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forthwith, and took Catana. That was all which was
done while he was there ; for he was fbon after re-
called by the Athenians, to take his trial. At firft, (as



we before faid) there were only fbme flight fufpicions
offered againfl Alcibiades, and accufations by certain
ilaves and Grangers. But afterwards in his abfence
his enemies attacked hirn more fiercely, and in their
accufation joined the breaking the images with the pro-
phanation of the holy myfteries, as if both had been
committed in purfuance of the fame confpiracy for chang-
ing the government. Thereupon the people imprifon-
ed all that were accufed, without diftinclion, and with-
out hearing them, and repented exceedingly, that hav-
ing fuch pregnant evidence, they had not immediately
brought Alcibiades to his trial, and given judgment a-

O ' f O <J O

gainft him. And if any of his friends or acquaintance
fell into the peoples hands, whilfl they v/ere in this fury,
they were fure to be ufed very feverely. Thucydides
has omitted to name his accufers ; but others mention
Dioclides and Tcucer : amongfl who is Phrynicrms the
comic poet, who introduces one fpeaking thus :

Dear Hermes, of a fecond fall take heed;
A fecond Dioclides willfucceed.
Not your's alone will be the dire difgrace ;
Wfre all undone, if you Jhould f cratch your face.

To which he makes Mercury return this anfwer :

Be not concerned my friend; you /ball not fee
Such rogues as Teucer ever thrive by me.

The truth is, his accufers alledged nothing that was cer-
tain againft him. One of them being afked, " How he
" knew the men who defaced the images ? faid, He faw
" them by the light of the moon ;" in which he was
grofly miftaken ; for it was juft new moon when the
fa6t was committed. This made all men of underfland-
ing cry out upon the thing as a contrivance ; but the
people were as eager as ever to receive further accufa-
tions ; nor was their firft heat at all abated, but they in-
ftantly feized and imprifoned every one that was ac-
cufed. Amongft thofe who were detained in prifon in or-
der to their trials, was Andocides the orator, whom the
hiftorian Helknicus reports to be defcended from Ulyfles.

Hs Hs

u6 n< LIFE of

He. was always looked upon as an enemy to the popu-
lar government, and a favourer of oligarchy. What
chiefly caufed him to be fufpecled of defacing the ima-
ges, was that the great Mercury, which was placed near
his houfe, and was an ancient monument of the tribe
of yEgeides, was almoft the only ftatue, cf all the re-
markable ones, which remained entire. For this rea-
fon it is now called the Murcury of Andocides ; all men
giving it that name, though the infcription evidently
Ihows the contrary. Among others who were pri loners
upon the lame account, was one Timaeus, a perfon not
equal to Andocides in quality, but very extraordinary
both for parts and boldnefs; with him Andocides con-
tracted a particular acquaintance and friendfhip. He per-
fuaded Andocides to accufe himfelf and fome few others
of this crime, urging to him " that upon his confeflion,
" he would be iecure of his pardon, by the decree of
" the people, whereas the event of judgment is uncer-
" tain to all men ; but to great perlbns, as he was mcft
44 terrible. So that it was better for him, if he regarded
" himfelf, to fave his life by a falfity, than to luffer an in-
" famous death, as one really guilty of the crime. And
" if he had a regard to the public good, it was com-
" mendable to facrihce a few fufpefted men, and by that
44 means to refcue many excellent perfons from the fury
44 of the people." The argument ufed by Timaeus fo far
prevailed upon Andocides, as to make him accufe himfelf
and fome others ; and thereupon, according to the decree
of the people, he obtained his pardon ; and all the per-
fons who were named by him, (except fome few who
laved themfelves by flight) fufFered death. To gain the
greater credit to his information, he accufed his own
lervants amongft others. But notwithstanding this,
the peoples anger was not appeafed ; and being now
no longer diverted by thofe who had violated the
images, they were at leifure to pour out their whole
rage upon Alcibiades. And in conclufion, they fent the
galley called the Salaminian, to recal him. But they


(2) All the myftery in thofe lay in expofing to view certain
ceremonies, and in that initiation, things, which were ufually con-

A L C I B I A D E S. n7

prudently commanded thofe that were fent not to
life violence, nor to feize upon his perfon, but to ad-
drefs themfelver, to him in the mildeft terms, requir-
ing him to follow them to Athens, in order to take
his trial, and make his defence before the people : for
indeed they feared a mutiny and a fedition in the army
in an enemy's country, which it would have been eafy
for Alcibiades to effect, if he had pleaftd , for the fol-
diers were difpirited upon his departure, expecting for
the future tedious delays, and that the war would be in-
dolently protracted byNicias, when Alcibiades, who was
the (pur to action, was taken away. For though Lama-
chus was a foldier and a man of courage, yet being poor, he
wanted authority and refpect in the army. Alcibiades, jufl
upon his departure, prevented Meilina from falling into the
hands of the Athenians. There were fome in that city,
who were upon the point of delivering it up ; but he know-
ing theperfons, difcovered them to fome friends of theSy-
racufans, and thereby defeated the whole contrivance.
When he arrived at Thuria, he went on fhore, and con-
cealing himfelf there, efcaped thofe who fearched after
him. But to one who knew him, and afked him, " If
* c he durft not truft his native country ?" he made anfwer,
*' Yes I dare truft her for all other things ; but when
" the matter concerns my life, I will not truft my mother,
" left me mould rniftake, and imwarmgly throw in a
" black bean inftead of a white one." When afterwards he
was told, that the aflembly had pronounced judgment
of death againft him, he anfwered, " I will make them
*' fenfible that I am yet alive."

The information againft him wa.s conceived in this

" TheiTalus, the fon of Cimon, of the ward of Laciades,
" doth accufe Alcibiades, the (on of Clinias, of the ward
** of Scambonides, of having offended the goddefles Ceres
"and Proferpine, by repreienting in cjerifion iJie holy
" myfteries, and mowing them to his companions in his
" own houfe : where (2) being habited in fuch robes ssare
*' ufed by the chief prieft, when he (hews the holy things,

cealed, and which the Latins called Ccreris Mundum.

H 3 (3) Eumol-

i;8 The L I F E of

"he named himfelf the chief prieft, Polition the torch-
* c bearer, and Theodorus, of the ward of Phegea, thehe-
" raid, and faluted the reft of his company as priefts and
*' initiated perfons. All which was done contrary to the
" laws and inftitutions of the (3) Eumolpides, and of the
" priefts and other officers of the holy myfteries of the
"temple at Eleufis." He was condemned upon his not
appearing, his eftate was confiicated, and it was decreed,
that all the priefts and prieftefles mould folemnly curfe
him- But one of them, Theano, the daughter of Menon,
of the ward of Agraulos, is faid to have oppofed that
part of the decree, faying, " That her holy office obliged,,
" her to make prayers, but not execrations."

Alcibiades lying under thefe heavy decrees and fen-
tences, when firft he fled from Thuria, patted over into
Peloponnefus, and remained ibme time at Argos. But
being there in fear of his enemies, and feeing himfelf
utterly rejeded by his native country, he fent to the
Spartans, defiring their protection, and alluring them,
that he would make them amends by his future fer-
vices for all the mifchief he had done them while he
was their enemy. The Spartans giving him the iecu-
rity he defired, he went thither chearfully, an<J was
well received. At his firft coming he prevailed upon
them without faither delay to fend fuccours to the Sy-
racufans-, and he quickened and excited them fo, '(4)
that they forthwith difpatched Gylippus into Sicily at the
head of an army, utterly to deftroy the forces which
the Athenians had in Sicily. Another thing which he
perfuaded them to do, was to make war alib upon the
Athenians on the fide of Peloponnefus. But the third
thing, and the moft important of all the reft, was to
make them fortify Decelea, which above all other


(3) Eumolpus was the firft that ceeded in the fun<Sb'on, were not-

digefted and fettled thofe myfte- withstanding called Eumolpides.
rics of Ceres, for which reafon (4) The reader may find in

the fuperintendency of them was Thiicydides, the fpeech Aleibiades

always referved to him and his mack in full council to the Laee-

defcendants ; and i;\ failure of dacmopians, to induce them to affift

thofe defendants, tbey who fuo the Sicilians, to attack Athens,


things {heightened and diftreffed the commonwealth of

As Alcibiades gained efteem by the fervices which he
rendered to the publick, fo he was no lefs refpected for
his manner of living in private, whereby he wholly cap-
tivated the people. For, he conformed himfelf intirely
to the Spartan cuftoms ; fo that thofe who faw that he
was fhaved clofe to the fkin, that he bathed in cold wa-
ter, fed upon a coarfe cake,*and ufed their black broth,
would have doubted, or rather could not have believed,
that he ever had a cook in his houie, had ever ieen a
perfumer, or had worn a robe of Miiefian purple. For
he had, as it is faid, this peculiar talent and art,
whereby he gained upon all men, that he could pre-
fently conform himfelf to their faihions and way of liv-
ing, more eafily than a chamaslion can change his co-
lours. For there is one colour, which, they fay, the
chamaelion cannot affume; that is the white ; but Alci-
biades, whether he converfed with debauched or virtu-
ous perfons, was ftill capable of imitating and comply-
ing with them. At Sparta, he was diligent at his exer-
cifes, frugal, and referved. In Ionia he was luxurious,
frolickfome, and lazy. In Thrace he was always drink-
ing, or on horfeback. And when he tranfafted with
Tifaphernes, the King of Perfia's Lieutenant, he exceed-
ed the Perijans themlelves in magnificence and pomp.
Not that his natural difpofition changed (b eafily, nor
that his manners were fo very variable; but being fen-
fible that if he purfued his own inclinations he might
give offence to thofe with whom he had occafion to
converfe, he therefore transformed himfelf into fuch
fhapes, and took up fuch falhions, as he obterved to
be moil agreeable to them. So that at Lacedcemon, if a
man judged by the outward appearance, he would fay


and fortify Decelea. That fortrcfs levy fines upoi) their demefnes

made the Lacedaemonians matters or receive aiililance from their

of the country, infomuch that the neighbours. Beiuies Dccelca be-

Athenians were deprived of the came a receptacle for -all the

profits that accrued to them from rualecontento, and abettors of the

their filver rnipes at Laurium, Spartaris It was fortified in the

nor could they gather rents, or lad year of the gth Olympiad.

H 4 (j) This

120 The LIFE of

of him, according to the proverb, "This is rot the fon of
u Achilles, but Achilles himfelf," and would have imagin-
ed he had been brought up in the auftere difcipline of
Lycurgus. But he that looked more nearly into his man-
ners, would cry out in the words of the poet,

Still the fame woman tbatjbc ever izas (5).

Fcr while King Agis was abfent, and abroad with the
army, he corrupted his wife Timaea, and got her with
child. Nor did fhe deny it; for \vhen fhe was brought

*/ C7

to-bed of a fon, though fhe called him in publick Leo-
tychides, yet among her confidants and attendants, fhe
would whifper that his name ought to be Alcibiades ;
to fuch a degree was fhe tranfported by her paflion for
him. But he, on the other fide, would fay in fport,
lie had not done this out of revenge or luft, but that his
race might one day come to reign over the Lacedaemo-
nians. There were many who acquainted Agis with
thefe things; but the time itfelf gave the greateft con-
firmation to the ftory. For Agis being frightened with
an earthquake, fled out of bed from his wife, and for
ten months after never lay with her ; and therefore
Leotychides being born after thofe ten months, he would
not acknowledge him for his fon, which was the reafon
that at laft he never came to the kingdom.

After the defeat which the Athenians received in Sicily,
ambafladors were difpatched to Sparta, at once from Chi-
os, and Lefbos, and Cyzicum, to fignify their purpofe of
deferring the interefts of the Athenians. The Baeotians
interpofed in favour of the Lefbians, and Pharnabazus in-
terelled himfelf for the Cyzicenians ; but the Lacedaemo-
nians, at the perfuafion of Alcibiades, chofc to aflifl thofe
of Chios before all others. He himfelf alfo went in-
ftantly to fea, and procured almoft all Ionia to revolt
at once ; and joining himfelf to the Lacedaemonian gene-
rals, did great mifchief to the Athenians. But Agis was
his enemy, hating him for having difhonoured his wife,
v/hich he relented highly, and alfo not being able to


(:;) This is fpolcen of Hermione licr Hifcovcring the fame vanity,
in the Creftes of Euripides, upon and the fame folicitude about


A L C I B I A D E S. I2l

bear patiently the glory he acquired ; for mod of the
great actions which fucceeded well, were univerfally
afcribed to Alcibiades. Others alfo of the mod power-
ful and ambitious amongd the Spartans, were envious
of Alcibiades, and by their practices prevailed with the
magiftrates in the city to fend orders into Ionia that he
fhould be killed. But Alcibiades having fecret intelli-
gence of it, rind being much terrified, though he com-
municated all affairs to the Lacedaemonians, yet took,
care not to fall into their hands. At laft he retired to
Tifaphernes, the King of Perfia's Lieutenant, for his fe-
curity, and immediately became the firft and moft con-
fiderab'e perfon about him. For this Barbarian not be-
ing himfelf fincere, but a man of artifice and deceit
admired his addrefs and wonderful fubtilty. And in-
deed his carriage was fo agreeable in their daily conver-
fations and pleafures, that it could not but fbften the
word humour, and take with the roughed diipofition.
Even thofe who feared and envied him, could not but
be pieafed with him, and feel feme affection for him
when they faw him, and were in his company. And
Tifaphernes himfelf, who was otherwife fierce, and above
all other Perfians hated the Greeks, yet was fo won by
the flatteries of Alcibiades, that he let himfelf even to
exceed him in civility, fo that he gave the name of
Alcibiades to one of his gardens which exceeded all the
reft in the beauty of its dreams, and meadows, and the
elegance and magnificence of the various buildings
which it contained ; and afterwards every one called it
by that name. Thus Aicibiades, quitting the intereft
of the Spartans, becaufe he could no longer truft them
and ftood in fear of Agis, endeavoured to do them all
ill offices, and render them odious to Tifaphernes, who
by his means was hindered from afliding them vigor-
oufly, and from finally ruining the Athenians. For his
advice was to furnifh them but fparingly with monev
whereby he would wear them out, nr;d" confume them
infenfibly ; and when they had waded their drength


Iier beauty in advanced years tna? fr.c had v;her. fhe was

(6) Th*

122 fbe LIFE of

upon one another they would both become an caly
prey to his King. Tifaphernes readily purfued his coun-
lel, and fo openly exprefled the value and efteem which
he. had for him, that Alcibiades was confidered highly by
the Grecians of all parties. The Athenians now, in the
midft of their misfortunes, repented of their fevere fcn-
tence againft him. And he, on the other fide, began
to be troubled for them, and to fear, lead if that com-
monwealth were utterly deflrcyed, he mould fall into
the hands of the Lacedaemonians, his mortal enemies.
At that time the whole flrength of the Athenians was at
Samos : and their fleet which rode there was employed
in reducing fuch as had revolted, and in protecting the
reft of their territories ; for as yet they were in a man-
ner equal to their enemies at fea. But they flood in fear
of Tifaphernes, and the Phoenician fleet, confiding of
a hundred and fifty galleys, which they expected in a
fhort time ; and if thofe came, there remained then no
hopes for the commonwealth of Athens. When Alci-
biades underftood this, he fent fecretly to the chiefs of
the Athenians, who were then at Samos, giving them
hopes that he would make Tifaphernes their friend ; not
with any defign to gratify the people, whom he would
never truft; but out of his refpedr. to the nobility, i
like men of courage, they durft attempt to reprefs the
infolence of the people, and by taking the government
upon themfelves, would endeavour to fave the city
from ruin. All of them gave a ready ear to the pro-
pofal made by Alcibiads, except only Phrynicus, one of
the generals, who was of the ward of Dirades, he
oppoled him, fufpecting as the truth was, that Alci-
biades concerned not himfelf, whether the government
were in the people or the nobility, but only fought by
any means to make way for his return into his native
country, and to that end inveighed againft the people,
thereby to gain the nobility, and to infmuate hirnfelf
into their good opinion. But Phrynicus finding his
counfel rejected, and being now a declared enemy of
Alcibiades, gave fecret intelligence of this to Aftyochus,
the enemy's admiral, cautioning him to beware of Al- .



cibiades, and to look upon him as a double-dealer, and
one that offered himfelf to both fides ; not underftand-
ing all this while, that one traitor was making difco,-
veries to another. For Aftyochus, who u as zealous to
gain the favour of Tifaphernes, observing the great
credit which Alcibiades had with him, revealed to Alci-
biades all that Phrynicus had laid againfthim. Alcibiades
prefently difpatched away fome perlbns to Samos, to ac-
cufe Phrynicus of the treachery. Upon this, all the com-
manders were enraged at Phrynicus, and fet themfelves
againfthim ; and he feeing no other way to extricate him-
felf from the prefent danger, attempted to remedy one
evil by a greater. For he fent away to Aftyochus, to
reproach him for betraying him, and to make an offer
at the fame time to deliver into his hands both the army
and the navy of the Athenians. But neither did this
treafon of Phrynicus bring any damage to the Athe-
nians, becaufe Aftyochus repeated his treachery, and re-
vealed alfo this propofal of Phrynicus to Alcibiades.
This was foreieen by Phrynicus, who fearing a fecond
accufation from Alcibiades, to prevent him, advertifed
the Athenians before-hand, that the enemy was ready to
fail, in order to furprize them, and therefore advifed
therp to fortify their camp, and to be in readinefs to
go aboard their (hips. While the Athenians were intent
upon thefe things, they received other letters from Alci-
biades, admoniming them to beware of Phrynicus, as
one who defjgned to betray their fleet to the enemy ; to
which they then gave no credit at all, conceiving that
Alcibiades, who knew perfectly the counfels and prepa-
rations of the enemy, made ufe of that knowledge, in
order to jrnpofe upon them in this falfe accufation of
Phrynicus. Yet afterwards when Phrynicus was ftabbed
with a dagger in the market-place by one of the foldiers
under Hermon's command, who was then upon guard,
the Athenians entering into an examination of the caufe,
folemnly condemned Phrynicus of treafon and decreed
crowns to Hermon and his afibciatcs. And now the
friends -of Alcibiades carrying all before them at Samos,
difpatched Pyfander to Athens, tp njdeavour a change


124 The L IF E of

in the ftate, and to encourage the nobility to take upon
themfelves the government, and to deftroy the repub-
lick i reprefenting to them, that upon thefe terms Al-
cibiades would procure that Tifaphernes fhould become
their friend and confederate. This was the colour and
the pretence made ufe of by thofe, who defired to re-
duce the government of Athens to an oligarchy. But as
foon as they prevailed, and had got the adminiftration
of affairs into their hands, they took upon themfelves
the name of the five thoufand -, (whereas indeed they
were but four hundred) (6) and began to flight Alcibia-
des extremely, and to profecute the war with lefs vigour
than formerly ; partly becaufe they durft not yet truft
the citizens, who were very averfe to this chaage ; and
partly becaufe they thought the Lacedaemonians, who
were always favourers of oligarchy would now preis
them lefs vehemently.

The people in the city were terrified into a fubmifllon,
many of thofe who had dared openly to oppofe the four
hundred having been put to death. But they who were
at Samos, w.ere enraged as foon as they heard this news,
and refolved to fet fail inflantly for the Piraeus. And
fending for Alcibiades, they declared him General, re-
quiring him to lead them on to deftroy thefe tyrants.
But in that juncture he did not act like one raifed on a
fudden by the favour of the multitude, nor would he
yield and comply in every thing, as one who thought
himfelf obliged entirely to gratify and fubmit to thofe
who from a fugitive and an exile, had created him Ge-
neral of fo great an army, and given him the command
of fuch a fleet : but, as became a great Captain, he
oppofed himfelf to the precipitate relblutions to which
their rage prompted them, and by reftraining them
from fo great an error as they were about to commit,
he manifeftly faved the commonwealth. For if they
had returned to Athens, all Ionia, the Hellefpont, and


(6) The four hundred, that an affembly of the people fliould
they might not feem to exclude be held occafionally, confuting of
th e people entirely from a (hare five thoufand, who fhould have
in the government, appointed that the fame right they formerly had


A L C I B I A D E S. 125

the iflands, would have fallen into the enemies hands
without oppofition, while the Athenians, engaged in a
civil war, were deftroying one another within their own
walls. It was Alcibiades principally who prevented all
this mifchief ; for he did not only ufe perfuafions to the
whole army, and inform them of the danger, but ap-
plied himfelf to them one by one, entreating lome, and
forcibly retraining others. And herein Thrafybulus of
Stira, by his afliduity, and the loudnefs of his voice
(in which hefurpafied all the Athenians) was ofconfider-
able ufe to him. Another great fervice which Alci-
biades did for them, was, his undertaking that thePhae-
nician fleet, which the Lacedaemonians exp cled to be fent
to them by the King of Perfia, fhould either come in
aid of the Athenians, or other wife mould not come at
all. He went on board with all expedition in order to
perform this, and fo managed the thing with Tifapher-
nes, that though thofe fhips were already come as far
as Afpendos, yet they advanced no further ; fo that the
Lacedaemonians were difappointed of them. It was by
both fides agreed, that this fleet was diverted by the
procurement of Alcibiades. But the Lacedaemonians
openly accufed him, that he had advifed this Barbarian
to fland Hill, and fuffer the Grecians to wafte and de-
ilroy one another. For it was evident that theacceflion of
io great a force to either party, would have made them
mafters of the fea.

Soon after this the four hundred ufurpers were driven
out, the friends of Alcibiades vigoroufly aflifling thofe
who were for the popular government. A'.-.d now the
people in the city not only defired, but commanded
Alcibiades to return home from his exile. However he
difdained to owe his return to the mere companion and
favour of the people, and therefore refolved to come
back with glory, and upon the merit of fome eminent
fervice. To this end he failed from Samos with a few


to vote and determine concerning thoriry, becaufe thefe aflemblies
fuch things as ihould be propofed were held only at iuch times and
to them. But notwithilanding upon Iuch affairs as were agree-
thisj the peopl? had no real au- able to the four hundred.

("0 Plutarch

12 6 We LI E of

fhips, and cruized on thefeaof Cnidos, and about the

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