The object of this book is to provide a reasonably short account of the works of the Orators and to give a general idea of the style of each. It seemed to me at the outset that this object could be best attained, not by applying methods of scientific analysis, but by giving numerous quotations from the speeches to emphasise the points which I wished to bring out. I have therefore avoided as far as possible the technicalities of criticism, and illustrated my remarks by translations of characteristic passages, hoping thus to make my work easily accessible not only to classical students, but also to others who, while generally interested in the Classics, have not the time or the capacity to study them in the original.

I have no idea of superseding the standard works on the subject, such as Jebb's Attic Orators and Blass' Attische Beredsamkeit, which deal with the subject more fully and from a somewhat different point of view. No student of the Orators can afford to neglect the works of these scholars, but though I have frequently consulted them, I have by no means considered myself bound by their opinions; in fact, my chief claim to consideration is that my own judgments are entirely independent of authority, and are based directly upon a first-hand study of the extant writings of the Orators.

The chief work, in addition to the two above mentioned, to which I am indebted is Croiset's Histoire de la Littérature Grecque.

I have to thank Balliol College and the Clarendon Press for permission to print extracts from Jowett's Plato.


BRISTOL, July 1919

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