For although the Peloponnesians had the
advantage in the number of their ships and the valour of their marines, the skill of the
Athenian pilots rendered the superiority of their opponents of no effect. For whenever the
Peloponnesians, with their ships in a body, would charge swiftly forward to ram, the pilots
would manoeuvre their own ships so skilfully that their opponents were unable to strike them at
any other spot but could only meet them bows on, ram against ram.
Consequently Mindarus, seeing that the force of the rams was proving ineffective, gave
orders for his ships to come to grips in small groups, or one at a time. But not by this
manoeuvre either, as it turned out, was the skill of the Athenian pilots rendered ineffective;
on the contrary, cleverly avoiding the on-coming rams of the ships, they struck them on the
side and damaged many.
And such a spirit of rivalry pervaded
both forces that they would not confine the struggle to ramming tactics, but tangling ship with
ship fought it out with the marines. Although they were hindered by the strength of the current
from achieving great success, they continued the struggle for a considerable time, neither side
being able to gain the victory.
While the fighting was thus
equally balanced, there appeared beyond a cape twenty-five ships which had been dispatched to
the Athenians from their allies. The Peloponnesians thereupon in alarm turned in flight toward
, the Athenians clinging to them and pursuing
them the more vigorously.
was the end of the battle; and the Athenians captured eight ships of the Chians, five of the
Corinthians, two of the Ambraciotes, and one each of the Syracusans, Pellenians, and
Leucadians, while they themselves lost five ships, all of them, as it happened, having been
After this Thrasybulus set up a trophy on the cape where
stands the memorial of Hecabe1
and sent messengers to Athens
to carry word of the victory, and himself made his way
with the entire fleet. For before the
sea-battle this city had revolted to Pharnabazus, the general of Darius, and to Clearchus, the
Lacedaemonian commander. Finding the city unfortified the Athenians easily achieved their end,
and after exacting money of the Cyziceni they sailed off to Sestus.