History of the Peloponnesian War

Thucydides

Thucydides. The Peloponnesian War. London, J. M. Dent; New York, E. P. Dutton. 1910.

The Lacedaemonians hearing this offer, most of them lowered their shields and waved their hands to show that they accepted it.

Hostilities now ceased, and a parley was held between Cleon and Demosthenes and Styphon, son of Pharax, the other side; since Epitadas, the first of the previous commanders, had been killed, and Hippagretas, the next in command, left for dead among the slain, though still alive, and thus the command had devolved upon Styphon according to the law, in case of anything happening to his superiors.

Styphon and his companions said they wished to send a herald to the Lacedaemonians on the mainland, to know what they were to do.

The Athenians would not let any of them go, but themselves called for heralds from the mainland, and after questions had been carried backwards and forwards two or three times, the last man that passed over from the Lacedaemonians on the continent brought this message: ‘The Lacedaemonians bid you to decide for yourselves so long as you do nothing dishonourable;’ upon which after consulting together they surrendered themselves and their arms.

The Athenians, after guarding them that day and night, the next morning set up a trophy in the island, and got ready to sail, giving their prisoners in batches to be guarded by the captains of the galleys; and the Lacedaemonians sent a herald and took up their dead.

The number of the killed and prisoners taken in the island was as follows: four hundred and twenty heavy infantry had passed over; three hundred all but eight were taken alive to Athens; the rest were killed.

About a hundred and twenty of the prisoners were Spartans.

The Athenian loss was small, the battle not having been fought at close quarters.