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The Public Orations of Demosthenes, volume 1 by Demosthenes

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speaking with a view to your pleasure. But if attractive words, spoken out of
season, bring their punishment in actual reality, then it is disgraceful to
blind our eyes to the truth, to put off everything that is unpleasant, {39} to
refuse to understand even so much as this, that those who conduct war rightly
must not follow in the wake of events, but must be beforehand with them: for
just as a general may be expected to lead his army, so those who debate must
lead the course of affairs, in order that what they resolve upon may be done,
and that they may not be forced to follow at the heels of events. {40} You, men
of Athens, have the greatest power in the world-warships, infantry, cavalry,
revenue. But none of these elements of power have you used as you ought, down to
this very day. The method of your warfare with Philip is just that of barbarians
in a boxing-match. Hit one of them, and he hugs the place; hit him on the other
side, and there go his hands; but as for guarding, or looking his opponent in
the face, he neither can nor will do it. {41} It is the same with you. If you
hear that Philip is in the Chersonese, you resolve to make an expedition there;
if he is at Thermopylae, you send one there; and wherever else he may be, you
run up and down in his steps. It is he that leads your forces. You have never of
yourselves come to any salutary decision in regard to the war. No single event
do you ever discern before it occurs--before you have heard that something has
happened or is happening. Perhaps there was room for this backwardness until
now; but now we are at the very crisis, and such an attitude is possible no
longer. {42} Surely, men of Athens, it is one of the gods--one who blushes for
Athens, as he sees the course which events are taking--that has inspired Philip
with this restless activity. If he were content to remain at peace, in
possession of all that he has won by conquest or by forestalling us--if he had
no further plans--even then, the record against us as a people, a record of
shame and cowardice and all that is most dishonourable, would, I think, seem
complete enough to some of you. But now he is always making some new attempt,
always grasping after something more; and unless your spirit has utterly
departed, his conduct will perhaps bring you out into the field. {43} It amazes
me, men of Athens, that not one of you remembers with any indignation, that this
war had its origin in our intention to punish Philip; and that now, at the end
of it, the question is, how we are to escape disaster at his hands. But that he
will not stay his progress until some one arrests it is plain enough. Are we
then to wait for that? Do you think that all is right, when you dispatch nothing
but empty ships and somebody's hopes? Shall we not embark? {44} Shall we not
now, if never before, go forth ourselves, and provide at least some small
proportion of Athenian soldiers? Shall we not sail to the enemy's country? But I
heard the question, 'At what point on his coast are we to anchor?' The war
itself, men of Athens, if you take it in hand, will discover his weak points:
but if we sit at home listening to the mutual abuse and recriminations of our
orators, you can never realize any of the results that you ought to realize.
{45} I believe that whenever any portion of Athens is sent with the forces, even
if the whole city does not go, the favour of Heaven and of Fortune fights on our
side. But whenever you dispatch anywhere a general with an empty resolution and
some platform-hopes to support him, then you achieve nothing that you ought to
achieve, your enemies laugh at you, and your allies are in deadly fear of all
such armaments. {46} It is impossible, utterly impossible, that any one man
should be able to effect all that you wish for you. He can give undertakings and
promises;[n] he can accuse this man and that; and the result is that your
fortunes are ruined. For when the general is at the head of wretched, unpaid
mercenaries, and when there are those in Athens who lie to you light-heartedly
about all that he does, and, on the strength of the tales that you hear, you
pass decrees at random, what _must_ you expect?

{47} How then can this state of things be terminated? Only, men of Athens, when
you expressly make the same men soldiers, witnesses of their general's actions,
and judges at his examination[n] when they return home; for then the issue of
your fortunes will not be a tale which you hear, but a thing which you will be
on the spot to see. So shameful is the pass which matters have now reached, that
each of your generals is tried for his life before you two or three times, but
does not dare to fight in mortal combat with the enemy even once. They prefer
the death of kidnappers and brigands to that of a general. {48} For it is a
felon's death, to die by sentence of the court: the death of a general is to
fall in battle with the enemy. Some of us go about saying that Philip is
negotiating with Sparta[n] for the overthrow of the Thebans and the breaking up
of the free states; others, that he has sent ambassadors to the king;[n] others,
that he is fortifying cities in Illyria. {49} We all go about inventing each his
own tale. I quite believe, men of Athens, that he is intoxicated with the
greatness of his successes, and entertains many such visions in his mind; for he
sees that there are none to hinder him, and he is elated at his achievements.
But I do not believe that he has chosen to act in such a way that the most
foolish persons in Athens can know what he intends to do; for no persons are so
foolish as newsmongers. {50} But if we dismiss all such tales, and attend only
to the certainty--that the man is our enemy, that he is robbing us of our own,
that he has insulted us for a long time, that all that we ever expected any one
to do for us has proved to be against us, that the future is in our own hands,
that if we will not fight him now in his own country we shall perhaps be obliged
to do so in ours--if, I say, we are assured of this, then we shall have made up
our minds aright, and shall be quit of idle words. For you have not to speculate
what the future may be: you have only to be assured that the future must be
evil, unless you give heed and are ready to do your duty.

{51} Well, I have never yet chosen to gratify you by saying anything which I
have not felt certain would be for your good; and to-day I have spoken freely
and without concealment, just what I believe. I could wish to be as sure of the
good that a speaker will gain by giving you the best advice as of that which you
will gain by listening to him. I should then have been far happier than I am. As
it is, I do not know what will happen to me, for what I have said: but I have
chosen to speak in the sure conviction that if you carry out my proposals, it
will be for your good; and may the victory rest with that policy which will be
for the good of all!


[_Introduction_. It has already been noticed that when Philip took Amphipolis in
357 B.C., the Olynthians made overtures to the Athenians, with whom they had
been at war for some years, and that, being rejected, they became allies of
Philip, who gave them Anthemus and Poteidaea. In 352, alarmed at Philip's
growing power, they once more applied to Athens. Peace was made, and
negotiations began with regard to an alliance. In 351 Philip appeared in the
territory of Olynthus. He did not, however, at once carry the invasion further,
but took pains, during this year and the next, to foster a Macedonian party in
the town. In 349 Philip virtually declared war on the Olynthians by demanding
the surrender of his step-brother Arrhidaeus, who had taken refuge with them.
The Olynthians again appealed to Athens; an alliance was made; Chares was sent
with thirty ships and 2,000 mercenaries, but seems to have mismanaged the war by
misfortune or by design. Probably he had been badly supplied with funds, and
instead of helping Olynthus, resorted to acts of piracy to satisfy his men. The
Macedonian troops proceeded to take Stageira and other towns of the Olynthian
League, though Philip still professed to have no hostile intentions against
Olynthus (see Phil. III, Sec. ii). Chares was recalled and put on his trial; and,
probably in response to a further message from Olynthus, Charidemus was
transferred thither from the Hellespont. With a considerable mercenary force at
his disposal, Charidemus overran Pallene and Bottiaea, and did some damage to
Philip's territory, but afterwards gave himself up to dissipation in Olynthus.
In the meantime, some of the Thessalians had become restless under Philip's
supremacy (see Olynth. I, Sec. 22, II, Sec. ii), and he was obliged to undertake an
expedition to suppress the revolt, and to put down Peitholaus (who had
apparently become tyrant of Pherae once more, though he had been expelled in
352). But early in 348 he appeared in person in Chalcidice, and took one after
another of the towns of the League, including Mecyberna the port of Olynthus,
and Torone. He thrice defeated the Olynthians in battle, and at last obtained
possession of Olynthus itself by the treachery of Euthycrates and Lasthenes, the
commanders of the Olynthian cavalry.

Athens had probably been occupied during the early part of the year [1] with an
expedition which she sent (against the advice of Demosthenes) to help Plutarchus
of Eretria to repel attacks which were partly, at least, instigated by Philip;
and in consequence she had done little for Olynthus, though on a request of the
Olynthians for cavalry, she had ordered some of those which had been sent to
Euboea to go to Olynthus, and these may have been the Athenians whom Philip
captured in that city. The seventeen ships, 2,000 infantry, and 300 cavalry (all
citizens), which Athens dispatched under Chares in response to a last urgent
appeal from Olynthus, were delayed by storms and arrived too late. Philip
entirely destroyed Olynthus and thirty-two other towns, sold their inhabitants
into slavery, brought the whole of Chalcidice within the Macedonian Empire, and
celebrated his conquests by a festival in honour of the Olympian Zeus at Dium.

The First Olynthiac Oration was delivered before Olynthus itself was attacked or
any other towns actually taken (Olynth. I, Sec. 17); and both the First and Second
before the discontent with Philip in Thessaly had taken an active form (I, Sec. 22,
II, Sec. 7). Both, that is, belong to the summer of 349, and the situation implied
is very much the same in both. The First was perhaps spoken when the Olynthians
first appealed to Athens in that year, before the mission of Chares; the Second,
to counteract the effect of something which had caused despondency in Athens
(possibly the conduct of the Athenian generals, or the account given by other
orators of Philip's power). In both Demosthenes urges the importance of
resisting Philip while he is still far away, and of sending, not mercenaries,
but a citizen-army; and while hinting at what he regards as the true solution of
the financial difficulty, proposes a special war-tax. The solution which he
thinks the right one is more explicitly described in the Third Olynthiac, spoken
(probably [Footnote: See note on Olynth. III, Section 4]) in the autumn of the
same year, and certainly at a time when the situation had become much more
grave. The root of the financial difficulty lay in the existence of a law which
prohibited (evidently under severe penalties, Olynth. III, Section 12) any
proposal to devote to military purposes that portion of the revenues which
constituted the 'Festival' or 'Theoric Fund', and was for the most part
distributed to the citizens to enable them to take part in the public festivals,
and so join in fulfilling what was no doubt a religious duty as well as a
pleasure. This particular form of expenditure is stated to have been introduced
by the demagogue Agyrrhius in 394, when it revived in an extended form a
distribution of theatre money instituted late in the fifth century by Cleophon;
but the special law in question appears to have been of recent date (Olynth.
III, Section 12), and was almost certainly the work of Eubulus and his party.
Demosthenes himself proposes an extraordinary Legislative Commission, to repeal
the mischievous laws and leave the way clear for financial reform. At the same
time he attacks the whole policy of Eubulus, charging him with distributing
doles without regard to public service, adding to the amenities of Athens
instead of maintaining her honour in war, and enriching her politicians while
degrading her people. The main object of the speech was unsuccessful; and just
about this time (though whether before or after the speech is disputed)
Apollodorus proposed that the people should decide whether the surplus revenues
should go to the Festival Fund, or be applied to military purposes, and was
heavily fined for the illegality of the proposal.

The Three Olynthiacs rank high among the Orations of Demosthenes. Some passages,
indeed, show that he had hardly as yet appreciated the genius of Philip, or the
unlikelihood of his making a false move either through over-confidence or
because he had come to the end of his resources. But the noble patriotism of the
speaker, the lofty tone of his political reflections, the clearness of his
diagnosis of the evils of his time, and the fearlessness of his appeal for loyal
and united self-sacrifice, are nowhere more conspicuous.]


{1} I believe, men of Athens, that you would give a great sum to know what
policy, in reference to the matter which you are now considering, will best
serve the interests of the city, and since that is so, you ought to be ready and
eager to listen to those who desire to give you their advice. For not only can
you hear and accept any useful proposals which a speaker may have thought out
before he came here; but such, I conceive, is your fortune, that the right
suggestion will often occur to some of those present on the spur of the moment;
and out of all these suggestions it should be easy for you to choose the most
advantageous course.

{2} The present time, men of Athens, seems almost to cry aloud that you must
take matters into your own hands yonder, if you have any interest in a
successful termination of the crisis: and yet our attitude appears to be--I do
not know what. My own opinion, at all events, is that you should at once resolve
to send this assistance; that you should prepare for the departure of the
expedition at the first possible moment--you must not fall victims to the same
error as before--and that you should dispatch an embassy to announce our
intention, and to be present at the scene of action. {3} For what we have most
to fear is this--that he, with his unscrupulous cleverness in taking advantage
of circumstances--now, it may be, by making concessions; now by uttering
threats, which he may well seem likely to fulfil; now by misrepresenting
ourselves and our absence from the scene--may turn and wrest to his own
advantage some of the vital elements of our power. {4} And yet it may fairly be
said, men of Athens, that our best hope lies in that very circumstance which
renders Philip's power so hard to grapple with. The fact that the entire control
over everything, open or secret,[n] is concentrated in the hands of a single
man; that he is at one and the same time general, master, and treasurer; that he
is always present in person with his army--all this is a great advantage, in so
far as military operations must be prompt and well-timed. But as regards the
compact which he would so gladly make with the Olynthians, the effect is just
the reverse. {5} For the Olynthians know well that they are not fighting now for
honour and glory, nor for a strip of territory, but to avert the devastation and
enslavement of their country. They know how he treated[n] those who betrayed to
him their city at Amphipolis, and those who received him at Pydna; and it is, I
imagine, universally true that tyranny is a faithless friend to a free state,
and that most of all, when they occupy adjoining territories. {6} With this
knowledge, men of Athens, and with all the reflections that the occasion calls
for in your minds, I say that now, if ever before, you must make your resolve,
rouse all your energies, and give your minds to the war: you must contribute
gladly, you must go forth in person, you must leave nothing undone. There is no
longer any reason or excuse remaining, which can justify you in refusing to do
your duty. {7} For every one was but recently harping on the desirability of
exciting Olynthus to war with Philip; and this has now come to pass of itself,
and in the way which most completely suits your interests. Had they taken up the
war because you had persuaded them to do so, their alliance might perhaps have
been precarious, and their resolution might only have carried them a certain
way. But now their detestation of Philip is based upon grievances which affect
themselves; and we may suppose that a hostility which is occasioned by their own
fears and sufferings will be a lasting one. {8} Since, therefore, men of Athens,
such an opportunity has been thrown in your way, you must not let it go, nor
fall victims to the mistake from which you have often suffered before. If, for
instance, when we had returned from our expedition in aid of the Euboeans,[n]
and Hierax and Stratocles came from Amphipolis and stood upon this platform and
urged us to sail and take over the city; if, I say, we had continued to display
in our own interest the eagerness which we displayed in the deliverance of the
Euboeans, you would have kept Amphipolis then, and we should have been free from
all the trouble that we have had since. {9} And again, when news kept coming of
the investment of Pydna, Poteidaea, Methone, Pagasae, and all the other places--
I will not stay to enumerate them all--if we had acted at once, and had gone to
the rescue of the first place attacked, with the energy which we ought to have
shown, we should now have found Philip much less proud and difficult to deal
with. As it is, we are always sacrificing the present, always fancying that the
future will turn out well of itself; and so we have raised Philip to a position
of such importance as no king of Macedonia has ever before attained. {10} And
now an opportunity has come to Athens, in this crisis at Olynthus, as great as
any of those former ones: and I believe, men of Athens, that one who was to draw
up a true account of the blessings which have been given us by the gods, would,
in spite of much that is not as it should be, find great cause for thankfulness
to them; and naturally so. For our many losses in the war must in fairness be
set down to our own indifference; but that we did not suffer such losses long
ago, and that an alliance has presented itself to us, which, if we will only
take advantage of it, will act as a counterpoise to them--all this I, for one,
should set down as a favour due to their goodness towards us. But it is, I
imagine, in politics, as it is in money-making. {11} If a man is able to keep
all that he gets, he is abundantly grateful to Fortune; but if he loses it all
before he is aware, he loses with it his memory of Fortune's kindness. So it is
in politics. When men have not made a right use of their opportunities, they do
not remember any good that heaven may actually have granted them: for it is by
the ultimate issue that men estimate all that they have enjoyed before.
Therefore, men of Athens, you must pay the very utmost heed to the future, that
by the better use you make of it, you may wipe out the dishonour of the past.
{12} But if you sacrifice these men also, men of Athens, and Philip in
consequence reduces Olynthus to subjection, I ask any of you to tell me what is
to prevent him from marching where he pleases. Is there a man among you, men of
Athens, who considers or studies the steps by which Philip, weak enough at
first, has become so strong? First he took Amphipolis, next Pydna, then again
Poteidaea, and then Methone. Next he set foot in Thessaly. {13} Then when
Pherae, Pagasae, Magnesia[n] were secured for his purposes, just as it suited
him, he departed to Thrace. In Thrace, after expelling one prince and setting up
another, he fell ill. When he grew easier again, he showed no inclination to
take things easily, but at once attacked the Olynthians[n]--and I am passing
over his campaigns against the Illyrians and the Paeonians, against Arybbas,[n]
and in every possible direction.

{14} Why, I may be asked, do I mention these things at the present moment? I
wish you to understand, men of Athens, and to realize these two points: first,
the unprofitableness of perpetually sacrificing your interests one by one; and,
secondly, the restless activity which is a part of Philip's very being, and
which will not allow him to content himself with his achievements and remain at
peace. For if it is to be his fixed resolve, that he must always be aiming at
something greater than he has yet attained; and ours, that we will never set
ourselves resolutely to work; ask yourselves what you can expect to be the end
of the matter. {15} In God's name, is there one of you so innocent as not to
know that the war will be transferred from Olynthus to Attica, if we pay no
heed? But if that happens, men of Athens, I fear that we shall be like men who
light-heartedly borrow at a high rate of interest, and after a brief period of
affluence, lose even their original estate; that like them we shall find that
our carelessness has cost us dear; that through making pleasure our standard in
everything, we shall find ourselves driven to do many of those unpleasant things
which we wished to avoid, and shall find our position even in our own country

{16} I may be told that it is easy to criticize--any one can do that; but that a
political adviser is expected to offer some practical proposal to meet the
existing situation. Now I am well aware, men of Athens, that in the event of any
disappointment, it is not upon those who are responsible that your anger falls,
but upon those who have spoken last upon the subject in question. Yet I do not
think that consideration for my own safety should lead me to conceal my
conviction as to the course which your interests demand. {17} I say then that
there are two things which you must do to save the situation. You must rescue
these towns [n] for the Olynthians, and send troops to accomplish this: and you
must damage Philip's country with your ships and with a second body of troops.
{18} If you neglect either of these things, our campaign, I greatly fear, will
be in vain. For suppose that you inflict damage on his country, and that he
allows you to do so, while he reduces Olynthus; he will have no difficulty in
repelling you when he returns. Suppose, on the other hand, that you only go to
the help of Olynthus; he will see that he has nothing to fear at home, and so he
will sit down before the town and remain at his task, until time enables him to
get the better of the besieged. The expedition, therefore, must be large, and it
must be in two parts.

Such is my view with regard to the expedition. {19} As to the sources of supply,
you have funds, men of Athens--funds larger than any one else in the world; but
you appropriate these without scruple, just as you choose. Now if you will
assign these to your troops, you need no further supplies: otherwise, not only
do you need further supplies--you are destitute of supplies altogether. 'Well'
(does someone say?), 'do you move that this money should form a war-fund?' I
assure you that I make no such motion. {20} For while I do indeed believe that a
force ought to be made ready [and that this money should form a war-fund], and
that the receipt of money should be connected, as part of one and the same
system, with the performance of duty; you, on the contrary, think it right to
take the money, after your present fashion, for your festivals, and spare
yourselves trouble. And therefore, I suppose, our only resource is a general
tax--larger or smaller, according to the amount required. In any case, we need
funds, and without funds nothing can be done that we ought to do. Various other
sources of supply are suggested by different persons. Choose whichever you think
best of these, and get to work, while you have the opportunity.

{21} It is worth while to remember and to take into account the nature of
Philip's position at this moment. For neither are his affairs at present in such
good order, or in so perfectly satisfactory a state, as might appear to any but
a careful observer; nor would he ever have commenced this present war, if he had
thought that he would really have to fight. He hoped at first that by his mere
advance he would carry all before him; and he has since discovered his mistake.
This disappointment, then, is the first thing which disturbs him and causes him
great despondency: {22} and next there is the disposition of the Thessalians,
naturally inconstant as we know it has always been found by all men; and what it
has always been, that, in the highest degree, Philip finds it now. For they have
formally resolved to demand from him the restitution of Pagasae; they have
prevented him from fortifying Magnesia, and I myself heard it stated that they
intend even to refuse him the enjoyment of their harbour and market dues for the
future. These, they say, should go to maintain the public administration of
Thessaly, instead of being taken by Philip. But if he is deprived of these
funds, the resources from which he must maintain his mercenaries will be reduced
to the narrowest limits. {23} Nay, more: we must surely suppose that the
chieftains of the Paeonians and Illyrians, and in fact all such personages--
would prefer freedom to slavery; for they are not accustomed to obey orders, and
the man, they say, is a bully. Heaven knows, there is nothing incredible in the
statement. Unmerited success is to foolish minds a fountain-head of perversity,
so that it is often harder for men to keep the good they have, than it was to
obtain it. {24} It is for you then, men of Athens, to regard his difficulty as
your opportunity, to take up your share of the burden with readiness, to send
embassies to secure all that is required, to join the forces yourselves, and to
stir up every one else to do so. Only consider what would happen, if Philip got
such an opportunity to strike at us, and there was war on our frontier. Can you
not imagine how readily he would march against us? Does it arouse no shame in
you, that, when you have the opportunity, you should not dare to do to him even
as much as you would have to suffer, were he able to inflict it?

{25} There is a further point, men of Athens, which must not escape you. I mean
that you have now to choose whether you are to carry on war yonder, or whether
he is to do so in your own country. If the resistance of Olynthus is maintained,
you will fight there and will inflict damage on Philip's territory, while you
remain secure in the enjoyment of this land of your own which you now possess.
But if Philip captures Olynthus, who is to hinder him from marching to Athens?
The Thebans? {26} It seems, I fear, too bitter a thing to say; but they will be
glad to join him in the invasion. The Phocians? They cannot protect their own
country, unless you go to their aid, or some other power. 'But, my good Sir,'[n]
you say, 'he will not want to march here.' And yet it would be one of the
strangest things in the world, if, when he has the power, he does not carry out
the threats, which he now blurts out in spite of the folly that they show. {27}
But I suppose that I need not even point out how vast is the difference between
war here and war in his country. For had you to camp outside the walls
yourselves, for only thirty days, and to take from the country such things as
men in camp must have--and I am assuming that there is no enemy in the country--
I believe that the loss your farmers would suffer would exceed your whole
expenditure on the war up to the present time. What then must we think will be
the extent of our loss, if ever war comes to our doors? And besides the loss
there is his insolence, and the shame of our position, which to right-minded men
is as serious as any loss.

{28} When you take a comprehensive view of these things you must all go to the
rescue and stave the war off yonder; you who are well-to-do, in order that, with
a small expense in defence of the great fortunes which you quite rightly enjoy,
you may reap the benefit of the remainder without fear; you who are of military
age, that you may gain your experience of war in Philip's country, and so become
formidable guardians of a fatherland unspoiled; and your orators, that they may
find it easy to render an account of their public life; for your judgement upon
their conduct will itself depend upon the position in which you find yourselves.
And may that be a happy one, on every ground!


{1} Many as are the occasions, men of Athens, on which we may discern the
manifestation of the goodwill of Heaven towards this city, one of the most
striking is to be seen in the circumstances of the present time. For that men
should have been found to carry on war against Philip; men whose territory
borders on his and who possess some power; men, above all, whose sentiments in
regard to the war are such that they think of the proposed compact with him, not
only as untrustworthy, but as the very ruin of their country--this seems to be
certainly the work of a superhuman, a divine, beneficence. {2} And so, men of
Athens, we must take care that we do not treat ourselves less well than
circumstances have treated us. For it is a shameful thing--nay, it is the very
depth of shame--to throw away openly, not only cities and places which were once
in our power, but even the allies and the opportunities which have been provided
for us by Fortune.

{3} Now to describe at length the power of Philip, men of Athens, and to incite
you to the performance of your duty by such a recital, is not, I think, a
satisfactory proceeding; and for this reason--that while all that can be said on
this subject tends to Philip's glory, it is a story of failure on our part. For
the greater the extent to which his success surpasses his deserts, the greater
is the admiration with which the world regards him; while, for your part, the
more you have fallen short of the right use of your opportunities, the greater
is the disgrace that you have incurred. {4} I will therefore pass over such
considerations. For any honest inquirer must see that the causes of Philip's
rise to greatness lie in Athens, and not in himself. Of the services for which
he has to thank those whose policy is determined by his interest--services for
which you ought to require their punishment--the present is not, I see, the
moment to speak. But apart from these, there are things which may be said, and
which it is better that you should all have heard--things which (if you will
examine them aright) constitute a grave reproach against him; and these I will
try to tell you.

{5} If I called him perjured and faithless, without giving his actions in
evidence, my words would be treated as idle abuse, and rightly: and it happens
that to review all his actions up to the present time, and to prove the charge
in every case, requires only a short speech. It is well, I think, that the story
should be told, for it will serve two purposes; first, to make plain the real
badness of the man's character; and secondly, to let those who are over-alarmed
at Philip, as if he were invincible, see that he has come to the end of all
those forms of deceit by which he rose to greatness, and that his career is
already drawing to its close. {6} For I, too, men of Athens, should be regarding
Philip with intense fear and admiration, if I saw that his rise was the result
of a righteous policy. {7} But when I study and consider the facts, I find that
originally, when certain persons wished to drive from your presence the
Olynthians who desired to address you from this place, Philip won over our
innocent minds by saying that he would deliver up Amphipolis to us, and by
inventing the famous secret understanding; that he afterwards conciliated the
Olynthians by seizing Poteidaea, which was yours, and injuring their former
allies by handing it over to themselves; and that, last of all, he recently won
over the Thessalians, by promising to give up Magnesia to them, and undertaking
to carry on the war with the Phocians on their behalf. There is absolutely no
one who has ever had dealings with him that he has not deluded; and it is by
deceiving and winning over, one after another, those who in their blindness did
not realize what he was, that he has risen as he has done. {8} And therefore,
just as it was by these deceptions that he rose to greatness, in the days when
each people fancied that he intended to do some service to themselves; so it is
these same deceptions which should drag him down again, now that he stands
convicted of acting for his own ends throughout. Such, then, is the crisis, men
of Athens, to which Philip's fortunes have now come. If it is not so, let any
one come forward and show me (or rather you) that what I say is untrue; or that
those who have been deceived at the outset trust him as regards the future; or
that those who have been brought into unmerited bondage would not gladly be

{9} But if any of you, while agreeing with me so far, still fancies that Philip
will maintain his hold by force, because he has already occupied fortified posts
and harbours and similar positions, he is mistaken. When power is cemented by
goodwill, and the interest of all who join in a war is the same, then men are
willing to share the labour, to endure the misfortunes, and to stand fast. But
when a man has become strong, as Philip has done, by a grasping and wicked
policy, the first excuse, the least stumble, throws him from his seat and
dissolves the alliance. {10} It is impossible, men of Athens, utterly
impossible, to acquire power that will last, by unrighteousness, by perjury, and
by falsehood. Such power holds out for a moment, or for a brief hour; it
blossoms brightly, perhaps, with fair hopes; but time detects the fraud, and the
flower falls withered about its stem. In a house or a ship, or any other
structure, it is the foundations that must be strongest; and no less, I believe,
must the principles, which are the foundation of men's actions, be those of
truth and righteousness. Such qualities are not to be seen to-day in the past
acts of Philip.

{11} I say, then, that we should help the Olynthians; and the best and quickest
method which can be proposed is the method which I approve. Further, we should
send an embassy to the Thessalians--to some, to inform them of our intention; to
others, to spur them on; for even now they have resolved to demand the
restitution of Pagasae, and to make representations in regard to Magnesia. {12}
Take care, however, men of Athens, that our envoys may not only have words to
speak, but also actions of yours to point to. Let it be seen that you have gone
forth in a manner that is worthy of Athens, and are already in action. Words
without the reality must always appear a vain and empty thing, and above all
when they come from Athens; for the more we seem to excel in the glib use of
such language, the more it is distrusted by every one. {13} The change, then,
which is pointed out to them must be great, the conversion striking. They must
see you paying your contributions, marching to war, doing everything with a
will, if any of them is to listen to you. And if you resolve to accomplish all
this in very deed, as it should be accomplished, not only will the feeble and
untrustworthy nature of Philip's alliances be seen, but the weakness of his own
empire and power will also be detected.

{14} The power and empire of Macedonia is, indeed, to speak generally, an
element which tells considerably as an addition to any other power. You found it
so when it helped you against the Olynthians in the days of Timotheus;[n] the
Olynthians in their turn found its help of some value, in combination with their
own strength, against Poteidaea; and it has recently come to the aid of the
Thessalians, in their disordered and disturbed condition, against the ruling
dynasty: and wherever even a small addition is made to a force, it helps in
every way. {15} But in itself the Macedonian Empire is weak and full of manifold
evils. Philip has in fact rendered his own tenure of it even more precarious
than it naturally was, by these very wars and campaigns which might be supposed
to prove his power. For you must not imagine, men of Athens, that Philip and his
subjects delight in the same things. Philip has a passion for glory--that is his
ambition; and he has deliberately chosen to risk the consequences of a life of
action and danger, preferring the glory of achieving more than any King of
Macedonia before him to a life of security. {16} But his subjects have no share
in the honour and glory. Constantly battered about by all these expeditions, up
and down, they are vexed with incessant hardships: they are not suffered to
pursue their occupations or attend to their own affairs: for the little that
they produce, as best they can, they can find no market, the trading stations of
the country being closed on account of the war. {17} From these facts it is not
difficult to discover the attitude of the Macedonians in general towards Philip;
and as for the mercenaries and Infantry of the Guard who surround him, though
they have the reputation of being a fine body of well-drilled warriors, I am
told by a man who has been in Macedonia, and who is incapable of falsehood, that
they are no better than any other body of men. {18} Granted that there may be
experienced campaigners and fighters among them; yet, he tells me, Philip is so
jealous of honour, that he thrusts all such men away from him, in his anxiety to
get the credit of every achievement for himself; for in addition to all his
other qualities, his jealousy is insurpassable. On the other hand, any generally
temperate or upright man, who cannot endure the dissolute life there, day by
day, nor the drunkenness and the lewd revels, is thrust on one side and counts
for nothing. {19} Thus he is left with brigands and flatterers, and men who,
when in their cups, indulge in dances of a kind which I shrink from naming to
you now. And it is evident that this report is true; for men whom every one
tried to drive out of Athens, as far viler than even the very juggler in the
street--Callias the public slave and men like him, players of farces, composers
of indecent songs, written at the expense of their companions in the hope of
raising a laugh--these are the men he likes and keeps about him. {20} You may
think that these are trivial things, men of Athens: but they are weighty, in the
judgement of every right-minded man, as illustrations of the temper with which
Philip is cursed. At present, I suppose, these facts are overshadowed by his
continual prosperity. Success has a wonderful power of throwing a veil over
shameful things like these. But let him only stumble, and then all these
features in his character will be displayed in their true light. And I believe,
men of Athens, that the revelation is not far off, if Heaven be willing and you
desirous of it. {21} So long as a man is in good health, he is unconscious of
any weakness; but if any illness comes upon him, the disturbance affects every
weak point, be it a rupture or a sprain or anything else that is unsound in his
constitution. And as with the body, so it is with a city or a tyrant. So long as
they are at war abroad, the mischief is hidden from the world at large, but the
close grapple of war on the frontier brings all to light.

{22} Now if any of you, men of Athens, seeing Philip's good fortune, thinks that
this makes him a formidable enemy to fight against, he reasons like a sensible
man: for fortune weighs heavily in the scale--nay, fortune is everything, in all
human affairs. And yet, if I were given the choice, it is the fortune of Athens
that I should choose, rather than that of Philip, provided that you yourselves
are willing to act even to a small extent as you should act. For I see that
there are far more abundant grounds for expecting the goodwill of Heaven on your
side than on his. {23} But here, of course, we are sitting idle; and one who is
a sluggard himself cannot require his friends to help him, much less the gods.
It is not to be wondered at that Philip, who goes on campaigns and works hard
himself, and is always at the scene of action, and lets no opportunity go, no
season pass, should get the better of us who delay and pass resolutions and ask
for news; nor do I wonder at it. It is the opposite that would have been
wonderful--if we, who do nothing that those who are at war ought to do, were
successful against one who leaves nothing undone. {24} But this I do wonder at,
that you who once raised your hand against Sparta, in defence of the rights of
the Hellenes--you, who with opportunities often open to you for grasping large
advantages for yourselves, would not take them, but to secure for others their
rights spent your own fortunes in war-contributions, and always bore the brunt
of the dangers of the campaign--that you, I say, are now shrinking from
marching, and hesitating to make any contribution to save your own possessions;
and that, though you have often saved the rest of the Hellenes, now all together
and now each in their turn, you are sitting idle, when you have lost what was
your own. {25} I wonder at this; and I wonder also, men of Athens, that none of
you is able to reckon up the time during which you have been fighting with
Philip, and to consider what you have been doing while all this time has been
going by. Surely you must know that it is while we have been delaying, hoping
that some one else would act, accusing one another, bringing one another to
trial, hoping anew--in fact, doing practically what we are doing now--that all
the time has passed. {26} And have you now so little sense, men of Athens, as to
hope that the very same policy, which has made the position of the city a bad
one instead of a good, will actually make it a good one instead of a bad? Why,
it is contrary both to reason and to nature to think so! It is always much
easier to retain than to acquire. But now, owing to the war, none of our old
possessions is left for us to retain; and so we must needs acquire. {27} This,
therefore, is our own personal and immediate duty; and accordingly I say that
you must contribute funds, you must go on service in person with a good will,
you must accuse no one before you have become masters of the situation; and then
you must honour those who deserve praise, and punish the guilty, with a
judgement based upon the actual facts. You must get rid of all excuses and all
deficiencies on your own part; you cannot examine mercilessly the actions of
others, unless you yourselves have done all that your duty requires. {28} For
why is it, do you think, men of Athens, that all the generals whom you dispatch
avoid this war,[n] and discover private wars of their own--if a little of the
truth must be told even about the generals? It is because in this war the prizes
for which the war is waged are yours, and if they are captured, you will take
them immediately for your own; but the dangers are the personal privilege of
your commanders, and no pay is forthcoming: while in those wars the dangers are
less, and the profits--Lampsacus, Sigeum, and the ships which they plunder--go
to the commanders and their men. Each force therefore takes the road that leads
to its own advantage. {29} For your part, when you turn your attention to the
serious condition of your affairs, you first bring the commanders to trial; and
then, when you have given them a hearing, and have been told of the difficulties
which I have described, you acquit them. The result, therefore, is that while
you are quarrelling with one another and broken into factions-one party
persuaded of this, another of that--the public interest suffers. You used, men
of Athens, to pay taxes by Boards:[n] to-day you conduct your politics by
Boards. On either side there is an orator as leader, and a general under him;
and for the Three Hundred, there are those who come to shout. The rest of you
distribute yourselves between the two parties, some on either side. {30} This
system you must give up: you must even now become your own masters; you must
give to all alike their share in discussion, in speech and in action. If you
assign to one body of men the function of issuing orders to you, like tyrants;
to another, that of compulsory service as trierarchs or tax-payers or soldiers;
and to another, only that of voting their condemnation, without taking any share
in the labour, nothing that ought to be done will be done in time. For the
injured section will always be in default, and you will only have the privilege
of punishing them instead of the enemy. {31} To sum up, all must contribute,
each according to his wealth, in a fair proportion: all must go on active
service in turn, until you have all served: you must give a hearing to all who
come forward, and choose the best course out of all that you hear--not the
course proposed by this or that particular person. If you do this, you will not
only commend the proposer of that course at the time, but you will commend
yourselves hereafter, for the whole position of your affairs will be a better


{1} Very different reflections suggest themselves to my mind, I men of Athens,
when I turn my eyes to our real situation, and when I think of the speeches that
I hear. For I observe that the speeches are all concerned with the taking of
vengeance upon Philip; whereas in reality matters have gone so far, that we have
to take care that we are not ourselves the first to suffer: so that those who
speak of vengeance are actually, as it seems to me, suggesting to you a false
conception of the situation which you are discussing. {2} That there was a time
when the city could both keep her own possessions in safety, and punish Philip,
I am very well aware. For it was not long ago, but within my own lifetime, that
both these things were so. But I am convinced that it is now quite enough for us
as a first step to make sure of the preservation of our allies. If this is
safely secured, we shall then be able to consider upon whom vengeance is to
fall, and in what way. But until the first step is properly conceived, I
consider it idle to say anything whatever about the last.

{3} If ever the most anxious deliberation was required, it is required in the
present crisis; and my greatest difficulty is not to know what is the proper
advice to give you in regard to the situation: I am at a loss rather to know,
men of Athens, in what manner I should address you in giving it. For I am
convinced by what I have heard with my own ears in this place that, for the most
part, the objects of our policy have slipped from our grasp, not because we do
not understand what our duty is, but because we will not do it; and I ask you to
suffer me, if I speak without reserve, and to consider only whether I speak
truly, and with this object in view--that the future may be better than the
past. For you see that it is because certain speakers make your gratification
the aim of their addresses, that things have gone on getting worse, till at last
the extremity has been reached.

{4} I think it necessary, first, to remind you of a few of the events which have
taken place. You remember, men of Athens, that two or three years ago[n] the
news came that Philip was in Thrace, besieging Heraeon Teichos. That was in the
month of November. Amidst all the discussion and commotion which took place in
this Assembly, you passed a resolution that forty warships should be launched,
that men under forty-five years of age should embark in person, and that we
should pay a war-tax of 60 talents. {5} That year came to an end, and there
followed July, August, September. In the latter month, after the Mysteries,[n]
and with reluctance, you dispatched Charidemus[n] with ten ships, carrying no
soldiers, and 5 talents of silver. For so soon as news had come that Philip was
sick or dead--both reports were brought--you dismissed the armament, men of
Athens, thinking that there was no longer any occasion for the expedition. But
it was the very occasion; for had we then gone to the scene of action with the
same enthusiasm which marked our resolution to do so, Philip would not have been
preserved to trouble us to-day. {6} What was done then cannot be altered. But
now a critical moment in another campaign has arrived; and it is in view of
this, and to prevent you from falling into the same error, that I have recalled
these facts. How then shall we use this opportunity, men of Athens? For unless
you will go to the rescue 'with might and main to the utmost of your power',[n]
mark how in every respect you will have served Philip's interest by your conduct
of the war. {7} At the outset the Olynthians possessed considerable strength,
and such was the position of affairs, that neither did Philip feel safe against
them, nor they against Philip. We made peace with them, and they with us. It was
as it were a stumbling-block in Philip's path, and an annoyance to him, that a
great city which had made a compact with us should sit watching for any
opportunity he might offer. We thought that we ought to excite them to war with
him by every means; and now this much-talked-of event has come to pass--by what
means, I need not relate. {8} What course then is open to us, men of Athens, but
to go to their aid resolutely and eagerly? I can see none. Apart from the shame
in which we should be involved, if we let anything be lost through our
negligence, I can see, men of Athens, that the subsequent prospect would be
alarming in no small degree, when the attitude of the Thebans towards us is what
it is, when the funds of the Phocians are exhausted,[n] and when there is no one
to prevent Philip, so soon as he has made himself master of all that at present
occupies him, from bringing his energies to bear upon the situation further
south. {9} But if any of you is putting off until then his determination to do
his duty, he must be desirous of seeing the terrors of war close at hand, when
he need only hear of them at a distance, and of seeking helpers for himself,
when now he can give help to others. For that this is what it must come to, if
we sacrifice the present opportunity, we must all, I think, be fairly well

{10} 'But,' some one may say, 'we have all made up our minds that we must go to
their aid, and we will go. Only tell us how we are to do it.' Now do not be
surprised, men of Athens, if I give an answer which will be astonishing to most
of you. You must appoint a Legislative Commission.[n] But when the commissioners
meet, you must not enact a single law--you have laws enough--you must cancel
the laws which, in view of present circumstances, are injurious to you. {11} I
mean the laws which deal with the Festival Fund--to put it quite plainly--and
some of those which deal with military service: for the former distribute your
funds as festival-money to those who remain at home; while the latter give
immunity to malingerers,[n] and thereby also take the heart out of those who
want to do their duty. When you have cancelled these laws, and made the path
safe for one who would give the best advice, then you can look for some one to
propose what you all know to be expedient. {12} But until you have done this,
you must not expect to find a man who will be glad to advise you for the best,
and be ruined by you for his pains; for you will find no one, particularly when
the only result will be that some unjust punishment will be inflicted on the
proposer or mover of such measures, and that instead of helping matters at all,
he will only have made it even more dangerous in future than it is at present to
give you the best advice. Aye, and you should require the repeal of these laws,
men of Athens, from the very persons who proposed them.[n] {13} It is not fair
that those who originally proposed them should enjoy the popularity which was
fraught with such mischief to the whole State, and that the unpopularity, which
would lead to an improvement in the condition of us all, should be visited to
his cost upon one who now advises you for the best. Until you have thus prepared
the way, men of Athens, you must entertain no expectation whatever that any one
will be influential enough here to transgress these laws with impunity, or
senseless enough to fling himself to certain ruin.

{14} At the same time, men of Athens, you must not fail to realize this further
point. No resolution is worth anything, without the willingness to perform at
least what you have resolved, and that heartily. For if decrees by themselves
could either compel you to do what you ought, or could realize their several
objects unaided, you would not be decreeing many things and performing few--nay,
none--of the things that you decree, nor would Philip have insulted you so long.
{15} If decrees could have done it, he would have paid the penalty long ago. But
it is not so. Actions come later than speeches and voting in order of procedure,
but in effectiveness they are before either and stronger than either. It is
action that is still needed; all else you already have. For you have those among
you, men of Athens, who can tell you what your duty is; and no one is quicker
than you are to understand the speaker's bidding. Aye, and you will be able to
carry it out even now, if you act aright. {16} What time, what opportunity, do
you look for, better than the present? When, if not now, will you do your duty?
Has not the man seized every position from us already? If he becomes master of
this country too, will not our fate be the most shameful in the world? And the
men whom we promised to be ready to save, if they went to war--are they not now
at war? {17} Is he not our enemy? Are not our possessions in his hands? Is he
not a barbarian? Is he not anything that you choose to call him? In God's name,
when we have let everything go, when we have all but put everything into his
hands, shall we then inquire at large who is responsible for it all? That we
shall never admit our own responsibility, I am perfectly sure. Just so amid the
perils of war, none of those who have run away accuses himself; he accuses his
general, his neighbour--any one but himself; and yet, I suppose, all who have
run away have helped to cause the defeat. He who now blames the rest might have
stood fast; and if every one had done so, the victory would have been theirs.
{18} And so now, if a particular speaker's advice is not the best, let another
rise and make a proposal, instead of blaming him; and if some other has better
advice to give, carry it out, and good fortune be with you. What? Is the advice
disagreeable? That is no longer the speaker's fault--unless, of course, he
leaves out the prayer that you expect of him. There is no difficulty in the
prayer, men of Athens; a man need only compress all his desires into a short
sentence. But to make his choice, when the question for discussion is one of
practical policy, is by no means equally easy. _Then_ a man is bound to choose
what is best, instead of what is pleasant, if both are not possible at once.
{19} But suppose that some one is able, without touching the Festival Fund, to
suggest other sources of supply for military purposes--is not he the better
adviser? Certainly, men of Athens--if such a thing _is_ possible. But I should
be surprised if it ever has happened or ever should happen to any one to find,
after spending what he has upon wrong objects, that what he has _not_ is wealth
enough to enable him to effect right ones. Such arguments as these find, I
think, their great support in each man's personal desire, and, for that reason,
nothing is easier than to deceive oneself; what a man desires, he actually
fancies to be true. {20} But the reality often follows no such principle.
Consider the matter, therefore, men of Athens, after this fashion; consider in
what way our objects can be realized under the circumstances, and in what way
you will be able to make the expedition and to receive your pay. Surely it is
not like sober or high-minded men to submit light-heartedly to the reproach
which must follow upon any shortcomings in the operations of the war through
want of funds--to seize your weapons and march against Corinthians and
Megareans,[n] and then to allow Philip to enslave Hellenic cities, because you
cannot find rations for your troops.

{21} These words do not spring from a wanton determination to court the ill-will
of any party among you. I am neither so foolish nor so unfortunate as to desire
unpopularity when I do not believe that I am doing any good. But a loyal citizen
ought, in my judgement, to care more for the safety of his country's fortunes
than for the popularity of his utterances. Such, I have heard, and perhaps you
have heard it also, was the principle which the orators of our forefather's time
habitually followed in public life--those orators who are praised by all who
rise to address you, though they are far from imitating them--the great
Aristides, and Nicias, and my own namesake, and Pericles. {22} But ever since
these speakers have appeared who are always asking you, 'what would you like?'
'what may I propose for you?' 'what can I do to please you?' the interests of
the city have been wantonly given away for the sake of the pleasure and
gratification of the moment; and we see the consequences--the fortunes of the
speakers prosper, while your own are in a shameful plight. {23} And yet
consider, men of Athens, the main characteristics of the achievements of your
forefathers' time, and those of your own. The description will be brief and
familiar to you; for you need not have recourse to the history of others, when
your own will furnish examples, by following which you may achieve prosperity.
{24} Our forefathers, who were not courted and caressed by their politicians as
you are by these persons to-day, were leaders of the Hellenes, with their
goodwill, for forty-five years;[n] they brought up into the Acropolis more than
10,000 talents; the king[n] who then ruled Macedonia obeyed them as a foreigner
ought to obey a Hellenic people; serving in person, they set up many glorious
trophies for victories by land and sea; and alone of all mankind they left
behind them, as the crown of their exploits, a fame that is beyond the reach of
envy. {25} Such was the part they played in the Hellenic world: and now
contemplate the manner of men they were in the city, both in public and in
private life. As public men, they gave us buildings and objects of such beauty
and grandeur, in the temples which they built and the offerings which they
dedicated in them, that no room has been left for any of those that come after
to surpass them: while in private life they were so modest, {26} so intensely
loyal to the spirit of the constitution, that if any one actually knows what the
house of Aristides, or Miltiades, or any other of the glorious men of that day,
is like, he can see that it is no more imposing than those of their neighbours.
For it was not to win a fortune that they undertook affairs of State; but each
thought it his duty to add to the common weal. And thus, acting in a spirit of
good faith towards the Hellenes, of piety towards the gods, and of equality
towards one another, they naturally attained great prosperity. {27} Such was the
national life of those times, when those whom I have mentioned were the foremost
men in the State. How do matters stand to-day, thanks to these worthy persons?
Is there any likeness, any resemblance, to old times? Thanks to them (and though
I might say much, I pass over all but this), when we had the field, as you see,
completely open to us--when the Spartans had been ruined,[n] and the Thebans had
their hands full,[n] and no other power could seriously dispute the supremacy
with us on the field of battle--when we could have retained our own possessions
in safety, and have stood as umpires of the rights of others--we have been
deprived of our own territory; {28} we have spent more than 1,500 talents to no
good purpose; the allies whom we had gained in the war,[n] these persons have
lost in time of peace; and we have trained Philip to be the powerful enemy to us
that he is. Let any one rise and tell me how Philip has grown so strong, if we
ourselves are not the source of his strength. {29} 'But, my good Sir,' you say,
'if we are badly off in these respects, we are at any rate better off at home.'
And where is the proof of this? Is it in the whitewashing of the battlements,
the mending of the roads, the fountains, and all such trumperies? Look then at
the men whose policy gives you these things. Some of them who were poor have
become rich; others, who were unknown to fame, have risen to honour; some of
them have provided themselves with private houses more imposing than our public
buildings; and the lower the fortunes of the city have fallen, the higher theirs
have risen.

{30} What is the cause of all these things? Why is it that all was well then,
and all is amiss to-day? It is because then the people itself dared to act and
to serve in the army; and so the people was master of its politicians; all
patronage was in its own hands; any separate individual was content to receive
from the people his share of honour or office or other emolument. The reverse is
now the case. {31} All patronage is in the hands of the politicians, while you,
the people, emasculated, stripped of money and allies, have been reduced to the
position of servile supernumeraries, content if they give you distributions of
festival-money, or organize a procession at the Boedromia;[n] and to crown all
this bravery, you are expected also to thank them for giving you what is your
own. They pen you up closely in the city; they entice you to these delights;
they tame you till you come to their hand. {32} But a high and generous spirit
can never, I believe, be acquired by men whose actions are mean and poor; for
such as a man's practice is, such must his spirit be. And in all solemnity I
should not be surprised if I suffered greater harm at your hands for telling you
the things that I have told you, than the men who have brought them to pass.
Even freedom of speech is not possible on all subjects in this place, and I
wonder that it has been granted me to-day.

{33} If, even now, you will rid yourselves of these habits, if you will resolve
to join the forces and to act worthily of yourselves, converting the
superfluities which you enjoy at home into resources to secure our advantage
abroad, then it may be, men of Athens, it may be, that you will gain some great
and final good, and will be rid of these your perquisites, which are like the
diet that a physician gives a sick man--diet which neither puts strength into
him nor lets him die. For these sums which you now share among yourselves are
neither large enough to give you any adequate assistance, nor small enough to
let you renounce them and go about your business; but these it is that[2]
increase the indolence of every individual among you. {34} 'Is it, then, paid
service that you suggest?'[n] some one will ask. I do, men of Athens; and a
system for immediate enforcement which will embrace all alike; so that each,
while receiving his share of the public funds may supply whatever service the
State requires of him.[3] If we can remain at peace, then he will do better to
stay at home, free from the necessity of doing anything discreditable through
poverty. But if a situation like the present occurs, then supported by these
same sums, he will serve loyally in person, in defence of his country. If a man
is outside the military age, then let him take, in his place among the rest,
that which he now receives irregularly and without doing any service, and let
him act as an overseer and manager of business that must be done. {35} In short,
without adding or subtracting anything,[n] beyond a small sum, and only removing
the want of system, my plan reduces the State to order, making your receipt of
payment, your service in the army or the courts, and your performance of any
duty which the age of each of you allows, and the occasion requires, all part of
one and the same system. But it has been no part of my proposal that we should
assign the due of those who act to those who do nothing; that we should be idle
ourselves and enjoy our leisure helplessly, listening to tales of victories won
by somebody's mercenaries;[n] for this is what happens now. {36} Not that I
blame one who is doing some part of your duty for you; but I require you to do
for yourselves the things for which you honour others, and not to abandon the
position which your fathers won through many a glorious peril, and bequeathed to

I think I have told you all that, in my belief, your interest demands. May you
choose the course which will be for the good of the city and of you all!


[1] See notes to Speech on the Peace, Sec. 5. Some date the Euboean expedition and
the sending of the cavalry one or two years earlier, and the whole chronology is
much disputed; but there are strong arguments for the date (348) given in the

[2] [Greek: esti tauta ta].

[3] [Greek: touto parechae].


[_Introduction_. After the fall of Olynthus in 348, the Athenians, on the
proposal of Eubulus, sent embassies to the Greek States in the Peloponnese and
elsewhere, to invite them to join in a coalition against Philip. Aeschines went
for this purpose to Megalopolis, and did his best to counteract Philip's
influence in Arcadia. When the embassies proved unsuccessful, it became clear
that peace must be made on such terms as were possible. Philip himself was
anxious for peace, since he wished to cross the Pass of Thermopylae without such
opposition from Athens as he had encountered in 352, and to be free from the
attacks of hostile ships upon his ports. Even before the fall of Olynthus,
informal communications passed between himself and Athens (see Speech on
Embassy, Sec.Sec. 12, 94, 315); and in consequence of these, Philocrates proposed and
the Assembly passed a decree, under which ten ambassadors were appointed to go
to Philip and invite him to send plenipotentiaries to Athens to conclude a
peace. Demosthenes (who had strongly supported Philocrates) was among the ten,
as well as Aeschines and Philocrates himself. Delighted with Philip's reception
of them, and greatly attracted by his personality, the ambassadors returned with
a letter from him, promising in general terms to confer great benefits upon
Athens, if he were granted alliance as well as peace: in the meantime he
undertook not to interfere with the towns allied to Athens in the Chersonese.
Demosthenes proposed (in the Council, of which he was a member in the year 347-
346) the usual complimentary resolution in honour of the ambassadors, and on his
motion it was resolved to hold two meetings of the Assembly, on the 18th and
19th of the month Elaphebolion (i.e. probably just after the middle of April
346), when Philip's envoys would have arrived, to discuss the terms of peace.
The envoys--Antipater, Parmenio, and Eurylochus--reached Athens shortly after
this; and before the first of the two meetings was held, the Synod of the allies
of Athens, now assembled in the city, agreed to peace on such terms as the
Athenian people should decide, but added a proposal that it should be permitted
to any Greek State to become a party to the Peace within three months. They said
nothing of alliance. Of the two meetings of the Assembly, in view of the
conflicting statements of Demosthenes and Aeschines, only a probable account can
be given. At the first, Philocrates proposed that alliance as well as peace
should be made by Athens and her allies with Philip and his allies, on the
understanding that both parties should keep what they _de facto_ possessed--a
provision entailing the renunciation by Athens of Amphipolis and Poteidaea; but
that the Phocians and the people of Halus should be excluded. Aeschines opposed
this strongly; and both he and Demosthenes claim to have supported the
resolution of the allies, which would have given the excluded peoples a chance
of sharing the advantage of the Peace. The feeling of the Assembly was with
them, although the Phocians had recently insulted the Athenians by declining to
give up to Proxenus (the Athenian admiral) the towns guarding the approaches to
Thermopylae, which they had themselves offered to place in the hands of Athens.
But Philocrates obtained the postponement of the decision till the next day. On
the next day, if not before, it became plain that Philip's envoys would not
consent to forgo the exclusion of the Phocians and Halus; but in order that the
Assembly might be induced to pass the resolution, the clause expressly excluding
them was dropped, and peace and alliance were made between Athens and Philip,
each with their allies.[n] Even this was not secured before Aeschines and his
friends had deprecated rash attempts to imitate the exploits of antiquity by
continuing the war, and had explained that Philip could not openly accept the
Phocians as allies, but that when the Peace was concluded, he would satisfy all
the wishes of the Athenians in every way; while Eubulus threatened the people
with immediate war, involving personal service and heavy taxation, unless they
accepted Philocrates' decree. A few days afterwards the Athenians and the
representatives of the allies took the oath to observe the Peace: nothing was
said about the Phocians and Halus: Cersobleptes' representative was probably not
permitted to swear with the rest. The same ten ambassadors as before were
instructed to receive Philip's oath, and the oaths of his allies, to arrange for
the ransom of prisoners, and generally to treat with Philip in the interests of
Athens. Demosthenes urged his colleagues (and obtained an instruction from the
Council to this effect) to sail at once, in order that Philip, who was now in
Thrace, might not make conquests at the expense of Athens before ratifying the
Peace; but they delayed at Oreus, went by land, instead of under the escort of
Proxenus by sea, and only reached Pella (the Macedonian capital) twenty-three
days after leaving Athens. Philip did not arrive for twenty-seven days more. By
this time he had taken Cersobleptes prisoner, and captured Serrhium, Doriscus,
and other Thracian towns, which were held by Athenian troops sent to assist
Cersobleptes. Demosthenes was now openly at variance with his colleagues. He had
no doubt realized the necessity of peace, but probably regarded the exclusion of
the Phocians as unwarrantable, and thought that the policy of his colleagues
must end in Philip's conquest of all Greece. At Pella he occupied himself in
negotiations for the ransom of prisoners. After taking the oath, Philip kept the
ambassadors with him until he had made all preparations for his march southward,
and during this time he played with them and with the envoys from the other
Greek States who were present at the same time. His intention of marching to
Thermopylae was clear; but he seems to have led all alike to suppose that he
would fulfil their particular wishes when he had crossed the Pass. The
ambassadors accompanied him to Pherae, where the oath was taken by the
representatives of Philip's allies; the Phocians, Halus, and Cersobleptes were
excluded from the Peace. (Halus was taken by Philip's army shortly afterwards.)
The ambassadors of Athens then returned homewards, bearing a letter from Philip,
but did not arrive at Athens before Philip had reached Thermopylae. On their
return Demosthenes denounced them before the Council, which refused them the
customary compliments, and (on Demosthenes' motion) determined to propose to the
people that Proxenus with his squadron should be ordered to go to the aid of the
Phocians and to prevent Philip from crossing the Pass. When the Assembly met on
the 16th of Scirophorion (shortly before the middle of July), Aeschines rose
first, and announced in glowing terms the intention of Philip to turn round upon
Thebes and to re-establish Thespiae and Plataeae; and hinted at the restoration
to Athens of Euboea and Oropus. Then Philip's letter was read, containing no
promises, but excusing the delay of the ambassadors as due to his own request.
The Assembly was elated at the promises announced by Aeschines; Demosthenes'
attempt to contradict the announcement failed; and on Philocrates' motion, it
was resolved to extend the Peace and alliance with Philip to posterity, and to
declare that if the Phocians refused to surrender the Temple of Delphi to the
Amphictyons, Athens would take steps against those responsible for the refusal.
Demosthenes refused to serve on the Embassy appointed to convey this resolution
to Philip: Aeschines was appointed, but was too ill to start. The ambassadors
set out, but within a few days returned with the news that the Phocian army had
surrendered to Philip (its leader, Phalaecus, and his troops being allowed to
depart to the Peloponnese). The surrender had perhaps been accelerated by the
news of the Athenian resolution. The Assembly, in alarm lest Philip should march
southwards, now resolved to take measures of precaution and defence, and to send
the same ambassadors to Philip, to do what they could. They went, Aeschines
among them, and arrived in the midst of the festivities with which Philip was
celebrating the success of his plans. The invitation which Philip sent to
Athens--to send a force to join his own, and to assist in settling the affairs
of Phocis--was (on Demosthenes' advice) declined by the Assembly; and soon
afterwards another letter from Philip expressed surprise at the unfriendly
attitude taken up by the Athenians towards him. Philip next summoned the
Amphictyonic Council (the legitimate guardians of the Delphian Temple, on whose
behalf the Thebans and Thessalians, aided by Philip, were now at war with the
Phocians): and the Council, in the absence of many of its members, resolved to
transfer the votes of the Phocians in the Council-meeting to Philip, to break up
the Phocian towns into villages, disarming their inhabitants and taking away
their horses, to require them to repay the stolen treasure to the temple by
instalments, and to pronounce a curse upon those actually guilty of sacrilege,
which would render them liable to arrest anywhere. The destructive part of the
sentence was rigorously executed by the Thebans. In order to punish the former
supporters of the Phocians, the right to precedence in consulting the oracle was
transferred from Athens to Philip, by order of the Council, and the Spartans
were excluded from the temple: Orchomenus and Coroneia were destroyed and their
inhabitants enslaved; and Thebes became absolute mistress of all Boeotia. The
Pythian games (at Delphi) in September 346 were celebrated under Philip's
presidency; but both Sparta and Athens refused to send the customary deputation
to them, and Philip accordingly sent envoys to Athens, along with
representatives of the Amphictyons, to demand recognition for himself as an
Amphictyonic power. Aeschines supported the demand, his argument being
apparently to the effect that Philip had been forced to act as he had done by
the Thebans and Thessalians; but the Assembly was very angry at the results (as
they seemed to be) of Aeschines' diplomacy and the calamities of the Phocians;
and it was only when Demosthenes, in the Speech on the Peace, advised
compliance, that they were persuaded to give way. To have refused would have
brought the united forces of the Amphictyonic States against Athens: and these
she could not have resisted. It was therefore prudent to keep the Peace, though
Demosthenes evidently regarded it only as an armistice.]

{1} I see, men of Athens, that our present situation is one of great perplexity
and confusion, for not only have many of our interests been sacrificed, so that
it is of no use to make eloquent speeches about them; but even as regards what
still remains to us, there is no general agreement in any single point as to
what is expedient: some hold one view, and some another. {2} Perplexing,
moreover, and difficult as deliberation naturally is, men of Athens, you have
made it far more difficult. For while all the rest of mankind are in the habit
of resorting to deliberation before the event, you do not do so until
afterwards: and consequently, during the whole time that falls within my memory,
however high a reputation for eloquence one who upbraids you for all your errors
may enjoy, the desired results and the objects of your deliberation pass out of
your grasp. {3} And yet I believe--and it is because I have convinced myself of
this that I have risen--that if you resolve to abandon all clamour and
contention, as becomes men who are deliberating on behalf of their country upon
so great an issue, I shall be able to describe and recommend measures to you, by
which the situation may be improved, and what we have sacrificed, recovered.

{4} Now although I know perfectly well, men of Athens, that to speak to you
about one's own earlier speeches, and about oneself, is a practice which is
always extremely repaying, I feel the vulgarity and offensiveness of it so
strongly, that I shrink from it even when I see that it is necessary. I think,
however, that you will form a better judgement on the subject on which I am
about to speak, if I remind you of some few of the things which I have said on
certain previous occasions. {5} In the first place, men of Athens, when at the
time of the disturbances in Euboea[n] you were being urged to assist Plutarchus,
and to undertake an inglorious and costly campaign, I came forward first and
unsupported to oppose this action, and was almost torn in pieces by those who
for the sake of their own petty profits had induced you to commit many grave
errors: and when only a short time had elapsed, along with the shame which you
incurred and the treatment which you received--treatment such as no people in
the world ever before experienced at the hands of those whom they went to
assist--there came the recognition by all of you of the baseness of those who
had urged you to this course, and of the excellence of my own advice. {6} Again,
men of Athens, I observed that Neoptolemus[n] the actor, who was allowed freedom
of movement everywhere on the ground of his profession, and was doing the city
the greatest mischief, was managing and directing your communications with
Philip in Philip's own interest: and I came forward and informed you; and that,
not to gratify any private dislike or desire to misrepresent him, as subsequent
events have made plain. {7} And in this case I shall not, as before, throw the
blame on any speakers or defenders of Neoptolemus--indeed, he had no defenders;
it is yourselves that I blame. For had you been watching rival tragedies in the
theatre, instead of discussing the vital interests of a whole State, you could
not have listened with more partiality towards him, or more prejudice against
me. {8} And yet, I believe, you have all now realized that though, according to
his own assertion, this visit to the enemy's country was paid in order that he
might get in the debts owing to him there, and return with funds to perform his
public service[n] here; though he was always repeating the statement that it was
monstrous to accuse those who were transferring their means from Macedonia to
Athens; yet, when the Peace had removed all danger, he converted his real estate
here into money, and took himself off with it to Philip. {9} These then are two
events which I have foretold--events which, because their real character was
exactly and faithfully disclosed by me, are a testimony to the speeches which I
have delivered. A third, men of Athens, was the following; and when I have given
you this one instance, I will immediately proceed to the subject on which I have
come forward to speak. When we returned from the Embassy, after receiving from
Philip his oath to maintain the Peace, {10} there were some[n] who promised that
Thespiae and Plataeae[n] would be repeopled, and said that if Philip became
master of the situation, he would save the Phocians, and would break up the city
of Thebes into villages; that Oropus would be yours, and that Euboea would be
restored to you in place of Amphipolis--with other hopes and deceptions of the
same kind, by which you were seduced into sacrificing the Phocians in a manner
that was contrary to your interest and perhaps to your honour also. But as for
me, you will find that neither had I any share in this deception, nor yet did I
hold my peace. On the contrary, I warned you plainly, as, I know you remember,
that _I_ had no knowledge and no expectations of this kind, and that I regarded
such statements as nonsense.

{11} All these plain instances of superior foresight on my part, men of Athens,
I shall not ascribe to any cleverness, any boasted merits, of my own. I will not
pretend that my foreknowledge and discernment are due to any causes but such as
I will name; and they are two. The first, men of Athens, is that good fortune,
which, I observe, is more powerful than all the cleverness and wisdom on earth.
{12} The second is the fact that my judgement and reasoning are disinterested.
No one can point to any personal gain in connexion with my public acts and
words: and therefore I see what is to our interest undistorted, in the light in
which the actual facts reveal it. But when you throw money into one scale of the
balance, its weight carries everything with it; your judgement is instantly
dragged down with it, and one who has acted so can no longer think soundly or
healthily about anything.

{13} Now there is one primary condition which must be observed by any one who
would furnish the city with allies or contributions or anything else--he must do
it without breaking the existing Peace: not because the Peace is at all
admirable or creditable to you, but because, whatever its character, it would
have been better, in the actual circumstances, that it should never have been
made, than that having been made, it should now be broken through our action.
For we have sacrificed many advantages which we possessed when we made it, and
which would have rendered the war safer and easier for us then than it is now.
{14} The second condition, men of Athens, is that we shall not draw on these
self-styled Amphictyons,[n] who are now assembled, until they have an
irresistible or a plausible reason for making a united war against us. My own
belief is that if war broke out again between ourselves and Philip about
Amphipolis or any such claim of our own, in which the Thessalians and Argives
and Thebans had no interest, none of these peoples would go to war against us,
least of all--{15} and let no one raise a clamour before he hears what I have to
say--least of all the Thebans; not because they are in any pleasant mood towards
us; not because they would not be glad to gratify Philip; but because they know
perfectly well, however stupid one may think them,[n] that if war springs up
between themselves and you, _they_ will get all the hardships of war for their
share, while another will sit by, waiting to secure all the advantages; and they
are not likely to sacrifice themselves for such a prospect, unless the origin
and the cause of the war are such as concern all alike. {16} Nor again should
we, in my opinion, suffer at all, if we went to war with Thebes on account of
Oropus[n] or any other purely Athenian interest. For I believe that while those
who would assist ourselves or the Thebans would give their aid if their ally's
own country were invaded, they would not join either in an offensive campaign.
For this is the manner of alliances--such, at least, as are worth considering;
and the relationship is naturally of this kind. {17} The goodwill of each ally--
whether it be towards ourselves or towards the Thebans--does not imply the same
interest in our conquest of others as in our existence. Our continued existence
they would all desire for their own sakes; but none of them would wish that
through conquest either of us should become their own masters. What is it then
that I regard with apprehension? What is it that we must guard against? I fear
lest a common pretext should be supplied for the coming war, a common charge
against us, which will appeal to all alike. {18} For if the Argives[n] and
Messenians and Megalopolitans, and some of the other Peloponnesians who are in
sympathy with them, adopt a hostile attitude towards us owing to our
negotiations for peace with Sparta, and the belief that to some extent we are
giving our approval to the policy which the Spartans have pursued: if the
Thebans already (as we are told) detest us, and are sure to become even more
hostile, because we are harbouring those whom they have exiled,[n] and losing no
opportunity of displaying our ill-will towards them; {19} and the Thessalians,
because we are offering a refuge to the Phocian fugitives;[n] and Philip,
because we are preventing his admission to Amphictyonic rank; my fear is that,
when each power has thus its separate reasons for resentment, they may unite in
the war against us, with the decrees of the Amphictyons for their pretext: and
so each may be drawn on farther than their several interests would carry them,
just as they were in dealing with the Phocians. {20} For you doubtless realize
that it was not through any unity in their respective ambitions, that the
Thebans and Philip and the Thessalians all acted together just now. The Thebans,
for instance, could not prevent Philip from marching through and occupying the
passes, nor even from stepping in at the last moment to reap the credit of all
that they themselves had toiled for.[n] {21} For, as it is, though the Thebans
have gained something so far as the recovery of their territory is concerned,
their honour and reputation have suffered shamefully, since it now appears as
though they would have gained nothing, unless Philip had crossed the Pass. This
was not what they intended. They only submitted to all this in their anxiety to
obtain Orchomenus and Coroneia, and their inability to do so otherwise. {22} And
as to Philip, some persons,[n] as you know, are bold enough to say that it was
not from any wish to do so that he handed over Orchomenus and Coroneia to
Thebes, but from compulsion; and although I must part company with them there, I
am sure that at least he did not want to do this _more_ than he desired to
occupy the passes, and to get the credit of appearing to have determined the
issue of the war, and to manage the Pythian games by his own authority. These, I
am sure, were the objects which he coveted most greedily. {23} The Thessalians,
again, did not desire to see either the Thebans or Philip growing powerful; for
in any such contingency they thought that they themselves were menaced. But they
did desire to secure two privileges--admission to the Amphictyonic meeting, and
the recovery of rights at Delphi;[n] and in their eagerness for these
privileges, they joined Philip in the actions in question. Thus you will find
that each was led on, for the sake of private ends, to take action which they in
no way desired to take. But this is the very thing against which we have now to
be on our guard.

{24} 'Are we then, for fear of this, to submit to Philip? and do _you_ require
this of us?' you ask me. Far from it. Our action must be such as will be in no
way unworthy of us, and at the same time will not lead to war, but will prove to
all our good sense and the justice of our position: and, in answer to those who
are bold enough to think that we should refuse to submit to anything
whatever,[n] [2] and who cannot foresee the war that must follow, I wish to urge
this consideration. We are allowing the Thebans to hold Oropus; and if any one
asked us to state the reason honestly, we should say that it was to avoid war.
{25} Again, we have just ceded Amphipolis to Philip by the Treaty of Peace;[n]
we permit the Cardians[n] to occupy a position apart from the other colonists in
the Chersonese; we allow the Prince of Caria[n] to seize the islands of Chios,
Cos, and Rhodes, and the Byzantines to drive our vessels to shore[n]--obviously
because we believe that the tranquillity afforded by peace brings more blessings
than any collision or contention over these grievances would bring: so that it
would be a foolish and an utterly perverse policy, when we have behaved in this
manner towards each of our adversaries individually, where our own most
essential interests were concerned, to go now to war with all of them together,
on account of this shadow at Delphi.[n]


[1] The term 'the allies of Athens' was ambiguous. It might be taken (as it was
taken by Philip and his envoys) to include only the remaining members of the
League (see p. 9), who were represented by the Synod then sitting, and whose
policy Athens could control. But it was evidently possible to put a wider
interpretation upon it, as the Assembly probably did and as Demosthenes often
does (e.g. Speech on Embassy, Sec. 278), and to understand it as including the
Phocians and others (such as Cersobleptes) with whom Athens had a treaty of
alliance. Much of the trouble which followed arose out of this ambiguity.

[2] [Greek: oud hotioun].


[_Introduction_. After settling affairs at Delphi in 346, Philip returned to
Macedonia. During a considerable part of 345 and in the early months of 344 he
was occupied with campaigns against the Illyrians, Dardani, and Triballi. But in
the summer (probably) of 344 he resumed his activities in Greece, garrisoning
Pherae and other towns of Thessaly with Macedonians, appropriating the revenues
derived from the Thessalian ports, and establishing oligarchical governments
throughout the country. At the same time negotiations were going on between
himself and Athens with regard to the Thracian strongholds which he had captured
in 346. He refused to give these up, though he offered to cut a canal across the
Chersonese, for the protection of the Athenian allies there from the attacks of
the Thracians. He also sent money and mercenaries to help the Messenians and
Argives, who, like the Megalopolitans, were anxious to secure their independence
of Sparta. Athens, which was on friendly terms with Sparta, sent envoys to the
Peloponnesian states to counteract Philip's influence, and of these Demosthenes
was one. In return, Argos and Messene complained to Athens of her interference
with their attempt to secure freedom, and Philip sent envoys to deprecate the
charges made against him by the Athenian ambassadors in the Peloponnese. He
pointed out that he had not broken any promises made to Athens at the time of
the Peace, for he had made none. (In fact, if Demosthenes' account is correct,
he had confined himself to vague expressions of goodwill; the promises had been
made by Aeschines.) The Second Philippic, spoken late in 344, proposes a reply
to Philip, the text of which has unfortunately not come down to us. The
Peloponnesian envoys appear also to have been in Athens at the time; and
Philip's supporters had put forward various explanations of his conduct at the
time when the Peace was made. To these also Demosthenes replies.]

{1} In all our discussions, men of Athens, with regard to the acts of violence
by which Philip contravenes the terms of the Peace, I observe that, although the
speeches on our side are always manifestly just and sympathetic,[n] and although
those who denounce Philip are always regarded as saying what ought to be said,
yet practically nothing is done which ought to be done, or which would make it
worth while to listen to such speeches. {2} On the contrary, the condition of
public affairs as a whole has already been brought to a point at which, the more
and the more evidently a speaker can convict Philip both of transgressing the
Peace which he made with you and of plotting against all the Hellenes, the
harder it is for him to advise you how you should act. {3} The responsibility
for this rests with us all, men of Athens. It is by deeds and actions, not by
words, that a policy of encroachment must be arrested: and yet, in the first
place, we who rise to address you will not face the duty of proposing or
advising such action, for fear of unpopularity with you, though we dilate upon
the character of Philip's acts, upon their atrocity, and so forth; and, in the
second place, you who sit and listen, better qualified though you doubtless are
than Philip for using the language of justice and appreciating it at the mouths
of others, are nevertheless absolutely inert, when it is a question of
preventing him from executing the designs in which he is now engaged. {4} It
follows as the inevitable and perhaps reasonable consequence, that you are each
more successful in that to which your time and your interest is given--he in
actions, yourselves in words. Now if it is still enough for you, that your words
are more just than his, your course is easy, and no labour is involved in it.
{5} But if we are to inquire how the evil of the present situation is to be
corrected; if its advance is not still to continue, unperceived, until we are
confronted by a power so great that we cannot even raise a hand in our own
defence; then we must alter our method of deliberation, and all of us who speak,
and all of you who listen, must resolve to prefer the counsels which are best,
and which can save us, to those which are most easy and most attractive.

{6} I am amazed, men of Athens, in the first place, that any one who sees the
present greatness of Philip and the wide mastery which he has gained, can be
free from alarm, or can imagine that this involves no peril to Athens, or that
it is not against you that all his preparations are being made. And I would beg
you, one and all, to listen while I put before you in a few words the reasoning
by which I have come to entertain the opposite expectation, and the grounds upon
which I regard Philip as an enemy; that so, if my own foresight appears to you
the truer, you may believe me; but if that of the persons who have no fears and
have placed their trust in him, you may give your adhesion to them. {7} Here
then, men of Athens, is my argument. Of what, in the first place, did Philip
become master, when the Peace was concluded? Of Thermopylae, and of the
situation in Phocis. Next, what use did he make of his power? He deliberately
chose to act in the interests of Thebes, not in those of Athens. And why? He
scrutinized every consideration in the light of his own ambition and of his
desire for universal conquest: he took no thought for peace, or tranquillity, or
justice; {8} and he saw quite correctly that our state and our national
character being what they are, there was no attraction that he could offer,
nothing that he could do, which would induce you to sacrifice any of the other
Hellenes to him for your own advantage. He saw that you would take account of
what was right; that you would shrink from the infamy attaching to such a
policy; that you would exercise all the foresight which the situation demanded,
and would oppose any such attempt on his part, as surely as if you were at open
war with him. {9} But the Thebans, he believed--and the event proved that he was
right--in return for what they were getting would let him do as he pleased in
all that did not concern them; and far from acting against him, or preventing
him effectively, would even join him in his campaign, if he bade them. His
services to the Messenians and the Argives at the present moment are due to his
having formed the same conception of them. And this, men of Athens, is the
highest of all tributes to yourselves: {10} for these actions of his amount to a
verdict upon you, that you alone of all peoples would never, for any gain to
yourselves, sacrifice the common rights of the Hellenes, nor barter away your
loyalty to them for any favour or benefit at his hands. This conception of you
he has naturally formed, just as he has formed the opposite conception of the
Argives and the Thebans, not only from his observation of the present, but also
from his consideration of the past. {11} He discovers, I imagine, and is told,
how when your forefathers might have been rulers of the rest of the Hellenes, on
condition of submitting to the king themselves, they not only refused to
tolerate the suggestion, on the occasion when Alexander [n], the ancestor of the
present royal house, came as his herald to negotiate, but chose rather to leave
their country and to face any suffering which they might have to endure; and how
they followed up the refusal by those deeds which all are so eager to tell, but
to which no one has ever been able to do justice; and for that reason, I shall
myself forbear to speak of them, and rightly; for the grandeur of their
achievements passes the power of language to describe. He knows, on the other
hand, how the forefathers of the Thebans and Argives, in the one case, joined
the barbarian army, in the other, offered no resistance to it. {12} He knows,
therefore, that both these peoples will welcome what is to their own advantage,
instead of considering the common interests of the Hellenes: and so he thought
that, if he chose you for his allies, he would be choosing friends who would
only serve a righteous cause; while if he joined himself to them, he would win
accomplices who would further his own ambitions. That is why he chose them, as
he chooses them now, in preference to you. For he certainly does not see them in
possession of more ships than you; nor has he discovered some inland empire, and
withdrawn from the seaboard and the trading-ports; nor does he forget the words
and the promises, on the strength of which he was granted the Peace.

{13} But some one may tell us, with an air of complete knowledge of the matter,
that what then moved Philip to act thus was not his ambition nor any of the
motives which I impute to him, but his belief that the demands of Thebes were
more righteous than your own. I reply, that this statement, above all others, is
one which he cannot possibly make _now_. How can one who is ordering Sparta to
give up Messene put forward his belief in the righteousness of the act, as his
excuse for handing over Orchomenus and Coroneia to Thebes?

{14} 'But,' we are told (as the last remaining plea), 'he was forced to make
these concessions, and did so against his better judgement, finding himself
caught between the cavalry of Thessaly and the infantry of Thebes.' Admirable!
And so, we are informed, he intends henceforth to be wary of the Thebans, and
the tale goes round that he intends to fortify Elateia [n]. 'Intends,' indeed!
and I expect that it will remain an intention! {15} But the help which he is
giving to the Messenians and Argives is no 'intention'; for he is actually
sending mercenaries to them and dispatching funds, and is himself expected to
arrive on the spot with a great force. Is he trying to annihilate the Spartans,
the existing enemies of Thebes, and at the same time protecting the Phocians,
whom he himself has ruined? Who will believe such a tale? {16} For if Philip had
really acted against his will and under compulsion in the first instance--if he
were now really intending to renounce the Thebans--I cannot believe that he
would be so consistently opposing their enemies. On the contrary, his present
course plainly proves that his former action also was the result of deliberate
policy; and to any sound observation, it is plain that the whole of his plans
are being organized for one end--the destruction of Athens. {17} Indeed, this
has now come to be, in a sense, a matter of necessity for him. Only consider. It
is empire that he desires, and you, as he believes, are his only possible rivals
in this. He has been acting wrongfully towards you for a long time, as he
himself best knows; for it is the occupation of your possessions that enables
him to hold all his other conquests securely, convinced, as he is, that if he
had let Amphipolis and Poteidaea go, he could not dwell in safety even at home.
{18} These two facts, then, he well knows--first, that his designs are aimed at
you, and secondly, that you are aware of it: and as he conceives you to be men
of sense, he considers that you hold him in righteous detestation: and, in
consequence, his energies are roused: for he expects to suffer disaster, if you
get your opportunity, unless he can anticipate you by inflicting it upon you.
{19} So he is wide awake; he is on the alert; he is courting the help of others
against Athens--of the Thebans and those Peloponnesians who sympathize with
their wishes; thinking that their desire of gain will make them embrace the
immediate prospect, while their native stupidity will prevent them from
foreseeing any of the consequences. Yet there are examples, plainly visible to
minds which are even moderately well-balanced[n]--examples which it fell to my
lot to bring before Messenian and Argive audiences, but which had better,
perhaps, be laid before yourselves as well.

{20} 'Can you not imagine,' I said, 'men of Messenia, the impatience with which
the Olynthians used to listen to any speeches directed against Philip in those
times, when he was giving up Anthemus to them--a city claimed as their own by
all former Macedonian kings; when he was expelling the Athenian colonists from
Poteidaea and presenting it to the Olynthians; when he had taken upon his own
shoulders their quarrel with Athens, and given them the enjoyment of that
territory? Did they expect, do you think, to suffer as they have done? if any
one had foretold it, would they have believed him? {21} And yet,' I continued,
'after enjoying territory not their own for a very short time, they are robbed
of their own by him for a great while to come; they are foully driven forth--not
conquered merely, but betrayed by one another and sold; for it is not safe for a
free state to be on these over-friendly terms with a tyrant. {22} What, again,
of the Thessalians? Do you imagine,' I asked, 'that when he was expelling their
tyrants, or again, when he was giving them Nicaea and Magnesia, they expected to
see the present Council of Ten[n] established in their midst? Did they expect
that the restorer of their Amphictyonic rights would take their own revenues
from them for himself? Impossible! And yet these things came to pass, as all men
may know. {23} You yourselves,' I continued, 'at present behold only the gifts
and the promises of Philip. Pray, if you are really in your right minds, that
you may never see the accomplishment of his deceit and treachery. There are, as
you know well,' I said, 'all kinds of inventions designed for the protection and
security of cities--palisades, walls, trenches, and every kind of defence. {24}
All these are made with hands, and involve expense as well. But there is one
safeguard which all sensible men possess by nature--a safeguard which is a
valuable protection to all, but above all to a democracy against a tyrant. And
what is this? It is distrust. Guard this possession and cleave to it; preserve
this, and you need never fear disaster. {25} What is it that you desire?' I
said. 'Is it freedom? And do you not see that the very titles that Philip bears
are utterly alien to freedom? For a king, a tyrant, is always the foe of freedom
and the enemy of law. Will you not be on your guard,' I said, 'lest in striving
to be rid of war, you find yourselves slaves?'[n]

{26} My audience heard these words and received them with a tumult of
approbation, as well as many other speeches from the envoys, both when I was
present and again later. And yet, it seems, there is still no better prospect of
their keeping Philip's friendship and promises at a distance. {27} In fact, the
extraordinary thing is not that Messenians and certain Peloponnesians should act
against their own better judgement, but that you who understand for yourselves,
and who hear us, your orators, telling you, that there is a design against you,
and that the toils are closing round you--that you, I say, by always refusing to
act at once, should be about to find (as I think you will) that you have exposed
yourselves unawares to the utmost peril: so much more does the pleasure and ease
of the moment weigh with you, than any advantage to be reaped at some future

{28} In regard to the practical measures which you must take, you will, if you
are wise, deliberate by yourselves[n] later. But I will at once propose an
answer which you may make to-day, and which it will be consistent with your duty
to have adopted.

[_The answer is read._]

Now the right course, men of Athens, was to have summoned before you those who
conveyed the promises[n] on the strength of which you were induced to make the
Peace. {29} For I could never have brought myself to serve on the Embassy, nor,
I am sure, would you have discontinued the war, had you imagined that Philip,
when he had obtained peace, would act as he has acted. What we were then told
was something very different from this. And there are others, too, whom you
should summon. You ask whom I mean? After the Peace had been made, and I had
returned from the Second Embassy, which was sent to administer the oaths, I saw
how the city was being hoodwinked, and I spoke out repeatedly, protesting and
forbidding you to sacrifice Thermopylae and the Phocians: {30} and the men to
whom I refer were those who then said that a water-drinker[n] like myself was
naturally a fractious and ill-tempered fellow; while Philip, if only he crossed
the Pass, would fulfil your fondest prayers; for he would fortify Thespiae and
Plataeae; he would put an end to the insolence of the Thebans; he would cut a
canal through the Chersonese at his own charges, and would repay you for
Amphipolis by the restoration of Euboea and Oropus. All this was said from this
very platform, and I am quite sure that you remember it well, though your memory
of those who injure you is but short. {31} To crown your disgrace, with nothing
but these hopes in view, you resolved that this same Peace should hold good for
your posterity also; so completely had you fallen under their influence. But why
do I speak of all this now? why do I bid you summon these men? By Heaven, I will
tell the truth without reserve, and will hold nothing back. {32} My object is
not to give way to abuse, and so secure myself as good a hearing[n] as others in
this place, while giving those who have come into collision with me from the
first an opportunity for a further claim[n] upon Philip's money. Nor do I wish
to waste time in empty words. {33} No; but I think that the plan which Philip is
pursuing will some day trouble you more than the present situation does; for his
design is moving towards fulfilment, and though I shrink from precise
conjecture, I fear its accomplishment may even now be only too close at hand.
And when the time comes when you can no longer refuse to attend to what is
passing; when you no longer hear from me or from some other that it is all
directed against you, but all alike see it for yourselves and know it for a
certainty; then, I think, you will be angry and harsh enough. {34} And I am
afraid that because your envoys have withheld from you the guilty secret of the
purposes which they have been bribed to forward, those who are trying to remedy
in some degree the ruin of which these men have been the instruments will fall
victims to your wrath. For I observe that it is the general practice of some
persons to vent their anger, not upon the guilty, but upon those who are most
within their grasp. {35} While then the trouble is still to come, still in
process of growth, while we can still listen to one another's words, I would
remind each of you once more of what he well knows--who it was that induced you
to sacrifice the Phocians and Thermopylae, the control of which gave Philip
command of the road to Attica and the Peloponnesus; who it was, I say, that
converted your debate about your rights and your interests abroad into a debate
about the safety of your own country, and about war on your own borders--a war
which will bring distress to each of us personally, when it is at our doors, but
which sprang into existence on that day. {36} Had you not been misled by them,
no trouble would have befallen this country. For we cannot imagine that Philip
would have won victories by sea which would have enabled him to approach Attica
with his fleet, or would have marched by land past Thermopylae and the Phocians;
but he would either have been acting straightforwardly--keeping the Peace and
remaining quiet; or else he would have found himself instantly plunged into a
war no less severe than that which originally made him desirous of the Peace.
{37} What I have said is sufficient by way of a reminder to you. Heaven grant
that the time may not come when the truth of my words will be tested with all
severity: for I at least have no desire to see any one meet with punishment,
however much he may deserve his doom, if it is accompanied by danger and
calamity to us all.


[_Introduction_. The principal events with which a reader of this Speech ought
to be acquainted have already been narrated (see especially the Introductions to
the last two Speeches). The influence of the anti-Macedonian party grew
gradually from the time of the Peace onwards. In 346, within a month after the
return of the Second Embassy, the ambassadors presented their reports before the
Logistae or Board of Auditors (after a futile attempt on the part of Aeschines
to avoid making a report altogether); and Timarchus, supported by Demosthenes,
there announced his intention of taking proceedings against Aeschines for
misconduct on the Second Embassy. But Timarchus' own past history was not above
reproach: he was attacked by Aeschines for the immoralities of his youth, which,
it was stated, disqualified him from acting as prosecutor, and though defended
by Demosthenes, was condemned and disfranchised (345 B.C.). But early in 343
Hypereides impeached Philocrates for corruption as ambassador, and obtained his
condemnation to death--a penalty which he escaped by voluntary exile before the
conclusion of the trial; and, later in the same year, Demosthenes brought the
same charge against Aeschines.

In the meantime (since the delivery of Demosthenes' Second Philippic) Philip had
been making fresh progress. The Arcadians and Argives (for the Athenian envoys
to the Peloponnese in 344 seem to have had little success) were ready to open
their gates to him. His supporters in Elis massacred their opponents, and with
them the remnant of the Phocians who had crossed over to Elis with Phalaecus. At
Megara, Perillus and Ptoeodorus almost succeeded in bringing a force of Philip's
mercenaries into the town, but the attempt was defeated, by the aid of an
Athenian force under Phocion. In Euboea Philip's troops occupied Porthmus, where
the democratic party of Eretria had taken refuge, owing to an overthrow of the
constitution (brought about by Philip's intrigues) which resulted in the
establishment of Cleitarchus as tyrant. In the course of the same year (343)
occurred two significant trials. The first was that of Antiphon, who had made an
offer to Philip to burn the Athenian dockyards at the Peiraeus. He was summarily
arrested by order of Demosthenes (probably in virtue of some administrative
office): Aeschines obtained his release, but he was re-arrested by order of the
Council of Areopagus[1] and condemned to death. The other trial was held before
the Amphictyonic Council on the motion of the people of Delos, to decide whether
the Athenians should continue to possess the right of managing the Temple of
Delos. The Assembly chose Aeschines as counsel for Athens; but the Council of
Areopagus, which had been given power to revise the appointment, put Hypereides
in his place. Hypereides won the case. Early in 343 (or at all events before the
middle of the year), Philip sent Python of Byzantium to complain of the language
used about him by Athenian orators, and to offer to revise and amend the terms
of the Peace of Philocrates. In response, an embassy was sent, headed by
Hegesippus, a violent opponent of Macedonia, to propose to Philip (1) that
instead of the clause 'that each party shall retain possession of what they
have', a clause, 'that each party shall possess what is their own,' should be
substituted; and (2) that all Greek States not included in the Treaty of Peace
should be declared free, and that Athens and Philip should assist them, if they
were attacked. These proposals, if sanctioned, would obviously have reopened the
question of Amphipolis, Pydna, and Poteidaea, as well as of Cardia and the
Thracian towns taken by Philip in 346. Hegesippus, moreover, was personally
objectionable, and the embassy was dismissed with little courtesy by Philip, who
even banished from Macedonia the Athenian poet Xenocleides for acting as host to
the envoys. The feeling against Philip in Athens was evidently strong, when the
prosecution of Aeschines by Demosthenes took place.

The trial was held before a jury (probably consisting of 1,501 persons),
presided over by the Board of Auditors. Demosthenes spoke first, and Aeschines
replied in a speech which is preserved. There is no doubt, on a comparison of
the two speeches, that each, before it was published, received alterations and
insertions, intended to meet the adversary's points, or to give a better colour
to passages which had been unfavourably received. Probably not all the
refutations 'in advance' were such in reality. But there is no sufficient reason
to doubt that the speeches were delivered substantially as we have them.
Aeschines was acquitted by thirty votes.

The question of the guilt or innocence of Aeschines will probably never be
finally settled. A great part of his conduct can be explained as a sincere
attempt to carry out the policy of Eubulus, or as the issue of a genuine belief
that it was best for Athens to make terms with Philip and stand on his side.
Even so the wisdom and the veracity of certain speeches which he had made is
open to grave question; but this is a different thing from corruption. Moreover,
to some of Demosthenes' arguments he has a conclusive reply. It is more
difficult to explain his apparent change of opinion between the 18th and 19th of
Elaphebolion, 346 (if Demosthenes' report of the debates is to be trusted); and
some writers are disposed to date his corruption from the intervening night. Nor
is it easy to meet Demosthenes' argument that if Aeschines had really been taken
in by Philip, and believed the promises which he announced, or if he had
actually heard Philip make the promises, he would have regarded Philip
afterwards as a personal enemy, and not as a friend. But even on these points
Aeschines might reply (though he could not reply so to the Athenian people or
jury) that though he did not trust the promises, he regarded the interest of
Athens as so closely bound up with the alliance with Philip, that he considered
it justifiable to deceive the people into making the alliance, or at least to
take the risk of the promises which he announced proving untrue. In any case
there is no convincing evidence of corruption; and it may be taken as
practically certain that he was not bribed to perform particular services. It is
less certain that he was not influenced by generous presents from Philip in
forming his judgement of Philip's character and intentions. The standard of
Athenian public opinion in regard to the receipt of presents was not that of the
English Civil Service; and the ancient orators accuse one another of corruption
almost as a matter of course. (We have seen that Demosthenes began the attack
upon Eubulus' party in this form as early as the Speech for the Rhodians; it
appears in almost every subsequent oration: and in their turn, his opponents
make the same charge against him.) It is, in any case, remarkable that at a time
when the people was plainly exasperated with the Peace and its authors, and very
ill-disposed towards Philip, a popular jury nevertheless acquitted Aeschines;
and the verdict is not sufficiently explained either by the fact that Eubulus
supported Aeschines or by the jurors' memory of Demosthenes' own part in the
earlier peace-negotiations, though this must have weakened the force of his
attack. That Demosthenes himself believed Aeschines to have been bribed, and
could himself see no other explanation of his conduct, need not be doubted; and
although the speech contains some of those misrepresentations of fact and
passages of irrelevant personal abuse which deface some of his best work, it
also contains some of his finest pieces of oratory and narrative.

The second part of the speech is more broken up into short sections and less
clearly arranged than the first; earlier arguments are repeated, and a few
passages may be due (at least in their present shape) to revision after the
trial: but the latter part even as it stands is successful in leaving the points
of greatest importance strongly impressed upon the mind.

The following analysis of the speech may enable the reader to find his way
through it without serious difficulty:--

INTRODUCTION (Sec.Sec. 1-28)

(i) _Exordium_ (Sec.Sec. 1, 2). Impartiality requested of the jury, in view of
Aeschines' attempt to escape by indirect means.

(ii) _Points of the trial_ (Sec.Sec. 3-8). An ambassador must (1) give true reports;
(2) give good advice; (3) obey his instructions; (4) not lose time; (5) be

(iii) _Preliminary exposition of the arguments_ (Sec.Sec. 9-28).

(1) The previous anti-Macedonian zeal of Aeschines suddenly collapsed
after the First Embassy.

(2) In the deliberations on the Peace, Aeschines supported

(3) After the Second Embassy, Aeschines prevented Athens from guarding
Thermopylae and saving the Phocians, by false reports and

(4) Such a change of policy is only explicable by corruption.

PART 1 (Sec.Sec. 29-178)

The five points of Introduction (ii) are treated as three, or in three groups.

(i) The reports made by Aeschines on his return from the Second Embassy, and his
advice, especially as to the ruin of the Phocians (Sec.Sec. 29-97).

(1) The reports (a) to the Senate, (b) to the People, and their
reception (Sec.Sec. 29-46).

(2) Evidence that Aeschines conspired with Philip against the
Phocians, whose ruin is described (Sec.Sec. 47-71).

(3) Refutation of three anticipated objections, beginning at Sec. 72, Sec.
78, Sec. 80 respectively (Sec.Sec. 72-82).

(4) The danger to Athens from Aeschines' treachery (Sec.Sec. 83-7).

(5) Request to confine the trial strictly to relevant points
(Sec.Sec. 88-97).

(ii) The corruption of Aeschines by the bribes of Philip (Sec.Sec. 98-149).

(1) Arguments (beginning Sec. 102, Sec. 111, Sec. 114, Sec. 116) showing the
corruption of Aeschines (Sec.Sec. 98-119).

(2) Refutation of anticipated objections (beginning at Sec. 120, Sec. 134,
Sec. 147) (Sec.Sec. 120-49).

(iii) Aeschines' loss of time, by which Philip profited, and disobedience
to his instructions (Sec.Sec. 150-77).

(1) Narrative of the Second Embassy (Sec.Sec. 150-62).

(2) Comparison of the two Embassies (Sec.Sec. 163-5).

(3) Comparison of Demosthenes' own conduct with that of the other
ambassadors (Sec.Sec. 167-77). Recapitulation of the points established
(Sec.Sec. 177, 178).

PART II (Sec.Sec. 179-343)

(i) The injury done to Athens--

(a) by the loss of Thrace and the Hellespont;

(b) generally, by false reports from ambassadors (Sec.Sec. 179-86).

(ii) Refutation of anticipated objections--

(a) 'It is not Philip's fault that he has not satisfied Athens'
(Sec. 187).

(b) 'Demosthenes has no right to prosecute' (Sec.Sec. 188-220): including a
digression (Sec.Sec. 192-200) on Aeschines' character and incidents in
his life.

(iii) Demosthenes' object in prosecuting, passing into reproof of the laxity of
Athens towards traitors (Sec.Sec. 221-33).

(iv) Warning against any attempt by Aeschines to confuse the dates and incidents
of the two Embassies (Sec.Sec. 234-6.)

(v) Criticism of Aeschines' brothers and his prosecution of Timarchus
(Sec.Sec. 237-58).

(vi) The increasing danger from traitors, and the traditional attitude
of Athens towards them (Sec.Sec. 259-87).

(vii) Attack upon Eubulus for defending Aeschines (Sec.Sec. 288-99).

(viii) Philip's policy and methods; proofs of Aeschines' complicity
repeated (Sec.Sec. 300-31).

(ix) Warnings to the jury against Aeschines' attempts to mislead them; and
conclusion (Sec.Sec. 331-43).]

{1} How much interest this case has excited, men of Athens, and how much
canvassing has taken place, must, I feel sure, have become fairly evident to you
all, after the persistent overtures just now made to you, while you were drawing
your lots.[n] Yet I will make the request of you all--a request which ought to
be granted even when unasked--that you will not allow the favour or the person
of any man to weigh more with you than justice and the oath which each of you
swore before he entered the court. Remember that what I ask is for your own
welfare and for that of the whole State; while the entreaties and the eager
interest of the supporters of the accused have for their aim the selfish
advantage of individuals: and it is not to confirm criminals in the possession
of such advantages that the laws have called you together, but to prevent their
attainment of them. {2} Now I observe that while all who enter upon public life
in an honest spirit profess themselves under a perpetual responsibility, even
when they have passed their formal examination, the defendant Aeschines does the
very reverse. For before entering your presence to give an account of his
actions, he has put out of the way one of those[n] who appeared against him at
his examination; and others he pursues with threats, thus introducing into
public life a practice which is of all the most atrocious and most contrary to
your interests. For if one who has transacted and managed any public business is
to render himself secure against accusation by spreading terror round him,
rather than by the justice of his case, your supremacy[n] must pass entirely out
of your hands.

{3} I have every confidence and belief that I shall prove the defendant guilty
of many atrocious crimes, for which he deserves the extreme penalty of the law.
But I will tell you frankly of the fear which troubles me in spite of this
confidence. It seems to me, men of Athens, that the issue of every trial before
you is determined as much by the occasion as by the facts; and I am afraid that
the length of time which has elapsed since the Embassy may have caused you to
forget the crimes of Aeschines, or to be too familiar with them. {4} I will tell
you therefore how, in spite of this, you may yet, as I believe, arrive at a just
decision and give a true verdict to-day. You have, gentlemen of the jury, to
inquire and to consider what are the points on which it is proper to demand an
account from an ambassador. He is responsible first for his report; secondly,
for what he has persuaded you to do; thirdly, for his execution of your
instructions; next, for dates; and, besides all these things, for the integrity
or venality of his conduct throughout. {5} And why is he responsible in these
respects? Because on his report must depend your discussion of the situation: if
his report is true, your decision is a right one: if otherwise, it is the
reverse. Again, you regard the counsels of ambassadors as especially
trustworthy. You listen to them in the belief that they have personal knowledge
of the matter with which they were sent to deal. Never, therefore, ought an
ambassador to be convicted of having given you any worthless or pernicious
advice. {6} Again, it is obviously proper that he should have carried out your
instructions to him with regard to both speech and action, and your express
resolutions as to his conduct. Very good. But why is he responsible for dates?
Because, men of Athens, it often happens that the opportunity upon which much
that is of great importance depends lasts but for a moment; and if this
opportunity is deliberately and treacherously surrendered to the enemy, no
subsequent steps can possibly recover it. {7} But as to the integrity or
corruption of an ambassador, you would all, I am sure, admit that to make money
out of proceedings that injure the city is an atrocious thing and deserves your
heavy indignation. Yet the implied distinction was not recognized by the framer
of our law. He absolutely forbade _all_ taking of presents, thinking, I believe,
that a man who has once received presents and been corrupted with money no
longer remains even a safe judge of what is to the interest of the city. {8} If
then I can convict the defendant Aeschines by conclusive proofs of having made a
report that was utterly untrue, and prevented the people from hearing the truth
from me; if I prove that he gave advice that was entirely contrary to your
interests; that on his mission he fulfilled none of your instructions to him;
that he wasted time, during which opportunities for accomplishing much that was
of great importance were sacrificed and lost to the city; and that he received
presents in payment for all these services, in company with Philocrates; then
condemn him, and exact the penalty which his crimes deserve. If I fail to prove
these points, or fail to prove them all, then regard me with contempt, and let
the defendant go.

{9} I have still to charge him, men of Athens, with many atrocious acts in
addition to these--acts which would naturally call forth the execration of every
one among you. But I desire, before all else that I am about to say, to remind
you (though most of you, I know, remember it well) of the position which
Aeschines originally took up in public life, and the speeches which he thought
it right to address to the people against Philip; for I would have you realize
that his own actions, his own speeches at the beginning of his career, are the
strongest evidence of his corruption. {10} According to his own public
declaration at that time, he was the first Athenian to perceive that Philip had
designs against the Hellenes and was corrupting certain leading men in Arcadia.
With Ischander, the son of Neoptolemus, to second him in his performance, he
came before the Council and he came before the people, to speak on the subject:
he persuaded you to send envoys in all directions to bring together a congress
at Athens to discuss the question of war with Philip: {11} then, on his return
from Arcadia, he reported to you those noble and lengthy speeches which, he
said, he had delivered on your behalf before the Ten Thousand[n] at Megalopolis,
in reply to Philip's spokesman, Hieronymus; and he described at length the
criminal wrong that was done, not only to their own several countries, but to
all Hellas, by men who took bribes and received money from Philip. {12} Such
was his policy at that time, and such the sample which he displayed of his
sentiments. Then you were induced by Aristodemus, Neoptolemus, Ctesiphon, and
the rest of those who brought reports from Macedonia in which there was not an
honest word, to send ambassadors to Philip and to negotiate for peace. Aeschines
himself is appointed one of them, in the belief, not that he was one of those
who would sell your interests, or had placed confidence in Philip, but rather
one who would keep an eye on the rest. The speeches which he had already
delivered, and his antipathy to Philip, naturally led you to take this view of
him. {13} Well, after this he came to me[n] and tried to make an agreement by
which we should act in concert on the Embassy, and urged strongly that we should
both keep an eye upon that abominable and shameless man Philocrates; and until
we returned to Athens from the First Embassy, I at least, men of Athens, had no
idea that he had been corrupted and had sold himself. For (not to mention the
other speeches which, as I have told you, he had made on former occasions) at
the first of the assemblies in which you debated about the Peace, he rose and
delivered an exordium which I think I can repeat to you word for word as he
uttered it at the meeting. {14} 'If Philocrates,' he said, 'had spent a very
long time in studying how he could best oppose the Peace, I do not think he could
have found a better device than a motion of this kind. The Peace which he
proposes is one which I can never recommend the city to make, so long as a
single Athenian remains alive. Peace, however, we ought, I think, to make.' {15}
And he made a brief and reasonable speech in the same tone. But though he had
spoken thus at the first meeting, in the hearing of you all, yet at the second
meeting, when the Peace was to be ratified; when I was upholding the resolution
of the allies and working for a Peace on just and equitable terms; when you in
your desire for such a Peace would not even listen to the voice of the despicable
Philocrates; then, I say, Aeschines rose and spoke in support of him, using
language for which he deserves, God knows, to die many deaths, {16} saying that
you must not remember your forefathers, nor tolerate speakers who recalled your
trophies and your victories by sea; and that he would frame and propose a law,
that you should assist no Hellene who had not previously assisted you. These
words he had the callous shamelessness to utter in the very presence and hearing
of the ambassadors[n] whom you had summoned from the Hellenic states, in
pursuance of the advice which he himself had given you, before he had sold

{17} You elected him again, men of Athens, to receive the oaths. How he
frittered away the time, how cruelly he injured all his country's interests, and
what violent mutual enmity arose between myself and him in consequence of his
conduct and of my desire to prevent it, you shall hear presently. But when we
returned from this Embassy which was sent to receive the oaths, and the report
of which is now under examination; when we had secured nothing, either small or
great, of all that had been promised and expected when you were making the
Peace, but had been totally deceived; when they had again acted without regard
to their instructions,[n] and had conducted their mission in direct defiance of
your decree; we came before the Council: and there are many who have personal
knowledge of what I am about to tell you, for the Council-Chamber was crowded
with spectators. {18} Well, I came forward and reported to the Council the whole
truth: I denounced these men: I recounted the whole story, beginning with those
first hopes, aroused in you by the report of Ctesiphon and Aristodemus, and
going on to the speeches which Aeschines delivered during the time of the Peace-
negotiations, and the position into which they had brought the city: as regards
all that remained to you--I meant the Phocians and Thermopylae--I counselled you
not to abandon these, not to be victims once more of the same mistake, not to
let yourselves be reduced to extremities through depending upon a succession of
hopes and promises: and I carried the Council with me. {19} But when the day of
the Assembly came, and it was our duty to address you, the defendant Aeschines
came forward before any of his colleagues--and I entreat you, in God's name, to
follow me, and try to recollect whether what I tell you is true; for now we have
come to the very thing which so cruelly injured and ruined your whole cause. He
made not the remotest attempt to give any report of the results of the Embassy--
if indeed he questioned the truth of my allegations at all--but instead of this,
he made statements of such a character, promising you benefits so numerous and
so magnificent, that he completely carried you away with him. {20} For he said
that,[n] before his return, he had persuaded Philip upon all the points in which
the interests of the city were involved, in regard both to the Amphictyonic
dispute and to all other matters: and he described to you a long speech which he
professed to have addressed to Philip against the Thebans, and of which he
reported to you the substance, calculating that, as the result of his own
diplomacy, you would within two or three days, without stirring from home or
taking the field or suffering any inconvenience, hear that Thebes was being
blockaded, alone and isolated from the rest of Boeotia, {21} that Thespiae and
Plataeae were being repeopled, and that the debt due to the god[n] was being
exacted not from the Phocians, but from the Thebans who had planned the seizure
of the temple. For he said that he gave Philip to understand that those who
planned the act were no less guilty of impiety than those whose hands executed
the plan; and that on this account the Thebans had set a price upon his head.
{22} Moreover, he said that he heard some of the Euboeans, who had been thrown
into a state of panic and confusion by the friendly relations established
between Athens and Philip, saying to the ambassadors, 'You have not succeeded,
gentlemen, in concealing from us the conditions on which you have made your
Peace with Philip; nor are we unaware that while you have given him Amphipolis,
he has undertaken to hand over Euboea to you.' There was, indeed, another matter
which he had arranged as well, but he did not wish to mention this at present,
since even as it was some of his colleagues were jealous of him. {23} This was
an enigmatical and indirect allusion to Oropus. These utterances naturally
raised him high in your estimation; he seemed to be an admirable speaker and a
marvellous man; and he stepped down with a very lofty air. Then I rose and
denied all knowledge of these things, and at the same time attempted to repeat
some part of my report to the Council. But they now took their stand by me, one
on this side, one on that--the defendant and Philocrates; they shouted, they
interrupted me, and finally they jeered, while you laughed. {24} You would not
hear, and you did not wish to believe anything but what Aeschines had reported.
Heaven knows, your feelings were natural enough; for who, that expected all
these marvellous benefits, would have tolerated a speaker who said that the
expectation would not be realized, or denounced the proceedings of those who
made the promise? All else, of course, was of secondary importance at the time,
in comparison with the expectations and the hopes placed before you; any
contradiction appeared to be nothing but sheer obstruction and malignity, while
the proceedings described seemed to be of incredible importance and advantage to
the city.

{25} Now with what object have I recalled these occurrences to you before
everything else, and described these speeches of his? My first and chief object,
men of Athens, is that none of you, when he hears me speak of any of the things
that were done and is struck by their unparalleled atrocity, may ask in surprise
why I did not tell you at once and inform you of the facts; {26} but may
remember the promises which these men made at each critical moment, and by which
they entirely prevented every one else from obtaining a hearing; and that
splendid pronouncement by Aeschines; and that you may realize that in addition
to all his other crimes, you have suffered this further wrong at his hands--that
you were prevented from learning the truth instantly, when you ought to have
learned it, because you were deluded by hopes, deceits and promises. {27} That
is my first and, as I have said, my chief object in recalling all these
occurrences. But there is a second which is of no less importance than the
first, and what is this? It is that you may remember the policy which he adopted
in his public life, when he was still uncorrupted--his guarded and mistrustful
attitude towards Philip; and may consider the sudden growth of confidence and
friendship which followed; {28} and then, if all that he announced to you has
been realized, if the results achieved are satisfactory, you may believe that
all has been done out of an honest interest in the welfare of Athens; but if, on
the other hand, the issue has been exactly the opposite of that which he
predicted: if his policy has involved the city in great disgrace and in grave
perils, you may then be sure that his conversion was due to his own base
covetousness and to his having sold the truth for money.

{29} And now, since I have been led on to this subject, I desire to describe to
you, before everything else, the way in which they took the Phocian question
entirely out of your hands. And let none of you, gentlemen of the jury, when he
looks at the magnitude of the transactions, imagine that the crimes with which
the defendant is charged are on a grander scale than one of his reputation could
compass. You have rather to observe that any one whom you would have placed in
such a position as this--a position in which, as each critical moment arrived,
the decision would be in his hands--could have brought about disasters equal to
those for which Aeschines is responsible, if, like Aeschines, he had wished to
sell his services, and to cheat and deceive you. {30} For however
contemptible[n] may be the men whom you frequently employ in the public service,
it does not follow that the part which the world expects this city to play is a
contemptible one. Far from it! And further, though it was Philip, of course, who
destroyed the Phocian people, it was Aeschines and his party who seconded
Philip's efforts. And so what you have to observe and consider is whether, so
far as the preservation of the Phocians came within the scope of their mission,
these men deliberately destroyed and ruined that whole cause. You have not to
suppose that Aeschines ruined the Phocians by himself. How could he have done

{31} (_To the clerk._) Now give me the draft-resolution which the Council passed
in view of my report, and the deposition of the clerk who wrote it. (_To the
jury._) For I would have you know that I am not repudiating to-day transactions
about which I held my peace at the time, but that I denounced them at once, with
full prevision of what must follow; and that the Council, which was not
prevented from hearing the truth from me, neither voted thanks to the
ambassadors, nor thought fit to invite them to the Town Hall.[n] From the
foundation of the city to this day, no body of ambassadors is recorded to have
been treated so; nor even Timagoras,[n] whom the people condemned to death. {32}
But these men have been so treated. (_To the clerk._) First read them the
deposition, and then the resolution.

[_The deposition and resolution are read._]

Here is no expression of thanks, no invitation of the ambassadors to the Town
Hall by the Council. If Aeschines asserts that there is any, let him point it
out and produce it, and I give way to him. But there is none. Now on the
assumption that we all fulfilled our mission in the same way, the Council had
good reason not to thank any of us, for the transactions of all alike were in
that case atrocious. But if some of us acted uprightly, while others did the
reverse, it must, it seems, have been owing to the knavery of their colleagues
that the virtuous were forced to take their share of this dishonour. {33} How
then can you all ascertain without any difficulty who is the rogue? Recall to
your minds who it is that has denounced the transaction from the outset. For it
is plain that it must have been the guilty person who was well content to be
silent, to stave off the day of reckoning for the moment, and to take care for
the future not to present himself to give an account of his actions; while it
must have been he whose conscience was clear to whom there occurred the thought
of the danger, lest through keeping silence he might be regarded as a partner in

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