THE parties in this suit are the same as in the preceding. The action now brought against the defendant is for a sum of money claimed out of the general property as due exclusively to Mantitheus, viz. a talent as the dower of his mother, to which he had a legal claim (§ 59). The dispute seems to have been an old one; for in §§ 3 and 18 the plaintiff says that after a lapse of eleven years he has come into court, all attempts to settle the matter by arbitration having failed. The claim was evidently first made by Mantitheus soon after his father's death. He had recognised his two half-brothers as co-heirs, and was willing to let them take a third share each, though perhaps he was not legally bound to do this1. But he asserted his right to the talent over and above his own third part. Upon this Boeotus makes a counter-claim to the same sum, τὴν ἴσην προῖκα2, due to himself from his mother Plangon (§ 14), and, as it seems, to some further property due from his father (§ 15). He thought, no doubt, that his brother would decline to risk an action for a still larger demand than that which he had himself made, and which might go against him; and in default of direct evidence, he trusted probably to vague, indirect, and purposely misleading inferences (παραγωγαί, § 21), to establish the allegation that Plangon had a fortune. This, however, is denied and disproved by counter-testimony by Mantitheus.

For the time being, the dispute seems to have been settled by the division of the bulk of Mantias' personal property, reserving only the slaves and the family house (οἰκία), the former for the sake of evidence on either side, the latter for payment of the claims, whichever side should prove to have a right to them.

This agreement being made, the cross-suits appear to have at once commenced. Each claimed his mother's dower out of the residuary property. The case was referred to an arbitrator Solon (§ 16), who however died before the decision could be given, in consequence of the delays and evasions of Boeotus. The latter then brings a fresh action against Mantitheus, and Mantitheus renews his old claim against Boeotus, and by that name. There are grounds for believing3 the man had established his right to the name of Mantitheus: anyhow, when the case went against him as Boeotus, he denied that this was his name and took no notice whatever of the decision (§§ 17, 18). Consequently, the real Mantitheus is compelled to sue him again in the eleventh year, in the court. Boeotus, it would seem, had changed his claim for Plangon's dower to a demand for some other property, which is not specified4; but his motive was the same, to cancel one demand by another, and he probably made that demand which he thought he could best establish on the slaves' evidence.

That Boeotus had played the bully for a long time, and made many vexatious claims on his brother, is clear from the evidence adduced. He had behaved so badly, in fact, that Mantitheus had been compelled to leave his own home. Many instances are given in which the old quarrel about the name had led to most disagreeable results and misunderstandings. In truth, throughout both the speeches the animus manifested on both sides is as bad as possible. In § 57 the plaintiff intimates that he had fears of being poisoned if he had continued to live in the same house. And he even takes pains to show that he did not believe the defendants were his father's sons at all. He regards the whole affair of the forced adoption as a scandalous fraud.

In one part of the present speech (§§ 8—12) the orator repeats, with some slight addition to the details, the subject of the preceding action about the name. The argument against the present claim of Boeotus turns (§§ 20—24) on the improbability of his mother's father, who died a debtor to the state, having left any money over and above, that could have come to Mantias after the confiscation of the property. On the other hand, it is shown (§§ 24, 25) that Mantitheus' mother was a lady of property, the daughter of Polyaratus, and sister of the wife of Chabrias. Her first husband was a son of Cleon (§ 25), and it is argued that such a man was not likely to have married a penniless wife. Her brothers too were men of wealth and honour who were not likely to have seen their sister wronged (§ 25).

[The present trial seems to have taken place in the eleventh year after the death of Mantias (§ 3), who according to the evidence of inscriptions (see note 1 on p. 153) was alive at the end of Ol. 105, 3 = B.C. 357. The earliest possible date for his death is Ol. 105, 4 = B.C. 356, which would give us Ol. 108, 2 = B.C. 347—6 as the probable date of the present trial. This conclusion is supported by other details minutely stated by Arnold Schaefer (Dem. u. s. Zeit III B 224), and coincides with a passage of Dionysius of Halicarnassus5, placing the trial περὶ προικὸς two or three years after the trial περὶ ὀνόματος, which (according to Schaefer's view) belongs to B.C. 350. Blass, however, makes the interval of time shorter, placing the first speech in 348 and the second in 347. In the latter year Mytilene, after having been under the rule of Cammys (§ 36), entered as a free state into alliance with Athens. It was in the same year that Demosthenes was a member of the Council, and his engagements in that capacity would be a sufficient excuse for his declining to write a second speech on behalf of Mantitheus (Att. Ber. III i 510{2}).

Arnold Schaefer (u. s. pp. 225—6) holds the present speech inferior to the speech περὶ ὀνόματος both in grasp of subject-matter and in style and expression. The writer was clearly familiar with the earlier speech, and several closely parallel passages occur in the two orations, which are in some cases better expressed in the earlier speech (cf. Or. 39 § 23 with 40 § 29; 39 § 2 with 40 § 9). For these and similar reasons he concludes that the περὶ προικὸς was not written by Demosthenes. Having in the former case availed himself of the help of Demosthenes without success, the plaintiff may have resorted to another advocate in the latter. In frequency of hiatus and in absence of rhythm the speech is unlike the genuine work of Demosthenes. For these and other reasons, Blass agrees with Schaefer in regarding it as the work of another writer. Att. Ber. III i 453{1}, 511{2}. S.]

[The two speeches are noticed as follows by Von Wilamowitz-Moellendorff:—

‘Die vergleichung der demosthenischen rede 39 mit der eines unbekannten 40 ist sehr lehrreich. Demosthenes führt eine schlechte sache und verliert sie, aber die rede ist sehr geschickt. Der andere sachwalter hat eine, wie es scheint, gute sache; den erfolg vermag ich nicht zu erkennen. Die sache war wol die. Der politiker Mantias von Thorikos hatte eine ehefrau Plangon, die er liebte, von der er kinder hatte, die er aber doch verstiess, als ihr vermögen verloren gieng. Nun nahm er sich eine reiche wittwe und zeugte mit der einen andern sohn. Aber als diese starb, kehrte er zu der ersten liebe zuruck, wollte nur von den kindern der Plangon nichts wissen. Doch diese war geschickt genug, den alten in den letzten tagen zur gerechtigkeit zu bestimmen. Und der nunmehr geprellte angeblich einzig echtbürtige sohn dang sich vergebens den besten redner für seine hässliche sache und ist mit einem schlechtern redner fur eine anscheinend begründete geldforderung kaum besser gefahren.’ Aristoteles u. Athen, II 179 (Das Recht am Namen), n. 24.

The style of the present speech is characterised as follows by Mr W. H. Kirk:—

‘The speech displays neither strength of passion nor marked force of reasoning; its lax structure is reflected in the comparative weakness of deictic expressions, the proportion of which is about the same as in Or. 39. The lack of the apostrophe it has in common with Or. 27 and Or. 30; but how far it is from possessing the compact energy of these speeches appears by the almost com plete absence of asyndeton, of which only two feeble examples occur (§§ 21, 47). The want of that dramatic force which this figure often gives is further emphasized by the fact that we find neither the challenge, the suggestion, nor the rhetorical answer; in short, none of those abrupt and telling checks to the flow of speech by which Demosthenes at once fixes and reposes the attention. The rhetorical value of asyndeton could hardly be better illustrated tban from this drowsy stream of constant polysyndeton... That the writer was a student of Demosthenes is suggested not only by the borrowings from the first speecb against Boeotus, but also by the opening words of the proœmium, which recall those of Or. 55, but lack their neatness and charm... The touches of insinuation in §§ 8, 23, and the air of moral superiority in §§ 12, 48—49, are sufficiently in the tone of the preceding speech to show that the writer wished to preserve to Mantitheus the attitude in which Demosthenes had placed him; but he lacked the ironic power by which the latter made this reserve appear the restraint imposed by a sense of right and decorum on a proud and energetic temperament.’ Demosthenic Style in the Private Orations, p. 40 f.]

[Modern Literature. A. Schaefer, Dem. und seine Zeit, III B 220—228, 1858. Blass, die Attische Beredsamkeit, III i 450—455{1}, 509—513{2}. Thalheim, Quaestiones Demosthcnicae, pp. 7—10 (Schneidemühl) 1889.]

[The following tables may illustrate some of the genealogical details involved in the case:

Cleaenetus of Κυδαθήναιον. CLEON Or. 40 § 25 (the demagogue, ob. B.C. 422). Polyaratus of Χολαργός (§§ 6 and 24) (ob. soon after B.C. 399). Cleomedon, § 6 + Daughter(*), § 6 Daughter, § 24 Menexenus, §§ 6, 25. Bathyllus, §§ 6, 25. Periander, § 6 (whose second (married to (trierarch in husband was Eryximachus B.C. 357). MANTIAS). whose sister is wife of the Polyaratus of Χο φαμους γενεραλ λαργός (trierarch Cleon Three CHABRIAS). in Samian war (§ 6 ad fin.). daughters. B.C. 322). Pamphilus (§ 20) of Κειριάδαι. Mantitheus of Θορικός. Boeotus, § 23. Hedylus, § 23. Euthydemus, § 23. PLANGON + MANTIAS + Daughter(*) of Polyaratus (ob. B.C. 356?) and widow of Cleomedon. BOEOTUS (or Mantitheus the elder). Pamphilus, MANTITHEUS Son (died early, § 7). § 11. (the younger). Daughter, § 13.

(Cf. A. Schaefer, u. s. pp. 211—14.) S.]

Argument. 1. 8, ἠμφισβήτουν ‘Put in a counter-claim to a dower, on the plea that Plangon also (their mother) had brought into the family-property of Mantias 100 drachmae.’ Both the mothers being dead, as well as the father, their respective children claim the dower that each had contributed. The question mainly turns on the fact of either or both having brought a dower. Mantitheus, when the property was being shared, claimed his mother's money over and above his share. It is clear that he regarded Boeotus' demand as a mere device for cancelling his account against the common property.

εἰσενεγκαμένης A technical word in this sense. So Or. 42 § 27 μενούσης μοι τῆς μητρὸς ἐν τῷ οἴκῳ καὶ ζώσης καὶ προῖκα ἐπενεγκαμένης. See also inf. §§ 19, 59, 60. [27 § 4 τὴν ἡμετέραν μητέρα πεντήκοντα μνᾶς εἰς τὸν οἶκον εἰσενηνεγμένην.]

By οἳ περὶ τὸν Βοιωτὸν, ‘Boeotus' party,’ himself, his brother Pamphilus, and their friends are meant. See Or. 39 § 2. If they should afterwards put in a further claim on any property in the house, with the exception of the slaves, such claims would be refuted by their having been paid and a release given by them. By ἔχωσιν ἔλεγχον he means ἔχωσιν ἐλέγχωνται as well as ἐλέγχωσιν. Otherwise, both parties would hardly have consented to this reservation. The reason why the slaves were reserved appears from § 15, VIZ. that the question by torture might be put to them, as belonging to both parties alike, if any further claims to property should be made, ἐάν τι ἐπιζητῶσι.

μετὰ ταῦτ̓ After this agreement had been made, that future claims should be paid out of the common property, &c. Boeotus, it seems, thereupon dropped his claim to Plangon's dower, and asserted his right to ἄλλα τινά, perhaps thinking that he could make use of the evidence of the slaves in his favour. See § 17.

ἀπεδιαίτησε §§ 17, 30, 31. He gave the decision in favour of Mantitheus, and against Boeotus by default. Mantitheus, therefore, fortified by this decision, on Boeotus' refusal to pay, brings the same suit into court, requiring payment of the money, i.e. of the dower.

καὶ εἰς τὸ δ. ‘He brings the same suit also into court’: apparently because Boeotus disregarded the arbitrators' decision, on the plea that not Boeotus, but Mantitheus was his name (§ 18). [For λαγχάνειν δίκην εἰς δικαστήριον cf. 59 (Neaer.) § 98 λαγχάνουσι δίκην τοῖς Λακεδαιμονίοις εἰς τοὺς Ἀμφικτύονας χιλίων ταλάντων. S.]

1 In Or. 39 § 6, he says, συγκεχωρηκέναι τὸ τρίτον νείμασθαι μέρος, as if it were a voluntary concession on his part. But in § 13 of the present speech he says he acknowledged Boeotus and Pamphilus in obedience to the law, though they were not his brothers. From which we may infer, not, as Kennedy thinks, that Mantias must have married Plangon after the death of his first wife, but that the adoption by the father entitled them to a share in the property. Indeed, this is virtually asserted in Or. 39 §§ 6, 20, 30. It appears likely that this would carry with it a legal claim (§ 59) to Plangon's property under the title of προῖκα, or dowry.

2 In § 20 it is said that Plangon's dower was more than 100 minae. (See the note on § 14.)

3 See Introd. Or. 39 ad fin.

4 § 17 οὐ νῦν περὶ ἐκείνων εἴληχέ μοι δίκην οὐδεμίαν, ἀλλὰ περὶ ἄλλων τινῶν. There is some obscurity on this point which is not fully cleared up in the course of the speech. Perhaps the arbitrators' decision in favour of Mantitheus had released him from the payment of Plangon's dower; and so it was thought unsafe to make precisely the same demand in a new action. From § 3 ἕνεκα τῆς δίκης ταύτης, it appears likely that some other claims were trumped up for the sake of furnishing the matter of a cross-suit.

5 Dionys. (on Deinarchus, § 13 p. 666, 1) πρὸς Μαντίθεον περὶ προικός: ‘Πάντων ἐστὶν ἀνιαρότατον.’ οὗτος ἀκολουθεῖ τῷ προτέρῳ λόγῳ καὶ πολλὰ ἔχει κατὰ λέξιν ταὐτά, εἴη ἂν τοῦ αὐτοῦ ῥήτορος, ἔξω τῆς Δεινάρχου ἡλικίας. [καὶ γὰρ οὐ] πολλοῖς ἔτεσιν ὕστερον ἠγώνισται τὸν ἀγῶνα κατήγορος, ἀλλὰ δύο τρισίν, ὡς ἀκριβέστερον περὶ αὐτῶν ἐν τῇ Δημοσθένους γραφῇ δεδηλώκαμεν. The restoration in brackets is due to Sauppe.— For a minor chronological point, see on § 37.

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  • Commentary references from this page (4):
    • Demosthenes, Against Boeotus 1, 2
    • Demosthenes, Against Boeotus 1, 23
    • Demosthenes, Against Boeotus 2, 25
    • Demosthenes, Against Phaenippus, 27
  • Cross-references in notes from this page (1):
    • Demosthenes, Against Boeotus 1, 6
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