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[11] Thus the real motive of courageous men is the nobility of courage, although spirit operates in them as well; but wild animals are emboldened by pain, for they turn to bay because they are wounded, or frightened—since if they are in a forest or a swamp1 they do not attack. Therefore they are not to be considered courageous for rushing upon danger when spurred by pain and anger, and blind to the dangers that await them; since on that reckoning even asses would be brave, when they are hungry, for no blows will make them stop grazing!2 (And adulterers also are led to do many daring things by lust.)3

1 i.e., in a place where they can escape. The words ‘or a swamp,’ are probably interpolated.

2 See Hom. Il. 11.558.

3 This parenthetical note does not bear on the context.

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