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‘Well contrived, vain Fortune! to advance and aggrandize Alexander by lancing, broaching, boring every part of his body. Not like Minerva,—who, to save Menelaus, directed the dart against the most impenetrable parts of his armor, blunting the force of the weapon with his breastplate, belt, and scarf, so that it only glanced upon his skin, and drew forth two or three drops of blood,— but contrariwise, thou hast exposed his principal parts naked to mischief, driving the wounds through the very bones, rounding every corner of his body, besieging the [p. 509] eyes, undermining the pursuing feet, stopping the torrent of victory, and disappointing the prosecution of noble designs. For my part, I know no prince to whom Fortune ever was more unkind, though she has been envious and severe enough to several. However, other princes she destroyed with a swift and rapid destruction, as with a whirlwind; but in her hatred against Alexander she prolonged her malice, and persisted still implacable and inexorable, as she showed herself to Hercules. For what Typhons and monstrous giants did she not oppose against him? Which of his enemies did she not fortify with store of arms, deep rivers, steep mountains, and the foreign strength of massy elephants? Now had not Alexander been a personage of transcending wisdom, actuated by the impulse of a more than ordinary virtue, but had he been supported only by Fortune, he would have trusted to her as her favorite, and spared himself the labor and the turmoil of ranging so many armies and fighting so many battles, the toil of so many sieges and pursuits, the vexations of revolting nations and haughty princes not enduring the curb of foreign dominion, and all his tedious marches into Bactria, Maracanda, and Sogdiana, among faithless and rebellious nations, who were ever breaking out afresh with new wars, like the Hydra putting forth a new head so soon as one was cut off.’
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