On the nones of June,1
the ambassadors returned from Africa, who having first had an interview with king Masinissa, proceeded to Carthage; but they received much more certain information respecting what had taken place in Carthage from the king than from the Carthaginians themselves.
They said they had sufficient proof that ambassadors had come from king Perseus, and that an audience of the senate was given to them by night, in the temple of Aesculapius; and the king asserted, that the Carthaginians had sent ambassadors to Macedon, which they themselves did not positively deny.
The senate, hereupon, resolved to send an embassy to Macedonia. They made choice of Caius Laelius, Marcus Valerius Messala, and Sextus Digitius, who accordingly proceeded thither.
About this time, Perseus, because some of [p. 1948]
the Dolopians were refractory, and in the matters in dispute were for referring the decision from the king to the Romans, marched an army into their country, and reduced the whole nation under his jurisdiction and dominion.
Thence he passed through the mountains of Œta, and on account of some religious scruples affecting his mind, went up to Delphi, to apply to the oracle. His sudden appearance in the middle of Greece caused a great alarm, not only in the neighbouring states, but also caused alarming intelligence to be brought into Asia to king Eumenes.
He staid only three days at Delphi, and then returned to his own dominions, through Phthiotis, Achaia, and Thessaly, without doing the least injury or damage to those countries.
He did not think it sufficient to conciliate the esteem of the several states through which his road lay; but despatched either ambassadors or letters to every one of the Grecian powers, requesting that they would “think no more of the animosities which had subsisted between them and his father; that the disputes had not been so violent that they might not, and ought not, to cease with regard to himself. On his part, there was no kind of obstacle to the forming of a cordial friendship.”
Above all, he wished particularly to find some way of ingratiating himself with the Achaean nation.