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In Europe, Agis king of Sparta engaged the services of those mercenaries who had escaped from the battle at Issus, eight thousand in number, and sought to change the political situation in Greece in favour of Dareius. [2] He received from the Persian king ships and money and sailed to Crete, where he captured most of the cities and forced them to take the Persian side.1

That Amyntas who had fled from Macedonia and had gone up to Dareius had fought on the Persian side in Cilicia. He escaped, however, from the battle at Issus with four thousand mercenaries2 and got to Tripolis in Phoenicia before Alexander's arrival. Here he chose from the whole Persian fleet enough ships to transport his soldiers, and burned the rest. [3] He sailed over to Cyprus, took on additional soldiers and ships, and continued on down to Pelusium. Becoming master of that city, he proclaimed that he had been sent by King Dareius as military commander because the satrap of Egypt had been killed fighting at Issus in Cilicia.3 [4] He sailed up the river to Memphis and defeated the local forces in a battle before the city, but then, as his soldiers turned to plunder, the Egyptians issued out of the city, attacked his men as they were scattered looting estates located in the countryside, and killed Amyntas and all who came with him to the last man. [5] And that was the end of Amyntas, who had set his hand to great undertakings and failed when he had every prospect of success.

His experience was paralleled by those of the other officers and troop leaders who escaped at the head of their military units from the battle at Issus and attempted to maintain the Persian cause. [6] Some got to important cities and held them for Dareius, others raised tribes4 and furnishing themselves with troops from them performed appropriate duties in the time under review.

The delegates of the League of Corinth voted to send fifteen envoys with a golden wreath as a prize of valour from Greece to Alexander,5 instructing them to congratulate him on his victory in Cilicia. [7] Alexander, in the meantime, marched down to Gaza, which was garrisoned by the Persians, and took the city by storm after a siege of two months.6

1 The narrative is continued later, chaps. 62.6-63.4; 73.5-6. Cp. Curtius 4.1.38-40; Arrian. 2.13.4-6; 3.6.3.

2 A prominent Macedonian, son of Antiochus, suspected of hostility to Alexander because of his association with Alexander's cousin Amyntas (SIG (3) 258). Amyntas had deserted to the Persians about 335 B.C. (Berve, Alexanderreich 2, no. 58). Curtius 4.1.27-33 also gives him 4000 troops, Arrian. 2.13.2-3 8000.

3 His name was Sabaces or Tasiaces (chap. 34.5).

4 Tarn (Alexander the Great, 2, p. 73) sees here very plausibly a reference to the revolt of Cappadocia (Curtius 4.1.34-35; 5.13).

5 Curtius 4.5.11-12.

6 Full accounts of the siege of Gaza are given by Curtius 4.6.7-30 and Arrian. 2.25.4-27. Cp. Plut. Alexander 25.3-4.

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    • Plutarch, Alexander, 25.3
    • Arrian, Anabasis, 2.13.2
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    • Curtius, Historiarum Alexandri Magni, 4.1.27
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