previous next
54. For the fact of Aristogeiton and Harmodius was undertaken upon an accident of love, which unfolding at large, I shall make appear that neither any other, nor the Athenians themselves, report any certainty either of their own tyrants or of the fact. [2] For the old Peisistratus dying in the tyranny, not Hipparchus, as the most thing, but Hippias, who was his eldest son, succeeded in the government. Now Harmodius, a man in the flower of his youth, of great beauty, was in the power of one Aristogeiton, a citizen of a middle condition that was his lover. [3] This Harmodius, having been solicited by Hipparchus, the son of Peisistratus, and not yielding, discovered the same unto Aristogeiton. He apprehending it (as lovers use) with a great deal of anguish and fearing the power of Hipparchus, lest he should take him away by force, fell presently, as much as his condition would permit, to a contriving how to pull down the tyranny. [4] In the meantime Hipparchus, having again attempted Harmodius and not prevailed, intended, though not to offer him violence, yet in secret, as if forsooth he did it not for that cause, to do him some disgrace. [5] For neither was the government otherwise heavy till then, but carried without their evil will. And to say the truth, these tyrants held virtue and wisdom in great account for a long time, and taking of the Athenians but a twentieth part of their revenues, adorned the city, managed their wars, and administered their religion worthily. [6] In other points they were governed by the laws formerly established, save that these took a care ever to prefer to the magistracy men of their own adherence. And amongst many that had the annual office of archon, Peisistratus also had it, the son of Hippias, of the same name with his grandfather, who also, when he was archon, dedicated the altar of the twelve gods in the market place and that other in the temple of Apollo Pythius. [7] And though the people of Athens, amplifying afterwards that altar which was in the market place, thereby defaced the inscription; yet that upon the altar that is in the temple of Apollo Pythius is to be seen still, though in letters somewhat obscure, in these words:
Peisistratus the son of Hippias
     Erected this to stand
l'th' Temple of Apollo Pythius,
     Witness of his command.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

load focus Notes (Charles F. Smith)
load focus Notes (E.C. Marchant, 1909)
load focus English (Benjamin Jowett, 1881)
load focus English (1910)
load focus Greek (1942)
hide References (66 total)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: