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[404a] “Perhaps.” “Nay,” said I, “that is a drowsy habit and precarious for health. Don't you observe that they sleep away their lives,1 and that if they depart ever so little from their prescribed regimen these athletes are liable to great and violent diseases?” “I do.” “Then,” said I, “we need some more ingenious form of training for our athletes of war, since these must be as it were sleepless hounds, and have the keenest possible perceptions of sight and hearing, and in their campaigns undergo many changes2

1 Cf.Ἐράσται132 Cκαθεύδων πάντα τὸν βίον. Xenophanes, Euripides, Aristotle, and the medical writers, like Plato, protest against the exaggerated honor paid to athletes and the heavy sluggishness induced by overfeeeding and overtraining.

2 Laws 797 D. Cf. 380 E. Aristotle's comment on μεταβολή, Eth. Nic. 1154 b 28 ff., is curiously reminiscent of Plato, includiong the phrase ἁπλῆ οὐδ᾽ ἐπιεικής.

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