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[44] Why then, do I dwell at such length on pleasure? Because the fact that old age feels little longing for sensual pleasures not only is no cause for reproach, but rather is ground for the highest praise. Old age lacks the heavy banquet, the loaded table, and the oft-filled cup; therefore it also lacks drunkenness, indigestion, and loss of sleep. But if some concession must be made to pleasure, since her allurements are difficult to resist, and she is, as Plato happily says, “the bait of sin,”1 —evidently because men are caught therewith like fish—then I admit that old age, though it lacks immoderate banquets, may find delight in temperate repasts. Gaius Duellius, son of Marcus, and the first Roman to win a naval victory over the Carthaginians, was often seen by me in my childhood, when he was an old man, returning home from dining out, attended, as was his delight, by a torch-bearer and flute-player—an ostentation which as a private citizen he had assumed, though without precedent: but that much licence did his glory give him.

1 κακοῦ δέλεαρ, Timaeus, 69D.

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