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As for those that spend nothing although they possess much, and yet are always craving more, they may still more increase our wonder at their folly, especially when one calls to mind that of Aristippus, who was wont to say, that when a man eats and drinks liberally and yet is never the nearer [p. 296] being filled, he presently goes to the physician and enquires what is his disease and his indisposition and how he may get rid of it; but if one that has five beds desires ten, and having ten tables is for purchasing as many more, and having land and money in good store is not at all filled, but still is bent, even breaking his natural rest, upon getting more, and when he has never so much never has enough, this man thinks he has no need of a physician to cure him and to show him from what cause his distemper arises. Indeed, when a man is athirst that hath not drunk at all, we expect that upon his drinking his thirstiness should cease; but as for him that drinks and drinks and so goes on without giving over, we do not think such a one needs further repletion, but evacuation; and we advise him by all means to vomit, as knowing that his trouble proceeds not from the want of any thing, but from some sharp humor or preternatural heat that is within him.

Among those persons, therefore, that are for increasing their substance and getting more, he that is poor and indigent may perhaps give over his cares when he has got a house or found a treasure, or, by a friend's help, has paid his debts and his creditors have discharged him. But as for him that, having more than enough, yet still desires to have, more, it is not gold nor silver, not horses, sheep, or oxen, that can cure him of this disease, but he needs evacuation and purgation. For his distemper is not penury and want, but an insatiable desire and thirst after riches, proceeding from a depraved and inconsiderate judgment of things, which if it be not plucked out of men's minds, like a thing twisting across and contracting them, they will always be in want of superfluities, that is, be craving things they have no need of.

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load focus Greek (Gregorius N. Bernardakis, 1891)
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