<<<
>>>

The History of the Peloponnesian War

Page: 174

Brasidas, perceiving their intention, told his three hundred to run on without order, each as quickly as he could, to the hill which seemed easiest to take, and to try to dislodge the barbarians already there, before they should be joined by the main body closing round him. These attacked and overpowered the party upon the hill, and the main army of the Hellenes now advanced with less difficulty towards it—the barbarians being terrified at seeing their men on that side driven from the height and no longer following the main body, who, they considered, had gained the frontier and made good their escape. The heights once gained, Brasidas now proceeded more securely, and the same day arrived at Arnisa, the first town in the dominions of Perdiccas. The soldiers, enraged at the desertion of the Macedonians, vented their rage on all their yokes of oxen which they found on the road, and on any baggage which had tumbled off (as might easily happen in the panic of a night retreat), by unyoking and cutting down the cattle and taking the baggage for themselves. From this moment Perdiccas began to regard Brasidas as an enemy and to feel against the Peloponnesians a hatred which could not be congenial to the adversary of the Athenians. However, he departed from his natural interests and made it his endeavour to come to terms with the latter and to get rid of the former.

On his return from Macedonia to Torone, Brasidas found the Athenians already masters of Mende, and remained quiet where he was, thinking it now out of his power to cross over into Pallene and assist the Mendaeans, but he kept good watch over Torone. For about the same time as the campaign in Lyncus, the Athenians sailed upon the expedition which we left them preparing against Mende and Scione, with fifty ships, ten of which were Chians, one thousand Athenian heavy infantry and six hundred archers, one hundred Thracian mercenaries and some targeteers drawn from their allies in the neighbourhood, under the command of Nicias, son of Niceratus, and Nicostratus, son of Diitrephes. Weighing from Potidaea, the fleet came to land opposite the temple of Poseidon, and proceeded against Mende; the men of which town, reinforced by three hundred Scionaeans, with their Peloponnesian auxiliaries, seven hundred heavy infantry in all, under Polydamidas, they found encamped upon a strong hill outside the city. These Nicias, with one hundred and twenty light-armed Methonaeans, sixty picked men from the Athenian heavy infantry, and all the archers, tried to reach by a path running up the hill, but received a wound and found himself unable to force the position; while Nicostratus, with all the rest of the army, advancing upon the hill, which was naturally difficult, by a different approach further off, was thrown into utter disorder; and the whole Athenian army narrowly escaped being defeated. For that day, as the Mendaeans and their allies showed no signs of yielding, the Athenians retreated and encamped, and the Mendaeans at nightfall returned into the town.


<<<
>>>