Aeneas Tacticus 11.





11. Plots

1.Again, it is necessary to keep an eye on the citizens who are known to be disaffected, and never to adopt suggestions too readily. 2. To illustrate this, I will give in order an account of the several plots mentioned in my treatise on the subject which owed their origin to the treachery of magistrates or private persons, and also relate how some of them were frustrated and failed.
3. When Chios was on the point of being betrayed, a magistrate who was in the plot deceived his colleagues by persuading them that, as it was peace time, it was advisable to have the harbour boom hauled ashore, dried, and pitched, the old tackle of the ships sold, and the leaky roofs of the ship-houses put in a state of repair, as well as the colonnade adjoining the docks and the tower next to it, in which the magistrates resided: this served as a pretext to provide ladders for those whose object it was to seize the dockyard, colonnade and tower. 4. He also advised the discharge of a greater number of the city guards, on the plea of saving expense. 5. By these and similar arguments he persuaded his colleagues to agree to the very measures that would facilitate the capture of the city by the traitors’ attack. It is, therefore, important always to keep an eye on people who busy themselves to prepare the way for such schemes. 6. At the same time, he fastened to the walls and hung out stag-nets and boar-nets, as if for drying, and in another place sails with their ropes hanging outside; and by these some of the enemy climbed up under cover of night.
7. In Argos the following measures were taken against the revolutionary party. When the wealthy party was about to make its second attempt against the democracy, and was calling in mercenary troops, the democratic leader, perceiving what was on foot, induced two of the hostile party which was meditating the attack to become his secret accomplices, and thus, while representing them to be his enemies and treating them as such in public, obtained from them privately information about the traitors’ plans. 8. The wealthy party was on the point of bringing in the mercenaries, accomplices in the city were ready, and the attempt was to be made on the following night, when the democratic leader saw fit to summon a special meeting of the assembly, and without disclosing the plot, which might have thrown the whole city into commotion, said in the course of his speech that it was expedient for all citizens to assemble by tribes and to remain under arms during the coming night: 9. and that anyone who conveyed his arms to any other point, or appeared with them anywhere else, was to be punished as a traitor and conspirator against the people. 10. Now the object of this was that the wealthy men, being divided according to their respective tribes, might be prevented from forming a united body and taking part with the mercenaries in the attack: for by this tribal arrangement they would be distributed in small groups among their fellow tribesmen. By this clever and effective plan the attempt was frustrated entirely without risk. 10a. Similarly, at Heracleia Pontica, when under a democratic regime the wealthy party was plotting against the people and contemplating an attack, the leaders of the people, discovering their intention, persuaded the populace to substitute for their normal arrangements of three tribes, with four centuries in each, a division into sixty centuries, in which the wealthy men were to be distributed for guard-duty and other public services. 11. Here, too, the result was that they were divided, so that in each century there were only a few of them along with a large number of ordinary citizens. 12. A similar incident is said to have occurred long ago at Sparta. The magistrates were informed that an attack would be made ‘when the cap was lifted’, and defeated the attempt by ordering those who were about to raise the cap to refrain from doing so.
13. At Corcyra, when a revolt of the wealthy oligarchs against the people was impending (Chares the Athenian, who was stationed there with a guard, was in sympathy with this revolt), recourse was had to the following device. 14. Certain officers of the guard cut themselves about the body with cupping glasses, and run out into the market place covered with blood, like wounded men; whereupon the rest of the soldiers and the Corcyraean conspirators, who were standing by in readiness, immediately brought out their weapons, the rest of the populace knowing nothing of the plot. 15. Then the assembly was summoned, and the leaders of the people were arrested on the charge of instigating a revolution, while the conspirators proceeded to make the changes necessary to secure their position.




11. Ἐπιβουλαί

1. Ἔτι δὲ καὶ τῶν πολιτῶν δεῖ τοῖς ἀντιπροθυμουμένοις προσέχειν τὸν νοῦν καὶ μηδὲν εὐθέως ἀποδέχεσθαι διὰ τάδε. 2. ῥηθήσονται δὲ ἑξῆς αἱ ἐπιβουλαὶ ἐκ τῆς βίβλου παραδείγματος ἕνεκεν, ὅσαι κατὰ πόλιν ἐξ ἀρχόντων ἢ ἰδιωτῶν γεγόνασιν καὶ ὡς ἔνιαι αὐτῶν κωλυθεῖσαι διελύθησαν.
3. Χίου γὰρ μελλούσης προδίδοσθαι, τῶν ἀρχόντων τις, συμπροδιδοὺς καὶ ἀπατῶν τοὺς συνάρχοντας ἔπεισε λέγων, ὡς, ἐπειδὴ εἰρήνη εἴη, τοῦ τε λιμένος τὸ κλεῖθρον εἰς γῆν ἀνασπάσαντας ξηρᾶναι δεῖ καὶ πισσαλοιφῆσαι καὶ τὰ παλαιὰ τῶν νεῶν ἄρμενα ἀποδόσθαι, τῶν τε νεωρίων ἐπεσκευάσθαι τὰ στάζοντα καὶ τὴν ἐχομένην αὐτῶν στοὰν καὶ τὸν πύργον, ἐν ᾧ διῃτῶντο οἱ ἄρχοντες, ἐχόμενον τῆς στοᾶς, ἵνα ἐκ προφάσεως κλίμακες προπορισθῶσιν τοῖς μέλλουσι καταλαμβάνειν τὰ νεώρια καὶ τὴν στοὰν καὶ τὸν πύργον. 4. ἔτι δὲ συνεβούλευε καὶ τὸ πλῆθος τῶν τὴν πόλιν φυλασσόντων ἀπόμισθον ποιῆσαι, ἵν̓ ὡς ἐλάχιστον δῆθεν ἀνάλωμα τῇ πόλει ᾖ. 5. καὶ ἄλλα τούτοις ὁμότροπα λέγων ἔπεισε τοὺς συνάρχοντας ἅπερ ἔμελλεν τοῖς προδιδοῦσι καὶ ἐπιτιθεμένοις συνοίσειν πρὸς τὴν κατάληψιν: ὥστε ἀεὶ δεῖ προσέχειν τοῖς τὰ τοιαῦτα τελειοῦν σπουδάζουσιν. 6. ἅμα δὲ τοῦ τείχους ἐκδήσας κατεκρέμασε δίκτυα ἐλάφεια καὶ σύεια, ὡσεὶ ξηρᾶναι θέλων, καὶ ἄλλῃ ἱστία ἔξω τοὺς κάλους ἔχοντα: καθ̓ ἅπερ ἐν νυκτὶ ἀνέβησαν στρατιῶται.
7. Πρὸς δὲ ἀντιστασιώτας τοιόνδε ἐπράχθη ἐν Ἄργει. μελλόντων γὰρ τῶν πλουσίων τὴν δευτέραν ἐπίθεσιν ἐπιτίθεσθαι τῷ δήμῳ καὶ ξένους ἐπαγομένων, ὁ τοῦ δήμου προστάτης, προαισθόμενος τὸ μέλλον, τῶν ἐπιθησομένων τινὰς τῶν ὑπεναντίων ὄντων τῷ δήμῳ ἄνδρας δύο προσποιησάμενος φίλους εἶναι ἀπορρήτους, πολεμίους αὑτῷ καθίστησιν αὐτοὺς καὶ ἐποίει κακῶς ἐν τῷ φανερῷ, σιγῇ δὲ τὰ ἐκ τῶν ἐναντίων βουλεύματα ἤκουεν παῤ αὐτῶν. 8. ἐπεὶ δ̓ ἐν τῷ εἰσάγεσθαι τοὺς ξένους ἦσαν οἱ πλούσιοι, ἅμα δὲ καὶ τῶν ἐν τῇ πόλει τινὲς ἦσαν ἕτοιμοι, καὶ εἰς τὴν ἐπιοῦσαν νύκτα ἔμελλεν τὸ ἔργον ἔσεσθαι, ἔδοξε τῷ τοῦ δήμου προστάτῃ τὴν ταχίστην ἐκκλησίαν συναγαγεῖν καὶ τὸ μέλλον μὴ προειπεῖν, ἵνα μὴ πᾶσα ἡ πόλις ταραχθῇ, εἰπόντα δὲ ἄλλα τε καὶ ὅτι συμφέρον εἴη ἐν τῇ ἐπιούσῃ νυκτὶ σὺν τοῖς ὅπλοις πάντας Ἀργείους παρεῖναι ἐν τῇ αὑτοῦ φυλῇ ὄντας ἕκαστον. 9. ἐὰν δέ τις ἄλλως ἐκθῆται τὰ ὅπλα ἢ ἄλλῃ ἐξενεγκάμενος φανῇ, ὡς προδότης καὶ ἐπιβουλεύων τῷ δήμῳ πασχέτω τι. 10. τοῦτο δὴ αὐτὸ ἵνα κατὰ τὰς φυλὰς ὄντες οἱ πλούσιοι μὴ δύνωνται εἰς ταὐτὸ ἀθροισθέντες μετὰ τῶν ξένων ἐπιθέσθαι, ἀλλ̓ ἐν ταῖς φυλαῖς ὄντες διακεχωρισμένοι ὦσιν ἐν πολλοῖς ὀλίγοι φυλέταις. καλῶς δὲ δοκεῖ καὶ ἀγχινόως μετ̓ ἀσφαλείας διαλῦσαι τὸ μέλλον. 10α. Παραπλησίως δὲ ἐν Ἡρακλείᾳ τῇ ἐν τῷ Πόντῳ, οὔσης δημοκρατίας καὶ ἐπιβουλευόντων τῶν πλουσίων τῷ δήμῳ καὶ μελλόντων ἐπιτίθεσθαι, προγνόντες οἱ προστάται τοῦ δήμου τὸ μέλλον, οὐσῶν αὐτοῖς τριῶν φυλῶν καὶ τεσσάρων ἑκατοστύων, ἔπεισαν τὸ πλῆθος ἑξήκοντα εἶναι ἑκατοστύας, ἵνα ἐν ταύταις καὶ εἰς τὰς φυλακὰς καὶ εἰς τὰς ἄλλας λειτουργίας φοιτῶσιν οἱ πλούσιοι. 11. συνέβαινεν καὶ ἐνταῦθα διεσκεδασμένους εἶναι τοὺς πλουσίους καὶ ἐν ταῖς ἑκατοστύσιν ὀλίγους ἑκάστοθι παραγίγνεσθαι ἐν πολλοῖς δημόταις: 12. ὁμότροπον δέ τι τούτῳ καὶ πάλαι ἐν Λακεδαίμονι γενέσθαι. μηνυθείσης γὰρ ἐπιβουλῆς τοῖς ἄρχουσιν ὅτι ὅταν ὁ πῖλος ἀρθῇ ἐπιθήσονται, ἔπαυσαν τοὺς ἐγχειροῦντας ἐπιθέσθαι, κήρυγμα ἀναγγείλαντες τοὺς τὸν πῖλον μέλλοντας ἆραι μὴ ἆραι.
13. Ἐν Κορκύρᾳ δὲ ἐπανάστασιν δέον γενέσθαι ἐκ τῶν πλουσίων καὶ ὀλιγαρχικῶν τῷ δήμῳ ῾ἐπεδήμει δὲ καὶ Χάρης Ἀθηναῖος φρουρὰν ἔχων, ὅσπερ συνήθελεν τῇ ἐπαναστάσεἰ ἐτεχνάσθη τοιόνδε. 14. τῶν τῆς φρουρᾶς τινες ἄρχοντες σικύας προσβαλόμενοι καὶ τομὰς ἐν τῷ σώματι ποιησάμενοι καὶ αἱματωθέντες ἐξέδραμον εἰς τὴν ἀγορὰν ὡς πληγὰς ἔχοντες, ἅμα δ̓ αὐτοῖς εὐθὺς προπαρεσκευασμένοι οἵ τε ἄλλοι στρατιῶται τὰ ὅπλα ἐξηνέγκαντο καὶ τῶν Κορκυραίων οἱ ἐπιβουλεύοντες. 15. τῶν δ̓ ἄλλων ἀγνοούντων τὸ πρᾶγμα καὶ εἰς ἐκκλησίαν παρακληθέντων συνελαμβάνοντο οἱ προστάται τοῦ δήμου, ὡς ἐπαναστάσεως γενομένης ἐξ αὐτῶν, καὶ τὰ ἄλλα μεθίστασαν πρὸς τὸ συμφέρον αὑτοῖς.

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created 04/07/2017 - updated 04/07/2017