Having thus made away with Aristippus, Aratus at once began to plot against Lydiades, who was tyrant in his native city of Megalopolis. This Lydiades was neither of mean birth nor naturally lacking in high ambition, nor, like most sole rulers, had he been driven by licence and rapacity into this iniquity, but he had been fired with a love of glory while still young, and had thoughtlessly associated with his high spirit the false and empty doctrines current concerning tyranny, to the effect that it was a wonderful and blessed thing. And now that he had made himself tyrant, he was quickly sated with the burdens which devolve upon the sole ruler.
Therefore, at once envying the successes of Aratus and fearing his plots, he adopted a new and most admirable plan, first, to free himself from hatred and fear and guards and spearmen, and second, to become a benefactor of his native city. So he sent for Aratus, resigned his power, and made his city a member of the Achaean League. Wherefore the Achaeans exalted him and chose him general.
Lydiades was at once ambitious to surpass Aratus in reputation, and not only did many other things which were thought unnecessary, but also proclaimed an expedition against the Lacedaemonians. Aratus opposed him, but was thought to do so out of jealousy; and Lydiades was chosen general for the second time, though Aratus openly worked against him and was eager to have the office given to someone else. For Aratus himself, as I have said, held the office every other year.
Accordingly, until he was general for the third time, Lydiades continued to be held in favour, and held the office every other year in alternation with Aratus; but after displaying an open enmity to him and frequently denouncing him before the Achaeans, he was cast aside and ignored, since it was apparent that he was contending, with a fictitious character, against a genuine and unadulterated virtue.
And just as the cuckoo, in the fable of Aesop, when he asks the little birds why they fly away from him, is told by them that he will one day be a hawk, so it would seem that since Lydiades had once been a tyrant he was never free from a suspicion, which did injustice to his real nature, that he would change again.