History of Pyrrhus
History of Pyrrhus
CHAPTER II. CASSANDER
Antipater's difficulties-Trouble with Olympias and Eurydice.-Character of Eurydice.-Her dictatorial and overbearing demeanor.-The convention of Triparadeisus.-Violence of Eurydice.-Antipater's life in danger.-Eurydice forced to submit.-Antipater is dangerously sick.-The arrangements made by him.-Antipater's arrangements for the succession.-Polysperchon.-Polysperchon invites Olympias to return to Macedon.-Cassander plans a rebellion.-His pretended hunting party.-Cassander explains his designs to his friends.-They agree to join him.-Olympias is afraid to return to Macedon.-War between Cassander and Polysperchon.-Curious incident.-Polysperchon's mine.-Success of it.-The conflict.-Consternation produced by the elephants.-Plan of defense against them.-The iron spikes.-Olympias finally concludes to go to Macedon.-Eurydice's troops desert her.-Olympias in her chariot.-Eurydice is captured.-She is sent to a dungeon.-Death of Philip.-Eurydice's despair.-he cell.-Eurydice's dreadful end.-Cassander's movements.-Olympias acts in the most energetic manner.-The siege of Pydna.-Movement of Cassander.-The carrying away of Pyrrhus.-Olympias resorts to a stratagem.-Olympias in prison.-Her end.
ALTHOUGH Antipater, on his return to Macedon, came back loaded with honors, and in the full and triumphant possession of power, his situation was still not without its difficulties. He had for enemies, in Macedon, two of the most violent and unmanageable women that ever lived-Olympias and Eurydice-who quarreled with him incessantly, and who hated each other even more than they hated him.
Olympias was at this time in Epirus. She remained there, because she did not choose to put herself under Antipater's power by residing in Macedon. She succeeded, however, by her maneuvers and intrigues, in giving Antipater a great deal of trouble. Her ancient animosity against him had been very much increased and aggravated by the failure of her plan for marrying her daughter Cleopatra to Perdiccas, through the advances which Antipater made in behalf of his daughter Nicæa; and though Nicæa and Perdiccas were now dead, yet the transaction was an offense which such a woman as Olympias never could forgive.
Eurydice was a still greater source of annoyance and embarrassment to Antipater than Olympias herself. She was a woman of very masculine turn of mind, and she had been brought up by her mother, Cynane, to martial exercises, such as those to which young men in those days were customarily trained. She could shoot arrows, and throw the javelin, and ride on horseback at the head of a troop of armed men. As soon as she was married to Philip she began at once to assume an air of authority, thinking, apparently, that she herself, being the wife of the king, was entitled to a much greater share of the regal authority than the generals, who, as she considered them, were merely his tutors and guardians, or, at most, only military agents, appointed to execute his will. During the memorable expedition into Egypt, Perdiccas had found it very difficult to exercise any control over her; and after the death of Perdiccas, she assumed a more lofty and imperious tone than ever. She quarreled incessantly with Pithon, the commander of the army, on the return from Egypt; and she made the most resolute and determined opposition to the appointment of Antipater as the custodian of the persons of the kings.
The place where the consultation was held, at which this appointment was made, was Triparadeisus, in Syria. This was the place where the expedition of Antipater, coming from Asia Minor, met the army of Egypt on its return. As soon as the junction of the two armies was effected, and the grand council was convened, Eurydice made the most violent opposition to the proceedings. Antipater reproved her for evincing such turbulence and insubordination of spirit. This made her more angry than ever; and wh