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The History Of Herodotus Volume 2 of 2

Page: 35

107. Thus saying Histiaios endeavoured to deceive the king, and Dareios was persuaded and let him go, charging him, when he should have accomplished that which he had promised, to return to him again at Susa.

108. In the meantime, while the news about Sardis was going up to the king, and while Dareios, after doing that which he did with the bow, came to speech with Histiaios, and Histiaios having been let go by Dareios was making his journey to the sea-coast,—during all that time the events were happening which here follow.—As Onesilos of Salamis was besieging those of Amathus, it was reported to him that Artybios a Persian, bringing with him in ships a large Persian army, was to be expected shortly to arrive in Cyprus. Being informed of this, Onesilos sent heralds to different places in Ionia to summon the Ionians to his assistance; and they took counsel together and came without delay with a large force. Now the Ionians arrived in Cyprus just at the time when the Persians having crossed over in ships from Kilikia were proceeding by land to attack Salamis, while the Phenicians with the ships were sailing round the headland which is called the "Keys of Cyprus.".

109. This being the case, the despots of Cyprus called together the commanders of the Ionians and said: "Ionians, we of Cyprus give you a choice which enemy ye will rather fight with, the Persians or the Phenicians: for if ye will rather array yourselves on land and make trial of the Persians in fight, it is time now for you to disembark from your ships and array yourselves on the land, and for us to embark in your ships to contend against the Phenicians; but if on the other hand ye will rather make trial of the Phenicians,—whichever of these two ye shall choose, ye must endeavour that, so far as it rests with you, both Ionia and Cyprus shall be free." To this the Ionians replied: "We were sent out by the common authority of the Ionians to guard the sea, and not to deliver our ships to the Cyprians and ourselves fight with the Persians on land. We therefore will endeavour to do good service in that place to which we were appointed; and ye must call to mind all the evils which ye suffered from the Medes, when ye were in slavery to them, and prove yourselves good men.".

110. The Ionians made answer in these words; and afterwards, when the Persians had come to the plain of Salamis, the kings of the Cyprians set in order their array, choosing the best part of the troops of Salamis and of Soloi to be arrayed against the Persians and setting the other Cyprians against the rest of the enemy's troops; and against Artybios, the commander of the Persians, Onesilos took up his place in the array by his own free choice.

111. Now Artybios was riding a horse which had been trained to rear up against a hoplite. Onesilos accordingly being informed of this, and having a shield-bearer, by race of Caria, who was of very good repute as a soldier and full of courage besides, 89 said to this man: "I am informed that the horse of Artybios rears upright and works both with his feet and his mouth against any whom he is brought to attack. Do thou therefore consider the matter, and tell me forthwith which of the two thou wilt rather watch for and strike, the horse or Artybios himself." To this his attendant replied: "O king, I am ready to do both or either of these two things, and in every case to do that which thou shalt appoint for me; but I will declare to thee the way in which I think it will be most suitable 90 for thy condition. I say that it is right for one who is king and commander to fight with a king and commander; for if thou shalt slay the commander of the enemy, it turns to great glory for thee; and again, if he shall slay thee, which heaven forbid, even death when it is at the hands of a worthy foe is but half to be lamented: but for us who are under thy command it is suitable to fight with the others who are under his command and with his horse: and of the tricks of the horse have thou no fear at all, for I engage to thee that after this at least he shall never stand against any man more." Thus he spoke; and shortly afterwards the opposed forces joined battle both on land and with their ships..


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