Demosthenes

Demosthenes - Greek Men, Facts and Personal Life

Violet FieldHome › GreekDemosthenes384 BC225 views

0 based on 0 rates
Demosthenes Biography Stories 

Demosthenes's Personal Details

Demosthenes was a prominent statesman and orator of ancient Greek

InformationDetail
Birthday384 BC
NationalityGreek
FamousLeaders, Greek Men, Orator, Statesman
SiblingsThrasylochus
Cause of death
  • Suicide
Birth PlaceAthens
GenderMale
FatherDemosthenes
MotherKleoboule
Born inAthens
Famous asStatesman & Orator
Died at Age62

// Famous Orator

Patrick Henry

Patrick Henry

Patrick Henry was an American politician, orator and a revolutionary leader who brought Virginian independence in the 1770s. Check out this biography to know about his childhood, family life, achievements and other facts related to his life.

Frederick Douglass

Frederick Douglass

Frederick Douglass was a slave turned social reformer. This biography of Frederick Douglass provides detailed information about his childhood, life, achievements, works & timeline.

Demosthenes's photo

Who is Demosthenes?

Demosthenes was one of the most important historical figures from ancient Greek. A celebrated orator and statesman of his times, he is credited to have contributed considerably to the development of rhetoric and oration in ancient Athens. Orphaned at a young age, he was brought by his guardians who took advantage of the vast inheritance his father had left him. In spite of being an educated young man he could not speak well because of a speech impediment. However, he worked hard to overcome this impediment and became a great orator. He used his oratory skills to gain back from his guardians a portion of his inheritance. In addition to his oratory skills, he was also an excellent writer who used to write speeches for clients involved in judicial cases. A man of very high intelligence, he could handle all kinds of cases which earned him several wealthy and powerful clients. His judiciary experience made him an apt candidate for politics as well. He is best known for his orations that were directed against King Philip II of Macedon who had been formally in war with Athens. He gave many powerful speeches as the ambassador of Athens in opposing Macedon’s expansion into Athens. Demosthenes sought to safeguard his city from Macedon’s onslaught and preserve Athens’s freedom.

// Famous Greek Men

Giannis Antetokounmpo

Giannis Antetokounmpo

Giannis Antetokounmpo, is a Greek basketball player. Check out this biography to know about his childhood, family life, achievements and fun facts about him.

Socrates

Socrates

Socrates was one of the most influential Greek philosophers of the ancient era. Check out this biography to know about his childhood, family life, achievements and fun facts about him.

Solon

Solon

Solon was an Athenian lawmaker, poet and politician. He is considered as one of the ‘Seven Wise Men’ in Greek culture. This biography provides detailed information about his childhood, life, career, works, achievements and timeline.

Childhood & Early Life

Demosthenes was born in 384 BC. His father, also named Demosthenes was a wealthy sword-maker belonging to the local tribe, Pandionis.

He was orphaned at the age of seven. His father had left him a hefty inheritance, but his legal guardians misused the wealth that was rightfully his.

He suffered from a speech impediment as a youngster and had to work hard to overcome it.

When he was 20, he sued his guardians for his inheritance but was able to retrieve only a portion of what his father had actually left him.

While fighting for his legal rights he began improving his oratory skills in order to effectively defend his case. From 364-361 BC, he delivered five orations against his guardians.

He underwent training to improve his oration. Different historians provide varying details of his training but it is widely accepted that he was trained under Isaeus.

Career

Demosthenes became a logographer—one who writes speeches for those involved in judicial cases—in 361 BC. He could manage any kind of cases and had many influential clients. His legal career paved the way for a political career later on.

He served as a trierarch in 363 and 359 BC. A trierarch was an officer who commanded a trireme, or a ship.

He continued practicing law from 355-541 BC. He also wrote speeches against individuals who tried to repeal tax exemptions. His speeches were in opposition of corruption and were directed against people accused of illegal activities.

He delivered his first political oration, ‘On the Navy’ in 354 BC. In this speech, he proposed reforming boards in order to fund the Athenian fleet.

In 352 BC, he gave the speech, ‘For the Megalopolitans’ followed by ‘On the Liberty of the Rhodians’ in 351 BC. He opposed Eubulus, the most powerful Athenian statesman in both of these speeches.

Athens had been at war with Macedonia since 357 BC. King Philip of Macedon had already seized Amphipolis and Pydna, and was trying to annex Athens. Demosthenes viewed the King as a danger to the independence of all Greek cities and launched a series of speeches directed against him.

He delivered the First Philippic in 351 BC in which he urged the Athenians to be ready for war and advocated the creation of a flexible military force to fight Philip’s army.

Philip II attacked Olynthus in 349 BC. Athens and Olynthus were allies and he urged Athens to help Olynthus through three speeches known as the ‘Olynthiacs’ delivered in 349 BC.

Demosthenes went to Peloponnese to detach certain cities from Macedon’s influence but was unsuccessful in doing so. He delivered the Second Philippic as a bitter attack against Philip in 344 BC.

He delivered the Third and Fourth Philippics in 341 BC.

Philip II was assassinated in 336 BC and Alexander III was made the new King of Macedon. Demosthenes celebrated the death of Philip II with his fellow Athenians.

Major Works

Demosthenes is regarded as the most prominent orator of ancient Greek, best known for his speeches directed against King Philip II of Macedon, the worst enemy of Athens. He delivered four such speeches, known as the four Philippics in his attacks against the king.

Personal Life & Legacy

He was married to the daughter of Heliodorus, a prominent Athenian citizen. The name of his wife is not known. He had one daughter who died young and unmarried.

After the death of Alexander in 323 BC, the new ruler demanded that Demosthenes be handed over to him. Demosthenes was sentenced to death but he managed to escape to a sanctuary in Kalaureia. However, he was soon discovered and he committed suicide by drinking poison in order to escape his capture.

The Athenians erected a statue in his honour years after his death and decreed that free meals be provided to his descendants in the Prytaneum.

// Famous Statesman

Anicius Manlius Severinus Boethius

Anicius Manlius Severinus Boethius

Boethius was an early 6th century Roman senator and philosopher best known for his treatise ‘Consolation of Philosophy’. This biography of Boethius provides detailed information about his childhood, life, achievements, works & timeline.

Otto von Bismarck

Otto von Bismarck

Otto von Bismarck served as the Chancellor of Germany and the Prime Minister of Prussia. He unified the German states into a powerful German empire. This biography profiles his childhood, political career, life, achievements and timeline.

Cardinal Richelieu

Cardinal Richelieu

Armand Jean du Plessis, commonly known as Cardinal Richelieu, was a French noble, statesman and clergyman. This biography of Cardinal Richelieu profiles his childhood, life, career, achievements and timeline.

Demosthenes biography timelines

  • // 384 BC
    Demosthenes was born in 384 BC. His father, also named Demosthenes was a wealthy sword-maker belonging to the local tribe, Pandionis.
  • // 364 BC To 361 BC
    While fighting for his legal rights he began improving his oratory skills in order to effectively defend his case. From 364-361 BC, he delivered five orations against his guardians.
  • // 363 BC
    He served as a trierarch in 363 and 359 BC. A trierarch was an officer who commanded a trireme, or a ship.
  • // 361 BC
    Demosthenes became a logographer—one who writes speeches for those involved in judicial cases—in 361 BC. He could manage any kind of cases and had many influential clients. His legal career paved the way for a political career later on.
  • // 357 BC
    Athens had been at war with Macedonia since 357 BC. King Philip of Macedon had already seized Amphipolis and Pydna, and was trying to annex Athens. Demosthenes viewed the King as a danger to the independence of all Greek cities and launched a series of speeches directed against him.
  • // 355 BC
    He continued practicing law from 355-541 BC. He also wrote speeches against individuals who tried to repeal tax exemptions. His speeches were in opposition of corruption and were directed against people accused of illegal activities.
  • // 354 BC
    He delivered his first political oration, ‘On the Navy’ in 354 BC. In this speech, he proposed reforming boards in order to fund the Athenian fleet.
  • // 352 BC
    In 352 BC, he gave the speech, ‘For the Megalopolitans’ followed by ‘On the Liberty of the Rhodians’ in 351 BC. He opposed Eubulus, the most powerful Athenian statesman in both of these speeches.
  • // 351 BC
    He delivered the First Philippic in 351 BC in which he urged the Athenians to be ready for war and advocated the creation of a flexible military force to fight Philip’s army.
  • // 349 BC
    Philip II attacked Olynthus in 349 BC. Athens and Olynthus were allies and he urged Athens to help Olynthus through three speeches known as the ‘Olynthiacs’ delivered in 349 BC.
  • // 344 BC
    Demosthenes went to Peloponnese to detach certain cities from Macedon’s influence but was unsuccessful in doing so. He delivered the Second Philippic as a bitter attack against Philip in 344 BC.
  • // 341 BC
    He delivered the Third and Fourth Philippics in 341 BC.
  • // 336 BC
    Philip II was assassinated in 336 BC and Alexander III was made the new King of Macedon. Demosthenes celebrated the death of Philip II with his fellow Athenians.
  • // 323 BC
    After the death of Alexander in 323 BC, the new ruler demanded that Demosthenes be handed over to him. Demosthenes was sentenced to death but he managed to escape to a sanctuary in Kalaureia. However, he was soon discovered and he committed suicide by drinking poison in order to escape his capture.

// Famous Leaders

Edi Rama

Edi Rama

Edi Rama is the current Prime Minister of Albania. Check out this biography to know about his childhood, life, achievements, works & timeline.

Leo Varadkar

Leo Varadkar

Cam Leo Varadkar is the current Taoiseach—the Prime Minister—of the Republic of Ireland. Check out this biography to know about his childhood, family life, achievements and other facts about his life.

Anwar Sadat

Anwar Sadat

Anwar Sadat was the third President of Egypt and has been awarded the Nobel Prize for his peace initiatives. To know more about his childhood, career, profile and timeline read on the following biography.

Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan

Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan

Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan is the current President of the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Check out this biography to know about his birthday, childhood, family life, achievements and fun facts about him.

Prophet Muhammad

Prophet Muhammad

Prophet Muhammad was the founder of Islam, one of the most widespread religions in the world. This biography profiles his childhood, life story, achievements and more.

Mohammed bin Salman

Mohammed bin Salman

Mohammed bin Salman is the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia and the heir apparent to the throne. Check out this biography to know about his childhood, family life, achievements and other facts about him.

Demosthenes's FAQ

  • When was Demosthenes died?

    Demosthenes was died at 2020-04-14

  • Where was Demosthenes died?

    Demosthenes was died in Island of Kalaureia

  • Which age was Demosthenes died?

    Demosthenes was died at age 62

  • Where is Demosthenes's birth place?

    Demosthenes was born in Athens

  • What is Demosthenes nationalities?

    Demosthenes's nationalities is Greek

  • Who is Demosthenes siblings?

    Demosthenes's siblings is Thrasylochus

  • What is Demosthenes's cause of dead?

    Demosthenes dead because of Suicide

  • Who is Demosthenes's father?

    Demosthenes's father is Demosthenes

  • Who is Demosthenes's mother?

    Demosthenes's mother is Kleoboule

  • How famous is Demosthenes?

    Demosthenes is famouse as Statesman & Orator