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Philip In Arcadia

Continuing his march through Arcadia, and encountering heavy snow storms and much fatigue in the pass over Mount Oligyrtus, he arrived on the third day at Caphyae.
Philip advances to Psophis.
There he rested his army for two days, and was joined by Aratus the younger, and the Achaean soldiers whom he had collected; so that, with an army now amounting to ten thousand men, he advanced by way of Clitoria towards Psophis, collecting missiles and scaling ladders from the towns through which he passed. Psophis is a place of acknowledged antiquity, and a colony of the Arcadian town of Azanis.
A description of Psophis.
Taking the Peloponnesus as a whole, it occupies a central position in the country; but in regard to Arcadia it is on its western frontier, and is close also to the western border-land of Achaia: its position also commands the territory of the Eleans, with whom at that time it was politically united. Philip reached this town on the third day after leaving Caphyae, and pitched his camp on some rising ground overhanging the city, from which he could in perfect security command a view both of the whole town and the country round it. But when the king saw the great strength of the place, he was at a loss what to do. Along the left side of it rushes a violent winter torrent, which for the greater part of the winter is impassable, and in any case renders the city secure and difficult of approach, owing to the size of the bed which its waters have worn out for themselves by slow degrees, in the course of ages, as it comes rushing down from the higher ground. On the east again there is a broad and rapid river, the Erymanthus, about which so many tales are told. This river is joined by the winter torrent at a point south of the town, which is thus defended on three sides by these streams; while the fourth, or northern, side is commanded by a hill, which has been fortified, and serves as a convenient and efficient citadel. The town has walls also of unusual size and construction; and besides all this, a reinforcement of Eleans happened to have just come in, and Euripidas himself was in the town after his escape from Stymphalus.

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hide References (3 total)
  • Cross-references to this page (3):
    • Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography (1854), AROA´NIUS
    • Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography (1854), OLIGYRTUS
    • Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography (1854), PSOPHIS
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