Not long afterwards three hundred cavalry
came to them from Egesta, and about a hundred from the Sicels, Naxians, and
others; and thus, with the two hundred and fifty from Athens, for whom they had got
horses from the Egestaeans and Catanians, besides others that they bought,
they now mustered six hundred and fifty cavalry in all.
After posting a garrison in Labdalum, they advanced to Syca, where they
sate down and quickly built the Circle or centre of their wall of
circumvallation.The Syracusans, appalled at the rapidity with which the work advanced,
determined to go out against them and give battle and interrupt it;
and the two armies were already in battle array, when the Syracusan
generals observed that their troops found such difficulty in getting into
line, and were in such disorder, that they led them back into the town,
except part of the cavalry.These remained and hindered the Athenians from carrying stones or
dispersing to any great distance,
until a tribe of the Athenian heavy infantry, with all the cavalry, charged
and routed the Syracusan horse with some loss; after which they set up a trophy for the cavalry action.
Thucydides. The Peloponnesian War. London, J. M. Dent; New York, E. P. Dutton. 1910.
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