The Roman expected that he who solicited the conference should open it; and the king thought that he who was to prescribe, not he who received, terms of peace, ought to begin the conference.
At length the Roman said, that "his discourse should be very simple; for he would only mention those articles, without which there could be no conditions of peace. These were, that the king should withdraw his garrisons from all the cities of Greece.
That he should deliver up to the allies of the Roman people the prisoners and deserters; should restore to the Romans those places in Illyricum of which he had possessed himself by force, since the peace concluded in Epirus; and to Ptolemy, king of Egypt, the cities which he had seized since the death of Ptolemy Philopater.
These were the terms which he required, on behalf of himself and the Roman people: but it was proper that the demands of the allies, also, should be heard.
The ambassador of king Attalus demanded “restitution of the ships and prisoners taken in the sea-fight at Cius; and that Nicephorium, and the temple of Venus, which Philip had pillaged and defaced, should be restored as though they had not been injured.”
The Rhodians laid claim to Peraea, a tract on the continent, lying opposite to their island, which from early times had been under their jurisdiction; and they required that “the garrisons should be withdrawn from Tassus, Bargylii, and Euroma, and from Sestus and Abydos on the Hellespont;
that Perinthus should be restored to the Byzantians, in right of their ancient title, and that all the sea-port towns and harbours of Asia should be free.”
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Achaeans demanded the restoration of Corinth and Argos. Phaeneas nearly repeated the demands made by the Romans, that the troops should withdraw out of Greece, and the Aetolians be put in possession of the cities which had formerly been under their dominion.
He was followed by Alexander, a man of eminence among the Aetolians, and, considering his country, not uneloquent.
He said, that “he had long kept silence, not because he expected that any business would be effected in that conference, but because he was unwilling to interrupt any of the allies in their discourse.” He asserted, that “Philip was neither treating for peace with sincerity; and that he had never waged war with true courage, at any time:
that in negotiating, he was insidious and fradulent; while in war he never fought on equal ground, nor engaged in regular battles; but, skulking about, burned and pillaged towns, and, when worsted, destroyed the prizes of victory.
But not in that manner did the ancient kings of Macedon behave; they decided the fate of the war in the field, and spared the towns as far as they were able, in order to possess the more opulent empire.
For what sort of conduct was it, to destroy the objects for the possession of which the contest was waged, and thereby leave nothing to himself but fighting? Philip had, in the last year, desolated more cities of his allies in Thessaly, than all the enemies that Thessaly ever had.
On the Aetolians themselves he had made greater depredations, when he was in alliance with them, than since he became their enemy.
He had seized on Lysimachia, after dislodging the praetor and garrison of the Aetolians. Cius also, a city belonging to their government, he razed from the foundation.
With the same injustice he held possession of Thebes in Phthiotis, of Echinus, Larissa, and Pharsalus.”