And now, as Antigonus was approaching with his forces (he was followed by twenty thousand Macedonian footmen and thirteen hundred horse), Aratus, in company with his High Councillors,1
went by sea to meet him at Pegae, eluding the enemy. He had no very great confidence in Antigonus, and put no trust in the Macedonians. For he knew that his own rise to power had been a consequence of the harm he had done to them, and that he had found the first and the chief basis for his conduct of affairs in his hatred towards the former Antigonus.2
But seeing how inexorable was the necessity laid upon him in the demands of the hour, to which those we call rulers are slaves, he went on towards the dread ordeal. But Antigonus, when he was told that Aratus was coming to him, gave the rest of the party an ordinary and moderate welcome; Aratus, however, he received at this first meeting with superlative honour, and afterwards, finding him to be a man of worth and wisdom, drew him in closer intimacy to himself.
For Aratus was not only helpful in large undertakings, but also more acceptable than anyone else as a companion in the king's leisure hours. Therefore, although Antigonus was young, as soon as he perceived that Aratus was naturally well fitted to be a king's friend, he continually treated him with greater intimacy than anyone else, whether of the Achaeans, or of the Macedonians in his following;
and thus the omen proved true which the god had given to Aratus in his sacrificial victims. For it is related that as he was sacrificing a little while before this, a liver was found which had two gall-bladders enclosed in a single coil of fat; whereupon the seer had declared that Aratus would soon enter into close friendship with what he most hated and fought against. At the time, then, Aratus paid no heed to the utterance, since in general he put little faith in victims and divinations, and trusted rather to his reasoning powers.
Later, however, when the war was going on well, Antigonus gave a feast in Corinth, at which he had many guests, and made Aratus recline just above himself. After a little while the king called for a coverlet, and asked Aratus if he too did not think it cold; and when Aratus replied that he was very chilly, the king ordered him to come nearer; so that the rug which the servants brought was thrown over both of them together. Then, indeed, Aratus called to mind his sacrificial victims and burst out laughing, and told the king about the omen and the seer's prediction. But this took place at a later time.