At break of day the whole populace, armed and unarmed, assembled at the senate-house in the Achradina; where from the altar of Concord, which stood there, one of the nobles, named Polyaenus, delivered a liberal and temperate address.
He said, that “men who had experienced servitude and contumely, were enraged against an evil which was well known, but that the Syracusans had rather heard from their fathers than seen with their own eyes the disasters which civil discord introduces.”
He said, “he commended them for the alacrity with which they had taken arms; but that he should commend them more if they should abstain from using them unless compelled by extreme necessity.
At present he advised that ambassadors should be sent to Andranodorus, to charge him to submit to the direction of the senate and the people, to throw open the gates of the island, and withdraw the garrison.
If he resolved to usurp the sovereignty of which he had been appointed guardian, that he would recommend that their liberty be recovered more energetically from Andranodorus than it had been from Hieronymus.”
From this assembly ambassadors were despatched. The senate began now to meet, which though during the reign of Hiero it had continued to be the public council of the state, from the time of his death up to the present had never been assembled or consulted upon any subject.
When the ambassadors came to Andranodorus, he was himself moved by the unanimous opinion of his countrymen, by their having possession of other parts of the city, and by the fact that the strongest part of the island was betrayed and placed in the hands of others;
but his wife, Demarata, the daughter of Hiero, still swelling with the pride of royalty and female presumption, called him out from the presence of the ambassadors, and reminded him of the expression so often repeated by the tyrant Dionysius, that a man ought only to relinquish sovereign power when dragged by the feet, and not while sitting on horseback.
That it was an easy thing, at any moment one pleased, to give up possession of grandeur, but that to create and obtain them was [p. 923]
difficult and arduous.
That he should obtain from the ambassadors a little time to deliberate, and to employ it in fetching the soldiers from the Leontines; to whom, if he promised the royal treasure, every thing would be at his disposal."
This advice, suggested by a woman, Andranodorus neither entirely rejected nor immediately adopted, considering it the safer way to the attainment of power to temporize for the present.
Accordingly he told the ambassadors to carry word back, that he should act subserviently to the senate and the people. The next day, as soon as it was light, he threw open the gates of the island, and came into the forum of the Achradina;
then mounting the altar of Concord, from which Poly- aenus had delivered his harangue the day before, he commenced a speech by soliciting pardon for his delay.
“He had kept the gates closed,” he said, “not as separating his own from the public interest, but from fear as to where the carnage would stop when once the sword was drawn; whether they would be satisfied with the blood of the tyrant, which was sufficient for their liberty, or whether all who were connected with the court, by consanguinity, affinity, or any offices, would, as implicated in another's guilt, be butchered.
After he perceived that those who had liberated their country were desirous of preserving it when liberated, and that the counsels of all were directed towards the public good, he had not hesitated to restore to his country his own person and every thing else which had been committed to his honour and guardianship, since the person who had intrusted him with them had fallen a victim to his own madness.”
Then turning to the persons who had killed the tyrant, and calling on Theodotus and Sosis by name, he said, “You have performed a memorable deed, but believe me, your glory is only beginning, not yet perfected;
and there still remains great danger lest the enfranchised state should be destroyed, if you do not provide for its tranquillity and harmony.”