Tidings of the disaster were brought to Pausanias while he was on the march from Plataea to Thespiae, and putting his army in battle array, he came to Haliartus. Thrasybulus also came from Thebes, leading his Athenians. But when Pausanias was minded to ask for the bodies of the dead under a truce, the elders of the Spartans could not brook it, and were angry among themselves, and coming to the king, they protested that the body of Lysander must not be taken up under cover of a truce, but by force of arms, in open battle for it; and that if they conquered, then they would give him burial, but if they were vanquished, it would be a glorious thing to he dead with their genera.
Such were the words of the elders; but Pausanias saw that it would be a difficult matter to conquer the Thebans, flushed as they were with victory, and that the body of Lysander lay near the walls, so that its recovery would be difficult without a truce, even if they were victorious; he therefore sent a herald, and after making a truce, led his forces back.
And as soon as they had come beyond the boundary of Boeotia with Lysander's body, they buried it in the friendly soil of their allies, the Panopeans, where his monument now stands, by the road leading from Delphi to Chaeroneia.
Here the army bivouacked and it is said that a certain Phocian, recounting the action to another who was not in it, said that the enemy fell upon them just after Lysander had crossed the Hoplites.
Then a Spartan, who was a friend of Lysander, asked in amazement what he meant by Hoplites, for he did not know the name.
‘Indeed it was there,’ said the Phocian,
‘that the enemy slew the foremost of us; for the stream that flows past the city is called Hoplites.’ On hearing this, the Spartan burst into tears, and said that man could not escape his destiny.
For Lysander, as it appears, had received an oracle running thus:—
Be on thy guard, I bid thee, against a sounding Hoplites,
And an earth-born dragon craftily coming behind thee.
Some, however say that the Hoplites does not flow before Haliartus, but is a winter torrent near Coroneia, which joins the Philarus and then flows past that city; in former times it was called Hoplaas, but now Isomantus.
Moreover, the man of Haliartus who killed Lysander, Neochorus by Dame, had a dragon as emblem on his shield, and to this, it was supposed, the oracle referred. And it is said that the Thebans also, during the Peloponnesian war, received an oracle at the sanctuary of Ismenus which indicated beforehand not only the battle at Delium,1
but also this battle at Haliartus, thirty years later.
It ran as follows:—
When thou huntest the wolf with the spear, watch closely the border,
Orchalides, too, the hill which foxes never abandon.
‘border,’ the god meant the region about Delium, where Boeotia is conterminous with Attica; and by Orchalides, the hill which is now called Alopecus, or
‘Fox-hill’, in the parts of Haliartus which stretch towards Mount Helicon.