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By Plutarch

(legendary, died 337 B.C.E.)

Translated by John Dryden

IT was for the sake of others that I first commenced writing biographies;
but I find myself proceeding and attaching myself to it for my own;
the virtues of these great men serving me as a sort of looking-glass,
in which I may see how to adjust and adorn my own life. Indeed, it
can be compared to nothing but daily living and associating together;
we receive, as it were, in our inquiry, and entertain each successive
guest, view- 

"Their stature and their qualities," and select from their actions
all that is noblest and worthiest to know. 

"Ah, and what greater pleasure can one have?" or what more effective
means to one's moral improvement? Democritus tells us we ought to
pray that of the phantasms appearing in the circumambient air, such
may present themselves to us as are propitious, and that we may rather
meet with those that are agreeable to our natures and are good than
the evil and unfortunate; which is simply introducing into philosophy
a doctrine untrue in itself, and leading to endless superstitions.
My method, on the contrary, is, by the study of history, and by the
familiarity acquired in writing, to habituate my memory to receive
and retain images of the best and worthiest characters. I thus am
enabled to free myself from any ignoble, base, or vicious impressions,
contracted from the contagion of ill company that I may be unavoidably
engaged in; by the remedy of turning my thoughts in a happy and calm
temper to view these noble examples. Of this kind are those of Timoleon
the Corinthian and Paulus Aemilius, to write whose lives is my present
business; men equally famous, not only for their virtues, but success;
insomuch that they have left it doubtful whether they owe their greatest
achievements to good fortune, or their own prudence and conduct.

The affairs of the Syracusans, before Timoleon was sent into Sicily,
were in this posture; after Dion had driven out Dionysius the tyrant,
he was slain by treachery, and those that had assisted him in delivering
Syracuse were divided among themselves; and thus the city by a continual
change of governors, and a train of mischiefs that succeeded each
other, became almost abandoned; while of the rest of Sicily, part
was now utterly depopulated and desolate through long continuance
of war, and most of the cities that had been left standing were in
the hands of barbarians and soldiers out of employment, that were
ready to embrace every turn of government. Such being the state of
things, Dionysius takes the opportunity, and in the tenth year of
his banishment, by the help of some mercenary troops he had got together,
forces out Nysaeus, then master of Syracuse, recovers all afresh,
and is again settled in his dominion; and as at first he had been
strangely deprived of the greatest and most absolute power that ever
was by a very small party, so now, in a yet stranger manner, when
in exile and of mean condition, he became the sovereign of those who
had ejected him. All therefore that remained in Syracuse had to serve
under a tyrant, who at the best was of an ungentle nature, and exasperated
now to a degree of savageness by the late misfortunes and calamities
he had suffered. The better and more distinguished citizens, having
timely retired thence to Hicetes, ruler of the Leontines, put themselves
under his protection, and chose him for their general in the war;
not that he was much preferable to any open and avowed tyrant, but
they had no other sanctuary at present, and it gave them some ground
of confidence he was of a Syracusan family, and had forces able to
encounter those of Dionysius. 

In the meantime the Carthaginians appeared before Sicily with a great
navy, watching when and where they might make a descent upon the island;
and terror at this fleet made the Sicilians incline to send an embassy
into Greece to demand succours from the Corinthians, whom they confided
in rather than others, not only upon the account of their near kindred,
and the great benefits they had often received by trusting them, but
because Corinth had ever shown herself attached to freedom and averse
from tyranny and had engaged in many noble wars, not for empire or
aggrandizement, but for the sole liberty of the Greeks, But Hicetes,
who made it the business of his command not so much to deliver the
Syracusans from other tyrants, as to enslave them to himself, had
already entered into some secret conferences with those of Carthage,
while in public he commended the design of his Syracusan clients,
and despatched ambassadors from himself, together with theirs, into
Peloponnesus; not that he really desired any relief to come from there,
but in case the Corinthians, as was likely enough, on account of the
troubles of Greece and occupation at home, should refuse their assistance,
hoping then he should be able with less difficulty to dispose and
incline things for the Carthaginian interest, and so make use of these
foreign pretenders, as instruments and auxiliaries for himself, either
against the Syracusans or Dionysius, as occasion served. This was
discovered a while after. 

The ambassadors being arrived, and their request known, the Corinthians,
who had always a great concern for all their colonies and plantations,
but especially for Syracuse, since by good fortune there was nothing
to molest them in their own country, where they were enjoying peace
and leisure at that time, readily and with one accord passed a vote
for their assistance. And when they were deliberating about the choice
of a captain for the expedition, and the magistrates were urging the
claims of various aspirants for reputation, one of the crowd stood
up and named Timoleon, son of Timodemus, who had long absented himself
from public business, and had neither any thoughts of nor the least
pretensions to, an employment of that nature. Some god or other, it
might rather seem, had put it in the man's heart to mention him; such
favour and good-will on the part of Fortune seemed at once to be shown
in his election, and to accompany all his following actions, as though
it were on purpose to commend his worth, and add grace and ornament
to his personal virtues. As regards his parentage, both Timodemus
his father, and his mother Demariste, were of high rank in the city;
and as for himself, he was noted for his love of his country, and
his gentleness of temper, except in his extreme hatred to tyrants
and wicked men. His natural abilities for war were so happily tempered,
that while a rare prudence might be seen in all the enterprises of
his younger years, an equal courage showed itself in the last exploits
of his declining age. He had an elder brother, whose name was Timophanes,
who was every way unlike him, being indiscreet and rash, and infected
by the suggestions of some friends and foreign soldiers, whom he kept
always about him, with a passion for absolute power. He seemed to
have a certain force and vehemence in all military service, and even
to delight in dangers, and thus he took much with the people, and
was advanced to the highest charges, as a vigorous and effective warrior;
in the obtaining of which offices and promotions, Timoleon much assisted
him, helping to conceal or at least to extenuate his errors, embellishing
by his praise whatever was commendable in him, and setting off his
good qualities to the best advantage. 

It happened once in the battle fought by the Corinthians against the
forces of Argos and Cleonae, that Timoleon served among the infantry,
when Timophanes, commanding their cavalry, was brought into extreme
danger; as his horse being wounded fell forward and threw him headlong
amidst the enemies, while part of his companions dispersed at once
in a panic, and the small number that remained, bearing up against
a great multitude, had much ado to maintain any resistance. As soon,
therefore, as Timoleon was aware of the accident, he ran hastily in
to his brother's rescue, and covering the fallen Timophanes with his
buckler, after having received abundance of darts, and several strokes
by the sword upon his body and his armour, he at length with much
difficulty obliged the enemies to retire, and brought off his brother
alive and safe. But when the Corinthians, for fear of losing their
city a second time, as they had once before, by admitting their allies,
made a decree to maintain four hundred mercenaries for its security,
and gave Timophanes the command over them, he, abandoning all regard
to honour and equity, at once proceeded to put into execution his
plans for making himself absolute, and bringing the place under his
own power; and having cut off many principal citizens, uncondemned
and without trial, who were most likely to hinder his designs, he
declared himself tyrant of Corinth; a procedure that infinitely afflicted
Timoleon, to whom the wickedness of such a brother appeared to be
his own reproach and calamity. He undertook to persuade him by reasoning,
that desisting from that wild and unhappy ambition, he would bethink
himself how he should make the Corinthians some amends, and find out
an expedient to remedy and correct the evils he had done them. When
his single admonition was rejected and contemned by him, he makes
a second attempt, taking with him Aeschylus his kinsman, brother to
the wife of Timophanes, and a certain diviner, that was his friend,
whom Theopompus in his history calls Satyrus, but Ephorus and Timaeus
mention in theirs by the name of Orthagoras. After a few days, then,
he returns to his brother with this company, all three of them surrounding
and earnestly importuning him upon the same subject, that now at length
he would listen to reason, and be of another mind. But when Timophanes
began first to laugh at the men's simplicity, and presently broke
out into rage and indignation against them, Timoleon stepped aside
from him and stood weeping with his face covered, while the other
two, drawing out their swords, despatched him in a moment.

On the rumour of this act being soon scattered about, the better and
more generous of the Corinthians highly applauded Timoleon for the
hatred of wrong and the greatness of soul that had made him, though
of a gentle disposition and full of love and kindness for his family,
think the obligations to his country stronger than the ties of consanguinity,
and prefer that which is good and just before gain and interest and
his own particular advantage. For the same brother, who with so much
bravery had been saved by him when he fought valiantly in the cause
of Corinth, he had now as nobly sacrificed for enslaving her afterwards
by a base usurpation. But then, on the other side, those that knew
not how to live in a democracy, and had been used to make their humble
court to the men of power, though they openly professed to rejoice
at the death of the tyrant, nevertheless, secretly reviling Timoleon,
as one that had committed an impious and abominable act, drove him
into melancholy and dejection. And when he came to understand how
heavily his mother took it, and that she likewise uttered the saddest
complaints and most terrible imprecations against him, he went to
satisfy and comfort her as to what had happened; and finding that
she would not endure so much as to look upon him, but caused her doors
to be shut, that he might have no admission into her presence, with
grief at this he grew so disordered in his mind and so disconsolate,
that he determined to put an end to his perplexity with his life,
by abstaining from all manner of sustenance. But through the care
and diligence of his friends, who were very instant with him, and
added force to their entreaties, he came to resolve and promise at
last, that he would endure living, provided it might be in solitude,
and remote from company; so that, quitting all civil transactions
and commerce with the world for a long while after his first retirement,
he never came into Corinth, but wandered up and down the fields, full
of anxious and tormenting thoughts, and spent his time in desert places,
at the farthest distance from society and human intercourse. So true
it is that the minds of men are easily shaken and carried off from
their own sentiments through the casual commendation or reproof of
others, unless the judgments that we make, and the purposes we conceive,
be confirmed by reason and philosophy, and thus obtain strength and
steadiness. An action must not only be just and laudable in its own
nature, but it must proceed likewise from motives and a lasting principle,
that so we may fully and constantly approve the thing, and be perfectly
satisfied in what we do; for otherwise, after having put our resolution
into practice, we shall out of pure weakness come to be troubled at
the performance, when the grace and godliness, which rendered it before
so amiable and pleasing to us, begin to decay and wear out of our
fancy; like greedy people, who, seizing on the more delicious morsels
of any dish with a keen appetite, are presently disgusted when they
grow full, and find themselves oppressed and uneasy now by what they
before so greedily desired. For a succeeding dislike spoils the best
of actions, and repentance makes that which was never so well done
become base and faulty; whereas the choice that is founded upon knowledge
and wise reasoning does not change by disappointment, or suffer us
to repent, though it happen perchance to be less prosperous in the
issue. And thus, Phocion, of Athens, having always vigorously opposed
the measures of Leosthenes, when success appeared to attend them,
and he saw his countrymen rejoicing and offering sacrifice in honour
of their victory, "I should have been as glad," said he to them, "that
I myself had been the author of what Leosthenes has achieved for you,
as I am that I gave you my own counsel against it." A more vehement
reply is record to have been made by Aristides the Locrian, one of
Plato's companions, to Dionysius the elder, who demanded one of his
daughters in marriage: "I had rather," said he to him, "see the virgin
in her grave than in the palace of a tyrant." And when Dionysius,
enraged at the affront, made his sons be put to death a while after,
and then again insultingly asked, whether he were still in the same
mind as to the disposal of his daughters, his answer was, "I cannot
but grieve at the cruelty of your deeds, but am not sorry for the
freedom of my own words." Such expressions as these may belong perhaps
to a more sublime and accomplished virtue. 

The grief, however, of Timoleon at what had been done, whether it
arose from commiseration of his brother's fate or the reverence he
bore his mother, so shattered and broke his spirits, that for the
space of almost twenty years he had not offered to concern himself
in any honourable or public action. When, therefore, he was pitched
upon for a general, and, joyfully accepted as such by the suffrages
of the people, Teleclides, who was at that time the most powerful
and distinguished man in Corinth, began to exhort him that he would
act now like a man of worth and gallantry: "For," said he, "if you
do bravely in this service we shall believe that you delivered us
from a tyrant; but if otherwise that you killed your brother." While
he was yet preparing to set sail, and enlisting soldiers to embark
with him, there came letters to the Corinthians from Hicetes, plainly
disclosing his revolt and treachery. For his ambassadors had no sooner
gone for Corinth, but he openly joined the Carthaginians, negotiating
that they might assist him to throw out Dionysius, and become master
of Syracuse in his room. And fearing he might be disappointed of his
aim if troops and a commander should come from Corinth before this
were effected, he sent a letter of advice thither, in all haste, to
prevent their setting out, telling them they need not be at any cost
and trouble upon his account, or run the hazard of a Sicilian voyage,
especially since the Carthaginians, alliance with whom against Dionysius
the slowness of their motions had compelled him to embrace, would
dispute their passage, and lay in wait to attack them with a numerous
fleet. This letter being publicly read, if any had been cold and indifferent
before as to the expedition in hand, the indignation they now conceived
against Hicetes so exasperated and inflamed them all that they willingly
contributed to supply Timoleon, and endeavoured with one accord to
hasten his departure. 

When the vessels were equipped, and his soldiers every way provided
for, the female priest of Proserpina had a dream or vision wherein
she and her mother Ceres appeared to them in a travelling garb, and
were heard to say that they were going to sail with Timoleon into
Sicily; whereupon the Corinthians, having built a sacred galley, devoted
it to them, and called it the galley of the goddesses. Timoleon went
in person to Delphi, where he sacrificed to Apollo, and, descending
into the place of prophecy, was surprised with the following marvellous
occurrence. A riband, with crowns and figures of victory embroidered
upon it, slipped off from among the gifts that were there consecrated
and hung up in the temple, and fell directly down upon his head; so
that Apollo seemed already to crown him with success, and send him
thence to conquer and triumph. He put to sea only with seven ships
of Corinth, two of Corcyra, and a tenth which was furnished by the
Leucadians; and when he was now entered into the deep by night, and
carried with a prosperous gale, the heaven seemed all on a sudden
to break open, and a bright spreading flame to issue forth from it,
and hover over the ship he was in; and, having formed itself into
a torch, not unlike those that are used in the mysteries, it began
to steer the same course, and run along in their company, guiding
them by its light to that quarter of Italy where they designed to
go ashore. The soothsayers affirmed that this apparition agreed with
the dream of the holy woman, since the goddesses were now visibly
joining in the expedition, and sending this light from heaven before
them: Sicily being thought sacred to Proserpina, as poets feign that
the rape was committed there, and that the island was given her in
dowry when she married Pluto. 

These early demonstrations of divine favour greatly encouraged his
whole army; so that making all the speed they were able, by a voyage
across the open sea, they were soon passing along the coast of Italy.
But the tidings that came from Sicily much perplexed Timoleon, and
disheartened his soldiers. For Hicetes, having already beaten Dionysius
out of the field, and reduced most of the quarters of Syracuse itself,
now hemmed him in and besieged him in the citadel and what is called
the Island, whither he was fled for his last refuge; while the Carthaginians,
by agreement, were to make it their business to hinder Timoleon from
landing in any port of Sicily; so that he and his party being driven
back, they might with ease and at their own leisure divide the island
among themselves. In pursuance of which design the Carthaginians sent
away twenty of their galleys to Rhegium, having aboard them certain
ambassadors from Hicetes to Timoleon, who carried instructions suitable
to these proceedings, specious amusements, and plausible stories,
to colour and conceal dishonest purposes. They had order to propose
and demand that Timoleon himself, if he liked the offer, should come
and advise with Hicetes and partake of all his conquests, but that
he might send back his ships and forces to Corinth, since the war
was in a manner finished, and the Carthaginians had blocked up the
passage, determined to oppose them if they should try to force their
way towards the shore. When, therefore, the Corinthians met with these
envoys at Rhegium, and received their message, and saw the Phoenician
vessels riding at anchor in the bay, they became keenly sensible of
the abuse that was put upon them, and felt a general indignation against
Hicetes, and great apprehensions for the Siceliots, whom they now
plainly perceived to be as it were a prize and recompense to Hicetes
on one side for his perfidy, and to the Carthaginians on the other
for the sovereign power they secured to him. For it seemed utterly
impossible to force and overbear the Carthaginian ships that lay before
them and were double their number, as also to vanquish the victorious
troops which Hicetes had with him in Syracuse, to take the lead of
which very troops they had undertaken their voyage. 

The case being thus, Timoleon, after some conference with the envoys
of Hicetes and the Carthaginian captains, told them he should readily
submit to their proposals (to what purpose would it be to refuse compliance?):
he was desirous only, before his return to Corinth, that what had
passed between them in private might be solemnly declared before the
people of Rhegium, a Greek city, and a common friend to the parties;
this, he said, would very much conduce to his own security and discharge;
and they likewise would more strictly observe articles of agreement,
on behalf of the Syracusans, which they had obliged themselves to
in the presence of so many witnesses. The design of all which was
only to divert their attention, while he got an opportunity of slipping
away from their fleet; a contrivance that all the principal Rhegians
were privy and assisting to, who had a great desire that the affairs
of Sicily should fall into Corinthian hands, and dreaded the consequences
of having barbarian neighbours. An assembly was therefore called,
and the gates shut, that the citizens might have no liberty to turn
to other business; and a succession of speakers came forward, addressing
the people at great length, to the same effect, without bringing the
subject to any conclusion, making way each for another and purposely
spinning out the time, till the Corinthian galleys should get clear
of the haven; the Carthaginian commanders being detained there without
any suspicion, as also Timoleon still remained present, and gave signs
as if he were just preparing to make an oration. But upon secret notice
that the rest of the galleys were already gone off, and that his alone
remained waiting for him, by the help and concealment of those Rhegians
that were about the hustings and favoured his departure, he made shift
to slip away through the crowd, and running down to the port, set
sail with all speed; and having reached his other vessels, they came
all safe to Tauromenium in Sicily, whither they had been formerly
invited, and where they were now kindly received by Andromachus, then
ruler of the city. This man was father of Timaeus the historian, and
incomparably the best of all those that bore sway in Sicily at that
time, governing his citizens according to law and justice and openly
professing an aversion and enmity to all tyrants; upon which account
he gave Timoleon leave to muster up his troops there, and to make
that city the seat of war, persuading the inhabitants to join their
arms with the Corinthian forces, and assist them in the design of
delivering Sicily. 

But the Carthaginians who were left in Rhegium perceiving, when the
assembly was dissolved, that Timoleon had given them the go-by, were
not a little vexed to see themselves out-witted, much to the amusement
of the Rhegians, who could not but smile to find Phoenicians complain
of being cheated. However, they despatched a messenger aboard one
of their galleys to Tauromenium, who, after much blustering in the
insolent barbaric way, and many menaces to Andromachus if he did not
forthwith send the Corinthians off, stretched out his hand with the
inside upward, and then turning it down again, threatened he would
handle their city even so, and turn it topsy-turvy in as little time,
and with as much ease. Andromachus, laughing at the man's confidence,
made no other reply, but, imitating his gesture, bid him hasten his
own departure, unless he had a mind to see that kind of dexterity
practised first upon the galley which brought him hither.

Hicetes, informed that Timoleon had made good his passage, was in
great fear of what might follow, and sent to desire the Carthaginians
that a large number of galleys might be ordered to attend and secure
the coast. And now it was that the Syracusans began wholly to despair
of safety, seeing the Carthaginians possessed of their haven, Hicetes
master of the town, and Dionysius supreme in the citadel; while Timoleon
had as yet but a slender hold of Sicily, as it were by the fringe
or border of it, in the small city of the Tauromenians, with a feeble
hope and a poor company; having but a thousand soldiers at the most,
and no more provisions, either of corn or money, than were just necessary
for the maintenance and the pay of that inconsiderable number. Nor
did the other towns of Sicily confide in him, overpowered as they
were with violence and outrage, and embittered against all that should
offer to lead armies by the treacherous conduct chiefly of Callipus,
an Athenian, and Pharax, a Lacedaemonian captain, both of whom, after
giving out that the design of their coming was to introduce liberty
and to depose tyrants, so tyrannized themselves, that the reign of
former oppressors seemed to be a golden age in comparison, and the
Sicilians began to consider those more happy who had expired in servitude,
than any that had lived to see such a dismal freedom. 

Looking, therefore, for no better usage from the Corinthian general,
but imagining that it was only the same old course of things once
more, specious pretences and false professions to allure them by fair
hopes and kind promises into the obedience of a new master, they all,
with one accord, unless it were the people of Adranum, suspected the
exhortations, and rejected the overtures that were made them in his
name. These were inhabitants of a small city, consecrated to Adranus,
a certain god that was in high veneration throughout Sicily, and,
as it happened, they were then at variance among themselves, insomuch
that one party called in Hicetes and the Carthaginians to assist them,
while the other sent proposals to Timoleon. It so fell out that these
auxiliaries, striving which should be soonest, both arrived at Adranum
about the same time; Hicetes bringing with him at least five thousand
men, while all the force Timoleon could make did not exceed twelve
hundred. With these he marched out of Tauromenium, which was about
three hundred and forty furlongs distant from that city. The first
day he moved but slowly, and took up his quarters betimes after a
short journey; but the day following he quickened his pace, and, having
passed through much difficult ground, towards evening received advice
that Hicetes was just approaching Adranum, and pitching his camp before
it; upon which intelligence, his captains and other officers caused
the vanguard to halt, that the army being refreshed, and having reposed
a while, might engage the enemy with better heart. But Timoleon, coming
up in haste, desired them not to stop for that reason, but rather
use all possible diligence to surprise the enemy, whom probably they
would now find in disorder, as having lately ended their march and
being taken up at present in erecting tents and preparing supper;
which he had no sooner said, but laying hold of his buckler and putting
himself in the front, he led them on as it were to certain victory.
The braveness of such a leader made them all follow him with like
courage and assurance. They were now within less than thirty furlongs
of Adranum, which they quickly traversed, and immediately fell in
upon the enemy, who were seized with confusion, and began to retire
at their first approaches; one consequence of which was that, amidst
so little opposition, and so early and general a flight, there were
not many more than three hundred slain, and about twice the number
made prisoners. Their camp and baggage, however, was all taken. The
fortune of this onset soon induced the Adranitans to unlock their
gates, and to embrace the interest of Timoleon, to whom they recounted,
with a mixture of affright and admiration, how, at the very minute
of the encounter, the doors of their temple flew open of their own
accord, that the javelin also, which their god held in his band, was
observed to tremble at the point, and that drops of sweat had been
seen running down his face; prodigies that not only presaged the victory
then obtained, but were an omen, it seemed, of all his future exploits,
to which this first happy action gave the occasion. 

For now the neighbouring cities and potentates sent deputies, one
upon another, to seek his friendship and make offer of their service.
Among the rest Mamercus, the tyrant of Catana, an experienced warrior
and a wealthy prince, made proposals of alliance with him, and what
was of greater importance still, Dionysius himself, being now grown
desperate, and well-nigh forced to surrender, despising Hicetes who
had been thus shamefully baffled, and admiring the valour of Timoleon,
found means to advertise him and his Corinthians that he should be
content to deliver up himself and the citadel into their hands. Timoleon,
gladly embracing this unlooked-for advantage, sends away Euclides
and Telemachus, two Corinthian captains, with four hundred men, for
the seizure and custody of the castle, with directions to enter not
all at once, or in open view, that being impracticable so long as
the enemy kept guard, but by stealth, and in small companies. And
so they took possession of the fortress and the palace of Dionysius,
with all the stores and ammunition he had prepared and laid up to
maintain the war. They found a good number of horses, every variety
of engines, a multitude of darts, and weapons to arm seventy thousand
men (a magazine that had been formed from ancient time), besides two
thousand soldiers that were then with him, whom he gave up with the
rest for Timoleon's service. Dionysius himself, putting his treasure
aboard, and taking a few friends, sailed away unobserved by Hicetes,
and being brought to the camp of Timoleon, there first appeared in
the humble dress of a private person, and was shortly after sent to
Corinth with a single ship and a small sum of money. Born and educated
in the most splendid court and the most absolute monarchy that ever
was, which he held and kept up for the space of ten years succeeding
his father's death, he had, after Dion's expedition, spent twelve
other years in a continual agitation of wars and contests, and great
variety of fortune, during which time all the mischiefs he had committed
in his former reign were more than repaid by the ills he himself then
suffered, since he lived to see the deaths of his sons in the prime
and vigour of their age, and the rape of his daughters in the flower
of their virginity, and the wicked abuse of his sister and his wife,
who, after being first exposed to all the lawless insults of the soldiery,
was then murdered with her children, and cast into the sea; the particulars
of which are more exactly given in the life of Dion. 

Upon the news of his landing at Corinth, there was hardly a man in
Greece who had not the curiosity to come and view the late formidable
tyrant, and say some words to him; part, rejoicing at his disasters,
were led thither out of mere spite and hatred, that they might have
the pleasure of trampling, as it were, on the ruins of his broken
fortune; but others, letting their attention and their sympathy turn
rather to the changes and revolutions of his life, could not but see
in them a proof of the strength and potency with which divine and
unseen causes operate amidst the weakness of human and visible things.
For neither art nor nature did in that age produce anything comparable
to this work and wonder of fortune which showed the very same man,
that was not long before supreme monarch of Sicily, loitering about
perhaps in the fish-market, or sitting in a perfumer's shop drinking
the diluted wine of taverns, or squabbling in the street with common
women, or pretending to instruct the singing women of the theatre,
and seriously disputing with them about the measure and harmony of
pieces of music that were performed there. Such behaviour on his part
was variously criticized. He was thought by many to act thus out of
pure compliance with his own natural indolent and vicious inclinations;
while finer judges were of the opinion, that in all this he was playing
a politic part, with a design to be contemned among them, and that
the Corinthians might not feel any apprehension or suspicion of his
being uneasy under his reverse of fortune, or solicitous to retrieve
it; to avoid which danger, he purposely and against his true nature
affected an appearance of folly and want of spirit in his private
life and amusements. 

However it be, there are sayings and repartees of his left still upon
record, which seem to show that he not ignobly accommodated himself
to his present circumstances; as may appear in part from the ingenuousness
of the avowal he made on coming to Leucadia, which, as well as Syracuse,
was a Corinthian colony, where he told the inhabitants that he found
himself not unlike boys who had been in fault, who can talk cheerfully
with their brothers, but are ashamed to see their father; so likewise
he, he said, could gladly reside with them in that island, whereas
he felt a certain awe upon his mind which made him averse to the sight
of Corinth, that was a common mother to them both. The thing is further
evident from the reply he once made to a stranger in Corinth, who
deriding him in a rude and scornful manner about the conferences he
used to have with philosophers, whose company had been one of his
pleasures while yet a monarch, and demanding, in fine, what he was
the better now for all those wise and learned discourses of Plato,
"Do you think," said he, "I have made no profit of his philosophy
when you see me bear my change of fortune as I do?" And when Aristoxenus
the musician, and several others, desired to know how Plato offended
him, and what had been the ground of his displeasure with him, he
made answer that, of the many evils attaching to the condition of
sovereignty, the one greatest infelicity was that none of those who
were accounted friends would venture to speak freely, or tell the
plain truth; and that by means of such he had been deprived of Plato's
kindness. At another time, when one of those pleasant companions that
are desirous to pass for wits, in mockery to Dionysius, as if he were
still the tyrant, shook out the folds of his cloak, as he was entering
into a room where he was, to show there were no concealed weapons
about him, Dionysius, by way of retort, observed, that he would prefer
he would do so on leaving the room, as a security that he was carrying
nothing off with him. And when Philip of Macedon, at a drinking party,
began to speak in banter about the verses and tragedies which his
father, Dionysius the elder, had left behind him, and pretended to
wonder how he could get any time from his other business to compose
such elaborate and ingenious pieces, he replied, very much to the
purpose, "It was at those leisurable hours, which such as you and
I, and those we call happy men, bestow upon our cups." Plato had not
the opportunity to see Dionysius at Corinth, being already dead before
he came thither; but Diogenes of Sinope, at their first meeting in
the street there, saluted him with the ambiguous expression, "O Dionysius,
how little you deserve your present life! Upon which Dionysius stopped
and replied, "I thank you, Diogenes, for your condolence." "Condole
with you!" replied Diogenes; "do you not suppose that, on the contrary,
I am indignant that such a slave as you, who, if you had your due,
should have been let alone to grow old and die in the state of tyranny,
as your father did before you, should now enjoy the ease of private
persons, and be here to sport and frolic in our society?" So that
when I compare those sad stories of Philistus, touching the daughters
of Leptines, where he makes pitiful moan on their behalf, as fallen
from all the blessings and advantages of powerful greatness to the
miseries of an humble life, they seem to me like the lamentations
of a woman who has lost her box of ointment, her purple dresses, and
her golden trinkets. Such anecdotes will not, I conceive, be thought
either foreign to my purpose of writing Lives, or unprofitable in
themselves, by such readers as are not in too much haste, or busied
and taken up with other concerns. 

But if the misfortune of Dionysius appears strange and extraordinary,
we shall have no less reason to wonder at the good fortune of Timoleon,
who, within fifty days after his landing in Sicily, both recovered
the citadel of Syracuse and sent Dionysius an exile into Peloponnesus.
This lucky beginning so animated the Corinthians, that they ordered
him a supply of two thousand foot and two hundred horse, who, reaching
Thurii, intended to cross over thence into Sicily; but finding the
whole sea beset with Carthaginian ships, which made their passage
impracticable, they were constrained to stop there, and watch their
opportunity: which time, however, was employed in a noble action.
For the Thurians, going out to war against their Bruttian enemies,
left their city in charge with these Corinthian strangers, who defended
it as carefully as if it had been their own country, and faithfully
resigned it up again. 

Hicetes, in the interim, continued still to besiege the castle of
Syracuse, and hindered all provisions from coming in by sea to relieve
the Corinthians that were in it. He had engaged also, and despatched
towards Adranum, two unknown foreigners to assassinate Timoleon, who
at no time kept any standing guard about his person, and was then
altogether secure, diverting himself, without any apprehension, among
the citizens of the place, it being a festival in honour of their
gods. The two men that were sent, having casually heard that Timoleon
was about to sacrifice, came directly into the temple with poniards
under their cloaks, and pressing in among the crowd, by little and
little got up close to the altar; but, as they were just looking for
a sign from each other to begin the attempt, a third person struck
one of them over the head with a sword, upon whose sudden fall, neither
he that gave the blow, nor the partisan of him that received it, kept
their stations any longer; but the one, making way with his bloody
sword, put no stop to his flight, till he gained the top of a certain
lofty precipice, while the other, laying hold of the altar, besought
Timoleon to spare his life, and he would reveal to him the whole conspiracy.
His pardon being granted, he confessed that both himself and his dead
companion were sent thither purposely to slay him. While this discovery
was made, he that killed the other conspirator had been fetched down
from his sanctuary of the rock, loudly and often protesting, as he
came along, that there was no injustice in the fact, as he had only
taken righteous vengeance for his father's blood, whom this man had
murdered before in the city of Leontini; the truth of which was attested
by several there present, who could not choose but wonder too at the
strange dexterity of fortune's operations, the facility with which
she makes one event the spring and motion to something wholly different,
uniting every scattered accident and loose particular and remote action,
and interweaving them together to serve her purpose; so that things
that in themselves seem to have no connection or interdependence whatsoever,
become in her hands, so to say, the end and the beginning of each
other. The Corinthians, satisfied as to the innocence of this seasonable
feat, honoured and rewarded the author with a present of ten pounds
in their money, since he had, as it were, lent the use of his just
resentment to the tutelar genius that seemed to be protecting Timoleon,
and had not pre-expended this anger, so long ago conceived, but had
reserved and deferred, under fortune's guidance, for his preservation,
the revenge of a private quarrel. 

But this fortunate escape had effects and consequences beyond the
present, as it inspired the highest hopes and future expectations
of Timoleon, making people reverence and protect him as a sacred person
sent by heaven to revenge and redeem Sicily. Hicetes, having missed
his aim in this enterprise, and perceiving, also, that many went off
and sided with Timoleon, began to chide himself for his foolish modesty,
that, when so considerable a force of the Carthaginians lay ready
to be commanded by him, he had employed them hitherto by degrees and
in small numbers, introducing their reinforcements by stealth and
clandestinely, as if he had been ashamed of the action. Therefore,
now laying aside his former nicety, he calls in Mago, their admiral,
with his whole navy, who presently set sail, and seized upon the port
with a formidable fleet of at least a hundred and fifty vessels, landing
there sixty thousand foot, which were all lodged within the city of
Syracuse; so that, in all men's opinion, the time anciently talked
of and long expected, wherein Sicily should be subjugated by barbarians,
was now come to its fatal period. For in all their preceding wars
and many desperate conflicts with Sicily, the Carthaginians had never
been able, before this, to take Syracuse; whereas Hicetes now receiving
them and putting them into their hands, you might see it become now
as it were a camp of barbarians. By this means, the Corinthian soldiers
that kept the castle found themselves brought into great danger and
hardship; as, besides that their provision grew scarce, and they began
to be in want, because the havens were strictly guarded and blocked
up, the enemy exercised them still with skirmishes and combats about
their walls, and they were not only obliged to be continually in arms,
but to divide and prepare themselves for assaults and encounters of
every kind, and to repel every variety of the means of offence employed
by a besieging army. 

Timoleon made shift to relieve them in these straits, sending corn
from Catana by small fishing-boats and little skiffs, which commonly
gained a passage through the Carthaginian galleys in times of storm,
stealing up when the blockading ships were driven apart and dispersed
by the stress of weather; which Mago and Hicetes observing, they agreed
to fall upon Catana, from whence these supplies were brought in to
the besieged, and accordingly put off from Syracuse, taking with them
the best soldiers in their whole army. Upon this Neon the Corinthian,
who was captain of those that kept the citadel, taking notice that
the enemies who stayed there behind were very negligent and careless
in keeping guard, made a sudden sally upon them as they lay scattered,
and, killing some and putting others to flight, he took and possessed
himself of that quarter which they call Acradina, and was thought
to be the strongest and most impregnable part of Syracuse, a city
made up and compacted, as it were, of several towns put together.
Having thus stored himself with corn and money, he did not abandon
the place, nor retire again into the castle, but fortifying the precincts
of Acradina, and joining it by works to the citadel, he undertook
the defence of both. Mago and Hicetes were now come near to Catana,
when a horseman, despatched from Syracuse, brought them tidings that
Acradina was taken; upon which they returned, in all haste, with great
disorder and confusion, having neither been able to reduce the city
they went against, nor to preserve that they were masters of.

These successes, indeed, were such as might leave foresight and courage
a pretence still of disputing it with fortune, which contributed most
to the result. But the next following event can scarcely be ascribed
to anything but pure felicity. The Corinthian soldiers who stayed
at Thurii, partly for fear of the Carthaginian galleys which lay in
wait for them under the command of Hanno, and partly because of tempestuous
weather which had lasted for many days, and rendered the sea dangerous,
took a resolution to march by land over the Bruttian territories,
and what with persuasion and force together, made good their passage
through those barbarians to the city of Rhegium, the sea being still
rough and raging as before. But Hanno, not expecting the Corinthians
would venture out, and supposing it would be useless to wait there
any longer, bethought himself, as he imagined, of a most ingenious
and clever stratagem apt to delude and ensnare the enemy; in pursuance
of which he commanded the seamen to crown themselves with garlands,
and adorning his galleys with bucklers both of the Greek and Carthaginian
make, he sailed away for Syracuse in this triumphant equipage, and
using all his oars as he passed under the castle with much shouting
and laughter, cried out, on purpose to dishearten the besieged, that
he was come from vanquishing and taking the Corinthian succours, which
he fell upon at sea as they were passing over into Sicily. While he
was thus trifling and playing his tricks before Syracuse, the Corinthians,
now come as far as Rhegium, observing the coast clear, and that the
wind was laid, as it were by miracle, to afford them in all appearance
a quiet and smooth passage, went immediately aboard on such little
barks and fishing-boats as were then at hand, and got over to Sicily
with such complete safety and in such an extraordinary calm, that
they drew their horses by the reins, swimming along by them as the
vessels went across. 

When they were all landed, Timoleon came to receive them, and by their
means at once obtained possession of Messena, from whence he marched
in good order to Syracuse, trusting more to his late prosperous achievements
than his present strength, as the whole army he had then with him
did not exceed the number of four thousand: Mago, however, was troubled
and fearful at the first notice of his coming, and grew more apprehensive
and jealous still upon the following occasion. The marshes about Syracuse,
that receive a great deal of fresh water, as well from springs as
from lakes and rivers discharging themselves into the sea, breed abundance
of eels, which may be always taken there in great quantities by any
that will fish for them. The mercenary soldiers that served on both
sides were wont to follow the sport together at their vacant hours,
and upon any cessation of arms; who being all Greeks, and having no
cause of private enmity to each other, as they would venture bravely
in fight, so in times of truce used to meet and converse amicably
together. And at this present time, while engaged about this common
business of fishing, they fell into talk together; and some expressing
their admiration of the neighbouring sea, and others telling how much
they were taken with the convenience and commodiousness of the buildings
and public works, one of the Corinthian party took occasion to demand
of the others: "And is it possible that you who are Grecians born
should be so forward to reduce a city of this greatness, and enjoying
so many rare advantages, into the state of barbarism; and lend your
assistance to plant Carthaginans, that are the worst and bloodiest
of men, so much the nearer to us? whereas you should rather wish there
were many more Sicilies to lie between them and Greece. Have you so
little sense as to believe, that they come hither with an army, from
the Pillars of Hercules and the Atlantic Sea, to hazard themselves
for the establishment of Hicetes? who, if he had had the consideration
which becomes a general, would never have thrown out his ancestors
and founders to bring in the enemies of his country in the room of
them, when he might have enjoyed all suitable honour and command,
with consent of Timoleon and the rest of Corinth." The Greeks that
were in pay with Hicetes, noising these discourses about their camp,
gave Mago some ground to suspect, as indeed he had long sought for
a pretence to be gone, that there was treachery contrived against
him; so that, although Hicetes entreated him to tarry, and made it
appear how much stronger they were than the enemy, yet, conceiving
they came far more short of Timoleon in respect of courage and fortune
than they surpassed him in number, he presently went aboard and set
sail for Africa, letting Sicily escape out of his hands with dishonour
to himself, and for such uncertain causes, that no human reason could
give an account of his departure. 

The day after he went away, Timoleon came up before the city in array
for a battle. But when he and his company heard of this sudden flight;
and saw the docks all empty, they could not forbear laughing at the
cowardice of Mago, and in mockery caused proclamation to be made through
the city that a reward would be given to any one who could bring them
tidings whither the Carthaginian fleet had conveyed itself from them.
However, Hicetes resolving to fight it out alone, and not quitting
his hold of the city, but sticking close to the quarters he was in
possession of, places that were well fortified and not easy to be
attacked, Timoleon divided his forces into three parts, and fell himself
upon the side where the river Anapas ran, which was most strong and
difficult of access; and he commanded those that were led by Isias,
a Corinthian captain, to make their assault from the post of Acradina,
while Dinarchus and Demaretus, that brought him the last supply from
Corinth, were, with a third division, to attempt the quarter called
Epipolae. A considerable impression being made from every side at
once, the soldiers of Hicetes were beaten off and put to flight; and
this- that the city came to be taken by storm, and fall suddenly into
their hands, upon the defeat and rout of the enemy- we must in all
justice ascribe to the valour of the assailants and the wise conduct
of their general; but that not so much as a man of the Corinthians
was either slain or wounded in the action, this the good fortune of
Timoleon seems to challenge for her own work, as though, in a sort
of rivalry with his own personal exertions, she made it her aim to
exceed and obscure his actions by her favours, that those who heard
him commended for his noble deeds might rather admire the happiness
than the merit of them. For the fame of what was done not only passed
through all Sicily, and filled Italy with wonder, but even Greece
itself, after a few days, came to ring with the greatness of his exploit;
insomuch that those of Corinth, who had as yet no certainty that their
auxiliaries were landed on the island, had tidings brought them at
the same time that they were safe and were conquerors. In so prosperous
a course did affairs run, and such was the speed and celerity of execution
with which fortune, as with a new ornament, set off the native lustres
of the performance. 

Timoleon, being master of the citadel, avoided the error which Dion
had been guilty of. He spared not the place for the beauty and sumptuousness
of its fabric, and, keeping clear of those suspicions which occasioned
first the unpopularity and afterwards the fall of Dion, made a public
crier give notice that all the Syracusans who were willing to have
a hand in the work should bring pick-axes and mattocks, and other
instruments, and help him to demolish the fortifications of the tyrants.
When they all came up with one accord, looking upon that order and
that day as the surest foundation of their liberty, they not only
pulled down the castle, but overturned the palaces and monuments adjoining,
and whatever else might preserve any memory of former tyrants. Having
soon levelled and cleared the place, he there presently erected courts
for administration of justice, ratifying the citizens by this means,
and building popular government on the fall and ruin of tyranny. But
since he had recovered a city destitute of inhabitants, some of them
dead in civil wars and insurrections, and others being fled to escape
tyrants, so that through solitude and want of people the great market-place
of Syracuse was overgrown with such quantity of rank herbage that
it became a pasture for their horses, the grooms lying along in the
grass as they fed by them; while also other towns, very few excepted,
were become full of stags and wild boars, so that those who had nothing
else to do went frequently a-hunting, and found game in the suburbs
and about the walls; and not one of those who possessed themselves
of castles, or made garrisons in the country, could be persuaded to
quit their present abode, or would accept an invitation to return
back into the city, so much did they all dread and abhor the very
name of assemblies and forms of government and public speaking, that
had produced the greater part of those usurpers who had successively
assumed a dominion over them- Timoleon, therefore, with the Syracusans
that remained, considering this vast desolation, and how little hope
there was to have it otherwise supplied, thought good to write to
the Corinthians, requesting that they would send a colony out of Greece
to repeople Syracuse. For else the land about it would lie unimproved;
and besides this, they expected to be involved in a greater war from
Africa, having news brought them that Mago had killed himself, and
that the Carthaginians, out of rage for his ill-conduct in the late
expedition, had caused his body to be nailed upon a cross, and that
they were raising a mighty force, with design to make their descent
upon Sicily the next summer. 

These letters from Timoleon being delivered at Corinth, and the ambassadors
of Syracuse beseeching them at the same time that they would take
upon them the care of their poor city, and once again become the founders
of it, the Corinthians were not tempted by any feeling of cupidity
to lay hold of the advantage. Nor did they seize and appropriate the
city to themselves, but going about first to the games that are kept
as sacred in Greece, and to the most numerously attended religious
assemblages, they made publication by heralds, that the Corinthians,
having destroyed the usurpation at Syracuse and driven out the tyrant,
did thereby invite the Syracusan exiles, and any other Siceliots,
to return and inhabit the city, with full enjoyment of freedom under
their own laws, the land being divided among them in just and equal
proportions. And after this, sending messengers into Asia and the
several islands where they understood that most of the scattered fugitives
were then residing, they bade them all repair to Corinth, engaging
that the Corinthians would afford them vessels and commanders, and
a safe convoy, at their own charges, to Syracuse. Such generous proposals,
being thus spread about, gained them the just and honourable recompense
of general praise and benediction, for delivering the country from
oppressors, and saving it from barbarians, and restoring it at length
to the rightful owners of the place. These, when they were assembled
at Corinth, and found how insufficient their company was, besought
the Corinthians that they might have a supplement of other persons,
as well out of their city as the rest of Greece, to go with them as
joint colonists; and so raising themselves to the number of ten thousand,
they sailed together to Syracuse. By this time great multitudes, also,
from Italy and Sicily had flocked in to Timoleon, so that, as Athanis
reports, their entire body amounted now to sixty thousand men. Among
these he divided the whole territory, and sold the houses for a thousand
talents; by which method he both left it in the power of the old Syracusans
to redeem their own, and made it a means also for raising a stock
for the community, which had been so much impoverished of late and
was so unable to defray other expenses, and especially those of a
war, that they exposed their very statues to sale, a regular process
being observed, and sentence of auction passed upon each of them by
majority of votes, as if they had been so many criminals taking their
trial; in the course of which it is said that while condemnation was
pronounced upon all other statues, that of the ancient usurper Gelo
was exempted, out of admiration and honour and for the sake of the
victory he gained over the Carthaginian forces at the river Himera.

Syracuse being thus happily revived, and replenished again by the
general concourse of inhabitants from all parts, Timoleon was desirous
now to rescue other cities from the like bondage, and wholly and once
for all to extirpate arbitrary government out of Sicily. And for this
purpose, marching in to the territories of those that used it, he
compelled Hicetes first to renounce the Carthaginian interest, and,
demolishing the fortresses which were held by him, to live henceforth
among the Leontinians as a private person. Leptines, also, the tyrant
of Apollonia and divers other little towns, after some resistance
made, seeing the danger he was in of being taken by force, surrendered
himself; upon which Timoleon spared his life, and sent him away to
Corinth, counting it a glorious thing that the mother city should
expose to the view of other Greeks these Sicilian tyrants, living
now in an exiled and a low condition. After this he returned to Syracuse,
that he might have leisure to attend to the establishment of the new
constitution, and assist Cephalus and Dionysius, who were sent from
Corinth to make laws, in determining the most important points of
it. In the meanwhile, desirous that his hired soldiers should not
want action, but might rather enrich themselves by some plunder from
the enemy, he despatched Dinarchus and Demaretus with a portion of
them into the part of the island belonging to the Carthaginians, where
they obliged several cities to revolt from the barbarians, and not
only lived in great abundance themselves, but raised money from their
spoil to carry on the war. 

Meantime, the Carthaginians landed at the promontory of Lilybaeum,
bringing with them an army of seventy thousand men on board two hundred
galleys, besides a thousand other vessels laden with engines of battery,
chariots, corn, and other military stores, as if they did not intend
to manage the war by piecemeal and in parts as heretofore, but to
drive the Greeks altogether and at once out of all Sicily. And indeed
it was a force sufficient to overpower the Siceliots, even though
they had been at perfect union among themselves, and had never been
enfeebled by intestine quarrels. Hearing that part of their subject
territory was suffering devastation, they forthwith made toward the
Corinthians with great fury, having Asdrubal and Hamilcar for their
generals; the report of whose number and strength coming suddenly
to Syracuse, the citizens were so terrified, that hardly three thousand,
among so many myriads of them, had the courage to take up arms and
join Timoleon. The foreigners, serving for pay, were not above four
thousand in all, and about a thousand of these grew faint-hearted
by the way, and forsook Timoleon in his march towards the enemy, looking
on him as frantic and distracted, destitute of the sense which might
have been expected from his time of life, thus to venture out against
an army of seventy thousand men, with no more than five thousand foot
and a thousand horse; and, when he should have kept those forces to
defend the city, choosing rather to remove them eight days' journey
from Syracuse, so that if they were beaten from the field, they would
have no retreat, nor any burial if they fell upon it. Timoleon, however,
reckoned it some kind of advantage, that these had thus discovered
themselves before the battle, and encouraging the rest, led them with
all speed to the river Crimesus, where it was told him the Carthaginians
were drawn together. 

As he was marching up an ascent, from the top of which they expected
to have a view of the army and of the strength of the enemy, there
met him by chance a train of mules loaded with parsley; which his
soldiers conceived to be an ominous occurrence or ill-boding token,
because this is the herb with which we not unfrequently adorn the
sepulchres of the dead; and there is a proverb derived from the custom,
used of one who is dangerously sick, that he has need of nothing but
parsley. So to ease their minds, and free them from any superstitious
thoughts or forebodings of evil, Timoleon halted, and concluded an
address suitable to the occasion, by saying, that a garland of triumph
was here luckily brought them, and had fallen into their hands of
its own accord, as an anticipation of victory: the same with which
the Corinthians crown the victors in the Isthmian games, accounting
chaplets of parsley the sacred wreath proper to their country; parsley
being at that time still the emblem of victory at the Isthmian, as
it is now at the Nemean sports; and it is not so very long ago that
the pine first began to be used in its place. 

Timoleon, therefore, having thus bespoke his soldiers, took part of
the parsley, and with it made himself a chaplet first, his captains
and their companies all following the example of their leader. The
soothsayers then, observing also two eagles on the wing towards them,
one of which bore a snake struck through with her talons, and the
other, as she flew, uttered a loud cry indicating boldness and assurance,
at once showed them to the soldiers, who with one consent fell to
supplicate the gods, and call them in to their assistance. It was
now about the beginning of summer, and conclusion of the month called
Thargelion, not far from the solstice; and the river sending up a
thick mist, all the adjacent plain was at first darkened with the
fog, so that for a while they could discern nothing from the enemy's
camp; only a confused buzz and undistinguished mixture of voices came
up to the hill from the distant motions and clamours of so vast a
multitude. When the Corinthians had mounted, and stood on the top,
and had laid down their bucklers to take breath and repose themselves,
the sun coming round and drawing up the vapours from below, the gross
foggy air that was now gathered and condensed above formed in a cloud
upon the mountains; and, all the under places being clear and open,
the river Crimesus appeared to them again, and they could descry the
enemies passing over it, first with their formidable four-horse chariots
of war, and then ten thousand footmen bearing white shields, whom
they guessed to be all Carthaginians, from the splendour of their
arms, and the slowness and order of their march. And when now the
troops of various other nations, flowing in behind them, began to
throng for passage in a tumultuous and unruly manner, Timoleon, perceiving
that the river gave them opportunity to single off whatever number
of their enemies they had a mind to engage at and bidding his soldiers
observe how their forces were divided into two separate bodies by
the intervention of the stream, some being already over, and others
still to ford it, gave Demaretus command to fall in upon the Carthaginians
with his horse, and disturb their ranks before they should be drawn
up into form of battle; and coming down into the plain himself forming
his right and left wing of other Sicilians, intermingling only a few
strangers in each, he placed the natives of Syracuse in the middle,
with the stoutest mercenaries he had about his own person; and waiting
a little to observe the action of his horse, when they saw they were
not only hindered from grappling with the Carthaginians by the armed
chariots that ran to and fro before the army, but forced continually
to wheel about to escape having their ranks broken, and so to repeat
their charges anew, he took his buckler in his hand, and crying out
to the foot that they should follow him with courage and confidence,
he seemed to speak with a more than human accent, and a voice stronger
than ordinary; whether it were that he naturally raised it so high
in the vehemence and ardour with his mind to assault the enemy, or
else, as many then thought, some god or other spoke with him. When
his soldiers quickly gave an echo to it, and besought him to lead
them on without any further delay, he made a sign to the horse, that
they should draw off from the front where the chariots were, and pass
sidewards to attack their enemies in the flank; then, making his vanguard
firm by joining man to man and buckler to buckler, he caused the trumpet
to sound, and so bore in upon the Carthaginians. 

They, for their part, stoutly received and sustained his first onset;
and having their bodies armed with breast-plates of iron, and helmets
of brass on their heads, besides great bucklers to cover and secure
them, they could easily repel the charge of the Greek spears. But
when the business came to a decision by the sword, where mastery depends
no less upon art than strength, all on a sudden from the mountain-tops
violent peals of thunder and vivid flashes of lightning broke out;
following upon which the darkness, that had been hovering about the
higher grounds and the crests of the hills, descending to the place
of battle and bringing a tempest of rain and of wind and hail along
with it, was driven upon the Greeks behind, and fell only at their
backs, but discharged itself in the very faces of the barbarians,
the rain beating on them, and the lightning dazzling them without
cessation; annoyances that in many ways distressed at any rate the
inexperienced, who had not been used to such hardships, and, in particular,
the claps of thunder, and the noise of the rain and hail beating on
their arms, kept them from hearing the commands of their officers.
Besides which, the very mud also was a great hindrance to the Carthaginans,
who were not lightly equipped, but, as I said before, loaded with
heavy armour; and then their shirts underneath getting drenched, the
foldings about the bosom filled with water, grew unwieldy and cumbersome
to them as they fought, and made it easy for the Greeks to throw them
down, and, when they were once down, impossible for them, under that
weight, to disengage themselves and rise again with weapons in their
hands. The river Crimesus, too, swollen partly by the rain, and partly
by the stoppage of its course with the numbers that were passing through,
overflowed its banks; and the level ground by the side of it, being
so situated as to have a number of small ravines and hollows of the
hillside descending upon it, was now filled with rivulets and currents
that had no certain channel, in which the Carthaginians stumbled and
rolled about, and found themselves in great difficulty. So that, in
fine, the storm bearing still upon them, and the Greeks having cut
in pieces four hundred men of their first ranks, the whole body of
their army began to fly. Great numbers were overtaken in the plain,
and put to the sword there; and many of them, as they were making
their way back through the river, falling foul upon others that were
yet coming over, were borne away and overwhelmed by the waters; but
the major part, attempting to get up the hill so as to make their
escape, were intercepted and destroyed by the light-armed troops.
It is said that, of ten thousand who lay dead after the fight, three
thousand, at least, were Carthaginian citizens; a heavy loss and great
grief to their countrymen; those that fell being men inferior to none
among them as to birth, wealth, or reputation. Nor do their records
mention that so many native Carthaginians were ever cut off before
in any one battle; as they usually employed Africans, Spaniards, and
Numidians in their wars, so that if they chanced to be defeated, it
was still at the cost and damage of other nations. 

The Greeks easily discovered of what condition and account the slain
were by the richness of their spoils; for when they came to collect
the booty, there was little reckoning made either of brass or iron,
so abundant were better metals, and so common were silver and gold.
Passing over the river they became masters of their camp and carriages.
As for captives, a great many of them were stolen away and sold privately
by the soldiers but about five thousand were brought in and delivered
up for the benefit of the public; two hundred of their chariots of
war were also taken. The tent of Timoleon then presented a most glorious
and magnificent appearance, being heaped up and hung round with every
variety of spoils and military ornaments, among which there were a
thousand breastplates of rare workmanship and beauty, and bucklers
to the number of ten thousand. The victors being but few to strip
so many that were vanquished, and having such valuable booty to occupy
them, it was the third day after the fight before they could erect
and finish the trophy of their conquest. Timoleon sent tidings of
his victory to Corinth, with the best and goodliest arms he had taken
as a proof of it; that he thus might render his country an object
of emulation to the whole world, when, of all the cities of Greece,
men should there alone behold the chief temples adorned, not with
Grecian spoils, nor offerings obtained by the bloodshed and plunder
of their own countrymen and kindred, and attended, therefore, with
sad and unhappy remembrances, but with such as had been stripped from
barbarians and enemies to their nation, with the noblest titles inscribed
upon them, titles telling of the justice as well as fortitude of the
conquerors; namely, that the people of Corinth, and Timoleon their
general, having redeemed the Greeks of Sicily from Carthaginian bondage,
made oblation of these to the gods, in grateful acknowledgment of
their favour. 

Having done this, he left his hired soldiers in the enemy's country
to drive and carry away all they could throughout the subject-territory
of Carthage, and so marched with the rest of his army to Syracuse,
where he issued an edict for banishing the thousand mercenaries who
had basely deserted him before the battle, and obliged them to quit
the city before sunset. They, sailing into Italy, lost their lives
there by the hands of the Bruttians, in spite of a public assurance
of safety previously given them; thus receiving, from the divine power,
a just reward of their own treachery. Mamercus, however, the tyrant
of Catana, and Hicetes, after all, either envying Timoleon the glory
of his exploits, or fearing him as one that would keep no agreement,
or having any peace with tyrants, made a league with the Carthaginians,
and pressed them much to send a new army and commander into Sicily,
unless they would be content to hazard all and to be wholly ejected
out of that island. And in consequence of this, Gisco was despatched
with a navy of seventy sail. He took numerous Greek mercenaries also
into pay, that being the first time they had ever been enlisted for
the Carthaginian service; but then it seems the Carthaginians began
to admire them, as the most irresistible soldiers of all mankind.
Uniting their forces in the territory of Messena, they cut off four
hundred of Timoleon's paid soldiers, and within the dependencies of
Carthage, at a place called Hierae, destroyed, by an ambuscade, the
whole body of mercenaries that served under Euthymus the Leucadian;
which accidents, however, made the good fortune of Timoleon accounted
all the more remarkable, as these were the men that, with Philomelus
of Phocis and Onomarchus, had forcibly broken into the temple of Apollo
at Delphi, and were partakers with them in the sacrilege; so that
being hated and shunned by all, as persons under a curse, they were
constrained to wander about in Peloponnesus; when, for want of others,
Timoleon was glad to take them into service in his expedition for
Sicily, where they were successful in whatever enterprise they attempted
under his conduct. But now, when all the important dangers were past,
on his sending them out for the relief and defence of his party in
several places, they perished and were destroyed at a distance from
him, not all together, but in small parties; and the vengeance which
was destined for them, so accommodating itself to the good fortune
which guarded Timoleon as not to allow any harm or prejudice for good
men to arise from the punishment of the wicked, the benevolence and
kindness which the gods had for Timoleon was thus as distinctly recognized
in his disasters as in his successes. 

What most annoyed the Syracusans was their being insulted and mocked
by the tyrants; as, for example, by Mamercus, who valued himself much
upon his gift for writing poems and tragedies, and took occasion,
when coming to present the gods with the bucklers of the hired soldiers
whom he had killed, to make a boast of his victory in an insulting
elegiac inscription:- 

"These shields with purple, gold, and ivory wrought, 
Were won by us that but with poor ones fought." 

After this, while Timoleon marched to Calauria, Hicetes made an inroad
into the borders of Syracuse, where he met with considerable booty,
and having done much mischief and havoc, returned back to Calauria
itself, in contempt of Timoleon and the slender force he had then
with him. He, suffering Hicetes to pass forward, pursued him with
his horsemen and light infantry, which Hicetes perceiving, crossed
the river Damyrias, and then stood in a posture to receive him; the
difficulty of the passage, and the height and steepness of the bank
on each side, giving advantage enough to make him confident. A strange
contention and dispute, meantime, among the officers of Timoleon a
little retarded the conflict; no one of them was willing to let another
pass over before him to engage the enemy; each man claiming it as
a right to venture first and begin the onset; so that their fording
was likely to be tumultuous and without order, a mere general struggle
which should be the foremost. Timoleon, therefore, desiring to decide
the quarrel by lot, took a ring from each of the pretenders, which
he cast into his own cloak, and, after he had shaken all together,
the first he drew out had, by good fortune, the figure of a trophy
engraved as a seal upon it; at the sight of which the young captains
all shouted for joy, and, without waiting any longer to see how chance
would determine it for the rest, took every man his way through the
river with all the speed they could make, and fell to blows with the
enemies, who were not able to bear up against the violence of their
attack, but fled in haste and left their arms behind them all alike,
and a thousand dead upon the place. 

Not long after, Timoleon, marching up to the city of the Leontines,
took Hicetes alive, and his son Eupolemus, and Euthymus, the commander
of his horse, who were bound and brought to him by their own soldiers.
Hicetes and the stripling his son were then executed as tyrants and
traitors; and Euthymus, though a brave man, and one of singular courage,
could obtain no mercy, because he was charged with contemptuous language
in disparagement of the Corinthians when they first sent their forces
into Sicily; it is said that he told the Leontini in a speech that
the news did not sound terrible, nor was any great danger to be feared
because of- 

"Corinthian women coming out of doors." So true it is that men are
usually more stung and galled by reproachful words than hostile actions:
and they bear an affront with less patience than an injury; to do
harm and mischief by deeds is counted pardonable from the enemies,
as nothing less can be expected in a state of war; whereas virulent
and contumelious words appear to be the expression of needless hatred,
and to proceed from an excess of rancour. 

When Timoleon came back to Syracuse, the citizens brought the wives
and daughters of Hicetes and his son to a public trial, and condemned
and put them to death. This seems to be the least pleasing action
of Timoleon's life; since if he had interposed, the unhappy women
would have been spared. He would appear to have disregarded the thing,
and to have given them up to the citizens, who were eager to take
vengeance for the wrongs done to Dion, who expelled Dionysius; since
it was this very Hicetes who took Arete the wife and Aristomache the
sister of Dion, with a son that had not yet passed his childhood,
and threw them all together into the sea alive, as related in the
life of Dion. 

After this, he moved towards Catana against Mamercus, who gave him
battle near the river Abolus, and was overthrown and put to flight,
losing above two thousand men, a considerable part of whom were the
Phoenician troops sent by Gisco to his assistance. After this defeat
the Carthaginians sued for peace; which was granted on the conditions
that they should confine themselves to the country within the river
Lycus, that those of the inhabitants who wished to remove to the Syracusan
territories should be allowed to depart with their whole families
and fortunes, and, lastly, that Carthage should renounce all engagements
to the tyrants. Mamercus, now forsaken and despairing of success,
took ship for Italy with the design of bringing in the Lucanians against
Timoleon and the people of Syracuse; but the men in his galleys turning
back and landing again and delivering up Catana to Timoleon, thus
obliged him to fly for his own safety to Messena, where Hippo was
tyrant. Timoleon, however, coming up against them, and besieging the
city both by sea and land, Hippo, fearful of the event, endeavoured
to slip away in a vessel; which the people of Messena surprised as
it was putting off, and seizing on his person, and bringing all their
children from school into the theatre, to witness the glorious spectacle
of a tyrant punished, they first publicly scourged and then put him
to death. Mamercus made surrender of himself to Timoleon, with the
proviso that he should be tried at Syracuse and Timoleon should take
no part in his accusation. Thither he was brought accordingly, and
presenting himself to plead before the people, he essayed to pronounce
an oration he had long before composed in his own defence; but finding
himself interrupted by noise and clamours, and observing from their
aspect and demeanour that the assembly was inexorable, he threw off
his upper garment, and running across the theatre as hard as he could,
dashed his head against one of the stones under the seats with intention
to have killed himself; but he had not the fortune to perish as he
designed, but was taken up alive, and suffered the death of a robber.

Thus did Timoleon cut the nerves of tyranny and put a period to the
wars; and, whereas, at his first entering upon Sicily, the island
was as it were become wild again, and was hateful to the very natives
on account of the evils and miseries they suffered there, he so civilized
and restored it, and rendered it so desirable to all men, that even
strangers now came by sea to inhabit those towns and places which
their own citizens had formerly forsaken and left desolate. Agrigentum
and Gela, two famous cities that had been ruined and laid waste by
the Carthaginians after the Attic war, were then peopled again, the
one by Megellus and Pheristus from Elea, the other by Gorgus, from
the island of Ceos, partly with new settlers, partly with the old
inhabitants whom they collected again from various parts; to all of
whom Timoleon not only afforded a secure and peaceful abode after
so obstinate a war, but was further so zealous in assisting and providing
for them that he was honoured among them as their founder. Similar
feelings also possessed to such a degree all the rest of the Sicilians
that there was no proposal for peace, nor reformation of laws, nor
assignation of land, nor reconstruction of government, which they
could think well of, unless he lent his aid as a chief architect,
to finish and adorn the work, and superadd some touches from his own
hand, which might render it pleasing both to God and man.

Although Greece had in his time produced several persons of extraordinary
worth, and much renowned for their achievements, such as Timotheus
and Agesilaus and Pelopidas and (Timoleon's chief model) Epaminondas,
yet the lustre of their best actions was obscured by a degree of violence
and labour, insomuch that some of them were matter of blame and of
repentance; whereas there is not any one act of Timoleon's, setting
aside the necessity he was placed under in reference to his brother,
to which, as Timaeus observes, we may not fitly apply that exclamation
of Sophocles- 

"O gods! what Venus, or what grace divine, 
Did here with human workmanship combine?" For as the poetry of Antimachus,
and the painting of Dionysius, the artists of Colophon, though full
of force and vigour, yet appeared to be strained and elaborate in
comparison with the pictures of Nicomachus and the verses of Homer,
which, besides their general strength and beauty, have the peculiar
charm of seeming to have been executed with perfect ease and readiness;
so the expeditions and acts of Epaminondas or Agesilaus, that were
full of toil and effort, when compared with the easy and natural as
well as noble and glorious achievements of Timoleon, compel our fair
and unbiased judgment to pronounce the latter not indeed the effect
of fortune, but the success of fortunate merit. Though he himself
indeed ascribed that success to the sole favour of fortune; and both
in the letters which he wrote to his friends at Corinth, and in the
speeches he made to the people of Syracuse, he would say, that he
was thankful unto God, who, designing to save Sicily, was pleased
to honour him with the name and title of the deliverance he vouchsafed
it. And having built a chapel in his house, he there sacrificed to
Good Hap, as a deity that had favoured him, and devoted the house
itself to the Sacred Genius; it being a house which the Syracusans
had selected for him, as a special reward and monument of his brave
exploits, granting him together with it the most agreeable and beautiful
piece of land in the whole country, where he kept his residence for
the most part, and enjoyed a private life with his wife and children,
who came to him from Corinth. For he returned thither no more, unwilling
to be concerned in the broils and tumults of Greece, or to expose
himself to public envy (the fatal mischief which great commanders
continually run into, from the insatiable appetite for honours and
authority); but wisely chose to spend the remainder of his days in
Sicily, and there partake of the blessings he himself had procured,
the greatest of which was to behold so many cities flourish, and so
many thousands of people live happy through his means. 

As, however, not only, as Simonides says, "on every lark must grow
a crest," but also in every democracy there must spring up a false
accuser, so was it at Syracuse: two of their popular spokesmen, Laphystius
and Demaenetus by name, fell to slander Timoleon. The former of whom
requiring him to put in sureties that he would answer to an indictment
that would be brought against him, Timoleon would not suffer the citizens,
who were incensed at this demand, to oppose it or hinder the proceeding,
since he of his own accord had been, he said, at all that trouble,
and run so many dangerous risks for this very end and purpose, that
every one who wished to try matters by law should freely have recourse
to it. And when Demaenetus, in a full audience of the people, laid
several things to his charge which had been done while he was general,
he made no reply to him, but only said he was much indebted to the
gods for granting the request he had so often made them, namely, that
he might live to see the Syracusans enjoy that liberty of speech which
they now seemed to be masters of. 

Timoleon, therefore, having by confession of all done the greatest
and the noblest things of any Greek of his age, and alone distinguished
himself in those actions to which their orators and philosophers,
in their harangues and panegyrics at their solemn national assemblies,
used to exhort and incite the Greeks, and being withdrawn beforehand
by happy fortune, unspotted and without blood, from the calamities
of civil war, in which ancient Greece was soon after involved; having
also given full proof, as of his sage conduct and manly courage to
the barbarians and tyrants, so of his justice and gentleness to the
Greeks, and his friends in general; having raised, too, the greater
part of those trophies he won in battle without any tears shed or
any mourning worn by the citizens either of Syracuse or Corinth, and
within less than eight years' space delivered Sicily from its inveterate
grievances and intestine distempers, and given it up free to the native
inhabitants, began, as he was now growing old, to find his eyes fail,
and awhile after became perfectly blind. Not that he had done anything
himself which might occasion this defect, or was deprived of his sight
by any outrage of fortune; it seems rather to have been some inbred
and hereditary weakness that was founded in natural causes, which
by length of time came to discover itself. For it is said, that several
of his kindred and family were subject to the like gradual decay,
and lost all use of their eyes, as he did, in their declining years.
Athanis the historian tells us that even during the war against Hippo
and Mamercus, while he was in his camp at Mylae, there appeared a
white speck within his eye, from whence all could foresee the deprivation
that was coming on him; this, however, did not hinder him then from
continuing the siege, and prosecuting the war, till he got both the
tyrants into his power; but upon his coming back to Syracuse, he presently
resigned the authority of sole commander, and besought the citizens
to excuse him from any further service, since things were already
brought to so fair an issue. Nor is it so much to be wondered that
he himself should bear the misfortune without any marks of trouble;
but the respect and gratitude which the Syracusans showed him when
he was entirely blind may justly deserve our admiration. They used
to go themselves to visit him in troops and brought all the strangers
that travelled through their country to his house and manor, that
they also might have the pleasure to see their noble benefactor; making
it the great matter of their joy and exultation, that when, after
so many brave and happy exploits, he might have returned with triumph
into Greece, he should disregard all the glorious preparations that
were there made to receive him, and choose rather to stay here and
end his days among them. Of the various things decreed and done in
honour of Timoleon, I consider one most signal testimony to have been
the vote which they passed, that, whenever they should be at war with
any foreign nation, they should make use of none but a Corinthian
general. The method, also, of their proceeding in council was a noble
demonstration of the same deference for his person. For, determining
matters of less consequence themselves, they always called him to
advise in the more difficult cases, and such as were of greater moment.
He was, on these occasions, carried through the market-place in a
litter, and brought in, sitting, into the theatre, where the people
with one voice saluted him by his name; and then, after returning
the courtesy, and pausing for a time, till the noise of their gratulations
and blessings began to cease, he heard the business in debate, and
delivered his opinion. This being confirmed by a general suffrage,
his servants went back with the litter through the midst of the assembly,
the people waiting on him out with acclamations and applauses, and
then returning to consider other public matters, which they could
despatch in his absence. Being thus cherished in his old age, with
all the respect and tenderness due to a common father, he was seized
with a very slight indisposition, which, however, was sufficient,
with the aid of time, to put a period to his life. There was an allotment
then of certain days given, within the space of which the Syracusans
were to provide whatever should be necessary for his burial, and all
the neighbouring country people and strangers were to make their appearance
in a body; so that the funeral pomp was set out with great splendour
and magnificence in all other respects, and the bier, decked with
ornaments and trophies, was borne by a select body of young men over
that ground where the palace and castle of Dionysius stood before
they were demolished by Timoleon. There attended on the solemnity
several thousands of men and women, all crowned with flowers, and
arrayed in fresh and clean attire, which made it look like the procession
of a public festival; while the language of all, and their tears mingling
with their praise and benediction of the dead Timoleon, manifestly
showed that it was not any superficial honour, or commanded homage,
which they paid him, but the testimony of a just sorrow for his death,
and the expression of true affection. The bier at length being placed
upon the pile of wood that was kindled to consume his corpse, Demetrius,
one of their loudest criers, proceeded to read a proclamation to the
following purpose: "The people of Syracuse have made a special decree
to inter Timoleon, the son of Timodemus, the Corinthian, at the common
expense of two hundred minas, and to honour his memory for ever, by
the establishment of annual prizes to be competed for in music, and
horse-races, and all sorts of bodily exercise; and this, because he
suppressed the tyrants, overthrew the barbarians, replenished the
principal cities, that were desolate, with new inhabitants, and then
restored the Sicilian Greeks to the privilege of living by their own
laws." Besides this, they made a tomb for him in the market-place,
which they afterwards built round with colonnades, and attached to
it places of exercise for the young men, and gave it the name of the
Timoleonteum. And keeping to that form and order of civil policy and
observing those laws and constitutions which he left them, they lived
themselves a long time in great prosperity. 



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Translation of "The Deeds of the Divine Augustus" by Augustus is
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