<<<
>>>

The History Of Herodotus Volume 2 of 2

Page: 70

106. However at that time, the time namely when he said that Pan appeared to him, this Pheidippides having been sent by the generals was in Sparta on the next day after that on which he left the city of the Athenians; and when he had come to the magistrates he said: "Lacedemonians, the Athenians make request of you to come to their help and not to allow a city most anciently established among the Hellenes to fall into slavery by the means of Barbarians; for even now Eretria has been enslaved, and Hellas has become the weaker by a city of renown." He, as I say, reported to them that with which he had been charged, and it pleased them well to come to help the Athenians; but it was impossible for them to do so at once, since they did not desire to break their law; for it was the ninth day of the month, and on the ninth day they said they would not go forth, nor until the circle of the moon should be full. 95

107. These men were waiting for the full moon: and meanwhile Hippias the son of Peisistratos was guiding the Barbarians in to Marathon, after having seen on the night that was just past a vision in his sleep of this kind,—it seemed to Hippias that he lay with his own mother. He conjectured then from the dream that he should return to Athens and recover his rule, and then bring his life to an end in old age in his own land. From the dream, I say, he conjectured this; and after this, as he guided them in, first he disembarked the slaves from Eretria on the island belonging to the Styrians, called Aigleia; 96 and then, as the ships came in to shore at Marathon, he moored them there, and after the Barbarians had come from their ships to land, he was engaged in disposing them in their places. While he was ordering these things, it came upon him to sneeze and cough more violently than was his wont. Then since he was advanced in years, most of his teeth were shaken thereby, and one of these teeth he cast forth by the violence of the cough: 97 and the tooth having fallen from him upon the sand, he was very desirous to find it; since however the tooth was not to be found when he searched, he groaned aloud and said to those who were by him: "This land is not ours, nor shall we be able to make it subject to us; but so much part in it as belonged to me the tooth possesses."

108. Hippias then conjectured that his vision had been thus fulfilled: and meanwhile, after the Athenians had been drawn up in the sacred enclosure of Heracles, there joined them the Plataians coming to their help in a body: for the Plataians had given themselves to the Athenians, and the Athenians before this time undertook many toils on behalf of them; and this was the manner in which they gave themselves:—Being oppressed by the Thebans, the Plataians at first desired to give themselves to Cleomenes the son of Anaxandrides and to the Lacedemonians, who chanced to come thither; but these did not accept them, and said to them as follows: "We dwell too far off, and such support as ours would be to you but cold comfort; for ye might many times be reduced to slavery before any of us had information of it: but we counsel you rather to give yourselves to the Athenians, who are both neighbours and also not bad helpers." Thus the Lacedemonians counselled, not so much on account of their goodwill to the Plataians as because they desired that the Athenians should have trouble by being involved in a conflict with the Boetians. The Lacedemonians, I say, thus counselled the men of Plataia; and they did not fail to follow their counsel, but when the Athenians were doing sacrifice to the twelve gods, they sat down as suppliants at the altar and so gave themselves. Then the Thebans having been informed of these things marched against the Plataians, and the Athenians came to their assistance: and as they were about to join battle, the Corinthians did not permit them to do so, but being by chance there, they reconciled their strife; and both parties having put the matter into their hands, they laid down boundaries for the land, with the condition that the Thebans should leave those of the Boeotians alone who did not desire to be reckoned with the other Boeotians. The Corinthians having given this decision departed; but as the Athenians were going back, the Boeotians attacked them, and having attacked them they were worsted in the fight. Upon that the Athenians passed beyond the boundaries which the Corinthians had set to be for the Plataians, and they made the river Asopos itself to be the boundary of the Thebans towards the land of Plataia and towards the district of Hysiai. The Plataians then had given themselves to the Athenians in the manner which has been said, and at this time they came to Marathon to bring them help.


<<<
>>>