History of the Peloponnesian War

Thucydides

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

At the Olympic games which were held this summer, and in which the Arcadian Androsthenes was victor the first time in the wrestling and boxing, the Lacedaemonians were excluded from the temple by the Eleans, and thus prevented from sacrificing or contending, for having refused to pay the fine specified in the Olympic law imposed upon them by the Eleans, who alleged that they had attacked Fort Phyrcus, and sent heavy infantry of theirs into Lepreum during the Olympic truce.

The amount of the fine was two thousand minae, two for each heavy-armed soldier, as the law prescribes.

The Lacedaemonians sent envoys, and pleaded that the imposition was unjust; saying that the truce had not yet been proclaimed at Lacedaemon when the heavy infantry were sent off.

But the Eleans affirmed that the armistice with them had already begun (they proclaim it first among themselves), and that the aggression of the Lacedaemonians had taken them by surprise while they were living quietly as in time of peace, and not expecting anything.

Upon this the Lacedaemonians submitted, that if the Eleans really believed that they had committed an aggression, it was useless after that to proclaim the truce at Lacedaemon; but they had proclaimed it notwithstanding, as believing nothing of the kind, and from that moment the Lacedaemonians had made no attack upon their country.

Nevertheless the Eleans adhered to what they had said, that nothing would persuade them that an aggression had not been committed; if, however, the Lacedaemonians would restore Lepreum, they would give up their own share of the money and pay that of the god for them.