king's empire was strong in its extent of territory and the number of inhabitants, that strength is compensated by an inherent weakness, dependent upon the length of roads and the inevitable dispersion of defensive forces, where an invader insists upon pressing home the war by forced marches.

On the opposite side of the Euphrates to the point reached on one of these desert stages, was a large and flourishing city named Charmande. From this town the soldiers made purchases of provisions, crossing the river on rafts, in the following fashion: They took the skins which they used as tent coverings, and filled them with light grass; they then compressed and stitched them tightly together by the ends, so that the water might not touch the hay. On these they crossed and got provisions: wine made from the date-nut, and millet or panic-corn, the common staple of the country. Some dispute or other here occurred between the soldiers of Menon and Clearchus, in which Clearchus sentenced one of Menon's men, as the delinquent, and had him flogged. The man went back to his own division and told them. Hearing what had been done to their comrade, his fellows fretted and fumed, and were highly incensed against Clearchus. The same day Clearchus visited the passage of the river, and after inspecting the market there, was returning with a few followers, on horseback, to his tent, and had to 12 pass through Menon's quarters. Cyrus had not yet come up, but was riding up in the same direction. One of Menon's men, who was splitting wood, caught sight of Clearchus as he rode past, and aimed a blow at him with his axe. The aim took no effect; when another hurled a stone at him, and a third, and then several, with shouts and hisses. Clearchus made a rapid retreat to his own troops, and at once ordered them to get under arms. He bade his hoplites remain in position with their shields resting against their knees, while he, at the head of his Thracians and horsemen, of which he had more than forty in his army--Thracians for the most part--advanced against Menon's soldiers, so that the latter, with Menon himself, were panic-stricken, and ran to seize their arms; some even stood riveted to the spot, in perplexity at the occurrence. Just then Proxenus came up from behind, as chance would have it, with his division of hoplites, and without a moment's hesitation marched into the open space between the rival parties, and grounded arms; then he fell to begging Clearchus to desist. The latter was not too well pleased to hear his trouble mildly spoken of, when he had barely escaped being stoned to death; and he bade Proxenus retire and leave the intervening space open. At this juncture Cyrus arrived and inquired what was happening. There was no time for hesitation. With his javelins firmly grasped in his hands he galloped up--escorted by some of his faithful bodyguard, who were present--and was soon in the midst, exclaiming: 'Clearchus, Proxenus, and you other Hellenes yonder, you know not what you do. As surely as you come to blows with one another, our fate is sealed--this very day I shall be cut to pieces, and so will you: your turn will follow close on mine. Let our fortunes once take an evil turn, and these barbarians whom you see around will be worse foes to us than those who are at present serving the king.' At these words Clearchus came to his senses. Both parties paused from battle, and retired to their quarters: order reigned.


As they advanced from this point (opposite Charmande), they came upon 1 the hoof-prints and dung of horses at frequent intervals. It looked like the trail of some two thousand horses. Keeping ahead of the army, these fellows burnt up the grass and everything else that was good for use. Now there was a Persian, named Orontas; he was closely related to the king by birth: and in matters pertaining to war reckoned among the best of Persian warriors. Having formerly been at war with Cyrus, and afterwards reconciled to him, he now made a conspiracy to destroy him. he made a proposal to Cyrus: if Cyrus would furnish him with a thousand horsemen, he would deal with these troopers, who were burning down everything in front of them; he would lay an ambuscade and cut them down, or he would capture a host of them alive; in any case, he would put a stop to their agressiveness and burnings; he would see to it that they did not ever get a chance of setting eyes on Cyrus's army and reporting its advent to the king. The proposal seemed plausible to Cyrus, who accordingly authorised Orontas to take a detachment from each of the generals, and be gone. He, thinking that he had got his horsemen ready to his hand, wrote a letter to the king, announcing that he would ere long join him with as many troopers as he could bring; he bade him, at the same time, instruct the royal cavalry to welcome him as a friend. The letter further contained certain reminders of his former friendship and fidelity. This despatch he delivered into the hands of one who was a trusty messenger, as he thought; but the bearer took and gave it to Cyrus. Cyrus read it. Orontas was arrested. Then Cyrus summoned to his tent seven of the noblest Persians among his personal attendants, and sent orders to the Hellenic generals to bring up a body of hoplites. These troops were to take up a position round his tent. This the generals did; bringing up about three thousand hoplites. Clearchus was also invited inside, to assist at the court-martial; a compliment due to the position he held among the other generals, in the opinion not only of Cyrus, but also of the rest of the court. When he came out, he reported the circumstances of the trial (as to which, indeed, there was no mystery) to his friends. He said that Cyrus opened the inquiry with these words: 'I have invited you hither, my friends, that I may take advice with you, and carry out whatever, in the sight of God and man, it is right for me to do, as concerning the man before you, Orontas. The 6 prisoner was, in the first instance, given to me by my father, to be my faithful subject. In the next place, acting, to use his own words, under the orders of my brother, and having hold of the acropolis of Sardis, he went to war with me. I met war with war, and forced him to think it more prudent to desist from war with me: whereupon we shook hands, exchanging solemn pledges. After that,' and at this point Cyrus turned to Orontas, and addressed him personally--'after that, did I do you any wrong?' Answer, 'Never.' Again another question: 'Then later on, having received, as you admit, no injury from me, did you revolt to the Mysians and injure my territory, as far as in you lay?'--'I did,' was the reply. 'Then, once more having discovered the limits of your power, did you flee to the altar of Artemis, crying out that you repented? and did you thus work upon my feelings, that we a second time shook hands and made interchange of solemn pledges? Are these things so?' Orontas again assented. 'Then what injury have you received from me,' Cyrus asked, 'that now for the third time, you have been detected in a treasonous plot against me?'--'I must needs do so,' he answered. Then Cyrus put one more question: 'But the day may come, may it not, when you will once again be hostile to my brother, and a faithful friend to myself?' The other answered: 'Even if I were, you could never be brought to believe it, Cyrus.'

At this point Cyrus turned to those who were present and said: 'Such has been the conduct of the prisoner in the past: such is his language now. I now call upon you, and you first, Clearchus, to declare your opinion--what think you?' And Clearchus answered: 'My advice to you is to put this man out of the way as soon as may be, so that we may be saved the necessity of watching him, and have more leisure, as far as he is concerned, to requite the services of those whose friendship is sincere.'--'To this opinion,' he told us, 'the rest of the court adhered.' After that, at the bidding of Cyrus, each of those present, 10 in turn, including the kinsmen of Orontas, took him by the girdle; which is as much as to say, 'Let him die the death,' and then those appointed led him out; and they who in old days were wont to do obeisance to him, could not refrain, even at that moment, from bowing down before him, albeit they knew he was being led forth to death.

After they had conducted him to the tent of Artapates, the trustiest of Cyrus's wand-bearers, none set eyes upon him ever again, alive or dead. No one, of his own knowledge, could declare the manner of his death; though some conjectured one thing and some another. No tomb to mark his resting-place, either then or since, was ever seen.


From this place Cyrus marched through Babylonia three stages--twelve 1 parasangs. Now, on the third stage, about midnight, Cyrus held a review of the Hellenes and Asiatics in the plain, expecting that the king would arrive the following day with his army to offer battle. He gave orders to Clearchus to take command of the right wing, and to Menon the Thessalian of the left, while he himself undertook to the disposition of his own forces in person. After the review, with the first approach of day, deserters from the great king arrived, bringing Cyrus information about the royal army. Then Cyrus summoned the generals and captains of the Hellenes, and held a council of war to arrange the plan of battle. He took this opportunity also to address the following words of compliment and encouragement to the meeting: 'Men of Hellas,' he said, 'it is certainly not from dearth of barbarians to fight my battles that I put myself at your head as my allies; but because I hold you to be better and stronger than many barbarians. That is why I took you. See then that you prove yourselves to be men worthy of the liberty which you possess, and which I envy you. Liberty--it is a thing which, be well assured, I would choose in preference to all my other possessions, multiplied many times. But I would like you to know into what sort of struggle you are going: learn its nature from one who knows. Their numbers are great, and they come on with much noise; but if you can hold out against these two things, I confess I am ashamed to think, what a sorry set of folk you will 4 find the inhabitants of this land to be. But you are men, and brave you must be, being men: it is agreed; then if you wish to return home, any of you, I undertake to send you back, in such sort that your friends at home shall envy you; but I

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