Aeschines, Speeches (English) (XML Header) [genre: prose; rhetoric] [word count] [Aeschin.].
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1.17

Now perhaps some one, on first hearing this law, may wonder for what possible reason this word “slaves” was added in the law against outrage. But if you reflect on the matter, fellow citizens, you will find this to be the best provision of all. For it was not for the slaves that the lawgiver was concerned, but he wished to accustom you to keep a long distance away from the crime of outraging free men, and so he added the prohibition against the outraging even of slaves. In a word, he was convinced that in a democracy that man is unfit for citizenship who outrages any person whatsoever.

1.18

And I beg you, fellow citizens, to remember this also, that here the lawgiver is not yet addressing the person of the boy himself, but those who are near him, father, brother, guardian, teachers, and in general those who have control of him. But, as soon as the young man has been registered in the list of citizens, and knows the laws of the state, and is now able to distinguish between right and wrong, the lawgiver no longer addresses another, Timarchus, but now the man himself.

1.19

And what does he say? “If any Athenian,” he says, “shall have prostituted his person, he shall not be permitted to become one of the nine archons,” because, no doubt, that official wears the wreath; [Note]“nor to discharge the office of priest,” as being not even clean of body; “nor shall he act as an advocate for the state,” he says, “nor shall ever hold any office whatsoever, at home or abroad,whether filled by lot or by election; nor shall he be a herald or an ambassador”

1.20

—nor shall he prosecute men who have served as ambassadors, nor shall he be a hired slanderer— “nor ever address senate or assembly,” not even though he be the most eloquent orator in Athens. And if any one contrary to these prohibitions, the lawgiver has provided for criminal process on the charge of prostitution, and has prescribed the heaviest penalties therefor. Read to the jury this law also, that you may know, gentlemen, in the face of what established laws of yours, so good and so moral, Timarchus has had the effrontery to speak before the people—a man whose character is so notorious.

1.21

Law

[If any Athenian shall have prostituted his person, he shall not be permitted to become one of the nine archons, nor to discharge the office of priest, nor to act as an advocate for the state, nor shall he hold any office whatsoever, at home or abroad, whether filled by lot or by election; he shall not be sent as a herald; he shall not take part in debate, nor be present at public sacrifices; when the citizens are wearing garlands, he shall wear none; and he shall not enter within the limits of the place that has been purified for the assembling of the people. If any man who has been convicted of prostitution act contrary to these prohibitions, he shall be put to death.]

1.22

This law was enacted concerning youths who recklessly sin against their own bodies. The laws relating to boys are those read to you a moment ago; but I am going to cite now laws that have to do with the citizens at large. For when the lawgiver had finished with these laws, he next turned to the question of the proper manner of conducting our deliberations concerning the most important matters, when we are met in public assembly. How does he begin? “Laws,” he says, “concerning orderly conduct.” He began with morality, thinking that that state will be best administered in which orderly conduct is most common. And how does he command the presiding officers to proceed?

1.23

After the purifying sacrifice has been carried round [Note] and the herald has offered the traditional prayers, the presiding officers are commanded to declare to be next in order the discussion of matters pertaining to the national religion, the reception of heralds and ambassadors, and the discussion of secular matters. [Note] The herald then asks, “Who of those above fifty years of age wishes to address the assembly?” When all these have spoken, he then invites any other Athenian to speak who wishes (provided such privileges belongs to him). [Note]

1.24

Consider, fellow citizens, the wisdom of this regulation. The lawgiver does not forget, I think, that the older men are at their best in the matter of judgment, but that courage is now beginning to fail them as a result of their experience of the vicissitudes of life. So, wishing to accustom those who are the wisest to speak on public affairs, and to make this obligatory upon them, since he cannot call on each one of them by name, he comprehends them all under the designation of the age-group as a whole, invites them to the platform, and urges them to address the people. At the same time he teaches the younger men to respect their elders, to yield precedence to them in every act, and to honor that old age to which we shall all come if our lives are spared.

1.25

And so decorous were those public men of old, Pericles, Themistocles, and Aristeides (who was called by a name most unlike that by which Timarchus here is called), that to speak with the arm outside the cloak, as we all do nowadays as a matter of course, was regarded then as an ill-mannered thing, and they carefully refrained from doing it. And I can point to a piece of evidence which seems to me very weighty and tangible. I am sure you have all sailed over to Salamis, and have seen the statue of Solon there. You can therefore yourselves bear witness that in the statue that is set up in the Salaminian market-place Solon stands with his arm inside his cloak. Now this is a reminiscence, fellow citizens, and an imitation of the posture of Solon, showing his customary bearing as he used to address the people of Athens. [Note]



Aeschines, Speeches (English) (XML Header) [genre: prose; rhetoric] [word count] [Aeschin.].
<<Aeschin. 1.12 Aeschin. 1.21 (Greek) >>Aeschin. 1.29

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