8. son probably of Battus IV., is the prince whose victory in the chariot-race at the Pythian games, B. C. 466, is celebrated by Pindar in his 4th and 5th Pythian odes; and these, in fact, together with the Scholia upon them, are our sole authority for the life and reign of this last of the Battiadae. From them, even in the midst of all the praises of him which they contain, it appears, that he endeavoured to make himself despotic, and had recourse, among other means, to the expedient (a favourite one with tyrants, see Aristot. Pol. 3.13
, 5.10, 11
, ed. Bekk.) of ridding himself of the nobles of the state. Indeed one main object of Pindar in the 4th Pythian ode seems to have been to induce Arcesilaus to adopt a more prudent and moderate course, and in particular to recall Demophilus, a banished Cyrenaean nobleman then living at Thebes. (See especially Pyth.
4.468, &c., εἰ γάρ τις ὄζους, κ. τ. λ.
; Böckh and Dissen, ad loc.
)It is further probable (Thrige, § 45), that the city "Hesperides" in the Cyrenaic Pentapolis (afterwards called " Berenice" from the wife of Ptolemy Euergetes) was founded by Arcesilaus IV., with the view of securing a retreat for himself in the event of the successful rebellion of his subjects.
It is not known whether he died by violence or not; but after his death royalty was abolished, and his son Battus, who had fled to Hesperides, was there murdered, and his head was thrown into the sea. Various dates have been assigned for the conclusion of the dynasty of the Battiadae; but nothing is certain, except that it could not have ended before B. C. 460, in which year Arcesilaus IV. won the chariot-race at Olympia,--nor after 401, when we hear of violent seditions between the Cyrenaean nobles and populace. (Diod. 14.34
; Aristot. Pol. 6.4
, ed. Bekk.) Thrige is disposed to place the commencement of popular government about 450. (Res Cyrenensium, §§
24, 45, 46, 48; comp. Müller, Dor.
The father of Callimachus was a Cyrenaean of the name of Battus (Suidas, s. v. Καλλίμαχος
); and the poet, who is often called " Battiades," seems to have claimed descent from the royal blood. (Callim. Hymn in Apoll.
65, &c., Ep.
37; Ovid. Trist.
2.367; Catull. 66.)