The Athenians were almost in despair. They had enemies on all sides, and were also worried by the quarrels of aristocrats and democrats within the city. These two political parties were now so opposed to each other, that nothing could make them friends.
The army, longing for action, and without a leader, finally took matters into their own hands. They recalled Alcibiades, and asked him to help them. The young man, who was generous and kind-hearted, immediately responded to this appeal; and, now that it was too late, he repented of what he had done, and began to do all in his power to defeat the enemy he had aroused.
By his eloquence and skill, Alcibiades finally succeeded in winning the Persians over to side with the Athenians, and to fight against the Spartans; but all his efforts to make up for the past were vain. His treachery had ruined Athens; and when he led the troops against the Spartans, the Athenians were completely defeated.