When I was younger, I elected not to write the kind of discourse which deals with myths1 nor that which abounds in marvels and fictions,2 although the majority of people are more delighted with this literature than with that which is devoted to their welfare and safety;3 nor did I choose the kind which recounts the ancient deeds and wars of the Hellenes, although I am aware that this is deservedly praised,4 nor, again, that which gives the impression of having been composed in a plain and simple manner and is lacking in all the refinements of style,5 which those who are clever at conducting law-suits urge our young men tocultivate,

1 See General Introduction p. 22. Yet he deals with the legend of Demeter in Isoc. 4 and with that of Heracles in Isoc. 5, and, half playfully, he goes into the stories of Helen and Busiris in the discourses devoted to them. See General Introduction.

2 Cf. Isoc. 10.4 ff., Vol. III., L.C.L.

3 See Isoc. 7.1.

4 One of his pupils, Theopompus, was a historian. For Isocrates' attitude to the historians see Blass, Die attische Beredsamkeit 2. p. 49.

5 For the plain style affected by the forensic orators, notably Lysias, see Jebb, Attic Orators1. pp. 159 ff. Cf. Isoc. 4.

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