Plutarch: Lives of the Ten Orators

Pages 844 - 852

These lives are unlikely to have been written by Plutarch himself, but nevertheless they contain much unique and valuable information about the ten Athenian orators, most of whom lived in the 4th century B.C.

Translated by H.N. Fowler (1936). The page numbers in the Greek text are shown in red. Click on the G symbols to go to the Greek text of each Life.   Click on ** to go to the translator's footnotes.

The lives sometimes date events by the name of the archon, the chief Athenian magistrate, who entered office in the middle of the summer; the equivalent years B.C. are shown in green.

Previous pages (832-844)


[844] Demosthenes, son of Demosthenes and Cleobule daughter of Gylon, was of the deme Paeania. He was left an orphan at the age of seven years ** by his father, along with his five-year-old sister,  and lived during his minority with his mother. Some say that he went to school to Isocrates, but most authorities say that he went to Isaeus of Chalcis, who was a pupil of Isocrates living in Athens. He imitated Thucydides and also the philosopher Plato, whose instruction, some say, he followed with especial zeal. But Hegesias of Magnesia says that he asked his attendant to let him hear Callistratus of Aphidna, son of Empedus, a noted orator who had been a commander of cavalry and had set up the altar to Hermes-of-the-Agora ** and was about to address the popular assembly ; and Demosthenes, when he had heard him speak, fell in love with oratory.  Demosthenes heard him, it is true, for only a short time, as long as Callistratus remained in Athens ; but when he had been banished to Thrace and Demosthenes had finished his service as ephebe **, he went over to Isocrates and Plato ; then he took Isaeus into his house and for four years exerted himself to imitate his speeches. But Ctesibius says in his work On Philosophy that through Callias of Syracuse he obtained the speeches of Zethus of Amphipolis and through Charicles of Carystus those of Alcidamas and that he studied them thoroughly.   

 When he attained his majority, because he received from his guardians less than was right, he brought them to trial for their administration, in the archonship of Timocrates {364-363 B.C.}. There were three of them : Aphobus, Therippides, and Demophon or Demeas,  and he accused the last-named especially, since he was his mother's brother **. He fixed the penalty in each suit at ten talents, and he obtained conviction of all three defendants ; but he exacted no part of the penalty, for he let them off, some for money and some as an act of grace. When Aristophon ** at last on account of age resigned political leadership, Demosthenes was even made choregus **. And when Meidias of the deme of Anagyrus struck him as he was performing his duties in the theatre as choregus, he sued him for the act, but on receipt of three thousand drachmas he dropped the suit. They say that when he was still a young man he withdrew into a cave and studied there, shaving half of his head to keep himself from going out ; also that he slept on a narrow bed  in order to get up quickly, and that since he could not pronounce the sound of R he learned to do so by hard work, and since in declaiming for practice he made an awkward movement with his shoulder, he put an end to the habit by fastening a spit or, as some say, a dagger from the ceiling to make him through fear keep his shoulder motionless. They say, too, that as he progressed in his ability to speak he had a mirror made as large as himself and kept his eyes on it while practising, that he might correct his faults ;  and that he used to go down to the shore at Phalerum and address his remarks to the roar of the waves, that he might not be disconcerted if the people should ever make a disturbance ; and that because he was short of breath he paid Neoptolemus the actor ten thousand drachmas to teach him to speak whole paragraphs without taking breath.   

 And when he entered upon political life, finding that the public men of the city were divided into two parties, one favouring Philip and the other addressing the populace in defence of liberty, he enrolled himself among those opposed to Philip and always constantly advised the people to support the cause of those peoples which were in danger of being subjected by Philip, in which policy he was associated with Hypereides, Nausicles, Polyeuctus, and Diotimus ; [845] and thus he also brought the Thebans, Euboeans, Corcyraeans, Corinthians, Boeotians, and many others into alliance with the Athenians. Once he was hissed out of the assembly and was walking home feeling discouraged ; but Eunomus of the deme Thria, who was already an old man, happened to meet him and encouraged him, and more than anyone else the actor Andronicus **, by telling him that his words were excellent but that his delivery was deficient,  and then Andronicus declaimed from memory the speech which Demosthenes had delivered in the assembly ; whereupon Demosthenes was convinced and put himself in the hands of Andronicus. Therefore when someone asked him what was the first thing in oratory, he replied "Delivery," and what the second, "Delivery," and the third, "Delivery." ** And when he spoke again in the assemblies he was hissed for some new-fangled expressions, so that Antiphanes and Timocles made fun of him in their comedies,   

 By earth, by founts, by rivers, and by floods, **   

 for it was by swearing in this way that he had caused an uproar in the assembly. He used also to swear by Asclepius, putting the accent on the third syllable from the end, though it is properly on the final syllable ; and he offered a proof that he was right, for he said that the god was "mild" {ēpios}. For this also he often provoked a clamour from audience.  But by going to school to Eubulides the Milesian philosopher he corrected all his faults. Once when he was at the Olympic festival and heard Lamachus of Tereina reading a eulogy of Philip and Alexander and decrying the Thebans and Olynthians, he stood up and quoted the words of the ancient poets testifying to the glorious deeds of the Thebans and Olynthians, with the result that Lamachus was silenced and fled from the festival.  And Philip said to those who reported to him the public speeches of Demosthenes against him, "I myself, if I had heard Demosthenes speak, would have elected the man general to carry on the war against me." And Philip used to say that Demosthenes' speeches were like soldiers because of their warlike power, but those of Isocrates were like athletes, because they afforded pleasure like that of a show.   

 When he was thirty-seven years old, reckoning from the archonship of Dexitheus {385-384 B.C.} to that of Callimachus {349-348 B.C.}, who was in office when an embassy came from the Olynthians asking for help because they were being hard pressed by Philip in the war,  he persuaded the Athenians to send the help ; but in the following year, in which Plato died {348-347 B.C.}, Philip overthrew the Olynthians. Xenophon, the follower of Socrates, knew him either in his youth or in his prime ; for Xenophon's Hellenica ended with the Battle of Mantineia and the archonship of Charicles {363-362 B.C.}, and Demosthenes had already before that time, in the archonship of Timocrates {364-363 B.C.}, caused the conviction of his guardians. When Aeschines fled after his condemnation **, he followed him on horseback, and Aeschines, thinking he was arresting him, fell at his feet and covered his head,  but Demosthenes raised him up, encouraged him, and gave him a talent of silver. And he advised the people to support a force of mercenaries at Thasos, and sailed out as commander of a trireme on that occasion. After he had been in charge of the food supply he was accused of embezzlement but was acquitted. When Philip had taken Elateia Demosthenes himself went out with those who fought at Chaeroneia {338 B.C.}, on which occasion it appears that he deserted his post, and that, as he was running away, a bramble-bush caught his cloak, whereupon he turned and said, "Take me alive." And he had as a device on his shield the words "With good fortune." ** However, he delivered the funeral address for those who fell **. And after that, directing his efforts to the improvement of the city and being elected commissioner in charge of the fortifications, he contributed out of his own pocket the funds expended, [846] amounting to one hundred minae ; he also presented ten thousand drachmas for theoroi, and he made a cruise in a trireme to the allied cities collecting money. For these activities he was crowned many times, on earlier occasions on motions offered by Demomeles, Aristonicus, and Hypereides with golden crowns, and the last time on the motion of Ctesiphon ; and when the decree granting this honour was attacked as illegal by Diodotus and Aeschines, he was so successful in his defence that the accuser did not receive one-fifth of the votes.   

 And at a later time, when Alexander was campaigning in Asia and Harpalus ** came fleeing to Athens with money, at first Demosthenes kept him from being admitted, but after he had entered the harbour, Demosthenes accepted one thousand darics and changed his attitude,  and when the Athenians wished to surrender the man to Antipater, he spoke against it and made a motion that Harpalus deposit the money on the acropolis without even stating the amount to the people ; and although Harpalus stated that he had brought with him seven hundred talents, that which was taken up to the acropolis was found to amount to only three hundred and fifty or a little more, as Philochorus says. And after this, when Harpalus escaped from the prison in which he was being kept until a representative of Alexander should arrive, and had gone to Crete or, as some say, to Taenarum in Laconia,  Demosthenes was accused of bribe-taking and of having this reason for not mentioning the amount of the money taken up or the carelessness of the guard. He was brought to trial by Hypereides, Pytheas, Menesaechmus, Himeraeus, and Patrocles, and they obtained his conviction by the Senate of the Areopagus ; and after his conviction he went into exile, not being able to pay back five times the amount (he was accused of having accepted thirty talents), or, as some say, he did not wait for the trial. After this time the Athenians sent Polyeuctus as envoy to the commonwealth of the Arcadians  in order to detach them from their alliance with the Macedonians, and when Polyeuctus was unable to persuade them, Demosthenes appeared to help him and did persuade them. For this he was admired, and after some time he was permitted to return, a decree in his favour having been passed and a trireme dispatched to bring him. When the Athenians passed a decree proposed by his cousin Demon of Paeania that he should use the thirty talents which he owed in adorning the altar of Zeus the Saviour at Peiraeus and should then be absolved, he returned on those conditions to public life.   

 When Antipater was shut up in Lamia by the Greeks,  and the Athenians were making thank-offerings for the good news, he said to his friend Agesistratus that he did not agree with the rest about these matters, "for," he said, "I know that the Greeks have both the knowledge and the strength for a stadium dash ** in warfare, but cannot hold out for a long-distance run." When Antipater had taken Pharsalus and threatened to besiege the Athenians unless they surrendered the orators, Demosthenes left the city and fled first to Aegina to sit as suppliant in the sanctuary of Aeacus, but was frightened and changed over to Calauria ; and when the Athenians voted to surrender the orators including himself,  he took his seat as a suppliant there in the temple of Poseidon. And when Archias **, nicknamed "Exile-Hunter," who had been a pupil of the orator Anaximenes, came to fetch him and urged him to leave his sanctuary, indicating that Antipater would receive him as a friend, he said, "Your acting in tragedy was not convincing to me, nor will your advice be convincing now" ; and when Archias tried to use force, the authorities of the city prevented him, and Demosthenes said, " I took refuge in Calauria, not to save my life, but to convict the Macedonians of using force even against the sanctuaries of the gods," [847] and asking for writing materials he wrote - so Demetrius of Magnesia says - the distich which was later inscribed by the Athenians upon his statue :   
   Had you possessed but the strength, Demosthenes, like to your spirit.  
   Never would Macedon's war Greece to submission have brought. **   

 The statue, a work of Polyeuctus, is placed near the Roped-off Enclosure ** and the altar of the Twelve Gods. But according to some authorities he was found to have written " Demosthenes to Antipater, greeting." ** Philochorus ** says that he died by drinking poison, but Satyrus the historian says that the pen with which he began to write the letter was poisoned,  and he died by sucking it ; and Eratosthenes says that for a long time he wore a poisoned bracelet on his arm through fear of the Macedonians. There are those who say that he died by holding his breath, but others assert that it was by sucking poison from his seal ring. He lived, according to those who give the higher number, seventy years, according to those who give the lower, sixty-seven. He was active in politics twenty-two years.   

 When Philip died, Demosthenes came out from his house dressed in a white garment, in spite of the fact that his daughter had lately died, thus showing his joy at the death of the Macedonian **.  He also assisted the Thebans when they were at war with Alexander, and he always encouraged the rest of the Greeks ; for which reason Alexander after razing Thebes demanded him of the Athenians and threatened them if they should refuse to surrender him. And when Alexander was making war on the Persians and called upon the Athenians for a naval force, he spoke against it, saying that it was not clear whether Alexander would not employ the force against those who furnished it.   

 He left two sons by one wife of noble family, daughter of a certain Heliodorus ; and he had one daughter who died unmarried while still a child. He had also a sister to whom and her husband Laches of Leuconoe his nephew Demochares was born, a man both brave in war and inferior to none in political speeches.  There is a statue of him in the prytaneion **, the first on the right as you go in towards the hearth, wearing both a cloak and a sword ; for he is said to have worn this costume in addressing the people when Antipater was demanding the surrender of the orators. At a later time the Athenians voted maintenance in the prytaneion to the relatives of Demosthenes and erected to him after his death the statue in the agora **, in the archonship of Gorgias {? 281-280 B.C.}. The grants to him were requested by his nephew Demochares, for whom in turn his son Laches, son of Demochares, of Leuconoe, asked in the archonship of Pytharatus {271-270 B.C.},  the tenth year after, for grants extending to the erection of the statue in the agora, maintenance in the prytaneion for Demochares and his eldest descendant in perpetuity, and front seats at all competitive spectacles. And the decrees in favour of both are inscribed, but the statue of Demochares mentioned above was transferred to the prytaneion.  

 Sixty-five genuine speeches of Demosthenes are current. Some say that he lived a dissolute life, wearing women's clothes and indulging in revels on every occasion, on which account he was nicknamed Batalus **; but others say that this was a diminutive derived from the name of his nurse  and was given to him in reproach. And Diogenes the Cynic, seeing him once in a tavern looking ashamed and trying to withdraw from sight, said, "The more you withdraw, the more you will be in the tavern." And he jeered at him, saying that in his speeches he was a Scythian, but in battle a city man. He received money from Ephialtes also, one of the politicians, who had been on an embassy to the King of Persia and came secretly bringing funds for distribution among the politicians for the purpose of stirring up the war against Philip ; [848] and they say that he received a private bribe of three thousand darics from the King. He arrested a certain Anaxilas of Oreus, who had been a guest-friend of his, subjected him to torture as a spy, and when he confessed nothing proposed a decree that he be handed over to the executioners. And once when he was being prevented by the Athenians from speaking in the assembly, he said that he only wished to speak briefly to them, and when they became silent he said, "A young man in the summer time hired an ass to go from the city to Megara. When noon came and the sun was blazing fiercely, both he and the owner of the ass wished to lie down in its shadow. Each tried to prevent the other from so doing, the owner maintaining that he had rented him the ass, not its shadow,  and the one who had hired the ass that he had complete rights in him." When he had said this, he began to go away ; and when the Athenians stopped him and asked him to tell the rest of the tale, he said, "You are willing to listen when I speak about the shadow of an ass **, but when I speak of serious matters, you refuse." Once when Polus the actor told him that he received a talentas pay for acting two days, he replied, "And I five talents for being silent one day." And when his voice failed in the assembly and the people jeered at him, he said "It is actors who should be judged by their voices, but statesmen by their opinions ."  And when Epicles rebuked him for always preparing his speeches, he said, " I should be ashamed to speak off-hand to such a great people." They say that he never put out his lamp until he was fifty years old - polishing his speeches. And he says himself that he was a water-drinker. { vi. 30, xix. 46 } Lysias the orator was acquainted with him, and Isocrates saw him engaged in public affairs until the Battle of Chaeroneia, as did some of the Socratic philosophers. He delivered most of his speeches extemporaneously, as he was well endowed for that by nature **.  The first who moved that he be crowned with a crown of gold was Aristonicus of Anagyrus, son of Nicophanes, but Diondas prevented it by an affidavit.   


Hypereides was the son of Glaucippus and grandson of Dionysius, of the deme of Collytus. He had a son, Glaucippus, named after his grandfather, who was an orator and writer of speeches **. He in turn had a son Alphinous. After being a pupil of the philosopher Plato, along with Lycurgus, and of the orator Isocrates, Hypereides entered upon public life at Athens  at the time when Alexander was interfering in the affairs of Greece. And he spoke in opposition to him concerning the generals whose surrender he demanded of the Athenians and concerning the triremes. He also advised against disbanding the mercenary force at Taenarum under the command of Chares, since he was well disposed towards that general. At first he pleaded in suits at law in return for a fee. And since he was believed to have shared the Persian funds ** with Ephialtes, and was elected trierarch when Philip was besieging Byzantium, he was sent out to aid the Byzantines ; and in that year he bore the expense of a chorus **, when others were released from all contributions to the public service.  He also proposed honours for Demosthenes, and when suit was brought by Diondas on the ground that the decree was contrary to law, he was acquitted. Although he was a friend of Demosthenes, Lysicles, Lycurgus, and their associates, he did not remain so to the end ; but when Lysicles and Lycurgus were dead and Demosthenes was being tried for receiving bribes from Harpalus, he was chosen from all the orators (for he alone was unbribed) and brought the accusation against him. And when he was brought to trial by Aristogeiton for illegal conduct [849] in proposing a decree after the Battle of Chaeroneia to grant citizenship to the resident aliens, to set the slaves free, and to put the sacred objects, the children, and the women in Peiraeus for safekeeping, he was acquitted. And when certain persons blamed him for having disregarded many laws in his decree, he said, "The shields of the Macedonians cast a shadow ** over my eyes," and "It was not I, but the Battle of Chaeroneia, that proposed the decree." After this, however, Philip was frightened and granted permission to remove the bodies of the slain, though before that he had refused it to the heralds who came from Lebadeia. Later, however, after the Battle of Crannon, when his surrender was demanded by Antipater and the people was on the point of surrendering him,  he fled from the city to Aegina along with those against whom decrees had been passed. Here he met Demosthenes and excused himself for his disagreement with him. After leaving Aegina he was seized forcibly by Archias, nicknamed "The Exile-Hunter" (a Thurian by birth, at first an actor, but at that time an assistant of Antipater), in the temple of Poseidon ** while clinging to the statue of the god. He was brought to Antipater at Corinth, and when put to the torture he bit off his tongue that he might not be able to utter any secrets of his native city. And in this way he died, on the ninth day of the month of Pyanepsion.  But Hermippus ** says that he went to Macedonia, where his tongue was cut out and he was thrown out unburied, and that Alphinous, who was his cousin (or, as some say, the son of his son Glaucippus), obtained possession of the body by the aid of a physician named Philopeithes, burned it and brought the bones to Athens to his relatives contrary to the decrees of the Athenians and the Macedonians ; for they had ordered, not only that he be exiled, but that he be not even buried in his own country. And others say that he died at Cleonae after being brought there with the rest, where his tongue was cut out and he perished in the manner related above ; and that his relatives obtained the bones and buried them with his ancestors before the gates of the Hippades **, as Heliodorus says in the third book of his work On Monuments.  But now the monument has fallen in ruins and cannot be identified.   

 He is said to have excelled all in addressing the people ; and by some critics he is ranked above Demosthenes. Seventy-seven speeches are current under his name, fifty-two of which are genuine **. He was also very prone to sexual indulgence, so that he turned his son out of the house and brought in Myrrhina, the most expensive prostitute, kept Aristagora in Peiraeus, and at his own estate in Eleusis kept the Theban girl Phila, whom he had ransomed for twenty minas.  He used to walk in the Fish-market every day **. And, as it is indeed reasonable to suppose, it was because he had been intimate also with Phryne ** the courtesan that when she was on trial for impiety he became her advocate ; for he makes this plain himself at the beginning of his speech **. And when she was likely to be found guilty, he led the woman out into the middle of the court and, tearing off her clothes, displayed her breasts. When the judges saw her beauty, she was acquitted **. He quietly compiled accusations against Demosthenes and the fact became known ; for once, when he was ill,  Demosthenes came to his house to visit him and found him with the document against himself in his hand ; and when Demosthenes was angry, Hypereides said, "It will do you no harm while you are my friend, but if you become my enemy, it will prevent your doing anything against me." He also proposed a decree conferring honours upon Iolas, who was supposed to have given Alexander the poison **. He took part with Leosthenes in the Lamian War and delivered the funeral oration for the fallen in marvellous fashion **. When Philip was preparing to sail against Euboea, and the Athenians were afraid, he assembled forty triremes by private contributions, and in his own name and his son's he gave two triremes, the first contribution made. [850] And when a dispute arose with the Delians as to which people should have control of the sanctuary, although Aeschines was chosen Athenian advocate, the senate of the Areopagus elected Hypereides ; and his speech is the one entitled The Delian. He was also an envoy to the Rhodians. And when envoys came from Antipater and praised their sender as a good man, in replying to them he said, "We know that he is good, but we do not want a good master." It is said that in addressing the public he did not employ the actor's art, that he merely related the facts of the case  and did not bore the jurors even with these. He was sent also to the Eleans to defend the athlete Callippus against the charge of having used corruption in the contest, and he won his case ; but when he brought a suit against the grant of a gift for Phocion, which Meidias, son of Meidias, of the deme Anagyrus, proposed in the archonship of Xenias ** on the twenty-fourth day of Gamelion, he was defeated. 


Deinarchus, son of Socrates or Sostratus, an Athenian according to some, but, as others think, a Corinthian, came to Athens while still young  at the time when Alexander was invading Asia, settled there, and became a pupil of Theophrastus, who had succeeded Aristotle as head of his School **; but he also attended the lectures of Demetrius of Phalerum. He took part most actively in public affairs after the death of Antipater {319 B.C.}, since some of the public men had been put to death and the rest were in exile. Since he became a friend of Cassander he prospered exceedingly through the fees he charged for the speeches which he wrote for those who requested his services ; and he had as his opponents the most distinguished public men, although he did not speak before the popular assembly (for he was unable to do so **) ; but he merely wrote speeches for their opponents. And when Harpalus absconded he composed many speeches  against those who were accused of having accepted bribes from him, and these he furnished to their accusers. But at a later time he was accused of having dealings with Antipater and Cassander in connexion with their occupation of Munychia when it was garrisoned by Antigonus and Demetrius in the archonship of Anaxicrates {307-306 B.C.}, whereupon he turned most of his property into cash and went into exile at Chalcis. And after living in exile about fifteen years and amassing considerable wealth, he returned, his restoration, and at the same time that of the other exiles, having been effected by Theophrastus and his friends. He lodged at the house of a friend of his named Proxenus and lost his money,  when he was already an old man and his eyes were weak, and when Proxenus refused to investigate the matter ** he brought a suit against him, and then for the first time he spoke in a court of law. His speech is extant, too **. There are sixty-four speeches of his extant which are regarded as genuine ; of these some are handed down as by Aristogeiton. He was a zealous follower of Hypereides or, as some say on account of his emotional and vehement qualities, of Demosthenes. He certainly is an imitator of the latter's figures of speech.   


 { I }   G  

  Demochares ** of Leuconoē, son of Laches, asks for Demosthenes of Paeania, son of Demosthenes, the grant of a bronze statue in the agora and maintenance in the prytaneion and the privilege of front seats at the public spectacles for him and for the eldest of his descendants in perpetuity, because he has shown himself as a public benefactor and counsellor, and has brought about many benefits for the people of the Athenians, not only having relinquished his property for the common weal but also having contributed eight talents and a trireme when the people freed Euboea, and another trireme when Cephisodorus sailed to the Hellespont, [851] and another when Chares and Phocion were sent as generals to Byzantium by the vote of the popular assembly, and having ransomed many of those who were taken prisoners by Philip at Pydna, Methonē, and Olynthus, and having contributed the expense of a chorus of men because when the members of the tribe of Pandionis failed to furnish this chorus, he contributed the money and, besides, furnished arms to the citizens who lacked them ; and when elected Commissioner of the Fortifications by the popular assembly he supplied the money for the work, himself contributing three talents in addition to the cost of two trenches about the Peiraeus, which he dug as his contribution. And after the Battle of Chaeroneia he contributed a talent,  and in the scarcity of food he contributed a talent for the food-supply. And because, through persuasion, benefactions, and the advice by which he moved them, he brought into alliance with the people the Thebans, Euboeans, Corinthians, Megarians, Achaeans, Locrians, Byzantines, and Messenians and gained troops for the people and its allies, namely ten thousand foot, one thousand horse, and a contribution of money which he as envoy persuaded the allies to give for the war - more than five hundred talents - and because he prevented the Peloponnesians from going to the aid of Alexander against Thebes, giving money and going in person as envoy.  And he advised the people to adopt many other excellent measures, and of all his contemporaries he performed the best public actions in the cause of liberty and democracy. And having been exiled by the oligarchy when the democracy had been destroyed, and having died at Calauria on account of his devotion to the democracy, when soldiers were sent against him by Antipater, persisting in his loyalty and devotion to the democracy and neither surrendering to its enemies nor doing anything in his time of danger that was unworthy of the democracy.   

 { II }   G  

  archon Pytharatus {271-270 B.C.}. Laches, son of Demochares, of Leuconoē, asks from the senate and people of the Athenians for Demochares, son of Laches, of Leuconoe, a grant of a bronze statue in the agora, and maintenance in the prytaneion for him and the eldest of his descendants in perpetuity, and the privilege of a front seat at all public spectacles, because he proved himself a benefactor and a good counsellor to the people of the Athenians and benefited the people as follows : He was a good ambassador, proposer of legislation, and statesman [. . . , and he superintended] the building of the walls and the preparation of armour, missiles, and engines of war, he fortified the city at the time of the four years' war **  and made peace, truce, and alliance with the Boeotians, in return for which he was banished by those who overthrew the democracy. When he was recalled by the people in the archonship of Diocles {286-285 B.C.}, he first reduced the expenses of the administration and was sparing of the public resources ; he went as envoy to Lysimachus and secured for the people thirty talents of silver and again one hundred more ; he proposed the sending of an embassy to Ptolemy in Egypt, and those who took part in it brought back for the people fifty talents of silver ; he was envoy to Antipater and secured twenty talents of silver which he brought to Eleusis for the people.  He won the assent of the people to all these measures and accomplished them ; he was exiled for the sake of the democracy, he took no part in any oligarchy, he held no office after the democracy had been overthrown, and he was the only Athenian of those who were engaged in public life in his time who never plotted to alter the government of the country by changing it to a form other than democracy; he made the decisions of the courts, the laws, the courts, and property, safe for all Athenians by the policy he pursued, and he never did anything adverse to the democracy by word or deed.   

 { III }   G  

 Lycophron, son of Lycurgus, of the deme Butadae, presented in writing a claim for maintenance in the prytaneion for himself in accordance with the gift presented by the people to Lycurgus of the deme Butadae. In the archonship of Anaxicrates {307-306 B.C.}, in the sixth prytany, that of the tribe Antiochis, [852] Stratocles, son of Euthydemus, of the deme Diomeia, made the following motion : Whereas Lycurgus, son of Lycophron, of the deme Butadae, having inherited from early times from his ancestors that loyalty to the democracy which has been peculiar to his family, and the progenitors of Lycurgus, Lycomedes and Lycurgus, were not only honoured by the people during their lives, but also after their death the people granted them for their courage and virtue public burials in the Cerameicus ; and whereas Lycurgus himself during his public career  made many excellent laws for his country, and when he was treasurer of the public revenues of the city for three periods of four years distributed from the public revenue eighteen thousand nine hundred talents ; and having received in trust large funds from private citizens, from which he made loans previously agreed upon in order to meet the exigencies of the city and the people, in all six hundred and fifty talents ; and, because he was believed to have administered all these funds justly, was often crowned by the State ; and whereas when chosen by the people he brought together large sums of money upon the acropolis, providing adornment for the Goddess, solid gold Victories, gold and silver vessels for the processions, and ornaments of gold for one hundred basket-carriers **,  and when chosen to be in charge of the equipment for the war he brought to the acropolis many pieces of armour and fifty thousand missiles and fitted out four hundred triremes ready to set sail, providing the equipment for some of them and causing some to be built from the beginning ; and besides all this he finished the ship-sheds and the arsenal, which were half done when they came into his hands, and completed the Panathenaic stadium and erected the gymnasium at the Lyceum, and adorned the city with many other edifices. And when King Alexander, after overthrowing all Asia,  assumed to give orders to all the Greeks in common and demanded that Lycurgus be surrendered because he was acting in opposition to him, the city did not surrender him in spite of fear of Alexander. And although he had many times submitted his accounts while the city was free and had a democratic form of government, he never was convicted of wrongdoing or of taking bribes through all his career. Therefore, that all may know that those who choose to act justly in public life in behalf of democracy and freedom are held in the highest esteem while living and receive after death enduring gratitude :  With good Fortune : Be it resolved by the people to commend Lycurgus, son of Lycophron, of the deme Butadae, for his virtue and justice, and to set up a bronze statue of him in the agora, only not in any place where the law forbids its erection, and to grant maintenance in the prytaneion to the eldest descendant of Lycurgus for all time, and that all his decrees be valid, and that the secretary of the people inscribe them on stone tablets and place them on the acropolis near the dedicatory offerings ; and that the treasurer of the people give for inscribing the tablets fifty drachmas from the funds expended by the people for decrees.

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92.   He was born in 384 B.C. ; cf. Orations xxx. 15 and xxi. 154. 


93.   The bronze Hermes Agoraios in the middle of the agora (schol. Aristoph. Eq. 297; cf. Paus. i. 15. 1) and by the Stoa Poikilē (Lucian, Jup. Trag. 33).  


94.   i.e. at the age of twenty. This service, designed to be a training for citizenship, lasted two years.   


95.   This is incorrect. The author seems to have confused Demophon and his father Demeas. Demosthenes accused Aphobus chiefly, and Aphobus was his cousin, not his uncle. Cf. Demosthenes, xxix. 59, also 6 and 20: xxviii. 15; xxvii. 4.  


96.   Aristophon, a second-rate but influential politician, was especially active in the decade preceding the choregia of Demosthenes, but no connexion can be perceived between his retirement and Demosthenes' choregia. He lived to be nearly 100 years old.  


97.   An indication of Demosthenes' restored fortune. The choregus was a wealthy man who equipped the chorus for dramas and superintended its training. 


98.   A tragic actor of the first part of the fourth century B.C. See O'Connor, Chapters in the History of Actors and Acting in Ancient Greece, p. 78. Plutarch, Life of Demosthenes, chap. vii. assigns to Satyrus about the same relation to the orator's training as is here assigned to Andronicus.  


99.   On the meaning, broader than that of our "delivery," in Greek rhetoric see Aristotle, Rhetoric, iii., ad init,    


100.   Kock, CAF. ii. p. 128, no. 296. For Demosthenes' metrical oath here parodied see Life of Demosthenes, chap. vii. 


101.   Aeschines brought a suit on grounds of illegality against Ctesiphon, who proposed in 336 B.C. that Demosthenes be honoured by the city with a golden crown. The case was tried in 330 B.C., when Aeschines delivered his oration Against Ctesiphon and Demosthenes his oration On the Crown. Aeschines received less than one-fifth of the votes of the dicasts, and was therefore condemned to pay a fine of 1000 drachmas and to forfeit the right to bring any similar suit. 


102.   Apparently a jest in connexion with the story of his cowardice. 


103.   This indicates that he had not disgraced himself. 


104.   On these contributions cf. Aeschines, iii. 17, and Demosthenes, xviii. 118. 


105.   Harpalus, treasurer of Alexander, embezzled a large sum and fled first to Tarsus, then, in 324 B.C., to Greece. 


106.   A stadium was about equal to a furlong and was the usual short-distance run. The dolichos was twenty stadia. 


107.   This Archias was a tragic actor recorded as victor at the Lenaea circa 330 B.C. in I.G. ii.2 2325 n. Plutarch, Life of Demosthenes, chap, xxviii. names several other prominent Athenians "hunted down" by him, among them Hypereides. Another version of Demosthenes' retort to Archias is given ibid. 29. 


108.   See Bergk, PLG. ii. p. 331.    


109.   This was a large area in the agora which was enclosed at ostracisms, and perhaps at other times, within a barrier of rope for the better control of the popular assembly. Since the contiguous altar of the Twelve Gods has recently (vide Shear in Hesperia, iv. pp. 355 ff.) been uncovered in the northern part of the Agora, this enclosure can no longer, with Judeich (Topographie von Athen,2 p. 250), be placed in the south-west area, on the slopes of the Areopagus.  


110.   These were the words usually employed at the beginning of letters. 


111.   Muller, FHG. i. p. 407. 


112.   See Life of Demosthenes, chap. xxii. 


113.   The prytaneion was the building in which the Prytanes who formed the executive committee of the Senate held their meetings. Maintenance in the prytaneion was often voted in recognition of service to the state.  


114.   See above, 847 a.    


115.   Cf. Aeschines, i. 131. The nickname is also said to refer to his stammering.    


116.   "An ass's shadow" was proverbial for things utterly trivial.   


117.   This does not agree with what has been said above about his preparing all his speeches.    


118.   In the Athenian courts of law the parties to a suit were obliged to speak in person, therefore those who were not sure of their own ability hired others to write their speeches, which they learned by heart and delivered.   


119.   The comic poets of the time were very free with such insinuations, e.g. Timocles in his Delos (Kock, CAF. ii. p. 432) mentions both Demosthenes and Hypereides.    


120.   Such offices or "liturgies" were imposed upon wealthy men only, and the fact that he undertook one may have led to the belief that he partook of the Persian funds, or that belief may have led to the imposition of the offices. 


121.   The shadow of the shields made him fail to see the laws.   


122.   At Hermionē.    


123.   Müller, FHG. 1. p. 50.  


124.   At Athens, probably south-east from the Acropolis.   


125.   Only small fragments of these were preserved until, at various times in the nineteenth century, six more or less complete orations were discovered in Egyptian papyrus manuscripts.   


126.   Another comic gibe against a public man supposed to be a gourmand. Athenaeus viii. 341 ff. quotes from the Delos and Icarians of Timocles gossip of this kind against Hypereides. 


127.   The traditional text is certainly corrupt. The inference seems to have been drawn from the orator's amatory record that his advocacy of Phrynē at her famous trial was due to an intimacy with her. An advocate was never "examined with" the defendant.  


128.   Explained by Athenaeus xiii. 590 d. Hypereides' speech was translated into Latin by Messala Corvinus (Quintilian x. 5. 2).  


129.   This version is found also in Athenaeus xiii. 590 e, but the comic poet Poseidippus in his Ephesian Lady {ibid. 591 e ; Kock, CAF. iii. p. 339) attributes Phrynē's acquittal to her own arts. 


130.   The belief that Alexander died of poison was apparently unfounded. 


131.   In 323-322 B.C. after Alexander's death, when the Greeks under Leosthenes besieged the Macedonian Antipater in Lamia near Thermopylae. A large part of Hypereides' funeral oration is preserved.  


132.   An archon Xenias is unknown. Euxenippus, suggested by Schafer, was archon in 305-304 B.C., but Hypereides was then dead. Possibly the archon Archias, 346-345 B.C., is intended, in which case the gift for Phocion may have had some connexion with the battle of Tamynae.    


133.   The Lyceum, i.e. the Peripatetic School. 


134.   If he was a Corinthian by birth, he would be debarred from such speaking.  


135.   Evidently Deinarchus suspected theft or fraud.  


136.   Only a fragment of this speech is extant.  


137.   Apparently the son of the Laches, son of Demochares, mentioned above, 847 d, that is, the orator's nephew.  


138.   {The war against Cassander, 307-304 B.C.}.   


139.   Maidens of good birth who carried baskets of offerings in the processions.  

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