And so they spent the night, but with day-dawn the generals led the 1
way into the natural fastness, and the others picked up their arms and
baggage and followed the lead. Before the breakfast-hour arrived, they
had fenced off with a ditch the only side on which lay ingress into
the place, and had palisaded off the whole, leaving only three gates.
Anon a ship from Heraclea arrived bringing barleymeal, victim animals,
and wine.

Xenophon was up betimes, and made the usual offering before starting
on an expedition, and at the first victim the sacrifice was
favourable. Just as the sacrifice ended, the seer, Arexion the
Parrhasian, caught sight of an eagle, which boded well, and bade
Xenophon lead on. So they crossed the trench and grounded arms. Then
proclamation was made by herald for the soldiers to breakfast and
start on an expedition under arms; the mob of sutlers and the captured
slaves would be left in camp. Accordingly the mass of the troops set
out. Neon alone remained; for it seemed best to leave that general and
his men to guard the contents of the camp. But when the officers and
soldiers had left them in the lurch, they were so ashamed to stop in
camp while the rest marched out, that they too set out, leaving only
those above five-and-forty years of age.

These then stayed, while the rest set out on the march. Before they
had gone two miles, they stumbled upon dead bodies, and when they had
brought up the rear of the column in a line with the first bodies to
be seen, they began digging graves and burying all included in the
column from end to end. After burying the first batch, they advanced,
and again bringing the rear even with the first unburied bodies which
appeared, they buried in the same way all which the line of troops
included. Finally, reaching the road that led out of the villages
where the bodies lay thick together, they collected them and laid them
in a common grave.

It was now about midday, when pushing forward the troops up to the
villages without entering them, they proceeded to seize prvoisions,
laying hands on everything they could set eyes on under cover of their 7
lines; when suddenly they caught sight of the enemy cresting certain
hillocks in front of them, duly marshalled in line--a large body of
cavalry and infantry. It was Spithridates and Rhathines, sent by
Pharnabazus with their forec at their backs. As soon as the enemy
caught sight of the Hellenes, they stood still, about two miles
distant. Then Arexion the seer sacrificed, and at the first essay the
victims were favourable. Whereupon Xenophon addressed the other
generals: "I would advise, sirs, that we should detach one or more
flying columns to support our main attack, so that in case of need at
any point we may have reserves in readiness to assist our main body,
and the enemy, in the confusion of battle, may find himself attacking
the unbroken lines of troops not hitherto engaged." These views
approved themselves to all. "Do you then," said he, "lead on the
vanguard straight at the enemy. Do not let us stand parleying here,
now that we have caught sight of him and he of us. I will detach the
hindmost companies in the way we have decided upon and follow you."
After that they quietly advanced, and he, withdrawing the rear-rank
companies in three brigades consisting of a couple of hundred men
apiece, commissioned the first on the right to follow the main body at
the distance of a hundred feet. Samolas the Achaean was in command of
this brigade. The duty of the second, under the command of Pyrrhias
the Arcadian, was to follow in the centre. The last was posted on the
left, with Phrasias, an Athenian, in command. As they advanced, the
vanguard reached a large and difficult woody glen, and halted, not
knowing whether the obstacle needed to be crossed or not. They passed
down the word for the generals and officers to come forward to the
front. Xenophon, wondering what it was that stopped the march, and
presently hearing the above order passed along the ranks, rode up with
all speed. As soon as they were met, Sophaenetus, as the eldest
general, stated his opinion that the question, whether a gully of that
kind ought to be crossed or not, was not worth discussing. Xenophon,
with some ardour, retorted: "You know, sirs, I have not been in the
habit hitherto of introducing you to danger which you might avoid. It
is not your reputation for courage surely that is at stake, but your 14
safe return home. But now the matter stands thus: It is impossible to
retire from this point without a battle; if we do not advance against
the enemy ourselves, he will follow us as soon as we have turned our
backs and attack us. Consider, then; is it better to go and meet the
foe with arms advanced, or with arms reversed to watch him as he
assails us on our rear? You know this at any rate, that to retire
before an enemy has nothing glorious about it, whereas attack
engenders courage even in a coward. For my part, I would rather at any
time attack with half my men than retreat with twice the number. As to
these fellows, if we attack them, I am sure you do not really expect
them to await us; though, if we retreat, we know for certain they will
be emboldened to pursue us. Nay, if the result of crossing is to place
a difficult gully behind us when we are on the point of engaging,
surely that is an advantage worth seizing. At least, if it were left
to me, I would choose that everything should appear smooth and
passable to the enemy, which may invite retreat; but for ourselves we
may bless the ground which teaches us that except in victory we have
no deliverance. It astonishes me that any one should deem this
particular gully a whit more terrible than any of the other barriers
which we have successfully passed. How impassable was the plain, had
we failed to conquer their cavalry! how insurmountable the mountains
already traversed by us, with all their peltasts in hot pursuit at our
heels! Nay, when we have safely reached the sea, the Pontus will
present a somewhat formidable gully, when we have neither vessels to
convey us away nor corn to keep us alive whilst we stop. But we shall
no sooner be there than we must be off again to get provisions. Surely
it is better to fight to-day after a good breakfast than to-morrow on
an empty stomach. Sirs, the offerings are favourable to us, the omens
are propitious, the victims more than promising; let us attack the
enemy! Now that they have had a good look at us, these fellows must
not be allowed to enjoy their dinners or choose a camp at their own
sweet will."

After that the officers bade him lead on. None gainsaid, and he led
the way. His orders were to cross the gully, where each man chanced to 22
find himself. By this method, as it seemed to him, the troops would
more quickly mass themselves on the far side than was possible, if
they defiled along[1] the bridge which spanned the gully. But once
across he passed along the line and addressed the troops: "Sirs, call
to mind what by help of the gods you have already done. Bethink you of
the battles you have won at close quarters with the foe; of the fate
which awaits those who flee before their foes. Forget not that we
stand at the very doors of Hellas. Follow in the steps of Heracles,
our guide, and cheer each the other onwards by name. Sweet were it
surely by some brave and noble word or deed, spoken or done this day,
to leave the memory of oneself in the hearts of those one loves."

[1] Lit. "had they wound off thread by thread"; the metaphor is from
unwinding a ball of wool.

These words were spoken as he rode past, and simultaneously he began
leading on the troops in battle line; and, placing the peltasts on
either flank of the main body, they moved against the enemy. Along the
line the order had sped "to keep their spears at rest on the right
shoulder until the bugle signal; then lower them for the charge, slow
march, and even pace, no one to quicken into a run." Lastly, the
watchword was passed, "Zeus the Saviour, Heracles our Guide." The
enemy waited their approach, confident in the excellence of his
position; but as they drew closer the Hellene light troops, with a
loud alala! without waiting for the order, dashed against the foe. The
latter, on their side, came forward eagerly to meet the charge, both
the cavalry and the mass of the Bithynians; and these turned the
peltasts. But when with counter-wave the phalanx of the heavy infantry
rapidly advancing, faced them, and at the same time the bugle sounded,
and the battle hymn rose from all lips, and after this a loud cheer
rose, and at the same instant they couched their spears;--at this
conjuncture the enemy no longer welcomed them, but fled. Timasion with
his cavalry followed close, and, considering their scant numbers, they
did great execution. It was the left wing of the enemy, in a line with
which the Hellene cavalry were posted, that was so speedily scattered.
But the right, which was not so hotly pursued, collected upon a knoll; 28
and when the Hellenes saw them standing firm, it seemed the easiest
and least dangerous course to go against them at once. Raising the
battle hymn, they straightway fell upon them, but the others did not
await their coming. Thereupon the peltasts gave chase until the right
of the enemy was in its turn scattered, though with slight loss in
killed; for the enemy's cavalry was numerous and threatening.

But when the Hellenes saw the cavalry of Pharnabazus still standing in
compact order, and the Bithynian horsemen massing together as if to
join it, and like spectators gazing down from a knoll at the
occurrences below; though weary, they determined to attack the enemy
as best they could, and not suffer him to recover breath with reviving
courage. So they formed in compact line and advanced. Thereupon the
hostile cavalry turned and fled down the steep as swiftly as if they
had been pursued by cavalry. In fact they sought the shelter of a
gully, the existence of which was unknown to the Hellenes. The latter
accordingly turned aside too soon and gave up the chase, for it was
too late. Returning to the point where the first encounter took place
they erected a trophy, and went back to the sea about sunset. It was
something like seven miles to camp.