Aelius Aristides 13, Panathenaicus

Aelius Aristides, Panathenaicus, translated by James Henry Oliver (1905-1981), from Oliver, J.H., "The Civilizing Power: A Study of the Panathenaic Discourse of Aelius Aristides against the Background of Literature and Cultural Conflict, with Text, Translation, and Commentary" Transactions of the American Philosophical Society, Vol. 58, No. 1 (1968) This text has 428 tagged references to 137 ancient places.
CTS URN: urn:cts:greekLit:tlg0284.tlg013; Wikidata ID: Q87771452; Trismegistos: authorwork/584     [Open Greek text in new tab]

§ 91  It is an ancient custom among the Hellenes, and, I think, even among the barbarians for the most part, to repay foster-parents with all possible gratitude. And whom anyone could consider foster- parents prior to you, oh men of Athens, provided he seems to belong in some way to the Hellenes, it is not easy to find, at least in my opinion. For of this training which has become customary and common to us all, anyone would immediately find that it is you especially who are name-givers and providers, if he studies it from the beginning. Hence it can be said that for various ones among us there are various foster-fathers, whomever fortune and coincidence might prepare as teachers in each case, but that as common foster-parents who are teachers of all, you are both alone and prior to the very teachers themselves, exactly like those whom the poets call fathers of fathers.

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§ 92  That alone was enough for good will from all sides to be yours by natural right.
[2] Not but what everyone knows that the training which I had in mind, the truly pure training that pre-eminently produces a man, the training in disciplines and in arts of discourse, had its beginning in all cases from you. In focusing attention thereon I was merely establishing my right to speak concerning it, for who is so out of touch with these things as not to know? Accordingly, it is fitting to bring here the discourse concerning these things and so to honor the city with the honor due to her. It has come about that the other expressions of gratitude are, though just, yet not in keeping with the circumstances, while this alone can be called genuine thanks for the benefaction, the thanks that in a discourse are offered for Discourse, for they not only establish their right by means of themselves, but bear out the impression that the name of logos for a discourse was originally derived from the Logos which is Reason, because only this kind of thanks is reasonable.
[3] But, sirs, you who are now listening to the words of my discourse and who will be with me for a while, let none of you condemn for rashness or simplicity the whole attempt because we have undertaken so great a trial without putting forward a pretense inferior to the subject and without exhibiting fear of the many difficulties which adhere to the subject. For, above all, if this is worthy of censure, orations have been addressed even to the gods, and we at least have not begged to be excused from even these acts of audacity. Secondly, it has hardly escaped me that the subject requires work, is difficult to cover, and has many extensions. Without great and splendid luck it would be impossible to view all these synoptically, to distinguish them individually, and to bring them to complete expression. Many, moreover, are the professions of those who have discoursed on these matters and have borrowed your ears before! We come after them and have a harder time to discover what we shall avoid than what we shall use. Various ones have treated various aspects with elegance and detail,

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§ 93  so that the things that have been left aside by each of them have actually been covered completely by all of them together. So it happens that for him who makes the last trial it becomes a double contest both separately against each and jointly against all.
[4] Yes, but what alone has impelled me to this discourse is the very fact that because the city is so superior in so many important ways and because there is no area which she had failed to render fruitful for those who wish to honor her with praise, no one up to this day ever yet addressed himself to all phases or mustered the courage to do so. Some who in poetry sing the praises of the city's ancient history and of her partnership with the gods do the best they can with these; others who narrate the occasional wars against Hellenes or Barbarians cover only parts; some recount the story of the civic constitution; others in funeral orations have celebrated some of those who died. But even among these there are those who did not enumerate the deeds in the traditional manner but turned aside, showing themselves, as it seems to me, afraid of proving unequal to the subject. The fear they conceived was not, I suppose, unpardonable, but in it they fell far short of achieving, in their entirety at least, an account of the glories belonging to the city. And, in fact, some extol her wisdom, some list her colonies, others again sing of her openness to all and her love of man; and they do so, some by making this material an ingredient of their compositions on other subjects, some by citing it merely from memory as they happen to think of it. One might almost say simply that all men in their own intention or within their own power have delivered their measure of homage to the city, not in proportion to what the city or the circumstances have deserved, but, as if it were a vast ocean which offered no boundaries

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§ 94  to the eye, each admires as much as he can see. The result has been rather paradoxical: there is such a superabundance of themes in which the city is entitled to honor and glory that, if a man mentions ever so small a part of her share, he will not completely fail. It is surely not fair, when this is the only cause of my boldness and the reason why a need arose for the discourse I now deliver, to charge this responsibility of mine with that responsibility which bears the name of blame.
[5] Then, if among many great and fine advantages which have to such a degree exalted the city- and they are not just many but difficult or impossible to enumerate-if one of these had not been the blessing of her traditions of Discourse, it would not perhaps be proper to run the risk but better to leave the record of her glory just as it was. But actually, just as she has been a leader in everything else for the Hellenes, and, I think, even for mankind in general, so it is well known that she has been first too in the forms of Discourse. Hence we are not engaged in an undertaking foreign to the scene and purpose; and we have not chosen a path which leads elsewhere, but one which leads directly to the city and to her Athenians; and we do not fail to maintain the city's tradition, but we repay some one of the city's gifts in so far as it is granted to us.
[6] It has been said by many on many occasions that it is not easy to find a suitable beginning, but it is I alone, I think, who really need this plea. For, as it happens, even the beginning involves more than is plainly visible and readily comprehensible, not only because oldest of those within memory is this city,

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§ 95  but also because many as in a circle are the starting points which the case temptingly offers. It is, I suppose, impossible to treat them all together, and it is not easy to decide which starting point will prevail as the beginning for all the others. Various things for various reasons, at least superficially, have an apparent claim to be appropriately called first.
[7] To begin with, I shall take as a basis that which I assume to be the most advantageous of all and upon which I think I would make no mistake in establishing the whole speech. Right or wrong, the plan is one in which it is possible for all to join. If I seem at some points to be conducting the oration as if it were about my own city and as if I myself participated in her blessings, this will not, I think, bring shame even to you. We shall show then that the nature of the terrain befits the nature of the men and that it is not suitable for the land to belong to others, nor has it belonged to others; it will appear that the inhabitants, worthy of nothing less than this very land, never left it but remained where they were. Both of these theses can be judged by the spectacle of the present and by the record of the past. Those who in each generation administered this land brought forth clear and admirable signs of their own justice in every exercise of power. For on the one hand they displayed, in the forbearance of their behavior and in their courteous association with others, that which one could well call a love of man and they left to no others an opportunity of appearing equally urbane; while, conversely, in the badly needed aid they supplied and in the dangers they faced they had taken their place as a rampart for the Hellenes.
[8] As you survey the country from the land and from the Aegean, her character is as follows.

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§ 96  She serves as a watchtower for the land of the Hellenes, because she holds the post that comes to her as first toward the rising sun as she reaches forward in a long projection into the sea; and it is quite clear that, by the powers above, this country has been made a bulwark of Hellas and that for her alone it is natural to have the hegemony of the Hellenes.
[9] Then she produces, as it were, a symbol too of her love of man. She advances to a very great distance into the Aegean, calming the waters. She mingles with the islands to become one of the most charming sights, a continent among islands, further out in the water than some of them, first to extend, as it were, a welcoming hand to those from the sea and offering them all kinds of anchorages and harbors in a circle all around her, moreover with some shores here and some there on various arms of the sea and of the land and with crossings to the adjacent islands which are as near as the islands to each other. Hence when men sail by Attica and when they sail around it and when they traverse it afoot and when they are still on the high seas, they can choose their direction, as it were, with the wind and please themselves.
[10] On all sides there is variety in the Cyclades and Sporades which lie off the coast around Attica as if the sea had deliberately placed them at the city's disposal to be her suburbs. They always seem to form a constellation and their own beauty and perfection of pattern have turned out to be the city's beauty and perfection of pattern. A poet might say that like a monumental entrance serving a palace and like stars enclosing the moon, they themselves gain more than they contribute-from the proximity, I mean. Therefore, one might say that rule over these isles came properly to this city alone

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§ 97  and that it was a genuine hegemony over the Hellenic isles. The hegemony of the others who moved into the sea was spurious; they were in a sense suppostitious heirs who in claiming the islands did not lay hands on property of their own ancestors but exploited an irrationality of Fortune to seize it. Which fact soon drove them out again.
[11] While this is the form, this the location which the country has, it is not easy to say with how much calm, delight, and comfort the travelers land who visit her for knowledge or for business, except as one might cite the travelers themselves as evidence. For, all in all, the soul is cleansed in preparation and becomes exalted and buoyant and exceedingly expectant at the sight of Athens, just as at a preliminary initiation in sacred rites. It is distinguishable even to the eye that the light there becomes more than the ordinary atmosphere, for in a deeper sense Athena, as Homer said, already removes the great mist from the eyes of the visitors while they are still approaching land. Accordingly, the sights are like a happy dream, and you might appear to be executing a joyful dance rather than completing a journey. All kinds of beauty-and what beauty it is!-on each occasion surround the ship on all sides and guide it cheerfully to Attica.
[12] As the landmarks come to the eye, so too the stories which one cannot disbelieve come to mind. Zoster of Attica! The time has not quite arrived to speak about the part of the gods, but there Leto loosened her zone and gave the place its name. Traveling from the tip of Attica ever toward the East under the guidance of Athena Foresight [Pronoia], she lighted upon the islands and put in to Delos and now bore her divine children,

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§ 98  Artemis and Apollo who is ancestral to the city. The islands! It was through them that the military expedition which first crossed from Asia against the Hellenes approached to land at Marathon, whither fortunately it was forced to go by the nature of the terrain, to pay a well-deserved penalty for the injury to Hellas it intended.
[13] Thus, the land, though situated where Hellas begins, is none the less in the middle of all Hellas. Wherever one leaves Attica, the most famous races of Hellas are just over the border, and as its own territory lies before a city, so all Hellas lies before Attica. Therefore, it is she alone who purely represents the Hellenes and to the barbarians remains most alien. For as different as she is in the nature of her terrain, she is equally removed in the manners of her men. There is no intervening river for her to share with another; there is no border country which, though dividing the land, produces an intermingling. From every extremity as to a device in the center of a shield, the signs of Hellas point to this region, and in the circles which encompass her land the environs on all sides are Hellenic, some from out of the sea, some from up on the continent, surrounding, as is natural, the nation's common hearth.
[14] To such a degree has she avoided the uncongenial atmosphere of barbarism that even on the opposite continent she protected herself with another Hellas, her colony, which now stands very far removed from the barbarians. It is as if the city had been appointed to oppose this species as its natural enemy. As a result she has never failed to display in her works her innocent, pure and uncorrupted spirit, and as a linguistic model for the whole Hellenic world she has introduced an unadulterated, pure and flawless idiom.

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§ 99  [15] Her land has the same position in Hellas that her city has in the land; it lies in the center of a center, inclining toward the sea, enough to let it be known to whom the harbors belong. A third center, in succession to these, rises like a tower from the middle of the city; it is the ancient polis, now the Acropolis, like a mountain peak, not intended to be an extremity of the city but for the rest of the city to be a body, as it were, all around it, where the high point and the center have coincided. This beauty already visible throughout is also the final mark of the city's perfect situation. For, as in the case of a shield where circles fall within circles, there is a fifth, fairest of all, which constitutes the central boss, if indeed Hellas lies in the middle of the whole earth, Attica in that of Hellas, in that of the country the polis, again in that of the polis the Polis.
[16] But in leading us here the discussion has led us astray by adhering closely to whatever thoughts arose at each point. We must return again to the country and give her faithfully the honor that is her due, because in describing her character from the standpoint of land and sea, we tried to avoid in as many ways as we reasonably could both a long account and the omission of those things which it would have been too bad not to mention.
[17] However, the air overhead, which she has received as her portion, with its temperate climate is so exactly right that if it were possible to speak in a manner suitable to the subject, it would be highly desirable to do so. For she is equally removed from all forms of bad weather, and while sharing in the blessings of every elementary force, she has escaped the discomforts which attach to each. It is possible to draw such inferences not only because of the seasonal fruits which here outgrow the seasons claiming them and continue throughout a great portion of the whole year, but also because of the deviation as with a guideline.

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§ 100  [18] For in proportion to the distance one gets from the city by movement in this direction or in that, he meets with heat or cold in excess of what is desirable. Hence the city is surpassed in this alone, where to surpass is unpleasant and where to be surpassed is more profitable. So great is the plenty of her good fortune that among all colonies it is her offspring, the cities occupying the Ionia of the present, who seem to be most temperate in climate, as if the climate were another thing they had inherited of their family wealth.
[19] Accordingly one must not say that this or that place is in the northern part of the country and that other places are in the south, and again in respect to the two other quarters likewise. Yet without the accessory phrase "of the country" one may rule that the regions beyond her on one side are north and on the other side are south, oh yes! One may define what lies up or down as east or west. But she herself, it might be said, truly becoming a province of Athena and a proper site for the latter's works and pupils, is, as it were, a meeting ground, a kind of common terrain, where all the sectors merge, one might almost say, immediately below the acropolis of heaven and the realm of Zeus. For of all the air the earth around, there is none so far removed in its nature from what is earthly and more assimilated to celestial ether.
[20] To this perfection of land, sea, and air, then, they arranged Attica, the Artisans who had these tasks of creation. Upon these blessings, which are of such enormous advantage, there follow others, as it is very easy to illustrate. There are plains which have a beautiful grace. Some lie spreading out before the city right from its walls, or rather spreading out from the Acropolis and blending with the city. Others are strung along the coast of each sea, and in the Mesogaea still others, divided by the mountains which contain them like [successive] boundary walls, appear in a form suggesting certain inlets of the sea.

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§ 101  [21] Again there is the cheerful grace of her mountains. Who could help admiring them, when they have such an abundance of beauty that they themselves beautify the cities? For in her mountains there lies a seed of grace, the means to express gracefully man's gratitude toward the gods. This, which it is right for her to have since she is herself a work of gods, the country exhibits among the first of her possessions. And so it is through nature that she produces the grace of art. She has in them a favor of nature, the material most suitable for achieving beauty in temples and statues of gods, so that she might be twice a leader in all this, because it was here that all these things in the law and custom of human conventions had their beginning, and because the material used for these adornments is material that the city has obtained from her own estate.
[22] Ah, but I do not know what subject to select. It occurs to me to illustrate also section by section what the country has to offer. For instance, not lowland throughout nor entirely highland, it has been formed to offer the advantages of each in turn and has been given variety so that one might rightly say that its advantages are those of a complete country which preserves, as it were, a faithful image of all the inhabitable world.
[23] Moreover, there are, it is true, other places one could mention where sea and land have been yoked together in the harbors and cooperate harmoniously, and where the fields and mountains wed with the aid of spring and achieve a grace; nevertheless, these things have never happened elsewhere as they do here, I think. Here also are the veins of silver to be seen which permeate like moisture all the mountainous terrain, in order that no part might be useless and that there might be nowhere unprofitable ground in Attica, but the land here unsown might surpass the good land of others. And how fitting it was that this means of traveling the road of independence and noble aspirations had been prepared for the city! Not only this, but never damaging streams of everflowing rivers and abundant springs and a harvest of all crops,

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§ 102  of which the cultivated fruit, here most highly perfected of all, is, as everyone knows, [the] fairest of those anywhere.
[24] But this is like praising a banquet for what is only its dessert. But I shall now discuss the country's product and special glory which is most her own and which in one form presents her whole contribution. One beginning of my discourse has now returned to another beginning.
[25] Other countries glory in elephants and lions, some in horses and dogs, some in animals which frighten the children who hear about them. Your country glories in the most noble of creatures on earth, more worthy of mention than the winged ants of India. For she first produced man, and she is a first home of man; and what the whole earth is to all terrestrial creatures is what she has proved to be to the race of men, a mother who also nurtured them all and started them growing as they should, an area set apart from every land for men to have as their own like the special estates which are set apart in sacred precincts.
[26] Therefore men she produced were in all respects superior and have come furthest in developing excellence, inasmuch as the crop of men was native to her and not alien. It was not after they had finished a period of wandering, nor when, as in darkness, they were seeking a home through every land and over every sea, that they occupied this soil, nor did they do so in violation of the name it bore under the guidance of two misfortunes, after yielding to those who were stronger than they and driving out those who were weaker. On the contrary, like water rising out of springs, their race, itself from itself taking its origin, arose from the bosom of the earth, and only in this land do aliens and citizens appear clearly distinguished.
[27] The rest of mankind hold their estates like seats which they have occupied in the theater. They do not keep the others away from their land because the land belongs more to them

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§ 103  but because they preceded the others in taking the land, and they apply the name "aliens" to those who came second without realizing that all are aliens in the same sense, rather that they themselves are first aliens who differ from the naturalized aliens whom they in their turn admit, in that without having been judged worthy of citizenship but having forced their way in, they pretended it was their fatherland, using, as in a dearth of weapons, whatever they saw. You alone have the right to boast of pure birth and citizenship.
[28] Though these are two distinct titles, each of the two has validity for this land on account of the other, as is meet. Some here are subject to the designation "aliens" because the others are genuine citizens, while the citizens vindicate their title by having an ancestry unadulterated with aliens from the beginning. Therefore, it is you alone against whom no one at all could enter, if the phrase is permissible, a suit for ejectment from the land, any more than against a man for ejectment from his mother's property.
[29] Moreover, only those naturalized here are not ridiculous, because you who assigned the honor to the others by law were all of you citizens of the country by descent. It could well be that the majority of the others admit spurious sons, being spurious sons themselves, because in the course of time they corrupted their original stock by living together with the whole world as in a tenement house. Periodically the last of all upon moving in call the house their own. It seems to me that one could be excused for saying that the rest of mankind inhabit their cities like camps, having settled down on the sites they had occupied. Only the children of this land have in their city a real city, and she alone of cities, or among very few, affords them justly an unchangeable city hearth.
[30] Since there is a flood of topics, each demanding special attention in my speech, I choose to present next that which comes second

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§ 104  in their development and confirms the previous argument. After producing her men, the land trained them and prepared their sustenance, performing a mother's tasks, and she did not neglect them as if they had to have a stranger for their nurse, but out of the same bosom she continuously gave the second gifts.
[31] And there came here a gathering which was in truth a sacred assembly, in behalf of the whole inhabited world, and all offerings were made in rivalry as in the presence of spectators. The earth was eager to produce all, and deities contributing provided, some of them plants, others seeds, others animals, of which the productiveness was to adorn the body of man no less than the animal's own, and to provide the cover they share, which first the animals have for a year and then men for as long as it lasts. Besides these gifts there were arts and crafts which the gods revealed, introducing the use of fire in some cases, in others without fire.
[32] And, in fact, these offerings not only give the city by their number pride in what here both grew and was revealed but present overwhelming corroboration of our first argument, and make it the clearest thing in the world that man set his foot first on this land. And it happens that the same proofs both excel in number and support each other as evidence of the truth. A first generation of men must first have experienced need, and after praying for what they needed, they must have actually received. Again it was impossible for them to receive what they needed unless they were dear to the gods, and to assume that the first deemed worthy of being created were dear to the gods is surely reasonable. Once more the argument returns to a starting-point.
[33] Again, there were probably two reasons why the gods perfected the land's productiveness, first because of requirement, since the men in this country, being first as I have said, found themselves in need, and second because of the honor which was due to the best. When they had thus received the gifts from the gods, they so well imitated the donors that they themselves became

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§ 105  representatives of the gods to the rest of mankind and first gave proof of having obtained their request according to merit by making a proper use of what they had. They did not think that they were doing all that was necessary with the treasure if they buried it, but were so far removed from conceiving fear lest others do equally as well as they, that they actually thought there was no better way to show by how much they surpassed the others than if they should be seen doing good to all.
[34] It seems to me that later Heracles, because he made this city a model for his own life, adopted in favor of all mankind that attitude which has placed him among the gods. The clear sign of this was his friendship for Theseus which entirely surpassed not only the ties of association which they had with others but the ties that any men whatsoever had with each other. Again, in return it was this city which first honored him with divine honors and which alone preserved his sons. But the argument has lifted me like a river in flood and swept me away; it is time to work back to the point from which I strayed.
[35] They now sent in a divine mission over the whole earth today's life-giving resources, a distribution, as it were, of some public fund, for which according to the story they appointed one of the pupils of Demeter. A report prevailed that his chariot had wings because he went everywhere more quickly than hope and for him nothing was hard or inaccessible, but as through the mere air, thus he traveled. It seems to me that they were the first to confirm the saying with action and so prove that favors are in their very nature swift. For in conferring benefits they anticipated the desires of those who needed to receive benefits. A reminder and symbol of that divine mission and of the benefaction to all were the first fruits which used to come here annually from the Hellenes in former times-furthermore, the oracles of the god, in which he designates the city as mother-city of the crops and attests to both facts, that she first had the fruits and that the fruits reached the others from her. She first of all cities instituted today's games and the prize as a consequence of these benefactions, because she had the honor of being entrusted with the gifts.

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§ 106  [36] And indeed it is true that they were, while children of gods, also pupils of gods and were ancestors from whom community life for all men has descended-models who, after such honor as this came to them first from the gods, bequeath for emulation finer things in general to their descendants. Such was their attitude toward the gods who bestowed the gifts and again that was the way they dealt with mankind in general.
[37] With this subject which has ended here we have completely finished. The subjects from here on, like forks in a road, lead in two or more directions. Whether it is possible, while treating each subject in connection with what has been said, to treat it in its turn and to preserve the succession which ties the subjects together is not yet apparent.
[38] It is best perhaps to complete an account first of the city's relations with the gods, and then with this behind us to discourse concerning Athenian excellence in general; further on, what things the Athenians of each successive period accomplished both by themselves and in cooperation with others.
[39] I shall go back a little. Not only in the ways I mention did the gods honor your land, but also in many other important ways. The most important –– it were enough perhaps merely to mention it. Of all the cities under the sun this is the only one for which, in attempts to seize the Acropolis as if to rule alone over the city, they contended whom one might almost call the first of the gods. Of equal importance with this was the second honor, which the gods later offered when they allowed those who at that time possessed the country to form a jury and be their judges, because they thought a verdict given in a court of his or her own favorites delightful for one and supportable for the other in either outcome. When both parties had displayed their seals or symbols, the rush of water and the olive branch, Athena won the case and proved the olive branch to be a symbol of victory. Poseidon withdrew; he did not, however, end his loving care. His and her subsequent behavior afforded no less evidence of the attention and honor which the Athenians enjoyed from both. For she granted to the city superiority in wisdom, while he granted superiority in naval battles, not only over their opponents but over their partners, indeed, I think, beyond any who at any time or place have fought and won battles at sea. But the discussion of these matters comes in a later section.

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§ 107  [40] Upon receiving the support of their ballots, Athena named the city, since it was hers, with the name it has, and as her own property she put it into good condition, amply provided both for peace and for war. First she taught her people arts of discourse and a system of laws and showed them a civic constitution far removed from a government of force. As a result of these advantages all disciplines were discovered, and models on which to pattern ways of living entered into view. Next she instructed them in the use of arms, and it was they whom she first dressed in the equipment with which we now invest her. Besides, she revealed the worth of chariots drawn by race horses or by war horses, and in this land for the first time in human history a complete chariot was yoked with steeds by the attendant of this goddess and with the help of the goddess, and the art of perfect horsemanship was shown to all.
[41] In addition, various dances and mystic rites and festivals came to prevail through visits from various deities. For the gifts from the gods kept pace with the honors for the gods, who gave, and received from those to whom they gave, the proper share for each side.
[42] Not only for the city did gods dispute with one another, but here in the city they actually sought adjudications of their disputes with one another; they were thereby drawing the attention of all men towards the city from all sides, and like those who teach children by example they were deliberately depositing in her keeping precedents and models of all procedure, in order that, just as it goes well with the pupils when their teachers in all subjects are best, so men too might turn out complete in respect to the development of their potential excellence by following the right models, and in order that the seeds which came to them from gods, might be the seeds, not only of wheat and barley, but also of justice and of civilized life in general. Poseidon was granted the action concerning his son against Ares and won it in a court of all the gods; the site received therefrom its present name, which itself was a symbol both of the event that had occurred and of justice, some general attestation and guarantee, as it were, to mankind.
[43] For it is not possible to find anything superior to the Areopagus, if one were looking for an unsurpassable example. But just as all the waters and exhalations which are mantic rise always from the same place,

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§ 108  so this locality too is apparently one which "sends up," as they say of a mantic source, the clear knowledge, as close as possible to that among the gods, of what is just. From all parties the deference with which it has been honored is so great that those who lose their case are equally as satisfied as those who have prevailed, while all magistrates, councils, and the other organs of government, and, last but not least, the Demos, before the decisions of the court at this place are all mere private citizens in the way they yield. On this one site alone, I suppose, change has not fastened in the case of human institutions. It has been left as an assembly place for the gods and for those who have had the duty since that time, and all, considering it a model of justice, honor it accordingly in awe of the gods.
[44] There occurred another trial later, with the parties differing from each other in status. This too was for the jurors a strange trial, in which an unhappy man of the house of Pelops stood against the dread deities who now dwell beside the spot where he took refuge and made, as it were, an appeal to the city in the thought that here, if anywhere, existed the philanthropy which was not unjust and, obtaining the support of the goddess, rid himself of the furies.
[45] Well then, concerning their origin and nurture and the honor from the gods, and the gifts which they themselves received and distributed to the rest, an account has now been given, inferior perhaps to what actually happened, but not more inadequate than were the accounts given by our predecessors. Now, when all sorts of topics suggest themselves, it is perhaps in keeping to treat subjects of which a partial description has been included in the discussion that has occurred, namely the extent and quality of the overflowing philanthropy they showed to all, and the way in which they worked as a city for the common good of mankind. Here too I shall go back a little.
[46] Just as it did not satisfy the gods to show their good will to the city in some single way, so those ancient Athenians did not deem it enough to impart to mankind the use of grain but continued methodically increasing their gift to society, as those who plant a field do more than plant seeds. A very great benefaction of theirs, very important for the community of Hellas, was the kind and consoling reception of those from everywhere who were unfortunate.
[47] In brief, there is no branch of the Hellenic race which has not experienced this help from the city and has not at times been homeless,

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§ 109  but both as cities and nations and as individuals too, more or less the most distinguished, they have come to her and taken refuge. It is quite impossible to recall them all in the first place and then to give an account commensurate with the story, so that not only do I make no list of those who migrated privately but I make no list of those who came in groups in the course of disaster. On the other hand, it is possible to narrate cases which among those of antiquity were most highly esteemed and especially the case of Heracles, inasmuch as it was a precedent for the many later.
[48] When Heracles departed from life among men, it was this city which first established today's temples and altars, just as previously she had honored him at the Mysteries, first of foreigners to be initiated. From that time on he has continued to be and to seem a god. Not only for those considered the oldest of the gods did she inaugurate honors, outstanding honors at that, beyond all who followed her example, but when the gods admitted the strangers, this city did too, living, as she did, in communion with the gods. For as soon as they were receptive, it came at once to her attention, and she revealed it in proclamations to the rest of mankind. Accordingly she proved that the Thebans, in whose land he was born, had little connection with him, likewise any others who as kinsmen had a claim upon his memory. For she alone saw what he deserved. To him, then, she has given in recognition this free gift, because of which one might justly describe all that Heracles received from the rest of mankind as so many favors of this city. For all the rest merely followed her example when they accorded him his due.
[49] When Eurystheus, on the other hand, drove from the Peloponnese the sons of Heracles and added another mistake, more important and more terrible, the proclamation that not a single one of the other cities was to receive them, and made the most extreme threats, all the others, though they were indignant, found themselves unable to aid. But this city received them, she alone of all hating the threats more than she feared them, and the protection which Heracles provided for all men she preserved for his sons, a contribution, as it were, to a fund raised by friends. She had good reason. Heracles she had helped in the greatest part of his labors by means of Theseus,

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§ 110  and she had long considered him an ally, ever since she had seen him thinking her own thoughts.
[50] While the work she now accomplished with the sons of Heracles and in their behalf is a story which must be told in another part of the speech, she did indeed look after their interests, and her guardianship was so brilliant that their misfortune became an advantage to them. She not only dispelled their feeling that they were orphans, when she assumed for them the role of their father, but she regarded them as traditionally benefactors of mankind and honored them accordingly by granting them four towns to possess of those then existing in her land and by initiating in their case a raising of children at public expense when the father was a benefactor, not unlike the custom she later adopted of raising children whose fathers had died in war. And of course she obtained for herself the reward which her pains deserved, for she found them worthy of the start she had given them.
[51] The voyage they made in taking refuge here became a common experience later of all the exiles; rather, the majority of the earlier exiles anticipated even the Heraclids in fleeing here. For the city made herself available to all those in need, right from the start. It seemed to all the Hellenes-and what they believed was true-that they were moored with two anchors, in that as members of separate cities they named their own fatherlands of origin, while they named this city as a fatherland common to them all, and to their first home they virtually assigned second place, while to their later home they gave precedence. For as they thought about it correctly on the basis of what they had actually experienced, they decided that this city was more secure and more advantageous for them by as much as it was more unassailable and really sacred. This was the case of those who met disaster at Thebes and were banished together from all Boeotia. This was the case of others, the routed Thessalians who took refuge here, and the Tanagraeans who migrated when they were driven out by men who themselves had withdrawn in face of the Dorians who conquered the Peloponnese. All these refugees made up Ionia.

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§ 111  [52] She acted in the same way toward those from both shores, both the western and the eastern. For she received with a welcome the latter as well as the former in their hour of need. Some races now who were quite outside the ranks of Hellas were fleeing to her for refuge and she took them in, the Dryopians and the Pelasgians for example, traces of whose rescue survive to this very day, for the names of places named after them attest at the same time to their residence and to their rescue. Thus of old she gave herself to all, and she continuously maintained this attitude as a rule of conduct. In all the crises of Hellenic history through which she passed she kept her gates open a little for those who as a result of wars or even through civil dissension or through some other chance were going into exile, for she ever called to them from afar to rest assured that no Hellene would be a man without a city as long as there remained the city of the Athenians, but that those in trouble would have a change of home.
[53] For instance, when one of the three divisions in the Peloponnese was destroyed, that of the Messenians, she alone saved their remnants, for she received them and then looked around for places where they were to settle. And if today there are Messenians, it is because of this city. Again, when the disaster by Boeotia occurred and the city which had once made her territory available to the Hellenes for victory suffered most unexpected and undeserved destruction, none relieved her with a memory equal to her service; but while as far as the others were concerned, the breed of Plataea was extinct, this city with her characteristic nobility raised them again from their misfortune by decreeing Athenian citizenship to replace the Plataean and by preserving for the site its commemoration, as was meet for her to do who at that time was the common protectress of all. Those who had lost their estates there she reimbursed. On another occasion, moreover, when the Thebans were being maltreated by the Laconian garrison, she supported the Demos, and the exiles lived like Athenians during this period, until with the help of Athens they were destined once again to recover their own land. Once again, when the Plataeans were expelled from their homes and the Thespiaeans along with them, she received them and all who belonged to them. And on another occasion the Thebans

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§ 112  in circumstances of the most extreme misfortune, and before the latter the people of the Thraceward region who had fared badly, all who remained of two and thirty cities, those from Corinth, Thasos, Byzantium, and everywhere else –– who could enumerate them all? For it is not easy, I think, to enumerate even those from the islands alone.
[54] She alone, one might almost say, has always been engaged in competition with those changes for the worse which are the fortune of all and in an effort to turn the disasters of all into benefits for them. And so she has reversed the proverb. She has shown that she does not keep out of the way of a friend who has been unfortunate, but that many even of those with whom she was previously at odds she has in their adversity adopted as friends. She has not regulated her generosity by Fortune associating with them in their prosperity and disdaining them as soon as they had trouble, but has made their occasions of misfortune occasions of good fortune, in that she gave her own blessings to the many and made them partners in things which they never even dreamed of acquiring when they were most prosperous. As a result, each at every moment of need saw one road of escape, this one leading here. And so, being most venerable among the cities of Hellas, more because of the reception she gives to those from everywhere than because of the precedence she has acquired by age, she is for the nation, as it were, a home and common hearth. And her loyal service to all she showed not only in the forces she herself sent out from herself but in the offer of land to those who were taking refuge with her from outside and in the admission of all as a part of herself.
[55] One, then, is this, of the type and importance indicated, a form of benefaction, in keeping with those which had first been placed at her disposal (by the gods). Another there is which in the time of its action comes next and which in importance is not inferior. She took as her partner him who is the common exegete of the Hellenes but for her an ancestral deity, the Pythian Apollo, and then she led out to all parts of the earth the Hellenic race, establishing the protection which at the same time was itself an increase for the nation.
[56] And so first she cleaned the adjacent sea, though this I mention first does not seem to be the first in rank among her achievements. And an eyesore of Hellas, as it were,

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§ 113  she took away when she displaced the troublemakers at her front door-I mean all the pirates and barbarians-and compelled them to remove as far as possible from the Hellenic shore and its ports of entry. As a result the islands which curve around her were securely settled, and it became possible to take an Aegean cruise through the most civilized waters, in some areas passing groups of two or three cities of one island as on a mainland. Such were the fine conditions she established on the sea.
[57] In addition to these achievements, she colonized the islands which lie off the Peloponnese, making the regions of the West her own special concern and holding back the barbarian flood from all directions as with barriers. When she had established its protection on both sides so that Hellas was defended all around as if with closable harbors, she now crossed the sea even to foreign soil and transported to Asia the settlers who formed her many great colonies. In the thought that the earth was naturally one and that the lands beyond the confines of Hellas were not distinct, she knit the earth together until she established, if it is permissible to say so, the Asian counterpart facing the old Hellas. In so doing, she increased by a great portion the possessions of the Hellenes and planned for the safety of all, as time showed, with great foresight. Moreover, she thus bestowed upon each of the two branches of the Hellenic family a most beautiful world of order to live in, not only because their country was spacious and favorably located, but also because she demonstrated how many and how fine are the blessings of which concord is the cause.
[58] Since this country, being such as I have said, was an underlying support like a stone foundation or a living root, the colonies of the Hellenes went forth, in fact over every land now. For after they had been sent out to Ionia and had made good, there came a yearning upon them, a desire to imitate the pattern set by the mother-city. And so they divided the land of the Mediterranean world among them and settled upon it, extending the measure of Hellas to some other mark, as it were, until they had filled the whole basin. Even now, at both ends of our world there dwell children of your children, for some have moved all the way to Gades from Massalia, while others have taken possession of allotments along the Tanais and Lake Maeotis.

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§ 114  Consequently I have to laugh as I hear the many other much larger cities of today vying with each other in their adornments and priding themselves on what they think are glories, when I find in my observation that by your city an orderly whole had been created on land and sea without them for all their size and importance.
[59] I wish to go back a little and show in specific cases the consistency of the policy which the city has followed in respect to the Hellenic world, and to show that it is impossible to apply a better term than the one I have just pronounced, consistency. When the children of Heracles needed assistance, it was she alone who provided it and gave them a share in all things, at once outstripping their want with the nobility of her great spirit. On the other hand, since it was fated for the Peloponnese to become Dorian, she joined the god in effecting their restoration, but when the return of the Heraclids had occurred and a revolution took place in the Peloponnese, again she received the element ejected. On this occasion the affairs of her previous suppliants were secure, while others in turn had changed into the latter's garb.
[60] After she had already received any and all men and had bestowed gifts of land and a share in laws and civic life, she determined to use this surplus population in the interests of Hellas and to employ the many cities which had taken refuge with her as a nucleus for the foundation of many great cities abroad. And indeed how could the policies which she adopted for those who placed themselves in her hands have been of greater philanthropy and distinction than if she first gave them a share in her own land and citizenship, then helped to prepare them for the acquisition of other land and citizenship, feeling much the same obligation to welcome the needy to her own and to champion them in the land of others, and never failed to do what was proper in the crises of both situations? When they were weak, she relieved them of their fear and raised them out of the troubles overwhelming them; but when they had later fared better than in adversity, then and then only she mustered them and sent them forth, appointing leaders for them individually, inasmuch as she herself had become a common leader and protector of them all, and she joined with them people of her own.
[61] One would find these things consistent not only in what actually was done but even in their intention. Just as she received and then restored the earlier suppliants, the Heraclids I mentioned,

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§ 115  so she first received and then later led out to a new home those who came after them, earning in each of the two cases credit for a double instead of a single benefaction. And since the city's concern for the Hellenes appears in the way I described from first to last on all occasions, it resembles a fixed policy being maintained consistently over a long uninterrupted period.
[62] Again in respect to the reception of exiles, even if this is undeniably a sign of a love felt for all, still one just might say it was only those who experienced this fortune whom she aided. But what she did in the preparation of colonizing expeditions was a community gain of the Hellenes, not just a gain of those who went away. For actually the Hellenes received the increment of many great cities and lands and powers into their community, as a result of which they became much stronger. Accordingly I maintain that the city has a claim on the gratitude of the Hellenes more for the dispatch of expeditions from herself than for the admission of those who begged to be admitted. And in consequence, it has happened that only the people here have a good reputation even through their contrarities. For the same who are most ancient of all the Hellenes count also as youthful Hellenes, old but also young as men describe Dionysus. Having immigrated from nowhere but having sprung from the land itself, they received those from everywhere who needed a city. And again having received men from everywhere. they have also sent men everywhere, maintaining also here the proper course as these situations arose one after the other. Old but also young. For it is the oldest whose descendants are likely to be most numerous, and the reception of those who ask for protection devolves upon the stronger rather than any others. And again it was in keeping with the original distribution of grain to send out swarms of colonists in all directions and to settle the land. Was it not undeniably so, especially when all now had the power to work and to earn the necessities of life more easily because of resources?
[63] Next comes that part of the speech for which, I suspect, many have long been waiting, the record of her deeds in the dangers of war. They are, I fear, even more perilous for the speaker to put into words than the actual labors were for the city when she was toiling. Still it is necessary to come to grips with these also,

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§ 116  for two reasons: first, because after having recalled sufficiently the blessings of her peace and the means by which she formed our way of life, it would, I suppose, be meet not to leave unmentioned either those exploits which she performed in different circumstances, especially when her exploits in war are more numerous than those of all the others together, and more important than all those we have in the traditions of the others; secondly, because the examination of what the city accomplished in her wars tallies with the account we have just finished of her philanthropy toward all. So once again a beginning has come to us out of an ending.
[64] Now one would more or less find that the colonies also have a place in this part of our argument. Even they, I suppose, did not come into existence without great risks and struggles in which they everywhere prevailed. But I shall go back to where I stopped.
[65] In truth, it is not only by the special grants with which she took care of those who came to her for refuge, protected them, and so forth, nor by the increments with which, in the ways we have said, she increased the Hellenic world, it is not only in these ways that the city has displayed to us clear samples of the excellence and greatness of spirit which mark her dealings with all. Rather, there is no risk or trial of strength she hesitated to undergo when there was a call. On the contrary, she proved herself better for her suppliants than the champion they wished her to be.
[66] Let the incidents with which a little while ago we began an examination of her perfect philanthropy be for us now a starting point of her concern for others in the trials of courage. How great was the superiority of might which Eurystheus and the Peloponnesians had, when in defense of the Heraclids she resisted them, and how she reversed the situation! No city, no hero, no group at all of those among the Hellenes resisted him. This man who had such an excess of insolence that he included both the children of Heracles and the cities in the threats he was uttering, threats of what he would do to the children if they were discovered, and to the cities if they accepted them, this man she brought to the point where he himself did not obtain a burial at home. Of the power which Eurystheus had undeservedly enjoyed the city found it possible to make the well-deserved end. Perhaps all this outrageous behavior of his came at a good time, for he relied on his wealth and accepted trial. This matter was adjudicated in Attica, and by saving the suppliants

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§ 117  she set free all the Peloponnese, which was worse off than the children of Heracles in that the latter had not been excluded from taking refuge while the former had been excluded from giving refuge: the former, through the city, obtained a freedom from fear, while the latter had no way of not doing what was ordered.
[67] There is another exploit of the city earlier than these; it occurred in the middle of Boeotia, and is typical of all the other exploits of the city, a work which, as the story is told, the Athenians of that time performed in behalf of the Argives at the request of the suppliants but which in the deeper sense and in the form of the benefaction was accomplished for the good of all the human race. For when they learned that those who had met misfortune beneath the Cadmea had been thrown on the ground and left unburied, the Athenians did not fear the ruthless violence of those who had deliberately committed this outrage nor did they worry as they fought for unfortunates, what kind of intentions for their own victims the latter had in case of victory. Instead, the Athenians by fighting gave to the man of conscience the hope that right would prevail over might and they felt the same indignation as if it had happened to themselves. Thus accepting the request in defense of the universal law, they gave the proper honor to the one side and to the other the punishment that was its due.
[68] And again consider first that for refuge all those in need of aid would, in a manner of speaking, run to this city as fast as their legs could carry them, and would look to none of the other cities. This itself is better than a marble inscription; it is a great and vivid indication that the city was in the lead right from the beginning by a wide margin; and it is evidence of two virtues in her-and they are the noblest-courage and philanthropy-though if you wish, I mean justice instead of philanthropy. All these have become, as it were, heralds announcing her, and have from the very time of the incidents themselves proclaimed publicly that none care for justice more than the Athenians and that none are better at stopping whatever movements occur outside the limits of good behavior, but that the other cities, being in need of Athens, were mere ciphers in Hellas, while Athens, like an acropolis rising among unprotected districts, was truly the same in her performance as in her intentions, being more strongly fortified than those who honored justice, while more equitable than those who had power, or rather, being more exact than those who honored justice, while more powerful than those who [had power] in respect to applying force effectively, so that she surpasses both types on both scores.

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§ 118  [69] Let these incidents, chosen from the earliest traditions, serve as samples of what I meant by a combination of courage and philanthropy. But now for the spirit they exhibited in defense of their own land in the face of aggression on each occasion! Though there is, I suppose, no one unacquainted with them, we must include on our speech also these traditions from which we have made brief selections.
[70] There were the Amazons, who in their exploits went beyond the limitation of nature. With these the Athenians engaged in a cavalry battle and destroyed them totally, whereas there was no opposition to the Amazons until they reached Attica. On the contrary, they had already made the continents equal; having started from a fixed point, the Thermodon, they stretched across Asia as far as Lycia and Caria and Pamphylia as in a camp, across Europe as far as their camp which faced the city. But then and there all their acquisitions slipped back as when a cable breaks; the empire of the Amazons had dissolved and their raiding was finished. So here too the city went to the aid of the common Nature of the All, and now it has become incredible that the Amazons ever existed.
[71] The Thracians too, I imagine, found their disaster quite enough, who still earlier learned a lesson when they had come hither with Eumolpus and their partisans among the Hellenes after making plans as if they were trying to cross the sea on foot.
[72] Here, moreover is a fact worth adding, which has been neglected by the majority of those who deliver the customary oration at the state funerals: Not only the zeal and energy of the city for public service have been so great wherever there was need, but even privately there have appeared at times of disasters certain individuals who were willing to make them occasions for public service, and quite logically, For they saw the spirit in which their fatherland associated with the Hellenes, and they thought that they themselves should assume the same attitude toward the fatherland, when opportunity called. Consequently, as a result both of the public and of the private response the city's whole generosity is doubled. Which is more important than the fact that some of the foreigners became similarly disposed toward her.
[73] It is said, for example, that Erechtheus during the war against Eumolpus gave his daughter to the latter in behalf of the city

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§ 119  after an utterance of the god, and that the mother adorned her and then brought her in as if she were sending her on a religious embassy. It is said that Leos resolved to do as Erechtheus and then gave up his daughters, he too, in the famine. It is said that Codrus during the war against the Dorians and Peloponnesians laid down his own life voluntarily in behalf of the country. Consequently, even those who do have such stories of their own tradition to relate can mention nothing which outdoes the material in your tradition, but even when it comes to such deeds the city shows the way by examples which are just as great and even more numerous, and there remains no possibility of surpassing her record either publicly or privately. Moreover it has not happened that the city, while defeated by the others in absolutely nothing and having prevailed over all the enemies I mentioned, yet in gratitude fell behind those in her ranks who made these sacrifices. On the contrary, it will appear that even over these she has prevailed in benefactions. For in the case of Codrus she granted to him an office for his children to have, and she honored the family both at home and abroad; in the case of the Maidens she established sacred offerings and a sanctuary and with these honors she pronounced them worthy of a divine instead of a mortal destiny; in the case of Erechtheus she recognized his title to a place beside the gods of the Acropolis.
[74] So much for these samples of the philanthropy which the ancestors displayed toward those from outside and of their good courage on their own behalf in times of stress, and again of how the notables and the many treated each other! We must in the same manner, as far as space permits, call also the rest of her history to mind, surveying both the things accomplished in behalf of others and what she endured in defense of her own land, in whatever way may suit the discourse so as not to overstep our time in treating her exploits. As the cases themselves come up, you can as you listen divide them into those that were for the community of Hellas and those that were for the city alone.
[75] If the discourse concerned any other city, it would not be possible to omit exploits which, as it is, will have to be omitted; on the contrary it would have been enough to mention these exploits alone, for they are such as a speaker would have sought and as many would, if they could, give much to have as their own. But in the present situation it is equally hard to select the things one must leave out and to mention worthily those which have won their place, and no one even in a straightforward report of the record has ever yet gone through all the incidents, though concerning this one city all speakers and writers have said very much indeed, nay rather, concerning her alone they have said more almost than about all the other cities.

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§ 120  Given the situation, it is not possible to relate particulars in a way to produce an exact understanding; on the contrary, we are obliged to leave out most particulars, in order to make use of the most important. For who would not have been delighted to present also these, which for others would be enough all by themselves ?
[76] For instance, when three leagues, the most important in Hellas, were attacking the city, the one league, the Dorian, passed sentence of banishment upon itself and went away, but as for the other two, the Boeotians in hand to hand fighting were worsted, and on the same day the Euboeans in Euboea itself, so great was the city's superiority. But in order that I may not use up my time relating many such cases, I shall omit all the intervening material, and in respect to this very matter I shall take further advantage of the city's magnanimity and turn to the main illustrations of the argument themselves. For when the affairs of Hellas and of the Barbarian World were being decided and a small part was fighting against a large part of the earth and it was a struggle for our survival and, at the same time, a test of our excellence, then it was that the city prevailed over both races in an unexpectedly wonderful manner, inasmuch as it was found that the one side proved a small addition to her, while the side that was larger proved inferior by more than it was larger.
[77] Now it is possible to give credit for the whole achievement to one of the gods who was eager to make, as it were, a trial of the men who had joined his company, and to hold this contest, just as we ourselves hold the usual contests. But even so, this city's excellence made a very great contribution. She contributed not only quite within reason but on a scale worthy of her future destiny. She was challenging the Barbarians in order to display both herself and all the Hellenic world, to show what kind she was herself and what kind were those whom she represented. In this way she attracted the Hellenes not by offering them the wrong principle, and not like those who later crossed to Asia, by appealing to a desire

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§ 121  for more than was just, but by resisting the Barbarians immediately at that time and demanding that they pay the penalty for the enslavement of the Hellenes on the mainland of Ionia, whom she alone had received when they were being ruined throughout all Hellas and whom she alone had established on the land they needed.
[78] As first of the Hellenes to do so up to that time Athenians made the march upcountry to Sardis in a joint expedition and sacked the place before departing, whereas until then the Hellenes in their admiration placed Sardis in a class with Babylon and the cities of India. When Darius received this excuse he could not remain still, but set about mobilizing the empire and collecting his forces, and no labor was too much for him. His alleged intention was retaliation upon the Athenians and Eretrians, for he threw in the Eretrians in order to make it credible, I suppose. But in truth there were two motives: one was a fear and suspicion of the city which he now conceived, lest she cease to be satisfied at all; the other was a yearning and longing to increase the empire with a glorious addition, that of the Hellenic world, and to rule the earth, not within limits of its division, but with rule even over the whole. This was by no means too much for him to hope, in view of the numerous nations already enslaved, which he was ambitious to know by name, whereas to traverse them in a march without heavy armor was indeed beyond his hope. For all at that time followed the Persians to war, inasmuch as they were unable to live otherwise. Having, as I said, a reason within himself consisting of his fear and his yearning, he came. That is, he decided not to try to cross personally, he had in mind to send the nations.
[79] First, when the heralds were sent on a tour through Hellas by that King and his successor in quest of earth and water, they would begin with this city, and their negotiations would all be addressed to her. In the letters to Hellas, and in all the frequent orders to the sub-kings nothing but Athens was mentioned, as though it were the same to say Athens as to say Hellas. In fact, it was not just a manner of speaking but an actual situation in which, if one gained control of the Athenians, he had all the cities.

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§ 122  All policies that these latter had to execute or plan concerning their interests as a whole the city would examine, having placed herself in front of the Hellenes right from the start. And now the war was already taking shape in two quarters from the conflict of attitudes in Persia and Athens, the one government threatening and testing, Athens resisting and prevailing immediately in her replies. And so, from both sides came evidence that the war for Hellas was a war between Athenians and Persians, the Persians trying to seize it, the Athenians to hinder them.
[80] In those days, however, deeds were surpassed by words, by which I mean the deeds of others were surpassed by words which emanated from you. A decree better than a trophy won through to everlasting memory, when it won a victory at the same time in word and deed. For in a decision of hands and hand to hand fighting it prevailed immediately, not only in the show of hands when it came up for vote as a bill but also when they laid hands on the messengers and destroyed them. As for the man who interpreted the letter, they granted him a special hearing and count of hands in order that, since he was a Hellene, he might have a distinction in the formality of the trial, but they killed him too on the grounds that it was improper to serve the Barbarians even with his voice. It was actually his special recommendation which effected his ruin, because they deemed it unpardonable for a man from a colony of Athens to act as an interpreter against the interest of Athens and of the Hellenes, for him who was by nature their enemy. And so, since they hurled into the Cleft those who had been sent, others had to report the replies to the King, and it was not granted to him to obtain his information from his own envoys.
[81] The King's excitement was immediately apparent. The fetters which he commanded the subkings to make ready at once he ordered for a larger number than he thought the Athenians to be, so that none of them might go unfettered, and he indulged his anger as far as he could. Upon the multitudes he enjoined various tasks.
[82] After this the heralds no longer visited Greece; the fleet which he was already dispatching would announce itself. He appointed the best of the Persians in command and assigned a multitudinous host, which surpassed on strict adherence to what the narrators individually relate by so much as to constitute the greatest fleet on record. For he did not wish to leave any excuse, either to them or to himself,

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§ 123  for failing to execute the plans concerning which he was issuing orders. These plans were to destroy the city and to carry off to him all the race in the style he had threatened.
[83] To this degree of anger and preparation the King was moved. His men, as they sailed, outroared the Aegean, deprived of sight those they met, and filled the sea with fugitives. Hence, there was no one in those days who wished to live on an island. While they were still at sea and only a short distance from their destination, they decided to offer first-fruits to the King's commands and to sing, as it were, a prelude of the war. And when it was so decided, they made a landing, imitated a fishing by dragnet from a ship, and were off with their catch of Eretrians. The race of Eretria was thus suddenly snatched away, as if abducted by some kind of demon [from the sea], and the King's men moved against their second victim, in the expectation that they would now carry off the Athenians themselves in a raid and take Hellas by storm. For they little knew what kind of quarry they were after, and they failed to realize that they were not abiding by the fable, inasmuch as they were pursuing, not the animals that fled, but rather those who were themselves in the habit of pursuing.
[84] Thus the Persians had started forward and when they were moving toward the mainland like some evil thing or other from the deep, all the Hellenes except one city, though they had long foreseen the invasion which they were then beholding, now sat still in utter dismay, each of them paralyzed as they looked into the future, by the nightmare of the fate of Eretria, and by the thought that they themselves were as close to ruin as the Persian expedition was to them. But not Athens! She more resembled a city organizing a religious procession than one equipping herself for a struggle. She opened all the shrines and convoked the priests of all categories and dispatched missions to the gods in the ancient way, calling upon their aid and placing herself in their trust. However, after she had first honored the divine, nothing else was left undone: as guardians of the sanctuaries and of the town the men over fifty

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§ 124  were left behind; the city's youth went forth.
[85] At first they cast a shadow over the races in those games which offer a crown as prize, because the zeal they displayed was as much more remarkable as the prizes for which they contended were more noble. Afterwards they showed themselves even better in the last laps than when they were leaving their starting gates.
[86] And mark you, when they were halfway on their march, a wind, as it were, from the sea struck them, a mixed shout of horses, men, and of all the rest of the creatures in the baggage for the camp, some of whom had been transported because of usefulness and others for the sake of a Barbarian's entertainment. And when the Athenians had crossed the ridge, they saw those strange and hostile figures everywhere they looked. Bronze and iron from afar forbade them to approach, while the enemy were so contemptuous of the Athenian armament and of their efforts that, to win, the Barbarians thought it enough merely to be seen. For they believed that all would immediately despair and, in the language of prize contests, yield without acquiring the dust of a struggle.
[87] This became among mankind the first public trial organized by a city to match excellence against wealth and to match Hellenic mind against barbarian mass and material preparation, a trial decided not by the speciousness of words but by the proof of deeds and by the requirement of the moment. For they did not let the sight frighten them but used the sight to spur them on, and blenched not at the strangeness of the foe who met their eyes but rejoiced as they saw how many were those over whom they would show their superiority. In this confidence they thought that they had received from fortune an opportunity, as it were, to surpass all mankind in courage and that it was better for them to have this advantage over the great expedition than to have material things to use without stint, and they concluded that they would now be "magnificently entertained" by the Barbarians and in a manner worthy of the excellence which was theirs. For, in fact, steeds, weapons, ships, armlets, collars of twisted metal, hunting dogs, and all sorts of things were gifts of fortune at the disposition of those who proved superior, and all these things were for victory to transfer.
[88] When the [men] individually as well as the generals had said this silently to themselves and expressed it aloud to each other, they began with the gods and their native paean,

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§ 125  and soon they were advancing at a run as the field through which they dashed was unencumbered. They did not give the Barbarians time to see what was happening, but no sooner were their ranks broken than the men were being killed, the horses captured, the ships dragged ashore, the goods collected, and the action turned into a dance of Pan. There was one man now who, though dead and riddled by them with arrows, yet stood erect and terrified the remnants of the Barbarians by seeming to be immortal. As they were being destroyed, the Barbarians, these men who had dared the great crimes and were carrying triumphal monuments in their ships, seemed to the Athenians more numerous even than they had previously. For neither the marsh nor the sea gave them a sufficiently good reception, and therefore there was for the coward no free space or avenue of escape. Then it was perceived that they were veritably a disorderly mass and a very great hindrance to each other. A goodly number was badly defeated, larger than many at first would have dared to resist, so that the streams of blood sufficed to float their ships onto the high sea.
[89] So great did the glory of those men of Athens become, and so great the prestige of their victory, that they made even the locality a kind of symbol of excellence. There is surely no one who upon hearing the name of Marathon fails to be uplifted in his spirit and to greet with at least as much reverence and joy as he accords to the memory of any deed elsewhere the deed which takes its name from here. It happened in fact that Athens was the first of the continental Greeks to run the risk and that she alone sufficed to win the victory, and that of dangers which were her own she made the rewards common to all and that she who was the nurse of Hellas did the opposite of what had become customary. For the law decrees that all those who have raised their children have the right to be maintained by them, but this city, in addition to her foster care and to the gifts she originally gave, assigned to Hellas also freedom along with salvation, in the course of risks which were her own, as if she owed it to the Hellenes to keep on helping them in everything and as if she had so promised their forebears. Hence it is possible to say with reason that while for Athens to honor Zeus Eleutherios, for the deeds accomplished is only fitting,

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§ 126  it is fitting for the other Greeks to honor Athens, and to consider the Demos of the Athenians as the Patron of Freedom for the Hellenes.
[90] In the allotment of destiny by race the battle, it seems to me, was joined to the fortune of the city and belongs to none but the Athenians. For, even if it is a rather enthusiastic way to put it, the battle became for the Hellenes a mother city and starting point, as it were, of all that happened later, not only of the tests they met in their wars but of all their ways of living and habits of thought and purpose, preaccomplished to serve as a foundation or model or, in an all-embracing term, as the seed which produced the Hellenes. If at that time the city had not so excelled, all would have been lost, persons and deeds and traditions and the things which all of this race naturally consider their own. The many wonder at the vast number of the Barbarians the Athenians defeated, but to me it seems that it was over all mankind, not just over those against whom they contended that they could be said to have prevailed, though one must ask others not to take offense and then must say, prevailed not only by becoming the cause of such blessings to all but by so far surpassing in the glory of their own record the glorious record of any others. Hence if not to have an equal share is equivalent to having been made inferior, it is all mankind over whom they have prevailed.
[91] Well then, had I stopped after having selected these matters alone, the argument would, I believe, have gone far enough, and nothing further would be needed to prove that the city gave of herself generously and behaved excellently in respect to those of the same race. She who was the first to produce men, the first to discover a means of livelihood, who nurtured not only her own offspring but all mankind, who as first to do so received the many, many exiles, individually and in whole groups, and then with proper organization dispatched thousands in all directions, and who again during all the time of the battles for survival stood forth as the champion of both sections of the Hellenes, those abroad and those in Old Hellas, has surely-even as one might say of the athletes who make the long run, come the whole way and finished the course. No city, therefore, can be allowed to take precedence over her, when in an assembly of the Hellenes the roll of honor is proclaimed. For ere the others were beginning similar deeds and customs, this city had long preceded.

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§ 127  [92] Yet the acts which reveal her true character do not let me break off but call to me and lead me further into her story, all the more so as events in this part of her story have been examined in a way to produce a more exact understanding. For, in the events which followed, the city so surpassed the performance of all that she outdid herself by as much as she formerly outdid the others.
[93] Before anyone gave the first achievements a worthy tribute, she laid the second achievements there, being, as she was, in emulation with herself. After the outrageous attempt at Marathon had occurred and the Barbarians had been driven from Hellas like a cloud of dust, Darius did not know what he would do, but, like one stricken by a god, he immediately succumbed to the city and blamed those responsible for the expedition for having suggested the Athenians to him, and then he died, before he carried out any second evil deed.
[94] But there was one who went beyond all other kings in his plans and made it impossible for anything afterwards to surprise mankind, Xerxes, son of Darius. He criticized his father severely as having made the attempt with insufficient preparation, and he underrated Athens and the Hellenes in thinking that they would not confront him anywhere. The contest in which he contended was a double contest, to surpass his father and to take vengeance on Athens with his superiority of might; and in doing what no one else had ever done he became so overweening that he decided to make the previous expedition look as if it were child's play.
[95] In my opinion it was not just with his father, that Xerxes at that time placed himself in competition, but with the signs from Zeus also and with all that men never expected to see or hear, since he wished to show that the earth of a certainty belonged to him. For what influx of the sea or what bolt of lightning or what tremors of the earth or what descent of mist or of hail, or what unusual stars did he not treat as things of lesser import ? Or what terrors on land or at sea did he not minimize to those who accompanied him?
[96] First it was impossible to hear his threats without dismay; they carried to the ends of the earth and proclaimed demands for which no example could be found but his alone.

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§ 128  For he used to claim that he was asking nothing that belonged to others but merely first fruits of land and sea, that of all these things he was the lord. There was one way of redeeming the contumacious behavior at Marathon and of averting its consequences, he would say, namely, that they yield to him in these things and join the rest of mankind in recognizing the universal master. Otherwise he would teach them a fine lesson with the help of the gods of his forefathers. For to gods and Xerxes, he said, this seemed good for the empire of Xerxes. He would come, he said, bringing everything, more ships than the Hellenic sea could hold, and with his cavalry and infantry he would cover every inch of Attica and fill the city with the sound of horses; he would burn the sanctuaries and dig up the graves and spare nothing. Besides, he threatened to give them estates on the Atlantic Ocean which would be no honor, and to make them construct a land outside the inhabited earth; he would force them, after they had been mutilated, to pour land into the sea. They could bail out water and dig up stones, because they would still have whatever parts of their bodies were necessary for that work.
[97] He did not merely threaten such unusual and outlandish punishments, worse than the worst fears, and stop there, but by his deeds he caused these threats to fade from memory, though there was something he could not do-I mean, use the city. What land of the interior or what rocky Atlantic coast did he not shake to its foundations? Of the gulfs known to mankind, those, I mean, which turn inward from the external sea, which did he leave untaxed? Not that toward Phasis, not the inner Persian Gulf, not the Red Sea, not the Hyrcanian. For did he not lead them all ? Did he not ransack all the corners of the earth more minutely than Datis searched the land of Eretria? Did he not issue orders for the expedition at the outer reaches of land and sea, gathering his own empire as in a dragnet ? What unrealistic venture was not then set in motion? Or which of the realities was not overlooked? Or what impossibility did not occur? Did not the straits seem to him to differ from rivers only in so much as they did not permit one to drink from them? The everflowing rivers were brought into quite the same condition as the torrents;

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§ 129  rather they were placed in the opposite condition from torrents. Whereas their streams rise when the rainwater comes from Zeus, under Xerxes all ran short.
[98] Neither land nor sea was good enough for him. Not only did all elements give way to satisfy his demand but he changed them into each other. Some land had to be made, other land had to be destroyed, part of the sea had to withdraw, other parts again had to come together for the King. His new sea lasted as long as it took him to cross, and Athos has been left in place of an inscription commemorating the work. It seemed that people were moving and changing virtually everything to suit his fancy. Camels gleaming with gold and silver went the whole distance, long as it was. If he desired shade, there was a golden tree for him as shade. Consequently at night he shone with silver and gold, while in the daytime he produced night as often as he ordered a volley of arrows.
[99] Many of those he led remained in the dark as to where their present location was. Of the tribes along the line of march there was none large enough not to be hidden. Upon becoming ambitious to learn the number of those he led-this too was destined to become possible for him-the altogether fantastic King was obliged to measure in a certain way rather than to count the expedition, and having constructed a walled enclosure for a myriad of men, he actually numbered them by taking their measure.
[100] While he thus went about disturbing everything, and taking whatever he encountered, all the tribes, cities, and clans of Europe cowered, and all those in Asia too, and, in their great fear, they yielded like air in the face of his aggression. Athens, on the other hand, gave contrasting displays of another sort. It was impossible to marvel any more at Xerxes for his arrogance than at Athens for not marveling at anything done by him. When the great tumult burst over the entire earth and when the decision between the two continents occurred in Hellas, Athens resisted, a bulwark and barrier, as it were, because she had begun at the beginning to give samples of what she too could do.

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§ 130  [101] First there were the letters in which the King made trial of Hellas. In these opening skirmishes Athens showed herself superior in pride and so far removed from fright at the assaults of those strange terrors, that she no longer needed a decree for them, but as if one unanimous opinion in respect to Darius already existed, namely for no one to listen to the Barbarians, she did not even grant them a hearing in the Assembly, but annihilated the messengers along with their equipment and finery, and so for the right-thinking Greeks she became the author of their reply.
[102] Secondly, when it was being announced from all sides that a mingling of all things was occurring and that of the Hellenes those furthest away would have an advantage, but that all would be engulfed by the war as by a wave, and that when such great astonishment at the Barbarian paralyzed Hellas that you would have thought it was the advance of some god marching with the rest of mankind against Hellas, Athens was no more discouraged and did not change her mind concerning the decisions she had taken, nor did she scold Hellas for the reply. No, she called the Hellenes together for the common struggle, because she was ashamed, I think, to show herself all alone to the Barbarian, as she did at Marathon. For it was not she who placed in others her hopes for salvation, but all placed in her the hopes they entertained for themselves, those at least who needed equally salvation and freedom. Both sides had their precedent in the previous crisis, and she was searching to find a plan by which she would first disconcert the Barbarian. In fact, she did surpass him by her own miracles. For she packed her people off and changed her residence, and this is the greatest thing of all: with no land anywhere-for it was all occupied-she retired to the sea, and in this act of boldness she gave a counter-performance more sensational than the canal through Mount Athos or the bridge over the Strait and superior to these in intelligence, appearing on the sea and leaving on the land merely her footprint for Xerxes to behold. Hence he did not find the city when he went there; he was not able to obtain it as he expected, though he had it.

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§ 131  Thus he found himself cornered in an inescapable and exceedingly paradoxical situation. Just as Paris, according to the poets, obtained the phantom of Helen, but could not obtain Helen herself, so did Xerxes have the terrain of the city, but never found the city herself, except, of course, that he found her nicely at Artemisium and Salamis and did not endure the sight, which affected him like that of some Gorgon in a myth, but in his terror he feared not only for the rest, but even for his own person, whereas throughout all the previous time he was unaccustomed to fear and had passed his life in causing this to others.
[103] Before undertaking these arguments, I had said that both races were conspicuously defeated by the city, both the Hellenic race and the Barbarian, in that the latter failed in all its aims, while the former was never even close to her. Again just now I said that it was from shame that she brought the Hellenes together, not from need. Now one can actually see by the events that this remark was justified. For to one who examines it on every side she will appear to have so transcendent a record that she might properly be called not the first nor even the one chiefly responsible for the freedom of the Hellenic cities, but the sole accomplisher of everything. First, all would agree that for those so far behind in ships, arms, men, money, and all the equipment of war one sole counter-weight was left and a counter-weight genuinely Hellenic, the ability to plan well, or they were destined to be ignominiously trampled upon like things that rise only a short distance above ground. For not only did the Hellenes not match their adversaries' number, but, if they had been given to the King and so increased his forces, the difference would have been unnoticeable. It cannot be denied that when such was the situation and when all, both wise men and the many too, would thus have cast their ballots in the same verdict, it was this city which provided the man who gave the good advice as to what should be done both concerning themselves and concerning the others, the advice that was destined to save them.

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§ 132  [104] Let us re-examine the result which has followed from this and which in itself offers the proof that applies throughout. No one is so stupid or, when the situation is obvious, so contrary, that he will not agree that at that time the fortunes of the Hellenes depended on their ships, and that this part was an excellent part of their plan. For of those who went forth to Thermopylae and posted themselves at the approaches some did not wait, as it were, for an advancing cloud to reach them, but ignobly wrecked the plan when they were "forced" to flee and to save themselves separately as individuals while the dangers were still in the future. So unlike the battle of Marathon was their imitation! The others who were left could not equal the achievement of the men who fought at Marathon, but they stayed just in order to obey rather than to accomplish anything, and they were overwhelmed and killed, after having brought honor to Hellas by their noble death and having put on a great spectacle. For it was only a spectacle, whereas the Persians, whom all now received, went on through like a torrent.
[105] Now this is an indication of two things: on land it was shown that the city or what those men of hers had accomplished on the previous occasion was not to be matched by any of the Hellenes, rather not to be matched even by all of them together, and their chances at sea were all that were left to the Hellenes. Further, when this was so clear that it left no one the possibility of two opinions, the city distinguished herself to such a degree in naval affairs that we would have blushed for the rest of Hellas. For, first in the number of triremes, the city achieved so brilliant a superiority that if one were to isolate the quality and strength of the Athenian contingent for comparison with the amount of shipping pooled together, one might think that the city's ships were those of the whole coalition, and that the ships of the whole coalition belonged to some one city among the Hellenes. Accordingly, if some god had asked the Hellenes at that time, supposing it were neither necessary nor possible for all the ships to fight, whether they would prefer to have those of all the others or those of the Athenians alone, they would have replied that no choice existed,

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§ 133  but that the only possibility left was for the Athenians to fight for all.
[106] And suppose the god himself again asked them a question. "Do you not admit that in the Athenians you have greater confidence about your future than in yourselves?" There would be no denial, I suspect. For compared with what the Athenians contributed to the coalition it was nothing, not even a fraction; rather, the contribution from the others became a fraction of the city's own. Then again the optimism and daring which the Athenians contributed were so great that their immense superiority in ships was but a small part. They are the only ones of all mankind who endured leaving their own land in order not to look on, while the land of all the rest suffered an enforced depopulation. They are the only ones who, having experienced this, not at the hands of enemies, but at their own, suffered an expulsion from their homes in order to conquer. They suffered, not in defeat at the hands of the opponents; rather what to the rest of mankind seems to be the ultimate among the misfortunes which occur in wars, this they turned into a virtue and deprived Xerxes of his hopes as far as they were concerned, having proved that, even if he occupied the land ten thousand times, even if he searched the homes, even if he pulled all the statues from their bases, he would none the more destroy the dignity of Athens or take from them the pride of being Athenians. No, endless was the task at which he failed, like that of those condemned in Hades!
[107] Well then, who among the Hellenes or, for that matter, who among men will appear, to one who examines closely, to have a manliness more glorious, a courage more illustrious? They moved out of their land in order not to submit to slavery either on land or on sea, having decided that the retention of their belongings was the beginning of slavery and having regarded the loss of what they had as a starting point for future blessings. They saved these, they gave up their own country. Besides, their courage before the dangers and for the dangers was so great and one might almost say, so unthinking, or, to speak in a deeper sense, so well thought out, their courage in the danger of the struggle itself was so conspicuous, that one can say they conquered by themselves alone. For it was they who caused the turn.

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§ 134  [108] I wish to go back a little further and make a statement in justice to the naval battle. All the other speakers extol the numbers of her ships and the courageous spirit if the city and her daring deed, but I, even if it seems a curious thing to say, claim that they have all omitted one point no less worthy of observation and admiration than any of the aforesaid, one which now I myself shall bring into view, unashamed of the truth. I hold that whenever, because of embarrassment, a speaker omits this in good will toward the city, it is much as if he omitted the battle itself in good will toward the city. For they achieved both victories in the most obvious of all ways. The men of that time were residents of Athens from far back and now recovered it with a still more glorious title. They conquered their foes with weapons and with fairness their friends. For when they were providing such a courageous spirit in behalf of the common safety, were making so great a contribution for the use of all, and were themselves everything, and when the fortunes of Greece depended on the city, and when all the others, as in a storm, were taking refuge with the strength of the Athenians and were mooring themselves on the excellence and felicity of the latter, and when, as I have said, the others themselves would not deny that this was the case, the Athenians showed such forbearance and greatness of spirit that they were in the lead in yielding to others the titular leadership and did not contend for it at all, not even [when] the most sluggish in temperament, whether directly or through the mouths of others, advanced a claim, and did not utter or come to the point of uttering a word and in general, as far as these questions were concerned, they were seen to resemble the voiceless. Surely in a deeper sense this finally proves full wisdom to reside in them and shows them as the best of all men, both as a nation and individually, and by any test. For if at that time they had become angry at such stupidity and had therefore stood out of the way or had entered into rivalry, what means of salvation, or what good hope remained for the others,

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§ 135  or what ship of any contingent large or small would still have been available to the Hellenes for their needs?
[109] Bear with me, in Heaven's name, that I may spend a little more time on the subject so that one may see their true character and all that I mean more clearly. If they themselves at that time had asked the Hellenes for the hegemony, telling them that if they were defeated in the naval battle, they would not have the right to choose the hegemony they desired and the Barbarian would not arrange for them the chance of talking concerning those who would exercise the hegemony among them, but they would have to follow him in his train ignominiously and become slaves and be dragged up country, perhaps not even have a place in his train, but be put away in whatever manner appealed to him and depart from the world together with their cults, their arms and their laws, telling them:
[110] "We, foreseeing this, have transferred the entire city to the triremes, and if it is necessary to have dared the greatest risks, the ordinary things which all men in common naturally consider their own have been relinquished by us for your sake, or if it is necessary to be at such a point of preparation that life in defeat is unlivable, we have reached this point of view. For us alone it is imperative to win. Hence, you may have some need of victory, but this is the point to which our affairs have advanced, and if one ought to look at the material contribution, we constitute two-thirds of the whole coalition, all by ourselves, while these people have a twentieth of the strength that comes from us."
[111] If they said this and imposed conditions: "If you accept, do so on these terms. If you do not accept, consider that you will not deprive us of greater benefits than you will deprive yourselves.'" If indeed they had also added-here I do not mention the leader who was so superior to all the rest that he as one man was worth all the rest, he who alone expounded like a prophet which were the right places and times and what were the secrets of the King and what the future would be-but if they had added to the challenge only this, "If, after all, you have decided otherwise, then another will give us rule over you gladly, and will add Median money and presents. Take into consideration which of these situations you prefer and then choose."
[112] Would they have spoken words which failed to conform with justice or words such as one in the grip of the attendant circumstances could ignore, if this had been the language they were using?

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§ 136  Surely not, for with the sea remaining the only possibility, they were supplying so many ships of their own and were themselves the chief hope and in a position to tip the scale of salvation and were alone champions of the cause worthy of the name and had placed themselves forward as defenders of all, not only in the role of leaders but as ancestors too, and had virtually from themselves the force of which they were creating the leadership. They would have been justified even if all things were kept in common with no one taking precedence over anyone else, all contributing on an equal basis, the captains resembling each other in their natural gifts, the spirit that of a friendly group's loan, but it were necessary to make an examination and to appoint on the basis of their record some to act as leaders. Did not the Athenians shine forth among all like stars, or did they not rise above all in the votes to which they were entitled on the basis of their record, not just by virtue of their knowledge?
[113] And yet this latter standard is, I think, the ultimate in justice in such matters. For surely it was unjust that while in the case of single triremes the captains would exercise for them these limited commands after a selection on the basis of skill, in the case of the overall command it was not considered necessary for those who were best at this to assume the leadership for all, but even this claim seemed to them small! But when a coalition had been gathered together and it was necessary to have some definite leaders in charge of the war against the Barbarian, surely this one point was both clear and alone sufficient, was it not, that those should now have the hegemony who alone in behalf of all risked the battle against the former expedition of these same Barbarians? Though they were sharing the same resources with the members of the coalition, they were contributing more in the way of their own, winning thereby a victory over all. Yes, over all the Hellenes, and the credit they were gaining would be proportionately less, if having won the freedom of all, they were to assume the crown of hegemony over those merely who were present.
[114] From another point of view-suppose no one opposed them in regard to this, but all withdrew on both sides, the Athenian attitude was surely to be admired for greatness of spirit. They everywhere neglected what concerned themselves, and though they had undertaken so much in the previous war and again in the present war were giving of themselves beyond the nature of men, they demanded nothing more. If they in anger had abandoned Hellas when the Hellenes were not going to give them their attention, what was there to prevent that Hellas which has never been deprived of admiration even among the Barbarians [not only from being stripped of it then] but from not surviving today even as a concept?

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§ 137  [115] One of three possibilities was inevitable, either with all yielding for the Athenians to hold the hegemony, than which one could propose no greater exhibition of their virtue in trying to free the Hellenes at their own cost, or with no one granting them these opportunities for all then remaining to go away, or else to be split in their votes, wherein dissension and fights with each other lay, because they did not know how to deal with the Barbarians. It appears that the foresight of the Athenians prevented what would have happened if the situation had taken its natural course.
[116] From another point of view, if these experiences which I have just related disturbed them inwardly, if then they kept to themselves their reasons and were silent, they gave proof of patient endurance to the last. If, on the other hand, they had no feeling at all of being unfairly treated, who can rightly be classed with those who could feel anger against none but the Barbarians? But in my opinion they brought everything into conformity with this one aim, to save both the present and the absent, the ones who were willing, the others who were not; and this alone they considered right, because if they tried on each occasion to examine everything precisely, none of the Hellenes would then have been at Salamis- for I shall add in her praise the tale of Salamis too.
[117] But now they decided that for them it was enough to serve Hellas and put the affairs of the Hellenes in order. For this reason they gave up not only the hegemony but even their city itself, having placed the common interests before their own security and advantage, with the thought that they would create a really great leadership if they were to lead the way for the Hellenes toward freedom and safety. Like those who teach children by example, they wished to make the Lacedaemonians more courageous. And for this reason they educated them in order that they might be encouraged and that the things which they themselves had done might be imitated. This they did also by means of the decrees. Surely they did not, as in the case of the title and place of honor on the wing, cede to others anywhere the leadership in action. How could they? Rather, the one group were leaders in name, the other group were leaders in performance, and their role was made all the finer for them by the fact that

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§ 138  they possessed the leadership of the leaders themselves. For all that did not meet with the approval of a certain man of Athens was invalid, so that the admiral of the Lacedaemonians commanded the admirals from the various states, but the man of Athens commanded the commander of the commanders.
[118] So, comprehending this, the Hellenes assigned to the city the award for prowess in the naval battles and gave testimony as witnesses who were present and had seen who they were who had led the way to their salvation. In fact it turned out that the city received the first prize from the two sources. For among the cities, Athens towered; among the men one man of Athens. Thus, they furnished proof of a gentleness of character in their yielding, but recognition of true leadership was offered to them by all. And furthermore, for the rest of the war, the Hellenes now placed the city openly in command. For after this Athens was host to all their congresses and gatherings and sent out the invitations. In fact, the city became a common hall of council for the war against the Barbarian.
[119] But the importance we attach to the demonstrations of an unseen reality and the fact that one argument leads to another have carried us too far. I shall return again to the deeds themselves, since I have interrupted the thoughts which I wished to treat. But let no one suppose that we are spending more time on them than is necessary and that we are resuming subjects already exhausted. On the contrary, let him consider with what pregnancy we have presented each argument of our plea and whither each argument leads. If he looks at it in that way, he will think that many are the subjects being treated, but that each subject has been treated only once, and that all are so equally indispensable that one can omit none of them as of secondary importance, and he will know that in their order they happened to be impossible to treat otherwise, that the subject left over on each occasion belonged to the continuation and sequel. He will know this if he takes these things up again in his own mind by himself and considers whether it were more suitable in some other way.
[120] Moreover, if we were making this examination of phenomena and study of hidden causes concerning things of no value or concerning things of which the examples are everywhere, one would have reason

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§ 139  to say that we were talking trivialities. But as it is, themes to which all the poets telling the tale have proved unequal, on which all the rhetorical talent has met with defeat and of which all express their admiration as if stunned rather than like men who have looked at each case through exact understanding, these are the themes with which we struggle, a struggle in finding the words which is almost as great as that which those men of yore sustained in performing the deeds. Hence we cannot afford to leave any area unworked and unexamined. Zeal to uncover hidden causes in the petty subjects is no more reprehensible than not to preserve throughout for the great subjects like this the importance that is their due. For one could call even that another way of talking trivialities. But I shall now return to the subject.
[121] After the disaster at the Gates there could be no hiding the fact that it had occurred and that Greece had been perilously laid open to the Barbarians. The Gates of Thermopylae were like gates in a wall, and the Barbarians, having forced them, were pouring in, not without support from each of two groups. The one group were those who joined them willingly, the other were those who joined under compulsion as the war flowed around them, while all the rest were fleeing as before an advancing fire.
[122] But Athena's men, who had already shown on many occasions at many times that they rightly bore her name and indeed enjoyed the gracious care of the goddess, and who recognized that protection for the city was protection from outside, now passed a decree to entrust the city to the goddess who keeps the city, to deposit women and children at Troezen, and themselves, stripped of all that was not essential, to make the sea their wall, by producing on one day tokens of all that one might call greatest in man, tokens of piety, endurance, prudence, philanthropy, greatness of spirit. Piety, because of the trust they had in the gods; endurance because they were separated by their patient spirit from their wives and children and from the familiar scene of the things that were dearest; philanthropy, because they endured this in behalf of the salvation of the others. And in the idealism of a great spirit, furthermore, among all mankind who is comparable to those who gave up their estates and property in defense of freedom? Then again the recognition of [122] the only course destined to save the whole situation!

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§ 140  This I call the wisdom through which they surpassed all who have ever lived at any time, by decreeing loyal obedience to their commanders, the discipline that all honor in telling the story. [123] Having packed up and left in this fashion, the Athenians kept the Hellenes at Salamis, but Xerxes arrived with both arms of his forces, having among his troops the Hellenes as far as Attica along with the Barbarians. Now he sent again to Salamis, in order to receive land and water. He made the same demands as previously, thinking that if his words were delivered while the dangers were present and in view, then the Athenians would be somewhat more inclined to lend their ears. Here he was very greatly disappointed in his hope. So far from fear or from changing their original decisions were they, that when someone dared to say that they had to submit, they killed him at once, while their wives attacked his wife and killed her too. And this became for the Hellenes a first summons to the naval battle, a summons in which both the men and the women shared.
[124] Surely they did not disgrace this summons in their actions immediately afterwards, but first, while the Hellenes were discussing plans unworthy of their boldness at Artemisium and of the presence of the Athenians, and the plan to flee was already prevailing, the Athenians themselves intervened and, treating them like unwilling children, compelled them to stay and meet the enemy. They effected this by their skill in courting them, persuading men who at first would hardly grant them a voice; then, when no decision could be reached, unexpectedly they placed compulsions about them and arranged the naval battle, so that they were forced to be bold, Then after the Barbarians, while the meeting was still taking place, covered with their ships all the outside area, then at last the Athenians, already cut off not only by land but by sea except for as far as the triremes reached in actual fact, and beholding as in a sea of waves nothing but enemies wherever they looked, relinquished nothing to others, but as first in line, they themselves, as at Euboea, began the battle when all were hesitating,

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§ 141  and theirs alone was the whole accomplishment. Thanks to foresight on the part of a general, they had prepared in advance whatever was destined to injure the King, so that in the ranks of their enemies they had a multitude of friendly people who would sympathize-I refer to the service performed in connection with the lonians. On the other hand, best of all those under a witnessing sun they both dared and accomplished with their ordinary stoutness of heart, what in hand-to-hand fighting had to be done, in that they placed themselves opposite whoever constituted the spearhead of the enemy fleet, and they were the first to rout and destroy various ships in various places in all kinds of actions and presented the rest with the task of pursuing instead of fighting.
[125] Hence it seems to me that the Hellenes won that naval battle in much the same way as they would have won at Marathon if they had been there and shared in the victory, for at Salamis the city did what was necessary by herself and the rest enjoyed the results. Then it was the whole fight for which the Lacedaemonians arrived one day too late; now, on the day of that naval battle, it was only the turning point for which the partnerswere too late. The city had made such a difference that one might reasonably have said that the Hellenes rightly owed gratitude to her not only for their freedom and the prizes which resulted from the naval battle, but even for the victory itself. For this also no less than any other gain, they took to themselves, it appears, and shared jointly in her noble offering.
[126] On that occasion every shore had been strewn with wrecks, all the straits had been blocked, and the journey out of Greece toward the continent of Asia brought the King dreadful sights in very ill accord with what he had known in a life of luxury. It is worth mentioning also the finishing touch to the disasters which befell the Barbarians. For, in fact, the bywork has been made to look no less humiliating than the results of the main work. What then was it? Three areas the Barbarians held at first, the continent, the sea,

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§ 142  the island before Salamis, in order that the Hellenes might be more perfectly enclosed than by a net. It seems that it constitutes a great disaster and an outrage against the law of the Medes if any of those who dared to war against the King escapes. So to deal with whoever were cast ashore from the wreckage of the naval battle, the supreme authorities of the expedition were assigned, the first men of Persia, and they occupied the island, standing by for ready victims as they thought. But when their ships failed in the first encounters and the victory lay with the Hellenes and the attempt had been frustrated, one man of Athens, a volunteer, assumed the risk, and taking those of the Athenians who were on Salamis, namely the men over fifty, he crossed to the island and slew all this group of Persians.
[127] Xerxes had taken his seat upon the mainland, having adorned himself as if he were conducting some contest or other or as if he were some arbiter from heaven to judge the events, thinking that the fear he inspired would be enough for his men; and all he did, it seems, was to wax indignant with some of his warriors and to give honor to others. But when he saw the sea boiling with blood and foam and all full of corpses and wreckage, and others in a stronger position to inspire fear in his men and in himself, then appalled and convinced that the city was a worker of miracles, he sang a different note. He turned and went the same way back, not, however, with the same bearing because his one goal now was to reach the bridge of rafts.
[128] Thus, altogether the city saved the entire Hellenic world and in the judgment of all she was shown to be a unique watchtower for the Hellenes and, I think, for the rest of the civilized world. What do I mean by the judgment of all? I refer to those for whom previously she had been the sole victor at Marathon, to those in whose opinion she later so surpassed the rest of the coalition, to those in whose opinion, she by herself constituted for both expeditions a main objective in the war, to those who at Thermopylae were faring badly without the city, to those who at Artemisium were victorious through the aid of the city, to the oracles of the God, some of which declared she was the gift of Athena, others that the Hellenes would be destroyed if the Athenians

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§ 143  sided with the Barbarians. Accordingly, on the basis of what the Hellenes did not suffer, and on the basis of what they were about to suffer, this city alone, both because of the things she did and the things she did not do, wins the recognition of the whole Hellenic world. Besides this, moreover, she wins it because of the general she contributed, because of the number of her triremes, because she was the first to engage in naval battles, because she found the right places to make a stand, because she kept the Hellenes in line, because she was the first to win a victory and over the largest part of their naval force too, because she destroyed the greatest number, because of the visions from Eleusis, because of the "bywork" on Psyttalia, because of the judgment implied by her [friends and] enemies. For while the former assigned to the city the first prize for prowess and bade her exercise hegemony in the present situation, the King of the latter fled away. Thus, both from gods and from men, both from friend and from foe are the votes which have been given to the city. Now these rewards are hers for two reasons, first because of what the city as a community carried out so famously, secondly because of what she accomplished through her general.
[129] To return to the narrative, thus stood the affairs of the King, but Mardonius remained, and he was desperate and deadly because he knew that he himself had been partly responsible for the expedition. Since his fate would be the same, he resolved [to be mindful of it] after having done something bold. He received from the King the best of the infantry and with this he settled down to a siege. Yet even then the Hellenes found no need of help elsewhere, but like any other task that remained the city accomplished this too and completed the series as those who string leaves or flowers together complete their wreath.
[130] The others pride themselves on their participation in the battle, absolutely all who attended, and at that without coming anywhere near the citizens of Athens, either in the size of their army or in their zeal. But our city again, long before this battle, won a truly private victory of her own over Mardonius and the King, a victory such as became only the Athenians. For when the whole Hellenic world looked to her and by both sides it had; been clearly discerned where the real strength lay-I mean both by the Hellenes and by the Barbarians - it gave the King and Mardonius an idea, which one may call both sensible and foolish.

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§ 144  On the one hand it would clearly have been the best of all, if it had succeeded, but on the other, it was more than any other plan impossible.
[131] What was this plan? They resolved to move the city to their own side and to leave the Hellenic cause stripped of Athens. For they not only knew the past but they saw the present being guided by the Athenians. In addition to this the oracles from Delphi, it is said, were specifically testifying that if the Athenians joined the Barbarians, the affairs of Hellas would be ruined. So it seemed to the King good to buy off the fear they inspired and to take the profit they represented into calculation and to make trial of the city. He actually sent out heralds with a message quite the opposite of their former words. On the former occasion he was demanding earth and water; this time, instead, he was offering them. Not in the same measure, but, on the one hand, with restitution of their city and of all their territory and, on the other, with the addition of the rest of Hellas as an estate by royal grant. Apart from this there was an offer of more wealth than existed among the Hellenes and a guaranteed status as friends and allies. By this he gave evidence both that they were the only ones he feared and that in them alone, if they were persuaded, he had more confidence than in all he had of his own. Such then was the burden of the embassy.
[132] As a herald came Alexander king of Macedon. The Athenians were so far from being impressed by the offer or from thinking, even if he were offering all that he possessed, that it was worthy of them, that while they treated his ambassador with respect
[132] 5* due to his status as proxenos, they did not even so send him back absolutely free from fear, but only if he were across the border before sundown, and they warned him in the future rather to give the Athenians a different kind of proxeny service, because another embassy like that would cost him his life. Along with this, an escort conducted him through the country, both lest anyone lay hands upon him and lest he talk with anyone. This reply in my opinion is no less worthy of admiration than the sea fight at Salamis and the trophies, and it shows a no less noble ambition to be of service in those who gave it and in him who persuaded them.

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§ 145  There they had to use also arms and triremes and tools-; here they used merely what they in themselves had, namely intelligence and language.
[133] Who, then, are nobler contestants in the trial of excellence, or who among those who have ever contended displayed excellence with greater staying power? They were assailed with gold, silver, and iron, but to these metals and to all assaults they were invincible throughout, and all weapons they proved just as useless to the King as if these metals were still hidden in the earth, for they honored poverty instead of wealth, dangers instead of security, justice instead of the King's enormous gifts.
[134] And while toward the promises of the King they had so hostile and unyielding an attitude, in respect to offers of the Hellenes, if accompanied by pleas from necessity, it cannot be said that they gave in or prolonged the audience beyond a word. On the contrary, when the Lacedaemonians came to them full of fear and were opposing the requests of the King's embassy with entreaties of their own and were promising to take care of the women and children and old men for the Athenians as long as the war lasted, the Athenians did not accept. Rather they pardoned them, for they thought the Lacedaemonians good men in their fear, but in their offers they were still inexperienced with Athens. In fact, they showed their greatness of spirit no less in restraining their anger than in rejecting the offers. Naturally disposed to do good, they felt that they themselves owed a reward to those who benefited the Hellenic world, but that they themselves ought not to receive from others a reward for their excellence and that it ought not to be for selfish reasons that they cherished those who placed themselves in their trust any more than it ought to be for selfish reasons that they cherished their children and parents, but that even if it cost them much, they ought to preserve them, as was reasonable for those to do who in their intentions were ready to act as in behalf of their own families.
[135] This very impressive performance, significant for an appraisal of excellence, shone forth in those days of war which came between the sea fight at Salamis and the battle of Plataea. As in the cases I previously described, so again in this case it was the King and the Hellenes jointly who made the ideal apparent, as they kept applying to the Athenians alone out of all Greece, he calling upon them through Mardonius with these proposals, the Hellenes begging them through the Lacedaemonians not to do these things.

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§ 146  For the fact that both sides, each pulling against the other, were inviting the Athenians to join them constitutes an obvious endorsement and a clear sign of belief from both sides that they knew the Athenians were better than they and their opponents by no mean margin. Though such were the hopes they had conceived at the start, they admired the Athenians even more when they left. For with the one side the Athenians would have no dealings, but the other side they received favorably when they themselves were in a position of great superiority. Accordingly it happened, as might have been expected, that the Athenians added their just endorsement of themselves, and so three witnesses in succession were on record, their enemies, their allies, and they themselves by virtue of having been in reality like themselves in all situations.
[136] Having gathered the Hellenes, who now could follow them in greater force, there they were at Plataea. To describe the strength of the armies or the battle array of the Barbarians as their army was posted throughout Boeotia or what took place before the battle is a time-consuming operation not arriving at what we seek to uncover. But again an amazing testimonial to the city occurred from both sides during the battle. For the Lacedaemonians relinquished to the Athenians the position opposite the Persians, as if it had been destined by some natural necessity that the Persians be defeated by the Athenians. But again Mardonius withdrew, choosing the Lacedaemonians instead, in the thought that the noble death of the Lacedaemonians was more expedient than the noble victory of the Athenians, for this was what he had found in the battles against them which served him as precedents.
[137] As boxers do, they contended first for position. They were ready to engage the Persians, were ready to engage any men, they were available for everything, surpassing the Persians in excellence, the Hellenes in excellence and numbers. They decided the battle when they distinguished themselves preeminently by destroying the leaders of the enemy cavalry. And when need of a siege arose, the others were dependent upon the Athenians to such a degree that one might be ashamed to mention how much so. Finally, some of the Barbarians were holding Boeotia in a different way from before, namely, by lying on it;

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§ 147  others, disarmed and disorderly as after a shipwreck, prizing night more than day, reduced from many to a few, and many in groups of a few, slunk away with many memories of their proud expedition and of the Athenians in mind.
[138] With these things settled thus, all the rest of the Hellenes, as soon as they had recovered their breath, were delighted that they had come through a greater storm than they would ever have expected to survive. They crowned the city, treated her with admiration, considered mean whatever citation they could give her, so far were they from thinking themselves able to do anything that was worthy of her. But she-it was then especially that she showed the abundance of her virtue and ability. For she accomplished so much at the head of affairs that even more outside Hellas she showed the Barbarians who it was that had done these things to them inside Hellas and from whom they had judged escape a fortunate thing at their departure.
[139] Well, I see the speech is becoming long, and after such subjects have been treated, it is not easy for the speaker himself either to say anything more which will give pleasure or to find an audience in a mood to take pleasure in anything further. For it is as when another enters the ring after a champion of established fame. However, I undertook these words, these stories, less to entertain than to show the city's worth in all its aspects. Hence, I am more concerned lest I do injustice by letting the plan drop than cause discomfort by continuing to speak.
[140] Then quite apart from what the words and stories symbolically reveal, one must remember that we are not at all obliged to limit the Panathenaic Festival itself to one day, but if it is necessary to increase the number of days, this too has been left free for the sake of a beautiful order and dignity. Accordingly, the number of words is not out of season either, at a time which is such a season for deeds. Of course we acknowledge for the athletic contest, and it applies still more to the effort inspired by the Muses, that the trial is not limited once for all but ends and begins over again virtually every day and need not be complete on any one day even in the classes of events, so that what outlasts the present meeting has by no means passed beyond the whole season of this festival.

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§ 148  [141] Or consider this. It was the lawgivers who extended the meetings; especially, by Zeus, in the name itself they gave it, "the sacred month," they went beyond the duration with an addition of more time, in order that we might associate with each other for a very long period. If we, instead of using it, were to find fault with this extra time, it would be very odd indeed. Just as we are not irritated by the gymnastic games, coming upon them day after day, but think that we are getting more in the bargain as we enjoy the spectacle before us on each occasion, so it is logical to feel this way also about words, especially when they are an integral part of the festival. At any rate you will not find them stale, as you come upon those left over in each case, or less worth attending than the previous words. But in order that I may not make it longer than necessary with these same apologies, I shall now turn to the next subjects and continue.
[142] When Hellas recovered control of itself and all –– ships, cavalry, infantry, sub-kings and the King –– had departed, first there were festal assemblies and religious processions for the gods such as have never occurred, as far as anyone remembers, either before or since, in their Greece which was free. It was no law which brought them together, no fixed event in the calendar; on the contrary, it stemmed from the situation itself that individually and by cities they rejoiced and put on garlands and thanked the gods with testimonials for the present happiness. For one thing, an altar of Zeus [Eleutherios], Patron of Free Men, was erected on the battlefield itself, both as a thank-offering to the god and as a memorial to those who had achieved the deeds there, constituting a general appeal to all the Hellenes to maintain concord among themselves and thus to despise the Barbarians. For another, the common sanctuary of the Hellenes at Delphi was adorned with its noble and becoming epigrams. And the cities gained not only the glory that comes from a display of excellence but also that which comes from a display of fine installations, because the wealth of the Barbarians was distributed to those who had bested them.
[143] And, here too of course it will again appear that the city excelled. In this activity she excelled as much as in the achievements of the war itself.

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§ 149  For one thing, she adorned the Acropolis with its memorials of the deeds, and beside the beauty of nature placed as a rival the beauty in treasures of art, so that the whole Acropolis stood out as a sacred dedication, or rather as an object of worship. For another, she paid, partly at home, partly abroad, all the rest of the honors due to the gods, and thereby bested every Greek power. The town itself, enlarging also its circle in accord with the dignity of its public monuments, passed beyond its ancient limits in every direction. In brief, while this city alone became through its excellence a deserted city, she alone was built up again by excellence and occupied more than the sites previously deserted, having become simultaneously in public monuments, in reputation and in adornment both more beautiful and larger.
[144] But I have fallen into these observations which lay in the path of my speech, unwillingly, as it were, rather than with premeditation. For I pressed on, with my eyes not on them, but with a desire to show that if association with gods in processions and religious gatherings is an excellent experience for men, both most profitable in itself and supreme as a pleasure, you could rightly attribute it to this one city that this practice too flowered at that time to such a degree for the Hellenes, first in the very fact that they truly established honors for the gods-it is the gods whom we all requite as, of course, authors of our blessings, but both gods and men were responsible for the results, and as far as it was up to men at that time this city appears chiefly so-secondly because she so surpassed the Hellenes not only in the dedications themselves but in the graceful thank-offerings, for these tokens of her piety symbolize her full beauty and growth.
[145] However, she did not think it enough to be grateful to the gods for what had occurred and to seek nothing further, nor did she think it enough to sit idly by her trophies as if she lacked full confidence in herself, but she judged the present means as an approach to the future and entered into competition with herself, taking a noble decision in accord with the occasion. For in this second period she deemed it right to carry on with the second task.

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§ 150  And this was to start a counter-offensive against the former assailants and so transfer the fear and danger to their own country.
[146] In those operations it was the form and structure of the war which were particularly admirable. For there are two different kinds of war: in one kind one originates the action, while in the other kind one wards it off; with the one kind justice is not associated, in the other kind the additional factor of compulsion leaves less room for the play of a noble ambition, because judgment is a thing naturally distinct from compulsion. Yet he who does right under compulsion is better, I think, than the one who transgresses voluntarily. However, he is not quite the moving spirit of the whole. In the particular case of the former war, while the Barbarians were disqualified because of the foul, the Hellenes observed the rules. Hence the Hellenes had marked up a victory, but that was all.
[147] So the city invented what might be called a third kind of war, one in which they themselves, exercising the freedom of first movers, but the justice of defenders, took the offensive against their former assailants. In her own behalf and in that of the rest of the Hellenes she planned to show the Barbarians that it was not in their power to come at any time and make the Hellenes good fighters, and that not by an accident of compulsion had their successes been achieved by the Hellenes. On the contrary, she wanted the Barbarians to think themselves in trouble because they were originators of war. "Now that the initiative has come around to the side of justice, you will soon know well what kind of men you have stirred."
[148] Because of this I claim that as a display of justice and of true courage the second task performed by the city was––lest I say anything offensive––no less clear than the former. In coming to this task she assumed that there was no security and salvation for the Hellenes if she checked them and kept them at home or if either she did nothing through them or they did nothing in their own behalf, but if they could drive the Barbarians away as far as possible from Hellas, in that case she thought there would be an excellent and unimpaired tranquility for all. She calculated rightly and saw the situation as it really was. For it is more or less true that only those enjoy unimpaired tranquility who prove that they are not at all obliged to lie quiet.

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§ 151  [149] This then was the city's reasoning, which took into view all that one could call finest in human society. In this way they made up their minds what to propose as necessary first, or what as necessary at the end. Having done so, they won the outstanding victory at Mycale, they searched the coasts of the European side for any of the aggressors who might still be hiding there, and they drove some from the Strymon, others from Sestos, others from Byzantium. They visited every corner as in a ritual cleansing and, no less frequently than those who sail as traders, they came to anchor. They emulated the fabled journey on which Triptolemus passed through the air. He went around doing good to all in common; they went around chastising those from whom it was necessary to exact a penalty, in the belief that it was profitable to the human race as a whole to subject those who committed outrage and were inhumanly overweening to condign punishment.
[150] Having so resolved, they were at one and the same time sailing around Asia Minor, then suddenly up the navigable rivers; suddenly they would arrive within earshot, then suddenly be seen. They put on a marvelous display, a Pyrrhic dance, which was, in truth, a dance of war. They sprang forth so frequently and eagerly in their conduct of affairs, that the Lacedaemonians, though they went along in the first actions, later departed, unable to keep up, as it were, with wingborne leaders. In exactly the same way those of the other Hellenes who had at first sailed out with them became dizzy and departed, but the Athenians, having the Hellenes from Asia whom the King had come leading against Hellas and against those other Hellenes, used them and they were enough.
[151] As a means of war against the King the Athenians had the King's own possessions. For in fact havens and walls and camps and everything were waiting for them, and arms and ships became theirs. They left no area unacquainted with their excellence, as they fought naval battles with Phoenicians, Cilicians and Cyprians together in-the middle of the Egyptian Sea and captured many fleets, and as they risked battles on land against the whole Persian Empire combined, destroying and capturing, not a number of individuals,

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§ 152  but groups of nations. And now, in fact, two trophies arose for one day, when a naval battle was matched by a land battle. To such a turn of fortune did the King come that the Athenians rendered his empire and the sites more famous by their victories; certainly Eurymedon enjoys its greatest fame through them.
[152] As they proved, it is not necessary to cross the ferry-crossings on a pontoon bridge bound with flaxen cables or to contend with the highest mountains as something more noble, but when men excel in courage and intelligence they prevail everywhere with the noblest means of all, I think, and with means that are purely their own because these alone belong permanently to those who have them. The other means are not private; they are there, you might almost say, for anyone to use, gifts of fortune, and if you will, of excellence, because, often available even to the inferior at the start, they are fairly secure only for the superior.
[153] Thus the Athenians exposed the whole empire for what it was, and shook it to its foundations. Those who belonged to the Persian world felt a sudden contempt; the city made all courageous by her example. They came so far, the former in their contempt, the latter in the courage she inspired, that the Libyans by Pharos rebelled, the Egyptians defected with them, and the King, though seeming to do as he liked with them in other respects, lost of Egypt no small part, the marsh land. Before this he had already captured all Egypt twice, but the advent of the triremes from Athens was like a bolt from the blue.
[154] Alone among men who organized a city, the Athenians used their own land as if it belonged to others, while the land of others they considered as really their own but held by others with defective title. They lived like guardians and like guardians who did not have a settled mode of life and did not patrol some one locality either, rather you must call them patrolling protectors of Hellenic interests in every land. They chose for enemies not the weakest but those best able to hold up a spear. For two thoughts prompted them, that the Hellenes had come very close to knowing from experience all the extreme punishments which had entered into a plan and actual preparation of the Barbarians,

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§ 153  and against which it was necessary to give aid in no small degree, the future security of Hellas, until the King learned that in raising war against the city he was doing much the same as if he had picked up wood in a struggle against a great advancing fire.
[155] For he was escaping no torment, but was being consumed by his own wood and he perceived that he had the country as a barrier to his own safety; and as he proceeded on his way he came to believe the third choice better than the first choice, or rather, more necessary. At first he had desired to acquire Hellas and the rest of Europe, but he gradually perceived that he had his heart set on impossibilities. His second aim was to keep the empire he already had, but the city did not permit him this. Well, now to his safety he attached greater importance, and, yielding to the city, he made once and for all his great withdrawal by land and sea, not just enough to back water, as the phrase goes, or to make a strategic retirement on land; rather he relinquished all the lower part of Asia Minor, whole regions of ten thousand stades, in total extent no less than a great empire, so that not only the islands with the Hellenes of all branches thereon were free, but also the Hellenes who dwelt on his mainland were further away from his dominion and rule than those who dwelt in Old Hellas had previously been. Yes, he used to hold the region as far as the Peneius. But what am I saying? That is not the really amazing part! He used to hold all the region as far as Attica, until he met the men of Attica on the sea. So far beyond Delphi had he gone, navel of the earth and of Hellas.
[156] But as a result of all the battles in which the city's expeditionary forces engaged he was reduced to the point where he actually agreed no longer to sail within two limits, namely the Chelidoneae to the south, the Blue Rocks to the north, and to keep away from the Aegean equally at all points for five hundred stades, so that this circle represented another crown upon the head of Hellas, and the Hellenes established their watch from the very land of the King.

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§ 154  [157] Such then was the war the city waged against the Barbarians, the war on her own soil and that in their land; such again was the peace she made. By both she showed that she had gone out, not in the pursuit of wealth and delighting in a profit, but in the search for just one thing, a secure freedom for the Hellenes from the Barbarians. And yet what nobler crowning act of peace or war could anyone name, either with Hellenes or with Barbarians, than the one with which the city at that time closed her conduct of affairs? These last, which were so great and fine, she carried through, of course, in spite of much opposition from the Hellenes and while all were, in a sense, pulling against her; the Lacedaemonians were alienated, the Boeotians were fighting against her on land, against her on the sea the Aeginetans whom one thing kept from being first in naval affairs, the city with her great victory. Besides this, the Corinthians were provoked on account of the Megarians and were waging war both on land and on sea; the Epidaurians and Sicyonians were found on the side of the Corinthians; the Naxians, Thasians, and Carystians were taking ill-advised decisions concerning the naval alliance; the Phocians were calling to her; the Lacedaemonians were calling to her. There was a remarkable round of troubles throughout Hellas so that, if to these problems alone she had been equal, and if we were able to mention merely the achievements which occurred at that time in her Hellenic policies, and if the dazzling successes of her policy in respect to the Medes did not enter into account at all, there would still be enough material to recount for ages.
[158] Therefore, the city outstandingly deserves to be congratulated, not only on her strength, but also on her greatness of spirit. For consider that when the Hellenes were at war with her and in rivalry, she never relaxed her vigilance in behalf of the Hellenes, but, in behalf of the common interests, continuously fought the King on every land and sea! How stupendous was the greatness of spirit to which one must attribute this! Besides, the fact that she was torn in so many directions and achieved all aims as if each had been her only aim gives reason

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§ 155  to admire the courage of her resolve and the perfection of her preparation. [159] I mean, she so managed her affairs against the Barbarians, as if she were on a complete vacation from everything in Greece, but at the same time those of the Hellenes who were giving trouble had no better opportunity to exploit the occasion. These too she met and in such a way that she had to count off the events in batches of five or more, like certain other things that cannot well be counted one by one. A victory, for instance, the Athenians won over the Peloponnesians in a naval battle off Cecryphalia, a victory over the Aeginetans before Aegina, and over the Peloponnesians a second time. For the Megarians they built walls down to the sea, and they protected their freedom at the same time as their land. They won a victory over the Corinthians in defense of the Megarians, and before twelve days had passed, they won another victory as the Corinthians were ignobly stealing the trophy.
[160] Actually, I have not yet shown the greatness of these last achievements, but you shall hear, even if I am pressed for time. The additional factor will make it clear. The additional factor is that the expeditionary forces were absent from the city. The one force was engaged in the help which the Egyptians had asked, more ships almost than all the navies together among the Hellenes of that time. The other blockaded Aegina. It was, in fact, precisely this latter circumstance which more than anything else gave their opponents the courage for the attack on Megara, for they thought that they themselves had a vacation from the Athenians to use for the task. If, after all, they won less than the victory they most wanted, at least they would break up another siege, that of Aegina. For Aegina was the only place from which they would now come.
[161] However, the Athenians made the sly trick look absurd when they eluded it to such a degree that their men before Aegina were no more disturbed at that time than those in Egypt who had heard nothing at all about it. Instead, the remnant left at home because of its age, namely, the very old and the very young, took the field and brought aid to Megara, and in two successive battles they showed themselves superior to the finest age group of the Corinthians and Peloponnesians, so that the Corinthians and Peloponnesians now conceded it unequivocally and had nothing to say further, not even that they had inflicted these present whippings in addition without just cause.
[162] In fact, it seems to me that because one of the gods was well disposed and took an active interest in the city,

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§ 156  this was contrived like the second episode in a play. For if the Corinthians and Peloponnesians had gone away for good after they had been defeated once, they would perhaps have had some argument later, but the fact that they were reproached by their own people, and under these reproaches went out to fight again, and in setting up a counter-trophy suffered a greater disaster than the former one, caused the Athenians to set their seal upon the victory, so that the action seems to have been decided less by fortune than on the basis of superiority, both then and previously. At any rate, the third trial they never attempted, even though they themselves force the contestants at the Isthmian Games to go on with a third trial.
[163] Is this all we can say about those men of Athens? We should, if it were, be stripping them of many mighty accomplishments. They sailed around the Peloponnese, not on patrols of a blockade of the ordinary type but in such a way as to dominate the advantageous sections of the country and to win victories over their opponents with little labor, as one general after another did. And they crossed to the opposite continent where all they encountered gave way before them. Again, when the Lacedaemonians had gone to Phocis, the Crisaean Gulf was closed at once, and the Athenians went to the boundaries to meet them. Apart from this, they stood above Megara at Geraneia, so that the Lacedaemonians were unable to do what they would need to do but, stranded in Boeotia, were at a loss how to get safely home. So completely had the city outmaneuvered them and hemmed them in.
[164] Finally, they joined battle at Tanagra of Boeotia, and when both sides had proved worthy of their boldness, the Lacedaemonians in this one encounter seemed to have obtained an advantage. How can I put it becomingly, when I hesitate to say that they were not destroyed? For, in fact, this was a decisive moment-for the Athenians to close the passage, or for the Lacedaemonians to come safely home. And I am afraid that what this engagement alone has had as a token of victory is the flight, because, except to many who had so decided even previously, the sequel showed which had been superior both at the moment of the battle and in all the situations. For there are three parties who had testified forthwith that the victory belonged to the Athenians,

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§ 157  to wit, the Athenians, the Lacedaemonians, the Boeotians. The Lacedaemonians were delighted when they got away; the Athenians advanced right after the battle; the Boeotians did not stand their ground, but, defeated at Oenophyta, they yielded, and with them the Phocians and Locrians in a single victory. And so from these the city exacted this penalty in return for the help they had given to the Barbarians during the common perils of Hellas.
[165] It is worth while mentioning another deed of hers, since this too proclaims powerfully the kind of men she had, or makes it clear to the eye from yet greater distance. After the earthquake which occurred in Laconia, the dwellers around about were threatening the Lacedaemonians and truly it was as if everything of the old order in the Peloponnese had been shaken in an earthquake; but no sooner did the Lacedaemonians appeal than the Athenian Demos arrived in arms, bold with its own courage, fearful concerning their salvation as if it were its own. This both liberated the Lacedaemonians from the terrors of the moment and enabled them to exact punishment again.
[166] It is, then, not so much the city's exploits or her acts of daring which are to be acclaimed, as the character of her deeds; the character of deeds shows more accurately than a trophy what they were who have performed them. The expedition in defense of the Milesians, the naval battles at Samos, the curbing of the Euboean Revolt, and many other events, it is quite permissible for us to ignore. But in the end, having subdued all, the city made a lasting peace. It is that peace which is worth recalling, for she did not settle with the Hellenes in the same way as with the Barbarians, but changed. From the Barbarians she took away all the down country and the sea within the limits I have mentioned; to the Hellenes, on the other hand, she restored the lands of which she had assumed the government during the war-Megara, Troezen, Pegae, all the Achaean coast. Thereby it is clear that she made her peace while predominant. For she accepted absolutely nothing in return, but produced in one and the same token an indication of two things, both of her superiority in the war and of her innate goodness, deeming that against the Barbarians she must fight to the limit of her ability, but against the Hellenes merely to a position of superiority.

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§ 158  [167] Having in this way carried through the struggle against the Barbarians, again in this way having carried through that against the Hellenes, such was the peace she made with the former, such was the peace she made with the latter, having proved herself superior to both, together and separately. What is more, she alone of all cities, with risks exclusively her own, provided the advantage in which the whole nation shared; and she alone as a result of the common benefits acquired the hegemony and changed the institution. For she obtained the leadership not by means with which she had enslaved the cities, but by ways with which she had made them free. Hence, the same years brought to the Hellenes the gain of freedom and to the city the gain of her leadership. For they were the only ones who acquired rule over willing followers, and among republics this republic alone won out to be single archon, as it were, chosen from all, one who had coerced the Barbarians with arms, who had persuaded kinsmen-no, not persuaded, but been persuaded by them to rule, with her rule a symbol of justice, and not injustice. If one must make distinctions and so express it, she alone of cities, against the will of the Barbarians and at the request of the Hellenes, obtained the leadership.
[168] Thus the Hellenes had made a great advance. There was tranquility up to a certain point and the cities enjoyed the happiness at their disposal; but, after all, in the common fortune of mankind which changes everything, the Hellenes and the city had a share. The Hellenes were not eternally grateful for the blessings they had received but came to resent the unprecedented scale of the enterprises. With those for whom she had undertaken everything, the city came into conflict showing in two ways that she did not want it so. She both restrained them while their revolt was still incipient and kept asking that their differences be settled by discussions, and when, after being forced to fight, she had won, she made no further demand, but released those who had contended with her for the hegemony, and she led them out of detention with no less joy

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§ 159  than she had originally put them in upon obtaining their surrender. Actually what use could anyone make of these prisoners ?
[169] I am ashamed of the battles in which they were captured. In shame I pass over the naval fights at Naupactus which the Athenians won by no small margin against a much larger number, as if they had gone out for a prize that chanced their way; and other battles in the Thraceward region; and how they saved Corcyra; and those deeds at Ambracia, which were the greatest Hellenic campaigns of that time, besides being deeds performed in a noble spirit, not for any mercenary reason; and especially the battles at the famous site of Pylos which were both naval battles fought off shore, and land battles, fought later on the island; and while this was still going on, the driving of other Lacedaemonians out of Cythera, and trophies won over the Corinthians, and many other subjects which rival these for mention and admiration.
[170] The time suitable for these subjects does not extend indefinitely; rather restraint seems to me of greater felicity. Besides, as we have indicated, we set out, not to narrate the city's achievements in a work which without interpretation collects all the data, for in that case the discourse would go on and on into the next festal assembly four years hence, but to mention of the city's exploits in her wars the best known and, on the other hand, to omit nothing, as far as possible, of the blessings which the city enjoys. We reach these goals, not by recording particulars throughout but by omitting no form of praise.
[171] In the judgment of the deity these misfortunes were not enough for Hellas, but in addition the cities had to be overwhelmed on land and at sea and, while some enemies must come upon them from overseas, Hellenes also had to sail out into alien waters to disaster. Who among the Hellenes or who among the Barbarians could name others who did as much then as the men from this city, who felt obliged to go to sea in defense of the freedom of the Leontines, who deemed it good to run risks in defense of that of Segesta, who had in mind to cross over against the Carthaginians in repayment for Carthaginian attacks upon the Hellenes in Sicily and who filled triremes and freighters as if sending forth an expedition from all Hellas?
[172] As for the battles, she was in the habit of winning them always, and it was the city's fortune to be superior in most situations, a destiny that had been granted to her people like a special privilege of their own. So there is less reason for us to be astonished at her [winning sea battles and] infantry battles and cavalry engagements. But that she nonetheless fought on when affairs went against her is more astonishing.

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§ 160  Gone were the hoplites and cavalry, whose match in number and quality was not to be found. Gone, in addition, such a quantity of ships, weapons, supplies, skilled workmen and allies, what one might almost call the whole colonizing expedition which had migrated to a new site, as if Sicily were only then being settled. The Acropolis had been emptied of almost ten thousand talents; on the other hand, the Lacedaemonians, Boeotians and the rest were no longer making their incursions from the Peloponnese but from Deceleia in the heart of Attica. No less a number of her slave labor had left her than would probably amount to a whole nation, and there was immunity for any who wished to desert. Yet with such a war surrounding her, the city displayed such reserves of endurance, of strength, of ambition, as to send forth another expedition equal to the former, with generals of matching quality, and as to think herself able to lay siege, out there, to the Lacedaemonians and their allies. With what merely human spirit can one compare these acts? Whose non-prosperity can one more admire?
[173] And when the great disaster occurred-for I shall certainly not cover it with silence, but emphasize it, because this too seems to me to show the city even greater-she met the rest of her responsibilities as if she had received all of Sicily as a resource. I mean, she did not resemble a city stripped of power, but one that had just acquired more. No speaker could do justice to the calm self-restraint and routine of life which they imposed upon themselves deliberately in order not to permit anything disgraceful. All the Hellenes took up positions around them, and the enemies they already had, then for the first time, conceived hope and were spurred on by the spectacle of changing fortune, while new enemies came upon them from Sicily. Almost all their allies of both islands and mainland defected, and practically all became enemies, and so their encirclement was completed from all sides. Moreover, an unexpected stupidity occurred:

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§ 161  they who had been saved from the King by the city's deeds now invoked his aid against the city. He of course acceded very willingly and shared in the war by contributions of men, ships, gold, everything. What base on land or sea did he not offer for the war? There was no one who, as a mere onlooker from outside, would not have expected the city now at last to be taken by storm and plundered, since she was involved in so universal a war with Barbarians and Hellenes. But the Athenians at once reversed the situation, as if all these factors were operating in their favor and not against them, or as if their enemies were maneuvering for their advantage.
[174] But the greatest thing of all is this. The constitution had been unlawfully changed for them and some had been deprived of their rights at home. They had no place on which to stand except Samos, as in the time of the peril from the Mede they had only Salamis. But though it was in a different way, this generation too acted like the men of that time and, for the most part, abandoned the city. Then this generation too reestablished affairs at home, conquered their enemies abroad, marked out the Hellespont with trophies, pursuing various enemies in various directions, as if they were practicing among themselves rather than fighting naval battles against those whom they met on each occasion. That is all I have to say about the story, which, as I took into consideration, has been told before by another.
[175] Finally at Cyzicus they encountered the Lacedaemonians together with their men from Hellas, and Pharnabazus with the Barbarians from Asia. They captured their ships, all but those they destroyed. As Pharnabazus was trying to repair the disaster by bringing up his cavalry against them, the Athenians, some on foot after engaging cavalry, some on shipboard, prevailed over all and everything together, navy, cavalry, archers from Sicily, the men from the Peloponnese, the financial support of the King, the hopes of the Lacedaemonians. The war was now fruitless for their opponents, and truly it was as if everything had been lost as the result of some shipwreck. Accordingly, the city, though overwhelmed by civil dissension,

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§ 162  at that time never even thought of peace, while the others, starting from so many great advantages, when stricken, immediately fled to the refuge of peace.
[176] Now on each occasion I have found fault with those who criticize the city of the Lacedaemonians and think it right to do so in defense of your city. While they offend the Lacedaemonians, they do not, as they think, honor you. On the contrary, even if I say something that must surprise you, to me they seem to do the opposite of what they wish. For they elevate the Lacedaemonians more than they praise you, and I think that they have more thanks from the Lacedaemonians for their evil words than from you for their good words. It is no insult for Sparta to be ranked after this city; on the other hand, they do not honor you by proving your superiority, but by the very comparison are seen to know you ill. Hence it is not at all unlikely that you more than the Lacedaemonians find it unpleasant when these arguments are used.
[177] Not but what this is the place to compare the cities. Since I have reached this part of my oration, we must perhaps meet this obligation too, in order to show by how much the city is superior, not only in the separate events, but also in the whole. It will appear that the Lacedaemonians, deprived of three hundred men, did not hold out but gave way immediately, which brings the city of Athens greater credit than victory in the battle. For in the battle she showed herself superior to her immediate opponents, while in the circumstances where the rest gave up, she showed herself superior to just about all, as when everyone of the contestants declines to meet the champion in the games. Conversely, it will appear that when she later suffered the terrible disaster in Sicily, not only did she not lose her morale and run gratefully to peace for refuge, but so impressed her enemies that, if anyone could have persuaded the city to be at peace, they would have been glad to see it.
[178] Again, when the Athenians heard that Conon was under siege at Mytilene, they did not become panic-stricken, but sailed along the Arginusae with ships, more than anyone would have guessed, yet fewer than those of their opponents,

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§ 163  and faced the entire fleet of their enemies, as if someone else kept supplying them with triremes, while they kept making their efforts with the manpower of Caria and not with their own persons. And they gave no thought either to the number of those arrayed against them or to the fame of Callicratidas, either to a holding of islands or to the loss of Fortune who, one might almost say, had already been alienated. Not because of a storm were they defeated; they did not let that discourage them for the rest of the war, but if it suffices, as it does indeed, to look at what happened on the sea, they routed the Lacedaemonians and prevailed over all the Peloponnesians; their triremes they captured in part, in part they sank them like a bolt of lightning. And so in combat with their enemies they made this enormous change from the state of siege. The greatest thing of all is that they saved a man who alone sufficed to destroy the Lacedaemonian domination.
[179] As all after their defeat at sea were once more seeking peace, so it might be said that not only had the city then long been accustomed to defeat those who actually participated in the contests, but she even frightened off the others and won over all. For another thing, it will appear that when she had carried off the greatest victories of all time, she then bore disasters in a way that would make one admire the city's courage in adversity more than the deeds of those who had prevailed. Hence I for one am impelled to say that her victory in prosperity has been striking, her victory in adversity no less so, if it is true, as indeed it is, that no one has ever carried his disasters in a comparable fashion.
[180] Not to be disputed, then, are two proofs of her victory in her successes, quite apart from what, had been performed against her opponents themselves. What she achieved by herself in some of the things that were done without help from others is so extraordinary that it cannot be unknown; in respect to what she achieved when they formed a coalition, all are found to be inferior by comparison. Again in her hour of trouble she has risen above her conquerors, for they have been shown yielding to Fortune, but she resisting. Therefore, both the victories are hers: she wins by no small margin

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§ 164  and prevails over the cities similarly, both where she succeeded and where she failed.
[181] From another standpoint, she by herself has at times prevailed over leagues and city states simultaneously whereas no one has prevailed over her, no one who did not come with numerous allies. Whereas, by herself, she had been compelled to fight against all together who were making or inciting attacks, the majority of her enemies have faced merely a part of her force, while of her total strength, either rarely or never did anyone make trial. Hence, the city of the Athenians has indeed won many victories on many occasions, while, on the other hand, it is as if she herself were unconquerable.
[182] The most important point of all is that no one conquered her because no one subdued her mind; on the contrary, all such reverses have become in each case unsuccessful issues of a mere campaign. On the other hand, she has at the moment of her victories enslaved the minds of her opponents; she caused Xerxes to long for an escape from his commitments, and she bent the Lacedaemonians, those of them who merely heard no less than those who when present at the battles had failed therein.
[183] One will recognize that the situation in the cases of these two cities is not the same or even similar, either in the grandeur of their achievements or in the acts of daring or absolutely in anything which can be cited. The Lacedaemonians, having met with misfortune at Leuctra, did not recover, but in their case something as final as human death occurred. They were too proud to make peace with the Thebans, as they thought yielding to any city but that of the Athenians was beneath their dignity. But, having joined company with the rest of the Peloponnesians, they were less in a position to save others than in need of others to save them, and indeed this city gave the very greatest aid and prevented them from being carried off in one fell swoop, as by the gust of some hurricane or cyclone.
[184] When this city was cheated in the naval battle at the Hellespont and stripped of her ships and of her walls, and when she subsequently suffered civil dissension within herself, and the Lacedaemonians were restraining themselves nowhere, she, through one man, deprived them of the rule of the sea and assumed the leadership in Hellenic affairs, as if she were only now coming to them from the Median War.
[185] Further, not only did she support the losses of her wars more nobly than others their prosperity,

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§ 165  but she so handled her troubles at home as to be a model of self-restraint for all mankind, and no one, even later, could invent anything better than was done by those Athenians. She displayed it in the change of the Constitution of the Four Hundred, which she quietly abolished, and in the War against the Thirty, which did not at all become a war against more than the Thirty after them.
[186] I say in this connection that no men have produced clearer proof of self-restraint and daring simultaneously than those who, numbering only a little more than fifty, first made plans together against the empire of the Lacedaemonians, which extended over land and sea, and against the faction in the city itself, and who faced the risks of war in the thought that they had to live in freedom or else not see the sun made witness of their abasement. They struggled against the faction from the town and drew up against the Lacedaemonians and obtained the Piraeus and became to mankind an example of hope in adversity. After they had already come together as the Demos, they reached the point of shaking hands and making speeches more or less to the effect that they would wage their wars, each side in behalf of the other, not in its own behalf. Hence it was impossible, once the civil discord had been abolished in this way, to distinguish which was the faction of the subversives to be cursed and which the side of the patriots to be prayed for. While the city fell ill by the nature of all mankind, she was cured by her own nature, so that even this, her civil discord, brought her envy rather than disaster.
[187] This much more I wish to say about those men: in their boldness they surpassed not only the Lacedaemonians, but almost those heroes at Marathon who were their ancestors. The latter, though numerically much inferior to their opponents, still did constitute a complete force and took courage therefrom, while these men, when they seized Phyle, were all together only a little more numerous than the total of the very tyrants against whom they were struggling. The heroes at Marathon, when the city was flourishing, conquered foreign barbarians, while the heroes of Phyle, when the city had fared otherwise, defeated Lacedaemonians who had ruled over the Hellenes, and they defeated those men of their own from the town. Having defeated the enemy

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§ 166  by courage, they conquered their own kin by equity.
[188] Not only by bravery at the time of their battles but by good planning after their successful deeds, by both these means they recovered their city so completely that, if one wished to give less than a complete account, it would be possible to suppress the misfortune which occurred during the war, so in keeping with their previous deeds were those they not only resolved but executed afterwards. And yet if the Lacedaemonians were so inferior to her when she had been stripped of everything, how great is the margin, must one think, by which this city surpassed them ordinarily?
[189] But none of the things they did was more Worthy of mention and respect than the following. The Lacedaemonians were calling upon the Demos for payment of what they had loaned to the Thirty. Since the Thirty had entered into an agreement, the whole Demos together paid the debt in order that it might in reality render contracts inviolable. Again, how the Lacedaemonians dealt with each other we could not say, for they kept it hidden, but our city, as she disposed her affairs in this way, did so in the view of many witnesses and so became a model for the others. At least later, when the Argive people were sick with dissension she cured them by act and word. For having sent an embassy to them and reminded them of her own behavior, she effected a reconciliation.
[190] Further, they alone of all appear to have conducted similarly both their own public affairs and the common public affairs of the Hellenes. They thought it necessary not only to save the Hellenes from their enemies, but also to reconcile them when they were sick with dissension, and showed themselves better than expectation both against the outside enemies and against the difficulties at home.
[191] It is a fact that those who had come from elsewhere and as a much younger race to people who were autochthonous and older, [kept practicing in secrecy hoplite tactics], whereas our city had revealed the invention to others, and it is a fact that they did so because they concerned themselves with nothing except with what pertains to war, while our city wins a greater victory in the other ways than in this.

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§ 167  Not only do these things show their inequality, but so does the fact that our city seems quite superior even in the very actions and crises of war, both when they go well and when they go badly for her, as both the stories already related make clear and as it is possible to see in what we shall add.
[192] The exploits of the city have on me the same effect that boys and girls in the flower of their youth have on one. What meets the eye among her deeds always seems to me on each occasion fairest, and I regard it in this light as I speak. Some god, yes, could make a selection of these deeds on the merits. I, however, shall do as I have undertaken, namely narrate of the remaining deeds the best known from which it is possible to estimate both the city's judgment and, at the same time, her power.
[193] Well, then, absolutely unique is a curious and astonishing war they assumed in defence of the Thebans. After we had abdicated, the Lacedaemonians, judging all the rest child's play, were beginning their arbitrary rule with their own allies and calling up a levy against the Thebans. Both developments stunned the Hellenes. But though this city had not found more bitter enemies, and the Lacedaemonians had not found more enthusiastic and powerful allies against her than the Thebans, not only when the war was starting or halfway through, but even when it had finally stopped, yet, despite all this, the Demos did not exult over what was happening nor again did they let the awkward situation discourage them that they still had neither ships nor wall at that time, but, as if, wherever the Lacedaemonians moved, there they had to be the ones to meet them; thus, committing their city to the dangers of war despite the reminders of their disasters, they marched out to Haliartus against Lysander and Pausanias and took Boeotia from them. It was then that Lysander realized that he had not conquered, as he supposed, the city of the Athenians, but had fooled himself with childish dreams. She had at once retrieved her losses, whereas he no longer administered the affairs of the Hellenes, but merely was one of the crowd.
[194] Not long afterwards the city obtained a dignified Hellenic revenge on the Corinthians, when they too turned to the city for help. From the record everyone would have inferred that no matter what harm she did them she would never acknowledge that she was exacting the penalty they deserved. But the Athenians made the same decision concerning the Corinthians as concerning the Thebans and marched to Corinth to their aid as a man might in defense of his own country.

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§ 168  When it grew into a big and continuous war at Corinth, they risked many battles in their defense and fortified them and guarded their town in all ways. Then they completed their task very nobly as follows. In control of Acrocorinth and in a position to seize the town whenever they wished, they refused to adopt this idea or even to consider it, showing by their behavior that in waging war they acted in defense of others and were not doing anything for themselves privately.
[195] Finally, they brought the Lacedaemonians to such a degree of desperation that they turned again to the King of the Persians and through him made for themselves the notorious peace, surrendering the Hellenes who lived in Asia, concerning whom I for my part make no accusation. But suppose someone were to ask the Lacedaemonians whether they had made these concessions willingly or under duress. If they say "willingly," it would be necessary to claim that they have committed a betrayal, and who would believe it? If they say, "unwillingly and under compulsion," they confess themselves, I presume, inferior to the city in the whole conduct of affairs. If at least they knew how to conduct affairs, they would not deliberately undergo a disgrace of such a character. Hence in the only field of argument that remains, they themselves attest that in those days the city was superior in war, and in no small degree at that.
[196] But since I have mentioned the peace, I wish to return to it for a moment. There are two conditions by which cities are judged, war and peace. Both these conditions were established for this city with the Barbarians. In war the city so distinguished herself that the greatest achievements are those which she carried out alone. Or if one were to judge by the later actions, she rose above her partners quite as much as if she bore the struggle all alone. Apart from this, her behavior on all three occasions meets with praise. In the first phase of the war she alone succeeded; in the second phase she actually bore the brunt of the battle against the King and carried off the prize of excellence; the achievements of the final phase are private achievements of her own, that is to say, the naval and land battles around Cyprus and Pamphylia and the long run between them. Hence, alone and first to do so, she has defeated the Barbarians;

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§ 169  upon forming a coalition with others she was victorious over her companions no less than over her opponents; and she alone persevered.
[197] Again, in the kind of peace what a difference! The peace treaty which the city made dictates to the King and reads that he must do what he is ordered. It forbids him to sail within the Chelidoneae and the Blue Rocks. "Though you pride yourself on your cavalry, you shall none the more ride to the sea, but shall," it says, "keep a day's run of this same cavalry away from the sea, and you shall obey concerning the Hellenes without distinguishing between those in Greece and those in your own country." While that is what the peace treaty made by the city says, the other treaty bids the Hellenes who dwell in Asia to obey the King and invites him to do whatever he may wish with them, and has imposed upon the others a limitation of their rights. Does it really amount to the same thing, or is the difference so slight ? Is it not rather quite the reverse ?
[198] (Let us look) once more at her relations with the Hellenes and her settlements of the wars among them. Well then, the city did no harm to Lacedaemonians whom she captured, and sent them back in peace, as if it were enough to have prevailed by excellence, whereas Lacedaemonians at the Hellespont—it is decent to put it in this way—immediately slaughtered Athenians whom they took by guile in the naval battle. And they did so—I add nothing else—although the Lacedaemonians had an example in their own history as to how this city treated those who had met disaster. But even so they did not imitate it, so far were they from being able to originate it.
[199] Moreover, while the Lacedaemonians rejected all terms and went so far as to pull down the walls, this city after having defeated all the Peloponnesians back in the days when she recovered Euboea, went no further, rather she even returned willingly the places she had taken in the war previously, Megara, Nisaea, Troezen, Achaea, Pegae.
[200] It seems to me that the treatment of the captives, and in general everything like that, is a sign testifying to the city's double virtue, not as one might assert, merely to her humanity alone. For in my opinion, all who obtain such success beyond expectation or power,

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§ 170  cling to their fortune of the moment, just as those who are unable to hunt will not relinquish the catch made unexpectedly; and if one asked them to sell it, they would not price it at its value, but, making allowance for their own weakness, they charge more than it is worth. She, on the other hand, knowing, I think, that she was altogether superior, was never mean, because in her expectations she equated what she did not have with what she did have. For this reason, she was quicker to make restitution to her enemies than they to ask for restitution.
[201] Again, whereas no one could name a Lacedaemonian who conquered this city single-handed, that is, where they were unsupported by any group at all with a common purpose, a man of Athens single-handed did deprive the Lacedaemonians of their command of the sea. He was the only human being who ever served as general simultaneously for the King and for the city, nay, rather for the Hellenes. For, after doing no injustice whatsoever to one who had trusted him, he fortified the city and liberated the Hellenes, by defeating the Lacedaemonians, island by island and city by city.
[202] Moreover, the thalassocracy itself! This city acquired it as a result of the defeats she inflicted upon the Barbarians, our natural enemies; the Lacedaemonians, on the other hand, acquired it as a result of the disasters the city suffered. Well, having acquired the command, the Athenians so divided every burden that among the Hellenes themselves their organizer was called "just," alone of the Hellenes to be so called as a result of this. And the surname is proof positive, for no evidence more extrordinary than the recognition which the city at that time acquired through him need be mentioned. The Lacedaemonians, on the other hand, so disposed the Hellenes that those who had entrusted themselves to the Lacedaemonians made the best speeches of any men in defense of Athens at certain times when charges were being brought from several sources against her. The reason for this was not cruelty in the Lacedaemonians nor any of the things which one of those prone to censure might aver, but merely the failure of their nature to go forth all the way to fairness.
[203] Again, the Athenians held the command of the sea more than seventy years, while the Lacedaemonians did not keep it even for three Olympiads. In truth, it would have been less than three if they had not received it the year before an Olympic Festival.

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§ 171  [204] There you have comparisons, and I for one am annoyed with those who want them. Now perhaps there are some to whom I myself seem to be acting strangely in finding fault, when I myself have finally entered into the same kind of arguments and have used the arguments for the very reasons for which I say they should not be used. Still it is from these same comparisons that one may best see the gratitude men think they are storing up for themselves in the city: it is not stupendous and a contest should not be made deliberately in efforts of this sort. Hence if there is anyone who thinks that these are unusable for us too, our discussion has been more or less in this very hope; and apart from these the arguments have been made without abuse and as the need occurred. Hence, the reasons why I kept avoiding comparisons are those by which I was finally led to use them, for it was impossible otherwise to carry out my design.
[205] It appears to me that the Lacedaemonians in respect to this city have fared like the Homeric Teucer in respect to Ajax. For he too, braving danger in front of the others, retires to Ajax and distinguishes himself through him and is overshadowed in the same way; likewise the Lacedaemonians, preeminent among the Hellenes, and fighting for them in their needs, are children by comparison with this city. By way of illustration: greatest of what they have to show as their accomplishments are those in which they have worked together with this city. In fact, they failed in what they did separately, while in what they did with the help of those from this city, they had a most brilliant success. Thus, it is through this city that they both distinguish themselves and are overshadowed again.
[206] Nevertheless, I have gone so far, as I was carried away unintentionally into these subjects, that I, for my part, would wish that even the trophies I am about to relate as dedicated from time to time came to the city from others and that it were not necessary continually to add to the many examples the comment "from the Lacedaemonians." But as it is, the situation imposes this method so that the comment will be made not for the sake of the parallel examination, but in order not to pass the achievements by altogether. For there are those too, which I discarded. Apparently, something more than the ordinary course is needed.

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§ 172  [207] Well then, they won a victory at Lechaeum and destroyed almost all the host. They seized the forts at Corinth and expelled the Lacedaemonians who were stationed therein and they tore down the walls. They entered Arcadia and penetrated as far as Laconia. They enclosed them in Phlius and erected a trophy over those who came out to fight, and again over the Mantineans and further over the Sicyonians in the plain and over their allies. They sailed along the coast as far as Byzantium and made all the Thraceward region their own; they defeated the rest of the harmosts and the garrisons at Methymne and by Abydos. They so much exceeded success as even to reconcile the kings of Thrace. And when that unexpected act of wickedness in connection with the Cadmea occurred, they alone of the Hellenes lived up to the commitment assumed in the disgraceful peace and preserved the true honor and justice of the Hellenes by taking the field against the Lacedaemonians.
[208] This war and this peace! Which of the two must one say is more important in a discussion of the city ? The Athenians were the last of the Hellenes to accept this peace and they did not do so until they recognized that they would have to fight not only the Lacedaemonians and at the same time the King and Seuthes and Dionysius and the Peloponnesians. For this they were prepared. But they would have to fight their own allies too. They had been so betrayed. Even under these conditions they did not persist in all their votes, but condemned those at any rate who had persuaded them, because they deemed it contrary to their own nature and sacrilegious, in the presence of the trophies, to permit any of the Hellenes to remain subject to the King.
[209] After those whose names under the circumstances I avoid mentioning actually entered into Thebes in violation of this peace, the Athenians not only as first of the Hellenes, but even as the only Hellenes, acted vigorously, laying hold of affairs as if seizing a windfall. And it was not just one type of benefaction they displayed; rather there was no type of benefaction they omitted. On the one hand, they received the exiles and contrived for them the plot which succeeded and showed them beforehand as if assigning among them parts in a drama. On the other hand, they granted to them a tax-free status, and citizenship, and a sharing in all privileges,

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§ 173  just as to those who had moved from Corinth and Thasos and Byzantium. Next when need for military aid arose, they marched out in almost a complete levy as if they were going to participate in a procession and not in the dangers of war; they imitated their former expedition but actually rose to new heights in their spirit. For on that previous occasion they went out without having an alliance with the Thebans, whereas at this time, though the Thebans had removed the inscriptions concerning the alliance, they nevertheless did not let the folly of the latter influence them in the Thebans' hour of need, and did not turn their anger against those who righteously were facing danger rather than against unrighteous aggressors. Thus splendid were the plans they followed, fitting was the conclusion they placed upon them. For it was not a close victory which they won nor such as merely to frighten the Lacedaemonians. On the contrary, under a safe-conduct they expelled the garrison and the harmosts and restored the city to its original position.
[210] While this contest they endured for the freedom of the Thebans, the next was for the very salvation of the latter. For when the Lacedaemonians, enraged at what had happened, had mobilized every ally for the attack, the Athenians opposed them in defense of Thebes, appointing against the Lacedaemonians generals more frightening than Agesilaus and his staff whom the Lacedaemonians placed in line, and becoming throughout saviors of that city. One who composes an account of this period finds all sorts of deeds. I am surrounded by them. It is not only not easy to narrate them all; it is not easy to give an orderly account of all the exploits of even one general. What shall I leave out, which of them should I mention? The naval victory at Naxos? An immense achievement! Or the struggles around Corcyra? Or the efforts made in the Thraceward region in behalf of the Hellenes there? Or those in Acarnania? Or those anywhere?
[211] Or let me put all this aside and narrate the following. It is the most important thing I have and most amazing and alone worthy of the Athenians. Let me narrate what happened when the Thebans, having defeated the Lacedaemonians at Leuctra, were planning to annihilate them

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§ 174  and the Lacedaemonians suddenly found their affairs in such a state that they needed either a god or this city, some god to hold his protecting hand over them or the Athenians to enter voluntarily into the inheritance of the dangers besetting them. In fact, right at the beginning, a herald, garlanded as in a case of good tidings, had arrived from Thebes. Soon the whole Peloponnese came with an offer to become followers and with an invitation to hegemony, provided Sparta were destroyed; and in case the city did not accept, they threatened to join the Thebans. The Athenians, on the other hand, upon the tidings from the herald, wept as if they had heard the news of some disaster of their own; and as if he had come from the Barbarians, they sent him back greatly cheated of his expectation. They chose for themselves, instead of the willing alliance of the Peloponnesians and the friendship of the victors, the cause of the deserted Lacedaemonians, not reviving the memory of what they themselves had suffered, but conceiving the thought that it was in their own power to cancel the penalty which the Lacedaemonians would suffer, if neglected.
[212] It is particularly this which must be admired as worthy of their nature, and which one must consider superhuman. It was possible for them to have the Lacedaemonians in their following on land and sea or to sit idly by as the Lacedaemonians were hurled headlong, with allies, perioeci, slaves, all in revolt. Instead they received them on equal terms. When the mighty host of the Thebans advanced toward Lacedaemon and the rest of the Peloponnese like a blazing fire, they alone of Hellenes or Barbarians stood forth and stopped it. As a result, all so respected Athens that they appointed the city as meeting place of the whole Alliance.
[213] Now I wonder where those who bring up against the city the stories of MVelos and Scione have been all their lives. Is this all they ever heard of what has been done by the high-principled, consistently behaved city of the Athenians? Or would not they have shared the wish of the Athenians and wished their own fatherlands to have as much? If they deny it, let them show the record on which they pride themselves instead. Since they could not escape the same choice if some god were offering it to them, let them cease trying their hand at arguments which are greater than those they would use in their own case.

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§ 175  Again, is it the city or the contingent results which they denounce? If they denounce the city, they apparently understand nothing of the most important things; rather those by which the city is recognized have escaped them. But if they criticize the results, considering them apparently not in conformity with the general intentions of the city, they criticize in such a way that on the grounds on which they denigrate the city's action they laud the city itself. For wickedness both in city and in individual is shown when either it or he has only a reprehensible record or when one proves the evil to be more or greater than the good. If such is the case, let this be stated also. But when you find fault with one or two things in the course of a complete examination, without realizing it you praise by what you let pass, especially if it is not at all an individual whom you are judging but a city, and at that the oldest among the Hellenic cities, which has a record of very many policies where the results were just as they should be.
[214] But if it is necessary to reply concerning these points too, I shall not state how those who came to power afterwards dealt with these same troubles, for I, for my part, have no intention of hurting any of the Hellenes—on the contrary, the discourse is an offering to the race of the Hellenes from my store, a gift to all of them in common—and to show that others have of course perpetrated more serious and more terrible deeds is not a defense of the city, but rather a confession appealing for pardon. I do not need to defend her in that way.
[215] On the contrary, I think that the people who bring up such arguments have completely mistaken the necessary nature of affairs and are living, as it were, outside our world. For how could anyone credit them with reasoning about the realities of the situation in a pertinent manner, or grant that they can discuss rule, when they have failed to understand this first, the nature of rule? All rule is presumably rule by the superior, and against the very law of equality. Otherwise, how is it fair or just either to collect tribute from another's land or to make laws for those who do not request it at all, or to judge their suits or to impose commands upon them or to go to war or to acquire alien property?

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§ 176  Absolutely none of this arises from equality. [216] Hence, if one quibbles about rights and prefers to be sophistical rather than to allow for the necessary nature of affairs, he will soon just cancel all positions of rule and power on the grounds that all such are by decree of the superior. Next from sheer cleverness he will ascend right up to the gods in his examination, saying that not even these address men on a basis of equality but have preferred to be superior. But this, I think, is the talk of men with the outlook of a secluded corner who have seen the stars but have never seen the sun which takes away from the other lights their brilliance.
[217] If it is necessary that every government and every superior authority have such advantages, and this is what rulership ordains, namely, not to submit to trial on an equal basis with the followers, then let a critic depart victorious, if he proves that among either the Hellenic powers or the barbarian kingdoms it is possible to find any state whatsoever using the vice of encroachment less than the Republic of the Athenians. For it will appear that the Republic of the Athenians in what it planned in a superior manner had used an habitual attitude of one man, its best, whereas in the policies which some criticize, it did not err in the manner natural to mankind, but followed the necessity of rule, and while it had been appointed ruler in the beginning because of ability, because of a generous leniency it willingly gave up the fear that rulership inspires and so has more or less brought the charges upon itself by its own accord. For having shown itself very unselfish and moderate toward all and in a way having made them sharers in its constitution rather than restraining them by a law of absolute authority, it had the same experience as the good among masters. From some it received no thanks for its fairness, but if it brought any compulsion to bear, it was thought to be openly using violence.
[218] Again, if the Republic of the Athenians is shown to have done these things to loyal followers,
[218] let us allow the critics who so wish their hard words. But if it appears that the Republic did these things to ingrates who apostasized and provoked it outrageously and to outright enemies, which side rightfully is to blame? In my opinion, those who made these actions necessary. I believe that the aforesaid were carried away

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§ 177  because they had, as it were, an assurance in which they placed their trust as they went astray, not that they would in the end prevail over the city, but that even if they were defeated, they would suffer no great harm, inasmuch as the Athenians were by nature saviors.
[219] Undoubtedly so. For instance what city can surpass the decree which the Athenians adopted concerning Mytilene when they changed their original plan? What they decided on the first day was the result of the sudden turn and of the injuries they had sustained; what they decided in the change of plan on the second day was the deed of the city alone, and the trireme immediately overtook the trireme.
[220] It astonishes me that, whereas in the case of individuals all accept the plea that a good deed militates in a defendant's favor, in the case of the city those fine critics do not look at her deeds to see the variety and number of good deeds by which she stands excused. When we do not denounce the sun and moon for the harm they do but admire them for the benefits they produce, shall we judge the city on the basis of her collisions with some few? Shall we not judge her rather on the basis of the cooperation she has given to all and from the standpoint of the world as a whole? I think that not to do so would be as if one denounced the gods for the bolts of lightning and the claps of thunder and for an earthquake, without having troubled to examine their ubiquitous and universal benefactions! Well, the city expelled the Scionaeans, yes, but she saved the Hellenes both all together and individually and did so on thousands of occasions. I should like to ask those who readily find themselves good enough to make such charges, whom, they claim, she drove out like the Thebans whose expulsion she prevented, or whose walls she tore down like the walls she built for the Corinthians, or whom she annihilated like the Lacedaemonians and the cities which stood by them that she preserved in many noble deeds of long ago and lastly in the cavalry action around Mantinea, finest of the Hellenic and, I think, even of all known cavalry actions.
[221] An achievement, which is, as it were, a crowning achievement of those times, gave to all the city did both previously and now the impress of a distinct character.

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§ 178  Dionysius, the tyrant of Sicily and ruler also of many Greek cities in Italy, was planning to attack Hellas, worn out by her long wars. He had for a long while courted the Barbarians who dwelt near the Hellenes and was calling in the King of the Persians. When the plot was already simmering, two Athenian generals checked the attempt. One captured, men and all, the ships that were approaching from Sicily; the other defeated the Lacedaemonians near Leucas and made the sea his own.
[222] For she alone of cities did not bring in a tyrant, was not impressed by wealth; for security, for pleasures she did not exchange her righteousness, but as having been born to live for all, she kept herself so. And in consequence all who conceived a desire for dominion over Hellenes always found themselves at war with the city. In fact, as regards the rest of the Hellenes, some Philip ignored and with promises and gifts he persuaded others to collaborate with him, but with this city he remained at war right from the beginning, as if fulfilling some inevitable law of nature. As long as her strength lasted, she used to destroy the aggressors, while for the others she became another fatherland; like a mother in defense of her brood, she fought for all; it was she alone who preserved the posture of the true Hellas and overshadowed the then prevailing disasters. When her affairs declined, nothing stood in Philip's way; rather, it became apparent that the victories of this city were actually victories of the Hellenes and that the reverses of this city were reverses of all the Hellenes. They did not abandon her leadership for Philip until the city adopted the peace.
[223] I have much to say concerning later events, too, of strange battles, wonderful acts of daring, superhuman acts of endurance, but I see that there is no longer time. This much only shall I add before I finish with the discussion of these topics. The city has waged four distinct kinds of wars: the private wars of her own,

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§ 179  wars in defense of the community of Hellas, wars in defense of those who one after the other appealed to her, and among these very ones who appealed to her were some by whom she had been injured and against whom she had grievances of yore. Well, then, I assert that this type of war by itself takes precedence over all the Hellenic exploits together since those whom the city saved after they had acted foolishly toward her outnumber those she remembered for favors they had done for her. I have in mind the occasions when she saved the Thebans from the Lacedaemonians, the Corinthians from the Thebans, the Euboeans from the Thebans—occasions on which she gave proof of a double virtue. For some she protected their cities and their land, though they had deprived her of her own; others whom Philip had conquered she released under a treaty, namely, the Euboeans again, the Byzantines, the Perinthians, the Chersonites, the Chalcidians on the opposite shore to her own, thousands of others. In return for these Hellenic exploits the Hellenes, in the way they erect a statue of an individual, should have honored a city, and if so, the city of the Athenians alone deserved a statue, yes, one to be honored as an image where the spirit of Hellas would delight to reside, an object of worship to all Hellenes jointly. For what the prytaneum is to the city, this the city has been in their emergencies, to all the Hellenes jointly, having provided the subjects, ever more noble, of trophies and epigrams.
[224] Moreover, a deed performed, yes, without danger but which shows as well as anything what the excellence of the Athenians really was escaped us in the preceding arguments, but perhaps it is better to give it its due now. An agreement had been made by them with the Lacedaemonians to annihilate, if they defeated the Barbarians, those who had Medized. Yet when the dangers passed, they forgot their hatred, and as the Lacedaemonians had rushed to do what had been decreed, they stopped them, for they saw by how many cities Hellas was about to be decreased. Hence, the city always contributed, not only to the common interests of the Hellenic race, but even to the interests of those who originally offended both against her and against the Hellenes, and whatever victories she won she won precisely in behalf of all.

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§ 180  [225] Enough about this! There are things which no one up to the present has recalled in the public eulogies, as far at least as we know. I shall not stop before I mention these. In fact it seems to me like an offense against the divine order for one adorning your deeds with the art of words to pass by the memory of your part in the very development of the art of words. For this and no other is "the bloodless trophy." You, alone of men, have raised a bloodless trophy, not over Boeotians or Lacedaemonians or Corinthians either, but over all those of the same race. I say this, not as one might name Hellenes, contrasting them with barbarians—but over the common family of Mankind. And you have carried off a victory, honorable and great throughout all time, not on a par with the disputed battle of Tanagra nor even, by Zeus, with the enormous victory at Marathon, but in truth the victory becoming to man and a perpetual one that we can call without impiety "child of Zeus." For all the cities and all the races of men have turned toward you and your way of life and your language.
[226] It is not through garrisons of occupation that the power of the city remains firm, but because all have chosen your ways deliberately and are, so far as possible, adopting the city as their mother, praying to have both their children and themselves acquire a share in the good life at your side. The Pillars of Heracles do not limit this power, nor is it bounded by the hills of Libya or by either Bosporus or by the Gates of Syria and Cilicia, but over the whole earth by some divine fortune there comes a yearning for your wisdom and your way of life, and this one idiom all have ordained to be the common language of the human race. And so through you the whole civilized world has become united by a common tongue, and one will find that even the Heniochi, both the herdsmen and those who live off the sea, and all nations not only in cities but on the countryside lay hold of the language that comes from you, clinging to it and trying their powers, just as one will find those unable to swim keep a hold on the land.
[227] I claim that this especially, oh Lacedaemonians

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§ 181  and all ye Hellenes, is the testimonial with which you and the first among you are every day up to the present still attesting her victory. The Hellenes have abandoned their ancestral idioms and would be ashamed to speak the old dialects among themselves in the presence of witnesses; all have come to this tongue of yours, men of Athens, considering it, as they do, a standard of culture. I call this the great dominion of the Athenians, not two hundred or more triremes, not Ionia, nor the Hellespont, nor the Thraceward region, which have changed rulers ten thousand times. The superiority of these modes of speech compared with all others existed at the beginning and appeared still more clearly with the passage of time, so that not only do these modes so flourish after all the others have more or less failed, but one could say that all the idioms of the others, not only of the Barbarians but even of the Hellenes, resembled the words of inarticulate infants in comparison with the tongue in your country. Whether one hears only two or three words or, as it were, gaily enjoys himself to the full, for the rest of his life the taste for all other idioms is already lost; only this tongue, suitable for all festal gatherings, all assemblies and council halls, suffices for all occasions and places, and is equally appropriate. Two qualities, which one might almost say, are the first, it alone possesses. I mean stateliness and grace. Why certainly! For in the all around test of effort, speed, and strength who with another tongue would be able to compete on a nearly equal basis and not indeed go away defeated like a mere boy against a man, to put it gently?
[228] And in consequence every poetic form derived from you is excellent and most fully developed, not only all that represents stateliness but all that represents grace. And if one must recall the poetry of Homer, the city has a share even in this noble offering, not only through her colony, his city, but because the language clearly came from here. Moreover, there are all the discourses which are best among you in all the categories, and those which men from your environment composed; and it is more or less true that they who have won laurels in any field among the Hellenes, have all prevailed by means of the power of the Athenians.

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§ 182  [229] And even as to this engagement of ours, if in any respect—now is a time for gods who are propitious—if in any respect this also traces its ancestry back to you, it is not possible to charge the words of my discourse with a usurpation of rights here. For as if she had foreseen from the beginning how much this city would rise above all the others in her accomplishments, Nature equipped her worthily with the arts of discourse so that the city herself might be adorned by her own blessings, and if any of the others had need, she might be able to give them this gift along with the others.
[230] Formerly you used to save those of the Hellenes who took refuge with you. Now it is actually all men and all races whom with the fairest of benefactions you sustain, making yourselves leaders in all education and wisdom and purifying all men everywhere. For because of the initiation of the Eleusinian festival you have by the visiting pilgrims been called expounders of the sacred rites and introducers to mysteries, while throughout all time to all men you have stood as teachers and expounders of the sacred contributions for the common benefit. In return for these things you attract all with the incantations which become you, moving them not with a spell, but with the finest of enchantments, Discourse, precisely the gift which the gods gave to man alone, and which is worth all the other gifts.
[231] Accordingly, while individuals would, I think, esteem after their own the other cities which they honor, in the case of the city of the Athenians the situation is reversed and all would deny that they honored your city after their own, thinking that this city was truly their own in first place, and no one would take it ill. For just as it is a fixed custom to honor the gods before one's parents as being common ancestors and benefactors of all, so it is in accord with piety to honor the common fatherland of the human race before one's own.
[232] It is furthermore right to mention the subject of the reverence she receives, how much of it there both is and has been for this city, from all people and at all times, on every occasion. She was deemed worthy of the first honors not only when Hellas was prospering, but even amid the loss of prosperity there is no city which has become equal to her. For while Philip, having had good fortune in the Battle of Chaeronea, immediately occupied the city of the Thebans, he did not suffer himself even to look upon the city of the Athenians immediately,

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§ 183  but stayed in the countryside because of reverence for what is superior. I need not mention the courteous attention which Alexander always paid to her. The present empire of land and sea, which, I pray, may last forever, recognizes the Athenians as teachers and foster-parents. Not only does it treat Athens accordingly, but the honors so abound that while the city fares differently now in that she is not so busy with administrative chores, her happiness in general is almost identical with her happiness in the days when she held the command of Greece, because of revenues and precedence and the deference from all.
[233] It is an absolutely supreme mark of divine favor that when the affairs of Hellas were in flower, she continually prevailed over both Hellenes and Barbarians, while those who alone seemed to surpass her fared in later times so much less honorably and less fortunately. In the case of some their cities are ruined, while all the rest are governed by the law of the ruling power and are subject to taxation and to the other obligatory contributions. She, on the other hand, was not so badly humiliated nor for so long a time, as she has from then up to this day been honored not only above those who once seemed to surpass her but even above all. For no one preens himself on being from Pella or Aegae, while there is no Hellene who would not give much to have been born an Athenian rather than a citizen of his original city. Not only do individuals in their hearts, but even cities, revere Athens. Some which were truly founded from here and with men of yours would rather say that they are descended from you than acquire the same power you had; others gather around seeking some way to attach themselves to you.
[234] Again, history records five empires, and may their number not increase. In the time of the oldest of these, the Assyrian, occurred the first deeds of the city's history, and the anecdotes about the gods fall in this period. In the time of the second occurred the rise of the city. The third she completely defeated. In the fourth, she alone held out

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§ 184  and came off best of all. In the time of the empire now established, which is in all respects the best and greatest, she holds the place of honor in the whole Hellenic world, and has so fared that one could not wish for her the old circumstances instead of the present.
[235] How great a superabundance of titles to fame the city holds from her entire past could be realized if one were to distribute her titles and give them to various cities and countries—in the case of all the titles, this would perhaps not be possible, or rather it would be clearly impossible, but at least as many as lent themselves—to distribute them and then to stage an oratorical contest like those of poets or choruses. For, I think, it can be no easy task to select the city which wins over all. For example, if one city were to preen herself that she first gave birth to the human race, another that she first produced the crops of agriculture, another that she gave to very many a share therein, some other that she invented laws, another festivals, another that she was once and for all located in the fairest parts of the land and sea, another that she rejoiced in the blessings of wisdom, while another listed her exploits in the wars, another the numbers of Hellenes she received in their troubles, another the colonies she sent forth, another whichever of the titles of Athens one might give to this city, in this way, I claim, it might best become clear with how many titles of superiority the city has surpassed the others. In short, Athens alone has enough for all Hellas to divide. And, furthermore, just as she so greatly surpasses by the combination of all her titles, so she in each individual title rejoices again in many proofs which lead to the same conclusion.
[236] For example, in the anecdotes concerning the gods two things are at once of the first importance, her honor from the gods and her zeal for the gods. Here again, consider the honor from the gods. Should one prize more highly the sojourns among you with which they honored the community or the nurture with which they fostered those in office like their very own children? Or the trials they arranged? And again among the trials, should one prize more highly the cases where they stood trial against one another for the city

Event Date: 160 GR

§ 185  or those mixed trials of heroes and gods transferred to the city before a jury of gods?
[237] Again in the case of the gifts, it is just as hard to pick out the most important. Let one city contend with another also concerning these, one having the crops of Demeter, another those of Dionysus, the latter being those not only from the vine, but also from the cultivated trees in general. Let the third recount the gift of Athena, this too being double. Are not the honors from the gods enough for distribution to many cities for each to pride itself on having the very best?
[238] Again, the acts of devotion toward the gods: on the one hand, the temples, on the other, the annual sacrifices and processions. Of these some have arisen among you first, while others are still today carried out among you in an unsurpassable manner. Since those who once partake of the ineffable mysteries fare, it seems, better after the end of life, who would not say that the mysteries as one title suffice to balance against all?
[239] But her intercourse with mankind has left ungranted what manner of benefaction? It has produced all kinds: in the first place, the sharing of the gift of crops; next the second sharing of a gift, that of the mysteries; thirdly, the protection in wars; fourthly, the aid ever given to all through wisdom, both for the individual families of the cities and for their communities. Furthermore, in the case of wisdom itself should we select the laws, since those the majority still use are yours, or the traditional forms of discourse? And of the traditional forms of discourse, whether those of oratory or those of dialectic, whether those of poetry, or the other style of composition, and if you will, what form of poetry? For in whatever you may name as first or last, the first prize belongs to this city.
[240] Examine now the subject of her wars: on the one hand, her private struggles, on the other, those in behalf of all the rest, again her achievements on her own soil, and again, those on foreign soil, Hellenic as well as Barbarian. And will you select her courage or her philanthropy exhibited in these same wars? For as in one stream all divisions you may make flow together again and coalesce, so the wars in the service of her suppliants

Event Date: 160 GR

§ 186  and the blessings of her wisdom flow together again into the theme of her benefactions, while her own quarrels and those in behalf of her suppliants flow together into the theme of her wars.
[241] Again, in the case of the wars, in behalf of themselves or the wars in behalf of others, must one choose the naval battles or the infantry battles or the cavalry battles or the battles against the walls of fortifications? For in all these respects the city was very strong. And if you will, what was the most important among her battles on the sea, or what among those on the mainland? But here, certainly, let three battles be recognized as records with which she has surpassed, if not herself, at least all the others indisputably: the infantry battle at Marathon, the naval battle at Salamis—as cavalry battle I am at a loss what to choose, but that at Mantinea will do. I stop here, for no one has ever even questioned her supremacy in battles against fortifications.
[242] And furthermore shall we make the award on the number of her trophies or on the importance of her achievements? Or how shall we define the merit? Thus, she wins through each and all in many ways. In fact, she has fought many, many superlatively great contests in behalf of the noblest ideals, and many noble trophies have been erected by Athens and very many and very noble and superior in all ways are the traditions of this city. I shall add that she has produced military and naval commanders of the greatest wisdom, keenness, and justice, and in greater number than have all the other Hellenes together.
[243] To sum it up, men obtain a fullness of life in three ways, by the good supply of necessities, by the noble fruits of culture, by preparation for war. The first is common to both peace and war—for there are two situations—the second a relaxation in time of peace, the third enables them to defend what they have. Of these, accordingly, let whatever one wishes be most important. Let these be granted to three cities as their titles to fame, one each to each one. Well then, I assert that against whichever of those cities one judges this city, the victory belongs to this city. For she will appear to have produced all three and to have progressed furthest in all. So she wins with any judges and besides in all areas.

Event Date: 160 GR

§ 187  Hence one could not hesitate to say that she ought to be proclaimed among the Hellenes the first and second and third, as they do in the chariot races. Fair enough, since it was Athens, not Sicily, which originated the chariot!
[244] Well, such is the case with these advantages. But again consider her size and her architecture in general. Who could find words worthy of her whole felicity and the great repute of the Athenians? On the one hand, the very circuit of the town is largest of the cities in Hellas, fairest of those anywhere! And I do not count the walls which once stretched to the sea, altogether a day's journey in length, and near the sea other circuits, counterparts of the walls around the city. But the demes can surely be inspected, some of which have been made more noble in appearance than the cities in other lands, and the rivalry of all their beauty can be seen, that from nature and that from art, that in town and that out in the country.
[245] Of the natural advantages there is here air superior to the ordinary, and such harbors that each of them alone is worth many ordinary harbors. Moreover, there is the position of the Acropolis itself and the charm of a fresh breeze, as it were, which strikes one everywhere. This too is worth noting among these same advantages: that other cities, whatever kind of sky they may have, are usually surpassed by their own rural areas, while, with the air of all Attica being as good and pure as it is, best and purest is that above the city. One would recognize her by the way the air above her head gleams, as it were, from afar.
[246] And such are the advantages from nature, though I did not begin to list all she has. But again—among the advantages from art what should one assume to be most important or what mention first? For here temples are the largest and most beautiful of those anywhere. And as for statues, quite apart from those which dropped from heaven, there are the best works, both ancient and modern, of the best art. Besides, there are veritable treasuries of books such as appear nowhere else on earth

Event Date: 160 GR

§ 188  and constitute indeed a native, home-grown glory of Athens. And as there should be with today's opportunity and way of life, there are baths, athletic grounds, and gymnasia overpowering in their magnificence and luxury. Hence, if one were to deprive the city of her heroic figures of legend like Erichthonius and Cecrops, her myths, the stories about her part in the gift of crops, her trophies both on land and sea, her literature, her men, all that through which she has passed in the course of endless time, and would look at her as at the cities of today which are so proud of themselves, she has enough to win on the basis of what meets the eye alone.
[247] Again some things she has had, other things she does have. And she has neither been stripped of the record of the pre-eminence she used to have nor again has she been left out of the present felicity, in case one likes to have this too recalled, but alone among cities she wins over the ancient with the ancient, over the modern with the modern, and if you wish, over the ancient with the modern, over the modern with the ancient—with her own, I mean, over that of others.
[248] One will see her superiority also from the following illustrations. All who have even a little something in common with the city pose as better than the rest of the Hellenes. She falls behind in no distinction which any at all pride themselves on having, yet she has no rival sharing throughout in her own titles to fame. For instance, the Argives claim to be very old among the Hellenes. Then so is the city of the Athenians. And the antiquities of the Argives are not at all in a class with those of the Athenians nor would any impartial judge say so. The Arcadians were autochthonous, yes, after the Athenians, and in the second tests they are surpassed with the discovery and gift of the crops. It is quite clear from the fact that the Hellenes bring their first fruits here but not there. Very good are the Lacedaemonians in respect to war, but so is the city of the Athenians, while in the second test, a noble ambition to take risks for others, honors are awarded to the Athenians. The birth of deities gives Thebes grace and honor. Of these deities, however, one revealed his gift in Attica, the other the Athenians proclaimed a god as first of the Hellenes to do so, quite apart from the adventures which Theseus shared with him.

Event Date: 160 GR

§ 189  All recall the strength of the Thebans at the end. Well, this city was responsible for it. And when resistance was necessary, Athens did not hesitate. One would have reason to praise the Corinthians for justice. However, this city has not merely willed justice, but has continuously been making just awards to others.
[249] Most famous of all are the games in Greece; again of these oldest are the Panathenaea, and if you wish, the Eleusinia. Then it is the gift of the city which permits the staging of all these games. I say "the gift of the city" because the gift from Athena is indeed the city's. The Samothracians pride themselves on their sacred rites, and these are the most famous of all, except the Eleusinian rites. Well yes, Delos is dedicated to the gods. But Delos belongs to this city. And to think that the open road to Delphi is an achievement of this city, that the sacred embassy, the Pythaid, is an ancestral custom of the Athenians alone! What reason for all this could one offer except the will of the gods who wish that everywhere Athens have first rank and that this city, as it were, have a hand in all the noble enterprises ?
[250] Moreover, among the cities of Asia there are those who pride themselves on the size of their temples, others on the architecture of their baths which are provided in excess of the need. This city has even these things to an unsurpassable degree, just as a recently founded city might. And best of all! It is you who possess the temples and the theaters for the display of distinction which the others particularly desire to show the world by means of statues. There are wonderful statues, and among these the one which you have on the Acropolis wins first place. The primacy in sculpture is yours quite apart from the fact that also the most beautiful statues anywhere in a certain sense belong to this city. For of all the most gifted, as it seems, she is a home and she is leader in all wisdom and art, so that she excels not only in her sculpture but in her sculptors too.
[251] Again, I must not omit this either: of seven men who became famous for wisdom, one has come from this city, and of two excellent lawgivers one was this same man. Furthermore, to two men of yore, a vote of confidence has been given by the gods as we have heard, namely to Lycurgus the Lacedaemonian

Event Date: 160 GR

§ 190  and to Socrates from your own midst. Hence, the city shares in the pride in the common things and the pride in the finest things, and there is nothing of renown to which the name of Athens is not applied.
[252] Furthermore, if one could ask which of the courts among the Hellenes was most honored and revered, all would name the court of the Areopagus.
"And who adopted customs of the greatest community spirit and concern for those in need?"
"The city of the Athenians," both Athenians and non-Athenians alike would have to say if they wished to tell the truth.
[253] To submit complete proofs of all this would be a long task and take a long time, but here are three customs which you alone of men instituted: that of pronouncing each year at their graves a funeral oration in praise of the men themselves who died in defense of the city, that of supporting their children at public expense until maturity, and of then sending them back to their paternal estates with a complete suit of armor, that of supporting the economically weak among the citizens at public expense. Hence, honoring both strength and weakness, you have taught the proper respect in each case.
[254] Moreover, whence have come decrees either more brilliant or more generous? They have been mentioned in the foregoing discussion and I pass them by, but let one of them serve me as a sample for the whole argument in connection therewith, namely, the decree passed against Arthmius the Zeleitan. When in the service of the King, he carried gold to the Peloponnese, they passed a decree declaring him an enemy of the Athenian people and depriving him and his family of their rights and privileges. Surely all the decrees of the others together are inferior to this one decree of the Athenians.
[255] Embassies, moreover, were most frequent. Very many were those she received, very many those she sent out. And this is important if it is accepted without arguments as applying to every situation; if it is not so accepted, it becomes more important as you add the specification. For instance, very many were those she dispatched in behalf of her petitioners from time to time. Then all the embassies she carried through on each occasion that she was persuading the Hellenes jointly not to keep warring upon each other or when she was consoling those in need! One must make omissions because the embassies were numerous, but here I shall recall just two of them.

Event Date: 160 GR

§ 191  The Argives were engaged in civil dissensions, and she stopped them. The Cretans were waging war on one another, and she effected a conciliation.
[256] Moreover, piety, forbearance, self-respect! Who could cite a finer example of these qualities than this? When the Corinthians had voted not to receive at their festal assembly the festal delegation from here but had even through an embassy forbidden the city to send one, the Athenians equipped both their delegates and their hoplites and dispatched them together; but when the latter reached Eleusis, the Corinthians arrived with a peace offer, and the Athenians, sending their delegation on, led the hoplites back.
[257] Ah yes, Eleusis. Of the mysteries, some have been revered as ancient, others as indispensable, still others as familiar to very many. By any test, however, the Eleusinian Mysteries come out first. In fact, concerning the others it is not our duty to speak, but you alone of the Hellenes every year put on a festival inferior to no quadrennial festival and receive in the Eleusinion more than others receive in their whole city. Indeed all on each occasion contend with the past to make the current festival the greatest on record in multitude of human beings.
[258] Ah yes, human beings! But Heracles and the Dioscuri! All presumably hold that these at least are gods. Well it was while they were consorting with men that the city revealed the sacred rites to these, first of strangers. Hence she is clearly the one who sanctified these heroes to whom we now offer sacred rites.
[259] Again, in respect to contests! This one city even today celebrates more games than all the rest. One might almost say that all festivals are either among you alone or from you. In fact at least one of three things has occurred: in some cases the festival began with you; in others it is best performed among you; here in still others it has the most events.
[260] Moreover, there are some poor souls who, not having any immediately usable asset of their own to show or any field of accomplishment to mention or anything in which to take a legitimate pride, go back to Homeric times and dispute about some hero's distinction without adducing, even so, any common deed of their own but associating themselves with one man's fame. The Phthiotes and Pylians and Ithacans, for instance, like some who, poor in land of their own, deem themselves among the rich because of one man. But this city,

Event Date: 160 GR

§ 192  while she does not need to go back for that reason to Homeric times, is not deprived even of that satisfaction. On the contrary, the common poet of the Hellenes says in the catalogue of ships and cities that the commander of the Athenians reached the highest perfection in the "marshalling of chariots and of shield-bearing men." And what gives greater value to the compliment and makes it so neat is this: the others whom he praises as best in respect to their physical condition or even in some other respect, if it so happens, he praises as best of the Achaeans or as best of such and such. In one case, at any rate, he says best "of men and steeds who followed the sons of Atreus," and on another occasion he says that "of those who were then at Ilion" he was supreme in archery. And his Nestor refers to some of the brilliant figures of his own time, "For I once consorted with even better men than you," and straightway counts many such, here again with a qualification that they were similar to each other and that no one of them was visibly superior. But in making mention of Menestheus, the poet has used no such qualifications, but concisely, without these remarks, he says at once, "His peer has not yet arisen on the earth." Among the things that occurred a little earlier than these he narrates concerning Erechtheus that the goddess nurtured him, the Earth herself bore him. Therefore, it is perhaps not at all unnatural that in proclaiming those whom he has selected as definitely best in each respect, he makes a difference when he praises one of those born in this country. He proclaims the others with a qualification either of time or of race, but when he praises as best one of those born in this country, he praises him once and for all as best of all those born anywhere on the earth. Finally, when he makes two of the Achaeans best in respect to the deeds of war, Salamis of course supplies one of the ethnics by which he identifies them.
[261] Of course one impressive thing that they say about the constitution of the Lacedaemonians is that the god originally ordained their laws for them. But this same god obviously made for our city its divisions into tribes and clans, when he appointed for each the proper sacrifices to offer, exactly as he determined for them, kings and archons and practically the whole constitution. Hence the god would be lawgiver of this city no less than of theirs.

Event Date: 160 GR

§ 193  [262] I wish in a few words to remind you of her constitution, as far as I am able. For in fact all praise it, yet almost no one has searchingly detected all that lies in it. I call it both simple and not simple. For to make a distinction as far back as possible, there are three constitutions and whichever one a man prefers he assigns to this city. Kingships she has obviously been using right from the beginning, a goodly number of generations, kingships not only of the Erechtheidae, but even of those who later were deemed worthy. Again democracy! Every child knows the democracy which has arisen among you: it is democracy in its purest form and of all the most important. And finally, everyone who has looked into the Council of the Areopagus would say, I think, that it is not possible to find a nobler ideal of aristocracy or one which better preserves the name.
[263] Thus all types of constitution have taken their start from here. For as if the city were drafting formulas to serve mankind, for each group to choose what suited its own inclinations and customs, so she discovered all types and presented them in public, aiding mankind everywhere, which is the same intention she had had, according to our interpretation, with regard to the crops and in many other different activities.
[264] There is a fact even more important and more conclusive. It will appear that the kings themselves were to a higher degree than all the others pleased with her equality of rights and privileges and especially, I believe, became in their sentiments of one mind with the Many, and that the People, wherever they find, in case they do, someone superior to the Many, voluntarily make him their chief and use him as a perpetual ruler but keep the same reward also for the Few, in case they perceive that a few are better than the others but rivals among themselves. Likewise it will appear that the Council is ever looking for ways to strengthen the People, having never made a separate reckoning of its own interest but judging that it was a noble advantage and one consistent with its dignity to preside over the Many salutarily with good repute.
[265] Hence no wonder the city can be famous beyond all the others not only in respect to each form of constitution but even in respect to the mixture of constitutions.

Event Date: 160 GR

§ 194  For just as, on the one hand, this whole universe, I think, came together from four elements as the ancient tale says, but, on the other hand, each of these itself partakes, by its natural development, also of the rest, while separately each kind of element has received its name by its excess, so also in respect to the constitutions, even if they happen to be as distinct as possible, it is right for them in some way or other to partake of each other, if we really are going to behold a kingship that is upright and just or a government of the Few, likewise of the Many, that is upright and just.
[266] One would understand if he were to study the kingships which have arisen in this city against those which have arisen anywhere else either in Hellas or on barbarian soil, again the democracy which has arisen at Athens against the democracies of the others, and finally the Council of the Areopagus against the sovereign and guiding bodies any where else. For if we ought to leave the others aside and speak of democracy alone, all who have shared in this form will appear in their designs and appetites to have been much more reckless and outrageous but in the dignity and splendor of their achievement not to have come anywhere near the men from this city.
[267] Again there is the following which this city was the first to teach: not to give one's vote to wealth nor to be impressed by it either. She never exalted those who were superior merely because of their estates but she deemed that only protection from injury on that account was due them from her; nor did she ever in any way assign less to those who were superior in virtue while inferior in wealth; she, who knew that of household slaves one considers as best not the richest but the most loyal, considered it, I presume, disgraceful that the worth of those who claim to be free should be defined in terms of wealth instead of each man being considered such as he personally is. And in consequence she alone of cities did not transpose the rule and make the third by natural right the first by law, nor has she ever been seen behaving like some of those who claim to be philosophers, whom one can see speaking in this way about these matters but in action ever bowing and yielding to whoever they feel are economically stronger. But she is seen conducting to high office

Event Date: 160 GR

§ 195  and trusting and deeming worthy of all honor, not those from the highest census classes but those who are most suitable in respect to their characters, in the opinion that he who would win in respect to virtue wins in the overall reckoning. She showed these qualities not least at the time she reached her greatest strength.
[268] For while among the famous men at Athens in those days some were rich beyond the first houses of Hellas, but others as poor as could be, she chose for the presidency of Hellenic interests one of the latter. And in consequence he achieved glory by his assessments, the city by her decisions.
[269] While there are many things that one could say about the constitution, many remarks actually have been anticipated and time is being subtracted, and it is not absolutely necessary to mention them. But one point I shall add and then finish the discussion of this topic too.
[270] The best group and the group in power have coincided here, and while the posts of honor are allowed only to the most suitable, to live their lives is in the highest degree the common right of all. This is surely a mark, is it not, of a truly free city and constitution? Though it is possible to live here as one wishes, honor and power are not for those who want them but for those who have been tested. And in consequence both in the struggles of war and in the discharge of duties they acted reasonably throughout; they would not go about their public tasks with an interest that was halfhearted or even less, but all in the same way vied with each other in zeal to the best of their ability. Common the fatherland for which they fought and toiled, and in common the battles, and no arrangement for one group merely to run the risks and for the other group to be masters in case of conquest. From these roots accordingly flowered concord and mutual trust throughout the city. If a disagreement anywhere were actually to arise, without much difficulty they would come to a mutual understanding, and for courage, if anywhere it might be needed, there was nothing to compare with them. To me it seems that not even five-game champions who win all the events prevail to such a degree in the overall test.
[271] On what occasions would any speaker not be better off in remembering the city? On military expeditions?

Event Date: 160 GR

§ 196  And where would he get nobler examples? Or by using which stories of courage would he produce a better exhortation? Well, at the festal assemblies? But she herself is leader in these. Well, at the political assemblies and in the management of city affairs? And what people in its history combines more keenness and gentleness or what popular leaders in history are more worthy of admiration? Well, in the training in Discourse and other knowledge? No, even now it is here that they all congregate, and by the good fortune of the city the generations of the lovers of knowledge have not died without it being constantly necessary for those anywhere on earth who mention the forms of Discourse to mention the Athenians at the same time, and they would never cast the image from their souls, where they see the forms as in a mirror.
[272] And in consequence for all mankind the name and the soil of this city is greatly revered, because all think that nothing else is one and the same. In fact, both commoners and kings have honored her, in neither case with some small tokens but in such a way that they themselves rejoiced in the unprecedented character of the honors they were showing.
[273] Unmistakable also is the good will shown by the gods themselves and the supporting vote even through the common mantis and exegete who is ancestral to the city, as they invite her to offer in behalf of the Hellenes the sacrifices before the time of tillage and as they name her mother-city of the crops, nay more, deem her worthy to wear a crown, her crown of victory, throughout her life. "An eagle among the clouds" the gods call her in comparison with other cities.
[274] To this alone among cities, as it seems, two incongruous things have happened. Both very many and very fine are the tributes spoken by men concerning this city, and yet no city has received less. For she has been admired above all others, yet has heard no song of praise worthy of her. Yes, formerly I used to rejoice to hear the city called "the hall of wisdom," and "the hearth of Hellas," and "the pillar of Hellas" and by all such lyrical terms. Now, on the other hand, it seems to me that all these expressions fall too short, but if ever a city were to be addressed as "legate of gods" or as "kin" thereof or as "image of the virtue and standard of the power in human nature," this city, I think, would have deserved the acclamation.

Event Date: 160 GR

§ 197  [275] Because of these things, oh men of Hellas, it is reasonable not to feel either envy or shame in yielding to the city, but actually to take pride in magnifying her with all one's power. For when the Athenians are victorious, the victory lies with you. It is impossible for all to be best among all. But as when a chief magistrate is eminent, the city shares in his fame, so when the leading city is being honored with the honors that are her due, all share in the pride. I believe it causes the Athenians themselves no shame either, if anyone worships their Acropolis. Therefore, you too must think the city a kind of acropolis or crown of Hellas and of your race, honoring her by act and by word and sharing in her glory, but you must not think that you yourselves are being deprived.
[276] It is finished; we too have wrought a work of art, the reasoned discourse of our logos instead of the peplos, an adornment for the spectacle of the Panathenaea. To give it a grace is for her, the very goddess of both the Logos which is Reason and the city.

Event Date: 160 GR
END
Event Date: 2018

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