III. Again, if the misfortunes of men are not to be attributed altogether to fortune, but to the different habits and passions which will be found underlying them, then no one shall acquit Romulus of unreasoning anger or hasty and senseless wrath in dealing with his brother, nor Theseus in dealing with his son, although the cause which stirred his anger leads us to be more lenient towards the one who was overthrown by a stronger provocation, as by a heavier blow.
For since the difference between Romulus and his brother arose from a deliberate investigation of the common welfare, there could have been no good reason for his flying into such a passion; while Theseus was impelled to wrong his son by love, jealousy, and a woman's slanders, the overmastering power of which very few men have escaped. And what is of greater weight, the anger of Romulus vented itself in action and a deed of most unfortunate issue; whereas the wrath of Theseus got no farther than words of abuse and an old man's curse, and the rest of the youth's calamities seem to have been due to fortune. On these counts, therefore, one would give his vote of preference to Theseus.