An exciting historical novel, set in Athens of415 B.C. and written with historical scholarship and a true love of the classical wisdom of life. The Ermokopides begins with an exceptional battle scene in Sfaktira, between the victorious Athenians and the vanquished Lacedaemonians. The young Spartan Agis doesn’t fall in battle but, instead, ends up in Athens as a Spartan spy. He goes to Megara on a secret mission with Aegiselaos, his comrade-in-arms in both battle and camp. Lyda, a comely courtesan, falls in love with Agis, and Baltakos uses this love to portray two different philosophies of life, two different approaches to the subjects of devotion, passion, duty, giving and self-control. Sparta, where adultery is taken for granted and practiced openly, and Athens, where Dionysos is worshipped (which puzzles the Spartans), are two cities in which the emotions are expressed in decidedly different ways. Against this backdrop, The Ermokopides brings up timely issues in the historical development of Athens and Sparta around the time 410 B.C.