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of the event, the parties desisted from the engagement, and it farther influenced them both to listen to certain propositions for peace, which were made by Syennesis of Cilicia, and Labynetus 108 of Babylon. To strengthen the treaty, these persons also recommended a matrimonial connection. They advised that Alyattes should give Aryenis his daughter to Astyages, son of Cyaxares, from the just conviction that no political engagements are durable, unless strengthened by the closest of all possible bonds 109, The ceremony of concluding
Apuleius, and Cicero. He was the first of the seven wise men, the first also who distinguished himself by his knowledge of astrology; add to which, he was the first who predicted an eclipse. His most memorable saying was, that he was thankful to the gods for three things—That he was born a man, and not a beast; that he was born a man, and not a woman; that he was born a Greek, and not a Barbarian. The darkness in the Iliad, which surprizes the Greeks and Trojans in the midst of a severe battle, though represented as preternatural, and the immediate interposition of Jupiter himself, has not the effect of suspending the battle. This might, perhaps, afford matter of discussion, did not the description of the darkness, and the subsequent prayer of Ajax, from their beauty and sublimity, exclude all criticism.-T.
108 Labynetus.]--The same, says Prideaux, with the Nebuchadnezzar of Scripture. He was called, continues the same author, by Berosus, Nabonnedes; by Megasthenes, Nabonnidichus; by Josephus, Naboardelus.—T.
109. Strengthened by the closest of all possible bords. It is not, perhaps, much to the credit of modern refinement, that
alliances is the same in this nation as in Greece, with this addition, that both parties wound themselves in the arm, and lick each other's blood"lo.
· LXXV. Astyages, therefore, was the grandfather of Cyrus, though at this time vanquished by him, and his captive, the particulars of which event I shall hereafter relate. This was what excited the original enmity of Creesus, and prompted him to enquire of the oracle, whether he should make war upon Persia. He interpreted the delusive reply which was given him, in a manner the most favourable to himself, and proceeded in his concerted expedition. When he arrived at the river Halys, he passed over his forces on bridges, which he there found constructed; although the Greeks in general assert, that this service was rendered him by Thales the Milesian, Whilst Crosus was hesitating over what part of the river he
political intermarriages, betwixt those of royal blood, seem anciently to have been considered as more solemn in themselves, and to have operated more effectually to the security of the public peace, than at present.--T.
110 Each other's blood.]—The Scythians, according to Herodotus, have a custom nearly similar. “ If the Siamese wish to vow an eternal friendship, they make an incision in some part of the body, till the blood appears, which they afterwards reciprocally drink. In this manner the ancient Scythians and Babylonians ratified alliances; and almost all the modern nations of the East observe the same custom."--Civil and Natural History of Siam,
should attempt a passage, as there was no bridge then constructed, Thales divided it into two branches. He sunk a deep trench", which commencing above the camp, from the river, was conducted round it in the form of a semicircle till it again met the ancient bed. It thus became easily fordable on either side. There are some who say, that the old channel was entirely dried up, to which opinion I can by no means assent, for then their return would have been equally difficult.
LXXVI. Croesus having passed over with his army, came into that part of Cappadocia which is called Pteria, the best situated in point of strength of all that district, and near the city of Sinope, on the Euxine. He here fixed his station, and, after wasting the Syrian lands, besieged and took the Pterians principal city. He destroyed also the neighbouring towns, and almost exterminated the Syrians, from whom he had certainly received no injury. Cyrus at length collected his forces "2,
111 Sunk a deep trench.] – Anciently, when they wanted to construct a bridge, they began by adding another channel to the river, to turn off the waters: when the ancient bed was dry, or at lest when there was but little water left, the bridge was erected. Thus it was much less troublesome to Cræsus to turn the river than to construct a bridge.-Larcher.
"1 Cyrus at length collected his forces.]-Cyrus, intimidated by the threats of Cræsus, was inclined to retire into
and, taking with him those nations which lay betwixt himself and the invader, advanced to meet him. Before he began his march, he dispatched emissaries to the Ionians, with the view of detaching them from Cresus. This not succeeding, he moved forward, and attacked Cresus in his camp; they engaged on the plains of Pteria, with the greatest ardour on both sides. The battle was continued with equal violence and loss till night parted the combatants, leaving neither in possession of victory
LXXVII. The army of Cresus being inferior in number, and Cyrus on the morrow discovering no inclination to renew the engagement, the Lydian prince determined to return to Sardis, intending to claim the assistance of the Ægyptians, with whose king, Amasis, he had formed an alliance, previous to his treaty with the Lacedæmonians. He had also made an offensive and defensive league with the Babylonians, over whom Laby
India. His wife Bardane inspired him with new courage, and advised him to consult Daniel, who, on more than one occasion, had predicted future events, both to her and to Darius the Mede. Cyrus having consulted the prophet, received from him an assurance of victory. To me this seems one of those fables which the Jews and earlier Christians made no scruple of asserting as truths not to be disputed.Larcher.
netus was then king" With these, in addition to the Lacedæmonian aids, who were to be ready at a stipulated period, he resolved, after spending a certain time' in winter quarters, to attack the Persians early in the spring Full of these thoughts, Cræsus returned to Sardis, and immediately sent messengers to his different allies, requiring them to meet at Sardis, within the space of five months. The troops which he had led against the Persians, being chiefly mercenaries, he disembodied and dismissed, never supposing that Cyrus, who had certainly no claims to victory, would think of following him to Sardis..
LXXVIII. Whilst the mind of Croesus was thus occupied, the lands near his capital were infested with a multitude of serpents; and it was observed, that to feed on these, the horses neglected and forsook their pastures 14. Crosus conceiving this to be of mysterious import, which it certainly was, sent to make enquiry of the Tel
113 Labynetus was then king:]-Labynetus was the last king of Babylon. He united himself with Cræsus to repress the too great power of Cyrus. The conduct of Amasis was prompted by a similar motive.-Larcher. This name of Labynetus occurs frequently among the kings of Babylon.-It is necessary to remember this. See note, p. 121.
114 Forsook their pastures.] There is a collection of prodigies by Julius Obsequens; all of which were understood to be predictive of some momentous event. Amongst these,