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Tiresias: The Ancient Mediterranean Religions Source Database



6465
Herodotus, Histories, 9.16.4


nanMarvelling at these words, Thersander answered: “Must you not then tell this to Mardonius and those honorable Persians who are with him?” “Sir,” said the Persian, “that which a god wills to send no man can turn aside, for even truth sometimes finds no one to believe it.


Intertexts (texts cited often on the same page as the searched text):

2 results
1. Herodotus, Histories, 1.8.3, 1.32.1, 1.46.1, 1.87.2, 1.90.3, 1.123.1, 3.38.4, 3.40.2, 3.108.1-3.108.2, 7.5, 7.8, 7.11, 7.17.2, 7.45, 7.226, 8.62.1, 8.69.2, 9.16.5 (5th cent. BCE - 5th cent. BCE)

1.8.3. “Master,” he said, “what an unsound suggestion, that I should see my mistress naked! When a woman's clothes come off, she dispenses with her modesty, too. 1.32.1. Thus Solon granted second place in happiness to these men. Croesus was vexed and said, “My Athenian guest, do you so much despise our happiness that you do not even make us worth as much as common men?” Solon replied, “Croesus, you ask me about human affairs, and I know that the divine is entirely grudging and troublesome to us. 1.46.1. After the loss of his son, Croesus remained in deep sorrow for two years. After this time, the destruction by Cyrus son of Cambyses of the sovereignty of Astyages son of Cyaxares, and the growth of the power of the Persians, distracted Croesus from his mourning; and he determined, if he could, to forestall the increase of the Persian power before they became great. 1.87.2. Thus he in tears invoked the god, and suddenly out of a clear and windless sky clouds gathered, a storm broke, and it rained violently, extinguishing the pyre. Thus Cyrus perceived that Croesus was dear to god and a good man. He had him brought down from the pyre and asked 1.90.3. Croesus repeated to him the story of all his own aspirations, and the answers of the oracles, and more particularly his offerings, and how the oracle had encouraged him to attack the Persians; and so saying he once more insistently pled that he be allowed to reproach the god for this. At this Cyrus smiled, and replied, “This I will grant you, Croesus, and whatever other favor you may ever ask me.” 3.38.4. Then Darius summoned those Indians who are called Callatiae, who eat their parents, and asked them (the Greeks being present and understanding through interpreters what was said) what would make them willing to burn their fathers at death. The Indians cried aloud, that he should not speak of so horrid an act. So firmly rooted are these beliefs; and it is, I think, rightly said in Pindar's poem that custom is lord of all. 3.40.2. It is pleasant to learn that a friend and ally is doing well. But I do not like these great successes of yours; for I know the gods, how jealous they are, and I desire somehow that both I and those for whom I care succeed in some affairs, fail in others, and thus pass life faring differently by turns, rather than succeed at everything. 3.108.1. The Arabians also say that the whole country would be full of these snakes if the same thing did not occur among them that I believe occurs among vipers. 3.108.2. Somehow the forethought of God (just as is reasonable) being wise has made all creatures prolific that are timid and edible, so that they do not become extinct through being eaten, whereas few young are born to hardy and vexatious creatures. 7.5. After Darius' death, the royal power descended to his son Xerxes. Now Xerxes was at first by no means eager to march against Hellas; it was against Egypt that he mustered his army. But Mardonius son of Gobryas, Xerxes cousin and the son of Darius' sister, was with the king and had more influence with him than any Persian. He argued as follows: “Master, it is not fitting that the Athenians should go unpunished for their deeds, after all the evil they have done to the Persians. ,For now you should do what you have in hand; then, when you have tamed the insolence of Egypt, lead your armies against Athens, so that you may have fair fame among men, and others may beware of invading your realm in the future.” ,This argument was for vengeance, but he kept adding that Europe was an extremely beautiful land, one that bore all kinds of orchard trees, a land of highest excellence, worthy of no mortal master but the king. 7.8. After the conquest of Egypt, intending now to take in hand the expedition against Athens, Xerxes held a special assembly of the noblest among the Persians, so he could learn their opinions and declare his will before them all. When they were assembled, Xerxes spoke to them as follows: ,“Men of Persia, I am not bringing in and establishing a new custom, but following one that I have inherited. As I learn from our elders, we have never yet remained at peace ever since Cyrus deposed Astyages and we won this sovereignty from the Medes. It is the will of heaven; and we ourselves win advantage by our many enterprises. No one needs to tell you, who already know them well, which nations Cyrus and Cambyses and Darius my father subdued and added to our realm. ,Ever since I came to this throne, I have considered how I might not fall short of my predecessors in this honor, and not add less power to the Persians; and my considerations persuade me that we may win not only renown, but a land neither less nor worse, and more fertile, than that which we now possess; and we would also gain vengeance and requital. For this cause I have now summoned you together, that I may impart to you what I intend to do. ,It is my intent to bridge the Hellespont and lead my army through Europe to Hellas, so I may punish the Athenians for what they have done to the Persians and to my father. ,You saw that Darius my father was set on making an expedition against these men. But he is dead, and it was not granted him to punish them. On his behalf and that of all the Persians, I will never rest until I have taken Athens and burnt it, for the unprovoked wrong that its people did to my father and me. ,First they came to Sardis with our slave Aristagoras the Milesian and burnt the groves and the temples; next, how they dealt with us when we landed on their shores, when Datis and Artaphrenes were our generals, I suppose you all know. ,For these reasons I am resolved to send an army against them; and I reckon that we will find the following benefits among them: if we subdue those men, and their neighbors who dwell in the land of Pelops the Phrygian, we will make the borders of Persian territory and of the firmament of heaven be the same. ,No land that the sun beholds will border ours, but I will make all into one country, when I have passed over the whole of Europe. ,I learn that this is the situation: no city of men or any human nation which is able to meet us in battle will be left, if those of whom I speak are taken out of our way. Thus the guilty and the innocent will alike bear the yoke of slavery. ,This is how you would best please me: when I declare the time for your coming, every one of you must eagerly appear; and whoever comes with his army best equipped will receive from me such gifts as are reckoned most precious among us. ,Thus it must be done; but so that I not seem to you to have my own way, I lay the matter before you all, and bid whoever wishes to declare his opinion.” So spoke Xerxes and ceased. 7.11. Thus spoke Artabanus. Xerxes answered angrily, “Artabanus, you are my father's brother; that will save you from receiving the fitting reward of foolish words. But for your cowardly lack of spirit I lay upon you this disgrace, that you will not go with me and my army against Hellas, but will stay here with the women; I myself will accomplish all that I have said, with no help from you. ,May I not be the son of Darius son of Hystaspes son of Arsames son of Ariaramnes son of Teispes son of Cyrus son of Cambyses son of Teispes son of Achaemenes, if I do not have vengeance on the Athenians; I well know that if we remain at peace they will not; they will assuredly invade our country, if we may infer from what they have done already, for they burnt Sardis and marched into Asia. ,It is not possible for either of us to turn back: to do or to suffer is our task, so that what is ours be under the Greeks, or what is theirs under the Persians; there is no middle way in our quarrel. ,Honor then demands that we avenge ourselves for what has been done to us; thus will I learn what is this evil that will befall me when I march against these Greeks—men that even Pelops the Phrygian, the slave of my forefathers, did so utterly subdue that to this day they and their country are called by the name of their conqueror.” 7.17.2. “Are you the one who dissuades Xerxes from marching against Hellas, because you care for him? Neither in the future nor now will you escape with impunity for striving to turn aside what must be. To Xerxes himself it has been declared what will befall him if he disobeys.” 7.45. When he saw the whole Hellespont covered with ships, and all the shores and plains of Abydos full of men, Xerxes first declared himself blessed, and then wept. 7.226. This then is how the Lacedaemonians and Thespians conducted themselves, but the Spartan Dieneces is said to have exhibited the greatest courage of all. They say that he made the following speech before they joined battle with the Medes: he had learned from a Trachinian that there were so many of the barbarians that when they shot their missiles, the sun was hidden by the multitude of their arrows. ,He was not at all disturbed by this and made light of the multitude of the Medes, saying that their Trachinian foreigner brought them good news. If the Medes hid the sun, they could fight them in the shade instead of in the sun. This saying and others like it, they claim, Dieneces the Lacedaemonian left behind as a memorial. 9.16.5. What I have said is known to many of us Persians, but we follow, in the bonds of necessity. It is the most hateful thing for a person to have much knowledge and no power.” This tale I heard from Thersander of Orchomenus who told me in addition that he had straightway told this to others before the battle of Plataea.
2. Thucydides, The History of The Peloponnesian War, 2.40.2-2.40.3, 3.58.5, 3.59.2, 5.112.2, 7.69.2, 7.77.2-7.77.4 (5th cent. BCE - 4th cent. BCE)

2.40.2. Our public men have, besides politics, their private affairs to attend to, and our ordinary citizens, though occupied with the pursuits of industry, are still fair judges of public matters; for, unlike any other nation, regarding him who takes no part in these duties not as unambitious but as useless, we Athenians are able to judge at all events if we cannot originate, and instead of looking on discussion as a stumbling-block in the way of action, we think it an indispensable preliminary to any wise action at all. 2.40.3. Again, in our enterprises we present the singular spectacle of daring and deliberation, each carried to its highest point, and both united in the same persons; although usually decision is the fruit of ignorance, hesitation of reflection. But the palm of courage will surely be adjudged most justly to those, who best know the difference between hardship and pleasure and yet are never tempted to shrink from danger. 3.58.5. Pausanias buried them thinking that he was laying them in friendly ground and among men as friendly; but you, if you kill us and make the Plataean territory Theban, will leave your fathers and kinsmen in a hostile soil and among their murderers, deprived of the honors which they now enjoy. What is more, you will enslave the land in which the freedom of the Hellenes was won, make desolate the temples of the gods to whom they prayed before they overcame the Medes, and take away your ancestral sacrifices from those who founded and instituted them. 3.59.2. We, as we have a right to do and as our need impels us, entreat you, calling aloud upon the gods at whose common altar all the Hellenes worship, to hear our request, to be not unmindful of the oaths which your fathers swore, and which we now plead—we supplicate you by the tombs of your fathers, and appeal to those that are gone to save us from falling into the hands of the Thebans and their dearest friends from being given up to their most detested foes. We also remind you of that day on which we did the most glorious deeds, by your fathers' sides, we who now, on this are like to suffer the most dreadful fate. 5.112.2. ‘Our resolution, Athenians, is the same as it was at first. We will not in a moment deprive of freedom a city that has been inhabited these seven hundred years; but we put our trust in the fortune by which the gods have preserved it until now, and in the help of men, that is, of the Lacedaemonians; and so we will try and save ourselves. 7.69.2. Meanwhile Nicias, appalled by the position of affairs, realizing the greatness and the nearness of the danger now that they were on the point of putting out from shore, and thinking, as men are apt to think in great crises, that when all has been done they have still something left to do, and when all has been said that they have not yet said enough, again called on the captains one by one, addressing each by his father's name and by his own, and by that of his tribe, and adjured them not to belie their own personal renown, or to obscure the hereditary virtues for which their ancestors were illustrious; he reminded them of their country, the freest of the free, and of the unfettered discretion allowed in it to all to live as they pleased; and added other arguments such as men would use at such a crisis, and which, with little alteration, are made to serve on all occasions alike—appeals to wives, children, and national gods,—without caring whether they are thought common-place, but loudly invoking them in the belief that they will be of use in the consternation of the moment. 7.77.2. I myself who am not superior to any of you in strength—indeed you see how I am in my sickness—and who in the gifts of fortune am, I think, whether in private life or otherwise, the equal of any, am now exposed to the same danger as the meanest among you; and yet my life has been one of much devotion towards the gods, and of much justice and without offence towards men. 7.77.3. I have, therefore, still a strong hope for the future, and our misfortunes do not terrify me as much as they might. Indeed we may hope that they will be lightened: our enemies have had good fortune enough; and if any of the gods was offended at our expedition, we have been already amply punished. 7.77.4. Others before us have attacked their neighbors and have done what men will do without suffering more than they could bear; and we may now justly expect to find the gods more kind, for we have become fitter objects for their pity than their jealousy. And then look at yourselves, mark the numbers and efficiency of the heavy infantry marching in your ranks, and do not give way too much to despondency, but reflect that you are yourselves at once a city wherever you sit down, and that there is no other in Sicily that could easily resist your attack, or expel you when once established.


Subjects of this text:

subject book bibliographic info
artabanus de Bakker, van den Berg, and Klooster, Emotions and Narrative in Ancient Literature and Beyond (2022) 370
athenians at melos (speech of), and divine Joho, Style and Necessity in Thucydides (2022) 140
croesus de Bakker, van den Berg, and Klooster, Emotions and Narrative in Ancient Literature and Beyond (2022) 370
cyrus de Bakker, van den Berg, and Klooster, Emotions and Narrative in Ancient Literature and Beyond (2022) 370
divine, the (τὸ θεῖον, τὸ δαιμόνιον etc.), in herodotus Joho, Style and Necessity in Thucydides (2022) 140, 142
divine, the (τὸ θεῖον, τὸ δαιμόνιον etc.), in melian dialogue Joho, Style and Necessity in Thucydides (2022) 140
divine, the (τὸ θεῖον, τὸ δαιμόνιον etc.), vs. personal labels Joho, Style and Necessity in Thucydides (2022) 140
divine, the (τὸ θεῖον, τὸ δαιμόνιον etc.), vs. the human Joho, Style and Necessity in Thucydides (2022) 140
emotion, description of de Bakker, van den Berg, and Klooster, Emotions and Narrative in Ancient Literature and Beyond (2022) 370
emotional restraint, expression of de Bakker, van den Berg, and Klooster, Emotions and Narrative in Ancient Literature and Beyond (2022) 370
emotional restraint de Bakker, van den Berg, and Klooster, Emotions and Narrative in Ancient Literature and Beyond (2022) 370
emotions, anger/rage de Bakker, van den Berg, and Klooster, Emotions and Narrative in Ancient Literature and Beyond (2022) 370
emotions, astonishment/surprise de Bakker, van den Berg, and Klooster, Emotions and Narrative in Ancient Literature and Beyond (2022) 370
emotions, desire de Bakker, van den Berg, and Klooster, Emotions and Narrative in Ancient Literature and Beyond (2022) 370
emotions, fear (fright) de Bakker, van den Berg, and Klooster, Emotions and Narrative in Ancient Literature and Beyond (2022) 370
emotions, grief de Bakker, van den Berg, and Klooster, Emotions and Narrative in Ancient Literature and Beyond (2022) 370
emotions, joy de Bakker, van den Berg, and Klooster, Emotions and Narrative in Ancient Literature and Beyond (2022) 370
greece/greeks Kingsley Monti and Rood, The Authoritative Historian: Tradition and Innovation in Ancient Historiography (2022) 137
greed de Bakker, van den Berg, and Klooster, Emotions and Narrative in Ancient Literature and Beyond (2022) 370
herodotus, nature of time and language Kingsley Monti and Rood, The Authoritative Historian: Tradition and Innovation in Ancient Historiography (2022) 137
herodotus de Bakker, van den Berg, and Klooster, Emotions and Narrative in Ancient Literature and Beyond (2022) 370
language, human Kingsley Monti and Rood, The Authoritative Historian: Tradition and Innovation in Ancient Historiography (2022) 137
mardonius Kingsley Monti and Rood, The Authoritative Historian: Tradition and Innovation in Ancient Historiography (2022) 137
nicias, and personal gods Joho, Style and Necessity in Thucydides (2022) 140
pain/suffering de Bakker, van den Berg, and Klooster, Emotions and Narrative in Ancient Literature and Beyond (2022) 370
persian wars Kingsley Monti and Rood, The Authoritative Historian: Tradition and Innovation in Ancient Historiography (2022) 137
persians de Bakker, van den Berg, and Klooster, Emotions and Narrative in Ancient Literature and Beyond (2022) 370
plataea, battle of Kingsley Monti and Rood, The Authoritative Historian: Tradition and Innovation in Ancient Historiography (2022) 137
plataea and plataeans Joho, Style and Necessity in Thucydides (2022) 140
plutarch, on the malice of herodotus Kingsley Monti and Rood, The Authoritative Historian: Tradition and Innovation in Ancient Historiography (2022) 137
revenge de Bakker, van den Berg, and Klooster, Emotions and Narrative in Ancient Literature and Beyond (2022) 370
sparta de Bakker, van den Berg, and Klooster, Emotions and Narrative in Ancient Literature and Beyond (2022) 370
speech de Bakker, van den Berg, and Klooster, Emotions and Narrative in Ancient Literature and Beyond (2022) 370
substantivized neuter phrases, based on adjectives Joho, Style and Necessity in Thucydides (2022) 140, 142
tears de Bakker, van den Berg, and Klooster, Emotions and Narrative in Ancient Literature and Beyond (2022) 370
time Kingsley Monti and Rood, The Authoritative Historian: Tradition and Innovation in Ancient Historiography (2022) 137
xerxes' de Bakker, van den Berg, and Klooster, Emotions and Narrative in Ancient Literature and Beyond (2022) 370
τύχη (chance, fortune), in melian dialogue Joho, Style and Necessity in Thucydides (2022) 140