Well, since you wish to hear the essay, I shall bring it out and read it aloud; but first you must understand its purpose. The writer's desire is to praise Epicrates,1 whom he thought to be the most charming young man in the city, although there were many fine gentlemen among those of his own age, and to surpass him more in understanding than in beauty of person. Observing also that, generally speaking, most erotic compositions attach shame rather than honor to those about whom they are written, he has taken precautions that this should not happen in his case, and has written only what he says he is convinced of by his judgement, believing that an honest lover would neither do anything shameful nor request it.2

1 It was at the house of a certain Epicrates that Lysias was supposed to have delivered his love-speech; Plat. Phaedrus 227b.

2 This topic is treated by Cicero De Amic. 12.

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  • Cross-references in notes from this page (2):
    • Plato, Phaedrus, 227b
    • Cicero, De Amicitia, 12
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