|4. Demosthenes, Orations, 19.281, 21.175-21.180, 22.2, 25.79-25.80
Tagged with subjects: • Asebeia as a legal category • asebeia • asebeia ἀσέβεια • graphe asebeias • impiety (asebeia) • impiety (asebeia), legal procedure (graphe asebeias)
Found in books: Bernabe et al (2013) 318; Eidinow and Kindt (2015) 328; Mikalson (2016) 126; Peels (2016) 185; Riess (2012) 48, 233
|19.281. will you be content that all these men should have been subjected to the inexorable penalty of law; that they should find no succor in mercy or compassion, in weeping children bearing honored names, or in any other plea? And then, when you have in your power a son of Atrometus the dominie, and of Glaucothea, the fuglewoman of those bacchanalian routs for which another priestess According to Ulpian her name was Nino and her crime was mixing a love-potion. suffered death, will you release the son of such parents, a man who has never been of the slightest use to the commonwealth, neither he, nor his father, nor any member of his precious family? |
21.175. Now I propose, men of Athens, to name those who have been condemned by you, after an adverse vote of the Assembly, for violating the festival, and to explain what some of them had done to incur your anger, so that you may compare their guilt with that of Meidias. First of all then, to begin with the most recent condemnation, the Assembly gave its verdict against Euandrus of Thespiae for profanation of the Mysteries on the charge of Menippus, a fellow from Caria . The law concerning the Mysteries is identical with that concerning the Dionysia, and it was enacted later. 21.176. Well, Athenians, what had Euandrus done to deserve your condemnation? He had won a commercial suit against Menippus, but being, as he alleged, unable to catch him sooner, he had arrested him while he was staying here for the Mysteries. You condemned him for that alone, and there were no aggravating circumstances. When he came before the court, you were inclined to punish him with death, and when his accuser was induced to relent, you compelled Euandrus to refund the damages, amounting to two talents, which he had won in the former action, and you also made him compensate the fellow for the loss that he had sustained, on his own calculation, by staying here in deference to your preliminary verdict. 21.177. There you have one case of a man, in a merely private matter, with no added circumstances of insolence, paying so heavy a penalty for a breach of the law. With good reason; because that is what you are here to guard—the laws and your oath. That is what you who serve on any jury hold as a trust from the rest of the citizens, a trust which must be maintained inviolate in the interests of all who appeal to you with justice on their side. 21.178. There was another man who in your opinion had profaned the Dionysia, and although he was actually sitting as assessor to his son, who was Archon, you condemned him, because in ejecting from the theater a man who was taking a wrong seat, he laid a hand on him. That man was the father of the highly respected Charicleides, at that time archon. 21.179. Yes, and you thought that his accuser had a strong case when he said, If I was taking a wrong seat, fellow, if as you assert I was disregarding the notices, what authority do the laws confer on you or even on the archon himself? The authority to bid the attendants remove me, but not to strike me yourself. If I still refuse to go, you may impose a fine; anything rather than touch me with your own hand; for the laws have taken every precaution to save a citizen from being insulted in his own person. That was his argument. You gave your votes, but the accuser died before he could bring the case before a jury. 21.180. Then another man, Ctesicles, was uimously condemned by the Assembly for profaning the festival, and when he came before you, you sentenced him to death, because he carried a leathern lash in the procession and, being drunk, struck with it a personal enemy of his. It was thought that insolence, not drink, prompted the stroke, and that he seized the excuse of the procession and his own drunkenness to commit the offence of treating freemen like slaves.
22.2. for he accused me of things that anyone would have shrunk from mentioning, unless he were a man of the same stamp as himself, saying that I had killed my own father. He also concocted a public indictment for impiety, not against me directly, but against my uncle, whom he brought to trial, charging him with impiety for associating with me, as though I had committed the alleged acts, and if it had ended in my uncle’s conviction, who would have suffered more grievously at the defendant’s hands than I? For who, whether friend or stranger, would have consented to have any dealings with me? What state would have admitted within its borders a man deemed guilty of such impiety? Not a single one.
25.79. No; I am wrong. He has a brother, who is present here in court and who brought that precious action against him. What need to say anything about him? He is own brother to the defendant, born of the same father and mother, and, to add to his misfortunes, he is his twin. It was this brother—I pass over the other facts—who got possession of the drugs and charms from the servant of Theoris of Lemnos, the filthy sorceress whom you put to death on that account with all her family. 25.80. She gave information against her mistress, and this rascal has had children by her, and with her help he plays juggling tricks and professes to cure fits, being himself subject to fits of wickedness of every kind. So this is the man who will beg him off! This poisoner, this public pest, whom any man would ban at sight as an evil omen rather than choose to accost him, and who has pronounced himself worthy of death by bringing such an action.''. None