Listed 15 sub titles with search on: Biographies for wider area of: "MONASTIRAKI City quarter ATHENS" .
Miltiades, a name borne by at least three of the family of the Cimonidae. The
family sprang from Aegina, and traced their descent to Aeacus. In the genealogy
of the family given in the life of Thucydides which bears the name of Marcellinus,
mention is made of a Miltiades, son of Tisander; but it is very questionable whether
even the text is correct.
Miltiades, the son of Cypselus, who was a man of considerable distinction in Athens in the time of Peisistratus. The Doloncians, a Thracian tribe dwelling in the Chersonesus, being hard pressed in war by the Absinthians, applied to the Delphic oracle for advice, and were directed to admit a colony led by the man who should be the first to entertain them after they left the temple. This was Miltiades, who, eager to escape from the rule of Peisistratus, gladly took the lead of a colony under the sanction of the oracle, and became tyrant of the Chersonese, which he fortified by a wall built across its isthmus. In a war with the people of Lampsacus he was taken prisoner, but was set at liberty on the demand of Croesus. He died without leaving any children, and his sovereignty passed into the hands of Stesagoras, the son of his half-brother Cimon. Sacrifices and games were instituted in his honour, in which no Lampsacene was suffered to take part (Herod. vi. 34, 38, 103, 36--38). Both Cornelius Nepos (Milt. i. ]) and Pausanias (vi. 19.6) confound this Miltiades with the Great (II).
Miltiades. He was a man of considerable distinction in Athens in the time of Pisistratus. The Doloncians, a Thracian tribe dwelling in the Chersonesus, being hard pressed in war by the Absinthians, applied to the Delphic oracle for advice, and were directed to admit a colony led by the man who should be the first to entertain them after they left the temple. This was Miltiades, who, eager to escape from the rule of Pisistratus, gladly took the lead of a colony under the sanction of the oracle, and became tyrant of the Chersonesus, which he fortified by a wall built across its isthmus. In a war with the people of Lampsacus he was taken prisoner, but was set at liberty on the demand of Croesus. He died without leaving any children, and his sovereignty passed into the hands of Stesagoras, the son of his half-brother Cimon. Sacrifices and games were instituted in his honour, in which no Lampsacene was suffered to take part.
This text is from: Harry Thurston Peck, Harpers Dictionary of Classical Antiquities. Cited Nov 2002 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks
Miltiades. The son of Cimon (I) and brother of Stesagoras. He became tyrant of the Chersonesus on the death of the latter, being sent out by Pisistratus from Athens to take possession of the vacant inheritance. By a stratagem he got the chief men of the Chersonesus into his power and threw them into prison, and took a force of mercenaries into his pay. In order to strengthen his position still more, he married Hegesipyle, the daughter of a Thracian prince named Olorus. He joined Darius Hystaspis on his expedition against the Scythians, and was left with the other Greeks in charge of the bridge over the Danube. When the appointed time had expired, and Darius had not returned, Miltiades recommended the Greeks to destroy the bridge and leave Darius to his fate. Some time after the expedition of Darius, an inroad of the Scythians drove Miltiades from his possessions; but after the enemy had retired the Doloncians brought him back. It appears to have been between this period and his withdrawal to Athens, that Miltiades conquered and expelled the Pelasgian inhabitants of Lemnos and Imbros and subjected the islands to the dominion of Attica. Lemnos and Imbros belonged to the Persian dominions; and it is probable that this encroachment on the Persian possessions was the cause which drew upon Miltiades the hostility of Darius, and led him to fly from the Chersonesus, when the Phoenician fleet approached, after the subjugation of Ionia. Miltiades reached Athens in safety, but his eldest son Metiochus fell into the hands of the Persians. At Athens Miltiades was arraigned, as being amenable to the pen Miltiades. alties enacted against tyranny, but was acquitted. When Attica was threatened with invasion by the Persians under Datis and Artaphernes, Miltiades was chosen one of the ten generals. Miltiades by his arguments induced the polemarch Callimachus to give the casting vote in favour of risking a battle with the enemy, the opinions of the ten generals being equally divided. Miltiades waited till his turn came, and then drew his army up in battle array on the ever-memorable field of Marathon. After the defeat of the Persians, Miltiades endeavoured to urge the Athenians to measures of retaliation, and induced them to intrust to him an armament of seventy ships, without knowing the purpose for which they were designed. He proceeded to attack the island of Paros, for the purpose of gratifying a private enmity. His attacks, however, were unsuccessful; and after receiving a dangerous hurt in the leg, while penetrating into a sacred enclosure on some superstitious errand, he was compelled to raise the siege and return to Athens, where he was impeached by Xanthippus for having deceived the people. His wound had turned into a gangrene, and, being unable to plead his cause in person, he was brought into court on a couch, his brother Tisagoras conducting his defence for him. He was condemned; but on the ground of his services to the State the penalty was commuted to a fine of fifty talents, the cost of the equipment of the armament. Being unable to pay this, he was thrown into prison, where he not long after died of his wound. The fine was subsequently paid by his son Cimon.
This text is from: Harry Thurston Peck, Harpers Dictionary of Classical Antiquities. Cited Nov 2002 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks
(c. 550-489 B.C.) Miltiades, noted general and victor of the Battle of Marathon (490), was the son of Cimon I. He was a member of Athens' rich and powerful Philaidai family. The family acquired interests in the Chersonese when the elder Miltiades, a second cousin of Miltiades Kimonos was invited there by the Dolonci to fortify a settlement for their protection. Miltiades' son, Cimon II, was an Athenian statesman and general of the first half of the fifth century.
Although Miltiades' father had been murdered by Hippias and Hipparchus, sons of Pisistratus (Hdt. 6.103), he was treated well by Hippias, who gave him his daughter in marriage. Hippias then sent Miltiades from Athens c. 524 to the Chersonese to take possession of the family's inheritance, left vacant upon the death of his brother, the younger Stesagoras. There, while continuing a policy of Athenian hegemony, Miltiades acted as virtual tyrant, arresting all of the leading men in the town upon his arrival and hiring a bodyguard of mercenary forces (Hdt. 6.39).
In c. 516 King Darius of Persia invaded Scythia, taking with him several Greeks, including Miltiades. At the river Danube, Darius left the Greeks to guard the bridge which they had constructed for sixty days, and he led the Persian army into Scythia (Hdt. 6.97.2-98.3). The King decided to return, since the expedition did not produce a major engagement. The Scythians pursued him by an alternate route and reached the Danube first. By this time the sixty days had passed, and the Scythians asked the Ionians to break up the bridge. Miltiades is said to have argued for the destruction of the bridge, but the Greeks were won over by Histiaeus of Miletus, and the bridge was left intact (Hdt. 4.136.2-138.2), thus allowing Darius to return safely to Persia.
A problem with the Herodotean account is that Miltiades would not have been spared his life had he actually urged betrayal of the Persians. Again, it may be that a punitive expedition of the Scythians into the Chersonese soon afterwards resulting in Miltiades' flight from there was attributable to Darius' wrath (Hdt. 6.40). Miltiades was brought back to the Chersonese by its inhabitants sometime before 499 (Hdt. 6.40.2).
Perhaps during this period Miltiades divorced the daughter of Hippias, who had become a political liability with that tyrant's fall in 510, and married the Thracian princess, Hegesipyle, daughter of Olorus; she was the mother of Cimon. At about this time Miltiades took the strategically important island of Lemnos, part of the Persian dominions in Ionia, and gave it to the Athenians (Hdt. 6.136.2). He possibly took the island of Imbros at the same time, for he found safe haven there in the aftermath of the Ionian Revolt in 493 when the Phoenician fleet approached the Chersonese (Hdt. 6.104.1). Miltiades escaped to Athens with four ships, but a fifth ship containing his older son Metiochos was captured by the Persians (Hdt. 6.41).
Upon his return to Athens, Miltiades was put on trial for tyranny in the Chersonese and acquitted (Hdt. 6.104.2). Historians build a case for an alliance between Miltiades and Themistocles based on an anti-Persian stance the two may have held in common. One scenario holds it possible that Themistocles was Miltiades' judge, and that he biased the trial in Miltiades' favor. Between this trial and the Battle of Marathon he is mentioned only by Pausanias, who says that he had a herald of Darius killed (Paus. 3.12.7), perhaps in order that the Persian king be angry with all of Athens as well as Miltiades himself.
Darius was determined to punish the Athenians and the Eretrians for their part in the Ionian Revolt. In 490 his commanders Datis and Artaphernes sacked Eretria after a seven-day siege and led its inhabitants into captivity. The Persian fleet then made for the Bay of Marathon, on the east coast of Attica. At the time of the invasion Miltiades was serving as one of the ten generals of Athens (Hdt. 6.104). The Athenians made the crucial decision to send out a force to oppose the Persians; they were joined by a contingent of Plataeans. The board of generals, which operated by concensus, was deadlocked whether or not to fight. There was an eleventh vote, however, that of the Polemarch, Callimachus of Aphidnae. Herodotus attributes to Miltiades a speech in which he persuades the Polemarch to cast his vote to fight, thereby turning the majority in favor of Miltiades' opinion (Hdt. 6.109).
Two issues are whether Callimachus and not Miltiades was actually in charge on the day of the battle, and if Miltiades, exactly how the command passed him. Herodotus says simply that each of the generals voting to fight resigned his presidency of the board in favor of Miltiades, who "accepted the office but did not make an attack until it was his own day to preside (Hdt. 6.110)". On August 12, 490 the ten thousand or so Athenians and Plataeans, outnumbered perhaps ten to one, advanced at a run against the Persians (Hdt. 6.112.1). In an attempt to cover the entire Persian front, the Athenians drew up in a line across the plain. This line was thin in the middle and deeper on each end. The Persians broke though the middle, but the Athenians and Plataeans routed the Persians on the flanks. Then, in a pincer movement, the Athenians turned their wings to crush the Persians who had broken through the center (Hdt. 6.110-115). The Persians, having lost 6800 men, withdrew to the fleet. Of the Athenians, 192 fell.
After the battle of Marathon, Miltiades was greatly esteemed in Athens. Consequently, he was able to convince the Athenians to send an expedition to take the island of Paros on the "pretext" (Herodotus' word) that "the Parians had brought this on themselves by first sending triremes with the Persian fleet to Marathon". The historian goes on to allege that the real reason for the expedition was a grudge Miltiades held against a certain Parian, Lysagoras son of Tisias (Hdt. 6.133). He besieged the city for 23 days, but received an injury in the leg (Hdt. 6.134) and was forced to return Athens without taking the island.
Upon his return charges were leveled against Miltiades that the Parian expedition had been an attempt to defraud the public. He was prosecuted by Xanthippus son of Ariphron, who called for the death penalty (Hdt. 6.136.1); it is probable that this Xanthippus was the father of Pericles. Miltiades, weak from his wound and unable to defend himself, lay on a couch as his friends conducted his defence. The people found him guilty, but did not sentence him to death. Miltiades was fined 50 talents of silver, but died-in prison according to legend (Nepos, Milt. 8)-in 489 before he could pay the fine, which his son Cimon paid for him.
Frederick Sher, ed.
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Cimon. The son of Miltiades and of Hegesipyle, the daughter of Olorus,
a Thracian prince. His education, according to Plutarch, was very much neglected,
and he himself indulged, at first, in every species of excess. At his father's
death he seems to have succeeded to a very scanty fortune, and he would perhaps
have found it very difficult to pay the fine of fity talents which had been imposed
upon his parent, and which the son was bound to pay to the public treasury, had
not Callias, one of the wealthiest men of Athens, struck by the charms of his
half-sister Elpinice, undertaken to discharge the sum as the price of her hand.
Cimon, however, had attracted notice and gained reputation by the spirit which
he displayed on the occasion of leaving the city on the approach of the Persians,
when he was the foremost to hang up a bridle in the Acropolis, as a sign that
he placed all his hopes in the fleet; and also by the valour with which he fought
at Salamis. Aristides, in particular, saw in him a fit coadjutor to himself and
antagonist to Themistocles, and exerted himself in his favour; and the readiness
with which the allied Greeks, when disgusted by the arrogance of Pausanias, united
themselves with Athens, was owing in a great measure to Cimon's mild temper and
to his frank and gentle manners. The popularity of Themistocles was already declining,
while Cimon, by a series of successful enterprises, was rapidly rising in public
favour. He defeated the Persians in Thrace, on the banks of the Strymon, took
Eion, and made himself master of the whole country. He conquered the island of
Scyros, the inhabitants of which were addicted to piracy; and brought thence to
Athens what were deemed the bones of the national hero Theseus. He next subdued
all the cities on the coast of Asia Minor, and went against the Persian fleet
which lay at the mouth of the Eurymedon. The Persians, although superior in number,
did not dare to abide an engagement, but sailed up the river to place themselves
under the protection of their land forces. Cimon, however, provoked them to a
battle, and, having defeated and sunk or taken two hundred ships, landed his men,
flushed with victory, and completely routed the Persian army. Returning to Athens
after these two victories thus achieved in a single day, he employed the perquisites
of his command, and the resources which he had acquired from his successes over
the barbarians, in the embellishment of his native city and in relieving the wants
of the indigent. He laid a part of the foundations of the Long Walls with magnificent
solidity at his own cost, and the southern wall of the citadel was built with
the treasures which he brought from Asia into the coffers of the State. He also
set the example of adorning the public places of the city with trees; and, by
introducing a stream of water, converted the Academy, a spot about two miles north
of the city, from an arid waste into a delightful grove. He threw down the fences
of his fields and orchards, that all who wished might enter and partake of their
fruits. He not only gave the usual entertainments expected from the rich to the
members of his own borough, but kept a table constantly open for them. He never
appeared in public without a number of persons attending him in good apparel,
who, when they met with any elderly citizen scantily clothed, would insist on
exchanging their warm mantles for his threadbare covering. It was the office of
the same persons respectfully to approach any of the poorer citizens of good character
whom they might see standing in the market-place, and silently to put some small
pieces of money into their hands. This latter kind of expenditure was certainly
of a mischievous tendency; and was not the less that of a demagogue because Cimon
sought popularity not merely for his own sake, but for that of his order and his
About B.C. 466, Cimon was sent to the Thracian Chersonesus, of which the Persians still kept possession, and having driven them out, next reduced the island of Thasus, and took possession of the Thasian gold mines on the neighbouring continent. Scarcely, however, had he returned to Attica, when an accusation was preferred against him of having been corrupted by the king of Macedonia, because he had refrained, not, according to the common account, from attacking the Macedonians then at peace with Athens, but from striking a blow at the Thracian tribes on the frontier of that kingdom, who had recently cut off the Athenian settlers on the banks of the Strymon. From this accusation Cimon had a very narrow escape. Having been sent, however, after this, with a body of troops to aid the Spartans before Ithome, and the latter having, after some interval, sent back their Athenian allies, whom they suspected of not lending them any effectual assistance, the irritation produced by this national insult fell principally upon Cimon, who was known to be an admirer of the Spartan character and constitution, and he was accordingly driven into exile. Subsequent events, however, made the Athenians feel the want of this able commander, and he was recalled and sent on an expedition against Egypt and Cyprus; but was carried off by illness, or the consequences of a wound, in the harbour of Citium, which place he was besieging (B.C. 449). His spirit, however, still animated his countrymen; for the fleet, when sailing home with his remains, gained a naval victory over a large squadron of Phoenician and Cilician galleys near the Cyprian Salamis, and followed up this victory by another which they gained on shore, either over the troops which had landed from the enemy's ships, or over a land force by which they were supported. Cimon was, beyond dispute, the ablest and most successful general of his day; and his victories shed a lustre on the arms of Athens which almost dimmed the glories of Marathon and Salamis.
This text is from: Harry Thurston Peck, Harpers Dictionary of Classical Antiquities. Cited Nov 2002 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks
Cimon. Grandson of the preceding, and son of the great Miltiades, is mentioned
in Herodotus as paying his father's fine and capturing Eion (vi. 136, vii. 107).
This latter event, the battle of Eurymedon, the expedition in aid of Sparta, and
his death in Cyprus, are the only occasions in which he is expressly named by
his relation, Thucydides; whose summary, moreover, of the history of this period
leaves us by its briefness necessarily dependent for much on the additional authorities,
which form the somewhat heterogeneous basis of Plutarch's biography. We find here
the valuable contemporary recollections of Ion of Chios, and the almost worthless
contemporary gossip and scandal of the Thasian Stesimbrotus: some little also
from the poets of the time, Cratinus, Melanthius, and Archelaus. He seems to have
followed Thucydides, though not very strictly, as a guide in general, while he
filled up the details from the later historians, perhaps from Theopompus more
than from Ephorus, whose account, as followed probably by Diodorus (xi. 60), differs
materially. He appears to have also used Callisthenes, Cratinus, Phanodemus, Diodorus
Periegetes, Gorgias, and Nausicrates; Aristotle, Eupolis, Aristophanes, and Critias.
On the death of Miltiades, probably in B. C. 489, Cimon, we are told by Diodorus (Excerpta.), in order to obtain the corpse for burial, took his father's place in prison till his fine of 50 talents should be paid. It appears, however, certain (see Dem. c. Androt.) that the atimia, if not the imprisonment, of the public debtor was legally inherited by the son, and Cornelius Nepos, whose life comes in many parts from Theopompus, states the confinement to have been compulsory. The fine was eventually paid by Callias on his marriage with Elpinice, Cimon's sister. A more difficult point is the previous connexion and even marriage of Cimon with this sister or half-sister, which was recorded by numerous writers, but after all was very probably the scandal of Stesimbrotus and the comedians (Eupolis, ap. Plut. Cim. 15, comp. 4; Nepos, Cim. 1; Athen. xiii). Nor, again, can we very much rely on the statement which Plutarch introduces at this time, that he and Themistocles vied with each other at the Olympian games in the splendour of their equipments and banquets (Plut. Themist. 5). It is more credible that his first occasion of attracting notice and admiration was the forwardness with which, when the city in B. C. 480 was to be deserted, he led up to the citadel a company of young men to offer to the goddess their now unserviceable bridles (Plut. Cim. 5). After the battle of Plataea, Aristeides brought him forward. They were placed together in 477 at the head of the Athenian contingent to the Greek armament, under the supreme command of Pausanias. Cimon shared the glory of transferring that supremacy to Athens, and in the first employment of it reduced the Persian garrison at Eion, and opened the important district in the neighbourhood for Athenian colonization (Plut. Cim. 6; Herod. vii. 107; Thuc. i. 98; Nepos, Cim. 2; Schol. ad Aesch. de Fals. Leg.). In honour of this conquest he received from his countrymen the distinction, at that time unprecedented, of having three busts of Hermes erected, inscribed with triumphal verses, but without mention of the names of the generals (Plut. Cim. 6; Aesch. c. Ctesiph.). In 476, apparently under his conduct, the piratical Dolopians were expelled from Scyros, and a colony planted in their room; and the remains of Theseus discovered there, were thence transported, probably after some years' interval (B. C. 468) with great pomp to Athens (Plut. Cim. 8; Paus. i. 17.6, iii. 3.6).
The reduction of Carystus and Naxos was, most likely, effected under his command (Thuc. i. 98); and at this period he was doubtless in war and politics his country's chief citizen. His coadjutor at home would be Aristeides; how far he contributed to the banishment of Themistocles may be doubtful (Comp. Plut. Arist. 25, Them. 24). The year B. C. 466 saw the completion of his glory. In the command of the allied forces on the Asiatic coast he met a Persian fleet of 350 ships, attacked them, captured 200, and following the fugitives to the shore, by the river Eurymedon, in a second and obstinate engagement on the same day, routed the land armament; indeed, according to Plutarch, he crowned his victory before night by the defeat of a reinforcement of 80 Phoenician ships (Plut. Cim. 12; Thuc. i. 100; Diod. xi. 60). His next achievement was the expulsion of the Persians from the Chersonese, and the subjection of the territory to Athens, accompanied perhaps with the recovery of his own patrimony. The effect of these victories was doubtless very great; they crushed perhaps a last aggressive movement, and fixed Persia finally in a defensive position. In later times it was believed, though on evidence, as was shewn by Callisthenes, quite insufficient, that they had been succeeded by a treaty (the famous peace of Cimon) negotiated through Callias, and containing in its alleged conditions the most humiliating concessions. They placed Cimon at the height of his power and glory, the chief of that empire which his character had gained for Athens, and which his policy towards the allies was rendering daily firmer and completer. Themistocles, a banished man, may perhaps have witnessed his Asiatic triumphs in sorrow; the death of Aristeides had left him sole possessor of the influence they had hitherto jointly exercised: nor had time yet matured the opposition of Pericles (Plut. Cim. 13, 14). Still the loss of the old friend and the rapidly increasing influence of the new opponent rendered his position precarious.
The chronology of the events that follow is henceforth in most points disputed; according to Clinton's view, which cannot hastily be deserted, the revolt of Thasos took place in 465; in 463 Cimon reduced it; in the year intervening occurred the earthquake and insurrection at Sparta, and in consequence, upon Cimon's urgent appeal, one if not two (Plut. Cim. 16; comp. Aristoph. Lysistr. 1137) expeditions were sent from Athens, under his command, to assist the Spartans. In these occurrences were found the means for his humiliation. During the siege of Thasos, the Athenian colonists on the Strymon were cut off by the Thracians, and Cimon seems to have been expected, after his victory there, to retrieve this disaster: and, neglecting to do so, he was on his return brought to trial; but the accusation of having taken bribes from Alexander of Macedon, was, by Pericles at any rate, not strongly urged, and the result was an acquittal. The termination of his Lacedaemonian policy in the jealous and insulting dismissal of their Athenian auxiliaries by the Spartans, and the consequent rupture between the two states was a more serious blow to his popularity. And the victory of his opponents was decided when Ephialtes and Pericles, after a severe struggle, carried their measure for reducing the authority of the aristocratic Areiopagus. Upon this it would seem his ostracism ensued. Soon after its commencement (B. C. 457) a Lacedaemonian army, probably to meet the views of a violent section of the defeated party in Athens, posted itself at Tanagra. The Athenians advanced to meet it: Cimon requested permission to fight in his place; the generals in suspicion refused: he departed, begging his own friends to vindicate his character: they, in number a hundred, placed in the ensuing battle his panoply among them, and fell around it to the last man. Before five years of his exile were fully out, B. C. 453 or 454, he was recalled on the motion of Pericles himself; late reverses having inclined the people to tranquillity in Greece, and the democratic leaders perhaps being ready, in fear of more unscrupulous opponents, to make concessions to those of them who were patriotic and temperate. He was probably employed in effecting the five years' truce with Sparta which commenced in 450. In the next year he sailed out with 200 ships to Cyprus, with the view of retrieving the late mishaps in Egypt. Here, while besieging Citium, illness or the effects of a wound carried him off. His forces, while sailing away with his remains, as if animated by his spirit, fell in with and defeated a fleet of Phoenician and Cilician galleys, and added to their naval victory a second over forces on shore (Plut. Cim. 14--19; Thuc. i. 112; Diod. xi. 64, 86, xii. 3, 4; Theopomp. ap. Ephori fragm.).
Cimon's character (see Plut. Cim. 4, 5, 9, 1 0, 16, Peric. 5) is marked by his policy. Exerting himself to aggrandize Athens, and to centralize in her the power of the naval confederacy, he still looked mainly to the humiliation of the common enemy, Persia, and had no jealous feeling towards his country's rivals at home. lie was always an admirer of Sparta: his words to the people when urging the succours in the revolt of the Helots were, as recorded by Ion (Plut. Cim. 16) "not to suffer Greece to be lamed, and Athens to lose its yoke-fellow". He is described himself to have had something of the Spartan character, being deficient in the Athenian points of readiness and quick discernment. He was of a cheerful, convivial temper, free and indulgent perhaps rather than excessive in his pleasures (philopotes kai ameles Eupolis, ap. Plut. Cim. 15), delighting in achievement for its own sake rather than from ambition. His frankness, affability, and mildness, won over the allies from Pausanias; and at home, when the recovery of his patrimony or his share of spoils had made him rich, his liberality and munificence were unbounded. His orchards and gardens were thrown open; his fellow demesmen (Aristot. ap. Plut. Cim. 10; comp. Cic. de Off. ii. 18 and Theopomp. ap. Athen. xii. 533) were free daily to his table, and his public bounty verged on ostentation. With the treasure he brought from Asia the southern wall of the citadel was built, and at his own private charge the foundation of the long walls to the Peiraeeus, works which the marshy soil made difficult and expensive, were laid down in the most costly and efficient style. According to the report of Ion, the tragic poet, who as a boy supped in his company (Plut. Cim. 5, 9), he was in person tall and good-looking, and his hair, which he wore long, thick and curly. He left three sons, Lacedaemonius, Eleus, and Thessalus, and was, according to one account, married to Isodice, a daughter of Euryptolemuis, the cousin of Pericles, as also to an Arcadian wife (Diodorus Periegetes, ap. Plut. Cim. 16). Another record gives him three more sons, Miltiades, Cimon, and Peisianax (Schol. ad Aristid. iii.).
This text is from: A dictionary of Greek and Roman biography and mythology, 1873 (ed. William Smith). Cited June 2005 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks
Benefactions by Cimon and his family
Cimon, an aristocratic and wealthy man, gained great fame for his costly benefactions to his fellow citizens. He was renowned, for example, for opening his orchards to let others pick whatever they wanted, but his most famous benefactions were architectural. He paid to have landscaping with shade trees and running tracks installed in open areas of Athens, and he also footed the enormous bill for the construction of footings for defensive walls to link the urban center of Athens and the harbor at Piraeus some seven kilometers away. Cimon's brother-in-law also participated in the family tradition of benefiting Athens by paying for highly-visible public building projects. He had built as a gift to the city the renowned Painted Stoa. Stoas were narrow, colonnaded buildings open along one side, whose purpose was to provide shelter from sun or rain for these conversations. The Painted Stoa stood on the edge of the central open area, the agora, at the center of the city. The agora served both as a market area where merchants could set up small stalls and as a gathering place for Athenian men to discuss politics and every other issue affecting their lives in the city-state. It was the commercial and social heart of Athens. The crowds of men who came to the agora daily for conversation would cluster inside the Painted Stoa, whose walls were decorated with paintings of great moments in Greek history commissioned from the most famous painters of the time, Polygnotus and Mikon. That one of the stoa's paintings portrayed the battle of Marathon in which Cimon's father, Miltiades, had won glory was only appropriate, since the building had been paid for by the husband of Cimon's sister, probably with financial assistance from Cimon himself.
This text is from: Thomas Martin's An Overview of Classical Greek History from Homer to Alexander, Yale University Press. Cited June 2005 from Perseus Project URL below, which contains bibliography & interesting hyperlinks.
Peripoltas the seer, who conducted King Opheltas with his subjects from Thessaly into Boeotia, left a posterity there which was in high repute for many generations. The greater part of them settled in Chaeroneia, which was the first city they won from the Barbarians. Now the most of this posterity were naturally men of war and courage, and so were consumed away in the Persian invasions and the contests with the Gauls, because they did not spare themselves. There remained, however, an orphan boy, Damon by name, Peripoltas by surname, who far surpassed his fellows in beauty of body and in vigor of spirit, though otherwise he was untrained and of a harsh disposition.
With this Damon, just passed out of boy's estate, the Roman commander of a cohort that was wintering in Chaeroneia fell enamored, and since he could not win him over by solicitations and presents, he was plainly bent on violence, seeing that our native city was at that time in sorry plight, and neglected because of her smallness and poverty. Violence was just what Damon feared, and since the solicitation itself had enraged him, he plotted against the man, and enlisted against him sundry companions,--a few only, that they might escape notice. There were sixteen of them in all, who smeared their faces with soot one might, heated themselves with wine, and at daybreak fell upon the Roman while he was sacrificing in the market-place, slew him, together with many of his followers, and departed the city. During the commotion which followed, the council of Chaeroneia met and condemned the murderers to death, and this was the defence which the city afterwards made to its Roman rulers. But in the evening, while the magistrates were dining together, as the custom is, Damon and his men burst into the town hall, slew them, and again fled the city.
Now about that time (74 BC) it chanced that Lucius Lucullus passed that way, on some errand, with an army. Halting on his march and investigating matters while they were still fresh in mind, he found that the city was in no wise to blame, but rather had itself also suffered wrong. So he took its garrison of soldiers and led them away with him. Then Damon, who was ravaging the country with predatory forays and threatening the city, was induced by embassies and conciliatory decrees of the citizens to return, and was appointed gymnasiarch. But soon, as he was anointing himself in the vapor-bath, he was slain. And because for a long while thereafter certain phantoms appeared in the place, and groans were heard there, as our Fathers tell us, the door of the vapor-bath was walled up, and to this present time the neighbors think it the source of alarming sights and sounds. Descendants of Damon's family (and some are still living, especially near Stiris in Phocis, Aeolians in speech) are called "Asbolomeni", or "Besooted", because Damon smeared himself with soot before he went forth to do his deed of murder.
But the Orchomenians, who were neighbors and rivals of the Chaeroneians, hired a Roman informer to cite the city by name, as though it were an individual person, and prosecute it for the murder of the Roman soldiers who had been slain by Damon. The trial was held before the praetor of Macedonia (the Romans were not yet sending praetors to Greece), and the city's advocates invoked the testimony of Lucullus. Lucullus, when the praetor wrote to him, testified to the truth of the matter, and so the city escaped capital condemnation. Accordingly, the people who at that time were saved by him erected a marble statue of Lucullus in the market-place beside that of Dionysus. And we, though many generations removed from him, think that his favour extends even down to us who are now living; and since we believe that a portrait, which reveals character and disposition is far more beautiful than one which merely copies form and feature, we shall incorporate this man's deeds into our parallel lives, and we shall rehearse them truly. The mere mention of them is sufficient favour to show him; and as a return for his truthful testimony he himself surely would not deign to accept a false and garbled narrative of his career.
We demand of those who would paint fair and graceful features that, in case of any slight imperfection therein, they shall neither wholly omit it nor yet emphasize it, because the one course makes the portrait ugly and the other unlike its original. In like manner, since it is difficult, nay rather perhaps impossible, to represent a man's life as stainless and pure, in its fair chapters we must round out the truth into fullest semblance; but those transgressions and follies by which, owing to passion, perhaps, or political compulsion, a man's career is sullied, we must regard rather as shortcomings in some particular excellence than as the vile products of positive baseness, and we must not all too zealously delineate them in our history, and superfluously too, but treat them as though we were tenderly defending human nature for producing no character which is absolutely good and indisputably set towards virtue.
On looking about for some one to compare with Lucullus, we decided that it must be Cimon. Both were men of war, and of brilliant exploits against the Barbarians, and yet they were mild and beneficent statesmen, in that they gave their countries unusual respite from civil strifes, though each one of them set up martial trophies and won victories that were famous. No Hellene before Cimon and no Roman before Lucullus carried his wars into such remote lands, if we leave out of our account the exploits of Heracles and Dionysus, and whatever credible deeds of Perseus against the Aethiopians or Medes and Armenians, or of Jason, have been brought down in the memory of man from those early times to our own. Common also in a way to both their careers was the incompleteness of their campaigns. Each crushed, but neither gave the death blow to his antagonist. But more than all else, the lavish ease which marked their entertainments and hospitalities, as well as the ardour and laxity of their way of living, was conspicuous alike in both. Possibly we may omit still other resemblances, but it will not be hard to gather them directly from our story.
Cimon was the son of Miltiades by Hegesipyle, a woman of Thracian stock, daughter of King Olorus, as it is stated in the poems of Archelaus and Melanthius addressed to Cimon himself. That explains how it was that the father of Thucydides the historian -and Thucydides was connected with the family of Cimon- was also an Olorus, who referred his name back to that of the common ancestor, and also how it was that Thucydides had gold mines in Thrace (Thuc. 4.105). And it is said that Thucydides died in Skapte Hyle, a place in Thrace, having been murdered there; but his remains were brought to Attica, and his monument is shown among those of Cimon's family, hard by the tomb of Elpinice, Cimon's sister. However, Thucydides belonged to the deme of Halimus, the family of Miltiades to that of Laciadae.
Now Miltiades, who had been condemned to pay a fine of fifty talents and confined till payment should be made, died in prison, and Cimon, thus left a mere stripling with his sister who was a young girl and unmarried, was of no account in the city at first. He had the bad name of being dissolute and bibulous, and of taking after his grandfather Cimon, who, they say, because of his simplicity, was dubbed Coalemus, or Booby. And Stesimbrotus the Thasian, who was of about Cimon's time, says that he acquired no literary education, nor any other liberal and distinctively Hellenic accomplishment; that he lacked entirely the Attic cleverness and fluency of speech; that in his outward bearing there was much nobility and truthfulness; that the fashion of the man's spirit was rather Peloponnesian:
Plain, unadorned, in a great crisis brave and true, Euripides; Nauck, Trag. Graec. Frag., 473.
as Euripides says of Heracles, a citation which we may add to what Stesimbrotus wrote.
While he was still a youth he was accused of improper intercourse with his sister. And indeed in other cases too they say that Elpinice was not very decorous, but that she had improper relations also with Polygnotus the painter, and that it was for this reason that, in the Peisianacteum, as it was then called, but now the Painted Colonnade, when he was painting the Trojan women, he made the features of Laodice a portrait of Elpinice. Now Polygnotus was not a mere artisan, and did not paint the stoa for a contract price, but gratis, out of zeal for the welfare of the city, as the historians relate, and as Melanthius the poet testifies after this fashion:
He at his own lavish outlay the gods' great fanes, and the market
Named Cecropia, adorned; demigods' valor his theme. Melanthius, unknown
Still, there are some who say that Elpinice did not live with Cimon in secret intercourse, but openly rather, as his wedded wife, because, on account of her poverty, she could not get a husband worthy of her high lineage; but that when Callias, a wealthy Athenian, fell in love with her, and offered to pay into the state treasury the fine which had been imposed upon her father, she consented herself, and Cimon freely gave Elpinice to Callias to wife.
However, it is perfectly apparent that Cimon was given to the love of women. Asteria, of a Salaminian family, and a certain Mnestra are mentioned by the poet Melanthius, in a sportive elegy addressed to Cimon, as wooed and won by him. And it is clear that he was even too passionately attached to his lawful wife, Isodice, the daughter of Euryptolemus and grand-daughter of Megacles, and that he was too sorely afflicted at her death, if we may judge from the elegy addressed to him for the mitigation of his grief. This was composed by the naturalist Archelaus, as Panaetius the philosopher thinks, and his conjecture is chronologically possible.
All other traits of Cimon's character were admirable and noble. Neither in daring was he inferior to Miltiades, nor in sagacity to Themistocles, and it is admitted that he was a juster man than either, and that while not one whit behind them in the good qualities of a soldier, he was inconceivably their superior in those of a statesman, even when he was still young and untried in war. When the Medes made their invasion, and Themistocles was trying to persuade the people to give up their city, abandon their country, make a stand with their fleet off Salamis, and fight the issue at sea, most men were terrified at the boldness of the scheme; but lo! Cimon was first to act, and with a gay mien led a procession of his companions through the Cerameicus up to the Acropolis, to dedicate to the goddess there the horse's bridle which he carried in his hands, signifying thus that what the city needed then was not knightly prowess but sea-fighters. After he had dedicated his bridle, he took one of the shields which were hung up about the temple, addressed his prayers to the goddess, and went down to the sea, whereat many were first made to take heart.
He was also of no mean presence, as Ion the poet says, but tall and stately, with an abundant and curly head of hair. And since he displayed brilliant and heroic qualities in the actual struggle at Salamis (480 BC), he soon acquired reputation and good will in the city. Many thronged to him and besought him to purpose and perform at once what would be worthy of Marathon. So when he entered politics the people gladly welcomed him, and promoted him, since they were full to surfeit of Themistocles, to the highest honors and offices in the city, for he was engaging and attractive to the common folk by reason of his gentleness and artlessness. But it was Aristides, son of Lysimachus, who more than any one else furthered his career, for he saw the fine features of his character, and made him, as it were, a foil to the cleverness and daring of Themistocles.
After the flight of the Medes from Hellas, Cimon was sent out as a commander(478-477 BC), before the Athenians had obtained their empire of the sea, and while they were still under the leadership of Pausanias and the Lacedaemonians. During this campaign, the citizen-soldiers he furnished on expeditions were always admirably disciplined and far more zealous than any others; and again, while Pausanias was holding treasonable conference with the Barbarians, writing letters to the King, treating the allies with harsh arrogance, and displaying much wantonness of power and silly pretension, Cimon received with mildness those who brought their wrongs to him, treated them humanely, and so, before men were aware of it, secured the leadership of Hellas, not by force of arms, but by virtue of his address and character. For most of the allies, because they could not endure the severity and disdain of Pausanias, attached themselves to Cimon and Aristides, who had no sooner won this following than they sent also to the Ephors and told them, since Sparta had lost her prestige and Hellas was in confusion, to recall Pausanias.
It is said that a maiden of Byzantium, of excellent parentage, Cleonice by name, was summoned by Pausanias for a purpose that would disgrace her. Her parents influenced by constraint and fear, abandoned their daughter to her fate, and she, after requesting the attendants before his chamber to remove the light, in darkness and silence at length drew near the couch on which Pausanias was asleep, but accidentally stumbled against the lamp-holder and upset it. Pausanias, startled by the noise, drew the dagger which lay at his side, with the idea that some enemy was upon him, and smote and felled the maiden. After her death in consequence of the blow, she gave Pausanias no peace, but kept coming into his sleep by night in phantom form, wrathfully uttering this verse:
Draw thou nigh to thy doom; 'tis evil for men to be wanton.
At this outrage the allies were beyond measure incensed, and joined Cimon in forcing Pausanias to give up the city. Driven from Byzantium, and still harassed by the phantom, as the story goes, he had recourse to the ghost-oracle of Heracleia, and summoning up the spirit of Cleonice, besought her to forgo her wrath. She came into his presence and said that he would soon cease from his troubles on coming to Sparta, thus darkly intimating, as it seems, his impending death. At any rate, this tale is told by many.
But Cimon, now that the allies had attached themselves to him, took command of them and sailed to Thrace(476-475 BC), for he heard that men of rank among the Persians and kinsmen of the King held possession of Eion, a city on the banks of the Strymon, and were harassing the Hellenes in that vicinity. First he defeated the Persians themselves in battle and shut them up in the city; then he expelled from their homes above the Strymon the Thracians from whom the Persians had been getting provisions, put the whole country under guard, and brought the besieged to such straits that Butes, the King's general, gave up the struggle, set fire to the city, and destroyed with it his family, his treasures, and himself. And so it was that though Cimon took the city, he gained no other memorable advantage thereby, since most of its treasures had been burned up with the Barbarians; but the surrounding territory was very fertile and fair, and this he turned over to the Athenians for occupation. Wherefore the people permitted him to dedicate the stone Hermae, on the first of which is the inscription:
Valorous-hearted as well were they who at Eion fighting,
Facing the sons of the Medes, Strymon's current beside,
Fiery famine arrayed, and gore-flecked Ares, against them,
Thus first finding for foes that grim exit,--despair;
and on the second:
Unto their leaders reward by Athenians thus hath been given;
Benefits won such return, valorous deeds of the brave.
All the more strong at the sight will the men of the future be eager,
Fighting for commonwealth, war's dread strife to maintain;
and on the third:
With the Atridae of old, from this our city, Menestheus
Led his men to the plain Trojan called and divine.
He, once Homer asserted, among well-armoured Achaeans,
Marshaller was of the fight, best of them all who had come.
Thus there is naught unseemly in giving that name to Athenians;
Marshallers they both of war and of the vigor of men.
Although these inscriptions nowhere mentioned Cimon by name, his contemporaries held them to be a surpassing honor for him. Neither Themistocles nor Miltiades achieved any such, nay, when the latter asked for a crown of olive merely, Sophanes the Deceleian rose up in the midst of the assembly and protested. His speech was ungracious, but it pleased the people of that day. "When", said he, "thou hast fought out alone a victory over the Barbarians, then demand to be honored alone". Why, then, were the people so excessively pleased with the achievement of Cimon? Perhaps it was because when the others were their generals they were trying to repel their enemies and so avert disaster; but when he led them they were enabled to ravage the land of their enemies with incursions of their own, and acquired fresh territories for settlement, not only Eion itself, but also Amphipolis. They settled Scyros too, which Cimon seized for the following reason. Dolopians were living on the island, but they were poor tillers of the soil. So they practised piracy on the high sea from of old, and finally did not withhold their hands even from those who put into their ports and had dealings with them, but robbed some Thessalian merchants who had cast anchor at Ctesium, and threw them into prison. When these men had escaped from bondage and won their suit against the city at the Amphictyonic assembly, the people of Scyros were not willing to make restitution, but called on those who actually held the plunder to give it back. The robbers, in terror, sent a letter to Cimon, urging him to come with his fleet to seize the city, and they would give it up to him. In this manner Cimon got possession of the island, drove out the Dolopians and made the Aegean a free sea.
On learning that the ancient Theseus, son of Aegeus, had fled in exile from Athens to Scyros, but had been treacherously put to death there, through fear, by Lycomedes the king, Cimon eagerly sought to discover his grave. For the Athenians had once received an oracle bidding them bring back the bones of Theseus to the city and honor him as became a hero, but they knew not where he lay buried, since the Scyrians would not admit the truth of the story, nor permit any search to be made. Now, however, Cimon set to work with great ardour, discovered at last the hallowed spot, had the bones bestowed in his own trireme, and with general pomp and show brought them back to the hero's own country after an absence of about four hundred years. This was the chief reason why the people took kindly to him.
But they also cherished in kindly remembrance of him that decision of his in the tragic contests which became so famous. When Sophocles, still a young man, entered the lists with his first plays, Apsephion the Archon, seeing that the spirit of rivalry and partisanship ran high among the spectators, did not appoint the judges of the contest as usual by lot, but when Cimon and his fellow-generals advanced into the theater and made the customary libation to the god, he would not suffer them to depart, but forced them to take the oath and sit as judges, being ten in all, one from each tribe. So, then, the contest, even because of the unusual dignity of the judges, was more animated than ever before. But Sophocles came off victorious and it is said that Aeschylus, in great distress and indignation thereat, lingered only a little while at Athens, and then went off in anger to Sicily. There he died also, and is buried near Gela.
Ion says that, coming from Chios to Athens as a mere stripling, he was once a fellow-guest with Cimon at a dinner given by Laomedon, and that over the wine the hero was invited to sing, and did sing very agreeably, and was praised by the guests as a cleverer man than Themistocles. That hero, they said, declared that he had not learned to sing, nor even to play the lyre, but knew how to make a city great and rich (Plut. Them. 2.3. .1). Next, Ion says, as was natural over the cups, the conversation drifted to the exploits of Cimon, and as his greatest deeds were being recounted, the hero himself dwelt at length on one particular stratagem which he thought his shrewdest. Once, he said, when the Athenians and their allies had taken many barbarian prisoners at Sestos and Byzantium and turned them over to him for distribution, he put into one lot the persons of the captives, and into another the rich adornments of their bodies, and his distribution was blamed as unequal. But he bade the allies choose one of the lots, and the Athenians would be content with whichever one they left. So, on the advice of Herophytus the Samian to choose Persian wealth rather than Persians, the Allies took the rich adornments for themselves, and left the prisoners for the Athenians. At the time Cimon came off with the reputation of being a ridiculous distributor, since the allies had their gold anklets and armlets and collars and jackets and purple robes to display, while the Athenians got only naked bodies ill-trained for labour. But a little while after, the friends and kinsmen of the captives came down from Phrygia and Lydia and ransomed every one of them at a great price, so that Cimon had four months' pay and rations for his fleet, and besides that, much gold from the ransoms was left over for the city.
And since he was already wealthy, Cimon lavished the revenues from his campaign, which he was thought to have won with honor from the enemy, to his still greater honor, on his fellow-citizens. He took away the fences from his fields, that strangers and needy citizens might have it in their power to take fearlessly of the fruits of the land; and every day he gave a dinner at his house--simple, it is true, but sufficient for many, to which any poor man who wished came in, and so received a maintenance which cost him no effort and left him free to devote himself solely to public affairs. But Aristotle says (Aristot. Const. Ath. 27.3) that it was not for all Athenians, but only for his own demesmen, the Laciadae, that he provided a free dinner. He was constantly attended by young comrades in fine attire, each one of whom, whenever an elderly citizen in needy array came up, was ready to exchange raiment with him. The practice made a deep impression. These same followers also carried with them a generous sum of money, and going up to poor men of finer quality in the market-place, they would quietly thrust small change into their hands. To such generosity as this Cratinus seems to have referred in his Archilochi, with the words:
Yes, I too hoped, Metrobius, I, the public scribe,
Along with man divine, the rarest host that lives,
In every way the best of all Hellenic men,
With Cimon, feasting out in joy a sleek old age,
To while away the remnant of my life. But he
Has gone before and left me. Cratinas, Archilochi
And again, Georgias the Leontine says that Cimon made money that he might spend it, and spent it that he might he honored for it. And Critias, one of the thirty tyrants, prays in his elegies that he may have:
the wealth of the Scopadae, the great-mindedness of Cimon,
and the victories of Arcesilaus of Lacedaemon. Critias, unknown
And yet we know that Lichas the Spartan became famous among the Hellenes for no other reason than that he entertained the strangers at the boys' gymnastic festival; but the generosity of Cimon surpassed even the hospitality and philanthropy of the Athenians of olden time. For they--and their city is justly very proud of it--spread abroad among the Hellenes the sowing of grain and the lustral uses of spring waters, and taught mankind who knew it not the art of kindling fire. But he made his home in the city a general public residence for his fellow citizens, and on his estates in the country allowed even the stranger to take and use the choicest of the ripened fruits, with all the fair things which the seasons bring. Thus, in a certain fashion, he restored to human life the fabled communism of the age of Cronus,--the golden age. Those who slanderously said that this was flattery of the rabble and demagogic art in him, were refuted by the man's political policy, which was aristocratic and Laconian. He actually opposed Themistocles when he exalted the democracy unduly, as Aristides also did. Later on he took hostile issue with Ephialtes, who, to please the people, tried to dethrone the Council of the Areiopagus; and though he saw all the rest except Aristides and Ephialtes filling their purses with the gains from their public services, he remained unbought and unapproached by bribes, devoting all his powers to the state, without recompense and in all purity, through to the end.
It is told, indeed, that one Rhoesaces, a Barbarian who had deserted from the King, came to Athens with large moneys, and being set upon fiercely by the public informers, fled for refuge to Cimon, and deposited at his door two platters, one filled with silver, the other with golden Darics. Cimon, when he saw them, smiled, and asked the man whether he preferred to have Cimon as his hireling or his friend, and on his replying, "As my friend", "Well then", said Cimon, "Take this money with thee and go thy way, for I shall have the use of it when I want it if I am thy friend".
The allies continued to pay their assessments, but did not furnish men and ships according to allotment, since they were soon weary of military service, and had no need of war, but a great desire to till their land and live at their ease. The Barbarians were gone and did not harass them, so they neither manned their ships nor sent out soldiers. The rest of the Athenian generals tried to force them to do this, and by prosecuting the delinquents and punishing them, rendered their empire burdensome and vexatious. But Cimon took just the opposite course when he was general, and brought no compulsion to bear on a single Hellene, but accepted money from those who did not wish to go out on service, and ships without crews, and so suffered the allies, caught with the bait of their own ease, to stay at home and become tillers of the soil an unwarlike merchants instead of warriors, and all through their foolish love of comfort. On the other hand, he made great numbers of the Athenians man their ships, one crew relieving another, and imposed on them the toil of his expeditions, and so in a little while, by means of the very wages which they got from the allies, made them lords of their own paymasters. For those who did no military service became used to fearing and flattering those who were continually voyaging, and for ever under arms and training, and practising, and so, before they knew it, they were tributary subjects instead of allies.
And surely there was no one who humbled the Great King himself, and reduced his haughty spirit, more than Cimon. For he did not let him go quietly away from Hellas, but followed right at his heels, as it were, and before the Barbarians had come to a halt and taken breath, he sacked and overthrew here, or subverted and annexed to the Hellenes there, until Asia from Ionia to Pamphylia was entirely cleared of Persian arms. Learning that the generals of the King were lurking about Pamphylia with a great army and many ships, and wishing to make them afraid to enter at all the sea to the west of the Chelidonian isles, he set sail from Cnidus and Triopium (About 467 BC) with two hundred triremes. These vessels had been from the beginning very well constructed for speed and maneuvering by Themistocles; but Cimon now made them broader, and put bridges between their decks, in order that with their numerous hoplites they might be more effective in their onsets. Putting in at Phaselis, which was a Hellenic city, but refused to admit his armament or even to abandon the King's cause, he ravaged its territory and assaulted its walls. But the Chians, who formed part of his fleet and were of old on friendly terms with the people of Phaselis, laboured to soften Cimon's hostility, and at the same time, by shooting arrows over the walls with little documents attached, they conveyed messages of their success to the men of Phaselis. So finally Cimon made friends with them on condition that they should pay ten talents and join him in his expedition against the Barbarians.
Now Ephorus says that Tithraustes was commander of the royal fleet, and Pherendates of the infantry; but Callisthenes says that it was Ariomandes, the son of Gobryas, who, as commander-in-chief of all the forces, lay at anchor with the fleet off the mouth of the Eurymedon, and that he was not at all eager to fight with the Hellenes, but was waiting for eighty Phoenician ships to sail up from Cyprus. Wishing to anticipate their arrival, Cimon put out to sea, prepared to force the fighting if his enemy should decline an engagement. At first the enemy put into the river, that they might not be forced to fight; but when the Athenians bore down on them there, they sailed out to meet them. They had six hundred ships, according to Phanodemus, three hundred and fifty, according to Ephorus. Whatever the number, nothing was achieved by them on the water which was worthy of such a force, but they straightway put about and made for shore, where the foremost of them abandoned their ships and fled for refuge to the infantry which was drawn up near by; those who were overtaken were destroyed with their ships. Whereby also it is plain that the Barbarian ships which went into action were very numerous indeed, since, though many, of course, made their escape and many were destroyed, still two hundred were captured by the Athenians.
When the enemy's land forces marched threateningly down to the sea, Cimon thought it a vast undertaking to force a landing and lead his weary Hellenes against an unwearied and many times more numerous foe. But he saw that his men were exalted by the impetus and pride of their victory, and eager to come to close quarters with the Barbarians, so he landed his hoplites still hot with the struggle of the sea-fight, and they advanced to the attack with shouts and on the run. The Persians stood firm and received the onset nobly, and a mighty battle ensued, wherein there fell brave men of Athens, who were foremost in public office and eminent. But after a long struggle the Athenians routed the Barbarians with slaughter and then captured them and their camp, which was full of all sorts of treasure.
But Cimon, though like a powerful athlete he had brought down two contests in one day, and though he had surpassed the victory of Salamis with an infantry battle, and that of Plataea with a naval battle, still went on competing with his own victories. Hearing that the eighty Phoenician triremes which were too late for the battle had put in at Hydrus (Hydrus is the name in the MSS., but no such place is known. Syedra is the most probable correction), he sailed thither with all speed, while their commanders as yet knew nothing definite about the major force, but were still in distrustful suspense. For this reason they were all the more panic-stricken at his attack, and lost all their ships. Most of their crews were destroyed with the ships. This exploit so humbled the purpose of the King that he made the terms of that notorious peace, by which he was to keep away from the Hellenic sea-coast as far as a horse could travel in a day, and was not to sail west of the Cyanean and Chelidonian isles with armored ships of war.
And yet Callisthenes denies that the Barbarian made any such terms, but says he really acted as he did through the fear which that victory inspired, and kept so far aloof from Hellas that Pericles with fifty, and Ephialtes with only thirty, ships sailed beyond the Chelidonian isles without encountering any navy of the Barbarians. But in the decrees collected by Craterus there is a copy of the treaty in its due place, as though it had actually been made. And they say that the Athenians also built the altar of Peace to commemorate this event, and paid distinguished honors to Callias as their ambassador.
By the sale of the captured spoils the people was enabled to meet various financial demands, and especially it constructed the southern wall of the Acropolis with the generous resources obtained from that expedition. And it is said that, though the building of the long walls, called "legs", was completed afterwards, yet their first foundations, where the work was obstructed by swamps and marshes, were stayed up securely by Cimon, who dumped vast quantities of rubble and heavy stones into the swamps, meeting the expenses himself. He was the first to beautify the city with the so-called "liberal" and elegant resorts which were so excessively popular a little later, by planting the market-place with plane trees, and by converting the Academy from a waterless and arid spot into a well watered grove, which he provided with clear running-tracks and shady walks.
Now there were certain Persians who would not abandon the Chersonese, but called in Thracians from the North to help them, despising Cimon, who had sailed out from Athens with only a few triremes all told (466 BC). But he sallied out against them with his four ships and captured their thirteen, drove out the Persians, overwhelmed the Thracians, and turned the whole Chersonese over to his city for settlement. And after this, when the Thasians were in revolt from Athens 465 BC), he defeated them in a sea-fight, captured thirty-three of their ships, besieged and took their city, acquired their gold mines on the opposite mainland for Athens, and took possession of the territory which the Thasians controlled there.
From this base he had a good opportunity, as it was thought, to invade Macedonia and cut off a great part of it, and because he would not consent to do it, he was accused of having been bribed to this position by King Alexander, and was actually prosecuted, his enemies forming a coalition against him (463 BC). In making his defence before his judges he said he was no proxenus of rich Ionians and Thessalians, as others were, to be courted and paid for their services, but rather of Lacedaemonians, whose temperate simplicity he lovingly imitated, counting no wealth above it, but embellishing the city with the wealth which he got from the enemy. In mentioning this famous trial Stesimbrotus says that Elpinice came with a plea for Cimon to the house of Pericles, since he was the most ardent accuser, and that he smiled and said, "Too old, too old, Elpinice, to meddle with such business". But at the trial he was very gentle with Cimon, and took the floor only once in accusation of him, as though it were a mere formality.
Well then, Cimon was acquitted at this trial. And during the remainder of his political career, when he was at home, he mastered and constrained the people in its onsets upon the nobles, and in its efforts to wrest all office and power to itself; but when he sailed away again on military service (462 B.C. See Plut. Cim. 17), the populace got completely beyond control. They confounded the established political order of things and the ancestral practices which they had formerly observed, and under the lead of Ephialtes they robbed the Council of the Areiopagus of all but a few of the cases in its jurisdiction. They made themselves masters of the courts of justice, and plunged the city into unmitigated democracy, Pericles being now a man of power and espousing the cause of the populace. And so when Cimon came back home, and in his indignation at the insults heaped upon the reverend council, tried to recall again its jurisdiction and to revive the aristocracy of the times of Cleisthenes, they banded together to denounce him, and tried to inflame the people against him, renewing the old slanders about his sister and accusing him of being a Spartan sympathizer. It was to these calumnies that the famous and popular verses of Eupolis about Cimon had reference:
He was not base, but fond of wine and full of sloth,
and oft he'ld sleep in Lacedaemon, far from home,
And leave his Elpinice sleeping all alone. Eupolis, unknown
But if, though full of sloth and given to tippling, he yet took so many cities and won so many victories, it is clear that had he been sober and mindful of his business, no Hellene either before or after him would have surpassed his exploits.
It is true indeed that he was from the first a philo-Laconian. He actually named one of his twin sons Lacedaemonius, and the other Eleius,-- the sons whom a woman of Cleitor bare him, as Stesimbrotus relates, wherefore Pericles often reproached them with their maternal lineage. But Diodorus the Topographer says that these, as well as the third of Cimon's sons, Thessalus, were born of Isodice, the daughter of Euryptolemus, the son of Megacles. And he was looked upon with favour by the Lacedaemonians, who soon were at enmity with Themistocles, and therefore preferred that Cimon, young as he was, should have the more weight and power in Athens. The Athenians were glad to see this at first, since they reaped no slight advantage from the good will which the Spartans showed him. While their empire was first growing, and they were busy making alliances, they were not displeased that honor and favour should be shown to Cimon. He was the foremost Hellenic statesman, dealing gently with the allies and acceptably with the Lacedaemonians. But afterwards, when they became more powerful, and saw that Cimon was strongly attached to the Spartans, they were displeased thereat. For on every occasion he was prone to exalt Lacedaemon to the Athenians, especially when he had occasion to chide or incite them. Then, as Stesimbrotus tells us, he would say, "But the Lacedaemonians are not of such a sort". In this way he awakened the envy and hatred of his fellow-citizens.
At any rate, the strongest charge against him arose as follows. When Archidamus, the son of Zeuxidamus, was in the fourth year of his reign at Sparta (464 BC), a greater earthquake than any before reported rent the land of the Lacedaemonians into many chasms, shook Taygetus so that sundry peaks were torn away, and demolished the entire city with the exception of five houses. The rest were thrown down by the earthquake. It is said that while the young men and youths were exercising together in the interior of the colonnade, just a little before the earthquake, a hare made its appearance, and the youths, all anointed as they were, in sport dashed out and gave chase to it, but the young men remained behind, on whom the gymnasium fell, and all perished together. Their tomb, even down to the present day, they call Seismatias.
Archidamus at once comprehended from the danger at hand that which was sure to follow, and as he saw the citizens trying to save the choicest valuables out of their houses, ordered the trumpet to give the signal of an enemy's attack, in order that they might flock to him at once under arms. This was all that saved Sparta at that crisis. For the Helots hurriedly gathered from all the country round about with intent to despatch the surviving Spartans. But finding them arrayed in arms, they withdrew to their cities and waged open war, persuading many Perioeci also so to do. The Messenians besides joined in this attack upon the Spartans.
Accordingly, the Lacedaemonians sent Pericleidas to Athens with request for aid, and Aristophanes introduces him into a comedy as "sitting at the altars, pale of face, in purple cloak, soliciting an army" (Aristoph. Lys. 1137). But Ephialtes opposed the project, and besought the Athenians not to succour nor restore a city which was their rival, but to let haughty Sparta lie to be trodden under foot of men. Whereupon, as Critias says, Cimon made his country's increase of less account than Sparta's interest, and persuaded the people to go forth to her aid with many hoplites. And Ion actually mentions the phrase by which, more than by anything else, Cimon prevailed upon the Athenians, exhorting them "not to suffer Hellas to be crippled, nor their city to be robbed of its yoke-fellow".
After he had given aid to the Lacedaemonians, he was going back home with his forces through the Isthmus of Corinth, when Lachartus upbraided him for having introduced his army before he had conferred with the citizens. "People who knock at doors", said he, "do not go in before the owner bids them"; to which Cimon replied, "And yet you Corinthians, O Lachartus, did not so much as knock at the gates of Cleonae and Megara, but hewed them down and forced your way in under arms, demanding that everything be opened up to the stronger". Such was his boldness of speech to the Corinthian in an emergency, and he passed on through with his forces.
Once more the Lacedaemonians summoned the Athenians to come to their aid against the Messenians and Helots in Ithome, and the Athenians went, but their dashing boldness awakened fear, and they were singled out from all the allies and sent off as dangerous conspirators. They came back home in a rage, and at once took open measures of hostility against the Laconizers, and above all against Cimon. Laying hold of a trifling pretext, they ostracised him for ten years (461 BC). That was the period decreed in all cases of ostracism.
It was during this period that the Lacedaemonians, after freeing the Delphians from the Phocians, encamped at Tanagra on their march back home (457 BC). Here the Athenians confronted them, bent on fighting their issue out, and here Cimon came in arms, to join his own Oeneid tribe, eager to share with his fellow-citizens in repelling the Lacedaemonians. But the Council of the Five Hundred learned of this and was filled with fear, since Cimon's foes accused him of wishing to throw the ranks into confusion, and then lead the Lacedaemonians in an attack upon the city; so they forbade the generals to receive the man. As he went away he besought Euthippus of Anaphlystus and his other comrades, all who were specially charged with laconizing, to fight sturdily against the enemy, and by their deeds of valor to dissipate the charge which their countrymen laid at their door. They took his armour and set it in the midst of their company, supported one another ardently in the fight, and fell, to the number of one hundred, leaving behind them among the Athenians a great and yearning sense of their loss, and sorrow for the unjust charges made against them. For this reason the Athenians did not long abide by their displeasure against Cimon, partly because, as was natural, they remembered his benefits, and partly because the turn of events favoured his cause. For they were defeated at Tanagra in a great battle, and expected that in the following spring-time an armed force of Peloponnesians would come against them, and so they recalled Cimon from his exile. The decree which provided for his return was formally proposed by Pericles. To such a degree in those days were dissensions based on political differences of opinion, while personal feelings were moderate, and easily recalled into conformity with the public weal. Even ambition, that master passion, paid deference to the country's welfare.
Well then, as soon as Cimon returned from exile he stopped the war and reconciled the rival cities. After peace was made 450BC), since he saw that the Athenians were unable to keep quiet, but wished to be on the move and to wax great by means of military expeditions; also because he wished that they should not exasperate the Hellenes generally, nor by hovering around the islands and the Peloponnesus with a large fleet bring down upon the city charges of intestine war, and initial complaints from the allies, he manned two hundred triremes.  His design was to make another expedition with them against Egypt and Cyprus. He wished to keep the Athenians in constant training by their struggles with Barbarians, and to give them the legitimate benefits of importing into Hellas the wealth taken from their natural foes.
All things were now ready and the soldiery on the point of embarking, when Cimon had a dream. He thought an angry bitch was baying at him, and that mingled with its baying it uttered a human voice, saying:
Go thy way, for a friend shalt thou be both to me and my puppies.
The vision being hard of interpretation, Astyphilus of Posidonia, an inspired man and an intimate of Cimon's, told him that it signified his death. He analyzed the vision thus: a dog is a foe of the man at whom it bays; to a foe, one cannot be a friend any better than by dying; the mixture of speech indicates that the enemy is the Mede, for the army of the Medes is a mixture of Hellenes and Barbarians. After this vision, when Cimon had sacrificed to Dionysus and the seer was cutting up the victim, swarms of ants took the blood as it congealed, brought it little by little to Cimon, and enveloped his great toe therewith, he being unconscious of their work for some time. Just about at the time when he noticed what they were doing, the ministrant came and showed him the liver of his victim without a head.
But since he could not get out of the expedition, he set sail, and after detailing sixty of his ships to go to Egypt, with the rest he made again for Cyprus. After defeating at sea the royal armament of Phoenician and Cilician ships, he won over the cities round about, and then lay threatening the royal enterprise in Egypt, and not in any trifling fashion,--nay, he had in mind the dissolution of the King's entire supremacy, and all the more because he learned that the reputation and power of Themistocles were great among the Barbarians, who had promised the King that when the Hellenic war was set on foot he would take command of it.  At any rate, it is said that it was most of all due to Themistocles' despair of his Hellenic undertakings, since he could not eclipse the good fortune and valor of Cimon, that he took his own life (Plut. Them. 31.4).
But Cimon, while he was projecting vast conflicts and holding his naval forces in the vicinity of Cyprus, sent men to the shrine of Ammon to get oracular answer from the god to some secret question. No one knows what they were sent to ask, nor did the god vouchsafe them any response, but as soon as the enquirers drew nigh, he bade them depart, saying that Cimon himself was already with him. On hearing this, the enquirers went down to the sea-coast, and when they reached the camp of the Hellenes, which was at that time on the confines of Egypt, they learned that Cimon was dead, and on counting the days back to the utterance of the oracle, they found that it was their commander's death which had been darkly intimated, since he was already with the gods.
He died while besieging Citium, of sickness, as most say (Thuc. 1.112). But some say it was of a wound which he got while fighting the Barbarians. As he was dying he bade those about him to sail away at once and to conceal his death. And so it came to pass that neither the enemy nor the allies understood what had happened, and the force was brought back in safety "under the command of Cimon", as Phanodemus says, "who had been dead for thirty days".
After his death no further brilliant exploit against the Barbarians was performed by any general of the Hellenes, who were swayed by demagogues and partisans of civil war, with none to hold a mediating hand between them, till they actually clashed together in war. This afforded the cause of the King a respite, but brought to pass an indescribable destruction of Hellenic power. It was not until long afterwards (396-394 BC) that Agesilaus carried his arms into Asia and prosecuted a brief war against the King's generals along the sea-coast. And even he could perform no great and brilliant deeds, but was over- whelmed in his turn by a flood of Hellenic disorders and seditions and swept away from a second empire.
So he withdrew, leaving in the midst of allied and friendly cities the tax-gatherers of the Persians, not one of whose scribes, nay, nor so much as a horse, had been seen within four hundred furlongs of the sea, as long as Cimon was general.
That his remains were brought home to Attica, there is testimony in the funeral monuments to this day called Cimonian. But the people of Citium also pay honors to a certain tomb of Cimon, as Nausicrates the rhetorician says, because in a time of pestilence and famine the god enjoined upon them not to neglect Cimon, but to revere and honor him as a superior being. Such was the Greek leader.
This extract is from: Plutarch's Lives (ed. Bernadotte Perrin, 1914). Cited June 2005 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains comments & interesting hyperlinks.
VOUTADE (Ancient demos) ATHENS
Lycurgus, (Lukourgos). An Athenian orator, and one of the warmest supporters of the democratic faction in the contest with Philip of Macedon. The time of his birth is uncertain, but he was older than Demosthenes; and if his father was put to death by order of the Thirty Tyrants, he must have been born previous to B.C. 404. But the words of the biographer are, as Clinton has justly remarked, ambiguous, and may imply that it was his grandfather who was put to death by the Thirty. Lycurgus is said to have derived instruction from Plato and Isocrates. He took an active part in the management of public affairs, and was one of the Athenian ambassadors who succeeded (B.C. 343) in counteracting the designs of Philip against Ambracia and the Peloponnesus. He filled the office of treasurer of the public revenue for three periods of five years; and was noted for the integrity and ability with which he discharged the duties of his office. Bockh considers that Lycurgus was the only statesman of antiquity who had a real knowledge of the management of finance. He raised the revenue to twelve hundred talents, and also erected, during his administration, many public buildings, and completed the docks, the armory, the theatre of Bacchus, and the Panathenaic course. So great confidence was placed in the honesty of Lycurgus that many citizens confided to his custody large sums; and, shortly before his death, he had the accounts of his public administration engraved on stone, and set up in a part of the wrestling-school. An inscription, preserved to the present day, containing some accounts of a manager of the public revenue, is supposed by Bockh to be a part of the accounts of Lycurgus. After the battle of Chaeronea (B.C. 388), Lycurgus conducted the accusation against the Athenian general Lysicles. He was one of the orators demanded by Alexander after the destruction of Thebes (B.C. 335). He died about B.C. 323, and was buried in the Academia. Fifteen years after his death, upon the ascendency of the democratic faction, a decree was passed by the Athenian people that public honours should be paid to Lycurgus. A brazen statue of him was erected in the Ceramicus, which was seen by Pansanias, and the representative of his family was allowed the privilege of dining in the Prytaneum. This decree, which was proposed by Stratocles, has come down to us at the end of the lives of the Ten Orators. Lycurgus is said to have published fifteen orations, of which only one has been preserved. This oration, which was delivered B.C. 331, is an accusation of Leocrates (Kata Leokratous), as Athenian citizen, for abandoning Athens after the battle of Chaeronea, and settling in another Grecian State.
This text is from: Harry Thurston Peck, Harpers Dictionary of Classical Antiquities. Cited Nov 2002 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks
Lycurgus (c. 390-c. 324 BC) was a leading Athenian public official during the
period after the Battle of Chaeronea (338 BC), in which Athens and its allies
were defeated by Philip of Macedon. Lycurgus? special achievement was his reorganization
of Athenian finances, which doubled the amount of money raised annually. These
additional funds were used for such things as increasing Athens? military capability
and rebuilding the theater of Dionysus in stone. Lycurgus was not a logographer,
but he brought charges of corruption or treason against many officials, usually
with success. Only one speech survives, Against Leocrates (330 BC).
Life and works
We know little of Lycurgus? life before 338 except that he came from a very old Athenian family and as a youth he studied with Isocrates and Plato. After Chaeronea he received an appointment or mandate to restore the financial condition of Athens; the precise nature of his position is not certain. In this position he had great success, and he continued to control Athenian finances and play a large role in the governance of the city for the next dozen years. Among his accomplishments in addition to his financial reforms were increasing the fleet and making other military improvements, refurbishing many religious and other public structures, and having official copies made of the tragedies of Aeschylus, Sophocles and Euripides to protect them against actors? interpolations.
Lycurgus? prosecutions of other Athenians earned him a high reputation as a severe but honest guardian of the public interest. The one speech that survives was one of the few in which he did not secure a conviction. He brought a charge of treason against an ordinary citizen named Leocrates, accusing him of leaving the city during the turmoil after Chaeronea. Leocrates? actions were probably not illegal in a strict sense, but Lycurgus argues that such cowardice is essentially treason. We are told by Aeschines (Aeschin. 3.252) that Leocrates was acquitted on a tie vote.
There is general agreement that despite Lycurgus? notable political accomplishments, his rhetorical ability ranks rather low among the ten Attic orators included in the Hellenistic canon. He pays little attention to niceties of prose style, and in his attacks on corruption and moralistic evocation of past glories, he tends to belabor his arguments rather tediously. Against Leocrates is unusual in the use it makes of citations of poetry, but although scholars are grateful that he preserved the fifty-five lines of Euripides? lost Erectheus and thirty-two lines of an otherwise unknown Tyrtaeus elegy, most agree that Lycurgus? purpose would have been better served by a shorter quotation.
This text is cited August 2004 from Perseus Project URL bellow, which contains interesting hyperlinks
Lycurgus (Lukourgos), an Attic orator, was born at Athens about B. C. 396, and
was the son of Lycophron, who belonged to the noble family of the Eteobutadae
(Plut. Vit. X. Orat.; Suidas, s. v. Lukourgos; Phot. Bibl. Cod. 268). In his early
life he devoted himself to the study of philosophy in the school of Plato, but
afterwards became one of the disciples of Isocrates, and entered upon public life
at a comparatively early age. He was appointed three successive times to the office
of tmias tes koines prosodou, i. e. manager of the public revenue, and held his
office each time for five years, beginning with B. S. 337. The conscientiousness
with which he discharged the duties of this office enabled him to raise the public
revenue to the sum of 1200 talents. This, as well as the unwearied activity with
which he laboured both for increasing the security and splendour of the city of
Athens, gained for him the universal confidence of the people to such a degree,
that when Alexander the Great demanded, among the other opponents of the Macedonian
interest, the surrender of Lycurgus also, who had, in conjunction with Demosthenes,
exerted himself against the intrigues of Macedonia even as early as the reign
of Philip, the people of Athens clung to him, and boldly refused to deliver him
up (Plut. Phot. ll. cc.).
He was further entrusted with the superintendence (phulake) of the city and the keeping of public discipline; and the severity with which he watched over the conduct of the citizens became almost proverbial (Cic. ad Att. i. 13; Plut. Flamin. 12; Amm. Marc. xxii. 9, xxx. 8). He had a noble taste for every thing that was beautiful and grand, as he showed by the buildings he erected or completed, both for the use of the citizens and the ornament of the city. His integrity was so great, that even private persons deposited with him large sums of money, which they wished to be kept in safety. He was also the author of several legislative enactments, of which he enforced the strictest observance. One of his laws forbade women to ride in chariots at the celebration of the mysteries; and when his own wife transgressed this law, she was fined (Aelian, V H. xiii. 24); another ordained that bronze statues should be erected to Aeschylus, Sophocles, and Euripides, that copies of their tragedies should be made and preserved in the public archives. The Lives of the Ten Orators ascribed to Plutarch are full of anecdotes and characteristic features of Lycurgus, from which we must infer that he was one of the noblest specimens of old Attic virtue, and a worthy contemporary of Demosthenes. He often appeared as a successful accuser in the Athenian courts, but he himself was as often accused by others, though he always, and even in the last days of his life, succeeded in silencing his enemies. Thus we know that he was attacked by Philinus (Harpocrat. s. v. theorika), Deinarchus (Dionys. Dinarch. 10), Aristogeiton, Menesaechmus, and others.
He died while holding the office of epistates of the theatre of Dionysus, in B. C. 323. A fragment of an inscription, containing the account which he rendered to the state of his administration of the finances, is still extant. At his death he left behind three sons, by his wife Callisto, who were severely persecuted by Menesaechmus and Thrasycles, but were defended by Hyperides and Democles (Plut. 1. c.). Among the honours which were conferred upon him, we may mention, that the archon Anaxicrates ordered a bronze statue to be erected to him in the Cerameicus, and that he and his eldest son should be entertained in the prytaneium at the public expense.
The ancients mention fifteen orations of Lycurgus as extant in their days (Plut. l. c.), but we know the titles of at least twenty. With the exception, however, of one entire oration against Leocrates, and some fragments of others, all the rest are lost, so that our knowledge of his skill and style as an orator is very incomplete. Dionysius and other ancient critics draw particular attention to the ethical tendency of his oraticns, but they censure the harshness of his metaphors, the inaccuracy in the arrangement of his subject, and his frequent digressions. His style is noble and grand, but neither elegant nor pleasing (Dionys. Vet. Script. cens. v. 3; Hermogen. De Form. Orat. ii.; Dion Chrysost. Or. xviii.). His works seem to have been commented upon by Didymus of Alexandria (Harpocrat. s. vv. pelanos, prokonia, stroter). Theon (Progymn.) mentions two declamations, Elenes enkomion and Eurubatou phogos, as the works of Lycurgus; but this Lycurgus, if the name be correct, must be a different personage from the Attic orator. The oration against Leocrates, which was delivered in B. C. 330 (Aeschin. adv. Ctesiph.93), is printed in the various collections of the Attic orators by Aldus, Stephens, Gruter, Reiske, Dukas, Bekker, Baiter, and Sauppe. Among the separate editions, the following deserve to be mentioned--that of J. Taylor (Cambridge, 1743, 8vo., where it is printed together with Demosthenes' speech against Meidias), C. F. Heinrich (Bonn, 1821, 8vo.), G. Pinzger (Leipzig, 1824, 8vo., with a learned introduction, notes, and a German translation), A. G. Becker (Magdeburg, 1821, 8vo.) The best editions are those of Baiter and Sauppe (Turici, 1834, 8vo.), and E. Maetzner (Berlin, 1836, 8vo.). Compare G. A. Blume, Narratio de Lycurgo Oratore, Potsdam, 11134, 4to.; A. F. Nissen, De Lycurgi Oratoris Vita et Rebus Gestis Dissertatio, Kiel, 1833, 8vo.
This text is from: A dictionary of Greek and Roman biography and mythology, 1873 (ed. William Smith). Cited July 2005 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks
Life of Lycurgus
Lycurgus, according to Libanius, was older than Demosthenes, though they were practically contemporaries. He belonged to the illustrious house of the Eteobutadae, who traced their descent from one Butes, brother of Erechtheus. The priesthood of Posidon-Erechtheus, and other religious offices, were hereditary in this family.
The grandfather of the orator, also called Lycurgus, was put to death by the Thirty; his father, Lycophron, is known only by name.
In the orator's extant speech, and in his recorded actions, we find abundant proof of a sincere piety and deep religious feeling, which were natural in the true representative of such a family. The traditions of his house may well have turned his thoughts to the stern virtues of ancient days, the days of Athenian greatness, when self-sacrifice was expected of a citizen. He expresses a friendly feeling towards Sparta.
Of his earlier political life we know only that he was an ally of Demosthenes. He came into greater prominence after Chaeronea, and was one of the ten orators whose surrender was demanded by Alexander after the destruction of Thebes.
In 338 B.C., when the war party came into power, he succeeded Eubulus, the nominee of the peace party, in an important financial office. In the decree quoted by the Pseudo-Plutarch he is called 'Steward of the public revenue' (tes koines prosodou tamias), which is probably not his correct title, though it fairly represents his appointment.e kept this office for twelve years. His long administration, which was characterized by absolute probity, brought the finances of Athens to a thoroughly sound condition. During his office he built a theatre and an odeon, completed an arsenal, increased the fleet, and improved the harbour of Piraeus. He also embellished the city with works of art--statues of the great poets erected in the public places, golden figures of Victory and golden vessels dedicated in the temples. His respect for the poets was further shown by his decree that an official copy should be made of the works of the three great tragedians--a copy which afterwards passed into the possession of the Alexandrine library.
He conceived it as his mission to raise the standard of public and private life. Himself almost an ascetic, he enacted sumptuary laws; as a religious man by instinct and tradition, he built temples and encouraged religious festivals; an ardent patriot by conviction, he thought it his duty to undertake the ungrateful part of a public prosecutor, pursuing all who failed in their sacred duty towards their country. In this way he conducted many prosecutions, which were nearly all successful. He was never a paid advocate or a writer of speeches for others; indeed he would have thought it criminal to write or speak against his convictions. His indictments were characterized by such inflexible severity that his contemporaries compared him to Draco, saying that he wrote his accusations with a pen dipped in death instead of blood.
He died a natural death in 324 B.C. (Suda), and was honoured by a public funeral. His enemy Menesaechmus, who succeeded to his office, accused him of having left a deficit, though, according to one story, Lycurgus, on the point of death, had been carried into the ecclesia and successfully defended himself on that score. His sons were condemned to make restitution, and, being unable to pay, were thrown into prison, in spite of an able defence by Hyperides. They were released on an appeal by Demosthenes, then in exile.
Fifteen speeches of Lycurgus were preserved in antiquity, nearly all accusations on serious charges. He prosecuted Euxenippus, whom Hyperides defended; he spoke against the orator Demades, and, in alliance with Demosthenes, against the sycophant Aristogiton. Other speeches known to us by name are Against Autolycus, Against Leocrates, two speeches Against Lycophron, Against Lysicles, against Menesaechmus, a Defence of himself against Demades, Against Ischyrias, pros tas manteias (obscure title), Concerning his administration, Concerning the priestess, and Concerning the priesthood.
Only one speech is now extant, the impeachment of Leocrates.
Leocrates, an Athenian, during the panic which succeeded the battle of Chaeronea, fled from Athens to Rhodes, and thence migrated to Megara, where he engaged in trade for five years. About 332 B.C. he returned to Athens, thinking that his desertion would have been forgotten; but Lycurgus prosecuted him as a traitor.
Only a small part of the speech is really devoted to proving the charge. By § 36 Lycurgus regards it as generally admitted. The remaining 114 sections consist mostly of comment and digressions which aim at emphasizing the seriousness of the crime and produce precedent for the infliction of severe punishment in such cases.
1. Introduction. Justice and piety demand that I should bring Leocrates to trial (§§ 1-2); the part of a prosecutor is unpopular, but it is my duty to undertake it (§§ 3-6). This is a case of exceptional importance, and you must give your decision without prejudice or partiality, emulating the Areopagus (§§ 7-16).
2. Narrative. The flight of Leocrates to Rhodes. Evidence (§§ 17-20). His move to Megara and occupation there. Evidence (§§ 21-23).
3. Argument. Comments on the narrative. Possible line of defence (§§ 24-35). The case is now proved. It remains to describe the circumstances of Athens at the time when Leocrates deserted her (§ 36).
4. The panic after the battle of Chaeronea (§§ 37-45). Praise of those who fell in the battle there (§§ 46-51). Acquittal is impossible (§§ 52-54). Another ground of defence cut away (§§ 55-58). Further excuses disallowed (§§ 59-62). Attempt of his advocates to belittle his crime refuted by appeal to the principles of Draco (§§ 63-67). They appeal to precedent--the evacuation of the city before the battle of Salamis: this precedent can be turned against them (§§ 68-74). The sanctity of oaths and punishment for perjury. Appeals to ancient history. Codrus (§§ 75-89). Leocrates says he is confident in his innocence--quem deus vult perdere, prius dementat (§§ 90-93). Providence (§§ 94-97). Examples of self-sacrifice; quotations from Euripides and Homer (§§ 97-105). Praise of Sparta. Influence of Tyrtaeus on patriots. Thermopylae (§§ 106-110). Severity of our ancestors towards traitors (§§111-127). Sparta was equally severe (§§ 128-129). Due severity will discourage treachery, and the treachery of Leocrates is of the basest sort (§§ 130-134). His advocates are as bad as he is (§§ 135-140). Appeal to the righteous indignation of the judges (§§ 141-148). Epilogue (§§ 149-150):
I have come to the succour of my country and her religion and her laws, and have pleaded my case straightforwardly and justly, neither slandering Leocrates for his general manner of living, nor bringing any charge foreign to the present matter; but you must consider that in acquitting him you condemn your country to death and slavery. Two urns stand before you, the one for betrayal, the other for salvation; votes placed in the former mean the ruin of your fatherland, those in the latter are given for civil security and prosperity. If you let Leocrates go, you will be voting for the betrayal of Athens, her religion, and her ships; but if you put him to death, you will encourage others to guard and secure your country, her revenues, and her prosperity. So imagine, Athenians, that the land and its trees are supplicating you, that the harbours, the dockyards, and the walls of the city are imploring you; that the temples and holy places are urging you to come to their help; and make an example of Leocrates, remembering what charges are brought against him, and how mercy and tears of compassion do not weigh more with you than the safety of the laws and the commonwealth. §§ 149-150
This, with the exception of a slight imperfection of style already noticed, is good in its way, in the style which tradition had established as appropriate to such subjects. It is less conventional and, in spite of its bold metaphors, less insincere than Gorgias, avoiding as it does the extravagance of his antithetical style.
And if I may use a paradox which is bold but nevertheless true, they were victorious in death. For to brave men the prizes of war are freedom and valour; for both of these the dead may possess. And further, we may not say that our defeat was due to them, whose spirits never quailed before the terror of the enemy's approach; for to those who fall nobly in battle, and to them alone, can no man justly ascribe defeat; for fleeing from slavery they make choice of a noble death. The valour of these men is a proof, for they alone of all in Greece had freedom in their bodies; for as they passed from life all Greece passed into slavery; for the freedom of the rest of the Greeks was buried in the same tomb with their bodies. Hence they proved to all that they were not warring for their personal ends, but facing danger for the general safety. So, Gentlemen, I need not be ashamed of saying that their souls are the garland on the brows of their country. §§ 49-50.
His use of examples from ancient history is similar to that of Isocrates, e.g. in the Philip and the Panegyric; but many of these episodes are forcibly dragged into a trial of the kind with which Lycurgus was concerned, whereas those of Isocrates always help to convey the lesson which he is trying to enforce. Thus the following passage, which succeeds a quotation from Homer, leads up to a digression on Tyrtaeus, accompanied by a lengthy quotation from his works. There is only a bare pretence that all this has anything to do with the case:
And because they showed reason in the exercise of their courage, you, men of Athens, alone of all the Greeks, know how to honour noble men. In other States you will find memorials of athletes in the market-places; in Athens such records are of good generals and of those who slew the tyrant. Search the whole of Greece and you will barely find a few men such as these, while in every quarter you will easily find men who have won garlands for success in athletic contests. So, as you bestow the highest honours on your benefactors, you have a right to inflict the severest punishments on those by whom their country is dishonoured and betrayed. § 51.
Here Lycurgus has reverted to the antithetical style of Antiphon, the opposition of 'word' and 'deed', 'private' and 'public', and the like. We are also from time to time reminded of Antiphon by the prominence given in the Leocrates to religious considerations. The digressions may be partly explained by the speaker's avowed motive in introducing some of them -his wish to be an educator. He introduces a very moral tale of a young Sicilian who, tarrying behind to save his father, on the occasion of an eruption of Etna, was providentially saved while all the others perished. This is his excuse -'The story may be legendary, but it will be appropriate for all the younger men to hear it now' (§ 95); and the manner of the lecturer is evident elsewhere -'There are three influences above all which guard and protect the democracy and the welfare of the city', etc. 'There are two things which educate our youth: -the punishment of evil-doers and the rewards bestowed on good men'.
Hearing these lines and emulating such actions, our ancestors were so disposed towards manly courage that they were content to die not only for their own fatherland but for all Greece, as their common fatherland. Those, at any rate, who faced the barbarians at Marathon, conquered the armament of all Asia, by their individual sacrifice gaining security for all the Greeks in common, priding themselves not upon their fame but on doing deeds worthy of their country, setting themselves up as champions of the Greeks and masters of the barbarians; for they made no nominal profession of courage, but gave an actual display of it to all the world. § 104.
The whole speech is pervaded by references to religion; Rehdantz has noted that the word theos occurs no less than thirty-three times; and other words of religious import are very frequent, though the orator never uses ejaculations such as the o ge kai theoi of Demosthenes. This reiteration is of less significance than the serious tone of the passages in which such references occur; his opening sentences indicate the attitude which he is to maintain:
I too, shall follow justice in my prosecution, neither falsifying anything, nor speaking of matters extraneous to the case. For most of those who come before you behave in the most inappropriate fashion; for they either give you advice about public interests, or bring charges, true or false, of every possible kind rather than the one on which you are to be called on to give your verdict.
There is no difficulty in either of these courses; it is as easy to utter an opinion about a matter on which you are not deliberating as it is to make accusations which nobody is going to answer. But it is not just to ask you to give a verdict in accordance with justice when they observe no justice in making their accusations. And you are responsible for this abuse, for it is you who have given this licence to those who appear before you. . . . §§ 11-12.
Passages later in the speech deepen this impression, and contain definite statements of belief which we cannot disregard:
Justice and Piety will be satisfied, men of Athens, by the prosecution which I shall institute, on your behalf and on behalf of the gods, against the defendant Leocrates. For I pray to Athena and the other gods, and to the heroes whose statues stand in the city and in the country, that if I have justly impeached Leocrates; if I am bringing to trial the betrayer of their temples, their shrines and their sanctuaries, and the sacrifices ordained by the laws, handed down to you by your forefathers, they may make me to-day a prosecutor worthy of his offences, as the interests of the people and the city demand; and that you, remembering that your deliberations are concerned with your fathers, your children, your wives, your country, and your religion, and that you have at the mercy of your vote the man who betrayed them all, may prove relentless judges, both now and for all time to come, in dealing with offenders of this kind and degree. But if the man whom I bring to trial before this assembly is not one who has betrayed his fatherland and deserted the city and her holy observances, I pray that he may be saved from this danger both by the gods and by you, his judges. §§ 1-2.
The following fragment deserves quotation as an example of his dignified severity:
For the first act of the gods is to lead astray the mind of the wicked man; and I think that some of the ancient poets were prophets when they left behind them for future generations such lines as these:
For when God's wrath afflicteth any man,
By his own act his wits are led astray,
And his straight judgment warped to crooked ways,
That, sinning, he may know not of his sin.
The older men among you remember, the younger have heard, the story of Callistratus, whom the city condemned to death. He fled the country, and hearing the god at Delphi declare that if he went to Athens he would obtain his due, he came here, and took sanctuary at the altar of the twelve gods; but none the less he was put to death by the city.
This was just; for a criminal's due is punishment. And the god rightly gave up the wrong-doer to be punished by those whom he had wronged; for it would be strange if he revealed the same signs to the pious and the wicked
But I am of opinion, Gentlemen, that the god's care watches over every human action, particularly those concerned with our parents and the dead, and our pious duty towards them; and naturally so, for they are the authors of our being, and have conferred innumerable blessings on us, so that it is an act of monstrous impiety, I will not say to sin against them, but even to refuse to squander our own lives in benefiting them. §§ 92-94.
This text is cited July 2005 from Perseus Project URL bellow, which contains interesting hyperlinks
The e-texts of the works by Lycurgus are found in Greece (ancient country) under the category Ancient Greek Writings.
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