[Dionysius of Halicarnassus], Ars Rhetorica

LCL 539: 408-409



δημοσίᾳ τὰς πόλεις ὑφ’ ἑνὸς ὅτου οὖν τῶν ἀρίστων κατὰ τὴν παιδείαν ὥσπερ δημοσίᾳ τινὶ φωνῇ καὶ κοινῷ προσαγορεύματι προσαγορεύοντος. φέρε οὖν εἴπωμέν τι καὶ περὶ τούτων τῶν λόγων, ὅπως ἂν καὶ τούτους ἄριστα καὶ ῥᾷστα μεταχειριζοίμεθα.

2. Καθόλου μὲν ὁ τρόπος αὐτῶν τοιοῦτος, ὡς σύστασίν τινα ἔχειν τῆς αὑτῶν πατρίδος πρὸς τοὺς ἄρχειν μέλλοντας. δεῖ δὲ οὐκ αὐτὸ τοῦτο μόνον πραγματεύεσθαι ἐν τῷ λόγῳ, ἀλλὰ μηδὲ ἑαυτῶν ἐν τῷ τοιῷδε ὀλιγώρως ἔχειν. ἀρχὴ οὖν ἐμοὶ δοκεῖ ἀναγκαιοτάτη ἂν αὕτη γενέσθαι περὶ αὑτοῦ τε εἰπεῖν καὶ τῆς ἑαυτοῦ προαιρέσεως, καὶ δι’ ὅ τι προκεχείρισται ἐκ πάντων ἐπὶ τὸν λόγον, καὶ ὅτι ἀναγκαία αὐτῷ ἡ ὑπόθεσις τοῦ λόγου. ἐχέτω δὲ ἐν τούτῳ καὶ θεραπείαν τινὰ τοῦ ἄρχοντος, ὡς ἀποδεχομένου τοὺς τοιούτους ἅπαντας καὶ οἷον αὐτοῦ χεῖρα ὀρέγοντος, δι’ ὅπερ καὶ ἑτοιμότερον ὑπήκουσεν· καὶ ὅτι ἦν μὲν καὶ ἀκούειν τοῦτο εὐθὺς περὶ αὐτοῦ, πολὺ δὲ ἔτι ἐναργέστερον τῇ ὄψει αὐτῇ πέφηνεν, ἀτεχνῶς οἷον ἐκ τοῦ προσώπου [καὶ]1 τῆς φαιδρότητος ὥσπερ ἐν κατόπτρῳ τοῦ ἤθους καὶ τῆς πρὸς ταῦτα δεξιότητος φανερῶν γιγνομένων. οὕτω δὲ προκαταστησάμενον τὸν λόγον ἑξῆς ἰτέον ἐπὶ τὸ ἐγκώμιον τοῦ βασιλέως, ἐν βραχεῖ τοῦτο ποιησάμενον καὶ αὐτὸ τοῦτο ἐπισημηνάμενον, ὅτι οὐδ’ ἂν ὁ 274σύμπας χρόνος ἐξαρκέσαι πρὸς τοῦτο, καὶ ὅτι ἑτέρου καιροῦ, οὐ τοῦ παρόντος. κατακλείσεις δὲ τὸ ἐγκώμιον εἰς τοῦτο, ὅτι ἕν τι τῶν καλῶν τῶν βασιλέως καὶ τοῦτο, τὸ τοιοῦτον ἄνδρα ἐπιλεξάμενον καταπέμψαι



within the city’s gates, when one of the best educated citizens, speaking, as it were, as the voice of the city, offers a greeting on behalf of all. Let me then say some things about these speeches, so that we may treat them in the best and most expeditious way.

2. In general, the point of these speeches is to make a kind of recommendation of one’s own country to the officials who are coming to govern it. This must not be the only thing accomplished in the speech; on such an occasion one should not neglect one’s own interests either. Consequently, I think that the most compelling opening would be to speak of oneself and one’s purpose, explaining why one has been chosen from all others to deliver this speech, and what makes its subject personally compelling. Here offer some compliments to the governor, by claiming that he welcomes all such orators and, as it were, holds out his hand to them. “That is why I agreed all the more readily. One can learn this about him just from hearsay, but it has become much more obvious at the actual sight of him. This is apparent from the brightness of his face, like a reflection of his character, and from his courtesy in this matter.” Once you have set up the speech in this way, proceed to an encomium of the emperor, keeping it brief and making a point of the fact that all of time would not suffice to complete it, and that it remains for an occasion other than the present one. You should conclude this encomium by saying, “One of the emperor’s finest achievements is having

DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.dionysius_halicarnassus-ars_rhetorica.2019