Anabasis eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 339 pages of information about Anabasis.


At Tarsus Cyrus and his army halted for twenty days; the soldiers 1 refusing to advance further, since the suspicion ripened in their minds, that the expedition was in reality directed against the king; and as they insisted, they had not engaged their services for that object.  Clearchus set the example of trying to force his men to continue their march; but he had no sooner started at the head of his troops than they began to pelt him and his baggage train, and Clearchus had a narrow escape of being stoned to death there and then.  Later on, when he perceived that force was useless, he summoned an assembly of his own men; and for a long while he stood and wept, while the men gazed in silent astonishment.  At last he spoke as follows:  “Fellow soldiers, do not marvel that I am sorely distressed on account of the present troubles.  Cyrus has been no ordinary friend to me.  When I was in banishment he honoured me in various ways, and made me also a present of ten thousand darics.  These I accepted, but not to lay them up for myself for private use; not to squander them in pleasure, but to expend them on yourselves.  And, first of all, I went to war with the Thracians, and with you to aid, I wreaked vengeance on them in behalf of Hellas; driving them out of the Chersonese, when they wanted to deprive its Hellenic inhabitants of their lands.  But as soon as Cyrus summoned me, I took you with me and set out, so that, if my benefactor had any need of me, I might requite him for the good treatment I myself had received at his hands. . . .  But since you are not minded to continue the march with me, one of two things is left to 5 me to do; either I must renounce you for the sake of my friendship with Cyrus, or I must go with you at the cost of deceiving him.  Whether I am about to do right or not, I cannot say, but I choose yourselves; and, whatever betide, I mean to share your fate.  Never shall it be said of me by any one that, having led Greek troops against the barbarians[1], I betrayed the Hellenes, and chose the friendship of the barbarian.  No! since you do not choose to obey and follow me, I will follow after you.  Whatever betide, I will share your fate.  I look upon you as my country, my friends, my allies; with you I think I shall be honoured, wherever I be; without you I do not see how I can help a friend or hurt a foe.  My decision is taken.  Wherever you go, I go also.”

[1] Lit. “into the country of the barbarian.”

Such were his words.  But the soldiers, not only his own, but the rest also, when they heard what he said, and how he had scouted the idea of going up to the great king’s palace[2], expressed their approval; and more than two thousand men deserted Xenias and Pasion, and took their arms and baggage-train, and came and encamped with Clearchus.  But Cyrus, in despair and vexation at this turn of affairs, sent for Clearchus.  He refused to come; but, without

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Anabasis from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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