At this point, Lysander's term expired and he went out of office. The new board of ephors encouraged Leonidas to leave his suppliant's asylum, and brought an indictment against Lysander and Mandrocleidas for violating the law in proposing an abolition of debts and a distribution of land.
Thus put in legal peril, Lysander and Mandrocleidas persuaded the two kings to act together and disregard the edicts of the ephors; for that board of magistrates, they said, derived its power from dissension between the two kings, by giving their vote to the king who offered the better advice, whenever the other was at variance with the public good; but when the two kings were in accord, their power was indissoluble, and it would be unlawful for the ephors to contend against them, although when the kings were in contention with one another it was the privilege of the ephors to act as arbiters between them, but not to interfere when they were of one mind.
Persuaded by these arguments, both the kings went with their friends into the market place, removed the ephors from their seats, and appointed others in their stead, one of whom was Agesilaüs.1
Then they armed a large body of young men and set free all who were in prison, thus striking fear into their opponents, who thought they would put many of them to death. No one, however, lost his life at their hands;
on the contrary, when Agis learned that Agesilaüs had plotted to make away with Leonidas as he was trying to withdraw to Tegea, and had sent men to assault him on the road, he sent out another company of trusted followers who took Leonidas under their protection and brought him safely to Tegea.