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The plaintiff knew all this, and had the best reasons for being satisfied of the truth of their testimony; notwithstanding which, he brings an unfounded charge against them, and not only denies that he ever made the statement, which I prove him to have made beyond the possibility of a doubt, but contends also that Milyas is really a slave. In a very few words I will prove the falsehood of this assertion. Upon this very point, men of the jury, I offered to let him question my female domestics, who remember that Milyas was emancipated by my father on his deathbed. Besides, my mother was willing to make oath, in the presence of my sister and myself, and with imprecations on us if she spoke falsely, that my father in his last moments discharged this man from servitude, and that he was treated by the family as a freeman.1 We were her only children, for whose sake she determined to remain a widow; and I trust none of you will imagine, that she would thus have called down the vengeance of heaven upon our heads, if she had not been certain she should swear to the truth. I have evidence that we made these proposals, and were ready to abide by them. Call the witnesses.
You see how many strong points I have to urge, and how ready I have been to submit the matters in dispute to the most infallible ordeal. Aphobus declines to meet me on these grounds, but imagines that he shall induce you to convict the defendant, by slandering me and impeaching the result of the late trial. Of all manœuvres I ever heard of, this is the most unfair and insidious. He, with the assistance of his brother-in-law Onetor and Timocrates, has suborned persons to give false evidence on that subject; we, not foreseeing that he would adopt such a course, and supposing that the whole contest would be as to the truth or falsehood of the deposition itself, are not prepared with witnesses to speak to the guardianship accounts. However, notwithstanding this artifice, I think I shall be able, by a simple narration of the facts, to convince you that the verdict was a most righteous one; that it was given against Aphobus, not because I prevented him from putting Milyas to the torture,
1 As to the nature of this oath, see Vol. iii. Appendix IX. p. 383.
nor because he admitted him to be a freeman (as these witnesses have testified), but because he was shown to have received large sums of money for which he was accountable to me, and because he did not let the estate in the manner required by the laws and directed by my father's will, as I will show you clearly. These were things that everybody could see, the laws I mean, and the sums of which the guardians had plundered me; but as to Milyas, no one knew even who he was. You will see by the charges in the plaint, that it is as I say. For when I brought my action, men of the jury, against Aphobus, for the fraudulent account which he had rendered me, I did not lay the damages in one general sum, as a man would do who made a vexatious demand, but specified the several items which I charged him with, stating the sources from which, and the persons from whom he received them, and also the amount of each. I make no mention of Milyas as being acquainted with any of these particulars. The plaint commences thus: "Demosthenes makes this complaint against Aphobus. Aphobus is indebted to me for monies had and received by him as guardian, (that is to say,) eighty minas which he received as the marriage portion of my mother, in pursuance of my father's will."-This is the first item, of which I aver myself to be defrauded. Now what is the evidence of the witnesses ? "That they were present before the arbitrator Notharchus, when Aphobus admitted Milyas to have had his freedom given him by the father of Demosthenes." Consider for a moment. Do you think you could find any orator, sophist, or conjuror, with such wonderful cleverness or power of eloquence, as to be able from this deposition to convince a single human being, that his mother's fortune is in the hands of Aphobus? What, in the name of heaven, could he say?" You confess Milyas to be a freeman?"-" Well, but how does this show the fund to be in my possession ?"-You must see it would be no proof at all. How then was the fact proved? First, by the evidence of his colleague Therippides, who declared that he paid over the money to him. Secondly, Demon his uncle and all the witnesses who were present stated, that he agreed to pay alimony to my mother, whose portion was in his hands. Against these men he has taken no proceedings; clearly
because he knew their statements to be correct. Besides, my mother offered to make oath, in the presence of me and my sister, and .with imprecations on our heads if she spoke falsely, that Aphobus received her portion according to my father's will. Are we then, or are we not to say, that he is liable for these eighty minas? And was it by this or that person's evidence, that the verdict against him was obtained? I think, it was by the evidence of truth. He has enjoyed the interest of this fund for ten years, and even after judgment cannot make up his mind to restore it; yet he asserts that he has been hardly used, and that he lost the cause by these witnesses, not one of whom uttered a word to fix him with the receipt of the marriage portion.
As to the bottomry loan, the sofa-manufacturers, the iron and ivory that were left me, and my sister's portion, at the plunder of which this man connived, that he might himself be allowed to take what he pleased of my effects-attend and observe, how just was the verdict pronounced against him, and how useless it would have been to examine Milyas on any of these points.
For the fraud which you connived at, Aphobus, there is an express law which makes you responsible, in like manner as if you had yourself reaped the fruits of it. What has this law to do with the questioning of the slave? In the affair of the bottomry loan, you all leagued with Xuthus, and divided the money amongst you, and cancelled the agreement; and now, having arranged everything to suit your own purposes, and destroyed the documentary evidence, (as you are proved to have done by Demon,) you endeavour by artful impostures to mislead the jury. With respect to the sofa-makers; if you have obtained money and made large profits for yourself by lending on my securities, when you should rather have prevented others from doing so, and at last have made away with them altogether; how can your witnesses help you? These men, at all events, did not prove, that you admitted having lent money upon my slaves, and having appropriated them to yourself. The fact was proved by the acknowledgment in your own account, and confirmed by other testimony.
As to the ivory and iron; I say, all my domestics well know, that Aphobus used to sell these articles; and I am
willing, as I was on the former occasion, to deliver to him any one of them he chooses, to be examined by the torture. Should he allege, that I refuse to give up a man who knows something of the case, and tender him persons who can prove nothing, he will have made out a stronger reason for accepting my offer. For if the persons, whom I tendered as competent to speak to the fact, had said that none of the stock was in his possession, of course he would have been acquitted of the charge. However, the fact is not so. He would certainly have been convicted of selling the stock and having received the proceeds. Therefore it was, that he rejected persons who were on all hands admitted to be slaves, and desired to examine a freeman by the torture, whom it would have been a crime in me to give up; his object being, not to bring to a test the matters in dispute, but that, in case his demand were not complied with, he might found upon it the semblance of an argument. To make you understand all these points-first about the portion-then the connivance then the rest he shall read you the laws and the depositions.
[The Laws. The Depositions.]
That Aphobus has been in no way prejudiced by my refusal to give up this person to the torture, you may infer not only from the preceding observations, but from the nature of the case itself. For let us suppose that Milyas was racked on the wheel. What would he most desire him to say? Would it not be this, "that he is not aware of the plaintiff having any part of the property in his hands?" Well; suppose he says so. Does it follow that he has none? Far from it; for I produced witnesses, who spoke to the affirmative from their own knowledge and eyesight. That some man knows something to be in his possession, is material evidence; but that some one does not know it, is no evidence at all: there might be plenty of witnesses of that sort.
Among all these witnesses who appeared against you, tell me, Aphobus, which have you sued for false testimony? You cannot mention one. What becomes then of your assertion, that you have been hardly used and lost the verdict unjustly because this person was not given up to you? Do you not yourself prove its falsehood when, it appears, you made no
charge against witnesses, who proved your receipt and possession of that property, as to which you desired to question Milyas, to show that it was never left? They were the persons against whom (if you were really injured) you ought to have proceeded; but you have sustained no injury, and your present charge is vexatious and malicious.
The roguery of the plaintiff may be seen in many points of view; but most clearly, by observing his conduct in regard to the will. My father's will, men of the jury, contained a specification of everything he left, and a direction to the guardians to let the estate. For this reason Aphobus never gave it up to me, lest I should learn from it the amount of the property. He admitted to be in his possession only what (on account of its publicity) he could not deny. The will (according to him) contained these provisions-that Demophon should immediately receive two talents as a portion with my sister, whom he was to marry when she arrived at a proper age, (that would be in ten years ;) he himself was to have eighty minas with my mother, and the house to dwell in; Therippides was to enjoy the interest of seventy minas until my majority: the residue which was left to me, and the clause for letting the estate, these he entirely suppressed; for it did not suit him to reveal these matters to you. However, when Aphobus himself allowed, that my father on his death-bed gave such large sums of money to each of the guardians, the jury, who sat on the former trial, considered this admission to be evidence of the value of the property. For, when a man had charged his estate with the payment of four talents and a half in the shape of marriage portion or legacy, it was plain that he took this from a residue (bequeathed to me) of more than double the amount. It could not be supposed, that he would desire to leave me his son in poverty, and to heap riches upon these men who were rich enough already. No. It was because of the magnitude of my inheritance, that he gave to Therippides the seventy minas, and to Demophon the interest of the two talents before the period of his marriage with my sister. That inheritance, or that with a small deduction, he was never shown to have delivered up to me. Some part of it he declared he had spent, some he had never received, some he knew nothing about, some was in the hands of this or that individual;