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[103] From all this—to return to our sketch of duty— we see that all the appetites must be controlled and calmed and that we must take infinite pains not to do anything from mere impulse or at random, without due consideration and care. For Nature has1 not brought us into the world to act as if we were created for play or jest, but rather for earnestness and for some more serious and important pursuits. We may, of course, indulge in sport and jest, but in the same way as we enjoy sleep or other relaxations, and only when we have satisfied the claims of our earnest, serious tasks. Further than that, the manner 2 of jesting itself ought not to be extravagant or immoderate, but refined and witty. For as we do not grant our children unlimited licence to play, but only such freedom as is not incompatible with [p. 107] good conduct, so even in our jesting let the light of a pure character shine forth.

1 (2) amusements.

2 (3) raillery.

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load focus Introduction (Walter Miller, 1913)
load focus Latin (Walter Miller, 1913)
hide References (4 total)
  • Cross-references in indexes to this page (4):
    • M. Tullius Cicero, De Officiis: index, Amusements
    • M. Tullius Cicero, De Officiis: index, Appetite
    • M. Tullius Cicero, De Officiis: index, Temperance
    • M. Tullius Cicero, De Officiis: index, Wit
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