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they revered Lycurgus as a divinity, and erected a sacred edifice to his memory”.
From this period, having a good and populous territory, they rapidly rose to prosperity and power. Dissatisfied with the language and inactivity of peace,
Lycurgus having reinarked that the Princes of his family who reigned al Argos and Messina, had degenerated into tyrants, and that in ruining their states, they had destroyed themselves, fearing the same catastrophe for his own city, instituted the Senate and the Ephori, as a salutary counterpoise to the royal authority. The Senators were twentyeight in number. Lycurgus also instituted Knights at Sparta, upon the model of the Equestrian order in Crete, with this difference, that the Knights of Crete had horses, those of Sparta, none.-Larcher.
It is the opinion of Strabo, that there is so great a resemblance between the laws of Minos and Lycurgus, that the latter must necessarily have borrowed his ideas on this subject from the former. Lycurgus endeavoured to persuade the Spartans that he was prompted by Apollo; so did Minos the Cretans, that he received his laws from Jupiter.
93 To his memory.]—The Lacedæmonians having bound themselves by an oath not to abrogate any of the laws of Lycurgus before his return to Sparta, the legislator went to consult the oracle at Sparta. He was told by the Pythian, that Sparta would be happy, as long as his laws were observed. Upon this he resolved to return no more, that he might thus be secure of the observance of these institutions, to which they were so solemnly bound: he went to Crisa, and there slew himself. The Lacedæmonians, bearing of this, in testimony of his former virtue, as well as of that which he discovered in his death, erected to him a temple, with an altar, at which they annually offered sacrifice to his honour, as to a hero. The above fact is mentioned both by Pausanias and Plutarch.-Larcher.
and conceiving themselves in all respects superior to the Tegeans, they sent to consult the oracle concerning the entire conquest of Arcadia. The Pythian thus answered them:
Arcadia? 'tis a bold demand; A rough and hardy race defend the land; Repuls'd by them, one only boon you gain, With frequent foot to dance on Tegea's plain, And o'er her fields the measuring-cord to strain.
No sooner had the Lacedæmonians received this reply, than, leaving the other parts of Arcadia unmolested, they proceeded to attack the Tegeans, carrying a quantity of fetters with them. They relied upon the evasive declaration of the oracle, and imagined that they should infallibly reduce the Tegeans to servitude. They engaged them, and were defeated 94: as many as were taken captive, were loaded with the fetters which themselves had brought, and thus employed in laborious service in the fields of the Tegeans. These chains were preserved, even in my remembrance, in
94 Were defeated.]—This incident happened during the reign of Charillus. The women of Tegea took up arnıs, and, placing themselves in ambuscade at the foot of mount Phylactris, they rushed upon the Lacedæmonians, who were already engaged with the Tegeans, and put them to flight. The above is from Pausanias.--Larcher.-Polyænus relates the same fact.
Tegea, suspended round the temple of the Alean Minerva 95.
LXVII. In the beginning of their contests with the Tegeans, they were uniformly unsuccessful; but in the time of Cræsus, when Anaxandrides and Ariston had the government of Sparta, they experienced a favourable change of fortune; which is thus to be explained:
Having repeatedly been defeated by the Tegeans, they sent to consult the Delphic oracle, what particular deity they had to appease, to become victorious over their adversaries. The Pythian assured them of success, if they brought back the body of Orestes, son of Agamemnon. Unable to discover his tomb, they sent a second time, to enquire concerning the place of his inter
95 Temple of the Alean Minerva.]— This custom of suspending in sacred buildings the spoils taken from the enemy, commencing in the most remote and barbarous ages, has been continued to the present period. See Samuel, buok ii. chap. 8.
" And David took the shields of gold which were on the servants of Hadadezer, and brought them to Jerusalem; which king David did dedicate unto the Lord, with the silver and gold of all nations which he subdued.”
These fetters taken from the Lacedæmonians were seen also in this temple in the time of Pausanias. It is usual too with the moderns, to suspend in churches the colours taken from the enemy.--T.
ment. The following was the oracular communication:
A plain within the Arcadian land I know,
After the above, the search for the body was without intermission continued: it was at length discovered by Lichas”, one of those Spartans distinguished by the name of Agathoërgoi*; which title was usually conferred, after a long period of
96 A plain, &c.]-Emitappo los is singularly used here: it means,
presume, " then you may have to defend Tegea, having by victory become proprietor of it.”—T.
97 Discovered by Lichas.]-In honour of this Lichas the Lacedæmonians struck a medal: on one side was a head of Hercules; on the reverse, a head with a long beard, and a singular ornament.-Larcher.-The medal of Lichas, inscribed Aiko, may be found in Haym. Tesoro. Brit. i. p. 133. AIKOT Fræt. Not. Elem. p. 242. Neuman. Pop. II. vii. 6. p. 237,239, and finally, Rasche in voce; but it may after all be questioned whether it be either genuine, or correctly described.
Agathoërgoi, or those who have done well. The Latin term Emeritus corresponds with this. The Emeriti were old and experienced soldiers, who had received particular rewards for their bravery, and were permitted to retire. They were sometimes also called Beneficiarii. They were excused from military drudgery, but were invited in time of war to guard the chief standard.
service among the cavalry. Of these citizens, five were every year permitted to retire; but were expected during the first year of their discharge, to visit different countries, on the business of the public.
LXVIII. Lichas, when in this situation, made the wished-for discovery, partly by good fortune, and partly by his own sagacity. They had at this time a commercial intercourse with the Tegeans; and Lichas happening to visit a smith at his forge, observed with particular curiosity the process
of working iron. The man took notice of his attention, and desisted from his labour. “Stranger of Sparta,” said he,“ you seem to admire the art which you contemplate; but how much more would your wonder be excited, if
knew all that I am able to communicate! Near this place, as I was sinking a well, I found a coffin seven cubits long: I never believed that men were formerly of larger dimensions than at presentos; but
98 Larger dimensions than at present.] ---Upon this subject of the degeneracy of the human race, whoever wishes to see what the greatest ingenuity can urge, will receive no small entertainment from the works of Lord Monboddo. If in the time of Herodotus this seemed matter of complaint, what conclusions must an advocate of this theory draw concerning the stature of his brethren in the progress of an equal number of succeeding centuries !—T.
In the perusal of history, traditions are to be found, of a pretended race of giants in every country of the globe, and