Page:Essays and Addresses.djvu/394
Funeral Oration must be aware of a majesty in the rhythm of the whole, a certain union of impetuous movement with lofty grandeur, which Thucydides has given to Pericles alone. There is a large alloy, doubtless, of rhetorical ornament in the new manner of overstrained antithesis: but the voice of the Olympian Pericles is not wholly lost in it. There can be no question, again, that the speeches of Pericles in the Ecclesia accurately represent the characteristic features of his policy at the time. But how far do they severally represent what Pericles said on the several occasions? Thucydides makes Pericles use different topics of encouragement at three successive stages.
In 432 B.C. Pericles emboldens the Athenians to
- The most glaring example is the reiterated contrast of "word" and "deed," which occurs some eighteen times in the Funeral Oration, and is parodied (as Mr H. M. Wilkins observes, Introduction to the Speeches, p. xxv) in the Platonic Menexenus [Menex. p. 236 D, Ἔργῳ μὲν ἡμῖν οἵδε ἔχοθσι τὰ προσήκοντα σφίσιν αὐτοῖς, ὧν τυχόντες πορεύονται τὴν εἱμαρμένην πορείαν, προπεμφθέντες κοινῇ μὲν ὑπὸ τῆς πόλεως, ἰδίᾳ δὲ ὑπὸ τῶν οἰκείων· λόγῳ δὲ δή, κ.τ.λ. And immediately afterwards, ἔργων εὖ πραχθέντων . . . λόγῳ καλῶς ῥηθέντι.]
- Περικλέης οὑλύμπιος, Ar. Acharn. 530. Eupolis notices the rapidity, the charm, and the sting of his eloquence (Δῆμοι, Frag. Com. i. 162); cp. Attic Orators, i. p. cxxx.
- Viz., to make no derogatory concessions, but to accept the war; to wage it, however, mainly on the defensive, allowing the enemy to ravage their lands, but guarding their possession of the city and the sea; to rely chiefly on their navy, and to retain a firm hold upon the allies, whose tribute gave the financial superiority to Athens.