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Pisthetaerus First I advise that the birds gather together in one city and that they build a wall of great bricks, like that at Babylon, round the plains of the air and the whole region of space that divides earth from heaven. Epops Oh, Cebriones! oh, Porphyrion! what a terribly strong place! Pisthetaerus Then, when this has been well done and completed, you demand back the empire from Zeus; if he will not agree, if he refuses and does not at once confess himself beaten, you declare a sacred war against him and forbid the gods henceforward to pass through your country with their tools up, as hitherto, for the purpose of laying their Alcmenas, their Alopes, or their Semeles! if they try to pass through,you put rings on their tools so that they can't make love any longer. You send another messenger to mankind, who will proclaim to them that the birds are kings, that for the future they must first of all sacrifice to them, and only afterwards to the gods; that it is fitting to appoint
There are not many marvellous things in Lydia to record, in comparison with other countries, except the gold dust that comes down from Tmolus. But there is one building to be seen there which is much the greatest of all, except those of Egypt and Babylon. In Lydia is the tomb of Alyattes, the father of Croesus, the base of which is made of great stones and the rest of it of mounded earth. It was built by the men of the market and the craftsmen and the prostitutes. There survived until my time five corner-stones set on the top of the tomb, and in these was cut the record of the work done by each group: and measurement showed that the prostitutes' share of the work was the greatest. All the daughters of the common people of Lydia ply the trade of prostitutes, to collect dowries, until they can get themselves husbands; and they themselves offer themselves in marriage. Now this tomb has a circumference of thirteen hundred and ninety yards, and its breadth is above four hundred and forty
The Scythians, then, ruled Asia for twenty-eight years: and the whole land was ruined because of their violence and their pride, for, besides exacting from each the tribute which was assessed, they rode about the land carrying off everyone's possessions. Most of them were entertained and made drunk and then slain by Cyaxares and the Medes: so thus the Medes took back their empire and all that they had formerly possessed; and they took Ninus (how, I will describe in a later part of my history), and brought all Assyria except the province of Babylon under their rule.