Aeschines, Speeches (English) (XML Header) [genre: prose; rhetoric] [word count] [Aeschin.].
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When we set out on our return home after completing our mission, suddenly he began talking to each of us on the way in a surprisingly friendly manner. Why, up to that time I had never so much as known the meaning of words like “kerkops,” or the so-called “paipalema,” or “palimbolon” [Note] but now after acquiring him as expounder of the mysteries of all rascality, I am fully instructed.


and he would take each of us in turn to one side, and to one he would promise to open a subscription to help him in his private difficulties, and to another that he would get him elected general. As for me, he fol- lowed me about, congratulating me on my ability and praising my speech; so lavish was he in his compliments that I became sick and tired of him. And when we were all dining together at Larisa, he made fun of himself and the embarrassment which had come upon him in his speech, and he declared that Philip was the most wonderful man under the sun.


When I had added my testimony, saying something like this, that Philip had shown excellent memory in his reply to what we had said, and when Ctesiphon, who was the oldest of us, speaking of his own advanced age and the number of his years, added that in all his many years he had never looked upon so charming and lovable a man, then this Sisyphus [Note] here clapped his hands and said,


“But, Ctesiphon, it will never do for you to tell the people that, nor would our friend here,” meaning me, “venture to say to the Athenians that Philip is a man of good memory and great eloquence.” And we innocently, not foreseeing the trick of which you shall hear presently, allowed him to bind us in a sort of agreement that we would say this to you. [Note] And he begged me earnestly not to fail to tell how Demosthenes also said something in support of our claim to Amphipolis.


Now up to this point I am supported by the testimony of my colleagues in the embassy, whom he has reviled and slandered from beginning to end of his accusation. But his words on the platform in your presence you yourselves have heard; so it will not be possible for me to misrepresent them. And I beg of you to continue to hear patiently the rest of my narrative. I do not forget that each of you is anxious to hear the story of Cersobleptes and the charges made about the Phocians, and I am eager to get to those subjects; but you will not be as well able to follow them unless you shall first hear all that preceded. And if, in my peril, you allow me to speak as I wish, you will be able to save me, if I am innocent, and that on good and sufficient grounds; and you will also have before you the facts that are acknowledged as you proceed to examine the points that are in dispute.


On our return, then, after we had rendered to the senate a brief report of our mission and had delivered the letter from Philip, Demosthenes praised us to his colleagues in the senate, and he swore by Hestia, goddess of the senate, [Note] that he congratulated the city on having sent such men on the embassy, men who in honesty and eloquence were worthy of the state.


In referring to me he said something like this: that I had not disappointed the hopes of those who elected me to the embassy. And to cap it all he moved that each of us be crowned with a garland of wild olive because of our loyalty to the people, and that we be invited to dine on the morrow in the Prytaneum. To prove that I have spoken to you nothing but the truth, please let the clerk take the decree, and let him read the testimony of my colleagues in the embassy.DecreeTestimony


Now when we presented the report of our embassy before the assembly, Ctesiphon came for ward first and spoke, including in his account the points that he was to make according to his agreement with Demosthenes, I mean about Philip's social accomplishments, his personal appearance, and his doughty deeds at the cups. Next Philocrates and Dercylus spoke briefly; then I came forward.


After giving an account of our mission in general, I went on to say, according to the agreement with my colleagues on the embassy, that Philip showed both memory and eloquence when he spoke. And I did not forget what Demosthenes had asked me to mention, namely, that we had agreed that he was to speak about Amphipolis, in case any point should have been passed over by the rest of us.


After we had spoken, last of all Demosthenes arose, and with that imposing air of his, and rubbing his forehead, when he saw that the people approved my report and were satisfied with it, he said that he was amazed at both parties, as well the listeners as the ambassadors, for they were carelessly wasting time—the listeners wasting the time for taking counsel, the ambassadors the time for giving it, all of them amusing themselves with foreign gossip, when they ought to be giving attention to our own affairs; for nothing, he said, was easier than to render account of an embassy.

Aeschines, Speeches (English) (XML Header) [genre: prose; rhetoric] [word count] [Aeschin.].
<<Aeschin. 2.34 Aeschin. 2.44 (Greek) >>Aeschin. 2.54

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