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at Syracuse and driven out the tyrant, did hereby invite the Syracusan exiles, and any other Sicilian Greeks, to return and inhabit the city, with full enjoyment of freedom under their own laws, the land being divided among them in just and equal proportions. And after this, sending messengers into Asia and the several islands, where they understood that most of the scattered fugitives were then residing, they bid them all repair to Corinth, engaging that the Corinthians, at their own charges, would afford them vessels and commanders and a safe convoy to Syracuse. Such generous proposals being thus spread about gained them the just and honourable recompense of general praise and benediction, for delivering the country from oppressors, saving it from barbarians, and restoring it to the rightful owners of the place. These, when they were assembled at Corinth, and found how insufficient their company was, besought the Corinthians that they might have a supplement of other persons, as well out of their city as the rest of Greece, to go with them as joint-colonists; and so raising themselves to the number of ten thousand, they sailed together to Syracuse. By this time great multitudes also from Italy and Sicily had flocked in to Timoleon, so that, as Athanis reports, their entire body amounted now to sixty thou . sand men.
Among these he divided the whole of the land, but sold the houses for a thousand talents; by which method he both left it in the power of the old Syracusans to redeem their own, and made it a means also for raising a stock for the community, which had been so much impoverished of late, and was so unable to defray other expenses and especially those of a war,
that they exposed their very statues to sale, a regular process being observed, and sentence of auction passed upon each of them by a majority of votes, as if they had been so many criminals taking their trial: in' the course of which it is said that while condemnation was pronounced upon other statues, that of the ancient usurper Gelo was exempted, out of admiration and honour for the sake of the victory he gained over the Carthaginian forces at the river Himera.
Syracuse being thus happily revived and replenished 24 again by the general concourse of inhabitants from all
View of Syracuse.
parts, Timoleon was desirous now to rescue other cities from the like bondage, and wholly and once for all to extirpate arbitrary government out of Sicily. And for
purpose marching into the territories of those that used it, he compelled Hicetes first to renounce the Carthaginian interest, and demolishing the fortresses which were held by him, to live henceforth at Leontini as a private person. Leptines also, the tyrant of Apollonia and divers other little towns, after some resistance made, seeing the danger he was in of being taken by force, surrendered himself ; upon which Timoleon spared his life and sent him away to Corinth, counting it a glorious thing that the mother city should offer to the view of other Greeks these Sicilian tyrants, living now in an exiled and a low condition. After this he returned to Syracuse, that he might have leisure to attend to the establishment of the new constitution, and assist Cephalus and Dionysius, who were sent from Corinth to make laws, in determining the most important points of it. In the mean while, desirous that his hired soldiers should not want action, but might rather enrich themselves by some plunder from the enemy,
he despatched Dinarchus and Demaretus with a portion of them into the part of the island belonging to the Carthaginians, where they obliged several cities to revolt from the barbarians, and not only lived in great abundance themselves, but raised money from their spoil to
carry on the war. 25 Meantime, the Carthaginians landed at the promonExpedi- tory of Lilybæum, bringing with them seventy thousand
men and two hundred galleys, besides a thousand other Cartha- vessels laden with engines of battery, chariots, corn, ginians.
and other military stores, as if they did not intend to manage the war by piecemeal and in parts, as heretofore, but to drive the Greeks altogether and at once out
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of all Sicily. And indeed it was a force sufficient to overpower the Siceliots, even though they had been at perfect union among themselves, and had never been enfeebled by intestine quarrels. Hearing that part of their subject territory was suffering devastation, they forthwith made toward the Corinthians with great fury, having Asdrubal and Amilcar for their generals; the report of whose numbers and strength coming suddenly to Syracuse, the citizens were so terrified, that hardly three thousand, among so many myriads of them, had the courage to take up arms and join Timoleon. The foreigners, serving for pay, were not above four thousand in all, and about a thousand of these grew faint-hearted by the way, and forsook Timoleon in his march toward the enemy, looking on him as frantic and distracted, destitute of the sense which might have been expected from his time of life, thus to venture out against an army of seventy
men, with no more than five thousand foot and a thousand horse; and, when he should have kept those forces to defend the city, choosing rather to remove them eight days' journey from Syracuse, so that if they were beaten from the field, they would have no retreat, nor any burial, if they fell upon it. Timoleon however reckoned it some kind of advantage that these had thus discovered themselves before the battle, and encouraging the rest, led them with all speed to the river Crimesus, where it was told him the Carthaginians were drawn together.
As he was marching up an ascent, from the top of 26 which they expected to have a view of the army and of the strength of the enemy, there met him by chance a
train of mules loaded with parsley, which his soldiers took for an ominous occurrence, because this is the herb with which we not unfrequently adorn the sepulchres of the dead; and there is a proverb derived from the custom, used of one who is dangerously sick, that he has need of nothing but parsley. So to ease their minds and free them from any superstitious thoughts or forebodings of evil, Timoleon halted, and concluded an address, suitable to the occasion, by saying, that a garland of triumph was here luckily brought them, and had fallen into their hands of its own accord, as an anticipation of victory; the same with which the Corinthians crown the victors in the Isthmian games, accounting chaplets of parsley the sacred wreath proper to their country : parsley being at that time still the emblem of victory at the Isthmian, as it is now at the Nemean, sports; and it is not so very long ago that the pine first began to be used in its place.* Timoleon, therefore, having thus addressed his soldiers, took part of the parsley, and with it made himself a chaplet first, his captains and their companies all following the example. The soothsayers then observing also two eagles on the wing towards them, one of which bore a snake struck through with her talons, and the other, as she flew, uttered a loud cry indicating boldness and assurance, showed them to the soldiers, who with one consent fell to
supplicate the gods, and call them in to their assistance. 27 It was now about the beginning of summer, of the clusion of the month Thargelion, not far from the
* The pine, sacred to Neptune, was the original Isthmian garland; then came parsley in its place; and then, not long before Plutarch's time, as he himself tells us, the pine came in again.