Dinarch (Corinth, c.
361 - c. 291 BCE) was a logographer (speech writer) in Ancient
Greece. He was the last of the ten Attic
included in the "Alexandrian Canon" compiled by
Aristophanes of Byzantium and Aristarchus of Samothrace in the
third century BCE.
A son of
Sostratus (or, according to the Suda,
Socrates), Dinarchus settled at Athens early in
life, and when not more than twenty-five was already active as a
logographer—a writer of speeches
for the law courts.
As an alien, he was unable to take part
in the debates. He had been the pupil both of Theophrastus
and of Demetrius Phalereus
, and had early
acquired a certain fluency and versatility of style.
In 324 the
Areopagus, after inquiry, reported that nine men had taken
bribes from Harpalus, the fugitive
treasurer of Alexander.
Ten public prosecutors were appointed. Dinarchus wrote, for one or
more of these prosecutors, the three speeches which are still
extant: Against Demosthenes
, and Against Philocles
The sympathies of Dinarchus were in favor of an Athenian oligarchy
control; but it should be remembered that he was not an Athenian
had no such excuse. In the Harpalus affair,
Demosthenes was doubtless innocent, and so, probably, were others
of the accused. Yet Hypereides
, the most
fiery of the patriots, was on the same side as Dinarchus.
Under the regency of his old master, Demetrius Phalereus, Dinarchus
exercised much political influence. The years 317-307 were the most
prosperous of his life. On the fall of Demetrius Phalereus and the
restoration of the democracy by Demetrius Poliorcetes, Dinarchus was
condemned to death and withdrew into exile at Chalcis in Euboea.
About 292, thanks to his friend Theophrastus
, he was able to return to Attica,
and took up his abode in the country with a former associate,
Proxenus. He afterwards brought an action against Proxenus on the
ground that he had robbed him of some money and plate. Dinarchus
died at Athens about 291.
- Minor Attic Orators, II, Lycurgus. Dinarchus. Demades. Hyperides, trans. J. O. Burtt, Harvard University Press, Loeb
Classical Library, 1954.
- Dinarchus, Hyperides, & Lycurgus,
trans. Ian Worthington, Craig Cooper, and Edward M. Harris,
University of Texas Press, 2001.