Demosthenes was a logographer and orator from Athens , one of the most relevant of his time for his great civic and moral actions.
- When was he born: 384 BC
- Where he was born: Athens, Greece
- When he died: 10/12/322 BC
- Where he died: Calauria, Greece
Who was Demosthenes?
He was a politician and orator who was born in 384 BC in Athens, Calauria , which is now Greece . He has an extremely wide fame that is due to his great ability for oratory, being considered one of the most relevant and influential speakers of ancient Greece.
- Biography of Demosthenes
- Demosthenes technique
- Political harangues
- Speeches of Demosthenes
Biography of Demosthenes
Born in a golden cradle, with wealthy parents and businessmen who boasted of their wealth, at the age of 7 his father died, after which his three guardians, who were Aphobus, Demophon and Teripides, abused his good will , taking most of his inheritance, so that after time, when he reached his majority, he had to undertake extensive judicial processes , which were extremely tedious, to preserve at least a quarter or less of his old fortune.
Some scholars like Plutarch who wrote about him affirm that his yearning and daydream towards oratory took root in him when his pedagogue impelled him, or rather, abruptly introduced him to an Assembly , in which a statistician named Callistrate himself He defended in such a brilliant way that it left him eager to hear more and be a part of it , however, something was preventing him from achieving his dream, a stutter that had bothered him since childhood and did not let him advance with ease.
However, that did not stop him, he became a disciple of Iseo and read various works by Isocrates , exercising after this the profession of logotype , he gradually got rid of his difficulties for oratory through constant declamation exercises . Starting from 354 BC, he intervened in delicate political affairs and found himself at his peak , being admired for his qualities for oratory and speech.
Among one of his first speeches, “For the Megalopolitans” stands out, which was about the power of Sparta and the danger that Athena represented at that time , thus drawing the attention of some Athenians, alarming them in turn, during the long process in The one that became the Athenian Assemblies denounced the ambition of Philip of Macedon , in what were called the famous Philippians , from this point Demosthenes began as an orator for the general public , who although in his beginnings his speeches were mostly influenced by his mentor and teacher Iseo through the yearsacquired his own and peculiar style that made him even more popular, after this he was part of the embassy that was sent to treat peace with Philip in 346, however, he spoke again in 344 calling the population to go against the claims of the Macedonian king in the second Philippians.
In addition to this, his maximum expression as a speaker could be perceived in the years 341 before Christ, since he gave three speeches, adding to them the third Philippians and the fourth Philippians and the speech On the situation of Chersonese , which was one of the great masterpieces of his oratory. However, starting from 340 BC he left the opposition and became one of the greatest leaders of the ruling group , after that he more than tried to be crowned for his civic actions , however, Aeschines opposed his constant proposals and because of his rebellion for no reason, he ended up being condemned to exile.
After a long time, around 330 BC, the hostility and rivalry between these two speakers faltered thanks to a great political process that took place in the town, Demosthenes stood up for the people with his speech called For the crown.
After a long life of overcoming and desires that little by little he was obtaining, in the year 322 BC he had the need to escape to the island of Calauria , in which later he committed suicide by poisoning and thus not fall into the hands of anti-patriotic agents. .
His stuttering was something that made him self-conscious from birth and even more so when at a young age he decided to be a speaker, full of admiration, for which he set out to overcome that small difficulty and he succeeded , using declamation exercises that he practiced constantly . until gradually his stuttering stopped.
His proclamation and oratory techniques were very similar to those of his mentor and teacher, Iseo , however, over the years he adopted his own style, deviating more towards politics.
Since his childhood, oratory was one of his many passions , in addition to the knowledge that it could provide him , his stuttering wanted to interfere with his dream, however, he did not succeed and overcame that small difficulty, his type of oratory was in favor of the situation current that his locality lived, for which he focused specifically on politics.
In politics he developed in many ways, being such a recognized orator in his time, he had the exact words to move the masses and make them influenced by his speeches , mainly he was emphatically opposed to the political actions and movements that were found. at the time, however, after a few years, he left the opposition , becoming one of the greatest leaders of the current rulers; After this he aspired to be crowned in the nation for his actions, however, this led him to exile.
Speeches of Demosthenes
- For the megalopolitans
- First Philippic.
- Second Philippians.
- Third Philippians.
- Fourth Philippians.
- On the situation of the Chersonese.
- For the crown.
- Funeral speech of Demosthenes.
- About the crown.
- There is nothing easier than self-deception. Since what every man wants is the first thing he believes.
- If you want to be happy entirely alone, you will never achieve it.
- Big events depend on small incidents.
- Make your relatives revere you more than fear you, because love follows reverence, more hatred after fear.
- Words that are not followed by deeds are worthless.
- Small opportunities are the beginning of great companies.
This character in his time was one of the most relevant , since with his speeches and words he convinced the masses in a simple and subtle way , giving him a primordial position in the society of his time, while in turn, for his good customs He was won by many rivals in the field of public speaking.