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ses and the prophets Esay, Jeremy, Ezekiel, Daniel, and Esdras in many places confirm: which also St. Jerome upon Jeremy the twenty-fifth, upon Daniel the eighth, and in his Hebrew Questions approveth, saying, Elam a quo Elamitæ principes Persidis ; “ Elam, of whom were the Ela“ mites princes of Persia.”
And that city which the author of the second book of the n Maccabees calleth Persepolis, is by the author of the • first called Elimais, but is now called Siras, being the same which Antiochus, for the great riches thereof, twice attempted in vain, and to his great dishonour. And yet this city, now called Siras, and in Antiochus's time Persepolis, was not the old Persepolis; for Alexander, at the request of Thais the harlot, burnt it.
The first king of Persia to us known, if we follow the current of authors interpreting the fourteenth chapter of Genesis, was Chedorlaomer, who lived with Amraphel, or Ninias, and joined with him in the war against those Arabians, who was afterwards extinguished by the forces of Abraham.
Of Cyrus's name and first actions. As touching the name of Cyrus, there are who frame diverse opinions: as first, out of Strabo P, who saith that it was taken from a river which watereth Persia; this great prince being formerly called Agradatus: secondly, out of Herodotus 9, that it signified a father : thirdly, out of Plutarch, that Cyrus in the Persian tongue signified the sun.
Howsoever the name is to be interpreted, the great Cyrus was neither the first nor last that was so called ; and therefore we may boldly infer, that it was not given to him as an 2 Mac.ix. o Mac. vi. p Strab. 1. 15. Herod. 1. 3. Plnt. in Vit. Artax.
attribute, but as a customary name. As for the place of Strabo, methinks it may well enough be interpreted as deriving the name of the river from the king, rather than contrariwise; and that of Herodotus plainly shows, that Cyrus for his goodness was called father, not that his name did signify so much.
This is sure, that the prophet Esay, almost two hundred years before Cyrus was born, gives him that name; Thus · saith the Lord unto Cyrus his anointed, &c.
Before the conquest of Babylon, the victories which Cyrus obtained were many and great; among which, the conquest of Lydia, and other provinces thereto subject, together with the taking of Croesus himself, are not recounted by Eusebius, Orosius, and others, but placed among his later achievements, whose opinion for this difference of time is founded upon two reasons; namely, that of the Median there is no mention in that last war against Crcesus; and that the obtaining of Sardis is referred to the fifty-eighth Olympiad, and the glorious victory which Cyrus had over BabyJon, to the fifty-fifth Olympiad.
The former of which might have been used (and was by the Greeks) to exclude the Medes from the honour of having won Babylon itself, which in due place I have answered. The latter seems to have reference to the second war which Cyrus made upon Lydia, when it rebelled ; at which time be so established his former conquest, as after that time these nations never offered to revolt. Wherefore I like better in this particular to believe with Herodotus, whom the most of chronologers follow, and find the enterprise of Sardis to precede that of Babylon.
SECT. II. Of Cræsus the king of Lydia, who made war upon Cyrus. I HAVE in the last book spoken somewhat of Crosus, of his race and predecessors, as also of those kings which governed Lydia in more ancient times; of which the first (to profane authors known) was Lydus the son of Atys; which family extinguished, the kingdom was by an oracle
conferred upon Argon, descended from Hercules, whereof there were twenty-two generations, Candaules being the last, who by shewing his fair wife naked to Gyges his favourite, he was by the same Gyges (thereto urged upon peril of his own life by the queen) the next day slain : which done, Gyges enjoyed both the queen and the kingdom of Lydia, and left the same to Atys his son, who was father to Sadyattes, the father of Halyattes, (who thrust the 'Cimmerians out of Asia,) and Halyattes begat Croesus: which five kings, of a third race, enjoyed that kingdom one hundred and seventy years. Halyattes the father of Cræsus was an undertaking prince, and after he had continued a war against Cyaxares the Median, a prince very powerful, and maintained it six years, a peace was concluded upon equal conditions between them.
Astyages the son of Cyaxares, and grandfather to Cyrus, thought himself greatly honoured by obtaining Aryenes, Cræsus's sister, whom he married.
But Cræsus so far enlarged his dominions after his father's death, as he was nothing inferior in territory to any king or monarch of that age; of which, about that time, there were four in effect of equal strength; to wit, the Median, the Babylonian, the Egyptian, and the Lydian; only Nabuchodonosor, after he had joined Phænicia, Palestina, and Egypt to his empire, had thenceforward no competitor during his own life.
But Crosus, notwithstanding the men and treasure spent in the quarrel of the Babylonians, he yet mastered Æolis, Doris, and Ionia, provinces possessed by the Greeks in Asia the Less, adjoining to Lydia; gave law to the Phrygians, Bithynians, Carians, Mysians, Paphlagonians, and other nations. And that he also enforced the Ephesians to acknowledge him, notwithstanding they compassed their city with Diana's girdle, s Herodotus witnesseth. Moreover, · Athenæus out of Berosus (which also Strabo confirmeth) makes report of a signal victory which Crosus obtained against the Saceans, a nation of the Scythians, in memory whereof Herod. 1. 1. p. 3, 4, 5,
· Herod. l. 5.
Athen, I. 14. C. 17.
the Babylonians his allies did yearly celebrate a feast, which they called Sacæa: all which he performed in fourteen years.
And being now confident in the continuance of his good fortune, and envious of Cyrus's fame, doubting also that his prosperous undertakings might in the end grow perilous to himself, he consulted with the oracle of Apollo, whom he presented with marvellous rich gifts, what success he might hope for against Cyrus, if he undertook him: from whom he received this riddle; Cræsus passing over the river Halys shall dissolve a great dominion. For the Devil, being doubtful of the success, paid him with merchandise of both sides like, and might be inverted either way to the ruin of Persia or of his own Lydia.
Cræsus's expedition against Cyrus. HEREUPON Cresus, being resolved to stop the course of Cyrus's fortunes if he could, despised all the arguments used by Sandanes to the contrary, who desired him to forethink, that he urged a nation inhabiting a barren and mountainous region, a people not covered with the soft silk of worms, but with the hard skins of beasts; not fed with such meat as they fancied, but content with what they found; drinkers of water, not of wine; and, in a word, a nation warlike, enduring, valiant, and prosperous; over whom if he became victorious, he could thereby enrich himself in nothing but fame, in which he already excelled; and if by them beaten and subjected, so great would his loss appear of all things which the world hath in account, as the same could neither hastily be told nor readily conceived.
Notwithstanding this solid counsel, Crosus having prepared a powerful army, he led the same towards Media, but in his passage he was arrested at Pterium, a city of great strength in Cappadocia ; which while he sought by all means to surprise or to force, Cyrus came on, and found the Lydians encamped before it. That each was inferior to other in strength or opinion, I do not find; for out of doubt, Crosus, as he excelled any prince of that age in riches and ability, so was he not under any in territory and fame that then lived.
But as Cratippus of Mitylene answered Pompey when he complained against the gods, because they favoured a disturber and usurper of the commonweal against him who fought for the Roman liberty, That kingdoms and commonweals had their increase and period from divine ordinance; so at this time was the winter of Cræsus's prosperity at hand, the leaves of his flourishing fortune ready to fall, and that of Cyrus but in the flower and first spring. The God of all power, and not Admetis's herdman, Apollo, had given date to the one, and a beginning of glory to the other.
When these two armies were in view of each other, after the entertainment of divers skirmishes, the Persians and Lydians began to join in gross troops ; supplies from both kings thrust on upon the falling off and advancement of either nation; and as the Persians had somewhat the better of the day, so when the dark veil of night had hidden each army from the other's view, Cræsus, doubting what success the rising sun would bring with it, quitted the field to Cyrus, and with all speed possible retired, and taking the next way into Lydia, recovered Sardis his first city and regal seat, without any pursuit made by Cyrus to retard him. Where being arrived, and nothing suspecting Cyrus's approach, or any other war for that winter, he dismissed the soldiers, and sent the troops of his sundry nations to their own provinces, appointing them to reassemble at the end of five months, acquainting his commanders with his intents for the renewing of the war at the time appointed.
The conquest of Lydia by Cyrus. CYRUS in the following morning finding the Lydians departed, put his army in order to pursue them, yet not so hastily, and at their heels, as to be discovered. But having good intelligence of Cresus's proceeding, he so measured his marches, as he presented not himself before Sardis, till such time as Creesus had disposed his army to their winter