nd Perdiccas took Aridaeus, son of Philip, and the boy Alexander, whom Roxana, daughter of Oxyartes, had borne to Alexander, to lend color to the campaign, but really he was plotting to take from Ptolemy his kingdom in Egypt. But being expelled from Egypt, and having lost his reputation as a soldier, and being in other respects unpopular with the Macedonians, he was put to death by his body guard.
The death of Perdiccas immediately raised Ptolemy to power, who both reduced the Syrians and Phoenicia, and also welcomed Seleucus, son of Antiochus, who was in exile, having been expelled by Antigonus; he further himself prepared to attack Antigonus. He prevailed on Cassander, son of Anti pater, and Lysimachus, who was king in Thrace, to join in the war, urging that Seleucus was in exile and that the growth of the power of Antigonus was dangerous to them all.
For a time Antigonus pre pared for war, and was by no means confident of the issue; but on learning that the revolt of Cyrene had c
inetan, whose sire was Micon.
Not far from the offering of the Achaeans there is also a Heracles fighting with the Amazon, a woman on horseback, for her girdle. It was dedicated by Evagoras, a Zanclaean by descent, and made by Aristocles of Cydonia. Aristocles should be included amongst the most ancient sculptors, and though his date is uncertain, he was clearly born before Zancle took its present name of Messene.
The Thasians, who are Phoenicians by descent, and sailed from Tyre, and from Phoenicia generally, together with Thasus, the son of Agenor, in search of Europa, dedicated at Olympia a Heracles, the pedestal as well as the image being of bronze. The height of the image is ten cubits, and he holds a club in his right hand and a bow in his left. They told me in Thasos that they used to worship the same Heracles as the Tyrians, but that afterwards, when they were included among the Greeks, they adopted the worship of Heracles the son of Amphitryon.
On the offering of the Thasians
era in Samos and that of Athena at Phocaea. Damaged though they are by fire, I found them a wonder.
You would be delighted too with the sanctuary of Heracles at Erythrae and with the temple of Athena at Priene, the latter because of its image and the former on account of its age. The image is like neither the Aeginetan, as they are called, nor yet the most ancient Attic images; it is absolutely Egyptian, if ever there was such. There was a wooden raft, on which the god set out from Tyre in Phoenicia. The reason for this we are not told even by the Erythraeans themselves.
They say that when the raft reached the Ionian sea it came to rest at the cape called Mesate （ Middle） which is on the mainland, just midway between the harbor of the Erythraeans and the island of Chios. When the raft rested off the cape the Erythraeans made great efforts, and the Chians no less, both being keen to land the image on their own shores.
At last a man of Erythrae （his name was Phormio） who gained a livin
ver, the food makes the poison of the snakes too less deadly, so that most of those bitten escape with their lives, should they fall in with a Libyan of the race of the Psyllians, or with any suitable remedies.
Now the poison of the most venomous snakes is of itself deadly to men and all animals alike, but what they feed on contributes very much to the strength of their poison; for instance, I learnt from a Phoenician that the roots they eat make more venomous the vipers in the highland of Phoenicia. He said that he had himself seen a man trying to escape from the rush of a viper; the man, he said, ran up a tree, but the viper, coming up too late, puffed some of its poison towards the tree, and the man died instantaneously.
Such was the story I heard from him. Those vipers in Arabia that nest around the balsam trees have, I know, the following peculiarities. The balsams are about as big as a myrtle bush, and their leaves are like those of the herb marjoram. The vipers of Arabia lodge
ed to sacrifice are led in procession; some send the victims into the shrine,while others burn the booths before the shrine and themselves go away in haste. They say that once a profane man, who was not one of those descending into the shrine, when the pyre began to burn, entered the shrine to satisfy his rash inquisitiveness. It is said that everywhere he saw ghosts, and on returning to Tithorea and telling what he had seen he departed this life.
I have heard a similar story from a man of Phoenicia, that the Egyptians hold the feast for Isis at a time when they say she is mourning for Osiris. At this time the Nile begins to rise, and it is a saying among many of the natives that what makes the river rise and water their fields is the tears of Isis. At that time then, so said my Phoenician, the Roman governor of Egypt bribed a man to go down into the shrine of Isis in Coptus. The man despatched into the shrine returned indeed out of it, but after relating what he had seen, he too, so