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But while the Thebans listened to this request, they took into account, on the other hand, the fact that Laconia was said to be exceedingly difficult to enter, and that they believed garrisons were posted at the points of easiest access. For Ischolaus was at Oeum, in Sciritis, commanding a garrison composed of emancipated Helots and about four hundred of the youngest of the Tegean exiles; and there was another garrison also at Leuctrum, above Maleatis. The Thebans likewise weighed this consideration, that the force of the Lacedaemonians would gather quickly and that they would fight nowhere better1 than in their own country. Therefore, taking into account all these things, they were by no means eager to proceed into Lacedaemon.

1 370 B.C.

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