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He attacked the Ephesians before any other Grecian people. The Ephesians then being besieged by him, consecrated their city to Diana, by fastening a rope from the temple to the wall. The distance between the old town, which was then besieged, and the temple, is seven stadia. Cresus then attacked these the first, and afterwards the several cities of the Ionians and Æolians one after another, alleging different pretences against different states, imputing graver charges against those in whom he was able to discover greater causes of blame, and against some of them alleging frivolous pretences. 27. After he had reduced the Grecians in Asia to the payment of tribute, he formed a design to build ships and attack the Islanders. But when all things were ready for the building of ships, Bias of Priene, (or, as others say, Pittacus of Mitylene,) arriving at Sardis, put a stop to his ship-building, by making this reply, when Croesus inquired if he had any news from Greece : “O king, the Islanders are enlisting a large body of cavalry, with intention to make war upon you and Sardis." Croesus, thinking he had spoken the truth, said, “May the gods put such a thought into the Islanders, as to attack the sons of the Lydians with horse.” The other answering said, “ Sire, you appear to wish above all things to see the Islanders on horseback upon the continent; and not without reason. But what can you imagine the Islanders more earnestly desire, after having heard of your resolution to build a fleet in order to attack them, than to catch the Lydians at sea, that they may revenge on you the cause of those Greeks who dwell on the continent, whom you hold in subjection ?” It is related, that Croesus was very much pleased with the conclusion, and that being convinced, (for he appeared to speak to the purpose,) he put a stop to the ship-building, and made an alliance with the Ionians that inhabit the islands.
28. In course of time, when nearly all the nations that dwell within the river Halys, except the Cilicians and Lycians, were subdued ; for Croesus held all the rest in subjection: and they were the following, the Lydians, Phrygians, Mysians, Mariandynians, Chalybians, Paphlagonians, Thracians, both the Thynians and Bithynians, Carians, Ionians, Dorians, Æolians, and Pamphylians. 29. When these nations were subdued, and Croesus had added them to the Lydians, all the other wise men of that time, as each had op
portunity, came from Greece to Sardis, which had then attained to the highest degree of prosperity; and amongst them Solon an Athenian, who having made laws for the Athenians at their request, absented himself for ten years, having sailed away under pretence of seeing the world, that he might not be compelled to abrogate any of the laws he had established : for the Athenians could not do it themselves, since they were bound by solemn oaths to observe for ten years whatever laws Solon should enact for them. 30. Solon therefore having gone abroad for these reasons, and for the purposes of observation, arrived in Egypt at the court of Amasis, and afterwards at that of Cresus at Sardis. On his arrival he was hospitably entertained by Croesus, and on the third or fourth day, by order of the king, the attendants conducted him round the treasury, and showed him all their grand and costly contents; and when he had seen and examined every thing sufficiently, Cresus asked him this question : “My Athenian guest, your great fame has reached even to us, as well of your wisdom as of your travels, how that as a philosopher you have travelled through various countries for the purpose of observation ; I am therefore desirous of asking you, who is the most happy man you have seen?” He asked this question, because he thought himself ti:e most happy of men. But Solon, speaking the truth freely, without any flattery, answered, “Tellus the Athenian.” Croesus, astonished at his answer, eagerly 3 asked him, “On what account do you deem Tellus the happiest ?” He replied,
Tellus, in the first place, lived in a well-governed commonwealth ; had sons who were virtuous and good ; and he saw children born to them all
, and all surviving : in the next place, when he had lived as happily as the condition of human affairs will. permit, he ended his life in a most glorious manner. For coming to the assistance of the Athenians in a battle with their neighbours of Eleusis, he put the enemy to flight, and died nobly. The Athenians buried him at the public charge in the place where he fell, and honoured him greatly."
31. When Solon had roused the attention of Croesus by relating many and happy circumstances concerning Tellus, Cresus, expecting at least to obtain the second place, asked,
3 'ETIO PEDéws. Baehr translates it accurate, diligenter
whom he had seen next to him. Cleobis,” said he, “and Biton, for they being natives of Argos, possessed a sufficient fortune, and had withal such strength of body, that they were both alike victorious in the public games; and moreover the following story is related of them; when the Argives were celebrating a festival of Juno, it was necessary that their mother should be drawn to the temple in a chariot; but the oxen did not come from the field in time, the young men therefore, being pressed for time, put themselves beneath the yoke, and drew the car in which their mother sate; and having conveyed it forty-five stades, they reached the temple. After they had done this in sight of the assembled people, a most happy termination was put to their lives; and in them the Deity clearly showed, that it is better for a man to die than to live. For the men of Argos, who stood round, commended the strength of the youths, and the women blessed her as the mother of such sons; but the mother herself, transported with joy both on account of the action and its renown, stood before the image and prayed, that the goddess would grant to Cleobis and Biton, her own sons, who had so highly honoured her, the greatest blessing man could receive.
After this prayer, when they had sacrificed and partaken of the feast, the youths fell asleep in the temple itself, and never awoke more, but met with such a termination of life. Upon this the Argives, in commemoration of their piety, caused their statues to be made and dedicated at Delphi.", *32. Thus Solon adjudged the second place of felicity to these youths. But Creesus, being enraged, said, “My Athenian friend, is my happiness then so slighted by you as nothing worth, that you do not think me of so much value as private men?” He answered ; “ Croesus, do you inquire of me concerning human affairs of me, who know that the divinity is always jealous, and delights in confusion. For in lapse of time men are constrained to see many things they would not willingly see, and to suffer many things they would not willingly suffer. Now I put the term of man's life at seventy years ; these seventy years then give twenty-five thousand two hundred days, without including the intercalary month ; and if we add that month 4 to every other year, in
* If the first number 25,200 is correct, it follows that the year vi 360 days; if the number of intercalary days 1050 in 70 years, there be altogether 26,259, which will give 375 days to the year; so that
order that the seasons arriving at the proper time may agree, the intercalary months will be thirty-five more in the seventy years, and the days of these months will be one thousand and
fifty. Yet in all this number of twenty-six thousand two y hundred and fifty days, that compose these seventy years, one
day produces nothing exactly the same as another. Thus, then, o Cresus, man is altogether the sport of fortune. You appear to me to be master of immense treasures, and king of many nations ; but as relates to what you inquire of me, I cannot say, till I hear
your life happily. For the richest of men is not more happy than he that has a sufficiency for a day, unless good fortune attend him to the grave, so that he ends his life in happiness. Many men, who abound in wealth, are unhappy ; and many, who have only a moderate competency, are fortunate. He that abounds in wealth, and is yet unhappy, surpasses the other only in two things ; but the other surpasses the wealthy and the miserable in many things. The former indeed is better able to gratify desire, and to bear the blow of adversity. But the latter surpasses him in this; he is not indeed equally able to bear misfortune or satisfy desire, but his good fortune wards off these things from him; and he enjoys the full use of his limbs, he is free from disease and misfortune, he is blessed with good children and a fine form, and if, in addition to all these things, he shall end his life wellé he is the man you seek, and may justly be called happy; but before he die we ought to suspend our judgment, and not pronounce him happy, but fortunate. Now it is impossible for any one man to comprehend all these advantages : as no one country suffices to produce every thing for itself, but affords some and wants others, and that which affords the most is the best ; so no human being is in all respects self-sufficient, but possesses one advantage, and is in need of another ; he therefore who has constantly enjoyed the most of these, and then ends his life tranquilly, this man, judgment, О king, deserves the name of happy. We ought therefore to consider the end of every thing, in what way
it will terminate ; for the Deity having shown a glimpse of happiness to many, has afterwards utterly overthrown them.” pite of the precaution the seasons will be confused.--Wyttenbach alters e number of intercalary months and days to make it agree with truth. archer.
33. When he spoke thus to Crosus, Croesus did not confer any favour on him, and holding him in no account, dismissed him; since he considered him a very ignorant man, because he overlooked present prosperity, and bade men look to the end of every thing.
34. After the departure of Solon, the indignation of the gods fell heavy upon Croesus, probably because he thought himself the most happy of all men. A dream soon after visited him while sleeping, which pointed out to him the truth of the misfortunes that were about to befal him in the
person of his sons. For Creesus had two sons, of whom one was grievously afflicted, for he was dumb; but the other, whose name was Atys, far surpassed all the young men of his age. Now the dream intimated to Crosus that he would lose this Atys by a wound inflicted by the point of an iron weapon ; he, when he awoke, and had considered the matter with himself, dreading the dream, provided a wife for his son ; and
though he was accustomed to command the Lydian troops, he did not ever after send him out on that business; and causing all spears, lances, and such other weapons as men use in war, to be removed from the men's apartments, he had them laid up in private chambers, that none of them being suspended might fall
his son. 35. While Creesus was engaged with the nuptials of his son, a man oppressed by misfortune, and whose hands were polluted, a Phrygian by birth, and of royal family, arrived at Sardis. This man, having come to the palace of Crosus, sought permission to obtain purification according to the custom of the country. Croesus purified him :-(now the manner of expiation is nearly the same among the Lydians and the Greeks :) and when he had performed the usual ceremonies, Creesus inquired whence he came, and who he was ; speaking to him as follows : Stranger, who art thou, and from what part of Phrygia hast thou come as a suppliant to my hearth ? and what man or woman hast thou slain ?” The stranger answered, “ Sire, I am the son of Gordius, son of Midas, and am called Adrastus : having unwittingly slain my own brother, and being banished by my father and deprived of every thing, I am come hither.” Crasus answered as follows: “ You are born of parents who are our friends, and you are come to friends, among whom, if you will stay, you shall want nothing ; and by bearing your misfortune as lightly as pos