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POLYSPERCHON.

sperchon, and sent to Athens to undergo the form of a trial. (Diod. xviii. 49, 54—58, 62, 64—66 ; Plut. Phoc. 31—34. For a more detailed account of these transactions see phocion.)

By the destruction of Phocion and his friends, the regent hoped to have secured the adherence of the Athenians ; but while he was still in Phocis with the king (b. c. 318), Cassander himself un­expectedly arrived in Attica with a considerable fleet and army, and established himself in the Peiraeeus. Hereupon Polysperchon advanced into Attica and laid siege to the Peiraeeus, but finding that he made little progress, he left his son Alex­ander to continue the blockade, while he himself advanced into the Peloponnese with a large army. Here be at first met with little opposition : almost all the cities obeyed his mandates and expelled or put to death the leaders of their respective oli­garchies : Megalopolis alone refused submission, and was immediately besieged by the regent him­self with his whole army. Polysperchon had apparently expected an easy victory, but the valour of the citizens frustrated his calculations: all his attacks were repulsed, and after some time he found himself compelled to raise the siege and withdraw from the Peloponnese. Shortly afterwards his ad­miral Cleitus, who had been despatched with a fleet to the Hellespont, was totally defeated by that of Cassander under Nicanor, and his forces utterly destroyed. (Diod. xviii. 68—72.)

These reverses quickly produced an unfavourable turn in the disposition of the Greek states towards Polysperchon : and Athens in particular again abandoned his alliance for that of Cassander, who established an oligarchical government in the city under the presidency of Demetrius of Phalerus. (Id. ib. 74, 75.) At the same time Eurydice, the active and intriguing wife of the unhappy king Arrhidaeus, conceived the project of throwing off the yoke of the regent, and concluded an alliance with Cassander, while she herself assembled an army with which she obtained for a time the complete possession of Macedonia. But in the spring of 317 Polysperchon having united his forces with those of Aeacides king of Epeirus, invaded Macedonia, accompanied by Olympias, whose presence alone quickly determined the con­test. [olympias]. During the subsequent events Polysperchon plays but a subordinate part. We do not learn that he interposed to prevent the cruelties of Olympias, or to save the life of the unhappy king, of whom he was the nominal guardian: and though he afterwards occupied the passes of Perrhaebia with an army, he was unable to prevent the advance of Cassander into Mace­donia, or to avert the fall of Pydna, which fell into the hands of the enemy, while Polysperchon was still shut up in Perrhaebia. Here he was reduced to great straits by Cassander's general Callas, and was besieged in the town of Azorus, when the news of the death of Olympias (b. c. 316) caused him to despair of recovering his footing in Macedonia, and he withdrew with a small force into Aetolia. (Diod. xix. 11, 35, 36, 52.)

From thence he appears to have joined his son Alexander in the Peloponnese, where we find him in b. c. 315, when the altered position of affairs having united Cassander with Lysimachus, Ptolemy, and Seleucus in a general coalition against Anti-genus, the latter sought to attach the aged Polys-

POLYSTRATUS.

perchon to his cause, by offering him the chief command in the Peloponnese. The bribe was accepted, and for a short time Polysperchon and his son conjointly carried on the war in the Pelo­ponnese against Cassander and the generals ot Ptolemy. But before the end of the same year Alexander was gained over by Cassander ; and Polysperchon, though he did not follow the ex­ample of his son, and coalesce with his old enemy, at least assumed a position hostile to Antigonus, as we find him in 313 defending Sicyon and Corinth against Telesphorus, the lieutenant of that general. (Id. ib. 60, 62, 64, 74.) From this time we lose sight of him till b. c. 310, when he again assumed an important part by reviving the long-forgotten pretensions of Heracles the son of Bar-sine (now the only surviving son of Alexander) to the throne of Macedonia. Having induced the unhappy youth to quit his retirement at Pergamus, and join him in the Peloponnese, he persuaded the Aetolians to espouse his cause, and with their assistance raised a large army, with which he advanced towards Macedonia. He was met at Trampyae in Stymphaea by Cassander, but the latter, distrusting the fidelity of his own troops, instead of risking an engagement, entered into secret negotiations with Polysperchon, and endea­voured by promises and flatteries to induce him to abandon the pretender whom he had himself set up. Polysperchon had the weakness to give way, and the meanness to serve the purposes of Cassan­der by the assassination of Heracles at a banquet. (Diod. xx. 20—28. For further details and au­thorities, see heracles.) It is satisfactory to know that Polysperchon did not reap the expected reward of his crime : Cassander had promised him the chief command of the Peloponnese, but this he certainly never obtained, though we find him at a later period possessing a certain footing in that country : he seems to have occupied a subordinate and inglorious position. The last occasion on which his name occurs in history is in B. c. 303, when we find him co-operating with Cassander and Prepe-laus against Demetrius (Diod. xx. 103), but no notice of his subsequent fortunes or the period of his death has been transmitted to us.*

Polysperchon appears to have been a soldier of considerable merit, and to have been regarded by the Macedonians with favour as belonging to the older race of Alexander's generals ; but he was altogether unequal to the position in which he found himself placed on the death of Antipater, and his weakness degenerated into the basest vil-lany in such instances as the surrender of Phocion, and the assassination of Heracles.

2. A leader of mercenaries who joined with Leptines in the assassination of Callippus. (Plut. Dion, 58.) [callippus.] [E. H. B.]

POLYSTEPHANUS (IIo\u(rrtyai/os), a Greek writer, possessed no small reputation, but his writings were full of incredible tales. (GeU. ix. 4.) Harpocration (s. v. \owrpo(f>6pos) quotes a work of his ircpl Kpt]v<av.

POLYSTRATUS. 1. An eminent Epicurean philosopher, who succeeded Hermarchus as head of

* Justin, by some inconceivable error, represents Polysperchon as killed in the war against Eume-nes, before the death of Antipater (xiii. 8): and again (xv. 1, init.) alludes to him as dead before the murder of Heracles the son of Barsine.

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