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Since the armament was on the great scale we have described, the people of Eryx were awed by the magnitude of the force and, hating the Carthaginians as they did, came over to Dionysius. The inhabitants of Motye, however, expecting aid from the Carthaginians, were not dismayed at Dionysius' armament, but made ready to withstand a siege; for they were not unaware that the Syracusans would make Motye the first city to sack, because it was most loyal to the Carthaginians. [6] This city was situated on an island lying six stades off Sicily, and was embellished artistically to the last degree with numerous fine houses, thanks to the prosperity of the inhabitants. It also had a narrow artificial causeway extending to the shore of Sicily, which the Motyans breached at this time, in order that the enemy should have no approach against them. [3]

Dionysius, after reconnoitring the area, together with his engineers, began to construct moles leading to Motye, hauled the warships up on land at the entrance of the harbour, and moored the merchantmen along the beach. [4] After this he left Leptines1 his admiral in command of the works, while he himself set out with the infantry of his army against the cities that were allies of the Carthaginians. Now the Sicani,2 fearing the great size of the army, all went over to the Syracusans, and of the rest of the cities only five remained loyal to the Carthaginians, these being Halicyae, Solus, Aegesta, Panormus, and Entella. [5] Hence Dionysius plundered the territory of Solus and Panormus, and that also of Halicyae, and cut down the trees on it, but he laid siege to Aegesta and Entella with strong forces and launched continuous attacks upon them, seeking to get control of them by force. Such was the state of the affairs of Dionysius.

1 Brother of the tyrant.

2 On the origin of the Sicani see Book 5.6.

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hide References (8 total)
  • Cross-references to this page (7):
    • The Princeton Encyclopedia of Classical Sites, SEGESTA Trapani, Sicily.
    • A Dictionary of Greek and Roman Antiquities (1890), EXE´RCITUS
    • Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography (1854), ENTELLA
    • Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography (1854), HALICYAE
    • Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography (1854), MO´TYA
    • Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography (1854), SO´LUS
    • Smith's Bio, Le'ptines
  • Cross-references in general dictionaries to this page (1):
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