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Antiphon

[τῆς τούτου μητρὸς] ταῖς ὑποθήκαις ἅμα διακονοῦσαν. 18καὶ τὰ μὲν ἄλλα μακρότερος ἂν εἴη λόγος περὶ τοῦ δείπνου ἐμοί τε διηγήσασθαι ὑμῖν τ᾿ ἀκοῦσαι· ἀλλὰ πειράσομαι τὰ λοιπὰ ὡς ἐν βραχυτάτοις ὑμῖν διηγήσασθαι, ὡς γεγένηται ἡ δόσις τοῦ φαρμάκου.

Ἐπειδὴ γὰρ ἐδεδειπνήκεσαν, οἷον εἰκός, ὁ μὲν θύων Διὶ Κτησίῳ κἀκεῖνον ὑποδεχόμενος, ὁ δ᾿ ἐκπλεῖν τε μέλλων καὶ παρ᾿ ἀνδρὶ ἑταίρῳ αὑτοῦ δειπνῶν, σπονδάς τ᾿ ἐποιοῦντο καὶ λιβανωτὸν ὑπὲρ 19αὑτῶν ἐπετίθεσαν. ἡ δὲ παλλακὴ τοῦ Φιλόνεω τὴν σπονδὴν ἅμα ἐγχέουσα ἐκείνοις εὐχομένοις ἃ οὐκ ἔμελλε τελεῖσθαι, ὦ ἄνδρες, ἐνέχει τὸ φάρμακον. καὶ ἅμα οἰομένη δεξιὸν ποιεῖν πλέον δίδωσι τῷ Φιλόνεῳ, ἴσως <ὡς>,1 εἰ δοίη πλέον, μᾶλλον φιλησομένη ὑπὸ τοῦ Φιλόνεω· οὔπω γὰρ ᾔδει ὑπὸ τῆς μητρυιᾶς τῆς ἐμῆς ἐξαπατωμένη, πρὶν ἐν τῷ κακῷ ἤδη ἦν· τῷ δὲ πατρὶ τῷ ἡμετέρῳ 20ἔλασσον ἐνέχει. καὶ ἐκεῖνοι ἐπειδὴ ἀπέσπεισαν, τὸν ἑαυτῶν φονέα μεταχειριζόμενοι ἐκπίνουσιν ὑστάτην πόσιν. ὁ μὲν οὖν Φιλόνεως εὐθέως παραχρῆμα ἀποθνῄσκει, ὁ δὲ πατὴρ ὁ ἡμέτερος εἰς νόσον ἐμπίπτει, ἐξ ἧς καὶ ἀπώλετο εἰκοσταῖος. ἀνθ᾿ ὧν ἡ μὲν διακονήσασα καὶ χειρουργήσασα2 ἔχει τὰ ἐπίχειρα ὧν ἀξία3 ἦν, οὐδὲν αἰτία οὖσα—τῷ γὰρ δημοκοίνῳ τροχισθεῖσα παρεδόθη—, ἡ δ᾿ αἰτία

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Prosecution of the Stepmother for Poisoning

of this Clytemnestraa here. Now it would take too long for me to furnish or for you to listen to a detailed description of the meal; so I shall try to give you as brief an account as I can of the administration of the poison which followed.

After supper was over, the two naturally set about pouring libations and sprinkling some frankincense to secure the favour of heaven, as the one was offering sacrifice to Zeus Ctesius and entertaining the other, and his companion was supping with a friend and on the point of putting out to sea. But Philoneos’ mistress, who poured the wine for the libation, while they offered their prayers—prayers never to be answered, gentlemen—poured in the poison with it. Thinking it a happy inspiration, she gave Philoneos the larger draught; she imagined perhaps that if she gave him more, Philoneos would love her the more: for only when the mischief was done did she see that my stepmother had tricked her. She gave our father a smaller draught. So they poured their libation, and, grasping their own slayer, drained their last drink on earth. Philoneos expired instantly; and my father was seized with an illness which resulted in his death twenty days later. In atonement, the subordinate who carried out the deed has been punished as she deserved, although the crime in no sense originated from her: she was broken on the wheel and handed over to the executioner; and the woman from whom it did originate, who was guilty

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DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.antiphon-prosecution_stepmother_poisoning.1941