Table of Contents:
And indeed Dionysius was not the only person who encouraged and received those who had squandered their estates on drunkenness and gambling and all such debauchery as that, for Philip also did the same. And Theopompus speaks of such of them in the forty-ninth book of his History, where he writes as follows:—“Philip kept at a distance all men who were well regulated in their conduct and who took care of their property; but the extravagant and those who lived in gambling and drunkenness he praised and honoured. And therefore he not only took care that they should always have such amusements, but he encouraged them to devote themselves to all sorts of injustice and debauchery besides. For what disgraceful or iniquitous practices were there to which [p. 409] these men were strangers, or what virtuous or respectable habits were there which they did not shun? Did they not at all times go about shaven and carefully made smooth, though they were men? And did not they endeavour to misuse one another though they had beards? And they used to go about attended by two or three lovers at a time; and they expected no complaisance from others which they were not prepared to exhibit themselves. On which account a man might very reasonably have thought them not ἑταῖροι but ἑταῖραι, and one might have called them not soldiers, but prostitutes. For though they were ἀνδροφόνοι by profession, they were ἀνδρόπορνοι by practice. And in addition to all this, instead of loving sobriety, they loved drunkenness; and instead of living respectably they sought every opportunity of robbing and murdering; and as for speaking the truth, and adhering to their agreements, they thought that conduct quite inconsistent with their characters; but to perjure themselves and cheat, they thought the most venerable behaviour possible. And they disregarded what they had, but they longed for what they had not; and this too, though a great part of Europe belonged to them. For I think that the companions of Philip, who did not at that time amount to a greater number than eight hundred, had possession so far as to enjoy the fruits of more land than any ten thousand Greeks, who had the most fertile and large estates.” And he makes a very similar statement about Dionysius, in his twenty-first book, when he says, “Dionysius the tyrant of Sicily encouraged above all others those who squandered their property in drunkenness and gambling and intemperance of that sort. For he wished every one to become ruined and ready for any iniquity, and all such people he treated with favour and distinction.”
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.
An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.