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Kke' to have lost them forever. His chief courtiers and most intimate friends thought it a proper juncture, during this calm and serenity of his mind, for them to'ünbosom them. selves, and to expose their fears to him : It was Craterus spoke on this occasion. “We begin, royal Sir, to breathe * and live, now we find you in the condition to which the “ goodness of the gods has restored you. But how great were “ our fears and our griefs ! How severely did we reproach “ ourselves, for having abandoned, in such an extremity, our « king, our father ! It was not in our power to follow him ; “ but this did not extenuate our guilt, and we look upon our6 selves as criminals, in not'having attempted impossibilities “ for your sake. But, Sir, never plunge us in such deep af** fliction hereafter. Does a wretched paltry town deserve " to be bought at so dear a price as the loss of your life!
Leave those petty exploits and enterprises to us, and preserve your person for such. occasions only as are worthy you. We stiil shudder with horror, when we reflect on what we so lately were spectators of. We have seen the moment, when the most abject hands upon earth were going to seize the greatest prince in the universe, and despoil him of his royal robes. Permit us, Sir, to say, you are not
your own master, bứt that your owe yourself to us : We * have a right over your life, since ours depends on it; and i we dare take the freedom to conjure you, as being your 6 subjects and your children, to be more careful of so pre“ cious a life, if not for your own sake, at least for ours, and 6 for the felicity of the universe."
The king was strongly touched with these testimonies of their affection, and having embraced them severally with mexpressible ténderness, he answered as follows: "I cannot “ enough thank all present, who are the flower of my citi« zens and friends, not only for your having this day prefer
red my safety to your own, but also for the strong proof you have given me of your zeal and affection, from the beginning of this war : And if any thing is capable of making me wish for a longer life, it is the pleasure of enjoy
ing, for years to come, such valuable friends as you. But “ give me leave to observe, that in some cases we differ very ~ much in opinion. You wish to enjoy me long; and even if “it were possible, for ever ; but as to myself, I compute the “ length of my existence, not by years, bat by glory. I might
have confined my ambition within the narrow limits of Ma"cerlonia ; and, contented with the kingdom my ancestors left " me, have waited, in the midst of pleasures and indolence, “ an inglorious old age. I own, that if my victories, not niy
years, are computed, I shall seem to have lived long; but can you imagine, that after having made Europe and Asia & but one empire, after having conquered the two noblest "parts of the world, in the tenth year of my reign and thirtiweth of my age, that it will become me to stop in the midst of “ so exalted a career, and discontinue the pursuit of glory to
which I have entirely devoted myself ? Know, that this “ glory ennobles all things, and gives a true and solid gran" deur to whatever appears insignificant. In what place so
ever I may fight, I shall fancy myself upon the stage of the * world, and in presence of all mankind. I confess that I 6 have achieved mighty things bitherto; but the country we
are now in, reproaches me that a woman has done still "greater. It is Semiramis I mean. How inany nations diä " she conquer ! How many cities were built by licr! What
magnificent and stupendous works did she finish ! How « shameful is it that I shculd not yet have attained to so ex " alted a pitch of glory! Do but second my ardour, and I "shall soon surpass her. Defend me only from secret cabals * and domestic treasons, by which most princes lose their * lires. I take the rest upon myself, and will be answerable
to you for all the events of the war."
This speech gives us a perfect idea of Alexander's character. He had no notion of true glory. He did not know either the principle, the rule, or end of it. He certainly placed it where it was not. He was strongly prejudiced in vulgar error, and cherished it. He fancied himself born mérely for glory; and that none could he acquired but by unbounded, unjust, and irregular conduct. In his impetuous sallies after a mistaken glory, ke followed neither reason, virtue, por humanity; and, as if his ambitious caprice ought to have been a rule and standard to all other men, he was surprised that neither his officers nor soldier's would enter into his views, and lent themselves very unwillingly to support his ridiculous enterprises.
Alexander, after having ended his speech, dismissed the assembly, and continued encamped for several days in this place. He afterwards went upon the river, and his army marched after upon the banks. He then came among the Sabraca, a powerful nation of Indians. These had levied 60,000 foot and 6000 horse, and reinforced them with 500 chariots ; however, the arrival of Alexander spread a tetror through the whole country, and accordingly they sent ambassadors to make their submission. After having built another city, which he also called Alexandria, he arrived in the territories of Musicanus, a very rich prince, and afterwards in those of king Samus. At the siege of one of this Ling's towns, Ptolemy was dangerously wounded; for the Indians had poisoned all their arrows and swords, so that the wounds they made were mortal. Alexander, who had the highest love and esteem for Ptolemy, was very much afflicted, and caused him to be brought in his bed near him, that he himself might have an eye to his cure. He was his near relation, and, according to some writers, a natural son to Philip. Ptolemy was one of the bravest men in the army, was highly esteemed in war, and had greater talents for peace. He was averse to luxury, vastly generous, easy of access, and did not imitate the pomp which wealth and pros. perity had made the rest of the Macedonian noblemen assume : in a word, it is hard to say, whether he was more ese teemed by his sovereign or his country. We are told, there appeared to himn in a dream a dragon, which presented him an herb, as an effectual remedy ; and that upon his waking, he ordered it to be sent for ; when laying it upon the wound, it was healed in a few days, to the universal joy of the army.
* The king, continuing his voyage, arrived at Patala, about the beginning of the dog-days, that is, about the end of July ; so that the fleet was nine months at least from its set:: ting out till its arrival at that place. , There the river Indus divides into two large arms, and forms an island, but much larger, like the Delta of the Nile ; and hence the city above mentioned received its name, Patala, according to Arriant signifying in the Indian tongue, the same as Delta in the Greek. Alexander caused a citadel to be built in Patala, as also az harbour and an arsenal for the shipping. This being done, he embarked on the right arm of the river, in or. der to sail as far as the ocean; exposing in this manner so many brave men to the mercy of a river with which they were wholly, upacquainted. The only consolation they had in this rąsh enterprize, was Alexander's uninterrupted suc-"
When he had sailed 20 leagues, (400 furlongs,) the pilots told him that they began to perceive the sea air, and therefore believed that the ocean could not be far off. Upon this news, leaping for joy, he besought the sailors to row · with all their strength, and told the soldiers," that they at * last were come to the end of their toils, which they had so " earnestly desired; that now nothing could oppose their 6 valour, por add to their glory that without fighting any
more, or spilling of blood, they were masters of the universe ; that their exploits had the same boundaries with
nature ; and that they would be spectators of things know " only to the immortal gods."
• Strab. l. av. p, 692 † Arrian, in lodic. p. 384
"Being come nearer the sea, a circumstance new and un, heard of by the Macedonians threw them into the utmost confusion, and exposed the fleet to the greatest danger ; and this was the ebbing and flowing of the ocean. Forming a judgment of this vast sea from that of the Mediterranean, the only one they knew, and whose ebbings are imperceptible, they were very much astonished when they saw it rise te a great height, and overflow the country, and considered it as a mark of the anger of the gods, to punish their rashness. They were no less surprised and terrified, some hours after, when they saw the ebbing of the sea, which now withdrew as it had before advanced, leaving those lands uncov, ered it had so lately overflowed
The fleet was very much shattered, and the ships being now. upon dry land, the fields were covered with clothes, with broken oars and planks, as after a great storm.
At last Alexander, after having sailed full nine months in rivers, arrived at the ocean, where gazing with the utmost eagerness upon that vast expanse of waters, he imagined that this sight, worthy so great a conqueror as himself, great. ly overpaid all the toils he had undergone, and the many thousand men he had lost to arrive at it. He then offered sacrifices to the gods, and particularly to Neptune ; threw into the sea the bulls he slaughtered, and a great number of golden cups; and besought the gods not to suffer any mortal after him to exceed the bounds of this expedition. "Finding that he had extended his conquests to the extremities of the earth on that side, he imagined he had completed his mighty: design ; and highly delighted with himself, he returned to rejoin the rest of his fleet and army, which waited for him at Patala, and in the neighbourhood of it.
SECTION XVII. ALEXANDER Is GRIEVOUSLY DİSTRESSED BY FAMINE,
HE MARRIES STATIRA, THE DAUGHTER OF DARIUS.
ALEXANDER,* being returned to Patala, prepared all tlvings for the departire of his fleet. He appointed Nearchus admiral of it, who was the only officer that had the courage to accept of this commission, which was a very haz. ardous one, because they were to sail over a sea entirely upknown to them. The king was very much pleased at his accepting of it ;: and, after testifying his acknowledgment
Artian, in ladic; p. 334
upon that account in the most obliging terms, he commanded him to take the best ships in the fleet, and to go and sound the sea coast extending from the Indus to the bottom of the Persian gulf; and, after having given these orders, he set out by land for Babylon.
Nearchus did not leave the Indus at the same time with Alexander. It was not yet the season proper for sailing. It was summer, when the southern sea-winds rise; and the sea. son of the north-winds, which blow in winter, was not yet come. He therefore did not set sail till about the end of September, which was too soon ; and accordingly he was incommoded by vinds some days after his departure, and obliged to shelter himself for 24 days.
We are obliged for these particulars to Arriao, who has given us an exact journal of his voyage, copied from that of Nearchus the admiral.
Alexander, after having left Patala, marched through the country of the Oritæ, the capital whereof was called Ora, or Rhambacis. Here he was in such want of provisions that be lost a great number of soldiers, and brought back from India scarce the fourth part of his army, which had consisted of 120,000 foot, and 15,000 horse. Sickness, bad food, and the excessive heats, had swept them away in multitudes; but famine made a still greater havoc among the troops in this barren country, which was neither ploughed nor sowed ; its inhabitants being savages, who fared very hard, and led a most uncomfortable life. After they had ate all the palm-tree roots that could be met with, they were obliged to feed upon the beasts of burden, and next upon their war-horses, and when they had no beasts left to carry their baggage, they were forced to burn those rich spoils, for the sake of which the Macedonians had ran to the extremities of the earth. The plague, a disease which generally acconi. panies farine, completed the calamity of the soldiers, and destroyed great numbers of them,
After marching 60 days, Alexander arrived on the confines of Gedrasia, where he found plenty of all things ; for the soil was not only very fruitful, but the kings and great men, who lay nearest that country, sent him all kinds of pron visions. He continued some time bere, in order to refresh his army.. The governors of India having sent, by bis order, a great number of horses and all kinds of beasts of burden, from the several kingdoms subject to him, he remounted the troops, i equipped those who had lost every thing; and soon after presented all of them with anos, as
• Arriao, in Indic. Prasa