It is true that this came under the law of reprisal;1 for though it is a terrible thing to treat men of the same race and blood in this way, out of anger, still
‘in dire stress even cruelty is sweet,’ as Simonides says, when men, as it were, give satisfaction and healing care to a mind that is in anguish and inflamed. But the subsequent treatment of the city by Aratus was neither necessary nor honourable, and cannot be excused.
1 The repeated treacheries of the Mantineians towards the Achaeans are related at length in Polybius, ii. 57 f.
Plutarch. Plutarch's Lives. with an English Translation by. Bernadotte Perrin. Cambridge, MA. Harvard University Press. London. William Heinemann Ltd. 1926. 11.
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