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Chaeron the Spartan Demagogue

There was at this time in Sparta a man named Chaeron,
Chaeron's malversations at Sparta.
who in the previous year had been on an embassy to Rome, a man of ready wit and great ability in affairs, but still young, in a humble position of life, and without the advantages of a liberal education. By flattering the mob, and starting questions which no one else had the assurance to move, he soon acquired a certain notoriety with the people. The first use he made of his power was to confiscate the land granted by the tyrants to the sisters, wives, mothers, and children of the exiles, and to distribute it on his own authority among the poor without any fixed rule or regard to equality. He next squandered the revenue, using the public money as though it were his own, without the authority of law, public decree, or magistrate. Annoyed at these proceedings, certain men managed to get themselves appointed auditors of the treasury in accordance with the laws.
Assassination of Apollonides.
Seeing this, and conscious of his mal-administration of the government, Chaeron sent some men to attack Apollonides, the most illustrious of the auditors, and the most able to expose his embezzlements, who stabbed him to death in broad daylight as he was coming from the bath. Upon this being reported to the Achaeans, and the people expressing great indignation at what had been done, the Strategus at once started for Sparta; and when he arrived there he brought Chaeron to trial for the murder of Apollonides, and having condemned him, threw him into prison. He then incited the remaining auditors to make a real investigation into the public funds, and to see that the relations of the exiles got back the property of which Chaeron had shortly before deprived them.

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