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Antisthenes of Athens | Athenaeus, Book V.220.c-f

Antisthenes, too, in the treatise on the second Cyrus, abuses Alcibiades and says that he was perverted in his relations with women as well as in his mode of life generally. He even says that Alcibiades lay with his mother, his daughter, and his sister, as Persians do. The dialogue on the Statesman, by Antisthenes, contains a denunciation of all the demagogues at Athens; the Archelaus, of the orator Gorgias; the Aspasia, slanders against Xanthippus and Paralus, the sons of Pericles. One of them, he says, lived with Archestratus, who plied a trade similar to that of women in the cheaper brothels; the other was the boon companion of Euphemus, who used to make vulgar and heartless jokes at the expense of all whom he met. Again, Antisthenes changed the name of Plato to Satho, a filthy, vulgar word, and published the dialogue against him under this title. For in the eyes of these gentry no statesman is honest, no general is wise, no sophist is worth considering, no poet is good for anything, no populace is capable of reason; only Socrates is — he who consorts with Aspasia's flute-girls at the workshops, or converses with Piston the cuirass-maker, or instructs the courtesan Theodote how to lure her lovers, as Xenophon represents him in the second book of the Memorabilia. For he makes him recommend to Theodote measures such as neither Nico the Samian beauty, nor Callistrate the Lesbian, nor Philaenis the Leucadian, nor even Pythonicus the Athenian, ever conceived as lures to desire; for all these persons used to busy themselves very devotedly with these questions. But all eternity would fail me if I should undertake to set forth the pompous censures of the philosophers. To quote Plato himself, “A crowd of similar Gorgons and winged horses and other fabulous creatures, incomprehensible in number and strangeness.” Wherefore I will lapse into silence.

Source: The Deipnosophistae of Athenaeus published in Vol. II of the Loeb Classical Library edition, 1928.

antisthenes_of_athens/athenaeus_book_v.220.c-f.txt · Last modified: 2014/03/02 13:59 by frank