By Brenda Griffith-Williams
In A remark on chosen Speeches of Isaios, Brenda Griffith-Williams deals a clean perception, available to non-Greek readers, into 4 disputed inheritance instances from the Athenian courts within the 4th century B.C. the one entire English language statement on Isaios (Wyse, 1904) displays a unfavourable view of the Athenian criminal process as one within which the judges, who had no criminal education, may be simply outwitted through an unscrupulous speechwriter with out regard for the reality. by means of addressing the complicated interaction of genuine, criminal, and rhetorical matters within the chosen speeches, Brenda Griffith-Williams identifies the strengths and weaknesses of every speaker's case and provides a extra balanced evaluate of Isaios's paintings.
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Additional resources for A Commentary on Selected Speeches of Isaios
In an adversarial system such as that of classical Athens, or those of common law jurisdictions today, winning a 74 Cf. ” Similarly, Rubinstein (2004), 108–109, points out that, although they are reluctant to admit it, modern advocates also use emotional arguments as a means of persuasion; there is a fine line between acceptable and unacceptable behaviour. 75 This is the traditional view, propounded by Lavency (1964), 36–45. Dover’s theory of “composite authorship” by “client and consultant” (Dover (1968a), 148–174), has not gained widespread acceptance, and was convincingly refuted by Usher, who, after reviewing the primary evidence, concludes that “Dover’s hypothesis would have surprised Dionysios and Plutarch and astounded Plato” (Usher (1976), 40).
9) while the legal opponent remains a shadowy figure. 25, take the form of a ‘glancing blow’ rather than a sustained diatribe. 32 The speaker of Isa. 6), but he is certainly taking a stance that would have helped him secure the good will of his audience, the dikastai. Isa. 28–29 shows, on the other hand, that more extended character assassination (diabolē) was not completely unacceptable in a diadikasia. This speech was delivered by a sunēgoros (supporting speaker) who may not have been related to the claimants for whom he appears; but the more significant point is that their opponent, the object of the diabolē, was not a kinsman of the deceased Nikostratos but a complete stranger to the family who claimed to have been adopted by will.
To start with family relations: the argumentation used in Isaios’s speeches indicates that an Athenian litigant attacking a will would have been expected to show that he was closer to the deceased than his opponent, not only in terms of blood relationship, but also of intimacy and affection. For instance, the speaker of Isa. 9, in describing the deceased Astyphilos’s hostility towards Kleon and good relations with Theophrastos and the speaker himself, is not (ostensibly, at least) inviting the dikastai to award the estate to him because he is more morally deserving than his opponent.
A Commentary on Selected Speeches of Isaios by Brenda Griffith-Williams