When Aristion was archon in Athens
Romans elected as consuls Titus Quinctius and Aulus Cornelius Cossus. During this year,
although the Peloponnesian War had just come to an end, again tumults and military movements
occurred throughout Greece
, for the following reasons.
Although the Athenians and Lacedaemonians had concluded a
truce and cessation of hostilities in company with their allies, they had formed an alliance
without consultation with the allied cities. By this act they fell under suspicion of having
formed an alliance for their private ends, with the purpose of enslaving the rest of the
As a consequence the most important of the cities
maintained a mutual exchange of embassies and conversations regarding a union of policy and an
alliance against the Athenians and Lacedaemonians.
states in this undertaking were the four most powerful ones, Argos
, and Elis
There was good reason to suspect that
had common designs against the rest of Greece
, since a clause had been added to the compact which the two had made,
namely, that the Athenians and Lacedaemonians had the right, according as these states may deem
it best, to add to or subtract from the agreements. Moreover, the Athenians by decree had
lodged in ten men the power to take counsel regarding what would be of advantage to the city;
and since much the same thing had also been done by the Lacedaemonians, the selfish ambitions
of the two states were open for all to see.
answered to the call of their common freedom, and since the Athenians were disdained by reason
of the defeat they had suffered at Delium
Lacedaemonians had had their fame reduced because of the capture of their citizens on the
island of Sphacteria
a large number of cities joined together and selected
the city of the Argives to hold the position of leader.
this city enjoyed a high position by reason of its achievements in the past, since until the
return of the Heracleidae3
practically all the most important kings had come from the Argolis
, and furthermore, since the city had enjoyed peace for a long time, it had
received revenues of the greatest size and had a great store not only of money but also of men.
The Argives, believing that the entire leadership was to be
conceded to them, picked out one thousand of their younger citizens who were at the same time
the most vigorous in body and the most wealthy, and freeing them also from every other service
to the state and supplying them with sustenance at public expense, they had them undergo
continuous training and exercise. These young men, therefore, by reason of the expense incurred
for them and their continuous training, quickly formed a body of athletes trained to deeds of