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And here a terrible spectacle displayed itself: the women first cast their infants down the cliff, and then they cast themselves after their fallen little ones, and the men likewise. In such a scene, Aeneas the Stymphalian, an officer, caught sight of a man with a fine dress about to throw himself over, and seized hold of him to stop him; but the other caught him to his arms, and both were gone in an instant headlong down the crags, and were killed. Out of this place the merest handful of human beings were taken prisoners, but cattle and asses in abundance and flocks of sheep.

From this place they marched through the Chalybes (1) seven stages, fifty parasangs. These were the bravest men whom they encountered on the whole march, coming cheerily to close quarters with them. They wore linen cuirasses reaching to the groin, and instead of the ordinary "wings" or basques, a thickly-plaited fringe of cords. They were also provided with greaves and helmets, and at the girdle a short sabre, about as long as the Laconian dagger, with which they cut the throats of those they mastered, and after severing the head from the trunk they would march along carrying it, singing and dancing, when they drew within their enemy's field of view. They carried also a spear fifteen cubits long, lanced at one end (2). This folk stayed in regular townships, and whenever the Hellenes passed by they invariably hung close on their heels fighting. They had dwelling-places in their fortresses, and into them they had carried up their supplies, sot hat the Hellenes could get nothing from this district, but supported themselves on the flocks and herds they had taken from the Taochians. After this the Hellenes reached the river Harpasus, which was four hundred feet broad. Hence they marched through the Scythenians four stages—twenty parasangs—through a long level country to more villages, among which they halted three days, and got in supplies.

 (1) These are the Armeno-Chalybes, so called by Pliny in
    contradistinction to another mountain tribe in Pontus so named,
    who were famous for their forging, and from whom steel received
    its Greek name {khalups}. With these latter we shall make
    acquaintance later on.

 (2) I.e. with a single point or spike only, the Hellenic spear having
    a spike at the butt end also.

Passing on from thence in four stages of twenty parasangs, they reached a large and prosperous well-populated city, which went by the name of Gymnias (3), from which the governor of the country sent them a guide to lead them through a district hostile to his own. This guide told them that within five days he would lead them to a place from which they would see the sea, "and," he added, "if I fail of my word, you are free to take my life." Accordingly he put himself at their head; but he no sooner set foot in the country hostile to himself than he fell to encouraging them to burn and harry the land; indeed his exhortations were so earnest, it was plain that it was for this he had come, and not out of the good-will he bore the Hellenes.