Aeschines, Speeches (English) (XML Header) [genre: prose; rhetoric] [word count] [Aeschin.].
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3.103

It remains for me to say that Demosthenes was paid three talents for making this motion: a talent from Chalcis, paid over by Callias, a talent from Eretria, paid by the tyrant Cleitarchus, and a talent from Oreus. And it was this last by means of which he was found out; for the government of Oreus is a democracy, and everything is done there by popular vote. Now they, exhausted by the war and entirely without means, sent to him Gnosidemus, son of Charigenes, a man who had once been powerful in Oreus, to ask him to release the city from paying the talent, and to offer him a statue of bronze to be set up in Oreus.

3.104

But he replied to Gnosidemus that the last thing that he was in need of was bronze, and he tried to collect the talent through Callias. Now the people of Oreus, pressed for payment and without means, mortgaged to him the public revenues as security for the talent, and paid Demosthenes interest on the fruit of his bribery at the rate of a drachma per month on the mina, [Note] until they paid off the principal.

3.105

This was done by vote of the people. To prove that what I am telling you is true, please take the decree of the people of Oreus.Decree

This is the decree, fellow citizens, a disgrace to our city, no slight exposure of Demosthenes' policies, and a clear accusation against Ctesiphon as well. For the man who so shamelessly received bribes cannot have been the good man that Ctesiphon has dared to set forth.

3.106

I come now to the third period, or rather to that bitterest period of all, in which Demosthenes brought ruin upon our state and upon all Hellas by his impiety toward the shrine at Delphi, and by moving the alliance with Thebes—an unjust alliance and utterly unequal. But I will begin with his sins against the the gods.

3.107

There is, fellow citizens, a plain, called the plain of Cirrha, and a harbor, now known as “dedicate and accursed.” This district was once inhabited by the Cirrhaeans and the Cragalidae, most lawless tribes, who repeatedly committed sacrilege against the shrine at Delphi and the votive offerings there, and who transgressed against the Amphictyons also. This conduct exasperated all the Amphictyons, and your ancestors most of all, it is said, and they sought at the shrine of the god an oracle to tell them with what penalty they should visit these men.

3.108

The Pythia replied that they must fight against the Cirrhaeans and the Cragalidae day and night, bitterly ravage their country, enslave the inhabitants, and dedicate the land to the Pythian Apollo and Artemis and Leto and Athena Pronaea, [Note] that for the future it lie entirely uncultivated; that they must not till this land themselves nor permit another.

Now when they had received this oracle, the Amphictyons voted, on motion of Solon of Athens, a man able as a law-giver and versed in poetry and philosophy, to march against the accursed men according to the oracle of the god.

3.109

Collecting a great force of the Amphictyons, they enslaved the men, destroyed their harbor and city, and dedicated their land, as the oracle had commanded. Moreover they swore a mighty oath, that they would not themselves till the sacred land nor let another till it, but that they would go to the aid of the god and the sacred land with hand and foot and voice, and all their might.

3.110

They were not content with taking this oath, but they added an imprecation and a mighty curse concerning this; for it stands thus written in the curse : “If any one should violate this,” it says, “whether city or private man, or tribe, let them be under the curse,” it says, “of Apollo and Artemis and Leto and Athena Pronaea.”

3.111

The curse goes on: That their land bear no fruit; that their wives bear children not like those who begat them, but monsters; that their flocks yield not their natural increase; that defeat await them in camp and court and market-place, and that they perish utterly, themselves, their houses, their whole race; “And never,” it says, “may they offer pure sacrifice unto Apollo, nor to Artemis, nor to Leto, nor to Athena Pronaea, and may the gods refuse to accept their offerings.”

3.112

As a proof of this, let the oracle of the god be read; hear the curse; call to mind the oaths that your fathers swore together with all the other Amphictyons.Oracle [Ye may not hope to capture town nor tower,
Till dark-eyed Amphitrite's waves shall break
And roar against Apollo's sacred shore.] [Note]
Paus. 10.7.6OathsCurse



Aeschines, Speeches (English) (XML Header) [genre: prose; rhetoric] [word count] [Aeschin.].
<<Aeschin. 3.98 Aeschin. 3.106 (Greek) >>Aeschin. 3.116

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