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PHILIP

PHILIP. Theophrastus tells us that Philip, the father of Alexander, was not only greater in his port and success, but also freer from luxury than other kings of his time. He said the Athenians were happy, if they could find every year ten fit to be chosen generals, since in many years he could find but one fit to be a general, and that was Parmenio. When he had news brought him of divers and eminent successes in one day, O Fortune, said he, for all these so great kindnesses do me some small mischief. After he had conquered Greece, some advised him to place garrisons in the cities. No, said he, I had rather be called merciful a great while, than lord a little while. His friends advised him to banish a railer his court. I will not do it, said he, lest he should go about and rail in many places. Smicythus accused Nicanor for one that commonly spoke evil of King Philip; and his friends advised him to send for him and punish him. Truly, said he, Nicanor is not the worst of the Macedonians; we ought therefore to consider whether we have given him any cause or not. When he [p. 195] understood therefore that Nicanor, being slighted by the king, was much afflicted with poverty, he ordered a boon should be given him. And when Smicythus reported that Nicanor was continually abounding in the king's praises, You see then, said he, that whether we will be well or ill spoken of is in our own power. He said he was beholden to the Athenian orators, who by reproaching him made him better both in speech and behavior; for I will endeavor, said he, both by my words and actions to prove them liars. Such Athenians as he took prisoners in the fight at Chaeronea he dismissed without ransom. When they also demanded their garments and quilts, and on that account accused the Macedonians, Philip laughed and said, Do ye not think these Athenians imagine we beat them at cockal? In a fight he broke his collar-bone, and the surgeon that had him in cure requested him daily for his reward. Take what you will, said he, for you have the key.1 There were two brothers called Both and Either; perceiving Either was a good understanding busy fellow and Both a silly fellow and good for little, he said: Either is Both, and Both is Neither. To some that advised him to deal severely with the Athenians he said: You talk absurdly, who would persuade a man that suffers all things for the sake of glory, to overthrow the theatre of glory. Being arbitrator betwixt two wicked persons, he commanded one to fly out of Macedonia and the other to pursue him. Being about to pitch his camp in a likely place, and hearing there was no hay to be had for the cattle, What a life, said he, is ours, since we must live according to the convenience of asses! Designing to take a strong fort, which the scouts told him was exceeding difficult and impregnable, he asked whether it was so difficult that an ass could not come at it laden with gold. Lasthenes the Olynthian and his friends being aggrieved, and complaining that some of Philip's retinue [p. 196] called them traitors, These Macedonians, said he, are a rude and clownish people, that call a spade a spade. He exhorted his son to behave himself courteously toward the Macedonians, and to acquire influence with the people, while he could be affable and gracious during the reign of another. He advised him also to make friends of men of interest in the cities, both good and bad, that afterwards he might make use of these, and suppress those. To Philo the Theban, who had been his host and given him entertainment while he remained an hostage at Thebes, and afterwards refused to accept any present from him, he said: Do not take from me the title of invincible, by making me inferior to you in kindness and bounty. Having taken many prisoners, he was selling them, sitting in an unseemly posture, with his tunic tucked up; when one of the captives to be sold cried out, Spare me, Philip, for our fathers were friends. When Philip asked him, Prithee, how or from whence? Let me come nearer, said he, and I'll tell you. When he was come up to him, he said: Let down your cloak a little lower, for you sit indecently. Whereupon said Philip: Let him go, in truth he wisheth me well and is my friend, though I did not know him. Being invited to supper, he carried many he took up by the way along with him; and perceiving his host troubled (for his provision was not sufficient), he sent to each of his friends, and bade them reserve a place for the cake. They, believing and expecting it, ate little, and so the supper was enough for all. It appeared he grieved much at the death of Hipparchus the Euboean. For when somebody said it was time for him to die,—For himself, said he, but he died too soon for me, preventing me by his death from returning him the kindness his friendship deserved. Hearing that Alexander blamed him for having children by several women, Therefore, saith he to him, since you have many rivals with you for the kingdom, be just and honorable, that you may not receive the kingdom [p. 197] as my gift, but by your own merit. He charged him to be observant of Aristotle, and study philosophy, That you may not, said he, do many things which I now repent of doing. He made one of Antipater's recommendation a judge; and perceiving afterwards that his hair and beard were colored, he removed him, saying, I could not think one that was faithless in his hair could be trusty in his deeds. As he sate judge in the cause of one Machaetas, he fell asleep, and for want of minding his arguments, gave judgment against him. And when being enraged he cried out, I appeal; To whom, said he, wilt thou appeal? To you yourself, O king, said he, when you are awake to hear me with attention. Then Philip rousing and coming to himself, and perceiving Machaetas was injured, although he did not reverse the sentence, he paid the fine himself. When Harpalus, in behalf of Crates his kinsman and intimate friend, who was charged with disgraceful crimes, begged that Crates might pay the fine and so cause the action to be withdrawn and avoid public disgrace;—It is better, said he, that he should be reproached upon his own account, than we for him. His friends being enraged because the Peloponnesians, to whom he had shown favor, hissed at him in the Olympic games, What then, said he, would they do if we should abuse them? Awaking after he had overslept himself in the army; I slept, said he, securely, for Antipater watched. Another time, being asleep in the day-time, while the Grecians fretting with impatience thronged at the gates; Do not wonder, said Parmenio to them, if Philip be now asleep, for while you slept he was awake. When he corrected a musician at a banquet, and discoursed with him concerning notes and instruments, the musician replied: Far be that dishonor from your majesty, that you should understand these things better than I do. While he was at variance with his wife Olympia and his son, Demaratus the Corinthian came to him, and Philip asked [p. 198] him how the Grecians held together. Demaratus replied: You had need to enquire how the Grecians agree, who agree so well with your nearest relations. Whereupon he let fall his anger, and was reconciled to them. A poor old woman petitioned and dunned him often to hear her cause; and he answered, I am not at leisure; the old woman bawled out, Do not reign then. He admired the speech, and immediately heard her and others.

1 The Greek κλείς (clavis), a key, signifies also the collar-bone, (G.)

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