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But not to describe at length the overweening self-confidence of this fellow, as soon as we were come to Macedonia, we arranged among ourselves that at our audience with Philip the eldest should speak first, and the rest in the order of age. Now it happened that the youngest man of us was, according to his own assertion, Demosthenes. When we were summoned—and pray now give especial attention to this, for here you shall see the exceeding enviousness of the man, and his strange cowardice and meanness too, and such plottings against men who were his own fellow ambassadors and his messmates as one would hardly enter into even against his bitterest enemies. For you remember he says1 it is the salt of the city and the table of the state for which he has most regard—he, who is no citizen born—for I will out with it!—nor akin to us.2

1 See Dem. 19.189 ff. Aeschines had protested that Demosthenes, in attacking his fellow-ambassadors on their return from Macedonia, was violating the common decencies of life, which demanded that men who had sat at table together should treat one another as friends. Demosthenes replied that the table and the salt, even, in the case of the prytanes and other high officials who ate together at a common official table, gave no immunity to the wrongdoer; his fellow-officials were free to bring him to punishment. If the public table of the prytanes did not protect the guilty from attack by his fellow-officers, the table and the salt of the group of ambassadors should be no protection to Aeschines against Demosthenes' attack.

2 In Aeschin. 3.171 f., Aeschines declares that the maternal grandmother of Demosthenes was a Scythian.

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  • Cross-references in notes to this page (1):
  • Cross-references in notes from this page (2):
    • Aeschines, Against Ctesiphon, 171
    • Demosthenes, On the False Embassy, 189
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