68.He that delivered this opinion was Pisander, who was also otherwise openly the forewardest to put down the democracy.But he that contrived the whole business, how to bring it to this pass, and had long thought upon it, was Antiphon, a man for virtue not inferior to any Athenian of his time, and the ablest of any man both to devise well and also to express well what he had devised;and though he came not into the assemblies of the people nor willingly to any other debatings, because the multitude had him in jealousy for the opinion they had of the power of his eloquence, yet when any man that had occasion of suit, either in the courts of justice or in the assembly of the people, came to him for his counsel, this one man was able to help him most.
The same man, when afterwards the government of The Four Hundred went down and was vexed of the people, was heard plead for himself, when his life was in question for that business, the best of any man to this day.
Phrynichus also shewed himself an earnest man for the oligarchy, and that more earnestly than any other, because he feared Alcibiades and knew him to be acquainted with all his practices at Samos with Astyochus, and thought in all probability that he would never return to live under the government of the few.And this man, in any matter of weight, appeared the most sufficient to be relied on.
Also Theramenes, the son of Agnon, an able man both for elocution and understanding, was another of the principal of those that overthrew the democracy.So that it is no marvel if the business took effect, being by many and wise men conducted, though it were a hard one.For it went sore with the Athenian people, almost a hundred years after the expulsion of the tyrants, to be now deprived of their liberty, having not only not been subject to any, but also for the half of this time been inured to dominion over others.
The English works of Thomas Hobbes of Malmesbury. Thucydides. Thomas Hobbes. translator. London. Bohn. 1843.
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