BRAVERY OF WOMEN (MULIERUM VIRTUTES)
Plutarch's well-chosen selection of stories about the
bravery of women was composed for his friend Clea,
who held high office among the priestesses at Delphi,
and to whom he dedicated also his treatise on Isis
and Osiris. He speaks of it as a supplement to a
conversation on the equality of the sexes, which he
had with Clea on the occasion of the death of Leontis,
of blessed memory, suggested no doubt by the noble
character of the departed. It is not impossible that
some of the topics discussed in that conversation are
included here also, so as to make the book a complete
and finished whole.
The treatise stands as No. 126 in Lamprias's list of
Polyaenus drew freely from this book to embellish
, as a glance at the notes on the
following pages will show.
Novelists who still write of virtuous women and
heartless villains may find some material in this work
of Plutarch's. They need not be ashamed to glean
where a great poet has reaped.