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a is essentially, b only accidentally, his object and his choice. And by ‘essentially’ we mean ‘absolutely’ ; hence while in a sense it is any sort of opinion, speaking absolutely it is the true opinion that the one stands by and the other abandons. [2]

But there are some persons who stand by their opinion whom we call ‘obstinate,’ meaning that they are hard to convince, and not easily persuaded to change their convictions. These bear some resemblance to the self-restrained man, as the prodigal does to the liberal, and the reckless to the brave; but they are really different in many respects. The self-restrained man stands firm against passion and desire: he will be ready on occasion to yield to persuasion; but the obstinate stand firm against reason: they are not proof against desire, and are often led by pleasure. [3] Types of obstinacy are the opinionated, the stupid, and the boorish. The motives of the opinionated are pleasure and pain: the agreeable sense of victory in not being persuaded to change their minds, and the annoyance of having the decrees of their sovereign will and pleasure annulled. Hence they really resemble the unrestrained more than the restrained. [4]

And there are some who fail to abide by their resolves from some other cause than lack of self-restraint, for instance, Neoptolemus1 in thePhiIoctetesof Sophocles. It is true that his motive for changing was pleasure, though a noble pleasure,

1 Cf. 2.7.

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