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CRITICAL AND EXPLANATORY NOTES
JOHN EDWIN SANDYS, LITT.D.,
FELLOW AND TUTOR OF ST JOHN'S COLLEGE,
AND PUBLIC ORATOR IN THE UNIVERSITY OF CAMBRIDGE.
Coin of Panticapaeum. (See note on page 37.)
EDITED FOR THE SYNDICS OF THE UNIVERSITY PRESS.
AT THE UNIVERSITY PRESS.
[All Rights reserved.]
"IX and twenty years ago, in the first term of my residence in
Cambridge, I attended a course of College lectures on the speech of Demosthenes against the law of Leptines. Of that early study of a subject, which has since engaged much of my attention, almost my only memento is a list recording in chronological order all the historical events mentioned in the course of the speech. But I was permanently impressed with the importance of the speech, as the first delivered by Demosthenes himself in a forensic cause of public interest, and with its peculiar fitness as an introduction to the study of his speeches in general, whether toward the close of school-life or in the early years of a University course. During the last twenty years I have, as a College lecturer, repeatedly lectured on the same subject; and I have recently devoted part of my vacations to the preparation of the present work.
In the Introduction, a prominent place has necessarily been assigned to matters of Greek antiquities immediately connected with the speech. In this department I have been specially indebted to the elaborate dissertation of Thumser, de civium Atheniensium muneribus eorumque immunitate (1880), and to the great work of Boeckh, on the Public Economy of Athens, which has been recently republished in 1886, as a fitting memorial of the hundredth anniversary of his birth.
The Text is to some extent founded on Dindorf's edition as revised by Blass for the Teubner series in 1888; but I have endeavoured to use my own judgement in deciding between conflicting readings, and have frequently refrained from following that eminent authority in the changes which he has introduced into the traditional text as
preserved in our manuscripts. These changes are due mainly to two causes :-(1) the rigid application of the law of composition discovered by the critic himself, in accordance with which Demosthenes in general avoids the collocation of more than two short syllables in consecutive words, -a law which gives his style a steadier and more stately march than that attained by the freer and less fettered style of Plato'; and (2) the weight assigned to quotations from, and reminiscences of, Demosthenes in the Greek rhetoricians of later times. All these changes are, however, duly recorded in the critical notes. I have also noticed every essential point in which the texts of Bekker, Dindorf, Westermann, Voemel, Weil and Blass differ from one another (with occasional reference to the texts of Benseler and of the Zürich editors, Baiter and Sauppe), adding in each case the readings of the more important manuscripts. Where all these editors are agreed, I have seldom thought it worth while to mention the manuscript readings. The evidence of contemporaneous inscriptions has led me to prefer αποτείσαι, δωρειά, λητουργία and Ποτείδαια to the forms which have been made familiar to us by the copyists of a later age. Similar evidence, as well as the authority of the Paris ms, has warranted my often allowing the final vû to stand, even when the following word begins with a consonant”. In the language of the critical and explanatory notes I have followed the example set by Shilleto in his well-known edition of the De Falsa Legatione, in the preface of which he records his deliberate persuasion that explanatory notes ought to be written in one's own language, critical in the Latin’. It has thus been easy to incorporate with a Latin context passages written in the language common to scholars of various nationalities, whether in the work of German editors, such as Voemel and Blass; or in the Adversaria of Dobree, formerly Professor of Greek in the University of Cambridge ; or in the Miscellanea Critica of Cobet, the great scholar of Leyden, whose death has lately been lamented in England no less than in Holland, and whose instructive and incisive criticisms on Greek are always expressed in a Latin form which presents an almost inimitable model of clearness and conciseness.
1 Introd. to Cicero's Orator, p. xxviii; Blass, Attische Beredsamkeit, ui i 99– 104:
2 Voemel, Demosthenis Contiones,
1856, Prolegomena Grammatica, § 16, de N et adductis litteris. Meisterhans, Grammatik der Attischen Inschriften, ed. 1888, § 42.