Arrian Anabasis Book 2a
SOON after this, Mernnon, whom King Darius had appointed commander of the whole fleet and of the entire sea-coast, with the design of moving the seat of war into Macedonia and Greece, acquired possession of Chios, which was surrendered to him by treachery. Thence he sailed to Lesbos and brought over to his side all the cities of the island, except Mitylene, the inhabitants of which gave no heed to him. When he had gained these cities over, he turned his attention to Mitylene; and walling off the city from the rest of the island by constructing a double stockade from sea to sea, he easily got the mastery on the land side by building five camps. A part of his fleet guarded their harbour, and, intercepting the ships passing by, he kept the rest of his fleet as a guard off Sigrium, the headland of Lesbos, where is the best landing-place for trading vessels from Chios, Geraestus, and Malea. By this means he deprived the Mitylenaeans of all hope of succour by sea. But hereupon he himself fell ill and died, and his death at that crisis was exceedingly injurious to the king’s interests. Nevertheless Autophradates, and Pharnabazus, son of Artabazus, prosecuted the siege with vigour. To the latter indeed, Memnon, when dying, had entrusted his command, as he was his sister’s son, till Darius should come to some decision on the matter. The Mitylenaeans, therefore, being excluded from the land, and being blockaded on the sea by many ships lying at anchor, sent to Pharnabazus and came to the following agreement :—That the auxiliary troops which had come to their aid from Alexander should depart, that the citizens should demolish the pillars on which the treaty made by them with Alexander was inscribed, that they should become allies of Darius on the terms of the peace which was made with King Darius at the instigation of Antalcidasi and that their exiles should return from banishment on condition of receiving back half the property whi ch they possessed when they were banished. Upon these terms the compact was made between the Mitylenaeans and the Persians. But as soon as Pharnabazus and Autophradates once got within the city, they introduced a garrison with Lycomedes, a Rhodian as its commandant. They also appointed Diogenes, one of the exiles, to be despot of the city, and exacted money from the Mitylenaeans, taking part of it by violence for themselves from the wealthy citizens, and laying the rest as a tax upon the community.
2. THE PERSIANS CAPTURE TENEDUS.—THEY ARE DEFEATED AT SEA.
AFTER accomplishing this, Pharnabazus sailed to Lycia, taking with him the Grecian mercenaries; but Autophradates sailed to the other islands. Meantime Darius sentThymondas, son of Mentor,’ down to the maritime districts, to take over the Grecian auxiliaries from Pharnabazus and to lead them up to him; and to tell Pharnabazus to assume the command of all whom Memnon had ruled. So Pharnabazus handed over to him the Grecian auxiliaries and then sailed to join AutophradateS and the fleet. When they met, they despatched Datames, a Persian, with ten ships to the islands called Cyclades, whilst they with ioo sailed to Tenedus. Having sailed into the harbour of Tenedus which is called Bor??us, they sent a message to the inhabitants, commanding them to demolish the pillars on which the treaty made by them with Alexander and the Greeks was inscribed, and to observe in regard to Darius the terms of the peace which they had ratified with the king of Persia at the advice of Antalcidas. The Tenedians preferred to be on terms of amity with Alexander and the Greeks ; but in the present crisis it seemed impossible to save themselves except by yielding to the Persians, since Hegelochus, who had been commissioned by Alexander to collect another naval force, had not yet gathered so large a fleet as to warrant them in expecting any speedy succour from him. Accordingly Pharnabazus made the Tenedians comply with his demands rather from fear than good-will.
Meantime Proteas, son of Andronicus, by command of Antipater, succeeded in collecting ships of war from Euboea and the Peloponnese, so that there might be some protection both for the islands and for Greece itself; if the foreigners attacked them by sea, as it was reported They intended to do.. Learning that Datames with ten ships was moored near Sip??, Proteas set out by night with fifteen from Chalcis on ??Wuripus, and touching at the island of Cynthus at dawn, he spent the day there in order to get more certain information of the movements of the te n ships, resolving at the same time to fall upon the Phoenicians by night, when he would be likely to strike them with greater terror. Having discovered with certainty that Datames was moored with his ships at Siphnus, he sailed thither while it was still dark, and just at the very dawn fell upon them when they least expected it, and captured eight of the ships, men and all. But Datames, with the other two triremes, escaped by stealth at the beginning of the attack made by the ships with Proteas, and reached the rest of the Persian fleet in safety.
3. ALEXANDER AT GORDIUM.
WHEN Alexander arrived at Gordium, he was seized with an ardent desire to go up into the citadel, which contained the palace of Gordius and his son Midas. He was also desirous of seeing the wagon of Gordius and the cord of the yoke of this wagon. There was a great deal of talk about this wagon among the neighbouring population. It was said that Gordius was a poor man among the ancient Phrygians, who had a small piece of land to till, and two yoke of oxen. He used one of these in ploughing and the other to draw the wagon. On one occasion, while he was ploughing, an eagle settled upon the yoke, and remained sitting there until the time came for unyoking the oxen. Being alarmed at the sight, he went to the Telmissian soothsayers to consult them about the sign from the deity; for the Telmissians were skilful in interpreting the meaning of Divine manifestations, and the power of divination has been besto~ved not only upon the men, but also upon their wives and children from generation to generation. When Gordius was driving his wagon near a certain village of the Telmi ssians, he met a maiden fetching water from the spring, and to her he related how the sign of the eagle had appeared to him. As she herself was of the prophetic race, she instructed him to return to the very spot and offer sacrifice to Zeus the king. Gordius reqtiested her to accompany him and direct him how to perform the sacrifice. He offered the sacrifice in the way the girl suggested, and afterwards married her. A son was born to them named Midas. When Midas was grown to be a man, handsome and valiant, the Phrygians were harassed by civil discord, and consulting the oracle, they were told that a wagon would bring them a king, who would put an end to their discord.2 While they were still deliberating about this very matter, Midas arrived with his father and mother, and stopped near the assembly, wagon and all. They, comparing the oracular response with this occurrence, decided that this was the person whom the god told them the wagon would bri ng . They therefore appointed Midas king; and he, putting an end to their discord, dedicated his father’s wagon in the citadel as a thank-offering to Zeus the king for sending the eagle. In addition to this the following saying was current concerningthe wagon, that whosoever could loosen the cord of the yoke of this wagon, was destined to gain the rule of Asia. The cord was made of cornel bark, and neither end nor beginning to it could be seen. It is said by some that when Alexander could find out no way to loosen the cord and yet was unwilling to allow it to remain unloosened, lest this should exercise some disturbing influence upon the multitude, he struck it with his sword and cutting it through, said that it had been loosened. But Aristobulus says that he pulled out the pin of the wagon-pole, which was a wooden peg driven right through it, holding the cord together. Having done this, he drew out the yoke from the wagon-pole. How Alexander performed the feat in connection with this cord, I cannot affirm with confidence. At any rate both he and his troops departed from the wagon as if the oracular prediction concerning the loosening of the cord had been fulfilled. Moreover, that very night, the thunder and lightning were signs of its fulfilment; and for this reason Alexander offered sacrifice on the following day to the gods who had revealed the signs and the way to loosen the cord.
4. CONQUEST OF CAPPADOCIA.—ALEXANDER’S ILLNESS AT TARSUS.
THE next day he set out to Ancyra in Galatia, where he was met by an embassy from the Paphlagonians, offering to surrender their nation to him and to enter into an alliance with him; but they requested him not to invade their land with his forces. He therefore commanded them to submit to the authority of Calas, the viceroy of Phrygia. Marching thence into Cappadocia, he subjugated all that part of it which lies on this side of the river Halys, and much of that which lies beyond it. Having appointed Sabictas viceroy of Cappadocia, he advanced to the gates of Cilicia, and when he arrived at the Camp of Cyrus, who went with Xenophon, and saw that the Gates were occupied by a strong guard, he left Parmenio there with the regiments of infantry which were more heavily armed; and about the first watch, taking the shield-bearing guards, the archers, and the Agrianians, he advanced by night to the Gates, in order to fall upon the guards when they least expected it. However, his advance was not unobserved ; but his boldness served him equally well, for the guards, perceiving that Alexander was advancing in person, deserted their post and set off in flight. At dawn next day he passed through the Gates with all his forces and descended into Cilicia. Here he was informed that Arsamnes had previously intended to preserve Tarsus for the Persians;but that when he heard that Alexander had already passed through the Gates, he resolved to abandon the city; and thatthe Tarsians were therefore afraid he would turn to plunder their city and afterwards evacuate it. Hearing this, Alexander led his cavalry and the lightest of his light infantry to Tarsus with a forced march; consequently Arsames, hearing of his start, fled with speed from Tarsus to King Darius without inflicting any injury upon the city.
Alexander now fell ill from the toils he had undergone,.according to the account of Aristobulus but other authors say that while very hot and in profuse perspiration he leaped into the river Cydnus and swam, beingeager to bathe in its water. This river flows through the midst of the city and as its source is in mount Taurus and it flows through a clear district, it is cold and its water is clear. Alexander therefore was seized with convulsions, accompanied with high fever and continuous sleeplessness. None of the physicians thought he was likely to survive, except Philip, an Acarnanian, a physician in attendance on the king, and very much trusted by him in medical matters, who also enjoyed a great reputation in the army in general affairs. This man wished to administer a purgative draught to Alexander, and the king ordered him to administer it. While Philip was preparing the cup, a letter was given to the king from Parmenio, warning him to beware of Philip; for he heard that the physician had been bribed by Darius to poison Alexander with medicine. But he, having read the letter, and still holding it in his hand, of his own accord took the cup which contained the medicine and gave Philip the letter to read. While Philip was reading the news from Parmenio, Alexander drank the potion. It was at once evident to the king that the physician was acting honourably in giving the medicine, for he was not alarmed at the letter, but only so much the more exhorted the king to obey all the other prescriptions which he might give, promising that his life would be saved if he obeyed his instructions. Alexander was purged by the draught, and his illness then took a favourable turn. He afterwards proved to Philip that he was a faithful friend to him; and to the rest of those about him he proved that he was sure not to be suspicious of his friends personally; and that he could meet death with dauntless courage.
CHAPTER V. ALEXANDER AT THE TOMB OF SARDANAPALUS.—PROCEEDINGS IN CILICIA.
AFTER this he sent Parmenio to the other Gates wh~a separate the land of the Cilicians from that of the Assyrians, in order to occupy them before the enemy could do so, and to guard the pass. He gave him the allied infantry, the Grecian mercenaries, the Thracians who were under the command of Sitalces, and the Thessalian cavalry. He afterwards marched from Tarsus, and on the first day arrived at the city of Anchialus? According to report, this city was founded by Sardanapalus the Assyrian I and both from the circumference and from the foundations of the walls it is evident that a large city had been founded and that it had reached a great pitch of power. Also near the wall of Anchialus was the monument of Sardanapalus, upon the top of which stood the statue of that king with the hands joined to each other just as they are joined for clapping. Assyrian tletters had been engraved upon it as an inscription, which the Assyrians asserted to be in metre. The meaning which the words expressed was this :—“ Sardanapalus, son of Anacyndaraxas, built Anchialus and Tarsus in one day; but do thou, 0 stranger, eat, drink, and play, since all other human things are not worth this !“ referring, as in a riddle, to the empty sound which the hands make in clapping. It was also said that the wod translated play had been expressed by a more lewd one in the Assyrian language.
From Anchialus Alexander went to Soli, into which city he introduced a garrison, and imposed upon the inhabitants afine of two hundred talents of silver, because they were more inclined to favour the Persians than himself. Then, having taken three regiments of Macedonian infantry, all the archers, and the Agrianians, he marched away thence against the Cilicians, who were holding the mountains; and in seven days in all, having expelled some by force, and having brought the rest over by composition, he marched back to Soli. Here he ascertained that Ptolemy and Asander had gained the mastery over Orontobates the Persian who was guarding the citadel of Halicarn assus, and was also holding Myndus, Caunus, Thera, and Callipolis. He had also brought Cos and Triopium over to his side. They wrote to inform him that Orontobates had been worsted in a great battle; that about 700 of his infantry and 50 of his cavalry had been killed, and not less than 1,000 taken prisoners. In Soli Alexander offered sacrifice to Asclepius, conducting a procession of the entire army, celebrating a torch race, and superintending a gymnastic and musical contest. He granted the Solians the privilege of a democratical constitution; and then marched away to Tarsus, despatching the cavalry under Philotas to march through the Aleian plain to the river Pyramus. But he himself with the infantry and the royal squadron of cavalry came to Magarsus, where he offered sacriftée to the Magarsian Athena. Thence he marched to Mallus, where he rendered to Amphilochus the sacrificial honours due to a hero. He also arrested those who were creating a sedition among the citizens, and thus put a stop to it. He remitted the tribute which they were paying to King Darius, because the Mallotes were a colony of the Argives, and he himself claimed to have sprung from Argos, being one of the descendants of Heracles.
6. ALEXANDER ADVANCES TO MYRIANDRUS – DARIUS MARCHES AGAINST HIM
While he was still at Mallus, he was informed that Darius was encamped with all his force at Sochi, a place in the land of Assyria, distant about two days' march from the Assyrian Gates. Then indeed he collected the Companions and told them what was reported about Darius and his army. They urged him to lead them on as they were, without delay. At that time he commended them, and broke up the conference; but next day he led them forward against Darius and the Persians. On the second day he passed through the Gates and encamped near the city of Myriandrus; but in the night a heavy tempest and a violent storm of wind and rain occurred which detained him in his camp. Darius, on the other hand, up to this time was delaying with his army, having chosen a plain in the land of Assyria which stretched out in every direction, suitable for the immense size of his army and convenient for the evolutions of cavalry. Amyntas, son of Antiochus, the deserter from Alexander, advised him not to abandon this position, because the open country was favourable to the great multitude of the Persians and the vast quantity of their baggage. So Darius remained. But as Alexander made a long stay at Tarsus on account of his illness, and not a short one at Soli, where he offered sacrifice and conducted his army in proces sion, and moreover spent some time in marching against the Cilician mountaineers, Darius was induced to swerve from his resolution. He was also not unwilling to be led to form whatever decision was most agreeable to his own wishes; and being urged on by those who for the gratification of pleasure associated with him, and will associate for their injury with those who for the time are reigning, he came to the conclusion that Alexander was no longer desirous of advancing further, but was shrinking from an encounter on learning that Darius himself was marching against him. On all sides they were urging him on, asserting that he would trample down the army of the Macedonians with his cavalry. Nevertheless, Amyntas, at any rate , confidently afffirmed that Alexander would certainly come to any place where he heard Darius might be; and he exhorted him by all means to stay where he was. But the worse advice, because at the immediate time it was more pleasant to hear, prevailed; moreover perhaps he was led by some divine influence into that locality where he derived little advantage from his cavalry and from the very number of his men, javelins and bows, and where he could not even exhibit the mere magnificence of his army, but surrendered to Alex ander and his troops an easy victory. For it was already decreed by fate that the Persians should be deprived of the rule of Asia by the Mace donians, just as the Medes had been deprived of it by the Persians, and still earlier the Assyrians by the Medes.
7. DARIUS AT ISSUS - ALEXANDER'S SPEECH TO HIS ARMY
Darius crossed the mountain range by what are called the Amanic Gates, and advancing towards Issus, came without being noticed to the rear of Alexander. Having reached Issus, he captured as many of the Macedonians as had been left behind there on account of illness. These he cruelly mutilated and slew. Next day he proceeded to the river Pinarus. As soon as Alexander heard that Darius was in his rear, because the news did not seem to him trustworthy, he embarked some of the Companions in a ship with thirty oars, and sent them back to Issus, to observe whether the report was true. The men who sailed in the thirty-oared ship discovered the Persians encamped there more easily, because the sea in this part takes the form of a bay. They therefore brought back word to Alexander that Darius was at hand. Alexander then called together the generals, the commanders of cavalry, and the leaders of the Grecian allies, and exhorted them to take courage from the dangers which they had already surmounted, asserting that the struggle would be between themselves who had been previously victorious and a foe who had already been beaten; and that the deity was acting the part of general on their behalf better than himself, by putting it into the mind of Darius to move his forces from the spacious plain and shut them up in a narrow place, where there was suffficient room for themselves to deepen their phalanx by marching from front to rear, but where their vast multitude would be useless to the enemy in the battle. He added that their foes were similar to them neither in strength nor in courage; for the Macedonians, who had long been practised in warlike toils accompanied with danger, were coming into close conflict with Persians and Medes, men who had become enervated by a long course of luxurious ease; and, to crown all, they, being freemen, were about to engage in battle with men who were slaves. He said, moreover, that the Greeks who were coming into conflict with Greeks would not be fighting for the same objects; for those with Darius were braving danger for pay, and that pay not high; whereas, those on their side were voluntarily defending the interests of Greece. Again, of foreigners, the Thracians, Paeonians, Illyrians, and Agrianians, who were the most robust and warlike of men in Europe, were about to be arrayed against the most sluggish and effeminate races of Asia. In addition to all this, Alexander was commanding in the field against Darius. These things he enumerated as evidences of their superiority in the struggle; and then he began to point out the great rewards they would win from the danger to be incurred. For he told them that on that occasion they would overcome, not merely the viceroys of Darius, nor the cavalry drawn up at the Granicus, nor the 20,000 Grecian mercenaries, but all the available forces of the Persians and Medes, as well as all the other races subject to them dwelling in Asia, and the Great King present in person. After this conflict nothing would be left for them to do, except to take possession of all Asia, and to put an end to their many labours. In addition to this, he reminded them of their brilliant achievements in their collective capacity in days gone by; and if any man had individually performed any distinguished feat of valour from love of glory, he mentioned him by name in commendation of the deed. He then recapitulated as modestly as possible his own daring deeds in the various battles. He is also said to have reminded them of Xenophon and the I0,000 men who accompanied him, asserting that the latter were in no way comparable with them either in number or in general excellence. Besides, they had had with them neither Thessalian, Boeotian, Peloponnesian, Macedonian, or Thracian horsemen, nor any of the other kinds of cavalry which were in the Macedonian army; nor had they any archers or slingers except a few Cretans and Rhodians, and even these were got ready by Xenophon on the spur of the moment in the very crisis of danger. And yet they put the king and all his forces to rout close to Babylo n itself, and succeeded in reaching the Euxine Sea after defeating all the races which lay in their way as they were marching down thither. He also adduced whatever other arguments were suitable for a great commander to use in order to encourage brave men in such a critical moment before the perils of battle. They urged him to lead them against the foe without delay, coming from all sides to grasp the king's right hand, and encouraging him by their words.
8. ARRANGEMENT OF THE HOSTILE ARMIES
Alexander then ordered his soldiers to take their dinner, and having sent a few of his horsemen and archers forward to the Gates to recon noitre the road in the rear, he took the whole of his army and marched in the night to occupy the pass again. When about midnight he had again got possession of it, he caused the army to rest the remainder of the night there upon the rocks, having posted vigilant sentries. At the approach of dawn he began to descend from the pass along the road; and as long as the space was narrow everywhere, he led his army in column, but when the mountains parted so as to leave a plain between them, he kept on opening out the column into the phalanx, marching one line of heavy armed infantry after another up into line towards the mountain on the right and towards the sea on the left. Up to this time his cavalry had been ranged behind the infantry; but when they advanced into the open country, he began to draw up his army in order of battle. First, upon the right wing near the mountain he placed his infantry guard and the shield-bearers, under the command of Nicanor, son of Parmenio; next to these the regiment of Coenus, and close to them that of Perdiccas. These troops were posted as far as the middle of the heavy-armed infantry to one beginning from the right. On the left wing first stood the regiment of Amyntas, then that of Ptolemy, and close to this that of Meleager. The infantry on the left had been placed under the command of Craterus; but Parmenio held the chief direction of the whole left wing. This general had been ordered not to abandon the sea, so that they might not be surrounded by the foreigners, who were likely to outflank them on all sides by their superior numbers.
But as soon as Darius was certified of Alexander's approach for battle, he conveyed about 30,000 of his cavalry and with them 20,000 of his light-armed infantry across the river Pinarus, in order that he might be able to draw up the rest of his forces with ease. Of the heavy armed infan try, he placed first the 30,000 Greek mercenaries to oppose the phalanx of the Macedonians, and on both sides of these he placed 60,000 of the men called Cardaces, who were also heavy-armed infantry. For the place where they were posted was able to contain only this number in a single phalanx. He also posted 20,000 men near the mountain on their left and facing Alexander's right. Some of these troops were also in the rear of Alexander's army; for the mountain near which they were posted in one part sloped a great way back and formed a sort of bay, like a bay in the sea, and afterwards bending forwards caused the men who had been posted at the foot of it to be behind Alexander's right wing. The remaining multitude of Darius's light-armed and heavy-armed infantry was marshalled by nations to an unserviceable depth and placed behind the Grecian mercenaries and the Persian army arranged in phalanx. The whole of the army with Darius was said to number about 600,000 fighting men.
As Alexander advanced, he found that the ground spread out a little in breadth, and he accordingly brought up his horsemen, both those called Companions, and the Thessalians as well as the Macedonians, and posted them with himself on the right wing. The Peloponnesians and the rest of the allied force of Greeks he sent to Parmenio on the left. When Darius had marshalled his phalanx, by a pre-concerted signal he recalled the cavalry which he had posted in front of the river for the express purpose of rendering the arranging of his army easy. Most of these he placed on the right wing near the sea facing Parmenio; because here the ground was more suitable for the evolutions of cavalry. A certain part of them also he led up to the mountain towards the left. But when they were seen to be useless there on account of the narrowness of the ground, he ordered most of these also to ride round to the right wing and join their comrades there. Darius himself occupied the centre of the whole army, inasmuch as it was the custom for the kings of Persia to t ake up that position, the reason of which arrangement has been recorded by Xenophon, son of Gryllus.
9. ALEXANDER CHANGES THE DISPOSITION OF HIS FORCES
Meantime when Alexander perceived that nearly all the Persian cavalry had changed their ground and gone to his left towards the sea, and that on his side only the Peloponnesians and the rest of the Grecian cavalry were posted there, he sent the Thessalian cavalry thither with speed, ordering them not to ride along before the front of the whole array, lest they should be seen by the enemy to be shifting their ground, but to proceed without being seen in the rear of the phalanx. In front of the cavalry on the right, he posted the lancers under the command of Protomachus, and the Paeonians under that of Aristo; and of the infantry, the archers under the direction of Antiochus, and the Agrianians under that of Attalus. Some of the cavalry and archers also he drew up so as to form an angle with the centre towards the mountain which was in the rear; so that on the right, his phalanx had been drawn up separated into two wings, the one fronting Darius and the main body of Persians beyond the river, and the other facing those who had been posted at the mountain in their rear. On the left wing the infantry consisting of the Cretan archers and the Thracians under command of Sitalces were posted in front; and before these the cavalry towards the left. The Grecian mercenaries were drawn up as a reserve for all of them. When he perceived that the phalanx towards the right was too thin, and it seemed likely that the Persians would outflank him here considerably, he ordered two squadrons of the Companion cavalry, the Anthemusian, of which Peroedas, son of Menestheus, was captain, and that which was called Leugaean, under the command of Pantordanus, son of Cleander, to proceed from the centre to the right without being seen. Having also marched the archers, part of the Agrianians and some of the Grecian mercenaries up to his right in the front, he extended his phalanx beyond the wing of the Persians. But when those who had been posted upon the mountains did not descend, a charge was made by a few of the Agrianians and archers at Alexander's order, by which they were easily put to the rout from the foot of the mountain. As they fled to the summit he decided that he could make use of the men who had been drawn up to keep these in check, to fill up the ranks of his phalanx. He thought it quite sufficient to post 300 horsemen to watch the men on the mountain.
10. BATTLE OF ISSUS
Having thus marshalled his men, he caused them to rest for some time, and then led them forward, as he had resolved that their advance should be very slow. For Darius was no longer leading the foreigners against him, as he had arranged them at first, but he remained in his position, upon the bank of the river, which was in many parts steep and precipitous; and in certain places, where it seemed more easy to ascend, he extended a stockade along it. By this it was at once evident to Alexander's men that Darius had become cowed in spirit. But when the armies were at length close to each other, Alexander rode about in every direction to exhort his troops to show their valour, mentioning with befitting epithets the names, not only of the generals, but also those of the captains of cavalry and infantry, and of the Grecian mercenaries as many as were more distinguished either by reputation or any deed of valour. From all sides arose a shout not to delay but to attack the enemy. At first he still led them on in close array with measured step, although he had the forces of Darius already in distant view, lest by a too hasty march any part of the phalanx should fluctuate from the line and get separated from the rest. But when they came within range of darts, Alexander himself and those around him, being posted on the right wing, dashed first into the river with a run, in order to alarm the Persians by the rapidity of their onset, and by coming sooner to close conflict to avoid being much injured by the archers. And it turned out just as Alexander had conjectured; for as soon as the battle became a hand-to-hand one, the part of the Persian army stationed on the left wing was put to rout; and here Alexander and his men won a brilliant victory. But the Grecian mercenaries serving under Darius attacked the Macedonians at the point where they saw their phalanx especially disordered. For the Macedonian phalanx had been broken and had disjoined towards the right wing, because Alexander had dashed into th e river with eagerness , and engaging in a hand-to-hand conflict was already driving back the Persians posted there; but the Macedonians in the centre had not prosecuted their task with equal eagerness; and finding many parts of the bank steep and precipitous, they were unable to preserve the front of the phalanx in the same line. Here then the struggle was desperate; the Grecian mercenaries of Darius fighting in order to push the Macedonians back into the river, and regain the victory for their allies who were already flying; the Macedonians struggling in order not to fall short of Alexander's success, which was already manifest, and not to tarnish the glory of the phalanx, which up to that time had been commonly pro claimed invincible. Moreover the feeling of rivalry which existed between the Grecian and Macedonian races inspired each side in the conflict. Here fell Ptolemy, son of Seleucus, after proving himself a valiant man, besides about 120 other Macedonians of no mean repute.
11. DEFEAT AND FLIGHT OF DARIUS
Hereupon the regiments on the right wing, perceiving that the Persians opposed to them had already been put to rout, wheeled round towards the Grecian mercenaries of Darius and their own hard-pressed detachment. Having driven the Greeks away from the river, they extended their phalanx beyond the Persian army on the side which had been broken, and attacking the Greeks on the flank, were already beginning to cut them up. However the Persian cavalry which had been posted opposite the Thessalians did not remain on the other side of the river during the struggle, but came through the water and made a vigorous attack upon the Thessalian squadrons. In this place a fierce cavalry battle ensued; for the Persians did not give way until they perceived that Darius had fled and the Grecian mercenaries had been cut up by the phalanx and severed from them. Then at last there ensued a decided flight and on all sides. The horses of the Persians suffered much injury in the retreat, because their riders were heavily armed; and the horsemen themselves, being so many in number and retreating in panic terror without any regard to order along narrow roads, were trampled on and injured no less by each other than by the pursuing enemy. The Thessalians also followed them up with vigour, so that the slaughter of the cavalry in the flight was no less than it would have been if they had been infantry.
But as soon as the left wing of Darius was terrified and routed by Alexander, and the Persian king perceived that this part of his army was severed from the rest, without any further delay he began to flee in his chariot along with the first, just as he was. He was conveyed safely in the chariot as long as he met with level ground in his flight; but when he lighted upon ravines and other rough ground, he left the chariot there, divesting himself both of his shield and Median mantle. He even left his bow in the chariot; and mounting a horse continued his flight. The night, which came on soon after, alone rescued him from being captured by Alexander; for as long as there was daylight the latter kept up the pursuit at full speed. But when it began to grow dark and the things before the feet became invisible, he turned back again to the camp, after capturing the chariot of Darius with the shield, the Median mantle, and the bow in it. For his pursuit had been too slow for him to overtake Darius, because, though he wheeled round at the first breaking asunder of the phalanx, yet he did not turn to pursue him until he observed that the Grecian mercenaries and the Persian cavalry had been driven away from the river.
Of the Persians were killed Arsames, Rheomithres, and Atizyes, three of the men who had commanded the cavalry at the Granicus. Sabaces, viceroy of Egypt, and Bubaces, one of the Persian dignitaries, were also killed, besides about I00,000 of the private soldiers, among them being more than I0,000 cavalry. So great was the slaughter that Ptolemy, son of Lagus, who then accompanied Alexander, says that the men who were with them pursuing Darius, coming in the pursuit to a ravine, passed over it upon the corpses. The camp of Darius was taken forthwith at the first assault, containing his mother, his wife, who was also his sister, and his infant son. His two daughters, and a few other women, wives of Persian peers, who were in attendance upon them, were likewise cap tured. For the other Persians happened to have despatched their women along with the rest of their property to Damascus; because Darius had sent to that city the greater part of his money and all the other things which the Great King was in the habit of taking with him as necessary for his luxurious mode of living, even though he was going on a military expedition. The consequence was, that in the camp no more than 3,000 talents were captured; but soon after, the money in Damascus was also seized by Parmenio, who was despatched thither for that very purpose. Such was the result of this famous battle which was fought in the month Maimacterion, when Nicocrates w as archon of the Athenians.
12. KIND TREATMENT OF DARIUS'S FAMILY
The next day, Alexander, though suffering from a wound which he had received in the thigh from a sword, visited the wounded, and having collected the bodies of the slain, he gave them a splendid burial with all his forces most brilliantly marshalled in order of battle. He also spoke with eulogy to those whom he himself had recognized performing any gallant deed in the battle, and also to those whose exploits he had learnt by report fully corroborated. He likewise honoured each of them individually with a gift of money in proportion to his desert. He then appointed Balacrus, son of Nicanor, one of the royal body-guards, vice roy of Cilicia; and in his place among the body-guards he chose Menes, son of Dionysius. In the place of Ptolemy, son of Seleucus, who had been killed in the battle, he appointed Polysperchon, son of Simmias, to the command of a brigade. He remitted to the Solians the fifty talents which were still due of the money imposed on them as a fine, and he gave them back their hostages.
Nor did he treat the mother, wife, and children of Darius with neglect; for some of those who have written Alexander's history say that on the very night in which he returned from the pursuit of Darius, entering the Persian king's tent, which had been selected for his use, he heard the lamentation of women and other noise of a similar kind not far from the tent. Inquiring therefore who the women were, and why they were in a tent so near, he was answered by some one as follows, "O king, the mother, wife, and children of Darius are lamenting for him as slain, since they have been informed that you have his bow and his royal mantle, and that his shield has been brought back." When Alexander heard this, he sent Leonnatus, one of his Companions, to them, with injunctions to tell them, "Darius is still alive; in his flight he left his arms and mantle in the chariot; and these are the only things of his that Alexander has." Leonnatus entered the tent and told them the news about Darius, saying, moreover, that Alexander would allow them to retain the state and retinue befitting their royal rank, as well as the title of queens; for he had not undertaken the war against Darius from a feeling of hatred, but he had conducted it in a legitimate manner for the empire of Asia. Such are the statements of Ptolemy and Aristobulus. But there is another report, to the effect that on the following day Alexander himself went into the tent, accompanied alone by Hephaestion one of his Companions. The mother of Darius, being in doubt which of them was the king (for they had both arrayed themselves in the same style of dress), went up to Hephaestion, because he appeared to her the taller of the two, and prostrated herself before him. But when he drew back, and one of her attendants pointed out Alexander, saying he was the king, she was ashamed of her mistake, and was going to retire. But the king told her she had made no mistake, for Hephaestion was also Alexander. This I record neither being sure of its truth nor thinking it altogeth er unreliable. If it really occurred, I commend Alexander for his compassionate treatment of the women, and the confidence he felt in his companion, and the honour bestowed on him; but if it merely seems probable to historians that Alexander would have acted and spoken thus, even for this reason I think him worthy of commendation.
CHAPTER XIII. FLIGHT OF MACEDONIAN DESERTERS INTO EGYPT.—PROCEEDINGS OF AGIS, KING OF SPARTA.—ALEXANDER OCCUPIES PHOENICIA.
DARIUS lied through the night with a few attendants; but next day, picking up as he went along the Persians and Grecian mercenaries who had come safely out of the battle, he had in all 4,000 men under his command. He then made a forced march towards the city of Thapsacus and the river Euphrates, in order to put that river as soon as possible between himself and Alexander. But Amyntas, son of Antiochus, Thymondas, son of Mentor, Aristoniedes the Pheraean, and Bianor the Acarnanian, all being deserters, fled without delay from the posts assigned them in the battle, with about 8,ooo soldiers under their command, and passing through the mountains, they arrived at Tripolis in Phoenicia. There they found the ships hauled up on shore
in which they had previously been transported from Lesbos; they launched as many of these vessels as they thought sufficient to convey them, and the rest they burnt there in the docks, in order not to supply their enemy with the means of quickly pursuing them. They fled first to Cyprus, thence to Egypt; where Amyntas shortly after, meddling in some political dispute, was killed by the natives.
Meantime Pharnabazus and Autophradates were staying near Chios; then having established a garrison in this island they despatched some of their ships to Cos and Halicarnassus, and with 100 of their best sailing vessels they put to sea themselves and landed at Siphnus. And Agis, king of the Lacedaemonians,’ came to them with one Erireme, both to ask for money to carry on the war, and also to urge them to send with him into the Peloponnese as large a force both naval and military as they could. At this time news reached them of the battle which had been fought at Issus; and
Bei ng alarmed at the report, Pharnabazus started off to Chios with twelve triremes and 1,500 Grecian mercenaries, for fear that the Chians might attempt to effect a revolution when they received the news of the Persian defeat. Agis, having received from Autophradates thirty talents of silver and ten triremes, despatched Hippias to lead these ships to his brother Agesilaus at Taenarum, ordering him also to instruct Agesilaus to give full pay to the sailors and then to sail as quickly as possible to Crete, in order to set things in order there. For a time he himself remained there among the islands, but afterwards joined Autophradates at Halicarnassus.
Alexander appointed Menon, son of Cerdimmas, viceroy of Coele-Syria, giving him the cavalry of the Grecian allies to guard the country. He then went in person towards Phoenicia; and on the march he was met by Strato, son of Gerostratus, king of the Aradians and of the people living near Aradus.’ But Gerostratus himself was serving in the fleet with Autophradates, as were also the other kings both of the Phoenicians and the Cyprians. When Strato fell in with Alexander, he placed a golden crown upon his head, promising to surrender to him both the island of Aradus,and the great and prosperous city of Marathus, situated on the mainland right opposite Aradus; also Sigon, the city of Mariamme, and all the other places under his own dominion and that of his father.
CHAPTER XIV. DARIUS’S LETTER, AND ALEXANDER’S REPLY.
WHILE Alexander was still in Marathus, ambassadors came from Darius bringing a letter, entreating him to give up to him his mother, wife, and children. They were also in. structed to support this petition by word of mouth. The letter pointed out to him that friendship and alliance had subsisted between Philip and Artaxerxes ; and that when Arses, son of Artaxerxes, ascended the throne, Philip was the first to practise injustice towards him, though he had suffered no injury from the Persians. Alexander also, from the time when Darius began to reign over the Persians, had not sent any one to him to confirm the friendship and alliance which had so long existed, but had crossed over into Asia with his army and had inflicted much injury upon the Persians. For this reason he had come down in person to defend his country and to preserve the empire of his fathers. As to the battle, it had been decided as seemed good to some one of the gods. And now he, a king, begged his captured wife, mother, and children from a king; and he wished to form a friendship with him and become his ally. For this purpose he requested Alexander to send men to him with Menjscus and Arsimas, the messengers who came from the Persians, to receive pledges of fidelity from him and to give them on behalf of Alexander.
To this Alexander wrote a reply, and sent Thersippus with the men who had come from Darius, with instructions to give the letter to Darius, but not to converse about any~ thing. Alexander’s letter ran thus: “Your ancestors came into Macedonia and the rest of Greece and treated us ill, without any previous injury from us. I, having been appointed commander4nchief of the Greeks, and wishing to take revenge on the Persians, crossed over into Asia, hostilities being begun by you. For you sent aid to the Perinthians,’ who were dealing unjustly with my father; and Ochus sent forces into Thrace, which was under our rule. My father was killed by conspirators whom you instigated5 as you have yourself boasted to all in your letters; and after slaying Arses, as well as Bagoas, and unjustly seizing the throne contrary to the law of the Persians, and ruling your subjects unjustly, you sent unfriendly letters about me to the Greeks, urging them to wage war with me. You have also despatched money to the Lacedaemonians, and certain other Greeks; but none of the States received it, except the Lacedaemonians. As your agents corrupted my friends, and were striving to dissolve the league which I had formed among the Greeks, I took the field against you, because you were the party who commenced the hostility. Since I have vanquished your generals and viceroys in the previous battle, and now yourself and your forces in like manner, I am, by the gift of the gods, in possession of your land. As many of the men who fought in your army as were not killed in the battle, but fled to me for refuge, I am protecting; and they are with me, not against their own will, but they are serving in my army as volunteers. Come to me therefore~ since I am lord of all Asia; but if you are afraid you may suffer any harsh treatment from me in case you come to me, send some of your friends to receive pledges of safety from me. Come to me then, and ask for your mother, wife, and children, and anything else you wish. For whatever you ask for you will receiv e; and nothing shall be denied you. But for the future, whenever you send to me, send to me as the king of Asia, and do not address to me your wishes as to an equal; but if you are in need of anything, speak to me as to the man who is lord of all your territories. If you act otherwise, I shah deliberate concerning you as an evil-doer; and if you dispute my right to the kingdom, stay and fight another battle for it; but do not run away. For wherever you may be, I intend to march against you. “ This is the letter which he sent to Darius.