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Comparing and contrasting the presentation of themistocles and aristides in plutarchs lives

In times of relaxation and leisure, when absolved from his lessons, he would not play or indulge his ease, as the rest of the boys did, but would be found composing and rehearsing to himself mock speeches. These speeches would be in accusation or defence of some boy or other. And yet Stesimbrotus says that Themistocles was a pupil of Anaxagoras, and a disciple of Melissus the physicist; but he is careless in his chronology.

It was Pericles, a much younger man than Themistocles, whom Melissus opposed at the siege of Samos, 3 and with whom Anaxagoras was intimate. Mnesiphilus received this "sophia," and handed it down, as though it were the doctrine of a sect, in unbroken tradition from Solon. His successors blended it with forensic arts, and shifted its application from public affairs to language, and were dubbed "sophists.

And, in just the opposite vein, there are some who say that his father fondly tried to divert him from public life, pointing out to him old triremes on the sea-shore, all wrecked and neglected, and intimating that the people treated their leaders in like fashion when these were past service. And yet it is thought that his enmity with this man had an altogether puerile beginning. However, the dissimilarity in their lives and characters is likely to have increased their variance.

Aristides was gentle by nature, and a conservative in character. Now the rest of his countrymen thought that the defeat of the Barbarians at Marathon was the end of the war; but Themistocles thought it to be only the beginning of greater contests, and for these he anointed himself, as it were, to be the champion of all Hellas, and put his city into training, because, while it was yet afar off, he expected the evil that was to come.

But that the salvation which the Hellenes achieved at that time came from the sea, and that it was those very triremes which restored again the fallen city of Athens, Xerxes himself bore witness, not to speak of other proofs. Others, on the contrary, denounce his great stinginess and parsimony, claiming that he used to sell the very food sent in to him as a gift.

In his ambition he surpassed all men. For instance, while he was still young and obscure, he prevailed upon Epicles of Hermione, a harpist who was eagerly sought after by the Athenians, to practise at his house, because he was ambitious that many should seek out his dwelling and come often to see him. For Cimon was young and of a great house, and they thought they must allow him in such extravagances; but Themistocles had not yet become famous, and was thought to be seeking to elevate himself unduly without adequate means, and so was charged with ostentation.

And so he grew in power, and pleased the common folk, and finally headed a successful faction and got Aristides removed by ostracism. But the greatest of all his achievements was his putting a stop to Hellenic wars, and reconciling Hellenic cities with one another, persuading them to postpone their mutual hatreds because of the foreign war.

To which end, they say, Cheileos the Arcadian most seconded his efforts. But many opposed this plan, and so he led forth a large army to the vale of Tempe, along with the Lacedaemonians, in order to make a stand there in defence of Thessaly, which was not yet at that time supposed to be medising. Wherefore he is thought to have been the man most instrumental in achieving the salvation of Hellas, and foremost in leading the Athenians up to the high repute of surpassing their foes in valour and their allies in magnanimity.

Therefore the Euboeans, fearing lest the Hellenes abandon them to their fate, held secret conference with Themistocles, and sent Pelagon to him with large sums of money. At any rate, such is the story of Phanias the Lesbian. It has a small temple of Artemis 116 surnamed Proseoea, which is surrounded by trees and enclosed by upright slabs of white marble.

This stone, when you rub it with your hand, gives off the colour and the odour of saffron. In these writings he solemnly enjoined upon the Ionians, if it were possible, to come over to the side of the Athenians, who were their ancestors, and who were risking all in behalf of their freedom; but if they could not do this, to damage the Barbarian cause in battle, and bring confusion among them.

By this means he hoped either to fetch the Ionians over to his side, or to confound them by bringing the Barbarians into suspicion of them. The Athenians, it is true, begged them to go up into Boeotia against the enemy, and make a stand there in defence of Attica, as they themselves had gone up by sea to Artemisium in defence of others.

But no one listened to their appeals. All clung fast to the Peloponnesus, and were eager to collect all the forces inside the Isthmus, and were building a rampart across the Isthmus from sea to sea.

Of comparing and contrasting the presentation of themistocles and aristides in plutarchs lives alone with an army of so many myriads they could not seriously think; and as for the only thing left them to do in their emergency, namely, to give up their city and stick to their ships, most of them were distressed at the thought, saying that they neither wanted victory nor understood what safety could mean if they abandoned to the enemy the shrines of their gods and the sepulchres of their fathers.

As a sign from heaven he took the behaviour of the serpent, which is held to have disappeared comparing and contrasting the presentation of themistocles and aristides in plutarchs lives that time from the sacred enclosure on the Acropolis.

When the priests found that the daily offerings made to it were left whole and untouched, they proclaimed to the multitude, — Themistocles putting the story into their mouths, — that the goddess had abandoned her city and was showing them their way to the sea.

At last his opinion prevailed, and so he introduced a bill providing that the city be entrusted for safe keeping "to Athena the patroness of Athens," but that all the men of military age embark on the triremes, after finding their children, wives, such safety as each best could.

The bill was introduced by a man whose name was Nicagoras. He says that when the Athenians were going down to the Piraeus and abandoning their city, the Gorgon's head was lost from the image of the god; and then Themistocles, pretending to search for it, and ransacking everything, thereby discovered an abundance of money hidden away in the baggage, which had only to be confiscated, and the crews of the ships were well provided with rations and wages.

Besides, many who were left behind on account of their great age invited pity also, and much affecting fondness was shown by the tame domestic animals, which ran along with yearning cries of distress by the side of their masters as they embarked. They say that the spot which is pointed out to this day as "Dog's Mound" is his tomb.

When Eurybiades said to him, "Themistocles, at the games those who start too soon get a caning," "Yes," said Themistocles, "but those who lag behind get no crown. This Sicinnus was of Persian stock, a prisoner of war, but devoted to Themistocles, and the paedagogue of his children.

  1. And besides, Roxanes the Chiliarch, when Themistocles came along opposite him, — the King being seated and the rest hushed in silence, — said in an angry undertone. But in the desperate fortune of that time Themistocles was more afraid of kindred and recent jealousy than of an anger that was of long standing and royal, and promptly cast himself upon the king's mercy, making himself the suppliant of Admetus in a way quite peculiar and extraordinary.
  2. For he had served as arbiter in a dispute between them and the Corinthians, and settled the quarrel by deciding that the Corinthians should pay an indemnity of twenty talents, and administer Leucas as a common colony of both cities.
  3. It was for this reason particularly that he became obnoxious to the Lacedaemonians, and they therefore tried to advance Cimon in public favour, making him the political rival of Themistocles.
  4. Plutarch's lives volume 1 of 2 by themistocles, camillus, pericles, fabius, alcibiades, coriolanus, timoleon, aemilius paulus, pelopidas, marcellus, aristides.

And while they were still incredulous in spite of all, a Tenian trireme appeared, a deserter from the enemy, in command of Panaetius, and told how the enemy surrounded them, so that with a courage born of necessity the Hellenes set out to confront the danger. There three prisoners of war were brought to him, of visage most beautiful to behold, conspicuously adorned with raiment and with gold. At any rate, this is what Phanias the Lesbian says, and he was a philosopher, and well acquainted with historical literature.

It was upon him that Ameinias the Deceleian and Socles the Paeanian bore down, — they being together on one ship, — and as the two ships struck each other bow on, crashed together, and hung fast by their bronze beaks, he tried to board their trireme; but they faced him, smote him with their spears, and hurled him into the sea.

His body, as it drifted about with other wreckage, was recognised by Artemisia, who had it carried to Xerxes. Then out of the shouting throng a cloud seemed to lift itself slowly from the earth, pass out seawards, and settle down upon the triremes.

These, they conjectured, were the Aeacidae, who had been prayerfully invoked before the battle to come to their aid. Then the rest, put on an equality in numbers with their foes, because the Barbarians had to attack them by detachments in the narrow strait and so ran foul of one another, routed them, though they resisted till the evening drew on, and thus "bore away," as Simonides says, 17 "that fair and notorious victory, than which no more brilliant exploit was ever performed upon the sea, either by Hellenes or Barbarians, through the manly valour and common ardour of all who fought their ships, but through the clever judgment of Themistocles.

The Loeb Editor's Notes:

But Themistocles, merely by way of sounding Aristides, proposed, as though he were in earnest, to sail with the fleet to the Hellespont and break the span of boats there, "in order," said he, "that we may capture Asia in Europe.

This thoughtful prudence on the part of Themistocles and Aristides was afterwards justified by the campaign with Mardonius, since, although they fought at Plataea with the merest fraction of the armies of Xerxes, they yet staked their all upon the issue.

For when the generals withdrew to the Isthmus and solemnly voted on this question, taking their ballots from the very altar of the god there, each one declared for himself as first in valour, but for Themistocles as second after himself. When, for example, the city had chosen him to be admiral, he would not perform any public or private business at its proper time, but would postpone the immediate duty to the day on which he was to set sail, in order that then, because he did many things all at once and had meetings with all sorts of men, he might be thought to be some great personage and very powerful.

Again, with the desire to be somewhat peculiar in all that he did, when he offered a certain estate for sale, he bade proclamation to be made that it had an excellent neighbour into the bargain.

Of two suitors for his daughter's hand, he chose the likely man in preference to the rich man, saying that he wanted a man without money rather than money without a man. Such were his striking sayings. And this was what actually happened. When the Lacedaemonians found out the truth they did him no harm, but concealed their displeasure and sent him away.

Comparing and contrasting the presentation of themistocles and aristides in plutarchs lives

But Themistocles did not, as Aristophanes 19 the comic poet says, "knead the Piraeus on to the city," nay, he fastened the city to the Piraeus, and the land to the sea. Therefore it was, too, that the bema in Pnyx, which had stood so as to look off toward the sea, was afterwards turned by the thirty tyrants so as to look inland, because they thought that maritime empire was the mother of democracy, and that oligarchy was less distasteful to tillers of the soil. The Athenians therefore ordered Themistocles to give it up.

It was for this reason particularly that he became obnoxious to the Lacedaemonians, and they therefore tried to advance Cimon in public favour, making him the political rival of Themistocles.

When, for instance, he demanded money of the Andrians, Herodotus 20 says he made a speech to them and got reply as follows: Timocreon, the lyric poet of Rhodes, assailed Themistocles very bitterly in a song, to the effect that for bribes he had secured the restoration of other exiles, but had abandoned him, through a host and a friend, and all for money.

The song runs thus: Then he composed the song beginning: For ostracism was not a penalty, but a way of pacifying and alleviating that jealousy which delights to humble the eminent, breathing out its malice into this disfranchisement. The Lacedaemonians cried him down, and his envious fellow-citizens denounced him, though he was not present to plead his cause, but defended himself in writing, making particular use of earlier accusations brought against him.

  1. Alcibiades' speech to the spartans and lives and still fully achieved his goal underlines his spiritual virtues and compares him with themistocles. But while Themistocles was asleep at midday before, it is said that the Mother of the Gods 27 appeared to him in a dream and said.
  2. They say that the King, on learning the cause and the manner of his death, admired the man yet more, and continued to treat his friends and kindred with kindness.
  3. Find great deals on ebay for plutarch's lives plutarch's lives harvard themistocles charles w eliot plutarch's lives of themistocles, pericles, aristides. When Eurybiades said to him, "Themistocles, at the games those who start too soon get a caning," "Yes," said Themistocles, "but those who lag behind get no crown.

The people, however, were overpersuaded by his accusers, and sent men with orders to arrest him and bring him up in custody to stand trial before a Congress of Hellenes. For he had served as arbiter in a dispute between them and the Corinthians, and settled the quarrel by deciding that the Corinthians should pay an indemnity of twenty talents, and administer Leucas as a common colony of both cities.

But in the desperate fortune of that time Themistocles was more afraid of kindred and recent jealousy than of an anger that was of long standing and royal, and promptly cast himself upon the king's mercy, making himself the suppliant of Admetus in a way quite peculiar and extraordinary. Some, it is true, say that it was Phthia, the wife of the king, who suggested this form of supplication to Themistocles, and that she seated her son on the hearth with him; and certain others that Admetus himself, in order that he might give a religious sanction to the necessity that was upon him of not surrendering the man, arranged beforehand and solemnly rehearsed with him the supplication scene.

Then, somehow or other, Stesimbrotus forgets this, or makes Themistocles forget it, and says he sailed to Sicily and demanded from Hiero the tyrant the hand of his daughter in marriage, promising as an incentive that he would make the Hellenes subject to his sway; but that Hiero repulsed him, and so he set sail for Asia. For Theophrastus, in his work "On Royalty," tells how, when Hiero sent horses to compete at Olympia, and set up a sort of booth there with very costly decorations, Themistocles made a speech among the assembled Hellenes, urging them to tear down the booth of the tyrant and prevent his horses from competing.

Here no one knew him except his host Nicogenes, the wealthiest man in Aeolia, and well acquainted with the magnates of the interior. Most barbarous nations, and the Persians in particular, are savage and harsh in their jealous watchfulness over their women. Such a vehicle was made ready for Themistocles, and safely ensconced in this he made his journey, while his attendants replied in every case to those who met them with enquiries, that they were conducting a Hellenic woman, fair but frail, to one of comparing and contrasting the presentation of themistocles and aristides in plutarchs lives King's courtiers.

With the chronological data Thucydides seems to me more in accord, although these are by no means securely established. Whereupon the Chiliarch replied: Verily, thou dost not seem to be a man of ordinary understanding. But when he was led into the presence of the King and had made him obeisance, and was standing in silence, the King ordered the interpreter to ask him who he was, and, on the interpreter's asking, he said: For it is a suppliant of thine whom thou wilt save, but an enemy of the Hellenes whom thou wilt destroy.

Thayer's Notes:

And besides, Roxanes the Chiliarch, when Themistocles came along opposite him, — the King being seated and the rest hushed in silence, — said in an angry undertone: And he promised him much more besides, and bade him take heart, and gave him leave to say whatever he wished concerning the affairs of Hellas, with all frankness of speech.

Wherefore he had need of time. And it is said that later kings also, in whose reigns Persia and Hellas came into closer relations, as often as they asked for a Hellene to advise them, promised him in writing, every one, that he should be more influential at court than Themistocles.

Magnesia, Lampsacus, and Myus; and two others are added by Neanthes of Cyzicus and by Phanias, namely: But while Themistocles was asleep at midday before, it is said that the Mother of the Gods 27 appeared to him in a dream and said: Now, since one of the beasts of burden which carried the equipage of his tent had fallen into the river, the servants of Themistocles hung up the curtains which had got wet, and were drying them out.

The Pisidians, at this juncture, sword in hand, made their approach, and since they could not see distinctly by the light of the moon what it was that was being dried, they thought it was the tent of Themistocles, and that they would find him reposing inside. Thereafter he behaved more circumspectly, fearing now even the jealousy of the Barbarians.

For he did not wander about over Asia, as Theopompus says, but had a house in Magnesia, and gathered in large gifts, and was honoured like the noblest Persians, and so lived on for a long time without concern, because the King paid no heed at all to Hellenic affairs, owing to his occupation with the state of the interior.

They say that the King, on learning the cause and the manner of his death, admired the man yet more, and continued to treat his friends and kindred with kindness. Archeptolis, Polyeuctus and Cleophantus, the last of whom Plato the philosopher mentions as a capital horseman, but good for nothing else.

The Loeb Editor's Notes: