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troops. Being thus refused all assistance from their | On the banishment of this eminent individual, Themis. neighbours, the Athenians were left to depend entirely tocles, a person who was more democratic in his senti. on their own courage and resources. A more remark- ments, became the leader of the councils of the Athe. able instance of a small state endeavouring to oppose nians. Meanwhile the Grecian liberties were again the wicked aggression of an overgrown power, has sel. menaced by the Persians. Xerxes, son of Darius, dom occurred in ancient or modern times; but the con- marched an army across the Hellespont by a bridge of stant exercises and training of the Athenian population boats from the Asiatic shore, and led it towards the enabled them to present a bold, and by no means con- southern part of Greece. The utmost force that the temptible front to the invader. War had been their confederated Greeks could oppose to the countless host principal employment, and in the field they displayed of Persians did not exceed 60,000 men. Of these, a their noblest qualities. They were unacquainted with band of Spartans, numbering 8000 soldiers, under Léothose highly-disciplined evolutions which give har- nidas their king, was posted at the pass of Thermopylæ, mony and concert to numerous bodies of men ; but to intercept the enemy, and here they discomfited every what was wanting in skill they supplied by courage. successive column of the Persians as it entered the The Athenian, and also other Greek soldiers, marched defile. Ultimately, foreseeing certain destruction, Leoto the field in a deep phalanx, rushed impetuously to nidas commanded all to retire but 300, with whom he the attack, and bravely closed with their enemies. proposed to give the Persians some idea of what the Each warrior was firmly opposed to his antagonist, and Greeks could submit to for the sake of their country. compelled by necessity to the same exertions of valour He and his 300 were cut off to a man. Xerxes took as if the fortune of the day had depended on his single possession of Attica and Athens, but in the naval battle arm. The principal weapon was a spear, which, thrown with the Athenian fleet at Salamis, which occurred soon by the nervous and well-directed vigour of a steady after (October 20, 480 B.c.), his army was utterly hand, often penetrated the firmest shields and bucklers. routed, and its scattered remains retreated into Asia. When they missed their aim, or when the stroke proved By this splendid victory the naval power of Persia ineffectual through want of force, they drew their was almost annihilated, and the spirit of its monarch so swords, and summoning their utmost resolution, darted completely humbled, that he durst no longer undertake impetuously on the foe. This mode of war was com- offensive operations against Greece. Here, therefore, mon to the soldiers and generals, the latter being as the war ought to have terminated; but so great and much distinguished in battle by their strength and valuable had been the spoils obtained by the concourage as their skill and conduct. The Greeks had federate forces, that they were unwilling to relinquish bows, slings, and darts, intended for the practice of such a profitable contest. The war, therefore, was condistant hostility; but their chief dependence was on tinued for twenty years longer, less, apparently, for the the spear and sword. Their defensive armour consisted chastisement of Persia, than for the plunder of her (as shown in the fig.) of a bright helmet, adorned with conquered provinces. plumes, and co

But now that all danger was over, many of the vering the head,

smaller states, whose population was scanty, began to a strong corslet

grow weary of the contest, and to furnish with reluctdefending the

ance their annual contingent of men to reinforce the breast, greaves

allied fleet. It was, in consequence, arranged that of brass descend

those states whose citizens were unwilling to perform ing the leg to

personal service, should send merely their proportion the feet, and an

of vessels, and pay into the common treasury an annual ample shield,

subsidy, for the maintenance of the sailors with whom loosely attached

the Athenians undertook to man the fieet. The unto the left shoul.

foreseen but natural consequence of this was the estabder and arm,

lishment of the complete supremacy of Athens. The which turned in

annual subsidies gradually assumed the character of a all directions,

regular tribute, and were compulsorily levied as such; and opposed its

while the recusant communities, deprived of their fleets, firm resistance

which had been given up to the Athenians, were unable to every hostile assault. With men thus organised and to offer effectual resistance to the oppressive exactions accoutred, a battle consisted of so many duels, and of the dominant state. The Athenians were thus raised the combatants fought with all the keenness of per- to an unprecedented pitch of power and opulence, and sonal resentment. The slaughter in such engagements enabled to adorn their city, to live in dignified idleness, was correspondingly great, the fight seldom terminat- and to enjoy a constant succession of the most costly ing till one of the parties was nearly destroyed, or at public amusements, at the expense of the vanquished least greatly reduced in numbers.

Persians, and of the scarcely more leniently-treated It was a people so animated and prepared that the communities of the dependent confederacy. hosts of Persia were about to encounter. Compelled to meet the invaders unassisted, the Athenians were able

Pericles. to march an army of only 9000 men, exclusive of about We have arrived at the most flourishing period of as many light-armed slaves, into the field. With Mil- Athenian history, during which Pericles rose to distiades as their leader and commander-in-chief, they met tinction, and greatly contributed to the beautifying of the Persians in battle on the plain of Marathon, thirty the capital. The talents of Pericles were of the very miles from Athens, and by great skill and courage, and first order, and they had been carefully cultivated by the the force of their close phalanx of spearmen, completely ablest tutorage which Greece could afford. After servconquered them. Upwards of 6000 Persians were slain ing for several years in the Athenian army, he ventured on the field, while the number killed of the Athenians to take a part in the business of the popular assembly, was but 192. This is reckoned by historians one of the and his powerful eloquence soon gained him an ascenmost important victories in ancient times, for it saved dancy in the national councils; and his power, in fact, the independence of the whole of Greece.' To the dis- became as great as that of an absolute monarch (445 grace of the fickle Athenians, they afterwards showed B.C.). Some of the most interesting events of Grecian the greatest ingratitude to Miltiades, and put him in history now occurred. After a number of years of prison on a charge of favouring the Persians. He died general peace, a dispute between the state of Corinth there the year after his great victory. Soon after, and its dependency the island of Corcyra (now Corfu), the citizens of Athens, on a plea equally unfounded, gave rise to a war which again disturbed the repose banished Aristides, an able leader of the aristocratic of all the Grecian states. Corcyra was a colony of party in the state, and who, from his strict integrity Corinth, but having, by its maritime skill and enterand wisdom, was usually entitled Aristides the Just. prise, raised itself to a higher pitch of opulence than its parent city, it not only refused to acknowledge Co-| temples, porticoes, and other magnificent works of art, rinthian supremacy, but went to war with that state and providing many costly entertainments for the on a question respecting the government of Epidamnus, people, his own domestic establishment was regulated a colony which the Corcyreans had planted on the with such strict attention to economy, that the memcoast of Illyria. Corinth applied for and obtained aid bers of his family complained of a parsimony wbich from several of the Peloponnesian states to reduce the formed a marked contrast to the splendour in which Corcyreans to subjection; while Coreyra, on the other many of the wealthy Athenians then lived. hand, concluded a defensive alliance with Athens, which Confirmed in his authority by this triumphant refu. sent a fleet to assist the island in vindicating its inde. tation of the slanders of his enemies, Pericles adopted pendence. By way of punishing the Athenians for the wisest measures for the public defence against the intermeduling in the quarrel, the Corinthians stirred invasion which was threatened by the Peloponnesians. up a revolt in Potidæa, a town of Chalcidice, near the Unwilling to risk a battle with the Spartans, who were confines of Macedonia, which had originally been a esteemed not less invincible by land than the Athecolony of Corinth, but was at this time a tributary of nians were by sea, he caused the inhabitants of Attica Athens. The Athenians immediately despatched a fleet to transport their cattle to Euboea and the neighbouring and army for the reduction of Potidæa, and the Pelo- islands, and to retire, with as much of their other proponnesians were equally prompt in sending succours to perty as they could take with them, within the walls the city. The Corinthians, meanwhile, were actively of Athens. By his provident care, the city was stored engaged in endeavouring to enlist in their cause those with provisions sufficient for the support of the multistates which had not yet taken a decided part in the tudes which now crowded it; but greater difficulty was dispute. To Lacedæmon, in particular, they sent am- found in furnishing proper accommodation for so vast bassadors to complain of the conduct of the Athenians, a population. Many found lodgings in the temples which they characterised as a violation of a univer- and other public edifices, or in the turrets on the city sally-recognised law of Grecian policy-that no state walls, while great numbers were obliged to construct should interfere between another and its dependencies. for themselves temporary abodes in the vacant space The efforts of the Corinthians were successful, and almost within the long walls extending between the city and all the Peloponnesian states, headed by Sparta, together the port of Piræus. with many of those beyond the isthmus, formed them- The memorable contest of twenty-seven years' duraselves into a confederacy for the purpose of going to tion, called “the Peloponnesian War,' now commenced war with Athens. Argos and Achain at first remained (431 1. c.). The Spartan king, Archidamus, entered neuter. Corcyra, Acarnania, some of the cities of Thes- Attica at the head of a large army of the confederates, saly, and those of Platæa and Naupactus, were all that and meeting with no opposition, proceeded along its took part with the Athenians.

eastern coast, burning the towns, and laying waste the Pericles beheld without dismay the gathering of the country in his course. When the Athenians saw the storm, but his countrymen were not equally undaunted. enemy ravaging the country almost up to their gates, They perceived that they were about to be called upon it required all the authority of Pericles to keep thein to exchange the idle and luxurious life they were at within their fortifications. While the confederates were present leading for one of hardship and danger, and wasting Attica with fire and sword, the Athenian and they began to murmur against their political leader for Corcyrean fleets were, by the direction of Pericles, involving them in so alarming a quarrel. They had not avenging the injury by ravaging the almost defenceat first the courage to impeach Pericles himself, but less coasts of the Peloponnesus. This, together with a vented their displeasure against his friends and favou- scarcity of provisions, soon induced Archidamus to lead rites. Phidias, a very eminent sculptor, whom the his army homewards. He retired by the western coast, great statesman had appointed superintendent of public continuing the work of devastation as he went along. buildings, was condemned to imprisonment on a frivo- Early in the summer of the following year, the conlous charge ; and the philosopher Anaxagoras, the federates returned to Attica, which they were again preceptor and friend of Pericles, was charged with dis- permitted to ravage at their pleasure, as Pericles still seminating opinions subversive of the national religion, adhered to his cautious policy of confining his efforts and banished from Athens. Respecting another cele to the defence of the capital.' But an enemy far more brated individual who at this time fell under persecu- terrible than the Peloponnesians attacked the unfortu. tion, it becomes necessary to say a few words. Aspasia nate Athenians. A pestilence, supposed to have origi. of Miletus was a woman of remarkable beauty and nated in Ethiopia, and which had gradually spread over brilliant talents, but she wanted that chastity which Egypt and the western parts of Asia, broke out in the is the greatest of feminine graces, and by her dissolute town of Piræus, the inhabitants of which at first suplife was rendered a reproach, as she would otherwise posed their wells to have been poisoned. The disease have been an ornament, to her sex. This remarkable rapidly advanced into Athens, where it carried off a woman having come to reside in Athens, attracted the great number of persons. It is described as having notice of Pericles, who was so much fascinated by been a species of infectious fever, accompanied with her beauty, wit, and eloquence, that, after separating many painful symptoms, and followed, in those who from his wife, with whom he had lived unhappily, he survived the first stages of the disease, by ulcerations of married Aspasia. It was generally believed that, for the bowels and limbs. Historians mention, as a proof the gratification of a private grudge, she had insti- of the singular virulence of this pestilence, that the gated Pericles to quarrel with the Peloponnesian states, birds of prey refused to touch the unburied bodies of and her unpopularity on this score was the true cause its victims, and that all the dogs which fed upon the of her being now accused, before the assembly of the poisonous relics perished. The mortality was dreadpeople, of impiety and grossly - immoral practices. ful, and was of course greatly increased by the overPericles conducted her defence in person, and pled for crowded state of the city. The prayers of the devout, her with so much earnestness, that he was moved even and the skill of the physicians, were found equally to tears. The people, either finding the accusations to unavailing to stop the progress of the disense; and the be really unfounded, or unable to resist the eloquence miserable Athenians, reiluced to despair, believed themof Pericles, acquitted Aspasia. His enemies next di- selves to be forgotten or hated by their gods. The sick rected their attack against himself. They accused hiin were in many cases left unattended, and the bodies of of embezzling the public money; but he completely the dead allowed to lie unburied, while those whom rebutted the charge, and proved that he had drawn his the plague had not yet reached, openly set at defiance income from no other source than his private estate. all laws, human and divine, and rushed into every His frugal and unostentatious style of living must excess of criminal indulgence. have of itself gone far to convince the Athenians Pericles was in the meantime engaged, with a fleet of the honesty with which he had administered the of 150 ships, in wasting with fire and sword the shores public affairs; for while he was filling the city with 1 of the Peloponnesus. Åt his return to Athens, finding

Alcibiades.

that the enemy had hastily retired from Attica, through Cleon was succeeded in the direction of public affairs fear of the contagion of the plague, he despatched the by Nicias, the leader of the aristocratical party, a man fleet to the coast of Chalcidice, to assist the Athenian of virtuous but unenterprising character, and a military land forces who were still engaged in the siege of Po- officer of moderate abilities. Under his auspices a peace tidæa--an unfortunate measure, productive of no other for fifty years, commonly known by the name of the result than the communication of the pestilence to the Peace of Nicias,' was concluded in the tenth year of besieging army, by which the majority of the troops the war (421 B.c.). It was not long, however, till the were speedily swept away. Maddened by their suffer- contest was resumed. Offended that its allies had given ings, the Athenians now became loud in their murmurs up a contest undertaken for the assertion of its alleged against Pericles, whom they accused of having brought rights, Corinth refused to be a party to the treaty of upon them at least a portion of their calamities, by in- peace, and entered into a new quadruple alliance with volving them in the Peloponnesian war. An assembly Argos, Elis, and Mantinca, a city of Arcadia; the osof the people was held, in which Pericles entered upon tensible object of which confederation was the defence a justification of his conduct, and exhorted them to of the Peloponnesian states against the aggressions of courage and perseverance in defence of their indepen- Athens and Sparta. This end scemed not difficult of dence. The hardships to which they had been exposed attainment, as fresh distrusts had arisen between the two by the war, were, he observed, only such as he had in last-mentioned republics, on account of the reluctance former addresses prepared them to expect; and as for felt and manifested by both to give up certain places the pestilence, it was a calamity which no human pru- which they had bound themselves by treaty mutually dence could either have foreseen or averted. He re- to surrender. The jealousies thus excited were fanned minded them that they still possessed a fleet which into a violent flame by the artful measures of Alcibiades, that of no potentate on earth could equal or cope with, a young Athenian, who now began to rise into political and that, after the present evil should have passed power, and whose genius and character subsequently away, their navy might yet enable them to acquire exercised a strong influence upon the affairs of Athens. universal empire. • What we suffer from the gods,' continued he, we should bear with patience; what from our enemics, with manly firmness; and such were Alcibiades was the son of Clinias, an Athenian of the maxims of our forefathers. From unshaken forti- high rank. Endowed with uncommon beauty of person, tude in misfortune has arisen the present power of this and talents of the very highest order, he was unfortucommonwealth, together with that glory which, if our nately deficient in that unbending integrity which is empire, according to the lot of all carthly things, decay, an essential element of every character truly great, and shall still survive to all posterity.'

his violent passions sometimes impelled him to act in The eloquent harangue of Pericles diminished, but a manner which has brought disgrace on his memory. did not emove, the aların and irritation of the Athe. While still very young, Alcibiades served in the Athenians, and they not only dismisserl him from all his nian army, and became the companion and pupil of offices, but imposed upon him a heavy fine. Mean Socrates, one of the wisest and most virtuous of the while domestic afflictions were combining with political | Grecian sages. Having rendered some service to his anxieties and mortifications to oppress the mind of this country in a protracted and useless war with Lacceminent man, for the members of his family were one dæmon, and being possessed of a talent for addressing by one perishing by the plague. Still, however, he bore the passions of the multitude, Alcibiades, as others had himself up with a fortitude which was witnessed with done before him, became the undisputed head of public admiration by all around him; but at the funeral of affairs in Athens. But this pre-eminence was not of the last of his children, his firmness at length gave way; long continuance. An opinion arose among the people and while he was, according to the custom of the country, that he designed to subvert the constitution, and his placing a garland of flowers on the head of the corpse, fall was as quick as his promotion. Many of his friends he burst into loud lamentations, and shed a torrent of were put to death, and he, while absent on an expeditears, It was not long till his mutable countrynien tion, deprived of his authority. Being thus left without repented of their harshuess towards him, and reinvested a public director of affairs, Athens, as usual, was torn by him with his civil and military authority. He soon internal discords: the aristocratic faction succeeded in after followed his children to the grave, falling, like overthrowing the democratical government (411 B.c.), them, a victim to the prevailing pestilence (429 B.c.). and establishing a council of 400 individuals to admiThe concurrent testimony of the ancient writers assigns nister the affairs of the state, with the power of convoking to Pericles the first place among Grecian statesmen for an assembly of 5000 of the principal citizens for advice wisdom and eloquence. Though ambitious of power, and assistance in any emergency. These 400 tyrants, he was temperate in its exercise; and it is creditable as they were popularly called, were no sooner investel to his memory, that, in an age and country so little with authority, than they annihilated every remaining scrupulous in the shedding of blood, his long adminis- portion of the free institutions of Athens. They behaved tration was as merciful and mild as it was vigorous with the greatest insolence and severity towards the and effective. When constrained to inake war, the people, and endeavoured to confirm and perpetuate constant study of this eminent statesinan was, how to their usurped power, by raising a body of mercenary overcome his enemies with the least possible destruc- troops in the islands of the IEgean, for the purpose of tion of life, as well on their side as on his own. It is overawing and enslaving their fellow-citizens. The related that, when he was lying at the point of death, Athenian army was at this period in the island of Samos, and while those who surrounded him were recounting whither it had retired after an expedition against the his great actions, he suddenly interrupted them by ex- revolted cities of Asia Minor. When intelligence pressing his surprise that they should bestow so much arrived of the revolution in Athens, and the tyrannical praise on achievements in which he had been rivalled proceedings of the oligarchical faction, the soldiers by many others, while they omitted to mention what he indignantly refused to obey the new government, and considered his highest and peculiar honour-namely, sent an invitation to Alcibiades to return among them, that no act of his had ever caused any Athenian to put and assist in re-establishing the democratical constituon mourning.

tion. He obeyed the call; and as soon as he arrived After the death of Pericles, the war was continued, in Samos, the troops elected him their general. lle without interruption, for seven years longer, but with then sent a message to Athens, commanding the 400 no very decisive advantage to either side. During this tyrants to divest themselves inmediately of their unperiod the Athenian councils were chiefly directed by constitutional authority, if they wished to avoid depoa coarse-minded and unprincipled demagogue named sition and death at his hands. Cleon, who was at last killed in battle under the walls This message reached Athens at a time of the greatest of Amphipolis, a Macedonian city, of which the posses- confusion and alarm. The 400 tyrants had quarrelled sion was disputed by the Athenians and Lacedæmonians. / among themselves, and were about to appeal to the sword : the island of Eubæa, from which Athens had | tion of Socrates, an eminent teacher of morals, and a for sometime been principally supplied with provisions, man guiltless of every offence but that of disgracing, had revolted, and the fleet which had been sent to re- by his illustrious merit, the vices and follies of his duce it had been destroyed by the Lacedæmonians, so contemporaries. On the false charge of corrupting the that the coasts of Attica, and the port of Athens itself, morals of the pupils who listened to his admirable ex. were now without defence. In these distressing cir- positions, and of denying the religion of his country, he cumstances, the people, roused to desperation, rose was, to the eternal disgrace of the Athenians, compelled upon their oppressors, overturned the government of to die by drinking poison, a fate which he submitted the 400, after an existence of only a few months, and to with a magnanimity which has rendered his name re-established their ancient institutions. Alcibiades for erer celebrated. This odious transaction occurred was now recalled ; but before revisiting Athens, he in the year 400 B.C. was desirous of performing some brilliant military ex- After the death of this great man, the political inde. ploit, which mnight obliterate the recollection of his late pendence of Athens drew to its termination-a circumconnection with the Spartans, and give his return an stance which cannot excite the least surprise, when we air of triumph. He accordingly joined the Athenian reflect on the turbulence of its citizens, their persecufleet, then stationed at the entrance of the Hellespont, tion of virtue and talent, and their unhappy distrust and soon obtained several important victories over the of any settled form of government. Their ruin was Lacedæmonians, both by sea and land. He then re- finally accomplished by their uncontrollable thirst for turned to Athens, where he was received with trans- war, and can create no emotions of pity or regret in the ports of joy. Chaplets of flowers were showered upon reader of their distracted history. The Lacedæmonians, his head, and amidst the most enthusiastic acclama- under the command of an able officer named Lysander

, tions he proceeded to the place of assembly, where he attacked and totally destroyed the Athenian fleet. By addressed the people in a speech of such eloquence and this means having obtained the undisputed command power, that at its conclusion a crown of gold was placed of the sea, Lysander easily reduced those cities on upon his brow, and he was invested with the supreme the coasts of Thrace and Asia Minor, and those islands command of the Athenian forces, both naval and mili- of the Ægean, which still acknowledged the supretary. His forfeited property was restored, and the macy of Athens. Having thus stripped that once priests were directed to revoke the curses which had lordly state of all its dependencies, he proceeded to formerly been pronounced upon him.

blockade the city of Athens itself. The Athenians This popularity of Alcibiades was not of long conti- made a heroic defence; but after a lengthened siege, nuance. Many of the dependencies of Athens being in during which they suffered all the horrors of famine, a state of insurrection, he assumed the command of an they were obliged to surrender on such conditions as armament intended for their reduction. But circum- their enemies thought fit to impose (404 B.C.). The stances arose which obliged him to leave the fleet for Spartans demanded that the fortifications of Piræus, a short time in charge of one of his officers, named and the long walls which connected it with the city, Antiochus, who, in despite of express orders to the con- should be demolished; that the Athenians should retrary, gave battle to the Lacedæmoniang during the linquish all pretensions to authority over their former absence of the commander-in-chief, and was defeated. tributaries, recall the exiled partisans of the 400 tyrants, When intelligence of this action reached Athens, a acknowledge the supremacy of Sparta, and follow its violent clamour was raised against Alcibiades : he was commanders in time of war; and finally, that they accused of having neglected his duty, and received a should adopt such a political constitution as should second dismissal from all his offices. On hearing of meet the approbation of the Lacedæmonians. this, he quitted the fleet, and retiring to a fortress he Thus sank the power of Athens, which had so long had built in the Chersonesus of Thrace, he collected been the leading state of Greece, and thus terininated around him a band of military adventurers, with whose the Peloponnesian war, in which the Grecian commuassistance he carried on a predatory warfare against the nities had been so long engaged, to little other purpose neighbouring Thracian tribes.

than to waste the strength, and exhaust the resources, Alcibiades did not long survive his second disgrace of their common country. with his countrymen. Finding his Thracian residence

Condition of Athens. insecure, on account of the increasing power of his Lacedæmonian enemies, he crossed the Hellespont, and During the age preceding its fall, Athens, as already settled in Bithynia, a country on the Asiatic side of the mentioned, had been greatly beautified and enlarged Propontis. Being there attacked and plundered by the by Pericles. At the same time, the comparative simpliThracians, he proceeded into Phrygia, and placed him- city of manners which formerly prevailed was exchanged self under the protection of Pharnabasus, the Persian for luxurious habits. This alteration has been thus desatrap of that province. But even thither the unfor- scribed by Gillies in his . History of Ancient Greece:tunate chief was followed by the unrelenting hatred of In the course of a few years, the success of Aristides, the Lacedæmonians, by whose directions he was pri- Cimon, and Pericles, had tripled the revenues, and vately and foully assassinated. Thus perished, about increased in a far greater proportion the dominions of the fortieth year of his age (403 B.C.), one of the ablest the republic. The Athenian galleys commanded the men that Greece ever produced. Distinguished alike eastern coasts of the Mediterranean; their merchantmen as a warrior, an orator, and a statesman, and in his had engrossed the traffic of the adjacent countries; the nature noble and generous, Alcibiades would have been magazines of Athens abounded with wood, metal, ebony, truly worthy of our admiration if he had possessed ivory, and all the materials of the useful as well as of probity; but his want of principle, and his unruly the agreeable arts; they imported the luxuries of Italy, passions, led him to commit many grievous errors, Sicily, Cyprus, Lydia, Pontus, and Peloponnesus; exwhich contributed not a little to produce or aggravate perience had improved their skill in working the silver those calamities which latterly overtook him.

mines of Mount Laurium; they had lately opened the

valuable marble veins in Mount Pentelicus; the honey DECLINE OF ATHENIAN INDEPENDENCE,

of Hymettus became important in domestic use and With Alcibiades perished the last of the great men foreign traffic; the culture of their olives (oil being long who possessed the power to sway the wild democracy, their staple commodity, and the only production of or, properly speaking, the mob of Athens. From the Attica which Solon allowed them to export) must have period of his death till the subjugation of the country, improved with the general improrement of the country the Athenian people were at the mercy of contending in arts and agriculture, especially under the active factions, and without a single settled principle of administration of Pericles, who liberally let loose the government. During this brief period of their history, public treasure to encourage every species of industry. in which a kind of popular democracy had attained the But if that minister promoted the love of action, he command of affairs, happened the trial and condemna- found it necessary at least to comply with, if not to ex

Alexander the Great.

cite the extreme passion for pleasure which then began | and which succeeding artists have in vain endeavoured to distinguish his countrymen. The people of Athens, to rival. While Athens had extended its power over a successful in every enterprise against their foreign as great part of the coasts of the Ægean Sea, and increased well as domestic enemies, seemed entitled to reap the its trade and commerce by every available means, it fruits of their dangers and victories. For the space of at had also become a city of palaces and temples, whose least twelve years preceding the war of Peloponnesus, ruins continue to be the admiration of ages for their their city afforded à perpetual scene of triumph and grandeur and beauty. It is understood that the Greeks festivity. Dramatic entertainments, to which they were had acquired their knowledge of architecture from the passionately addicted, were no longer performed in Egyptians; but they greatly excelled them in the eleslight, unadorned edifices, but in stone or marble gance of their designs, and are in a great measure theatres, erected at great expense, and embellished entitled to the character of inventors in the art. The with the most precious productions of nature and of art. beauty of the Corinthian pillar, for example, has never The treasury was opened, not only to supply the deco- been excelled either in ancient or modern times. (Sce rations of this favourite amusement, but to enable the ARCHITECTURE, in Vol. I.) poorer citizens to enjoy it, without incurring any private After the surrender of Athens to the Spartans (404 expense; and thus, at the cost of the state, or rather of B.c.), the democratical constitution was abolished, and its tributary allies and colonies, to feast and delight the government was intrusted to thirty persons, whose their ears and fancy with the combined charms of music rapacious, oppressive, and bloody administration ere and poetry. The pleasure of the eye was peculiarly long procured them the title of the Thirty Tyrants. consulted and gratified in the architecture of theatres The ascendancy of these intruders was not, however, of and other ornamental buildings; for as Themistocles long duration. Conon, assisted privately by the Perhad strengthened, Pericles adorned, his native city; sians, who were desirous of humiliating the Spartans, and unless the concurring testimony of antiquity was expelled the enemy, and re-established the indepenillustrated in the Parthenon, or Temple of Minerva, dence of his country. About seventy years later, a new and other existing remains worthy to be immortal, it source of agitation throughout Greece was caused by would be difficult to believe that in the space of a few the warlike projects of Alexander, king of Macedon, years there could have been created those numerous, usually styled yet inestimable wonders of art, those temples, theatres, statues, altars, baths, gymnasia, and porticoes, which, in the language of ancient panegyric, rendered Athens This intrepid and ambitious soldier was the son of the eye and light of Greece.

Philip, king of Macedon, a small territory adjacent to Pericles was blamed for thus decking one favourite the Grecian states, from which it had originally received city, like a vain voluptuous harlot, at the expense of a knowledge of arts and learning. Alexander was born plundered provinces; but it would have been fortunate in the year 356 B.C., and by his father was committed for the Athenians if their extorted wealth had not been to the charge of the philosopher Aristotle to be eduemployed in more perishing, as well as more criminal, cated ; a duty which was faithfully fulfilled. By the luxury. The pomp of religious solemnities, which were assassination of Philip, Alexander was called to the twice as numerous and costly in Athens as in any other throne of Macedon while yet only twenty years of age, city of Greece-the extravagance of entertainments and and immediately had an opportunity of displaying his banquets, which on such occasions always followed the great warlike abilities in conducting an expedition into sacrifices—the increase of private luxury, which natu- Greece, which was attended with signal success, and rally accompanied this public profusion--exhausted the procured for him the honour of succeeding his father resources, without augmenting the glory, of the republic. as commander-in-chief of the Grecian states. Instead of the bread, herbs, and simple fare recom- carried out a design which had been formed by Philip, mended by the laws of Solon, the Athenians, soon after to subdue Persia and other countries in Asia. In the the eightieth Olympial, availed themselves of their spring of 334 B.C., he crossed over to the Asiatic coast, extensive commerce to import the delicacies of distant with an army of 30,000 foot and 5000 horse, thus comcountries, which were prepared with all the refinements mencing the most important military enterprise which of cookery. The wines of Cyprus were cooled with is narrated in the pages of ancient history. Alexander snow in summer; in winter, the most delightful flowers marched through Asia Minor, and in successive enadorned the tables and persons of the wealthy Athe-counters completely conquered the armies of Persia; nians. Nor was it sufficient to be crowned with roses, but the whole history of his progress is but an account unless they were likewise anointed with the most pre- of splendid victories. During a space of about seven cious perfumes. Parasites, dancers, and buffoons, were a or eight years, he conquered Persia, Assyria, Egypt, usual appendage of every entertainment. Among the Babylonia, and, in fact, became master of nearly all weaker sex, the passion for delicate birds, distinguished the half-civilised countries in Asia and Africa. It by their voice or plumage, was carried to such excess, does not appear that Alexander had any motive for as merited the name of madness. The bodies of such this wide-spread overthrow of ancient and remote soveyouths as were not peculiarly addicted to hunting and reignties, excepting that of simple ambition, or desire horses, which began to be a prevailing taste, were cor- of conquest, with perhaps the indefinite idea of imrupted by a lewd style of living; while their minds were proving the social condition of the countries which he still more polluted by the licentious philosophy of the overran. From various circumstances in his career, it sophists. It is unnecessary to crowd the picture, since is apparent that he never contemplated the acquisition it may be observed, in one word, that the vices and of wealth or of praise, except such as could be shared extravagances which are supposed to characterise the with his soldiers, for whom he displayed a most padeclining ages of Greece and Rome, took root in Athens ternal affection. His character in this respect shines during the administration of Pericles, the most splen- forth in a remarkable speech which he delivered to his did and most prosperous in the Grecian annals. army after these great conquests, and when some

During this period flourished Aschylus and Sopho- mutinous murmurs bad broken forth in his camp. cles, Euripides and Aristophanes, dramatists; Pindar, Mounting the tribunal, he spoke as follows :— It is a lyrical poet; Herodotus and Thucydides, historians; not my wish, Macedonians, to change your resolution. Xenophanes, Heraclitus, Empedocles, Anaxagoras, and Return home without hindrance froin me. But before Socrates, philosophers (reasoners upon the nature of leaving the camp, first learn to know your king and the human mind, and upon man's immortal destiny). yourselves. My father Philip (for with him it is ever In this period also, under the administration of Pericles fit to begin) found you, at his arrival in Macedon, (from 458 to 429 B.C.), sculpture and architecture at- miserable and hopeless fugitives; covered with skins tained their perfection. It was then that Phidias exe- of sheep; feeding among the mountains some wretched cuted those splendid works, statues of the gods and herds, which you had neither strength nor courage to goddesses, which excited the admiration of the world, | defend against the Thracians, Illyrians, and Triballi.

He now

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