Page images

Such being the enactments of the law, I imagine that Bootus or Mantitheus, or whatever other name it pleases him to be called by, will have no true and just defence to offer, but, relying on his boldness and audacity, will try to shift the misfortunes of his own family on my shoulders, as he is accustomed to do in private society, and will say, that upon the confiscation of the property of Pamphilus, who was the father of Plangon, my father received the surplus monies out of the Council-chamber:1 so he will endeavour to make out, that his own mother brought a fortune of more than a hundred minas, while my mother (as he pretends) was a portionless wife. He will tell you this story, men of the jury, without having put a single deposition in the box to prove it, and knowing there is not a syllable of truth in it, because he is perfectly aware, that no man was ever acquitted before you who confessed his guilt, but people have sometimes escaped punishment by lies and shuffling excuses.

In order that you may not be deceived by him, I think it is better to give you a little information upon the subject. Should he say, that my mother did not bring a marriage portion and their mother did, remember that this is a transparent falsehood. For, in the first place, Pamphilus, the father of their mother, died owing five talents to the public treasury, and, so far from there being any surplus for his children after his property had been scheduled and confiscated, even his debt has not been entirely discharged, but Pamphilus at this very moment stands in the register as indebted to the treasury. How then is it possible that my father received money from the estate of Pamphilus, which was not even sufficient to satisfy his debt to the commonwealth? In the next place, men of the jury, consider this-were it ever so true, that there was the surplus which these men pretend, my father would not have got it, but the sons of Pamphilus, namely, Boeotus and Hedylus and Euthydemus, persons who would go all lengths to get the property of others, as you all know, and of course would never have allowed my father to receive what belonged to them.

That the mother of my opponents did not bring a marriage portion, but that this is a pure invention of their own, I think

1 As to the financial duties of the Council, see Böckh, Publ. Econ. of Athens, Translation, Vol. I. page 237.

you are sufficiently informed. That my mother did bring one, I can easily show. In the first place, she was the daughter of Polyaratus, who was honoured by the people of Athens and possessed a large estate. Secondly, it has been proved to you by witnesses, that her sister brought a portion of the like amount to her husband Eryximachus, the brotherin-law of Chabrias. In addition to this it is shown, that my mother was first given in marriage to Cleomedon, whose father Cleon, as we are told, commanded the troops of your ancestors, and captured a large number of Lacedæmonian prisoners in Pylus, and acquired a higher reputation than any of his countrymen; so it was hardly proper that his son should wed my mother portionless, nor is it likely that Menexenus and Bathyllus, who had a large fortune themselves, and who after Cleomedon's death received back the portion, deprived their sister of it; on the contrary, it is more likely, that they added to it when they gave her in marriage to my father, as they themselves and her other relations have testified to you. And besides this, just con

sider, if it were true that my mother was not an affianced wife and brought no marriage portion, while the mother of these men did bring one, what could possibly induce my father to deny that these were his sons, and to acknowledge me and bring me up? Perhaps, as these men pretend, because he dishonoured them to gratify me and my mother. But she died leaving me quite a little child, whereas their mother Plangon, who was a handsome woman, had intercourse with him both before and after that: so it was far more likely that on account of the living lady, of whom he was enamoured, he would dishonour the son of the deceased, than that for the sake of me and my deceased mother he should refuse to acknowledge the children of her who was living and having intercourse with him.


Bootus however has reached such a pitch of audacity, as say that my father gave a feast for him on the tenth day. And in support of this assertion he has put in the depositions only of Timocrates and Promachus, who are no way related to my father by blood, and were no friends of his. manifestly false is their testimony, that, like witnesses to a summons, a pair of them only depose, that a man, who, as every one knows, was compelled by the legal proceedings of

[blocks in formation]


Bootus to adopt him against his will, gave a feast for him on the tenth day! Which of you will believe such a story? He can't say this, that my father acknowledged him when a little child, but, after he had grown up, refused to notice him on account of some quarrel with his mother. For surely it is much more usual for man and wife to make up their private differences for the sake of their children, than to hate their children on account of their own quarrels. If he attempts therefore to say this, don't listen to so impudent an assertion.

Should he talk about the actions which they brought, and which the arbitrator decided in my favour, and should he say that he was taken by me unprepared, remember first, that he had not a short time only to prepare himself, but many years; secondly, that he was the plaintiff, so that it was much more likely for me to be taken unprepared by him, than for him to be só taken by me. And further, all the persons who were before the arbitrator have stated to you in evidence, that Boeotus was himself present, when the arbitrator decided in my favour, and that he did not appeal to the court, but acquiesced in the award. It would be strange, I take it, when other men, who consider themselves wronged, carry the most trifling causes on appeal to you, that this man, who had sued me for a marriage portion to recover a talent, and had an award in the suit given against him (as he himself says) unjustly, should acquiesce in that award. Oh, but perhaps he is a quiet sort of person, not fond of litigation. I should have been glad indeed, men of the jury, if he had been such. But it is quite otherwise. While you are so liberal and humane, that you would not banish from the country even the sons of the thirty tyrants; Bootus, conspiring against me with Menecles, who is the architect of all these plots, upon some dispute between us contrived from words to come to blows; then he cut his own head and summoned me on a charge of wounding before the Areopagus, with the intention of driving me into exile from Athens. And if Euthydicus the physician, whom these persons went to in the first instance and asked to cut the head of Boeotus, had not of his own accord disclosed the whole truth to the Council of Areopagus, this man would have taken such vengeance on me who never wronged him, as you would

not attempt to inflict even on the greatest offenders. That it may not be thought I am slandering him, read me the depositions.

[The Depositions.]

To get up so serious and formidable a charge against me was the act, not of a good-natured person, but of a conspirator and a ruffian. After this, instead of the name of Bœotus which my father gave him, as the witnesses have proved to you, upon my father's death he entered his name as Mantitheus in the register of our fellow-townsmen, and then, having for his address the same father and the same township as myself, he not only set aside the judgment in this action in which I am now suing him, but, when you had elected me to command the division of my tribe, he came himself to the court to pass his probation, and, when a judgment had been given against him in an ejectment suit, he gave out that the judgment was not against him but against me. To sum it up briefly-he annoyed me so much, that I was compelled to bring an action against him for the name, not with a view to get money from him, men of the jury, but in order that, if it appeared to you that I was cruelly usedand grievously injured, the defendant might be enjoined to use the name of Bootus, which my father gave him.

To show that these statements are equally true with the rest, please to take the depositions which relate to them.

[The Depositions.]

Here is another thing he has done. I was out on service, and had enlisted mercenaries with Aminias; I raised money from various quarters, and (among others) from Mytilene, where I received from your state-friend Apollonides and from other partisans of our commonwealth three hundred Phocaic staters, which I expended upon the troops, in order that some action might be performed to your and their advantage. For this Bootus goes to law with me, alleging that I had recovered a debt due to my father from the Mytilenean state; his object being to serve Cammes, the tyrant of Mytilene, who is both my private enemy and also the enemy of Athens. That the reward which the Mytileneans voted to my father was received by him in person at the time, and that no debt

was owing to him in Mytilene, I will prove by producing a deposition of your friends.

[The Deposition.]

I could mention many other shameful acts of which Bootus has been guilty, towards myself as well as towards some of you, men of the jury; but, as the water in my glass is scanty, I am compelled to pass them over. I think indeed that I have already given you abundant proof, that the same man who got up a prosecution against me involving the risk of exile, and sued me for wholly unfounded demands, is not likely to have attended before the arbitrator unprepared. If therefore he attempts to say anything upon this point, I expect that you will not listen to him.

Should he say however, that he requested me to refer all matters in difference to Conon son of Timotheus, and that I was not willing to refer them, be assured that he will be trying to impose on you. For my part, I was ready to refer those matters which had received no judicial determination either to Conon or to any other impartial arbitrator whom he chose; but questions which the arbitrator had decided in my favour after three attendances of Bootus before him, and after hearing him in support of his claim, and upon which he acquiesced in the award, as has been proved to you in evidence, I thought could not with fairness be opened again. For what definitive settlement could we ever have come to, if I had set aside an award pronounced according to law, and referred the same causes of action to another arbitrator, especially when I knew so well, that, even if it is not equitable to insist on awards against other people, it is perfectly fair to deal in such a way with Bootus. For let me ask one question-If any one were to indict him as an alien for assuming the rights of citizenship, alleging that my father denied upon his oath that this man was his son; in answer to the charge, what else could he rely upon but this, that, in consequence of their mother's oath and the arbitrator's decision, my father was compelled to abide by the award? It would be monstrous then, when this man has himself by virtue of an arbitrator's judgment become a citizen of Athens and shared the inheritance with me and obtained everything which is fair and reasonable, that he should receive any

« EelmineJätka »