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The advent of Cyrus, commonly known as Cyrus the younger, into Asia Minor, was an event of the greatest importance, opening what may be called the last phase in the Peloponnesian war.

He was the younger of the two sons of the Persian king Darius Nothus by the cruel queen Parysatis, and was now sent down by his father as satrap of Lydia, Phrygia the greater, and Cappadocia, as well as general of all that military division of which the muster-place was Kastolus. His command did not at this time comprise the Greek cities on the coast, which were still left to Tissaphernes and Pharnabazus. But he nevertheless brought down with him a strong interest in the Grecian war, and an intense anti-Athenian feeling, with full authority from his father to carry it out into act. Whatever this young man willed, he willed strongly; his bodily activity, rising superior to those temptations of sensual indulgence which often enervated the Persian grandees, provoked the admiration even of Spartans : and his energetic character was combined with a certain measure of ability. Though he had not as yet conceived that deliberate plan for mounting the Persian throne which afterwards absorbed his whole mind, and was so near succeeding by the help of the Ten Thousand Greeks, yet he seems to have had from the beginning the sentiment and ambition of a king in prospect, not those of a satrap. He came down, well aware that Athens was the efficient enemy by whom the pride of the Persian kings had been humbled, the insular Greeks kept out of the sight of a Persian ship, and even the continental Greeks on the coast practically emancipated, for the last sixty years. He therefore brought down with him a strenuous desire to put down the Athenian power, very different from the treacherous balancing of Tissaphernes, and much more formidable even than the straightforward enmity of Pharnabazus, who had less money, less favor at court, and less of youthful ardor. Moreover, Pharnabazus, after having heartily espoused the cause of the Peloponnesians for the last three years, had now become weary of the allies whom he had so long kept in pay. Instead of expelling Athenian influence from his coasts with little difficulty, as he had expected to do, he found his satrapy plundered, his revenues impaired or absorbed, and an Athenian fleet all-powerful in the Propontis and Hellespont; while the Lacedaemonian fleet, which he had taken so much pains to invite, was destroyed. Decidedly sick of the Peloponnesian cause, he was even leaning towards Athens; and the envoys whom he was escorting to Susa might perhaps have laid the foundation of an altered Persian policy in Asia Minor, when the journey of Cyrus down to the coast overthrew all such calculations. The young prince brought with him a fresh, hearty, and youthful antipathy against Athens, a power inferior only to that of the Great King himself, and an energetic determination to use it without reserve in insuring victory to the Peloponnesians.

From the moment that Pharnabazus and the Athenian envoys met Cyrus, their farther progress towards Susa became impossible. Boeotius, and the other Lacedaemonian envoys travelling along with the young prince, made extravagant boasts of having obtained all that they asked for at Susa; and Cyrus himself announced his powers as unlimited in extent over the whole coast, all for the purpose of prosecuting vigorous war in conjunction with the Lacedaemonians. Pharnabazus, on hearing this intelligence, and seeing the Great King’s seal to the words, “I send down Cyrus, as lord of all those who muster at Kastolus”, not only refused to let the Athenian envoys proceed onward, but was even obliged to obey the orders of the young prince, who insisted that they should either be surrendered to him, or at least detained for some time in the interior, in order that no information might be conveyed to Athens. The satrap resisted the first of these requisitions, having pledged his word for their safety; but he obeyed the second, detaining them in Cappadocia for no less than three years, until Athens was prostrate and on the point of surrender, after which he obtained permission from Cyrus to send them back to the sea-coast.

This arrival of Cyrus, overruling the treachery of Tissaphernes as well as the weariness of Pharnabazus, and supplying the enemies of Athens with a double flow of Persian gold at a moment when the stream would otherwise have dried up, was a paramount item in that sum of causes which concurred to determine the result of the war. But important as the event was in itself, it was rendered still more important by the character of the Lacedaemonian admiral Lysander, with whom the young prince first came into contact on reaching Sardis.

Lysander had come out to supersede Kratesippidas, about December, 408 B.C., or January, 407 B.C. He was the last, after Brasidas and Gylippus, of that trio of eminent Spartans, from whom all the capital wounds of Athens proceeded, during the course of this long war. He was born of poor parents, and is even said to have been of that class called mothakes, being only enabled by the aid of richer men to keep up his contribution to the public mess, and his place in the constant drill and discipline. He was not only an excellent officer, thoroughly competent to the duties of military command, but possessed also great talents for intrigue, and for organizing a political party as well as keeping up its disciplined movements. Though indifferent to the temptations either of money or of pleasure, and willingly acquiescing in the poverty to which he was born, he was altogether unscrupulous in the prosecution of ambitious objects, either for his country or for himself. His family, poor as it was, enjoyed a dignified position at Sparta, belonging to the gens of the Herakleidae, not connected by any near relationship with the kings: moreover, his personal reputation as a Spartan was excellent, since his observance of the rules of discipline had been rigorous and exemplary. The habits of self-constraint thus acquired, served him in good stead when it became necessary to his ambition to court the favor of the great. His recklessness about falsehood and perjury is illustrated by various current sayings ascribed to him; such as, that children were to be taken in by means of dice; men, by means of oaths. A selfish ambition—for promoting the power of his country not merely in connection with, but in subservience to, his own—guided him from the beginning to the end of his career. In this main quality, he agreed with Alcibiades; in reckless immorality of means, he went even beyond him. He seems to have been cruel; an attribute which formed no part of the usual character of Alcibiades. On the other hand, the love of personal enjoyment, luxury, and ostentation, which counted for so much in Alcibiades, was quite unknown to Lysander. The basis of his disposition was Spartan, tending to merge appetite, ostentation, and expansion of mind, all in the love of command and influence,—not Athenian, which tended to the development of many and diversified impulses; ambition being one, but only one, among the number.

Kratesippidas, the predecessor of Lysander, seems to have enjoyed the maritime command for more than the usual yearly period, having superseded Pasippidas during the middle of the year of the latter. But the maritime power of Sparta was then so weak, having not yet recovered from the ruinous defeat at Cyzicus, that he achieved little or nothing. We hear of him only as furthering, for his own profit, a political revolution at Chios. Bribed by a party of Chian exiles, he took possession of the acropolis, reinstated them in the island, and aided them in deposing and expelling the party then in office, to the number of six hundred. It is plain that this is not a question between democracy and oligarchy, but between two oligarchical parties, the one of which succeeded in purchasing the factious agency of the Spartan admiral. The exiles whom he expelled took possession of Atarneus, a strong post belonging to the Chians on the mainland opposite Lesbos. From hence they made war, as well as they could, upon their rivals now in possession of the island, and also upon other parts of Ionia; not without some success and profit, as will appear by their condition about ten years afterwards

The practice of reconstituting the governments of the Asiatic cities, thus begun by Kratesippidas, was extended and brought to a system by Lysander; not indeed for private emolument, which he always despised, but in views of ambition. Having departed from Peloponnesus with a squadron, he reinforced it at Rhodes, and then sailed onward to Kos—an Athenian island, so that he could only have touched there—and Miletus. He took up his final station at Ephesus, the nearest point to Sardis, where Cyrus was expected to arrive; and while awaiting his coming, augmented his fleet to the number of seventy triremes. As soon as Cyrus reached Sardis, about April or May 407 B.C., Lysander went to pay his court to him, along with some Lacedaemonian envoys, and found himself welcomed with every mark of favor. Preferring bitter complaints against the double-dealing of Tissaphernes,—whom they accused of having frustrated the king’s orders, and sacrificed the interests of the empire, under the seductions of Alcibiades,—they entreated Cyrus to adopt a new policy, and execute the stipulations of the treaty, by lending the most vigorous aid to put down the common enemy. Cyrus replied, that these were the express orders which he had received from his father, and that he was prepared to fulfil them with all his might. He had brought with him, he said, five hundred talents, which should be at once devoted to the cause : if these were insufficient, he would resort to the private funds which his father had given him; and if more still were needed, he would coin into money the gold and silver throne on which he sat.

Lysander and the envoys returned the warmest thanks for these magnificent promises, which were not likely to prove empty words from the lips of a vehement youth like Cyrus. So sanguine were the hopes which they conceived from his character and proclaimed sentiments, that they ventured to ask him to restore the rate of pay to one full Attic drachma per head for the seamen; which had been the rate promised by Tissaphernes through his envoys at Sparta, when he first invited the Lacedaemonians across the Aegean, and when it was doubtful whether they would come, but actually paid only for the first month, and then reduced to half a drachma, furnished in practice with miserable irregularity. As a motive for granting this increase of pay, Cyrus was assured that it would determine the Athenian seamen to desert so largely, that the war would sooner come to an end, and of course the expenditure also. But he refused compliance, saying that the rate of pay had been fixed both by the king’s express orders and by the terms of the treaty, so that he could not depart from it. In this reply Lysander was forced to acquiesce. The envoys were treated with distinction, and feasted at a banquet; after which Cyrus, drinking to the health of Lysander, desired him to declare what favor he could do to gratify him most. “To grant an additional obolus per head for each seaman’s pay”, replied Lysander. Cyrus immediately complied, having personally bound himself by his manner of putting the question. But the answer impressed him both with astonishment and admiration; for he had expected that Lysander would ask some favor or present for himself, judging him not only according to the analogy of most Persians, but also of Astyochus and the officers of the Peloponnesian armament at Miletus, whose corrupt subservience to Tissaphernes had probably been made known to him. From such corruption, as well as from the mean carelessness of Theramenes, the Spartan, respecting the condition of the sea­men, Lysander’s conduct stood out in pointed and honorable contrast.

The incident here described not only procured for the seamen of the Peloponnesian fleet the daily pay of four oboli, instead of three, per man, but also insured to Lysander himself a degree of esteem and confidence from Cyrus which he knew well how to turn to accounts I have already remarked, in reference to Perikles and Nikias, that an established reputation for personal incorruptibility, rare as that quality was among Grecian leading politicians, was among the most precious items in the capital stock of an ambitious man, even if looked at only in regard to the durability of his own influence. If the proof of such disinterestedness was of so much value in the eyes of the Athenian people, yet more powerfully did it work upon the mind of Cyrus. With his Persian and princely ideas of winning adherents by munificence, a man who despised presents was a phenomenon commanding the higher sentiment of wonder and respect. From this time forward he not only trusted Lysander with implicit pecuniary confidence, but consulted him as to the prosecution of the war, and even condescended to second his personal ambition to the detriment of this object.

Returning from Sardis to Ephesus, after such unexampled success in his interview with Cyrus, Lysander was enabled not only to make good to his fleet the full arrear actually due, but also to pay them for a month in advance, at the increased rate of four oboli per man; and to promise that high rate for the future. A spirit of the highest satisfaction and confidence was diffused through the armament. But the ships were in indifferent condition, having been hastily and parsimoniously got up since the late defeat at Cyzicus. Accordingly, Lysander employed his present affluence in putting them into better order, procuring more complete tackle, and inviting picked crews. He took another step pregnant with important results. Summoning to Ephesus a few of the most leading and active men from each of the Asiatic cities, he organized them into disciplined clubs, or factions, in correspondence with himself. He instigated these clubs to the most vigorous prosecution of the war against Athens, promising that, as soon as that war should be concluded, they should be invested and maintained by Spartan influence in the government of their respective cities. His newly established influence with Cyrus, and the abundant supplies of which he was now master, added double force to an invitation in itself but too seducing. And thus, while infusing increased ardor into the joint warlike efforts of these cities, he at the same time procured for himself an ubiquitous correspondence, such as no successor could manage, rendering the continuance of his own command almost essential to success. The fruits of his factious manoeuvres will be seen in the subsequent dekadarchies, or oligarchies of Ten, after the complete subjugation of Athens.

While Lysander and Cyrus were thus restoring formidable efficacy to their side of the contest, during the summer of 407 B.C., the victorious exile Alcibiades had accomplished the important and delicate step of reentering his native city for the first time. According to the accommodation with Pharnabazus, concluded after the reduction of Chalcedon, the Athenian fleet was precluded from assailing his satrapy, and was thus forced to seek subsistence elsewhere. Byzantium and Selymbria, with contributions levied in Thrace, maintained them for the winter : in the spring (407 B.C.), Alcibiades brought them again to Samos; from whence he undertook an expedition against the coast of Karia, levying contributions to the extent of one hundred talents. Thrasybulus, with thirty triremes, went to attack Thrace, where he reduced Thasos, Abdera, and all those towns which had revolted from Athens; Thasos being now in especial distress from famine as well as from past seditions. A valuable contribution for the support of the fleet was doubtless among the fruits of this success. Thrasyllus at the same time conducted another division of the army home to Athens, intended by Alcibiades as precursors of his own return.

Before Thrasyllus arrived, the people had already manifested their favorable disposition towards Alcibiades by choosing him anew general of the armament, along with Thrasybulus and Konon. Alcibiades was now tending homeward from Samos with twenty triremes, bringing with him all the contributions recently levied : he first stopped at Paros, then visited the coast of Laconia, and lastly looked into the harbor of Gytheion in Laconia, where, he had learned that thirty triremes were preparing. The news which he received of his reelection as general, strengthened by the pressing invitations and encouragements of his friends, as well as by the recall of his banished kinsmen at length determined him to sail to Athens. He reached Piraeus on a marked day, the festival of the Plynteria, on the 25th of the month Thargelion, about the end of May, 407 B.C. This was a day of melancholy solemnity, accounted unpropitious for any action of importance. The statue of the goddess Athene was stripped of all its ornaments, covered up from every one’s gaze, and washed or cleansed under a mysterious ceremonial, by the holy gens, called Praxiergidae. The goddess thus seemed to turn away her face, and refuse to behold the returning exile. Such at least was the construction of his enemies; and as the subsequent turn of events tended to bear them out, it has been preserved; while the more auspicious counter-interpretation, doubtless suggested by his friends, has been forgotten.

The most extravagant representations, of the pomp and splendor of this return of Alcibiades to Athens, were given by some authors of antiquity, especially by Duris of Samos, an author about two generations later. It was said that he brought with him two hundred prow-ornaments belonging to captive enemies’ ships, or, according to some, even the two hundred captured ships themselves; that his trireme was ornamented with gilt and silvered shields, and sailed by purple sails; that Kallippides, one of the most distinguished actors of the day, performed the functions of keleustes, pronouncing the chant or word of command to the rowers; that Chrysogonus, a flute-player, who had gained the first prize at the Pythian games, was also on board playing the air of return. All these details, invented with melancholy facility, to illustrate an ideal of ostentation and insolence, are refuted by the more simple and credible narrative of Xenophon. The reentry of Alcibiades was not merely unostentatious, but even mistrustful and apprehensive. He had with him only twenty triremes; and though encouraged, not merely by the assurances of his friends, but also by the news that he had just been reelected general, he was, nevertheless, half afraid to disembark, even at the instant when he made fast his ship to the quay in Piraeus. A vast crowd had assembled there from the city and the port, animated by curiosity, interest, and other emotions of every kind, to see him arrive. But so little did he trust their sentiments that he hesitated at first to step on shore and stood upon the deck looking about for his friends and kinsmen. Presently, he saw Euryptolemus his cousin, and others, by whom he was heartily welcomed, and in the midst of whom he landed. But they too were so apprehensive of his numerous enemies, that they formed themselves into a sort of bodyguard, to surround and protect him against any possible assault during his march from Piraeus to Athens.

No protection, however, was required. Not merely did his enemies attempt no violence against him, but they said nothing in opposition when he made his defence before the senate and the public assembly. Protesting before the one as well as the other, his innocence of the impiety laid to his charge, he denounced bitterly the injustice of his enemies, and gently, but pathetically, deplored the unkindness of the people. His friends all spoke warmly in the same strain. So strenuous, and so pronounced, was the sentiment in his favor, both of the senate and of the public assembly, that no one dared to address them in the contrary sense. The sentence of condemnation passed against him was cancelled; the Eumolpidae were directed to revoke the curse which they had pronounced upon his head; the record of the sentence was destroyed, and the plate of lead upon which the curse was engraven, thrown into the sea; his confiscated property was restored; lastly; he was proclaimed general with full powers, and allowed to prepare an expedition of one hundred triremes, fifteen hundred hoplites from the regular muster-roll, and one hundred and fifty horsemen. All this passed, by unopposed vote, amidst silence on the part of enemies and acclamations from friends, amidst unmeasured promises of future achievement from himself, and confident assurances, impressed by his friends on willing hearers, that Alcibiades was the only man competent to restore the empire and grandeur of Athens. The general expectation, which he and his friends took every possible pains to excite, was, that his victorious career of the last three years was a preparation for yet greater triumphs during the next. We may be satisfied, when we advert to the apprehensions of Alcibiades on entering the Piraeus, and to the body-guard organized by his friends, that this overwhelming and uncontradicted triumph greatly surpassed the anticipations of both. It intoxicated him, and led him to make light of enemies whom only just before he had so much dreaded. This mistake, together with the carelessness and insolence arising out of what seemed to be an unbounded ascendency, proved the cause of his future ruin. But the truth is, that these enemies, however they might remain silent, had not ceased to be formidable. Alcibiades had now been eight years in exile, from about August 415 B.C. to May 407 B.C. Now absence was in many ways a good thing for his reputation, since his overbearing private demeanor had been kept out of sight, and his impieties partially forgotten. There was even a disposition among the majority to accept his own explicit denial of the fact laid to his charge, and to dwell chiefly upon the unworthy manoeuvres of his enemies in resisting his demand for instant trial immediately after the accusation was broached, in order that they might calumniate him during his absence. He was characterized as a patriot animated by the noblest motives, who had brought both first-rate endowments and large private wealth to the service of the commonwealth, but had been ruined by a conspiracy of corrupt and worthless speakers, every way inferior to him; men, whose only chance of success with the people arose from expelling those who were better than themselves, while he, Alcibiades, far from having any interest adverse to the democracy, was the natural and worthy favorite of a democratical people. So far as the old causes of unpopularity were concerned, therefore, time and absence had done much to weaken their effect, and to assist his friends in countervailing them by pointing to the treacherous political manoeuvres employed against him.

But if the old causes of unpopularity had thus, comparatively speaking, passed out of sight, others had since arisen, of a graver and more ineffaceable character. His vindictive hostility to his country had been not merely ostentatiously proclaimed, but actively manifested, by stabs but too effectively aimed at her vitals. The sending of Gylippus to Syracuse, the fortification of Dekeleia, the revolts of Chios and Miletus, the first origination of the conspiracy of the Four Hundred, had all been emphatically the measures of Alcibiades. Even for these, the enthusiasm of the moment attempted some excuse, it was affirmed that he had never ceased to love his country, in spite of her wrongs towards him, and that he had been compelled by the necessities of exile to serve men whom he detested, at the daily risk of his life. But such pretences could not really impose upon any one. The treason of Alcibiades during the period of his exile remained indefensible as well as undeniable, and would have been more than sufficient as a theme for his enemies, had their tongues been free. But his position was one altogether singular: having first inflicted on his country immense mischief, he had since rendered her valuable service, and promised to render still more. It is true, that the subsequent service was by no means adequate to the previous mischief: nor had it indeed been rendered exclusively by him, since the victories of Abydos and Cyzicus belong not less to Theramenes and Thrasybulus than to Alcibiades : moreover, the peculiar present or capital which he had promised to bring with him,—Persian alliance and pay to Athens,—had proved a complete delusion. Still, the Athenian arms had been eminently successful since his junction, and we may see that not merely common report, but even good judges, such as Thucydides, ascribed this result to his superior energy and management.

Without touching upon these particulars, it is, impossible fully to comprehend the very peculiar position of this returning exile before the Athenian people in the summer of 407 B.C. The more distant past exhibited him as among the worst of criminals; the recent past, as a valuable servant and patriot: the future promised continuance in this last character, so far as there were any positive indications to judge by. Now this was a case in which discussion and recrimination could not possibly answer any useful purpose. There was every reason for reappointing Alcibiades to his command; but this could only be done under prohibition of censure on his past crimes, and provisional acceptance of his subsequent good deeds, as justifying the hope of yet better deeds to come. The popular instinct felt this situation perfectly, and imposed absolute silence on his enemies. We are not to infer from hence that the people had forgotten the past deeds of Alcibiades, or that they entertained for him nothing but unqualified confidence and admiration. In their present very justifiable sentiment of hopefulness, they determined that he should have full scope for prosecuting his new and better career, if he chose; and that his enemies should be precluded from reviving the mention of an irreparable past, so as to shut the door against him. But what was thus interdicted to men’s lips as unseasonable, was not effaced from their recollections; nor were the enemies, though silenced for the moment, rendered powerless for the future. All this train of combustible matter lay quiescent, ready to be fired by any future misconduct or negligence, perhaps even by blameless ill-success, on the part of Alcibiades.

At a juncture when so much depended upon his future behavior, he showed, as we shall see presently, that he completely misinterpreted the temper of the people. Intoxicated by the unexpected triumph of his reception, according to that fatal susceptibility so common among distinguished Greeks, he forgot his own past history, and fancied that the people had forgotten and forgiven it also; construing their studied and well-advised silence into a proof of oblivion. He conceived himself in assured possession of public confidence, and looked upon his numerous enemies as if they no longer existed, because they were not allowed to speak at a most unseasonable hour. Without doubt, his exultation was shared by his friends, and this sense of false security proved his future ruin.

Two colleagues, recommended by Alcibiades himself, Adeimantus and Aristokrates, were named by the people as generals of the hoplites to go out with him, in case of operations ashore. In less than three months, his armament was ready; but he designedly deferred his departure until that day of the month Boedromion, about the beginning of September, when the Eleusinian mysteries were celebrated, and when the solemn processional march of the crowd of communicants was wont to take place, along the Sacred Way from Athens to Eleusis. For seven successive years, ever since the establishment of Agis at Dekeleia, this march had been of necessity discontinued, and the procession had been transported by sea, to the omission of many of the ceremonial details. Alcibiades, on this occasion, caused the land-march to be renewed, in full pomp and solemnity; assembling all his troops in arms to protect, in case any attack should be made from Dekeleia. No such attack was hazarded; so that he had the satisfaction of reviving the full regularity of this illustrious scene, and escorting the numerous communicants out and home, without the smallest interruption; an exploit gratifying to the religious feelings of the people, and imparting an acceptable sense of undiminished Athenian power; while in reference to his own reputation, it was especially politic, as serving to make his peace with the Eumolpidae and the Two Goddesses, on whose account he had been condemned.

Immediately after the mysteries, he departed with his armament. It appears that Agis at Dekeleia, though he had not chosen to come out and attack Alcibiades when posted to guard the Eleusinian procession, had nevertheless felt humiliated by the defiance offered to him. He shortly afterwards took advantage of the departure of this large force, to summon reinforcements from Peloponnesus and Boeotia, and attempt to surprise the walls of Athens on a dark night. If he expected any connivance within, the plot miscarried; alarm was given in time, and the eldest and youngest hoplites were found at their posts to defend the walls. The assailants — said to have amounted to twenty-eight thousand men, of whom half were hoplites, with twelve hundred cavalry, nine hundred of them Boeotians — were seen on the ensuing day close under the walls of the city, which were amply manned with the full remaining strength of Athens. In an obstinate cavalry battle which ensued, the Athenians gained the advantage even over the Boeotians. Agis encamped the next night in the garden of Akademus; again on the morrow he drew up his troops and offered battle to the Athenians, who are affirmed to have gone forth in order of battle, but to have kept under the protection of the missiles from the walls, so that Agis did not dare to attack them. We may well doubt whether the Athenians went out at all, since they had been for years accustomed to regard themselves as inferior to the Peloponnesians in the field. Agis now withdrew, satisfied apparently with having offered battle, so as to efface the affront which he had received from the march of the Eleusinian communicants in defiance of his neighborhood.

The first exploit of Alcibiades was to proceed to Andros, now under a Lacedaemonian harmost and garrison. Landing on the island, he plundered the fields, defeated both the native troops and the Lacedaemonians, and forced them to shut themselves up within the town; which he besieged for some days without avail, and then proceeded onward to Samos, leaving Konon in a fortified post, with twenty ships, to prosecute the siege. At Samos, he first ascertained the state of the Peloponnesian fleet at Ephesus, the influence acquired by Lysander over Cyrus, the strong anti-Athenian dispositions of the young prince, and the ample rate of pay, put down even in advance, of which the Peloponnesian seamen were now in actual receipt. He now first became convinced of the failure of those hopes which he had conceived, not without good reason, in the preceding year,—and of which he had doubtless boasted at Athens, —that the alliance of Persia might be neutralized at least, if not won over, through the envoys escorted to Susa by Pharnabazus. It was in vain that he prevailed upon Tissaphernes to mediate with Cyrus, to introduce to him some Athenian envoys, and to inculcate upon him his own views of the true interests of Persia; that is, that the war should be fed and protracted so as to wear out both the Grecian belligerent parties, each by means of the other. Such a policy, uncongenial at all times to the vehement temper of Cyrus, had become yet more repugnant to him since his intercourse with Lysander. He would not consent even to see the envoys, nor was he probably displeased to put a slight upon a neighbor and rival satrap. Deep was the despondency among the Athenians at Samos, when painfully convinced that all hopes from Persia must be abandoned for themselves; and farther, that Persian pay was both more ample and better assured, to their enemies, than ever it had been before.

Lysander had at Ephesus a fleet of ninety triremes, which he employed himself in repairing and augmenting, being still inferior in number to the Athenians. In vain did Alcibiades attempt to provoke him out to a general action. This was much to the interest of the Athenians, apart from their superiority of number, since they were badly provided with money, and obliged to levy contributions wherever they could: but Lysander was resolved not to fight unless he could do so with advantage, and Cyrus, not afraid of sustaining the protracted expense of the war, had even enjoined upon him this cautious policy, with additional hopes of a Phoenician fleet to his aid, which in his mouth was not intended to delude, as it had been by Tissaphernes. Unable to bring about a general battle, and having no immediate or capital enterprise to constrain his attention, Alcibiades became careless, and abandoned himself partly to the love of pleasure, partly to reckless predatory enterprises for the purpose of getting money to pay his army. Thrasybulus had come from his post on the Hellespont, and was now engaged in fortifying Phocaea, probably for the purpose of establishing a post, to be enabled to pillage the interior. Here he was joined by Alcibiades, who sailed across with a squadron, leaving his main fleet at Samos. He left it under the command of his favorite pilot Antiochus, but with express orders on no account to fight until his return.

While employed in this visit to Phocaea and Klazomenae, Alcibiades, perhaps hard-pressed for money, conceived the unwarrantable project of enriching his men by the plunder of the neighboring territory of Kyme, an allied dependency of Athens. Landing on this territory unexpectedly, after fabricating some frivolous calumnies against the Kymaeans, he at first seized much property and a considerable number of prisoners. But the inhabitants assembled in arms, bravely defended their possessions, and repelled his men to their ships; recovering the plundered property, and lodging it in safety within their walls. Stung with this miscarriage, Alcibiades sent for a reinforcement of hoplites from Mitylene, and marched up to the walls of Kyme, where he in vain challenged the citizens to come forth and fight. He then ravaged the territory at pleasure: nor had the Kymaeans any other resource, except to send envoys to Athens, to complain of so gross an outrage, inflicted by the Athenian general upon an unoffending Athenian dependency.

This was a grave charge, nor was it the only charge which Alcibiades had to meet at Athens. During his absence at Phocaea and Kyme, Antiochus the pilot, whom he had left in command, disobeying the express order pronounced against fighting a battle, first sailed across from Samos to Notium, the harbor of Kolophon, and from thence to the mouth of the harbor of Ephesus, where the Peloponnesian fleet lay. Entering that harbor with his own ship and another, he passed close in front of the prows of the Peloponnesian triremes, insulting them scornfully and defying them to combat. Lysander detached some ships to pursue him, and an action gradually ensued, which was exactly that which Antiochus desired. But the Athenian ships were all in disorder, and came into battle as each of them separately could; while the Peloponnesian fleet was well marshalled and kept in hand; so that the battle was all to the advantage of the latter. Though Athenians, compelled to take flight, were pursued to Notium, losing fifteen triremes, several along with their full crews. Antiochus himself was slain. Before retiring to Ephesus, Lysander had the satisfaction of erecting his trophy on the shore of Notium; while the Athenian fleet was carried back to its station at Samos.

It was in vain that Alcibiades, hastening back to Samos, mustered the entire Athenian fleet, sailed to the mouth of the harbor of Ephesus, and there ranged his ships in battle order, challenging the enemy to come forth. Lysander would give him no opportunity of wiping out the late dishonor. And as an additional mortification to Athens, the Lacedaemonians shortly afterwards captured both Teos and Delphinium; the latter being a fortified post which the Athenians had held for the last three years in the island of Chios.

Even before the battle of Notium, it appears that complaints and dissatisfactions had been growing up in the armament against Alcibiades. He had gone out with a splendid force, not inferior, in number of triremes and hoplites, to that which he had conducted against Sicily, and under large promises, both from himself and his friends, of achievements to come. Yet in a space of time which can hardly have been less than three months, not a single success had been accomplished; while on the other side there was to be reckoned the disappointment on the score of Persia, which had great effect on the temper of the armament, and which, though not his fault, was contrary to expectations which he had held out, the disgraceful plunder of Kyme, and the defeat at Notium. It was true that Alcibiades had given peremptory orders to Antiochus not to fight, and that the battle had been hazarded in flagrant disobedience to his injunctions. But this circumstance only raised new matter for dissatisfaction of a grave character. If Antiochus had been disobedient,—if, besides disobedience, he had displayed a childish vanity and an utter neglect of all military precautions,—who was it that had chosen him for deputy; and that too against all Athenian precedent, putting the pilot, a paid officer of the ship, over the heads of the trierarchs who paid their pilots, and served at their own cost? It was Alcibiades who placed Antiochus in this grave and responsible situation, a personal favorite, an excellent convivial companion, but destitute of all qualities befitting a commander. And this turned attention on another point of the character of Alcibiades, his habits of excessive self-indulgence and dissipation. The loud murmurs of the camp charged him with neglecting the interests of the service for enjoyments with jovial parties and Ionian women, and with admitting to his confidence those who best contributed to the amusement of these chosen hours.

It was in the camp at Samos that this general indignation against Alcibiades first arose, and was from thence transmitted formally to Athens, by the mouth of Thrasybulus son of Thrason, not the eminent Thrasybulus, son of Lykus, who has been already often spoken of in this history, and will be so again. There came at the same time to Athens the complaints from Kyme, against the unprovoked aggression and plunder of that place by Alcibiades; and seemingly complaints from other places besides. It was even urged as accusation against him, that he was in guilty collusion to betray the fleet to Pharnabazus and the Lacedaemonians, and that, he had already provided three strong forts in the Chersonese to retire to, as soon as this scheme should be ripe for execution.

Such grave and wide-spread accusations, coupled with the disaster at Notium, and the complete disappointment of all the promises of success, were more than sufficient to alter the sentiments of the people of Athens towards Alcibiades. He had no character to fall back upon; or rather he had a character worse than none, such as to render, the most criminal imputations of treason not intrinsically improbable. The comments of his enemies, which had been forcibly excluded from public discussion during his summer visit to Athens, were now again set free; and all the adverse recollections of his past life doubtless revived. The people had refused to listen to these, in order that he might have a fair trial, and might verify the title, claimed for him by his friends, to be judged only, by his subsequent exploits, achieved since the year 411 B.C. He had now had his trial; he had been found wanting; and the popular confidence, which had been provisionally granted to him, was accordingly withdrawn.

It is not just to represent the Athenian people, however Plutarch and Cornelius Nepos may set before us this picture, as having indulged an extravagant and unmeasured confidence in Alcibiades in the month of July, demanding of him more than man could perform, and as afterwards in the month of December passing, with childish abruptness, from confidence into wrathful displeasure, because their own impossible expectations were not already realized. That the people entertained large expectations, from so very considerable an armament, cannot be doubted: the largest of all, probably, as in the instance of the Sicilian expedition, were those entertained by Alcibiades himself, and promulgated by his friends. But we are not called upon to determine what the people would have done, had Alcibiades, after performing all the duties of a faithful, skilful, and enterprising commander, nevertheless failed, from obstacles beyond his own control, in realizing their hopes and his own promises. No such case occurred: that which did occur was materially different. Besides the absence of grand successes, he had farther been negligent and reckless in his primary duties; he had exposed the Athenian arms to defeat, by his disgraceful selection of an unworthy lieutenant; he had violated the territory and property of an allied dependency, at a moment when Athens had a paramount interest in cultivating by every means the attachment of her remaining allies. The truth is, as I have before remarked, that he had really been spoiled by the intoxicating reception given to him so unexpectedly in the city. He had mistaken a hopeful public, determined, even by forced silence as to the past, to give him the full benefit of a meritorious future, but requiring as condition from him, that that future should really be meritorious, for a public of assured admirers, whose favor he had already earned and might consider as his own. He became an altered man after that visit, like Miltiades after the battle of Marathon; or, rather, the impulses of a character essentially dissolute and insolent, broke loose from that restraint under which they had before been partially controlled. At the time of the battle of Cyzicus, when Alcibiades was laboring to regain the favor of his injured countrymen, and was yet uncertain whether he should succeed, he would not have committed the fault of quitting his fleet and leaving it under the command of a lieutenant like Antiochus. If, therefore, Athenian sentiment towards Alcibiades underwent an entire change during the autumn of 407 B.C., this was in consequence of an alteration in his character and behavior; an alteration for the worse, just at the crisis when everything turned upon his good conduct, and upon his deserving at least, if he could not command success.

We may, indeed, observe that the faults of Nikias before Syracuse, and in reference to the coming of Gylippus, were far graver and more mischievous than those of Alcibiades during this turning season of his career, and the disappointment of antecedent hopes at least equal. Yet while, these faults and disappointment brought about the dismissal and disgrace of Alcibiades, they did not induce the Athenians to dismiss Nikias, though himself desiring it, nor even prevent them from sending him a second armament to be ruined along with the first. The contrast is most instructive, as demonstrating upon what points durable esteem in Athens turned; how long the most melancholy public, incompetency could remain overlooked, when covered by piety, decorum, good intentions, and high station; how short-lived was the ascendency of a man far superior in ability and energy, besides an equal station, when his moral qualities and antecedent life were such as to provoke fear and hatred in many, esteem from none. Yet, on the whole, Nikias, looking at him as a public servant, was far more destructive to his country than Alcibiades. The mischief done to Athens by the latter was done in the avowed service of her enemies.

On hearing the news of the defeat of Notium and the accumulated complaints against Alcibiades, the Athenians simply voted that he should be dismissed from his command; naming ten new generals to replace him. He was not brought to trial, nor do we know whether any such step was proposed. Tet his proceedings at Kyme, if they happened as we read them, richly deserved judicial animadversion; and the people, had they so dealt with him, would only have acted up to the estimable function ascribed to them by the oligarchical Phrynichus, “of serving as refuge to their dependent allies, and chastising the high-handed oppressions of the optimates against them”. In the perilous position of Athens, however, with reference to the foreign war, such a political trial would have been productive of much dissension and mischief. And Alcibiades avoided the question by not coming to Athens. As soon as he heard of his dismissal, he retired immediately from the army to his own fortified posts on the Chersonese.

The ten new generals named were Konon, Diomedon, Leon, Perikles, Erasinides, Aristocrates, Archestratus, Protomachus, Thrasyllus, Aristogenes. Of these, Konon was directed to proceed forthwith from Andros with the twenty ships which he had there, to receive the fleet from Alcibiades ; while Phanosthenes proceeded with four triremes to replace Konon at Andros.

In his way thither, Phanosthenes fell in with Dorieus the Rhodian and two Thurian triremes, which he captured, with every man aboard. The captives were sent to Athens, where all were placed in custody, in case of future exchange, except Dorieus himself. The latter had been condemned to death, and banished from his native city of Rhodes, together with his kindred, probably on the score of political disaffection, at the time when Rhodes was a member of the Athenian alliance. Having since then become a citizen of Thurii, he had served with distinction in the fleet of Mindarus, both at Miletus and the Hellespont. The Athenians now had so much compassion upon him that they released him at once and unconditionally, without even demanding a ransom or an equivalent. By what particular circumstance their compassion was determined, forming a pleasing exception to the melancholy habits which pervaded Grecian war fare in both belligerents, we should never have learned from the meagre narrative of Xenophon. But we ascertain from other sources, that Dorieus, the son of Diagoras of Rhodes, was illustrious beyond all other Greeks for his victories in the pankration at the Olympic, Isthmian, and Nemean festivals; that he had gained the first prize at three Olympic festivals in succession, of which Olympiad 88, or 428 B.C. was the second, a distinction altogether without precedent, besides eight Isthmian and seven Nemean prizes; that his father Diagoras, his brothers, and his cousins, were all celebrated as successful athletes; lastly, that the family were illustrious from old date in their native island of Rhodes, and were even descended from the Messenian hero Aristomenes. When the Athenians saw before them as their prisoner a man doubtless of magnificent stature and presence, as we may conclude from his athletic success, and surrounded by such a halo of glory, impressive in the highest degree to Grecian imagination, the feelings and usages of war were at once overruled. Though Dorieus had been one of their most vehement enemies, they could not bear either to touch his person, or to exact from him any condition. Released by them on this occasion, he lived to be put to death, about thirteen years afterwards, by the Lacedaemonians.

When Konon reached Samos to take the command, he found the armament in a state of great despondency; not merely from the dishonorable affair of Notium, but also from disappointed hopes connected with Alcibiades, and from difficulties in procuring regular pay. So painfully was the last inconvenience felt, that the first measure of Konon was to contract the numbers of the armament from above one hundred triremes to seventy; and to reserve for the diminished fleet all the ablest seamen of the larger. With this fleet, he and his colleagues roved about the enemies’ coasts to collect plunder and pay.

Apparently about the same time that Konon superseded Alcibiades, that is, about December 407 B.C. or January 406 B.C., the year of Lysander’s command expired, and Callicratidas arrived from Sparta to replace him. His arrival was received with undisguised dissatisfaction by the leading Lacedaemonians in the armament, by the chiefs in the Asiatic cities, and by Cyrus. Now was felt the full influence of those factious correspondences and intrigues which Lysander had established with all of them, for indirectly working out the perpetuity of his own command. While loud complaints were heard of the impolicy of Sparta, in annually changing her admiral, both Cyrus and the rest concurred with Lysander in throwing difficulties in the way of the new successor.

Callicratidas, unfortunately only shown by the Fates, and not suffered to continue in the Grecian world, was one of the noblest characters of his age. Besides perfect courage, energy, and incorruptibility, he was distinguished for two qualities, both of them very rare among eminent Greeks; entire straightforwardness of dealing, and a Pan-Hellenic patriotism alike comprehensive, exalted, and merciful. Lysander handed over to him nothing but an empty purse; having repaid to Cyrus all the money remaining in his possession, under pretence that it had been confided to himself personally. Moreover, on delivering up the fleet to Callicratidas at Ephesus, he made boast of delivering to him at the same time the mastery of the sea, through the victory recently gained at Notium. “Conduct the fleet from Ephesus along the coast of Samos, passing by the Athenian station (replied Callicratidas), and give it up to me at Miletus : I shall then believe in your mastery of the sea”. Lysander had nothing else to say, except that he should give himself no farther trouble, tow that his command had been transferred to another.

Callicratidas soon found that the leading Lacedaemonians in the fleet, gained over to the interests of his predecessor, openly murmured at his arrival, and secretly obstructed all his measures; upon which he summoned them together, and said: “I, for my part, am quite content to remain at home; and if Lysander, or any one else, pretends to be a better admiral than I am, I have nothing to say against it. But sent here as I am by the authorities at Sparta to command the fleet, I have no choice except to execute their orders in the best way that I can. You now know how far my ambition reaches; you know also the murmurs which are abroad against our common city (for her frequent change of admirals). Look to it, and give me your opinion. Shall I stay where I am, or shall I go home, and communicate what has happened here?”

This remonstrance, alike pointed and dignified, produced its full effect. Every one replied, that it was his duty to stay and undertake the command. The murmurs and cabals were from that moment discontinued.

His next embarrassments arose from the manoeuvre of Lysander in paying back to Cyrus all the funds from whence the continuous pay of the army was derived. Of course this step was admirably calculated to make, every one regret the alteration of command. Callicratidas, who had been sent out without funds, in full reliance on the unexhausted supply from Sardis, now found himself compelled to go thither in person and solicit a renewal of the bounty. But Cyrus, eager to manifest in every way his partiality for the last admiral, deferred receiving him, first for two days, then for a farther interval, until the patience of Callicratidas was wearied out, so that he left Sardis in disgust without an interview. So intolerable to his feelings was the humiliation of thus begging at the palace gates, that he bitterly deplored those miserable dissensions among the Greeks which constrained both parties to truckle to the foreigner for money; swearing that, if he survived the year’s campaign, he would use every possible effort to bring about an accommodation between Athens and Sparta.

In the meantime, he put forth all his energy to obtain money in some other way, and thus get the fleet to sea; knowing well, that the way to overcome the reluctance of Cyrus was, to show that he could do without him. Sailing first from Ephesus to Miletus, he despatched from thence a small squadron to Sparta, disclosing his unexpected poverty, and asking for speedy pecuniary aid. In the meantime he convoked an assembly of the Milesians, communicated to them the mission just sent to Sparta, and asked from them a temporary supply until this money should arrive. He reminded them that the necessity of this demand sprang altogether from the manoeuvre of Lysander, in paying back the funds in his hands; that he had already in vain applied to Cyrus for farther money, meeting only with such insulting neglect as could no longer be endured: that they, the Milesians, dwelling amidst the Persians, and having already experienced the maximum of ill-usage at their hands, ought now to be foremost in the war, and to set an example of zeal to the other allies, in order to get clear the sooner from dependence upon such imperious taskmasters. He promised that, when the remittance from Sparta and the hour of success should arrive, he would richly requite their forwardness. “Let us, with the aid of the gods, show these foreigners (he concluded) that we can punish our enemies without worshipping them”.

The spectacle of this generous patriot, straggling against a degrading dependence on the foreigner, which was now becom­ing unhappily familiar to the leading Greeks of both sides, excites our warm sympathy and admiration. We may add, that his language to the Milesians, reminding them of the misery which they had endured from the Persians as a motive to exertion in the war, is full of instruction as to the new situation opened for the Asiatic Greeks since the breaking-up of the Athenian power. No such evils had they suffered while Athens was competent to protect them, and while they were willing to receive protection from her, during the interval of more than fifty years between the complete organization of the confederacy of Delos and the disaster of Nikias before Syracuse.

The single-hearted energy of Callicratidas imposed upon all who heard him, and even inspired so much alarm to those leading Milesians who were playing underhand the game of Lysander, that they were the first to propose a large grant of money towards the war, and to offer considerable sums from their own purses; an example probably soon followed by other allied cities. Some of the friends of Lysander tried to couple their offers with conditions; demanding a warrant for the destruction of their political enemies, and hoping thus to compromise the new admiral. But he strenuously refused all such guilty compliances. He was soon able to collect at Miletus fifty fresh triremes in addition to those left by Lysander, making a fleet of one hundred and forty sail in all. The Chians having furnished him with an out­fit of five drachmas for each seaman, equal to ten days’ pay at the usual rate, he sailed with the whole fleet northward towards Lesbos. Of this numerous fleet, the greatest which had yet been assembled throughout the war, only ten triremes were Lacedaemonian; while a considerable proportion, and among the best equipped, were Boeotian and Euboean. In his voyage towards Lesbos, Callicratidas seems to have made himself master of Phocaea and Kyme, perhaps with the greater facility in consequence of the recent ill-treatment of the Kymaeans by Alcibiades. He then sailed to attack Methymna, on the northern coast of Lesbos; a town not only strongly attached to the Athenians, but also defended by an Athenian garrison. Though at first repulsed, he renewed his attacks until at length he took the town by storm. The property in it was all plundered by the soldiers, and the slaves collected and sold for their benefit. It was farther demanded by the allies, and expected pursuant to ordinary custom, that the Methymnaean and Athenian prisoners should be sold also. But Callicratidas peremptorily refused compliance, and set them all free the next day; declaring that, so long as he was in command, not a single free Greek should be reduced to slavery if he could prevent it.

No one, who has not familiarized himself with the details of Grecian warfare, can feel the full grandeur and sublimity of this proceeding, which stands, so far as I know, unparalleled in Grecian history. It is not merely that the prisoners were spared and set free; as to this point, analogous cases may be found, though not very frequent. It is, that this particular act of generosity was performed in the name and for the recommendation of Pan-Hellenic brotherhood and Pan-Hellenic independence of the foreigner: comprehensive principle, announced by Callicratidas on previous occasions as well as on this, but now carried into practice tinder emphatic circumstances, and coupled with an explicit declaration of his resolution to abide by it in all future cases. It is, lastly, that the step was taken in resistance to formal requisition on the part of his allies, whom he had very imperfect means either of paying or controlling, and whom therefore it was so much the more hazardous for him to offend. There cannot be any doubt that these allies felt personally wronged and indignant at the loss, as well as confounded with the proposition of a rule of duty so new, as respected the relations of belligerents in Greece; against which too, let us add, their murmurs would not be without some foundation: “If we should come to be Konon’s prisoners, he will not treat us in this manner”. Reciprocity of dealing is absolutely essential to constant moral observance, either public or private; and doubtless Callicratidas felt a well-grounded confidence, that two or three conspicuous examples would sensibly modify the future practice on both sides. But some one must begin by setting such examples, and the man who does begin—having a position which gives reasonable chance that others will follow—is the hero. An admiral like Lysander would not only sympathize heartily with the complaints of the allies, but also condemn the proceeding as a dereliction of duty to Sparta; even men better than Lysander would at first look coldly on it as a sort of Quixotism, in doubt whether the example would be copied, while the Spartan ephors, though probably tolerating it because they interfered very sparingly with their admirals afloat, would certainly have little sympathy with the feelings in which it originated. So much the rather is Callicratidas to be admired, as bringing out with him not only a Pan-Hellenic patriotism, rare either at Athens or Sparta, but also a force of individual character and conscience yet rarer, enabling him to brave unpopularity and break through routine, in the attempt to make that patriotism fruitful and operative in practice. In his career, so sadly and prematurely closed, there was at least this circumstance to be envied; that the capture of Methymna afforded him the opportunity, which he greedily seized, as if he had known that it would be the last, of putting in act and evidence the full aspirations of his magnanimous soul.

Callicratidas sent word by the released prisoners to Konon, that he would presently put an end to his adulterous intercourse with the sea; which he now considered as his wife, and lawfully appertaining to him, having one hundred and forty triremes against the seventy triremes of Konon. That admiral, in spite of his inferior numbers, had advanced near to Methymna, to try and relieve it; but finding the place already captured, had retired to the islands called Hekatonnesoi, off the continent bearing northeast from Lesbos. Thither he was followed by Callicratidas, who, leaving Methymna at night, found him quitting his moorings at break of day, and immediately made all sail to try and cut him off from the southerly course towards Samos. But Konon, having diminished the number of his triremes from one hundred to seventy, had been able to preserve all the best rowers, so that in speed he outran Callicratidas and entered first the harbor of Mitylene. His pursuers, however, were close behind, and even got into the harbor along with him, before it could be closed and put in a state of defence. Constrained to fight a battle at its entrance, he was completely defeated; thirty of his ships were taken, though the crews escaped to land; and he preserved the remaining forty only by hauling them ashore under the wall.

The town of Mitylene, originally founded on a small islet off Lesbos, had afterwards extended across a narrow strait to Lesbos itself. By this strait, whether bridged over or not we are not informed, the town was divided into two portions, and had two harbors, one opening northward towards the Hellespont, the other southward towards the promontory of Kane on the mainland. Both these harbors were undefended, and both now fell into the occupation of the Peloponnesian fleet; at least all the outer portion of each, near to the exit of the harbor, which Callicratidas kept under strict watch. He at the same time sent for the full forces of Methymna and for hoplites across from Chios, so as to block up Mitylene by land as well as by sea. As soon as his success was announced, too, money for the fleet, together with separate presents for himself, which he declined receiving, was immediately sent to him by Cyrus; so that his future operations became easy.

No preparations had been made at Mitylene for a siege: no stock of provisions had been accumulated, and the crowd within the walls was so considerable, that Konon foresaw but too plainly the speedy exhaustion of his means. Nor could he expect succor from Athens, unless he could send intelligence thither of his condition; of which, as he had not been able to do so, the Athenians remained altogether ignorant. All his ingenuity was required to get a trireme safe out of the harbor, in the face of the enemy’s guard. Putting afloat two triremes, the best sailers in his fleet, and picking out the best rowers for them out of all the rest, he caused these rowers to go aboard before daylight, concealing the epibatae, or maritime soldiers, in the interior of the vessel, instead of the deck, which was their usual place, with a moderate stock of provisions, and keeping the vessel still covered with hides or sails, as was customary, with vessels hauled ashore, to protect them against the sun. These two triremes were thus made ready to depart at a moment’s notice, without giving any indication to the enemy that they were so. They were fully manned before daybreak, the crews remained in their position all day, and after dark were taken out to repose. This went on for four days successively, no favorable opportunity having occurred to give the signal for attempting a start. At length, on the fifth day, about noon, when many of the Peloponnesian crews were ashore for their morning meal, and others were reposing, the moment seemed favorable, the signal was given, and both the triremes started at the same moment with their utmost speed; one to go out at the southern entrance towards the sea, between Lesbos and Chios, the other to depart by the northern entrance towards the Hellespont. Instantly, the alarm was given among the Peloponnesian fleet: the cables were cut, the men hastened aboard, and many triremes were put in motion to overtake the two runaways. That which departed southward, in spite of the most strenuous efforts, was caught towards evening and brought back with all her crew prisoners : that which went towards the Hellespont escaped, rounded the northern coast of Lesbos, and got safe with the news to Athens; sending intelligence also, seemingly, in her way, to the Athenian admiral Diomedon at Samos.

The latter immediately made all haste to the aid of Konon, with the small force which he had with him, no more than twelve triremes. The two harbors being both guarded by a superior force, he tried to get access to Mitylene through the Euripus, a strait which opens on the southern coast of the island into an interior lake, or bay, approaching near to the town. But here he was attacked suddenly by Callicratidas, and his squadron all captured except two triremes, his own and another; he himself had great difficulty in escaping.

Athens was all in consternation at the news of the defeat of Konon and the blockade of Mitylene. The whole strength and energy of the city was put forth to relieve him, by an effort greater than any which had been made throughout the whole war. We read with surprise that within the short space of thirty days, a fleet of no less than one hundred and ten triremes was fitted out and sent from Piraeus. Every man of age and strength to serve, without distinction, was taken to form a good crew; not only freemen, but slaves, to whom manumission was promised as reward: many also of the horsemen, or knights, and citizens of highest rank, went aboard as epibatae, hanging up their bridles like Cimon before the battle of Salamis. The levy was in fact as democratical and as equalizing as it had been on that memorable occasion. The fleet proceeded straight to Samos, whither orders had doubtless been sent to get together all the triremes which the allies could furnish as reinforcements, as well as all the scattered Athenian. By this means, forty additional triremes, ten of them Samian, were assembled, and the whole fleet, one hundred and fifty sail, went from Samos to the little islands called Arginusae, close on the mainland, opposite to Malea, the southeastern cape of Lesbos.

Callicratidas, apprized of the approach of the new fleet while it was yet at Samos, withdrew the greater portion of his force from Mitylene, leaving fifty triremes under Eteonikus to continue the blockade. Less than fifty probably would not have been sufficient, inasmuch as two harbors were to be watched; but he was thus reduced to meet the Athenian fleet with inferior numbers, one hundred and twenty triremes against one hundred and fifty. His fleet was off Cape Malea, where the crews took their suppers, on the same evening as the Athenians supped at the opposite islands of Arginusae. It was his project to sail across the intermediate channel in the night, and attack them in the morning before they were prepared; but violent wind and rain forced him to defer all movement till daylight On the ensuing morning, both parties prepared for the greatest naval encounter which had taken place throughout the whole war Callicratidas was advised by his pilot, the Megarian Hermon, to retire for the present without fighting, inasmuch an the Athenian fleet had the advantage of thirty triremes over him in number. He replied that flight was disgraceful, and that Sparta would be no worse off, even if he should perish. The answer was one congenial to his chivalrous nature; and we may well conceive, that, having for the last two or three months been lord and master of the sea, he recollected his own haughty message to Konon, and thought it dishonor to incur or deserve, by retiring, the like taunt upon himself. We may remark too that the disparity of numbers, though serious, was by no means such as to render the contest hopeless, or to serve as a legitimate ground for retreat, to one who prided himself on a full measure of Spartan courage.

The Athenian fleet was so marshalled, that its great strength was placed in the two wings; in each of which there were sixty Athenian ships, divided into four equal divisions, each division commanded by a general. Of the four squadrons of fifteen ships each, two were placed in front, two to support them in the rear. Aristokrates and Diomedon commanded the two front squadrons of the left division, Perikles and Erasinides the two squadrons in the rear: on the right division, Protomachus and Thrasyllus commanded the two in front, Lysias and Aristogenes the two in the rear. The centre, wherein were the Samians and other allies, was left weak, and all in single line; it appears to have been exactly in front of one of the isles of Arginusae, while the two other divisions were to the right and left of that isle. We read with some surprise that the whole Lacedaemonian fleet was arranged by single ships, because it sailed better and manoeuvred better than the Athenians; who formed their right and left divisions in deep order, for the express purpose of hindering the enemy from performing the nautical manoeuvres of the diekplus and the periplus. It would seem that the Athenian centre, having the land immediately in its rear, was supposed to be better protected against an enemy “sailing through the line out to the rear, and sailing round about”, than the other divisions, which were in the open waters; for which reason it was left weak, with the ships in single line. But the fact which strikes us the most is, that, if we turn back to the beginning of the war, we shall find that this diekplus and periplus were the special manoeuvres of the Athenian navy, and continued to be so even down to the siege of Syracuse; the Lacedaemonians being at first absolutely unable to perform them at all, and continuing for a long time to perform them far less skilfully than the Athenians. Now, the comparative value of both parties is reversed : the superiority of nautical skill has passed to the Peloponnesians and their allies: the precautions whereby that superiority is neutralized or evaded, are forced as a necessity on the Athenians. How astonished would the Athenian admiral Phormion have been, if he could have witnessed the fleets and the order of battle at Arginusae!

Callicratidas himself, with the ten Lacedaemonian ships, was on the right of his fleet; on the left were the Boeotians and Euboeans, under the Boeotian admiral Thrasondas. The battle was long and obstinately contested, first by the two fleets in their original order; afterwards, when all order was broken, by scattered ships mingled together and contending in individual combat. At length the brave Callicratidas perished. His ship was in the act of driving against the ship of an enemy, and he himself probably, like Brasidas at Pylos, had planted himself on the forecastle, to be the first in boarding the enemy, or in preventing the enemy from boarding him when the shock, arising from impact, threw him off his footing, so that he fell overboard and was drowned. In spite of the discouragement springing from his death, the ten Lacedaemonian triremes displayed a courage worthy of his, and nine of them were destroyed or disabled. At length the Athenians were victorious in all parts, the Peloponnesian fleet gave way, and their flight became general, partly to Chios, partly to Phocaea. More than sixty of their ships were destroyed over and above the nine Lacedaemonian, seventy-seven in all; making a total loss of above the half of the entire fleet. The loss of the Athenians was also severe, amounting to twenty-five triremes. They returned to Arginusae after the battle.

The victory of Arginusae afforded the most striking proof how much the democratical energy of Athens could yet accomplish, in spite of so many years of exhausting war. But far better would it have been, if her energy on this occasion had been less efficacious and successful. The defeat of the Peloponnesian fleet, and the death of their admirable leader,—we must take the second as inseparable from the first, since Callicratidas was not the man to survive a defeat,—were signal misfortunes to the whole Grecian world; and in an especial manner, misfortunes to Athens herself. If Callicratidas had gained the victory and survived it, he would certainly have been the man to close the Peloponnesian war; for Mitylene must immediately have surrendered, and Konon, with all the Athenian fleet there blocked up, must have become his prisoners; which circumstance, coming at the back of a defeat, would have rendered Athens disposed to acquiesce in any tolerable terms of peace. Now to have the terms dictated at a moment when her power was not wholly prostrate, by a man like Callicratidas, free from corrupt personal ambition and of a generous Pan-Hellenic patriotism, would have been the best fate which at this moment could befall her; while to the Grecian world generally, it would have been an unspeakable benefit, that, in the reorganization which it was sure to undergo at the close of the war, the ascendant individual of the moment should be penetrated with devotion to the great ideas of Hellenic brotherhood at home, and Hellenic independence against the foreigner. The near prospect of such a benefit was opened by that rare chance which threw Callicratidas into the command, enabled him not only to publish his lofty profession of faith but to show that he was prepared to act upon it, and for a time floated him on towards complete success. Nor were the envious gods ever more envious, than when they frustrated, by the disaster of Arginusae, the consummation which they had thus seemed to promise. The pertinence of these remarks will be better understood in the next chapter, when I come to recount the actual winding-up of the Peloponnesian war under the auspices of the worthless, but able, Lysander. It was into his hands that the command was retransferred, a transfer almost from the best of Greeks to the worst. We shall then see how much the sufferings of the Grecian world, and of Athens especially, were aggravated by his individual temper and tendencies, and we shall then feel by contrast, how much would have been gained if the commander armed with such great power of dictation had been a Pan-Hellenic patriot. To have the sentiment of that patriotism enforced, at a moment of break-up and rearrangement throughout Greece, by the victorious leader of the day, with single-hearted honesty and resolution, would have been a stimulus to all the better feelings of the Grecian mind, such as no other combination of circumstances could have furnished. The defeat and death of Callicratidas was thus even more deplorable as a loss to Athens and Greece, than to Sparta herself. To his lofty character and patriotism, even in so short a career, we vainly seek a parallel.

The news of the defeat was speedily conveyed to Eteonikus at Mitylene by the admiral’s signal-boat. As soon as he heard it, he desired the crew of the signal-boat to say nothing to any one, but to go again out of the harbor, and then return with wreaths and shouts of triumph, crying out that Callicratidas had gained the victory and had destroyed or captured all the Athenian ships. All suspicion of the reality was thus kept from Konon and the besieged, while Eteonikus himself, affecting to believe the news, offered the sacrifice of thanksgiving; but gave orders to all the triremes to take their meal and depart afterwards without losing a moment, directing the masters of the trading-ships also to put their property silently aboard, and get off at the same time. And thus, with little or no delay, and without the least obstruction from Konon, all these ships, triremes and merchantmen, sailed out of the harbor and were carried off in safety to Chios, the wind being fair. Eteonikus al the same time withdrew his land-forces to Methymna, burning his camp. Konon, thus finding himself unexpectedly at liberty, put to sea with his ships when the wind had become calmer, and joined the main Athenian fleet, which he found already on its way from Arginusae to Mitylene. The latter presently came to Mitylene, and from thence passed over to make an attack on Chios; which attack proving unsuccessful, they went forward to their ordinary station at Samos.

The news of the victory at Arginusae diffused joy and triumph at Athens. All the slaves who had served in the armament were manumitted and promoted, according to promise, to the rights of Plataeans at Athens, a qualified species of citizenship. Yet the joy was poisoned by another incident, which became known at the same time, raising sentiments of a totally opposite character, and ending in one of the most gloomy and disgraceful proceedings in all Athenian history.

Not only the bodies of the slain warriors floating about on the water had been picked up for burial, but the wrecks had not been visited to preserve those who were yet living. The first of these two points, even alone, would have sufficed to excite a painful sentiment of wounded piety at Athens. But the second point, here an essential part of the same omission, inflamed that sentiment into shame, grief, and indignation of the sharpest character.

In the descriptions of this event, Diodorus and many other writers take notice of the first point, either exclusively, or at least with slight reference to the second; which latter, nevertheless, stands as far the gravest in the estimate of every impartial critic, and was also the most violent in its effect upon Athenian feelings. Twenty-five Athenian triremes had been ruined, along with most of their crews; that is, lay heeled over or disabled, with their oars destroyed, no masts, nor any means of moving; mere hulls, partially broken by the impact of an enemy’s ship, and gradually filling and sinking. The original crew of each was two hundred men. The field of battle, if we may use that word for a space of sea, was strewed with these wrecks; the men remaining on board being helpless and unable to get away, for the ancient trireme carried no boat, nor any aids for escape. And there were, moreover, floating about, men who had fallen overboard, or were trying to save their lives by means of accidental spars or empty casks. It was one of the privileges of a naval victory, that the party who gained it could sail over the field of battle, and thus assist their own helpless or wounded comrades aboard the disabled ships, taking captive, or sometimes killing, the corresponding persons belonging to the enemy. According even to the speech made in the Athenian public assembly afterwards, by Euryptolemus, the defender of the accused generals, there were twelve triremes with their crews on board lying in the condition just described. This is an admission by the defence, and therefore the minimum of the reality: there cannot possibly have been fewer, but there were probably several more, out of the whole twenty-five stated by Xenophon. No step being taken to preserve them, the surviving portion, wounded as well as unwounded, of these crews, were left to be gradually drowned as each disabled ship went down. If any of them escaped, it was by unusual goodness of swimming, by finding some fortunate plank or spar, at any rate by the disgrace of throwing away their arms, and by some method such as no wounded man would be competent to employ.

The first letter from the generals which communicated the victory, made known at the same time the loss sustained in obtaining it. It announced, doubtless, the fact which we read in Xenophon, that twenty-five Athenian triremes had been lost, with nearly all their crews; specifying, we may be sure, the name of each trireme which had so perished; for each trireme in the Athenian navy, like modern ships, had its own name. It mentioned, at the same time, that no step whatever had been taken by the victorious survivors to save their wounded and drowning countrymen on board the sinking ships. A storm had arisen, such was the reason assigned, so violent as to render all such intervention totally impracticable.

It is so much the custom, in dealing with Grecian history, to presume the Athenian people to be a set of children or madmen, whose feelings it is not worthwhile to try and account for, that I have been obliged to state these circumstances somewhat at length, in order to show that the mixed sentiment excited at Athens by the news of the battle of Arginusae was perfectly natural and justifiable. Along with joy for the victory, there was blended horror and remorse at the fact that so many of the brave men who had helped to gain it had been left to perish unheeded. The friends and relatives of the crews of these lost triremes were of course foremost in the expression of such indignant emotion. The narrative of Xenophon, meagre and confused as well as unfair, presents this emotion as if it were something causeless, factitious, pumped up out of the standing irascibility of the multitude by the artifices of Theramenes, Kallixenus, and a few others. But whatever may have been done by these individuals to aggravate the public excitement, or pervert it to bad purposes, assuredly the excitement itself was spontaneous, inevitable, and amply justified. The very thought that so many of the brave partners in the victory had been left to drown miserably on the sinking hulls, without any effort on the part of their generals and comrades near to rescue them, was enough to stir up all the sensibilities, public as well as private, of the most passive nature, even in citizens who were not related to the deceased, much more in those who were so. To expect that the Athenians would be so absorbed in the delight of the victory, and in gratitude to the generals who had commanded, as to overlook such a desertion of perishing warriors, and such an omission of sympathetic duty, is, in my judgment, altogether preposterous; and would, if it were true, only establish one more vice in the Athenian people, besides those which they really had, and the many more with which they have been unjustly branded.

The generals, in their public letter, accounted for their omission by saying that the violence of the storm was too great to allow them to move. First, was this true as matter of fact? Next, had there been time to discharge the duty, or at the least to try and discharge it, before the storm came on to be so intolerable? These points required examination. The generals, while honored with a vote of thanks for the victory, were superseded, and directed to come home; all except Konon, who having been blocked up at Mitylene, was not concerned in the question. Two new colleagues, Philokles and Adeimantus, were named to go out and join him. The generals probably received the notice of their recall at Samos, and came home in consequence; reaching Athens seemingly about the end of September or beginning of October, the battle of Arginusae having been fought in August 406 B.C. Two of the generals, however, Protomachus and Aristogenes, declined to come : warned of the displeasure of the people, and not confiding in their own case to meet it, they preferred to pay the price of voluntary exile. The other six, Perikles, Lysias, Diomedon, Erasinides, Aristokrates, and Thrasyllus,—Archestratus, one of the original ten, having died at Mitylene,—came without their two colleagues; an unpleasant augury for the result.

On their first arrival, Archedemus, at that time an acceptable popular orator, and exercising some magistracy or high office which we cannot distinctly make out, imposed upon Erasinides a fine to that limited amount which was within the competence of magistrates without the sanction of the dikastery, and accused him besides before the dikastery; partly for general misconduct in his command, partly on the specific charge of having purloined some public money on its way from the Hellespont. Erasinides was found guilty, and condemned to be imprisoned, either until the money was made good, or perhaps until farther examination could take place into the other alleged misdeeds.

This trial of Erasinides took place before the generals were summoned before the senate to give their formal exposition respecting the recent battle, and the subsequent neglect of the drowning men. And it might almost seem as if Archedemus wished to impute to Erasinides exclusively, apart from the other generals, the blame of that neglect; a distinction, as will hereafter appear, not wholly unfounded. If, however, any such design was entertained, it did not succeed. When the generals went to explain their case before the senate, the decision of that body was decidedly unfavorable to all of them, though we have no particulars of the debate which passed. On the proposition of the senator Timokrates, a resolution was passed that the other five generals present should be placed in custody, as well as Erasinides, and thus handed over to the public assembly for consideration of the case.

The public assembly was accordingly held, and the generals were brought before it. We are here told who it was that appeared as their principal accuser, along with several others; though unfortunately we are left to guess what were the topics on which they insisted. Theramenes was the man who denounced them most vehemently, as guilty of leaving the crews of the disabled triremes to be drowned, and of neglecting all efforts to rescue them. He appealed to their own public letter to the people, officially communicating the victory; in which letter they made no mention of having appointed any one to undertake the duty, nor of having any one to blame for not performing it. The omission, therefore, was wholly their own : they might have performed it, and ought to be punished for so cruel a breach of duty.

The generals could not have a more formidable enemy than Theramenes. We have had occasion to follow him, during the revolution of the Four Hundred, as a long-sighted as well as tortuous politician : he had since been in high military command, a partaker in victory with Alcibiades at Cyzicus and elsewhere; and he had served as trierarch in the victory of Arginusae itself. His authority therefore was naturally high, and told for much, when he denied the justification which the generals had set up founded on the severity of the storm. According to him, they might have picked up the drowning men, and ought to have done s0, either they might have done so before the storm came on, or there never was any storm of sufficient gravity to prevent them, upon their heads lay the responsibility of omission. Xenophon, in his very meagre narrative, does not tell us, in express words, that Theramenes contradicted the generals as to the storm. But that he did so contradict them, point blank, is implied distinctly in that which Xenophon alleges him to have said. It seems also that Thrasybulus—another trierarch at Arginusae, and a man not only of equal consequence, but of far more estimable character—concurred with Theramenes in this same accusation of the generals, though not standing forward so prominently in the case. He too therefore must have denied the reality of the storm; or at least, the fact of its being so instant after the battle, or so terrible as to forbid all effort for the relief of these drowning seamen.

The case of the generals, as it stood before the Athenian public, was completely altered when men like Theramenes and Thrasybulus stood forward as their accusers. Doubtless what was said by these two had been said by others before, in the senate and elsewhere; but it was now publicly advanced by men of influence, as well as perfectly cognizant of the fact. And we are thus enabled to gather indirectly, what the narrative of Xenophon, studiously keeping back the case against the generals, does not directly bring forward, that though the generals affirmed the storm, there were others present who denied it, thus putting in controversy the matter of fact which formed their solitary justification. Moreover, we come—in following the answer made by the generals in the public assembly to Theramenes and Thrasybulus—to a new point in the case, which Xenophon lets out as it were indirectly, in that confused manner which pervades his whole narrative of the transaction. It is, however, a new point of extreme moment. The generals replied that if anyone was to blame for not having picked up the drowning men, it was Theramenes and Thrasybulus themselves; for it was they two to whom, together with various other trierarchs and with forty-eight triremes, the generals had expressly confided the performance of this duty; it was they two who were responsible for its omission, not the generals. Nevertheless they, the generals, made no charge against Theramenes and Thrasybulus, well knowing that the storm had rendered the performance of the duty absolutely impossible, and that it was therefore a complete justification for one as well as for the other. They, the generals, at least could do no more than direct competent men like these two trierarchs to perform the task, and assign to them an adequate squadron for the purpose; while they themselves with the main fleet went to attack Eteonikus, and relieve Mitylene. Diomedon, one of their number, had wished after the battle to employ all the ships in the fleet for the preservation of the drowning men, without thinking of anything else until that was done. Erasinides, on the contrary, wished that all the fleet should move across at once against Mitylene; Thrasyllus said that they had ships enough to do both at once. Accordingly, it was agreed that each general should set apart three ships from his division, to make a squadron of forty-eight ships under Thrasybulus and Theramenes. In making these statements, the generals produced pilots and others, men actually in the battle as witnesses in general confirmation.

Here, then, in this debate before the assembly, were two new and important points publicly raised. First, Theramenes and Thrasybulus denounced the generals as guilty of the death of these neglected men; next, the generals affirmed that they had delegated the duty to Theramenes and Thrasybulus themselves. If this latter were really true, how came the generals, in their official despatch first sent home, to say nothing about it? Euryptolemus, an advocate of the generals, speaking in a subsequent stage of the proceedings, though we can hardly doubt that the same topics were also urged in this very assembly, while blaming the generals for such omission, ascribed it to an ill-placed good­nature on their part, and reluctance to bring Theramenes and Thrasybulus under the displeasure of the people. Most of the generals, he said, were disposed to mention the fact in their official despatch, but were dissuaded from doing so by Perikles and Diomedon; an unhappy dissuasion, in his judgment, which Theramenes and Thrasybulus had ungratefully requited by turning round and accusing them all.

This remarkable statement of Euryptolemus, as to the intention of the generals in wording the official despatch, brings us to a closer consideration of what really passed between them on the one side, and Theramenes and Thrasybulus on the other; which is difficult to make out clearly, but which Diodorus represents in a manner completely different from Xenophon. Diodorus states that the generals were prevented partly by the storm, partly by the fatigue and reluctance and alarm of their own sea­men, from taking any steps to pick up, what he calls, the dead bodies for burial; that they suspected Theramenes and Thrasybulus, who went to Athens before them, of intending to accuse them before the people, and that for this reason they sent home intimation to the people that they had given special orders to these two trierarchs to perform the duty. When these letters were read in the public assembly, Diodorus says, the Athenians were excessively indignant against Theramenes; who, however, defended himself effectively and completely, throwing the blame back upon the generals. He was thus forced, against his own will, and in self-defence, to become the accuser of the generals, carrying with him his numerous friends and partisans at Athens. And thus the generals, by trying to ruin Theramenes, finally brought condemnation upon themselves.

Such is the narrative of Diodorus, in which it is implied that the generals never really gave any special orders to Theramenes and Thrasybulus, but falsely asserted afterwards that they had done so, in order to discredit the accusation of Theramenes against themselves. To a certain extent, this coincides with what was asserted by Theramenes himself, two years afterwards, in his defence before the Thirty, that he was not the first to accuse the generals; they were the first to accuse him; affirming that they had ordered him to undertake the duty, and that there was no sufficient reason to hinder him from performing it; they were the persons who distinctly pronounced the performance of the duty to be possible, while he had said, from the beginning, that the violence of the storm was such as even to forbid any movement in the water; much more, to prevent rescue of the drowning men.

Taking the accounts of Xenophon and Diodorus together, in combination with the subsequent accusation and defense of Theramenes at the time of the Thirty, and blending them so as to reject as little as possible of either, I think it probable that the order for picking up the exposed men was really given by the generals to Theramenes, Thrasybulus, and other trierarchs; but that, first, a fatal interval was allowed to elapse between the close of the battle and the giving of such order; next, that the forty-eight triremes talked of for the service, and proposed to be furnished by drafts of three out of each general’s division, were probably never assembled; or, if they assembled, were so little zealous in the business as to satisfy themselves very easily that the storm was too dangerous to brave, and that it was now too late. For when we read the version of the transaction, even as given by Euryptolemus, we see plainly that none of the generals, except Diomedon, was eager in the performance of the task. It is a memorable fact, that of all the eight generals, not one of them undertook the business in person, although its purpose was to save more than a thousand drowning comrades from death. In a proceeding where every interval even of five minutes was precious, they go to work in the most dilatory manner, by determining that each general shall furnish three ships, and no more, from his division. Now we know from the statement of Xenophon, that, towards the close of the battle, the ships on both sides were much dispersed. Such collective direction therefore would not be quickly realized; nor, until all the eight fractions were united, together with the Samians and others, so as to make the force complete, would Theramenes feel bound to go out upon his preserving visitation. He doubtless disliked the service, as we see that most of the generals did; while the crews also, who had just got to land after having gained a victory, were thinking most about rest and refreshment, and mutual congratulations. All were glad to find some excuse for staying in their moorings instead of going out again to buffet what was doubtless unfavorable weather. Partly from this want of zeal, coming in addition to the original delay, partly from the bad weather, the duty remained unexecuted, and the seamen on board the damaged ships were left to perish unassisted.

But presently arose the delicate, yet unavoidable question, “How are we to account for the omission of this sacred duty, in our official despatch to the Athenian people?” Here the generals differed among themselves, as Euryptolemus expressly states: Perikles and Diomedon carried it, against the judgment of their colleagues, that in the official despatch, which was necessarily such as could be agreed to by all, nothing should be said about the delegation to Theramenes and others; the whole omission being referred to the terrors of the storm. But though such was the tenor of the official report, there was nothing to hinder the generals from writing home and communicating individually with their friends in Athens as each might think fit; and in these unofficial communications, from them as well as from others who went home from the armament,—communications not less efficacious than the official despatch, in determining the tone of public feeling at Athens,—they did not disguise their convictions that the blame of not performing the duty belonged to Theramenes. Having thus a man like Theramenes to throw the blame upon, they did not take pains to keep up the story of the intolerable storm, but intimated that there had been nothing to hinder him from performing the duty if he had chosen. It is this which he accuses them of having advanced against him, so as to place him as the guilty man before the Athenian public : it was this which made him, in retaliation and self-defence, violent and unscrupulous in denouncing them as the persons really blamable. As they had made light of this alleged storm, in casting the blame upon him, so he again made light of it, and treated it as an insufficient excuse, in his denunciations against them; taking care to make good use of their official despatch, which virtually exonerated him, by its silence, from any concern in the matter.

Such is the way in which I conceive the relations to have stood between the generals on one side and Theramenes on the other, having regard to all that is said both in Xenophon and in Diodorus. But the comparative account of blame and recrimination between these two parties is not the most important feature of the case. The really serious inquiry is as to the intensity or instant occurrence of the storm. Was it really so instant and so dangerous, that the duty of visiting the wrecks could not be performed, either before the ships went back to Arginusae, or afterwards? If we take the circumstances of the case, and apply them to the habits and feelings of the English navy, if we suppose more than one thousand seamen, late comrades in the victory, distributed among twenty damaged and helpless hulls, awaiting the moment when these hulls would fill and consign them all to a watery grave, it must have been a frightful storm indeed, which would force an English admiral even to go back to his moorings leaving these men so exposed, or which would deter him, if he were at his moorings, from sending out the very first and nearest ships at hand to save them. And granting the danger to be such that he hesitated to give the order, there would probably be found officers and men to volunteer, against the most desperate risks, in a cause so profoundly moving all their best sympathies. Now, unfortunately for the character of Athenian generals, officers, and men, at Arginusae?—for the blame belongs, though in unequal proportions, to all of them,—there exists here strong presumptive proof that the storm on this occasion was not such as would have deterred any Grecian seamen animated by an earnest and courageous sense of duty. We have only to advert to the conduct and escape of Eteonikus and the Peloponnesian fleet from Mitylene to Chios; recollecting that Mitylene was separated from the promontory of Kane on the Asiatic mainland, and from the isles of Arginusae, by a channel only one hundred and twenty stadia broad, about fourteen English miles. Eteonikus, apprized of the defeat by the Peloponnesian official signal-boat, desired that boat to go out of the harbor, and then to sail into it again with deceptive false news, to the effect that the Peloponnesians had gained a complete victory : he then directed his seamen, after taking their dinners, to depart immediately, and the masters of the merchant vessels silently to put their cargoes aboard, and get to sea also. The whole fleet, triremes and merchant vessels both, thus went out of the harbor of Mitylene and made straight for Chios, whither they arrived in safety; the merchant vessels carrying their sails, and having what Xenophon calls “a fair wind”. Now it is scarcely possible that all this could have taken place, had there blown during this time an intolerable storm between Mitylene and Arginusae. If the weather was such as to allow of the safe transit of Eteonikus and all his fleet from Mitylene to Chios, it was not such as to form a legitimate obstacle capable of deterring any generous Athenian seaman, still less a responsible officer, from saving his comrades exposed on the wrecks near Arginusae. Least of all was it such as ought to have hindered the attempt to save them, even if such attempt had proved unsuccessful. And here the gravity of the sin consists, in having remained inactive while the brave men on the wrecks were left to be drowned. All this reasoning, too, assumes the fleet to have been already brought back to its moorings at Arginusae, discussing only how much was practicable to effect after that moment, and leaving untouched the no less important question, why the drowning men were not picked up before the fleet went back.

I have thought it right to go over these considerations, indispensable to the fair appreciation of this memorable event, in order that the reader may understand the feelings of the assembly and the public of Athens, when the generals stood before them, rebutting the accusations of Theramenes and recriminating in their turn against him. The assembly had before them the grave and deplorable fact, that several hundreds of brave sea­men had been suffered to drown on the wrecks, without the least effort to rescue them. In explanation of this fact, they had not only no justification, at once undisputed and satisfactory, but not even any straightforward, consistent, and uncontradicted statement of facts. There were discrepancies among the generals themselves, comparing their official with their unofficial, as well as with their present statements, and contradictions between them and Theramenes, each having denied the sufficiency of the storm as a vindication for the neglect imputed to the other. It was impossible that the assembly could be satisfied to acquit the generals on such a presentation of the case; nor could they well know how to apportion the blame between them and Theramenes. The relatives of the men left to perish would be doubtless in a state of violent resentment against one or other of the two, perhaps against both. Under these circumstances, it could hardly have been the sufficiency of their defence,—it must have been rather the apparent generosity of their conduct towards Theramenes, in formally disavowing all charge of neglect against him, though he had advanced a violent charge against them,—which produced the result that we read in Xenophon. The defence of the generals was listened to with favor and seemed likely to prevail with the majority. Many individuals present offered themselves as bail for the generals, in order that the latter might be liberated from custody: but the debate had been so much prolonged—we see from hence that there must have been a great deal of speaking—that it was now dark, so that no vote could be taken, because the show of hands was not distinguish able. It was therefore resolved to adjourn the whole decision until another assembly; but that in the meantime the senate should meet, should consider what would be the proper mode of trying and judging the generals, and should submit a proposition to that effect to the approaching assembly.

It so chanced that immediately after this first assembly, during the interval before the meeting of the senate or the holding of the second assembly, the three days of the solemn annual festival called Apaturia intervened; early days in the month of October. This was the characteristic festival of the Ionic race; handed down from a period anterior to the constitution of Cleisthenes, and to the ten new tribes each containing so many demes, and bringing together the citizens in their primitive unions of family, gens, phratry, etc., the aggregate of which had originally constituted the four Ionic tribes, now superannuated. At the Apaturia, the family ceremonies were gone through; marriages were enrolled, acts of adoption were promulgated and certified, the names of youthful citizens first entered on the gentile and phratric roll; sacrifices were jointly celebrated by these family assemblages to Zeus Phratrius, Athene, and other deities, accompanied with much festivity and enjoyment. A solemnity like this, celebrated every year, naturally provoked in each of these little unions, questions of affectionate interest: “Who are those that were with us last year, but are not here now? The absent, where are they? The deceased, where or how did they die?”. Now the crews of the twenty-five Athenian triremes, lost at the battle of Arginusae, at least all those among them who were free­men, had been members of some one of these family unions, and were missed on this occasion. The answer to the above inquiry, in their case, would be one alike melancholy and revolting: “They fought like brave men, and had their full share in the victory: their trireme was broken, disabled, and made a wreck in the battle : aboard this wreck they were left to perish, while their victorious generals and comrades made not the smallest effort to preserve them”. To hear this about fathers, brothers, and friends,— and to hear it in the midst of a sympathizing family circle,— was well calculated to stir up an agony of shame, sorrow, and anger, united; an intolerable sentiment, which required as a satisfaction, and seemed even to impose as a duty, the punishment of those who had left these brave comrades to perish. Many of the gentile unions, in spite of the usually festive and cheerful character of the Apaturia, were so absorbed by this sentiment, that they clothed themselves in black garments and shaved their heads in token of mourning, resolving to present themselves in this guise at the coming assembly, and to appease the manes of their abandoned kinsmen by every possible effort to procure retribution on the generals.

Xenophon in his narrative describes this burst of feeling at the Apaturia as false and factitious, and the men in mourning as a number of hired impostors, got up by the artifices of Theramenes, to destroy the generals. But the case was one in which no artifice was needed. The universal and self-acting stimulants of intense human sympathy stand here so prominently marked, that it is not simply superfluous but even misleading, to look behind for the gold and machinations of a political instigator. Theramenes might do all that he could to turn the public displeasure against the generals, and to prevent it from turning against himself: it is also certain that he did much to annihilate their defence. He may thus have had some influence in directing the sentiment against them, but he could have had little or none in creating it. Nay, it is not too much to say that no factitious agency of this sort could ever have prevailed on the Athenian public to desecrate such a festival as the Apaturia, by all the insignia of mourning. If they did so, it could only have been through some internal emotion alike spontaneous and violent, such as the late event was well calculated to arouse.

Moreover, what can be more improbable than the allegation that a great number of men were hired to personate the fathers or brothers of deceased Athenian citizens, all well known to their really surviving kinsmen? What more improbable, than the story that numbers of men would suffer themselves to be hired, not merely to put on black clothes for the day, which might be taken off in the evening, but also to shave their heads, thus stamping upon themselves an ineffaceable evidence of the fraud, until the hair had grown again? That a cunning man, like Theramenes, should thus distribute his bribes to a number of persons, all presenting naked heads which testified his guilt, when there were real kinsmen surviving to prove the fact of personation? That having done this, he should never be arraigned or accused for it afterwards,— neither during the prodigious reaction of feeling which took place after the condemnation of the generals, which Xenophon himself so strongly attests, and which fell so heavily upon Callixenus and others,—nor by his bitter enemy Critias, under the government of the Thirty? Not only Theramenes is never mentioned as having been afterwards accused, but, for aught that appears, he preserved his political influence and standing, with little if any abatement. This is one forcible reason among many others, for disbelieving the bribes and the all-pervading machinations which Xenophon represents him as having put forth, in order to procure the condemnation of the generals. His speaking in the first public assembly, and his numerous partisans voting in the second, doubtless contributed much to that result, and by his own desire. But to ascribe to his bribes and intrigues the violent and overruling emotion of the Athenian public, is, in my judgment, a supposition alike unnatural and preposterous both with regard to them and with regard to him.

When the senate met, after the Apaturia, to discharge the duty confided to it by the last public assembly, of determining in what manner the generals should be judged, and submitting their opinion for the consideration of the next assembly, the senator Callixenus—at the instigation of Theramenes, if Xenophon is to be believed—proposed, and the majority of the senate adopted, the following resolution: “The Athenian people having already heard, in the previous assembly, both the accusation and the defence of the generals, shall at once come to a vote on the subject by tribes. For each tribe two urns shall be placed, and the herald of each tribe shall proclaim: All citizens who think the generals guilty, for not having rescued the warriors who had conquered in the battle, shall drop their pebbles into the foremost urn; all who think otherwise, into the hindmost. Should the generals be pronounced guilty, by the result of the voting, they shall be delivered to the Eleven, and punished with death; their property shall be confiscated, the tenth part being set apart for the goddess Athene”. One single vote was to embrace the case of all the eight generals.

The unparalleled burst of mournful and vindictive feeling at the festival of the Apaturia, extending by contagion from the relatives of the deceased to many other citizens,—and the probability thus created that the coming assembly would sanction the most violent measures against the generals,—probably emboldened Kallixenus to propose, and prompted the senate to adopt, this deplorable resolution. As soon as the assembly met, it was read and moved by Kallixenus himself, as coming from the senate in discharge of the commission imposed upon them by the people.

It was heard by a large portion of the assembly with well-merited indignation. Its enormity consisted in breaking through the established constitutional maxims and judicial practices of the Athenian democracy. It deprived the accused generals of all fair trial; alleging, with a mere faint pretence of truth which was little better than utter, falsehood, that their defence as well as their accusation had been heard in the preceding assembly. Now there has been no people, ancient or modern, in whose view the formalities of judicial trial were habitually more sacred and indispensable than in that of the Athenians; formalities including ample notice beforehand to the accused party, with a measured and sufficient space of time for him to make his defence before the dikasts; while those dikasts were men who had been sworn beforehand as a body, yet were selected by lot for each occasion as individuals. From all these securities the generals were now to be debarred; and submitted, for their lives, honors, and fortunes, to a simple vote of the unsworn public assembly, without hearing 0f defence. Nor was this all. One single vote was to be taken in condemnation or absolution of the eight generals collectively. Now there was a rule in Attic judicial procedure, called the psephism of Kannonus,—originally adopted, we do not know when, on the proposition of a citizen of that name, as a psephism or decree for some particular case, but since generalized into common practice, and grown into great prescriptive reverence,— which peremptorily forbade any such collective trial or sentence, and directed that a separate judicial vote should, in all cases, be taken for or against each accused party. The psephism of Kannonus, together with all the other respected maxims of Athenian criminal justice, was here audaciously trampled under foot.

As soon as the resolution was read in the public assembly, Euryptolemus, an intimate friend of the generals, denounced it as grossly illegal and unconstitutional, presenting a notice of indictment against Callixenus, under the Graphs Paranomon, for having proposed a resolution of that tenor. Several other citizens supported the notice of indictment, which, according to the received practice of Athens, would arrest the farther progress of the measure until the trial of its proposer had been consummated. Nor was there ever any proposition made at Athens, to which the Graphe Paranomon more closely and righteously applied.

But the numerous partisans of Kallixenus—especially the men who stood by in habits of mourning, with shaven heads, agitated with sad recollections and thirst of vengeance—were in no temper to respect this constitutional impediment to the discussion of what had already been passed by the senate. They loudly clamored, “that it was intolerable to see a small knot of citizens thus hindering the assembled people from doing what they chose”: and one of their number, Lykiskus, even went so far as to threaten that those who tendered the indictment against Callixenus should be judged by the same vote along with the generals, if they would not let the assembly proceed to consider and determine on the motion just read. The excited disposition of the large party thus congregated, farther inflamed by this menace of Lykiskus, was wound up to its highest pitch by various other speakers; especially by one, who stood forward and said:

“Athenians! I was myself a wrecked man in the battle; I escaped only by getting upon an empty meal-tub; but my comrades, perishing on the wrecks near me, implored me, if I should myself be saved, to make known to the Athenian people, that their generals had abandoned to death warriors who had bravely conquered in behalf of their country”. Even in the most tranquil state of the public mind, such a communication of the last words of these drowning men, reported by an ear-witness, would have been heard with emotion; but under the actual predisposing excitement, it went to the inmost depth of the hearers’ souls, and marked the generals as doomed men. Doubtless there were other similar statements, not expressly mentioned to us, bringing to view the same fact in other ways, and all contributing to aggravate the violence of the public manifestations; which at length reached such a point, that Euryptolemus was forced to withdraw his notice of indictment against Callixenus.

Now, however, a new form of resistance sprung up, still preventing the proposition from being taken into consideration by the assembly. Some of the prytanes,—or senators of the presiding tribe, on that occasion the tribe Antiochis,—the legal presidents of the assembly, refused to entertain or put the question; which, being illegal and unconstitutional, not only inspired them with aversion, but also rendered them personally open to penalties. Callixenus employed against them the same menaces which Lykiskus had uttered against Euryptolemus : he threatened, amidst encouraging clamor from many persons in the assembly, to include them in the same accusation with the generals. So intimidated were the prytanes by the incensed manifestations of the assembly, that all of them, except one, relinquished their opposition, and agreed to put the question. The single obstinate prytanis, whose refusal no menace could subdue, was a man whose name we read with peculiar interest, and in whom an impregnable adherence to law and duty was only one among many other titles to reverence. It was the philosopher Socrates; on this trying occasion, once throughout a life of seventy years, discharging a political office, among the fifty senators taken by lot from the tribe Antiochis. Socrates could not be induced to withdraw his protest, so that the question was ultimately put by the remaining prytanes without his concurrence. It should be observed that his resistance did not imply any opinion as to the guilt or innocence of the generals, but applied simply to the illegal and unconstitutional proposition now submitted for determining their fate, a proposition which he must already have opposed one before in his capacity of member of the senate.

The constitutional impediments having been thus violently overthrown, the question was regularly put by the prytanes to the assembly. At once the clamorous outcry ceased, and those who had raised it resumed their behavior of Athenian citizens, patient hearers of speeches and opinions directly opposed to their own. Nothing is more deserving of notice than this change of demeanor. The champions of the men drowned on the wrecks had resolved to employ as much force as was required to eliminate those preliminary constitutional objections, in themselves indisputable, which precluded the discussion. But so soon as the discussion was once begun, they were careful not to give to the resolution the appearance of being carried by force. Euryptolemus, the personal friend of the generals, was allowed not only to move an amendment negativing the proposition of Callixenus, but also to develop it in a long speech, which Xenophon sets before us.

His speech is one of great skill and judgment in reference to the case before him and to the temper of the assembly. Beginning with a gentle censure on his friends, the generals Perikles and Diomedon, for having prevailed on their colleagues to abstain from mentioning, in their first official letter, the orders given to Theramenes, he represented them as now in danger of becoming victims to the base conspiracy of the latter, and threw himself upon the justice of the people to grant them a fair trial. He besought the people to take full time to instruct themselves before they pronounced so solemn and irrevocable a sentence; to trust only to their own judgment, but at the same time to take security that judgment should be pronounced after full information and impartial hearing, and thus to escape that bitter and unavailing remorse which would otherwise surely follow. He proposed that the generals should be tried each separately, according to the psephism of Kannonus, with proper notice, and ample time allowed for the defence as well as for the accusation; but that, if found guilty, they should suffer the heaviest and most disgraceful penalties, his own relation Perikles the first. This was the only way of striking the guilty, of saving the innocent, and of preserving Athens from the ingratitude and impiety of condemning to death, without trial as well as contrary to law, generals who had just rendered to her so important a service. And what could the people be afraid of? Did they fear lest the power of trial should slip out of their hands, that they were so impatient to leap over all the delays prescribed by the law? To the worst of public traitors, Aristarchus, they had granted a day with full notice for trial, with all the legal means for making his defence: and would they now show such flagrant contrariety of measure to victorious and faithful officers? “Be not ye (he said) the men to act thus, Athenians. The laws are your own work; it is through them that ye chiefly hold your greatness: cherish them, and attempt not any proceeding without their sanction”.

Euryptolemus then shortly recapitulated the proceedings after the battle, with the violence of the storm which had prevented approach to the wrecks; adding that one of the generals, now in peril, had himself been on board a broken ship, and had only escaped by a fortunate accident. Gaining courage from his own harangue, he concluded by reminding the Athenians of the brilliancy of the victory, and by telling them that they ought in justice to wreath the brows of the conquerors, instead of following those wicked advisers who pressed for their execution.

It is no small proof of the force of established habits of public discussion, that the men in mourning and with shaven heads, who had been a few minutes before in a state of furious excitement, would patiently hear out a speech so effective and so conflicting with their strongest sentiments as this of Euryptolemus. Perhaps others may have spoken also; but Xenophon does not mention them. It is remarkable that he does not name Theramenes as taking any part in this last debate.

The substantive amendment proposed by Euryptolemus was that the generals should be tried each separately, according to the psephism of Kannonus; implying notice to be given to each, of the day of trial, and full time for each to defend himself. This proposition, as well as that of the senate moved by Callixenus, was submitted to the vote of the assembly; hands being separately held up, first for one, next for the other. The prytanes pronounced the amendment of Euryptolemus to be carried. But a citizen named Menecles impeached their decision as wrong or invalid, alleging seemingly some informality or trick in putting the question, or perhaps erroneous report of the comparative show of hands. We must recollect that in this case the prytanes were declared partisans. Feeling that they were doing wrong in suffering so illegal a proposition as that of Callixenus to be put at all, and that the adoption of it would be a great public mischief, they would hardly scruple to try and defeat it even by some unfair manoeuvre. But the exception taken by Menecles constrained them to put the question over again, and they were then obliged to pronounce that the majority was in favor of the proposition of Callixenus.

That proposition was shortly afterwards carried into effect by disposing the two urns for each tribe, and collecting the votes of the citizens individually. The condemnatory vote prevailed, and all the eight generals were thus found guilty; whether by a large or a small majority we should have been glad to learn, but are not told. The majority was composed mostly of those who acted under a feeling of genuine resentment against the generals, but in part also of the friends and partisans of Theramenes, not inconsiderable in number. The six generals then at Athens,—Perikles (son of the great statesman of that name by Aspasia), Diomedon, Erasinides, Thrasyllus, Lysias, and Aristokrates, —were then delivered to the Eleven, and perished by the usual draught of hemlock; their property being confiscated, as the decree of the senate prescribed.

Respecting the condemnation of these unfortunate men, pronounced without any of the recognized tutelary preliminaries for accused persons, there can be only one opinion. It was an act of violent injustice and illegality, deeply dishonoring the men who passed it, and the Athenian character generally. In either case, whether the generals were guilty or innocent, this censure is deserved, for judicial precautions are not less essential in dealing with the guilty than with the innocent. But it is deserved in an aggravated form, when we consider that the men against whom such injustice was perpetrated, had just come from achieving a glorious victory. Against the democratical constitution of Athens, it furnishes no ground for censure, nor against the habits and feelings which that constitution tended to implant in the individual citizen. Both the one and the other strenuously forbade the deed; nor could the Athenians ever have so dishonored themselves, if they had not, under a momentary ferocious excitement, risen in insurrection not less against the forms of their own democracy, than against the most sacred restraints of their habitual constitutional morality.

If we wanted proof of this, the facts of the immediate future would abundantly supply it. After a short time had elapsed, every man in Athens became heartily ashamed of the deed. A vote of the public assembly was passed, decreeing that those who had misguided the people on this occasion ought to be brought to judicial trial, that Callixenus with four others should be among the number, and that bail should be taken for their appearance. This was accordingly done, and the parties were kept under custody of the sureties themselves, who were responsible for their appearance on the day of trial. But presently both foreign misfortunes and internal sedition began to press too heavily on Athens to leave any room for other thoughts, as we shall see in the next chapter. Callixenus and his accomplices found means to escape before the day of trial arrived, and remained in exile until after the dominion of the Thirty and the restoration of the democracy. Callixenus then returned under the general amnesty. But the general amnesty protected him only against legal pursuit, not against the hostile memory of the people. “Detested by all, he died of hunger”, says Xenophon; a memorable proof how much the condemnation of these six generals shocked the standing democratical sentiment at Athens.

From what cause did this temporary burst of wrong arise, so foreign to the habitual character of the people? Even under the strongest political provocation, and towards the most hated traitors,—as Euryptolemus himself remarked, by citing the case of Aristarchus,—after the Four Hundred as well as after the Thirty, the Athenians never committed the like wrong, never deprived an accused party of the customary judicial securities. How then came they to do it here, where the generals condemned were not only not traitors, but had just signalized themselves by a victorious combat? No Theramenes could have brought about this phenomenon; no deep-laid oligarchical plot is, in my judgment, to be called in as an explanation. The true explanation is different, and of serious moment to state. Political hatred, intense as it might be, was never dissociated, in the mind of a citizen of Athens, from the democratical forms of procedure: but the men, who stood out here as actors, had broken loose from the obligations of citizenship and commonwealth, and surrendered themselves, heart and soul, to the family sympathies and antipathies; feelings first kindled, and justly kindled, by the thought that their friends and relatives had been left to perish unheeded on the wrecks; next, inflamed into preternatural and overwhelming violence by the festival of the Apaturia, where all the religious traditions connected with the ancient family tie, all those associations which imposed upon the relatives of a murdered man the duty of pursuing the murderer, were expanded into detail and worked up by their appropriate renovating solemnity. The garb of mourning and the shaving of the head—phenomena unknown at Athens, either in a political assembly or in a religious festival—were symbols of temporary transformation in the internal man. He could think of nothing but his drowning relatives, together with the generals as having abandoned them to death, and his own duty as survivor to insure to them vengeance and satisfaction for such abandonment. Under this self-justifying impulse, the shortest and surest proceeding appeared the best, whatever amount of political wrong it might entail; nay, in this case it appeared the only proceeding really sure, since the interposition of the proper judicial delays, coupled with severance of trial on successive days, according to the psephism of Kannonus, would probably have saved the lives of five out of the six generals, if not of all the six. When we reflect that such absorbing sentiment was common, at one and the same time, to a large proportion of the Athenians, we shall see the explanation of that misguided vote, both of the senate and of the ekklesia, which sent the six generals to an illegal ballot, and of the subsequent ballot which condemned them. Such is the natural behavior of those who, having for the moment forgotten their sense of political commonwealth, become degraded into exclusive family men. The family affections, productive as they are of so large an amount of gentle sympathy and mutual happiness in the interior circle, are also liable to generate disregard, malice, sometimes even ferocious vengeance, towards others. Powerful towards good generally, they are not less powerful occasionally towards evil; and require, not less than the selfish propensities, constant subordinating control from that moral reason which contemplates for its end the security and happiness of all. And when a man, either from low civilization, has never known this large moral reason,—or when from some accidental stimulus, righteous in the origin, but wrought up into fanaticism by the conspiring force of religious as well as family sympathies, he comes to place his pride and virtue in discarding its supremacy,— there is scarcely any amount of evil or injustice which he may not be led to perpetrate, by a blind obedience to the narrow instincts of relationship. “Ces pères de famille sont capables de tout” was the satirical remark of Talleyrand upon the gross public jobbing so largely practised by those who sought place or promotion for their sons. The same words understood in a far more awful sense, and generalized for other cases of relationship, sum up the moral of this melancholy proceeding at Athens.

Lastly, it must never be forgotten that the generals themselves were also largely responsible in the case. Through the unjustifiable fury of the movement against them, they perished like innocent men, without trial, “inauditi et indefensi, tamquam innocentes, perierunt”; but it does not follow that they were really innocent. I feel persuaded that neither with an English, nor French, nor American fleet, could such events have taken place as those which followed the victory of Arginusae. Neither admiral nor seamen, after gaining a victory and driving off the enemy could have endured the thoughts of going back to their anchorage, leaving their own disabled wrecks unmanageable on the waters, with many living comrades aboard, helpless, and depending upon extraneous succor for all their chance of escape. That the generals at Arginusae did this, stands confessed by their own advocate Euryptolemus, though they must have known well the condition of disabled ships after a naval combat, and some ships even of the victorious fleet were sure to be disabled. If these generals, after their victory, instead of sailing back to land, had employed themselves first of all in visiting the crippled ships, there would have been ample time to perform this duty, and to save all the living men aboard, before the storm came on. This is the natural inference, even upon their own showing; this is what any English, French, or American naval commander would have thought it an imperative duty to do. What degree of blame is imputable to Theramenes, and how far the generals were discharged by shifting the responsibility to him, is a point which we cannot now determine. But the storm, which is appealed to as a justification of both, rests upon evidence too questionable to serve that purpose, where the neglect of duty was so serious, and cost the lives probably of more than one thousand brave men. At least, the Athenian people at home, when they heard the criminations and recriminations between the generals on one side and Theramenes on the other,—each of them in his character of accuser implying that the storm was no valid obstacle, though each, if pushed for a defence, fell back upon it as a resource in case of need,—the Athenian people could not but look upon the storm more as an afterthought to excuse previous omissions, than as a terrible reality nullifying all the ardor and resolution of men bent on doing their duty. It was in this way that the intervention of Theramenes chiefly contributed to the destruction of the generals, not by those manoeuvres ascribed to him in Xenophon : he destroyed all belief in the storm as a real and all-covering hindrance. The general impression of the public at Athens—in my opinion, a natural and unavoidable impression—was, that there had been most culpable negligence in regard to the wrecks, through which negligence alone the seamen on board perished. This negligence dishonors, more or less, the armament at Arginusae as well as the generals: but the generals were the persons responsible to the public at home, who felt for the fate of the deserted seamen more justly as well as more generously than their comrades in the fleet.

In spite, therefore, of the guilty proceeding to which a furious exaggeration of this sentiment drove the Athenians, in spite of the sympathy which this has naturally and justly procured for the condemned generals,—the verdict of impartial history will pronounce that the sentiment itself was well founded, and that the generals deserved censure and disgrace. The Athenian people might with justice proclaim to them: “Whatever be the grandeur of your victory, we can neither rejoice in it ourselves, nor allow you to reap honor from it, if we find that you have left many hundreds of those who helped in gaining it to be drowned on board the wrecks without making any effort to save them, when such effort might well have proved successful”.