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"And in the vessel were eight towers of a size proportioned to the burden of the ship, two at the stern, and as many at the head, and the rest in the middle of the ship. And to each of these were fastened two large beams, or yards, from which port-holes were fixed, through which stones were let down upon any enemy who might come against the ship. And on each of the towers stood four young men fully armed, and two archers. And the whole of the interior of the towers was full of stones and darts. And a wall, having buttresses and decks, ran all through the ship, supported on trestles; and on these decks was placed a catapult, which hurled a stone weighing three talents, and an arrow twelve cubits long. And this engine was devised and made by Archimedes; and it could throw every arrow a furlong. And besides all this, there were mats composed of stout ropes1 suspended by brazen chains; and as there were three masts, from each of them were suspended two large yard bearing stones, from which hooks and leaden weights were let down upon any enemy which might attack the vessel. And there was also a palisade all round the ship, made of iron, as a defence against those who might attempt to board it; and iron ravens, as they were called, all round the ship, which, being shot forth by engines, seized on the vessels of the enemy, and brought [p. 332] them round so as to expose them to blows. And on each of the sides of the ship stood sixty young men clad in complete armour; and an equal number stood on the masts, and on the yards which carried the stones; and they were also on the masts, up at the mast-head, which was made of brass. On the first there were three men, and on the second two, and on the third one. And they had stones brought up to them in wicker baskets by means of pulleys, and arrows were supplied to them by boys, within the defended parts of the mast-heads. And the vessel had four wooden anchors and eight iron ones. And of the masts, the second and third were easily found; but the first was procured with difficulty among the mountains of the Bruttii, and was discovered by a swineherd. And Phileas, a mechanic of Tauromenium, brought it down to the seaside. And the hold, although of a most enormous depth, was pumped out by one man, by means of a pulley, by an engine which was the contrivance of Archimedes. And the name of the ship was 'The Syracusan;' but when Hiero sent it to sea, he altered its name and called it 'The Alexandrian.' "And it had some small launches attached to it, the first of which was one of the light galleys called cercurus, able to hold a weight of three thousand talents; and it was wholly moved by oars. And after that came many galleys and skiffs of about fifteen hundred talents burthen. And the crew also was proportionably numerous; for besides the men who have been already mentioned, there were six hundred more, whose post was at the head of the ship, always watching for the orders of the captain. And there was a tribunal instituted to judge of all offences which might be committed on board the ship, consisting of the captain and the pilot, and the officer of the watch; and they decided in every case according to the laws of the Syracusans.
1 I have adopted here Casaubon's conjectural emendation, and his interpretation of it. The text of the MSS. seems undoubtedly corrupt.
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