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Himilcon seized the suburb of Achradine; and he also plundered the temples of both Demeter and Core, for which acts of impiety against the divinity he quickly suffered a fitting penalty. For his fortune quickly worsened from day to day, and whenever Dionysius made bold to skirmish with him, the Syracusans had the better of it. [2] Also at night unaccountable tumults would arise in the camp and the soldiers would rush to arms, thinking that the enemy was attacking the palisade. To this was added a plague which was the cause of every kind of suffering. But of this we shall speak a little later, in order that our account may not anticipate the proper time. [3]

Now when he threw a wall about the camp, Himilcon destroyed practically all the tombs in the area, among which was that of Gelon and his wife Demarete, of costly construction.1 He also built three forts along the sea, one at Plemmyrium,2 one at the middle of the harbour, and one by the temple of Zeus, and into them he brought wine and grain and all other provisions, believing that the siege would continue a long time. [4] He also dispatched merchant ships to Sardinia and Libya to secure grain and every kind of food. Polyxenus, the brother-in-law of Dionysius, arrived from the Peloponnesus and Italy, bringing thirty warships from his allies, with Pharacidas3 the Lacedaemonian as admiral.

1 Cp. Book 11.38.4 f.

2 The headland which formed the south side of the entrance to the Great Harbour (Thuc. 7.4).

3 Beloch (Rhein. Mus. 34.124) thinks that Pharacidas is the Pharax of Xen. Hell. 3.2.12, who was Spartan admiral in 397 B.C.

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