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12. Although Zeno, coming from Citium, of a
foreign stock, 2 and by no means distinguished as a
writer, seems to have made his way into a place
not natively his own among the ancient philoso-
phers, the weight of his opinion may be enhanced
by the authority of Plato, who often says that noth-
ing ought to be called "good" except virtue; as in
the Gorgias, when Socrates was asked whether he
did not account Archelaus, the son of Perdiccas, as
happy, he replied that he had never talked with
him. " Do you mean to say that there is no other
way of knowing whether he is happy ? " " There
is no other." " Can you not then say whether the
great king of the Persians is happy ? " " Can I,
when I know not how intelligent or how good a
man he is ? " " What ? Do you think that this is
what constitutes a happy life ?" "I certainly think
so. I regard the good as happy, the bad as miser-

1 The Peripatetics, and, it would seem, Brutus with them,
while they taught that the perfectly wise man must be happy,
yet placed a high value on health, riches, honors, and the like,
which the Stoics affected to despise ; and maintained both that a
ceitain kind or degree of happiness, though of an inferior type,
might ensue from the possession of these things, and that they
enhanced the happiness even of the wise man.

2 Citium, in Cyprus, was a Phoenician colony, so that Zeno,
though he lived long in Athens, was still regarded as a foreigner.
Many of the other Greek philosophers were born in Greek colonies
more or less remote from Athens, yet were of Greek parentage.

Virtue sufficient for Happiness. 273

able." "Is Archelaus miserable then?" "Assur-
edly, if he is unrighteous." 1 Does he not seem
here to make a happy life to depend entirely on
virtue ? What more ? What does the same man
say in the Funeral Oration ? 2 " The best mode of
living is secured to him for whom all things that
tend to a happy life are furnished from within, and
do not hang in suspense on the good or ill for-
tune of others, or vary with the events that befall
another. This man is moderate, brave, wise, and
when other goods come and go, most of all, when
his children are born and die, he will be submissive
and obedient to the old precept ; for he will never
rejoice or grieve overmuch, because he will always
repose in himself all hope for himself." From this
saying of Plato then, as from a fountain sacred and
august, my whole discussion shall flow.

13. Whence then can we more fittingly start
upon our course than from our common parent,
Nature ? whose purpose it was that whatever she
has brought forth, not only animals, but that which
so springs from the earth as to be supported by its

1 Archelaus was the son of Perdiccas, king of Macedonia, by a
slave-mother. On his father's death he usurped the sovereignty,
and afterward killed the legitimate heir of the throne. His reign
was prosperous and wise ; yet in the estimation of Socrates, or of
Plato, who speaks by the mouth of Socrates, the crimes to which
he owed the kingdom sufficed to preclude him from a happy life.

2 An imaginary funeral oration in the Menexenus, in which
Socrates, or Plato in his name, gives what may be called a serious
parody of the funeral orations of Thucydides and Lysias.


274 Cicerds Tusculan Disputations.

own roots, should be perfect, each in its kind. Thus
of trees, and vines, and the humbler plants that
cannot raise themselves far above the ground, some
are evergreen ; others, bare in winter, when warmed
by spring, put forth leaves ; nor is there any one
of them which does not so thrive by certain move-
ments within, and by its seed included in itself, as
to yield either blossoms, or grain, or berries ; and
in all of them everything is perfect, if there be no
hindrance from without. But the force of Xature
can be more easily discerned in animals, because
she has endowed them with the perceptive faculty.
She has ordained some, able to swim, to inhabit the
waters, others, winged, to enjoy the freedom of the
sky, some to creep, some to walk, a part to be soli-
tary, a part gregarious, some to be savage, some
tame, a part to hide and burrow beneath the ground.
Each of these, retaining its proper place, unable to
pass into the life of an animal unlike itself, adheres
to the law of Nature. As some specialty is bestowed
by Nature on each animal, which it holds as its
own, and does not depart from it, to man is given
something far more excellent, 1 though " excellent "
is a comparative term, and is not properly used
where comparison is impossible, and the human
soul, derived 2 from the divine mind, can be com-

1 Latin, praestantius. " Excellent" is properly a comparative
term, no less than praestans, which it most nearly represents.

2 Latin, dccerpt us, _ literally, "plucked," a stronger figure
thaii our language can well bear.

Virtue sufficient for Happiness. 275

pared, if I may so say without irreverence, only
with God himself. This soul then, if it is thor-
oughly cultivated, and if its keenness of vision is
so cherished that it cannot be blinded by errors,
becomes perfect, that is, absolute reason, which is
identical with virtue. Now if that to which noth-
ing is wanting, and which is full and complete in
its kind, is happy, and if this is the property of
virtue, then certainly all who are possessed of vir-
tue are happy ; and in this I agree with Brutus,
that is to say, with Aristotle, Xenocrates, Speu-
sippus, Polemon. To me such men seem even
supremely happy. For what is wanting to a
happy life in him who trusts in goods that are
absolutely his own ? Or how can he who has
not this trust be happy ? But it must necessarily
be lacking in him who makes a threefold division
of goods. 1

14. For who can trust either in strength of body
or in stability of fortune ? Yet no man can be
happy, unless possessed of stable and fixed and per-
manent good. But what that can be so described
can belong to those who recognize the three kinds
of goods ? 2 It seems to me that we may apply to
them the saying of the Spartan who, when a mer-
chant boasted that he had sent many ships to every
port, replied, " That fortune rigged with ropes is not
much to be desired." Is it not certain that noth-

1 Goods of mind, of body, and of fortune.

2 Over but one of which he can have, any control.

276 Cicero's Tusculan Disputations.

ing which can be lost can be placed among the con-
stituent elements of a happy life ? Not one of those
things which go to make up a happy life ought to
wither, or perish, or fail ; for he who fears that he
may lose any of them will be incapable of happi-
ness. For we understand that he who is happy is
safe, impregnable, hedged in and fortified, so that he
may be subject, not to little fear, but to none at all.
As not one who is slightly guilty, but one who has
done no wrong, is called " innocent," so not he who
fears a little, but he who is wholly free from fear, is
to be regarded as fearless. What else is courage
than an affection of the mind, at once patient in the
face of peril and in labor and pain, and far from all
fear ? Now this certainly could not be the condi-
tion of any human being, unless all good consists in
the right alone. How can one who has or may have
a multitude of evils to endure possess that security
which is most desired and sought, if we indeed mean
by "security" the freedom from grief on which
a happy life depends ? How can one be lofty and
erect, and capable of regarding all things that can
happen to man as of small account, as should be
the case with the wise man, unless he shall consider
everything that concerns himself as depending on
himself? Did the Lacedaemonians, when Philip
threatened by letter that he would prevent what-
ever they might undertake, ask in reply whether he
would prevent their killing themselves ; and shall
not the like-minded man whom we seek be much

Virtue sufficient for Happiness. 277

more easily found than a state so disposed ? What ?
If temperance, which calms all inward agitations,
be added to this courage of which I speak, what
can be wanting to constitute a happy life for him
whom courage defends from grief and fear, while
temperance calls him away from inordinate desire,
and will not suffer him to be elated by presumptu-
ous joy ? That such is the effect of virtue I would
show, had not this proposition been fully developed
on the previous days.

15. Now since perturbations of mind create
misery, while quietness of mind makes life happy,
and since there are two kinds of perturbations, grief
and fear having their scope in imagined evils, inor-
dinate joy and desire in mistaken notions of the
good, all being repugnant to wise counsel and rea-
son, will you hesitate to call him happy whom you
see relieved, released, free from these excitements
so oppressive, and so at variance and divided among
themselves ? Indeed one thus disposed is always
happy. Therefore the wise man is always happy.
Then too, everything good is joy-giving ; whatever
is joy-giving may be commended and made the
subject of self-congratulation ; whatever is of this
character is of good report ; l if of good report, it is
certainly praiseworthy : but what is praiseworthy
is surely right. Therefore what is good is right.

1 Latin, gloriosum. But its place is not high enough in the
sorites, to admit of its being rendered "famous" or "glorious,"
which otherwise would be the more obvious rendering.

278 Cicero's Tusculan Disputations.

But the goods which those of a different opinion
put upon their list they themselves do not call
right ; therefore, what is right alone being good, a
happy life is contained in the right alone. Those
things in which one may abound and yet be utterly
miserable are not to be called or esteemed "goods."
Do you hesitate as to a man who excels in health,
in strength, in beauty, and with senses perfectly
sound and of the keenest discernment ; add, if you
will, agility and swiftness ; give him also wealth, civic
honors, military commands, power, fame : if he who
has all these be dishonest, intemperate, cowardly,
dull and insignificant in mind, will you hesitate
to call him miserable ? Let us see whether, as a
heap of wheat is made up of grains of its own kind,
so a happy life ought not to be constituted of parts
like itself. If this be so, happiness must be made
up only of goods that are right. If they shall be
mixed with things unlike, nothing right can be
made from them ; and if the right be taken away,
what will remain that can be regarded as happy ?
For whatever is good is desirable because it is good ;
whatever is desirable is worthy of approbation;
whatever is worthy of approbation is to be regarded
as grateful and acceptable. Therefore honor must
be paid to it. But if so, it must of necessity be
praiseworthy. Therefore everything good is praise-
worthy. Whence it is inferred that only what is
right is good.

16. Unless we adhere to this opinion, there will

Virtue sufficient for Happiness. 279

be many things which we shall have to call " good."
I say nothing of wealth, which I do not reckon among
the goods, since any one, however unworthy, may
have it ; while not every man can possess what is
really good. I say nothing of reputation and popu-
larity, which may be due to the common sentiment
of fools and rascals. Were these things admitted
to be goods, we should have to give that name to
the merest trifles, such as teeth delicate and white, 1
beautiful eyes, fair complexion, and what Anticlea 2
praises when she is washing the feet of Ulysses,

"Smoothness of skin, and gentleness of speech."

If we shall esteem these things as goods, what will
there be that can be called of more weight or mo-
ment in the grave pursuits of the philosopher than
in the opinion of the common people and in the
crowd of the unwise ? The Stoics apply the terms
"special" 3 and "preferable" 4 to what those who
differ from them and me call " goods." These men
call them "goods" indeed; yet they admit that they
do not suffice to fill out a happy life. They think,
however, that a life cannot be happy without them,

1 Latin, candiduli denies.

2 In the Odyssey, it is Euryclea, the nurse, who washes the
feet of Ulysses. Anticlea was his mother. Either Cicero, by
lapse of memory, substituted one name for the other, or what
is more probable quoted another tradition, connected with the
verse here quoted, which is a genuine verse, but not translated
from the Odyssey.

8 Latin, praecipua.
4 Latin, producta.

280 Cicero's Tusculan Disputations.

or if happy, certainly not so happy as it might be.
But I mean to say that the right alone suffices for
the very happiest life, and I am confirmed in this
by the conclusion of Socrates ; for thus said that
prince of philosophy: "As the disposition of one's
mind is, such is the man ; as the man himself is,
so is his speech ; then again, his acts are like his
speech ; his life, like his acts." But in a good man
the disposition of his mind is praiseworthy, and
right because praiseworthy, whence the conclusion
is that the life of the good is happy. For I invoke
the faith of gods and men, and ask whether it was
determined in our former discussions or whether
we talked for amusement and pastime that the
wise man is always free from all that excitement of
mind which I call " perturbation." Is not, then, the
temperate, self-consistent man, without fear, without
grief, without any excessive joy, without inordinate
desire, happy ? But such is the wise man always.
He is therefore always happy. Now how can a
good man fail to refer everything that he does or
thinks to praiseworthiness as a standard ? But he
does in fact refer everything to happiness of life as
a standard. Therefore a happy life is praiseworthy.
Nor is anything praiseworthy without virtue; there-
fore it is virtue that constitutes a happy life.

17. The same conclusion may also be reached as
follows. In a miserable life there is nothing worthy
of mention, or to be gloried in ; nor yet in the life
that is neither miserable nor happy. But there is

Virtue sufficient for Happiness. 281

in some sort of life that which is worthy of men-
tion, and to be gloried in, and to be proud of, as
when Epaminondas says,

" The Spartan fame was by my counsels shorn," l

or Africanus,

" From farthest East, beyond the Euxine sea,
Whose deeds of prowess can compare with mine ? " a

But if there is such a thing as a happy life, it is to
be gloried in, and made mention of, and held as an
object of pride ; nor is there anything else which
can be worthy of mention and of pride. This estab-
lished, you understand what follows. Indeed, un-
less that life is happy which is also right, there must
of necessity be something better than a happy life ;
for all will certainly grant that whatever is right is
better. Thus there will be something better than a
happy life, than which can anything be said that is
more preposterous ? What ? When it is acknowl-
edged that in vices there is a sufficiently great force
to produce a miserable life, must it not be acknowl-
edged that there is equal power in virtue ? For
contraries follow from contraries. Here I ask, what
force has the balance of Critolaus ? 3 who, when he
puts into one scale the goods of the mind, into the

1 The first verse of an inscription on a statue of Epaminondas.

2 From an epigram by Ennius.

8 A Peripatetic philosopher, associated with Carneades and
Diogenes in the famous mission from Athens to Rome, B. c. 155.
As a Peripatetic, he thinks outward and bodily good worth put-
ting into the scale, though outweighed by goods of a higher order.

282 Cicero s Tusculan Disputations.

other those of the body and of the outside world,
thinks that the scale containing the goods of the
mind so far preponderates as to outweigh 1 earth
and sea.

18. What then is there to hinder either him, or
even Xenocrates, that bravest of philosophers, while
so diligently aggrandizing virtue and attenuating
and debasing everything else, from making not only
a happy life, but the happiest life possible, consist
in virtue ? Otherwise, their theory will result in
the destruction of virtue. For he who is liable to
grief must of necessity be liable to fear, since fear
is but the anxious expectation of future grief; but
he who is liable to fear is equally so to dread, ti-
midity, trepidation, cowardice, therefore liable at
some time to be overcome ; nor will he regard as
applicable to himself that precept of Atreus,

" So order life as to remain unconquered." 2

But he will be overcome, as I have said, and not
only overcome, but also enslaved. Now we would
have virtue always free, always unconquered. Oth-
erwise virtue ceases to be. Moreover, if there is in
virtue sufficient aid for living well, there is suffi-
cient also for living happily. Now there is certainly
enough in virtue to enable us to live bravely; if
bravely, enough for us to live magnanimously, and

1 Latin, deprimat, which denotes "depressing," not throwing
upward in the lighter scale. This is one of the amazingly few
instances in which Cicero uses a word carelessly.

2 From the Atreus of Attius.

Virtue sufficient for Happiness. 283

indeed so that nothing can ever terrify us and we
may be always unconquered. It follows that in
this state there is nothing to be repented of, noth-
ing wanting, no hindrance. Thus everything will
be in an affluent, untrammelled, prosperous condi-
tion; therefore happy. But virtue can suffice for
living bravely ; it therefore suffices also for living
happily As folly, although it has attained what
it coveted, yet never thinks that it has enough,
on the other hand wisdom is always contented
with the present, and never finds reason for self-

19. You have the record of but one consulship
of Caius Laelius, and that indeed after he had been
rejected as a candidate (unless when a wise and
good man like him fails of election it is not rather
the people that are rejected by a good consul than
he by a fickle people) ; yet which would you prefer,
were it in your power, to be a consul once like
Laelius, or four times like Cinna ? I know what
your answer would be, and so I see to whom I can
safely put the question, although I would not put
it to every one ; for some other person might per-
haps reply that he would prefer not only four con-
sulships to one, but a single day of Cinna to whole
ages of many men who were also eminent. Laelius,
if he had touched any one with his finger, would have
submitted to the legal penalty. But Cinna ordered
the beheading of his colleague in the consulship,
Gneius Octavius, of Publius Crassus, of Lucius

284 Cicerds Tusculan Disputations.

Caesar, men of the highest eminence, whose signal
merit had been recognized both in the civil and the
military service, of Marcus Antonius, the most elo-
quent man that I ever heard, of Caius Caesar, who
seemed to me the model of politeness, wit, sweet-
ness of temper and genial intercourse. Was he
who killed them happy ? On the other hand, he
seems to me miserable, not only because he did
these things, but because he so conducted himself
that it was lawful for him to do them. 1 Yet it is
not really lawful for any one to do wrong ; we fail
here by a misuse of words, calling what a man is
permitted to do lawful. Was not Marius happier
when he shared the fame of victory over the Cimbri
with his colleague Catulus, who was almost another
Laelius (for I trace a very close resemblance be-
tween the two) than when, conqueror in civil war,
he in his anger, not once, but many times, answered
the friends of Catulus who made supplication for
his life, " Let him die." In this instance he who
yielded to the abominable decree was happier than
he who issued a command so wicked. While it is
better to receive an injury than to inflict one, so
was it better to go a little way to meet approach-
ing death, 2 as Catulus did, than, like Marius, to
cover with shame his six years' consulship and

1 By decrees of the Senate, which made him virtually an

2 Finding that escape was impossible, he suffocated himself
with the fumes of burning charcoal.

Virtue sufficient for Happiness. 285

to contaminate his old age by the death of such
a man.

20. For thirty-eight years Dionysius was tyrant
of the Syracusans, having taken violent possession
of the sovereignty at the age of twenty-five. How
beautiful and rich a city was that which he held
in slavish oppression ! Yet on excellent authority
we read that he was severely temperate in his
mode of living, alert and diligent in business, but
at the same time by nature malevolent and unjust.
Therefore to all who look closely at the truth lie
must of necessity seem utterly miserable ; for while
he thought his power unlimited, the very things
which he had coveted he failed to obtain. Born
of good parents and in a respectable position
(though as to this accounts vary), with very nu-
merous friends of his own age and many near kin-
dred, he trusted none of them, but committed the
charge of his person to slaves whom he chose from
among those belonging to rich owners, and to cer-
tain immigrants and rude barbarians. He thus, on
account of his unrighteous lust for power, had vir-
tually shut himself up in prison. Even unwilling
to trust his neck to a barber, he taught his daugh-
ters to shave him. So these royal maidens, prac-
tising a low and menial art, like little barbers, 1
shaved their father's beard and hair. Yet even
from them, as they grew up, he took away the

1 Latin, tonstriculae, diminutive of tonstrix, a not uncom-
mon word, as there were many female barbers in Rome.

286 Cicero's Tusculan Disputations.

razor, and made them burn his beard and hair with
red-hot walnut-shells. Having two wives, Aristom-
ache, a native of Syracuse, and Doris from Locris,
when he came to them by night he first made a
thorough search and examination of everything
about them. Having surrounded the place where
his bed was with a broad ditch, and arranged a
wooden bridge for crossing the ditch, after closing
the door of his bedroom he drew the bridge over
to his side of the water. Not daring to stand on
ordinary platforms, he harangued the people from
the top of a high tower. When he wanted to play
ball his favorite amusement and laid aside his
tunic, a youth whom he loved is said to have held
his sword. But when a friend of his said one day
in jest, "You are certainly putting your life into
this young man's hands," and the youth smiled, he
ordered them both to be killed, the one for indi-
cating a way in which his life might be taken, the
other for showing approval of what was said by
smiling. But after this was done he was so grieved
that in his whole life he had never borne a heavier
affliction ; for he had the greatest love possible for
the young man whose death he had ordered. Thus
the desires of weak men are drawn in opposite
directions, and when such a person pursues this
course, he runs counter to that. This tyrant, how-
ever, showed how happy he was.

21. When Damocles, one of his flatterers, in talk-
ing with him, recounted his forces, his power, the

Virtue sufficient for Happiness. 287

majesty of his reign, the abundance of his posses-
sions, the magnificence of his palace, and said that
there had never been a happier man, he replied,
" Damocles, since this life charms you, do you want
to taste it yourself, and to make trial of my for-
tune ? " He answering in the affirmative, Dionys-
ius commanded the man to be placed upon a golden
couch with a covering most beautifully woven and
magnificently embroidered, and furnished for him
several sideboards with chased silver and gold.
Then he ordered boys chosen for their surpassing
beauty to stand at the table, and watching his nod,
to serve him assiduously. There were ointments,
garlands. Perfumes were burned. The tables were
spread with the most exquisite viands. Damocles
thought himself favored of Fortune. In the midst
of this array Diouysius ordered a glittering sword
attached to a horse-hair to be let down from the
ceiling, so as to hang over the neck of the happy
man. After this, Damocles had no eye for the beau-
tiful servants nor for the silver richly wrought, nor
did he reach forth his hand to the table. The gar-
lands were already fading. At length he begged
the tyrant to let him go ; for he no longer wanted
to be happy. 1 Does not Dionysius seem thus to

1 Horace refers to this story (iii. 1).

" Districtus ensis cui super impia
Cervice pendet, non Siculae dapes

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