Online Encyclopedia


Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V08, Page 16 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
Spread the word: it!
SPURIOUS. (The first eight of the following are given by Schafer to Apollodorus.) (m) Or. 52. Contra Callippum. . . . 369–8 B.C. (a) Or. 53. Contra Nicostratum after 368 (a) Or. 49. Contra Timotheum . 362 (m) Or. 50. Contra Polyclem . • 357 (a) Or. 47. In Evergum et Mnesibulum . . 356 (m) Or. 45, 46. In Stephanum I. et II. . 351 (a) Or. 59, In Neaeram 349[343-0, Blass] (M) Or. 51. On the Trierarchic Crown (by Cephiso- 360_359 dotus ?) (m) Or. 43. Contra Macartatum ? (m) Or. 48. In Olympiodorum. . after 343 (m) Or. 44. Contra Leocharem. ? (a) Or. 35. Contra Lacritum . 341 (a) Or. 42. Contra Phaenippum ? (m) Or. 32. Contra Zenothemin ? (m) Or. 34. Contra Phormionem ? (m) Or. 29, Contra Aphobum pro Phano (a) Or. 40. Contra Boeotum de Dote 347 (m) Or. 57. Contra Eubulidem 346–5 (m) Or. 33. Contra Apaturium ? (a) Or. 56. In Dionysodorum . not before 322–1 „ Or. 6o (brim./nos) and Or. 61 (€pwruK6s) are works of rhetoricians. The six epistles are also forgeries; they were used by the composer of the twelve epistles which bear the name of Aeschines. The 56 apooluta, exordia or sketches for political speeches, are by various hands and of various dates.2 They are valuable as being compiled from Demosthenes himself, or from other classical models. The ancient fame of Demosthenes as an orator can be compared only with the fame of Homer as a poet. Cicero, with generous appreciation, recognizes Demosthenes as the standard of perfection. Dionysius, the closest and most penetrating of his ancient critics, exhausts the language of admiration in showing how Or. II and 12 are probably both by-Anaximenes of Lampsacus. 2 According to Blass, the second and third epistles and the exordia are genuine. Demosthenes united and elevated whatever had been best in earlier masters of the Greek idiom. Hermogenes, in his works on rhetoric, refers to Demosthenes as 6 I TWp, the Literary orator. The writer of the treatise On Sublimity knows history of no heights loftier than those to which Demosthenes Dthaneemoshas risen. From his own younger contemporaries, s. Aristotle and Theophrastus, who founded their theory of rhetoric in large part on his practice, down to the latest Byzantines, the consent of theorists, orators, antiquarians, anthologists, lexicographers, offered the same unvarying homage to Demosthenes. His work busied commentators such as Xenon, Minucian, Basilicus, Aelius, Theon, Zosimus of Gaza. Arguments to his speeches were drawn up by rhetoricians so distinguished as Numenius and Libanius. Accomplished men of letters, such as Julius Vestinus and Aelius Dionysius, selected from his writings choice passages for declamation or perusal, of which fragments are incorporated in the miscellany of Photius and the lexicons of Harpocration, Pollux and Suidas. It might have been anticipated that the purity of a text so widely read and so renowned would, from the earliest times, have been guarded with jealous care. The works of the three great dramatists had been thus protected, about 340 B.C., by a standard Attic recension. But no such good fortune befell the works of Demosthenes. Alexandrian criticism was chiefly occupied with poetry. The titular works of Demosthenes were, indeed, registered, with those of the other orators, in the catalogues (pt7Topteol 7rivaKes) of Alexandria and Pergamum. But no thorough attempt was made to separate the authentic works from those spurious works which had even then become mingled with them. Philosophical schools which, like the Stoic, felt the ethical interest of Demosthenes, cared little for his language. The rhetoricians who imitated or analysed his style cared little for the criticism of his text. Their treatment of it had, indeed, a direct tendency to falsify it. It was customary to indicate by marks those passages which were especially useful for study or imitation. It then became a rhetorical exercise to recast, adapt or interweave such passages. Sopater, the commentator on Hermogenes, wrote on A raaoXal Kai luerairotiiaeis rCw An,uoa%vovr xwpica, " adaptations or transcripts of passages in Demosthenes.” Such manipulation could not but lead to interpolations or confusions in the original text. Great, too, as was the attention bestowed on the thought, sentiment and style of Demosthenes, comparatively little care was bestowed un his subject-matter. He was studied more on the moral and the formal side than on the real side. An incorrect substitution of one name for another, a reading which gave an impossible date, insertions of spurious laws or decrees, were points which few readers would stop to notice. Hence it resulted that, while Plato, Thucydides and Demosthenes, were the most universally popular of the classical prose-writers, the text of Demosthenes, the most widely used perhaps of all, was also the least pure. His more careful students at length made an effort to arrest the process of corruption. Editions of Demosthenes based on a critical recension, and called 'ATrLKtava (avriypacba), came to be distinguished from the vulgates, or t5t , ihECs EK66o-a . Among the extant manuscripts of Demosthenes—upwards of 170 in number—one is far superior, as a whole, to the rest. This is Parisinus 2934, of the loth century. A comparison of this MS. with the extracts of Aelius, Aristeides and Harpocration from the Third Philippic favours the view that it is derived from an 'ArrtKtavbv, whereas the 3nµ66ets EKSbvets, used by Hermogenes and by the rhetoricians generally, have been the chief sources of our other manuscripts. The collation of this manuscript by Immanuel Bekker first placed the textual criticism of Demosthenes on a sound footing. Not only is this manuscript nearly free from interpolations, but it is the sole voucher for many excellent readings. Among the other MSS., some of the most important are—Marcianus 416 F, of the loth (or filth) century, the basis of the Aldine edition; Augustanus I. (N Si), derived from the last, and containing scholia to the speeches on the Crown and the Embassy, by Ulpian, with some by a younger writer, who was (m) 11 11 „ „ Manuscripts. perhaps Moschopulus; Parisinus T ; Antverpiensis II—the last two comparatively free from additions. The fullest authority on the MSS. is J. T. Vomel, Notitia codicum Demosth., and Prolegomena Critica to his edition published at Halle (1856–1857), PP. 175-178.1 The extant scholia on Demosthenes are for the most part poor. Their staple consists of Byzantine erudition; and their value Scholia. depends chiefly on what they have preserved of older criticism. They are better than usual for the Hepi o7e4avov, Kara Tlp.oxparovs; best for the IIepc srapa7rpecr-3eias. The Greek commentaries ascribed to Ulpian are especially defective on the historical side, and give little essential aid. Editions: C. W. Muller, in Drat. Att. ii. (1847–1858); Scholia Graeca in Demosth. ex cod. aucta et emendata (Oxon., 1851; in W. Dindorf's ed.). (1892–1893) ; S. H. Butcher in Oxford Scriptorum Classicorum Bibliotheca (1903 foil.); W. Dindorf (9 vols., Oxford, 1846-1851), with notes of previous commentators and Greek scholia; R. Whiston (political speeches) with introductions and notes (1859–1868). For a select list of the numerous English and foreign editions and translations of separate speeches see J. B. Mayor, Guide to the Choice of Classical Books (1885, suppt, 1896). Mention may here be made of De corona by W. W. Goodwin (1901, ed. min., 1904) ; W. H. Simcox (1873, with Aeschines In Ctesiphontem); and P. E. Matheson (1899); Leptines by J. E. Sandys (189o); De falsa legatione by R. Shilleto (4th ed., 1874) ; Select Private Orations by J. E. Sandys and F. A. Paley Ord ed., 1898, 1896) ; Midias by W. W. Goodwin (1906). C. R. Kennedy's complete translation is a model of scholarly finish, and the appendices on Attic law, &c., are of great value. There are indices to Demosthenes by J. Reiske (ed. G. H. Schafer, 1823) ; S. Preuss (1892). Among recent papyrus finds are fragments of a special lexicon to the Aristocratea and a commentary by Didymus (ed. H. Diels and W. Schubart, 1904). Illustrative literature: A. D. Schafer, Demosthenes and seine Zeit (2nd ed., 1885–1887), a masterly and exhaustive historical work; F. Blass, Die attische Beredsamkeit (1887–1898); W. J. Brodribb, " Demosthenes " in Ancient Classics for nglish Readers (1877); S. H. Butcher, Introduction to the Study of Demosthenes (1881); C. G. Bohnecke, Demosthenes, Lykurgos, IIyperides, and ihr Zeitalter (1864); A. Bouille, Histoire de Demosthene (2nd ed., 1868) ; J. Girard, Etudes sur l' eloquence attique (1874) ; M. Croiset, Des idees morales clans l'Eloquence politique de Demos-thane (1874);, A. Hug, Demosthenes als politischer Denker (1881); L. Bredit, L'Eloquence politique en Grece (2nd ed., 1886) ; A. Bougot, Rivalite d'Eschine et Demosthene (1891). For fuller bibliographical information consult R. Nicolai, Griechische Literaturgeschichte (1881); W. Engelmann, Scriptores Greeci (1881); G. Huttner in C. Bursian's Jahresbericht, li. (1889). (R. C. J.)
End of Article: SPURIOUS

Additional information and Comments

There are no comments yet for this article.
» Add information or comments to this article.
Please link directly to this article:
Highlight the code below, right click and select "copy." Paste it into a website, email, or other HTML document.