In Chalcidice, on the isthmus of Mt. Athos, one of Xerxes' chief halting-places on his march.
The same summer, without loss of time, Brasidas marched with the Chalcidians against Acanthus, a colony of the Andrians, a little before vintage.
From there, keeping on his left hand the gulf off Poseideion, Xerxes traversed the plain of Syleus (as they call it), passing by the Greek town of Stagirus, and came to Acanthus.
Xerxes, after having enumerated his armaments, pushed on with the entire army, and the whole fleet accompanied the land forces in their advance as far as the city of Acanthus, and from there the ships passed through the place where the canal had been dug into the other sea expeditiously and without loss.
Then there came ambassadors to Lacedaemon from Acanthus and Apollonia, which are the largest of the cities in the neighbourhood of Olynthus.
Here, too, is to be seen a canal, in the neighborhood of Acanthus, where Xerxes dug a canal across Athos, it is said, and, by admitting the sea into the canal, brought his fleet across from the Strymonic Gulf through the isthmus. Demetrius of Scepsis, however, does not believe that this canal was navigable, for, he says, although as far as ten stadia the ground is deep-soiled and can be dug, and in fact a canal one plethrum in width has been dug, yet after that it is a flat rock, almost a stadium in length, which is too high and broad to admit of being quarried out through the whole of the distance as far as the sea; but even if it were dug thus far, certainly it could not be dug deep enough to make a navigable passage; this, he adds, is where Alexarchus, the son of Antipater,163 laid the foundation of Uranopolis, with its circuit of thirty stadia.
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