[ 501 ] Pacem, et amorem, et concordiam invexit Deus: Partes et factiones, et privatas utilitates cum alienis damnis, sicut etiam dissidia, rixas contentiones, bella, Diabolus peritissimus horum artifex.
[ 501 ] [God has brought in peace, love, and concord. Divisions and factions and personal gain at others' loss, just like dissension, quarrels, fights, and wars -- these the Devil has introduced, the most expert craftsman of such as these.
[ 502 ] Concordiâ etiam pusilla coalescunt; discordiâ maxima dissipantur.
[ 502 ] Concord makes even the most trivial things come together; discord makes even the most important ones come apart. [Lit: By means of concord,... etc.]
[ 503 ] Neminem irriteris, cogitans quod uni alicui accidit, posse cuivis accidere. Age potius Deo gratias quod te extra eam fortem posuerit, et ora, tum tibi ne quid tale accidat, tum illi sic afflicto saltem remedium aliquod, vel aequum animum, et ipse subveni, si potes.
[ 503 ] Don't laugh at anyone [irriseris], thinking that what has happened to one, can happy to anyone. Rather thank God that he has spared you that accident, and pray both that no such thing happen to you and that there be some help for the one that has been so afflicted, even a mind at peace, and help him yourself, if you are able.
[ 504 ] Nullae sunt certiores opes, quam certae amicitiae. Nullum potentius satellitium, quam amici fideles.
[ 504 ] There are no better resources than sure friendships. There are no more powerful companions than faithful friends.
[ 505 ] Solem e mundo tollit, qui e vita amicitiam.
[ 505 ] He takes the sun away from the world, who takes friendship from one's life.
[ 506 ] Vera, et solida, et duratura amicitia tantummodo est inter bonos, inter quos facile amor coalescit.
[ 506 ] True and real and lasting friendship exists only among the good, among whom mutual love easily makes a union.
[ 507 ] Mali nec inter se amici sunt, nec cum bonis.
[ 507 ] Bad people are friends neither among themselves, nor with those who are good.
[ 508 ] Ut ameris certissima et brevissima est per amorem via. Nihil enim sic amorem elicit, ut amor.
[ 508 ] The surest and shortest way to be loved is by love. For nothing elicits love the way love does.
[ 509 ] Amicitiae venenum, si ames tanquam osurus, et amicum sic habeas, ut putes posse inimicum fieri.
[ 509 ] It is poison for a friendship if you love as if you are going to hate, and if you regard a friend in such a way that you think he can be an enemy.
[ 510 ] Ne in alienas vitas inquiras, neve curiosus scruteris quid quisque agat: multae hinc suboriuntur simultates. Praeterea stultum est alios probe nosse, seipsum ignorare.
[ 510 ] Don't investigate other people's lives and do not not inquisitively examine what each one is doing: many quarrels arise from this. Moreover, it is foolish to know others accurately and be ignorant about yourself.
[ 511 ] Convicium convicio regere est lutum luto purgare.
[ 511 ] To direct insult at insult is to clean mud with mud.
[ 512 ] Assentatio deforme vitium: turpe, illi qui dicit; perniciosum, ei qui audit.
[ 512 ] Flattery is an awful vice -- shameful for the one who speaks it, and destructive for the one who hears it.
[ 513 ] Sermone utitor modesto, civili, comi: non aspero, non rusticano, vel imperito, sed nec accurato, aut affectato nimis.
[ 513 ] Adopt a kind of speech that is restrained, courteous, and gracious, not harsh, countrified or sloppy, but not too precise or artificial.
[ 514 ] Ne celeritatem in loquendo nimiam suscipias, nec cogitationem praevertant verba nec respondeas, antequam qua de re plene intellexeris, et quid ille, cui respondes, dixerit senseritque.
[ 514 ] Don't take too quick a pace in speaking or let your words get ahead of your thought; and don't answer before you have fully understood the meaning of any matter and what the one you are answering has said and meant.
[ 515 ] Rarissimum debet esse pervulgatum illud, Quicquid in buccam, ac nescio an usquam admittendum, quum inter amicos cavendum sit, ne quid dicamus, quod amicitiam dirimat aut laedat.
[ 515 ] Very seldom should that famous saying be sent around, Whatever in the mouth..., and and I wonder whether it should ever be allowed since between friends there always has to be care taken that we not say anything that might tear or injure the friendship.
[ 516 ] In differendo ne sis contentiosus aut pertinax. Si verum audias, hoc protinus silentio reverere, illique tanquam divinae rei assurgito.
[ 516 ] In disagreeing, do not be argumentative or stubborn. If you hear the truth, reverence it in silence, and rise before it, as if for a sacred ceremony.
[ 517 ] Sin non audias, nihilominus concede hoc vel amico, vel modestiae tuae, praesertim ubi nullum neque probi mores detrimentum accipiunt, neque pietas.
[ 517 ] But if you do not hear it, allow it anyway, either for your friend or your modesty, especially when it causes no loss to your good character or to your religious devotion.
[ 518 ] Quod taceri vis, prior ipse taceas: sin detecturus es, vide etiam atque etiam cui.
[ 518 ] What you wish kept quiet, first keep quiet about yourself, but if you are going to reveal it, consider repeatedly to whom you are going to reveal it.
[ 519 ] Nec mendax sis nec mordax.
[ 519 ] Do not be deceptive or caustic.
[ 520 ] Si mendacem te homines norint, nemo credet tibi, etiamsi affirmes verissima.
[ 520 ] If people know that you are deceptive, no one will believe you even if you state the purest truth.
[ 521 ] Contra si veracem, majorem habebit fidem nutus tuus, quam aliorum sanctissimum jusiurandum.
[ 521 ] On the other hand, if people know that you are honest, your word will command a greater confidence than the most sacred oath that others give.
[ 522 ] Miser is est qui id egit, unde extricare se non potest, nisi per mendacium.
[ 522 ] The one who has gotten himself into a situation that he can get out of only by lying is a sorry fellow.
[ 523 ] Ne expectes dum necessitates ad te suas familiaris amicus deferat; tu illas odorare, et iis ultro subvenias.
[ 523 ] Don't wait until a close friend tells you about his urgent needs; you get wind of them and help him on your own initiative.
[ 524 ] Parentem non amabis solum, sed secundum Deum unice venerabere.
[ 524 ] Do not only give love to your parent but the deepest respect, immediately after God.
[ 525 ] Crede te illi esse carum a quo amice reprehenderis. Nec unquam reprehensionem obesse puta vel inimici. Nam si vera objicit, ostendit quod emendemus: sin falsa, quod vitemus: ita semper vel meliores reddit , vel cautiores.
[ 525 ] Believe that you are dear to the one from whom you get a kind rebuke. And never think that rebuking is an obstacle even when it comes from an enemy. For if it raises valid objections, it is pointing out what we should correct; but if false, what we should avoid. Thus it always makes us better, or more careful.
[ 526 ] Esto in admittendis ad familiaritatem cunctantior: in retinendis semel admissis constantior.
[ 526 ] Be rather slow in taking others into your close confidence, and rather steadfast about keeping them once you've accepted them.
[ 527 ] Ex bestiis exitiabilis maxime inter feras, Invidia; inter mansuetas, Adulatio.
[ 527 ] With respect to the animals, the especially deadly thing among the wild ones is jealousy; among the tame ones, flattery.
[ 528 ] Si reprehendi fers aegre, reprehendenda ne feceris.
[ 528 ] If you can't take criticism well, don't do things that deserve it.
[ 529 ] Natura nostra in malum fertur prona: ad virtutem autem acclivis est, atque ardua semita.
[ 529 ] Our nature inclines down towards evil; but towards virtue the slope rises up and the path is difficult.
[ 530 ] In minores praebe te comem: in majores reverentem: in pares facilem ac tractabilem.
[ 530 ] To those younger than you, be kind; to your elders, respectful; to your peers, approachable and easy to deal with.
[ 531 ] Si virtute non excellis, cur postulas videri aliis potior? Si excellis, cur affectibus moderandis non plusquam vulgus praestas?
[ 531 ] If you are not outstanding in virtue, why do you insist on seeming better than others? If you are outstanding, why don't you surpass the common people more in the control of your disposition?
[ 532 ] Oculus domini singula intuetur; ipse novit et facientem injuriam, et patientem.
[ 532 ] The Lord's eye is watching over each thing; he knows both the one doing harm and the one suffering it.
[ 533 ] Pluris facias judicium conscientiae tuae, quam voces omnes ingentis multitudinis, quae imperita et stulta est: ignota temere ut probat, sic et damnat.
[ 533 ] Put more value on the judgment of your conscience than on all the voices of the vast crowd of people, which is inexperienced and foolish: as it is afraid to try what is unknown, so also it condemns it.
[ 534 ] Fama nec profutura malo, nec laesura bonum.
[ 534 ] Reputation neither helps someone who is wicked nor hurts someone who is good.
[ 535 ] Mortuus quid plus referes de fama, quam pictura Apellis laudata? aut equus in Olympia victor? nec vivo quidem prodest, si eam ignorat: si novit, nihil adfert aliud, nisi ut sapiens contemnat, insipiens sibi magis placeat.
[ 535 ] When you are dead, what more will reputation mean to you than a picture praised by Apelles or a champion horse at Olympia? It doesn't even profit you while you are alive, if you are unaware of it. If a person knows it, it contributes nothing except that a wise person will have scorn for it and a foolish person will have greater self-satisfaction.
[ 536 ] Conscientia magna est hujus vitae magistra.
[ 536 ] Conscience is a great teacher about this life.
[ 537 ] Qui numinis curam abjiciunt, ut audacius, et securius peccent; ii dupliciter sunt mali, quod nec homines reverentur, nec Deum.
[ 537 ] There are those who reject concern for the divine power to sin more boldly and freely; they are doubly wicked, because they respect neither people nor God.
[ 538 ] Conscientia ista effuse delinquit, quae nullo metu coercetur.
[ 538 ] That conscience that no fear restrains goes far astray.
[ 539 ] Laborem pro aeterno et coelesti praemio, quis nisi amens refugiat? quum nec caduca haec et fragilia citra laborem acquirantur.
[ 539 ] Who but a madman would shirk efforts made in return for an eternal heavenly reward? After all, you can't even get these perishable and shoddy things without work.
[ 540 ] Peccatum hominis mors est, ut jugulare se ipsum videatur quisquis peccat. Abducit enim se a Deo vita nostra, et a quiete conscientiae suae, qua nihil est beatius.
[ 540 ] Sin is the death of a person, so whoever sins appears to be murdering himself. For our life detaches itself from God and from the peace of one's conscience, than which nothing is more blessed.
[ 541 ] Ut unus dies humanae vitae praeferendus est longissimae aetati corvi aut cervi: ita dies unus ex religione actus, hoc est, divinae vitae, toti aeternitati sine religione est anteponendus.
[ 541 ] Just as a single day of human life is preferable to the longest lifetime of a raven or a stag, so one day lived on the basis of religion -- that is , one day of divine life -- ranks above to all eternity without religion.
[ 542 ] Facetiae, et argute dicta.
[ 542 ] Witticisms and striking utterances.
[ 543 ] Publius ubi Mutium imprimis malevolum solito tristiorem vidisset, Aut Mutio (inquit) nescio quid incommodi accessit, aut nescio cui aliquid boni.
[ 543 ] When Publius had noticed that Mutius, an especially grumpy person, was gloomier than usual, he said, "Either something bad has happened to Mutius -- or something good."
[ 544 ] Augustus Caesar exceptus a quodam coena satis parca, et quasi quotidiana (nam pene nulli se invitanti negabat) post epulum inops, ac sine ullo apparatu discedens, valedicenti hoc tantum insusurravit: Non putabam me tibi tam familiarem.
[ 544 ] When a certain person received Augustus Caesar with a meager enough dinner, one even approaching a regular everyday meal (for the emperor refused almost no one who invited him), after the skimpy banquet, while he was leaving without any fanfare, he merely muttered to the host who was telling him good-bye, "I didn't think we were so close."
[ 545 ] Interroganti quanam hora diei prandendum esset? Diviti, inquit, ubi velit, pauperi quum possit.
[ 545 ] To someone asking him at what time one ought to take the mid-day meal, he said, "For a somebody rich, whenever he wants, and for somebody poor, whenever he can."
[ 546 ] Diogenes interrogatus, quo vino maxime delectaretur, Alieno, inquit.
[ 546 ] Diogenes, when asked what wine he liked best, said, "Somebody else's."
[ 547 ] Quidam rogabat unde palleret aurum? Diogenes respondit, Quia nusquam non haberet insidiatores.
[ 547 ] Someone asked where gold got its light color from. Diogenes answered, "Because it never has a moment when it has no muggers."
[ 548 ] Diogenes Myndum profectus, quum vidisset portas ingentes, urbem vero exiguam, O viri, inquit, Myndi, portas occludite, ne quando urbs vestra egrediatur.
[ 548 ] Diogenes on his way to Myndum, when he noticed that the front gates were huge but the city small, said, "Mynidians, shut your gates so your city doesn't leave you someday."
[ 549 ] Prandebat in foro Diogenes: Proinde ab his qui astabant, canis appellatus: Vos, inquit, canes estis, qui me prandentem circumstatis.
[ 549 ] Diogenes was taking his lunch in the marketplace and he was called a dog by some who stood at a distance. "You are the dogs," he said, "since you are standing around watching me eat."
[ 550 ] Scorti cujusdam filio lapidem projicienti in concionem: Cave, inquit, ne patrem ferias.
[ 550 ] When the son of a certain prostitute threw a stone into an assembly, he told him, "Be careful that you don't hit your father!"
[ 551 ] Dionysius Syracusanus, detracta veste aurea Iovi Olympio, palleum ei laneum injecit, atque rogatus, quid ita faceret? Quoniam, inquit, aestate gravis est aurea vestis; hyeme frigida, laneum vero indumentum utrique tempori multo aptius.
[ 551 ] When Dionysius of Syracuse took the golden clothing from [the statue of] the Olympian Jupiter and dressed him in a woolen one, he was asked why he did that. He said, "Because in summertime, a golden outfit is heavy and in winter it is cold, but woolen wear goes much better in either season."
[ 552 ] Idem Dionysius quum Aesculapio barbam auream demi jussisset, affirmavit, Non convenire ut hujus pater Apollo imberbis, ipse vero, qui filius esset, barbatus conspiceretur.
[ 552 ] This very Dionysius, when he had ordered the golden beard taken off of [the statue of] Aesculapius, claimed, " It isn't right that his father Apollo be smooth-cheeked while the one that was his son is seen bearded."
[ 553 ] Fur quispiam Demosthenis lucubrationes, ejusque scriptiones paulo petulantius irridebat. Cui ille, Scio, inquit, me tibi molestum esse quod noctu lucernam accendo.
[ 553 ] Some thief was mocking the Demosthenes's research and writings a little too impudently. So he told the man, "I realize that I'm bothering you by burning a lamp at night."
[ 554 ] Quum Lacon uxorem duxisset perpusillam, lepide dicebat, E malis, quod minimum esset, eligendum.
[ 554 ] When Lacon had married a very small woman, he wittily said, "You have to pick the lesser evil."
[ 555 ] Quum adolescens quidam nimio luxu ad inopiam redactus, oleas in coena esitaret, Diogenes forte praeteriens, Si sic pransus, inquit, esses, non ita coenares.
[ 555 ] When a certain young man, reduced to poverty by too much expensive living, was eating olives for dinner, Diogenes, chancing to pass by, said, "If you had had lunches like this, you would not have dinners like this."
[ 556 ] Medicus quidam imperitus, quum Pausaniae diceret, Qui fit, o bone vir, quod nihil mali habeas? Quia, inquit, te medico non utor.
[ 556 ] When a certain inexperienced doctor asked Pausanias, "How is it, sir, that you have no health problems?", he said, "Because I don't have you for a doctor."
[ 557 ] Galba rogatus a quopiam ut utendam daret penulam, festive respondens, Non pluit, inquit, non opus est tibi; si pluat, ipse utar.
[ 557 ] Galba, asked by somebody for a raincoat to use, wittily answered, "It is not raining, so you don't need it. If it rains, I'll use it myself."
[ 558 ] Quum Aristoteles jam annos natus fere sexaginta duos adeo laboraret, ut admodum tenuis vitae spes superesset, convenerunt ad illum discipuli rogantes, ut ex ipsis aliquem deligeret, qui in locum ejus succederet. Inter auditores erant duo praecipui, Theophrastus Lesbius, et Menedemus Rhodius. Aristoteles respondit se, quod petebatur, facturum, ubi daretur opportunitas. Paulo post, quum rursus ad eum eadem de causa convenissent, dixit vinum quod biberet sibi parum esse commodum, ac quaeri jussit Exoticum, vel Rhodium, vel Lesbium. Id simulatque curatum est, gustato Rhodio, dixit: Firmum hercle vinum et jucundum. Mox gustato Lesbio: Utrumque, inquit, egregie bonum, sed Lesbium suavius. Id ubi dixit, nulli dubium fuit, quin lepide simul et verecunde successorem sibi ea voce, non vinum delegisset: Probavit utrumque, nec tamen auditoribus elegendi jus ademit. [Sed Graecus sermo plusculum habet civilitatis: quod oinos, id est vinum, sit generis masculini: ut haec vox, ho lesbios hediôn, possit et ad personam accommodari.]
[ 558 ] When Aristotle at the age of about 62 was working so hard that it seemed that his life was almost over, his followers came to him, asking to pick one of them to take his place. Among his students there were two outstanding ones, Theophrastus of Lesbos and Menedemus of Rhodes. Aristotle answered that he would do what they asked when the occasion arose. A little later, when they had gathered around him for the same purpose, he said that he found the wine that he was drinking not very agreeable, and he asked that someone get him a foreign wine, either one from Rhodes or from Lesbos. As soon as that was managed, tasting the wine from Rhodes, he said, "That's a downright robust and pleasant wine." Next tasting the wine from Lesbos, he said: "Both are outstandingly good, but I like the one from Lesbos better." When he said this, there was no doubt that with his statement he had chosen his successor, not wine, both politely and cleverly. He approved both and he did not remove from his students their prerogative to choose. [But the Greek language is a little bit more urbane, because oinos, that is, vinum, is a word of the masculine gender, so that this statement, ho lesbios hediôn might be used of a person.]
[ 559 ] Quidam e familiaribus Adriani Sophistae miserat illi pisces in disco argenteo, picturato auro: at ille delectatus vasculo, non remisit, tantum ei, qui miserat, respondit: Bene facis quod etiam pisces: quasi discus esset dono missus, pisces tantum novitatis gratia additi. Quidam autem dicunt joco factum, ut castigaret discipuli vitium, qui sordidior esse dicebatur.
[ 559 ] A certain person in Hadrian the Sophist's circle had sent him fish on a silver platter with a gold design on it. But taking delight in the dishware, he did not send it back, but merely answered the one who had sent it, "It was a nice touch to add the fish," as if the platter had been sent as a gift and the fish merely added for effect. Some say this was done as a joke, to punish his disciple's fault, since he was said to be rather stingy.
[ 560 ] Pollio dicebat, commode agendo factum est, ut saepe agerem: sed saepe agendo factum est, ut minus commode: quia scilicet assiduitate nimia facilitas magis, quam facultas, nec fiducia, sed temeritas paratur. Quod accurate factum velimus, raro faciendum est.
[ 560 ] Pollio would say that doing something just right leads to doing it often, but doing it often leads to doing it less well: for constant performance produces facility more than faculty, and not confidence but rashness results. What we want done with care should be done seldom.
[ 561 ] Philoxenus quondam coenans apud Dionysium, quoniam animadvertebat regi appositum piscem Mullum insigni magnitudine, quum ipsi appositus esset perpusillus (in piscium enim genere laudantur adulti), pisciculum auribus admovit. Id factum admiranti Dionysio causamque percontanti: In manibus, inquit, est Galatea, de qua volebam ex hoc quaedam percontari. Verum negat se per aetatem quicquam adhuc scire, sed ait proavum suum istic esse in tuo disco, qui multa posset commemorare si liceat alloqui. Exhilaratus rex misit illi suum Mullum.
[ 561 ] Once at dinner with Dionysius, Philoxenus saw that the king had been served a remarkably large red mullet but he had been served a very tiny one, the mature fish of this species being the ones that people praise. So he moved his little fish to his ears. To Dionysius wondering at this and asking him the reason for it, he said, "I've got my clutches on Galatea, and I wanted to ask it certain things about her. But he says he is not old enough to know anything yet, but he says his grandfather is over there on your plate, and he could tell a lot if someone let him speak." The king was amused and sent him his own mullet.
[ 562 ] Cuculo minores aviculas percontanti, cur ipsam fugerent: Quoniam, inquiebant, suspicamur te aliquando futurum accipitrem. Coccyx enim specie non multum differt ab acciptre. [Cavendum ab iis qui tyrannidis specimen moribus edunt.] Ex Plutarch.
[ 562 ] When the cuckoo-bird asked the smaller birds why they fled her, they said, "Because we suppose you'll turn out to be a hawk." (The cuckoo is quite close to the hawk in appearance.) [Beware of those who put out tyrannical signals in their behavior.] From Plutarch.
[ 563 ] Quum Antisthenes ipse salsamenta per forum gestaret, id quibusdam admirantibus quod Philosophus officio tam sordido fungeretur, idque in publico, ac non potius servo delegasset: Quid, inquit, admiramini? Haec mihi porto, non aliis. Sentiens nullum esse sordidum obsequium quod sibi quis impenderet: dein non esse indecorum, eum portare salsamenta, qui salsamentis vesceretur.
[ 563 ] When Antisthenes was carrying some salted fish through the market-place himself, some people were surprised that the philosopher was performing such a lowly task, and that in public, rather than assigning it to a slave. He said to them, "What are you surprised at? I'm carrying this for myself, not for somebody else." He saw that what someone does for himself is not base servility, so carrying salted fish was not improper for one who was going to enjoy them.
[ 564 ] [Stilpo videns Cratetem hybernis mensibus frigore rubentem: Dokeis, inquit, moi chreian echein himatia kaine. Lepos qui est in vocis ambiguo, Latine reddi non potest: kaine conjunctim, sonat novo, kai ne disiunctim, sonat et mente: Discrimen auribus vix sentiri potest, scripto potest ostendi. Videris, inquit, egere pallio novo, sive pallio et mente. Novum requirebat gelu; mentem, Cynici stultitia, qui vestem non accommmodaret tempori.]
[ 564 ] Stilpo, seeing Crates turning red from the cold in the winter months, said, "You seem to me to need a new cloak." The wit that it is in the double meaning cannot be translated into Latin: kaine as one word means new, an kai ne as two means and mind. The ears can hardly tell the difference, but the written form makes it plain. He said, "You seem to be needing a new cloak, or a [new] cloak and a [new] mind." The chill called for a new [cloak]; the foolishness of the Cynic, who would not adapt his clothing to the season, for a new mind.
[ 565 ] Menedemus Eretriensis percontanti cuidam, an patrem caedere desivisset, respondit: Neque caecidi, neque desii. Quum alter subjecisset, oportere solvere ambiguitatem per kai et ek, aut affirmando, aut negando: Ridiculum, inquit, est vestras sequi leges, cum liceat in portis occurrere. Alter captabat illum insidiosa percontatione: sive enim respondisset, desii, sive non desii, agnovisset crimen. Ille hoc praesentiens exclusit sophisticum cavillum.
[ 565 ] When someone asked him whether he had stopped beating his father, Menedemus of Eretria made this response: I have not beaten him and I have not stopped. When another person had postulated that he had to solve the ambiguity with a yes or a no, with either an affirmation or with a denial, he said, "It is ridiculous to follow your rules when you can run into them at the gates." The second one was trying to catch him with a treacherous line of questioning, for whether he would have answered "I have stopped" or "I have not stopped, he would have been admitting to the charge." Seeing this coming, he put a stop to the sophistic word-games.
[ 566 ] Bion rogatus essetne ducenda uxor: Si deformem, inquit, duxeris, habebis poenam: sin formosam, habebis communem. In Graecis vocibus plusculum est jucunditatis, peinio et koinio. Nec minus latinis inest, si hanc dicamus, suspectam: illam despectam.]
[ 566 ] Bion when asked whether he should marry a wife, said, "If you marry an ugly one, you'll have to bear her, but if you marry a beautiful one, you'll have to share her." In the Greek words, there's a bit more play: peinio and koinio. There's just as much in Latin too if we'd say suspectam [admired] and for the former despectam [looked down upon].
[ 567 ] [Epictetus Philosophiae summam duobus verbis comprehendere solitus est, aneche kai apoche, Sustine et Abstine: quorum prius admonet, ut mala, quae incurrunt, aequo animo toleremus: posterius, ut a voluptatibus temperemus. Ita enim fiet, ut nec adversis dejiciamur, nec prosperis corrumpamur.
[ 567 ] [Epictetus was accustomed to sum up all philosophy in two words: aneche kai apoche, "Sustain and Forbear." The first of these directs us to endure with a calm spirit the troubles that come our way; the second, to refrain from pleasures. So it will come about that we are not dejected when things go against us, and we are not spoiled when they turn out in our favor.
[ 568 ] Heraclitus Ephesius dicebat cives non minus oportere pugnare pro legibus quam pro moenibus. Quod absque legibus nullo pacto possit esse civitas incolumis, absque moenibus possit.]
 Heraclitus of Ephesus used to say that citizens should fight for their laws no less than for their walls. That is to say, a city would not in any way be able to be safe apart from its laws, and apart from its walls it could.]
[ 569 ] Galba corpus habens gibbo deforme, de quo vulgo jactatum est, Ingenium Galbae male habitare; quum apud Caesarem causam agens subinde diceret: Corrige me Caesar, si quid in me reprehendendum videris: Ego, inquit, Galba monere te possum: corrigere non possum.
[ 569 ] Galba had an unsightly hump on his back, about which people joked, "It is just like Galba to live in a bad residence!" When he would promote a cause in Caesar's presence, he would regularly say, "Straighten me out, Caesar, if you find anything to blame in me." The other answered, "I can counsel you, Galba, but I cannot straighten you out."
[ 570 ] Quum plaerique rei quos Severus Cassius accusabat, absolverentur; et is cui Caesar forum extruendum locarat, diu traheret illum operis expectatione: Vellem, inquit, Cassius et forum meum accusasset.
[ 570 ] When a very great number of those indicted by Severus Cassius were released [absolverentur] and the engineer Caesar had contracted for construction work on the forum kept leading him on for a long time with delays, he said "I wish Cassius had also indicted my forum!" [Absolvere also means "to finish."]
[ 571 ] Narrant Alexandrum Magnum astantem Diogeni, quaesisset ab eo, num ipsum metueret. At ille: Quid es? Bonum an malum? Alexander respondit; Bonum. Quis, inquit, timet bonum? [Convicit regem non esse metuendum, nisi se malum esse profiteretur.]
[ 571 ] They say that Alexander the Great, standing by Diogenes, had asked him whether he was afraid of him. But he said: "What are you, good or evil?" Alexander replied, "Good." He answered, "Who is afraid of what is good?" [He demonstrated that a king ought not be feared unless he confesses that he is evil.]
[ 572 ] Quum Diogenes in dolio, sicco mucidoque pane vescens solus, audiret totam urbem laetitiâ perstrepentem (erat enim dies festus) sensit animo nonnihil taedii, diuque secum de relinquendo vitae instituto cogitavit. Sed quum tandem mures videret adrepentes, panisque micas edere: Quid tibi displices, inquit, O Diogenes, sat magnificus es, ecce etiam parasites alis.
[ 572 ] Once Diogenes, alone in his barrel, feeding on dry and moldy bread, heard the whole city buzzing with all kinds of happy sounds since it was a holiday. He felt somewhat dejected, and for a long time thought about abandoning his way of life. But when he finally saw mice creeping up and eating the breadcrumbs, he said, "Why are you unhappy with yourself. Diogenes, you are rich enough -- look you are even providing meals for guests."
[ 573 ] Quidam in publico gestans longam trabem, per imprudentiam percusserat Diogenem, moxque ex more dixit: Cave. At Diogenes, Num, inquit, me vis iterum percutere?
[ 573 ] A certain man carrying around a long club in public had struck Diogenes by accident and blurted out instinctively "Watch out!" But Diogenes said, "Now you are not going to hit me again, are you?"
[ 574 ] Diogenes quodam tempore quum diutissime legens, tandem eo venisset, ut videret chartam vacuam, Bono, inquit, animo estote viri, terram video.
[ 574 ] When Diogenes, reading on a certain occasion for an extremely long time, had gotten to the point where he saw blank space, he said, "Courage, men, I see land."
[ 575 ] Alexander Thrasyllo Cynico petenti drachmam, Non est, respondit, munus regium. Cynico subjiciente: Talentum igitur da: At non, inquit, Cynicum tale munus accipere. [Utroque cornu repulit postulatoris improbitatem, quem existimabat nullo dignum beneficio.]
[ 575 ] When Thraysullus the Cynic asked for a drachma, Alexander answered, "It is not the type of gift that a king gives." When the Cynic added, "So give me a talent," he said, "But it is not Cynic-like to take such a gift." [On both sides, he rebuffed the shamelessness of the one making the request, whom he did not consider worthy of any gift.]
[ 576 ] Faustus Syllae filius, in sororem, quae eodem tempore cum duobus adulteris haberet consuetudinem, Fulvio Fullonis filio, et Pompeio cognomine Macula, facetissime lusit: Miror, inquit, sororem meam habere maculam, quum Fullonem habeat.
[ 576 ] Faustus, Sulla's son, very cleverly teased his sister, who was seeing two married men at the same time, Fulvius, the son of Fullo, and Pompey, nicknamed Macula. He said, "I am surprised that my sister has a macula [spot] when she has a fullo [launderer].
[ 577 ] Vespasianus reprehendenti filio Tito, quod etiam urinae vectigal commentus esset, Pecuniam ex prima pensione admovit ad nares, sciscitans num odore offenderetur, et illo negante, atqui, inquit, e lotio est. Hinc illud, Bonus odor lucri ex re qualibet.
[ 577 ] [When his son Titus was taking him to task over having devised a tax even on the latrines, Vespasian waved money from the first payment under his nose, asking him whether he found the smell offensive. When he said he didn't, Vespasian replied, "And yet it comes from urine." Hence the saying, "The smell of profit is good no matter what the source."
[ 578 ] Virgilius vates suspirabundus ubique observatus est. Unde facetum illud Augusti responsum, inter hunc ipsum sedentis, et Flaccum Horatium, qui oculorum lippitudine laboravit, rogatus a quodam amicorum, quid ageret, Sedeo, inquit, inter suspiria et lachrymas.
[ 578 ] The poet Virgil was noticed to be constantly letting out sighs. This is the source of that well-known answer of Augustus, when he was sitting between him and Flaccus Horatius, who was troubled with bleary-eyes. Asked by one of his friends about what he was doing, he said, "I am sitting between sighs and tears."
[ 579 ] Diverterat aliquando quidam, peregre iter faciens, ad diversorium, ubi apposita est ei coena omni ex parte olitoria, vinum item dilutissimum, omnia demum administrata parcissime. Postquam autem coenasset, jussit vocari ad se medicum ad mercedem capiendam. Caupo respondit: Ecquid malum in viculo maxime agresti medicum requiris? Tum ille, numne, o bone, tete ipsum ignoras? Quo merces operae tuae par sit, medici precium accipe, non cauponis, quando ut aegrotum me pavisti in coenula.
[ 579 ] Once a certain traveler making a journey abroad had turned aside into an inn, where an entirely vegetarian meal was set before him, with very watered-down wine, and a minimum of service. But after he had had his dinner, he asked that the doctor be called to get his fee. The inn-keeper answered, "What kind of trouble do you need a doctor for in this place that is so far out of the way? The he said, "Sir, don't you know who you are? To make the fee fit your service, take what a doctor costs rather than an inn-keeper, since you fed me like a sick man at this poor little dinner."
[ 580 ] Pyrrhiniculus Vasco ad hospitium quoddam diverterat, atque apposita mensa anaticulam versabat in lancibus perbelle unctam, atque alliatam. Ingreditur de repente ad illum viator hispanus, injectisque in anaticulam oculis, Potes, inquit, o amice advenientem comiter amicum accipere. Tum Pyrrhiniculus, quo nomine ipse esset exquirit. Audenter ille, ac jactabundus, Alopantius, inquit, Ausimarchides Hiberoneus Alarchides. Pape, tum Pyrrhiniculus, quatuorne avicula haec heroibus, et quidem Hispanis? Absit injuria. Ea Pyrrhiniculo satis est uni: minutos enim decent minuta. Ex Pontano.
[ 580 ] Pyrrhiniculus the Basque had pulled off the road to an inn and at supper was turning a young duck on his plate, nicely dressed and seasoned. Suddenly a Spanish traveler appeared at his side, with his eyes glued to the duck. "You, friend, can receive one coming kindly as a friend." Then Pyrrhiniculus asked him what his name was. Full of self-assertion and self-importance, he said "Alopantius Ausimarchides Hiberoneus Alarchides." Then Pyrrhiniculus said, "Wow! Are there four birds here for these heroes, and Spanish ones at that? No offense intended. It is enough for Pyrrhiniculus alone: Small servings fit small people." From Pontanus.
[ 581 ] Diogenes cum ridere vellet imperitum sagittandi hominem, scopo se admovebat; rogatus cur ita faceret, Ne me feriat, inquit.
[ 581 ] When Diogenes wanted to mock a man who was very bad at archery, he positioned himself near the target. Asked why he did this, he said "So he doesn't hit me."
[ 582 ] Puer Florentinus et argutus et perurbanus, adductus ante sacerdotem Cardinalem jocandi gratia, multa cum facete admodum nec minus etiam scite dixisset, sacerdosque ipse ad amicum qui astabat conversus, susurasset hujusmodi pueros consuesse ubi ad aetatem pervenissent robustiorem, ingenio subcrassescere. Nae, inquit, O bone Cardinalus, puerulum te oportuit scitum fuisse admodum.
[ 582 ] A sharp and thoroughly sophisticated Florentine youth, brought in before a priest-Cardinal for amusing conversation, had spoken at length quite cleverly and also even brilliantly. The priest, turning to a friend who was standing nearby, whispered that when boys like this grow up their wits usually get rather dull. "Really, good Cardinal, you must have been quite a brilliant little boy."
[ 583 ] Quidam canescens ab Adriano Caesare quiddam petierat, et repulsus est. Is cum aliquanto post idem peteret, sed capillitio nigro (nam id tinctura fecerat) Caesar agnoscens faciem: Istuc inquit, negavi patri tuo.
[ 583 ] A particular man who was growing grey asked Emperor Hadrian for something and was refused. When he asked for the same thing a little later, but now with a head of black hair (for he had dyed it), the Emperor, recognizing his face, said, "That very thing I refused your father."
[ 584 ] Quum Minutius hostium insidiis septus in summo esset periculo, ne cum suis copiis periret, Fabius e monte movens exercitum venit illi auxilio, multisque trucidatis hostibus ipsum eripuit. Hoc facto Hannibal ad suos dixit: Nonne vobis saepenumero praedixi fore, ut illa montana nubes nobis aliquando tempestatem immitteret?
[ 584 ] When Minutius was trapped by and enemy ambush and was in extreme danger, Fabius, mobilizing his army from a mountain came to his aid so that he would not perish with his troops, and slaughtering many of the enemy, he pulled him out of the danger. When this had happened, Hannibal said to his own army: "Didn't I predict to you a good number of times that that mountain-cloud would someday send a storm down on us?"
[ 585 ] Iulia Augusti filia quum patrem salutaret, senserat illius oculos licentiore cultu offensos, licet ille dissimularet: itaque postero die, mutato cultu patrem complexa est. Tum Caesar, qui pridie dolorem suum continuerat, gaudium continere non potuit. Et quanto magis, inquit, iste cultus decet Augusti filiam. Tum illa: Nimirum hodie me patris oculis ornavi, heri viri.
[ 585 ] When Augustus's daughter Julia greeted him, she had realized that he had been offended by the sight of her overly provocative outfit, although he tried to pretend he was not. And so one the next day she wore a different kind of outfit when she greeted her father with an embrace. Then the emperor who had contained his distress the day before could not contain his joy, and he said, "How much more becoming is that outfit for Augustus's daughter." She replied, "Yes, for sure--today I have dressed myself for my father's eyes; yesterday for a husband's."
[ 586 ] In spectaculo gladiatorum converterant in se populi oculos Livia et Iulia, comitatus dissimilitudine: Liviam cingebant viri graves, Iuliam juvenes luxuriosi comitabantur. Pater Iuliam admonuit scripto, videret quantum inter duas principes feminas interesset. Illa rescripsit: Et hi mecum senes fient.
[ 586 ] At the gladiatorial exhibition, Livia and Julia had attracted people's attention with the difference in their company. Mature and serious men encircled Livia, but exuberant young ones accompanied Julia. Julia's father mentioned to her through a note that he saw how big a difference there was between the two leading ladies. She wrote back: And these are going to grow old with me.
[ 587 ] Augustus etiamnum adolescens lepide tetigit Vatinium: siquidem is podagrae obnoxius, videri studebat discussisse vitium, ac jam mille passus ambulare se gloriabatur. Non miror, inquit Caesar, dies aliquanto sunt longiores.
[ 587 ] While Augustus was still in his youth, he cleverly scored against Vatinius. Since he was given to the pains of the gout, he was eager to seem to have shaken the affliction, and he would boast that he now walked a mile. "I'm not surprised," said the Emperor. "The days are a bit longer."
[ 588 ] Quispiam praefectura Equitum submotus, insuper et salarium ab Augusto postulare est ausus, hoc colore, ut diceret se non lucri causa salarium petere, sed ut tuo, inquit, judicio videar impetrasse munus, et ita credar non ab officio submotus, sed officium deposuisse: Tu, inquit Augustus, [original: inquit, Augustus,] apud omnes praedica te accepisse, ego non negabo.
[ 588 ] Removed from his command of the cavalry, a certain person dared to request additional pay from Augustus, with the excuse that he was not seeking the pay for financial gain, but, he said, "So that I might seem to have gotten the gift by your decision and this way it will not be thought that I had been removed but that I had resigned." Augustus said, "You go tell everybody that you took it, and I won't deny it."
[ 589 ] Domitianus Caesar initio principatus quotidie sibi secretum horarium sumere consuevit, nec interim aliud quam muscas captare, easque stylo praeacuto configere: ut cuidam interroganti, essetne quis intus cum Caesare, Vibius Crispus lepide responderit: Ne Musca quidem.
[ 589 ] At the beginning of his rule, Emperor Domitian was in the habit of taking private time for himself and doing nothing in the meantime other than catching flies and pinning them through with a sharply pointed stylus. So when someone asked if anyone was inside with the Emperor, Vibius Crispus quipped, "Not even a fly."
[ 590 ] Quum tres essent designati, qui legati proficiscerentur in Bithyniam, quorum unus podagra teneretur, alter caput haberet vulneribus confossum, tertius vecordia laborare videretur, Cato ridens dixit: Populi Romani legationem nec pedes habere, nec caput, nec cor.
[ 590 ] Three men had been appointed to set out for Bithynia as legates. One of them was detained by the gout, another had a head riddled with wounds, and the third seemed to be struggling with mental instability. Cato laughed and said, "The delegation representing the Roman people has neither feet nor head nor heart."
[ 591 ] Quum oeconomus Lucullo coenam modestam apparasset, accersitum objurgavit: illo dicente, Non putabam sumptuoso apparatu opus esse, quum solus esses coenaturus: Quid ais, inquit Lucullus? An ignorabas apud Lucullum hodie coenaturum Lucullum?
[ 591 ] When the steward had prepared a modest meal for Lucullus, he summoned him and berated him. The fellow said "I did not think that there was a need for a lavish spread because you were going to be dining alone." Lucullus said, "What are you saying? Didn't you know that today Lucullus was going to dinner at Lucullus's?"
[ 592 ] Idem quum Graecos quosdam per dies aliquot magnifice tractasset, atque illi dicerent se mirari, quod tantum impendiorum sua causa faceret: Nonnihil, o hospites, vestra causa, sed maxima pars Luculli gratia.
[ 592 ] When this same man had entertained some Greeks splendidly for several days, and they said that they were amazed that he would incur such expenses for their sake, he said, "Some was for you, my good guests, but the biggest part was for Lucullus's sake."
[ 593 ] Scipio Nasica quum ad poetam Ennium venisset, eique ab ostio quaerenti Ennium, ancilla dixisset eum domi non esse, Nasica sensit illam hoc domini jussu dicere, et illum intus esse. At tum quidem dissimulans abiit. At paucis post diebus quum ad Nasicam venisset Ennius, eumque a janua quaereret, exclamat ipse Nasica, se domi non esse. Tum Ennius. Quid? Ego, inquit, non agnosco vocem tuam? Hic Nasica: Nae tu homo es impudens, ego quum te quaererem ancillae tuae credidi, tu mihi non credis ipsi?
[ 593 ] When Scipio Nasica had come to Ennius the poet's house and asked for him at at door-way, the maid-servant had told him that he was not at home, but Nasica realized that she was saying this at her master's request and that he was inside. But pretending not to notice this, he left. But a few days later, When Ennius had come to Nasica and asked for him at the door, Nasica himself shouted out that he was not at home. Then Ennius said, "What!? Don't I recognize your voice?" Nasica replied, "You really are a shameless man! When I was looking for you, I believed your maid-servant, and you don't even believe me!"
[ 594 ] De Vespasiano patre narrat Suetonius, quum scurram multa in alios jacientem, provocasset, ut in se quoque diceret aliquid: Dicam, inquit, ubi ventrem exonerare desieris: alludens ad formam Caesaris, qui faciem habebat nitentis ---
[ 594 ] Suetonius tells a story about the Emperor [lit: father] Vespasian, when he had incited a comic who was hurling many barbs at others to say something against himself as well. He said, "I will -- when you finish doing your business," making reference to the Caesar's appearance, since he had a face like a man who was making an effort.
[ 595 ] Memoratur de Beda, quem Venerabilem dicunt, cui Romam profecto quum ostendissent has litteras saxo insculptas, S.P.Q.R. quibus significari volunt, Senatus Populusque Romanus, ac veluti hospes rogaretur, quid sibi vellent illae litterae, dissimulans dixit: Stultus Populus Quaerit Romam.
[ 595 ] They tell a story about Bede, referred to as "the Venerable,": When he was on his way to Rome, they showed him the letters S.P.Q.R. engraved on a stone (meaning "The Senate and the People of Rome"), and they asked him as they would a host what those letters meant. Pretending he didn't know the true meaning, he said, "A Foolish People is looking for Rome."
[ 596 ] Philoxenus Poeta interrogatus cur in tragoediis induceret mulieres malas, quum Sophocles eas induceret bonas, argutissime respondit: Quoniam, inquit, Ille tales inducit quales esse deberent; Ego, quales sunt.
[ 596 ] Asked why he put women who were wicked into his tragedies, when Sophocles put in ones that were good, the poet Philoxenus made this very clever response: "He presents them as they ought to be; I present them as they are."
[ 597 ] [Idem apud Sythonem amicum suum prandens, appositis oleis, quum paulo post inferretur patina piscium, percusso vasculo quod habebat oleas, Homericum hemistichium dixit: mastixen d'elaan, id est, scutica incitavit ut traherent. Nam de auriga dictum est. Sensit autem Philoxenus, oleas quamprimum auferendas, alludens interim ad Graecam vocem elaion, quae sonat olearum, et elaan, quod sonat trahere currum, aut aliquid simile.]
[ 597 ] [[When the same man was having a meal at his friend Sytho's, olives had been served and a little later fish brought in on a shallow pan. When it hit the small container of olives, he recited half of a Homeric line: musixen d'elaan, that is, "He whipped them so they would pull." (It is said of a charioteer.) But Philoxenus saw that the olives had to be taken away right away, and meanwhile he played on the Greek word elaion, which means of olives and elaan, which means to draw a chariot, or something like it.
[ 598 ] Idem vocatus ad convivium, quum esset appositus ater panis: Cave, inquit, multos apponas ne facias tenebras.
[ 598 ] The same man was invited to a party. When black bread had been served, he said, "Be careful not to serve too much or you'll make the room dark."
[ 599 ] Phryne aetate florens, in convivio, cui complures aderant foeminae, (quum juxta morem joci convivalis quod unusquispiam faceret, idem omnes facere cogerentur) prior manum bis aquae immersam admovit fronti. Quoniam autem omnes erant fucatae, aqua per lituram fucorum defluens, rugarum specie vultus omnium deformabat, quum ipse interim Phryne, quae naturali forma pollebat, speciosior etiam apparebat diluta facie.
[ 599 ] At a party, Phryne, in the bloom of her youth, when she was playing the party-game that had everyone do what one would do, first dipped her hand twice in water and moved it to her forehead. But since everyone had make-up on, the water flowed down and smeared the make-up, disfiguring everyone's face with a wrinkled look, while she herself, with her natural beauty at its best, looked even better with her face washed.
[ 600 ] Cornelia Gracchorum mater, quum Campana matrona illius hospitio utens, ornamenta sua quibus illud seculum nihil habebat pulchrius, ipsi ostenderet, traxit eam sermone donec liberi redirent e schola: Tum et haec, inquit, ornamenta mea sunt. Sentiens matronae nihil esse pulchrius, neque preciosius, quam liberos recte educatos.
[ 600 ] Once Cornelia, the mother of the Gracchi, was hosting a matron from Campana who displayed to her her jewels, which were the most beautiful ones available in that whole era. Cornelia drew out the conversation until her children got back from class. Then she said "And these are my jewels," thinking that nothing was more beautiful to a matron, or more precious, than children who had been brought up correctly.
[ 601 ] Omnibus Dionysio Tyranno exitium imprecantibus, una foemina anus quotidie diluculo deos comprecari solebat, ut esset incolumis et superstes. Accita a rege mulier rogata est, unde tanta in regem benevolentia? Quoniam, inquit, quum puella essem, et gravem tyrannum haberemus, optabam mortem illius. Eo interfecto, deterior arcem occupavit. Et hujus exitium optabam. Nunc quum te habeamus, superioribus etiam graviorem, vereor ne si tu pereas succedat etiam deterior.
[ 601 ] When everyone was begging for an end to the Tyrant Dionysius, one old woman was in the habit of imploring the gods early every day that he remain safe and sound. Summoned by the king, the woman was asked where she got so kind attitude toward the king. She said, "When I was a girl and we had a bad tyrant, I hoped for his death. When he had been killed, a worse one took control of the citadel. And I hope for his destruction. Now that we have you, even worse than the earlier ones, I am afraid that if you pass away someone even worse will follow you."
[ 602 ] Demonax Cynicus interrogatus quid sentiret de conflictu duorum, quorum alter inepte proponebat, alter absurde respondebat, ait, sibi videri alterum mulgere hircum, alterum supponere cribrum.
[ 602 ] Demonax the Cynic was once asked what he thought about the disagreement of two people, one of whom put forth a silly proposition and the other of whom gave a non-sensical response. He said, "It seems to me that one is milking a male goat and the other is holding a sieve ready."
[ 603 ] Socrates quum Xantippen diu rixantem tulisset in aedibus, ac tandem fessus consedisset ante fores, illa magis irritata quiete et lenitate viri, de fenestra perfudit eum lotio. Ridentibus qui praeteribant, et ipse Socrates arridebat, dicens: Facile divinabam, post tantum tonitru sequuturam pluviam.
[ 603 ] Once Socrates put up with Xanthippe's quarrelling for a long while, and finally worn out, he sat down in front of the door, but even more exasperated by the peacefulness and mildness of the man, she poured the contents of the chamber-pot on him from the window. The people passing by laughed, and he smiled too, saying to them: "I just knew that after such a thundering, rain would follow."
[ 604 ] Socrates Alcibiadi demiranti quod Xantippen supra modum rixosam domi perpeteretur, respondit: Nonne tu Alcibiades domi tuae toleras gallinarum tuarum glocientium strepitum? Tolero, inquit, sed gallinae mihi pariunt ova et pullos: Et mihi ait Socrates, mea Xantippe parit liberos.
[ 604 ] When Alcibiades was amazed at how Socrates suffered Xanthippe who was so excessively quarrelsome at home, he answered, "Don't you, Alcibiades, put up with the noise of your clucking chickens at your house?" He said, "I do, but my chickens produce eggs and chicks for me." "And my Xanthippe bears me children," said Socrates.
[ 605 ] Curtius eques Romanus delitiis diffluens, quum apud Caesarem coenaret, macrum turdum sustulit e patina, eumque tenens, interrogavit Caesarem, liceretne mittere; quumque is respondisset, quidni liceat? Ille protinus avem misit per fenestram, iocum arripiens ex ambiguitate verbi. Nam apud Romanos erat solenne cibum e convivio dono amicis mittere.
[ 605 ] When Curtius, a Roman knight dissipating himself in his enjoyments, was dining at Caesar's, he picked up a skimpy thrush from the serving-pan and holding it, asked Caesar if he could send it. When he had replied, "Why not?", he immediately threw [misit] the bird through the window, getting a joke out of the double-meaning of the word. For is is a custom among the Romans to send food from a party to friends as a gift.
[ 606 ] Augustus salutatus a Psittaco, hunc emi jussit. Idem miratus in pica, et hanc mercatus est. Hoc exemplum tenuem quendam homuncionem sortis infimae sollicitavit, ut Corvum institueret ad hujusmodi salutationem. Qui quum impendio exhauriretur, subinde ad avem non respondentem dicere solet: Opera et impensa periit. Tandem pervicit assiduitate, ut Corvus sonaret dictatam salutationem. Ea quum Augustum praetereuntem salutasset: Caesar, satis, inquit, istiusmodi salutatorum habeo domi. Tum Corvus memor et illorum verborum, quae toties audierat, subtexuit: Opera et impensa periit. Ad hoc arridens Augustus, jussit avem emi, quanti nullam adhuc emerat.
[ 606 ] When Augustus was greeted by a parrot, he had it bought. Admiring a magpie, he bought it as well. This pattern incited a certain little scrawny fellow all out of luck to train a raven to make this kind of greeting. And since its cost left him broke, he was accustomed to regularly say to the bird when it did not answer him, "My work and money are lost!" Finally he succeeded by persevering to make the raven sound out the greeting that he wanted it to. And when it had greeted Augustus when he was passing by, the Emperor said, "I have enough of such greetings at home." Then the raven also remembered those words that he had heard so often and added, "My work and money are lost!" Smiling at this, Augustus had this bird bought at a higher price than he had ever paid before.
[ 607 ] Adolescens quidam provincialis Romam venerat, oris similitudine tam mirifice referens Augustum, ut in se populi totius oculos converteret. Caesar, hoc audito, jussit ad se perduci, eumque contemplatus, hunc in modum percontatus est: Dic mihi adolescens, fuitne aliquando mater tua Romae? Negavit ille, ac sentiens jocum retorsit, adiiciens: sed pater meus saepe.
[ 607 ] There had come to Rome from the provinces a certain youth who had such uncanny resemblance to Augustus that he attracted everyone's attention. Hearing about this, the Emperor had him brought in and, looking him over, questioned him this way: "Tell me, young man, was your mother ever at Rome?" He said no, and getting the idea for a joke he shot back, "But my father often was."
[ 608 ] Equite Romano quodam defuncto, compertum est illum tantum habuisse aeris alieni ut solvere nullo modo posset: idque dum viveret, celaverat. Quum igitur res illius auctioni sujicerentur ut ex pecunia aliquibus ejus creditoribus satisfieret, Augustus jussit sibi emi culcitram illius cubicularem: ac mirantibus hoc praeceptum: Habenda est, inquit, ad somnum mihi conciliandum illa culcitra, in qua ille tanto aere alieno obstrictus somnum capere potuit. Nam Augustus ob ingentes curas saepe maximam noctis partem ducebat insomnem.
[ 608 ] When a certain Roman knight had died, it was discovered that he had been in such great debt that he could not in any way pay it off. While he was alive, he had hidden this fact. So when his property was put up for auction to pay some of his creditors, Augustus had his mattress bought for himself. To those who were suprised by this instruction, he said, "To get some sleep for myself, I have to have that mattress on which he could take his rest even while under the burden of such debt." For Augustus, on account of his tremendous concerns, often spent most of the night awake.