Example: For Euphiletos
‘You have now heard, judges, not only our
Isaeos, ‘For Euphiletos.’
evidence but the testimony of all the kinsfolk that Euphiletos the plaintiff is our brother. Consider, first, what motive our father could have had for telling an untruth, or for adopting this man if he had not been his son. You will find that all who act thus
are constrained either by the want of trueborn sons or by poverty, hoping for benefits from the persons who by their means have become Athenians. Neither condition applies to our father. He has, in us, two legitimate sons, so that childlessness could not have prompted the adoption. Nor, again, did he look to Euphiletos for maintenance or wealth; he has substance enough; further, it has been deposed before you that he maintained the plaintiff from infancy, educated him, enrolled him in his clan —and these are no light expenses. Our father, then, was not likely, judges, to attempt anything so unjust when it could do him no good. Nor, again, will I be suspected of such madness as bearing false witness for the plaintiff in order to have my patrimony divided among a larger number. Hereafter, of course, I could not for a moment dispute the relationship; no one of you would endure the sound of my voice, if I, who now, standing in peril of the law, testify that he is our brother, should be found contradicting that statement. The probability is, judges, that true testimony has been borne, not only by us, but by the other kinsmen too. Reflect, in the first place, that the husbands of our sisters would never have perjured themselves in the cause of the plaintiff: his mother was the stepmother of our sisters, and somehow stepmothers and the daughters of a former marriage are wont to disagree: so that, if the plaintiff had been our stepmother's son by another than our father, our sisters, judges, would never have allowed their husbands to be witnesses. Again:—our maternal uncle, being, of
course, no relation of the plaintiff, would not have gratified the plaintiff's mother by making a false deposition fraught with the manifest injury to us involved in our adoption of a stranger as our brother. Further, judges, how could any of you impute perjury to Demaratos, who stands there, or to Hegesippos, or Nikostratos—men whose whole lives will show a stainless record, and who, being our intimate friends and knowing us all, have severally testified their kinship with Euphiletos?
‘I should be glad, then, to learn from the most respected of our adversaries whether he could establish his Athenian citizenship by any other proofs than those which we have brought for Euphiletos. For my part, I do not think he could do more than show that both his parents are Athenians, and adduce the testimony of his relatives to the truth of that assertion. Then again, judges, supposing our adversaries were in peril, they would expect you to believe their friends rather than their accusers; as it is, though we have all that testimony on our side, shall they require you to put faith in their own story rather than in Euphiletos, in me and my brother, in our clansmen, in our entire family? Moreover, the adversaries are acting from private enmity, without personal risk to one of their number; we, who give our evidence, stand, one and all, within the peril of the law.
‘In addition to these testimonies, judges, the mother of Euphiletos, whom the adversaries allow to be an Athenian, was willing to take an oath before the arbitrator at the Delphinion that she and our
father are the parents of Euphiletos; and who should know better? Then our father, judges, who ought to be the next best authority, was and is willing to swear that Euphiletos is his son by his wedded Athenian wife. If this is not enough, judges, I was thirteen years old, as I said before, when Euphiletos was born, and I am ready to swear that Euphiletos is the son of my father. Justly then, judges, might you deem our oaths more trustworthy than the adversaries' assertions; we are willing to make oath on a matter of which we have accurate knowledge, while they retail hearsay from the plaintiff's ill-wishers, or inventions of their own. We, moreover, bring our kinsmen as witnesses before you as before the arbitrators,—witnesses who have a claim to be believed; while, since Euphiletos brought his first suit against the corporation and its demarch now deceased, the adversaries have failed to find any evidence that he is not my father's son, though the case was before the arbitrator for two years. To the conductors of the arbitration these facts afforded the strongest presumption of falsehood, and both of them decided against the adversaries.—(Read the evidence of the former award.)—You have heard that the former arbitration went against them. I claim, judges, that just as the adversaries would have urged an award favourable to themselves in evidence of Euphiletos not being the son of Hegesippos, so the opposite result should now be testimony to the truth of our story, since they were adjudged guilty of having erased the name of Euphiletos, an Athenian citizen, after it had been duly registered. That,
then, Euphiletos is our brother and your citizen, and that he has been subjected by the conspirators in his deme to injurious and outrageous treatment, sufficient proof, judges, has, I think, been laid before you.’