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Titus Livius - The History of Rome: Book 32

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Successes of Titus Quinctius Flamininus against Philip; and of his brother Lucius with the fleet, assisted by Attalus and the Rhodians. Treaty of friendship with the Achaeans. Conspiracy of the slaves discovered and suppressed.

The number of the praetors augmented to six. Defeat of the Insubrian Gauls by Cornelius Cethegus. Treaty of friendship with Nabis, tyrant of Lacedaemon. Capture of several cities in Macedonia.

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The consuls and praetors, having entered upon office on the ides of March, cast lots for the provinces. Italy fell to Lucius Cornelius Lentulus, Macedonia to Publius Villius. Of the praetors, the city jurisdiction fell to Lucius Quinctius, Ariminum to Cneius Baebius, Sicily to Lucius Valerius, Sardinia to Lucius Villius. The consul Lentulus was ordered to levy new legions; Villius, to receive the army from Publius Sulpicius; and, to complete its number, power was given him to raise as many men as he thought proper. To the praetor Baebius were decreed the legions which Caius Aurelius, late consul, had commanded, with directions that he should keep them in their present situation, until the consul should come with the new army to supply their place; and that, on his arriving in Gaul, all the soldiers who had served out their time should be sent home, except five thousand of the allies, which would be sufficient to protect the province round Ariminum. The command was continued to the praetors of the former year; to Cneius Sergius, that he might superintend the distribution of land to the soldiers who had served for many years in Spain, Sicily, and Sardinia; to Quintus Minucius, that he might finish the inquiries concerning the conspiracies in Bruttium, which, while praetor, he had managed with care and fidelity. That he should also send to Locri, to suffer punishment, those who had been convicted of sacrilege, and who were then in chains at Rome; and that he should take care, that whatever had been carried away from the temple of Proserpine should be replaced with expiations.

The Latin festival was repeated in pursuance of a decree of the pontiffs, because ambassadors from Ardea had complained to the senate, that during the said solemnity they had not been supplied with meat as usual on the Alban mount. From Suessa an account was brought, that two of the gates, and the wall between them, had been struck with lightning. Messengers from Formiae related, that the temple of Jupiter had also been struck by lightning; from Ostia, likewise, news came of the like accident having happened to the temple of Jupiter there; it was said, too, that the temples of Apollo and Sancus, at Veliternum, were struck in like manner; and that in the temple of Hercules, hair had grown (on the statue). A letter was received from Quintus Minucius, propraetor, from Bruttium, that a foal had been born with five feet, and three chickens with three feet each. Afterwards a letter was brought from Macedonia, from Publius Sulpicius, proconsul, in which, among other matters, it was mentioned, that a laurel tree had sprung up on the poop of a ship of war. On occasion of the former prodigies, the senate had voted, that the consuls should offer sacrifices with the greater victims to such gods as they thought proper. On account of the last prodigy, alone, the aruspices were called before the senate, and, in pursuance of their answer, the people were ordered by proclamation to perform a supplication for one day, and worship was solemnized at all the shrines.


This year, the Carthaginians brought to Rome the first payment of the silver imposed on them as a tribute; and the quaestors having reported, that it was not of the proper standard, and that, on the assay, it wanted a fourth part, they made up the deficiency with money borrowed at Rome. On their requesting that the senate would be pleased to order their hostages to be restored to them, a hundred were given up, and hopes were held out with relation to the rest, if they remained in fidelity (to the treaty). They then further requested, that the remaining hostages might be removed from Norba, where they were ill accommodated, to some other place, and they were permitted to remove to Signia and Ferentinum. The request of the people of Gades was likewise complied with: that a governor should not be sent to their city; being contrary to what had been agreed with them by Lucius Marcius Septimus, when they came under the protection of the Roman people. Deputies from Narnia, complaining that they had not their due number of settlers, and that several who were not of their community, had crept in among them, and were conducting themselves as colonists, Lucius Cornelius, the consul, was ordered to appoint three commissioners to adjust those matters. The three appointed were, Publius and Sextus Aelius, both surnamed Paetus, and Caius Cornelius Lentulus. The favour granted to the Narnians, of filling up their number of colonists, was refused to the people of Cossa, who applied for it.


The consuls, having finished the business that was to be done at Rome, set out for their provinces. Publius Villius, on coming into Macedonia, found the soldiers in a violent mutiny, which had been previously excited, and not sufficiently repressed at the commencement. They were the two thousand who, after Hannibal had been vanquished, had been transported from Africa to Sicily, and then, in about a year after, into Macedonia, as volunteers; they denied, however, that this was done with their consent, affirming, that "they had been put on board the ships, by the tribunes, contrary to their remonstrances; but, in what manner soever they had become engaged in that service, whether it had been voluntarily undertaken or imposed on them, the time of it was now expired, and it was reasonable that some end should be put to their warfare. For many years they had not seen Italy, but had grown old under arms in Sicily, Africa, and Macedonia; they were now, in short, worn out with labour and fatigue, and were exhausted of their blood by the many wounds they had received." The consul told them, that "the grounds on which they demanded their discharge, appeared to him to be reasonable, if the demand had been made in a moderate manner; but that neither that, nor any other ground, was a justifying cause of mutiny. Wherefore, if they were contented to adhere to their standards, and obey orders, he would write to the senate concerning their release; and that what they desired would more easily be obtained by moderation than by turbulence."


At this time, Philip was pushing on the siege of Thaumaci, with the utmost vigour, by means of mounds and engines, and was ready to bring up the ram to the walls, when he was obliged to relinquish the undertaking by the sudden arrival of the Aetolians, who, under the command of Archidamus, having made their way into the town between the posts of the Macedonians, never ceased, day or night, making continual sallies, sometimes against the guards, sometimes against the works of the besiegers. They were at the same time favoured by the very nature of the place: for Thaumaci stands near the road from Thermopylae, and the Malian bay as you go through Lamia, on a lofty eminence, hanging immediately over the narrow pass which the Thessalians call Caela.[5] After passing through the craggy grounds of Thessaly, the roads are rendered intricate by the windings of the valleys, and on the near approach to the city, such an immense plain opens at once to view, like a vast sea, that the eye can scarcely reach the bounds of the expanse beneath From this surprising prospect it was called Thaumaci.[6] The city itself is secured, not only by the height of its situation, but by its standing on a rock, the stone of which had been cut away on all sides. These difficulties, and the prize not appearing sufficient to recompense so much toil and danger, caused Philip to desist from the attempt. The winter also was approaching; he therefore retired from thence, and led back his troops into winter quarters, in Macedonia.


There, whilst others, glad of any interval of rest, consigned both body and mind to repose, Philip, in proportion as the season of the year had relieved him from the incessant fatigues of marching and fighting, found his care and anxiety increase the more, when he turned his thoughts towards the general issue of the war. He dreaded, not only his enemies, who pressed him hard by land and sea, but also the dispositions, sometimes of his allies, at others of his own subjects, lest the former might be induced, by hopes of friendship with the Romans, to revolt, and the Macedonians themselves be seized with a desire of innovation. Wherefore, he despatched ambassadors to the Achaeans, both to require their oath, (for it had been made an article of their agreement that they should take an oath prescribed by Philip every year,) and at the same time to restore to them Orchomenes, Heraea, and Triphylia. To the Eleans he delivered up Aliphera; which city, they insisted, had never belonged to Triphylia, but ought to be restored to them, having been one of those that were incorporated by the council of the Arcadians for the founding of Megalopolis. These measures had the effect of strengthening his connexion with the Achaeans. The affections of the Macedonians he conciliated by his treatment of Heraclides: for, finding that his having countenanced this man had been the cause to him of the utmost unpopularity, he charged him with a number of crimes, and threw him into chains, to the great joy of the people. It was now, if at any time, that he made preparations for the war with especial energy. He exercised both the Macedonian and mercenary troops in arms, and in the beginning of spring sent Athenagoras, with all the foreign auxiliaries and what light-armed troops there were, through Epirus into Chaonia, to seize the pass at Antigonia, which the Greeks called Stena. He followed, in a few days, with the heavy troops: and having viewed every situation in the country, he judged that the most advantageous post for fortifying himself was on the river Aous. This river runs in a narrow vale, between two mountains, one of which the natives call Aeropus, and the other Asnaus, affording a passage of very little breadth along the bank. He ordered Athenagoras, with the light infantry, to take possession of Asnaus, and to fortify it. His own camp he pitched on Aeropus. Those places where the rocks were steep, were defended by guards of a few soldiers only; the less secure he strengthened, some with trenches, some with ramparts, and others with towers. A great number of engines, also, were disposed in proper places, that, by means of weapons thrown from these, they might keep the enemy at a distance. The royal pavilion was pitched on the outside of the rampart, on the most conspicuous eminence, in order, by this show of confidence, to dishearten the foe, and raise the hopes of his own men.


The consul having received intelligence from Charopus of Epirus, on what pass the king had taken his position with his army, as soon as the spring began to open, left Corcyra, where he had passed the winter, and, sailing over to the continent, led on his army against the enemy. When he came within about five miles of the king's camp, leaving the legions in a strong post, he went forward in person with some light troops, to view the nature of the country; and, on the day following, held a council, in order to determine whether he should attempt a passage through the defiles occupied by the enemy, notwithstanding the great labour and danger which the proposal involved, or lead round his forces by the same road through which Sulpicius had penetrated into Macedonia the year before. The deliberations on this question had lasted several days, when news arrived, that Titus Quinctius had been elected consul; that he had obtained, by lot, Macedonia as his province; and that, hastening his journey, he had already come over to Corcyra. Valerius Antias says, that Villius marched into the defile, and that, as he could not proceed straight forward, because every pass was occupied by the king, he followed the course of a valley, through the middle of which the river Aous flows, and having hastily constructed a bridge, passed over to the bank where the king's camp was, and fought a battle with him; that the king was routed and driven out of his camp; that twelve thousand of the enemy were killed, and two thousand two hundred taken, together with a hundred and thirty-two military standards, and two hundred and thirty horses. He adds, that, during the battle, a temple was vowed to Jupiter in case of success. The other historians, both Greek and Latin, (all those at least whose accounts I have read,) affirm that nothing memorable was done by Villius, and that Titus Quinctius, the consul who succeeded him, received from him a war which had yet to be commenced.


During the time of these transactions in Macedonia, the other consul, Lucius Lentulus, who had stayed at Rome, held an assembly for the election of censors. Out of many illustrious men who stood candidates, were chosen Publius Cornelius Scipio Africanus and Publius Aelius Paetus. These, acting together in perfect harmony, read the list of the senate, without passing a censure on any one member; they also let to farm the port-duties at Capua, and at Puteoli, and of the fort situate were the city now stands; enrolling for this latter place three hundred colonists, that being the number fixed by the senate; they also sold the lands of Capua, which lie at the foot of Mount Tifata. About the same time, Lucius Manlius Acidinus, on his return from Spain, was hindered from entering the city in ovation by Marcus Portius Laeca, plebeian tribune, notwithstanding he had obtained permission of the senate: coming, then, into the city in a private character, he conveyed to the treasury one thousand two hundred pounds' weight of silver, and about thirty pounds' weight of gold. During this year, Cneius Baebius Tamphilus, who had succeeded to the government of the province of Gaul, in the room of Caius Aurelius, consul of the year preceding, having, without proper caution, entered the territories of the Insubrian Gauls, was surprised with almost the whole of his army. He lost above six thousand six hundred men,--so great a loss was received from a war which had now ceased to be an object of apprehension. This event called away the consul, Lucius Lentulus, from the city; who, arriving in the province, which was filled with confusion, and taking the command of the army, which he found dispirited by its defeat, severely reprimanded the praetor, and ordered him to quit the province and return to Rome. Neither did the consul himself perform any considerable service, being called home to preside at the elections, which were obstructed by Marcus Fulvius and Manius Curius, plebeian tribunes, who wished to hinder Titus Quinctius Flamininus from standing candidate for the consulship, after passing through the office of quaestor. They alleged, that "the aedileship and praetorship were now held in contempt, and that the nobility did not make their way to the consulship through the regular gradations of offices, thus affording a trial of themselves; but, passing over the intermediate steps, pushed at once from the lowest to the highest." From a dispute in the Field of Mars, the affair was brought before the senate, where it was voted, "that when a person sued for any post, which by the laws he was permitted to hold, the people had the right of choosing whoever they thought proper." To this decision of the senate the tribunes submitted, and thereupon Sextus Aelius Paetus and Titus Quinctius Flamininus were elected consuls. Then was held the election of praetors. The persons chosen were, Lucius Cornelius Merula, Marcus Claudius Marcellus, Marcus Porcius Cato, and Caius Helvius, who had been plebeian aediles. By these the plebeian games were repeated, and, on occasion of the games, a feast of Jupiter was celebrated. The curule aediles, also, Caius Valerius Flaccus, who was flamen of Jupiter, and Caius Cornelius Cethegus, celebrated the Roman games with great magnificence. Servius and Caius Sulpicius Galba, pontiffs, died this year; in their room were substituted Marcus Aemilius Lepidus and Cneius Cornelius Scipio, as pontiffs.


The new consuls, Sextus Aelius Paetus and Titus Quinctius Flamininus, on assuming the administration, convened the senate in the Capitol, and the fathers decreed, that "the consuls should settle between themselves or cast lots for the provinces, Macedonia and Italy. That he to whom Macedonia fell should enlist, as a supplement to the legions, three thousand Roman footmen and three hundred horse, and also five thousand footmen and five hundred horsemen belonging to the Latin confederacy." The army assigned to the other consul was to consist entirely of newly-raised men. Lucius Lentulus, consul of the preceding year, was continued in command, and was ordered not to depart from the province, nor to remove the old army, until the consul should arrive with the new legions. The consuls cast lots for the provinces, and Italy fell to Aelius, Macedonia to Quintius. Of the praetors, the lots gave to Lucius Cornelius Merula the city jurisdiction; to Marcus Claudius, Sicily; to Marcus Porcius, Sardinia; and to Caius Helvius, Gaul. The levying of troops was then begun, for besides the consular armies, the praetors had been ordered also to enlist men: for Marcellus, in Sicily, four thousand foot and three hundred horse of the Latin confederates; for Cato, in Sardinia, three thousand foot and two hundred horse of the same class of soldiers; with directions, that both these praetors, on their arrival in their provinces, should disband the veterans, both foot and horse. The consuls then introduced to the senate ambassadors from king Attalus. These, after representing that their king gave every assistance to the Roman arms on land and sea, with his fleet and all his forces, and had up to that day executed with zeal and obedience every order of the consuls, added, that "they feared it would not be in his power to continue so to do by reason of king Antiochus, for that Antiochus had invaded the kingdom of Attalus, when destitute of protective forces by sea and land. That Attalus, therefore, entreated the conscript fathers, if they chose to employ his army and navy in the Macedonian war, then to send a body of forces to protect his territories; or if that were not agreeable, to allow him to go home to defend his own possessions, with his fleet and troops." The following answer was ordered to be given to the ambassadors: that "it was a cause of gratitude to the senate that Attalus had assisted the Roman commanders with his fleet and other forces. That they would neither send succours to Attalus, against Antiochus, the ally and friend of the Roman people; nor would they detain the auxiliary troops longer than would be convenient to the king. That it was ever a constant rule with the Roman people, to use the aid of others so far only as was agreeable to the will of those who gave it; and even to leave the commencement and the termination of that aid at the discretion of those who desired that the Romans should be benefited by their help. That they would send ambassadors to Antiochus, to represent to him, that Attalus, with his fleet and army, were, at the present, employed by the Roman people against Philip, their common enemy; and that Antiochus would do that which was gratifying to the senate if he abstained from the kingdom of Attalus and desisted from the war; for that it was much to be wished, that kings who were allies and friends to the Roman people should maintain friendship between themselves also."


When the consul Titus Quinctius had finished the levies, in making which he chose principally such as had served in Spain or Africa, that is, soldiers of approved courage, and when hastening to set forward to his province, he was delayed by reports of prodigies, and the expiations of them. There had been struck by lightning the public road at Veii, a temple of Jupiter at Lanuvium, a temple of Hercules at Ardea, with a wall and towers at Capua, also the edifice which is called Alba. At Arretium, the sky appeared as on fire; at Velitrae, the earth, to the extent of three acres, sunk down so as to form a vast chasm. From Suessa Aurunca, an account was brought of a lamb born with two heads; from Sinuessa, of a swine with a human head. On occasion of these ill omens, a supplication of one day's continuance was performed; the consuls gave their attention to divine services, and, as soon as the gods were appeased, set out for their provinces. Aelius, accompanied by Caius Helvius, praetor, went into Gaul, where he put under the command of the praetor the army which he received from Lucius Lentulus, and which he ought to have disbanded, intending to carry on his own operations with the new troops, which he had brought with him; but he effected nothing worth recording. The other consul, Titus Quinctius, setting sail from Brundusium earlier than had been usual with former consuls, reached Corcyra, with, eight thousand foot and eight hundred horse. From this place, he passed over, in a quinquereme, to the nearest part of Epirus, and proceeded, by long journeys, to the Roman camp. Here, having dismissed Villius, and waiting a few days, until the forces from Corcyra should come up and join him, he held a council, to determine whether he should endeavour to force his way straight forward through the camp of the enemy; or whether, without attempting an enterprise of so great difficulty and danger, he should not rather take a circuitous and safe road, so as to penetrate into Macedonia by the country of the Dassaretians and Lycus. The latter plan would have been adopted, had he not feared that, in removing to a greater distance from the sea, the enemy might slip out of his hands; and that if the king should resolve to secure himself in the woods and wilds, as he had done before, the summer might be spun out without any thing being effected. It was therefore determined, be the event what it might, to attack the enemy in their present post, disadvantageous as it was. But they more easily resolved on this measure, than devised any safe or certain method of accomplishing it.


Forty days were passed in view of the enemy, without making any kind of effort. Hence Philip conceived hopes of bringing about a treaty of peace, through the mediation of the people of Epirus; and a council, which was held for the purpose, having appointed Pausanias, the praetor, and Alexander, the master of the horse, as negotiators, they brought the consul and the king to a conference, on the banks of the river Aous, where the channel was narrowest. The sum of the consul's demands was, that the king should withdraw his troops from the territories of the several states; that, to those whose lands and cities he had plundered, he should restore such of their effects as could be found; and that the value of the rest should be estimated by a fair arbitration. Philip answered, that "the cases of the several states differed widely from each other. That such as he himself had seized on, he would set at liberty; but he would not divest himself of the hereditary and just possessions which had been conveyed down to him from his ancestors. If those states, with whom hostilities had been carried on, complained of any losses in the war, he was ready to submit the matter to the arbitration of any state with whom both parties were at peace." To this the consul replied, that "the business required neither judge nor arbitrator: for to whom was it not evident that every injurious consequence of the war was to be imputed to him who first took up arms. And in this case Philip, unprovoked by any, had first commenced hostilities against all." When they next began to treat of those nations which were to be set at liberty, the consul named, first, the Thessalians: on which the king, fired with indignation, exclaimed, "What harsher terms, Titus Quinctius, could you impose on me if I were vanquished?" With these words he retired hastily from the conference, and they were with difficulty restrained by the river which separated them from assaulting each other with missile weapons. On the following day many skirmishes took place between parties sallying from the outposts, in a plain sufficiently wide for the purpose. Afterwards the king's troops drew back into narrow and rocky places, whither the Romans, keenly eager for fighting, penetrated also. These had in their favour order and military discipline, while their arms were of a kind well calculated for protecting their persons. In favour of the enemy were the advantage of ground, and their balistas and catapultas disposed on almost every rock as on walls. After many wounds given and received on both sides, and numbers being slain, as in a regular engagement, darkness put an end to the fight.


While matters were in this state, a herdsman, sent by Charopus, prince of the Epirots, was brought to the consul. He said, that "being accustomed to feed his herd in the forest, then occupied by the king's camp, he knew every winding and path in the neighbouring mountains; and that if the consul thought proper to send some troops with him, he would lead them by a road, neither dangerous nor difficult, to a spot over the enemy's head." When the consul heard these things, he sent to Charopus to inquire if he considered that confidence might be placed in the rustic in so important a matter. Charopus ordered an answer to be returned, that he should give just so much credit to this man's account, as should still leave every thing rather in his own power than in that of the other. Though the consul rather wished than dared to give the intelligence full belief, and though his mind was possessed by mingled emotions of joy and fear, yet being moved by the confidence due to Charopus, he resolved to put to trial the prospect that was held out to him. In order to prevent all suspicion of the matter, during the two following days he carried on attacks against the enemy without intermission, drawing out troops against them in every quarter, and sending up fresh men to relieve the wearied. Then, selecting four thousand foot and three hundred horse, he put them under the command of a military tribune, with directions to advance the horse as far as the nature of the ground allowed; and when they came to places impassable to cavalry, then to post them in some plain; that the infantry should proceed by the road which the guide would show, and that when, according to his promise, they arrived on the height over the enemy's head, then they should give a signal by smoke, but raise no shout, until the tribune should have reason to think that, in consequence of the signal received from him, the battle was begun. He ordered that the march should take place by night, (the moon shining through the whole of it,) and employ the day in taking food and rest. The most liberal promises were made to the guide, provided he fulfilled his engagement; he bound him, nevertheless, and delivered him to the tribune. Having thus sent off this detachment, the Roman general exerted himself only the more vigorously in every part to make himself master of the posts of the enemy.


On the third day, the Roman party made the signal by smoke, to notify that they had gained possession of the eminence to which they had been directed; and then the consul, dividing his forces into three parts, marched up with the main strength of his army, through a valley in the middle, and made the wings on right and left advance to the camp of the enemy. Nor did these advance to meet him with less alacrity. The Roman soldiers, in the ardour of their courage, long maintained the fight on the outside of their works, for they had no small superiority in bravery, in skill, and in the nature of their arms; but when the king's troops, after many of them were wounded and slain, retreated into places secured either by intrenchments or situation, the danger reverted on the Romans, who pushed forward, inconsiderately, into disadvantageous grounds and defiles, out of which a retreat was difficult. Nor would they have extricated themselves without suffering for their rashness, had not the Macedonians, first, by a shout heard in their rear, and then by an attack begun on that quarter, been utterly dismayed and confounded at the unforeseen danger. Some betook themselves to a hasty flight: some, keeping their stand, rather because they could find no way for flight than that they possessed spirit to support the engagement, were cut off by the Romans, who pressed them hard both on front and rear. Their whole army might have been destroyed, had the victors continued their pursuit of the fugitives; but the cavalry were obstructed by the narrowness of the passes and the ruggedness of the ground; and the infantry, by the weight of their armour. The king at first fled with precipitation, and without looking behind him; but afterwards, when he had proceeded as far as five miles, he began, from recollecting the unevenness of the road, to suspect, (what was really the case,) that the enemy could not follow him; and halting, he despatched his attendants through all the hills and valleys to collect the stragglers together. His loss was not more than two thousand men. The rest of his army, coming to one spot, as if they had followed some signal, marched off, in a compact body, towards Thessaly. The Romans, after having pursued the enemy as far as they could with safety, killing such as they overtook, and despoiling the slain, seized and plundered the king's camp; which, even when it had no defenders, was difficult of access. The following night they were lodged within their own trenches.


Next day, the consul pursued the enemy through the same defiles through which the river winds its way among the valleys. The king came on the first day to the camp of Pyrrhus, a place so called in Triphylia, a district of Melotis; and on the following day he reached Mount Lingos, an immense march for his army, but his fear impelled him. This ridge of mountains belongs to Epirus, and stretches along between Macedonia and Thessaly; the side next to Thessaly faces the east, that next to Macedonia the north. These hills are thickly clad with woods, and on their summits have open plains and perennial streams. Here Philip remained encamped for several days, being unable to determine whether he should continue his retreat until he arrived in his own dominions, or whether he might venture back into Thessaly. At length, his decision leaned to leading down his army into Thessaly; and, going by the shortest roads to Tricca, he made hasty excursions from thence to all the cities within his reach. The inhabitants who were able to accompany him he summoned from their habitations, and burned the towns, allowing the owners to take with them such of their effects as they were able to carry; the rest became the prey of the soldiers; nor was there any kind of cruelty which they could have suffered from an enemy, that they did not suffer from these their confederates. These acts were painful to Philip even while he executed them; but as the country was soon to become the property of the foe, he wished to rescue out of it at least the persons of his allies. In this manner were ravaged the towns of Phacium, Iresiae, Euhydrium, Eretria, and Palaepharsalus. On his coming to Pherae, the gates were shut against him, and as it would necessarily occasion a considerable delay if he attempted to take it by force, and as he could not spare time, he dropped the design, and crossed over the mountains into Macedonia; for he had received intelligence, that the Aetolians too were marching towards him. These, on hearing of the battle fought on the banks of the river of Aous, first laid waste the nearest tracts round Sperchia, and Long Come, as they call it, and then, passing over into Thessaly, got possession of Cymine and Angeae at the first assault. From Metropolis they were repulsed by the inhabitants, who, while a part of their army was plundering the country, assembled in a body to defend the city. Afterwards, making an attempt on Callithera, they were attacked by the townsmen in a like manner; but withstood their onset with more steadiness, drove back into the town the party which had sallied, and content with that success, as they had no prospect whatever of taking the place by storm, retired. They then took by assault and sacked the towns of Theuma and Calathas. Acharrae they gained by surrender. Xyniae, through similar apprehensions, was abandoned by the inhabitants. These having forsaken their homes, and going together in a body, fell in with a party which was being marched to Thaumacus for the purpose of protecting their foragers; all of whom, an irregular and unarmed multitude, incapable of any resistance, were put to the sword by the troops. The deserted town of Xyniae was plundered. The Aetolians then took Cyphara, a fort conveniently situated on the confines of Dolopia. All this the Aetolians performed within the space of a few days.


Nor did Amynander and the Athamanians, when they heard of the victory obtained by the Romans, continue inactive. Amynander, having little confidence in his own troops, requested a slight auxiliary force from the consul; and then advancing towards Gomphi, he stormed on his march a place called Pheca, situate between that town and the narrow pass which separates Thessaly from Athamania. He then attacked Gomphi, and though the inhabitants defended it for several days with the utmost vigour, yet, as soon as he had raised the scaling ladders to the walls, the same apprehension (which had operated on others) at length compelled them to surrender. This capture of Gomphi spread the greatest consternation among the Thessalians: their fortresses of Argenta, Pherinus, Thimarus, Lisinae, Stimon, and Lampsus surrendered, one after another, with several other garrisons equally inconsiderable. While the Athamanians and Aetolians, delivered from fear of the Macedonians, converted to their own profit the fruits of another's victory; and Thessaly, ravaged by three armies at once, knew not which to believe its foe or its friend; the consul marched on, through the pass which the enemy's flight had left open, into the country of Epirus. Though he well knew which party the Epirots, excepting their prince Charopus, were disposed to favour, yet as he saw that, even from the motive of atoning for past behaviour, they obeyed his orders with diligence, he regulated his treatment of them by the standard of their present rather than of their former temper, and by this readiness to pardon conciliated their affection for the future. Then, sending orders to Corcyra for the transport ships to come into the Ambrician bay, he advanced by moderate marches, and on the fourth day pitched his camp on Mount Cercetius. Hither he ordered Amynander to come with his auxiliary troops; not so much as being in want of his forces, as that he might avail himself of them as his guides into Thessaly. With the same purpose, many volunteers of the Epirots also were admitted into the corps of auxiliaries.


Of the cities of Thessaly, the first which he attacked was Phaloria. The garrison here consisted of two thousand Macedonians, who at first resisted with the utmost vigour so far as their arms and fortifications could protect them. The assault was carried on without intermission or relaxation either by day or by night, because the consul thought that it would have a powerful effect on the spirits of the rest of the Thessalians, if the first who made trial of the Roman strength were unable to withstand it; and this at the same time subdued the obstinacy of the Macedonians. On the reduction of Phaloria, deputies came from Metropolis and Piera, surrendering those cities. To them, on their petition, pardon was granted: Phaloria was sacked, and burned. He then proceeded to Aeginium; but finding this place so circumstanced, that, even with a moderate garrison, it was safe, after discharging a few weapons against the nearest advanced guard he directed his march towards the territory of Gomphi; and thence descended into the plains of Thessaly. His army was now in want of every thing, because he had spared the lands of the Epirots; he therefore despatched messengers to learn whether the transports had reached Leucas and the Ambracian bay; sending the cohorts, in turn, to Ambracia for corn. Now, the road from Gomphi to Ambracia, although difficult and embarrassed, is very short; so that in a few days, provisions having been conveyed from the sea, his camp was filled with an abundant supply of all necessaries. He then marched to Atrax, which is about ten miles from Larissa, on the river Peneus. The inhabitants came originally from Perrhaebia. The Thessalians, here, were not in the least alarmed at the first coming of the Romans; and Philip, although he durst not himself advance into Thessaly, yet, keeping his stationary camp in the vale of Tempe, whenever any place was attempted by the enemy, he sent up reinforcements as occasion required.


About the time that Quinctius first pitched his camp opposite to Philip's, at the entrance of Epirus, Lucius, the consul's brother, whom the senate had commissioned both to the naval command and to the government of the coast, sailed over with two quinqueremes to Corcyra; and when he learned that the fleet had departed thence, thinking that no delay ought to be incurred, he followed, and overtook it at the island of Zama. Here he dismissed Lucius Apustius, in whose room he had been appointed, and then proceeded to Malea, but at a slow rate, being obliged, for the most part, to tow the vessels which accompanied him with provisions. From Malea, after ordering the rest to follow with all possible expedition, himself, with three light quinqueremes, hastened forward to the Piraeus, and took under his command the ships left there by Lucius Apustius, lieutenant-general, for the protection of Athens. At the same time, two fleets set sail from Asia; one of twenty-four quinqueremes, under king Attalus; the other belonging to the Rhodians, consisting of twenty decked ships, and commanded by Agesimbrotus. These fleets, joining near the island of Andros, sailed for Euboea, which was separated from them only by a narrow strait. They first ravaged the lands belonging to Carystus; but, judging that city too strong, in consequence of a reinforcement hastily sent from Chalcis, they bent their course to Eretria. Lucius Quinctius also, on hearing of the arrival of king Attalus, came thither with the ships which had lain at the Piraeus; having left orders, that his own ships should, as they arrived, follow him to Euboea. The siege of Eretria was now pushed forward with the utmost vigour; for the three combined fleets carried machines and engines, of all sorts, for the demolition of towns, and the adjacent country offered abundance of timber for the construction of new works. At the beginning the townsmen defended their walls with a good degree of spirit; afterwards, when they felt the effects of fatigue, a great many being likewise wounded, and a part of the wall demolished by the enemy's works, they became disposed to capitulate. But they had a garrison of Macedonians, of whom they stood in no less dread than of the Romans; and Philocles, the king's general, sent frequent messages from Chalcis, that he would bring them succour in due time, if they could hold out the siege. The hope of this, in conjunction with their fears, obliged them to protract the time longer than was consistent either with their wishes or their strength. However, having learned soon after that Philocles had been repulsed in the attempt, and forced to fly back, in disorder, to Chalcis, they instantly sent deputies to Attalus, to beg pardon and protection. While intent on the prospect of peace, they executed with less energy the duties of war, and kept armed guards in that quarter only where the breach had been made in the wall, neglecting all the rest; Quinctius made an assault by night on the side where it was least apprehended, and carried the town by scalade. The whole multitude of the townsmen, with their wives and children, fled into the citadel, but soon after surrendered themselves prisoners. The quantity of money, of gold and silver, taken was not great. Of statues and pictures, the works of ancient artists, and other ornaments of that kind, a greater number was found than was proportionate either to the size of the city, or its opulence in other particulars.


The design on Carystus was then resumed, and the fleets sailed thither; on which the whole body of the inhabitants, before the troops were disembarked, deserted the city and fled into the citadel, whence they sent deputies to beg protection from the Roman general. To the townspeople life and liberty were immediately granted; and it was ordered, that the Macedonians should pay a ransom of three hundred drachmas[7] a head, deliver up their arms, and quit the country. After being ransomed for the said amount, they were transported, unarmed, to Boeotia. The combined fleets having, in the space of a few days, taken these two important cities of Euboea, sailed round Sunium, a promontory of Attica, and steered their course to Cenchreae, the grand mart of the Corinthians. In the mean time, the consul found the siege of Atrax more tedious and severe than had been universally expected, and the enemy resisted in the way which they had least anticipated. He had supposed that the whole of the trouble would be in demolishing the wall, and that if he could once open a passage for his soldiers into the city, the consequence would then be, the flight and slaughter of the enemy, as usually happens on the capture of towns. But when, on a breach being made in the wall by the rams, and when the soldiers, by mounting over the ruins, had entered the place, this proved only the beginning, as it were, of an unusual and fresh labour. For the Macedonians in garrison, who were both chosen men and many in number, supposing that they would be entitled to extraordinary honour if they should maintain the defence of the city by means of arms and courage, rather than by the help of walls, formed themselves in a compact body, strengthening their line by an uncommon number of files in depth. These, when they saw the Romans entering by the breaches, drove them back, so that they were entangled among the rubbish, and with difficulty could effect a retreat. This gave the consul great uneasiness; for he considered such a disgrace, not merely as it retarded the reduction of a single city, but as likely to affect materially the whole process of the war, which in general depends much on the influence of events in themselves unimportant. Having therefore cleared the ground, which was heaped up with the rubbish of the half-ruined wall, he brought up a tower of extraordinary height, consisting of many stories, and which carried a great number of soldiers. He likewise sent up the cohorts in strong bodies one after another, to force their way, if possible, through the wedge of the Macedonians, which is called a phalanx. But in such a confined space, (for the wall was thrown down to no great extent,) the enemy had the advantage, both in the kind of weapons which they used, and in the manner of fighting. When the Macedonians, in close array, stretched out before them their long spears against the target fence which was formed by the close position of their antagonists' shields, and when the Romans, after discharging their javelins without effect, drew their swords, these could neither press on to a closer combat, nor cut off the heads of the spears; and if they did cut or break off any, the shaft, being sharp at the part where it was broken, filled up its place among the points of those which were unbroken, in a kind of palisade. Besides this, the parts of the wall still standing rendered both the flanks of the Macedonians secure, who were not obliged, either in retreating or in advancing to an attack, to pass through a long space, which generally occasions disorder in the ranks. An accidental circumstance also helped to confirm their courage: for as the tower was moved along a bank of not sufficiently solid soil, one of the wheels sinking into a rut, made the tower lean in such a manner that it appeared to the enemy as if falling, and threw the soldiers posted on it into consternation and affright.


As none of his attempts met any success, the consul was very unwilling to allow such a comparison to be exhibited between the two classes of soldiery and their respective weapons; at the same time, he could neither see any prospect of reducing the place speedily, nor any means of subsisting in winter, at such a distance from the sea, and in regions desolated by the calamities of war. He therefore raised the siege; and as, along the whole coast of Acarnania and Aetolia, there was no port capable of containing all the transports that brought supplies to the army, nor any place which afforded lodgings to the legions, he pitched on Anticyra, in Phocis on the Corinthian gulf, as most commodiously situated for his purpose. There the legions would be at no great distance from Thessaly, and the places belonging to the enemy; while they would have in front Peloponnesus, separated from them by a narrow sea; on their rear, Aetolia and Acarnania; and on their sides, Locris and Boeotia. Phanotea in Phocis he took without resistance at the first assault. The siege of Anticyra gave him not much delay. Then Ambrysus and Hyampolis were taken. Daulis, being situated on a lofty eminence, could not be reduced either by scalade or works: he therefore provoked the garrison, by missile weapons, to make sallies from out the town. Then by flying at one time, pursuing at another, and engaging in slight skirmishes, he led them into such a degree of carelessness, and such a contempt of him, that at length the Romans, mixing with them as they ran back, entered by the gates, and stormed the town. Six other fortresses in Phocis, of little consequence, came into his hands, through fear rather than by force of arms. Elatia shut its gates, and the inhabitants seemed determined not to admit within their walls either the army or the general of the Romans, unless compelled by force.


While the consul was employed in the siege of Elatia, a prospect opened to him of effecting a business of much more importance; namely, of drawing away the Achaeans from their alliance with Philip to that of the Romans. Cycliades, the head of the faction that favoured the interest of Philip, they had now banished; and Aristaenus, who wished for a union between his countrymen and the Romans, was praetor. The Roman fleet, with Attalus and the Rhodians, lay at Cenchreae, and were preparing to lay siege to Corinth with their whole combined force. The consul therefore judged it prudent, that, before they entered on that affair, ambassadors should be sent to the Achaean state, with assurances, that if they came over from the king to the side of the Romans, the latter would consign Corinth to them, and annex it to the old confederacy of their nation. Accordingly, by the consul's direction, ambassadors were sent to the Achaeans, by his brother Lucius Quinctius, by Attalus, and by the Rhodians and Athenians--a general assembly being summoned to meet at Sicyon to give them audience. Now, the state of feeling of the Achaeans was by no means uniform. Nabis the Lacedaemonian, their constant and inveterate enemy, was the object of their dread; they dreaded the arms of the Romans; they were under obligations to the Macedonians, for services both of ancient and recent date; but the king himself, on account of his perfidy and cruelty, they looked upon with jealous fear, and not judging from the behaviour which he then assumed for the time, they knew that, on the conclusion of the war, they should find him a more tyrannical master. So that every one of them was not only at a loss what opinion he should support in the senate of his own particular state, or in the general diets of the nation; but, even when they deliberated within themselves, they could not, with any certainty, determine what they ought to wish, or what to prefer. Such was the unsettled state of mind of the members of the assembly, when the ambassadors were introduced and liberty of speaking afforded them. The Roman ambassador, Lucius Calpurnius, spoke first; next the ambassadors of king Attalus; after them those of the Rhodians; and then Philip's. The Athenians were heard the last, that they might refute the discourses of the Macedonians. These inveighed against the king with the greatest acrimony of any, for no others had suffered from him so many and so severe hardships. So great a number of speeches of the ambassadors succeeding each other took up the whole of the day; and about sun-set the council was adjourned.


Next day the council was convened again; and when the magistrates, according to the custom of the Greeks, gave leave, by their herald, to any person who chose to offer advice, not one stood forth; but they sat a long time, looking on each other in silence. It was no wonder that men, revolving in their minds matters of such contradictory natures, and who found themselves puzzled and confounded, should be involved in additional perplexity by the speeches continued through the whole preceding day; in which the difficulties, on all sides, were brought into view, and stated in their full force. At length Aristaenus, the praetor of the Achaeans, not to dismiss the council without any business being introduced, said:--"Achaeans, where are now those violent disputes, in which, at your feasts and meetings, whenever mention was made of Philip and the Romans, you scarcely refrained from blows? Now, in a general assembly, summoned on that single business, when you have heard the arguments of the ambassadors on both sides, when the magistrates demand your opinions, when the herald calls you to declare your sentiments, you are struck dumb. Although your concern for the common safety be insufficient for determining the matter, cannot the party zeal which has attached you to one side or the other extort a word from any one of you? especially when none is so obtuse as not to perceive, that the time for declaring and recommending what each either wishes or thinks most advisable, must be at the present moment; that is, before we make any decree. When a decree shall have been once passed, every man even such as previously may have disapproved the measure, must then support it as good and salutary." These persuasions of the praetor, so far from prevailing on any one person to declare his opinion, did not excite, in all that numerous assembly, collected out of so many states, so much as a murmur or a whisper.


Then the praetor, Aristaenus, again spoke as follows:--"Chiefs of Achaea, you are not more at a loss for advice, than you are for words; but every one is unwilling to promote the interest of the public at a risk of danger to himself. Were I in a private character, perhaps I too should be silent; but, as praetor, it is my duty to declare, that I see evidently, either that an audience of the council ought not to have been accorded to the ambassadors, or that they ought not to be dismissed from it without an answer. Yet how can I give them an answer, unless by a decree of yours? And, since not one of you who have been called to this assembly either chooses or dares to make known his sentiments, let us examine (as if they were opinions proposed to our consideration) the speeches of the ambassadors delivered yesterday; supposing the speakers not to have required what was useful to themselves, but to have recommended what they thought most conducive to our advantage. The Romans, the Rhodians and Attalus, request an alliance and friendship with us; and they demand to be assisted by us in the war in which they are now engaged against Philip. Philip reminds us of our league with him, and of the obligation of our oath; he requires only, that we declare ourselves on his side; and says, he will be satisfied if we do not intermeddle in the operations of the war. Does not the reason occur to the mind of any one of you why those, who are not yet our allies, require more than he who is? This arises not from modesty in Philip, nor from the want of it in the Romans. It is fortune, which, while it bestows confidence to requisitions on one side, precludes it on the other. We see nothing belonging to Philip but his ambassador: the Roman fleet lies at Cenchreae, exhibiting to our view the spoils of the cities of Euboea. We behold the consul and his legions, at the distance of a small tract of sea, overrunning Phocis and Locris. You were surprised at Philip's ambassador, Cleomedon, showing such diffidence yesterday in his application to us to take arms on the side of the king against the Romans. But if we, in pursuance of the same treaty and oath, the sacredness of which he inculcated on us, were to ask of him, that Philip should protect us, both from Nabis and his Lacedaemonians, and also from the Romans, he would be utterly unable to find, not only a force with which to protect us, but even an answer to return. As much so in truth as was Philip himself, who endeavoured, by promises of waging war against Nabis, to draw away our youth into Euboea; but finding that we would neither decree such assistance to him, nor choose to be embroiled in a war with Rome, forgot that alliance on which he now lays such stress, and left us to Nabis and the Lacedaemonians to be spoiled and plundered. Besides, to me the arguments of Cleomedon appeared utterly inconsistent. He made light of the war with the Romans; and asserted, that the issue of it would be similar to that of the former, which they waged against Philip. If such the case, why does he, at a distance, solicit our assistance; rather than come hither in person, and defend us, his old allies, both from Nabis and from the Romans? Us, do I say? Why, on this showing, has he suffered Eretria and Carystus to be taken? Why so many cities of Thessaly? Why Locris and Phocis? Why does he at present suffer Elatia to be besieged? Did he, either through compulsion, or fear, or choice, quit the straits of Epirus, and those impregnable fastnesses on the river Aous; and why, abandoning the pass which he was occupying, did he retire altogether into his own kingdom? If of his own will he gave up so many allies to the ravages of the enemy, what objection can he make to these allies consulting for their own safety? If through fear, he ought to pardon the like fear in us. If he retired defeated by force of arms, let me ask you, Cleomedon, shall we, Achaeans, be able to withstand the Roman arms, which you, Macedonians, have not withstood? Are we to give credit to your assertion, that the Romans do not employ, in the present war, greater forces or greater strength than they did in the former, rather than regard the facts themselves? In the first instance, they aided the Aetolians with a fleet; they sent not to the war either a consul as commander, or a consular army. The maritime cities of Philip's allies were in terror and confusion; but the inland places were so secure against the Roman arms, that Philip ravaged the country of the Aetolians, while they in vain implored succour from those arms. Whereas, in the present case, the Romans, after bringing to a final conclusion the Punic war, which they had supported for sixteen years in the bowels, as it were, of Italy, sent not auxiliaries to the Aetolians in their quarrels, but, being themselves principals, made a hostile invasion on Macedonia with land and sea forces at once. Their third consul is now pushing forward the war with the utmost vigour. Sulpicius, engaging the king within the territory of Macedonia itself, has overthrown and put him to flight; and afterwards despoiled the most opulent part of his kingdom. Then, again, when he was in possession of the strait of Epirus, where, from the nature of the ground, his fortifications, and the strength of his army, he thought himself secure, Quinctius drove him out of his camp; pursued him, as he fled into Thessaly; and, almost in the view of Philip himself, stormed the royal garrisons and the cities of his allies. Supposing that there were no truth in what the Athenian ambassadors mentioned yesterday, respecting the cruelty, avarice, and lust of the king; supposing the crimes committed, in the country of Attica, against the gods, celestial and infernal, concerned us not all; that we had less to complain of than what the people of Cius and Abydos, who are far distant from us, have endured: let us then, if you please, forget even our own wounds; let the murders and ravages committed at Messana, and in the heart of Peloponnesus, the killing of his host Garitenes at Cyparissia, almost in the very midst of a feast, in contempt of laws divine and human; the murder of the two Aratuses of Sicyon, father and son, though he was wont to call the unfortunate old man his parent; his carrying away the son's wife into Macedonia for the gratification of his vicious appetites, and all his violations of virgins and matrons;--let all these, I say, be consigned to oblivion. Let us suppose our business were not with Philip, through dread of whose cruelty you are all thus struck dumb; for what other cause could keep you silent, when you have been summoned to a council? Let us imagine that we are treating with Antigonus, a prince of the greatest mildness and equity, to whose kindness we have all been highly indebted; would he require us to perform what at the time was impossible? Peloponnesus is a peninsula, united to the continent by the narrow passage of an isthmus particularly exposed and open to the attacks of naval armaments. Now, if a hundred decked ships, and fifty lighter open ones, and thirty Issean barks, shall begin to lay waste our coasts, and attack the cities which stand exposed, almost on the very shore, shall we then retreat into the inland towns, as if we were not afflicted with an intestine war, though in truth it is rankling in our very bowels? When Nabis and the Lacedaemonians by land, and the Roman fleet by sea, shall press us, whence must I implore the support due from the king's alliance, whence the succours of the Macedonians? Shall we ourselves, with our own arms, defend, against the Roman forces, the cities that will be attacked? Truly, in the former war, we defended Dymae excellently well! The calamities of others afford us abundant examples; let us not seek how we may render ourselves an example to others. Do not, because the Romans voluntarily desire your friendship, contemn that which you ought to have prayed for, nay, laboured with all your might to obtain. But, it is insinuated, that they are impelled by fear, in a country to which they are strangers; and that, wishing to shelter themselves under your assistance, they have recourse to your alliance in the hope of being admitted into your harbours, and of there finding supplies of provisions. Now, at sea they are absolute masters; and instantly reduce to subjection every place at which they land. What they request, they have power to enforce. Because they wish to treat you with tenderness they do not allow you to take steps that must lead you to ruin. Cleomedon lately pointed out, as the middle and safest way, to remain inactive, and abstain from taking up arms But that is not a middle way; it is no way at all. For, besides the necessity of either embracing or rejecting the Roman alliance, what other consequence can ensue from such conduct, than that, while we show no steady attachment to either side, as if we waited the event with design to adapt our counsels to fortune, we shall become the prey of the conqueror? Contemn not then, when it is spontaneously offered to your acceptance, what you ought to have solicited with your warmest prayers. The free option between the two, which you have this day, you will not always have. The same opportunity will not last long, nor will it frequently recur. You have long wished to deliver yourselves out of the hands of Philip, although you have not dared to make the attempt. Those have now crossed the sea, with large fleets and armies, who are able to rescue you to a state of freedom, without any trouble or danger to yourselves. If you reject such persons as allies, you can scarcely be of sane mind; but you must unavoidably have to deal with them, either as allies or as enemies."


This speech of the praetor was followed by a general murmur; some declaring their approbation, and others vehemently rebuking those who did so. And now, not only individuals, but whole states were engaged in altercation among themselves; and at length among the magistrates, called Demiurgi, who are ten in number, the dispute was taken up with as much warmth as among the multitude. Five of them declared, that they would propose the question concerning an alliance with Rome, and would take the votes on it; while five insisted, that it had been provided by law that neither the magistrates should have power to propose nor the council to pass any decree injurious to the alliance with Philip. This day, also, was spent in contention, and there remained now but one day more of the regular time of sitting; for, according to the rule, the decree must be passed on the third day: and as that approached, the zeal of the parties was kindled into such a flame, that scarcely did parents refrain from offering violence to their own sons. There was present a man of Pallene, named Rhisiasus, whose son, Memnon, was a demiurgus, and was of that party which opposed the reading of the decree and taking the votes. This man, for a long time, entreated his son to allow the Achaeans to take proper measures for their common safety, and not, by his obstinacy, to bring ruin on the whole nation; but, finding that his entreaties had no effect, he swore that he would treat him, not as a son, but as an enemy, and would put him to death with his own hand. By these threats he forced him, next day, to join the party that voted for the question being proposed. These, having now become the majority, proposed the question accordingly, while almost every one of the states, openly approving the measure, showed plainly on which side they would vote. Whereupon the Dymaeans, Megalopolitans, with several of the Argives, rose up, and withdrew from the council; which step excited neither wonder nor disapprobation. For when, in the memory of their grandfathers, the Megalopolitans had been expelled their country by the Lacedaemonians, Antigonus had reinstated them in their native residence; and, at a later period, when Dymae was taken and sacked by the Roman troops, Philip ordered that the inhabitants, wherever they were in servitude, should be ransomed, and not only restored them to their liberty, but their country. As to the Argives, besides believing that the royal family of Macedonia derived its origin from them, the greater part were attached to Philip by personal acts of kindness and familiar friendship. For these reasons, when the council appeared disposed to order an alliance to be concluded with Rome, they withdrew; and their secession was readily excused, in consideration of the many and recent obligations by which they were bound to the king of Macedon.


The rest of the Achaean states, on their opinions being demanded, ratified, by an immediate decree, the alliance with Attalus and the Rhodians. That with the Romans, as it could not be perfected without an order from the people, they deferred until such time as ambassadors could be sent to Rome. For the present, it was resolved, that three ambassadors should be sent to Lucius Quinctius; and that the whole force of the Achaeans should be brought up to Corinth, which city Quinctius, after taking Cenchreae, was then besieging. The Achaeans accordingly pitched their camp opposite to the gate that leads to Sicyon. The Romans made their approaches on the side of the city which faces Cenchreae; Attalus having drawn his army across the isthmus, towards Lechaeum, the port on the opposite sea. At first, they did not push forward their operations with any great degree of vigour, because they had hopes of a dissension breaking out between the townsmen and the king's troops. But afterwards, learning that they all were of one mind; that the Macedonians exerted themselves as if in defence of their common country; and that the Corinthians submitted to the orders of Androsthenes, commander of the garrison, as if he were their countryman, and elected by their own suffrages; the assailants had no other hopes but in force, arms, and their works. They therefore brought up their mounds to the walls, though by very difficult approaches. On that side where the Romans attacked, their ram had demolished a considerable part of the wall; and the Macedonians having run together to defend the place thus stripped of its works, a furious conflict ensued between themselves and the Romans. At first, by reason of the enemy's superiority in number, the Romans were quickly repulsed; but being joined by the auxiliary troops of Attalus and the Achaeans, they restored the fight to an equality; so that there was no doubt that they would easily drive the Macedonians and Greeks from their ground. But there were in the town a great multitude of Italian deserters; some of whom, having been in Hannibal's army, had, through fear of being punished by the Romans, followed Philip; others, having been sailors, had lately quitted the fleets, and gone over, in hopes of more honourable employment: despair of safety, therefore, in case of the Romans getting the better, inflamed these to a degree which might rather be called madness than courage. Opposite to Sicyon is the promontory of Juno Acraea, as she is called, stretching out into the main, the passage to Corinth being about seven miles. To this place Philocles, one of the king's generals, led, through Boeotia, fifteen hundred soldiers; and there were barks from Corinth ready to take these troops on board, and carry them over to Lechaeum. Attalus, on this, advised to burn the works, and raise the siege immediately; Quinctius was for persisting more obstinately in the attempt. However, when he saw the king's troops posted at the gates, and that the sallies of the besieged could not easily be withstood, he came over to the opinion of Attalus. Thus, their design proving fruitless, they dismissed the Achaeans, and returned to their ships. Attalus steered to Piraeus, the Romans to Corcyra.


While the naval forces were thus employed, the consul, having encamped before Elatia, in Phocis, first endeavoured, by conferring with the principal inhabitants, to bring them over, and by their means to effect his purpose; but on their answering that they had nothing in their power, because the king's troops were more numerous and stronger than the townsmen, he assaulted the city on all sides at once with arms and engines. A battering-ram having been brought up, shattered a part of the wall that reached from one tower to another, and this falling with a prodigious noise and crash, left much of the town exposed. On this a Roman cohort made an assault through the breach, while at the same time the townsmen, quitting their several posts, ran together from all parts to the place, which was endangered by the attack of the enemy. At the same time others of the Romans climbed over the ruins of the wall, and brought up scaling-ladders to the parts that were standing. As the conflict attracted the eyes and attention of the enemy to one particular spot, the walls were scaled in several places, by which means the soldiers easily entered the town. The noise and tumult which ensued so terrified the enemy, that quitting the place, which they had crowded together to defend, they all fled in panic to the citadel, accompanied by the unarmed multitude. The consul having thus become master of the town, gave it up to be plundered, and then sent messengers into the citadel, offering the king's troops their lives, on condition of their laying down their arms, and departing. To the Elatians he offered their liberty; which terms being agreed to, in a few days after he got possession of the citadel.


In consequence of Philocles, the king's general, coming into Achaia, not only Corinth was delivered from the siege, but the city of Argos was betrayed into his hands by some of the principal inhabitants, after they had first sounded the minds of the populace. They had a custom, that, on the first day of assembly, their praetors, for the omen's sake, should pronounce the names, Jupiter, Apollo, and Hercules; in addition to which, a rule had been made, that, along with these they should join the name of king Philip. After the conclusion of the alliance with the Romans, the herald did not make that addition; on which a murmur spread through the multitude, who would add the name of Philip, and insisting that the respect, due by law, should be paid as before; until at length the name was given out amidst universal approbation. On the encouragement afforded by this favourable disposition, Philocles was invited, who seized in the night a strong post called Larissa, seated on a hill which overhangs the city, and in which he placed a garrison. At the dawn of day, however, and as he was proceeding in order of battle to the forum, at the foot of the hill he was met by a line of troops, drawn up to oppose him. This was a body of Achaeans, lately posted there, consisting of about five hundred young men, selected out of all the states. Their commander was Aenesidemus, of Dymae. The king's general sent a person to recommend to them to evacuate the city, because they were not a match for the townsmen alone, who held the same sentiments as the Macedonians; much less when these were joined by the Macedonians, whom even the Romans had not withstood at Corinth. This at first had no effect, either on the commander, or his men: and when they, soon after, perceived the Argives also in arms, coming, in a great body, from the opposite side, perceiving that their destruction was inevitable, they yet seemed determined to run every hazard, if their leader would persevere. But Aenesidemus, unwilling that the flower of the Achaean youth should be lost, together with the city, made terms with Philocles, that they should have liberty to retire, while himself remained armed with a few of his dependents, in the position which he had occupied. To a person sent by Philocles to inquire what he meant, he only answered, standing with his shield held out before him, that he meant to die in arms in defence of the city intrusted to his charge. Philocles then ordered some Thracians to throw their javelins at him and his attendants; and they were all put to death. Thus, notwithstanding the alliance concluded by the Achaeans with the Romans, two of their cities, and those of the greatest consequence, Argos and Corinth, were still in the hands of Philip. Such were the services performed during that summer by the land and sea forces of Rome employed in Greece.


In Gaul, the consul Sextus Aelius did nothing worth mention, though he had two armies in the province: one, which he had retained under their standards, although it ought to have been disbanded; and of this, which had served under Lucius Cornelius, proconsul, he had given the command to Caius Helvius, the praetor: the other he had brought with him into the province. He spent nearly the whole summer in compelling the people of Cremona and Placentia to return to their colonies, from whence they had been driven to various places by the calamities of war. While Gaul, beyond expectation, remained quiet through the whole year, an insurrection of the slaves was very near taking place in the neighbourhood of the city. The hostages, given by the Carthaginians, were kept in custody at Setia: as they were the children of the principal families, they were attended by a great multitude of slaves; to this number many were added, in consequence of the late African war, and by the Setians themselves having bought, from among the spoil, several of those which had been captured. Having conspired together, they sent some of their number to engage in the cause the slaves of the country round Setia, and then those at Norba and Circeii. When every thing was fully prepared, they determined, during the games which were soon to be solemnized at the first-mentioned place, to attack the people while intent on the show, and when Setia had been taken in the midst of the slaughter and unexpected turmoil, then to seize on Norba and Circeii. Information of this atrocious plot was brought to Rome, to Lucius Cornelius Merula, the city praetor. Two slaves came to him before daylight, and disclosed to him in order the whole proceedings and intentions of the conspirators. The praetor, ordering them to be guarded in his own house, summoned a meeting of the senate; and having laid before them the information of the discoverers, he was ordered to go himself to the spot, and examine into and crush the conspiracy. Setting out, accordingly, with five lieutenant-generals, he compelled such as he found in the country to take the military oath, to arm, and follow him. Having by this tumultuary kind of levy armed about two thousand men, while all were ignorant of his destination, he came to Setia. There the leaders of the conspiracy were instantly apprehended; on which, the remainder fled from the city; but parties were sent through the country to search them out. The services of the two who made the discovery, and of one free person employed, were highly meritorious. The senate ordered a present to the latter of a hundred thousand asses;[8] to the slaves, twenty-five thousand asses[9] each, and their freedom. The price was paid to their owners out of the treasury. Not long after, intelligence was received, that other slaves, belonging to the remains of the conspiracy, had formed a design of seizing Praeneste. The praetor, Lucius Cornelius, went thither, and inflicted punishment on near five hundred persons concerned in that wicked scheme. The public were under apprehensions that the Carthaginian hostages and prisoners fomented these plots: watches were, therefore, kept at Rome in all the streets, which the inferior magistrates were ordered to go round and inspect; while the triumvirs of the prison, called the Quarry, were to keep a stricter guard than usual. Circular letters were also sent by the praetor to all the Latin states, directing that the hostages should be confined within doors, and not at any time allowed the liberty of going into public; and that the prisoners should be kept bound with fetters, of not less than ten pounds weight, and confined in no other place of custody than the common jail.


In this year, ambassadors from king Attalus made an offering, in the Capitol, of a golden crown of two hundred and fifty-six pounds' weight, and returned thanks to the senate, because Antiochus, influenced by the authority of the Romans, had withdrawn his troops out of the territories of Attalus. During the same summer, two hundred horsemen, ten elephants, and two hundred thousand pecks of wheat, arrived from king Masinissa for the army in Greece. From Sicily also, and Sardinia, large supplies of provisions were sent, with clothing for the troops. Sicily was then governed by Marcus Marcellus, Sardinia by Marcus Porcius Cato, a man of acknowledged integrity and purity of conduct, but deemed too severe in punishing usury. He drove the usurers entirely out of the island; and restricted or abolished the contributions, usually paid by the allies, for maintaining the dignity of the praetors. The consul, Sextus Aelius, coming home from Gaul to Rome to hold the elections, elected consuls, Caius Cornelius Cethegus and Quintus Minucius Rufus. Two days after was held the election of praetors; and this year, for the first time, six praetors were appointed, in consequence of the increase of the provinces, and the extension of the bounds of the empire. The persons elected were, Lucius Manlius Vulso, Caius Sempronius Tuditanus, Marcus Sergius Silus, Marcus Helvius, Marcus Minucius Rufus, and Lucius Atilius. Of these Sempronius and Helvius were, at the time, plebeian aediles. The curule aediles were Quintus Minucius Thermus and Tiberius Sempronius Longus. The Roman games were four times repeated during this year.


On Caius Cornelius and Quintus Minucius becoming consuls, the first business of all was the arrangement of the provinces of the consuls and praetors. Those of the praetors were the first settled, because that could be transacted by the lots. The city jurisdiction fell to Sergius; the foreign to Minucius; Atilius obtained Sardinia; Manlius, Sicily; Sempronius, the Hither Spain; and Helvius, the Farther. When the consuls were preparing to cast lots for Italy and Macedonia, Lucius Oppius and Quintus Fulvius, plebeian tribunes, stood in their way, alleging, that "Macedonia was a very distant province, and that the principal cause which had hitherto retarded the progress of the war, was, that when it was scarcely entered upon, and just at the commencement of operations, the former consul was always recalled. This was the fourth year since the declaration of war against Macedonia. The greater part of one year Sulpicius spent in seeking the king and his army; Villius, on the point of engaging the enemy, was recalled without any thing having been done. Quinctius was detained at Rome, for the greater part of his year, by business respecting religion; nevertheless, he had so conducted affairs, that had he come earlier into the province, or had the cold season been at a greater distance, he might have put an end to hostilities. He was then just going into winter quarters; but, it was stated that he had brought the war into such a state, that if he were not prevented by a intercessor, he seemed likely to complete it in the course of the ensuing summer." By such arguments the tribunes so far prevailed, that the consuls declared that they would abide by the directions of the senate, if the tribunes would agree to do the same. Both parties having, accordingly, left the consultation perfectly free, a decree was passed, appointing the two consuls to the government of the province of Italy. Titus Quinctius was continued in command, until a successor should accede by a decree of the senate. To each, two legions were decreed; and they were ordered, with these, to carry on the war with the Cisalpine Gauls, who had revolted from the Romans. A reinforcement of five thousand foot and three hundred horse was ordered to be sent into Macedonia to Quinctius, together with three thousand seamen. Lucius Quinctius Flamininus was continued in the command of the fleet. To each of the praetors for the two Spains were granted eight thousand foot, of the allies and Latins, and four hundred horse; so that they might discharge the veteran troops in their provinces. They were further directed to fix the bounds which should divide the hither from the farther province. Two additional lieutenant-generals were sent to the army in Macedonia, Publius Sulpicius and Publius Villius, who had been consuls in that province.


It was thought necessary, that before the consuls and praetors went abroad, some prodigies should be expiated. For the temples of Vulcan and Summanus,[10] at Rome, and a wall and a gate at Fregellae, had been struck by lightning. At Frusino, light had shone forth during the night. At Asculum, a lamb had been born with two heads and five feet. At Formiae, two wolves entering the town had torn several persons who fell in their way; and, at Rome, a wolf had made its way, not only into the city, but into the Capitol. Caius Acilius, plebeian tribune, caused an order to be passed, that five colonies should be led out to the sea-coast; two to the mouths of the rivers Vulturnus and Liternus; one to Puteoli and one to the fort of Salernum. To these was added Buxentum. To each colony three hundred families were ordered to be sent. The commissioners appointed to conduct them thither, and who were to hold the office for three years, were Marcus Servilius Geminus, Quintus Minucius Thermus, and Tiberius Sempronius Longus. As soon as the levies, and such other business, religious and civil, as required their personal attendance, was finished, both the consuls set out for Gaul. Cornelius took the direct road towards the Insubrians, who were then in arms, and had been joined by the Caenomanians. Quintus Minucius turned his route to the left side of Italy, and leading away his army to the lower sea, to Genoa, opened the campaign with an invasion of Liguria. Two towns, Clastidium and Litubium, both belonging to the Ligurians, and two states of the same nation, Celela and Cerdicium, surrendered to him. And now, all the states on this side of the Po, except the Boians among the Gauls and the Ilvatians among the Ligurians, were reduced to submission: no less, it is said, than fifteen towns and twenty thousand men surrendered themselves. He then led his legions into the territory of the Boians.


The Boian army had, not very long before, crossed the Po and joined the Insubrians and Caenomanians; for, having heard that the consuls intended to act with their forces united, they wished to increase their own strength by this junction. But when information reached them that one of the consuls was ravaging the country of the Boians, a dispute instantly arose. The Boians demanded, that all, in conjunction, should carry succour to those who were attacked; while the Insubrians positively refused to leave their country defenceless. In consequence of this dissension, the armies separated; the Boians went to defend their own territory, and the Insubrians, with the Caenomanians, encamped on the banks of the river Mincius. About five miles below this spot, the consul Cornelius pitched his camp close to the same river. Sending emissaries hence into the villages of the Caenomanians, and to Brixia, the capital of their tribe, he learned with certainty that their young men had taken arms without the approbation of the elders; and that the Caenomanians had not joined in the revolt of the Insubrians by any public authority. On which he invited to him the principal of the natives, and endeavoured to contrive and concert with them that the Caenomanians should separate from the Insubrians; and either march away and return home, or come over to the side of the Romans. This he was not able to effect; but so far, he received solemn assurances that, in case of a battle, they would either stand inactive, or, should any occasion offer, would even assist the Romans. The Insubrians knew not that such an agreement had been concluded, but they harboured in their minds some kind of suspicion, that the fidelity of their confederates was wavering. Wherefore, in forming their troops for battle, not daring to intrust either wing to them, lest, if they should treacherously give ground, they might cause a total defeat, they placed them in reserve behind the line. At the beginning of the fight, the consul vowed a temple to Juno Sospita, provided the enemy should, on that day, be routed and driven from the field; on which the soldiers raised a shout, declaring, that they would insure to their commander the completion of his vow, and at the same time an attack was made on the enemy. The Insubrians did not stand even the first onset. Some writers affirm, that the Caenomanians, falling on their rear during the heat of the engagement, caused as much disorder there as prevailed in their front: and that, thus assailed on both sides, thirty-five thousand of them were slain, five thousand seven hundred taken prisoners, among whom was Hamilcar, a Carthaginian general, who had been the cause of the war; and that a hundred and thirty military standards and above two hundred waggons were taken. On this, the towns of the Gauls, which had joined in the revolt of the Insubrians, surrendered to the Romans.


The other consul, Minucius, had at first traversed the territories of the Boians, with wide-spread ravaging parties; but afterwards, when that people left the Insubrians, and came home to defend their own property, he kept his men within their camp, expecting to come to a regular engagement with the enemy. Nor would the Boians have declined a battle, if their spirits had not been depressed by hearing of the defeat of the Insubrians. Upon this, deserting their commander and their camp, they dispersed themselves through the several towns, each wishing to take care of his own effects. Thus they changed the enemy's method of carrying on the war: for, no longer hoping to decide the matter by a single battle, he began again to lay waste the lands, burn the houses, and storm the villages. At this time, Clastidium was burned, and the legions were led thence against the Ilvatian Ligurians, who alone refused to submit. That state, also, on learning that the Insubrians had been defeated in battle, and the Boians so terrified that they had not dared to try the fortune of an engagement, made a submission. Letters from the consuls, containing accounts of their successes, came from Gaul to Rome at the same time. Marcus Sergius, city praetor, read them in the senate, and afterwards, by direction of the fathers, in an assembly of the people; on which a supplication, of four days' continuance, was decreed.


It was by this time winter; and while Titus Quinctius, after the reduction of Elatia, had his winter quarters distributed in Phocis and Locris, a violent dissension broke out at Opus. One faction invited to their assistance the Aetolians who were nearest at hand; the other, the Romans. The Aetolians arrived first; but the other party, which was the more powerful, refused them admittance, and, despatching a courier to the Roman general, held the city until his arrival. The citadel was possessed by a garrison belonging to the king, and they could not be prevailed on to retire from thence, either by the threats of the people of Opus, or by the authority of the Roman consul's commands. What prevented their being immediately attacked was, the arrival of an envoy from the king, to solicit the appointing of a time and place for a conference. This was granted to the king with great reluctance; not that Quinctius did not wish to see war concluded under his own auspices, partly by arms, and partly by negotiation: for he knew not, yet, whether one of the new consuls would be sent out as his successor, or whether he should be continued in the command; a point which he had charged his friends and relations to labour for with all their might. But he thought that a conference would answer this purpose; that it would put it in his power to give matters a turn towards war, in case he remained in the province, or towards peace, if he were to be removed. They chose for the meeting a part of the sea-shore, in the Malian gulf, near Nicaea. Thither Philip came from Demetrias, with five barks and one ship of war: he was accompanied by some principal Macedonians, and an Achaean exile, name Cycliades, a man of considerable note. With the Roman general, were king Amynander, Dionysidorus, ambassador from king Attalus, Agesimbrotus, commander of the Rhodian fleet, Phaeneas, praetor of the Aetolians, and two Achaeans, Aristaenus and Xenophon. Attended by these, the Roman general advanced to the brink of the shore, when the king had come forward to the prow of his vessel, as it lay at anchor; and said, "If you will come on the shore, we shall mutually speak and hear with more convenience." This the king refused; and on Quinctius asking him, "Whom do you fear?" With the haughty spirit of royalty, he replied, "Fear I have none, but of the immortal gods; but I have no confidence in the faith of those whom I see about you, and least of all in the Aetolians." "That danger," said the Roman, "is equal to all in common who confer with an enemy, if no confidence subsists." "But, Titus Quinctius," replied the king, "if treachery be intended, the prizes of perfidy are not equal, namely, Philip and Phaeneas. For it will not be so difficult for the Aetolians to find another praetor, as for the Macedonians to find another king in my place."--Silence then ensued.


The Roman expected that he who solicited the conference should open it; and the king thought that he who was to prescribe, not he who received, terms of peace, ought to begin the conference. At length the Roman said, that "his discourse should be very simple; for he would only mention those articles, without which there could be no conditions of peace. These were, that the king should withdraw his garrisons from all the cities of Greece. That he should deliver up to the allies of the Roman people the prisoners and deserters; should restore to the Romans those places in Illyricum of which he had possessed himself by force, since the peace concluded in Epirus; and to Ptolemy, king of Egypt, the cities which he had seized since the death of Ptolemy Philopater." These were the terms which he required, on behalf of himself and the Roman people: but it was proper that the demands of the allies, also, should be heard. The ambassador of king Attalus demanded "restitution of the ships and prisoners taken in the sea-fight at Cius; and that Nicephorium, and the temple of Venus, which Philip had pillaged and defaced, should be restored as though they had not been injured." The Rhodians laid claim to Peraea, a tract on the continent, lying opposite to their island, which from early times had been under their jurisdiction; and they required that "the garrisons should be withdrawn from Tassus, Bargylii, and Euroma, and from Sestus and Abydos on the Hellespont; that Perinthus should be restored to the Byzantians, in right of their ancient title, and that all the sea-port towns and harbours of Asia should be free." The Achaeans demanded the restoration of Corinth and Argos. Phaeneas nearly repeated the demands made by the Romans, that the troops should withdraw out of Greece, and the Aetolians be put in possession of the cities which had formerly been under their dominion. He was followed by Alexander, a man of eminence among the Aetolians, and, considering his country, not uneloquent. He said, that "he had long kept silence, not because he expected that any business would be effected in that conference, but because he was unwilling to interrupt any of the allies in their discourse." He asserted, that "Philip was neither treating for peace with sincerity; and that he had never waged war with true courage, at any time: that in negotiating, he was insidious and fradulent; while in war he never fought on equal ground, nor engaged in regular battles; but, skulking about, burned and pillaged towns, and, when worsted, destroyed the prizes of victory. But not in that manner did the ancient kings of Macedon behave; they decided the fate of the war in the field, and spared the towns as far as they were able, in order to possess the more opulent empire. For what sort of conduct was it, to destroy the objects for the possession of which the contest was waged, and thereby leave nothing to himself but fighting? Philip had, in the last year, desolated more cities of his allies in Thessaly, than all the enemies that Thessaly ever had. On the Aetolians themselves he had made greater depredations, when he was in alliance with them, than since he became their enemy. He had seized on Lysimachia, after dislodging the praetor and garrison of the Aetolians. Cius also, a city belonging to their government, he razed from the foundation. With the same injustice he held possession of Thebes in Phthiotis, of Echinus, Larissa, and Pharsalus."


Philip, provoked by this discourse of Alexander, pushed his ship nearer to the land, that he might be the better heard, and began to speak with much violence, particularly against the Aetolians. But Phaeneas, interrupting him, said that "the business depended not upon words; he must either conquer in war, or submit to his superiors." "That, indeed, is evident," said Philip, "even to the blind," reflecting on Phaeneas, who had a disorder in his eyes: for he was naturally fonder of such pleasantries than became a king; and even in the midst of serious business, did not sufficiently restrain himself from ridicule. He then began to express great indignation at the "Aetolians assuming as much importance as the Romans, and insisting on his evacuating Greece; people who could not even tell what were its boundaries. For, of Aetolia itself, a large proportion, consisting of the Agraeans, Apodeotians, and Amphilochians, was no part of Greece. Have they just ground of complaint against me for not refraining from war with their allies, when themselves, from the earliest period, follow, as an established rule, the practice of suffering their young men to carry arms against those allies, withholding only the public authority of the state; while very frequently contending armies have Aetolian auxiliaries on both sides? I did not seize on Cius by force, but assisted my friend and ally, Prusias, who was besieging it, and Lysimachia I rescued from the Thracians. But since necessity diverted my attention from the guarding of it to this present war, the Thracians have possession of it. So much for the Aetolians. To Attalus and the Rhodians I in justice owe nothing; for not to me, but to themselves, is the commencement of hostilities to be attributed. However, out of respect to the Romans, I will restore Peraea to the Rhodians, and to Attalus his ships, and such prisoners as can be found. As to what concerns Nicephorium, and the temple of Venus, what other answer can I make to those who require their restoration, than that I will take on myself the trouble and expense of replanting them--the only way in which woods and groves which have been cut down can be restored,--since it is thought fit that, between kings, such kinds of demands should be made and answered." The last part of his speech was directed to the Achaeans, wherein he enumerated, first, the kindnesses of Antigonus; then, his own towards their nation, desiring them to consider the decrees themselves had passed concerning him, which comprehended every kind of honour, divine and human; and to these he added their late decree, by which they had confirmed the resolution of deserting him. He inveighed bitterly against their perfidy, but told them, that nevertheless he would give them back Argos. "With regard to Corinth, he would consult with the Roman general; and would, at the same time, inquire from him, whether he thought it right, that he (Philip) should evacuate only those cities which, being captured by himself, were held by the right of war; or those, also, which he had received from his ancestors."


The Achaeans and Aetolians were preparing to answer, but, as the sun was near setting, the conference was adjourned to the next day; and Philip returned to his station whence he came, the Romans and allies to their camp. On the following day, Quinctius repaired to Nicaea, which was the place agreed on, at the appointed time; but neither Philip, nor any messenger from him, came for several hours. At length, when they began to despair of his coming, his ships suddenly appeared. He said, that "the terms enjoined were so severe and humiliating, that, not knowing what to determine, he had spent the day in deliberation." But the general opinion was, that he had purposely delayed the business until late, that the Achaeans and Aetolians might not have time to answer him: and this opinion he himself confirmed, by desiring that time might not be consumed in altercation, and, to bring the affair to some conclusion, that the others should retire, and leave him to converse with the Roman general. For some time this was not admitted, lest the allies should appear to be excluded from the conference. Afterwards, on his persisting in his desire, the Roman general, with the consent of all, taking with him Appius Claudius, a military tribune, advanced to the brink of the coast, and the rest retired. The king, with the two persons whom he had brought the day before, came on shore, where they conversed a considerable time in private. What account of their proceedings Philip gave to his people is not well known: what Quinctius told the allies was, that "Philip was willing to cede to the Romans the whole coast of Illyricum, and to give up the deserters and prisoners, if there were any. That he consented to restore to Attalus his ships, and the seamen taken with them; and to the Rhodians the tract which they call Peraea. That he refused to evacuate Iassus and Bargylii. To the Aetolians he was ready to restore Pharsalus and Larissa; Thebes he would not restore: and that he would give back to the Achaeans the possession, not only of Argos, but of Corinth also." This arrangement pleased none of the parties; neither those to whom the concessions were to be made, nor those to whom they were refused; "for on that plan," they said, "more would be lost than gained; nor could the grounds of contention ever be removed, but by his withdrawing his forces from every part of Greece."


These expressions, delivered with eagerness and vehemence by every one in the assembly, reached the ears of Philip, though he stood at a distance. He therefore requested of Quinctius, that the whole business might be deferred until the next day; and then he would, positively, either prevail on the allies, or suffer himself to be prevailed on by them. The shore at Thronium was appointed for their meeting, and there they assembled early. Philip began with entreating Quinctius, and all who were present, not to harbour such sentiments as must embarrass a negotiation of peace; and then desired time, while he could send ambassadors to Rome, to the senate, declaring, that "he would either obtain a peace on the terms mentioned, or would accept whatever terms the senate should prescribe." None by any means approved of this; they said, he only sought a delay, and leisure to collect his strength. But Quinctius observed, "that such an objection would have been well founded, if it were then summer and a season fit for action; as matters stood, and the winter being just at hand, nothing would be lost by allowing him time to send ambassadors. For, without the authority of the senate, no agreement which they might conclude with the king would be valid; and besides, they would by this means have an opportunity, while the winter itself would necessarily cause a suspension of arms, to learn the authoritative decision of the senate." The other chiefs of the allies came over to this opinion: and a cessation of hostilities for two months being granted, they resolved that each of their states should send an ambassador with the necessary information to the senate, and in order that it should not be deceived by the misrepresentations of Philip. To the above agreement for a truce, was added an article, that all the king's troops should be immediately withdrawn from Phocis and Locris. With the ambassadors of the allies, Quinctius sent Amynander, king of Athamania; and, to add a degree of splendour to the embassy, a deputation from himself, composed of Quintus Fabius, the son of his wife's sister, Quintus Fulvius, and Appius Claudius.


On their arrival at Rome, the ambassadors of the allies were admitted to audience before those of the king. Their discourse, in general, was filled up with invectives against Philip. What produced the greatest effect on the minds of the senate was, that, by pointing out the relative situations of the lands and seas in that part of the world, they made it manifest to every one, that if the king held Demetrias in Thessaly, Chalcis in Euboea, and Corinth in Achaia, Greece could not be free; and they added, that Philip himself, with not more insolence than truth, used to call these the fetters of Greece. The king's ambassadors were then introduced, and when they were beginning a long harangue, a short question cut short their discourse:--Whether he was willing to yield up the three above-mentioned cities? They answered, that they had received no specific instructions on that head: on which they were dismissed, the negotiation being left unsettled. Full authority was given to Quinctius to determine every thing relative to war and peace. As this demonstrated clearly that the senate were not weary of the war, so he, who was more earnestly desirous of conquest than of peace, never afterwards consented to a conference with Philip; and even gave him notice that he would not admit any embassy from him, unless it came with information that he was retiring from the whole of Greece.


Philip now perceived that he must decide the matter in the field, and collect his strength about him from all quarters. Being particularly uneasy in respect to the cities of Achaia, a country so distant from him, and also of Argos, even more, indeed, than of Corinth, he resolved, as the most advisable method, to put the former into the hands of Nabis, tyrant of Lacedaemon, in trust, as it were, on the terms, that if he should prove successful in the war, Nabis should re-deliver it to him; if any misfortune should happen, he should keep it himself. Accordingly, he wrote to Philocles, who had the command in Corinth and Argos, to have a meeting with the tyrant. Philocles, besides coming with a valuable present, added to that pledge of future friendship between the king and the tyrant, that it was Philip's wish to unite his daughters in marriage to the sons of Nabis. The tyrant, at first, refused to receive the city on any other conditions than that of being invited to its protection by a decree of the Argives themselves: but afterwards, hearing that in a full assembly they had treated the name of the tyrant not only with scorn, but even with abhorrence, he thought he had now a sufficient excuse for plundering them, and he accordingly desired Philocles to give him possession of the place as soon as he pleased. Nabis was admitted into the city in the night, without the privity of any of the inhabitants, and, at the first light, seized on the higher parts of it, and shut the gates. A few of the principal people having made their escape, during the first confusion, the properties of all who were absent were seized as booty: those who were present were stripped of their gold and silver, and loaded with exorbitant contributions. Such as paid these readily were discharged, without personal insult and laceration of their bodies; but such as were suspected of hiding or reserving any of their effects, were mangled and tortured like slaves. He then summoned an assembly, in which he promulgated two measures; one for an abolition of debts, the other for a distribution of the land, in shares, to each man--two fire-brands in the hands of those who were desirous of revolution, for inflaming the populace against the higher ranks.


The tyrant, when he had the city of Argos in his power, never considering from whom or on what conditions he had received it, sent ambassadors to Elatia, to Quinctius, and to Attalus, in his winter quarters at Aegina, to tell them, that "he was in possession of Argos; and that if Quinctius would come hither, and consult with him, he had no doubt but that every thing might be adjusted between them." Quinctius, in order that he might deprive Philip of that stronghold, along with the rest, consented to come; accordingly, sending a message to Attalus, to leave Aegina, and meet him at Sicyon, he set sail from Anticyra with ten quinqueremes, which his brother, Lucius Quinctius, happened to have brought a little before from his winter station at Corcyra, and passed over to Sicyon. Attalus was there before him, who, representing that the tyrant ought to come to the Roman general, not the general to the tyrant, brought Quinctius over to his opinion, which was, that he should not enter the city of Argos. Not far from it, however, was a place called Mycenica; and there the parties agreed to meet. Quinctius came, with his brother and a few military tribunes; Attalus, with his royal retinue; and Nicostratus the praetor of the Achaeans, with a few of the auxiliary officers: and they there found Nabis waiting with his whole army. He advanced, armed, and attended by his armed guards, almost to the middle of the interjacent plain; Quinctius unarmed, with his brother and two military tribunes; the king was accompanied by one of his nobles, and the praetor of the Achaeans, unarmed likewise. The tyrant, when he saw the king and the Roman general unarmed, opened the conference, with apologizing for having come to the meeting armed himself, and surrounded with armed men. "He had no apprehensions," he said, "from them; but only from the Argive exiles." When they then began to treat of the conditions of their friendship, the Roman made two demands: one, that the war with the Achaeans should be put an end to; the other, that he should send him aid against Philip. He promised the aid required; but, instead of a peace with the Achaeans, a cessation of hostilities was obtained, to last until the war with Philip should be concluded.


A debate concerning the Argives, also, was set on foot by king Attalus, who charged Nabis with holding their city by force, which was put into his hands by the treachery of Philocles; while Nabis insisted, that he had been invited by the Argives themselves to afford them protection. The king required a general assembly of the Argives to be convened, that the truth of that matter might be known. To this the tyrant did not object; but the king alleged, that the Lacedaemonian troops ought to be withdrawn from the city, in order to render the assembly free; and that the people should be left at liberty to declare their real sentiments. The tyrant refused to withdraw them, and the debate produced no effect. To the Roman general, six hundred Cretans were given by Nabis, who agreed with the praetor of the Achaeans to a cessation of arms for four months, and thus they departed from the conference. Quinctius proceeded to Corinth, advancing to the gates with the cohort of Cretans, in order that it might be evident to Philocles, the governor of the city, that the tyrant had deserted the cause of Philip. Philocles himself came out to confer with the Roman general; and, on the latter exhorting him to change sides immediately, and surrender the city he answered in such a manner as showed an inclination rather to defer than to refuse the matter. From Corinth, Quinctius sailed over to Anticyra, and sent his brother thence, to sound the disposition of the people of Acarnania. Attalus went from Argos to Sicyon. Here, on one side, the state added new honours to those formerly paid to the king; and, on the other, the king, besides having on a former occasion, redeemed for them, at a vast expense, a piece of land sacred to Apollo, unwilling to pass by the city of his friends and allies without a token of munificence, made them a present of ten talents of silver,[11] and ten thousand bushels of corn, and then returned to Cenchreae to his fleet. Nabis, leaving a strong garrison at Argos, returned to Lacedaemon; and, as he himself had pillaged the men, he sent his wife to Argos to pillage the women. She invited the females to her house, sometimes singly, and sometimes several together, who were united by family connexion; and partly by fair speeches, partly by threats, stripped them, not only of their gold, but, at last, even of their garments, and every article of female attire.


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