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‘ [4] If, then, I asked you to save your country by ruining the Volscians, the question before thee would be a grievous one, my son, and hard to decide, since it is neither honourable for a man to destroy his fellow-citizens, nor just for him to betray those who have put their trust in him; but as it is, we ask only a relief from evils, something which would be salutary for both parties alike, but more conducive to fame and honour for the Volscians, because their superiority in arms will give them the appearance of bestowing the greatest of blessings, namely peace and friendship, although they get these no less themselves. If these blessings are realized, it will be chiefly due to thee; if they are not, then thou alone wilt bear the blame from both nations. ’

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