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But swift is the pace of Fortune, bold is her spirit, and most vaunting her hopes ; she outstrips Virtue and is close at hand. She does not raise herself in the air on light pinions, nor advance ‘poised on tip-toe above a globe,’ in a precarious and hesitant posture, and then depart from sight. But even as the Spartans say that Aphroditê, as she crossed the Eurotas, put aside her mirrors and ornaments and her magic girdle, and took a spear and shield, adorning herself to please Lycurgus, even so Fortune, when she had deserted the Persians and Assyrians, had flitted lightly over Macedonia, and had quickly shaken off Alexander, made her way through Egypt and Syria, conveying kingships here and there ; and turning about, she would often exalt the Carthaginians. But when she was approaching the Palatine and crossing the Tiber, it appears that she took off her wings, stepped out of her sandals, and abandoned her untrustworthy and unstable globe.1 Thus did she enter Rome, as with intent to abide, and in such guise is she present to-day, as though ready to meet her trial.
For stubborn is she not,
as Pindar2 says,
Nor is the rudder double that she plies ;
but rather is she
The sister of Good Order and Persuasion, and
The daughter of Foresight,
[p. 333] as Alcman3 describes her lineage. And she holds that celebrated Horn of Plenty in her hand, filled not with fruits of everlasting bloom, but as many as are the products of the whole earth and of all the seas, rivers, mines, and harbours, these does she pour forth in unstinted abundance. Not a few splendid and distinguished men are seen in her company : Numa Pompilius from the Sabine country and Priscus from Tarquinii, whom as adventitious and foreign kings she set upon the throne of Romulus ; and Aemilius Paulus, leading back his army without a wound4 from Perseus and the Macedonians, triumphing for a tearless victory, magnifies Fortune. There magnifies her also the aged Caecilius Metellus Macedonicus,5 borne to his grave by four sons of consular rank, Quintus Baliaricus, Lucius Diadematus,6 Marcus Metellus, Gaius Caprarius, and by two sons-in-law of consular rank, and by grandsons made distinguished by illustrious deeds and offices. Aemilius Scaurus, a novus homo,7 was raised by her from a humble station and a humbler family to be enrolled as the first man of the Senate,8 Cornelius Sulla she took up and elevated from the embraces of his mistress, Nicopolis,9 and designated him for a monarchy and dictatorship which ranked far above the Cimbrian triumphs and the seven consulships of Marius. Sulla used openly to declare himself, together with his exploits, to be [p. 335] the adopted child of Fortune, loudly asserting in the words of Sophocles' Oedipus,10
And Fortune's son I hold myself to be.
In the Latin tongue he was called Felix,11 but for the Greeks he wrote his name thus : Lucius Cornelius Sulla Epaphroditus.12 And the trophies at my home in Chaeroneia and those of the Mithridatic Wars are thus inscribed, quite appropriately ; for not ‘Night,’ as Menander13 has it, but Fortune has the ‘greater share in Aphroditê.’.

1 This is the Fortuna of Horace, Carmina, i. 35; cf. Dio Chrysostom, Oration, lxiii. (p. 591 c-d); Galen, Protrepticus, 2.

2 Pindar, Frags. 39-41 (ed. Christ), or Bergk, Poet. Lyr. Graec. i. p. 382.

3 Bergk, Poet. Lyr. Graec. iii. p. 58, Alcman, no. 62; or Edmonds, Lyra Graeca, i. p. 90.

4 An exaggeration; 100 were killed: cf. Life of Aemilius Paulus, chap. xxi. (266 e); Livy, xliv. 42.

5 Cf. Cicero, De Finibus, v. 27 (82); Tusculan Disp. i. 35 (85); Velleius Paterculus, i. 11. 7; Valerius Maximus, vii. 1. 1; Pliny, Natural History, vii. 13. 59; 44. 142.

6 That is, Vittatus.

7 Not literally true; he was of the gens Aemilia (cf. Cicero, Pro Murena, 7 (16)); but his father was engaged in the charcoal trade, and he had to fight his way as thought he had been a novus homo.

8 Princeps senatus.

9 Life of Sulla, chap. ii. (452 b-c).

10 Oedipus Tyrannus, 1080.

11 Life of Sulla, chap. xxxiv. (473 d-e); Appian, Civil Wars, i. 97; Diodorus, xxxviii. 15; Corpus Inscriptionum Graecarum, vii. nos. 264, 372, 413 (= Dittenberger, Sylloge 3, 747, 752).

12 That is, Venustus.

13 Koch, Com. Att. Frag. iii. 209, Menander, no. 739, or Menander, ed. Allinson (in L.C.L.), p. 528: cf. Moralia, 654 d; scholia on Theocritus, ii. 10.

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