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Demarātus

Δημάρατος).


1.

The son and successor of Ariston on the throne of Sparta, B.C. 516. He was deposed, through the intrigues of Cleomenes, his colleague, on the ground of his being illegitimate. After his deposition he was chosen and held the office of magistrate; but being insultingly derided on one occasion by Leotychides, who had been appointed king in his stead, he crossed over into Asia to Darius, who received him honourably and presented him with lands and cities (Herod.vi. 65Herod., 70). He enabled Xerxes subsequently to obtain the nomination to the empire, in preference to his elder brother Artabazarnes, by suggesting to him an argument, the justice of which was acknowledged by Darius (Herod.vii. 3). We find him after this, though an exile from his country, yet sending the first intelligence to Sparta of the designs of Xerxes against Greece. He accompanied that monarch on his expedition, frankly praised the discipline of the Greeks, and especially that of the Spartans; and before the battle of Thermopylae explained to him some of the warlike customs of the last-mentioned people. We learn also that he advised Xerxes to seize, with his fleet, the island of Cythera, off the coast of Laconia, from which he might continually ravage the shores of that country. The monarch did not adopt his suggestion, but still always regarded the exile Spartan as a friend, and treated him accordingly.


2.

A rich citizen of Corinth, of the family of the Bacchiadae. When Cypselus had usurped the sovereign power of Corinth, Demaratus, with all his family, migrated to Italy, and settled at Tarquinii, 658 years before Christ. Commerce had not been deemed disreputable among the Corinthian nobility; and as a merchant, therefore, Demaratus had formed ties of friendship at this place. He brought great wealth with him. The sculptors Eucheir and Eugrammus, and Cleophantus the painter, were said to have accompanied him, and along with the fine arts of Greece he taught (so the popular account said) alphabetic writing to the Etrurians. His son called Lucumo went afterwards to Rome, and became king there under the name of Tarquinius Priscus (Liv.i. 34 foll.).


3.

A Corinthian, in the time of Philip and his son Alexander. He had connections of hospitality with the royal family of Macedon, and, having paid a visit to Philip, succeeded in reconciling that monarch to his son. After Alexander had overthrown the Persian Empire, Demaratus, though advanced in years, made a voyage to the east in order to see the conqueror, and, when he beheld him, exclaimed, “What a pleasure have those Greeks missed, who died without seeing Alexander seated on the throne of Darius!” He died soon after, and was honoured with a magnificent funeral (Plut. Alex. 37Plut. Alex., 56).

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