Historical Library/Book XIV/Chapter IX
- The confederate war by the Argives and others against the Lacedæmonians. The battle at Aricas. The fight at Nemæa. Pisander the Lacedæmonian admiral routed in a sea-fight at Cnidus by the Persian fleet, commanded by Conon the Athenian. The Corinthian war against the Lacedæmonians, and the great sedition there.
AT the end of the year Diophantus was made lord chancellor of Athens, and at Rome six military tribunes were invested with the consular authority; that is to say, Lucius Valerius, Marcus Furius, Quintus Servilius, Quintus Sulpitius, Claudius Ogron, and Marius Appius. In the time of their governments, the Bœotians and Athenians, the Corinthians and the Argives, confederated: for they conceived, that if they (being the most considerable and largest cities of Greece) did but stick close one to another, they might easily overcome the lordly power of the Lacedæmonians, and the rather, because they were hated of their confederates for their tyrannical government. To this end they first ordered a general assembly of members from the several cities to meet at Corinth, where being met, they ordered all things necessary concerning the war. Afterwards they sent messengers from city to city, and by that means took off many from siding with the Lacedæmonians. And presently there joined with them all Eubœa generally, the Leucadians, Acarnanians, Ambracians, and Chalcidonians of Thrace. They then endeavoured to bring into the confederacy the inhabitants of Peloponessus, but none of them would hearken to them: for Sparta lying close to the sides of Peloponnesus, was as a castle or bulwark for the defence of the country. Medicus, the prince of Larissa in Thessaly, was about that time engaged in a war with Lycophron, tyrant of the Pheræans, to whom, upon his request, this general assembly sent in aid two thousand men, who being furnished with these aids, takes Pharsalus, (a Lacedæmonian garrison), and sells all the inhabitants for slaves. After this, the Bœotians, with them of Argos, separating themselves from Medicus, took Heraclea in Trachinia, being let within the walls in the night; and there they put all the Lacedæmonians to the sword, but suffered the Peloponnesians to depart with all that belonged to them. Then they recalled the Trachinians to inhabit the city, whom the Lacedæmonians had forced to till the land, though they were the antient inhabitants of the country.
And not long after, Ismenias, the general of the Bœotians leaving the Argives to guard the city, caused the Æneans and Acharnians to desert the Lacedæmonians, and having raised among them and other confederates many soldiers, he marched with an army of no less than six thousand men against the Phocians. Not long after he encamped near Aricas, a citiy of Locris, (the birth-place of Ajax, as it is said), where the Phocians under the conduct of Lacisthenes a Laconian, came out against him and fought him: the dispute was very sharp for a long time, but at length the Bœotians got the day, and pursued the enemy till it grew dark, of whom they killed above a thousand, and lost five hundred of their own. After this battle, both sides disbanded their armies, and the Phocians returned to their own country, and the other to Corinth; where, having called a senate, and encouraged by this good success, (as they conceived it), they mustered an army at Corinth, (raised out of all cities far and near), to the number of about fifteen thousand foot, and five hundred horses.
The Lacedæmonians seeing that the greatest cities of Greece had confederated against them, determined to send for Agesilaus, and the army he had with him, out of Asia. Yet in the mean time they marched out against the enemy with three-hundred-and twenty thousand foot, and five hundred hors, which they had raised out of their own city, and from among their confederates. And not long after a battle was fought at the river Nemæa, which continued till night parted them, wherein part of the army on both sides prevailed one against the other. There fell of the Lacedæmonians and their confederates, eleven hundred; but of the Bœotians and their confederates, were slain two thousand eight hundred.
As soon as Agesilaus had landed his army in Europe, he was encountered by a great body of Thracians, whom he routed, and killed the greatest part of them. Thence he marched through Macedonia, on purpose to pass that way Xerxes had formerly done, when he came with a powerful army into Greece. Having therefore passed through Macedon and Thessaly, he went on forward to the straits of Thermopylæ, and passed through that way.
In the mean time Conon and Pharnabazus, the Persian admirals, lay at Doryma in the Chersonesus with a fleet of more than ninety men of war; and being informed that the enemy's navy lay at Cnidus, they prepared for a sea-fight. Periarchus the admiral of the Lacedæmonian fleet weighing anchor from Cnidus, arrived at Physcus in Chersonesus with eighty-five gallie; and departing from thence, fell upon the king's fleet, and had the advantage against those ships he first attacked: but upon the Persian gallies coming up in a full body to rescue their fellows, his confederates fled, and made to the shore; but he judging it a base and dishonourable thing for a Spartan to turn his back, tacked about to front the enemy, and fighting with gallantry, (after he had destroyed many of the Persians in the heat of the fight), was at length killed, and so fell with honour worthy of his country. Then they with Conon pursuing the Lacedæmonians to the shore, took fifty of their gallies, but the most part of the men swam to land and escaped, only five hundrd were taken prisoners, and the rest of the gallies came to Cnidus.
But Agesilaus being strengthened with forces from Peloponnesus, entered with an army into Bœotia, where the Bœotians and their confederates forthwith met him at Coronea, and engaged, in which battle the Bœotians put that wing of the Lacedæmonians to flight that opposed them, and pursued them to their camp; but the rest, after a small resistance, were routed by Agesilaus and his party. Whereupon the Lacedæmonians looking upon themselves as conquerors, in token of victory erected a trophy, and gave leave to the enemy to bury their dead. For there were killed of the Bœotians and their confederates above six hundred; and of the Lacedæmonians and their associates above three hundred and fifty; Agesilaus himself being sorely wounded, and carried to Delphos to be cured.
After the late sea-fight, Pharnabazus invaded the confederates of the Lacedæmonians with their whole fleet; and first forced them of Coos to a defenction from the Lacedæmonians, then those of Nisæa, and Teos or Teium. Afterwards the Chians (forcing out the garrison there) revolted to Conon.
The Mityleneans, Ephesians, and Erythræans likewise followed the example of the former. And thus all the cities on a sudden revolted, some of which (casting out the Lacedæmonian garrison) took the opportunity absolutely to free themselves: other from that time gave themselves up into Conon's hands, and from that time forward the Lacedæmonians lost the sovereignty of the sea.
Conon determining to sail to Attica with his whole fleet, weighed anchor, and by the way bringing over the islands of the Cyclades to his side, he makes straight for Cythera, which he gained upon the first approach; and, taking hostages of the Cytherians for their fidelity, he sent them away to Laconia; and when he had put a strong garrison into the city, he sailed for Corinth, where he had audience of the senate; and then entering into a league, and leaving money with them for the carrying on of the war, he returned into Asia. About this time Eropus king of Macedonia died, after he had reigned six years; his son Pausanias succeeded him, and reined only one year. Theopompus of Chios ends his history with this year, and with the sea-fight at Cnidus, containing the relation of the Grecian affairs in twelve books, beginning at the sea-fight at Cynossema, where Thucydides ends, comprehending seventeen years.
After the end of the last year, Eubulides was made lord chancellors of Athens, and six military tribunes executed the consular dignity at Rome, Lucius Sergius, Aulus Posthumius, Publius Cornelius, Sextus Centius, Quintus Manlius, and Anitius Camillus. At that time Conon the Persian admiral arrived in the Piræus at Athens with fourscore sail, and promised the citizens to rebuild the walls of the city: for the walls and long thighs of the Piræus were demolished by the Lacedæmonians, according to the articles of the peace when the Athenians were brought very low, and their power broken by the Peloponnesian war. To this end Conon hired many workmen, and ordered several out of the fleet to be assisting to the carrying on the work, so that the greatest part of the wall was finished in a short time. For the Thebans sent in five hundred carpenters and masons, and several other cities gave their assistance. But Teribazus, general of the land forces in Asia, envying Conon's successes, contrived falsely to charge him, as if he only made use of the king's soldiers to get towns and cities for the Athenians; therefore sending for him to Sardis, upon his appearance he seized him and threw him into prison.
But now at Corinth, some that had thirsted after the chief rule and command in the government, entered into a conspiracy, and at the time of the public plays killed many in the playhouse, and filled the city with tumult and sedition. And being assisted by the Argives, they cut the throats of a hundred and twenty citizens, and banished five hundred more. The Lacedæmonians raised forces in order to reduce these murderers by force of arms: but the Athenians and Bœotians came with an army to their assistance, but with an eye to bring the city into their subjection. But the exiles with the Lacedæmonians and other confederates, in the night came up to the Lechæum and Arsenal, and took it by storm. The next day the townsmen drew out their forces under the command of Iphicrates, but were routed by the Lacedæmonians, who slew a great number of them. After this, the Bœotians and Athenians, together with the Argives and Corinthians, marched down with their forces to the Lechæum, and at first (after a short resistance) forced their way into the castle. But the Lacedæmonians and exiles (valiantly renewing the fight) drove out the Bœotians, and all with them, who were forced to return into the city, with the loss of about a thousand men.
And now the time of celebrating the Isthmian games approached, and a contest fell out amongst them concerning the ordering and management of the sports: and after much wrangling, the Lacedæmonians prevailed, and gave to the exiles the authority of ordering that affair. And because almost all the skirmishes and encounters in this war happened near Corinth, it was called the Corinthian war, and lasted eight years.
- Marcus Valerius Maximus.
- Lucius Furius.
- Pheræ, a city in Macedonia.
- Periarchus is here mistaken for Pisander. Ush. An. 179.
- Lucius Junius and Lucius Furius.