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Philip Takes Lissus in Illyria, B.C. 213

Philip had long had his thoughts fixed upon Lissus and
Lissus founded by Dionysius of Syracuse, B. C. 385. See Diod. Sic. 15. 13.
its citadel; and, being anxious to become master of those places, he started with his army, and after two days' march got through the pass and pitched his camp on the bank of the river Ardaxanus, not far from the town. He found on surveying the place that the fortifications of Lissus, both on the side of the sea and of the land, were exceedingly strong both by nature and art; and that the citadel, which was near it, from its extraordinary height and its other sources of strength, looked more than any one could hope to carry by storm. He therefore gave up all hope of the latter, but did not entirely despair of taking the town. He observed that there was a space between Lissus and the foot of the Acrolissus which was fairly well suited for making an attempt upon the town. He conceived the idea therefore of bringing on a skirmish in this space, and then employing a strategem suited to the circumstances of the case. Having given his men a day for rest; and having in the course of it addressed them in suitable words of exhortation; he hid the greater and most effective part of his light-armed troops during the night in some woody gulleys, close to this space on the land side; and next morning marched to the other side of the town next the sea, with his peltasts and the rest of his light-armed. Having thus marched round the town, and arrived at this spot, he made a show of intending to assault it at that point. Now as Philip's advent had been no secret, a large body of men from the surrounding country of Illyria had flocked into Lissus; but feeling confidence in the strength of the citadel, they had assigned a very moderate number of men to garrison it.

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    • Titus Livius (Livy), Ab urbe condita libri, erklärt von M. Weissenborn, books 43-44, commentary, 43.20
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