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XXIII. Such is the condition of the Scythians. The other people of Europe differ from one another both in stature and in shape, because of the changes of the seasons, which are violent and frequent, while there are severe heat waves, severe winters, copious rains and then long droughts, and winds, causing many changes of various kinds. Wherefore it is natural to realize that generation too varies in the coagulation of the seed,1 and is not the same for the same seed in summer as in winter nor in rain as in drought. It is for this reason, I think, that the physique of Europeans varies more than that of Asiatics, and that their stature differs very widely in each city. For there arise more corruptions in the coagulation of the seed when the changes of the seasons

[p. 133] are frequent than when they are similar or alike. The same reasoning applies also to character. In such a climate arise wildness, unsociability and spirit. For the frequent shocks to the mind impart wildness, destroying tameness and gentleness. For this reason, I think, Europeans are also more courageous than Asiatics. For uniformity engenders slackness, while variation fosters endurance in both body and soul ; rest and slackness are food for cowardice, endurance and exertion for bravery. Wherefore Europeans are more warlike, and also because of their institutions, not being under kings as are Asiatics. For, as I said above, where there are kings, there must be the greatest cowards. For men's souls are enslaved, and refuse to run risks readily and recklessly to increase the power of somebody else. But independent people, taking risks on their own behalf and not on behalf of others, are willing and eager to go into danger, for they themselves enjoy the prize of victory. So institutions contribute a great deal to the formation of courageousness.

1 I. e. "in the formation of the foetus."

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