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50. As this proposal was rejected, the Eleans made another: the Lacedaemonians need not give up1 Lepreum if they did not like, but since they wanted to have access to the temple of Olympian Zeus, they might go up to his altar and swear before all the Hellenes that they would hereafter pay the fine. [2] But neither to this offer would the Lacedaemonians agree; they were therefore excluded from the temple and from the sacrifices and games, and sacrificed at home. The other Hellenes, with the exception of the people of Lepreum, sent representatives to Olympia. [3] The Eleans however, fearing that the Lacedaemonians would force their way into the temple and offer sacrifice, had a guard of young men under arms; there came to their aid likewise a thousand Argives, and a thousand Mantineans, and certain Athenian horsemen, who had been awaiting the celebration of the festival at Argos. [4] The whole assembly were in terror lest the Lacedaemonians should come upon them in arms, and their fears were redoubled when Lichas, the son of Arcesilaus, was struck by the officers. As a Lacedaemonian he had been excluded from the lists, but his chariot had been entered in the name of the Boeotian state, and was declared victorious. He had then come forward into the arena and placed a garland on the head of his charioteer, wishing to show that the chariot was his own. When the blows were given the anxiety became intense, and every one thought that something serious would happen. [5] But the Lacedaemonians did not stir, and the festival passed off quietly.

The Olympic games being over, the Argives and their allies went to Corinth, and requested the Corinthians to join them. An embassy from Lacedaemon was also present. After much discussion nothing was concluded, for an earthquake broke up the assembly, and the envoys from the several states returned home. So the summer ended.

1 Fear of a disturbance at the games, which turns out to be unfounded

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