Page images

Athenians in the port of Pyle, which was won, and | ard, told him; “ You were best take heed next time some slain, and some taken. There was one said you run away how you look back.” to one of them that was taken, by way of scorn, 189. There was a suitor to Vespasian, who to lay Were they not brave men that lost their lives at his suit fairer, said it was for his brother; whereas the port of Pyle ?” " He answered, Certainly a Per- | indeed it was for a piece of money. Some about sian arrow is much to be set by, if it can choose out Vespasian told the emperor, to cross him, that the a brave man."

party his servant spoke for, was not his brother ; 180. Clodius was acquitted by a corrupt jury, but that he did it upon a bargain. Vespasian sent that had palpably taken shares of money; before for the party interested, and asked him; “Whether they gave up their verdict, they prayed of the senate his mean employed by him was his brother or no?” a guard, that they might do their consciences, for He durst not tell untruth to the emperor, and conthat Clodius was a very seditious young nobleman. fessed he was not his brother. Whereupon the Whereupon all the world gave him for condemn- emperor, said, “ This do, fetch me the money, and ed. But acquitted he was. Catulus, the next day you shall have your suit despatched.” Which he seeing some of them that had acquitted him to- did. The courtier, which was the mean, solicited gether, said to them ; " What made you ask of us Vespasian soon after about his suit : “ Why,” saith a guard ? Were you afraid your money should be Vespasian, “ I gave it last day to a brother of mine." taken from you ?”.

190. Vespasian asked of Apollonius, what was 181. At the same judgment, Cicero gave in evi- the cause of Nero's ruin ? Who answered, “ Nero dence upon oath: and when the jury, which con could tune the harp well, but in government he did sisted of fifty-seven, had passed against his evidence, always wind up the strings too high, or let them one day in the senate Cicero and Clodius being in down too low.” altercation, Clodius upbraided him, and said ; “ The 191. Dionysius the tyrant, after he was deposed jury gave you no credit.” Cicero answered, “Five and brought to Corinth, kept a school. Many used and twenty gave me credit : but there were two and to visit him; and amongst others, one when he thirty that gave you no credit, for they had their came in, opened his mantle and shook his clothes; money beforehand.”

thinking to give Dionysius a gentle scorn ; because 182. Sir Henry Savil was asked by my lord of it was the manner to do so for them that came in to Essex his opinion touching poets ? He answered see him while he was a tyrant. But Dionysius said my lord; " that he thought them the best writers, to him; “ I prithee do so rather when thou goest next to them that writ prose.”

out, that we may see thou stealest nothing away." 183. Diogenes, having seen that the kingdom of 192. Diogenes, one terrible frosty morning, came Macedon, which before was contemptible and low, into the market-place, and stood naked, shaking, to began to come aloft when he died, was asked, how show his tolerance. Many of the people came about he would be buried ? He answered, "With my him, pitying him : Plato passing by, and knowing face downwards; for within a while the world will he did it to be seen, said to the people as he went be turned upside down, and then I shall lie right.” by ; “ If you pity him indeed, let him alone to

184. Cato the elder was wont to say, that the himself.” Romans were like sheep; a man were better to 193. Aristippus was earnest suitor to Dionysius drive a flock of them than one of them.

for some grant, who would give no ear to his suit. 185. When Lycurgus was to reform and alter Aristippus fell at his feet, and then Dionysius grantthe state of Sparta, in consultation one advised, that ed it. One that stood by said afterwards to Arisit should be reduced to an absolute popular equality: tippus ; “ You a philosopher, and be so base as to but Lycurgus said to him; “Sir, begin it in your throw yourself at the tyrant's feet to get a suit.". own house."

Aristippus answered, “ The fault is not mine, but 186. Bion, that was an atheist, was showed in the fault is in Dionysius, that carries his ears in his a port city, in a temple of Neptune, many tables feet.” of pictures, of such as had in tempests made their 194. Solon, when he wept for his son's death, vows to Neptune, and were saved from shipwreck : and one said to him, “ Weeping will not help;" anand was asked, " How say you now? Do you not swered, “ Alas, therefore I weep, because weeping acknowledge the power of the gods ?” But saith he; will not help.” " Ay, but where are they painted that have been 195. The same Solon being asked, whether he drowned after their vows ?"

had given the Athenians the best laws? answer187. Cicero was at dinner, where there was an ed, " The best of those that they would have reancient lady that spake of her own years, and said, ceived." "she was but forty years old.” One that sat by 196. One said to Aristippus; 'Tis a strange thing, Cicero rounded him in the ear, and said; “ She why men should rather give to the poor, than 10 talks of forty years old; but she is far more, out of philosophers. He answered, “ Because they thirak question." Cicero answered him again; “ I must themselves may sooner come to be poor, than to believe her, for I have heard her say so any time be philosophers.” these ten years."

197. Trajan would say of the vain jealor 188. There was a soldier that vaunted before princes, that seek to make away those that Julius Cæsar of the hurts he had received in his to their succession ; " that there was never, face. Julius Cæsar, knowing him to be but a cow. I did put to death his successor.”

od that


sy of 'in ? aspire that king that

[ocr errors]

198. When it was represented to Alexander, to self to be mortal, chiefly by two things; sleep, and the advantage of Antipater, who was a stern and lust. imperious man, that he only of all his lieutenants 211. Augustus Cæsar would say, that he wondered wore no purple, but kept the Macedonian habit of that Alexander feared he should want work, having black ; Alexander said, “ Yea, but Antipater is all no more worlds to conquer : as if it were not as hard purple within."

a matter to keep, as to conquer. 199. Alexander used to say of his two friends, 212. Antigonus, when it was told him, that the Craterus and Hephæstion ; that Hephæstion loved enemy had such volleys of arrows that they did Alexander, and Craterus loved the king.

hide the sun, said, “ That falls out well, for it is hot 200. It fell out so, that as Livia went abroad in weather, and so we shall fight in the shade.” Rome, there met her naked young men that were 213. Cato the elder, being aged, buried his wife, sporting in the streets, which Augustus went about and married a young woman. His son came to severely to punish in them; but Livia spake for him, and said ; " Sir, what have I offended, that you them, and said, “ It was no more to chaste women have brought a step-mother into your house ?" The than so many statues.”

old man answered, “ Nay, quite contrary, son: thou 201. Philip of Macedon was wished to banish one pleasest me so well, as I would be glad to have more for speaking ill of him. But Philip answered ; such." “ Better he speak where we are both known, than 214. Crassus the orator had a fish which the where we are both unknown.”

Romans called Muræna, that he made very tame 202. Lucullus entertained Pompey in one of his and fond of him ; the fish died, and Crassus magnificent houses : Pompey said, “ This is a mar wept for it. One day falling in contention with vellous fair and stately house for the summer ; but Domitius in the senate, Domitius, said, “ Foolish methinks it should be very cold for winter.” Lu- Crassus, you wept for your Murana.” Crassus cullus answered, “ Do you not think me as wise as replied, “ That is more than you did for both your divers fowls are, to change my habitation in the wives." winter season?”

215. Philip, Alexander's father, gave sentence 203. Plato entertained some of his friends at a against a prisoner what time he was drowsy, and dinner, and had in the chamber a bed, or couch, scemed to give small attention. The prisoner, after neatly and costly furnished. Diogenes came in, sentence was pronounced, said, “ I appeal.” The and got up upon the bed, and trampled it, saying, king, somewhat stirred, said, “ To whom do you apI trample upon the pride of Plato.” Plato mildly peal ?” The prisoner answered, “ From Philip answered, “ But with greater pride, Diogenes.” when he gave no ear, to Philip when he shall

204. Pompey being commissioner for sending give ear." grain to Rome in time of dearth, when he came to 216. There was a philosopher that disputed with the sea, found it very tempestuous and dangerous, the emperor Adrian, and did it but weakly. One of insomuch as those about him advised him by no his friends that stood by, afterwards said unto him, means to embark; but Pompey said, “ It is of neces " Methinks you were not like yourself last day, in sity that I go, not that I live."

argument with the emperor; I could have answered 205. Demosthenes was upbraided by Æschines, better myself.” “ Why," said the philosopher, that his speeches did smell of the lamp. But De “ would you have me contend with him that commosthenes said, “ Indeed there is a great deal of mands thirty legions ?” difference between that which you and I do by 217. When Alexander passed into Asia, he gave lamp-light.”

large donatives to his captains, and other principal 206. Demades the orator, in his age was talkative, men of virtue ; insomuch as Parmenio asked him, and would eat hard : Antipater would say of him, "Sir, what do you keep for yourself?" He answered, that he was like a sacrifice, that nothing was left of Hope.” it but the tongue and the paunch.

218. Vespasian set a tribute upon urine. Titus 207. Themistocles, after he was banished, and his son imboldened himself to speak to his father of had wrought himself into great favour afterwards, it; and represented it as a thing indign and sordid. so that he was honoured and sumptuously served, Vespasian said nothing for the time; but a while seeing his present glory, said unto one of his after, when it was forgotten, sent for a piece of silver friends, “ If I had not been undone, I had been out of the tribute-money; and called to his son, bidundone."

ding him to smell to it; and asked him, whether he 208. Philo Judæus saith, that the sense is like found any offence? Who said, “ No." Why so?” the sun; for the sun seals up the globe of heaven, saith Vespasian again ; "yet this comes out of urine.” and opens the globe of earth: so the sense doth 219. Nerva the emperor succeeded Domitian, who obscure heavenly things, and reveals earthly things. had been tyrannical; and in his time many noble

209. Alexander, after the battle of Granicum, houses were overthrown by false accusations; the had very great offers made him by Darius ; consult- instruments whereof were chiefly Marcellus and ing with his captains concerning them, Parmenio Regulus. The emperor Nerva one night supped said, “ Sure I would accept of these offers, if I were privately with some six or seven: amongst whom as Alexander.” Alexander answered, “ So would I, there was one that was a dangerous man; and began if I were as Parmenio.”

to take the like courses as Marcellus and Regulus 210.. Alexander was wont to say, he knew him. had done. The emperor fell into discourse of the


[ocr errors]

injustice and tyranny of the former time; and by | now at that present had demanded of him, to drink name, of the two accusers; and said, “ What should up the sea. Whereunto one of the wise men said, we do with them, if we had them now ?” One of “I would have him undertake it.” “Why," said the them that was at supper, and was a free-spoken ambassador, “ how shall he come off ?" “ Thus," senator, said, “ Marry, they should sup with us.” saith the wise man; “ let that king first stop the

220. There was one that found a great mass of rivers which run into the sea, which are no part of money digging under ground in his grandfather's the bargain, and then your master will perform it.” house; and being somewhat doubtful of the case, 230. At the same banquet, the ambassador designified it to the emperor that he had found suchsired the seven, and some other wise men that were treasure. The emperor made a rescript thus ; “ Use at the banquet, to deliver every one of them some it." He writ back again, that the sum was greater sentence or parable, that he might report to his king than his estate or condition could use. The empe- the wisdom of Græcia, which they did ; only one ror writ a new rescript, thus : “ Abuse it.”

was silent; which the ambassador perceiving, said 221. Julius Cæsar, as he passed by, was, by ac to him, “Sir, let it not displease you; why do not clamation of some that stood in the way, termed King, you say somewhat that I may report ?” He anto try how the people would take it. The people swered, “ Report to your lord, that there are of the showed great murmur and distaste at it. Cæsar, Grecians that can hold their peace.” finding where the wind stood, slighted it, and said, 231. The Lacedæmonians had in custom to speak "I am not king, but Cæsar;" as if they had mis- very short, which being an empire, they might do taken his name. For Rex was a surname amongst at pleasure: but after their defeat at Leuctra, in an the Romans, as King is with us.

assembly of the Grecians, they made a long invective 222. When Cræsus, for his glory, showed Solon against Epaminondas; who stood up, and said no his great treasures of gold, Solon said to him, “If more than this ; " I am glad we have brought you another king come that hath better iron than you, to speak long." he will be master of all this gold.”

232. Fabius Maximus being resolved to draw the 223. Aristippus being reprehended of luxury by war in length, still waited upon Hannibal's progress one that was not rich, for that he gave six crowns to curb him; and for that purpose he encamped for a small fish, answered, “ Why, what would you upon the high ground: but Terentius his colleagne have given ?” The other said, “Some twelve pence." fought with Hannibal, and was in great peril of Aristippus said again, “ And six crowns is no more overthrow; but then Fabius came down from the with me."

high grounds, and got the day. Whereupon Han224. Plato reprehended severely a young man nibal said, "that he did ever think that that same for entering into a dissolute house. The young man cloud that hanged upon the hills, would at one time said to him, "Why do you reprehend so sharply for or other give a tempest." so small a matter ?" Plato replied, “But custom 233. Hanno the Carthaginian was sent commisis no small matter."

sioner by the state, after the second Carthaginian 225. Archidamus, king of Lacedæmon, having re war, to supplicate for peace, and in the end obtained ceived from Philip king of Macedon, after Philip it: yet one of the sharper senators said, “ You have had won the victory of Chæronea upon the Athe- often broken with us the peaces whereunto you have nians, proud letters, writ back to him, “That if he been sworn; I pray, by what god will you swear ?" measured his own shadow, he would find it no longer Hanno answered ; " By the same gods that have than it was before his victory."

punished the former perjury so severely." 226. Pyrrhus, when his friends congratulated to 234. Cæsar, when he first possessed Rome, Pomhim his victory over the Romans, under the conduct pey being fled, offered to enter the sacred treasury of Fabricius, but with great slaughter of his own to take the moneys that were there stored; and side, said to them again, “Yes, but if we have such Metellus, tribune of the people, did forbid him: and another victory, we are undone."

when Metellus was violent in it, and would not de227. Plato was wont to say of his master Socrates, sist, Cæsar turned to him, and said ; “Presume no that he was like the apothecaries' gally-pots; that farther, or I will lay you dead.” And when Metellus had on the outside apes, and owls, and satyrs; but was with those words somewhat astonished, Cæsar within, precious drugs.

added ; “Young man, it had been easier for me to 228. Alexander sent to Phocion a great present do this than to speak it." of money. Phocion said to the messenger, “Why 235. Caius Marius was general of the Romans doth the king send to me, and to none else ?” The against the Cimbers, who came with such a sea of messenger answered, " Because he takes you to be people upon Italy. In the fight there was a band the only good man in Athens.” Phocion replied, of the Cadurcians of a thousand, that did notable “If he thinks so, pray let him suffer me to be so service; whereupon, after the fight, Marius did still."

denison them all for citizens of Rome, though there 229. At a banquet where those that were called was no law to warrant it. One of his friends did the seven wise men of Greece were invited by the present it unto him, that he had transgressed the law, ambassador of a barbarous king, the ambassador re because that privilege was not to be granted but by lated, that there was a neighbour mightier than his the people. Whereunto Marius answered ; " That master, picked quarrels with him, by making im- for the noise of arms he could not hear the laws." possible demands, otherwise threatening war; and 236. Pompey did consummate the war against

Sertorius, when Metellus had brought the enemy reans; but there never were any Epicureans that somewhat low. He did also consummate the war turned to any other sect. Whereupon a philosopher against the fugitives, whom Crassus had before de- that was of another sect, said; “ The reason was feated in a great battle. So when Lucullus had plain, for that cocks may be made capons,


capons had great and glorious victories against Mithridates could never be made cocks.” and Tigranes; yet Pompey, by means his friends 247. Chilon would say, “ That gold was tried made, was sent to put an end to that war. Where with the touchstone, and men with gold." upon Lucullus taking indignation, as a disgrace 248. Simonides being asked of Hiero, “ what he offered to himself, said ; "that Pompey was a car- thought of God ?” asked a seven-night's time to conrion crow: when others had strucken down the sider of it: and at the seven-night's end he asked a bodies, then Pompey came and preyed upon them.” fortnight's time; at the fortnight's end, a month.

237. Antisthenes being asked of one what learn At which Hiero marvelling, Simonides answered ; ing was most necessary for man's life? answered; “ that the longer he thought upon the matter, the " To unlearn that which is nought.”

more difficult he found it.” 238. Alexander visited Diogenes in his tub; and 249. A Spaniard was censuring to a French genwhen he asked him, what he would desire of him ? tleman the want of devotion amongst the French ; in Diogenes answered; " That you would stand a little that, whereas in Spain, when the sacrament goes to aside, that the sun may come to me."

the sick, any that meets with it, turns back and 239. The same Diogenes, when mice came about waits upon it to the house whither it goes ; but in him as he was eating, said ; “I see, that even France they only do reverence, and pass by. But Diogenes nourisheth parasites."

the French gentleman answered him, “There is rea240. Hiero visited by Pythagoras, asked him, son for it; for here with us, Christ is secure amongst "of what condition he was ?” Pythagoras answered; his friends; but in Spain there be so many Jews

Sir, I know you have been at the Olympian and Moranos, that it is not amiss for him to have a games.” Yes," saith Hiero. “ Thither,” saith convoy." Pythagoras, come some to win the prizes. Some 250. Mr. Popham, afterwards lord chief justice come to sell their merchandise, because it is a kind Popham, when he was speaker, and the house of of mart of all Greece. Some come to meet their commons had set long, and done in effect nothing ; friends, and to make merry ; because of the great coming one day to queen Elizabeth, she said to confluence of all sorts. Others come only to look him ; " Now, Mr. Speaker, what hath passed in on. I am one of them that come to look on." the commons house ?” He answered, “ If it please Meaning it, of philosophy, and the contemplative your majesty, seven weeks." life.

251. Themistocles in his lower fortune was in 241. Heraclitus the obscure said; “ The dry love with a young gentleman who scorned him ; light is the best soul :” meaning, when the faculties but when he grew to his greatness, which was soon intellectual are in vigour, not drenched, or, as it after, he sought him : Themistocles said, “We are were, blooded by the affections.

both grown wise, but too late." 242. One of the philosophers was asked ;

252. Bion was sailing, and there fell out a great a wise man differed from a fool ?” He answered, tempest; and the mariners, that were wicked and dis“ Send them both naked to those that know them solute fellows, called upon the gods ; but Bion said not, and you shall perceive.”

to them, “ Peace, let them not know you are here." 243. There was a law made by the Romans 253. The Turks made an expedition into Peragainst the bribery and extortion of the governors of sia; and because of the strait jaws of the mounprovinces. Cicero saith in a speech of his to the tains of Armenia, the bashaws consulted which way people, “ that he thought the provinces would they should get in. One that heard the debate said, petition to the state of Rome to have that law Here is much ado how you shall get in; but I repealed. For," saith he,“ before the governors hear nobody take care how you should get out.” did bribe and extort as much as was sufficient for 254. Philip king of Macedon maintained arguthemselves; but now they bribe and extort as much ments with a musician in points of his art, someas may be enough not only for themselves, but for what peremptorily; but the musician said to him, ihe judges, and jurors, and magistrates.”

" God forbid, Sir, your fortune were so hard, that 244. Aristippus, sailing in a tempest, showed you should know these things better than myself.”. signs of fear. One of the seamen said to him, in an 255. Antalcidas, when an Athenian said to him, insulting manner : “ We that are plebeians are not “ Ye Spartans are unlearned ;" said again, " True, troubled; you that are a philosopher are afraid.” for we have learned no evil nor vice of you." Aristippus answered ; “ That there is not the like 256. Pace, the bitter fool, was not suffered to wager upon it, for you to perish and for me.” come at queen Elizabeth, because of his bitter

245. There was an orator that defended a cause humour. Yet at one time, some persuaded the of Aristippus, and prevailed. Afterwards he asked queen that he should come to her; undertaking for Aristippus ; “Now, in your distress, what did Socra- him, that he should keep within compass: so he tes do you good ?" Aristippus answered; “ Thus, was brought to her, and the queen said; “ Come in making that which you said of me to be true.” on, Pace ; now we shall hear of our faults.” Saith

246. There was an Epicurean vaunted, that divers Pace; “ I do not use to talk of that that all the of other sects of philosophers did after turn Epicu- | town talks of.”

" what

to say,

257. Bishop Latimer said, in a sermon at court, | and when he had finished it, he required the wager “ That he heard great speech that the king was according to agreement; because the seaman was poor; and many ways were propounded to make to say his compass better than he his Pater-noster, him rich: for his part he had thought of one way, which he had not performed. “ Nay, I pray, Sir, which was, that they should help the king to some hold," quoth the seaman, “the wager is not finished; good office, for all his officers were rich.”

for I have but half done;" and he immediately 258. After the defeat of Cyrus the younger, Fa- said his compass backward very exactly; which the linus was sent by the king to the Grecians, who had judge failing of in his Pater-noster, the seaman carfor their part rather victory than otherwise, to com- ried away the prize. mand them to yield their arms : which when it was 266. There was a conspiracy, against the emperor denied, Falinus said to Clearchus ; "Well then, the Claudius by Scribonianus, examined in the senate ; king lets you know, that if you remove from the place where Claudius sat in his chair, and one of his freed where you are now encamped, it is war: if you stay, servants stood at the back of his chair. In the exit is truce. What shall I say you will do ?" Clear- amination, that freed servant, who had much power chus answered, “ It pleaseth us, as it pleaseth the with Claudius, very saucily, had almost all the words: king." “ How is that?" saith Falinus. Saith and amongst other things, he asked in scorn one of Clearchus, “ If we remove, war: if we stay, truce :" the examinates, who was likewise a freed servant of and so would not disclose his purpose.

Scribonianus ; “I pray, Sir, if Scribonianus had 259. Alcibiades came to Pericles, and stayed a been emperor, what would you have done?" He while ere he was admitted. When he came in, answered; " I would have stood behind his chair Pericles civilly excused it, and said: "I was study, and held my how to give mine account.” But Alcibiades 267. One was saying that his great grandfather, said to him, “ If you will be ruled by me, study and grandfather, and father, died at sea: said anrather how to give no account.”

other that heard him, “And I were as you, I would 260. Mendoza that was viceroy of Peru, was wont never come at sea." “ Why,” saith he, “ where

" That the government of Peru was the best did your great grandfather, and grandfather, and place that the king of Spain gave, save that it was father die P” He answered; “ Where but in their somewhat too near Madrid."

beds ?" He answered ; “ And I were as you, I 261. When Vespasian passed from Jewry to take would never come in bed.” upon him the empire, he went by Alexandria, where 268. There was a dispute, whether great heads remained two famous philosophers, Apollonius and or little heads had the better wit? And one said, Euphrates. The emperor heard the discourse, touch “ It must needs be the little: for that it is a maxim, ing matter of state, in the presence of many. And • Omne majus continet in se minus.'" when he was weary of them, he brake off, and in a 269. Sir Thomas More, when the counsel of the secret derision, finding their discourses but spe- party pressed him for a longer day to perform the culative, and not to be put in practice, said; “O decree, said ; “Take Saint Barnaby's day, which is that I might govern wise men, and wise men the longest day in the year.” Now Saint Barnaby's govern me.”

day was within few days following. 262. Cardinal Ximenes, upon a muster, which 270. One of the fathers saith, “ That there is but was taken against the Moors, was spoken to by a this difference between the death of old men and servant of his to stand a little out of the smoke of young men ; that old men go to death, and death the harquebuss; but he said again, “ that that was comes to young men.” his incense.”

271. Cassius, after the defeat of Crassus by the 263. Nero was wont to say of his master Seneca, Parthians, whose weapons were chiefly arrows, fied That his style was like mortar without lime.” to the city of Charras, where he durst not stay any

264. Augustus Cæsar, out of great indignation time, doubting to be pursued and besieged; he had against his two daughters, and Posthumus Agrippa, with him an astrologer, who said to him, " Sir, I his grandchild; whereof the two first were infamous, would not have you go hence, while the moon is in and the last otherwise unworthy; would say, “ That the sign of Scorpio." Cassius answered, “ I am they were not his seed, but some imposthumes that more afraid of that of Sagittarius." had broken from him."

272. Jason the Thessalian was wont to say,

" that 265. A seaman coming before the judges of the some things must be done unjustly, that many things admiralty for admittance into an office of a ship may be done justly.” bound for the Indies, was by one of the judges much 273. Demetrius king of Macedon would at times slighted, as an insufficient person for that office he retire himself from business, and give himself wholly sought to obtain; the judge telling him, " that he to pleasures. One of those his retirings, giving out believed he could not say the points of his compass.” that he was sick, his father Antigonus came on the The seaman answered; " that he could say them, sudden to visit him; and met a fair dainty youth under favour, better than he could say his Pater- coming out of his chamber. When Antigonus came noster.” The judge replied ; “ that he would wager in, Demetrius said ; “ Sir, the fever left me right twenty shillings with him upon that.” The seaman

now.” Antigonus replied, " I think it was he that taking him up, it came to trial: and the seaman be- I met at the door." gạn, and said all the points of his compass very 274. Cato Major would say, " That wise men exactly : the judge likewise said his Pater-noster; I learned more by fools, than fools by wise men.”

« PreviousContinue »