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Death of Epigenes

The forces, however, having been mustered at Apameia, upon a kind of mutiny arising among the common soldiers, on account of some arrears of pay, Hermeias, observing the king to be in a state of anxiety, and to be alarmed at the disturbance at so critical a moment, offered to discharge all arrears, if the king would only consent to Epigenes not accompanying the expedition; on the ground that nothing could be properly managed in the army when such angry feelings, and such party spirit, had been excited. The proposal was very displeasing to the king, who was exceedingly anxious that Epigenes should accompany him on the campaign, owing to his experience in the field; but he was bound so completely hand and foot, and entangled by the craft of Hermeias, his skilful finance, constant watchfulness, and designing flattery, that he was not his own master; and accordingly he yielded to the necessity of the moment and consented to his demand. When Epigenes thereupon retired, as he was bidden, the members of the council were too much afraid of incurring displeasure to remonstrate; while the army generally, by a revulsion of feeling, turned with gratitude to the man to whom they owed the settlement of their claims for pay. The Cyrrhestae were the only ones that stood out: and they broke out into open mutiny, and for some time occasioned much trouble; but, being at last conquered by one of the king's generals, most of them were killed, and the rest submitted to the king's mercy. Hermeias having thus secured the allegiance of his friends by fear, and of the troops by being of service to them, started on the expedition in company with the king; while in regard to Epigenes he elaborated the following plot, with the assistance of Alexis, the commander of the citadel of Apameia. He wrote a letter purporting to have been sent from Molon to Epigenes, and persuaded one of the latter's servants, by holding out the hope of great rewards, to take it to the house of Epigenes, and mix it with his other papers. Immediately after this had been done, Alexis came to the house and asked Epigenes whether he had not received certain letters from Molon; and, upon his denial, demanded in menacing terms to be allowed to search. Having entered, he quickly discovered the letter, which he availed himself of as a pretext for putting Epigenes to death on the spot. By this means the king was persuaded to believe that Epigenes had justly forfeited his life; and though the courtiers had their suspicions, they were afraid to say anything.

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