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Demosthenes
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Politician
    (384 BC-October 12, 322 BC)
    Born in Athens, Greece
    Greek statesman and orator
    Tried to create an alliance of Greek city-states to oppose Macedonian expansion
    Led a revolt against Alexander the Great
    Committed suicide to avoid capture by Alexander’s successor Antipater
    As a youth, he mispronounced r’s as l’s.
    To focus on practicing his oratory, he allegedly shaved off half of his hair so he would look too ridiculous to attend social events.
    He made a living as a professional litigant, both speaking in court on behalf of clients and writing speeches for use in private lawsuits.
    He allegedly wrote the speeches for both sides in at least one lawsuit.
    He convinced Athenians to revolt against Macedon by spreading a false rumor that Alexander and his army had been slaughtered during a military campaign in Thrace (335 BC).
    He was orphaned at age seven.
    He allegedly overcame his speech defect by practicing lecturing with pebbles in his mouth.
    In his first oratorical success, he sued the guardians of his estate for squandering his inheritance.
    Cicero called him ‘the perfect orator.’
    He influenced the rhetorical styles of Henry Clay, Friedrich Nietzsche, and tons of other orators and authors.

Credit: C. Fishel


    For 2017, as of last week, Out of 6 Votes: 66.67% Annoying
 
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