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The Siceli, however, had an ancient tradition, handed down from their ancestors, that these parts of the island had been the possession of the Siceli, when Greeks first landed there and founded Naxos, expelling from that very hill the Siceli who were then dwelling on it. Maintaining, therefore, that they had only recovered territory that belonged to their fathers and were justly righting the wrongs which the Greeks had committed against their ancestors, they put forth every effort to hold the hill. [2] While extraordinary rivalry was being displayed on both sides, the winter solstice occurred, and because of the consequent winter storms the area about the acropolis was filled with snow. Thereupon Dionysius, who had discovered that the Siceli were careless in their guard of the acropolis because of its strength and the unusual height of the wall, advanced on a moonless and stormy night against the loftiest sectors. [3] After many difficulties both because of the obstacles offered by the crags and because of the great depth of the snow he occupied one peak, although his face was frosted and his vision impaired by the cold. After this he broke through to the other side and led his army into the city. But when the Siceli came up in a body, the troops of Dionysius were thrust out and Dionysius himself was struck on the corslet in the flight, sent scrambling, and barely escaped being taken alive. [4] Since the Siceli pressed upon them from superior ground, more than six hundred of Dionysius' troops were slain and most of them lost their complete armour, while Dionysius himself saved only his corslet. [5] After this disaster the Acragantini and Messenians banished the partisans of Dionysius, asserted their freedom, and renounced their alliance with the tyrant.

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  • Cross-references to this page (2):
    • Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography (1854), AGRIGENTUM
    • Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography (1854), NAXOS
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