Page images


The manner in which my father entered us in the register you have heard from the witnesses: I will now show you, that, as the defendant did not choose to abide by these entries, I have brought the action necessarily and justly. Surely I am not so wrong-headed and unreasonable, as, after having consented (since my father adopted these men) to take only a third part of the inheritance, the whole of which was mine, and after acquiescing in that arrangement, to engage in a family quarrel 1 about a name, unless for this reason, that for me to change my name would draw with it the deepest degradation and the reproach of cowardice, while for the defendant to have the same name as myself would on many accounts be impossible.

In the first place, (to begin with public matters before private,) in what manner will the state give its command to us, if anything is required to be done? I suppose the tribesmen will nominate us in the same way as they nominate others. Well then; they will nominate me as Mantitheus the son of Mantias of Thoricus, if they propose me for choragus or gymnasiarch or feaster of the tribe, or for any other office. By what then will it appear, whether they nominate you or me? You will say they have appointed me, and I shall say it is you. Suppose, after this, the Archon summons us, or any other magistrate before whom the case is brought: we do not comply, we do not perform the duty: which of us will be amenable to the legal penalties? And in what manner will the Generals enter our names, if they put us in a board of tax-payers, or if they appoint either of us a trierarch? Or if there be any military expedition, how will it appear which of us is the person on the muster-roll? How, if any other functionary impose a public charge; for example, the Archon, the King-archon, the Umpires of prizes-what sign will distinguish the person intended? Perhaps they will affix "the son of Plangon," if they enter your name, and the name of my mother, if they enter mine. And who ever heard of such a thing? By what law can such a description be appended,

1 Svyoμuxeîv-Reiske in his Index-“cum aliquo contendere, cujus sis necessarius, a quo avelli nequeas, cum quo necessaria tibi sit et inevitabilis vitæ consuetudo." Pabst "einen Familienhader erheben." VOL. IV.


or any other addition besides the name of the father and the township? And these being both the same, a pretty confusion must result.

Again-suppose Mantitheus son of Mantias of Thoricus were summoned as juror: what should we do? Should we both go to the bench? By what token will it be known whether he has summoned you or me? Or, by Jupiter, suppose the state elects to any office by lot; as to that of Councillor, Judge, or any of the rest: how will it be known which of us is appointed?—unless a mark is to be attached to the brass plate, as there might be to anything else; and even then the people will not know to which of us it belongs. He then will say he is appointed, and I shall say I am; and the only thing left will be to go before the court. So in each of these cases the state will impanel a jury for us; and of that right, which is common to all, namely, to hold the office to which one is chosen by lot, we shall be deprived; instead of this, we shall abuse one another, and the successful talker will get the office. And which would be most advantageous for us to get rid of our existing dissensions, or to begin quarrelling and wrangling afresh; which we must inevitably do, when we have a dispute about an office or anything else? But how will it be for we must examine every imaginable case-if either of us, before he goes to the ballot, should persuade the other to give him up the office, in case of his being drawn for it? And what is this but one man balloting with two balls? And shall it be in our power to do with impunity a thing which by law is punishable with death? Aye, but we shall not do it. I know that; at least I can speak for myself but it is not right that there should be individuals exposed to such a penalty, when it may be easily avoided.

Well I have shown the damage which the state suffers. What is my own private damage? Observe how serious it is, and consider if there is reason in what I say. In fact, the damage done to me is far more grievous than what you have heard. You all know that he was intimate with Menecles and his set in that person's lifetime, and now he associates with others who are no better, and has the same pursuits and objects, and wishes to be thought an orator; and, by Jupiter,

1 As was the practice in the election or impanelling of jurors. See Article Akaσrs in the Archæological Dictionary.

[ocr errors]

perhaps he is one. Suppose in course of time he commences the same kind of proceedings as those persons-I mean indictments, presentments, informations, arrests-and in any such proceeding-(for the accidents in human life are numerous, and even the cleverest people, when they are too arrogant, you know how to keep within bounds on all occasions) suppose he incurs a fine to the state: why will it be recorded against him more than against me? Perhaps, it may be said, because everybody will know which of the two was amerced. Very good: but suppose (what may easily happen) that time has elapsed and the debt is not paid; why will it be entered against his children more than against mine, when the name and the father and the tribe and all particulars are the same? Again-suppose a man sues him in ejectment, not pretending to have any claim against me, and afterwards, when he has established his right in the suit, enters the record of the judgment: 1 why will the judgment be entered against Bootus rather than me? How will it be, if he fails to pay any of the property taxes? how, if any other suit be commenced, or (to speak generally) if any unpleasant report be spread, concerning the name? Which of the people will know whether it is I or whether it is he, when there are two named Mantitheus by the same father?

Now take another case. Suppose he were prosecuted for evading military service, dancing as a chorister when he should be campaigning-as on this late occasion, when the rest went over to Tamynæ, he was left behind here and celebrated the feast of Cups, and stayed and danced in the chorus at the Dionysia, as all you that were at home witnessed; and, after the troops had left Euboea, he was summoned on a charge of 1 Κυρίαν δὲ ποιησάμενος ἐγγράψαι. Pabst. “ Aber doch durch schriftliche Eintragung seiner klage Rechtgültigkeit verschaffte."

As to the ovλns díkn, see Meier and Schömann, Attic Process, page 486; and Volume III. of this work, page 391. Reiske in his notes gives a pretty clear explanation of this passage. No danger could accrue to Mantitheus in the supposed case, until the record of the judg ment; because Bootus would be summoned to appear, called upon to plead, interrogated before the magistrate, &c.; in short all the proceedings in the action would be taken against him; but when once the judgment was entered, it would in effect be a judgment against the real as well as the soi-disant Mantitheus: for after a lapse of time the actual proceedings might be forgotten, while the record would remain. * See Volume III. Appendix VI. page 284.

desertion, and I, who commanded the division of my tribe, was compelled to receive the indictment, as it was against my own name coupled with my father's; and, if pay had been provided for the juries, they would undoubtedly have brought me into court. If the affair had not occurred after the sealing of the boxes, I should have called witnesses to prove it. 18 So much for that. Now suppose he were summoned for usurpation of civic rights. He makes many enemies, and the way in which my father was compelled to adopt him is no secret. You certainly, at the time when my father refused to acknowledge him, thought that his mother spoke the truth; but when, with his birth thus established, he begins to make himself disagreeable, you'll change your minds some day and believe my father's story. How if, in fear of being convicted of perjury for the aid which he lends to his associates, he should allow judgment to go by default against him in such a proceeding? Do you think it is a trifling disadvantage, men of Athens, to be for one's whole life the partner of this man's character and conduct?

I beg you to observe, that my alarm even on these lastmentioned grounds is not imaginary. Bootus has already, men of Athens, had some indictments preferred against him; and the obloquy extends to me, who am wholly innocent. And he laid claim to the office, to which you elected me; and many unpleasant things have occurred to us through the name. I shall produce witnesses, and give you fall proof of every particular.


You see the consequences, men of Athens; you perceive the annoyance which the thing occasions. Even if there were no disagreeable results—if it were not wholly impos sible for us to have the same name-surely it is not just, while Bootus has his share of the property by virtue of my father's compulsory acknowledgment, that I should be deprived of the name, which my father gave me voluntarily and without any compulsion. I cannot see the justice of this. To show you that my father not only made the entry,

1 Because it was nominally directed against me, having my name and addition. Pabst. "Ich sahe mich genöthigt, gegen den von meinem Vater her auf mich vererbten Namen eine klage zuzulassen."

Schäfer correctly explains aтpódev, “nomine patris addito."

in the manner I have already proved, in the register of the clansmen, but also gave me this name when he kept the tenth day after my birth-please to take this deposition :

[The Deposition.]

You hear, men of Athens, that I have always borne the name of Mantitheus; but the defendant was entered in the clan-register, when my father was compelled to enter him, under the name of Bootus. I should be glad then to ask him in your presence-If my father had not died, what should you have done at the meeting of the township? Would you not have allowed yourself to be registered in the name of Bootus? It would have been absurd to enforce the registry, and yet afterwards to prevent it. But my father, if you had allowed him, would have entered you in the township register by the same name as he had entered you in the clan-register. By earth and heaven! it is monstrous, that he should say Mantias was his father, and yet dare to disaffirm the acts done by him in his lifetime.

He ventured before the arbitrator to make a most impudent assertion-that my father kept the tenth day for him as he had kept it for me, and gave him the name of Mantitheus and he produced some witnesses, with whom my father was never known to have any acquaintance. You must all be aware that, in the first place, no man would have kept the tenth day for a child, whom he did not believe to be rightfully his own; and in the next place, no one, after keeping the day and showing a parent's fondness for the child, could have brought himself afterwards to repudiate him. My father, though he might have quarrelled with the mother of these children, would not have hated them, if he believed them to be his own: it is far more usual for man and wife, when they are at variance, to become reconciled for their children's sake, than to hate their children for the injuries which they have done to one another. This however is not the only proof that his assertion, if he repeats it, will be false. For, before he pretended to be our relation, he

1 This was the christening, as we should say; when the name was given to the infant, and the parents gave a feast and sacrifice to which they invited their friends and relations. Proof that such a feast was given was important on questions of pedigree and citizenship. See Becker's Charicles, Excursus to Scene I. page 220, Translation.

« EelmineJätka »