Pelopidas and Marcellus

Pelopidas and Marcellus

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Cato Major, hearing some commend one that was rash, and inconsiderately daring in a battle, said, “There is a difference between a man’s prizing valor at a great rate, and valuing life at little;” a very just remark. Antigonus, we know, at least, had a soldier, a venturous fellow, but of wretched health and constitution; the reason of whose ill looks he took the trouble to inquire into; and, on understanding from him that it was a disease, commanded his physicians to employ their utmost skill, and if possible recover him; which brave hero, when once cured, never afterwards sought danger or showed himself venturous in battle; and, when Antigonus wondered and upbraided him with his change, made no secret of the reason, and said, “Sir, you are the cause of my cowardice, by freeing me from those miseries which made me care little for life.” With the same feeling, the Sybarite seems to have said of the Spartans, that it was no commendable thing in them to be so ready to die in the wars, since by that they were freed from such hard labor, and miserable living. In truth, the Sybarites, a soft and dissolute people, might very well imagine they hated life, because in their eager pursuit of virtue and glory, they were not afraid to die: but, in fact, the Lacedaemonians found their virtue secured them happiness alike in living or in dying; as we see in the epitaph that says:show more

Product details

  • Electronic book text
  • Pdm Classics
  • United States
  • English
  • 0740826972
  • 9780740826979