View Full Version : Anabasis VII - Xenophon

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05-27-2007, 01:00 AM

Crossing over in the direction of the Thracians above Byzantium, they 1
reached the Delta, as it is called. Here they were no longer in the
territory of the Maesades, but in the country of Teres the Odrysian
[an ancient worthy[1]]. Here Heracleides met them with the proceeds of
the spoil, and Seuthes picked out three pairs of mules (there were
only three, the other teams being oxen); then he summoned Xenophon and
bade him take them, and divide the rest between the generals and
officers, to which Xenophon replied that for himself, he was content
to receive his share another time, but added: "Make a present of these
to my friends here, the generals who have served with me, and to the
officers." So of the pairs of mules Timasion the Dardanian received
one, Cleanor the Orchomenian one, and Phryniscus the Achaean one. The
teams of oxen were divided among the officers. Then Seuthes proceeded
to remit pay due for the month already passed, but all he could give
was the equivalent of twenty days. Heracleides insisted that this was
all he had got by his trafficking. Whereupon Xenophon with some warmth
exclaimed: "Upon my word, Heracleides, I do not think you care for
Seuthes' interest as you should. If you did, you have been at pains to
bring back the full amount of the pay, even if you had had to raise a
loan to do so, and, if by no other means, by selling the coat off your
own back."

[1] See above re previous Teres. The words "an ancient worthy" may
possibly be an editor's or commentator's note.

What he said annoyed Heracleides, who was afraid of being ousted from
the friendship of Seuthes, and from that day forward he did his best
to calumniate Xenophon before Seuthes. The soldiers, on their side,
laid the blame of course on Xenophon: "Where was their pay?" and
Seuthes was vexed with him for persistently demanding it for them. Up
to this date he had frequently referred to what he would do when he
got to the seaboard again; how he intended to hand over to him
Bisanthe, Ganos, and Neontichos[2]. But from this time forward he
never mentioned one of them again. The slanderous tongue of
Heracleides had whispered him:--it was not safe to hand over fortified 8
towns to a man with a force at his back.

[2] For Bisanthe see above. Ganos, a little lower down the coast, with
Neontichos once belonged to Alcibiades, if we may believe
Cornelius Nepos, "Alc." vii. 4, and Plutarch, "Alc." c. 36. See

Consequently Xenophon fell to considering what he ought to do as
regards marching any further up the country; and Heracleides
introduced the other generals to Seuthes, urging them to say that they
were quite as well able to lead the army as Xenophon, and promising
them that within a day or two they should have full pay for two
months, and he again implored them to continue the campaign with
Seuthes. To which Timasion replied that for his part he would continue
no campaign without Xenophon; not even if they were to give him pay
for five months; and what Timasion said, Phryniscus and Cleanor
repeated; the views of all three coincided.

Seuthes fell to upbraiding Heracleides in round terms. "Why had he not
invited Xenophon with the others?" and presently they invited him, but
by himself alone. He, perceiving the knavery of Heracleides, and that
his object was to calumniate him with the other generals, presented
himself; but at the same time he took care to bring all the generals
and the officers. After their joint consent had been secured, they
continued the campaign. Keeping the Pontus on their right, they passed
through the millet-eating[3] Thracians, as they are called, and
reached Salmydessus. This is a point at which many trading vessels
bound for the Black Sea run aground and are wrecked, owing to a sort
of marshy ledge or sandbank which runs out for a considerable distance
into the sea[4]. The Thracians, who dwell in these parts, have set up
pillars as boundary marks, and each set of them has the pillage of its
own flotsom and jetsom; for in old days, before they set up these
landmarks, the wreckers, it is said, used freely to fall foul of and
slay one another. Here was a rich treasure trove, of beds and boxes 14
numberless, with a mass of written books, and all the various things
which mariners carry in their wooden chests. Having reduced this
district, they turned round and went back again. By this time the army
of Seuthes had grown to be considerably larger than the Hellenic army;
for on the one hand, the Odrysians flocked down in still larger
numbers, and on the other, the tribes which gave in their adhesion
from time to time were amalgamated with his armament. They got into
quarters on the flat country above Selybria at about three miles[5]
distance from the sea. As to pay, not a penny was as yet forthcoming,
and the soldiers were cruelly disaffected to Xenophon, whilst Seuthes,
on his side, was no longer so friendlily disposed. If Xenophon ever
wished to come face to face with him, want of leisure or some other
difficulty always seemed to present itself.

[3] Or, "the Melinophagi."

[4] See, for a description of this savage coast, Aesch. "Prom." vinc.
726, etc.--

"{trakheia pontou Salmudesia gnathos
ekhthroxenos nautaisi, metruia neon.}"

"The rugged Salmudesian jaw of the Black Sea,
Inhospitable to sailors, stepmother of ships."

But the poet is at fault in his geography, since he connects "the
Salmydesian jaw" with the Thermodon.

[5] Lit. "thirty stades." Selybria is about fourty-four miles from
Byzantium, two-thirds of the way to Perinthus.