is grief with bodily vexation. Despair is grief
without any hope of better things. The emotions
under the head of fear they define as follows. Sloth
is the fear of labor in the future. Bashfulness. 2
. . . Terror is a fear that convulses the body; so
that while blushing attends bashfulness, paleness
and trembling and chattering of teeth are produced
by terror. Timidity is the fear of evil close at hand.
Consternation is a fear that deranges the mind, as
in that verse of Ennius,
"Then consternation drives all wisdom from my mind."
Sinking of heart is a fear consequent and attend-
ant upon consternation. Confusion of mind is a
fear that shakes out thought. Dread is continuous
1 Best defined "jealousy."
2 There are many and widely varying readings of this passage.
My belief is that the definition that was here given of pudor, or
" bashfulness," is irrecoverably lost.
208 Cicerds Tusculan Disputations.
9. The divisions of pleasure they define as fol-
lows. Malevolence is pleasure in another's misfor-
tune from which one derives no benefit. Delight
is pleasure that soothes the mind by sweet sounds,
and by similar sensations through the organs of
sight, touch, smell and taste, all which are of one
kind, and may be described as pleasures liqui-
fied to besprinkle the soul Boastfulness is de-
monstrative pleasure, arrogantly forthputting. The
following are the definitions of the states of mind
under the head of desire. Anger is the desire to
punish one who, we think, has wrongfully done us
harm. Irritability is anger nascent and just begin-
ning to be, called in Greek Bv^wtr^. 1 Hatred is
an anger that has become chronic. Enmity is anger
on the watch for the opportunity of revenge. Dis-
cord is a more bitter anger conceived of hatred in
the inmost heart. 2 Want is a desire that cannot
be satisfied. Longing is a desire to see some one
who is not yet at hand. They also define longing
as a desire excited by the report of certain tilings
which the logicians call /ear^o/o^ara, 3 as pos-
1 This word is not found in any extant Greek writer ; but it
may have been used by Chrysippus, from whom Cicero probably
drew most or all of these definitions. It is a word that ought to
be, and probably was. It is legitimately formed from 0vjt6j, and
corresponds in formation, as in meaning, to the Latin animositas,
whence the English "animosity."
2 Latin, intimo odio et corde, literally, " of inmost hatred and
the heart ; " the point of the definition being the relation between
discordia and cor.
8 "Predicates," i. e. what is affirmed concerning persons or
On the Passions. 209
sessed by some person or persons, as that they have
riches, or are receiving honors ; while want is the
desire for the things themselves, as for honors or
for money. But they say that intemperance 1 is
the cause of every disturbance of soul ; and this is
a falling away from a sound rnind and right reason,
so averse from the rule of reason that the appetites
of the mind can be in no measure governed or
held in check. As therefore temperance allays
the appetites, makes them obey right reason, and
maintains the deliberate decisions of the mind,
so intemperance, in hostility to it, inflames, dis-
turbs, excites the entire mind. Thus griefs and
fears and all other perturbations are born of in-
10. As when the blood is poisoned, or there is
an excess of phlegm or of bile, diseases and sick-
nesses are produced in the body, so the confusion of
perverse opinions and their mutual repugnancy de-
prive the soul of health, and trouble it with diseases.
From these inward perturbations there are pro-
duced, first, diseases which the Stoics call voa-r^ara?
and also dispositions opposed to those diseases, in-
volving a faulty disgust and disdain for certain
things, then, sicknesses which they call dpp
1 Of course in its broad sense. The Latin temperantia denotes
dispositions and conduct appropriate to the time or occasion ; i. e.
neither^ too much, nor too little, "moderation." Intemperan-
tia, which I have rendered "intemperance," includes immoder-
ateness of every description.
a A word used to denote diseases both of body and of mind.
210 Cicero's Tusculan Disputations.
fiara, 1 and also opposed to them disgusts of a con-
trary kind. Here the Stoics, and especially Chry-
sippus, spend too much labor in comparing diseases
of the mind with those of the body. Omitting this
line of thought as by no means necessary, let us treat
only of those things in which the subject in hand is
comprised. Let it then be understood that the per-
turbation of mind, when inconsistent and confused
opinions are tossed to and fro, implies perpetual
unrest; and when this heat and excitement of mind
have become chronic, and seated, as it were, in the
veins and marrow, then commence disease and sick-
ness, and the disgusts which are contrary to the
diseases and sicknesses.
11. The disease and sickness of which I speak,
though they may be discriminated in thought, yet iu
fact are closely united, and they proceed from desire
and joy. Thus when money is desired, and reason
is not immediately applied, as a sort of Socratic
remedy which would cure that desire, the evil flows
into the veins and inheres in the bowels, and be-
comes a disease and a sickness which, when chronic,
cannot be extirpated, and the name of that disease
is "avarice." The case is the same with other
diseases, as the desire of fame, or the passion for
women, if I may so call what in Greek is termed
and other diseases and sicknesses have
1 A word denoting, not acute disease, but the kind of feeble-
ness and bodily derangement that is likely to become chronic.
2 " Love for women."
On the Passions. 211
a like origin. The dispositions contrary to these
are thought to originate from fear, as the hatred of
women, like that in the Mi<royvvrj l of Attilius,
or the hatred of the whole human race, such as
is reported of Timon, who is called luaavQpwrros?
or inhospitality. All these sicknesses of the mind
spring from a certain fear of the objects shunned
and hated. The Stoics define sickness of the mind
to be an intensely strong opinion, inherent and
deeply seated, concerning some object which ought
not to be sought, that it deserves to be earnestly
sought. What springs from disgust they define as
an intensely strong opinion, inherent and deeply
seated, concerning some object which ought not to
be shunned, that it ought to be shunned ; and this
opinion is an assurance on the part of him who
holds it that he knows what he does not know. Un-
der the head of " sickness " belong such conditions
or habits as avarice, ambition, licentiousness, obsti-
nacy, gluttony, drunkenness, luxuriousness, and the
like. Now avarice is an intensely strong opinion,
inherent and deeply seated, about money, that it
ought to be earnestly sought ; and the definition of
the other affections of the same class is similar.
The definitions of disgusts may be illustrated in the
1 The woman-hater. The title of a comedy of Attilius, one of
the earliest of Roman comic poets.
2 The " misanthrope," or "man-hater." The details of Timon's
life have come to us mainly through Aristophanes and other comic
poets, so that little is definitely known of him, except that he
was really a misanthrope, or posed as one.
212 Cicero's Tusculan Disputations.
case of inhospitality, which is an intensely strong
opinion, inherent and deeply seated, that a guest is
to be seduloiisly avoided. In like manner we may
define the hatred of women, as in the case of Hip-
poly tus, 1 and the hatred of the whole human race
like that felt by Timon.
12. To resort to the analogy of bodily health,
using occasionally comparisons derived from it, but
more sparingly than is the habit of the Stoics,
as different persons are specially inclined toward
different diseases, and so we call some " catarrhal,"
some " dysenteric," not because they are so now, but
because they often are, so there are some inclined
to fear, others to other perturbations. Thus in
some there is frequent anxiety, whence they are
called " anxious," and in others there is an irascibil-
ity which differs from anger ; for it is one thing to
be irascible, another to be angry, even as anxiety
differs from an anxious feeling ; for all who some-
times feel anxious are not anxious, nor do those
who are anxious always feel anxious. There is a
like difference between a case of intoxication and
the habit of intoxication, and it is one thing to be
a lover, and another to be in the habit of making
love. This proclivity of different persons to differ-
ent diseases has a wide application. It belongs to
1 Hippolytus, in the mythical history of the family of Theseus,
is represented only as having repelled the unlawful love of his
stepmother ; but Euripides, in the tragedy of Hippolytus, repre-
sents him as, in the fullest sense of the term, a woman-hater.
On the Passions. 213
all disturbances of mind. It appears in the case
of many vices, but without a distinctive name.
Thus the envious, and the malevolent, and the ma-
lignant, and the timid, and the pitiful are so called,
because they are inclined to these disturbances of
mind, not because they are always affected by them.
This proclivity of each to his own kind of mental
disease may from the analogy of the body be termed
" sickness," understanding by it a proclivity to be-
ing sick. 1 But since different persons have special
aptitudes for different forms of goodness, this in-
clination with reference to good things is termed
" facility ; " with reference to bad things " procliv-
ity ; " while as to things neither good nor bad it has
the former name.
13. As in the body there is disease, there is sick-
ness, there is imperfection, 2 so is it in the mind.
1 This section is rendered into English with difficulty, because
its meaning depends in great part on the different shades of sig-
nification belonging to words from the same root. In several
instances, we lack the means of showing at the same time the
resemblance and the difference between the two words ; in others
we should have to employ words not in common use, as " ire " and
"irate." The following are the pairs of words, which I have in
some cases been able to represent less fully than I could have
wished, anxietas, anzius ; iracundia, ira ; ebrietas, ebriositas ;
amator, amans ; aegrotatio, ad aegrotandum proclimtas.
2 Latin, vitium. I have in this section rendered this word,
and vitiositas also, "imperfection ;" as not only would "vice"
and " viciousness " be inapplicable to the body, but " imperfec-
tion" would better than "vice" express Cicero's meaning as to
214 Cicero's Tusculan Disputations.
The disordered condition of the whole body is called
"disease;" when disease is connected with debility,
it is "sickness;" while imperfection exists where the
parts of the body do not correspond to one another,
whence results the unhealthy condition of single
members, distortion, deformity. Those two, then,
disease and sickness, are produced by the concus-
sion and disturbance of the entire health of the
body, while an imperfection shows itself when the
health is sound. But as to the mind it is only in
thought that we can discriminate between disease
and sickness, while an imperfection is a habit or
state out of keeping with the life as a whole, and
not even in harmony with itself. Thus it is that
in the former case disease or sickness may be pro-
duced by corrupt opinions. On the other hand,
imperfection may result from a lack of consistency
and harmony in the mind itself ; for it is not true
that in the mind, as in the body, every imperfec-
tion betokens a want of symmetry, and in the case
of those almost wise, it is a state that lacks self-
consistency so long as unwisdom lasts, 1 while there
may not be distortion or utter unhealthiness. But
diseases and sicknesses are parts of imperfection,
while it is questionable whether perturbations of
mind are so ; for imperfections are continuous states,
while perturbations are fluctuating, and cannot there-
1 According to the Stoics, the truly wise man is " perfect ; " he
who falls never so little short of wisdom, though without moral
disease or sickness, is "imperfect."
On the Passions. 215
fore be parts of continuous states. 1 Moreover, as
in things evil, so in things good, the analogy of the
body applies very closely to the nature of the mind ;
for as in the body the distinguishing attributes are
beauty, strength, health, firmness, quickness, so are
they in the mind. Soundness is the condition of
the body in which these elements of its well-being
are united. So is soundness affirmed of the mind
when its decisions and opinions agree. This state
is that virtue of the mind, which some call " tem-
perance," while others regard it as obeying the rules
of temperance, and making temperance its aim, yet
without any specific character of its own. 2 But
whether it be this or that, it exists only in the wise
man. Yet there is a certain kind of mental sound-
ness which may fall to the lot even of the unwise,
when the perturbation of mind is removed by cura-
tive treatment. 3 Still further, as there is in the
body a certain fit shape of the members with a
1 The sense of this sentence is better expressed by a paraphrase
than by a translation. "Diseases and sicknesses are indeed pro-
duced by perturbations ; but these perturbations may cease, and
then the disease or sickness that they have produced may settle
down in some permanent imperfection of mind or character ;
while so long as the perturbations last, they are symptoms, not of
imperfection, but of still active disease or sickness."
2 The more rigid Stoics denied the names of which temper-
ance, in its broadest sense, was one that denote perfect good-
ness to any human being, except to the ideal perfectly wise man.
8 This means that there may be all the discernible tokens of
moral excellence in those who, because lacking perfect wisdom,
cannot be perfectly good.
216 Cicero's Tusculan Disputations.
sweetness of complexion, which is termed " beauty,"
so in the mind the same name is given to an equa-
bility and consistency of opinions, with a certain
firmness and steadfastness, engaged in the pursuit
of virtue, or containing all that gives strength to
virtue. 1 We also give names derived from the
body to the active powers of the mind that resem-
ble the powers, nerves and efficiency of the body.
The speed of the body is called " celerity," and this
also is regarded as one of the merits of genius, on
account of the mind's ability to run through many
things in a short time.
14. There is this difference between minds and
bodies, that healthy minds cannot be attacked by
disease, healthy bodies can be ; but while diseases
of the body may take place without blame, it is
not so with those of the mind, in which diseases
and disturbances occur only from the neglect of
reason. They therefore exist in men alone ; for
though beasts do some things that might be taken
for disease, they are not liable to disturbances of
mind. There is, too, this difference between those
of quick and those of dull apprehension, that, as
Corinthian brass is slow to rust, so men of active
minds are slower in falling into disease, and are
restored more rapidly than those of dull intellect.
Nor are those of active mind liable to every sort of
disease and perturbation, certainly not to what is
1 Here again the reference is to the seemingly excellent men
who yet fall short of perfect wisdom.
On the Passions. 217
wild and savage; but some of their morbid affec-
tions appear at first sight humane, as pity, grief,
fear. Still further, it is thought that sicknesses
and diseases of the mind are eradicated less easily
than are those extreme imperfections that are the
opposites of the virtues. While diseases continue,
imperfections may be removed ; for diseases are not
cured as promptly as imperfections are taken away.
I have thus given you what the Stoics teach with
great precision as to disturbances of mind. They
call such discussion \oyiicd, 1 on account of its sub-
tilty. Now that my discourse has, as it were,
made its sea-way beyond the rude cliffs of the
shore, let us pursue our course through what re-
mains, if only what I have said shall have been as
clear as so obscure a subject permits.
A. You have been sufficiently clear ; but if there
are any matters that need to be inspected more
carefully, I will ask your aid at some other time.
I am now looking for the sails of which you spoke
at the outset, and for the voyage.
15. M. I have elsewhere spoken of virtue, and
shall still have to speak of it often ; for most ques-
tions appertaining to life and conduct are derived
from the fountain of virtue. It being a uniform
and fitting affection of the mind, making those who
possess it praiseworthy, and being itself, and for its
own sake, even without reference to its utility, de-
serving of praise, there proceed from it good voli-
218 Cicero's Tusculan Disputations.
tions, sentiments, deeds, and everything that belongs
to right reason, although virtue itself might be most
comprehensively defined as " right reason." The op-
posite of virtue thus understood is viciousness (for
so rather than " malice " I prefer to call what the
Greeks term xatciav, 1 malice being the name of a
certain kind of vice, viciousness of all), which stim-
ulates the perturbations which, as I said a little
while ago, are turbid and excited movements of the
soul contrary to reason, and utterly inimical to
quietness of mind and life, inasmuch as they bring
in anxious and bitter griefs, afflict and enfeeble the
mind by fear, and inflame it with excessive desire,
which we sometimes call " cupidity," sometimes
" lust," and which, under whatever form, is a men-
tal infirmity, utterly inconsistent with temperance
and moderation. This craving, when it thinks it has
attained what it desired, is so elated by excessive
joy as to be incapable of consistent action, verifying
the saying of the character in the play, 2 that too
much pleasure of the mind is the greatest mistake
possible. The cure of these evils then is to be
found in virtue alone.
16. But what is there not only more miserable,
but more base and deformed, than a man broken
down, debilitated, prostrated by affliction ? Next
to this form of wretchedness is he who fears some
approaching evil, and hangs in breathless suspense.
1 The best definition of this word is " badness."
2 A comedy of Trabea.
On the Passions. 219
To denote the magnitude of this evil the poets
imagine in the infernal regions a rock impending
"For lawless deeds and over-boastful words."
This is the common punishment of folly ; for some
such terror is perpetually impending over all whose
minds are averse from reason. Still further, as
these perturbations of the mind, to wit, grief and
fear, consume the strength, so do those of a more
cheerful kind, desire always on the eager quest, and
empty mirth, that is, exuberant joy, differ very
little from madness. Hence it is understood what
sort of a man he is, whom we at one time call "mod-
erate," at another " temperate," then again, " firm "
and " self-controlling," while we are sometimes in-
clined to refer all these names to frugality, as chief
over them all ; for unless the virtues are all com-
prehended in that one word, the saying, " A frugal
man does all things aright," 1 would not have been
so commonly repeated as to become a proverb.
When the Stoics say the same about the wise man,
they seem to speak of him with the utmost admi-
ration and honor.
17. Whoever then has his mind kept in repose
1 Pre-eminently a Koman proverb ; for though in Cicero's
time, notwithstanding abounding corruption and depravity, no-
bler ethical principles prevailed among the wiser and better men,
in Rome's most virtuous days her virtues were of a utilitarian
type, and were prized because they represented the most thrifty
economy and the shrewdest practical wisdom.
220 Cicero's Tusculan Disputations.
by moderation and firmness, and is at peace with
himself so that he is neither wasted by troubles nor
broken down by fear, nor burns with kmging in his
thirsty quest of some object of desire, nor flows
out in the demonstration of empty joy, is the wise
man whom we seek ; he is the happy man, to whom
no human fortune can seem either insupportable so
as to cast him down, or too joyful so as to elate him
unduly. For what in human affairs can seem great
to him who takes cognizance of all eternity and
of the immensity of the whole universe ? Indeed,
what in human pursuits or in the narrow period of
life can seem great to the wise man, whose mind is
always so on the watch that nothing sudden, noth-
ing unthought of, nothing altogether new can hap-
pen to him? Such a man looks with so keen
insight in every direction that he always sees a
place of abode where he can live without trouble
or distress, and that whatever accident fortune may
bring, he can bear it fittingly and calmly ; and he
with whom this is the case wilt be free not from
grief alone, but also from all other perturbations.
But a mind free from these makes men perfectly
and absolutely happy ; while a mind liable to ex-
citement and drawn away from sound and unerring
reason loses not only its self-consistency, but even
its sanity. Therefore the reasoning and discourse
of the Peripatetics must be regarded as feeble and
nerveless, saying, as they do, that the mind must
of necessity be disturbed, and prescribing a certain
On the Passions. 221
limit beyond which one ought not to go. Do you
prescribe limit to a fault ? Or is it no fault not to
obey reason ? Or does reason fail to teach you that
what you either ardently desire or, when obtained,
rejoice over immoderately, is not a real good, nor is
that a real evil under which you lie crushed, or as
to which the fear that it may crush you deprives
you of your self-possession ? And does reason say
that it is only the excess of sadness or of joy that is
an error ? Now if this error is lessened by time for
the unwise, so that, while things remain unchanged,
they bear old troubles in one way, new troubles in
another, it may certainly not affect the wise at all.
What limit shall there be then ? Let us seek the
limit of grief, which is the most burdensome of all
these morbid affections. Fannius writes that Pub-
lius Rupilius bore hardly the defeat of his brother
as candidate for the consulship. But he seems to
have passed the limit ; for this was the cause of his
death. 1 He ought then to have borne it more mod-
erately. But what if while he was bearing it mod-
erately, the death of his children had imposed an
added burden ? A new grief would have sprung up.
Let that be moderate, still a great addition would
have been made. What if there had then come se-
vere bodily pains, loss of property, blindness, exile ?
If for each of these evils there was added grief, the
sum might have been such as could not be borne.
1 The story is that, being slightly ill, he died instantly on
hearing of his brother's defeat.
222 Cicero's Tusculan Disputations.
18. He who seeks a limit for a fault, 1 is like one
who, throwing himself from Leucate, should think
that he can poise himself in mid-air when he
pleases. As he cannot do this, no more can the
mind when disturbed and excited restrain itself, and
stop where it wants to stop ; and, in general, what-
ever things are harmful in their growth are faulty in
their birth. Now it is certain that grief and other
perturbations, when largely increased, are pestilen-
tial ; therefore when they first affect the mind, they
are at the outset in no small degree baleful. For
they urge themselves on when reason has once been
forsaken ; and weakness indulges itself, launches
out recklessly on the deep, nor finds any stopping
place. Therefore the approval of moderate pertur-
bations of mind is the same as approving of mod-
erate injustice, or moderate sloth, or moderate
intemperance. He who assigns a limit to faults
takes the part of those faults ; and this, while hate-
ful in itself, is all the worse, because the faults for
which indulgence is craved are on slippery ground,
and when once started on the downward track, glide
on, and can in no way be held back.
19. What remains to be said ? This indeed,
that these same Peripatetics not only call those
perturbations which, as I think, ought to be extir-