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Demosthenes

philip greece macedonian speeches

Demosthenes (384–322 B.C.), Athenian orator and speech writer, best known for his attempts to rouse Athens to resist the encroachment of Philip of Macedon, the father of Alexander the Great. Demosthenes' series of speeches against Philip were called the Philippics (351–341 B.C.). In the same cause he delivered a set of speeches known as the Olynthiacs (349 B.C.). In the end, however, Philip conquered Greece, and in 324 B.C. Demosthenes was exiled. He returned after the death of Alexander in 323 B.C., but failed to free Greece from Macedonian rule. He fled, was pursued, and took poison to avoid capture by the Macedonian general Antipater.

See also: Greece, Ancient; Philip II.

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