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On this page: Demotae – Denarius – Deo – Deportatio



the Athenians to rise against the Mace­donian dominion. But the destruction of Thebes by Alexander crippled every at­tempt at resistance. It was only through the venal intervention of Deruades that Demosthenes, with his true-hearted allies and supporters Hype"rides and Lycurgus, escaped being given up-to the enemy, as had been demanded. Demosthenes had been repeatedly crowned in public for his public services, and in 337 b.c. Ctesiphon had pro­posed not only to give him a golden crown for his tried devotion to his country, but to proclaim the fact at the Dionysia by the mouth of the herald. jEschines had already appeared to prosecute Ctesiphon for bring­ing forward an illegal proposal. In 330 he brought up the charge again, meaning it no doubt as a blow against his bitterest enemy Demosthenes. Demosthenes replied in his famous speech upon the Crown, and won a brilliant victory over his adversary, who was thereupon obliged to go into exile at Rhodes. But in 324 his enemies, joined on this occasion by his old friend Hyperides, succeeded in humiliating him. Harpalus, the finance minister of Alexander, had fled to Athens with an immense treasure, and Demosthenes was accused of having taken bribes from him, condemned, and sentenced to pay a fine of 50 talents. Unable to pay this enormous sum, he was thrown into prison, whence he escaped to ^Egina, to be recalled and welcomed with trumpets in the following year after the death of Alex­ander. But the unfortunate issue of the Lamian war, which resulted in a Mace­donian occupation of Athens and the dis­solution of the democratic constitution, involved him in ruin. Condemned to death with his friends by the Macedonian party, he fled to the island of Calauria, near Troezen, and took sanctuary in the temple of Poseidon. Here, as Antlpater's officers were upon him, he took poison and died, Oct. 16, 322.

Sixty-five genuine speeches of Demos­thenes were known in antiquity, and many others were falsely attributed to him. The collection which we possess contains sixty speeches, besides a letter of Philip to the Athenians, but some twenty-seven of these are suspected. The seventh, for instance, On the Island of ffdlonnlsus, was written by a contemporary, Hegesippus. The genuineness of the six letters, and of fifty-six pr6a>m1.a, or introductions to public speeches, which bear his name, is also doubt­ful. Among the genuine speeches the most |

remarkable, both for the beauty of their form and the importance of their subjects, are the Olynthiacs, the Philippics, the orations on the Peace, on the Crown, on the Embassy (against vEschines), with those against the Law of Leptlnes, against AndrStlon, and against Meidlas. The greatness of Demosthenes consists in his unique combination of honest intention with natural genius and thoroughly finished workmanship. He has all the qualities by which the other Greek orators are dis­tinguished singly, and at the same time the power of applying them in the most effective way on each occasion as it arises. It is true that he had not the gift of free extempore speaking, or if he had, he did not cultivate it; he gave the most elaborate preparation to all his speeches, so that a witty contemporary said they smelt of the lamp. The consequence however is, that all he says shows the deepest thought and ripest consideration. There is the same finish everywhere, whether in the sobriety and acuteness of his argumentation, in the genial and attractive tone of his narrative, or in the mighty and irresistible stream of his eloquence, which no violence of passion ever renders turbid. With all his art, his language is always simple and natural, never far-fetched or artificial. The greatest of the Greek orators, Demosthenes was the centre of all rhetorical study among the Greeks and Romans, and was much com­mented upon by scholars and rhetoricians. Little, however, of these commentaries remains, except a collection of mediocre scholia, bearing the name of Ulplanus. Dem6tffl. See demos. Denarius (Latin). A Roman silver coin so called because it originally contained 10 asses. In later times it = 16 asses = 4 sestertii = ¥V °f an aurlus. Its original weight was 4P55 gr. (= between 9d. and lOrf.), from 207 b.c. to Nero, 3-90 (about S!>d.), after Nero's time 3 41 gr., the amount of pure silver being so reduced that it was worth only about Gd. Its value sub­sequently sank more and more, until at the beginning of the 3rd century a.d. it was worth only S^d. When at the end of the 3rd century Diocletian introduced a new silver coin of full value according to the Neronian standard (the so-called argen-tlus), the name denarius was transferred to a small copper coin (see coinage, roman). Deo See demeter.

Deportatlo. Banishment to a specified locality, generally an island. This form of

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