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Perseus an Example of the Impermanence of Fortune

Then Aemilius Paulus speaking once more in Latin bade
Perseus, being brought a prisoner before Aemilius Paulus and his council, refuses to reply to his questions. Paulus addresses the king in Greek and then his council in Latin. Livy, 45, 8.
the members of his council, "With such a sight before their eyes,"—pointing to Perseus,—"not to be too boastful in the hour of success, nor to take any extreme or inhuman measures against any one, nor in fact ever to feel confidence in the permanence of their present good fortune. Rather it was precisely at the time of greatest success, either private or public, that a man should be most alive to the possibility of a reverse. Even so it was difficult for a man to exhibit moderation in good fortune. But the distinction between fools and wise was that the former only learnt by their own misfortunes, the latter by those of others." . . .

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  • Cross-references in notes from this page (1):
    • Livy, The History of Rome, Book 45, 8
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