the river. The camp of the Medes extended " along by Hysiai into the
Plataian district."10 Exactly the same expression is used of the Greeks
who went from Erythrai across the skirts of Kithairon "along by
Hysiai into the Plataian district." The expression " into the Plataian
district" could hardly have been used, if part at least of the Persian
forces had not been south of the Asopos. There is no proof that the
Plataian territory ever extended north of the Asopos; on the con-
trary, there is proof that at first it did not extend as far as the Asopos.
Herodotos tells41 us that when the Athenians espoused the cause of
the Plataiaus against the Thebans, they passed over the bounds which
had been fixed for the Plataiaus, and " made the Asopos the boundary
between the Thebans and the Plataians." Pausanias (n. 6. 1 ; IX.
4. 4) speaks of the Asopos, which forms the boundary between the
Theban and the Plataian land; and again he says: " Even yet the
Asopos separates the land of the Plataians from the Thebans." We
are told that the Persians fled to their wooden fort in the Theban
territory;42 but this does not prove that the fort was north of the
Asopos. We have seen that, before the Athenians interfered, the
Theban territory extended across the Asopos opjjosite Plataia. This
was doubtless the case at Erythrai; for Strabo (409) tells us that all
the villages along the Asopos at this point were under the Thebans;
though he adds that some say that Skolos, Eteonos, and Erythrai are
in the country of the Plataians. Herodotos himself (IX. 15) places
Skolos in the Theban territory.
While Mardonios was encamjied here in the plain of the Asopos,
the Greeks came to Erythrai, and, as Herodotos
first position 43 ouserved that the barbarians were encamped
of greeks. j ' 1
on the Asopos; and perceiving this they took their
stand on the skirts of Kithairon facing the enemy (dvrerdcraovTo);" u
and Mardonios, as the Greeks did not descend into the plain, sent
against them all his cavalry. Masistios, commander of the cavalry,
was slain, and the Greeks bore his body along their ranks on a wagon,
a circumstance which throws light on the nature of the ground.
40 Herodotos, ix. 15; cf. 25. The wooden fort may have been extended across the
river for the sake of a better water supply. The valley widens conveniently at this
point. 41 Herodotos, vi. 108 : 519 b. c. Cf. Thoukydides, hi. 68.
42 Herodotos, ix. 65. 43 ix. 19 ff.; cf. Diodoros, xi. 29, 30.
44 Leake, who places the Persians on the other side of the Asopos, bases his view
on this avrrraaaovTo, which can have no more definite meaning than we give to it.
See Northern Greece, n, 340, Note.