Near the frontiers of Lycia there is a great rock fortress1
of unusual strength inhabited by people named Marmares. As Alexander
marched by, these people attacked the Macedonian rear guard and killed many, carrying off as
booty numerous men and pack animals.
The king was enraged at
this, established a siege, and exerted every effort to take the place by force. The Marmares
were very brave and had confidence in the strength of their fortifications, and manfully
withstood the attack. For two whole days there were constant assaults and it was clear that the
king would not leave until he had captured the "rock."
First, then, the older men of the Marmares advised their
younger countrymen to end their resistance and make peace with the king on whatever terms were
possible. They would have none of this, however, but all were eager to die together
simultaneously with the end of the freedom of their state, so next the elders urged upon them
that they should kill with their own hands their children and wives and aged relatives, and
those who were strong enough to save themselves should break out through the midst of the enemy
at night and take refuge in the neighbouring mountain.
young men agreed, and consequently gave orders to go each to his own house and there, enjoying
the best of food and drink with their families, await the dread event. Some of them, however
(these were about six hundred), decided not to kill their relatives with their own hands, but
to burn them in the houses, and so issuing forth from the gates to make their way to the
These carried out their decision and so caused each
family to be entombed at its own hearth, while they themselves slipped through the midst of the
enemy encamped about them and made their way to the near-by hills under cover of
This is what happened in this year.