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splendour. She was conducted towards the city; heralds were sent before, who, as soon as they arrived within* the walls of Athens, were instructed to exclaim aloud—“Athenians, receive Pisistratus again, and with good will; he is the great
favourite of Minerva, and the goddess herself comes to conduct him to her citadel.” The rumour soon spread amongst the multitude, that Minerva was bringing back Pisistratus. Those in the city being told that this woman was their goddess, prostrated themselves before her, and admitted Pisistratus 8o.
* This farce brings to recollection the equally foolish and atrocious one which was played at Paris by Robespierre and his monstrous gang. In the festival of the Goddess of Liberty, a beautiful courtezan was chosen to represent the goddess, and conducted in a triumphal car, with ceremonies similar to what are here described, to the church of Notre Dame. Not very unlike this also, is the following extract from one of Gray's Letters to Mr. West:
“ In the mean timne, to employ the minds of the populace, the government has thought fit to bring into the city, in a solemn manner, and at a great expence, a famous statue of the Virgin, called the Madonna del Impruneta, from the place of her residence, which is upon a mountain seven miles off. It has never been practised but in times of public calamity, and † was done at present to avert the ill effects of a late great inundation, which it was feared might cause some epidemical distemper. It was introduced a fortnight since in procession, attended by the Council of Regency, the Senate, the Nobility, and all the religious orders, on foot, and bareheaded, and so carried to the great church, where it was frequented by an infinite concourse of people from all the country round."
+ Was done at present is not English, and is an oversight of which it is surprising that Gray should be guilty. $0 Admitted Pisistratus. ]-The ambitious in all ages have 3
LXI. By these means the son of Hippocrates recovered his authority, and fulfilled the terms of his agreement with Megacles, by marrying his daughter$l. But, as he had already sons grown up, and as the Alcmæonides were stigmatized by some imputed contaminations, to avoid having children by this marriage, he refused all natural communication with his wife. This incident which the woman for a certain time concealed, she afterwards revealed to her mother, in consequence, perhaps, of her enquiries. The father was soon informed of it, who, exasperated by the affront, forgot his ancient resentments, and entered into a league with those, whom he had formerly opposed. Pisistratus, seeing the danger which menaced him, hastily left the country, and, retiring to Eretria"}, there deliberated with his sons concerning their future conduct. The sentiments of Hippias, which were for attempting the recovery of their dignity, prevailed. They met with no difficulty in procuring assistance from the neighbouring states, amongst whom a prejudice in their favour generally existed. Many cities assisted them largely with money; but the Thebans were particularly liberal. Not to protract the narration, every preparation was made to facilitate their return. A band of Argive mercenaries came from the Peloponnese; and an inhabitant of Naxos, named Lygdamis, gave new alacrity to their proceedings, by his unsolicited assistance both with money and with troops.
made religion an instrument of their designs, and the people, naturally superstitious and weak, have always been the dupes.-Larcher.
8. By marrying his daughter.]-Her name was Cæsyra, as appears from the Scholiast to the Nubes of Aristophanes.-*Palmerius.
82 Imputed contamination.]—Megacles, who was Archon in the time of the conspiracy of Cylon, put the conspirators to death, at the foot of the altars where they had taken refuge. All those who had any concern in the perpetration of murder were considered as detestable.- Larcher.
83 Retiring to Eretria.]-There were two places of this name, one in Thessaly, the other in Eubæa: Pisistratus retired to the latter.
LXII. After an absence of eleven years, they advanced to Attica from Eretria, and seized on Marathon, in the vicinity of which, they encamped. They were soon visited by throngs of factious citizens 84 from Athens, and by all those
84 Factious citizens.]—The whole account given by Herodotus, of the conduct of Pisistratus and his party, bears no small resemblance to many circumstances of the Catilinariap conspirators, as described by Cicero and others. Two or three instances are nevertheless recorded, of the moderation of Pisistratus, which well deserve our praise. His daughter assisted at some religious festival: a young man, who violently loved her, embraced her publicly, and afterwards endeavoured to carry her off. His friends excited him to vengeance. If,” said he in reply, “ we hate those who love us, what shall we do to those who hate us?”—Some young men, in a drunken frolic, insulted his wife. The next day
who preferred * tyranny to freedom. Their number was thus soon and considerably increased. Whilst Pisistratus was providing himself with money, and even when he was stationed at Marathon, the Athenians of the city appeared to be under no alarm: but when they heard that he had left his post, and was advancing towards them, they began to assemble their forces, and to think of obstructing his return. Pisistratus continued to approach, with his men, in one collected body: he halted at the temple of the Palleniant Minerva, opposite to which he fixed his camp. Whilst he remained in this situation, Amphylutus, a priest of Acarnania, approached him, and, as if by divine inspiration 85, thus addressed him in heroic verse : The cast is made; the net secures the way; And night's pale gleams will bring the scaly prey.
they came in tears, to solicit forgiveness. " You must have been mistaken,” said Pisistratus ;“ my wife did not go yesterday.”—T.
* As this is the first time the word tyranny occurs, be necessary to inform the English reader, that in its literal sense it means the government of one person, that is, a monarchy.
† Pallene was the name of a village in Attica, and was famous for the residence of the Pallantides, the fifty sons of Pallas, who were all killed by Theseus, when he came to take possession of his paternal inheritance. See Plutarch's Life of Theseus.
85 In the sacred processions in early times the deity used to be carried about in a shrine, which circumstance was
LXIII. Pisistratus considered the declaration as prophetic, and prepared his troops accordingly. The Athenians of the city were then engaged at their dinner; after which, they retired to the amusement of dice, or to sleep 86. The of Pisistratus, then making the attack, soon com
always attended with shouts and exclamations, and the whole was accompanied with a great concourse of people. The ancient Greeks styled these celebrities the procession of the P'Omphi, and from hence were derived the words
πομπη and pompa. These originally related to a procession of the oracles, but were afterwards made use of to describe any cavalcade or show. In the time of lierodotus the word seems, in some degree, to have retained its true meaning, being by him used for the oracular influence. He informs us that Amphylutus was a diviner of Acarnan, and that he came to Pisistratus with a commission from heaven. By this he induced that prince to prosecute a scheme which he recommended. -- Bryant.
86 To sleep.]-In all the warmer climates of the globe, the custom of sleeping after dinner is invariably preserved. It appears from modern travellers, that many of the present inhabitants of Athens have their houses flat-roofed, and decorated with arbours, in which they sleep at noon. We are informed, as well by Herodotus, as by Demosthenes, Theophrastus, and Xenophon, that, anciently, the A thenians in general, as well citizens as soldiers, took only two repasts in the day.
The meaner sort were satisfied with one, which some took at noon, others at sunset.
The following passage from Horace not only proves the intimacy which prevailed betwixt Mæcenas, Virgil, and Horace, but satisfies us, that at a much later period, and in the most refined state of the Roman empire, the mode of spending the time after dinner was similar to that here nens tioned : Lusum it Mæcenas, dormitum ego Virgiliusque.
Sermon, lib. i. 5.