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[13] We may wonder at the variety of herbs that have been observed by physicians, of roots that are good for the bites of wild beasts, for eye affections, and for wounds, and though reason has never explained their force and nature, yet through their usefulness they have won approval for the medical art and for their discoverer.

"But come, let us consider instances, which although outside the category of divination, yet resemble it very closely1

The heaving sea oft warns of coming storms,
When suddenly its depths begin to swell;
And hoary rocks, o'erspread with snowy brine,
To the sea, in boding tones, attempt reply;
Or when from lofty mountain-peak upsprings
A shrilly whistling wind, which stronger grows
With each repulse by hedge of circling cliffs.

8. "Your book, Prognostics, is full of such warning signs, but who can fathom their causes? And yet I see that the Stoic Boëthus has attempted to do so and has succeeded to the extent of explaining [p. 239] the phenomena of sea and sky.

1 The following verses and those in §§ 14, 15 are from Cicero's translation of the Diosemeia of Aratus.

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load focus Introduction (William Armistead Falconer, 1923)
load focus Latin (William Armistead Falconer, 1923)
load focus Latin (C. F. W. Müller, 1915)
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