Political Trials: Treason and Accountability in Fourth Century Athens

2110G [CRN: 15856]

In studying trials of treason and accountability, we shall examine the democratic ideologies and political factionalism that fueled the trials and also the legal armature that rendered them possible. Our sources for the most part are speeches written by the Attic orators (Demosthenes, Aeschines, Lycourgos, Deinarchos, and Hypereides) and include impeachment trials for treason by commission of adultery, for having the wrong dream in the Amphiareion, for leaving Athens in wartime; an accountability trial for treasonous conduct while serving on an embassy; and trials (including the prosecution of Demosthenes) for accepting bribes from Alexander’s agent, Harpalos.
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