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Headword: *de/on
Adler number: delta,243
Translated headword: necessary
Vetting Status: high
"Just like Perikles, I spent 'on the necessary'." When general of [the] Athenians Perikles, required to give an account of money [given] to the Lacedaimonians' harmost Kleandros[1] for [sc. the purpose of inducing him to commit] treason, did not make this clear, but said that he had spent it 'on the necessary'. But some [explain it] otherwise. With there being a lot of money on the acropolis, he spent most of it on the war. But they say that when giving his accounts he said simply that he had spent 50 talents 'on the necessary'. Learning [this] afterwards,[2] the Lacedaemonians confiscated Kleandrides[' property] and fined [sc. King] Pleistoanax 5 talents, suspecting that they had taken bribes to spare the rest of the land of the Athenians; and [they say that] Perikles hinted in this way so as to avoid saying nakedly 'I gave this [money] to the kings[sic] of the Lacedaimonians'.
Greek Original:
*de/on: w(/sper *perikle/hs ei)s to\ de/on a)na/lwsa. *perikle/hs *)aqhnai/wn strathgo/s, lo/gon a)paitou/menos u(pe\r xrhma/twn *klea/ndrw| tw=| a(rmosth=| *lakedaimoni/wn e)pi\ prodosi/a|, tou=to ou)k e)dh/lou, a)ll' ei)s to\ de/on e)/legen a)nalw=sai au)ta/. oi( de\ a)/llws fasi/. pollw=n o)/ntwn xrhma/twn e)n th=| a)kropo/lei, ei)s to\n po/lemon ta\ plei=sta a)na/lwse. fasi\ de\ o(/ti kai\ logismou\s didou\s n# tala/ntwn a(plw=s ei)pei=n ei)s to\ de/on a)nhlwke/nai. meta\ de\ tau=ta maqo/ntes *lakedaimo/nioi *kleandri/dhn me\n e)dh/meusan, *pleistoa/nakta de\ e# tala/ntois e)zhmi/wsan u(polabo/ntes dwrodokh/santas au)tou\s fei/sasqai th=s loiph=s *)aqhnai/wn gh=s, kai\ to\n *perikle/a, i(/na mh\ gumnw=s ei)/ph| o(/ti de/dwka toi=s *lakedaimoni/wn basileu=si tau=ta, ou(/tws ai)ni/casqai.
Aristophanes, Clouds 859, with comment from the scholia there.
cf. Thucydides 1.114.2, 2.21.2 and 5.16.3; Plutarch, Pericles 22-23. For discussion of the incident see Donald Kagan, The Archidamian War (Cornell UP 1974) 92 n.64. The remark 'necessary', 'for necessary purposes', became proverbial: see epsiloniota 241.
For Perikles see generally delta 451, pi 1179, pi 1180, pi 1181; for the bare bones of his career see Robert Develin, Athenian Officials 684-321 BC (Cambridge 1989) Index I no. 2293.
[1] The name should be Kleandrides (Kleandridas), as correctly later. On harmosts see generally alpha 3979.
[2] The scholiast here picks up the thread of explanation #1.
Keywords: biography; comedy; economics; ethics; history; law; military affairs; politics; proverbs
Translated by: Debra Hamel on 12 August 1999@20:10:42.
Vetted by:
David Mirhady on 17 December 1999@19:09:19.
David Mirhady on 4 January 2000@15:07:01.
David Whitehead (cosmetics) on 17 September 2000@11:32:09.
David Whitehead (augmented note and keyword; cosmetics) on 17 April 2003@06:06:25.
David Whitehead (more keywords) on 4 December 2005@06:35:48.
David Whitehead (augmented notes; another keyword; tweaks and cosmetics) on 19 June 2012@03:40:48.


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