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[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.1 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.

1 See 2.7.8.

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