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In this formation the two armies, almost equally matched in the numbers of their cavalry and light infantry, engaged. The battle was begun by the slingers and javelin men, who were in front of the whole line.  First of all the Thracians, like wild beasts kept in cages and suddenly released, set up a deafening roar and charged the Italian cavalry on the right wing with such fury that, in spite of their experience of war and their native fearlessness, they threw them into disorder.  The infantry on both sides snapped the lances of the cavalry with their swords, cut at the legs of the horses and stabbed them in the flanks.  Perseus, charging the centre, dislodged the Greeks at the first onslaught, and pressed heavily upon them as they fell back. The Thessalian cavalry had been in reserve, a little distance from the extreme left, outside the fighting and simply watching it, but when the day began to go against them they were of the greatest use.  For by slowly retiring, and keeping their ranks unbroken, they formed a junction with Eumenes' troops, and so afforded a safe retreat within their united ranks to the allied cavalry as they fled in disorder. As the enemy slackened in the pursuit they even ventured to advance and protected many of the fugitives whom they met. The king's troops, separated by the pursuit in all directions, did not venture to come to close quarters with men who were keeping their formation and advancing in a steady line.  The king, victorious in this cavalry action, shouted to his men that if they gave him a little more help the war would be over, and very opportunely for his own encouragement and that of his men, the phalanx appeared on the scene.  Hippias and Leonnatus, hearing of the success of the cavalry, had hastily brought it up on their own initiative, that they might take their part in an action so daringly begun.  The king was hovering between hope and fear at attempting so great a task, when Euander the Cretan, who had been his instrument in the attempt upon Eumenes' life at Delphi, ran up to him.  He had seen the massed infantry advancing with their standards, and he solemnly warned the king not to be so elated by his good fortune as to stake everything upon a chance which there was no necessity for him to risk.  If he would be contented with what he had gained and kept quiet for the day he would have peace with honour, or if he preferred war, he would have very many allies who would follow his fortunes.  The king was more inclined to this course, so after thanking Euander for his advice, he ordered the standards to be reversed, the infantry to march back to camp and the "retire" to be sounded for the cavalry.
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