The History of Herodotus, parallel English/Greek, tr. G. C. Macaulay, , at sacred-texts.com
|10. He then, since he might not avoid it, gave consent: and Candaules, when he considered that it was time to rest, led Gyges to the chamber; and straightway after this the woman also appeared: and Gyges looked upon her after she came in and as she laid down her garments; and when she had her back turned towards him, as she went to the bed, then he slipped away from his hiding-place and was going forth. And as he went out, the woman caught sight of him, and perceiving that which had been done by her husband she did not cry out, though struck with shame, but she made as though she had not perceived the matter, meaning to avenge herself upon Candaules: for among the Lydians as also among most other Barbarians it is a shame even for a man to be seen naked.
| 10.  ὃ μὲν δὴ ὡς οὐκ ἐδύνατο διαφυγεῖν, ἦν ἕτοιμος· ὁ δὲ Κανδαύλης, ἐπεὶ ἐδόκεε ὥρη τῆς κοίτης εἶναι, ἤγαγε τὸν Γύγεα ἐς τὸ οἴκημα. καὶ μετὰ ταῦτα αὐτίκα παρῆν καὶ ἡ γυνή. ἐσελθοῦσαν δὲ καὶ τιθεῖσαν τὰ εἵματα ἐθηεῖτο ὁ Γύγης.  ὡς δὲ κατὰ νώτου ἐγένετο ἰούσης τῆς γυναικός ἐς τὴν κοίτην, ὑπεκδὺς ἐχώρεε ἔξω, καὶ ἡ γυνὴ ἐπορᾷ μιν ἐξιόντα. μαθοῦσὰ δὲ τὸ ποιηθέν ἐκ τοῦ ἀνδρὸς οὔτε ἀνέβωσε αἰσχυνθεῖσα οὔτε ἔδοξε μαθεῖν, ἐν νοῶ ἔχουσα τίσεσθαι τὸν Κανδαύλεα.  παρὰ γὰρ τοῖσι Λυδοῖσι, σχεδὸν δὲ καὶ παρὰ τοῖσι ἄλλοισι βαρβάροισι καὶ ἄνδρα ὀφθῆναι γυμνόν ἐς αἰσχύνην μεγάλην φέρει.
|11. At the time then she kept silence, as I say, and made no outward sign; but as soon as day had dawned, and she made ready those of the servants whom she perceived to be the most attached to herself, and after that she sent to summon Gyges. He then, not supposing that anything of that which had been done was known to her, came upon her summons; for he had been accustomed before to go whenever the queen summoned him. And when Gyges was come, the woman said to him these words: "There are now two ways open to thee, Gyges, and I give thee the choice which of the two thou wilt prefer to take. Either thou must slay Candaules and possess both me and the kingdom of Lydia, or thou must thyself here on the spot be slain, so that thou mayest not in future, by obeying Candaules in all things, see that which thou shouldest not. Either he must die who formed this design, or thou who hast looked upon me naked and done that which is not accounted lawful." For a time then Gyges was amazed at these words, and afterwards he began to entreat her that she would not bind him by necessity to make such a choice: then however, as he could not prevail with her, but saw that necessity was in truth set before him either to slay his master or to be himself slain by others, he made the choice to live himself; and he inquired further as follows: "Since thou dost compel me to take my master's life against my own will, let me hear from thee also what is the manner in which we shall lay hands upon him." And she answering said: "From that same place shall the attempt be, where he displayed me naked; and we will lay hands upon him as he sleeps."
| 11.  τότε μὲν δὴ οὕτω οὐδέν δηλώσασα ἡσυχίην εἶχε. ὡς δὲ ἡμέρη τάχιστα ἐγεγόνεε, τῶν οἰκετέων τοὺς μάλιστα ὥρα πιστοὺς ἐόντας ἑωυτῇ, ἑτοίμους ποιησαμένη ἐκάλεε τὸν Γύγεα. ὁ δὲ οὐδὲν δοκέων αὐτήν τῶν πρηχθέντων ἐπίστασθαι ἦλθε καλεόμενος· ἐώθεε γὰρ καὶ πρόσθε, ὅκως ἡ βασίλεια καλέοι, φοιτᾶν.  ὡς δὲ ὁ Γύγης ἀπίκετο, ἔλεγε ἡ γυνὴ τάδε. «νῦν τοί δυῶν ὁδῶν παρεουσέων Γύγη δίδωμί αἵρεσιν, ὁκοτέρην βούλεαι τραπέσθαι. ἢ γὰρ Κανδαύλεα ἀποκτείνας ἐμέ τε καὶ τὴν βασιληίην ἔχε τὴν Λυδῶν, ἢ αὐτόν σε αὐτίκα οὕτω ἀποθνήσκειν δεῖ, ὡς ἂν μὴ πάντα πειθόμενος Κανδαύλῃ τοῦ λοιποῦ ἴδῃς τὰ μὴ σε δεῖ.  ἀλλ᾽ ἤτοι κεῖνόν γε τὸν ταῦτα βουλεύσαντα δεῖ ἀπόλλυσθαι, ἢ σε τὸν ἐμὲ γυμνήν θεησάμενον καὶ ποιήσαντα οὐ νομιζόμενα.» ὁ δὲ Γύγης τέως μὲν ἀπεθώμαζε τὰ λεγόμενα, μετὰ δὲ ἱκέτευε μὴ μιν ἀναγκαίῃ ἐνδέειν διακρῖναι τοιαύτην αἵρεσιν.  οὔκων δὴ ἔπειθε, ἀλλ᾽ ὥρα ἀναγκαίην ἀληθέως προκειμένην ἢ τὸν δεσπότεα ἀπολλύναι ἢ αὐτὸν ὑπ᾽ ἄλλων ἀπόλλυσθαι· αἱρέεται αὐτὸς περιεῖναι. ἐπειρώτα δὴ λέγων τάδε. «ἐπεί με ἀναγκάζεις δεσπότεα τὸν ἐμὸν κτείνειν οὐκ ἐθέλοντα, φέρε ἀκούσω τέῳ καὶ τρόπῳ ἐπιχειρήσομεν αὐτῷ.»  ἣ δὲ ὑπολαβοῦσα ἔφη «ἐκ τοῦ αὐτοῦ μὲν χωρίου ἡ ὁρμή ἔσται ὅθεν περ καὶ ἐκεῖνος ἐμέ ἐπεδέξατο γυμνήν, ὑπνωμένῳ δὲ ἡ ἐπιχείρησις ἔσται.»
|12. So after they had prepared the plot, when night came on, (for Gyges was not let go nor was there any way of escape for him, but he must either be slain himself or slay Candaules), he followed the woman to the bedchamber; and she gave him a dagger and concealed him behind that very same door. Then afterwards, while Candaules was sleeping, Gyges came privily up to him and slew him, and he obtained both his wife and his kingdom: of him moreover Archilochos the Parian, who lived about that time, made mention in a trimeter iambic verse.
| 12.  ὡς δὲ ἤρτυσαν τὴν ἐπιβουλήν, νυκτὸς γενομένης (οὐ γὰρ ἐμετίετο ὁ Γύγης, οὐδέ οἱ ἦν ἀπαλλαγὴ οὐδεμία, ἀλλ᾽ ἔδεε ἤ αὐτὸν ἀπολωλέναι ἢ Κανδαύλεα) εἵπετο ἐς τὸν θάλαμον τῇ γυναικί, καί μιν ἐκείνη, ἐγχειρίδιον δοῦσα, κατακρύπτει ὑπὸ τὴν αὐτὴν θύρην.  καὶ μετὰ ταῦτα ἀναπαυομένου Κανδαύλεω ὑπεκδύς τε καὶ ἀποκτείνας αὐτὸν ἔσχε καὶ τὴν γυναῖκα καὶ τὴν βασιληίην Γύγης τοῦ καὶ Ἀρχίλοχος ὁ Πάριος κατὰ τὸν αὐτὸν χρόνον γενόμενος ἐν ἰάμβῳ τριμέτρῳ ἐπεμνήσθη.3
| 13. He obtained the kingdom however and was strengthened in it by means of the Oracle at Delphi; for when the Lydians were angry because of the fate of Candaules, and had risen in arms, a treaty was made between the followers of Gyges and the other Lydians to this effect, that if the Oracle should give answer that he was to be king of the Lydians, he should be king, and if not, he should give back the power to the sons of Heracles. So the Oracle gave answer, and Gyges accordingly became king: yet the Pythian prophetess said this also, that vengeance for the Heracleidai should come upon the descendants of Gyges in the fifth generation. Of this oracle the Lydians and their kings made no account until it was in fact fulfilled.
| 13.  ἔσχε δὲ τὴν βασιληίην καὶ ἐκρατύνθη ἐκ τοῦ ἐν Δελφοῖσι χρηστηρίου. ὡς γὰρ δὴ οἱ Λυδοὶ δεινόν ἐποιεῦντο τὸ Κανδαύλεω πάθος καὶ ἐν ὅπλοισι ἦσαν, συνέβησαν ἐς τὠυτὸ οἳ τε τοῦ Γύγεω στασιῶται καί οἱ λοιποὶ Λυδοί, ἤν μὲν τὸ χρηστήριον ἀνέλῃ μιν βασιλέα εἶναι Λυδῶν, τόν δὲ βασιλεύειν, ἤν δὲ μή, ἀποδοῦναι ὀπίσω ἐς Ἡρακλείδας τὴν ἀρχήν.  ἀνεῖλέ τε δὴ τὸ χρηστήριον καὶ ἐβασίλευσε οὕτω Γύγης. τοσόνδε μέντοι εἶπε ἡ Πυθίη, ὡς Ἡρακλείδῃσι τίσις ἥξει ἐς τὸν πέμπτον ἀπόγονον Γύγεω. τούτου τοῦ ἔπεος Λυδοί τε καί οἱ βασιλέες αὐτῶν λόγον οὐδένα ἐποιεῦντο, πρὶν δὴ ἐπετελέσθη.
| 14. Thus the Mermnadai obtained the government having driven out from it the Heracleidai: and Gyges when he became ruler sent votive offerings to Delphi not a few, for of all the silver offerings at Delphi his are more in number than those of any other man; and besides the silver he offered a vast quantity of gold, and especially one offering which is more worthy of mention than the rest, namely six golden mixing-bowls, which are dedicated there as his gift: of these the weight is thirty talents, and they stand in the treasury of the Corinthians, (though in truth this treasury does not belong to the State of the Corinthians, but is that of Kypselos the son of Aëtion). This Gyges was the first of the Barbarians within our knowledge who dedicated votive offerings at Delphi, except only Midas the son of Gordias king of Phrygia, who dedicated for an offering the royal throne on which he sat before all to decide causes; and this throne, a sight worth seeing, stands in the same place with the bowls of Gyges. This gold and silver which Gyges dedicated is called Gygian by the people of Delphi, after the name of him who offered it.
Now Gyges also, as soon as he became king, led an army against Miletos and Smyrna, and he took the lower town of Colophon: but no other great deed did he do in his reign, which lasted eight-and-thirty years, therefore we will pass him by with no more mention than has already been made,
| 14.  τὴν μὲν δὴ τυραννίδα οὕτω ἔσχον οἱ Μερμνάδαι τοὺς Ἡρακλείδας ἀπελόμενοι, Γύγης δὲ τυραννεύσας ἀπέπεμψε ἀναθήματα ἐς Δελφοὺς οὐκ ὀλίγα, ἀλλ᾽ ὅσα μὲν ἀργύρου ἀναθήματα, ἔστι οἱ πλεῖστα ἐν Δελφοῖσι, πάρεξ δὲ τοῦ ἀργύρου χρυσὸν ἄπλετον ἀνέθηκε ἄλλον τε καὶ τοῦ μάλιστα μνήμην ἄξιον ἔχειν ἐστί, κρητῆρες οἱ ἀριθμὸν ἓξ χρύσεοι ἀνακέαται.  ἑστᾶσι δὲ οὗτοι ἐν τῷ Κορινθίων θησαυρῷ, σταθμὸν ἔχοντες τριήκοντα τάλαντα· ἀληθέι δὲ λόγῳ χρεωμένῳ οὐ Κορινθίων τοῦ δημοσίου ἐστὶ ὁ θησαυρός, ἀλλὰ Κυψέλου τοῦ Ἠετίωνος. οὗτος δὲ ὁ Γύγης πρῶτος βαρβάρων τῶν ἡμεῖς ἴδμεν ἐς Δελφοὺς ἀνέθηκε ἀναθήματα μετὰ Μίδην τὸν Γορδίεω Φρυγίης βασιλέα.  ἀνέθηκε γὰρ δὴ καὶ Μίδης τὸν βασιλήιον θρόνον ἐς τὸν προκατίζων ἐδίκαζε, ἐόντα ἀξιοθέητον· κεῖται δὲ ὁ θρόνος οὗτος ἔνθα περ οἱ τοῦ Γύγεω κρητῆρες. ὁ δὲ χρυσός οὗτος καὶ ὁ ἄργυρος τὸν ὁ Γύγης ἀνέθηκε, ὑπὸ Δελφῶν καλέεται Γυγάδας ἐπὶ τοῦ ἀναθέντος ἐπωνυμίην.  ἐσέβαλε μέν νυν στρατιὴν καὶ οὗτος ἐπείτε ἦρξε ἔς τε Μίλητον καὶ ἐς Σμύρνην, καὶ Κολοφῶνος τὸ ἄστυ εἷλε· ἀλλ᾽ οὐδὲν γὰρ μέγα ἀπ᾽ αὐτοῦ ἄλλο ἔργον ἐγένετο βασιλεύσαντος δυῶν δέοντα τεσσεράκοντα ἔτεα, τοῦτον μὲν παρήσομεν τοσαῦτα ἐπιμνησθέντες,
| 15. and I will speak now of Ardys the son of Gyges, who became king after Gyges. He took Priene and made an invasion against Miletos; and while he was ruling over Sardis, the Kimmerians driven from their abodes by the nomad Scythians came to Asia and took Sardis except the citadel.
| 15. Ἄρδυος δὲ τοῦ Γύγεω μετὰ Γύγην βασιλεύσαντος μνήμην ποιήσομαι. οὗτος δὲ Πριηνέας τε εἷλε ἐς Μίλητόν τε ἐσέβαλε, ἐπὶ τούτου τε τυραννεύοντος Σαρδίων Κιμμέριοι ἐξ ἠθέων ὑπὸ Σκυθέων τῶν νομάδων ἐξαναστάντες ἀπίκοντο ἐς τὴν Ἀσίην καὶ Σάρδις πλὴν τῆς ἀκροπόλιος εἷλον.
|16. Now when Ardys had been king for nine-and-forty years, Sadyattes his son succeeded to his kingdom, and reigned twelve years; and after him Alyattes. This last made war against Kyaxares the descendant of Deïokes and against the Medes, and he drove the Kimmerians forth out of Asia, and he took Smyrna which had been founded from Colophon, and made an invasion against Clazomenai. From this he returned not as he desired, but with great loss: during his reign however he performed other deeds very worthy of mention as follows:--
| 16.  Ἄρδυος δὲ βασιλεύσαντος ἑνὸς δέοντα πεντήκοντα ἔτεα ἐξεδέξατο Σαδυάττης ὁ Ἄρδυος, καὶ ἐβασίλευσε ἔτεα δυώδεκα, Σαδυάττεω δὲ Ἀλυάττης.  οὗτος δὲ Κυαξάρῃ τε τῷ Δηιόκεω ἀπογόνῳ ἐπολέμησε καὶ Μήδοισι, Κιμμερίους τε ἐκ τῆς Ἀσίης ἐξήλασε, Σμύρνην τε τὴν ἀπὸ Κολοφῶνος κτισθεῖσαν εἷλε, ἐς Κλαζομενάς τε ἐσέβαλε. ἀπὸ μέν νυν τούτων οὐκ ὡς ἤθελε ἀπήλλαξε, ἀλλὰ προσπταίσας μεγάλως.
|17. He made war with those of Miletos, having received this war as an inheritance from his father: for he used to invade their land and besiege Miletos in the following manner:--whenever there were ripe crops upon the land, then he led an army into their confines, making his march to the sound of pipes and harps and flutes both of male and female tone: and when he came to the Milesian land, he neither pulled down the houses that were in the fields, nor set fire to them nor tore off their doors, but let them stand as they were; the trees however and the crops that were upon the land he destroyed, and then departed by the way he came: for the men of Miletos had command of the sea, so that it was of no use for his army to blockade them: and he abstained from pulling down the houses to the end that the Milesians might have places to dwell in while they sowed and tilled the land, and by the means of their labour he might have somewhat to destroy when he made his invasion.
| 17.  ἄλλα δὲ ἔργα ἀπεδέξατο ἐὼν ἐν τῇ ἀρχῇ ἀξιαπηγητότατα τάδε. ἐπολέμησε Μιλησίοισι, παραδεξάμενος τὸν πόλεμον παρὰ τοῦ πατρός. ἐπελαύνων γὰρ ἐπολιόρκεε τὴν Μίλητον τρόπῳ τοιῷδε· ὅκως μὲν εἴη ἐν τῇ γῇ καρπὸς ἁδρός, τηνικαῦτα ἐσέβαλλε τὴν στρατιήν· ἐστρατεύετο δὲ ὑπὸ συρίγγων τε καὶ πηκτίδων καὶ αὐλοῦ γυναικηίου τε καὶ ἀνδρηίου.  ὡς δὲ ἐς τὴν Μιλησίην ἀπίκοιτο, οἰκήματα μὲν τὰ ἐπὶ τῶν ἀγρῶν οὔτε κατέβαλλε οὔτε ἐνεπίμπρη οὔτε θύρας ἀπέσπα, ἔα δὲ κατὰ χώρην ἑστάναι· ὁ δὲ τὰ τε δένδρεα καὶ τὸν καρπὸν τὸν ἐν τῇ γῇ ὅκως διαφθείρειε, ἀπαλλάσσετο ὀπίσω.  τῆς γὰρ θαλάσσης οἱ Μιλήσιοι ἐπεκράτεον, ὥστε ἐπέδρης μὴ εἶναι ἔργον τῇ στρατιῇ. τὰς δὲ οἰκίας οὐ κατέβαλλε ὁ Λυδὸς τῶνδε εἵνεκα, ὅκως ἔχοιεν ἐνθεῦτεν ὁρμώμενοι τὴν γῆν σπείρειν τε καὶ ἐργάζεσθαι οἱ Μιλήσιοι, αὐτὸς δὲ ἐκείνων ἐργαζομένων ἔχοι τι καὶ σίνεσθαι ἐσβάλλων.
|18. Thus he continued to war with them for eleven years; and in the course of these years the Milesians suffered two great defeats, once when they fought a battle in the district of Limenion in their own land, and again in the plain of Maiander. Now for six of the eleven years Sadyattes the son of Ardys was still ruler of the Lydians, the same who was wont to invade the land of Miletos at the times mentioned; for this Sadyattes was he who first began the war: but for the five years which followed these first six the war was carried on by Alyattes the son of Sadyattes, who received it as an inheritance from his father (as I have already said) and applied himself to it earnestly. And none of the Ionians helped those of Miletos bear the burden of this war except only the men of Chios. These came to their aid to pay back like with like, for the Milesians had formerly assisted the Chians throughout their war with the people of Erythrai.
| 18.  ταῦτα ποιέων ἐπολέμεε ἔτεα ἕνδεκα, ἐν τοῖσι τρώματα μεγάλα διφάσια Μιλησίων ἐγένετο, ἔν τε Λιμενηίῳ χώρης τῆς σφετέρης μαχεσαμένων καὶ ἐν Μαιάνδρου πεδίῳ.  τὰ μέν νυν ἓξ ἔτεα τῶν ἕνδεκα Σαδυάττης ὁ Ἄρδυος ἔτι Λυδῶν ἦρχε, ὁ καὶ ἐσβάλλων τηνικαῦτα ἐς τὴν Μιλησίην τὴν στρατιήν· Σαδυάττης οὗτος γὰρ καὶ ὁ τὸν πόλεμον ἦν συνάψας· τὰ δὲ πέντε τῶν ἐτέων τὰ ἑπόμενα τοῖσι ἓξ Ἀλυάττης ὁ Σαδυάττεω ἐπολέμεε, ὃς παραδεξάμενος, ὡς καὶ πρότερον μοι δεδήλωται, παρὰ τοῦ πατρὸς τὸν πόλεμον προσεῖχε ἐντεταμένως.  τοῖσι δὲ Μιλησίοισι οὐδαμοὶ Ἰώνων τὸν πόλεμον τοῦτον συνεπελάφρυνον ὅτι μὴ Χῖοι μοῦνοι. οὗτοι δὲ τὸ ὅμοιον ἀνταποδιδόντες ἐτιμώρεον· καὶ γὰρ δὴ πρότερον οἱ Μιλήσιοι τοῖσι Χίοισι τὸν πρὸς Ἐρυθραίους πόλεμον συνδιήνεικαν.
|19. Then in the twelfth year of the war, when standing corn was being burnt by the army of the Lydians, it happened as follows:--as soon as the corn was kindled, it was driven by a violent wind and set fire to the temple of Athene surnamed of Assessos; and the temple being set on fire was burnt down to the ground. Of this no account was made then; but afterwards when the army had returned to Sardis, Alyattes fell sick, and as his sickness lasted long, he sent messengers to inquire of the Oracle at Delphi, either being advised to do so by some one, or because he himself thought it best to send and inquire of the god concerning his sickness. But when these arrived at Delphi, the Pythian prophetess said that she would give them no answer, until they should have built up again the temple of Athene which they had burnt at Assessos in the land of Miletos.
| 19.  τῷ δὲ δυωδεκάτῳ ἔτεϊ ληίου ἐμπιπραμένου ὑπὸ τῆς στρατιῆς συνηνείχθη τι τοιόνδε γενέσθαι πρῆγμα· ὡς ἅφθη τάχιστα τὸ λήιον, ἀνέμῳ βιώμενον ἅψατο νηοῦ Ἀθηναίης ἐπίκλησιν Ἀσσησίης, ἁφθεὶς δὲ ὁ νηὸς κατεκαύθη.  καὶ τὸ παραυτίκα μὲν λόγος οὐδεὶς ἐγένετο, μετὰ δὲ τῆς στρατιῆς ἀπικομένης ἐς Σάρδις ἐνόσησε ὁ Ἀλυάττης. μακροτέρης δέ οἱ γινομένης τῆς νούσου πέμπει ἐς Δελφοὺς θεοπρόπους, εἴτε δὴ συμβουλεύσαντός τευ, εἴτε καὶ αὐτῷ ἔδοξε πέμψαντα τὸν θεὸν ἐπειρέσθαι περὶ τῆς νούσου.  τοῖσι δὲ ἡ Πυθίη ἀπικομένοισι ἐς Δελφοὺς οὐκ ἔφη χρήσειν πρὶν ἢ τὸν νηὸν τῆς Ἀθηναίης ἀνορθώσωσι, τὸν ἐνέπρησαν χώρης τῆς Μιλησίης ἐν Ἀσσησῷ.