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Demosthenes, Speeches 23-26

Demosthenes, Speeches 23-26

The final volume in The Oratory of Classical Greece series presents four speeches by or falsely ascribed to the most renowned of the ancient Greek orators, Demosthenes, which have not been translated in recent times.

Series: The Oratory of Classical Greece

January 2018
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304 pages | 5.5 x 8.5 |

This is the fifteenth volume in the Oratory of Classical Greece. This series presents all of the surviving speeches from the late fifth and fourth centuries BC in new translations prepared by classical scholars who are at the forefront of the discipline. These translations are especially designed for the needs and interests of today’s undergraduates, Greekless scholars in other disciplines, and the general public.

Classical oratory is an invaluable resource for the study of ancient Greek life and culture. The speeches offer evidence on Greek moral views, social and economic conditions, political and social ideology, law and legal procedure, and other aspects of Athenian culture that have recently been attracting particular interest: women and family life, slavery, and religion, to name just a few.

This volume provides introductions, translations, and notes for four speeches found in the Demosthenic corpus that have not been translated in recent times. Against Aristocrates deals with matters of foreign policy involving a mercenary general, Charidemus, and is a valuable source for Athenian homicide law. Against Timocrates involves domestic politics and provides important information about Athenian procedures for enacting legislation. In both speeches, the litigants stress the importance of the rule of law in Athenian democracy and emphasize key ideas, such as the monopoly of legitimate force by the state, the need for consistency in statutes, and the principle of no punishment without a written law. The remaining two speeches, Against Aristogeiton, are forgeries composed in the Hellenistic period, as Edward Harris demonstrates conclusively through a study of laws and legal procedures and an analysis of style and vocabulary.

  • Series Editor's Preface (Michael Gagarin)
  • Translator's Preface (Edward Harris)
  • Series Introduction (Michael Gagarin)
    • Oratory in Classical Athens
    • The Orators
    • The Works of the Orators
    • Government and Law in Classical Athens
    • The Translation of Greek Oratory
    • Abbreviations
    • Note on Currency
    • Bibliography of Works Cited
  • Introduction to Demosthenes (Michael Gagarin)
    • Life
    • Works
    • Style
    • Significance
  • Introduction to This Volume (Edward Harris)
  • DEMOSTHENES (Edward Harris)
    • 23. Against Aristocrates
    • 24. Against Timocrates
    • 25–26. Against Aristogeiton I and II
  • Bibliography for This Volume
  • Index


Athens, Greece

Harris is an emeritus professor of ancient history at Durham University and honorary professorial fellow at the University of Edinburgh. He is the author of Aeschines and Athenian Politics, Democracy and the Rule of Law in Classical Athens: Essays in Law, Society, and Politics, and The Rule of Law in Action in Democratic Athens.


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This book may also be available on the following library platforms; check with your local library:
3M Cloud Library/bibliotheca