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[16] So much concerning proofs. In regard to moral character, since sometimes, in speaking of ourselves, we render ourselves liable to envy, to the charge of prolixity, or contradiction, or, when speaking of another, we may be accused of abuse or boorishness, we must make another speak in our place, as Isocrates does in the Philippus1 and in the Antidosis.2 Archilochus uses the same device in censure; for in his iambics he introduces the father speaking as follows of his daughter: “ There is nothing beyond expectation, nothing that can be sworn impossible,3

” and the carpenter Charon in the iambic verse beginning “ I [care not for the wealth] of Gyges;4

” Sophocles, also,5 introduces Haemon, when defending Antigone against his father, as if quoting the opinion of others.

1 Isoc. 5.4-7. Isocrates says that his friends thought very highly of one of his addresses, as likely to bring peace.

2 Isoc. 15.132-139, Isoc. 15.141-149. Here again Isocrates puts compliments on his composition into the mouth of an imaginary friend.

3 Archilochus (c. 650) of Paros was engaged to Neobule, the daughter of Lycambes. Her father broke off the engagement, whereupon Archilochus pursued father and daughter with furious and scurrilous abuse. It is here said that, instead of attacking the daughter directly, he represented her as being attacked by her father. The meaning of ἄελπτον is not clear. It may be a general statement: the unexpected often happens; or, there is nothing so bad that you may not expect it. B. St. Hilaire translates: “There is nothing that money cannot procure,” meaning that the father was prepared to sell his daughter (Frag. 74).

4 The line ends: τοῦ πολυχρύσου μέλει. Archilochus represents Charon the carpenter as expressing his own disapproval of the desire for wealth and of the envy caused by others possessing it.

5 Here again, Haemon similarly puts his own feeling as to Creon's cruel treatment of Antigone into the mouth of the people of the city, and refers to popular rumor.

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