Almost at the same time, the wars that were to lead to the dissolution of the Boeotic hegemony and the Athenian maritime league began. In the Aegean, Chios, Kos and Rhodes, stirred up by Mausolus of Caria, joined forces with each other and with Byzantium, that war of secession began against Athens which is known as the social war of the Athenians (357). In central Greece Thebes, which together with its Thessalian allies predominated in the Delphic amphictyonic, tried by means of amphictyonic condemnations to repress the secessionist ambitions of the Phocians. This is a sign of the times, and above all of the cultural inferiority of the new hegemons, the exploitation for political ends of the sacred prestige of the Delphic temple. The effect was contrary to the aims of the Boeotians; the condemnations provoked the Phocians to open rebellion, and they, under the leadership of Philomelos, they occupied the temple of Delphi by surprise, starting the sacred war, which tormented Greece for more than ten years (356-346). The social war of the Athenians ended more quickly; they employed their best generals there, but Cabria died fighting near Chios (356) and Timothy and Ificrates, not responding to the hopes placed in them, were dismissed and ended their political-military career with little glory. Athens had to settle for a peace that recognized the detachment of its most powerful allies, and from then on the Athenian league was reduced to a mediocre weak organism and always ready for further breakdowns. But the struggle in central Greece was terribly fiercer, because Thebes was in the full bloom of its power, and the Phocians, disposing of Delphic treasures to their degree, they could field very considerable mercenary armies. After Philomelus fell fighting against the Boeotians in Neon (355), Onomarch reconstituted the Phocean army with new recruits and managed to win in a pitched battle in Thessaly Philip II of Macedon, who had rushed, called by them, to defend the Thessalians (354), and severely damaged the Boeotians themselves by rebuilding Orchomenus. But it brought about a decisive change in the sacred war, the rise of Macedonia to great power. The Macedonians, a Greek or Greekized lineage living north of Thessaly, had at the end of the century. VI reduced to unity, descending along the valleys of the Aliacmone and Axio, the region that took the name of Macedonia from them, and then had tried among various events, in alliance or at war with the Chalcidians, the Athenians and the Thracians Odrisî, to go towards the Strymon. The monarchy was preserved with them with the ancient fullness of power, as well as at the other extreme of the Greek world in Cyprus and, until almost the middle of the century. V, in Cyrene. A rich and powerful feudal aristocracy surrounded the kings, the one that with the name of ἑταῖοι (companions) always constituted the Macedonian cavalry. Alongside the cavalry, the kings organized, following the example provided by Greece, the infantry, consisting essentially of small owners, to whom they gave the name of πεζέταιροι (walking companions) as a sign of honor. The perennial struggle against the neighboring Thracian and Illyrian tribes and against the Greeks themselves fierced the Macedonians and kept alive their loyalty to the Argeadian dynasty that headed them. And the kings were able to take advantage of the most recent innovations in Greek tactics and strategy to make their army an ever more perfect instrument of war. Thus, when after various and serious dynastic crises a shrewd and energetic prince like Philip II came to the throne, he soon had a compact and faithful people and a fierce and disciplined army, which only needed to be led with a brilliant intellect. and with a firm hand to ensure Macedonia a preponderant position in the Balkan peninsula. The successes in fact were not lacking. Overcoming some suitors in a short time, Philip defeated the Illyria (358) who had invaded Macedonia and killed his predecessor Perdiccas in battle (359); then took possession of Amphipolis (357), the old colony of Pericles, that the Athenians had tried in vain for many years to recover, and settled firmly in the territory of Pangeo, founding the colony which they gave the name of Philippi (356) and securing the proceeds of those mines, which suddenly made Macedonia the richest of the Greek powers, as it was by now the strongest militarily. It is understood that the occupation of Amphipolis and then of the fortresses that still remained in that region to the Athenians aroused in them the enmity of Athens, but it was or seemed to be impotent enmity. Also in Thessaly Philip had intervened by resuming the expansion plans already initiated by his predecessors, and only temporarily interrupted them after the victory of the Phocians. Now, called again by the Thessalians, he descended with greater forces and brought a decisive victory over the Phocians in the field of Croco near the Pagaseo gulf, where Onomarco fell (353). The Athenians and the Spartans, immediately intervening with forces in Thermopylae, worried about the dangers that could arise from a victorious march of Philip in central Greece, prevented him from entering it for the time being, and the Phocians took advantage of it to reorganize their forces under Faillo and then under Faleco without the Boeotians being able to, as well as to tame them, not even to wrest Orchomenus from them. But Philip, who by now had the dominion of almost the entire Thessaly, excluded from central Greece, resumed his expansion to the north of the Aegean, and there he attacked the olinhias who after the fall of Spartan hegemony had firmly reconstituted their federation in Halkidiki.. The Macedonian danger induced the Olinzî to seek the help of Athens, but Athens, weakly led by Eubulus, was unable to help them with due vigor and, despite the aid of the Athenians, Olinto fell and was destroyed and all the Chalcidian territory incorporated into Macedonia. It was an immeasurable gain, and those Athenians were terrified, who, like Demosthenes, had long ago sensed the danger that Macedonia represented for Greece and had pointed to Philip as the enemy to fight. But by now they too had to recognize that with the insufficient moral and material preparation of the Athenians for so much war, with the very serious dissensions that divided the Greeks among them, the struggle had no hope of success, and it was better to make peace in order to have the to prepare militarily and diplomatically for the decisive war. Therefore all the parties in Athens collaborated in the peace concluded with Philip (346) who bears the name of Philocrates. An implicit condition of the agreement was the abandonment to Philip of southern Thrace, which he then took possession of (except for the Athenian possessions in Chersonese) and of Phocis, now in collapse due to the lack of Delphic treasures. Passing Thermopylae, which no one thought of contending with him, Philip descended into Phocis, forced the Phocians to capitulate, reconstituted amphionia in agreement with the Boeotians, freeing Delphi and immediately assuming the presidency of the Pythian games himself.