Anabasis eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 284 pages of information about Anabasis.

From the river Tigris they advanced four stages—­twenty parasangs—­to the river Physcus, which is a hundred feet broad and spanned by a bridge.  Here lay a large and populous city named Opis, close to which the Hellenes were encountered by the natural brother of Cyrus and Artaxerxes, who was leading a large army from Susa and Ecbatana to assist the king.  He halted his troops and watched the Helleens march past.  Clearchus led them in column two abreast:  and from time to time the vanguard came to a standstill, just so often and just so long the effect repeated itself down to the hindmost man:  halt! halt! halt! along the whole line:  so that even to the Hellenes themselves their army seemed enormous; and the Persian was fairly astonished at the spectacle.

From this place they marched through Media six desert stages—­thirty 27 parasangs—­to the villages of Parysatis, Cyrus’s and the king’s mother.  These Tissaphernes, in mockery of Cyrus, delivered over to the Hellenes to plunder, except that the folk in them were not to be made slaves.  They contained much corn, cattle, and other property.  From this place they advanced four desert stages—­twenty parasangs—­keeping the Tigris on the left.  On the first of these stages, on the other side of the river, lay a large city; it was a well-to-do place named Caenae, from which the natives used to carry across loaves and cheeses and wine on rafts made of skins.

V

After this they reached the river Zapatas[1], which is four hundred 1 feet broad, and here they halted three days.  During the interval suspicions were rife, though no act of treachery displayed itself.  Clearchus accordingly resolved to bring to an end these feelings of mistrust, before they led to war.  Consequently, he sent a messenger to the Persian to say that he desired an interview with him; to which the other readily consented.  As soon as they were met, Clearchus spoke as follows:  “Tissaphernes,” he said, “I do not forget that oaths have been exchanged between us, and right hands shaken, in token that we will abstain from mutual injury; but I can see that you watch us narrowly, as if we were foes; and we, seeing this, watch you narrowly in return.  But as I fail to discover, after investigation, that you are endeavouring to do us a mischief—­and I am quite sure that nothing of the sort has ever entered our heads with regard to you—­the best plan seemed to me to come and talk the matter over with you, so that, if possible, we might dispel the mutual distrust on either side.  For I have known people ere now, the victims in some cases of calumny, or possibly of mere suspicion, who in apprehension of one another and eager to deal the first blow, have committed irreparable wrong against those who neither intended nor so much as harboured a thought of mischief against them.  I have come to you under a conviction that such 6 misunderstandings may best be put a stop

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Anabasis from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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