But the king, not daring to risk so hastily a general engagement, sent four hundred Trallians, who are a tribe of the Illyrians, as we have said in another place, and three hundred Cretans; adding to this body of infantry an equal number of horse, under the command of Athenagoras, one of his nobles honoured with the purple, to make an attack on the enemy's cavalry.
When these troops arrived within a little more than five hundred paces, the Romans sent out the light infantry, and two cohorts of horse, that both cavalry and infantry might be equal in number to the Macedonians.
The king's troops expected that the method of fighting would be such as they had been accustomed to; that the horsemen, pursuing and retreating alternately, would at one time use their weapons, at another time turn their backs; that the agility of the Illyrians would be serviceable for excursions and sudden attacks, and that the Cretans might discharge their arrows against the enemy, as they advanced eagerly to the charge.
But the onset of the Romans, which was not more vigorous than persevering, entirely disconcerted this method of fighting:
for the light infantry, as if they were fighting with their whole line of battle, after discharging their javelins, carried on a close fight with their swords; and the horsemen, when they had once made a charge, stopping their horses, fought, some on horseback, while others dismounted and intermixed themselves with the foot.
By this means neither were the king's cavalry, who were unaccustomed to a steady fight, a match for the others; nor were the infantry, who were only skirmishing and irregular troops, and were besides but half covered with the kind of harness which they used, at all equal to the Roman infantry, who carried a sword and buckler, and were furnished with proper armour, both to defend themselves and to annoy the
enemy': nor did they sustain the combat, but fled to their camp, trusting entirely to their speed for safety.