XVIII. (120) And the mixed and promiscuous multitude of the Alexandrians perceiving this, attacked us, looking upon it as a most favourable opportunity for doing so, and displayed all the arrogance which had been smouldering for a long period, disturbing everything, and causing universal confusion, (121) for they began to crush our people as if they had been surrendered by the emperor for the most extreme and undeniable miseries, or as if they had been subdued in war, with their frantic and most brutal passion, forcing their way into their houses, and driving out the owners, with their wives and children, which they rendered desolate and void of inhabitants. (122) And no longer watching for night and darkness, like ordinary robbers out of fear of being detected, they openly plundered them of all their furniture and treasures, carrying them off in broad daylight, and displaying their booty to every one whom they met, as if they had inherited it or fairly purchased it from the owners. And if a multitude joined together to share any particular piece of plunder, they divided it in the middle of the market-place, reviling it and turning it all into ridicule before the eyes of its real owners. (123) These things were of themselves terrible and grievous; how could they be otherwise? Surely it was most miserable for men to become beggars from having been wealthy, and to be reduced on a sudden from a state of abundance to one of utter indigence, without having done any wrong, and to be rendered houseless and homeless, being driven out and expelled from their own houses, that thus, being compelled to dwell in the open air day and night, they might be destroyed by the burning heat of the sun or by the cold of the night. (124) Yet even these evils were lighter than those which I am about to mention; for when the populace had driven together these countless myriads of men, and women, and children, like so many herds of sheep and oxen, from every quarter of the city, into a very narrow space as if into a pen, they expected that in a few days they should find a heap of corpses all huddled together, as they would either have perished by hunger through the want of necessary food, as they had not prepared themselves with any thing requisite, through a foreknowledge of the evils which thus suddenly came upon them; (125) or else through being crushed and suffocated from want of any adequate space to breathe in, all the air around them becoming tainted, and all that there was of vivifying power in their respiration being cut off, or, if one is to say the truth, utterly expelled, by the breath of those who were expiring among them. By which, each individual being inflamed, and in a manner oppressed by a descent of fever upon him, inhaled a hot and unwholesome breath through his nostrils and mouth, heaping, as the proverb has it, fire on fire; (126) for the power which resides in the inmost parts changed its nature, and became most excessively fiery; upon which, when the external breezes, being moderately cool, blow, all the organs of the respiratory powers flourish, and are in a good and healthy condition; but when these breezes change and become hot, then those organs must of necessity be in a bad state, fire being added to fire.