Herodotus VI: 117


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Greek

ἐν ταύτῃ τῇ ἐν Μαραθῶνι μάχῃ ἀπέθανον τῶν βαρβάρων κατὰ ἑξακισχιλίους καὶ τετρακοσίους ἄνδρας, Ἀθηναίων δὲ ἑκατὸν καὶ ἐνενήκοντα καὶ δύο. ἔπεσον μὲν ἀμφοτέρων τοσοῦτοι. [2] συνήνεικε δὲ αὐτόθι θῶμα γενέσθαι τοιόνδε, Ἀθηναῖον ἄνδρα Ἐπίζηλον τὸν Κουφαγόρεω ἐν τῇ συστάσι μαχόμενόν τε καὶ ἄνδρα γινόμενον ἀγαθὸν τῶν ὀμμάτων στερηθῆναι οὔτε πληγέντα οὐδὲν τοῦ σώματος οὔτε βληθέντα, καὶ τὸ λοιπὸν τῆς ζόης διατελέειν ἀπὸ τούτου τοῦ χρόνου ἐόντα τυφλόν. [3] λέγειν δὲ αὐτὸν περὶ τοῦ πάθεος ἤκουσα τοιόνδε τινὰ λόγον, ἄνδρα οἱ δοκέειν ὁπλίτην ἀντιστῆναι μέγαν, τοῦ τὸ γένειον τὴν ἀσπίδα πᾶσαν σκιάζειν: τὸ δὲ φάσμα τοῦτο ἑωυτὸν μὲν παρεξελθεῖν, τὸν δὲ ἑωυτοῦ παραστάτην ἀποκτεῖναι. ταῦτα μὲν δὴ Ἐπίζηλον ἐπυθόμην λέγειν.

Translation

In this battle at Marathon about six thousand four hundred men of the foreigners were killed, and one hundred and ninety-two Athenians; that many fell on each side. [2] An amazing thing, such as follows, happened there: an Athenian, Epizelus son of Couphagoras, was fighting and behaving as a brave man in the thick of battle when he was deprived of his sight, though struck or hit nowhere on his body, and from that time on he spent the rest of his life in blindness. [3] I have heard that he tells such a story as follows about his misfortune: a tall armed man seemed to oppose him, whose beard overshadowed his whole shield, but the phantom passed him by and killed the man next to him. I learned by inquiry that this is the story Epizelus tells.