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fourscore years of age) one would have thought they should have been desirous of ending their lives in the union which had so long subsisted between them: instead of which, their mutual destruction by war, became the whole object of their thoughts, on the following occasion.

Lysimachus, after the marriage of his son Agathocles with Lysandra, one of the daughters of Ptolemy, espoused another himself, whose name was Arsinoe, and had several children by ber. The different interests of these two sisters led them into all sorts of intrigues, to form a powerful party in their favour, upon the death of Lysimachus. What are ambitious wives and mothers not capable of attempting! Their opposition to each other was not the mere effect of personal interest, but was chiefly fomented by the differences of their mothers. Lysandra was the daughter of Eurydice, and Arsinoe of Berenice. The arrival of Ptolemy Ceraunus, the brother of Philadelphus, at this court, made Arsinoe apprehensive that his interest would strengthen too much the party of Lysandra, who was his sister by the same mother; and that they would accomplish the destruction of herself, and her own children, at the death of Lysimachus. This calamity she was determined to prevent, by sacrificing Agathocles to her suspicions; and she succeeded in her design, by representing him to her husband, as one who had formed a conspiracy against his life and crown, by which she so much incensed him against his own son, that he caused him to be imprisoned and put to death. Lysandra and her children, with her brother Ceraunus, and Alexander, another son of Lysimachus, took sanctuary 'in the court of Seleucus, and prevailed upon him to declare war against Lysimachus. Several of the principal officers of this prince, and even those who had been most devoted

* Justin. I. xvii. c. 1. Appian. in Syriac. Pausan. in Attic

P. 18.

to his interest, were struck with so much horror at the murder of his son, that they entirely abandoned him, and retired to the court of Seleucus, where they strengthened the remonstrances of Lysandra by their own complaints. Seleucus was easily induced to undertake this war, for which he was already suf, ficiently disposed by views of interest.

Before he engaged in this enterprise, he resigned his queen Stratonice to his son Antiochus, for a reason I shall spon relate, and consigned to him, at the same time, a considerable part of his empire, reserving to himself no other territories but the pro. vinces between the Euphrates and the sea.

Antiochus was seized with a lingering distemper, of which the physicians were incapable of discovering the cause; for which reason his condition was thought entirely desperate. It is easy to conceive the inquietude of a father who beheld himself on the point of losing his son in the flower of his age ; whom he had intended for his successor in his vast dominions, and in whom all the happiness of his life consisted. Erasistratus, the most attentive and most skilful of all the physicians, having carefully considered every symptom with which the indisposition of the young prince was attended, believed at last that he had discovered its true cause, and that it proceeded from a passion he had entertained for some lady; in which conjecture he was not de. ceived. It, however, was more difficult to discover the object of a passion, the more violent from the secrecy in which it remained. The physician, there, fore, to assure himself fully of what he surmised, passed whole days in the apartment of bis patient, and when he saw any lady enter, he carefully ob. served the countenance of the prince, and never dis. covered the least emotion in him, except when Stra. tonice came into the chamber, either alone, or with her consort; at which times the young prince was,

Plut. in Demetr. p. 906, 907. Appian. in Syr. p. 126-128

as Plutarch observes, always affected with the symp. toms described by Sappho, as so many indications of a violent passion. Such, for instance, as a suppression of voice; burning blushes; suffusion of sight; cold sweat; a sensible inequality and disorder of pulse; with a variety of the like symptoms. When the physician was afterwards alone with his patient, he managed his inquiries with so much dexterity, as at last drew the secret from him. Antiochus confessed his passion for queen Stratonice his mother-in-law, and declared that he had in vain employed all his efforts to vanquish it: he added, that he had a thousand times had recourse to every consideration that could be represented to his thoughts, in such a conjuncture; particularly the respect due from him to a father and sovereign, by whom he was tenderly beloved; the shameful circumstance of indulging a passion altogether unjustifiable, and contrary to all the rules of de. cency and honour; the folly of harbouring a design he ought never to be desirous of gratifying; but that his reason in its present state of distraction, entirely engrossed by one object, would hearken to nothing. And he concluded with declaring, that to punish himself, for desires involuntary in one sense, but criminal in every other, he had resolved to languish to death, by discontinuing all care of his health, and abstaining from every kind of food. · The physician gained a very considerable point, by penetrating into the source of his patient's disorder; but the application of the proper remedy was much more difficult to be accomplished; and how could a proposal of this nature be made to a parent and king! When Seleucus made the next inquiry after his son's health, Erasistratus replied, that his distemper was incurable, because it arose from a secret passion which could never be gratified, as the lady he loved was not to be obtained. The father, surprised and afflicted at this answer, desired to know why the lady was not to be obtained ? “ Be

the king.

cause she is my wife,” replied the physician, “and I am not disposed to yield her up to the embraces of another.”_And will you not part with her then,” replied the king, “ to preserve the life of a son I so tenderly love? Is this the friendship you profess for me?"-" Let me intreat you, my lord,” said Erasistratus, “ to imagine yourself for one moment in my place; would you resign your Stratonice to his arms? If you, therefore, who are a father, would not consent to such a sacrifice for the welfare of a son so dear to you, how can you expect another should do it?”—“ I would resign Stratonice, and my empire to him, with all my soul,” interrupted

“ Your majesty, then,” replied the physician, “ has the remedy in your own hands; for he loves Stratonice." The father did not hesitate a moment after this declaration, and easily obtained the consent of his consort: after which his son and that princess were crowned king and queen of Upper Asia. * Julian the apostate relates, in a fragment of his writings still extant, that Antiochus could not espouse Stratonice till after the death of his father.

Whatever traces of reserve, moderation, and even modesty, appear in the conduct of this young prince, his example shows us the misfortune of giving the least entrance into the heart of an unlaw. ful passion, capable of discomposing all the happiness and tranquillity of life.

Seleucus being now eased of his inquietude, thought of nothing but marching against Lysiinachus. He therefore put himself at the head of a fine army, and advanced into Asia Minor. All the country submitted to him as far as Sardis, which he besieged and took; by which means he became master of all the treasures of Lysimachus.


k In Misop. "Justin. l. xvii. c. 1. 2. Appian. in Syr. p. 178. Memnon, Excerpta apud Phot, c. ix. Pausan, in Attic. p. 18. Orps 3-23. Polyæn. 4-9.

A. M. This last, having passed the Hellespont, in order 3723., to check the progress of Seleucus, gave him battle Ant. J.c.

in Phrygia*, but was defeated and slain; in conse281. quence

of which Seleucus rendered himself master of all his dominions. His greatest pleasure on this occasion resulted from his being the only survivor of all the captains of Alexander, and, by the event of this battle, victorious, over conquerors themselves, for that was the expression he thought fit to use, and this advantage was considered by him as the effect of a peculiar providence in his favour. This last victory was undoubtedly the best justification of the title of Nicator, or the conqueror, which he had already assumed, and which is usually given him by the historians, in order to distinguish bim from the other princes who reigned after him in Syria of the name of Seleucus.

His triumph, on this occasion, was of no long continuance, for when he went, seven months after his victory, to take possession of Macedonia, where he proposed to pass the remainder of his days in the bosôm of his native country, he was basely assassinated by Ceraunus, on whom he had conferred innumerable honours and obligations: for he had received him into his court, when he fled from his own country, and had treated him suitably to his rank. He had also carried that prince with him in that expedition; intending, when it should be completed, to employ the same forces for his establishment on the throne of his father in Egypt. But as this wretch was insensible of all the favours he had

• Porphyry is the only author who has pointed out the real place where this battle was fought, and which Eusebius, by an evident mistake, calls Kogumidov, instead of Kugomedson, the field of Cyrus; mentioned by Strabo, l. xiii. p. 629.

+ Lætus ea victoria Seleucus, et quod majus ea victoria putabat, solum se de cohorte Alexandri remansisse, victoremque victorum extitisse, non humanum esse opus, sed divinum munus, gloriabatur : ige narum prorsus, non multo post fragilitatis bumanæ se ipsum exemplum futurum. JUSTIN. l. xvii. c. 2.

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