After this, discord set in amongst the commanders, causing the failure of
the enterprise. For Iphicrates, learning from the captives that Memphis,1
the most strategically situated of the Egyptian
cities, was undefended, advised sailing immediately up to Memphis before the Egyptian forces
arrived there, but Pharnabazus thought they should await the entire Persian force; for in this
way the campaign against Memphis would be less dangerous.
Iphicrates demanded that he be given the mercenaries that were on hand and promised if he had
them to capture the city, Pharnabazus became suspicious of his boldness and his courage for
fear lest he take possession of Egypt for himself. Accordingly when Pharnabazus would not
yield, Iphicrates protested that if they let slip the exact moment of opportunity, they would
make the whole campaign a failure. Some generals indeed bore a grudge against him and were
attempting to fasten unfair charges upon him.
Egyptians, having had plenty of time to recuperate, first sent an adequate garrison into
Memphis, and then, proceeding with all their forces against the ravaged stronghold at the
Mendesian mouth of the Nile and being now at a great advantage owing to the strength of their
position, fought constant engagements with the enemy. With ever-increasing strength they slew
many Persians and gained confidence against them.
campaign about this stronghold dragged on, and the Etesian winds had already set in, the Nile,
which was filling up and flooding2
whole region with the abundance of its waters, made Egypt daily more secure. The Persian
commanders, as this state of affairs constantly operated against them, decided to withdraw from
Consequently, on their way back to Asia, when a
disagreement arose between him and Pharnabazus, Iphicrates, suspecting that he might be
arrested and punished as Conon3
the Athenian had been,
decided to flee secretly from the camp. Accordingly, having secured a ship he covertly got away
at night and reached port at Athens.
ambassadors to Athens and accused Iphicrates of being responsible for the failure to capture
Egypt. The Athenians, however, replied to the Persians that if they detected him in wrong-doing
they would punish him as he deserved, and shortly afterward appointed Iphicrates general in
command of their fleet.