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There are people who frown upon eloquence and censure men who study philosophy,1 asserting that those who engage in such occupations do so, not for the sake of virtue, but for their own advantage. Now, I should be glad if those who take this position would tell me why they blame men who are ambitious to speak well, but applaud men who desire to act rightly; for if it is the pursuit of one's own advantage which gives them offense, we shall find that more and greater advantages are gained from actions than from speech.

1 For Isocrates' use of the word “philosophy” as covering what we mean by “culture” and his identification of “discourse” with the cultivated life see General Introduction, pp. xxiii ff.

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