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[16] Consider the legal position, Athenogenes, as regards free persons as well as slaves. No doubt you know as everyone does that the children of married women are legitimate. Yet the mere act of betrothing a woman on the part of a father or brother was not enough for the lawmaker. On the contrary, he wrote expressly in the law1 : “whomsoever any man has lawfully betrothed as wife, her children shall be legitimate”; not: “if any man has betrothed some other woman on the pretence that she is his daughter.” He lays it down that just betrothals shall be valid and unjust ones invalid.

1 This law is mentioned by Demosthenes (Dem. 44.49) and quoted in Dem. 46.18, from which the text is here reconstructed.

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