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When Conon was archon in Athens, in Rome the consulship was held by Quintus Fabius Vibulanus and Tiberius Aemilius Mamercus. This year Artaxerxes, the king of the Persians, appointed Achaemenes, who was a son of Darius and his own uncle, to be commander in the war against the Egyptians; and turning over to him more than three hundred thousand soldiers, counting both cavalry and infantry, he commanded him to subdue the Egyptians. [2] Now Achaemenes, when he had entered Egypt, pitched his camp near the Nile, and when he had rested his army after the march, he made ready for battle; but the Egyptians, having gathered their army from Libya and Egypt, were awaiting the auxiliary force of the Athenians. [3] After the Athenians had arrived in Egypt with two hundred ships and had been drawn up with the Egyptians in battle order against the Persians, a mighty struggle took place. And for a time the Persians with their superior numbers maintained the advantage, but later, when the Athenians seized the offensive, put to flight the forces opposing them, and slew many of them, the remainder of the barbarians turned to flight en masse. [4] There was much slaughter in the course of the flight, and finally the Persians, after losing the larger part of their army, found refuge in the White Fortress,2 as it is called, while the Athenians, who had won the victory by their own deeds of valour, pursued the barbarians as far as the aforesaid stronghold and did not hesitate to besiege it. [5]

Artaxerxes, on learning of the defeat of his troops, at first sent some of his friends with a large sum of money to Lacedaemon and asked the Lacedaemonians to make war upon the Athenians, thinking that if they complied the Athenian troops who had won the victory in Egypt would sail back to Athens in order to defend their native city. [6] When the Lacedaemonians, however, neither accepted money nor paid any attention whatever to the requests of the Persians, Artaxerxes despaired of getting any aid from the Lacedaemonians and set about preparing other armaments. In command of them he placed Artabazus and Megabyzus, men of outstanding merit, and dispatched them to make war upon the Egyptians.

1 462 B.C.

2 According to Thucydides (Thuc. 1.104) this was a part of the city of Memphis.

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