When the Lacedaemonians were about to abandon them, the Samians who had brought an army against Polycrates sailed away too, and went to Siphnus; for they were in need of money; and the Siphnians were at this time very prosperous and the richest of the islanders, because of the gold and silver mines on the island. They were so wealthy that the treasure dedicated by them at Delphi, which is as rich as any there, was made from a tenth of their income; and they divided among themselves each year’s income. Now when they were putting together the treasure they inquired of the oracle if their present prosperity was likely to last long; whereupon the priestess gave them this answer:
“When the prytaneum on Siphnus becomes white
And white-browed the market, then indeed a shrewd man is wanted
Beware a wooden force and a red herald.”
At this time the market-place and town-hall of Siphnus were adorned with Parian marble.
Herodotus, with an English translation by A. D. Godley. Cambridge. Harvard University Press. 1920.