Page 0369


charging the foe. The Persians gave way before them. The scythe-bearing chariots were

turned by their frightened horses upon their own ranks. For three miles the Greeks

scattered all before them. In the center, meanwhile, Cyrus engaged his foe and gained some

advantages. Finally a charge was made against the six thousand horsemen who composed the

body-guard of the king, and they were put to flight. In the confused struggle in this part

of the field Cyrus discerned at a distance the form of his brother, and shouting out, "TON

ANDRA HORO" (see the man), made a rash plunge in that direction to cut him down. But

before he could reach Artaxerxes he was himself struck with a javelin and slain. As the

whole question was merely whether his life or that of the king should bleed on the altar

of fraternal vengeance, the fight was virtually decided. The provincial forces that made

up the body of Cyrus's army broke and fled. But the Greeks stood fast, and though their

captains were soon inveigled into a conference and treacherously killed, they began to

recede in good order, with the: hope -of reaching their own country.

Now it was that the famous "Retreat of the Ten Thousand" began, under the leadership of

Xenophon. The hosts of the Persians hung upon their flanks and rear, but discipline and

courage kept their myriads at bay, and after untold hardships and a march of many hundred

miles through Mesopotamia and the mountainous regions of'Armenia to Trapezus on the

Euxine, the heroic Greeks at last came in safety, and by their exultant cry of "THE SEA!

THE SEA!" gave proof to aftertimes of the valor and fortitude of their race. ^

The mercenaries who had thus aided Cyrus in his attempt on the throne were mostly

Spartans. Their conduct gave grounds to the king for going to war with their country; for

their country would not disavow what its soldiery had done. For six years (B. C. 399-394)

a desultory con-

1 There is little doubt that the exploit of these Ten Thousand Greeks in penetrating to

the heart of the Persian Empire and then returning in safety, furnished Alexander with a

precedent for his conquest.

flict was carried on between the satraps of Lydia and Phrygia on the one side and Sparta

on the other. In the year B. C. 393 a league was formed by Argos, Thebes, Athens, and

Corinth, which compelled the Spartans to withdraw from foreign complications and defend

themselves at home. In the straitened condition of their oligarchy they undertook and were

finally able to secure the establishment of peace. The general proposal was that all of

Asia should go to the Persians, and that all of the Greek islands and states should be

free. For six years the negotiations were pending, but finally, in B. C. 387, the terms

were acceded to by all the parties and the "Peace of Antalcidas" was established. In the

meantime a revolt broke out in Cyprus, led by the Greek governor Evagoras, who beat off

the forces sent against him and achieved a nominal independence. In the remaining years of

the reign of Artaxerxes a series of rebellions occurred in the outlying provinces, the

existence of which and the success of some indicated clearly the moribund condition of the


After a long reign of forty-six years Artaxerxes died, and was succeeded by OCHUS, who,

with the connivance and aid of Parysatis, had first cleared the field of claimants by the

murder of all his brothers and rivals. The bloody road by which he went to the throne was

not more bloody than the scepter which he wielded. As soon as, he wais king he instigated

a series of murders by which nearly all the princes and a large number of princesses were

destroyed. The next matter to which he turned his attention was the re-conquest of Egypt,

which now for about fifty years had held a nominal independence. At the head of a great

army Ochus marched into the Nile valley, where he was met and signally defeated by the

Pharaoh Nectanebo.

Immediately after this a revolt broke out in Phoenicia, and the ancient city of Sidon

recovered her independence. But Ochus, in the midst of what seemed universal

dismemberment, was undismayed. He re- organized an immense army, consisting of three

hundred and thirty thousand men, and again advanced into Egypt. This