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18. "Know it, by seeing this present misfortune fallen on us, who, being of greatest dignity of all the Grecians, come to you to ask that which before we thought chiefly in our own hands to give. [2] And yet we are not brought to this through weakness nor through insolence upon addition of strength, but because it succeeded not with the power we had as we thought it should, which may as well happen to any other as to ourselves. [3] So that you have no reason to conceive that for your power and purchases fortune also must be therefore always yours. [4] Such wise men as safely reckon their prosperity in the account of things doubtful do most wisely also address themselves towards adversity and not think that war will so far follow and no further as one shall please more or less to take it in hand, but rather so far as fortune shall lead it. Such men also, seldom miscarrying because they be not puffed up with the confidence of success, choose then principally to give over when they are in their better fortune. [5] And so it will be good for you, men of Athens, to do with us, and not, if rejecting our advice you chance to miscarry (as many ways you may), to have it thought hereafter that all your present successes were but mere fortune; whereas, on the contrary, it is in your hands without danger to leave a reputation to posterity both of strength and wisdom.

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load focus Greek (1942)
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load focus English (Benjamin Jowett, 1881)
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