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tions, which were about to take place. He represented, that the change they meditated might very probably excite a civil war, to the ruin of the state ; that it was very unlikely that the king of Persia would prefer the alliance of the Athenians to that of the Spartans, so much more advantageous to him; that this change would not retain the allies in their duty, nor bring over those who had renounced it, who would persist in preferring their liberty; that the government of a small number of rich and powerful persons would not be more favourable to either the citizens or allies than that of the people, because ambition was the great cause of all misfortunes in a republic, and the rich were the sole promoters of all troubles for the aggrandizing of themselves; that a state suffered more oppressions and vi. olences under the rule of the nobility than that of the people, whose authority kept the former within due bounds, and was the assylum of such as they desired to oppress; that the allies were too well acquainted with these truths from their own experience, to want any
lessons upon the subject. These remonstrances, as wise as they were, had no effect. Pisander was sent to Athens with some of the same faction, to propose the return of Alcibiades, the alliance of Tissaphernes, and the abolition of the democracy. They represented, that by changing the government, and recalling Alcibiades, Athens might obtain a powerful aid from the king of Persia, which would be a certain means to triumph over Sparta. Upon this proposal great numbers exclaimed against it, and especially the enemies of Alcibiades. They alleged, amongst other reasons, the imprecations pronounced by the priests, and all the orders of religion, against him, and even against such as should propose to recal him. But Pisander, advancing into the midst of the assembly, demanded whether they knew any other means to save the republic in the deplorable condition to which it was reduced; and as it was admitted there were none, he added, that the preservation of the state was the question, and not the authority of the laws, which might be provided for in the sequel ; but at present there was no other method for the attainment of the king's friendship, and that of Tissaphernes. Though this change was very offensive to the people, they gave their consent to it at length, with the hope of reestablishing the democracy in time, as Pisander had promised ; and they decreed that he should
go with ten more deputies to treat with Alcibiades and Tissaphernes, and that in the mean time Phrynicus should be recalled, and another general appointed to command the fleet in his stead.
The deputies did not find Tissaphernes in so good a disposition as they had been made to hope. He was afraid of the Lacedemonians, but did not care to render the Athenians too powerful. It was his policy, by the advice of Alcibiades, to leave the two parties always at war, in order to weaken and consume them by each other. He therefore made great difficulties. He de. manded at first that the Athenians should abandon all Ionia to him, and afterwards insisted upon their adding the neighbouring islands. Those demands being complied with, he further required, in a third interview, permission to fit out a fleet, and to cruise in the Grecian seas, which had been expressly provided
against in the celebrated treaty concluded with Arta.
The deputies thereupon broke up the conference with indignation, and perceived that Alcibiades had imposed upon them.
Tissaphernes, without loss of time, concluded a new treaty with the Lacedemonians, in which, what had displeased in the two preceding treaties was retrenched. The article which yielded to Persia the countries in general that had been in the actual possession of the reigning king Darius, or his predecessors, was limitted to the provinces of Asia. The king engaged to defray all expenses of the Lacedemonian feet, upon the foot, and in the condition it then was, till the arrival of that of Persia ; after which they were to support it themselves, unless they should choose that the king should pay it, to be reimbursed after the conclusion of the
It was further agreed that they should unite their forces and continue the war, or make peace by common consent. Tissaphernes, to keep his prom. ise, sent for the fleet of Phenicia. This treaty was made in the eleventh year of Darius, and the twentieth of the Peloponnesian war.
ALTERATION IN THE GOVERNMENT OF ATHENS.
CALLED, AND AFTERWARDS APPOINTED GENERALISSIMO.
PISANDER," at his return into Athens, found the change he had proposed at his setting out much forwarded, to which he put the last hand soon after. To
* Thucyd. 1. viii. p. 590-594. Plut in Alcib. p. 105.
give a form to this new government, he caused ten commissaries with absolute power to be appointed, who were however at a certain fixed time to give the people an account of what they had done. At the expiration of that term, the general assembly was summoned, wherein their first resolution was, that every one should be admitted to make such proposals, as he thought fit, without being liable to any accusation of infringing the law, or consequential penalty. It was afterwards decreed that a new council should be formed, with full power to administer the public affairs, and to elect new magistrates. For this purpose
five presidents were established, who nominated one hundred persons, including themselves. Each of these chose and associated three more at his own pleasure, which made in all four hundred, in whom an absolute power was lodged. But to amuse the people, and to console them with a shadow of popular government, whilst they instituted a real oligarchy, it was said that the four hundred should call a council of five thousand citizens, to assist them when they should judge it necessary. The council and assemblies of the people were held as usual; nothing was done however but by the order of the four hundred. The people of Athens were deprived in this manner of their liberty, which they had enjoyed almost an hundred years, after having abolished the tyranny of the Pisistratides.
This decree being passed without opposition, after the separation of the assembly, the four hundred, armed with daggers, and attended by one hundred and twenty young men, whom they made use of when any execuVOL. 3.
tion required it, entered the senate, and compelled the senators to retire, after having paid them the arrears due upon their appointments. They elected new magistrates out of their own body, observing the usual ceremonies upon such occasions. They did not think proper to recal those who were banished, lest they should authorize the return of Alcibiades, whose uncontrollable spirit they apprehended, and who would soon have made himself master of the people. Abusing their
power in a tyrannical manner, some they put to death, others they banished, confiscating their estates with impunity. All who ventured to oppose this change, or even to complain of it, were butchered upon false pretexts; and those would have met with a bad reception, who demanded justice of the murderers. The four hundred, soon after their establishment, sent ten deputies to Samos for the army's concurrence to it.
• All that had passed at Athens was already known there, and the news had enraged the soldiers to the highest degree. They deposed immediately several of their chiefs, whom they suspected, and put others into their places, of whom Thrasylus and Thrasybulus were the principal, and in the highest credit. Alcibiades was recalled, and chosen generalissimo by the whole army,
which desired to sail directly for Pyreus to attack the tyrants. But he opposed it ; representing that it was necessary he should first have an interview with Tissaphernes, and that as they had chosen him general, they might rely upon him for the care of the war. He set out immediately for Miletus. His
Thucyd. I. viii. p. 595–604. Plut. in Alcib. p. 205. Diod. L. xiii.