Aeschines, Speeches (English) (XML Header) [genre: prose; rhetoric] [word count] [Aeschin.].
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So when Demosthenes at the height of his impudence shall say that because the money was a gift he is not subject to audit, suggest this to him: was it not, then, your duty, Demosthenes, to allow the herald of the Board of Auditors to make this proclamation, sanctioned by law and custom, “Who wishes to prefer charges?” Let any citizen who wishes have the opportunity to claim that you have given nothing, but that from the large sums under your control you have spent a mere trifle on the repair of the walls, whereas you have received ten talents from the city for this work. Do not grab honor; do not snatch the jurors' ballots from their hands; do not in your political career go before the laws, but follow them. For so is the democracy upheld.


As an answer then to the empty pretexts that they will bring forward, let what I have said suffice. But that Demosthenes was in fact subject to audit at the time when the defendant made his motion, since he held the office of Superintendent of the Theoric Fund [Note] as well as the office of Commissioner for the Repair of Walls, and at that time bad not rendered to you his account and reckoning for either office, this I will now try to show you from the public records. Read, if you please, in what archonship and in what month and on what day and in what assembly Demosthenes was elected a Superintendent of the Theoric Fund.Enumeration of the Days

If now I should prove nothing beyond this, Ctesiphon would be justly convicted, for it is not my complaint that convicts him, but the public records.


In earlier times, fellow citizens, the city used to elect a Comptroller of the Treasury, who every prytany made to the people a report of the revenues. But because of the trust which you placed in Eubulus, those who were elected Superintendents of the Theoric Fund held (until the law of Hegemon was passed) the office of Comptroller of the Treasury and the office of Receiver of Moneys; they also controlled the dockyards, had charge of the naval arsenal that was building, and were Superintendents of Streets; almost the whole administration of the state was in their hands.


I say this, not to accuse or blame them, but because I wish to show you this: that while the lawgiver, in case any one is subject to audit for a single office—though it be the least—does not permit him to be crowned until lie has rendered his account and submitted to audit, Ctesiphon did not hesitate to move to crown Demosthenes, who was holding all the offices in Athens at once.


Furthermore I will present to you Demosthenes himself as witness to the fact that at the time when Ctesiphon made his motion, Demosthenes was holding the office of Commissioner for the Repair of Walls, and so was handling public funds, imposing fines like the other magistrates, and privileged to preside in court. [Note] For in the archonship of Chaerondas, on the last day but one of Thargelion, [Note] Demosthenes made a motion in the assembly that on the second and third days of Skirophorion assemblies of the tribes be held; and he directed in his decree that men be chosen from each tribe as superintendents and treasurers for the work upon the walls; and very properly, that the city might have responsible persons upon whom to call for an accounting of the money spent. Please read the decree.Decree


Yes, but he immediately tries to wriggle out of this by saying that it was not the people who elected him, or appointed him by lot, as Commissioner of Walls. On this point Demosthenes and Ctesiphon will argue at length. But the law is brief and clear and it makes short work of their devices. I wish first to speak to you briefly about this.


There are, fellow citizens, three classes of public officers. The first and most obvious class are all who are appointed by lot or by election; the second class are those who administer some public business for more than thirty days, and the Commissioners of Public Works; but third it stands written in the law that if any others receive presidencies of courts, [Note] they also shall “hold office on passing their scrutiny.”


Now when you subtract those officials who are chosen by popular election and those appointed by lot, there remain those whom the tribes, the trittyes, [Note] and the demes appoint from among their own number to administer public funds. This happens when, as in the present case, some work is assigned to the several tribes, like the digging of trenches or the building of triremes. That what I say is true, you shall learn from the laws themselves.Laws

Aeschines, Speeches (English) (XML Header) [genre: prose; rhetoric] [word count] [Aeschin.].
<<Aeschin. 3.17 Aeschin. 3.26 (Greek) >>Aeschin. 3.34

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