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63. He, inspired by the god, uttered this prophecy ; and Pi. sistratus, comprehending the oracle, and saying he accepted the omen, led on his army. The Athenians of the city were then engaged at their breakfast, and some of them after breakfast had betaken themselves to dice, others to sleep ; so that the army of Pisistratus, falling upon them by surprise, soon put them to flight; and as they were flying, Pisistratus contrived a clever stratagem to prevent their rallying again, and that they might be thoroughly dispersed. He mounted his sons on horseback and sent them forward ; and they having overtaken the fugitives, spoke as they were ordered by Pisistratus, bidding them be of good cheer, and to depart every man to his own home. 64. The Athenians yielded a ready obedience, and thus Pisistratus, having a third time possessed himself of Athens, secured his power more firmly both by the aid of auxiliary forces, and by revenues partly collected at home and partly drawn from the river Stry
He also seized as hostages the sons of the Athenians who had held out against him, and had not immediately fled, and settled them at Naxos ; which island Pisistratus had formerly subdued, and given in charge to Lygdamis : he, moreover, purified the island of Delos, in obedience to an oracle. And he purified it in the following manner : having dug up the dead bodies, as far as the prospect from the temple reached, he removed them to another part of Delos. Thus Pisistratus ruled despotically over the Athenians ; but of them, some had fallen in the battle, and others fled from their homes with the son of Alcmæon.3
65. Croesus, therefore, was informed that such was, at that time, the condition of the Athenians ; and that the Lacedæmonians, having extricated themselves out of great difficulties, had first gained the mastery over the Tegeans in war. For during the reign of Leo and Hegesicles, kings of Sparta, the Lacedæmonians were successful in all other wars, and were worsted by the Tegeans only. And long before their reign they had been governed by the worst laws of almost any people in Greece, both as regarded their dealings with one another, and in holding no intercourse with strangers.
2 The country between the Strymon and the Nessus was celebrated for its mines. Larcher.
But they changed to a good government in the following manner : Lycurgus, a man much esteemed by the Spartans, having arrived at Delphi to consult the oracle, no sooner entered the temple, than the Pythian spoke as follows : Thou art come, Lycurgus, to my wealthy temple, beloved by Jove and all that inhabit Olympian mansions : I doubt whether I shall pronounce thee god or man ; but rather god, I think, Lycurgus.” Some men say that, besides this, the Pythian also communicated to him that form of government now established among the Spartans. But, as the Lacedæmonians themselves affirm, Lycurgus, being appointed guardian to his nephew Leobotas, 4 king of Sparta, brought those institutions from Crete. For as soon as he had taken the guardianship, he altered all their customs, and took care that no one should transgress them. Afterwards he established military regulations, the enomotiæ, the triecades, and the syssitia, and besides these he instituted the ephori and senators. 66. Thus, having changed their laws, they established good institutions in their stead : and having erected a temple to Lycurgus after his death, they held him in the highest
As they had a good soil and abundant population, they quickly sprang up and flourished. And now they were no longer content to live in peace ; but proudly considering themselves superior to the Arcadians, they sent to consult the oracle at Delphi, touching the conquest of the whole country of the Arcadians ; and the Pythian gave them this answer : “ Dost thou ask of me Arcadia ? thou askest a great deal ; I cannot grant it thee. There are many acorneating men in Arcadia, who will hinder thee. But I do not grudge thee all ; I will give thee Tegea to dance on with beating of the feet, and a fair plain to measure out by the rod.” When the Lacedæmonians heard this answer reported, they laid aside their design against all Arcadia ; and, relying on an equivocal oracle, led an army against Tegea only, carrying fetters with them, as if they would surely reduce the Tegeans to slavery. But being defeated in an engagement, as many of them as were taken alive, were compelled to work,
• It is generally agreed that the name of Lycurgus's nephew was not Leobotas, but Charilaus.
5 For an account of these several institutions see Smith's Dictionary of Antiquities.
wearing the fetters they had brought, and measuring the lands of the Tegeans with a rod. Those fetters in which they were bound, were, even in my time, preserved in Tegea, suspended around the temple of Alean Minerva.
67. In the first war, therefore, they had constantly fought against the Tegeans with ill success; but in the time of Crosus, and during the reign of Anaxandrides and Ariston at Lacedæmon, they had at length become superior in the war, and they became so in the following manner : when they had always been worsted in battle by the Tegeans, they sent to inquire of the oracle at Delphi, what god they should propitiate, in order to become victorious over the Tegeans. The Pythian answered, they should become so, when they had brought back the bones of Orestes the son of Agamemnon. But as they were unable to find the sepulchre of Orestes, they sent again to inquire of the god in what spot Orestes lay interred, and the Pythian gave this answer to the inquiries of those who came to consult her: “In the level plain of Arcadia lies Tegea, where two winds by hard compulsion blow, and stroke answers to stroke, and woe lies on woe. There life-engendering earth contains Agamemnon's son; convey him home, and you will be victorious over Tegea.” When the Lacedæmonians heard this, they were as far off the discovery as ever, though they searched every where : till Lichas, one of the Spartans who are called Agathoergi, found it. These Agathoergi consist of citizens who are discharged from serving in the cavalry, such as are senior, five in every year: it is their duty during the year in which they are discharged from the cavalry, not to remain inactive, but go to different places where they are sent by the Spartan commonwealth. 68. Lichas, who was one of these persons, discovered it in Tegea, both meeting with good fortune and employing sagacity. For as the Lacedæmonians had at that time intercourse with the Tegeans, he, coming to a smithy, looked attentively at the iron being forged, and was struck with wonder when he saw what was done. The smith perceiving his astonishment desisted from his work, and said, “ O Laconian stranger, you would certainly have been astonished had you seen what I saw, since you are so surprised at the working of iron. For as I was endeavouring to sink a well in this enclosure, in digging, I came to a coffin seven cubits long; and
because I did not believe that men were ever taller than they now are, I opened it, and saw that the body was equal to the coffin in length, and after I had measured it, I covered it up again. The man told him what he had seen, but Lichas, reflecting on what was said, conjectured from the words of the oracle, that this must be the body of Orestes, forming his conjecture on the following reasons : seeing the smith's two bellows he discerned in them the two winds, and in the anvil and hammer the stroke answering to stroke, and in the iron that was being forged the woe that lay on woe; representing it in this way,
that iron had been invented to the injury of man. Having made this conjecture, he returned to Sparta, and gave the Lacedæmonians an account of the whole matter; they, having brought a feigned charge against him, sent him into banishment. He then, going back to Tegea, related his misfortune to the smith, and wished to hire the enclosure from him, but he would not let it. But in time, when he had persuaded him, he took up his abode there; and having opened the sepulchre and collected the bones, he carried them away with him to Sparta. From that time, whenever they made trial of each other's strength, the Lacedæmonians were by far superior in war ; and the greater part of Peloponnesus had been already subdued by them.
69. Cræsus being informed of all these things, sent ambassadors to Sparta, with presents, and to request their alliance, having given them orders what to say; and when they were arrived they spoke as follows: “ Croesus, king of the Lydians and of other nations, has sent us with this message ; ‘0 Lacedæmonians, since the deity has directed me by an oracle to unite myself to a Grecian friend, therefore (for I am informed that you are pre-eminent in Greece) I invite
you in obedience to the oracle, being desirous of becoming your friend and ally, without treachery or guile.'” Creesus therefore made this proposal by his ambassadors. But the Lacedæmonians, who had before heard of the answer given by the oracle to Croesus, were gratified at the coming of the Lydians, and exchanged pledges of friendship and alliance ; and indeed certain favours had been formerly conferred on them Croesus : for when the Lacedæmonians sent to Sardis to purchase gold, wishing to use it in erecting the statue of Apollo that now stands at Thornax in Laconia, Creesus gave
it as a present to them, when they were desirous of purchasing it. 70. For this reason then, and because he had selected them from all the Greeks, and desired their friendship, the Lacedæmonians accepted his offer of alliance; and in the first place they promised to be ready at his summons; and in the next, having made a brazen bowl, and covered it outside to the rim with various figures, and capable of containing three hundred amphoræ, they sent it to him, being desirous of making Croesus a present in return. But this bowl never reached Sardis, for one of the two following reasons: the Lacedæ
that when this bowl, on its way to Sardis, was off Samos, the Samians having heard of it, sailed out in long ships, and took it away by force. On the other hand the Samians affirm, that when the Lacedæmonians who were conveying the bowl found they were too late, and heard that Sardis was taken, and Cresus a prisoner, they sold the bowl in Samos, and that some private persons, who bought it, dedicated it in the temple of Juno. And perhaps they who sold it, when they returned to Sparta, might say that they had been robbed of it by the Samians. So it is then respecting this bowl.
71. Creesus then, mistaking the oracle, prepared to invade Cappadocia, hoping to overthrow Cyrus and the power of the Persians. Whilst Croesus was preparing for his expedition against the Persians, a certain Lydian, who before that time was esteemed a wise man, and on this occasion acquired a very great name in Lydia, gave him advice in these words (the name of this person was Sandanis): “O king, you are preparing to make war against a people who wear leather trousers, and the rest of their garments of leather ; who inhabit a barren country, and feed not on such things as they choose, but such as they can get. Besides, they do not habitually use wine, but drink water; nor have they figs to eat, nor any thing that is good. In the first place, then, if you should conquer, what will you take from them, since they have nothing? On the other hand, if you should be conquered, consider what good things you will lose. For when they have tasted of our good things, they will become fond of them, nor will they be driven from them. As for me, I thank the gods, that they have not put it into the thoughts of the Persians to make war on the Lydians.” In saying this, he did not