Book VII

From this place they sailed across to Lampsacus, and here Xenophon was met by Eucleides the soothsayer, a Phliasian, the son of Cleagoras, who painted "the dreams[1]" in the Lycium. Eucleides congratulated Xenophon upon his safe return, and asked him how much gold he had got? and Xenophon had to confess: "Upon my word, I shall have barely enough to get home, unless I sell my horse, and what I have about my person." The other could not credit the statement. Now when the Lampsacenes sent gifts of hospitaliry to Xenophon, and he was sacrificing to Apollo, he requested the presence of Eucleides; and the latter, seeing the victims, said: "Now I believe what you said about having no money. But I am certain," he continued, "if it were ever to come, there is an obstacle in the way. If nothing else, you are that obstacle yourself." Xenophon admitted the force of that remark. Then the other: "Zeus Meilichios[2] is an obstacle to you, I am sure," adding in another tone of voice, "have you tried sacrificing to that god, as I was wont to sacrifice and offer whole burnt offerings for you at home?" Xenophon replied that since he had been abroad, he had not sacrificed to that god. Accordingly Eucleides counselled him to sacrifice in the old customary way: he was sure that his fortune would improve. The nexy day Xenophon went on to Ophrynium and sacrificed, offering a holocaust of swine, after the custom of his family, and the signs which he obtained were favourable. That very day Bion and Nausicleides arrived laden with gifts for the army. These two were hospitably entertained by Xenophon, and were kind enough to repurchase the horse he had sold in Lampsacus for fifty darics; suspecting that he had parted with it out of need, and hearing that he was fond of the beast they restored it to him, refusing to be remunerated.

[1] Reading {ta enupnia}, or if {ta entoikhia} with Hug and others, translate "the wall-paintings" or the "frescoes." Others think that a writing, not a painting, is referred to.

[2] Zeus Meilichios, or the gentle one. See Thuc. i. 126. The festival of the Diasia at Athens was in honour of that god, or rather of Zeus under that aspect. Cf. Arist. "Clouds," 408.

From that place they marched through the Troad, and, crossing Mount Ida, arrived at Antandrus, and then pushed along the seaboard of Mysia to the plain of Thebe[3]. Thence they made their way through Adramytium and Certonus[4] by Atarneus, coming into the plain of the Caicus, and so reached Pergamus in Mysia.

[3] Thebe, a famous ancient town in Mysia, at the southern foot of Mt. Placius, which is often mentioned in Homer ("Il." i. 366, vi. 397, xxii. 479, ii. 691). See "Dict. Geog." s.v. The name {Thebes pedion} preserves the site. Cf. above {Kaustrou pedion}, and such modern names as "the Campagna" or "Piano di Sorrento."

[4] The site of Certonus is not ascertained. Some critics have conjectured that the name should be Cytonium, a place between Mysia and Lydia; and Hug, who reads {Kutoniou}, omits {odeusantes par 'Atanea}, "they made their way by Atarneus," as a gloss.

Here Xenophon was hospitably entertained at the house of Hellas, the wife of Gongylus the Eretrian[5], the mother of Gorgion and Gongylus. From her he learnt that Asidates, a Persian notable, was in the plain. "If you take thirty men and go by night, you will take him prisoner," she said, "wife, children, money, and all; of money he has a store;" and to show them the way to these treasures, she sent her own cousin and Daphnagoras, whom she set great store by. So then Xenophon, with these two to assist, did sacrifice; and Basias, an Eleian, the soothsayer in attendance, said that the victims were as promising as could be, and the great man would be an easy prey. Accordingly, after dinner he set off, taking with him the officers who had been hs staunchest friends and confidants throughout; as he wished to do them a good turn. A number of others came thrusting themselves on their company, to the number of six hundred, but the officers repelled them: "They had no notion of sharing their portion of the spoil," they said, "just as though the property lay already at their feet."

[5] Cf. Thuc. i. 128; also "Hell." III. i. 6.

Ahout midnight they arrived. The slaves occupying the precincts of the tower, with the mass of goods and chattles, slipped through their fingers, their sole anxiety being to capture Asidates and his belongings. So they brought their batteries to bear, but failing to take the tower by assault (since it was high and solid, and well supplied with ramparts, besides having a large body of warlike defenders), they endeavoured to undermine it. The wall was eight clay bricks thick, but by daybreak the passage was effected and the wall undermined. At the first cleam of light through the aperture, one of the defendants inside, with a large ox-spit, smote right through the thigh of the man nearest the hole, and the rest discharged their arrows so hotly that it was dangerous to come anywhere near the passage; and what with their shouting and kindling of beacon fires, a relief party at length arrived, consisting of Itabelius at the head of his force, and a body of Assyrian heavy infantry from Comania, and some Hyrcanian cavalry[6], the latter also being mercenaries of the king. There were eighty of them, and another detachment of light troops, about eight hundred, and more from Parthenium, and more again from Apollonia and the neighbouring places, also cavalry.

[6] The Hyrcanian cavalry play an important part in the "Cyropaedeia." They are the Scirites of the Assyrian army who came over to Cyrus after the first battle. Their country is the fertile land touching the south-eastern corner of the Caspian. Cf. "Cyrop." IV. ii. 8, where the author (or an editor) appends a note on the present status of the Hyrcanians.

It was now high time to consider how they were to beat a retreat. So seizing all the cattle and sheep to be had, with the slaves, they put them within a hollow square and proceed to drive them off. Not that they had a thought to give to the spoils now, but for precaution's sake and for fear lest if they left the goods and chattels behind and made off, the retreat would rapidly degenerate into a stampede, the enemy growing bolder as the troops lost heart. For the present then they retired as if they meant to do battle for the spoils. As soon as Gongylus espied how few the Hellenes were and how large the attacking party, out he came himself, in spite of his mother, with his private force, wishing to share in the action. Another too joined in the rescue--Procles, from Halisarna and Teuthrania, a descendant of Damaratus. By this time Xenophon and his men were being sore pressed by the arrows and slingstones, though they marched in a curve so as to keep their shields facing the missles, and even so, barely crossed the river Carcasus, nearly half of them wounded. Here it was that Agasias the Stymphalian, the captain, received his wound, while keeping up a steady unflagging fight against the enemy from beginning to end. And so they reached home in safety with about two hundred captives, and sheep enough for sacrifices.

The next day Xenophon sacrificed and led out the whole army under the cover of night, intending to pierce far into the heart of Lydia with a view to lulling to sleep the enemy's alarm at his proxmity, and so in fact to put him off his guard. But Asidates, hearing that Xenophon had again sacrificed with the intention of another attack, and was approaching with his whole army, left his tower and took up quarters in some villages lying under the town of Parthenium. Here Xenophon's party fell in with him, and took him prisoner, with his wife, his children, his horses, and all that he had; and so the promise of the earlier victims was literally fulfilled. After that they returned again to Pergamus, and here Xenophon might well thank God with a warm heart, for the Laconians, the officers, the other generals, and the soldiers as a body united to give him the pick of horses and cattle teams, and the rest; so that he was now in a position himself to do another a good turn.

Meanwhile Thibron arrived and received the troops which he incorporated with the rest of his Hellenic forces, and so proceeded to prosecute a war against Tissaphernes and Pharnabazus[7].

[7] The MSS. add: "The following is a list of the governors of the several territories of the king which were traversed by us during the expedition: Artimas, governor of Lydia; Artacamas, of Phrygia; Mithridates, of Lycaonia and Cappadocia; Syennesis, of Cilicia; Dernes, of Phoenicia and Arabia; Belesys, of Syria and Assyria; Rhoparas, of Babylon; Arbacus, of Media; Tiribazus, of the Phasians and Hesperites. Then some independent tribes--the Carduchians or Kurds, and Chalybes, and Chaldaeans, and Macrones, and Colchians, and Mossynoecians, and Coetians, and Tibarenians. Then Corylas, the governor of Paphlagonia; Pharnabazus, of the Bithynians; Seuthes, of the European Thracians. The entire journey, ascent and descent, consisted of two hundred and fifteen stages = one thousand one hundred and fifty-five parasangs = thirty-four thousand six hundred and fifty stades. Computed in time, the length of ascent and descent together amounted to one year and three months." The annotator apparently computes the distance from Ephesus to Cotyora.