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extend not only to human affairs, but to the state | kings; to revive the supremacy of the God of of the human body. Travellers have observed, heaven over Ahriman, the evil principle; and that in the countries of the east it is customary to teach a future judgment, in which the apparent to prefer the time of the new moon to begin a mixture of good and evil in this life, designed in journey. And to this there appears to be refer- the state of probation to promote God's glory, ence made in Scripture. Thus Solomon puts into should be redressed in the next, by the reward the mouth of the adulterous wife these words: of the good in heaven, and the punishment of
the wicked in hell ; all which articles appear to “The goodman is not at home,
have been derived from some superior teacher to He is gone a long journey :
the magi, to have been, in fact, collected from. He hath taken a bag of money with him, And will come home at the day appointed.”
the sacred writings, or the oral instructions of Prov. vii. 19, 20.
Instead of the former mode of keeping the Or, in other words, at “the new moon.” Refer- sacred fire in caves, and on mountains in the ence is also made to this observance, 1 Sam. xx. open air, where it was liable to be extinguished, 24, where Saul is represented as sitting down to Darius built fire temples throughout his dominmeat, or to a feast, when the new moon was come. ions, as at Jerusalem. His principal fire temple, It was under the influence of this superstition called Azur Gushtasp, was erected at Balch, the that the Lacedæmonians deferred sending their capital of the province of Bactria.* After the promised aid to the Athenians. After the moon, death of Zerdusht, in the fifth year of his reformhowever, had passed the full, they sent a body of ation, Darius assumed the office of archimagus 2000 men, which arrived only to offer them their himself, but died the following year. Hence the congratulations on the victory. Happily, this succeeding kings of Persia were always initiated superstition is now exploded by the more satis- into the sacerdotal order of the magi before their factory deductions of a sound philosophy. It has inauguration, as related in the section on the been reasonably urged, that as the most accurate polity of Persia. and subtile barometers are not affected by the Next to Cyrus, says Dr. Hales, Darius was various positions of the moon, it is very unlikely the greatest prince of this dynasty. If Cyrus that the human body should be within the sphere founded, Darius Hystaspes unquestionably estaof its influence.
blished the empire. His political wisdom and The lesson conveyed in these disasters was moderation, his system of laws and finance, and lost upon Darius. His revenge was, indeed, still his reform of the national religion, were all more excited against the Athenians, and he admirable; and his attention to maritime discoresolved to head another armament in person, veries and commerce distinguished him from all which put all Asia in a ferment for three years. the other kings of Persia. His greatness, howBut his designs were frustrated. In the year ever, was sullied by the indulgence of those evil B.C. 487, the Egyptians revolted, which caused principles, ambition and revenge, which brought him to delay his expedition, that he might in- ruin not only on his enemies, but on his own crease his preparations against both nations; and subjects. Notwithstanding, he was endowed two years after, as he was upon the point of with many excellent qualities ; and his wisdom, carrying his plans into execution, he died, after justice, and in many instances, clemency, are having reigned thirty-six years.
much commended by the ancients. His greatest During the last six years of his reign, Darius, honour is, that he was appointed by the Alaccording to oriental writers, was engaged also mighty to complete the work begun by Cyrus, in reforming the corruptions that had crept into namely, the restoration of the Jews to the Holy the national religion, by the progress of the Land. Sabian superstition and adoration of fire, and of Before his death, Darius appointed Xerxes, his the other elements of nature ; and by the pre- eldest son by Atossa, the daughter of Cyrus, to valence of the notion of the two principles, the succeed him, in preference to Artobazanes, his good and evil, which are referred to in Isaiah's eldest son by his first wife, the daughter of Goprophecies respecting Cyrus, who acknowledged bryas ; because the former was born when his Jehovah as “the God," Ezra i. 1-3. Accord father was king, but the latter when he was only ing to Mohammed Mustapha, Darius was assisted in a private station. It is probable that the in his salutary work by Hystaspes, then master
influence Atossa had over the mind of Darius of the magi in succession to the prophet Daniel, decided the choice. who held that high office from B.C. 569 to B.C. 534 ; and who, from his rank and residence at Susa, the capital, from the time of Belshazzar, (Dan. viii. 2.) must have been well known to Xerxes having ascended the throne, employed Hystaspes, and probably to Darius himself. the first year of his reign in carrying on the
The chief associate of Hystaspes and Darius, preparations begun by Darius for the reduction says Dr. Hales, was the younger Zerdusht, or of Egypt. second Zoroaster, who is represented by the In the same year, the Samaritans wrote to Arabian and Persian historians as a native of the province of Aderbijan, and a disciple of one of
* Balch is situated on the river Dehash, the Bactrius of the Jewish prophets, either Elijah, Jeremiah, or Curtius, Pliny, and Strabo, and the Zariaspis of Ptolemy. Ozeir, Ezra. The real prophet was Daniel. By different writers it is called Zariaspa, Balk, Balakh, The design of the reform was to bring back
and Bilahj. It is considered to be the oldest city in the the religion of Persia to its primitive purity, in
world, and is hence denominated Omool Belad, “The
mother of cities.' Elphinstone says it is now reduced to the days of Abraham and of the Pischdadian comparative insignificance.
him, (Ahasuerus,*) in accusation against the in- wiser nor less ambitious by his ill success, and habitants of Judah and Jerusalem, Ezra iv. 6; anxious to obtain the command of the army, not but notwithstanding this opposition, he confirmed only approved of the determination of Xerxes, to that people all the privileges granted them by but extolled him above all his predecessors, and his father, especially the grant of the Samaritan endeavoured to show the necessity of avenging tribute, for carrying on the building of the tem- the dishonour done to the Persian name. The ple, and the support of the temple worship and rest of the council, perceiving that this flattering sacrifices.
speech was well received by Xerxes, remained In the second year of his reign, B.C. 484, for some time silent, fearful of opposing the will Xerxes marched against the Egyptians, and of the monarch. At length Artabanus, the having defeated and subdued them, he made the king's uncle, who was venerable both for his age yoke of their subjection more grievous: then and prudence, deriving confidence from his relagiving the government of that province to his tionship, addressing Xerxes, used all his endeabrother Achæmenes, he returned to Susa. vours to divert him from his present resolution,
The poet Æschylus, in his tragedy of the and at the same time reproached Mardonius with Persians, represents Xerxes as following his pre- want of sincerity, and showed how much he was decessor's plan of conquest. Atossa, the mother to blame for desiring rashly to engage the Perof Xerxes, is introduced as addressing the ghost sians in a war which nothing but his own ambition of her husband Darius thus :
and self-interest could tempt him to advise.
The ear of Xerxes was open to flattery, but “This from too frequent converse with bad men, deaf to wholesome advice. Although Artabanus The impetuous Xerxes learned: these caught his ear
delivered his sentiments in a respectful manner, With thy great deeds, as winning for thy sons Vast riches with thy conquering spear: whilst he, and with great sincerity, Xerxes was indignant Timorous and slothful, never, save in sport,
at the liberty, and assured him that if he were Lifted his lance, nor added to the wealth
not his uncle, he should bave suffered for his preWon by his noble fathers. This reproach, Oft by bad men repeated, urged his soul
sumption. Tacitus has well observed, that it is To attempt this war, and lead his troops to Greece." the misfortune of princes spoiled by fattery to
look upon every thing as austere that is sincere Accordingly, the reduction of Egypt was only and ingenuous, and to disregard all counsel depreparatory to his grand expedition against livered with a generous and disinterested freedom. Greece. Plutarch represents him as boasting They do not consider that even an honest man that it was not his intention to have the figs of durst not tell them all he thinks, nor discover the Attica, which were excellent, bought for him whole truth; and that what they stand most in any longer, and that he would eat no more till need of is a sincere and faithful friend. A prince he was master of the country. Before, however, ought to think himself happy if in his whole Xerxes engaged in this important enterprise, he reign he finds one who ventures to speak honestly, assembled his council, in order to obtain the for he is the most necessary and rare instrument advice of the most illustrious persons of his court. He laid before them the design he had in view, there is nothing so agreeable to nature, or so
of government. Cicero justly remarks, that and acquainted them with his motives, which convenient to our affairs, whether in prosperity were, the desire of imitating his predecessors ; the obligation he was under to revenge the burn- sincere a friend as he who imparts good advice
or adversity, as true friendship; and who is so ing of Sardis; the necessity of recovering their in an hour of difficulty ? lost honours ; and the prospect of the advantages that might be reaped from this war, which would “ Take sound advice proceeding from a heart be attended with the conquest of all Europe.
Sincerely yours, and free from fraudful art."-DRYDEN. He added further, that this war had been resolved
But, alas ! advice is seldom welcome, and those on by his father Darius, and consequently that who want it the most like it the least, as in the he was only completing his designs; he con
case of Xerxes. The reason may be, that the cluded by promising large rewards to those who acknowledgment of our weakness and another's should distinguish themselves in the expedition.
better sense are implied in the act of taking It is probable that the poet had the speech of advice. Whence the pride of human nature Xerxes in his mind when he wrote the following stifles the voice of conviction, and makes us turn lines, which he makes Mardonius utter on enter
a deaf ear to the charmer, charm he never so ing Athens :
wisely. “ Is this the city whose presumption dar'd
According to Herodotus, when the ebullitions Invade the lord of Asia ? sternly said
of his rage were over, Xerxes repented of his Mardonius entering. Whither now are fled
conduct towards Artabanus, and sent for him to The audacious train, whose firebrands Sardis felt! Where'er you lurk, Athenians, if in sight,
acknowledge his fault, and express his intention Soon shall you view your citadel in flames;
of foregoing the war upon Greece, which gave Or if retreated to a distant land,
the nobles great joy. After this, the same author No distant land of refuge shall you find
relates a romantic account of a vision, which Against avenging Xerxes.”—GLOVER.
changed their opinion, and made even Artabanus Mardonius, the same who had been so unsuc- himself become a sanguine and zealous promoter cessful in the reign of Darius, grown neither of the war.
The greatness of the preparations was in pro• The reader must
remember that this is a title, and portion to the grandeur of the scheme. Nothing not a proper name. Dr. Hales says that this title is ap
was omitted which could contribute to the success plied to Xerxes, Ezra iv. 6; to Artaxerxes Longimanus, Esther i. l; and to Astyages, the father of Cyaxares, or of
of the undertaking. Xerxes entered into a conDarius the Mede, Dan, ix. 1.
federacy with the Carthaginians, who were at
that time the most potent people of the west, and a noble Lydian, who was considered the richest made an agreement with them that, while the of mankind after Xerxes, entertained the Persian Persians invaded Greece, they should fall upon army with great magnificence, for which he was the Greek colonies in Sicily and Italy, that ill rewarded, as related on page 35 of this histhereby they might be diverted from rendering tory. each other assistance. The Carthaginians ap- As soon as the spring of the year arrived, B.C. pointed Hamilcar general, who not only raised 480, Xerxes left Sardis, and directed his march what forces he could in Africa, but with the towards the Hellespont. Being arrived at Abymoney sent him by Xerxes hired mercenaries in dos, he wished to witness a naval combat. À Spain, Gaul, and Italy; so that it is said his army throne was erected for him upon an eminence, consisted of 300,000 men, and a proportionate and in that situation, seeing all the sea crowded number of ships, in order to execute the projects with his vessels, and the land covered with his and stipulations of the league. See the History troops, he felt a secret joy diffuse itself through of the Carthaginians.
his soul, considering that he was the most powerIn the beginning of the fifth year, after war ful and the most happy of mortals. Reflecting, had been determined on, Xerxes began his march however, soon afterwards, that out of so many from Susa, the metropolis, with his mighty army. thousands, in a hundred years' time there would The time of his departure, says Dr. Hales, is not be one living on the earth, his joy was turncritically determined by an eclipse of the sun, ed into grief, and he could not forbear weeping visible at Susa about eight in the morning, April at the uncertainty and instability of human things. 19, B. C. 481. Herodotus represents this eclipse
As down as total ; “for the sun disappeared in a cloudless
The' immeasurable ranks his sight was lost, and clear sky, and day became night;" but it
A momentary gloom o'ercast his mind; appears from Dr. Brinkley's computation that it While this reflection fill'd his eye with tears : was somewhat less than a half eclipse. This was
That, soon as time a hundred years had told, sufficient to excite observation, and create alarm
Not one among those millions should survive!
Whence, to obscure thy pride, arose that cloud ? at Susa, especially at the moment of their de- Was it, that once humanity could touch parture, and might easily have been magnified A tyrant's breast? Or, rather, did thy soul into total, by tradition, at a time when eclipses
Repine, O Xerxes, at the bitter thought,
That all thy power was mortal?”—GLOVER. were considered portentous, and the cause known but to few of the learned. Xerxes was alarmed Xerxes might have found another subject of at the incident, and consulted the magi upon reflection, which would have more justly meritwhat it might portend. The magi affirmed that ed his tears and affliction, had he turned his God prognosticated to the Greeks the failure of thoughts upon himself. He might have contheir states, saying that the sun was the prog- sidered the reproaches he deserved for being the nosticator of the Greeks, but the moon of the instrument of shortening that fatal term to milPersians. With this futile and lying exposition lions of people, whom he was going to sacrifice Xerxes was satisfied, and proceeded on his march. as victims to his cruel ambition.
From Susa Xerxes marched to Sardis, which Artabanus, who neglected no opportunity of was the place appointed for the general rendezvous making himself useful to the young prince, and of all his land forces, while his navy advanced of instilling into him sentiments of goodness, along the coasts of Asia Minor towards the took advantage of this moment of the workings Hellespont.
of nature, and led him into farther reflections It was on his way thither, at Celænæ,* Pythius, upon the miseries with which the lives of most
men are attended, and which render them so was situated in Phrygia Major, on the road painful and unhappy; endeavouring, at the same from Susa to Sardis. It was a city of great note in the time, to make him sensible of the duty and oblidays of the Lydian and Phrygian kings, and during the time of the Persian empire. It is now in ruins, and mo
gation of princes to alleviate the sorrows of mandern geographers are much divided in opinion respecting kind. its ancient site. It is noted in the march of the younger In the same conversation, Xerxes asked ArCyrus, and a description of its site has been given in the
tabanus if he would still advise him not to make Anabasis of Xenophon. It was the usual residence of the Persian satrap, and was adorned with a palace, probably war upon Greece; and, for the moment, he himerected by Xerxes, as well as with other establishments, self appears to have been staggered at his mighty and a park of such extent, as not only to afford room for project. Artabanus replied, that the land and great hunts of wild animals, but to permit an army of 12,000 men to encamp within its precincts. Through the
the sea still gave him great uneasiness: the land, middle of this park, says Xenophon, runs the river Mæ- because there is no country, said he, that can ander, but the head of it rises in the palace : it runs also feed and maintain so numerous an army; and through the city of Celænæ. A similar description is given of this river, also, by Quintius Curtius, in his life of
the sea, because there are no ports capable of Alexander the Great. The confluence of these two streams would naturally be below the city. In after ages, about the same distance south of Cotyæum, and 116 east Celænæ was abandoned for a new city built by Antiochus of Sardis. Marinert, a German geographer, supposed Soter, son of Seleucus, which was surrounded by the Ophium Kara Hissar, which is twenty-two geographical streams of the Marsyas, Obrima, and Orga, which empty miles north-east of Sandukly, to answer the site of the themselves into the Mæander. This city was called ancient Celænæ; and Dr. Pococke regarded Askkly as its Apamea Kibotis.
site; but both these opinions are evidently erroneous. According to Rennel, the modern Sandukiy occupies Neither the Marsius nor the Mæander exist at Ophium the site of the ancient Celænæ. This place is actually Kara Hissar, and Askkly is too far down the latter river situated on one of the sources of the Mæander, now Me- to answer to the description. Kinneir thinks that Ceinder, which was generally allowed to have its principal lænæ stood seven miles south of Kara Hissar, where source at Celænæ, and the branch is formed by some fine there is a village embosomed in wood, said to be erected springs which flow from the foot of a ridge of lofty hills, on the site of an ancient town, not far from one of the as is reported of that city. Pliny calls the hill Sigria, and sources of the Mæander; so difficult is it to identify this it lies sixty English miles direct north-east of Colosse, ancient city of renown.
receiving such a multitude of vessels. These he marched southwards with his army in three objections, however, were overruled by Xerxes, divisions, attended by his fleet, through Thrace and ambition again prevailing, the momentary and Macedonia, several cities of which enterirresolution was succeeded by a fixed determina- tained him hospitably. Herodotus says, that the tion to go forward.
Thracians expended 400 talents of silver on a Xerxes commanded a bridge of boats to be single banquet; and that a witty citizen told the laid over the Hellespont, for the transmission of Abderites, “ they should bless Heaven that Xerhis forces from Asia into Europe; which was a xes did not require two repasts in the day, or work of more ostentation than use, since Alex- they would be ruined.” ander, and afterwards the Ottomans, passed the Herodotus gives a minute account of the difsame straits, in after ages, with less parade, and ferent amount of the various nations that convastly greater effect. The space that separates stituted this army. Besides the generals of every the two continents, formerly called the Helles- nation, who commanded the troops of their repont, now the Dardanelles, is seven stadia in spective country, the land army was under the breadth, or nearly one English mile. A violent command of six Persian generals, namely, Marstorm arose on' a sudden, and broke down the donius, Trintæhmes, Masistes, Smerdones, Gerbridge first erected ; and Xerxes appointed more gis, and Megabyzus. The 10,000 Persians, experienced architects to build two others in its called the Immortal Band, were commanded by room, one for the army, and the other for the Hydarnes. The cavalry had, also, its particular beasts of burden and the baggage. Major Ren- commanders. Rennel observes, that the Pernel has ingeniously explained the construction sians may be compared, in respect to the rest of of these two bridges, and shown the angle which the army of Xerxes, with the Europeans in a they formed with each other, the one to resist British army in India, composed chiefly of seathe strong current from the Propontis, the other poys and native troops. to withstand the strong winds in the Ægean Sea, Xerxes having ranged and numbered his areach protecting the other.
mament, was desirous of reviewing the whole. Herodotus relates a story concerning the con
Mounted in his car, he examined each nation duct of Xerxes on the occasion of the failure of in turn, to all of whom he proposed questions, the first bridge, the import of which is, that he the replies to which were noted down by his threw two pair of chains into the sea, as if he secretaries. The procession of Xerxes in his meant to shackle and confine it, and that he car through the ranks of his army, is well deordered 300 strokes to be given it, by way of scribed by Glover, in his “ Leonidas :" chastisement. Now, water among the Persians
“ The monarch will’d, and suddenly he heard was held to be one of the symbols of Divine His trampling horses. High on silver wheels nature, and this story may, therefore, be accounted The ivory car, with azure sapphires shone, fabulous ; for Xerxes would not have acted so
Cerulean beryls, and the jasper green,
The emerald, the ruby's glowing blush, directly opposite to the tenets of his religion.
The flaming topaz, with its golden beam, The perforation of Mount Athos, and the circum- The pearl, ihe' empurpled amethyst, and all stance of sending a letter to it
, threatening to
The various gems which India's mines afford throw it into the sea, may also justly be doubted.
To deck the pomp of kings. In burnish'd gold
A sculptured eagle from behind display'd Xerxes was not one of the wisest of princes, but His stately neck, and o'er the royal head he certainly was no idiot; and these actions could Outstretch'd his dazzling wings. Eight generous steeds, only have been committed by a madman. They
Which on the famed Nisæn plain were nursed, do not accord, moreover, with the anecdote that
In wintry Media, drew the radiant car.
At the signal, bound Xerxes, after having reviewed his army at Aby- The attentive steeds: the chariot flies; behind dos, burst into tears upon reflecting on their
Ten thousand horse in thunder sweep the field; short term of life.
Down to the sea-beat margin, on a plain When the second bridge was completed, a day
Of vast expansion, in battalia wait
The eastern bands. To these the' imperial wheels, was appointed for the commencement of their By princes followed in a hundred cars, passage over. Accordingly, as soon as the first
Proceed. The queen of Caria,t and her son,
With Hyperanthes rode. The king's approach rays of the sun appeared, sweet odours of various
Swift through the wide arrangement is proclaim'd. kinds were spread over the bridges, and the way He now draws nigh. The' innumerable host was strewed with myrtle. At the same time,
Roll back by nations, and admit their lord Xerxes poured out libations into the sea, and
With all his satraps. As from crystal domes,
Built underneath an arch of pendent seas, turning his face towards the sun, the principal When that stern power whose trident rules the floods, object of the Persian worship, he implored the
With each cerulean deity ascends, assistance of that god in his enterprize : this
Throned in his pearly chariot, all the deep
Divides its bosom to the emerging god, done, he threw the vessel he had used in making So Xerxes rode between the Asian world his libations, together with a golden cup and a On either side receding." Persian scimitar, into the sea. His army was seven days and seven nights in passing these changing his chariot for a Sidonian vessel, re
After viewing the land forces, Xerxes, exstraits. It was an immense host, but there were few real soldiers among them.
writers of a later date, conceive that such statements are Xerxes spent a month at Doriscus, in Thrace, beyond the bounds of belief, and reduce the numbers to near the mouth of the Hebrus, in reviewing and compared with the handful of soldiers Greece could op
about one-fifth, which would still leave a mighty army, numbering his army and fleet.* From thence pose to such a force. The latter statement is more con
sistent with probability, and with the narrative of the • Herodotus states, that the number of the followers of results of the invasion, which the attentive reader will Xerxes was 5,283,220. Isocrates estimates the land army,
observe. in round numbers, at 5,000,000. Plutarch agrees with + Justin observes of this woman: “Artemisia, queen these statements; but Diodorus, Pliny, Ælian, and other of Halicarnassus, who joined her forces with those of
viewed his fleet in a similar manner, passing destroyed and sunk 400 ships of war, besides an betwixt the prows of the ships and the shore. immense number of transports and provision Elated at the prospect before him, when he had vessels, at the promontory of Sepias. From this reviewed his forces, Xerxes asked Demaratus, station they therefore removed to Apheta, furan exiled king of Sparta, who had taken refuge ther southward. The Grecian fleet, of 300 ships, at the Persian court,* whether he thought the assembled in their neighbourhood, at Artemisium, Grecians would venture to oppose his progress the northern promontory of the island of Eubea, through their country. After being assured by to oppose their passage southward. Xerxes that he wished him to speak his thoughts The Greeks were not inactive whilst the enefreely and sincerely, Demaratus replied to the my was approaching. They sent to Gelon, the effect, that, bound by their laws to defend their tyrant of Syracuse, and to the isles of Corcyra country, they would conquer or die.
and Crete, to desire succour from them, and to
form a league against the common enemy. Spread on Eurota's banks, Amid a circling of soft rising hills,
Gelon was prevented from joining them through The patient Sparta stood; the sober, hard,
his ambitious views; the inhabitants of Corcyra And man-subduing city, which no shape
deceived them; and the people of Crete, having Of pain could conquer, nor of pleasure charm.
consulted the Delphic oracle, refused to enter Lycurgus there built, on the solid base Of equal life, so well a tempered state,
into the league. Where mix'd each government in each just poise, Added to these disappointments, was the deEach power so checking, and supporting each, That firm for ages and unmoved it stood,
fection of many other cities of Greece, of whom The fort of Greece, without one giddy hour,
Xerxes had demanded by his heralds earth and One shock of faction, or of party rage :
water. Fear so wrought upon them generally, For, drained the springs of wealth, Corruption there
that none but the Lacedæmonians and AtheniLay withered at the root. Thrice happy land, Had not neglected art with weedy vice
ans, and the people of Thespia, and Platæa, reConfounded sunk: but if Athenian arts
mained to combat the enemy. These were reLoved not the soil, yet then the calm abode
solved to conquer or die; and the first thing Of wisdom, virtue, philosophic ease,
they did in this emergency was to put an end Of manly sense, and wit, in frugal phrase, Confined and press'd into laconic force;
to all discords and intestine divisions. AccordThere, too, by rooting thence still treacherous self, ingly, peace was concluded between the AtheniThe public and the private grew the same:
ans and the people of Ægina, who at this period The children of the nursling, public all,
were at war. This was a great point gained ; And at its table fed. For that they toild, For that they lived entire, and ev'n for that
for their attention thereby was left 'undiverted The tender mother urged her son to die."--Thomsox. from the coming danger, and they were
This is a just description of the people against abled to direct the whole force of their genius whom Xerxes was leading his hosts ; and though object of their deliberations; and the result
to prevent its realization.
This was the one he laughed at the reply of Demaratus, he soon found that the battle is not always accorded to
shows how wisely they acted. the strong, and that
The principal points of their deliberations
were the choice of commanders, and at what “ Thrice is he arm'd that hath his quarrel just." place they should meet the Persians, in order to The first information of this formidable inva- dispute their entrance into Greece. The Athesion of Greece was given to the Lacedæmonians nians chose Themistocles, and the Spartans by. Demaratus himself, whose patriotism pre- conferred the supreme command of their forces vailed over his private wrongs. By an ingenious upon Leonidas, one of their kings. The situastratagem, he carved an account of the king's tion they adopted for the conflict was the straits determination on two tablets of wood, and then of Thermopylæ. covered the writing with wax, so that they
ap Pass of the Hot
The appellation, Thermopylæ, means peared to be blank tablets. When these were
On the north is an delivered at Sparta, they puzzled the people ex
extensive bog, or fen, through which a narrow ceedingly, till Gorgo, the wife of Leonidas, sa
paved causeway offers the only approach to gaciously removed the wax, when the alarming Greece. It is bordered on either side by a deep truth was revealed. The Lacedæmonians cir- and impracticable morass, and it is further culated the intelligence throughout the coun
bounded by the sea towards the east, and the try.
precipices of Mount Eta to the west. Here is Xerxes proceeded through Achaia and Thes- situated the Turkish dervene, or barrier, upon a saly, and without meeting any opposers, reached small narrow stone bridge, marking the most the famous and important straits of Thermopylæ, important point of the whole passage. It is still the key of Greece, while the Carnian and Olym- occupied by sentinels, as in ancient times, and is, pic games were celebrating.
therefore, even at the present time, considered as At this time, a furious Hellespontine wind, the pylæ of the southern provinces. The Therblowing from E.N.E., raised such a hurricane as mæ, or hot springs, are at a short distance from
the bridge, a little further on to the north. Xerxes, appeared amongst the forwardest commanders in Their principal issue is from two mouths at the the hottest engagements. And as on the man's side there foot of the limestone precipices of Eta, on the was an effeminate cowardice, on the woman's was observed
left of the causeway which here passes close a masculine courage.” Herodotus speaks to the same effect, and adds, that there was not one who gave such.good under the mountain, and at this part of it advice and counsel to Xerxes; but he was not prudent scarcely admits two horsemen abreast of each enough to profit by it.
other. • Bemaratus was a favourite of Xerxes, because he
The most critical part is at the hot suggested his plea to the crown in preference to his elder springs, or at the bridge where the Turkish derbrother, on the grounds before recorded.
vene is placed. At the former, the traveller has