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or who form them in line with a trench or some other obstacle in the rear; all these are using compulsion. A man ought not to be brave because he is compelled to be, but because courage is noble. [6]

(2) Again, experience of some particular form of danger is taken for a sort of Courage; hence arose Socrates' notion that Courage is Knowledge.1 This type of bravery is displayed in various circumstances, and particularly in war by professional soldiers.2 For war (as the saying is) is full of false alarms, a fact which these men have had most opportunity of observing; thus they appear courageous owing to others' ignorance of the true situation. [7] Also experience renders them the most efficient in inflicting loss on the enemy without sustaining it themselves, as they are skilled in the use of arms, and equipped with the best ones both for attack and defence. [8] So that they are like armed men fighting against unarmed, or trained athletes against amateurs; for even in athletic contests it is not the bravest men who are the best fighters, but those who are strongest and in the best training. [9] But professional soldiers prove cowards when the danger imposes too great a strain, and when they are at a disadvantage in numbers and equipment; for they are the first to run away, while citizen troops stand their ground and die fighting, as happened in the battle at the temple of Hermes.3 This is because citizens think it disgraceful to run away,

1 i.e., knowledge of what is truly formidable and what is not (cf. note on 8.1); but Socrates went on to show that this depended on knowledge of the good, with which he identified all virtue: see Plato's Laches.

2 i.e., ξένοι, foreign mercenary troops, much employed in Greek warfare in Aristotle's time.

3 In Coronea, 353 B.C.; the Acropolis had been seized by Onomarchus the Phocian, and mercenaries, brought in by the Boeotarchs to aid the citizens, ran away at the beginning of the battle (schol.).

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