) was sent out in B. C. 406 to succeed Lysander as admiral of the Lacedaemonian fleet, and soon found that the jealousy of his predecessor, as well as the strong contrast of their characters, had left for him a harvest of difficulties. Yet he was not unsuccessful in surmounting these, and shewed that plain, straight-forward honesty may sometimes be no bad substitute for the arts of the supple diplomatist.
The cabals of Lysander's partizans against him he quelled by asking them, whether he should remain where he was, or sail home to report how matters stood; and even those who looked back with most regret to the winning and agreeable manners of his courtly predecessor, admired his virtue, says Plutarch, even as the beauty of a heroic statue. His great difficulty, however, was the want of funds, and for these he reluctantly went and applied to Cyrus, to whom it is said that Lysander, in order to thwart his successor, had returned the sums he held; but the proud Spartan spirit of Callicratidas could not brook to dance attendance at the prince's doors, and he withdrew from Sardis in disgust, declaring that the Greeks were most wretched in truckling to barbarians for money, and that, if he returned home in safety, he would do his best to reconcile Lacedaemon to Athens.
He succeeded, however, in obtaining a supply from the Milesians, and he then commenced against the enemy a series of successful operations.
The capture of the fortress of Delphinium in Chios and the plunder of Teos were closely followed by the conquest of Methymna.
This last place Conon attempted to save, in spite of his inferiority in numbers, but, arriving too late, anchored for the night at Ἑκατόννησοι
The next morning he was chased by Callicratidas, who declared that he would put a stop to his ad ultery with the sea,
and was obliged to take refuge in Mytilene, where his opponent blockaded him by sea and land. Conon, however, contrived to send news to the Athenians of the strait in which he was, and a fleet of more than 150 sail was despatched to relieve him. Callicratidas then, leaving Eteonicus with 50 ships to conduct the blockade, proceeded with 120 to meet the enemy.
A battle ensued at Arginusae, remarkable for the unprecedented number of vessels engaged, and in this Callicratidas was slain, and the Athenians were victorious.
According to Xenophon, his steersman, Hermon. endeavoured to dissuade him from engaging with such superior numbers: as Diodorus and Plutarch tell it, the soothsayer foretold the admiral's death. His answer at any rate, μὴ παῤ ἕνα εἶναι τὰν Σπάρταν
, became famous, but is mentioned with censure by Plutarch and Cicero. On the whole, Callicratidas is a somewhat refreshing specimen of a plain, blunt Spartan of the old school, with all the guilelessness and simple honesty, but (it may be added) not without the bigotry of that character. Witness his answer, when asked what sort of men the Ionians were: " Bad freemen, but excellent slaves. " (Xen. Hell. 1.6
. §§ 1-33; Diod. 13.76
; Plut. Lysand. 5-7, Pelop.
2, Apophthegm. Lacon;
Cic. de Off.
1.24, 30.) Aelian tells us (V. H.
12.43), that he rose to the privileges of citizenship from the condition of a slave (μόθων
); but see Mitford's Greece,
ch. xx. sec. 2, note 4.)