by the Pseudo-Plutarch tells us that sixty-four speeches were attributed to Isaeus, of which fifty were considered genuine. He also composed an Art of Rhetoric.
We now possess eleven and a considerable fragment of a twelfth, and know the titles of forty-two others. The eleven speeches which are extant all deal directly or indirectly with inheritances. Six of these are connected with διαδικάσιαι
—trials to decide who is the righteous claimant—and their titles are as follows:—On the Estate of Cleonymus
(Or. i.), date 360-353 B.C.; On the Estate of Nicostratus
(Or. iv.), the date is uncertain—the author of the ‘argument’ asserts, with no plausibility, that Isaeus delivered the speech in his own person; On the Estate of Apollodorus
(Or. vii.), about 353 B.C.; On the Estate of Ciron
(Or. viii.) (see above, pp. 108-10
), date uncertain, perhaps
circa 375 B.C.; On the Estate of Astyphilus
(Or. ix.), date perhaps about 369 B.C.; On the Estate of Aristarchus,
date probably between 377 and 371 B.C.
Three speeches deal with prosecutions for false witness in connection with testamentary cases, viz. On the Estate of Menecles
(Or. ii.), date about 354 B.C.; On the Estate of Pyrrhus
(Or. iii.), of uncertain date; On the Estate of Philoctemon
(Or. vi.),—the date of this speech can be fixed with certainty at 364-363 B.C., as we learn from § 14 that it is now fifty-two years since the Athenian expedition sailed to Sicily.
Oration v., On the Estate of Dicaeogenes,
is in an ἐγγύης δίκη
, an action to compel Leochares, who was surety for Dicaeogenes in an agreement connected with the will of the latter's cousin, also named Dicaeogenes, to carry out the contract, since Dicaeogenes, the principal, is a defaulter. The date can only be fixed by the references to the death of the testator, who was killed in battle at Cnidos. There are two engagements which might be referred to, the first in 412 B.C., the second in 394 B.C. Twenty-two years have elapsed between that event and the present trial, so the date is either 390 B.C.—many years earlier than that of any other speech of Isaeus—or 372 B.C.
On the Estate of Hagnias
(Or. xi.) is in a prosecution of a guardian for ill-treatment of his ward under a will.
(Or. xii.), a considerable fragment preserved by Dionysius, is the only specimen that we possess of a speech not connected with a will-case. It refers to an appeal by Euphiletus to a law-court against the decision of his fellow demes-men, who have struck him off the roll.
The remaining fragments are hardly important
except in so far as they provide us with the names of several lost speeches. One of them (frag. 23) contains several sentences repeated verbally from Or. viii. (Ciron
), § 28.
The fragment of the speech For Eumathes,
preserved by Dionysius, has been referred to above (p. 118