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[98] Another common device is to introduce an oath, like the speaker who, in defending a disinherited man, cried, “So may I die leaving a son to be my heir.”1 But this is not a figure which is much to be recommended, for as a rule the introduction of an oath, unless it is absolutely necessary, is scarcely becoming to a self-respecting man. Seneca made a neat comment to this effect when he said that oaths were for the witness and not for the advocate. Again, the advocate who drags in an oath merely for the sake of some trivial rhetorical effect, does not deserve much credit, unless he can do this with the masterly effect achieved by Demosthenes, which I mentioned above.2

1 By this wish he expresses his disapproval of such acts as the disinheritance of a son.

2 §62.

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