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[1349b] [1]

Again being in need of funds, he requested the citizens to contribute. On their declaring that they had not the wherewithal, he brought out the furnishings of his palace and offered them for sale, pretending to be compelled through lack of money. At the sale, he had a list made of the articles and their purchasers; and when they had all paid, he commanded every one to bring back the article he had bought.

Finding that because of his imposts the citizens were ceasing to rear sheep and cattle, he made proclamation that he needed no more money until a certain <date>; so that those who now became possessed of any stock would not be liable to taxation. A large number of citizens lost no time in acquiring a quantity of sheep and cattle, on the understanding that they would be free of impost. But Dionysius, when he thought the fitting time was come, had them all valued and imposed a tax. The citizens were angry at being thus deceived, and proceeded to kill and sell their beasts. On Dionysius's making a decree that only such beasts should be slain as were needed each day, the owners retorted by offering their animals as sacrifices; whereupon the despot forbade the sacrifice of female beasts.

Once more funds were lacking, and Dionysius ordered a list to be made for him of all houses whose heirs were orphan. Having obtained a complete list, he made use of the orphans' property until each should come of age.

After the capture of Rhegium, he summoned a meeting of the citizens, and told them why he had a good right to sell them as slaves. [20] If, however, they would pay him the expenses of the war and three minae1 a head besides, he would release them. The people of Rhegium brought forth all their hoards; the poor borrowed from the wealthier and from the foreigners resident in the city; and so the amount demanded was paid. But though he received this money from them, none the less he sold them all for slaves, having succeeded <by his trick> in bringing to light the hoarded goods which they had previously concealed.

On another occasion he had borrowed money from the citizens, promising to repay it. On their demanding its return, he bade each bring him, under pain of death, whatever silver he possessed. This silver when brought he coined into drachmae each bearing the face value of two: with these he repaid the <previous> debt and also what had just been brought in.

He also made a raid on Tyrrhenia with a hundred ships, and rifled the temple of Leucothea of a large amount of gold and silver, besides a quantity of works of art. But being aware that his sailors too had taken much plunder,

1 See 3.

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