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Molon Withdraws Toward Media

When Molon learnt what had taken place, he sent his cavalry, under the idea that they would easily stop those who were actually crossing, and ride down those who had already crossed. But as soon as they got near Xenoetas's force, their ignorance of the ground proved fatal to them without any enemy to attack them; for they got immersed by their own weight, and sinking in the lakes were all rendered useless, while many of them actually lost their lives. Xenoetas, however, feeling sure that if he only approached, Molon's forces would all desert to him, advanced along the bank of the river and pitched a camp close to the enemy. Thereupon Molon, either as a stratagem, or because he really felt some doubt of the fidelity of his men, and was afraid that some of Xenoetas's expectations might be fulfilled, left his baggage in his camp and started under cover of night in the direction of Media. Xenoetas, imagining that Molon had fled in terror at his approach, and because he distrusted the fidelity of his own troops, first attacked and took the enemy's camp, and then sent for his own cavalry and their baggage from the camp of Zeuxis. He next summoned the soldiers to a meeting, and told them that they should feel encouraged and hopeful now that Molon had fled. With this preface, he ordered them all to attend to their bodily wants and refresh themselves; as he intended without delay to go in pursuit of the enemy early next morning.

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