The consul, highly delighted with this intelligence, removed his quarters from Dium to Phila, in order to strengthen that post, and, at the same time, to distribute corn to the soldiers, on the spot, as the carriage of it thence would be tedious.
That march gave rise to opinions not at all favourable to his reputation: some said that he retired from the enemy through fear; because if he had staid in Pieria he must have risked a battle:
others, that, not considering the daily changes produced by fortune in the affairs of war, he had let slip out of his hands advantages which threw themselves in his way, and which, in all probability, he could never regain.
For, by giving up the possession of Dium, he at once roused the enemy to action; who at length saw the necessity of endeavouring to recover what he had lost before, through his own fault.
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hearing of the consul's departure, therefore, Perseus marched back to Dium, repaired whatever had been destroyed and laid waste by the Romans, rebuilt the battlements which they had thrown down, strengthened the fortifications all round, and then pitched his camp within five miles of the city, on the hither bank of the Enipeus, in order to have the river itself, the passage of which was extremely difficult, as a defence to his post.
The Enipeus, which rises in a valley of Mount Olympus, is a small stream during the summer, but is raised by the winter rains to a violent torrent, when, as it runs over the rocks, it forms furious eddies, and, by sweeping away the earth at the bottom into the sea, makes very deep gulfs, while the sinking of the middle of the channel renders the banks both high and steep.
Perseus, thinking that the advance of the enemy was sufficiently obstructed by this river, contemplated spending there the remainder of the summer.
In the mean time, the consul sent Popilius, with two thousand men, from Phila to Heracleum.
It is distant about five miles from Phila, midway between Dium and Tempe, and stands on a steep rock hanging over the river.