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The History Of Herodotus Volume 2 of 2

Page: 49

26. Thus it came to pass as regards these matters: and meanwhile Histiaios the Milesian, who was at Byzantion and was seizing the merchant vessels of the Ionians as they sailed forth out of the Pontus, received the report of that which had happened about Miletos. Upon that he entrusted the matters which had to do with the Hellespont to Bisaltes the son of Apollophanes, a man of Abydos, while he himself with the Lesbians sailed to Chios; and when a body of the Chians who were on guard did not allow him to approach, he fought with them at that spot in the Chian land which is called the "Hollows." 14 Histiaios then not only slew many of these, but also, taking Polichne of the Chians as his base, he conquered with the help of the Lesbians the remainder of the Chians as well, since they had suffered great loss by the sea-fight..

27. And heaven is wont perhaps to give signs beforehand whenever great evils are about to happen to a city or a race of men; for to the Chians also before these events remarkable signs had come. In the first place when they had sent to Delphi a chorus of a hundred youths, two only returned home, the remaining ninety-eight of them having been seized by a plague and carried off; and then secondly in their city about the same time, that is shortly before the sea-fight, as some children were being taught 15 in school the roof fell in upon them, so that of a hundred and twenty children only one escaped. These signs God showed to them beforehand; and after this the sea-fight came upon them and brought their State down upon its knees; and as the Chians had suffered great loss, he without difficulty effected the conquest of them.

28. Thence Histiaios made an expedition against Thasos, taking with him a large force of Ionians and Aiolians; and while he was encamped about the town of Thasos, a report came to him that the Phenicians were sailing up from Miletos to conquer the rest of Ionia. Being informed of this he left Thasos unconquered and himself hastened to Lesbos, taking with him his whole army. Then, as his army was in want of food, 16 he crossed over from Lesbos to reap the corn in Atarneus and also that in the plain of the Caïcos, which belonged to the Mysians. In these parts there chanced to be a Persian named Harpagos commanding a considerable force; and this man fought a battle with him after he had landed, and he took Histiaios himself prisoner and destroyed the greater part of his army..

29. And Histiaios was taken prisoner in the following manner:—As the Hellenes were fighting with the Persians at Malene in the district of Atarneus, after they had been engaged in close combat for a long time, the cavalry at length charged and fell upon the Hellenes; and the cavalry in fact decided the battle. 17 So when the Hellenes had been turned to flight, Histiaios trusting that he would not be put to death by the king on account of his present fault, conceived a love of life, so that when he was being caught in his flight by a Persian and was about to be run through by him in the moment of his capture, he spoke in Persian and made himself known, saying that he was Histiaios the Milesian..


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