Aeschines, Speeches (English) (XML Header) [genre: prose; rhetoric] [word count] [Aeschin.].
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But when you had passed a decree that the Phocians should hand over these posts to your general Proxenus, and that you should man fifty triremes, and that all citizens up to the age of forty years should take part in the expedition, then instead of surrendering the Posts to Proxenus, the tyrants arrested those ambassadors of their own who had offered to hand over the garrison posts to you and when your heralds carried the proclamation of the sacred truce of the Mysteries, [Note] the Phocians alone in all Hellas refused to recognize the truce. Again, when Archidamus the Laconian was ready to take over those posts and guard them, the Phocians refused his offer, answering him that it was the danger from Sparta that they feared, not the danger at home.


That was before you had come to terms with Philip; but on the very day when you were discussing the question of the peace, the letter of Proxenus was read to you, in which he said that the Phocians had failed to hand over the posts to him; and on the same day the heralds of the Mysteries reported to you that the Phocians alone in all Hellas had refused the sacred truce, and had, furthermore, arrested the ambassadors who had been here. To prove that I am speaking the truth, please call the heralds of the truce, and the envoys Callicrates and Metagenes, whom Proxenus our general sent to the Phocians, and let the letter of Proxenus be read.TestimonyLetter


The dates, fellow citizens, taken from the public archives, have been read and compared in your hearing, and you have heard the witnesses, who further testify that before I was elected ambassador, Phalaecus the Phocian tyrant distrusted us and the Lacedaemonians as well, but put his trust in Philip.


But was Phalaecus the only one who failed to discern what the outcome was going to be? How stood public opinion here? Were you not yourselves all expecting that Philip was going to humble the Thebans, when he saw their audacity, and because he was unwilling to increase the power of men whom he could not trust? And did not the Lacedaemonians take part with us in the negotiations against the Thebans, and did they not finally come into open collision with them in Macedonia and threaten them? Were not the Theban ambassadors themselves perplexed and alarmed? And did not the Thessalians laugh at all the rest and say that the expedition was for their own benefit?


Did not some of' Philip's companions say explicitly to some of us that Philip was going to reestablish the cities in Boeotia? Had not the Thebans already, suspicious of the situation, called out all their reserves and taken the field? And did not Philip, when he saw this, send a letter to you calling upon you to come out with all your forces in defence of the cause of justice? As for those who are now for war, and who call peace cowardice, did they not prevent your going out, in spite of the fact that peace and alliance had been made with Philip? And did they not say that they were afraid he would take your soldiers as hostages?


Was it I, therefore, who prevented the people from imitating our forefathers, or was it you, Demosthenes, and those who were in conspiracy with you against the common good? And was it a safer and more honourable course for the Athenians to take the field at a time when the Phocians were at the height of their madness and at war with Philip, with Alponus and Nicaea in their possession—for Phalaecus had not yet surrendered these posts to the Macedonians—and when those whom we were proposing to aid would not accept the truce for the Mysteries, and when we were leaving the Thebans in our rear: or after Philip had invited us, when we had already received his oaths and had an alliance with him, and when the Thessalians and the other Amphictyons were taking part in the expedition?


Was not the latter opportunity far better than the former? But at this later time, thanks to the combination of cowardice and envy in you, Demosthenes, the Athenians brought in their property from the fields, when I was already absent on the third embassy, [Note] and appearing before the assembly of the Amphictyons [Note]—that embassy on which you dare to say that I set out without having been elected, although, enemy as you are to me, you have never to this day been willing to prosecute me as having wrongly served on it; and we may safely assume that this is not because you begrudge me bodily pains and penalties.


When, therefore, the Thebans were besieging him with their importunities, and our city was in confusion, thanks to you, and the Athenian hoplites were not with him; [Note] when the influence of the Thessalians had been added to that of the Thebans, thanks to your shortsightedness and because of the hostility to the Phocians which the Thessalians had inherited from that ancient time when Phocians seized and flogged the Thessalian hostages; and when, before my coming and that of Stephanus, Dercylus, and the rest of the ambassadors, Phalaecus already made terms and departed;

Aeschines, Speeches (English) (XML Header) [genre: prose; rhetoric] [word count] [Aeschin.].
<<Aeschin. 2.127 Aeschin. 2.136 (Greek) >>Aeschin. 2.143

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