Sivut kuvina

three hundred talents, one million bushels of corn, and a sufficient quantity of timber for building ten galleys, of ten benches of oars, and as many more of three benches, besides an infinite quantity of wood for other buildings, all which donations were accompanied with three thousand talents for erecting the colossus anew. Antigonus, Seleucus, Prusias, Mithridates, and all the princes, as well as cities, signalized their liberality on this occasion. Even private persons emulated each other in sharing in this glorious act of humanity ; and historians have recorded, that a lady, whose name was Chryseis,& and who truly merited that appellation, furnished from her own substance, one hundred thousand bushels of corn. “Let the princes of these times," says Polybius, “who imagine they have done gloriously in giving four or five thousand crowns, only consider, how inferior their generosity is to that we have now described.” Rhodes, in consequence of these liberalities, was reestablished in a few


in a more opulent and splendid state than she had ever experienced before, if we only except the colossus.

This colossus was a brazen statue of a prodigious size, as I have formerly observed ; and some authors have affirmed that the money arising from the contributions already mentioned,amounted to five times as much as the loss which the Rhodians had sustained. b This people, instead of employing the sums they had received, in replacing that statue, according to the intention of the donors, pretended that the oracle of Delphos had forbid it, and given them a command to preserve that money for other purposes, by which they enriched themselves. The colossus lay neglected on the ground, for the space of eight hundred and ninety four years ; at the expiration of which, that is to say, in the six hundred and fifty third year of our Lord, Moawyas,' the sixth caliph or emperor of the Saracens, made himself master of Rhodes, and sold this statue to a Jewish merchant, who loaded nine hundred camels with the metal ; which, computed by eight quintals for each load, after a deduction of the diminution the statue had sustained by rust, and very probably by theft, amounted to more than thirty six thousand pounds sterling, or seven thousand two hundred quintals.

5 Chryseis signifies golden.

4 Strab. I. 14, p. 652.

Zonar. sub regno Constantis Imperat. et Cedrenus.







This book includes the history of twenty seven years, during which Ptolemy Philopator reigned.




* I OBSERVED in the preceding book, that Ptolemy Philopator had succeeded Ptolemy Evergetes, his father, in Egypt. On the other side, Seleucus Callinicus was dead in Parthia. He had left two sons, Seleucus and Antiochus; and the first, who was the elder, succeeded to his father's throne, and assumed the sirname of 5 Ceraunus, or the Thunder, which

* A. M. 3778. Ant. J. C. 226. Polyb. 1. iv. p. 315, et l. v. p. 386. Hieron. in Daniel. Appian. in Syriac. p. 131. Justin. l. xix. c. 1.



no way suited his character; for he was a very weak prince, both in body and mind, and never did any actions that corresponded with the idea of that

His reign was short, and his authority but ill established, either in the army or the provinces. What prevented his losing it entirely, was, that Acheus, his cousin, son to Andromachus, his mother's brother, a man of courage and abilities, assumed the management of his affairs, which his father's ill conduct had reduced to a very low ebb. As for Andromachus, he was taken by Ptolemy, in a war with Callinicus, and kept prisoner in Alexandria during all his reign, and part of the following: * Attalus, king of Pergamus, having seized upon

all Asia Minor, from Mount Taurus as far as the Hellespont, Seleucus marched against him, and left Hermias the Carian regent of Syria. Acheus accompanied him in that expedition, and did him all the good services the ill state of his affairs would admit.

Having no money to pay the forces, and the king being despised by the soldiers for his weakness, Nicanor and Apaturius, two of the chief officers, formed a conspiracy against him during his absence in Phrygia, and poisoned him. However, Acheus revenged that horrid action, by putting to death the two ring lead. ers, and all who had engaged in their plot. He acted afterwards with so much prudence and valor, with regard to the army, that he kept the soldiers in their obedience ; and prevented Attalus from taking advantage of this accident, which, but for his excellent


A. M. 3780. Ant. J. C. 224.

d A. M. 3781. Ant. J. C. 223.

In the present

conduct, would have lost the Syrian empire, all it still possessed on that side.

Seleucus dying without children, the army offered the crown to Acheus, and several of the provinces did the same. However, he had the generosity to refuse it at that time, though he afterwards thought himself obliged to act in a different manner. conjuncture, he not only refused the crown, but preserved it carefully for the lawful heir, Antiochus, brother of the deceased king, who was but in his fifteenth year. Seleucus, at his setting out for Asia Minor, had sent him into Babylonia,' where he was when his brother died. He was now brought from thence to Antioch, where he ascended the throne, and enjoyed it thirty six years. For his illustrious actions he has been sirnamed the Great. Acheus, to secure the succession in his favour, sent a detachment of the army to him in Syria, with Epigenes, one of the late king's most experienced generals. The rest of the forces he kept for the service of the state, in that part of the country where he himself was.

'As soon as Antiochus was possessed of the crown, he sent Molo and Alexander, two brothers, into the east ; the former as governor of Media, and the latter of Persia. Acheus was appointed to preside over the provinces of Asia Minor. Epigenes had the command of the troops which were kept about the king's person; and Hernias, the Carian, was declared his prime

* To Seleucia, which was in that province, and the capital of the east, instead of Babylon, which was no longer in being, or at least was uninhabited.

fA. M. 3782. Ant. J. C. 222. Polyb. I. 4. p. 386, VOL. 6.


« EdellinenJatka »