During the ensuing year the temple of1
Athena at Phocaea was struck by lightning and set on fire. When the winter ended and spring began,—Pantacles being now ephor and Antigenes archon, and the war having continued for twenty-two years—the Athenians sailed with their entire force to Proconnesus.
From there they set out against Calchedon and Byzantium, and went into camp near Calchedon. Now the Calchedonians, when they learned that the Athenians were approaching, had put all their portable2
property in the keeping of the Bithynian Thracians, their neighbours.
Alcibiades, however, taking a few of the hoplites and the cavalry, and giving orders that the ships should sail along the coast, went to the Bithynians and demanded the property of the Calchedonians, saying that if they did not give it to him, he would make war upon them; so they gave it over.
And when Alcibiades returned to his camp with the booty, after having concluded a treaty with the Bithynians, he proceeded with his whole army to invest Calchedon by building a wooden stockade which extended from sea to sea, taking in the river also in so far as this was practicable.3
Thereupon Hippocrates, the Lacedaemonian governor, led forth his troops from the city to do battle; and the Athenians marshalled themselves against him, while Pharnabazus, outside the stockade, with infantry and horsemen in great numbers, tried to aid Hippocrates.
Now for a long time Hippocrates and Thrasyllus fought, each with his hoplites, until Alcibiades came to the rescue with a few hoplites and the cavalry. Then Hippocrates was killed, and those who were with him fled back into the city.
At the same time Pharnabazus, unable to effect a junction with Hippocrates owing to the narrowness of the space, since the stockade came down close to the river, retired to the Heracleium in the Calchedonian territory, where he had his camp.
After this Alcibiades went off to the Hellespont and the Chersonese to collect money; and the rest of the generals concluded a compact with Pharnabazus which provided that, in4
consideration of their sparing Calchedon, Pharnabazus should give the Athenians twenty talents and should conduct Athenian ambassadors to the King;
they also received from Pharnabazus a pledge under oath that the Calchedonians should pay to the Athenians precisely the same tribute they had been accustomed to pay and should settle the arrears of tribute, while they on their side made oath that the Athenians would not wage war upon the Calchedonians until the ambassadors should return from the King.
Alcibiades was not present at the exchange of these oaths, but was in the neighbourhood of Selymbria; and when he had captured that city, he came to Byzantium, bringing with him all the forces of the Chersonesians and soldiers from Thrace and more than three hundred horsemen.
Now Pharnabazus thought that Alcibiades also ought to give his oath, and so waited at Calchedon until he should come from Byzantium; but when he came, he said that he would not make oath unless Pharnabazus also should do the like to him.
In the end, Alcibiades made oath at Chrysopolis to the representatives of Pharnabazus, Mitrobates and Arnapes, and Pharnabazus at Calchedon to the representatives of Alcibiades, Euryptolemus and Diotimus, both parties not only giving the official oath but also making personal pledges to one another.
Immediately after this Pharnabazus went away, leaving word that the ambassadors who were going to the King should meet him at Cyzicus. The Athenians who were sent were Dorotheus, Philocydes, Theogenes, Euryptolemus, and Mantitheus, and with them two Argives, Cleostratus and Pyrrolochus; ambassadors of the Lacedaemonians also went along, Pasippidas and others, and5
with them Hermocrates, who was already an exile from Syracuse, and his brother Proxenus.
While Pharnabazus was conducting this party, the Athenians were besieging Byzantium; they had built a stockade around the city, and were attacking its wall with missiles from a distance and by close assault.
Within Byzantium was Clearchus the Lacedaemonian, its governor, and with him some Laconian Perioeci, a few emancipated Helots, a contingent of Megarians, under the command of Helixus the Megarian, and one of Boeotians, under the command of Coeratadas.
Now the Athenians, finding that they were unable to accomplish anything by force, persuaded some of the Byzantines to betray the city.
Meanwhile Clearchus, the governor, supposing that no one would do that, arranged everything as well as he could, turned over the charge of the city to Coeratadas and Helixus, and crossed to the opposite shore to meet Pharnabazus, in order to get from him pay for the soldiers and also to collect ships. His plan was to assemble those which had been left behind by Pasippidas as guardships and were now in the Hellespont, those at Antandrus, and those which Agesandridas, a lieutenant of Mindarus, had under his command on the Thracian coast, and finally, to have other ships built; then, after gathering them all together, he thought to harry the allies of the Athenians and so draw off their army from Byzantium.
But when Clearchus had sailed away, those who wanted to betray the city of the Byzantines set about their work,—Cydon, Ariston, Anaxicrates, Lycurgus, and Anaxilaus.
This Anaxilaus was afterwards tried for his life at Lacedaemon6
because of this betrayal, but was acquitted, on the plea that he did not betray the city, but rather saved it; he was a Byzantine, he said, not a Lacedaemonian, and when he saw children and women perishing of starvation,—for Clearchus, he said, gave whatever provisions the city contained to the soldiers of the Lacedaemonians,—he had for this reason admitted the enemy, not for the sake of money nor out of hatred to the Lacedaemonians.
As has been said, however, these betrayers made their preparations, and then, opening by night the gates that lead to the Thracian Square, as it is called, let in the Athenian army and Alcibiades.
Now Helixus and Coeratadas, who knew nothing of what was going on, hurried to the market-place with all their troops; but when they found that the enemy were masters everywhere and that they could do nothing, they surrendered themselves.
They were all sent off to Athens, and as they were disembarking at Piraeus, Coeratadas slipped away in the crowd and made his escape to Decelea.