2. A Spartan, son of Arcesilaus, was proxenus of Argos and one of the ambassadors who proposed to the Argives, without success, in B. C. 422, a renewal of the truce, then expiring, between Argos and Sparta. (Thuc. 5.14
.) In B. C. 420, when the Spartans had been excluded by the Eleians from the Olympic games because of their alleged breach of the sacred truce in the seizure of Lepreum, Lichas sent a chariot into the lists in the name of the Boeotian commonwealth; but, his horses having won the victory, he came forward and crowned the charioteer, by way of showing that he was himself the real conqueror. For this he was publicly beaten by the Eleian ῥαβδοῦχοι
, and Sparta did not forget the insult, though no notice was taken of it at the time. (Thuc. 5.49
; Xen. Hell. 3.2.21
; Paus. 6.2
.) In B. C. 418, he succeeded in inducing the Argives to make peace with Lacedaemon after the battle of Mantineia. (Thuc. 5.76
.) In B. C. 412, he was one of the eleven commissioners sent out to inquire into the conduct of Astyochus, the Spartan admiral, and was foremost in protesting against the treaties which had been made with Persia by Chalcideus and Theramenes (the Lacedaemonian) respectively, -- especially against that clause in them which acknowledged the king's right to all the territories that had been under the rule of his ancestors. We find him, however, in the following year, disapproving of the violence of the Milesians in rising on the Persian garrison in their town, as he thought it prudent to keep on good terms with the king as long as the war with Athens lasted; and his remonstrances so exasperated the Milesians, that, after his death (which was a natural one) in their country, they would not allow the Lacedaemonians there to bury him where they wished. (Thuc. 8.18
.) We learn from Xenophon and Plutarch that he was famous throughout Greece for his hospitality, especially in his entertainment of strangers at the Gymnopaedia (see Dict. of Ant. s. v.
); for there is no reason to suppose this Lichas a different person, unless, indeed, we press closely what Plutarch says, -- that he was renowned among the Greeks for nothing but his hospitality. (Xen. Mem. 1.2.61
; Plut. Cim. 10
; comp. Müller, Dor.