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ORATIONS OF DEMOSTHENES. The beautiful copy of the Orations of Demosthenes from which our sample is taken, is a work of Italian art executed toward the close of the fifteenth century. Exquisite volums such as this could only be purchased by the rich, and this one seems to have been executed for one of the Farnesi, a name intimately connected with Italian art of this period, the arms of that noble family being emblazoned in the lower part of the border. After many vicissitudes it found its way to England and was purchased by the trustees of the British Museum.
The book consists of some of the orations of Demosthenes with the addition of the prologues of Libanius, a Greek author of the third century, who appears to have written these commentaries, or introductions, for the Roman proconsul Montius. The blue label at the top of the page contains the title as follows: "Libanius's Introduction to the Discourses of Demosthenes."
The portion on the page we have given may be thus nearly literally translated : "Since, O most excellent proconsul Montius, like the illustrious Homer, skilled in the powers of eloquence, you hold the first place in Roman discourse, and have beyond dispute, obtained a palm in other learning, may you not neglect Greek literature for in this you may excel by reason of the greatness of your genius; and, as you are learned in other authors, so also may you be in the work of Demosthenes, the most excellent of great Orators. And since you require me to write the introduction to this man's orations, I will willingly obey your commands, not ignorant that there is more of honor than labor in the task."
A LIBRARY OF THE
WORLD'S BEST LITERATURE
ANCIENT AND MODERN
CHARLES DUDLEY WARNER
HAMILTON WRIGHT MABIE LUCIA GILBERT RUNKLE
GEORGE HENRY WARNER