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were oftener) are bonds of union to men. In us to the purposes that dignify or delight our nature. you more easily pardon faults than excellences I have ever said, “Reverence the rulers.”
Let in each other. Your tempers are such, my be then his image stand; but stand apart from loved scholars, that even this truth does not ruffle Pindar's. Pallas and Jove! defend me from them; and such is your affection, that I look being carri down the stream of time among a with confidence to its unabated ardour at twenty. shoal of royalets, and the rootless weeds they are
Leontion. Oh, then, I am to love Ternissa almost hatched on. fifteen months!
Ternissa. So much piety would deserve the Ternissa. And I am destined to survive the loss exemption, even though your writings did not of it three months above four years !
hold out the decree. Epicurus. Incomparable creatures ! may it be Leontion. Child, the compliment is ill turned : eternal ! In loving ye shall follow no example : if you are ironical, as you must be on the piety ye shall step securely over the iron rule laid down of Epicurus, Atticism requires that you should for others by the Destinies, and you for ever be continue to be so, at least to the end of the Leontion, and you Ternissa.
sentence. Leontion. Then indeed we should not want Ternissa. Irony is my abhorrence. Epicurus statues.
may appear less pious than some others; but I Ternissa. But men, who are vainer creatures, am certain he is more ; otherwise the gods would would be good for nothing without them : they never have given him ... must be flattered, even by the stones.
Leontion. What? what? let us hear! Epicurus. Very true. Neither the higher arts Ternissa. Leontion! nor the civic virtues can flourish extensively Leontion. Silly girl! Were there any hibiscus without the statues of illustrious men. But gar- or broom growing near at hand, I would send him dens are not the places for them. Sparrows away and whip you. wooing on the general's truncheon (unless he be Epicurus. There is fern, which is better. such a general as one of ours in the last war), and Leontion. I was not speaking to you : but now snails besliming the .emblems of the poet, do not you shall have something to answer for yourself. remind us worthily of their characters. Porticoes Although you admit no statues in the country, are their proper situations, and those the most you might at least methinks have discovered a frequented. Even there they may lose all honour retirement with a fountain in it: here I see not and distinction, whether from the thoughtlessness even a spring. of magistrates or from the malignity of rivals. Epicurus. Fountain I can hardly say there is ; Our own city, the least exposed of any to the but on the left there is a long crevice or chasm, effects of either, presents us a disheartening ex- which we have never yet visited, and which we ample. When the Thebans in their jealousy con- can not discern until we reach it. This is full of demned Pindar to the payment of a fine, for having soft mould, very moist; and many high reeds and praised the Athenians too highly, our citizens canes are growing there ; and the rock itself too erected a statue of bronze to him.
drips with humidity along it, and is covered with Leontion. Jealousy of Athens made the Thebans more tufted moss and more variegated lichens. fine him; and jealousy of Thebes made the This crevice, with its windings and sinuosities, is Athenians thus record it.
about four hundred paces long, and in many parts Epicurus. And jealousy of Pindar, I suspect, eleven, twelve, thirteen feet wide, but generally made some poet persuade the arcons to render six or seven. I shall plant it wholly with lilies the distinction a vile and worthless one, by placing of the valley ; leaving the irises which occupy the his effigy near a king's, one Evagoras of Cyprus. sides as well as the clefts, and also those other
Ternissa. Evagoras, I think I remember to have flowers of paler purple, from the autumnal cups. read in the inscription, was rewarded in this of which we collect the saffron ; and forming a manner for his reception of Conon, defeated by narrow path of such turf as I can find there, or the Lacedemonians.
rather following it as it creeps among the bays Epicurus. Gratitude was due to him, and some and hazels and sweet-briar, which have fallen at such memorial to record it. External reverence different times from the summit, and are now should be paid unsparingly to the higher magis- grown old, with an infinity of primroses at the trates of every country who perform their offices roots. There are nowhere twenty steps without a exemplarily : yet they are not on this account to projection and a turn, nor in any ten together is, be placed in the same degree with men of primary the chasm of the same width or figure. Hence the genius. They never exalt the human race, and ascent in its windings is easy and imperceptible rarely benefit it; and their benefits are local and quite to the termination, where the rocks are transitory, while those of a great writer are uni- somewhat high and precipitous : at the entrance versal and eternal.
they lose themselves in privet and elder, and you If the gods did indeed bestow on us a portion must make your way between them through the of their fire, they seem to have lighted it in canes. Do not you remember where I carried you sport and left it: the harder task and the nobler both across the muddy hollow in the foot-path ? is performed by that genius who raises it clear and Ternissa. Leontion does. glowing from its embers, and makes it applicable Epicurus. That place is always wet; not only
in this month of Puanepsion *, which we are cultivation of such minds as flourish best in cities, beginning to-day, but in midsummer. The water where my garden at the gate, although smaller that causes it, comes out a little way above it, but than this, we find sufficiently capacious. There I originates from the crevice, which I will cover at secure my listeners : here my thoughts and imatop with rose-laurel and mountain-ash, with cle- ginations have their free natural current, and matis and vine; and I will intercept the little rill tarry or wander as the will invites : may it erer in its wandering, draw it from its concealment, be among those dearest to me! those whose hearts and place it like Bacchus under the protection of possess the rarest and divinest faculty, of retaining the Nymphs, who will smile upon it in its marble or forgetting at option what ought to be forgotten cradle, which at present I keep at home.
or retained. Ternissa. Leontion ! why do you turn away Leontion. The whole ground then will be covered your face ? have the Nymphs smiled upon you with trees and shrubs. in it?
Epicurus. There are some protuberances in Leontion. I bathed in it once, if you must know, various parts of the eminence, which you do not Ternissa! Why now, Ternissa, why do you turn perceive till you are upon them or above them. away yours ? have the Nymphs frowned upon you They are almost level at the top, and overgrown for invading their secrets?
with fine grass ; for they catch the better soil, Ternissa. Epicurus, you are in the right to brought down in small quantities by the rains. bring it away from Athens; from under the eye These are to be left unplanted ; so is the platform of Pallas : she might be angry.
under the pinasters, whence there is a prospect of Epicurus. You approve of its removal then, my the city, the harbour, the isle of Salamis, and the lovely friend?
territory of Megara. “What then,” cried Sosi-. Ternissa. Mightily.
menes, "you would hide from your view my (Aside.) I wish it may break in pieces on the young olives, and the whole length of the new road.
wall I have been building at my own expense Epicurus. What did you say?
between us! and, when you might see at once the Ternissa. I wish it were now on the road .. whole of Attica, you will hardly see more of it that I might try whether it would hold me .. than I could buy." I mean with my clothes on.
Leontion. Id not perceive the new wall, for Epicurus. It would hold you, and one a span which Sosimenes, no doubt, thinks himself another longer. I have another in the house; but it is Pericles. not decorated with Fauns and Satyrs and foliage, Epicurus. Those old junipers quite conceal it. like this.
Ternissa. They look warm and sheltering: but Leontion. I remember putting my hand upon I like the rose-laurels much better; and what a the frightful Satyr's head, to leap in : it seems thicket of them here is ! made for the purpose. But the sculptor needed Epicurus. Leaving all the larger, I shall remore not to place the Naiad quite so near: he must many thousands of them; enough to border the have been a very impudent man: it is impossible greater part of the walk, intermixed with roses. to look for a moment at such a piece of work- Ternissa. Do, pray, leave that taller plant manship
yonder, of which I see there are several springing Ternissa. For shame! Leontion!.. why, what in several places out of the rock: it appears to was it? I do not desire to know.
have produced on a single stem a long succession Epicurus. I don't remember it.
of yellow flowers; some darkening and fading, Leontion. Nor I neither; only the head. others running up and leaving them behind, others
Epicurus. I shall place the Satyr toward the showing their little faces imperfectly through rock, that you may never see him, Ternissa. their light green veils.
Ternissa. Very right; he can not turn round. Leontion. Childish girl! she means the mulLeontion. The poor Naiad had done it, in vain. len ; and she talks about it as she would have
Ternissa. All these labourers will soon finish talked about a doll, attributing to it feelings and the plantation, if you superintend them, and are aims and designs. I saw her stay behind to kiss not appointed to some magistrature.
it; no doubt, for being so nearly of her own highth. Epicurus. Those who govern us are pleased at Ternissa. No indeed, not for that; but because seeing a philosopher out of the city, and more still I had broken off one of its blossoms unheedingly, at finding, in a season of scarcity, forty poor perhaps the last it may bear, and because its leaves citizens, who might become seditious, made happy are so downy and pliant; and because nearer the and quiet by such employment.
earth some droop and are decaying, and remind Two evils, of almost equal weight, may befall me of a parent who must die before the tenderest the man of erudition : never to be listened to, and of her children can do without her. to be listened to always. Aware of these, I devote Epicurus. I will preserve the whole species; a large portion of my time and labours to the but you must point out to me the particular one
as we return. There is an infinity of other plants * The Attic month of Puanepsion had its commencement and flowers, or weeds as Sosimenes calls them, of in the latter days of October : its name is derived from Tudve, the legumes which were offered in sacrifice to which he has cleared his olive-yard, and which I Apollo at that season.
shall adopt. Twenty of his slaves came in yester
day, laden with hyacinths and narcissuses, ane- Ternissa. And can you teach me then ? mones and jonquils. “The curses of our vine- Epicurus. I teach by degrees. yards,” cried he, “and good neither for man nor Leontion. By very slow ones, Epicurus! I have beast. I have another estate infested with lilies no patience with you : tell us directly. of the valley : I should not wonder if you accepted Epicurus. It is very material what kind of these tpo."
recipient you bring with you. Enchantresses use “And with thanks," answered I.
a brazen one: silver and gold are employed in The whole of his remark I could not collect: he other arts. turned aside, and (I believe) prayed. I only heard Leontion. I will bring any. "Pallas " .. "father” .. “sound mind"... “in- Ternissa. My mother has a fine golden one : offensive man "good neighbour.” As we she will lend it me: she allows me everything. walked together, I perceived him looking grave, Epicurus. Leontion and Ternissa ! those eyes and I could not resist my inclination to smile as of yours brighten at inquiry, as if they carried a I turned my eyes toward him. He observed it, light within them for a guidance. at first with unconcern, but by degrees some Leontion. No flattery ! doubts arose within him, and he said, “ Epi. Ternissa. No flattery! come, teach us. curus, you have been throwing away no less than Epicurus. Will you hear me through in silence ? half a talent on this sorry piece of mountain, and Leontion. We promise. I fear you are about to waste as much in labour : Epicurus. Sweet girls! the calm pleasures, such for nothing was ever so terrible as the price we as I hope you will ever find in your walks among are obliged to pay the workman, since the con- these gardens, will improve your beauty, animate quest of Persia, and the increase of luxury in our your discourse, and correct the little that may city. Under three obols none will do his day's hereafter rise up for correction in your dispositions. work. But what, in the name of all the deities, The smiling ideas left in our bosoms from our could induce you to plant those roots, which other infancy, that many plants are the favourites of people dig up and throw away?"
the gods, and that others were even the objects of "I have been doing,” said I, “the same thing their love, having once been invested with the my whole life through, Sosimenes ! ”
human form, beautiful and lively and happy as “ How !” cried he: “I never knew that." yourselves, give them an interest beyond the
“Those very doctrines,” added I,“which others vision ; yes, and a station, let me say it, on the hate and extirpate, I inculcate and cherish. They vestibule of our affections. Resign your ingenuous bring no riches, and therefore are thought to bring hearts to simple pleasures ; and there is none in no advantage : to me they appear the more advan- man, where men are Attic, that will not follow and tageous for that reason. They give us immediately outstrip their movements. what we solicit through the means of wealth. We Ternissa. O Epicurus ! toil for the wealth first; and then it remains to be Epicurus. What said Ternissa? proved whether we can purchase with it what we Leontion. Some of those anemones, I do think, look for. Now, to carry our money to the market, must be still in blossom. Ternissa’s golden cup and not to find in the market our money's worth, is at home ; but she has brought with her a little is great vexation : yet much greater has already vase for the filter .. and has filled it to the brim preceded, in running up and down for it among so ... Do not hide your head behind my shoulder, many competitors, and through so many thieves.” Ternissa ! no, nor in my lap.
After a while he rejoined, “ You really, then, Epicurus. Yes, there let it lie, the lovelier for have not overreached me?”
that tendril of sunny brown hair upon it. How “In what? my friend !” said I.
it falls and rises! Which is the hair? which the “These roots,” he answered, “ may perhaps be shadow ? good and saleable for some purpose. Shall you Leontion. Let the hair rest. send them into Persia? or whither?”
Epicurus. I must not perhaps clasp the shadow! “ Sosimenes ! I shall make love-potions of the Leontion. You philosophers are fond of such flowers."
unsubstantial things. O! you have taken my Leontion. O Epicurus! should it ever be known volume. This is deceit. in Athens that they are good for this, you will not You live so little in public, and entertain such have, with all your fences of prunes and pomegra- a contempt for opinion, as to be both indifferent nates, and precipices with gorse upon them, a and ignorant what it is that people blame you for. single root left under ground after the month of Epicurus. I know what it is I should blame Elaphebolion *
myself for, if I attended to them. Prove them to Epicurus. It is not everyone that knows the be wiser and more disinterested in their wisdom preparation.
than I am, and I will then go down to them and Leontion. Everybody will try.
listen to them. When I have well considered a Epicurus. And you too, Ternissa ?
thing, I deliver it, regardless of what those think Ternissa. Will you teach me?
who neither take the time nor possess the faculty Epicurus. This, and anything else I know. We of considering anything well, and who have always must walk together when they are in flower. lived far remote from the scope of our speculations. * The thirtieth of Elaphebolion was the tenth of April.
Leontion. In the volume you snatched away
from me so slily, I have defended a position of Epicurus. The Lacedemonians are temperate yours which many philosophers turn into ridicule; in food and courageous in battle: but men like namely, that politeness is among the virtues. I these, if they existed in sufficient numbers, would wish you yourself had spoken more at large upon devastate the universe. We alone, we Athenians, the subject.
with less military skill perhaps, and certainly less Epicurus. It is one upon which a lady is likely to rigid abstinence from voluptuousness and luxury, display more ingenuity and discernment. If philo- have set before it the only grand example of sophers have ridiculed my sentiment, the reason social government and of polished life. From is, it is among those virtues which in general they us the seed is scattered : from us flow the streams find most difficult to assume or counterfeit. that irrigate it: and ours are the hands, O Leon
Leontion. Surely life runs on the smoother for tion ! that collect it, cleanse it, deposit it, and this equability and polish ; and the gratification convey and distribute it sound and weighty it affords is more extensive than is afforded even through every race and age. Exhausted as we by the highest virtue. Courage, on nearly all are by war, we can do nothing better than lie occasions, inflicts as much of evil as it imparts of down and doze while the weather is fine overgood. It may be exerted in defence of our country, head, and dream (if we can) that we are affluent in defence of those who love us, in defence of the and free. harmless and the helpless: but those against whom O sweet sea-air ! how bland art thon and it is thus exerted may possess an equal share of refreshing! Breathe upon Leontion! breathe it. If they succeed, then manifestly the ill it upon Ternissa! bring them health and spirits produces is greater than the benefit : if they suc- and serenity, many springs and many summers, cumb, it is nearly as great. For, many of their and when the vine-leaves have reddened and adversaries are first killed and maimed, and many rustle under their feet. of their own kindred are left to lament the con- These, my beloved girls, are the children of sequences of their aggression.
Eternity: they played around Theseus and the Epicurus. You have spoken first of courage, beauteous Amazon, they gave to Pallas the bloom as that virtue which attracts your sex principally. of Venus, and to Venus the animation of Pallas.
Ternissa. Not me; I am always afraid of it. I Is it not better to enjoy by the hour their soft love those best who can tell me the most things I salubrious influence, than to catch by fits the never knew before, and who have patience with rancid breath of demagogues; than to swell and me, and look kindly while they teach me, and move under it without or against our will ; than to almost as if they were waiting for fresh questions. acquire the semblance of eloquence by the bitterNow let me hcar directly what you were about to ness of passion, the tone of philosophy by diapsay to Leontion.
pointment, or the credit of prudence by distrust? Epicurus. I was proceeding to remark that Can fortune, can industry, can desert itself, bestow temperance comes next; and temperance has on us anything we have not here? then its highest merit when it is the support of Leontion. And when shall those three meet! civility and politeness. So that I think I am The gods have never united them, knowing that right and equitable in attributing to politeness a men would put them asunder at their first apdistinguished rank, not among the ornaments of pearance. life, but among the virtues. And you, Leontion Epicurus. I am glad to leave the city as often and Ternissa, will have leaned the more pro- as possible, full as it is of high and glorious pensely toward this opinion, if you considered, as reminiscences, and am inclined much rather to I am sure you did, that the peace and concord of indulge in quieter scenes, whither the Graces and families, friends, and cities, are preserved by it: Friendship lead me. I would not contend even in other terms, the harmony of the world. with men able to contend with me. You, Leon
Ternissa. Leontion spoke of courage, you of tion, I see, think differently, and have composed temperance : the next great virtue, in the divi- at last your long-meditated work against the sion made by the philosophers, is justice. philosophy of Theophrastus.
Epicurus. Temperance includes it: for tem- Leontion. Why not? he has been praised abore perance is imperfect if it is only an abstinence his merits. from too much food, too much wine, too much Epicurus. My Lcontion ! you have inadvertconviviality, or other luxury. It indicates every ntly given me the reason and in of all conkind of forbcarance. Justice is forbearance from troversial writings. They flow not from a love of what belongs to another. Giving to this one truth or a regard for science, but from envy and rightly what that one would hold wrongfully, is ill-will
. Setting aside the evil of malignity, justice in magistrature, not in the abstract, and always hurtful to ourselves, not always to others, is only a part of its office. The perfectly tempe- there is weakness in the argument you have rate man is also the perfectly just man: but the adduced. When a writer is praised above his perfectly just man (as philosophers now define merits in his own times, he is certain of being him) may not be the perfectly temperate one: I estimated below them in the times succeeding. include the less in the greater.
Paradox is dear to most people: it bears the Leontion. We hear of judges, and upright ones appearance of originality, but is usually the talent too, being immoderate eaters and drinkers. of the superficial, the perverse, and the obstinate.
Nothing is more gratifying than the attention in it: their pleasure is in chewing what is hard, you are bestowing on me, which you always appor- not in tasting what is savoury. tion to the seriousness of my observations. But, Epicurus. Unhappily the aged are retentive of Leontion! Leontion ! you defend me too earnestly. long-acquired maxims, and insensible to new The roses on your cheeks should derive their impressions, whether from fancy or from truth : bloom from a cooler and sweeter and more salu- in fact, their eyes blend the two together. Well brious fountain. In what mythology can you might the poet tell us, tell me, Ternissa ?) is Friendship the mother of
Fewer the gifts that gnarled Age presents Anger?
To elegantly-handled Infancy, Ternissi. I can only tell you that Love lights Than elegantly-handed Infancy Anger's torch very often.
Presents to gnarled Age. From both they drop; Leontion. I dislike Theophrastus for his affected The middle course of life receives them all, contempt of your doctrines.
Save the light few that laughing Youth runs off with,
Unvalued as a mistress or a flower. Epicurus. Unreasonably, for the contempt of them; reasonably, if affected. Good men may Leontion. It is reported by the experienced differ widely from me, and wise ones misunder- that our last loves and our first are of equal intestand me; for, their wisdom having raised up to rest to us. them schools of their own, they have not found Ternissa. Surely they are. What is the differleisure to converse with me; and from others ence? Can you really mean to say, O Leontion, they have received a partial and inexact report. that there are any intermediate? Why do you My opinion is, that certain things are indifferent, look aside? And you, too, refuse to answer me and unworthy of pursuit or attention, as lying so easy and plain a question ? beyond our research and almost our conjecture; Leontion to Epicurus. Although you teach us which things the generality of philosophers (for the necessity of laying a strong hand on the strong the generality are speculative) deem of the first affections, you never pull one feather from the importance. Questions relating to them I answer wing of Love. evasively, or altogether decline. Again, there Epicurus. I am not so irreligious. are modes of living which are suitable to some Ternissa. I think he could only twitch it just and unsuitable to others. What I myself follow enough to make the gentle god turn round, and and embrace, what I recommend to the studious, smile on him. to the irritable, to the weak in health, would ill Leontion. You know little about the matter, agree with the commonality of citizens. Yet my but may live to know all. Whatever we may talk adversaries cry out, “ Such is the opinion and of torments, as some do, there must surely be practice of Epicurus.” For instance, I have never more pleasure in desiring and not possessing, taken a wife, and never will take one: but he than in possessing and not desiring. from among the mass who should avow his Epicurus. Perhaps so : but consult the intelliimitation of my example, would act as wisely gent. Certainly there is a middle state between and more religiously in saying that he chose love, and friendship, more delightful than either, celibacy because Pallas had done the same. but more difficult to remain in.
Leontion. If Pallas had many such votaries she Leontion. To be preferred to all others is the would soon have few citizens.
supremacy of bliss.
Do not you think so, Epicurus. And extremely bad ones if all fol- Ternissa ? lowed me in retiring from the offices of magis- Ternissa. It is indeed what the wise and the tracy and of war. Having seen that the most powerful and the beautiful chiefly aim at: Leonsensible men are the most unhappy, I could not tion has attained it. but examine the causes of it: and finding that Epicurus. Delightful, no doubt, is such suprethe same sensibility to which they are indebted macy: but far more delightful is the certainty for the activity of their intellect, is also the rest that there never was anyone quite near enough less mover of their jealousy and ambition, I would to be given up for us. To be preferred is hardly lead them aside from whatever operates upon a compensation for having been long compared. these, and throw under their feet the terrors their The breath of another's sigh bedims and hangs • imagination has created. My philosophy is not pertinaciously about the image we adore. for the populace nor for the proud : the ferocious Leontion. When Friendship has taken the place will never attain it: the gentle will embrace it, of Love, she ought to make his absence as little a but will not call it mine. I do not desire that cause of regret as possible, and it is gracious in they should : let them rest their heads upon that her to imitate his demeanour and his words. part of the pillow which they find the softest, and Epicurus. I can repeat them more casily than enjoy their own dreams unbroken.
imitate them. Leontion. The old are all against you : for the Ternissa. Both of you, until this moment, were name of pleasure is an affront to them : they looking grave; but Leontion has resumed her know no other kind of it than that which has smiles again on hearing what Epicurus can do. flowered and seeded, and of which the withered I wish you would repeat to me, o Epicurus, any sters have indeed a rueful look. What we call dry words so benign a God hath vouchsafed to teach they call sound: nothing must retain any juice you; for it would be a convincing proof of your