Anabasis by Xenophon

ANABASIS BY XENOPHON ANABASIS BOOK I Darius and Parysatis had two sons: the elder was named Artaxerxes, and 1 the younger Cyrus. Now, as Darius lay sick and felt that the end of life drew near, he wished both his sons to be with him. The elder, as it chanced, was already there, but Cyrus
This page contains affiliate links. As Amazon Associates we earn from qualifying purchases.
Writer:
Language:
Form:
Genre:
Published:
Collection:
Buy it on Amazon Listen via Audible FREE Audible 30 days

ANABASIS

BY

XENOPHON

ANABASIS

BOOK I

Darius and Parysatis had two sons: the elder was named Artaxerxes, and 1 the younger Cyrus. Now, as Darius lay sick and felt that the end of life drew near, he wished both his sons to be with him. The elder, as it chanced, was already there, but Cyrus he must needs send for from the province over which he had made him satrap, having appointed him general moreover of all the forces that muster in the plain of the Castolus. Thus Cyrus went up, taking with him Tissaphernes as his friend, and accompanied also by a body of Hellenes, three hundred heavy armed men, under the command of Xenias the Parrhasian[1].

[1] Parrhasia, a district and town in the south-west of Arcadia.

Now when Darius was dead, and Artaxerxes was established in the kingdom, Tissaphernes brought slanderous accusations against Cyrus before his brother, the king, of harbouring designs against him. And Artaxerxes, listening to the words of Tissaphernes, laid hands upon Cyrus, desiring to put him to death; but his mother made intercession for him, and sent him back again in safety to his province. He then, having so escaped through peril and dishonour, fell to considering, not only how he might avoid ever again being in his brother’s power, but how, if possible, he might become king in his stead. Parysatis, his mother, was his first resource; for she had more love for Cyrus than for Artaxerxes upon his throne. Moreover Cyrus’s behaviour towards all who came to him from the king’s court was such that, when he sent them away again, they were better friends to himself than to 5 the king his brother. Nor did he neglect the barbarians in his own service; but trained them, at once to be capable as warriors and devoted adherents of himself. Lastly, he began collecting his Hellenic armament, but with the utmost secrecy, so that he might take the king as far as might be at unawares.

The manner in which he contrived the levying of the troops was as follows: First, he sent orders to the commandants of garrisons in the cities (so held by him), bidding them to get together as large a body of picked Peloponnesian troops as they severally were able, on the plea that Tissaphernes was plotting against their cities; and truly these cities of Ionia had originally belonged to Tissaphernes, being given to him by the king; but at this time, with the exception of Miletus, they had all revolted to Cyrus. In Miletus, Tissaphernes, having become aware of similar designs, had forestalled the conspirators by putting some to death and banishing the remainder. Cyrus, on his side, welcomed these fugitives, and having collected an army, laid siege to Miletus by sea and land, endeavouring to reinstate the exiles; and this gave him another pretext for collecting an armament. At the same time he sent to the king, and claimed, as being the king’s brother, that these cities should be given to himself rather than that Tissaphernes should continue to govern them; and in furtherance of this end, the queen, his mother, co-operated with him, so that the king not only failed to see the design against himself, but concluded that Cyrus was spending his money on armaments in order to make war on Tissaphernes. Nor did it pain him greatly to see the two at war together, and the less so because Cyrus was careful to remit the tribute due to the king from the cities which belonged to Tissaphernes.

A third army was being collected for him in the Chersonese, over against Abydos, the origin of which was as follows: There was a Lacedaemonian exile, named Clearchus, with whom Cyrus had become associated. Cyrus admired the man, and made him a present of ten thousand darics[2]. Clearchus took the gold, and with the money raised 9 an army, and using the Chersonese as his base of operations, set to work to fight the Thracians north of the Hellespont, in the interests of the Hellenes, and with such happy result that the Hellespontine cities, of their own accord, were eager to contribute funds for the support of his troops. In this way, again, an armament was being secretly maintained for Cyrus.

[2] A Persian gold coin = 125.55 grains of gold.

Then there was the Thessalian Aristippus, Cyrus’s friend[3], who, under pressure of the rival political party at home, had come to Cyrus and asked him for pay for two thousand mercenaries, to be continued for three months, which would enable him, he said, to gain the upper hand of his antagonists. Cyrus replied by presenting him with six months’ pay for four thousand mercenaries–only stipulating that Aristippus should not come to terms with his antagonists without final consultation with himself. In this way he secured to himself the secret maintenance of a fourth armament.

[3] Lit. “guest-friend.” Aristippus was, as we learn from the “Meno” of Plato, a native of Larisa, of the family of the Aleuadae, and a pupil of Gorgias. He was also a lover of Menon, whom he appears to have sent on this expedition instead of himself.

Further, he bade Proxenus, a Boeotian, who was another friend, get together as many men as possible, and join him in an expedition which he meditated against the Pisidians[4], who were causing annoyance to his territory. Similarly two other friends, Sophaenetus the Stymphalian[5], and Socrates the Achaean, had orders to get together as many men as possible and come to him, since he was on the point of opening a campaign, along with Milesian exiles, against Tissaphernes. These orders were duly carried out by the officers in question.

[4] Lit. “into the country of the Pisidians.”

[5] Of Stymphalus in Arcadia.

II

But when the right moment seemed to him to have come, at which he 1 should begin his march into the interior, the pretext which he put forward was his desire to expel the Pisidians utterly out of the country; and he began collecting both his Asiatic and his Hellenic armaments, avowedly against that people. From Sardis in each direction his orders sped: to Clearchus, to join him there with the whole of his army; to Aristippus, to come to terms with those at home, and to despatch to him the troops in his employ; to Xenias the Arcadian, who was acting as general-in-chief of the foreign troops in the cities, to present himself with all the men available, excepting only those who were actually needed to garrison the citadels. He next summoned the troops at present engaged in the siege of Miletus, and called upon the exiles to follow him on his intended expedition, promising them that if he were successful in his object, he would not pause until he had reinstated them in their native city. To this invitation they hearkened gladly; they believed in him; and with their arms they presented themselves at Sardis. So, too, Xenias arrived at Sardis with the contingent from the cities, four thousand hoplites; Proxenus, also, with fifteen hundred hoplites and five hundred light-armed troops; Sophaenetus the Stymphalian, with one thousand hoplites; Socrates the Achaean, with five hundred hoplites; while the Megarion Pasion came with three hundred hoplites and three hundred peltasts[1]. This latter officer, as well as Socrates, belonged to the force engaged against Miletus. These all joined him at Sardis.

[1] “Targeteers” armed with a light shield instead of the larger one of the hoplite, or heavy infantry soldier. Iphicrates made great use of this arm at a later date.

But Tissaphernes did not fail to note these proceedings. An equipment so large pointed to something more than an invasion of Pisidia: so he argued; and with what speed he might, he set off to the king, attended by about five hundred horse. The king, on his side, had no sooner heard from Tissaphernes of Cyrus’s great armament, than he began to make counter-preparations.

Thus Cyrus, with the troops which I have named, set out from Sardis, and marched on and on through Lydia three stages, making two-and-twenty parasangs[2], to the river Maeander. That river is two hundred feet[3] broad, and was spanned by a bridge consisting of seven boats. Crossing it, he marched through Phrygia a single stage, of eight parasangs, to Colossae, an inhabited city[4], prosperous and 6 large. Here he remained seven days, and was joined by Menon the Thessalian, who arrived with one thousand hoplites and five hundred peltasts, Dolopes, Aenianes, and Olynthians. From this place he marched three stages, twenty parasangs in all, to Celaenae, a populous city of Phrygia, large and prosperous. Here Cyrus owned a palace and a large park[5] full of wild beasts, which he used to hunt on horseback, whenever he wished to give himself or his horses exercise. Through the midst of the park flows the river Maeander, the sources of which are within the palace buildings, and it flows through the city of Celaenae. The great king also has a palace in Celaenae, a strong place, on the sources of another river, the Marsyas, at the foot of the acropolis. This river also flows through the city, discharging itself into the Maeander, and is five-and-twenty feet broad. Here is the place where Apollo is said to have flayed Marsyas, when he had conquered him in the contest of skill. He hung up the skin of the conquered man, in the cavern where the spring wells forth, and hence the name of the river, Marsyas. It was on this site that Xerxes, as tradition tells, built this very palace, as well as the citadel of Celaenae itself, on his retreat from Hellas, after he had lost the famous battle. Here Cyrus remained for thirty days, during which Clearchus the Lacedaemonian arrived with one thousand hoplites and eight hundred Thracian peltasts and two hundred Cretan archers. At the same time, also, came Sosis the Syracusian with three thousand hoplites, and Sophaenetus the Arcadian[6] with one thousand hoplites; and here Cyrus held a review, and numbered his Hellenes in the park, and found that they amounted in all to eleven thousand hoplites and about two thousand peltasts.

[2] The Persian “farsang” = 30 stades, nearly 1 league, 3 1/2 statute miles, though not of uniform value in all parts of Asia.

[3] “Two plethra”: the plethron = about 101 English feet.

[4] Lit. “inhabited,” many of the cities of Asia being then as now deserted, but the suggestion is clearly at times “thickly inhabited,” “populous.”

[5] Lit. “paradise,” an oriental word = park or pleasure ground.

[6] Perhaps this should be Agias the Arcadian, as Mr. Macmichael suggests. Sophaenetus has already been named above.

From this place he continued his march two stages–ten parasangs–to 10 the populous city of Peltae, where he remained three days; while Xenias, the Arcadian, celebrated the Lycaea[7] with sacrifice, and instituted games. The prizes were headbands of gold; and Cyrus himself was a spectator of the contest. From this place the march was continued two stages–twelve parasangs–to Ceramon-agora, a populous city, the last on the confines of Mysia. Thence a march of three stages–thirty parasangs–brought him to Caystru-pedion[8], a populous city. Here Cyrus halted five days; and the soldiers, whose pay was now more than three months in arrear, came several times to the palace gates demanding their dues; while Cyrus put them off with fine words and expectations, but could not conceal his vexation, for it was not his fashion to stint payment, when he had the means. At this point Epyaxa, the wife of Syennesis, the king of the Cilicians, arrived on a visit to Cyrus; and it was said that Cyrus received a large gift of money from the queen. At this date, at any rate, Cyrus gave the army four months’ pay. The queen was accompanied by a bodyguard of Cilicians and Aspendians; and, if report speaks truly, Cyrus had intimate relations with the queen.

[7] The Lycaea, an Arcadian festival in honour of Zeus {Arcaios}, akin to the Roman Lupercalia, which was originally a shepherd festival, the introduction of which the Romans ascribe to the Arcadian Evander.

[8] Lit. “plain of the Cayster,” like Ceramon-agora, “the market of the Ceramians” above, the name of a town.

From this place he marched two stages–ten parasangs–to Thymbrium, a populous city. Here, by the side of the road, is the spring of Midas, the king of Phrygia, as it is called, where Midas, as the story goes, caught the satyr by drugging the spring with wine. From this place he marched two stages–ten parasangs–to Tyriaeum, a populous city. Here he halted three days; and the Cilician queen, according to the popular account, begged Cyrus to exhibit his armament for her amusement. The latter being only too glad to make such an exhibition, held a review of the Hellenes and barbarians in the plain. He ordered the Hellenes to draw up their lines and post themselves in their customary battle order, each general marshalling his own battalion. Accordingly they drew up four-deep. The right was held by Menon and those with him; the 15 left by Clearchus and his men; the centre by the remaining generals with theirs. Cyrus first inspected the barbarians, who marched past in troops of horses and companies of infantry. He then inspected the Hellenes; driving past them in his chariot, with the queen in her carriage. And they all had brass helmets and purple tunics, and greaves, and their shields uncovered[9].

[9] I.e. ready for action, c.f. “bayonets fixed”.

After he had driven past the whole body, he drew up his chariot in front of the centre of the battle-line, and sent his interpreter Pigres to the generals of the Hellenes, with orders to present arms and to advance along the whole line. This order was repeated by the generals to their men; and at the sound of the bugle, with shields forward and spears in rest, they advanced to meet the enemy. The pace quickened, and with a shout the soldiers spontaneously fell into a run, making in the direction of the camp. Great was the panic of the barbarians. The Cilician queen in her carriage turned and fled; the sutlers in the marketing place left their wares and took to their heels; and the Hellenes meanwhile came into camp with a roar of laughter. What astounded the queen was the brilliancy and order of the armament; but Cyrus was pleased to see the terror inspired by the Hellenes in the hearts of the Asiatics.

From this place he marched on three stages–twenty parasangs–to Iconium, the last city of Phrygia, where he remained three days. Thence he marched through Lycaonia five stages–thirty parasangs. This was hostile country, and he gave it over to the Hellenes to pillage. At this point Cyrus sent back the Cilician queen to her own country by the quickest route; and to escort her he sent the soldiers of Menon, and Menon himself. With the rest of the troops he continued his march through Cappadocia four stages–twenty-five parasangs–to Dana, a populous city, large and flourishing. Here they halted three days, within which interval Cyrus put to death, on a charge of conspiracy, a Persian nobleman named Megaphernes, a wearer of the royal purple; and along with him another high dignitary among his subordinate commanders.

From this place they endeavoured to force a passage into Cilicia. Now 21 the entrance was by an exceedingly steep cart-road, impracticable for an army in face of a resisting force; and report said that Syennesis was on the summit of the pass guarding the approach. Accordingly they halted a day in the plain; but next day came a messenger informing them that Syenesis had left the pass; doubtless, after perceiving that Menon’s army was already in Cilicia on his own side of the mountains; and he had further been informed that ships of war, belonging to the Lacedaemonians and to Cyrus himself, with Tamos on board as admiral, were sailing round from Ionia to Cilicia. Whatever the reason might be, Cyrus made his way up into the hills without let or hindrance, and came in sight of the tents where the Cilicians were on guard. From that point he descended gradually into a large and beautiful plain country, well watered, and thickly covered with trees of all sorts and vines. This plain produces sesame plentifully, as also panic and millet and barley and wheat; and it is shut in on all sides by a steep and lofty wall of mountains from sea to sea. Descending through this plain country, he advanced four stages–twenty-five parasangs–to Tarsus, a large and prosperous city of Cilicia. Here stood the palace of Syennesis, the king of the country; and through the middle of the city flows a river called the Cydnus, two hundred feet broad. They found that the city had been deserted by its inhabitants, who had betaken themselves, with Syennesis, to a strong place on the hills. All had gone, except the tavern-keepers. The sea-board inhabitants of Soli and Issi also remained. Now Epyaxa, Syennesis’s queen, had reached Tarsus five days in advance of Cyrus. During their passage over the mountains into the plain, two companies of Menon’s army were lost. Some said they had been cut down by the Cilicians, while engaged on some pillaging affair; another account was that they had been left behind, and being unable to overtake the main body, or discover the route, had gone astray and perished. However it was, they numbered one hundred hoplites; and when the rest arrived, being in a fury at the destruction of their fellow soldiers, they vented their spleen by pillaging the city of Tarsus and the palace to boot. Now when Cyrus had marched into the city, he sent for Syennesis to come to him; but 26 the latter replied that he had never yet put himself into the hands of any one who was his superior, nor was he willing to accede to the proposal of Cyrus now; until, in the end, his wife persuaded him, and he accepted pledges of good faith. After this they met, and Syennesis gave Cyrus large sums in aid of his army; while Cyrus presented him with the customary royal gifts–to wit, a horse with a gold bit, a necklace of gold, a gold bracelet, and a gold scimitar, a Persian dress, and lastly, the exemption of his territory from further pillage, with the privilege of taking back the slaves that had been seized, wherever they might chance to come upon them.

III

At Tarsus Cyrus and his army halted for twenty days; the soldiers 1 refusing to advance further, since the suspicion ripened in their minds, that the expedition was in reality directed against the king; and as they insisted, they had not engaged their services for that object. Clearchus set the example of trying to force his men to continue their march; but he had no sooner started at the head of his troops than they began to pelt him and his baggage train, and Clearchus had a narrow escape of being stoned to death there and then. Later on, when he perceived that force was useless, he summoned an assembly of his own men; and for a long while he stood and wept, while the men gazed in silent astonishment. At last he spoke as follows: “Fellow soldiers, do not marvel that I am sorely distressed on account of the present troubles. Cyrus has been no ordinary friend to me. When I was in banishment he honoured me in various ways, and made me also a present of ten thousand darics. These I accepted, but not to lay them up for myself for private use; not to squander them in pleasure, but to expend them on yourselves. And, first of all, I went to war with the Thracians, and with you to aid, I wreaked vengeance on them in behalf of Hellas; driving them out of the Chersonese, when they wanted to deprive its Hellenic inhabitants of their lands. But as soon as Cyrus summoned me, I took you with me and set out, so that, if my benefactor had any need of me, I might requite him for the good treatment I myself had received at his hands. . . . But since you are not minded to continue the march with me, one of two things is left to 5 me to do; either I must renounce you for the sake of my friendship with Cyrus, or I must go with you at the cost of deceiving him. Whether I am about to do right or not, I cannot say, but I choose yourselves; and, whatever betide, I mean to share your fate. Never shall it be said of me by any one that, having led Greek troops against the barbarians[1], I betrayed the Hellenes, and chose the friendship of the barbarian. No! since you do not choose to obey and follow me, I will follow after you. Whatever betide, I will share your fate. I look upon you as my country, my friends, my allies; with you I think I shall be honoured, wherever I be; without you I do not see how I can help a friend or hurt a foe. My decision is taken. Wherever you go, I go also.”

[1] Lit. “into the country of the barbarian.”

Such were his words. But the soldiers, not only his own, but the rest also, when they heard what he said, and how he had scouted the idea of going up to the great king’s palace[2], expressed their approval; and more than two thousand men deserted Xenias and Pasion, and took their arms and baggage-train, and came and encamped with Clearchus. But Cyrus, in despair and vexation at this turn of affairs, sent for Clearchus. He refused to come; but, without the knowledge of the soldiers, sent a message to Cyrus, bidding him keep a good heart, for that all would arrange itself in the right way; and bade him keep on sending for him, whilst he himself refused to go. After that he got together his own men, with those who had joined him, and of the rest any who chose to come, and spoke as follows: “Fellow soldiers, it is clear that the relations of Cyrus to us are identical with ours to him. We are no longer his soldiers, since we have ceased to follow him; and he, on his side, is no longer our paymaster. He, however, no doubt considers himself wronged by us; and though he goes on sending for me, I cannot bring myself to go to him: for two reasons, chiefly from a sense of shame, for I am forced to admit to myself that I have altogether deceived him; but partly, too, because I am afraid of his seizing me and inflicting a penalty on the wrongs which he conceives 11 that I have done him. In my opinion, then, this is no time for us to go to sleep and forget all about ourselves, rather it is high time to deliberate on our next move; and as long as we do remain here, we had better bethink us how we are to abide in security; or, if we are resolved to turn our backs at once, what will be the safest means of retreat; and, further, how we are to procure supplies, for without supplies there is no profit whatsoever in the general or the private soldier. The man with whom we have to deal is an excellent friend to his friends, but a very dangerous enemy to his foes. And he is backed by a force of infantry and cavalry and ships such as we all alike very well see and know, since we can hardly be said to have posted ourselves at any great distance from him. If, then, any one has a suggestion to make, now is the time to speak.” With these words he ceased.

[2] Or “how he insisted that he was not going up.”

Then various speakers stood up; some of their own motion to propound their views; others inspired by Clearchus to dilate on the hopeless difficulty of either staying, or going back without the goodwill of Cyrus. One of these, in particular, with a make-believe of anxiety to commence the homeward march without further pause, called upon them instantly to choose other generals, if Clearchus were not himself prepared to lead them back: “Let them at once purchase supplies” (the market being in the heart of the Asiatic camp), “let them pack up their baggage: let them,” he added, “go to Cyrus and ask for some ships in order to return by sea: if he refused to give them ships, let them demand of him a guide to lead them back through a friendly district; and if he would not so much as give them a guide, they could but put themselves, without more ado, in marching order, and send on a detachment to occupy the pass–before Cyrus and the Cilicians, whose property,” the speaker added, “we have so plentifully pillaged, can anticipate us.” Such were the remarks of that speaker; he was followed by Clearchus, who merely said: “As to my acting personally as general at this season, pray do not propose it: I can see numerous obstacles to my doing so. Obedience, in the fullest, I can render to the man of 15 your choice, that is another matter: and you shall see and know that I can play my part, under command, with the best of you.”

After Clearchus another spokesman stood up, and proceeded to point out the simplicity of the speaker, who proposed to ask for vessels, just as if Cyrus were minded to renounce the expedition and sail back again. “And let me further point out,” he said, “what a simple-minded notion it is to beg a guide of the very man whose designs we are marring. If we can trust any guide whom Cyrus may vouchsafe to us, why not order Cyrus at once to occupy the pass on our behoof? For my part, I should think twice before I set foot on any ships that he might give us, for fear lest he should sink them with his men-of-war; and I should equally hesitate to follow any guide of his: he might lead us into some place out of which we should find it impossible to escape. I should much prefer, if I am to return home against the will of Cyrus at all, to give him the slip, and so begone: which indeed is impossible. But these schemes are simply nonsensical. My proposal is that a deputation of fit persons, with Clearchus, should go to Cyrus: let them go to Cyrus and ask him: what use he proposes to make of us? and if the business is at all similar to that on which he once before employed a body of foreigners–let us by all means follow: let us show that we are the equals of those who accompanied him on his much up formerly. But if the design should turn out to be of larger import than the former one–involving more toil and more danger–we should ask him, either to give us good reasons for following his lead, or else consent to send us away into a friendly country. In this way, whether we follow him, we shall do so as friends, and with heart and soul, or whether we go back, we shall do so in security. The answer to this shall be reported to us here, and when we have heard it, we will advise as to our best course.”

This resolution was carried, and they chose and sent a deputation with Clearchus, who put to Cyrus the questions which had been agreed upon by the army. Cyrus replied as follows: That he had received news that Abrocomas, an enemy of his, was posted on the Euphrates, twelve stages 20 off; his object was to march against this aforesaid Abrocomas: and if he were still there, he wished to inflict punishment on him, “or if he be fled” (so the reply concluded), “we will there deliberate on the best course.” The deputation received the answer and reported it to the soldiers. The suspicion that he was leading them against the king was not dispelled; but it seemed best to follow him. They only demanded an increase of pay, and Cyrus promised to give them half as much again as they had hitherto received–that is to say, a daric and a half a month to each man, instead of a daric. Was he really leading them to attack the king? Not even at this moment was any one apprised of the fact, at any rate in any open and public manner.

IV

From this point he marched two stages–ten parasangs–to the river 1 Psarus, which is two hundred feet broad, and from the Psarus he marched a single stage–five parasangs–to Issi, the last city in Cilicia. It lies on the seaboard–a prosperous, large and flourishing town. Here they halted three days, and here Cyrus was joined by his fleet. There were thirty-five ships from Peloponnesus, with the Lacedaemonian admiral Pythagoras on board. These had been piloted from Ephesus by Tamos the Egyptian, who himself had another fleet of twenty-five ships belonging to Cyrus. These had formed Tamos’s blockading squadron at Miletus, when that city sided with Tissaphernes; he had also used them in other military services rendered to Cyrus in his operations against that satrap. There was a third officer on board the fleet, the Lacedaemonian Cheirisophus, who had been sent for by Cyrus, and had brought with him seven hundred hoplites, over whom he was to act as general in the service of Cyrus. The fleet lay at anchor opposite Cyrus’s tent. Here too another reinforcement presented itself. This was a body of four hundred hoplites, Hellenic mercenaries in the service of Abrocomas, who 3 deserted him for Cyrus, and joined in the campaign against the king.

From Issi, he marched a single stage–five parasangs–to the gates of Cilicia and Syria. This was a double fortress: the inner and nearer one, which protects Cilicia, was held by Syennesis and a garrison of Cilicians; the outer and further one, protecting Syria, was reported to be garrisoned by a body of the king’s troops. Through the gap between the two fortresses flows a river named the Carsus, which is a hundred feet broad, and the whole space between was scarcely more than six hundred yards. To force a passage here would be impossible, so narrow was the pass itself, with the fortification walls stretching down to the sea, and precipitous rocks above; while both fortresses were furnished with gates. It was the existence of this pass which had induced Cyrus to send for the fleet, so as to enable him to lead a body of hoplites inside and outside the gates; and so to force a passage through the enemy, if he were guarding the Syrian gate, as he fully expected to find Abrocomas doing with a large army. This, however, Abrocomas had not done; but as soon as he learnt that Cyrus was in Cilicia, he had turned round and made his exit from Phoenicia, to join the king with an army amounting, as report said, to three hundred thousand men.

From this point Cyrus pursued his march, through Syria a single stage–five parasangs–to Myriandus, a city inhabited by Phoenicians, on the sea-coast. This was a commercial port, and numerous merchant vessels were riding at anchor in the harbour. Here they halted seven days, and here Xenias the Arcadian general, and Pasion the Megarian got on board a trader, and having stowed away their most valuable effects, set sail for home; most people explained the act as the outcome of a fit of jealousy, because Cyrus had allowed Clearchus to retain their men, who had deserted to him, in hopes of returning to Hellas instead of marching against the king; when the two had so vanished, a rumour spread that Cyrus was after them with some ships of war, and some hoped the cowards might be caught, others pitied them, if that should be their fate.

But Cyrus summoned the generals and addressed them: “Xenias and 8 Pasion,” he said, “have taken leave of us; but they need not flatter themselves that in so doing they have stolen into hiding. I know where they are gone; nor will they owe their escape to speed; I have men-of-war to capture their craft, if I like. But heaven help me! if I mean to pursue them: never shall it be said of me, that I turn people to account as long as they stay with me, but as soon as they are minded to be off, I seize and maltreat them, and strip them of their wealth. Not so! let them go with the consciousness that our behaviour to them is better than theirs to us. And yet I have their children and wives safe under lock and key in Tralles; but they shall not be deprived even of these. They shall receive them back in return for their former goodness to me.” So he spoke, and the Hellenes, even those who had been out of heart at the thought of marching up the country, when they heard of the nobleness of Cyrus, were happier and more eager to follow him on his path.

After this Cyrus marched onwards four stages–twenty parasangs–to the river Chalus. That river is a hundred feet broad, and is stocked with tame fish which the Syrians regard as gods, and will not suffer to be injured–and so too the pigeons of the place. The villages in which they encamped belonged to Parysatis, as part of her girdle money[1]. From this point he marched on five stages–thirty parasangs–to the sources of the river Dardas, which is a hundred feet broad. Here stood the palace of Belesys, the ruler of Syria, with its park–which was a very large and beautiful one, and full of the products of all the seasons in their course. But Cyrus cut down the park and burnt the palace. Thence he marched on three stages–fifteen parasangs–to the river Euphrates, which is nearly half a mile broad. A large and 11 flourishing city, named Thapsacus, stands on its banks. Here they halted five days, and here Cyrus sent for the generals of the Hellenes, and told them that the advance was now to be upon Babylon, against the great king; he bade them communicate this information to the soldiers and persuade them to follow. The generals called an assembly, and announced the news to the soldiers. The latter were indignant and angry with the generals, accusing them of having kept secret what they had long known; and refused to go, unless such a bribe of money were given them as had been given to their predecessors, when they went up with Cyrus to the court of his father, not as now to fight a battle, but on a peaceful errand–the visit of a son to his father by invitation. The demand was reported to Cyrus by the generals, and he undertook to give each man five silver minae as soon as Babylon was reached, and their pay in full, until he had safely conveyed them back to Ionia again. In this manner the Hellenic force were persuaded–that is to say, the majority of them. Menon, indeed, before it was clear what the rest of the soldiers would do–whether, in fact they would follow Cyrus or not–collected his own troops apart and made them the following speech; “Men,” he said, “if you will listen to me, there is a method by which, without risk or toil, you may win the special favour of Cyrus beyond the rest of the soldiers. You ask what it is I would have you to do? I will tell you. Cyrus at this instant is begging the Hellenes to follow him to attack the king. I say then: Cross the Euphrates at once, before it is clear what answer the rest will make; if they vote in favour of following, you will get the credit of having set the example, and Cyrus will be grateful to you. He will look upon you as being the heartiest in his cause; he will repay, as of all others he best knows how; while, if the rest vote against crossing, we shall go back again; but as the sole adherents, whose fidelity he can altogether trust, it is you whom Cyrus will turn to account, as commandants of garrisons or captains of companies. You need only ask him for whatever you want, and you will get it from him, as being the friends of Cyrus.

[1] Cf. Plat. “Alcib.” i. 123 B. “Why, I have been informed by a credible person, who went up to the king (at Susa), that he passed through a large tract of excellent land, extending for nearly a day’s journey, which the people of the country called the queen’s girdle, and another which they called her veil,” etc. Olympiodorus and the Scholiast both think that Plato here refers to Xenophon and this passage of the “Anabasis.” Grote thinks it very probable that Plato had in his mind Xenophon (either his “Anabasis” or personal communications with him).

The men heard and obeyed, and before the rest had given their answer, they were already across. But when Cyrus perceived that Menon’s troops 16 had crossed, he was well pleased, and he sent Glus to the division in question, with this message: “Soldiers, accept my thanks at present; eventually you shall thank me. I will see to that, or my name is not Cyrus.” The soldiers therefore could not but pray heartily for his success; so high their hopes ran. But to Menon, it was said, he sent gifts with lordly liberality. This done, Cyrus proceeded to cross; and in his wake followed the rest of the armament to a man. As they forded, never a man was wetted above the chest: nor ever until this moment, said the men of Thapascus, had the river been so crossed on foot, boats had always been required; but these, at the present time, Abrocomas, in his desire to hinder Cyrus from crossing, had been at pains to burn. Thus the passage was looked upon as a thing miraculous; the river had manifestly retired before the face of Cyrus, like a courtier bowing to his future king. From this place he continued his march through Syria nine stages–fifty parasangs–and they reached the river Araxes. Here were several villages full of corn and wine; in which they halted three days, and provisioned the army.

V

Thence he marched on through Arabia, keeping the Euphrates on the 1 right, five desert stages–thirty-five parasangs. In this region the ground was one long level plain, stretching far and wide like the sea, full of absinth; whilst all the other vegetation, whether wood or reed, was sweet scented like spice or sweet herb; there were no trees; but there was wild game of all kinds–wild asses in greatest abundance, with plenty of ostriches; besides these, there were bustards and antelopes. These creatures were occasionally chased by the cavalry. The asses, when pursued, would run forward a space, and then stand still–their pace being much swifter than that of horses; and as soon as the horses came close, they went through the same performance. The only way to catch them was for the riders to post themselves at intervals, and to hunt them in relays, as it were. The flesh of those they captured was not unlike venison, only more tender. No one was lucky enough to capture an ostrich. Some of the troopers did give chase, but it had soon to be abandoned; for the bird, in its effort to escape, speedily put a long interval between itself and its 3 pursuers; plying its legs at full speed, and using its wings the while like a sail. The bustards were not so hard to catch when started suddenly; for they only take short flights, like partridges, and are soon tired. Their flesh is delicious.

As the army wended its way through this region, they reached the river Mascas, which is one hundred feet in breadth. Here stood a big deserted city called Corsote, almost literally environed by the stream, which flows round it in a circle. Here they halted three days and provisioned themselves. Thence they continued their march thirteen desert stages–ninety parasangs–with the Euphrates still on their right, until they reached the Gates. On these marches several of the baggage animals perished of hunger, for there was neither grass nor green herb, or tree of any sort; but the country throughout was barren. The inhabitants make their living by quarrying millstones on the river banks, which they work up and take to Babylon and sell, purchasing corn in exchange for their goods. Corn failed the army, and was not to be got for money, except in the Lydian market open in Cyrus’s Asiatic army; where a kapithe of wheat or barley cost four shekels; the shekel being equal to seven and a half Attic obols, whilst the kapithe is the equivalent of two Attic choeneces[1], dry measure, so that the soldiers subsisted on meat alone for the whole period. Some of the stages were very long, whenever they had to push on to find water or fodder; and once they found themselves involved in a narrow way, where the deep clay presented an obstacle to the progress of the wagons. Cyrus, with the nobles about him, halted to superintend the operation, and ordered Glus and Pigres to take a body of barbarians and to help in extricating the wagons. As they seemed to be slow about the business, he turned round angrily to the Persian nobles and bade them lend a hand to force the wagons out. Then, if ever, what goes to constitute one branch of good discipline, was to be witnessed. Each of those addressed, just where he chanced to be 8 standing, threw off his purple cloak, and flung himself into the work with as much eagerness as if it had been a charge for victory. Down a steep hill side they flew, with their costly tunics and embroidered trousers–some with the circlets round their necks, and bracelets on their arms–in an instant, they had sprung into the miry clay, and in less time than one could have conceived, they had landed the wagons safe on terra firma.

[1] The choenix = about 1 quart (or, according to others, 1 1/2 pint). It was the minimum allowance of corn for a man, say a slave, per diem. The Spartan was allowed at the public table 2 choenices a day.

Altogether it was plain that Cyrus was bent on pressing on the march, and averse to stoppages, except where he halted for the sake of provisioning or some other necessary object; being convinced that the more rapidly he advanced, the less prepared for battle would he find the king; while the slower his own progress, the larger would be the hostile army which he would find collected. Indeed, the attentive observer could see, at a glance, that if the king’s empire was strong in its extent of territory and the number of inhabitants, that strength is compensated by an inherent weakness, dependent upon the length of roads and the inevitable dispersion of defensive forces, where an invader insists upon pressing home the war by forced marches.

On the opposite side of the Euphrates to the point reached on one of these desert stages, was a large and flourishing city named Charmande. From this town the soldiers made purchases of provisions, crossing the river on rafts, in the following fashion: They took the skins which they used as tent coverings, and filled them with light grass; they then compressed and stitched them tightly together by the ends, so that the water might not touch the hay. On these they crossed and got provisions: wine made from the date-nut, and millet or panic-corn, the common staple of the country. Some dispute or other here occurred between the soldiers of Menon and Clearchus, in which Clearchus sentenced one of Menon’s men, as the delinquent, and had him flogged. The man went back to his own division and told them. Hearing what had been done to their comrade, his fellows fretted and fumed, and were highly incensed against Clearchus. The same day Clearchus visited the passage of the river, and after inspecting the market there, was returning with a few followers, on horseback, to his tent, and had to 12 pass through Menon’s quarters. Cyrus had not yet come up, but was riding up in the same direction. One of Menon’s men, who was splitting wood, caught sight of Clearchus as he rode past, and aimed a blow at him with his axe. The aim took no effect; when another hurled a stone at him, and a third, and then several, with shouts and hisses. Clearchus made a rapid retreat to his own troops, and at once ordered them to get under arms. He bade his hoplites remain in position with their shields resting against their knees, while he, at the head of his Thracians and horsemen, of which he had more than forty in his army–Thracians for the most part–advanced against Menon’s soldiers, so that the latter, with Menon himself, were panic-stricken, and ran to seize their arms; some even stood riveted to the spot, in perplexity at the occurrence. Just then Proxenus came up from behind, as chance would have it, with his division of hoplites, and without a moment’s hesitation marched into the open space between the rival parties, and grounded arms; then he fell to begging Clearchus to desist. The latter was not too well pleased to hear his trouble mildly spoken of, when he had barely escaped being stoned to death; and he bade Proxenus retire and leave the intervening space open. At this juncture Cyrus arrived and inquired what was happening. There was no time for hesitation. With his javelins firmly grasped in his hands he galloped up–escorted by some of his faithful bodyguard, who were present–and was soon in the midst, exclaiming: “Clearchus, Proxenus, and you other Hellenes yonder, you know not what you do. As surely as you come to blows with one another, our fate is sealed–this very day I shall be cut to pieces, and so will you: your turn will follow close on mine. Let our fortunes once take an evil turn, and these barbarians whom you see around will be worse foes to us than those who are at present serving the king.” At these words Clearchus came to his senses. Both parties paused from battle, and retired to their quarters: order reigned.

VI

As they advanced from this point (opposite Charmande), they came upon 1 the hoof-prints and dung of horses at frequent intervals. It looked like the trail of some two thousand horses. Keeping ahead of the army, these fellows burnt up the grass and everything else that was good for use. Now there was a Persian, named Orontas; he was closely related to the king by birth: and in matters pertaining to war reckoned among the best of Persian warriors. Having formerly been at war with Cyrus, and afterwards reconciled to him, he now made a conspiracy to destroy him. he made a proposal to Cyrus: if Cyrus would furnish him with a thousand horsemen, he would deal with these troopers, who were burning down everything in front of them; he would lay an ambuscade and cut them down, or he would capture a host of them alive; in any case, he would put a stop to their agressiveness and burnings; he would see to it that they did not ever get a chance of setting eyes on Cyrus’s army and reporting its advent to the king. The proposal seemed plausible to Cyrus, who accordingly authorised Orontas to take a detachment from each of the generals, and be gone. He, thinking that he had got his horsemen ready to his hand, wrote a letter to the king, announcing that he would ere long join him with as many troopers as he could bring; he bade him, at the same time, instruct the royal cavalry to welcome him as a friend. The letter further contained certain reminders of his former friendship and fidelity. This despatch he delivered into the hands of one who was a trusty messenger, as he thought; but the bearer took and gave it to Cyrus. Cyrus read it. Orontas was arrested. Then Cyrus summoned to his tent seven of the noblest Persians among his personal attendants, and sent orders to the Hellenic generals to bring up a body of hoplites. These troops were to take up a position round his tent. This the generals did; bringing up about three thousand hoplites. Clearchus was also invited inside, to assist at the court-martial; a compliment due to the position he held among the other generals, in the opinion not only of Cyrus, but also of the rest of the court. When he came out, he reported the circumstances of the trial (as to which, indeed, there was no mystery) to his friends. He said that Cyrus opened the inquiry with these words: “I have invited you hither, my friends, that I may take advice with you, and carry out whatever, in the sight of God and man, it is right for me to do, as concerning the man before you, Orontas. The 6 prisoner was, in the first instance, given to me by my father, to be my faithful subject. In the next place, acting, to use his own words, under the orders of my brother, and having hold of the acropolis of Sardis, he went to war with me. I met war with war, and forced him to think it more prudent to desist from war with me: whereupon we shook hands, exchanging solemn pledges. After that,” and at this point Cyrus turned to Orontas, and addressed him personally–“after that, did I do you any wrong?” Answer, “Never.” Again another question: “Then later on, having received, as you admit, no injury from me, did you revolt to the Mysians and injure my territory, as far as in you lay?”–“I did,” was the reply. “Then, once more having discovered the limits of your power, did you flee to the altar of Artemis, crying out that you repented? and did you thus work upon my feelings, that we a second time shook hands and made interchange of solemn pledges? Are these things so?” Orontas again assented. “Then what injury have you received from me,” Cyrus asked, “that now for the third time, you have been detected in a treasonous plot against me?”–“I must needs do so,” he answered. Then Cyrus put one more question: “But the day may come, may it not, when you will once again be hostile to my brother, and a faithful friend to myself?” The other answered: “Even if I were, you could never be brought to believe it, Cyrus.”

At this point Cyrus turned to those who were present and said: “Such has been the conduct of the prisoner in the past: such is his language now. I now call upon you, and you first, Clearchus, to declare your opinion–what think you?” And Clearchus answered: “My advice to you is to put this man out of the way as soon as may be, so that we may be saved the necessity of watching him, and have more leisure, as far as he is concerned, to requite the services of those whose friendship is sincere.”–“To this opinion,” he told us, “the rest of the court adhered.” After that, at the bidding of Cyrus, each of those present, 10 in turn, including the kinsmen of Orontas, took him by the girdle; which is as much as to say, “Let him die the death,” and then those appointed led him out; and they who in old days were wont to do obeisance to him, could not refrain, even at that moment, from bowing down before him, albeit they knew he was being led forth to death.

After they had conducted him to the tent of Artapates, the trustiest of Cyrus’s wand-bearers, none set eyes upon him ever again, alive or dead. No one, of his own knowledge, could declare the manner of his death; though some conjectured one thing and some another. No tomb to mark his resting-place, either then or since, was ever seen.

VII

From this place Cyrus marched through Babylonia three stages–twelve 1 parasangs. Now, on the third stage, about midnight, Cyrus held a review of the Hellenes and Asiatics in the plain, expecting that the king would arrive the following day with his army to offer battle. He gave orders to Clearchus to take command of the right wing, and to Menon the Thessalian of the left, while he himself undertook to the disposition of his own forces in person. After the review, with the first approach of day, deserters from the great king arrived, bringing Cyrus information about the royal army. Then Cyrus summoned the generals and captains of the Hellenes, and held a council of war to arrange the plan of battle. He took this opportunity also to address the following words of compliment and encouragement to the meeting: “Men of Hellas,” he said, “it is certainly not from dearth of barbarians to fight my battles that I put myself at your head as my allies; but because I hold you to be better and stronger than many barbarians. That is why I took you. See then that you prove yourselves to be men worthy of the liberty which you possess, and which I envy you. Liberty–it is a thing which, be well assured, I would choose in preference to all my other possessions, multiplied many times. But I would like you to know into what sort of struggle you are going: learn its nature from one who knows. Their numbers are great, and they come on with much noise; but if you can hold out against these two things, I confess I am ashamed to think, what a sorry set of folk you will 4 find the inhabitants of this land to be. But you are men, and brave you must be, being men: it is agreed; then if you wish to return home, any of you, I undertake to send you back, in such sort that your friends at home shall envy you; but I flatter myself I shall persuade many of you to accept what I will offer you here, in lieu of what you left at home.”

Here Gaulites, a Samian exile, and a trusty friend of Cyrus, being present, exclaimed: “Ay, Cyrus, but some say you can afford to make large promises now, because you are in the crisis of impending danger; but let matters go well with you, will you recollect? They shake their heads. Indeed, some add that, even if you did recollect, and were ever so willing, you would not be able to make good all your promises, and repay.” When Cyrus heard that, he answered: “You forget, sirs, my father’s empire stretches southwards to a region where men cannot dwell by reason of the heat, and northwards to a region uninhabitable through cold; but all the intervening space is mapped out in satrapies belonging to my brother’s friends: so that if the victory be ours, it will be ours also to put our friends in possession in their room. On the whole my fear is, not that I may not have enough to give to each of my friends, but lest I may not have friends enough on whom to bestow what I have to give, and to each of you Hellenes I will give a crown of gold.”

So they, when they heard these words, were once more elated than ever themselves, and spread the good news among the rest outside. And there came into his presence both the generals and some of the other Hellenes also, claiming to know what they should have in the event of victory; and Cyrus satisfied the expectations of each and all, and so dismissed them. Now the advice and admonition of all who came into conversation with him was, not to enter the battle himself, but to post himself in rear of themselves; and at this season Clearchus put a question to him: “But do you think that your brother will give battle 9 to you, Cyrus?” and Cyrus answered: “Not without a battle, be assured, shall the prize be won; if he be the son of Darius and Parysatis, and a brother of mine.”

In the final arming for battle at this juncture, the numbers were as follows: Of Hellenes there were ten thousand four hundred heavy infantry with two thousand five hundred targeteers, while the barbarians with Cyrus reached a total of one hundred thousand. He had too about twenty scythe-chariots. The enemy’s forces were reported to number one million two hundred thousand, with two hundred scythe-chariots, besides which he had six thousand cavalry under Artagerses. These formed the immediate vanguard of the king himself. The royal army was marshalled by four generals or field-marshals, each in command of three hundred thousand men. Their names were Abrocomas, Tissaphernes, Gobryas, and Arbaces. (But of this total not more than nine hundred thousand were engaged in the battle, with one hundred and fifty scythe-chariots; since Abrocomas, on his march from Phoenicia, arrived five days too late for the battle.) Such was the information brought to Cyrus by deserters who came in from the king’s army before the battle, and it was corroborated after the battle by those of the enemy who were taken prisoners.

From this place Cyrus advanced one stage–three parasangs–with the whole body of his troops, Hellenic and barbarian alike in order of battle. He expected the king to give battle the same day, for in the middle of this day’s march a deep sunk trench was reached, thirty feet broad, and eighteen feet deep. The trench was carried inland through the plain, twelve parasang’s distance, to the wall of Media[1]. [Here are canals, flowing from the river Tigris; they are four in number, each a hundred feet broad, and very deep, with corn ships plying upon 15 them; they empty themselves into the Euphrates, and are at intervals of one parasang apart, and are spanned by bridges.]

[1] For “the wall of Media” see Grote, “Hist. of Greece,” vol. ix. p. 87 and foll. note 1 (1st ed.), and various authorities there quoted or referred to. The next passage enclosed in [] may possibly be a commentator’s or editor’s note, but, on the whole, I have thought it best to keep the words in the text instead of relegating them, as heretofore, to a note. Perhaps some future traveller may clear up all difficulties.

Between the Euphrates and the trench was a narrow passage, twenty feet only in breadth. The trench itself had been constructed by the great king upon hearing of Cyrus’s approach, to serve as a line of defence. Through this narrow passage then Cyrus and his army passed, and found themselves safe inside the trench. So there was no battle to be fought with the king that day; only there were numerous unmistakable traces of horse and infantry in retreat. Here Cyrus summoned Silanus, his Ambraciot soothsayer, and presented him with three thousand darics; because eleven days back, when sacrificing, he had told him that the king would not fight within ten days, and Cyrus had answered: “Well, then, if he does not fight within that time, he will not fight at all; and if your prophecy comes true, I promise you ten talents.” So now, that the ten days were passed, he presented him with the above sum.

But as the king had failed to hinder the passage of Cyrus’s army at the trench, Cyrus himself and the rest concluded that he must have abandoned the idea of offering battle, so that next day Cyrus advanced with less than his former caution. On the third day he was conducting the march, seated in his carriage, with only a small body of troops drawn up in front of him. The mass of the army was moving on in no kind of order: the soldiers having consigned their heavy arms to be carried in the wagons or on the backs of beasts.

VIII

It was already about full market time[1] and the halting-place at 1 which the army was to take up quarters was nearly reached, when Pategyas, a Persian, a trusty member of Cyrus’s personal staff, came galloping up at full speed on his horse, which was bathed in sweat, and to every one he met he shouted in Greek and Persian, as fast as he could ejaculate the words: “The king is advancing with a large army ready for battle.” Then ensued a scene of wild confusion. The Hellenes and all alike were expecting to be attacked on the instant, and before they could form their lines. Cyrus sprang from his carriage and donned his corselet; then leaping on to his charger’s back, with the javelins firmly clutched, he passed the order to the rest, to arm themselves and fall into their several ranks.

[1] I.e. between 9 and 10 A.M.

The orders were carried out with alacrity; the ranks shaped themselves. Clearchus held the right wing resting on the Euphrates, Proxenus was next, and after him the rest, while Menon with his troops held the Hellenic left. Of the Asiatics, a body of Paphlagonian cavalry, one thousand strong, were posted beside Clearchus on the right, and with them stood the Hellenic peltasts. On the left was Ariaeus, Cyrus’s second in command, and the rest of the barbarian host. Cyrus was with his bodyguard of cavalry about six hundred strong, all armed with corselets like Cyrus, and cuirasses and helmets; but not so Cyrus: he went into battle with head unhelmeted[2]. So too all the horses with Cyrus wore forehead-pieces and breast-pieces, and the troopers carried short Hellenic swords.

[2] The MSS. add, “to expose oneself to the risks of war bareheaded is, it is said, a practice common to the Persians,” which I regard as a commentator’s note, if not an original marginal note of some early editor, possibly of the author himself. The “Cyropaedeia” is full of such comments, “pieces justificatives” inserted into the text.

It was now mid-day, and the enemy was not yet in sight; but with the approach of afternoon was seen dust like a white cloud, and after a considerable interval a black pall as it were spread far and high above the plain. As they came nearer, very soon was seen here and there a glint of bronze and spear-points; and the ranks could plainly be distinguished. On the left were troopers wearing white cuirasses. That is Tissaphernes in command, they said, and next to these a body of men bearing wicker-shields, and next again heavy-armed infantry, with long wooden shields reaching to the feet. These were the Egyptians, they said, and then other cavalry, other bowmen; all were in national divisions, each nation marching in densely-crowded 10 squares. And all along their front was a line of chariots at considerable intervals from one another–the famous scythe-chariots, as they were named–having their scythes fitted to the axle-trees and stretching out slantwise, while others protruded under the chariot-seats, facing the ground, so as to cut through all they encountered. The design was to let them dash full speed into the ranks of the Hellenes and cut them through.

Curiously enough the anticipation of Cyrus, when at the council of war he admonished the Hellenes not to mind the shouting of the Asiatics, was not justified. Instead of shouting, they came on in deep silence, softly and slowly, with even tread. At this instant, Cyrus, riding past in person, accompanied by Pigres, his interpreter, and three or four others, called aloud to Clearchus to advance against the enemy’s centre, for there the king was to be found: “And if we strike home at this point,” he added, “our work is finished.” Clearchus, though he could see the compact body at the centre, and had been told by Cyrus that the king lay outside the Hellenic left (for, owing to numerical superiority, the king, while holding his own centre, could well overlap Cyrus’s extreme left), still hesitated to draw off his right wing from the river, for fear of being turned on both flanks; and he simply replied, assuring Cyrus that he would take care all went well.

At this time the barbarian army was evenly advancing, and the Hellenic division was still riveted to the spot, completing its formation as the various contingents came up. Cyrus, riding past at some distance from the lines, glanced his eye first in one direction and then in the other, so as to take a complete survey of friends and foes; when Xenophon the Athenian, seeing him, rode up from the Hellenic quarter to meet him, asking him whether he had any orders to give. Cyrus, pulling up his horse, begged him to make the announcement generally known that the omens from the victims, internal and external alike, were good[3]. While he was still speaking, he heard a confused murmur 16 passing through the ranks, and asked what it meant. The other replied that it was the watchword being passed down for the second time. Cyrus wondered who had given the order, and asked what the watchword was. On being told it was “Zeus our Saviour and Victory,” he replied, “I accept it; so let it be,” and with that remark rode away to his own position. And now the two battle lines were no more than three or four furlongs apart, when the Hellenes began chanting the paean, and at the same time advanced against the enemy.

[3] I.e. the omens from inspecting the innards of the victims, and the omens from the acts and movements of the victims.

But with the forward movement a certain portion of the line curved onwards in advance, with wave-like sinuosity, and the portion left behind quickened to a run; and simultaneously a thrilling cry burst from all lips, like that in honour of the war-god–eleleu! eleleu! and the running became general. Some say they clashed their shields and spears, thereby causing terror to the horses[4]; and before they had got within arrowshot the barbarians swerved and took to flight. And now the Hellenes gave chase with might and main, checked only by shouts to one another not to race, but to keep their ranks. The enemy’s chariots, reft of their charioteers, swept onwards, some through the enemy themselves, others past the Hellenes. They, as they saw them coming, opened a gap and let them pass. One fellow, like some dumbfoundered mortal on a racecourse, was caught by the heels, but even he, they said, received no hurt, nor indeed, with the single exception of some one on the left wing who was said to have been wounded by an arrow, did any Hellene in this battle suffer a single hurt.

[4] Some critics regard this sentence as an editor’s or commentator’s note.

Cyrus, seeing the Hellene’s conquering, as far as they at any rate were concerned, and in hot pursuit, was well content; but in spite of his joy and the salutations offered him at that moment by those about 21 him, as though he were already king, he was not led away to join in the pursuit, but keeping his squadron of six hundred horsemen in cloe order, waited and watched to see what the king himself would do. The king, he knew, held the centre of the Persian army. Indeed it is the fashion for the Asiatic monarch to occupy that position during action, for this twofold reason: he holds the safest place, with his troops on either side of him, while, if he has occasion to despatch any necessary rider along the lines, his troops will receive the message in half the time. The king accordingly on this occasion held the centre of his army, but for all that, he was outside Cyrus’s left wing; and seeing that no one offered him battle in front, nor yet the troops in front of him, he wheeled as if to encircle the enemy. It was then that Cyrus, in apprehension lest the king might get round to the rear and cut to pieces the Hellenic body, charged to meet him. Attacking with his six hundred, he mastered the line of troops in front of the king, and put to flight the six thousand, cutting down, as is said, with his own hand their general, Artagerses.

But as soon as the rout commenced, Cyrus’s own six hundred themselves, in the ardour of pursuit, were scattered, with the exception of a handful who were left with Cyrus himself–chiefly his table companions, so-called. Left alone with these, he caught sight of the king, and the close throng about him. Unable longer to contain himself, with a cry, “I see the man,” he rushed at him and dealt a blow at his chest, wounding him through the corselet. This, according to the statement of Ctesias the surgeon[5], who further states that he himself healed the wound. As Cyrus delivered the blow, some one struck him with a javelin under the eye severely; and in the struggle which then ensued between the king and Cyrus and those about them to protect one or other, we have the statement of Ctesias as to the number slain 27 on the king’s side, for he was by his side. On the other, Cyrus himself fell, and eight of his bravest companions lay on the top of him. The story says that Artapes, the trustiest among his wand-wearers, when he saw that Cyrus had fallen to the ground, leapt from his horse and threw his arms about him. Then, as one account says, the king bade one slay him as a worthy victim to his brother: others say that Artapates drew his scimitar and slew himself by his own hand. A golden scimitar it is true, he had; he wore also a collar and bracelets and the other ornaments such as the noblest Persians wear; for his kindliness and fidelity had won him honours at the hands of Cyrus.

[5] “Ctesias, the son of Ctesiochus, was a physician of Cnidos. Seventeen years of his life were passed at the court of Persia, fourteen in the service of Darios, three in that of Artaxerxes; he returned to Greece in 398 B.C.,” and “was employed by Artaxerxes in diplomatic services.” See Mure; also Ch. Muller, for his life and works. He wrote (1) a history on Persian affairs in three parts–Assyrian, Median, Persian–with a chapter “On Tributes;” (2) a history of Indian affairs (written in the vein of Sir John Maundeville, Kt.); (3) a Periplus; (4) a treatise on Mountains; (5) a treatise on Rivers.

IX

So died Cyrus; a man the kingliest[1] and most worthy to rule of all 1 the Persians who have lived since the elder Cyrus: according to the concurrent testimony of all who are reputed to have known him intimately. To begin from the beginning, when still a boy, and whilst being brought up with his brother and the other lads, his unrivalled excellence was recognised. For the sons of the noblest Persians, it must be known, are brought up, one and all, at the king’s portals. Here lessons of sobreity and self-control may largely be laid to heart, while there is nothing base or ugly for eye or ear to feed upon. There is the daily spectacle ever before the boys of some receiving honour from the king, and again of others receiving dishonour; and the tale of all this is in their ears, so that from earliest boyhood they learn how to rule and to be ruled.

[1] The character now to be drawn is afterwards elaborated into the Cyrus of the Cyropaedeia.

In this courtly training Cyrus earned a double reputation; first he was held to be a paragon of modesty among his fellows, rendering an obedience to his elders which exceeded that of many of his own inferiors; and next he bore away the palm for skill in horsemanship and for love of the animal itself. Nor less in matters of war, in the use of the bow and the javelin, was he held by men in general to be at 5 once the aptest of learners and the most eager practiser. As soon as his age permitted, the same pre-eminence showed itself in his fondness for the chase, not without a certain appetite for perilous adventure in facing the wild beasts themselves. Once a bear made a furious rush at him[2], and without wincing he grappled with her, and was pulled from his horse, receiving wounds the scars of which were visible through life; but in the end he slew the creature, nor did he forget him who first came to his aid, but made him enviable in the eyes of many.

[2] The elder Cyrus, when a boy, kills not a bear but a boar.

After he had been sent down by his father to be satrap of Lydia and Great Phrygia and Cappadocia, and had been appointed general of the forces, whose business it is to muster in the plain of the Castolus, nothing was more noticeable in his conduct than the importance which he attached to the faithful fulfilment of every treaty or compact or undertaking entered into with others. He would tell no lies to any one. Thus doubtless it was that he won the confidence alike of individuals and of the communities entrusted to his care; or in case of hostility, a treaty made with Cyrus was a guarantee sufficient to the combatant that he would suffer nothing contrary to its terms. Therefore, in the war with Tissaphernes, all the states of their own accord chose Cyrus in lieu of Tissaphernes, except only the men of Miletus, and these were only alienated through fear of him, because he refused to abandon their exiled citizens; and his deeds and words bore emphatic witness to his principle: even if they were weakened in number or in fortune, he would never abandon those who had once become his friends.

He made no secret of his endeavour to outdo his friends and his foes alike in reciprocity of conduct. The prayer has been attributed to him, “God grant I may live along enough to recompense my friends and requite my foes with a strong arm.” However this may be, no one, at least in our days, ever drew together so ardent a following of friends, eager to lay at his feet their money, their cities, their own lives and persons; nor is it to be inferred from this that he suffered the malefactor and the wrongdoer to laugh him to scorn; on the 13 contrary, these he punished most unflinchingly. It was no rare sight to see on the well-trodden highways, men who had forfeited hand or foot or eye; the result being that throughout the satrapy of Cyrus any one, Hellene or barbarian, provided he were innocent, might fearlessly travel wherever he pleased, and take with him whatever he felt disposed. However, as all allowed, it was for the brave in war that he reserved especial honour. To take the first instance to hand, he had a war with the Pisidians and Mysians. Being himself at the head of an expedition into those territories, he could observe those who voluntarily encountered risks; these he made rulers of the territory which he subjected, and afterwards honoured them with other gifts. So that, if the good and brave were set on a pinnacle of fortune, cowards were recognised as their natural slaves; and so it befell that Cyrus never had lack of volunteers in any service of danger, whenever it was expected that his eye would be upon them.

So again, wherever he might discover any one ready to distinguish himself in the service of uprightness, his delight was to make this man richer than those who seek for gain by unfair means. On the same principle, his own administration was in all respects uprightly conducted, and, in particular, he secured the services of an army worthy of the name. Generals, and sabulterns alike, came to him from across the seas, not merely to make money, but because they saw that loyalty to Cyrus was a more profitable investment than so many pounds a month. Let any man whatsoever render him willing service, such enthusiasm was sure to win its reward. And so Cyrus could always command the service of the best assistants, it was said, whatever the work might be.

Or if he saw any skilful and just steward who furnished well the country over which he ruled, and created revenues, so far from robbing him at any time, to him who had, he delighted to give more. So that toil was a pleasure, and gains were amassed with confidence, and least of all from Cyrus would a man conceal the amount of his possessions, seeing that he showed no jealousy of wealth openly avowed, but his 19 endeavour was rather to turn to account the riches of those who kept them secret. Towards the friends he had made, whose kindliness he knew, or whose fitness as fellow-workers with himself, in aught which he might wish to carry out, he had tested, he showed himself in turn an adept in the arts of courtesy. Just in proportion as he felt the need of this friend or that to help him, so he tried to help each of them in return in whatever seemed to be their heart’s desire.

Many were the gifts bestowed on him, for many and diverse reasons; no one man, perhaps, ever received more; no one, certainly, was ever more ready to bestow them upon others, with an eye ever to the taste of each, so as to gratify what he saw to be the individual requirement. Many of these presents were sent to him to serve as personal adornments of the body or for battle; and as touching these he would say, “How am I to deck myself out in all these? to my mind a man’s chief ornament is the adornment of nobly-adorned friends.” Indeed, that he should triumph over his friends in the great matters of welldoing is not surprising, seeing that he was much more powerful than they, but that he should go beyond them in minute attentions, and in an eager desire to give pleasure, seems to me, I must confess, more admirable. Frequently when he had tasted some specially excellent wine, he would send the half remaining flagon to some friend with a message to say: “Cyrus says, this is the best wine he has tasted for a long time, that is his excuse for sending it to you. He hopes you will drink it up to-day with a choice party of friends.” Or, perhaps, he would send the remainder of a dish of geese, half loaves of bread, and so forth, the bearer being instructed to say: “This is Cyrus’s favourite dish, he hopes you will taste it yourself.” Or, perhaps, there was a great dearth of provender, when, through the number of his servants and his own careful forethought, he was enabled to get supplies for himsefl; at such times he would send to his friends in different parts, bidding them feed their horses on his hay, since it would not do for the horses that carried his friends to go starving. Then, on any long march or expedition, where the crowd of lookers-on 28 would be large, he would call his friends to him and entertain them with serious talk, as much as to say, “These I delight to honour.”

So that, for myself, and from all that I can hear, I should be disposed to say that no one, Greek or barbarian, was ever so beloved. In proof of this, I may cite the fact that, though Cyrus was the king’s vassal and slave, no one ever forsook him to join his master, if I may except the attempt of Orontas, which was abortive. That man, indeed, had to learn that Cyrus was closer to the heart of him on whose fidelity he relied than he himself was. On the other hand, many a man revolted from the king to Cyrus, after they went to war with one another; nor were these nobodies, but rather persons high in the king’s affection; yet for all that, they believed that their virtues would obtain a reward more adequate from Cyrus than from the king. Another great proof at once of his own worth and of his capacity rightly to discern all loyal, loving and firm friendship is afforded by an incident which belongs to the last moment of his life. He was slain, but fighting for his life beside him fell also every one of his faithful bodyguard of friends and table-companions, with the sole exception of Ariaeus, who was in command of the cavalry on the left, and he no sooner perceived the fall of Cyrus than he betook himself to flight, with the whole body of troops under his lead.

X

Then the head of Cyrus and his right hand were severed from the body. 1 But the king and those about him pursued and fell upon the Cyreian camp, and the troops of Ariaeus no longer stood their ground, but fled through their own camp back to the halting-place of the night before–a distance of four parasangs, it was said. So the king and those with him fell to ravaging right and left, and amongst other spoil he captured the Phocaean woman, who was a concubine of Cyrus, witty and beautiful, if fame speaks correctly. The Milesian, who was the younger, was also seized by some of the king’s men; but, letting go her outer garment, she made good her escape to the Hellenes, who had been left among the camp followers on guard. These fell at once 3 into line and put to the sword many of the pillagers, though they lost some men themselves; they stuck to the place and succeeded in saving not only that lady, but all else, whether chattels or human beings, wich lay within their reach.

At this point the king and the Hellenes were something like three miles apart; the one set were pursuing their opponents just as if their conquest had been general; the others were pillaging as merrily as if their victory were already universal. But when the Hellenes learnt that the king and his troops were in the baggage camp; and the king, on his side, was informed by Tissaphernes that the Hellenes were victorious in their quarter of the field, and had gone forward in pursuit, the effect was instantaneous. The king massed his troops and formed into line. Clearchus summoned Proxenus, who was next him, and debated whether to send a detachment or to go in a body to the camp to save it.

Meanwhile the king was seen again advancing, as it seemed, from the rear; and the Hellenes, turning right about, prepared to receive his attack then and there. But instead of advancing upon them at that point, he drew off, following the line by which he had passed earlier in the day, outside the left wing of his opponent, and so picked up in his passage those who had deserted to the Hellenes during the battle, as also Tissaphernes and his division. The latter had not fled in the first shock of the encounter; he had charged parallel to the line of the Euphrates into the Greek peltasts, and through them. But charge as he might, he did not lay low a single man. On the contrary, the Hellenes made a gap to let them through, hacking them with their swords and hurling their javelins as they passed. Episthenes of Amphipolis was in command of the peltasts, and he showed himself a sensible man, it was said. Thus it was that Tissaphernes, having got through haphazard, with rather the worst of it, failed to wheel round and return the way he came, but reaching the camp of the Hellenes, 8 there fell in with the king; and falling into order again, the two divisions advanced side by side.

When they were parallel with the (original) left wing of the Hellenes, fear seized the latter lest they might take them in flank and enfold them on both sides and cut them down. In this apprehension they determined to extend their line and place the river on their rear. But while they deliberated, the king passed by and ranged his troops in line to meet them, in exactly the same position in which he had advanced to offer battle at the commencemet of the engagement. The Hellenes, now seeing them in close proximity and in battle order, once again raised the paean and began the attack with still greater enthusiasm than before: and once again the barbarians did not wait to receive them, but took to flight, even at a greater distance than before. The Hellenes pressed the pursuit until they reached a certain village, where they halted, for above the village rose a mound, on which the king and his party rallied and reformed; they had no infantry any longer, but the crest was crowded with cavalry, so that it was impossible to discover what was happening. They did see, they said, the royal standard, a kind of golden eagle, with wings extended, perched on a bar of wood and raised upon a lance.

But as soon as the Hellenes again moved onwards, the hostile cavalry at once left the hillock–not in a body any longer, but in fragments–some streaming from one side, some from another; and the crest was gradually stripped of its occupants, till at last the company was gone. Accordingly, Clearchus did not ascend the crest, but posting his army at its base, he sent Lycius of Syracuse and another to the summit, with orders to inspect the condition of things on the other side, and to report results. Lycius galloped up and investigated, bringing back news that they were fleeing might and main. Almost at that instant the sun sank beneath the horizon. There the Hellenes halted; they grounded arms and rested, marvelling the while that Cyrus was not anywhere to be seen, and that no messenger had come from him. For they were in complete ignorance of his death, and conjectured that either he had gone off in pursuit, or had pushed forward to occupy some point. Left to themselves, they now deliberated, whether they should stay where they were and have the baggage train brought up, or should return to camp. They resolved to return, and about supper time reached the tents. Such was the conclusion of this day.

They found the larger portion of their property pillaged, eatables and drinkables alike, not excepting the wagons laden with corn and wine, which Cyrus had prepared in case of some extreme need overtaking the expedition, to divide among the Hellenes. There were four hundred of these wagons, it was said, and these had now been ransacked by the king and his men; so that the greater number of the Hellenes went supperless, having already gone without their breakfasts, since the king had appeared before the usual halt for breakfast. Accordingly, in no better plight than this they passed the night.

BOOK II

[In the previous book will be found a full account of the method by which Cyrus collected a body of Greeks when meditating an expedition against his brother Artaxerxes; as also of various occurrences on the march up; of the battle itself, and of the death of Cyrus; and lastly, a description of the arrival of the Hellenes in camp after the battle, and as to how they betook themselves to rest, none suspecting but what they were altogether victorious and that Cyrus lived.]

I

With the break of day the generals met, and were surprised that Cyrus 1 should not have appeared himself, or at any rate have sent some one to tell them what to do. Accordingly, they resolved to put what they had together, to get under arms, and to push forward until they effected junction with Cyrus. Just as they were on the point of starting, with the rising sun came Procles the ruler of Teuthrania. He was a descendant of Damaratus[1] the Laconian, and with him also came Glus the son of Tamos. These two told them, first, that Cyrus was dead; next, that Ariaeus had retreated with the rest of the barbarians to the halting-place whence they had started at dawn on the previous day; and wished to inform them that, if they were minded to come, he would wait for this one day, but on the morrow he should return home again to Ionia, whence he came.

[1] The Spartan king who was deposed in B.C. 491, whereupon he fled to King Darius, and settled in south-western Mysia. See Herod. vi. 50, 61-70. We shall hear more of his descendant, Procles, the ruler of Teuthrania, in the last chapter of this work.

When they heard these tidings, the generals were sorely distressed; so 4 too were the rest of the Hellenes when they were informed of it. Then Clearchus spoke as follows: “Would that Cyrus were yet alive! But since he is dead, take back this answer to Ariaeus, that we, at any rate, have conquered the king; and, as you yourselves may see, there is not a man left in the field to meet us. Indeed, had you not arrived, we should ere this have begun our march upon the king. Now, we can promise to Ariaeus that, if he will join us here, we will place him on the king’s throne. Surely to those who conquer empire pertains.” With these words he sent back the messengers and with them he sent Cheirisophus the Laconian, and Menon the Thessalian. That was what Menon himself wished, being, as he was, a friend and intimate of Ariaeus, and bound by mutual ties of hospitality. So these set off, and Clearchus waited for them.

The soldiers furnished themselves with food [and drink] as best they might–falling back on the baggage animals, and cutting up oxen and asses. There was no lack of firewood; they need only step forward a few paces from the line where the battle was fought, and they would find arrows to hand in abundance, which the Hellenes had forced the deserters from the king to throw away. There were arrows and wicker shields also, and the huge wooden shields of the Egyptians. There were many targets also, and empty wagons left to be carried off. Here was a store which they were not slow to make use of to cook their meat and serve their meals that day.

It was now about full market hour[2] when heralds from the king and Tissaphernes arrived. These were barbarians with one exception. This was a certain Phalinus, a Hellene who lived at the court of Tissaphernes, and was held in high esteem. He gave himself out to be a connoisseur of tactics and the art of fighting with heavy arms. These were the men who now came up, and having summoned the generals of the Hellenes, they delivered themselves of the following message: “The great king having won the victory and slain Cyrus, bids the Hellenes to surrender their arms; to betake themselves to the gates of the king’s palace, and there obtain for themselves what terms they can.” That was what the heralds said, and the Hellenes listened with heavy 9 hearts; but Clearchus spoke, and his words were few; “Conquerors do not, as a rule, give up their arms”; then turning to the others he added, “I leave it to you, my fellow-generals, to make the best and noblest answer, that ye may, to these gentlemen. I will rejoin you presently.” At the moment an official had summoned him to come and look at the entrails which had been taken out, for, as it chanced, he was engaged in sacrificing. As soon as he was gone, Cleanor the Arcadian, by right of seniority, answered: “They would sooner die than give up their arms.” Then Proxenus the Theban said: “For my part, I marvel if the king demands our arms as our master, or for the sake of friendship merely, as presents. If as our master, why need he ask for them rather than come and take them? But if he would fain wheedle us out of them by fine speeches, he should tell us what the soldiers will receive in turn for such kindness.” In answer to him Phalinus said: “The king claims to have conquered, because he has put Cyrus to death; and who is there now to claim the kingdom as against himself? He further flatters himself that you also are in his power, since he holds you in the heart of his country, hemmed in by impassable rivers; and he can at any moment bring against you a multitude so vast that even if leave were given to rise and slay you could not kill them.” After him Theopompus[3] the Athenian spoke. “Phalinus,” he said, “at this instant, as you yourself can see, we have nothing left but our arms and our valour. If we keep the former we imagine we can make use of the latter; but if we deliver up our arms we shall presently be robbed of our lives. Do not suppose then that we are going to give up to you the only good things which we possess. We prefer to keep them; and by their help we will do battle with you for the good things which are yours.” Phalinus laughed when he heard those words, and said: 13 “Spoken like a philosopher, my fine young man, and very pretty reasoning too; yet, let me tell you, your wits are somewhat scattered if you imagine that your valour will get the better of the king’s power.” There were one or two others, it was said, who with a touch of weakness in their tone or argument, made answer: “They had proved good and trusty friends to Cyrus, and the king might find them no less valuable. If he liked to be friends with them, he might turn them to any use that pleased his fancy, say for a campaign against Egypt. Their arms were at his service; they would help to lay that country at his feet.”

[2] 10 A.M.

[3] So the best MSS. Others read “Xenophon,” which Kruger maintains to be the true reading. He suggests that “Theopompus” may have crept into the text from a marginal note of a scholiast, “Theopompus” (the historian) “gives the remark to Proxenus.”

Just then Clearchus returned, and wished to know what answer they had given. The words were barely out of his mouth before Phalinus interrupting, answered: “As for your friends here, one says one thing and one another; will you please give us your opinion”; and he replied: “The sight of you, Phalinus, caused me much pleasure; and not only me, but all of us, I feel sure; for you are a Hellene even as we are–every one of us whom you see before you. In our present plight we would like to take you into our counsel as to what we had better do touching your proposals. I beg you then solemnly, in the sight of heaven–do you tender us such advice as you shall deem best and worthiest, and such as shall bring you honour of after time, when it will be said of you how once on a time Phalinus was sent by the great king to bid certain Hellenes yield up their arms, and when they had taken him into their counsel, he gave them such and such advice. You know that whatever advice you do give us cannot fail to be reported in Hellas.”

Clearchus threw out these leading remarks in hopes that this man, who was the ambassador from the king, might himself be led to advise them not to give up their arms, in which case the Hellenes would be still more sanguine and hopeful. But, contrary to his expectation, Phalinus turned round and said: “I say that if you have one chance, one hope in ten thousand to wage a war with the king successfully, do not give up your arms. That is my advice. If, however, you have no chance of escape without the king’s consent, then I say save yourselves in the only way you can.” And Clearchus answered: “So, then, that is your 20 deliberate view? Well, this is our answer, take it back. We conceive that in either case, whether we are expected to be friends with the king, we shall be worth more as friends if we keep our arms than if we yield them to another; or whether we are to go to war, we shall fight better with them than without.” And Phalinus said: “That answer we will repeat; but the king bade me tell you this besides, ‘Whilst you remain here there is truce; but one step forward or one step back, the truce ends; there is war.’ Will you then please inform us as to that point also? Are you minded to stop and keep truce, or is there to be war? What answer shall I take from you?” And Clearchus replied: “Pray answer that we hold precisely the same views on this point as the king.”–“How say you the same views?” asked Phalinus. Clearchus made answer: “As long as we stay here there is truce, but a step forward or a step backward, the truce ends; there is war.” The other again asked: “Peace or war, what answer shall I make?” Clearchus returned answer once again in the same words: “Truce if we stop, but if we move forwards or backwards war.” But what he was minded really to do, that he refused to make further manifest.

II

Phalinus and those that were with him turned and went. But the 1 messengers from Ariaeus, Procles and Cheirisophus came back. As to Menon, he stayed behind with Ariaeus, They brought back this answer from Ariaeus: “‘There are many Persians,’ he says, ‘better than himself who will not suffer him to sit upon the king’s throne; but if you are minded to go back with him, you must join him this very night, otherwise he will set off himself to-morrow on the homeward route.'” And Clearchus said: “It had best stand thus between us then. If we come, well and good, be it as you propose; but if we do not come, do whatsoever you think most conducive to your interests.” And so he kept these also in the dark as to his real intention.

After this, when the sun was already sinking, he summoned the generals and officers, and made the following statement: “Sirs, I sacrificed and found the victims unfavourable to an advance against the king. After all, it is not so surprising perhaps, for, as I now learn, between us and the king flows the river Tigris, navigable for big 3 vessels, and we could not possibly cross it without boats, and boats we have none. On the other hand, to stop here is out of the question, for there is no possibility of getting provisions. However, the victims were quite agreeable to us joining the friends of Cyrus. This is what we must do then. Let each go away and sup on whatever he has. At the first sound of the bugle to turn in, get kit and baggage together; at the second signal, place them on the baggage animals; and at the third, fall in and follow the lead, with the baggage animals on the inside protected by the river, and the troops outside.” After hearing the orders, the generals and officers retired, and did as they were bid; and for the future Clearchus led, and the rest followed in obedience to his orders, not that they had expressly chosen him, but they saw that he alone had the sense and wisdom requisite in a general, while the rest were inexperienced[1].

[1] The MSS. add the words, “The total distance of the route, taking Ephesus in Ionia as the starting point up to the field of battle, consisted of 93 stages, 535 parasangs, or 16,050 furlongs; from the battle-field to Babylon (reckoned a three days’ journey) would have been another 360 stades,” which may well be an editor’s or commentator’s marginal note.

Here, under cover of the darkness which descended, the Thracian Miltocythes, with forty horsemen and three hundred Thracian infantry, deserted to the king; but the rest of the troops–Clearchus leading and the rest following in accordance with the orders promulgated–took their departure, and about midnight reached their first stage, having come up with Ariaeus and his army. They grounded arms just as they stood in rank, and the generals and officers of the Hellenes met in the tent of Ariaeus. There they exchanged oaths–the Hellenes on the one side and Ariaeus with his principal officers on the other–not to betray one another, but to be true to each other as allies. The Asiatics further solemnly pledged themselves by oath to lead the way without treachery. The oaths were ratified by the sacrifice of a bull, a wolf[2], a boar, and a ram over a shield. The Hellenes dipped a sword, the barbarians a lance, into the blood of the victims.

[2] It is a question whether the words “a wolf” ought not to be omitted.

As soon as the pledge was taken, Clearchus spoke: “And now, Ariaeus,” he said, “since you and we have one expedition in prospect, will you 10 tell us what you think about the route; shall we return the way we came, or have you devised a better?” He answered: “To return the same way is to perish to a man by hunger; for at this moment we have no provisions whatsoever. During the seventeen last stages, even on our way hither, we could extract nothing from the country; or, if there was now and again anything, we passed over and utterly consumed it. At this time our project is to take another and a longer journey certainly, but we shall not be in straits for provisions. The earliest stages must be very long, as long as we can make them; the object is to put as large a space as possible between us and the royal army; once we are two or three days’ journey off, the danger is over. The king will never overtake us. With a small army he will not dare to dog our heels, and with a vast equipment he will lack the power to march quickly. Perhaps he, too, may even find a scarcity of provisions. There,” said he, “you asked for my opinion, see, I have given it.”

Here was a plan of the campaign, which was equivalent to a stampede: helter-skelter they were to run away, or get into hiding somehow; but fortune proved a better general. For as soon as it was day they recommenced the journey, keeping the sun on their right, and calculating that with the westering rays they would have reached villages in the territory of Babylonia, and in this hope they were not deceived. While it was yet afternoon, they thought they caught sight of some of the enemy’s cavalry; and those of the Hellenes who were not in rank ran to their ranks; and Ariaeus, who was riding in a wagon to nurse a wound, got down and donned his cuirass, the rest of his party following his example. Whilst they were arming themselves, the scouts, who had been sent forward, came back with the information that they were not cavalry but baggage animals grazing. It was at once clear to all that they must be somewhere in the neighbourhood of the king’s encampment. Smoke could actually be seen rising, evidently from villages not far ahead. Clearchus hesitated to advance upon the enemy, knowing that the troops were tired and hungry; and indeed it was already late. On the other hand he had no mind either to swerve from his route–guarding against any appearance of flight. Accordingly he 16 marched straight as an arrow, and with sunset entered the nearest villages with his vanguard and took up quarters.

These villages had been thoroughly sacked and dismantled by the royal army–down to the very woodwork and furniture of the houses. Still, the vanguard contrived to take up their quarters in some sort of fashion; but the rear division, coming up in the dark, had to bivouac as best they could, one detachment after another; and a great noise they made, with hue and cry to one another, so that the enemy could hear them; and those in their immediate proximity actually took to their heels, left their quarters, and decamped, as was plain enough next morning, when not a beast was to be seen, nor sign of camp or wreath of smoke anywhere in the neighbourhood. The king, as it would appear, was himself quite taken aback by the advent of the army; as he fully showed by his proceedings next day.

During the progress of this night the Hellenes had their turn of scare–a panic seized them, and there was a noise and clatter, hardly to be explained except by the visitation of some sudden terror. But Clearchus had with him the Eleian Tolmides, the best herald of his time; him he ordered to proclaim silence, and then to give out this proclamation of the generals: “Whoever will give any information as to who let an ass into the camp shall receive a talent of silver in reward.” On hearing this proclamation the soldiers made up their minds that their fear was baseless, and their generals safe and sound. At break of day Clearchus gave the order to the Hellenes to get under arms in line of battle, and take up exactly the same position as they held on the day of the battle.

III

And now comes the proof of what I stated above–that the king was 1 utterly taken aback by the sudden apparition of the army; only the day before, he had sent and demanded the surrender of their arms–and now, with the rising sun, came heralds sent by him to arrange a truce. These, having reached the advanced guard, asked for the generals. The guard reported their arrival; and Clearchus, who was busy inspecting the ranks, sent back word to the heralds that they must await his leisure. Having carefully arranged the troops so that from every side they might present the appearance of a compact battle line without a 3 single unarmed man in sight, he summoned the ambassadors, and himself went forward to meet them with the soldiers, who for choice accoutrement and noble aspect were the flower of his force; a course which he had invited the other generals also to adopt.

And now, being face to face with the ambassadors, he questioned them as to what their wishes were. They replied that they had come to arrange a truce, and were persons competent to carry proposals from the king to the Hellenes and from the Hellenes to the king. He returned answer to them: “Take back word then to your master, that we need a battle first, for we have had no breakfast; and he will be a brave man who will dare mention the word ‘truce’ to Hellenes without providing them with breakfast.” With this message the heralds rode off, but were back again in no time, which was a proof that the king, or some one appointed by him to transact the business, was hard by. They reported that “the message seemed reasonable to the king; they had now come bringing guides who, if a truce were arranged, would conduct them where they would get provisions.” Clearchus inquired “whether the truce was offered to the individual men merely as they went and came, or to all alike.” “To all,” they replied, “until the king receives your final answer.” When they had so spoken, Clearchus, having removed the ambassadors, held a council; and it was resolved to make a truce at once, and then quietly to go and secure provisions; and Clearchus said: “I agree to the resolution; still I do not propose to announce it at once, but to wile away time till the ambassadors begin to fear that we have decided against the truce; though I suspect,” he added, “the same fear will be operative on the minds of our soldiers also.” As soon as the right moment seemed to have arrived, he delivered his answer in favour of the truce, and bade the ambassadors at once conduct them to the provisions.

So these led the way; and Clearchus, without relaxing precaution, in spite of having secured a truce, marched after them with his army in line and himself in command of the rearguard. Over and over again they encountered trenches and conduits so full of water that they could not 10 be crossed without bridges; but they contrived well enough for these by means of trunks of palm trees which had fallen, or which they cut down for the occasion. And here Clearchus’s system of superintendence was a study in itself; as he stood with a spear in his left hand and a stick in the other; and when it seemed to him there was any dawdling among the parties told off to the work, he would pick out the right man and down would come the stick; nor, at the same time, was he above plunging into the mud and lending a hand himself, so that every one else was forced for very shame to display equal alacrity. The men told off for the business were the men of thirty years of age; but even the elder men, when they saw the energy of Clearchus, could not resist lending their aid also. What stimulated the haste of Clearchus was the suspicion in his mind that these trenches were not, as a rule, so full of water, since it was not the season to irrigate the plain; and he fancied that the king had let the water on for the express purpose of vividly presenting to the Hellenes the many dangers with which their march was threatened at the very start.

Proceeding on their way they reached some villages, where their guides indicated to them that they would find provisions. They were found to contain plenty of corn, and wine made from palm dates, and an acidulated beverage extracted by boiling from the same fruit. As to the palm nuts or dates themselves, it was noticeable that the sort which we are accustomed to see in Hellas were set aside for the domestic servants; those put aside for the masters are picked specimens, and are simply marvellous for their beauty and size, looking like great golden lumps of amber; some specimens they dried and preserved as sweetmeats. Sweet enough they were as an accompaniment of wine, but apt to give headache. Here, too, for the first time in their lives, the men tasted the brain[1] of the palm. No one could help being struck by the beauty of this object, and the peculiarity of its delicious flavour; but this, like the dried fruits, was exceedingly apt to give headache. When this cabbage or brain has been removed from the palm the whole tree withers from top to bottom.

[1] I.e. the cabbage-like crown.

In these villages they remained three days, and a deputation from the 17 great king arrived–Tissaphernes and the king’s brother-in-law and three other Persians–with a retinue of many slaves. As soon as the generals of the Hellenes had presented themselves, Tissaphernes opened the proceedings with the following speech, through the lips of an interpreter: “Men of Hellas, I am your next-door neighbour in Hellas. Therefore was it that I, when I saw into what a sea of troubles you were fallen, regarded it as a godsend, if by any means I might obtain, as a boon from the king, the privilege of bringing you back in safety to your own country: and that, I take it, will earn me gratitude from you and all Hellas. In this determination I preferred my request to the king; I claimed it as a favour which was fairly my due; for was it not I who first announced to him the hostile approach of Cyrus? who supported that announcement by the aid I brought; who alone among the officers confronted with the Hellenes in battle did not flee, but charged right through and united my troops with the king inside your camp, where he was arrived, having slain Cyrus; it was I, lastly, who gave chase to the barbarians under Cyrus, with the help of those here present with me at this moment, which are also among the trustiest followers of our lord the king. Now, I counsel you to give a moderate answer, so that it may be easier for me to carry out my design, if haply I may obtain from him some good thing on your behalf.”

Thereupon the Hellenes retired and took counsel. Then they answered, and Clearchus was their spokesman: “We neither mustered as a body to make war against the king, nor was our march conducted with that object. But it was Cyrus, as you know, who invented many and divers pretexts, that he might take you off your guard, and transport us hither. Yet, after a while, when we saw that he was in sore straits, we were ashamed in the sight of God and man to betray him, whom we had permitted for so long a season to benefit us. But now that Cyrus is dead, we set up no claim to his kingdom against the king himself; there is neither person nor thing for the sake of which we would care 23 to injure the king’s country; we would not choose to kill him if we could, rather we would march straight home, if we were not molested; but, God helping us, we will retaliate on all who injure us. On the other hand, if any be found to benefit us, we do not mean to be outdone in kindly deeds, as far as in us lies.”

So he spoke, and Tissaphernes listened and replied: “That answer will I take back to the king and bring you word from him again. Until I come again, let the truce continue, and we will furnish you with a market.” All next day he did not come back, and the Hellenes were troubled with anxieties, but on the third day he arrived with the news that he had obtained from the king the boon he asked; he was permitted to save the Hellenes, though there were many gainsayers who argued that it was not seemly for the king to let those who had marched against him depart in peace. And at last he said: “You may now, if you like, take pledges from us, that we will make the countries through which you pass friendly to you, and will lead you back without treachery into Hellas, and will furnish you with a market; and wherever you cannot purchase, we will permit you to take provisions from the district. You, on your side, must swear that you will march as through a friendly country, without damage–merely taking food and drink wherever we fail to supply a market–or, if we afford a market, you shall only obtain provisions by paying for them.” This was agreed to, and oaths and pledges exchanged between them–Tissaphernes and the king’s brother-in-law upon the one side, and the generals and officers of the Hellenes on the other. After this Tissaphernes said: “And now I go back to the king; as soon as I have transacted what I have a mind to, I will come back, ready equipped, to lead you away to Hellas, and to return myself to my own dominion.”

IV

After these things the Hellenes and Ariaeus waited for Tissaphernes, 1 being encamped close to one another: for more than twenty days they waited, during which time there came visitors to Ariaeus, his brother and other kinsfolk. To those under him came certain other Persians, encouraging them and bearing pledges to some of them from the king himself–that he would bear no grudge against them on account of the part they bore in the expedition against him with Cyrus, or for aught else of the things which were past. Whilst these overtures were being made, Ariaeus and his friends gave manifest signs of paying less attention to the Hellenes, so much so that, if for no other reason, the majority of the latter were not well pleased, and they came to Clearchus and the other generals, asking what they were waiting for. “Do we not know full well,” they said, “that the king would give a great deal to destroy us, so that other Hellenes may take warning and think twice before they march against the king. To-day it suits his purpose to induce us to stop here, because his army is scattered; but as soon as he has got together another armament, attack us most certainly he will. How do we know he is not at this moment digging away at trenches, or running up walls, to make our path impassable. It is not to be supposed that he will desire us to return to Hellas with a tale how a handful of men like ourselves beat the king at his own gates, laughed him to scorn, and then came home again.” Clearchus replied: “I too am keenly aware of all this; but I reason thus: if we turn our backs now, they will say, we mean war and are acting contrary to the truce, and then what follows? First of all, no one will furnish us with a market or means of providing ourselves with food. Next, we shall have no one to guide us; moreover, such action on our part will be a signal to Ariaeus to hold aloof from us, so that not a friend will be left to us; even those who were formerly our friends will now be numbered with our enemies. What other river, or rivers, we may find we have to cross, I do not know; but this we know, to cross the Euphrates in face of resistance is impossible. You see, in the event of being driven to an engagement, we have no cavalry to help us, but with the enemy it is the reverse–not only the most, but the best of his troops are cavalry, so that if we are victorious, we shall kill no one, but if we are defeated, not a man of us can escape. For my part, I cannot see why the king, who has so many advantages on his side, if 7 he desires to destroy us, should swear oaths and tender solemn pledges merely in order to perjure himself in the sight of heaven, to render his word worthless and his credit discreditable the wide world over.” These arguments he propounded at length.

Meanwhile Tissaphernes came back, apparently ready to return home; he had his own force with him, and so had Orontas, who was also present, his. The latter brought, moreover, his bride with him, the king’s daughter, whom he had just wedded. The journey was now at length fairly commenced. Tissaphernes led the way, and provided a market. They advanced, and Ariaeus advanced too, at the head of Cyrus’s Asiatic troops, side by side with Tissaphernes and Orontas, and with these two he also pitched his camp. The Hellenes, holding them in suspicion, marched separately with the guides, and they encamped on each occasion a parasang apart, or rather less; and both parties kept watch upon each other as if they were enemies, which hardly tended to lull suspicion; and sometimes, whilst foraging for wood and grass and so forth on the same ground, blows were exchanged, which occasioned further embitterments. Three stages they had accomplished ere they reached the wall of Media, as it is called, and passed within it. It was built of baked bricks laid upon bitumen. It was twenty feet broad and a hundred feet high, and the length of it was said to be twenty parasangs. It lies at no great distance from Babylon.

From this point they marched two stages–eight parasangs–and crossed two canals, the first by a regular bridge, the other spanned by a bridge of seven boats. These canals issued from the Tigris, and from them a whole system of minor trenches was cut, leading over the country, large ones to begin with, and then smaller and smaller, till at last they become the merest runnels, like those in Hellas used for watering millet fields. They reached the river Tigris. At this point there was a large and thickly populated city named Sittace, at a 13 distance of fifteen furlongs from the river. The Hellenes accordingly encamped by the side of that city, near a large and beautiful park, which was thick with all sorts of trees.

The Asiatics had crossed the Tigris, but somehow were entirely hidden from view. After supper, Proxenus and Xenophon were walking in front of the place d’armes, when a man came up and demanded of the advanced guard where he could find Proxenus or Clearchus. He did not ask for Menon, and that too though he came from Ariaeus, who was Menon’s friend. As soon as Proxenus had said: “I am he, whom you seek,” the man replied: “I have been sent by Ariaeus and Artaozus, who have been trusty friends to Cyrus in past days, and are your well-wishers. They warn you to be on your guard, in case the barbarians attack you in the night. There is a large body of troops in the neighbouring park. They also warn you to send and occupy the bridge over the Tigris, since Tissaphernes is minded to break it down in the night, if he can, so that you may not cross, but be caught between the river and the canal.” On hearing this they took the man to Clearchus and acquainted him with his statement. Clearchus, on his side, was much disturbed, and indeed alarmed at the news. But a young fellow who was present[1], struck with an idea, suggested that the two statements were inconsistent; as to the contemplated attack and the proposed destruction of the bridge. Clearly, the attacking party must either conquer or be worsted: if they conquer, what need of their breaking down the bridge? “Why! if there were half a dozen bridges,” said he, “we should not be any the more able to save ourselves by flight–there would be no place to flee to; but, in the opposite case, suppose we win, with the bridge broken down, it is they who will not be able to save themselves by flight; and, what is worse for them, not a single soul will be able to bring them succour from the other side, for all their numbers, since the bridge will be broken down.”

[1] Possibly Xenophon himself.

Clearchus listened to the reasoning, and then he asked the messenger, “How large the country between the Tigris and the canal might be?” “A 21 large district,” he replied, “and in it are villages and cities numerous and large.” Then it dawned upon them: the barbarians had sent the man with subtlety, in fear lest the Hellenes should cut the bridge and occupy the island territory, with the strong defences of the Tigris on the one side and of the canal on the other; supplying themselves with provisions from the country so included, large and rich as it was, with no lack of hands to till it; in addition to which, a harbour of refuge and asylum would be found for any one, who was minded to do the king a mischief.

After this they retired to rest in peace, not, however, neglecting to send a guard to occupy the bridge in spite of all, and there was no attack from any quarter whatsoever; nor did any of the enemy’s people approach the bridges: so the guards were able to report next morning. But as soon as it was morning, they proceeded to cross the bridge, which consisted of thirty-seven vessels, and in so doing they used the utmost precaution possible; for reports were brought by some of the Hellenes with Tissaphernes that an attempt was to be made to attack them while crossing. All this turned out to be false, though it is true that while crossing they did catch sight of Glus watching, with some others, to see if they crossed the river; but as soon as he had satisfied himself on that point, he rode off and was gone.

From the river Tigris they advanced four stages–twenty parasangs–to the river Physcus, which is a hundred feet broad and spanned by a bridge. Here lay a large and populous city named Opis, close to which the Hellenes were encountered by the natural brother of Cyrus and Artaxerxes, who was leading a large army from Susa and Ecbatana to assist the king. He halted his troops and watched the Helleens march past. Clearchus led them in column two abreast: and from time to time the vanguard came to a standstill, just so often and just so long the effect repeated itself down to the hindmost man: halt! halt! halt! along the whole line: so that even to the Hellenes themselves their army seemed enormous; and the Persian was fairly astonished at the spectacle.

From this place they marched through Media six desert stages–thirty 27 parasangs–to the villages of Parysatis, Cyrus’s and the king’s mother. These Tissaphernes, in mockery of Cyrus, delivered over to the Hellenes to plunder, except that the folk in them were not to be made slaves. They contained much corn, cattle, and other property. From this place they advanced four desert stages–twenty parasangs–keeping the Tigris on the left. On the first of these stages, on the other side of the river, lay a large city; it was a well-to-do place named Caenae, from which the natives used to carry across loaves and cheeses and wine on rafts made of skins.

V

After this they reached the river Zapatas[1], which is four hundred 1 feet broad, and here they halted three days. During the interval suspicions were rife, though no act of treachery displayed itself. Clearchus accordingly resolved to bring to an end these feelings of mistrust, before they led to war. Consequently, he sent a messenger to the Persian to say that he desired an interview with him; to which the other readily consented. As soon as they were met, Clearchus spoke as follows: “Tissaphernes,” he said, “I do not forget that oaths have