Aeschines, Speeches (English) (XML Header) [genre: prose; rhetoric] [word count] [Aeschin.].
<<Aeschin. 2.81 Aeschin. 2.89 (Greek) >>Aeschin. 2.97


and my accuser has dared to tell you that it was I who drove Critobulus, Cersobleptes' ambassador, from the ceremony—in the presence of the allies, under the eyes of the generals, after the people had voted as they did! Where did I get all that power? How could the thing have been hushed tip? If I had really dared to undertake such a thing, would you have suffered it, Demosthenes? Would you not have filled the market-place with your shouts and screams, if you had seen me, as you just now said you did, thrusting the ambassador away from the ceremony? But please let the herald call the generals and the representatives of the allies, and do you hear their testimony.Testimony


Is it not, therefore, an outrage, gentlemen, if one dares utter such lies about a man who is his own—no, I hasten to correct myself, not his own, but your—fellow citizen, when he is in peril of his life? Wisely, indeed, did our fathers prescribe that, in the trials for bloodshed which are held at the Palladion, [Note] the one who wins his case must cut in pieces the sacrificial flesh, and take a solemn oath (and the custom of your fathers is in force to this day), affirming that those jurors who have voted on his side have voted what is true and right, and that he himself has spoken no falsehood; and he calls down destruction upon himself and his household, if this be not true, and prays for many blessings for the jurors. A right provision, fellow citizens, and worthy of a democracy.


For if no one of you would willingly defile himself with justifiable bloodshed, surely he would guard against that which was unjustifiable, such as robbing a man of life or property or civil rights—such acts as have caused some men to kill themselves, others to be put to death by decree of the state. Will you then, fellow citizens, pardon me, if I call him a lewd rascal, unclean of body, even to the place whence his voice issues forth, and if I go on to prove that the rest of his accusation about Cersobleptes is false on the face of it?


You have a practice which in my judgment is most excellent and most useful to those in your midst who are the victims of slander: you preserve for all time in the public archives your decrees, together with their dates and the names of the officials who put them to vote. Now this man has told you that what ruined the cause of Cersobleptes was this: that when Demosthenes urged that we should go to Thrace, where Cersobleptes was being besieged, and should solemnly call on Philip to cease doing this thing, I, as leader of the ambassadors and influential with you, refused, and sat down in Oreus, I and the rest of the ambassadors, busy with getting foreign consulships for ourselves. [Note]


Hear now the letter which Chares sent to the people at the time, saying that Cersobleptes had lost his kingdom and that Philip had taken Hieron Oros [Note] on the twenty-fourth of Elaphebolion. And it was Demosthenes, one of the ambassadors, who was presiding in the assembly here on the twenty-fifth of that month.Letter


Now not only did we delay all the rest of that month, but it was Munichion [Note] when we set out. As witness of this I will present the senate, for there is a decree of theirs which commands the ambassadors to set out in order to receive the oaths. Please read the decree of the senate.Decree

Now read also the date of the decree.Date


You hear that the decree was passed on the third of Munichion. How many days before I set out was it that Cersobleptes lost his kingdom? According to Chares the general it occurred the month before—that is, if Elaphebolion is the month next before Munichion! Was it, then, in my power to save Cersobleptes, who was lost before I set out from home? And now do you imagine that there is one word of truth in his account of what was done in Macedonia or of what was done in Thessaly, when he gives the lie to the senate-house and the public archives, and falsifies the date and the meetings of the assembly?


and is it true, Demosthenes, that you at Athens tried to exclude Cersobleptes from the treaty, but pitied him when you got to Oreus? And do you today accuse me of having taken bribes, you who were once fined by the Senate of the Areopagus for not prosecuting your suit for assault, that time when you indicted your cousin Demomeles of Paeania for the cut on your head that you gave yourself with your own hand? [Note] And do you put on airs before these jurymen, as though they did not know that you are the bastard son of Demosthenes the cutler? [Note]

Aeschines, Speeches (English) (XML Header) [genre: prose; rhetoric] [word count] [Aeschin.].
<<Aeschin. 2.81 Aeschin. 2.89 (Greek) >>Aeschin. 2.97

Powered by PhiloLogic