In Sicily Philistus, Dionysius' general, sailed to Rhegium and transported to Syracuse
the cavalry, more than five hundred in number. When he had added to these other cavalry more
numerous and two thousand infantry, he made an expedition against Leontini, which had revolted
from Dionysius, and having succeeded in entering the walls by night captured a portion of the
city. A sharp engagement ensued, and the Syracusans came to the aid of the Leontinians, so that
he was defeated and was driven out of Leontini.
who had been left behind by Dion as commander of his men-of-war, having been hindered by storms
in the Peloponnese,1
was too late for
Dion's return and the liberation of the Syracusans, but he now came with twenty men-of-war and
fifteen hundred soldiers. Being a man of very great distinction and considered worthy of the
position, he was chosen admiral by the Syracusans, and, having been assigned to the supreme
command of the armed forces along with Dion, he participated in the war against Dionysius.
After this Philistus, who had been appointed general and had
fitted out sixty triremes, fought a naval battle with the Syracusans, who had about the same
number. As the fight became sharp Philistus at first was superior because of his own gallantry,
but later on, when he was intercepted by the enemy, the Syracusans, encircling the ships from
all sides, put forth strenuous efforts to capture the general alive, but Philistus, with
apprehensions of torture after his capture, slew himself after having performed a great many
very important services to the tyrants and having proved himself the most faithful of their
friends to the men in power.
The Syracusans, after they had
won the naval battle, dismembered the body of Philistus, dragged it through the whole city, and
cast it forth unburied; and Dionysius, who had lost the most efficient of his friends and had
no other general of repute, being himself unable to sustain the burden of the war, sent out
ambassadors to Dion, first offering him the half of his power, but later consenting to place
the whole of it in his hands.