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When news was brought to Polyxenidas of the approach of the Roman fleet he was delighted at the prospect of a fight. Extending his left towards the open sea he ordered the captains of the right division to align their ships towards the land, and in this way he advanced to battle with a straight front.  On seeing this the Roman commander took in sail, lowered his masts, and stowing away the tackle waited for the ships in the rear to come up.  His front line now consisted of thirty ships, and in order to make it extend as far as the enemy's left he directed these vessels to set up their foresails and steer for the open sea;  those behind, as they came up, were ordered to direct their course landward against the enemy's right.  Eumenes was bringing up the rear, but as soon as he saw the hurried removal of the masts and rigging he urged his ships on with all possible speed. Full in view of both fleets were two Carthaginian vessels which outstripped the Roman fleet and three of the king's ships went to meet them.  The inequality of numbers enabled two of these to close on one of the Carthaginian vessels, and after shearing off both banks of oars they boarded it and flinging overboard or killing the defenders captured the ship.  The other Carthaginian ship which had only one opponent, seeing its sister-ship captured, fled back to the Roman fleet before the three could make a simultaneous attack upon it.  Livius was furious and made straight in his flagship for the enemy, and as the two vessels which had overpowered the single Carthaginian ship bore down upon him, expecting the same success, he ordered the rowers to back water on both sides so that the way of the ship might be stopped. Then he ordered them to hook their grappling irons on to the enemy ships and when they had made a soldiers' battle of it to remember that they were Romans and not to look upon the slaves of Antiochus as men.  This one ship now defeated and captured the two much more easily than the two had captured the single one previously.  By this time the fleets were engaged along the whole line and as the fighting went on the ships became everywhere intermixed.  Eumenes, who had come up after the battle had commenced seeing that Livius had thrown the enemy's left into confusion, attacked the right division where the struggle was still an equal one.
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