15 Meanwhile, to gain the favour of the conqueror, Darius was confined in golden fetters24 and chains in a village of the Parthians named Thara; the immortal gods, I suppose, ordaining that the empire of the Persians should have its termination in the country of those who were to succeed them in dominion.25 Alexander, hastening his march, arrived there on the following day, when he found that Darius had been conveyed from the place in the night, in a covered vehicle. Directing his army to follow him, he pursued the flying prince with six thousand cavalry. On his march he had several severe encounters, and advanced many miles without finding any traces of Darius. But while he was allowing the horses time to rest, one of the soldiers, going to a neighbouring spring, found Darius in the vehicle, wounded in several places, but still alive. One of the Persian captives being brought forward, the dying prince, knowing from his voice that he was his countryman, said that “he had at least this comfort in his present sufferings, that he should speak to one who could understand him, and that he should not utter his last words in vain.” He then desired that the following message should be given to Alexander: that “he died with out having done him any acts of kindness, but a debtor to him for the greatest, since he had found his feelings towards his mother and children to be those of a prince, not of a foe; that he had been more happy in his enemy than in his relations, for by his enemy life had been granted to his mother and children, but taken from himself by his relatives, to whom he had given both life and kingdoms; and that such a requital must therefore be made them as his conqueror should please. For himself, that he made the only return to Alexander which he could at the point of death, by praying to the gods above and below, and the powers that protected kings, that the empire of the world might fall to his lot. That he desired the favour of a decent rather than a magnificent funeral; and, as to avenging his death, it was not his cause alone that was concerned, but precedent, and the common cause of all kings, which it would be both dishonourable and dangerous for him to neglect; since, in regard to vengeance, the interests of justice were affected, and, in regard to precedent, those of the general safety. To this effect he gave him his right hand, as the only pledge of a king’s faith to be conveyed to Alexander.” Then, stretching out his hand, he expired.
When this intelligence was communicated to Alexander, he went to see the body of the dead monarch, and contemplated with tears a death so unsuitable to his dignity. He also directed his corpse to be buried as that of a king, and his relics to be conveyed to the sepulchres of his ancestors.
1 That is, Greece.
2 So called from Lyncestis, a region bordering on Macedonia, the inhabitants of which are called LUGKH/STAI by Thucydides. Concerning this Alexander, see Quint. Curt. vii. 1; Diod. Sic. xvii. 32, 80 ; Arrian. i. 25; Justin, xi. 7; xii. 14.Wetzel.
3 Caranum fratrem, &c.] Only his half-brother; he was the son of Cleopatra, ix. 5, 7.
4 See vii. 6.
5 The Aeacidae were the descendants of Aeacus, the father of Peleus, and grandfather of Achilles, whose son Pyrrhus is said to have been the first of the kings of Epirus, from whom Olympias, Alexander’s mother, was descended.Wetzel. She was the daughter of Neoptolemus, king of the Molossi. See vii. 6.
6 Credulitatis.] Tauchnitz’s edition has crudelitatis, by an error, apparently of the press.
7 That is, Hercules and Bacchus.Wetzel.
8 Quorum pretium non ex ementium commodo, sed ex inimicorum odio extenditur.] “The greatness of the price asked for them,” says Berneccerus, “was in proportion to the eagerness with which they were bought by their enemies.” If anyone of the purchasers wished to get an old enemy into his power to torture him as a slave, he offered a high price for him.
9 Among whom was Attalus. Compare ch. ii. init.Wetzel.
10 Tripudianti similis.] The tripudium was a sort of dance in which the performers beat the earth with their feet in measured tread. Cicero, de Div. ii. 34, supposes the derivation to be from terra and pavire: terripavium, terripudium, tripudium. Cicero, indeed, is here speaking of the corn that fell from the beaks of the sacred chickens when they were feeding; and Turnebus and others accordingly suppose that his derivation is confined to that signification of the word, and that the dance is derived from ter and pes; agreeably to Horace’s Gaudet invisam pepulisse fossor ter pede terram, Od. iii. 18, 15, and Ovid’s Et viridem celeri ter pede pulsat humum, Fast. vi. 329. Compare Lucret. v. 1393, seqq.
11 Under Alexander and Perdiccas against the IIlyrians.Wetzel.
12 Ordines duxit.] A phrase borrowed from the military affairs of the Romans, among whom ordines ducere meant “to be a centurion.”
13 Principia castrorum.] See note on Florus, iii. 10, Bohn’s Classical
14 Campis Adrastiae.] Through which flows the river Granicus, from which the battle is generally named.
15 He was, however, afterwards put to death. See xii. 14, init.
16 Bubus conductis.] It is specified that they were hired, to denote his poverty.
17 About fifty-seven miles and a half, the Greek stadium being equal to 606 feet 9 inches. See Dr. Smith’s Classical Dict. sub voc.
18 Cum infulis. ] Denoting that they were suppliants.
19 Tyro vetere.] Which had been besieged for thirteen years, and at last taken by Nebuchadnezzar, B.C. 590. The new city of Tyre had been built on an island.Wetzel.
20 Not she herself, but her successors, extended their dominion over a great part of Africa.
21 Or rather, after being besieged seven months, they were forced to surrender. See Diod. Sic. xvii. 40-47; Q. Curt. iv. 2-4. Compare also Justin, xviii. 3, sub fin.Wetzel.
22 Isaac Vossius conjectures Syria, as Cilicia had been already taken.
23 Very similar to what is said by Agamemnon, Il. ii, of the comparative numbers of the Greeks and Trojans:
So small their numbers, that if wars were ceas’d,
And Greece triumphant held a gen’ral feast,
All rank’d by tens; whole decads, when they dine,
Must want a Trojan slave to pour the wine.Pope.
24 See note on vi. 11.
25 The Parthians, revolting from the Syrians, founded a new empire, B.C. 255, See xli. 4.Wetzel.