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ALCIBIADES. Alcibiades while he was a boy, wrestling in a ring, seeing he could not break his adversary's hold, bit him by the hand; who cried out, You bite like a woman. Not so, said he, but like a lion. He had a very handsome dog, that cost him seven thousand drachmas; and he cut off his tail, that, said he, the Athenians may have this story to tell of me, and may concern themselves no farther with me. Coming into a school, he called for Homer's Iliads; and when the master told him he had none of Homer's works, he gave him a box on the ear, and went his way. He came to Pericles's gate, and being told he was busy a preparing his accounts to be given to the people of Athens, Had he not better, said he, contrive how he might give no account at all? Being summoned by the Athenians out of Sicily to plead for his life, he absconded, saying, that criminal was a fool who studied a defence when he might fly for it. But, said one, will you not trust your country with your cause? No, said he, nor my mother either, lest she mistake and cast a black pebble [p. 212] instead of a white one. When he heard death was decreed to him and his associates, Let us convince them, said he, that we are alive. And passing over to Lacedaemon, he stirred up the Decelean war against the Athenians.

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