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Speech of Alexander Isius

When Phaeneas the Aetolian strategus had delivered this
Speech of Alexander Isius.
demand, a man called Alexander Isius, who had the reputation of being an able politician and good speaker, said that "Philip was neither sincere at the present moment in proposing terms, nor bold in his manner of making war, when he had to do that. In conferences and colloquies he was always setting ambushes and lying in wait, and using all the practices of war, but in actual war itself took up a position at once unjust and ignoble: for he avoided meeting his enemies face to face, and, as he fled before them, employed himself in burning and plundering the cities; and by this policy, though himself beaten, he spoilt the value of the victor's reward. Yet former kings of Macedonia had not adopted this plan, but one exactly the reverse: for they were continually fighting with each other in the open field, but rarely destroyed and ruined cities. This was shown clearly by Alexander's war in Asia against king Darius; and again in the contentions between his successors, when they combined to fight Antigonus for the possession of Asia. So too had the successors of these kings followed the same policy down to the time of Pyrrhus: they had been prompt to war against each other in the open field, and to do everything they could to conquer each other in arms, but had spared the cities, that they might rule them if they conquered, and be honoured by their subjects. But that a man should abandon war, and yet destroy that for which the war was undertaken, seemed an act of madness, and madness of a very violent sort. And this was just what Philip was doing at that moment; for he had destroyed more cities in Thessaly, on his rapid march from the pass of Epirus, though he was a friend and ally of that country, than any one who had ever been at war with the Thessalians."

After a good deal more to the same effect he ended by asking Philip, "On what grounds he was holding the town of Lysimacheia with a garrison, having expelled the strategus sent by the Aetolian league, of which it was a member? Also on what grounds he had enslaved the Ciani who were also in alliance with the Aetolians? Lastly, on what plea he was in actual occupation of Echinus, Phthiotid Thebes, Pharsalus, and Larisa?"

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hide References (9 total)
  • Commentary references to this page (2):
    • Titus Livius (Livy), Ab urbe condita libri, erklärt von M. Weissenborn, books 31-32, commentary, 32.13
    • Titus Livius (Livy), Ab urbe condita libri, erklärt von M. Weissenborn, books 31-32, commentary, 32.33
  • Cross-references to this page (7):
    • Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography (1854), CYNOSCE´PHALAE
    • Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography (1854), ERE´TRIA
    • Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography (1854), MELA´MBIUM
    • Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography (1854), ONCHESTUS
    • Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography (1854), PHERAE
    • Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography (1854), SCOTUSSA
    • Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography (1854), THETI´DIUM
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