67.At the end of the same summer, Aristeus the Corinthian, the Lacedaemonian ambassadors
Aneristus,1 Nicolaus, and Stratodemus, Timagoras of Tegea, and Pollis of Argos who had no
public mission, were on their way to Asia in the hope of persuading the King to give
them money and join in the war.They went first of all to Sitalces son of Teres, in Thrace, wishing if possible to
detach him from the Athenians, and induce him to lead an army to the relief of Potidaea,
which was still blockaded by Athenian forces; they also wanted him to convey them across
the Hellespont on their intended journey to Pharnaces, the son of Pharnabazus, who was
to send them on to the King.
At the time of their arrival two Athenian envoys, Learchus the son of Callimachus, and
Ameiniades the son of Philemon, chanced to be at the court of Sitalces; and they
entreated his son Sadocus, who had been made an Athenian citizen2, to deliver the envoys into their hands, that they might not find their way to
the King and so injure a city which was in some degree his own.
He consented, and, sending a body of men with Learchus and Ameiniades, before they
embarked, as they were on their way through Thrace to the vessel in which they were
going to cross the Hellespont, seized them;
they were then, in accordance with the orders of Sadocus, handed over to the Athenian
envoys, who conveyed them to Athens.On the very day of their arrival the Athenians, fearing that Aristeus, whom they
considered to be the cause of all their troubles at Potidaea and in
Chalcidicè, would do them still further mischief if he escaped, put them all
to death without trial and without hearing what they wanted to say; they then threw
their bodies down precipices.They considered that they had a right to retaliate on the Lacedaemonians, who had begun
by treating in the same way the traders of the Athenians and their allies when they
caught their vessels off the coast of Peloponnesus.For at the commencement of the war, all whom the Lacedaemonians captured at sea were
treated by them as enemies and indiscriminately slaughtered, whether they were allies of
the Athenians or neutrals.
Envoys sent from the Peloponnesian cities to the King are detained by Sitalces
and given up to the Athenians. They are carried to Athens and put to death.
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