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pass, he poured upon the rear of Ptolemy's troops, without being discovered in his approach, because he advanced through hollow ways. Upon this sudden attack, as their ranks were broken, and their troops thrown into disorder, they crowded and pressed upon each other, and most of them rolled into the ditch, and fell around the chariots. In a; word, after a long encounter, which cost them a vast quantity of blood, they were repulsed, and obliged to have recourse to flight. The old men, and most of the women, stood on the other side of the trench, and beheld with admiration, the undaunted bravery of Acrotates. As for him, covered with blood, and exulting from his victory, he returned to his post amidst the universal applause of the Spartan women, who extolled his valour, and envied, at the same time, the glory and happiness of Chelidonida: an evident proof that the Spartan ladies were not extremely delicate in point of conjugal chastity.

The battle was still lotter along the edge of the ditch, where Pyrrhus commanded, and which was defended by the Lacedæmonian infantry: the Spartans fought with great intrepidity, and several among them distinguished themselves very much; particularly Phyllius, who after having opposed the enemy for a considerable time, and killed, with his own hand, all those who attempted to force a passage where he fought; finding himself, at last, faint with the many wounds he had received, and the large quantity of blood he had lost, he called to one of the officers who commanded at the post, and after having resigned his place to him, he retired a few paces, and fell down dead amidst his countrymen, that the enemies might not be masters of his body.

Night obliged both parties to discontinue the engagement: but the next morning it was renewed by break of day. The Lacedæmonians defended themselves with new efforts of ardour and bravery, and even the women would not forsake them, but were always at hand to furnish arms and refreshments ta

such as wanted them, and also to assist in carrying off the wounded. The Macedonians were indefatigable in their endeavours to fill up the ditch with vast quantities of wood, and other materials, which they threw upon the arms and dead bodies; and the Lacedæmonians redoubled their ardour to prevent their effecting that design.

But while the latter were thus employed, Pyrrhus, had forced himself a passage at the place where the chariots had been disposed, and pushed forwards full speed to the city. Those who defended this post, sent up loud cries, which were answered by dismal shrieks from the women, who ran from place to place in the utmost consternation. Pyrrhus, still advanced, and bore down all who opposed him. He was now within a small distance of the city, when a shaft from a Cretan bow pierced his horse, and made him so furious, that he ran with his master into the very midst of the enemies, and fell dead with him to the ground. Whilst his friends crowded about him, to extricate him from the danger he was in, the Spartans advanced in great numbers, and, with their arrows, repulsed the Macedonians beyond the trench.

Pyrrhus then caused a general retreat to be sounded, in expectation that the Lacedæmonians, who had lost a great number of men, and were most of them wounded, would be inclined to surrender the city, which was then reduced to the last extremity, and seemed incapable of sustaining a new attack. But at the very instant when every thing seemed desperate, one of the generals of Antigonus arrived from Corinth, with a very considerable body of foreign troops; which had scarce entered the city before King Areus appeared with two thousand foot, which he had brought from Crete.

These two re-inforcements, which the Lacedæinonians received the same day, did but animate Pyrrhus, and add new ardour to his ainbition. He was sen. sible, that it would be more glorious for him to take the city in spite of its new defenders, and in the very

sight of its king; but, after he had made some ats tempts to that effect, and was convinced that he should gain nothing but wounds, be desisted from his enterprise, and began to ravage the country, with an intention to pass the winter there ; but he was diverted from this design by a new ray of hope, which soon drew him off to another quarter.

• Aristæas and Aristippus, two of the principal A.M. citizens of Argos, had excited a great sedition in 23733.

Ant. J.C. that city. The latter of these was desirous of sup

271. porting himself, by the favour and protection of Antigonus; and Aristæas, in order to frustrate his de sign, immediately invited Pyrrhus to espouse his party. The King of Epirus, always fond of new motions, considered his victories as so many steps to greater advantages; and thought his defeats furnished him with indispensable reasons for entering upon a new war, to repair his losses. Neither good nor ill success, therefore, could inspire him with a disposition for tranquillity; for which reason he had no sooner given audience to the courier of Aristæas, than he began his march to Argos. King Areus formed several ambuscades to destroy him by the way, and having possessed himself of the most difficult passes, cut to pieces the Gauls and Molossians who formed his rear-guard. Ptolemy, who had been detached by Pyrrhus, his father, to succour that guard, was killed in the engagement, upon which his troops disbanded and fled. The Lacedamonian cavalry, commanded by Evalcus, an officer of

great reputation, pursued them with so much ardour, that he insensibly advanced to a great distance from his infantry, who were incapable of keeping up

Pyrrhus being informed of his son's death, which affected him with the sharpest sorrow, immediately led up the Molossian cavalry against the pursuers;

with him.

'c Plut. in Pyrrh. p. 403-406, Pausan. 1. i. p. 24 Justin

1. xxv. c. 5.

and throwing binself among their thickest troops, made such a slaughter of the Lacedæmonians, as in a moment covered himn with blood. He was always intrepid and terrible in battles; but on this occasion, when grief and revenge gave a new edge to bis courage, he even surpassed himself, and effaced the lustre of his conduct in all former battles, by the superior valour and intrepidity which he now displayed. He continually sought Evalcus in the throng, and having at last singled him out, he spurred his horse against him, and struck him through with his javelin, after having been in great danger himself.

He then sprung from his horse, and made a terrible slaughter of the Lacedæmonians, whom he overthrew in heaps upon the dead body of Evalcus. This loss of the bravest officers and troops of Sparta, proceeded altogether from the temerity of those, who, after they had gained a complete victory, suffered it to be wrested out of their hands, by pursuing those that fled with a blind and imprudent eagerness.

Pyrrhus having thus celebrated the funeral solemnities of Ptolemy by this great battle, and mitigated his affliction in some measure, by satiating his rage and vengeance in the blood of those who bad slain his son, continued his march to Argos, and upon his arrival there, was informed that Antigonus possessed the heights upon the borders of the plain. He then formed his camp near the city of Nauplia, and sent a herald the next morning to Antigonus, with an offer to decide their quarrel by a single combat; but Antigonus contented himself with replying, “ That if Pyrrhus was grown weary of life, there were abundance of methods for putting an end to it.”

The inhabitants of Argos dispatched ambassadors at the saine time to both these princes, to intreat them to withdraw their troops, and not reduce their city into subjection to either of them, but allow it to continue in a state of friendship with both. Anti

gonus readily consented to this proposal, and sent his son as an hostage to the Argives. Pyrrhus also promised to retire; but as he offered no security for the performance of his word, they began to suspect his sincerity, and indeed with sufficient reason.

As soon as night appeared, he advanced to the walls, and having found a door left open by Aristæas, he had time to pour his Gauls into the city, and to seize it without being perceived. But when he would have introduced his elephants, he found the gate too low; which obliged him to cause the towers to be taken down from their backs, and replaced there, when those animals had entered the city. All this could not be effected, amidst the darkness, without much trouble, noise, and confusion, and without a considerable loss of time, which caused them to be discovered. The Argives, when they beheld the enemy in the city, fled to the citadel, and to those places that were more advantageous for their defence, and sent a deputation to Antigonus to press his speedy advance to their assistance.

He accordingly marched that moment, and caused bis son, with the other officers, to enter the city at the head of his best troops.

In this very juncture of time, King Areus also arrived at Argos, with a thousand Cretans, and as many Spartans as were capable of coming. These troops, when they had all joined each other, charged the Gauls with the utmost fury, and put them into disorder. Pyrrhus hastened, on his part, to sustain them, but the darkness and confusion were then so great, that it was impossible for him to be either heard or obeyed. When day appeared, he was not a little surprised to see the citadel filled with ene. inies; and as he then imagined all was lost, he thought of nothing but a timely retreat. But as he had some apprehensions with respect to the city gates, which were much too narrow, he sent orders to his son Helenus, whom he had left without with the greatest part of the army, to demolish part of

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