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Alexander welcomed the prediction of the seer and made a splendid sacrifice to Athena, dedicating his own armour to the goddess. Then, taking the finest of the panoplies deposited in the temple, he put it on and used it in his first battle.1 And this he did in fact decide through his own personal fighting ability and won a resounding victory. But this did not take place till a few days later. [2]

Meanwhile, the Persian satraps and generals had not acted in time to prevent the crossing of the Macedonians,2 but they mustered their forces and took counsel how to oppose Alexander. Memnon, the Rhodian, famed for his military competence, advocated a policy of not fighting a pitched battle, but of stripping the countryside and through the shortage of supplies preventing the Macedonians from advancing further, while at the same time they sent naval and land forces across to Macedonia and transferred the impact of war to Europe.3 [3] This was the best counsel, as after-events made clear, but, for all that, Memnon failed to win over the other commanders, since his advice seemed beneath the dignity of the Persians. [4] So they decided to fight it out, and summoning forces from every quarter and heavily outnumbering the Macedonians, they advanced in the direction of Hellespontine Phrygia. They pitched camp by the river Granicus, using the bed of the river as a line of defence.

1 Cp. chap. 21.2, below, and Arrian. 1.11.7-8, who states that the arms were carried before him into battle. The shield was carried by Peucestes in the assault on the citadel of the Malli in 325 (Arrian. 6.9.3).

2 The battle of the Granicus is described by Justin 11.6.8-13, Plut. Alexander 16, and Arrian. 1.12.6-16.7. A good analysis of this and Alexander's other battles is given by Major General J. F. C. Fuller, The Generalship of Alexander the Great (1958).

3 Arrian. 1.12.9.

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