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unaccountable, had there not been softer lines in the character of his people, the worshippers of beauty in all its colors and all its forms. The first play of Euripides was before the world, and he, full of ambition to surpass the achievements of Sophocles and AEschylus, was studying in philosophy and in history the secrets of the nature he was often too frigid, too literal, or too affected to understand. Some bright day would call forth the poets and their countrymen, together, to the theatre, where the words of him who wrote were repeated amid the acclamations and the raptures of the motley crowd that listened, of Athenians and strangers, warriors, traders, and slaves. To the Athenian the day of the new drama was the great day of the month or year; and the seat he had at public cost in the theatre was one of his highest privileges as a free citizen. He looked with the same eye upon the temple or the statue, – that they were his, individually, and his, also, as the native of his great and glorious country. It was a matter, positively, of less regard with most men in Athens, at the time to which we have arrived, that the revenues of the islands should be duly received or the powers of the assemblies rightly exercised, than that there should be an Antigone or an Alcestis to be seen upon the stage, or a Parthenon to crown the Acropolis with its diadem of columns. This sketch may serve the purpose of describing the Athenians as they were in the time of Pericles. He was a grand-nephew of Clisthenes, to whose career, as that of a high-born and professedly popular man, his own may be aptly enough compared. Fearing at the outset of his public life to be thought aiming at tyranny in Athens, he kept himself in the background, and employed others, as he seems to have employed Ephialtes, in furthering the projects, of which he nevertheless obtained the popularity, concerning the humiliation of the Areopagus, the remuneration of the members of the Heliaea, possibly of the assembly, and the public payment of the price of admission to the theatres.” It was not until many years after these measures were partially or wholly carried, that Pericles took courage to throw aside the reserve he had imposed on himself while Cimon lived, and other adversaries whom he feared remained. Renewing the peace with Sparta, and assuming the control of public affairs and the direction of public works, he lived for nearly twenty years at the head of the Athenian dominions. The laws of earlier times were scarcely changed; the courses of colonization, of commerce, and of learning were unquestionably improved; the art, the poetry, and the philosophy of Greece were lifted from their nests and taught to soar: but the glory was the result rather of the sacrifice of Theseus and the wisdom of Solon, that is, of the training that had long been prepared for the Athenian nation, than of the genius of Pericles. He stands in histories laurelled for the work of other men, by which he had the sagacity and the power, after he once declared himself” to profit; but the inheritance he left in the place of that he had received was of a people who would never be free again, as they had been, though they might be a refined, a sensitive, and, compared with almost any other ancient standard than their own, an admirable nation. It must be confessed as plainly, that many of the evils he bequeathed he had himself inherited from former generations. The acknowledgment of slavery, -the exclusion of strangers, and even natives, from political rights, – the system of extraordinary dependence on the rich in respect to contributions, and on the poor in respect to political authority,+the preponderance of orators and generals amongst the magistrates, – the inferiority of women, – the prevalence of licentiousness in all sorts of habits, and of skepticism in all kinds of opinions, – were not to be charged against Pericles or any other individual in the history of Athens or of Greece. One error, at least, there was to avoid, into which he, with all his statesmanship, plunged headlong. At his suggestion, a law was passed, disfranchising some five thousand citizens, for want of Athenian descent on both the paternal and the maternal sides; by which the number of those in full possession of citizenship was reduced to fourteen thousand and forty only, in the midst of slaves, residents, and a continually growing multitude of every occupation and degree. It may be added, for the sake of explaining, not only the operation of the law, but the character of its author's power, that, when his house had been stricken with disease which spared neither son of his lawful nuptials, a child he had by Aspasia was admitted to the franchise as his successor.” The immediate legacy of Pericles to his countrymen was the Peloponnesian War. He may not, possibly, have provoked,” but he did not prevent, the hostilities from which the freedom of Greece must be said to date its ruin. Even the allies of Athens, her subjects, as Pericles would have forced them to become, were so weary of the principles by which they had been governed, that, at the close of a conflict protracted for nearly thirty years,” they who had not already deserted their mistress” rejoiced in her overthrow. The horrors of the war were increased by the factions which rent nearly every state engaged in it; nor were they in any way tempered by the conduct of the leaders on either side, who seemed to revel in the hatred which was kindled amongst their neighbours and between their cities. Nicias, an honest man, but so timid that he would keep his doors barred or refuse to tarry with a friend,” was one of the few who wished for peace; while, on the other hand, Cleon, the thorough demagogue, inflated with ignorance and airs, and Alcibiades,” proud of his descent from Ajax and from Jupiter, unscrupulous in his demands and his designs, at once a fondler and a despiser of his countrymen, were fierce for war in Athens; and the Spartan heroes, Brasidas and Lysander, did not belie the laws which were now interpreted as ordering cruelty and encouraging pride. Details of the campaign from year to year, -alternations of success in favor of Sparta or of Athens, the two great combatants under which the rest were ranged,—enormous efforts made in Greece, on the seas, and in Sicily,–and terrors of carnage, pestilence, and affliction, — were all such as might have been expected in a conflict where passions. and forces were nearly equal on both sides. It was the contest for superiority, not only with regard to the state or the states that might be subdued, but over all the Grecian nations. Foreign powers were enticed into the affray; Athens obtained the aid or the alliance of Thrace and Macedonia, while Sparta leaned upon the promises of the Persian king, too willing to behold the laceration of his enemies by their own hands. Of this deplorable contest, which exposed every thing that was feeblest in Greece to observation and to influences the most hostile to freedom, Thucydides is the monumental historian. Without concealing the truth, which he was too great in spirit to deny, he seems to have compressed his lips in sorrow for the relation he had to give; his nervous words and

216 Plut., Per., 7, 9; Cim., 15. Diod. Sic., XI. 77. See Boeckh, Book II. ch. 14.

217 Thucyd., II, 65. Plut., Per., 9, 15.

218 Plut., Per., 37. within the first seven years of the * His feeling is pretty distinctly war. Thucyd., IV. 88. proved to have inclined towards war * Plut., Nic., 5. in Plut., Per. 21. *3 Plut., Alc., 12, 18; where * A. C. 431–404. the extraordinary gifts he received * Of which there were instances and the still more extraordinary designs he formed upon Carthage, cyd., VI. 15; Corn. Nep., Alcib., Libya, Italy, and the Peloponnesus Cap. I. will be found described. See Thu

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