Ἄνδρες δικασταί, βούλομαι παραγεγραμμένος μὴ εἰσαγώγιμον εἶναι τὴν δίκην, περὶ τῶν νόμων πρῶτον εἰπεῖν, καθ᾿ οὓς παρεγραψάμην. οἱ νόμοι κελεύουσιν, ὦ ἄνδρες δικασταί, τὰς δίκας εἶναι τοῖς ναυκλήροις καὶ τοῖς ἐμπόροις τῶν Ἀθήναζε καὶ τῶν Ἀθήνηθεν συμβολαίων, καὶ περὶ ὧν ἂν ὦσι συγγραφαί· ἐὰν δέ τις παρὰ ταῦτα δικάζηται, 2μὴ εἰσαγώγιμον εἶναι τὴν δίκην. τουτῳὶ τοίνυν Ζηνοθέμιδι πρὸς μὲν ἔμ᾿ ὅτι οὐδὲν ἦν συμβόλαιον οὐδὲ συγγραφή, καὐτὸς ὁμολογεῖ ἐν τῷ ἐγκλήματι· δανεῖσαι δέ φησιν Ἡγεστράτῳ ναυκλήρῳ, τούτου δ᾿ ἀπολομένου ἐν τῷ πελάγει, ἡμᾶς τὸ ναῦλον σφετερίσασθαι· τουτὶ τὸ ἔγκλημ᾿ ἐστίν. ἐκ δὴ τοῦ αὐτοῦ λόγου τήν τε δίκην οὐκ εἰσαγώγιμον οὖσαν μαθήσεσθε, καὶ τὴν ὅλην ἐπιβουλὴν καὶ πονηρίαν 3τουτουὶ τοῦ ἀνθρώπου ὄψεσθε. δέομαι δ᾿ ὑμῶν πάντων, ὦ ἄνδρες δικασταί, εἴπερ ἄλλῳ τινὶ πώποτε πράγματι τὸν νοῦν προσέσχετε, καὶ τούτῳ προσσχεῖν· ἀκούσεσθε γὰρ ἀνθρώπου τόλμαν καὶ πονηρίαν [883]οὐ τυχοῦσαν, ἄνπερ ἐγὼ τὰ πεπραγμέν᾿ αὐτῷ πρὸς ὑμᾶς πολλάκις εἰπεῖν δυνηθῶ, οἶμαι δέ.

4Ζηνόθεμις γὰρ οὑτοσί, ὢν ὑπηρέτης Ἡγεστράτου τοῦ ναυκλήρου, ὃν καὐτὸς ἔγραψεν ἐν




Plea of Demo against Zenothemis, a Special Plea

Men of the jury, having entered a plea that the action is not admissible, I wish first to speak concerning the laws in accordance with which the plea was entered. The laws, men of the jury, ordain that actions for shipowners and merchants shall be upon loans for shipments to or from Athens, concerning which there shall be written agreements; and if anyone brings suit in violation of this provision, the action shall not be maintainable. Now between this man2 Zenothemis and myself there has been no contract or agreement in writing, as he himself acknowledges in his complaint. He states that he made a loan to Hegestratus, a shipowner, and that after the latter was lost at sea, we appropriated the cargo. This is his charge in the complaint. The same speech will suffice to prove to you that his action is not maintainable, and to make you see the whole of his plot and his rascality. I beg of you all, men of the jury, if you ever attended3 closely to any matter, to attend to this. You will hear of a man’s audacity and villainy that go beyond all bounds, provided I am able, as I hope to be, to tell you the whole tale of what he has done.

Zenothemis, who is here before you, being an4 underling of Hegestratus, the shipowner, who he

DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.demosthenes-orations_xxxii_plea_demo_zenothemis.1936