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upon the model of Clisthenes, one of the greatest men of his time, and a zealous defender of liberty, who had greatly contributed to the restoring of it at Athens, by expelling the Pisistratidæ out of that city. It was an excellent custom among the ancients, and it is to be wished that the same might prevail among us, that the young men, ambitious of public einployments, particularly attached themselves to such aged and experienced persons as had distinguished themselves most eminently in business, and who, both by their conversation and example, could teach them the art of conducting themselves, and governing others with wisdom and discretion.* Thus, says Plutarch, did Aristides attach himself to Clisthenes, and Cimon to Aristides ; and he mentions several others, among the rest Polybius, whom we have mentioned so often, and who in his youth was the constant disciple and faithful imitator of the celebrated Philopemen.
Themistocles and Aristides were of very different dispositions; but they both rendered great services to the commonwealth. Themistocles, who naturally inclined to popular government, omitted nothing that could contribute to render him agreeable to the people, and to gain friends ; behaving himself with great affability and complaisance to every body ; always ready to do service to the citizens, every one of whom he knew hy name; nor was he
very scrupulous about the means he used to oblige them. Somebody talking with him
on this subject, told him he would make an excellent magistrate, if his behaviour towards the citizens was more equal, and if he was not biassed in favour of one more than another. God forbid," replied Themistocles, I should ever sit upon a tribunal, where my friends should find no more credit or favour than strangers.”I Cleon, who appeare some time after at Athens, observed a quite different conduct, but yet such as was not wholly exempted from blame. When he came into the administration of public affairs, he assembled all his friends, and declared to them, that from that moment he renounced their friendship, lest it should prove an obstacle to him in the discharge of his duty, and cause bim to act with partiality and injustice. This was doing them very little honour, and judging harshly of their integrity. But, as Plutarch says, it was not his friends, but his passions, that he ought to have renounced.
Aristides had the discretion to observe a just medium between these two vicious extremes. Being a favourer of aristocracy in imitation of Lycurgus, whom he greatly admired, be in a manner struck out a new path of his own; not endeavouring to oblige his friends at the expense of justice, and yet always ready to do them service when consistent with it. He carefully avoided making use of his friends' recommendations for obtaining employments, lest it should prove a dangerous obligation upon him, as well as a plausible pretext for them, to expect the same favour on the like occasion. He used to say, that the true citizen, or the honest man, ought to make no other use of his credit and power, than upon all occasions to practise what was honest and just, and engage others to do the same.
Considering this contrariety of principles and humours among these great mrn, we are not to wonder, if, during their administration, there was a continual opposition between them. Themistocles, who was bold and enterprising, was still sure almost always to find Aristides against him, who thought himself obliged to thwart the other's designs, even sometimes when they were just and beneficial to the public, lest he should get too great an ascendant and authority, which might become pernicious to the commonwealth. One day, having got the better of Themistocles, who had made some proposal really advantageous to the state, he could not contain himself, but cried out aloud as he went out of the assembly, “That the Athenians would never prosper, till they threw
* Discere a peritis, sequi optimos. Tacit. in Agric. t Plut. in Arist. p. 319, 320. et in Them. 112, 113. An sem sit in ger. Resp. p: 790, 793.
* Cic. de Senect. Plut, An Seni sit ger. Resp. p. 806, 807.
them both into the Barathrum.” The Barathrum was a pit into which male. factors, condemned to die, were thrown. But notwithstanding this mutual opposition, wben the common interes' was at stake, they were no longer enemies: and whenever they were to tak : the field, or engage in any expedition, they mutually agreed to lay aside al differences on leaving the city, and to be at liberty to resume them on their return, if they thought fit.*
The predominant passion of Ther.istocles was ambition and the love of glory, which discovered itself from his childhood. After the battle of Marathon, which we shall speak of presently, when the people were every where extolling the valour and conduct of Miltiades, who had won it, Themistocles never appeared but in a thoughtful and melancholy humour; he spent whole nights without sleep, and was never seen at public feasts and entertainments as usual. When his friends, astonished at this change, asked him the reason of it, he made answer, " that the trophies of Miltiades would not let him sleep." These were a kind of incentive, which never ceased to prompt and animate bis ambition. From this time Themistocles addicted himself wholly to arms; and the love of martial glory wholly engrossed hiin.
As for Aristides, the love of the public good was the great spring of all his actions. What he was most particularly admired for, was his constancy and steadiness under the unforeseen changes, to wbich those who have the administration of affairs are exposed; for he was neither elevated with the honour conferred upon bim, nor cast down at the contempt and disappointments he sometimes experienced. On all occasions, he preserved his usual calmness and temper, being persuaded, that a man ought to give himself up entirely to his country, and to serve it with a perfect disinterestedness, as well with regard to glory as to riches. The general esteem he had gained for the uprightness of his intentions, the purity
of his zeal for the interests of the state, and the sincerity of his virtue, appeared one day in the theatre, when one of Æschylus's plays was acting. For when the actor repeated that verse which describes the character of Amphiaraus, “He does not desire to seem an honest and virtuous mao, but really to be so," the whole audience cast their eyes on Aristides, and applied the eulogy to him.
Another thing related of him, with respect to a public employment, is very remarkable. He was no sonner made #reasurer-general of the republic, than he made it appear that his predecessors in office had defrauded the state of vast sum.s of money, and among the rest Themistocles, in particular; for this great man, with all his merit, was not irreproachable on that head. For which reason, when Aristides came to pass his accounts, Themistocles raised a mighty faction against him, accused him of having embezzled the public treasure, and prevailed so far as to have him condemned and fined. But the principal inbabitants, and the most virtuous part of the citizens, rising up against so unjust a sentence, not only the judgment was reversed, and the fine remitted, but he was elected treasurer for the ensuing year. He then seemed to repent of his former administration; and by showing himself tractable and indulgent ‘owards others, he found out the secret of pleasing all that plundered the commonwealth. For as he neither reproved them, nor narrowly inspected their accounts, all these plunderers, grown fat with spoil and rapine, now extolled Aristides to the skies. It would have been easy for him, as we perceive, to enrich himself in a post of that nature, which seems, as it were, to invite a man to do so by the many favourable opportunities presented to him; esa pecially as he had to deal with officers, who for their part, were intent upon nothing but robbing the public, and would have been ready to conceal the frauds of the treasurer their master, upon condition he did them the same favour.
These very officers now made interest with the people to have him continued a third year in the same employment. But when the time of election arrived, just as they were upon the point of electing Aristides unanimously, he rose up.
* Plut. Apophthegm. p. 186,
and warmly reproved the Athenian people: "what,” said he," when I managed your treasure with all the fidelity and diligence an honest man is capable of, I met with the most cruel treatment, and the most mortifying returns; and now that I have abandoned it to the mercy of all these robbers of the public, am I an admirable man, and the best of citizens? I cannot help declaring to you, that I am more ashamed of the honour you do me this day, than I was of the condemnation you passed against me this time twelve-month : and with grief I find, that it is more glorious with us to be complaisant to knaves, than to save the treasures of the republic.” By this declaration he silenced the public plunderers, and gained the esteem of all good men.
Such were the characters of these two illustrious Athenians, who began to display their extraordinary merit, when Darius turned his arms against Greece. 2. DARIUS SENDS HERALDS INTO GREECE, IN ORDER TO SOUND THE PEOPLE, AND
TO REQUIRE THEM TO SUBMIT. Before this prince would directly engage in this enterprise, he judged it expedient, first of all, to sound the Grecians, and know in what manner the different states stood affected towards him. With this view he sent heralds into all parts of Greece to require earth and water in his name. This was the form used by the Persians when they demanded submission from those they were desirous of bringing under subjection. On the arrival of these heralds, many of the Grecian cities, dreading the power of the Persians, complied with their demands; as did also the inhabitants of Ægina, a small island opposite to, and not far from Athens. This proceeding of the people of Ægina was looked upon as a public treason. The Athenians represented the matter to the Spartans, who immediately sent Cleomenes, one of their kings, to apprehend the authors of it. The people of Ægina refused to deliver them up, under pretence that he came without his colleague.
This colleague was Demaratus, who had himself suggested that excuse. As soon as Cleomenes was returned to Sparta, in order to be revenged on Demaratus for that affront, he endeavoured to get him deposed, as not being of the royal family, and succeeded in his attempt by the assistance of the priestess of Delphos, whom he bad suborned to give an answer favourable to his designs. Demaratus, not being able to endure so gross an injury, banished himself from his country, and retired to Darius, who received him with open arms, km a considerable settlement in Persia. He was succeeded in the throne by Leotychides, who joined his colleague, and went with him to Ægina, from whence they brought away ten of the principal inhabitants, and committed them to the custody of the Athenians, their declared enemies. Cleomenes dying not long after, and the fraud he had committed at Delphos being discovered, the Lacedæmonians endeavoured to oblige the people of Athens to set those prisoners at liberty, but they refused.
The Persian heralds, who went to Sparta and Athens, were not so favourably received as those that had been sent to the other cities. One of them was thrown into a well, and the other into a deep ditch, and were bid to take earth and water from thence.t. I should be less surprised at this unworthy treatment, if Athens alone had been concerned in it. It was a proceeding suitable enough to a popular government, rash, impetuous, and violent, where reason is seldom heard, and every thing determined by passion. But I do not find any thing in this, agreeable to the Spartan equity and gravity. They were at liberty to refuse what was demanded: but to treat public officers in such a manner, was an open violation of the law of nations. "If what historians say on this head be true, the crime did not remain unpunished. Talthybius, one of Agamemnon's heralds, was honoured at Sparta as a god, and had a temple there. He revenged the indignities done to the heralds of the king of Persia, and made the Spartans feel the effects of his wrath, by bringing many terrible accident:
and gave upon them. In order to appease him, and to expiate their offence, they sent afterwards several of their chief citizens into Persia, who voluntarily offered themselves as victims for their country. They were delivered into the hands of Xerxes, who would not let them suffer, but sent them back to their own country. As for the Athenians, Talthybius executed his vengeance on the family of Miltiades, who was principally concerned in the outrage committed upon Darius's heralds.*
* Herod. l. vi. c. 49 et 86.
t Herod. l. vii. c. 133 134),
3 THE PERSIANS DEFEATED AT MARATHON BY MILTIADES. Darius immediately sent away Datis and Artaphernes, whom he had appointed generals in the room of Mardonius. Their instructions, were to give up Eretria and Athens to be plundered, to burn the houses and temples, to make all the inhabitants of both places prisoners, and to send them to Darius; for which purpose they went provided with a great number of chains and fetters. They set sail with a fleet of five or six hundred ships, and an army of five hundred thousand men. After having made themselves masters of the isles in the Ægean sea, which they did without difficulty, they steered their course towards Eretria, a city of Eubea, which they took after a siege of seven days, by the treachery of some of the principal inhabitants ; they reduced it entirely $o ashes, put all the inhabitants in chains, and sent them to Persia. Darius, contrary to their expectation, treated them kindly, and gave them a village in the country of Cissias for their habitation, wbich was but a day's journey from Susa, where Apollonius Tyanæus found some of their descendants six hundred years afterwards.Il
After this success at Eretria, the Persians advanced towards Attica. Hippias conducted them to Marathon, a little town by the sea side. They took care to acquaint the Athenians with the fate of Eretria, and to let them know, that not an inhabitant of that place had escaped their vengeance, in hopes that this news would induce them to surrender immediately. T The Athenians had sent to Lacedæmon, to desire succours against the common enemy, which the Spartans granted them instantly ; but which could not set out till some days after, on account of an ancient custom and superstitious maxim among them, that did not allow them to begin a march before the full of the moon. Not one of their other allies prepared to succour them, such terror had the formidable army of the Persians spread on every side. The inhabitants of Platææ alone furnished them with a thousand soldiers. In this extremity the Athenians were obliged to arm their slaves, which they had never done before this occasion.
The Persian army commanded by Datis, consisted of a bundred thousand foot, and ten thousand horse. That of the Athenians amounted only to ten thousand men. It was headed by ten generals, of whom Miltiades was the chief; and these ten were to have the alternate command of the whole army. each for a day. There was a great dispute among these officers, whether they should hazard a battle, or await the enemy within the walls. The latter opin ion had a great majority, and appeared very reasonable. For, what prospect of success could there be in facing, with a handful of soldiers, so numerous and formidable an army as that of the Persians ? Miltiades, however, de. clared for the contrary opinion, and showed that the only means to rouse the courage of their own troops, and to strike terror into those of the enemy, was to advance boldly towards them with an air of confidence and intrepidity. Aristides strenuously defended this opinion, and brought some of the other commanders into it, so that when the suffrages came to be taken, they were equal on both sides of the question. Hereupon Miltiades addressed himself to Callimachus, who was then polemarch,** and had a right of voting as well
* Herod. I. vii. c. 135, 136. Paus. in Lacon. p. 182, 183.
A. M. 3514. Ant. J.C. 490. Plut. in Moral. p. 829. . Herod. I. vi. c. 119.
Philostr. 1. i. c. 17. 1 Herod. I. vi. c. 102, 120. Corn. Ner. in Milt. c. iv-vi. Justin. I. ii.c.3. Plut. in Aristid. p. 321.
** The polemarch at Athens was both a military and judicial officer, equally employed to command is the army, and to administer justice. I shall give a more particular account of this office in another place.
as the ten commanders. He very warmly represented to him that the fate of their country was then in bis bands : that his single vote was to determine whether Athens should preserve ber liberty, or be enslaved; and that he had it in his power by, one word to become as famous as Harmodious and Aristogiton, the authors of that liberty the Athenians enjoyed. Callimachus pronounced the word in favour of Miltiades's opinion. And accordingly a battle was resolved upon.
Aristides, reflecting that a command which changes every day must neces. sarily be feeble, unequal, often contradictory, and incapable either of projecting or executing any uniform design, was of opinion, that their danger was both too great and too pressing for them to expose their affairs to such inccnveniences. In order to obviate these, he judged it necessary to vest the whole power in a single person ; and, to induce his colleagues to act conformably, he himself set the first example of resignation. When the day came, on which it was his turn to take upon him the command, he resigned it to Miltiades, as the more able and experienced general. The other commanders did the same, all sentiments of jealousy giving way to the love of the public good; and, by this day's behaviour we may learn, that it is almost as glorious to acknowledge merit in other persons, as to have it one's self. Miltiades, however, thought fit to wait till his own day came. Then, like an able captain, he endeavoured, by the advantage of the ground, to gain what he wanted in strength and number. He drew up his army at the foot of a mountain, that the enemy should not be able either to surround him, or charge him in the
On the two sides of his army he caused large trees to be thrown, which were cut down on purpose, in order to cover his fanks, and render the Persian cavalry useless. Datis, their commander, was very sensible that the place was not very advantageous for him : but, relying upon the number of his troops, which was infinitely superior to that of the Athenians, and on the other hand, unwilling to delay till the reinforcement of the Spartans arrived, he determined to engage. The Athenians did not wait for the enemy to charge them. As soon as the signal for battle was given, they ran against the enemy with all the fury imaginable. The Persians looked upon this first step of the Athenians as a piece of madness, considering their army was so small and utterly destitute both of cavalry and archers: but they were quickly undeceived. Herodotus observes, that this was the first time the Grecians began an engage. ment by, rupning in this manner; which may seem somewhat astonishing And, indeed, was there not reason to apprehend, that their running would in some measure weaken the troops, and blunt the edge of their first impetuosity ; and that the soldiers having quitted their ranks, might be out of breath, spent, and in disorder, when they came to the enemy, who, waiting to receive them in good order, and without stirring, ought, one would think, to be in a condition to sustain the charge advantageously ? This consideration engaged Pompey, at the battle of Pharsalia, to keep his troops in a steady posture, and to forbid their making any motion, till the enemy made the first attack.* But Cæsart blames Pompey's conduct in this respect, and gives this reason for it, that the impetuosity of an army's motion in running to engage, inspires the soldiers with a certain enthusiasm and martial fury, gives an additional force to their blow's, and increases and inflames their courage, which, by the rapid movềment of so many thousand men together, is blown up and animated, to use the expression, like dames, by the wind. I leave it to military gentlemen to decide the point between these two great captains, and return to my subject.
* Cæs. in Bell. Civil. l. iii. Quod nobis quidem nulla ratione factum a Pompeio videtur: propterea quod est quædam incitatio atque alacritas naturaliter innata omnibus, quæ studio pugnæ incenditur. Hanc non reprimere, sed augere imperatores debent.-Cas.
Καίσαρ περί τέτο διαμαρτείν φησί τον Πομπήϊον. αγνοήσαντο, την μετά δρόμο και φοβεραν εν αρχή γινομένην σύρραξιν, ώς έντε ταις πληγαϊς βίαν προτίθησι, και συνέκκαίει τον θύμoν εκ πάντων αναρριπιζα HEVOV.-- Plut. in Cæs.
Plut. in Pomp, p. 656. et in Cæs. p. 719