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But when Messene was built by Epaminondas, and its former citizens flocked into it from all quarters, 1 the Spartans had not the courage to contest the issue nor the ability to hinder it, but cherished the deepest resentment against AgesilaĆ¼s, because a country which was not of less extent than their own, which stood first among Hellenic lands for its fertility, the possession and fruits of which they had enjoyed for so long a time, had been lost by them during his reign.

1 In 369 B.C.

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