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T I M O L E O N,

A R IST i DE s,




3 3


WHEN Caefar once faw fome rich ftrangers at
Rome carrying young dogs and monkeys in
their arms, and careiiing them, ,he afked,
" Whether the women in their courftry never bore any chil-
** dren " by this queilion reproving with ajuft feverity
and difdain thofe who lavifh upon brutes that natural
tendernefs and affection which is due only to man
kind, (i) In the fame manner, we muft condemn
thofe who employ that curicfity and love of knowledge


(i) The words xwu* TE ^ 7n9-
KV "itiltva, are omitted in the tranf-
lation, as they are quite fuper-
fluous, and only perplex the fen-
tence. Perhaps they were origi-


nally a marginal glofs upon the
v/ord Sr^ia in the preceding line,
and by an inattention common in.
tranfcribers removed into the

(2) Antifthcnes

2656391 ' Al

4 rbe L I F E of

which nature has implanted in our minds, upon low
and worthlefs objects, while they neglect fuch as are
excellent and ufeful.

Cur fenfes being pailive in receiving impreflions
from without, muft be affected by all objects indiffe-
rently, which happen to ftrike upon them, whether
pleafant or ofFenfive. But the mind has a power of*
choice, and can turn its attention to whatever objects
it pleafes. It ought therefore to employ itfelf in the
bed purfuits, not merely for the fake of contemplating
what is good, but that it may be nourifhed and en-
riched by the contemplation. For as thofe gay and
vivid colours, which ftrengthen and chear the fight,
are moft grateful to the eye ; fo thofe objects of con-r
templation are to be chofen, which while they delight,
at the fame time direct the mind to the proper happi-
nefs of its nature. Such are the works cf virtue. The
mere defcription of thefe infpires the mind withaflrong
emulation and earned defire to imitate them ; whereas
in other, our admiration is not always attended
with a defire of imitating what we admire ; nay, on
the contrary, while we efteem the work, we often de-
fpife the workman. Thus we are pleafed with per-
fumes and purple ; but we look upon dyers and per-
fumers as men of a low and illiberal occupation.
Therefore Antifthenes (2), when he was told that Ifme-
nias was an excellent performer on the flute, well re-
plied, " True ; but he is a worthlefs man ; othervvife he
" would not have been fo good a mufician :" and Philip
faid to his fon Alexander, when once at a feaft he had fung
in a very agreeable and fkilful m inner, " Are you not
" afhamed tofing fo well ?" Jt being fuff.cient for a King
to find lei Cure to hear others fing; and he does the mufes
no fmall honour, when he is prefent at the perform-
ances of thofe who excel in an.s of this kind.

Every man who applies nimfelf to mean and ufelefs
arts is felf-condemned, and mini be convicted of a


(2) Antifthenes was a difciple of Socrates, and founder of the feft
of the Cynicks.

(3) Pericles


flothful indifpofition to nobler occupations by that very
induflry which he employs in fuch unprofitable pur-
fuits. And there is no youth of a liberal and ingenuous
nature, who when he fees the ftatue of Jupiter at Pifa,
or that of Juno at Argos, would defire to be Phidias or
Polycletus ; or who would wifh to be Anacreon, Philemon
or Archilochus, becaufe he has been delighted with their
poems : for it is not necefTary that we mould love ar.d
efteem the artift, becaufe we are pleafed with- the grace-
fulnefs and beauty of his work. Since therefore by
objects of this kind no emulation is raifed, nor any-
warm emotions urging to action and imitation, we may
conclude that they are ufelefs to the beholders. But fuch
is the effett of virtuous actions that we not only admire
them, but long to copy the example. The goods of for-
tune we wiih to enjoy, virtue we defire to practife ; the
former we are content to receive from others, the effects
of the latter we are ambitious that others fhould receive
from us. For it is the nature of virtue to draw us pow-
erfully to itfelf, to kindle in us an active principle, to
form our manners and engage our affections, and this
even in an hiftorical defcription, and not only when it is
reprefented before our eyes.

For this reafon I have determined to proceed in writ-
ing the lives of eminent men ; and have competed this
tenth book containing the life of Pericles, andofFabiiis
Maximus who carried on the war a^ainft Hannibal : men

*^> '

who refembled each other in many virtues, but efpecially
in the mildnefs and integrity of their difpofitions , and
who by bearing patiently the infolence and folly both of
the common people and of their collegues in the govern-
ment, were eminently ferviceable to their country. With
what fuccefs I execute my defign muft be left to the
judgment of the reader.

Pericles was of the tribe of Acamantis, and of the
ward of Cholargia. His family was one of the mod con-
fiderable in Athens both on the father's and mother's
fide. His father Xanthippus, who defeated the King of
Perfia's generals at Mycale, married Agarifte the niece

A3 f

6 f, 'be L I F E /

of Clifthenes who expelled the race of Pififtratus,
lifhed.the tyranny, aud fettled fuch laws and fuch a plan
of government as were excellently adapted for the fecu-
rity of the ftate, and for promoting concord and unani-
mity amongft the people.

Agarifte dreamed that (he was brought to bed of a
lion, and in a few days after was delivered of Pericles.
His body was well-formed, but his head was very long
and difproportioned. For this reafon almoft all the fta-
tues of him have the head covered with a helmet ; the
ftatuajries, probably, not being willing to expofe his de-
formity. But the poets of Athens gave him the name of
Schinocephalus, as having his head fhaped like a Squill
or Sea-onion, which in their dialed they fometimes call
Schinos. Cratinus the comick poet in his play called
Chirones has this pafiage,

(3) Old Time and Faction gave the tyrant birth,
Whom mortal men call Pericles on earth ;
Not thus dijiinguijh' d in the courts of Jove,
For Head-compeller is his name above.

And in his play called Nemefis he thus addrefles him j

Come hofpitable blejjed (4) Jove.
Tekclides ridicules him in thefe lines ;

Perplexed by bujinefs, by its weight deprejl

Now his huge head hangs filent on his breaft.

Now from that head, in which ten men might dine.

Loud thunders burft, of dreadful Jlorms the fign.
Eupolis in his play called Demi, introduces an enquiry


(3) Pericles (as Plutarch after- (4) Mxp*oj or bleffed, was ai-

wards mentions) was called Oiyin- fo a common epithet of Jupiter ;

pius or Jupiter. In al'ufion to but here Cratinus alludes to the

this name he is here reprefented word xfT, the head, and the aug-

as the fon of Saturn ; and initead mentative particle /*, thus mak-

of Nephelegeretes or Cloud- com- ing the word fignify great-headed,

peller, a common epithet of Ju- (5) Chiron the centaur was

piter, he is called Cephalageretes tutor to Hercules, Jafon,Achille?;

or Head-compeller, as if his head and fome other heroes. The fa-

*.vas compofed of an aiTcniBlage tire of ihis paffage confifts in the

f a great number of heads. smibiguity of the word Chiron,



concerning all the demagogues or orators whom he re-
prefents as coming up from hell; and when Pericles
appears laft he makes one of his characters cry out,

Moft writers fay that he was inftructed in mufick by
Damon, (whofe name they tell us, mould be pro-
nounced with the firft fyllable fhort ;) but Ariflotle fays
that he ftudied mufick under Pythoclides. And it is
probable that Damon who was an able politician, only
affumed the character of a mufician, that he might
conceal his political talents from the people. He con*
tinually attended on Pericles, and was as afliduous in
teaching him the fcience of government, as a mafter of
the gymnaftick art is in training and exercifing his
fcholars. His difguife however proved ineffectual, for
he was bammed by the oftracifm as a man of a factious
turbulent fpirit, and an enemy to the liberties of the
people. Nor was he fpared by the comick poets : Plato
introduces a perfon fpeaking to him thus ;

Firft anfwer^ Chiron (5), for if fame fays
Fbis tyrant Pericles was taught by yap.

Pericles was likewife a difciple of Zeno Eleates (6,)
who in natural philofophy was a follower of Parmenides,
and who practifed a fubtle method of difputation, by
which he never failed to refute arid confound his adver-
fary. This account Timon the Phliafian gives of him in
thefe verfes.


which alfo fignifies a rogue. caufed him 'to be pounded to

(6) This Zeno was of Elea, a death in a mortar ; and by his

town in Italy, and a Phocian co- death he accomplished what he

lony. He was a fcholar of Par- had undertaken in his lifetime;

menides, who likewife adopted for his fellow-citizens were there-

him. Though by his profound by fo far incenfed, that they fell

learning he had acquired a great upon the tyrant and ftoned him.

reputation, yet he became more We are not to confound this Zeno

illuftrious by his courage and re- withhimof Citium,who wasfoun-

fclution ; for he confpired againft der of the fed of the Stoicks, and

thfc tyrant of hu country, who was much later than the former.

A 4 (7) Tragedy

g the L I F E of

Great Zeno's force, which never known to fail,
Could on eachfide, tf tried on each^ prevail

But the per'fon who was moft converfant with Pericles,
and from whom chiefly he acquired that dignity which
appeared in his whole addrefs and deportment, and that
ftrength and fublimity of fentiment which gave him
fuch an afcendant over the minds of the people, was
Anaxagoras the Clazomenian, whom his contemporaries
called Nous, or Intelligence, either from admiration of
his (kill in philofophy and his deep infight into nature,
or becaufe he was the firft that afcribed the order of the
tmiverfe, not to chance or neceflity, but to the operation
and energy of a pure unmixed Intelligence diftinguifhing
and feparating the constituent principles of the various
parts of nature, which before were mingled in one con-
fufed mafs.

This philofopher Pericles held in the higheft efleem -,
and being fully inflrucled by him in the fublimefl
fciences, acquired not only an elevation of mind and
loftinefs of ftyle free from all the affectation and buf-
foonery of the vulgar ; but likewife an eaiy compofed
crait, a gravity of countenance feldom relaxed by laugh-
ter, a firm and even tone of voice, together with fuch a
modefty and decency in his drefs, that when he fpoke in
publick even with the greatefl vehemence, it was never
put into diforder. Thefe things and others of the like
nature raifed admiration in all who faw him.

'Being once reviled and infulted in publick for a whole
day together by an impudent profligate fellow, he
made no reply, but continued to difpatch fome im-
. portant bufinefs in which he was then employed. In
the evening he retired, and went home with great com-
pofure, the other ftill following him, and loading him


(-) Tragedy at firft was only jeft of tragedy, the fatyrs were
afong in honour of Bacchus, fung ftill retained, and their licentious
bv a chorus of fatyrs. After- drollery was mixed with the grave-
wards, when ferioui characters and mournful fcenes. Tragedies
r.nd events were ir.ade the fub- of this kind were called fary-



with the moft abufive language. When he arrived at his
houfe, it being then dark, he ordered one of his fer-
vants to take a light and wait on the man home. The
poet Ion, indeed, fays that Pericles was haughty and in-
fblent in his behaviour, and that the fenfe he had of his
own dignity produced in him an arrogant .contempt
of others ; and ke highly extols the civility, eomplai-
fance and politenefs of Cimon. But little regard is due
to the judgment of a man who thinks that foftnefs of
manners, and the minute refinements of delicacy are ne-
ceiTary to temper the majefty of virtue, jurt as the hu-
mour of fatyrical (7) fcenes is to be blended with the
folemnity of tragedy. When Zeno heard the gravity of
Pericles reprefented as mere pride and oftentation, he
advifed thofe who cenfured it to affume the fame fort
of pride themfelves ; being of opinion that by counter-
feiting what is excellent, a man may be infenfibly led
to love and pra&ife it in reality.

But thefe were not the only advantages which Pericles
reaped from the converfation of Anaxagoras. From
him he learned to banifh thofe fuperftitious fears which
diftrefs the minds of the vulgar, who are terrified when
any extraordinary appearances are feen in the heavens,
becaufe they are unacquainted with the caufos of them ;
and who from their ignorance of religion and the na-
ture of the Gods are upon fuch cccafions tormented
with the moft extravagant and difmal apprehenfions.
For philofophy cures thefe diforders of the mind, and
inftead of the terrors and frenzy of fuperilition, pro-
duces a rational and chearful piety.

It is faid that the head of a rarn with only one horn
was once brought to Pericles from his country-feat.
Lampo the diviner obferving that the horn grew ftrong
and firm out of the middle of the forehead, foretold
that as there were then two parties in the city, that of


rical. And even when tragedy conclude with a fatyrical one. Of
was more refined, the poets, in this fort is the Cyclops of Euri-
their publick contentions, ufed, pidcs, the only fatyrical tragedy-
each of them, after exhibiting now remaining.
three or four ferious tragedies, to

(S) The

io The L I F E if

Thucydides and that of Pericles, the whole power would
fhortly center in him on whofe land the prodigy had
happened. Bat Anaxagoras having opened the head,
fhowed that the brain did not fill up the whole cavity,
but that it had contracted itfelf into an oval form, and
pointed di redly to that part of the fkull whence the
horn took its rife. This fclution procured Anaxagoras
great honour from the fpectators , but fome time after,
Lampo was no lefs honoured for his prediction, when
the power of Thucydides was ruined, and the whole ad-
miftration of the republick came into the hands of Pe-
ricles. But I fee no reafon why the philofbpher and
the foothfayer may not both be allowed to have been
in the right ; the one having difcovered the caufe, and
the other the defign of this phenomenon. For it was
the bufmefs of the one to find in what manner and by
what means this effect was produced ; and the bufmefs
of the other was to mow what end it was defigned to
anfwer, and what events it portended. And thofe who
manintain that no prodigy, when the caufe of it is
known, ought to be regarded as a prognoftick, do not
confider that if they reject fuch figns as are extraordi-
nary and preternatural, they muft alfo deny that com-
mon and artificial figns are of any ufe ; for the clatter-
ing of brafs plates (8), the light of beacons, the fhadow
upon a fun-dial, have all of them their proper natural
caufes, yet each has a peculiar fignification befides. But
perhaps this point might be more properly difcufled elfe-
. where.

Pericles when young ftood in great fear of the people,
becaufe in his countenance he was thought to referable
Pififtratus ^ and the old men were not a little alarmed
when they difcovered in him, the fame fweetnefs of voice,
and the- tame volubility of ipeech which they remem-
bered in the tyrant. And as he was befides of a noble
and wealthy family, and had the friendship of the moft
confiderable men in the (late, he was afraid of being ba-
niihed by the oflraciun } he therefore abilained from


(8) The clattering of brafs a military figna! among the Gre-
plates or quoits was fometimes cians. Among the Romans, it



all political bufinefs, but not from war, in which he
fhowed great courage and intrepidity. But when Ari-
ftides was dead, Themiftocles in exile, and Cimon for
the mofl part employed in military expeditions, at a dif-
tance from Greece, Pericles affumed a publick character.
He chofe rather to folicit the favour of the multitude
and the poor, than of the rich and the few ; putting a
conftraint upon his natural temper which by no means
Inclined him to court popularity. But being appre-
henfive that he might fall under the fufpicion of aim-
ing at the fupreme power, and obferving that Cimon
was attached to the party of the nobles, and was highly
efteemed by men of the greateil eminence, he fldied
to ingratiate himfelf with the common people, as the
mofl effectual means for his own fecurity, and for
ftrengthening his intereft againft Cimon. From this
time he entirely changed his ordinary courfeof life; he
was never feen in any ftreet but that which led from
the fenate-houfe to the Forum ; he declined all the invi-
tations of his friends, and all focial entertainments and
"recreations; fo that during the whole time of his ad-
miniftration, which was of long continuance, he never
fupped with any of his friends, except once at the mar-
riage of his nephew Euryptolemus -, and then he retired
as loon as the libations were performed. For dignity
is not eafily preferved in the familiarity of converfation,
nor a folemnity of character maintained amidft fur-
rounding gaiety and chearfulnefs. Real virtue indeed,
the moie it is feen is the more admired ; and a truly
good man can by*no action appear fo great in the eyes
of flrangrs, as he appears in private life to thofe who
daily converfe with- him. But Pericles chofe not to
cloy the people by 'being too laviih of his prefence ; he
therefore appeared only by intervals ; he did not fpeak
upon every fubject that occurred, nor conftantly at-
tended the publick aflemblies, but referved himfelf (as
Critolaus fays) like the Salaminian galley (9), for extra-
ordinary occafions. Common bufinefs he tranfacted


was a fignal to call the wreftlers (9) This was a confecrated
to their exercifes. veffel, which the Athenians never


12, .The L I F E of

by means of his friends and certain orators with whom
he had an intimacy. Among thefe, they fay, was Ephi-
altes, who deflroyed the power of the Areopagites,
and fo intoxicated the people, according to plato's ex-
preffion, with this full draught of liberty, that from their
impatience of reftramt, and mad defire of conqueft,
they were compared by the comick writers to an un-
ruly pampered fleed,

Wbo champs the bit, and bounds along the plain.

Pericles made ufe of the doctrines of Anaxagoras, as
an inftrument to raife his ftyle to a fublimity fuitable
to the greatnefs of his fpirit and the dignity of his man-
ner of life, rendering his eloquence more fplendid and
majeftick by the rich tincture which it received from
philofophy. For it was from the fludy of philofophy
as well as from nature, that he acquired that elevation
of thought, and that all-commanding power (as the divine
Plato calls it) by which he was diflinguifhed ; and it
was by applying his philofophy to the purpofes of elo-
quence, that he gained fo great a fuperiority over all
the orators of his time. Upon this account, it is faid,
he obtained the furname of Olympius ; but ibme are of
opinion that it was on account of the publick buildings
and ornaments with which he embellished the city ; and
others fay, that he was fo called from the great autho-
rity he had in the republiek, in affairs both of peace
and war. It is not improbable, indeed, that all thefe
circumftances might concur in procuring him this
fplendid title. It appears, however, from the come-
dies of that age, in which there are many flrokes of
fatire both ferious and ludicrous upon Pericles, that the
appellation was given him chiefly on account of his
eloquence ; for in them he is reprefented as thundering


made ufe of but on extraordinary that which Suidas gives of him.

occafions; as for inftance, when He fays, that Pericles was thefirft

they fent for any of their Gene- that wrote down his fpeeches be-

rals in order to call them to ac- fore hedeiivered them in publick;

count for their behaviour. whereas the other orators fpoke

(i) This account is contrary to extempore. This prayer is pro- *



and lightening in his harangues, and as carrying a
dreadful thunder-bolt in his tongue. Thucydides the
fbn of Melefias rs iajd to have given a very pleafant de-
fcription of the force, of Pericles's eloquence. Being
afked by Archidamus iCing of the Lacedaemonians, whe-
ther he or Pericles was the beft wreftler ; he anfwered,
" When I have thrown him, he-ftill gees the better of
" me ; for he denies that he has had a fall, and perfuades
" the fpectators to believe him."

Such was the folicitude of Pericles about his publick
orations, that before he addrefted the people he always
offered up a prayer to the Gcds, that nothing might
unawares efcape him, unfuitable to the fubjecT:on which
he was to fpeak (i). He left nothing behind him in
writing except pubiick decrees (2) ; and only a few of
his fayings are recorded : fome of which are thefe. He
faid, " that the ifland of JEgina mould not be fuffered to
" remain as the eye-fore of the Piraeus." On another oc-
cafion he faid, " that he already beheld war advancing with
" hafly ftrides fromPeloponnefus." Once as he was fail-
ing from Athens upon fome military expedition, Sopho-
cles, who accompanied him, and was joined in the com-
mand with him, happened to praife the beauty of a certain
boy ; Pericles replied, " It becomes a General, Sophocles,
" to have not only pure hands, but pure eyes." Stefimbro-
tus has preferved the following palfage from the oration
which Pericles pronounced in honour of thofe who fell
in battle at Samos. " Thefe, (faid he,) like all others who
" die for their country, are exalted to a participation of
" the divine nature, being, like the Gods, feenonly in the
" honours that are paid them, and in the bleflings which
" they beflow.

Thucydides reprefents the adminiflration of Pericles as
favouring ariflocracy ; and according to him, though
the government was called democratical, yet it was


per only for a man who fpeaks fpeeches which went under his

without any preparation. Quin- name, were not his ; and Quinti-

tiiian fays the fubjeft of his prayer lian declares he found nothing in

was, that he might utter nothing them anfwerable to the high re-

difagreeable to the people. putation he had for eloquence,

(?) By this it appears that thofe lib 3, c. i.

(3) Infteai

i 4 Tbt LIFE ef

really in the hands of one man who had acquired the
fupreme 'authority. But many other writers cenfure
him for his too great indulgence to the people ; he be-
ing the firft who corrupted, them by dividing among
them the conquered lands, and by diflributing money
to them for the publick fpedacles; the effect of which
was, that from being ibber and induftrious they be-
came diffblute and prodigal. Let us now enquire by
what alteration of circumftances in the republick this
difference in his conduct was occafioned.

We have already obferved that at firfl, in order to
oppofe the authority of Cimon, he endeavoured to in-
gratiate himfelf with the people. But finding that he
was furpafled in popularity by his rival, whofe wealth
enabled him to relieve the .poor, to entertain the indi-
gent citizens daily at his houfe, to clothe fuch as were
pad their labour, and to throw open his inclofures that
all might be at liberty to gather his fruit ; he had re-
courfe to the expedient of diflributing the publick trea,
fure ; which fcheme, as Ariflotle relates, was propofed
to him byDemonides of los (3). Accordingly by giving
money among the people for the publick fpeftacles, by
increafing the fees for their attendance in courts of judi-
cature (4), and by other donations he foon eftablifhed his
intereft with them. The power which he thus obtained
he employed againfl the fcnate of Areopagus, of which
he was not a member, having never had the fortune to
fee chofen Archon,Thefmotheta, "Kingof thefacred rites,"
or " Polemarch (5) :" for thefe offices were anciently di
pofed of by lot ; and only thofe who had been elected
into them, and had difcharged them well were admit-
ted among the Areopagites. Pericles by thefe methods

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