On the following day the Athenians, beginning at one end of the unfinished circle, began to bring the wall1
down over the cliff which on this side of Epipolae looks across the marsh towards the Great Harbour, intending to carry on the line by the shortest way to the harbour right through the level of the marsh.
Meanwhile the Syracusans also came out, and beginning2
from the city, proceeded to carry another stockade through the middle of the marsh, with a ditch at the side, in order to prevent the Athenians from completing their line to the sea.
The latter, having finished their work as far as the cliff, attacked the new Syracusan stockade and ditch. They ordered the ships to sail round from Thapsus into the Great Harbour of the Syracusans; with the first break of day they descended themselves from Epipolae to the level ground; and passing through the marsh where the soil was clay and firmer than the rest, over planks and gates which they laid down, they succeeded at sunrise in taking nearly the whole of the stockade and the ditch, and the remainder not long afterwards.
A battle took place in which the Athenians were victorious, and the Syracusans on the right wing fled to the city, those on the left along the river. The three hundred chosen Athenian troops pressed on at full speed towards the bridge, intending to stop their passage, but the Syracusans, fearing that they would be cut off, and having most of their horsemen on the spot, turned upon the three hundred, and putting them to flight, charged the right wing of the Athenians.
The panic now extended to the whole division3
at the extremity of the wing.
Lamachus saw what had happened, and hastened to the rescue from his own place on the left wing, taking with him a few archers and the Argive troops; but pressing forward across a certain ditch he and a few who had followed him were cut off from the rest, and he fell with five or six others. The Syracusans hastily snatched up their bodies, and carried them across the river out of the reach of the enemy. But when they saw the rest of the Athenian army advancing towards them they retreated.