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Consider also what vast power love has over martial men and warriors, not slothful, as Euripides1 will have it to be, nor unwarlike, nor
Slumbering on a girl's soft cheek.2

For a man that is once inflamed with love wants not [p. 284] Mars himself to be his second, when he is to engage with his enemies; but confiding in the Deity that is within him,

Ventures through fire and seas, and blustering storms,
While love of friend his daring courage warms;

and breaks through all opposition, if his mistress require any proof of his valor. Therefore we read in Sophocles, that the daughters of Niobe being wounded with arrows to death, one of them, as she lay wallowing in blood, calls out for no other help or succor to assist her in her revenge, but her lover.

Where is my love? she cried;
Were I but armed with that,
I yet would be revenged
For my untimely fate.

You know the reason why Cleomachus the Pharsalian fell in battle. I am a stranger to the story, replied Pemptides, and would willingly therefore hear it. Certainly it is very well worth your knowledge, said my father.

In the heat of the war between the Chalcidians and the Eretrians, Cleomachus went with the Thessalian force to aid the Chalcidians; at what time it was evident that the Chalcidians were the stronger in foot, but they found it a difficult thing to withstand the force of the enemies' horse. Thereupon they requested Cleomachus, being their confederate and a man signalized for his courage, to give the first onset upon the enemies' cavalry. Presently the youth whom he most entirely loved being present, he asked him whether he would stay and be a spectator of the combat. To which when the lad gave his consent, and after many tender kisses and embraces had put on his helmet, Cleomachus's love redoubling his courage, being surrounded with some few of the flower of the Thessalian horse, he charged into the thickest of the enemy and put them to the rout; which the heavy-armed infantry seeing, they betook [p. 285] themselves also to flight, so that the Chalcidians obtained a noble victory. However, Cleomachus was there slain, and the Chalcidians show his monument erected in the market-place, with a fair pillar standing upon it to this day; and whereas they abominated pederasty before, after that they admired and affected it above all other pleasures. Nevertheless, Aristotle tells us that Cleomachus indeed lost his life after the victorious battle which he gained from the Eretrians, but as for that Cleomachus who was thus kissed by his male concubine, that he was of Chalcis in Thrace, and sent to aid the Chalcidians in Euboea. Which is the reason of that same ballad generally sung among them:

Fair youths, whose mothers brought you forth
Lovely in form, and noble for your birth;
Envy not men of courage, prompt in arms,
The kind fruition of your tempting charms.
For softest love with daring valor reigns
In equal honor through Chalcidian plains.

Dionysius the poet, in his poem entitled Causes, informs us that the name of the lover was Anton, and that the youth beloved was called Philistus.

And is it not a custom among you Thebans, Pemptides, for the lover to present the beloved with a complete suit of armor when he is come of age? And Pammenes, a very great soldier but very amorously given, quite altered the method of embattling the heavy-armed infantry, and blames Homer, as one that knew not what belonged to love, for marshalling the several divisions of the Achaeans according to their tribes and clans, and not placing the lover by his beloved, so that the close order which he afterwards describes might have been the consequence, in which

Spears lean on spears, on targets targets throng,
Helms stuck to helms, and man drove man along;

[p. 286] the only way to render a battalion invincible. For men will desert those of the same tribe or family, nay, their very children and parents; but never any enemy could pierce or penetrate between a lover and his darling minion, in whose sight many times when there is no necessity the lover delights to show his courage and contempt of danger; like Thero the Thessalian, who clapping his left hand to the wall, and then drawing his sword, struck off his thumb, thereby challenging his rival to do the same. Or like another, who falling in battle upon his face, as his enemy was about to follow his blow, desired him to stay till he could turn, lest his male concubine should see that he had been wounded in the back.

And therefore we find that the most warlike of nations are most addicted to love, as the Boeotians, Lacedaemonians, and Cretans. And among the most ancient heroes none were more amorous than Meleager, Achilles, Aristomenes, Cimon, and Epaminondas; the latter of which had for his male concubines Asopichus and Caphisodorus, who was slain with him at the battle of Mantinea and lies buried very near him. And when . . . had rendered himself most terrible to the enemy and' most resolute, Eucnamus the Amphissean, that first made head against him and slew him, had heroic honors paid him by the Phocians. It would be a task too great to enumerate the amours of Hercules; but among the rest, Iolaus is honored and adored to this day by many, because he is thought to have been the darling of that hero; and upon his tomb it is that lovers plight their troths and make reciprocal vows of their affection. Moreover, Hercules, being skilled in physic, is said to have recovered Alcestis from death's door in kindness to Admetus, who, as he had a great love for his wife, so was greatly beloved by the hero. For it is said that even Apollo, doting upon Admetus,

Became his slave for a long weary year.

[p. 287] And here, methinks, we have very opportunely mentioned Alcestis; for although the temper of women has little to do with Mars, Love many times drives them to daring attempts beyond their own nature, even to death. And if there be any credit to be given to the fables of the poets, the stories of Alcestis, Protesilaus, and Eurydice the wife of Orpheus, plainly evince us that Pluto himself obeys no other God but Love. For, as Sophocles says,

To others—be their fame or birth whate'er—
Nor equity nor favor will he show;
But rigorous, and without remorse severe,
His downright justice only makes them know;

but to lovers he pays a reverence: to them alone is he neither implacable nor inexorable. And therefore, although it is a very good thing to be initiated into the Eleusinian ceremonies, still I find the condition of those much better in hell who are admitted into the mysteries of love; which I speak as neither altogether confiding in fables, nor altogether misbelieving them. For they speak a great deal of sense, and many times, by a certain kind of divine good hap, hit upon the truth, when they say that lovers are permitted to return from hell to sunlight again; but which way and how, they know not, as wandering from the right path, which Plato, first of all men, by the assistance of philosophy found out. For there are several slender and obscure emanations of truth dispersed among the mythologies of the Egyptians; only they want an acute and experienced huntsman, who is skilled in tracing out great mysteries by small tracks. And therefore let them go.

And now, since we find the power of love to be so great, let us take a little notice of that which we call the benevolence and favor of it towards men; not whether it confers many benefits upon those that are addicted to it,—for that is a thing apparent to all men,—but whether the [p. 288] blessings that men receive by it are more and greater than any other. And here Euripides, notwithstanding that he was a person so amorous as he was, admires the meanest gift it has; for, says he,

Love into men poetic fire infuses,
Though ne'er before acquainted with the Muses.

And he might well have said, that love makes a man wise and prudent that was a fool and sottish before, and a coward bold and daring, as we have already shown; as when we heat wood in the fire to make it strong, when before it was weak. In like manner, he that was a sordid miser before, falling once in love, becomes liberal and lofty-minded, his covetous and pinching humor being mollified by love, like iron in the fire, so that he is more pleased with being liberal to the objects of his love, than before delighted to receive from others. For ye all know that Anytus, the son of Anthemion, fell in love with Alcibiades; who, understanding that Anytus had invited several of his friends to a noble and splendid banquet, came into the room in masquerade, and going to the table, after he had taken one half of the silver cups and other plate, went his way. Which when some of the guests took very ill, and told Anytus that the young lad had demeaned himself very rudely and saucily; Not so, said Anytus, but very civilly, since, when it was in his power to have taken all the rest, he was so civil as to leave me some.

1 Eurip. Danae, Frag. 324.

2 Soph. Antigone, 784.

3 Soph. Niobe, Frag. 407.

4 Il. XIII. 131.

5 From the Stheneboea of Euripides, Frag. 666.

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