Imágenes de páginas

Look to the essence of a thing, whether it be a point of doctrine, of practice, or of interpretation.

Meditations. riii. 22. A man's happiness, - to do the things proper to man.





Be not careless in deeds, nor confused in words, nor rambling in thought.

He that knows not what the world is, knows not where lie is himself. He that knows not for what he was made, knows not what he is nor what the world is.

The nature of the universe is the nature of things that are. Now, things that are have kinship with things that are from the beginning. Further, this nature is styled Truth; and it is the first cause of all that is true. ix. 1.

He would be the finer gentleman that should leave the world without having tasted of lying or pretence of any sort, or of wantonness or conceit.

Think not disdainfully of death, but look on it with favour; for even death is one of the things that Nature wills.

A wrong-doer is often a man that has left something undone, not always he that has done something.

Blot out vain pomp; check impulse; quench appetite; keep reason under its own control.

Things that have a common quality ever quickly seek their kind.

All things are the same, — familiar in enterprise, momentary in endurance, coarse in substance. All things now are as they were in the day of those whom we have buried.

14. The happiness and unhappiness of the rational, social animal depends not on what he feels but on what he does; just as his virtue and vice consist not in feeling but in doing







[ocr errors]


Everything is in a state of metamorphosis. Thou thyself art in everlasting change and in corruption to correspond; so is the whole universe.

Meditations. ix. 19. Forward, as occasion offers. Never look round to see whether any shall note it. Be satisfied with success in even the smallest matter, and think that even such a result is no trifle.

He that dies in extreme old age will be reduced to the same state with him that is cut down untimely.

Whatever may befall thee, it was preordained for thee from everlasting

“The earth loveth the shower,” and “the holy ether knoweth what love is.” 1 The Universe, too, loves to create whatsoever is destined to be made.

Remember that what pulls the strings is the force hidden within; there lies the power to persuade, there the life, — there, if one must speak out, the real man. 38.

No form of Nature is inferior to Art; for the arts merely imitate natural forms.

Di. 10. If it is not seemly, do it not; if it is not true, speak it not.

cii. 17.


TERTULLIAN. 160-240 A. D.

c. 50.

See how these Christians love one another.

Apologeticus. 6.39. Blood of the martyrs is the seed of the Church. It is certain because it is impossible.?

De Carne Christi. c. 5. He who flees will fight again.

De Fuga in Persecutione. c. 10.

i Fragmenta Euripidis, apud Aristotelem, N. A. viii. 1, 6.

2 Certum est, quia impossibile est. This is usually misquoted, “Credo quia impossibile” (I believe it because it is impossible).

8 See Butler, pages 215, 216.

DIOGENES LAERTIUS. Circa 200 A. D. \From The Lires and Opinions of Eminent Philosophers.Translated

by C. D. Yonge, B. A., with occasional corrections. Bohn's Classical
Alcæus mentions Aristodemus in these lines :

'Tis money makes the man; and he who's none
Is counted neither good nor honourable.

Thales. vit. Thales said there was no difference between life and death. “Why, then," said some one to him, “do not you die?"

“ Because," said he, “it does make no difference.”


When Thales was asked what was difficult, he said, “To know one's self.” And what was easy, “ To advise another.”

Ibid. He said that men ought to remember those friends who were absent as well as those who were present. The apophthegm “Know thyself” is his.? Writers differ with respect to the apophthegms of the Seven Sages, attributing the same one to various authors.




Solon used to say that speech was the image of actions; ... that laws were like cobwebs, - for that if any trifling or powerless thing fell into them, they held it fast; while if it were something weightier, it broke through them and was off.

Solon. 2. Solon gave the following advice: “Consider your honour, as a gentleman, of more weight than an oath. Never tell a lie. Pay attention to matters of importance." xii.

As some say, Solon was the author of the apophthegm, “Nothing in excess.

Xvi See Pope, page 317. Also Plutarch, page 736. 2 Μηδέν άγαν, ηequid nimis.


Chilo advised, “ not to speak evil of the dead." }

Chilo. i Pittacus said that half was more than the whole.?

Pillacus in. Heraclitus

says that Pittacus, when he had got Alcæus into his power, released him, saying, "Forgiveness is better than revenge." :

üb. One of his sayings was, “ Even the gods cannot strive against necessity." 4

in. Another was, “ Watch your opportunity."

rii. Bias used to say that men ought to calculate life both as if they were fated to live a long and a short time, and that they ought to love one another as if at a future time they would come to hate one another; for that most men were bad.

Bias. e. Ignorance plays the chief part among men, and the multitude of words ;6 but opportunity will prevail.

Cleobulu.. ie. The saying, “Practice is everything,” is Periander's.'

Periander, i Anarcharsis, on learning that the sides of a ship were four fingers thick, said that “the passengers were just that distance from death."

Anarcharsis. r. He used to say that it was better to have one friend of great value than many friends who were good for nothing.

1 De mortuis nil nisi bonum (Of the dead be nothing said but what is good.) – Of unknown authorship.

2 See Hesiod, page 693.

3 Quoted by Epictetus (Fragment Ixii.), “Forgiveness is better than pun. ishment ;

for the one is the proof of a gentle, the other of a savage nature." 4 See Shakespeare, page 115. 5 In the multitude of words there wanteth not sin. – Prorerbs z. 19. 6 See Publius Syrus, page 710.

7 “How thick do you judge the planks of our ship to be ?” “Some two good inches and upward, returned the pilot. “It seems, then, we are within two fingers' breadth of damnation." - RABELAIS : book ie. chap. zziii.


fifty-seven years;

short nap."

It was a common saying of Myson that men ought not to investigate things from words, but words from things; for that things are not made for the sake of words, but words for things.

Myson. iii. Epimenides was sent by his father into the field to look for a sheep, turned out of the road at mid-day and lay down in a certain cave and fell asleep, and slept there

and after that, when awake, he went on looking for the sheep, thinking that he had been taking a

Epimenides. ii. There are many marvellous stories told of Pherecydes. For it is said that he was walking along the seashore at Samos, and that seeing a ship sailing by with a fair wind, he said that it would soon sink; and presently it

At another time he was drinking some water which had been drawn up out of a well, and he foretold that within three days there would be an earthquake; and there was one.

Pherecydes. ii. Anaximander used to assert that the primary cause of all things was the Infinite, - not defining exactly whether he meant air or water or anything else.

Anaximander. ii. Anaxagoras said to a man who was grieving because he was dying in a foreign land, “The descent to Hades is the same from every place.”

Anaxagoras. vi. Aristophanes turns Socrates into ridicule in his comedies, as making the worse appear the better reason.2

sank before his eyes.


Often when he was looking on at auctions he would say, “How many things there are which I do not need !”

Socrates said, “Those who want fewest things are nearest to the gods."

[ocr errors]

1 The story of Rip Van Winkle.
2 See Milton, page 226.

« AnteriorContinuar »