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PERSEUS.

lyb. xxvi. 7 ; Inscr. Del. ap. Marm. Otxon. ; Ap-pian. Mac. ix. 1.) But every attempt to strengthen himself by foreign alliances was resented by the Romans as an infraction of the treaty with them. The Dardanians complained to the senate at Rome of the aggressions of the Bastarnae, and accused Perseus, apparently not without reason, of sup­porting the invaders. News was also brought to Rome that Macedonian envoys had been secretly received at Cartilage ; and the king soon after gave fresh cause of offence by an expedition against the Dolopians, in which, after reducing that tribe, he repaired at the head of an army, though in the most peaceful manner, to Delphi, under pretence of a vow, but in reality to make a show of his power and force in the eyes of the Greeks. Numerous embassies were sent by the Romans to complain of these proceedings, as well as to spy into the real state of affairs in Macedonia, while Perseus in return was not sparing of apolo­gies and excuses. At length, in b. c. 172, Eu-menes, king of Pergamus, repaired in person to Rome and laid before the senate an elaborate statement of the power, the resources, and the hostile designs of the Macedonian king. On his return through Greece he was attacked near Delphi by a band of assassins, who are said to have been employed by Perseus, a suspicion to which the latter certainly afforded some countenance, by taking the leader of them—a Cretan named Evan-der—into his immediate service. Another plot which the Romans pretended to have discovered at the same time, for poisoning some of their chief officers [RAM mi us], was probably a mere fiction to inflame the minds of the populace against Per­seus. War was now determined by the senate, but it was not declared till the following spring (b. c. 171), and even then the'Romans were not fully prepared to commence hostilities. Perseus, on the other hand, found himself at the head of a splendid army, fully equipped and ready for immediate action: but instead of making use of this advan­tage, he still clung to the delusive hopes of peace, and was persuaded by Q. Marcius Phiiippus, with whom he held a personal conference in Thessaly, to send ambassadors once more to Rome. These soon returned, as was to be expected, without having even obtained an answer; but in the mean while the Romans had completed their levies, transported their army into Epeirus, and the consul P. Licinius Crassus was ready to take the field. (Liv. xli. 1.9, 22—24, xlii. 2, 5, 11, 12, 14—19, 25, 29— 319 36—43, 48 ; Polyb. xxvi. 9, xxvii. 7, Exc. Vat. p. 413 ; Diod. xxx. Exc. Leg. pp. 623, 624 ; Ap-pian, Mac. Exc. ix. 1—5.)

Perseus was now at length convinced that he had no hope of any longer delaying the contest ; and at a council of war held at Pella, it was de­termined to have immediate recourse to arms. Though supported by no allies, except Cotys king of the Odrysians, he found himself at the head of an army, of 39,000 foot and 4,000 horse, with which he invaded Thessaly, and after taking some small towns, encamped near Sycurium in the valley of the Peneius. The consul Licinius soon arrived in the same neighbourhood, and an action ensued between the cavalry of the two armies, in which the Macedonians were victorious ;, and if Perseus had chosen to follow up his advantage with vigour, might probably have led to the total defeat of the Romans. But the king wavered,

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PERSEUS.

drew off his forces, and even sent to the consul to renew his offers of peace, which were haughtily rejected by Licinius. The rest of the campaign passed over without any decisive result. The Romans in their turn obtained a slight advantage, and Perseus at the close of the summer withdrew into Macedonia, whither Licinius made no attempt to follow him. (Liv. xlii. 50—67 ; Polyb. xxvii. 8; Appian Mac. Exc. 10 ; Pint, Aemil. 9 ; Zonar. ix. 22 ; Eutrop. iv. 6 ; Oros. iv. 20.)

The second year of the war (b. o. 170) passed over without any striking action, but was on the whole favourable to Perseus. The Macedonian fleet defeated that of the Romans at Oreus ; and the consul, A. Hostilius Mancinus, after an unsuccess­ful attempt to penetrate into Macedonia, through the passes of Elymiotis, remained inactive in Thes­saly. Meanwhile, the Epeirots declared in favour of Perseus, by which his frontier became secured on that side; and so little cause did there appear to dread the advance of the Romans, that the king found leisure for an expedition against the Dar­danians, by which he obtained a large booty. (Plut. Aemil. 9; Liv. xliii. 18.) During the heart of the following winter he crossed the mountains into Illyria with an armjr, but not so much with a view to conquest, as in order to gam over Gentius, king of the Illyrians, to his alliance. That mon­arch was favourably disposed towards the Mace­donian cause, but was unable to act without money, and this Perseus was unwilling to give. A second expedition into Acarnania was also productive oi little result. (Liv. xliii. 18—23.)

The arrival of the new consul Q. Marcius Philip-pus, in the spring of 169, for a moment gave fresh vigour to the Roman arms. By a bold but hazardous march he crossed the mountain ridge of Olympus, and thus descended into Macedonia near Hera-cleium. Had Perseus attacked him before he reached the plains he might probably have destroyed the whole Roman army: but instead of this he was seized with a panic terror, abandoned the strong position of Dium, and hastily retreated to Pydna. Marcius at first followed him, but was soon com­pelled by want of provisions to fall back to Phila, arid Perseus again occupied the line of the Enipeus. (Liv. xliv. 1—10; Polyb. xxix. 6; Diod. xxx. Exc. Vales, pp. 578, 579 ; Exc. Vat. pp. 74, 75 ; Zonar. ix. 22.)

The length to which the war had been unex­pectedly protracted, and the ill success of the Roman arms, had by this time excited a general feeling in favour of the Macedonian monarch ; Prusias, king of Bithynia, and the Rhodians, both interposed their good offices at Rome to obtain for him a peace upon moderate terms; and even his bitter enemy Eumenes began to waver, and entered into secret negotiations with the same view. [eu­menes.] These were, however, rendered abortive by the refusal of Perseus to advance the sum of money demanded by the king of Pergamus as the price of his interposition ; and the same unseason­able niggardliness deprived the king of the services of 20,000 Gaulish mercenaries, who had actually advanced into Macedonia to his support, but retired on failing to obtain their stipulated pay. Many of the Greek states, also, which had been from the commencement of the war favourably disposed to­wards Perseus, might undoubtedly have been in duced at this juncture openly to espouse his cause, had he been more liberal of his treasures: but his

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