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Thucydides, The History Of The Peloponnesian War, 8.89


nanthe envoys sent by the Four Hundred to Samos arrived at Athens. Upon their delivering the message from Alcibiades, telling them to hold out and to show a firm front to the enemy, and saying that he had great hopes of reconciling them with the army and of overcoming the Peloponnesians, the majority of the members of the oligarchy, who were already discontented and only too much inclined to be quit of the business in any safe way that they could, were at once greatly strengthened in their resolve. 2 These now banded together and strongly criticised the administration, their leaders being some of the principal generals and men in office under the oligarchy, such as Theramenes, son of Hagnon, Aristocrates, son of Scellias, and others; who, although among the most prominent members of the government — being afraid, as they said, of the army at Samos, and most especially of Alcibiades, and also lest the envoys whom they had sent to Lacedaemon, might do the state some harm without the authority of the people — without insisting on objections to the excessive concentration of power in a few hands, yet urged that the Five Thousand must be shown to exist not merely in name but in reality, and the constitution placed upon a fairer basis. 3 But this was merely their political cry; most of them being driven by private ambition into the line of conduct so surely fatal to oligarchies that arise out of democracies. For all at once pretend to be not only equals but each the chief and master of his fellows; while under a democracy a disappointed candidate accepts his defeat more easily, because he has not the humiliation of being beaten by his equals. 4 But what most clearly encouraged the malcontents was the power of Alcibiades at Samos, and their own disbelief in the stability of the oligarchy; and it was now a race between them as to which should first become the leader of the commons.


nannan,the envoys sent by the Four Hundred to Samos arrived at Athens . Upon their delivering the message from Alcibiades, telling them to hold out and to show a firm front to the enemy, and saying that he had great hopes of reconciling them with the army and of overcoming the Peloponnesians, the majority of the members of the oligarchy, who were already discontented and only too much inclined to be quit of the business in any safe way that they could, were at once greatly strengthened in their resolve. ,These now banded together and strongly criticised the administration, their leaders being some of the principal generals and men in office under the oligarchy, such as Theramenes, son of Hagnon, Aristocrates, son of Scellias, and others; who, although among the most prominent members of the government (being afraid, as they said, of the army at Samos, and most especially of Alcibiades, and also lest the envoys whom they had sent to Lacedaemon, might do the state some harm without the authority of the people), without insisting on objections to the excessive concentration of power in a few hands, yet urged that the Five Thousand must be shown to exist not merely in name but in reality, and the constitution placed upon a fairer basis. ,But this was merely their political cry; most of them being driven by private ambition into the line of conduct so surely fatal to oligarchies that arise out of democracies. For all at once pretend to be not only equals but each the chief and master of his fellows; while under a democracy a disappointed candidate accepts his defeat more easily, because he has not the humiliation of being beaten by his equals. ,But what most clearly encouraged the malcontents was the power of Alcibiades at Samos, and their own disbelief in the stability of the oligarchy; and it was now a race between them as to which should first become the leader of the commons.


Intertexts (texts cited often on the same page as the searched text):

7 results
1. Aristophanes, Lysistrata, 421 (5th cent. BCE - 4th cent. BCE)

421. ὅτε γ' ὢν ἐγὼ πρόβουλος, ἐκπορίσας ὅπως
2. Sophocles, Philoctetes, 1341, 257, 285-295, 297, 300-304, 311, 313-316, 1340 (5th cent. BCE - 5th cent. BCE)

3. Thucydides, The History of The Peloponnesian War, 1.4, 1.20.2, 1.89, 1.100, 1.108, 1.126.3-1.126.12, 2.58.1, 4.102, 5.1, 5.11, 5.13, 5.16, 5.18-5.19, 5.23-5.24, 5.27-5.28, 5.43-5.44, 5.46, 5.52-5.54, 5.56-5.57, 5.70, 5.82-5.83, 6.54-6.59, 7.11-7.15, 8.1.2, 8.10, 8.12, 8.14-8.19, 8.15.1, 8.35-8.37, 8.44-8.49, 8.52-8.56, 8.53.1-8.53.2, 8.65-8.69, 8.65.2, 8.67.1, 8.67.3, 8.68.2, 8.68.4, 8.70.1, 8.81-8.82, 8.81.2, 8.82.2, 8.84, 8.86, 8.89.3, 8.93.3, 8.95, 8.97, 8.97.2-8.97.3, 8.108 (5th cent. BCE - 4th cent. BCE)

1.20.2. The general Athenian public fancy that Hipparchus was tyrant when he fell by the hands of Harmodius and Aristogiton; not knowing that Hippias, the eldest of the sons of Pisistratus, was really supreme, and that Hipparchus and Thessalus were his brothers; and that Harmodius and Aristogiton suspecting, on the very day, nay at the very moment fixed on for the deed, that information had been conveyed to Hippias by their accomplices, concluded that he had been warned, and did not attack him, yet, not liking to be apprehended and risk their lives for nothing, fell upon Hipparchus near the temple of the daughters of Leos, and slew him as he was arranging the Panathenaic procession. 1.126.6. Whether the grand festival that was meant was in Attica or elsewhere was a question which he never thought of, and which the oracle did not offer to solve. For the Athenians also have a festival which is called the grand festival of Zeus Meilichios or Gracious, viz. the Diasia. It is celebrated outside the city, and the whole people sacrifice not real victims but a number of bloodless offerings peculiar to the country. However, fancying he had chosen the right time, he made the attempt. 1.126.7. As soon as the Athenians perceived it, they flocked in, one and all, from the country, and sat down, and laid siege to the citadel. 2.58.1. The same summer Hagnon, son of Nicias, and Cleopompus, son of Clinias, the colleagues of Pericles, took the armament of which he had lately made use, and went off upon an expedition against the Chalcidians in the direction of Thrace and Potidaea, which was still under siege. As soon as they arrived, they brought up their engines against Potidaea and tried every means of taking it 8.1.2. Already distressed at all points and in all quarters, after what had now happened, they were seized by a fear and consternation quite without example. It was grievous enough for the state and for every man in his proper person to lose so many heavy infantry, cavalry, and able-bodied troops, and to see none left to replace them; but when they saw, also, that they had not sufficient ships in their docks, or money in the treasury, or crews for the ships, they began to despair of salvation. They thought that their enemies in Sicily would immediately sail with their fleet against Piraeus, inflamed by so signal a victory; while their adversaries at home, redoubling all their preparations, would vigorously attack them by sea and land at once, aided by their own revolted confederates. 8.15.1. While the revolted places were all engaged in fortifying and preparing for the war, news of Chios speedily reached Athens . The Athenians thought the danger by which they were now menaced great and unmistakable, and that the rest of their allies would not consent to keep quiet after the secession of the greatest of their number. In the consternation of the moment they at once took off the penalty attaching to whoever proposed or put to the vote a proposal for using the thousand talents which they had jealously avoided touching throughout the whole war, and voted to employ them to man a large number of ships, and to send off at once under Strombichides, son of Diotimus, the eight vessels, forming part of the blockading fleet at Spiraeum, which had left the blockade and had returned after pursuing and failing to overtake the vessels with Chalcideus. These were to be followed shortly afterwards by twelve more under Thrasycles, also taken from the blockade. 8.53.1. the Athenian envoys who had been despatched from Samos with Pisander arrived at Athens, and made a speech before the people, giving a brief summary of their views, and particularly insisting that if Alcibiades were recalled and the democratic constitution changed, they could have the king as their ally, and would be able to overcome the Peloponnesians. 8.53.2. A number of speakers opposed them on the question of the democracy, the enemies of Alcibiades cried out against the scandal of a restoration to be effected by a violation of the constitution, and the Eumolpidae and Ceryces protested in behalf of the mysteries, the cause of his banishment, and called upon the gods to avert his recall; when Pisander, in the midst of much opposition and abuse, came forward, and taking each of his opponents aside asked him the following question:—In the face of the fact that the Peloponnesians had as many ships as their own confronting them at sea, more cities in alliance with them, and the king and Tissaphernes to supply them with money, of which the Athenians had none left, had he any hope of saving the state, unless some one could induce the king to come over to their side? 8.65.2. Here they found most of the work already done by their associates. Some of the younger men had banded together, and secretly assassinated one Androcles, the chief leader of the commons, and mainly responsible for the banishment of Alcibiades; Androcles being singled out both because he was a popular leader, and because they sought by his death to recommend themselves to Alcibiades, who was, as they supposed, to be recalled, and to make Tissaphernes their friend. There were also some other obnoxious persons whom they secretly did away with in the same manner. 8.67.1. At this juncture arrived Pisander and his colleagues, who lost no time in doing the rest. First they assembled the people, and moved to elect ten commissioners with full powers to frame a constitution, and that when this was done they should on an appointed day lay before the people their opinion as to the best mode of governing the city. 8.67.3. The way thus cleared, it was now plainly declared, that all tenure of office and receipt of pay under the existing institutions were at an end, and that five men must be elected as presidents, who should in their turn elect one hundred, and each of the hundred three apiece; and that this body thus made up to four hundred should enter the council chamber with full powers and govern as they judged best, and should convene the five thousand whenever they pleased. 8.68.2. Indeed, when he was afterwards himself tried for his life on the charge of having been concerned in setting up this very government, when the Four Hundred were overthrown and hardly dealt with by the commons, he made what would seem to be the best defence of any known up to my time. 8.68.4. Theramenes, son of Hagnon, was also one of the foremost of the subverters of the democracy—a man as able in council as in debate. Conducted by so many and by such sagacious heads, the enterprise, great as it was, not unnaturally went forward; although it was no light matter to deprive the Athenian people of its freedom, almost a hundred years after the deposition of the tyrants, when it had been not only not subject to any during the whole of that period, but accustomed during more than half of it to rule over subjects of its own. 8.70.1. Upon the Council withdrawing in this way without venturing any objection, and the rest of the citizens making no movement, the Four Hundred entered the council chamber, and for the present contented themselves with drawing lots for their Prytanes, and making their prayers and sacrifices to the gods upon entering office, but afterwards departed widely from the democratic system of government, and except that on account of Alcibiades they did not recall the exiles, ruled the city by force; 8.81.2. An assembly was then held in which Alcibiades complained of and deplored his private misfortune in having been banished, and speaking at great length upon public affairs, highly incited their hopes for the future, and extravagantly magnified his own influence with Tissaphernes. His object in this was to make the oligarchical government at Athens afraid of him, to hasten the dissolution of the clubs, to increase his credit with the army at Samos and heighten their own confidence, and lastly to prejudice the enemy as strongly as possible against Tissaphernes, and blast the hopes which they entertained. 8.82.2. To the plan of sailing for Piraeus, leaving their more immediate enemies behind them, Alcibiades opposed the most positive refusal, in spite of the numbers that insisted upon it, saying that now that he had been elected general he would first sail to Tissaphernes and concert with him measures for carrying on the war. 8.89.3. But this was merely their political cry; most of them being driven by private ambition into the line of conduct so surely fatal to oligarchies that arise out of democracies. For all at once pretend to be not only equals but each the chief and master of his fellows; while under a democracy a disappointed candidate accepts his defeat more easily, because he has not the humiliation of being beaten by his equals. 8.93.3. After a great many had spoken and had been spoken to, the whole body of heavy infantry became calmer than before, absorbed by their fears for the country at large, and now agreed to hold upon an appointed day an assembly in the theatre of Dionysus for the restoration of concord. 8.97.2. or if he did should be held accursed. Many other assemblies were held afterwards, in which law-makers were elected and all other measures taken to form a constitution. It was during the first period of this constitution that the Athenians appear to have enjoyed the best government that they ever did, at least in my time. For the fusion of the high and the low was effected with judgment, and this was what first enabled the state to raise up her head after her manifold disasters. 8.97.3. They also voted for the recall of Alcibiades and of other exiles, and sent to him and to the camp at Samos, and urged them to devote themselves vigorously to the war.
4. Xenophon, Hellenica, 1.4.18, 2.3.30 (5th cent. BCE - 4th cent. BCE)

1.4.18. Meanwhile Alcibiades, who had come to anchor close to the shore, did not at once disembark, through fear of his enemies; but mounting upon the deck of 407 B.C. his ship, he looked to see whether his friends were present. 2.3.30. Now to let you know that this man’s present doings are nothing new, but that he is, rather, a traitor by nature, I will recall to you his past deeds. This man in the beginning, although he had received honours at the hands of the democracy, was extremely eager, like his father Hagnon, to change the democracy into the oligarchy of the Four Hundred, See note on I. vii. 28. and he was a leader in that government. When, 404 B.C. however, he perceived that some opposition to the oligarchy was gathering, he look the lead again—as champion of the democrats against the oligarchs! That is the reason, you know, why he is nicknamed Buskin :
5. Aristotle, Athenian Constitution, 10-13, 16-19, 2, 20-21, 23-28, 3, 34-41, 5-9, 1 (4th cent. BCE - 4th cent. BCE)

6. Plutarch, Alcibiades, 32.2 (1st cent. CE - 2nd cent. CE)

32.2. Duris the Samian, who claims that he was a descendant of Alcibiades, gives some additional details. He says that the oarsmen of Alcibiades rowed to the music of a flute blown by Chrysogonus the Pythian victor; that they kept time to a rhythmic call from the lips of Callipides the tragic actor; that both these artists were arrayed in the long tunics, flowing robes, and other adornment of their profession; and that the commander’s ship put into harbors with a sail of purple hue, as though, after a drinking bout, he were off on a revel.
7. Plutarch, Pericles, 32 (1st cent. CE - 2nd cent. CE)



Subjects of this text:

subject book bibliographic info
agis Rengakos and Tsakmakis, Brill's Companion to Thucydides (2006) 213
alcibiades Jouanna, Sophocles: A Study of His Theater in Its Political and Social Context (2018) 640, 641; Rengakos and Tsakmakis, Brill's Companion to Thucydides (2006) 213
aristophanes, on the probouloi Jouanna, Sophocles: A Study of His Theater in Its Political and Social Context (2018) 639
aristotle, on the oligarchy Jouanna, Sophocles: A Study of His Theater in Its Political and Social Context (2018) 640
aristotle Rengakos and Tsakmakis, Brill's Companion to Thucydides (2006) 671
athenaion politeia Rengakos and Tsakmakis, Brill's Companion to Thucydides (2006) 671
athenian empire Rengakos and Tsakmakis, Brill's Companion to Thucydides (2006) 545
banquet, with ion of chios Jouanna, Sophocles: A Study of His Theater in Its Political and Social Context (2018) 3, 4
boys, sophocles love of Jouanna, Sophocles: A Study of His Theater in Its Political and Social Context (2018) 3, 4
chaireas Rengakos and Tsakmakis, Brill's Companion to Thucydides (2006) 545
constitution of athens (aristotle) Jouanna, Sophocles: A Study of His Theater in Its Political and Social Context (2018) 640
democracy, in athens, vs. the oligarchy Jouanna, Sophocles: A Study of His Theater in Its Political and Social Context (2018) 640
diodorus siculus, on alcibiades Jouanna, Sophocles: A Study of His Theater in Its Political and Social Context (2018) 641
diodorus siculus Rengakos and Tsakmakis, Brill's Companion to Thucydides (2006) 671
eumolpides, the Jouanna, Sophocles: A Study of His Theater in Its Political and Social Context (2018) 641
hagnon Jouanna, Sophocles: A Study of His Theater in Its Political and Social Context (2018) 639
ion of chios Jouanna, Sophocles: A Study of His Theater in Its Political and Social Context (2018) 3, 4
kerykes, the Jouanna, Sophocles: A Study of His Theater in Its Political and Social Context (2018) 641
lebeau le cadet, m., on philoctetes and alcibiades Jouanna, Sophocles: A Study of His Theater in Its Political and Social Context (2018) 640
marcellinus Rengakos and Tsakmakis, Brill's Companion to Thucydides (2006) 24
nicias, and hagnon Jouanna, Sophocles: A Study of His Theater in Its Political and Social Context (2018) 639
nicias Rengakos and Tsakmakis, Brill's Companion to Thucydides (2006) 24
oenophyta Rengakos and Tsakmakis, Brill's Companion to Thucydides (2006) 671
oligarchic conspiracy/revolution (nan' Rengakos and Tsakmakis, Brill's Companion to Thucydides (2006) 671
oligarchic conspiracy/revolution (nan Rengakos and Tsakmakis, Brill's Companion to Thucydides (2006) 545
pericles, and sophocles Jouanna, Sophocles: A Study of His Theater in Its Political and Social Context (2018) 4
philoctetes (sophocles), and alcibiades Jouanna, Sophocles: A Study of His Theater in Its Political and Social Context (2018) 640, 641
phrynichos (politician) Rengakos and Tsakmakis, Brill's Companion to Thucydides (2006) 545
plutarch, on alcibiades Jouanna, Sophocles: A Study of His Theater in Its Political and Social Context (2018) 641
poetry, of sophocles Jouanna, Sophocles: A Study of His Theater in Its Political and Social Context (2018) 3, 4
probouloi Jouanna, Sophocles: A Study of His Theater in Its Political and Social Context (2018) 639, 640
samos Rengakos and Tsakmakis, Brill's Companion to Thucydides (2006) 213, 545
skaptesyle Rengakos and Tsakmakis, Brill's Companion to Thucydides (2006) 24
strategos, sophocles as Jouanna, Sophocles: A Study of His Theater in Its Political and Social Context (2018) 3, 4
strategy, of sophocles Jouanna, Sophocles: A Study of His Theater in Its Political and Social Context (2018) 4
theramenes Jouanna, Sophocles: A Study of His Theater in Its Political and Social Context (2018) 639, 640
thrace Rengakos and Tsakmakis, Brill's Companion to Thucydides (2006) 24
thucydides, son of melesias, book-division Rengakos and Tsakmakis, Brill's Companion to Thucydides (2006) 24
thucydides, son of melesias, exile Rengakos and Tsakmakis, Brill's Companion to Thucydides (2006) 545
thucydides, son of melesias, manuscript traditionnan Rengakos and Tsakmakis, Brill's Companion to Thucydides (2006) 545, 671
thucydides (politician), on the oligarchy Jouanna, Sophocles: A Study of His Theater in Its Political and Social Context (2018) 640
vergil, aeneid Rengakos and Tsakmakis, Brill's Companion to Thucydides (2006) 24
vergil Rengakos and Tsakmakis, Brill's Companion to Thucydides (2006) 24
visit to Jouanna, Sophocles: A Study of His Theater in Its Political and Social Context (2018) 3, 4