When the city was close at hand, he sent Eurycleidas to the mess-table of the ephors, ostensibly to carry some message of the king from the army; but Therycion, Phoebis, and two of the Helots, who had been bred up along with Cleomenes1
(they call them
‘mothakes’), followed after with a few soldiers. These in, while Eurycleidas was still making his report to the ephors, ran in upon them with drawn swords and smote them.
The first of them, Agylaeus, on receiving the blow, fell and lay still as though dead; but afterwards he quietly pulled himself together, dragged himself out of the room, and crept unobserved into a little building which was a temple of Fear. Usually it was closed, but at this time it chanced to be open. Into this building he betook himself and locked the door. But the other four were slain, and also about ten of those who came to their aid. For the people who kept quiet were not killed, nor were those who wished to leave the city prevented. And even Agylaeus was spared when he came out of the temple next day.