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4.

It appears however that honor also,1 as was said in the first part of this work, has a certain virtue concerned with it, which may be held to bear the same relation to Greatness of Soul that Liberality bears to Magnificence. This virtue as well as Liberality is without the element of greatness, but causes us to be rightly disposed towards moderate and small honors as Liberality does towards moderate and small amounts of money; [2] and just as there is a mean and also excess and deficiency in getting and in giving money, so also it is possible to pursue honor more or less than is right and also to seek it from the right source and in the right way. [3] We blame a man as ambitious if he seeks honor more than is right, or from wrong sources; we blame him as unambitious if he does not care about receiving honor even on noble grounds. [4] But at another time we praise the ambitious man as manly and a lover of what is noble, or praise the unambitious man as modest and temperate, as we said in the first part of this work.2 The fact is that the expression ‘fond of’ so-and-so is ambiguous, and we do not always apply the word ‘fond of honor’ (ambitious) to the same thing; when we use it as a term of praise, we mean ‘more fond of honor than most men,’ but when as a reproach, ‘more than is right.’ As the observance of the mean has no name, the two extremes dispute as it were for the unclaimed estate. But where there is excess and deficiency there must also be a mean. [5] Now men do seek honor both more and

1 i.e., honor as well as wealth is the object of both a major and a minor virtue: see 2.7.8.

2 See 2.7.8.

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