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XX ΠΡΟΣ ΘΕΟΔΟΣΙΟΝ ΤΟΝ ΒΑΣΙΛΕΑ ΕΠΙ ΤΑΙΣ ΔΙΑΛΛΑΓΑΙΣ

R 6531. Ὃ μὲν πολλάκις προεῖπον, ὡς οὔτ᾿ ἔσται τῇF ii. 421 πόλει δεινὸν οὐδὲν ἕτερον ἅ τε ἦν ἐν τῇ τιμωρίᾳ πεπαύσεται, δέδεικται πᾶσιν ἀνθρώποις, ὅπου γε καὶ πόλιν ὑπῆρξέ μοι προσειπεῖν ἣν οὐκ ἐξῆν πρότερον· ἐπεὶ δὲ δίκαιον τοῖς εὖ πεποιηκόσιν ἀποδοῦναι χάριν, δι᾿ ἐμοῦ τοῦτο ποιεῖ τῶν Ἀντιοχέων ἡ πόλις τῆς μὲν δι᾿ ἔργων ἀμοιβῆς ἀπολελειμμένη, τῇ δὲ διὰ λόγων, αὕτη1 γὰρ ἂν εἴη μόνη, χρωμένη. δοκεῖ δέ μοι καὶ | τοῖς θεοῖς ὕμνος ἅπας εὖ ἔχων ἅπαντοςF 422 ἀναθήματος εἶναι τιμιώτερος, ὡς δηλοῖ Πίνδαρος ὁ Θηβαῖος μειζόνων παρὰ τοῦ Πυθίου τετυχηκὼς ἢ οἱ πλεῖστον χρυσίον ἐκεῖσε κεκομικότες.

2. αἰσχύνομαι μὲν οὖν τοῖς κατὰ τῆς ἐμαυτοῦ ῥηθησομένοις R 654λόγοις, ἐπεὶ δὲ οὐκ ἔνι τοῦτο | φυγόντα σῶσαι τὸ προσῆκον τῷ περὶ τῆς χάριτος λόγῳ, φράσω τὰ ἀπὸ τῆς ἀληθείας βουλόμενος μὲν ἂν ἔχειν εἰπεῖν τι περὶ αὐτῆς ἄμεινον, τῆς ἀνάγκης δὲ ταύτῃ ἀγούσης ἐρῶ.

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Oration XX

To the Emperor Theodosius, After the Reconciliation

1. I often foretold that the city would suffer no further harm and that there would be an end put to the business of punishment. This has been demonstrated to all mankind, not least by the fact that I have been able to speak of her as a city, which I could not do before. However, since it is right to to return thanks to one’s benefactors, the city of Antioch does so through me and, finding it impossible to make due exchange by deeds, she uses the method of words—the only one left to her. Every hymn well done is, I feel, more precious to the gods than any offering, as is proved by Pindar the Theban,a who received a greater reward from the Pythian than any who had bestowed there vast treasures of gold.

2. Ashamed as I am of the tale I have to tell against my native city, it is impossible for me, if I seek to evade the issue, to preserve the elements appropriate to a speech of thanks. Hence I shall speak the plain truth. For all my desire to be able to tell a pleasanter tale about her, I shall say my say in the way that necessity dictates.

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DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.libanius-oration_20_theodosius_reconciliation.1977