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not much in earnest. We may, if we please, say that the evils which Lysias discovered with such partial vision were already, and had long been, incurable; but we stand amazed at the fancy that the most hopeless discordance of political ideas, and the most radical divergence of principle, might be cured by a joint military cxpedition against a potentate whose weakness had been proved by the all but successful adventure of Cyrus, and the subsequent escape and exploits of the Ten Thousand.
Four years later the spectators assembled at Olympia for the great festival heard another oration which urged the same project, and which, it is said, had cost the author the anxious toil of more than ten years. But if in his Panegyric speech Isocrates proclaims the ravages of the same disease, and insists on the same remedy, he roundly charges Sparta not with laziness merely, or indifference, but with positive treachery. It is her business to lead the Greek against the barbarian; but she is allowing the Persian king on the one side, and the Syracusan despot on the other, to threaten the autonomous cities of Hellas, because the policy of utter isolation suits her own heartless and selfish ambition. The great merit of this oration as a work of art must be admitted by all; but the speech displays also a degree of historical discernment which might have warranted the expectation of a more creditable policy than that which in fact marked the long and laborious career of Isocrates. No one could have summed up more forcibly the benefits which the maritime empire of Athens had secured for Greece, and the frightful miseries which came in as a flood on the establishment of Spartan rule. The extension of the Hellenic world by means of her colonies, the general security which Athens imparted by sea, and, so far as her power extended, by land, the equal justice which she administered to her own citizens and to the members of the allied or dependent states, the readiness with which she took up the cause of the oppressed, and the sense of union in a great confederacy which she wakened in thegeneral body of her subjects, are all contrasted with the disintegrating results of Spartan policy, the violent tyranny which took the place of popular government, the consequent impossibility of obtaining redress for the grossest wrongs, and the impunity assured to marauders by land and pirates by sea. These points, it is true, are strangely, and perhaps absurdly, jumbled up with mythical stories which the public life of a statesman would probably have taught Isocrates to avoid ; but the very clearness with which he perceives the difference between Spartan and Athenian rule might have convinced him that the only hope of recovery lay not in attacking other
people, but in returning to the path which might have led, slowly and painfully perhaps, yet surely, to something like national coherence. This is just what Demosthenes saw, and what apparently no one else could see; and it is precisely this conviction, and the fearless consistency with which he acted upon it, that made him the foremost of Greek orators, and won for him an absolutely unsullied name and the glory of a life-long martyrdom for a righteous yet failing cause. Of such greatness Isocrates was wholly incapable, and he can be acquitted of actual treachery only because the ideas even of Athenian citizens on the subject of civic allegiance were so loose and shifting, and because he never betrayed the state by becoming the pensioner and tool of a foreign enemy with whom he had been sent to negotiate. Short of this, he did all that he could to counteract the great work which Demosthenes regarded as the sacred business of his life, and to divert the people from the measures needed to cure evils at home by cheating them with dreams of splendid retaliation on the representatives of Xerxes. If Sparta failed him, he could betake himself to Iason of Pherai. The assassination of Iason left him free to address his expostulations and entreaties to the Syracusan tyrant, whose tents Lysias had exhorted his hearers to plunder or dismantle at Olympia. If Dionysios turned a deaf ear to his strain, he would invoke the aid of the Macedonian king, whose armies hung like a thunder-cloud in the north, big with danger for the whole Greek world. Having once fixed his mind on the thought of this fatal championship, he stuck to the idea with a devotion which almost equalled that of Æschines. The possession of Thermopylæ and the fortifying of Elateia could not weaken the ardour with which he looked to Philip as the future leader of the Greeks against the Persian king; and the fatal fight of Chæronea would waken in him only a feeling of satisfaction in the thought that some of the hopes which he had cherished for more than half a century were now in a fair way of being realised. There is, indeed, the tale that Isocrates, on hearing the news of the defeat, starved himself and died on the burial day of those who had fallen in the battle. The third letter to Philip, written a few days before his death, stands out in complete contradiction to this story, and Mr. Jebb holds that there is no reason for questioning its genuineness. But even on the supposition of its spuriousness,
• How,' he well asks, 'is the motive of the suicide to be explained ? Undoubtedly Isocrates regretted the struggle between Athens and Philip; it had been brought on by a policy which he disapproved.
But the result of the struggle was that the idea of his life—the idea on which depended, as he thought, the welfare of Athens and of Greece had become practicable. Isocrates cannot have destroyed himself because Philip had won. The conduct of Philip to Athens after Chæronea was studiously temperate and conciliatory; there was nothing in it to estrange Isocrates from his ideal Panhellenic chief, who, having struck one necessary blow, was now bent on healing the discords of Greece. It is more conceivable that Isocrates should have destroyed himself because he saw Athens still resolved to resist, and because he dreaded the conflict, when Philip should be at the walls, between his duty to Athens and his duty to Greece. If the tradition of the suicide is considered too strong to be set aside, this seems the most reasonable account of it.' (Vol. ii. p. 33.)
Possibly on the very day that Isocrates sat down to write to Philip the last words which his hand was ever to trace, another Athenian, Leocrates, fled from the city to seek a refuge at Rhodes, and there to announce that Athens had been already taken. Isocrates, by staying at home, escaped the charge of treason, on which Leocrates was brought before the bar of his country. A casting-vote alone saved the latter from the penalty invoked by the indignant eloquence of Lycurgus, an orator in integrity of purpose and intensity of earnestness second only to Demosthenes.
From the political aspects of a career which closed at the age of ninety-eight, we may turn with some reluctance to the technical merits of Isocrates as a rhetorician; and we are free to confess, as we have confessed already, that, excellent beyond doubt and instructive as is Mr. Jebb's criticism generally, it employs a number of terms which will probably fail to convey the same idea to different minds. When, for instance, he speaks of his purity and correctness of idiom (ü. 58), when he tells us that Lysias prefers common words, but that Isocrates, though he can distinguish on occasions, has a general bent towards grandeur (ii. 59), it is hard to shake off the feeling that we are walking among quagmires. We tread on firmer ground when we read that, while the orators of the austere school relied mainly on words, Isocrates relied almost wholly on composition, and may thus be regarded as having-developed, though he did not originate, the idea of a literary proserhythm' (ii. 60). Above all, the manner of Isocrates was smooth and tranquil. On this special characteristic Mr. Jebb has some excellent remarks; nor need we say any more than that it was well for the world that Demosthenes had something higher to care for. We must resist the temptation to follow Mr. Jebb through the pages in which he treats of the life-long labours of the great rhetorician. The reader will find enter pas
tainment and instruction everywhere, and not least in the sages which notice the three classes of Sophists with whom Isocrates had his quarrel, on grounds which, so far as we may see, were perfectly legitimate and solid.
The one remaining orator whose life and work fall directly within the scope of Mr. Jebb's volumes is Isæus; and the position of Isæus marks a change which for Demosthenes would have been only an omen of doom. 66 Let the ekklesia
" be the care of the statesmen-my profession is to write for co the courts." This is what the life of Isæus, by the fact • that it is almost hidden, declares. That change has set in
which is to lead, without a break, from the old life of the republic to a cosmopolitan Hellenism, and thence to the modern world '(ii. 262). The impulse thus given led Isæus to confine himself not merely to the professional calling of a speech writer, but to the composition of speeches for private causes, and these too of a class which Isocrates regarded with special contempt–claims, namely, to property or money between man and man. This avocation drew towards him one who was to leave behind him a name for all time; and the connexion and contrast between Isæus and Demosthenes are drawn out by Mr. Jebb with a fulness and freshness at once interesting and delightful. The fact of the connexion cannot be questioned. Afterwards, when that relative obscurity in • which the critics left the elder orator was hardly broken save
by this strong gleam from the glory of the younger, friendly biographers naturally welcomed everything that could add • brightness to the borrowed ray'(ii. 267). On the strength of this tradition Professor Curtius has framed the picture of an intellectual armed alliance in which, like the heroes of ancient mythology, these two orators went forth to fight with the men who had desolated the home of the younger. But the speeches against Aphobos and Onetor, Mr. Jebb remarks decisively, shatter this vision of Isæus as a Pylades divided by nothing
but, perhaps, thirty-six years from his young partner in the • chastisement of a triple Ægisthus' (ii. 268). These earliest speeches of Demosthenes, he adds, have a stamp of their own as marked as it is original; and we have no warrant for supposing that the intercourse between him and Isæus as teacher and * learner can have been either very intimate or of very long
duration'ii. 269). In truth, the course which Demosthenes marked out for himself rendered any other result impossible. Isæus resolved to follow the calling of Antiphon and Lysias. Demosthenes, in Mr. Jebb's words, instead of refining on the art which hides itself, determined to wield the art which
triumphs and commands (ii. 303). Like Antiphon and Lysias, Isæus was content to forego the honours and perils of political eminence; and like the former, but unlike the latter, he gained a sinister reputation for cleverness' in elaborating pleas for the worse part.' But here the resemblance ended. The name of Isæus was not to be linked, like that of Antiphon, with a long catalogue of secret murders. Subtle and patient, but not passionate, he
was congenially placed in days when an Athenian had ceased to be primarily a citizen. The early application of rhetorical art to politics -so natural, even so necessary, yet so crude—had long given place to a conception of the rhetorical province in which politics made only one department. With this department Isæus recognised-probably with the indifference of the time—that he had nothing to do; the intel. lectual ardour which he clearly had was of a kind that his tasks at once satisfied and limited—making it enough for him to live and die the laborious, successful, rather unpopular master of Attic Law; not the first at Athens who had followed a calling, but perhaps the earliest Athenian type of a professional man.' (Vol. ii. p. 271.)
This choice, determined manifestly by a genius only of the second rank, made his career a compromise; and he remains the first advocate who was at once morally persuasive and logically powerful, without either entrancing by the grace of his ethical charm or constraining by the imperious brilliancy of his art; one from whom Demosthenes learned the best technical lessons that Antiphon or Thucydides could teach, in a form at once strict and animated, serviceable under conditions which they had not known; a contributor, by these means, to the success of Demosthenes both in the forensic and in other fields, but no more the author of his victories than he is the kindler of his enthusiasm ; yet for the modern world, not the less, but the more, a man who speaks with his own voice and stands for his own work—the earliest master of forensic controversy.' (Vol. ii. p. 310.)
From Isæus and Isocrates we turn with feelings of reverence not unmingled with awe to the undying work of Demosthenes. The charm of Mr. Jebb's pages has tempted us already to indulge in large quotation; from the glowing chapters which he devotes to the matured civil eloquence of Athens it is difficult indeed to resist the temptation of quoting far more largely. Throughout, the great orator stands before us, mighty because clothed in the armour of righteousness, unapproachable in the majesty of his art because resting on the strong foundation of truth, and victorious over his great rival from the fearlessness imparted by absolute sincerity of purpose. If the very intensity of his eloquence seem oppressive, we must