the plain of Thebe, passing by the cities of Adramytteion and
Antandros of the Pelasgians; and taking mount Ida on the left hand, it
came on to the land of Ilion. And first, when it had stopped for the
night close under mount Ida, thunder and bolts of lightning fell upon
it, and destroyed here in this place a very large number of men.[43]
43. Then when the army had come to the river Scamander,--which of all
rivers to which they had come, since they set forth from Sardis and
undertook their march, was the first of which the stream failed and
was not sufficient for the drinking of the army and of the animals
with it,--when, I say, Xerxes had come to this river, he went up to
the Citadel of Priam,[44] having a desire to see it; and having seen
it and learnt by inquiry of all those matters severally, he sacrificed
a thousand heifers to Athene of Ilion, and the Magians poured
libations in honour of the heroes: and after they had done this, a
fear fell upon the army in the night. Then at break of day he set
forth from thence, keeping on his left hand the cities of Rhoition and
Ophryneion and Dardanos, which last borders upon Abydos, and having on
the right hand the Gergith Teucrians.

44. When Xerxes had come into the midst of Abydos,[45] he had a desire
to see all the army; and there had been made purposely for him
beforehand upon a hill in this place a raised seat of white stone,[46]
which the people of Abydos had built at the command of the king given
beforehand. There he took his seat, and looking down upon the shore he
gazed both upon the land-army and the ships; and gazing upon them he
had a longing to see a contest take place between the ships; and when
it had taken place and the Phenicians of Sidon were victorious, he was
delighted both with the contest and with the whole armament. 45. And
seeing all the Hellespont covered over with the ships, and all the
shores and the plains of Abydos full of men, then Xerxes pronounced
himself a happy man, and after that he fell to weeping. 46. Artabanos
his uncle therefore perceiving him,--the same who at first boldly
declared his opinion advising Xerxes not to march against Hellas,--
this man, I say, having observed that Xerxes wept, asked as follows:
"O king, how far different from one another are the things which thou
hast done now and a short while before now! for having pronounced
thyself a happy man, thou art now shedding tears." He said: "Yea, for
after I had reckoned up, it came into my mind to feel pity at the
thought how brief was the whole life of man, seeing that of these
multitudes not one will be alive when a hundred years have gone by."
He then made answer and said: "To another evil more pitiful than this
we are made subject in the course of our life; for in the period of
life, short as it is, no man, either of these here or of others, is
made by nature so happy, that there will not come to him many times,
and not once only, the desire to be dead rather than to live; for
misfortunes falling upon us and diseases disturbing our happiness make
the time of life, though short indeed, seem long: thus, since life is
full of trouble, death has become the most acceptable refuge for man;
and God, having given him to taste of the sweetness of life, is
discovered in this matter to be full of jealousy." 47. Xerxes made
answer saying: "Artabanos, of human life, which is such as thou dost
define it to be, let us cease to speak, and do not remember evils when
we have good things in hand: but do thou declare to me this:--If the
vision of the dream had not appeared with so much evidence, wouldest
thou still be holding thy former opinion, endeavouring to prevent me
from marching against Hellas, or wouldest thou have changed from it?
Come, tell me this exactly." He answered saying: "O king, may the
vision of the dream which appeared have such fulfilment as we both
desire! but I am even to this moment full of apprehension and cannot
contain myself, taking into account many things besides, and also
seeing that two things, which are the greatest things of all, are
utterly hostile to thee." 48. To this Xerxes made answer in these
words: "Thou strangest of men,[47] of what nature are these two things
which thou sayest are utterly hostile to me? Is it that the land-army
is to be found fault with in the matter of numbers, and that the army
of the Hellenes appears to thee likely to be many times as large as
ours? or dost thou think that our fleet will fall short of theirs? or
even that both of these things together will prove true? For if thou
thinkest that in these respects our power is deficient, one might make
gathering at once of another force." 49. Then he made answer and said:
"O king, neither with this army would any one who has understanding
find fault, nor with the number of the ships; and indeed if thou shalt
assemble more, the two things of which I speak will be made thereby
yet more hostile: and these two things are--the land and the sea. For
neither in the sea is there, as I suppose, a harbour anywhere large
enough to receive this fleet of thine, if a storm should arise, and to
ensure the safety of the ships till it be over; and yet not one
alone[48] ought this harbour to be, but there should be such harbours
along the whole coast of the continent by which thou sailest; and if
there are not harbours to receive thy ships, know that accidents will
rule men and not men the accidents. Now having told thee of one of the
two things, I am about to tell thee of the other. The land, I say,
becomes hostile to thee in this way:--if nothing shall come to oppose
thee, the land is hostile to thee by so much the more in proportion as
thou shalt advance more, ever stealing on further and further,[49] for
there is no satiety of good fortune felt by men: and this I say, that
with no one to stand against thee the country traversed, growing more
and more as time goes on, will produce for thee famine. Man, however,
will be in the best condition, if when he is taking counsel he feels
fear, reckoning to suffer everything that can possibly come, but in
doing the deed he is bold." 50. Xerxes made answer in these words:
"Artabanos, reasonably dost thou set forth these matters; but do not
thou fear everything nor reckon equally for everything: for if thou
shouldest set thyself with regard to all matters which come on at any
time, to reckon for everything equally, thou wouldest never perform
any deed. It is better to have good courage about everything and to
suffer half the evils which threaten, than to have fear beforehand
about everything and not to suffer any evil at all: and if, while
contending against everything which is said, thou omit to declare the
course which is safe, thou dost incur in these matters the reproach of
failure equally with him who says the opposite to this. This then, I
say, is evenly balanced: but how should one who is but man know the
course which is safe? I think, in no way. To those then who choose to
act, for the most part gain is wont to come; but to those who reckon
for everything and shrink back, it is not much wont to come. Thou
seest the power of the Persians, to what great might it has advanced:
if then those who came to be kings before me had had opinions like to
thine, or, though not having such opinions, had had such counsellors
as thou, thou wouldest never have seen it brought forward to this
point. As it is however, by running risks they conducted it on to
this: for great power is in general gained by running great risks. We
therefore, following their example, are making our march now during
the fairest season of the year; and after we have subdued all Europe
we shall return back home, neither having met with famine anywhere nor
having suffered any other thing which is unpleasant. For first we
march bearing with us ourselves great store of food, and secondly we
shall possess the corn-crops of all the peoples to whose land and
nation we come; and we are making a march now against men who plough
the soil, and not against nomad tribes." 51. After this Artabanos
said: "O king, since thou dost urge us not to have fear of anything,
do thou I pray thee accept a counsel from me; for when speaking of
many things it is necessary to extend speech to a greater length.
Cyrus the son of Cambyses subdued all Ionia except the Athenians, so
that it was tributary to the Persians. These men therefore I counsel
thee by no means to lead against their parent stock, seeing that even
without these we are able to get the advantage over our enemies. For
supposing that they go with us, either they must prove themselves
doers of great wrong, if they join in reducing their mother city to
slavery, or doers of great right, if they join in freeing her: now if
they show themselves doers of great wrong, they bring us no very large
gain in addition; but if they show themselves doers of great right,
they are able then to cause much damage to thy army. Therefore lay to
heart also the ancient saying, how well it has been said that at the
first beginning of things the end does not completely appear." 52. To
this Xerxes made answer: "Artabanos, of all the opinions which thou
hast uttered, thou art mistaken most of all in this; seeing that thou
fearest lest the Ionians should change side, about whom we have a most
sure proof, of which thou art a witness thyself and also the rest are
witnesses who went with Dareios on his march against the Scythians,--
namely this, that the whole Persian army then came to be dependent
upon these men, whether they would destroy or whether they would save
it, and they displayed righteous dealing and trustworthiness, and
nought at all that was unfriendly. Besides this, seeing that they have
left children and wives and wealth in our land, we must not even
imagine that they will make any rebellion.[50] Fear not then this
thing either, but have a good heart and keep safe my house and my
government; for to thee of all men I entrust my sceptre of rule."

53. Having thus spoken and having sent Artabanos back to Susa, next
Xerxes summoned to his presence the men of most repute among the
Persians, and when they were come before him, he spoke to them as
follows: "Persians, I assembled you together desiring this of you,
that ye should show yourselves good men and should not disgrace the
deeds done in former times by the Persians, which are great and
glorious; but let us each one of us by himself, and all together also,
be zealous in our enterprise; for this which we labour for is a common
good for all. And I exhort you that ye preserve in the war without
relaxing your efforts, because, as I am informed, we are marching
against good men, and if we shall overcome them, there will not be any
other army of men which will ever stand against us. Now therefore let
us begin the crossing, after having made prayer to those gods who have
the Persians[51] for their allotted charge."

54. During this day then they were making preparation to cross over;
and on the next day they waited for the Sun, desiring to see him rise,
and in the meantime they offered all kinds of incense upon the bridges
and strewed the way with branches of myrtle. Then, as the Sun was
rising, Xerxes made libation from a golden cup into the sea, and
prayed to the Sun, that no accident might befall him such as should
cause him to cease from subduing Europe, until he had come to its
furthest limits. After having thus prayed he threw the cup into the
Hellespont and with it a golden mixing-bowl and a Persian sword, which
they call /akinakes/: but whether he cast them into the sea as an
offering dedicated to the Sun, or whether he had repented of his
scourging of the Hellespont and desired to present a gift to the sea
as amends for this, I cannot for certain say. 55. When Xerxes had done
this, they proceeded to cross over, the whole army both the footmen
and the horsemen going by one bridge, namely that which was on the
side of the Pontus, while the baggage-animals and the attendants went
over the other, which was towards the Egean. First the ten thousand
Persians led the way, all with wreaths, and after them came the mixed
body of the army made up of all kinds of nations: these on that day;
and on the next day, first the horsemen and those who had their spear-
points turned downwards, these also wearing wreaths; and after them
the sacred horses and the sacred chariot, and then Xerxes himself and
the spear-bearers and the thousand horsemen; and after them the rest
of the army. In the meantime the ships also put out from shore and
went over to the opposite side. I have heard however another account
which says that the king crossed over the very last of all.

56. When Xerxes had crossed over into Europe, he gazed upon the army
crossing under the lash; and his army crossed over in seven days and
seven nights, going on continuously without any pause. Then, it is
said, after Xerxes had now crossed over the Hellespont, a man of that
coast exclaimed: "Why, O Zeus, in the likeness of a Persian man and
taking for thyself the name of Xerxes instead of Zeus, art thou
proposing to lay waste Hellas, taking with thee all the nations of
men? for it was possible for thee to do so even without the help of

57. When all had crossed over, after they had set forth on their way a
great portent appeared to them, of which Xerxes made no account,
although it was easy to conjecture its meaning,--a mare gave birth to
a hare. Now the meaning of this was easy to conjecture in this way,
namely that Xerxes was about to march an army against Hellas very
proudly and magnificently, but would come back again to the place
whence he came, running for his life. There happened also a portent of
another kind while he was still at Sardis,--a mule brought forth young
and gave birth to a mule which had organs of generation of two kinds,
both those of the male and those of the female, and those of the male
were above. Xerxes however made no account of either of these
portents, but proceeded on his way, and with him the land-army. 58.
The fleet meanwhile was sailing out of the Hellespont and coasting
along, going in the opposite direction to the land-army; for the fleet
was sailing towards the West, making for the promontory of Sarpedon,
to which it had been ordered beforehand to go, and there wait for the
army; but the land-army meanwhile was making its march towards the
East and the sunrising, through the Chersonese, keeping on its right
the tomb of Helle the daughter of Athamas, and on its left the city of
Cardia, and marching through the midst of a town the name of which is
Agora.[52] Thence bending round the gulf called Melas and having
crossed over the river Melas, the stream of which did not suffice at
this time for the army but failed,--having crossed, I say, this river,
from which the gulf also has its name, it went on Westwards, passing
by Ainos a city of the Aiolians, and by the lake Stentoris, until at
last it came to Doriscos. [59] Now Doriscos is a sea-beach and plain
of great extent in Thrace, and through it flows the great river
Hebros: here a royal fortress had been built, the same which is now
called Doriscos, and a garrison of Persians had been established in it
by Dareios, ever since the time when he went on his march against the
Scythians. It seemed then to Xerxes that the place was convenient to
order his army and to number it throughout, and so he proceeded to do.
The commanders of the ships at the bidding of Xerxes had brought all
their ships, when they arrived at Doriscos, up to the sea-beach which
adjoins Doriscos, on which there is situated both Sale a city of the
Samothrakians, and also Zone, and of which the extreme point is the
promontory of Serreion, which is well known; and the region belonged
in ancient time to the Kikonians. To this beach then they had brought
in their ships, and having drawn them up on land they were letting
them get dry: and during this time he proceeded to number the army at

60. Now of the number which each separate nation supplied I am not
able to give certain information, for this is not reported by any
persons; but of the whole land-army taken together the number proved
to be one hundred and seventy myriads:[53] and they numbered them
throughout in the following manner:--they gathered together in one
place a body of ten thousand men, and packing them together[54] as
closely as they could, they drew a circle round outside: and thus
having drawn a circle round and having let the ten thousand men go
from it, they built a wall of rough stones round the circumference of
the circle, rising to the height of a man's navel. Having made this,
they caused others to go into the space which had been built round,
until they had in this manner numbered them all throughout: and after
they had numbered them, they ordered them separately by nations.

61. Now those who served were as follows:--The Persians with this
equipment:--about their heads they had soft[55] felt caps called
/tiaras/, and about their body tunics of various colours with sleeves,
presenting the appearance of iron scales like those of a fish,[56] and
about the legs trousers; and instead of the ordinary shields they had
shields of wicker-work,[57] under which hung quivers; and they had
short spears and large bows and arrows of reed, and moreover daggers
hanging by the right thigh from the girdle: and they acknowledged as
their commander Otanes the father of Amestris the wife of Xerxes. Now
these were called by the Hellenes in ancient time Kephenes; by
themselves however and by their neighbours they were called Artaians:
but when Perseus, the son of Danae and Zeus, came to Kepheus the son
of Belos[58] and took to wife his daughter Andromeda, there was born
to them a son to whom he gave the name Perses, and this son he left
behind there, for it chanced that Kepheus had no male offspring: after
him therefore this race was named. 62. The Medes served in the
expedition equipped in precisely the same manner; for this equipment
is in fact Median and not Persian: and the Medes acknowledged as their
commander Tigranes an Achaimenid. These in ancient time used to be
generally called Arians; but when Medea the Colchian came from Athens
to these Arians, they also changed their name. Thus the Medes
themselves report about themselves. The Kissians served with equipment
in other respects like that of the Persians, but instead of the felt
caps they wore fillets:[59] and of the Kissians Anaphes the son of
Otanes was commander. The Hyrcanians were armed like the Persians,
acknowledging as their leader Megapanos, the same who after these
events became governor of Babylon. 63. The Assyrians served with
helmets about their heads made of bronze or plaited in a Barbarian
style which it is not easy to describe; and they had shields and
spears, and daggers like the Egyptian knives,[60] and moreover they
had wooden clubs with knobs of iron, and corslets of linen. These are
by the Hellenes called Syrians, but by the Barbarians they have been
called always[61] Assyrians: [among these were the Chaldeans]:[62] and
the commander of them was Otaspes the son of Artachaies. 64. The
Bactrians served wearing about their heads nearly the same covering as
the Medes, and having native bows of reed and short spears. The Scaran
Scythians had about their heads caps[63] which were carried up to a
point and set upright and stiff; and they wore trousers, and carried
native bows and daggers, and besides this axes of the kind called
/sagaris/. These were called Amyrgian Sacans, being in fact Scythians;
for the Persians call all the Scythians Sacans: and of the Bactrians
and Sacans the commander was Hystaspes, the son of Dareios and of
Atossa the daughter of Cyrus. 65. The Indians wore garments made of
tree-wool, and they had bows of reed and arrows of reed with iron
points. Thus were the Indians equipped; and serving with the rest they
had been assigned to Pharnazathres the son of Artabates. 66. The
Arians[64] were equipped with Median bows, and in other respects like
the Bactrians: and of the Arians Sisamnes the son of Hydarnes was in
command. The Parthians and Chorasmians and Sogdians and Gandarians and
Dadicans served with the same equipment as the Bactrians. Of these the
commanders were, Artabazos the son of Pharnakes of the Parthians and
Chorasmians, Azanes the son of Artaios of the Sogdians, and Artyphios
the son of Artabanos of the Gandarians and Dadicans. [67] The Caspians
served wearing coats of skin[65] and having native bows of reed and
short swords:[66] thus were these equipped; and they acknowledged as
their leader Ariomardos the brother of Artyphios. The Sarangians were
conspicuous among the rest by wearing dyed garments; and they had
boots reaching up to the knee, and Median bows and spears: of these
the commander was Pherendates the son of Megabazos. The Pactyans were
wearers of skin coats[67] and had native bows and daggers: these
acknowledged as their commander Arta ntes the son of Ithamitres. 68.
The Utians and Mycans and Paricanians were equipped like the Pactyans:
of these the commanders were, Arsamenes the son of Dareios of the
Utians and Mycans, and of the Paricanians Siromitres the son of
Oiobazos. 69. The Arabians wore loose mantles[68] girt up, and they
carried at their right side bows that bent backward[69] of great
length. The Ethiopians had skins of leopards and lions tied upon them,
and bows made of a slip[70] of palm-wood, which were of great length,
not less than four cubits, and for them small arrows of reed with a
sharpened stone at the head instead of iron, the same stone with which
they engrave seals: in addition to this they had spears, and on them
was the sharpened horn of a gazelle by way of a spear-head, and they
had also clubs with knobs upon them. Of their body they used to smear
over half with white,[71] when they went into battle, and the other
half with red.[72] Of the Arabians and the Ethiopians who dwelt above
Egypt the commander was Arsames, the son of Dareios and of Artystone,
the daughter of Cyrus, whom Dareios loved most of all his wives, and
had an image made of her of beaten gold. 70. Of the Ethiopians above
Egypt and of the Arabians the commander, I say, was Arsames; but the
Ethiopians from the direction of the sunrising (for the Ethiopians
were in two bodies) had been appointed to serve with the Indians,
being in no way different from the other Ethiopians, but in their
language and in the nature of their hair only; for the Ethiopians from
the East are straight-haired, but those of Libya have hair more thick
and woolly than that of any other men. These Ethiopians from Asia were
armed for the most part like the Indians, but they had upon their
heads the skin of a horse's forehead flayed off with the ears and the
mane, and the mane served instead of a crest, while they had the ears
of the horse set up straight and stiff: and instead of shields they
used to make defences to hold before themselves of the skins of
cranes. 71. The Libyans went with equipments of leather, and they used
javelins burnt at the point. These acknowledged as their commander
Massages the son of Oarizos. 72. The Paphlagonians served with plaited
helmets upon their heads, small shields, and spears of no great size,
and also javelins and daggers; and about their feet native boots
reaching up to the middle of the shin. The Ligyans and Matienians and
Mariandynoi and Syrians served with the same equipment as the
Paphlagonians: these Syrians are called by the Persians Cappadokians.
Of the Paphlagonians and Matienians the commander was Dotos the son of
Megasidros, and of the Mariandynoi and Lygians and Syrians, Gobryas,
who was the son of Dareios and Artystone. 73. The Phrygians had an
equipment very like that of the Paphlagonians with some slight
difference. Now the Phrygians, as the Macedonians say, used to be
called Brigians during the time that they were natives of Europe and
dwelt with the Macedonians; but after they had changed into Asia, with
their country they changed also their name and were called Phrygians.
The Armenians were armed just like the Phrygians, being settlers from
the Phrygians. Of these two together the commander was Artochmes, who
was married to a daughter of Dareios. 74. The Lydians had arms very
closely resembling those of the Hellenes. Now the Lydians were in old
time called Medonians, and they were named again after Lydos the son
of Atys, changing their former name. The Mysians had upon their heads
native helmets, and they bore small shields and used javelins burnt at
the point. These are settlers from the Lydians, and from mount Olympos
they are called Olympienoi. Of the Lydians and Mysians the commander
was Artaphrenes the son of Artaphrenes, he who invaded Marathon
together with Datis. 75. The Thracians served having fox-skins upon
their heads and tunics about their body, with loose mantles[68] of
various colours thrown round over them; and about their feet and lower
part of the leg they wore boots of deer-skin; and besides this they
had javelins and round bucklers and small daggers. These when they had
crossed over into Asia came to be called Bithynians, but formerly they
were called, as they themselves report, Strymonians, since they dwelt
upon the river Strymon; and they say that they were driven out of
their abode by the Teucrians and Mysians. Of the Thracians who lived
in Asia the commander was Bassakes the son of Artabanos. 76. ...[73]
and they had small shields of raw ox-hide, and each man carried two
hunting-spears of Lykian workmanship.[74] On their heads they wore
helmets of bronze, and to the helmets the ears and horns of an ox were
attached, in bronze, and upon them also there were crests; and the
lower part of their legs was wrapped round with red-coloured strips of
cloth. Among these men there is an Oracle of Ares. 77. The Meonian
Cabelians, who are called Lasonians, had the same equipment as the
Kilikians, and what this was I shall explain when in the course of the
catalogue I come to the array of the Kilikians. The Milyans had short
spears, and their garments were fastened on with buckles; some of them
had Lykian bows, and about their heads they had caps made of leather.
Of all these Badres the son of Hystanes was in command. 78. The
Moschoi had wooden caps upon their heads, and shields and small
spears, on which long points were set. The Tibarenians and Macronians
and Mossynoicoi served with equipment like that of the Moschoi, and
these were arrayed together under the following commanders,--the
Moschoi and Tibarenians under Ariomardos, who was the son of Dareios
and of Parmys, the daughter of Smerdis son of Cyrus; the Macronians
and Mossynoicoi under Arta ctes the son of Cherasmis, who was governor
of Sestos on the Hellespont. 79. The Mares wore on their heads native
helmets of plaited work, and had small shields of hide and javelins;
and the Colchians wore wooden helmets about their heads, and had small
shields of raw ox-hide and short spears, and also knives. Of the Mares
and Colchians the commander was Pharandates the son of Teaspis. The
Alarodians and Saspeirians served armed like the Colchians; and of
these the commander was Masistios the son of Siromitres. 80. The
island tribes which came with the army from the Erythraian Sea,
belonging to the islands in which the king settles those who are
called the "Removed,"[75] had clothing and arms very like those of the
Medes. Of these islanders the commander was Mardontes the son of
Bagaios, who in the year after these events was a commander of the
army at Mykale and lost his life in the battle.

81. These were the nations which served in the campaign by land and
had been appointed to be among the foot-soldiers. Of this army those
who have been mentioned were commanders; and they were the men who sit
it in order by divisions and numbered it and appointed commanders of
thousands and commanders of tens of thousands, but the commanders of
hundreds and of tens were appointed by the commanders of ten
thousands; and there were others who were leaders of divisions and
nations. 82. These, I say, who have been mentioned were commanders of
the army; and over these and over the whole army together that went on
foot there were in command Mardonios the son of Gobryas,
Tritantaichmes the son of that Artabanos who gave the opinion that
they should not make the march against Hellas, Smerdomenes the son of
Otanes (both these being sons of brothers of Dareios and so cousins of
Xerxes),[76] Masistes the son of Dareios and Atossa, Gergis the son of
Ariazos, and Megabyzos the son of Zopyros. 83. These were generals of
the whole together that went on foot, excepting the ten thousand; and
of these ten thousand chosen Persians the general was Hydarnes the son
of Hydarnes; and these Persians were called "Immortals," because, if
any one of them made the number incomplete, being overcome either by
death or disease, another man was chosen to his place, and they were
never either more or fewer than ten thousand. Now of all the nations,
the Persians showed the greatest splendour of ornament and were
themselves the best men. They had equipment such as has been
mentioned, and besides this they were conspicuous among the rest for
great quantity of gold freely used; and they took with them carriages,
and in them concubines and a multitude of attendants well furnished;
and provisions for them apart from the soldiers were borne by camels
and beasts of burden.

84. The nations who serve as cavalry are these; not all however
supplied cavalry, but only as many as here follow:--the Persians
equipped in the same manner as their foot-soldiers, except that upon
their heads some of them had beaten-work of metal, either bronze or
iron. 85. There are also certain nomads called Sagartians, Persian in
race and in language and having a dress which is midway between that
of the Persians and that of the Pactyans. These furnished eight
thousand horse, and they are not accustomed to have any arms either of
bronze or of iron excepting daggers, but they use ropes twisted of
thongs, and trust to these when they go into war: and the manner of
fighting of these men is as follows:--when they come to conflict with
the enemy, they throw the ropes with nooses at the end of them, and
whatsoever the man catches by the throw,[77] whether horse or man, he
draws to himself, and they being entangled in toils are thus
destroyed. 86. This is the manner of fighting of these men, and they
were arrayed next to the Persians. The Medes had the same equipment as
their men on foot, and the Kissians likewise. The Indians were armed
in the same manner as those of them who served on foot, and they both
rode horses[78] and drove chariots, in which were harnessed horses or
wild asses. The Bactrians were equipped in the same way as those who
served on foot, and the Caspians likewise. The Libyans too were
equipped like those who served on foot, and these also all drove
chariots. So too the Caspians[79] and Paricanians were equipped like
those who served on foot, and they all rode on camels, which in
swiftness were not inferior to horses. 87. These nations alone
served[80] as cavalry, and the number of the cavalry proved to be
eight myriads,[81] apart from the camels and the chariots. Now the
rest of the cavalry was arrayed in squadrons, but the Arabians were
placed after them and last of all, for the horses could not endure the
camels, and therefore they were placed last, in order that the horses
might not be frightened. 88. The commanders of the cavalry were
Harmamithras and Tithaios sons of Datis, but the third, Pharnuches,
who was in command of the horse with them, had been left behind at
Sardis sick: for as they were setting forth from Sardis, an accident
befell him of an unwished-for kind,--as he was riding, a dog ran up
under his horse's feet, and the horse not having seen it beforehand
was frightened, and rearing up he threw Pharnuches off his back, who
falling vomited blood, and his sickness turned to a consumption. To
the horse however they forthwith at the first did as he commanded,
that is to say, the servants led him away to the place where he had
thrown his master and cut off his legs at the knees. Thus was
Pharnuches removed from his command.

89. Of the triremes the number proved to be one thousand two hundred
and seven, and these were they who furnished them:--the Phenicians,
together with the Syrians[82] who dwell in Palestine furnished three
hundred; and they were equipped thus, that is to say, they had about
their heads leathern caps made very nearly in the Hellenic fashion,
and they wore corslets of linen, and had shields without rims and
javelins. These Phenicians dwelt in ancient time, as they themselves
report, upon the Erythraian Sea, and thence they passed over and dwell
in the country along the sea coast of Syria; and this part of Syria
and all as far as Egypt is called Palestine. The Egyptians furnished

Book of the day: