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40. For there was no quiet anywhere, and no contentment with present conditions, but even among the Sicyonians and Corinthians themselves there were many who were known to have been in conference with Cleomenes, men whom a desire for private domination had long ago led into secret hostility towards the common interests. [2] For the punishment of these men Aratus was clothed with absolute power,1 and seizing those in Sicyon who were thus corrupted he put them to death; but when he tried to seek out and chastise those in Corinth, he roused the resentment of the populace there, which was already disaffected and ill at ease under the Achaean administration. So they assembled hastily in the temple of Apollo and sent for Aratus, determined to kill him or seize him, and then to revolt. [3] He came, accordingly, leading his horse after him, as though he had no distrust or suspicion, and when many sprang up and abused and denounced him, with a composed countenance and gentle words he bade them sit down and not stand there shouting in disorderly fashion, but to admit also those who were outside at the door; and as he spoke, he withdrew slowly, as if he would hand his horse over to somebody. [4] Having thus slipped out of the crowd, he conversed calmly with the Corinthians who met him, bidding them go to the temple of Apollo, and so, before his enemies were aware of it, came nigh the citadel. Then he leaped upon his horse, and after giving orders to Cleopater the commander of the garrison in the citadel to guard it with a strong hand, he rode off to Sicyon, followed by only thirty of his soldiers; the rest deserted him and dispersed.

[5] After a little while the Corinthians learned of his flight and pursued him, but did not overtake him. Then they sent for Cleomenes and delivered their city into his hands, although he thought that he had gained by what they gave him far less than he had lost by their letting Aratus get away. Cleomenes, accordingly, after the accession to him of the inhabitants of Acte, as the district is called, who placed their cities in his hands,2 proceeded to run a wall and palisade about Acrocorinthus.

1 See chap. xli. 1.

2 Early in 223 B.C. The story is told very differently in the Cleomenes, xix. 1. f.

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