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After this Archidamus sailed to Italy and joined forces with the Tarentines but lost his life fighting gallantly in battle. He was praised for his ability as general and for his conduct on the whole, though in the matter of the Phocian alliance alone he was severely criticized as the one who was chiefly responsible for the seizure of Delphi. [2] Now Archidamus was king of the Lacedaemonians for twenty-three years, and Agis his son succeeded to the throne and ruled for fifteen1 years. After the death of Archidamus his mercenaries, who had participated in plundering the shrine, were shot down by the Lucanians, whereas Phalaecus, now that he had been driven out of Lyctus, attempted to besiege Cydonia. [3] He had constructed siege engines and was bringing them up against the city when lightning descended and these structures were consumed by the divine fire, and many of the mercenaries in attempting to save the engines perished in the flames. Among them was the general Phalaecus. But some say that he offended one of the mercenaries and was slain by him. [4] The mercenaries who survived were taken into their service by Eleian exiles, were then transported to the Peloponnese, and with these exiles were engaged in war against the people of Elis.2 [5] When the Arcadians joined the Eleians in the struggle and defeated the exiles in battle, many of the mercenaries were slain and the remainder, about four thousand, were taken captive. After the Arcadians and the Eleians had divided up the prisoners, the Arcadians sold as booty all who had been apportioned to them, while the Eleians executed their portion because of the outrage committed against the oracle.

1 Cp. chap. 88.4, where nine years are allotted to Agis, as also in Book 17.63.4. The dates of the reigns are Archidamus III, 361-338; Agis II, 338-331. Agis fell in the battle of Megalopolis in the autumn of 331. The error of fifteen years seems to have arisen from the fact that in this passage (placed under year 346) Diodorus records the death of Archidamus (which occurred in 338) and the succession of Agis. From 346 to 331 would give fifteen years. (For a full discussion of the date of the battle of Megalopolis in relation to Alexander's march see Beloch, 3.2. Sec. 130; also Tarn, Cambridge Ancient History, 6.443-445.)

2 Cp. Dem. 19.260; Paus. 4.28.4 and Paus. 5.4.9. There seems to be no later reference in Diodorus to this war, which occurred about 343/2.

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    • Demosthenes, On the False Embassy, 260
    • Pausanias, Description of Greece, 4.28.4
    • Pausanias, Description of Greece, 5.4.9
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