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CRITOLAUS has written 1 that envoys came from Miletus to Athens on public business, perhaps for [p. 321] the purpose of asking aid. Then they engaged such advocates as they chose, to speak for them, and the advocates, according to their instructions, addressed the people in behalf of the Milesians. Demosthenes vigorously opposed the demands of the Milesians, maintaining that the Milesians did not deserve aid, nor was it to the interest of the State to grant it. The matter was postponed to the next day. The envoys came to Demosthenes and begged him earnestly not to speak against them; he asked for money, and received the amount which he demanded. On the following day, when the case was taken up again, Demosthenes, with his neck and shoulders wrapped in thick wool, came forward before the people and said that he was suffering from quinsy and hence could not speak against the Milesians. Then one of the populace cried out that it was, not quinsy, but “silverinsy” from which Demosthenes was suffering.

Demosthenes himself too, as Critolaus also relates, did not afterwards conceal that matter, but actually made a boast of it. For when he had asked Aristodemus, the player, what sum he had received for acting, and Aristodemus 2 had replied, “a talent,” Demosthenes rejoined: “Why, I got more than that for holding my tongue.”

1 F. H. G. iv. 373.

2 Ps.-Plutarch, Decem Orat. Vitae, Demosth., p. 848, B, says that the actor was Polos. Famous actors made large sums of money; according to Pliny, N.H. vii. 129, the celebrated Roman actor Roscius made 500,000 sesterces yearly.

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