Speakers address audiences in the earliest Greek literature, but oratory became a distinct genre in the late fifth century and reached its maturity in the fourth. This book traces the development of its techniques by examining the contribution made by each orator. Dr Usher makes the speeches come alive for the reader through an in-depth analysis of the problems of composition and the likely responses of contemporary audiences. His study differs from previous books in its recognition of the richness of the early tradition which made innovation difficult; however, the orators are revealed as men of remarkable talent, versatility, and resource. Antiphon's pioneering role, Lysias' achievement of balance between the parts of the speech, the establishment of oratory as a medium of political thought by Demosthenes and Isocrates, and the individual characteristics of other orators - Andocides, Isaeus, Lycurgus, Hyperides, Dinarchus and Apollodorus - together make a fascinating study in evolution; while the illustrative texts of the orators (which are translated into English) include some of the liveliest and most moving passages in Greek literature.
`Review from previous edition: Students of Greek oratory have long benefited from Stephen Usher's work.' Michael Gagarin, Classical Review `The book ... provides a good starting point for a study of rhetorical tropes and figures in oratory ... Perhaps its most impressive feature is U's overall assessments of orators.' Michael Gagarin, Clas.Rev. `U's assessment is more precisely and elegantly stated, and more thoroughly illustrated and supported than anything I am familiar with ... this book has considerable strengths and will interest all who work on the orators.' Michael Gagarin, Clas.Rev. `In short, it is a diligent piece of work that could be useful for students and those who want to change their understanding in ancient Greek oratory.' Helene Perdicoyianni, Les Etudes Classiques, University of Namur.
Series: Tradition and Originality
Number Of Pages: 400
Published: 15th April 2005
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 21.49 x 13.87 x 2.11
Weight (kg): 0.47