ONE may say of discourses what they use to say of friends, that they are the best and firmest that afford their useful presence and help in calamities. Many indeed present themselves and discourse with those that are fallen into misfortunes, who yet do them more harm than good. Like men that attempt to succor drowning persons and have themselves no skill in diving under water, they entangle one another, and sink together to the bottom. The discourses of friends, such as would help an afflicted person, ought to be directed to the consolation, and not to the patronage of his sorrows. For we have no need in our distresses of such as may bear us company in weeping and howling, like a chorus in a tragedy, but of such as will deal freely with us, and will convince us that,—as it is in all cases vain and foolish and to no purpose to grieve and cast down one's self,—so, when the things themselves that afflict us, after a rational examination and discovery of what they are, give a man leave to say to himself thus,
Thou feel'st but little pain and smart,
Unless thou'lt feign and act a part,

it would be extremely ridiculous for him not to put the question to his body, and ask it what it has suffered, nor to his soul, and ask how much worse it is become by this accident, but only to make use of those teachers of grief from abroad, who come to bear a part with him in his sorrow, or to express indignation at what has happened.

[p. 16]

Creative Commons License
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.

load focus Greek (Gregorius N. Bernardakis, 1891)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: