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So the people speedily took the government out of these men's hands; and in the sixth1 year after the dissolution of the Four Hundred, in the archonship of Callias of the deme of Angele, after the occurrence of the naval battle at Arginusae, it came about first that the ten Generals to whom victory in the naval battle was due were all condemned by a single vote, some of them not even having been in the engagement at all and the others having escaped on board a ship not their own, the people being completely deceived through the persons who provoked their anger; and then, when the Lacedaemonians were willing to evacuate Decelea on terms of both parties retaining what they held, and to make peace, though some persons were eager to accept, yet the mass of the people refused to consent, being completely deceived by Cleophon, who prevented the conclusion of peace by coming into the assembly, drunk and wearing a corslet,2 and protesting that he would not allow it unless the Lacedaemonians surrendered all the cities.3 [2] But though on this occasion they had managed their affairs ill, they realized their mistake not long afterwards. For in the next year, when Alexius was Archon, they met with the disaster in the naval battle of Aegospotami which resulted in the city's falling into the hands of Lysander, who set up the Thirty in the following way. [3] The peace having been concluded on terms of their carrying on the government according to the ancestral constitution, the popular party endeavored to preserve the democracy, but the notables who belonged to the Comradeships and those exiles who had returned after the peace were eager for oligarchy, while those notables who were not members of any Comradeship but who otherwise were inferior in reputation to none of the citizens were aiming at the ancestral constitution; members of this party were Archinus, Anytus, Cleitophon and Phormisius, while its chief leader was Theramenes. And when Lysander sided with the oligarchical party, the people were cowed and were forced to vote for the oligarchy. The motion was proposed by Dracontides of Aphidna.

1 'Sixth' (in Greek arithmetic 'seventh') is a mistake for 'fifth' (Greek 'sixth'): the Four Hundred fell in 411, Callias was archon 406 B.C.

2 i.e. with his courage artificially stimulated and with armor to protect him against assassination (unless we adopt the conjecture that μεθύων καὶ θώρακα ἐνδεδυκώς is a mistaken paraphrase of some original record giving θώρακα ἔχων in the slang sense of 'well primed with liquor,' cf. Aristoph. Frogs 1504).

3 i.e. those that they had taken in the war.

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    • Aristophanes, Frogs, 1504
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