Epictetus, the Discourses as reported by Arrian, the Manual, and Fragments/Book 3/Chapter 22


On the calling of a Cynic[1]

When one of his acquaintances, who seemed to have an inclination to take up the calling of a Cynic, asked him what sort of a man the Cynic ought to be, and what was the fundamental conception of his calling, Epictetus said: We will consider it at leisure; but I can tell you this much, that the man who lays his hand to so great a matter as this without God, is hateful to Him, and his wish means nothing else than disgracing himself in public. For in a well-ordered house no one comes along and says to himself, "I ought to be manager of this house"; or if he does, the lord of the mansion, when he turns around and sees the fellow giving orders in a high and mighty fashion, drags him out and gives him a dressing down. So it goes also in this great city, the world; for here also there is a Lord of the Mansion who assigns each and every thing its place. 5"You are the sun; you have the power, as you make the circuit of the heavens, to produce the year and the seasons, to give increase and nourishment to the fruits, to stir and to calm the winds, and to give warmth in moderation to the bodies of men; arise, make the circuit of the heavens, and so set in motion all things from the greatest to the least. You are a calf; when a lion appears, do what is expected of you; otherwise you will smart for it. You are a bull; come on and fight, for this is expected of you, it befits you, and you are able to do it. You are able to lead the host against Ilium; be Agamemnon. You are able to fight a duel with Hector; be Achilles." But if Thersites came along and claimed command, either he would not have got it, or if he had, he would have disgraced himself in the presence of a multitude of witnesses.

So do you also think about the matter carefully; it is not what you think it is. 10"I wear a rough cloak even as it is, and I shall have one then; I have a hard bed even now, and so I shall then; I shall take to myself a wallet and a staff,[2] and I shall begin to walk around and beg from those I meet, and revile them; and if I see someone who is getting rid of superfluous hair by the aid of pitch-plasters, or has a fancy cut to his hair, or is strolling about in scarlet clothes, I will come down hard on him." If you fancy the affair to be something like this, give it a wide berth; don't come near it, it is nothing for you. But if your impression of it is correct, and you do not think too meanly of yourself, consider the magnitude of the enterprise that you are taking in hand.

First, in all that pertains to yourself directly you must change completely from your present practices, and must cease to blame God or man; you must utterly wipe out desire, and must turn your aversion toward the things which lie within the province of the moral purpose, and these only; you must feel no anger, no rage, no envy, no pity; no wench must look fine to you, no petty reputation, no boy-favourite, no little sweet-cake. For this you ought to know: Other men have the protection of their walls and their houses and darkness, when they do anything of that sort, and they have many things to hide them. A man closes his door, stations someone at the entrance to his bedroom: "If anyone comes, tell him 'He is not at home, he is not at leisure.'" 15But the Cynic, instead of all these defences, has to make his self-respect his protection; if he does not, he will be disgracing himself naked and out of doors. His self-respect is his house, his door, his guards at the entrance to his bedroom, his darkness. For neither ought he to wish to keep concealed anything that is his (otherwise he is lost, he has destroyed the Cynic within him, the man of outdoor life, the free man; he has begun to fear something external, he has begun to need something to conceal him), nor can he keep it concealed when he wishes to do so. For where will he conceal himself, or how? And if this instructor of us all, this "pedagogue,"[3] chance to get caught,[4] what must he suffer! Can, then, a man who is afraid of all this continue with all his heart to supervise the conduct of other men? It cannot be done, it is impossible.

In the first place, then, you must make your governing principle pure, and you must make the following your plan of life: 20"From now on my mind is the material with which I have to work, as the carpenter has his timbers, the shoemaker his hides; my business is to make the right use of my impressions. My paltry body is nothing to me; the parts of it are nothing to me. Death? Let it come when it will, whether it be the death of the whole or some part. Exile? And to what place can anyone thrust me out? Outside the universe he cannot. But wherever I go, there are sun, moon, stars, dreams, omens, my converse with gods."

In the next place, the true Cynic, when he is thus prepared, cannot rest contented with this, but he must know that he has been sent by Zeus to men, partly as a messenger, in order to show them that in questions of good and evil they have gone astray, and are seeking the true nature of the good and the evil where it is not, but where it is they never think; and partly, in the words of Diogenes, when he was taken off to Philip, after the battle of Chaeroneia, as a scout.[5] For the Cynic is truly a scout, to find out what things are friendly to men and what hostile; 25and he must first do his scouting accurately, and on returning must tell the truth, not driven by fear to designate as enemies those who are not such, nor in any other fashion be distraught or confused by his external impressions.

He must, accordingly, be able, if it so chance, to lift up his voice, and, mounting the tragic stage, to speak like Socrates: "Alas! men, where are you rushing?[6] What are you doing, O wretched people? Like blind men you go tottering all around. You have left the true path and are going off upon another; you are looking for serenity and happiness in the wrong place, where it does not exist, and you do not believe when another points them out to you. Why do you look for it outside? It does not reside in the body. If you doubt that, look at Myron, or Ophellius.[7] It is not in possessions. If you doubt that, look at Croesus, look at the rich nowadays, the amount of lamentation with which their life is filled. It is not in office. Why, if it were, then those who have been consul two or three times ought to be happy men, but they are not. Whom are we going to believe about this question? You who look upon their estate from the outside and are dazzled by the external appearance, or the men themselves? What do they say? Listen to them when they lament, when they groan, when they think that their condition is more wretched and dangerous because of these very consulships, and their own reputation, and their prominence. 30It is not in royalty. Otherwise Nero would have been a happy man, and Sardanapalus. Nay, even Agamemnon was not a happy man, though a much finer fellow than Sardanapalus or Nero; but while the rest are snoring what is he doing?

"Many a hair did he pluck, by the roots, from his forehead."[8]

And what are his own words?

"Thus do I wander,"[9]

he says, and

"To and fro am I tossed, and my heart is
Leaping forth from my bosom."[10]

Poor man, what about you is in a bad state? Your possessions? No, it is not; rather you "are possessed of much gold and of much bronze."[11] Your body? No, it is not. What, then, is wrong with you? Why, this: You have neglected and ruined whatever that is within you by which we desire, avoid, choose, and refuse. How neglected? It remains ignorant of the true nature of the good, to which it was born, and of the true nature of the evil, and of what is its own proper possession, and what is none of its own concern. And whenever some one of these things that are none of its own concern is in a bad way, it says, "Woe is me, for the Greeks are in danger."[12] Ah, miserable governing principle, the only thing neglected and uncared for! "They are going to perish, slain by the Trojans." But if the Trojans do not kill them, will they not die anyway? "Yes, but not all at once." What difference does it make, then? For if death is an evil, whether they die all at once, or die one at a time, it is equally an evil.[13] Nothing else is going to happen, is it, but the separation of the paltry body from the soul? "Nothing." And is the door closed for you, if the Greeks perish? Are you not permitted to die? "I am." Why, then, do you grieve? "Woe is me, a king, and holding the sceptre of Zeus!" A king does not become unfortunate any more than a god becomes unfortunate.[14] 35What are you, then? Truly a shepherd![15] for you wail as the shepherds do when a wolf carries off one of their sheep; and these men over whom you rule are sheep. But why did you come here[16] in the first place? Your desire was not in danger, was it, or your avoidance, your choice, or your refusal? "No," he answers, "but my brother's frail wife was carried off." Was it not, then, a great gain to lose a frail and adulterous wife? "Shall we, then, be despised by the Trojans?" Who are they? Wise men or foolish? If wise, why are you fighting with them? If foolish, why do you care?

"In what, then, is the good, since it is not in these things? Tell us. Sir messenger and scout."[17] "It is where you do not expect it, and do not wish to look for it. For if you had wished, you would have found it within you, and you would not now be wandering outside, nor would you be seeking what does not concern you, as though it were your own possession. Turn your thoughts upon yourselves, find out the kind of preconceived ideas which you have. what sort of a thing do you imagine the good to be? Serenity, happiness, freedom from restraint. Come, do you not imagine it to be something naturally great? Something precious? Something not injurious? 40In what kind of subject-matter for life ought one to seek serenity, and freedom from restraint? In that which is slave, or in that which is free?" "In the free." "Is the paltry body which you have, then, free or is it a slave?" "We know not." "You do not know that it is a slave of fever, gout, ophthalmia, dysentery, a tyrant, fire, iron, everything that is stronger?" "Yes, it is their servant." "How, then, can anything that pertains to the body be unhampered? And how can that which is naturally lifeless, earth, or clay, be great or precious? What then? Have you nothing that is free?" "Perhaps nothing." "And who can compel you to assent to that which appears to you to be false?" "No one." "And who to refuse assent to that which appears to you to be true?" "No one." "Here, then, you see that there is something within you which is naturally free. But to desire, or to avoid, or to choose, or to refuse, or to prepare, or to set something before yourself—what man among you can do these things without first conceiving an impression of what is profitable, or what is not fitting?" "No one." "You have, therefore, here too, something unhindered and free. Poor wretches, develop this, pay attention to this, seek here your good."

45And how is it possible for a man who has nothing, who is naked, without home or hearth, in squalor, without a slave, without a city, to live serenely? Behold, God has sent you the man who will show in practice that it is possible. "Look at me," he says, "I am without a home, without a city, without property, without a slave; I sleep on the ground; I have neither wife nor children, no miserable governor's mansion, but only earth, and sky, and one rough cloak. Yet what do I lack? Am I not free from pain and fear, am I not free? When has anyone among you seen me failing to get what I desire, or falling into what I would avoid? When have I ever found fault with either God or man? When have I ever blamed anyone? Has anyone among you seen me with a gloomy face? And how do I face those persons before whom you stand in fear and awe? Do I not face them as slaves? Who, when he lays eyes upon me, does not feel that he is seeing his king and his master?"

50Lo, these are words that befit a Cynic, this is his character, and his plan of life. But no, you say, what makes a Cynic is a contemptible wallet, a staff, and big jaws; to devour everything you give him, or to stow it away, or to revile tactlessly the people he meets, or to show off his fine shoulder. Do you see the spirit in which you are intending to set your hand to so great an enterprise? First take a mirror, look at your shoulders, find out what kind of loins and thighs you have. Man, it's an Olympic contest in which you are intending to enter your name, not some cheap and miserable contest or other. In the Olympic games it is not possible for you merely to be beaten and then leave; but, in the first place, you needs must disgrace yourself in the sight of the whole civilized world, not merely before the men of Athens, or Lacedaemon, or Nicopolis; and, in the second place, the man who carelessly gets up and leaves[18] must needs be flogged, and before he is flogged he has to suffer thirst, and scorching heat, and swallow quantities of wrestler's sand.

Think the matter over more carefully, know yourself, ask the Deity, do not attempt the task without God. For if God so advises you, be assured that He wishes you either to become great, or to receive many stripes. For this too is a very pleasant strand woven into the Cynic's pattern of life; he must needs be flogged like an ass, and while he is being flogged he must love the men who flog him, as though he were the father or brother of them all. 55But that is not your way. If someone flogs you, go stand in the midst and shout, "O Caesar, what do I have to suffer under your peaceful rule? let us go before the Proconsul." But what to a Cynic is Caesar, or a Proconsul, or anyone other than He who has sent him into the world, and whom he serves, that is, Zeus? Does he call upon anyone but Zeus? And is he not persuaded that whatever of these hardships he suffers, it is Zeus that is exercising him? Nay, but Heracles, when he was being exercised by Eurystheus, did not count himself wretched, but used to fulfil without hesitation everything that was enjoined upon him: and yet is this fellow, when he is being trained and exercised by Zeus, prepared to cry out and complain? Is he a man worthy to carry the staff of Diogenes? Hear his words to the passers-by as he lies ill of a fever:[19] "Vile wretches," he said, "are you not going to stop? Nay, you are going to take that long, long journey to Olympia, to see the struggle of worthless athletes; but do you not care to see a struggle between fever and a man?"[20] No doubt a man of that sort would have blamed God, who had sent him into the world, for mistreating him! Nay, he took pride in his distress, and demanded that those who passed by should gaze upon him. Why, what will he blame God for? Because he is living a decent life? What charge does he bring against Him? The charge that He is exhibiting his virtue in a more brilliant style? 60Come, what says Diogenes about poverty, death, hardship? How did he habitually compare his happiness with that of the Great King?[21] Or rather, he thought there was no comparison between them. For where there are disturbances, and griefs, and fears, and ineffectual desires, and unsuccessful avoidances, and envies, and jealousies—where is there in the midst of all this a place for happiness to enter? But wherever worthless judgements are held, there all these passions must necessarily exist.

And when the young man asked whether he, as a Cynic, should consent, if, when he had fallen ill, a friend asked him to come to his house, so as to receive proper nursing, Epictetus replied: But where will you find me a Cynic's friend? For such a person must be another Cynic, in order to be worthy of being counted his friend. He must share with him his sceptre[22] and kingdom, and be a worthy ministrant, if he is going to be deemed worthy of friendship, as Diogenes became the friend of Antisthenes, and Crates of Diogenes. Or do you think that if a man as he comes up greets the Cynic, he is the Cynic's friend, 65and the Cynic will think him worthy to receive him into his house? So if that is what you think and have in mind, you had much better look around for some nice dunghill, on which to have your fever, one that will give you shelter from the north wind, so that you won't get chilled. But you give me the impression of wanting to go into somebody's house for a while and to get filled up. Why, then, are you even laying your hand to so great an enterprise?

But, said the young man, will marriage and children be undertaken by the Cynic as a matter of prime importance?—If, replied Epictetus, you grant me a city of wise men, it might very well be that no one will lightly adopt the Cynic's profession. For in whose interest would he take on this style of life? If, nevertheless, we assume that he does so act, there will be nothing to prevent him from both marrying and having children; for his wife will be another person like himself, and so will his father-in-law, and his children will be brought up in the same fashion. But in such an order of things as the present, which is like that of a battle-field, it is a question, perhaps, if the Cynic ought not to be free from distraction, wholly devoted to the service of God, free to go about among men, not tied down by the private duties of men, nor involved in relationships which he cannot violate and still maintain his role as a good and excellent man, whereas, on the other hand, if he observes them, he will destroy the messenger, the scout, the herald of the gods, that he is. 70For see, he must show certain services to his father-in-law, to the rest of his wife's relatives, to his wife herself; finally, he is driven from his profession, to act as a nurse in his own family and to provide for them. To make a long story short, he must get a kettle to heat water for the baby, for washing it in a bath-tub; wool for his wife when she has had a child, oil, a cot, a cup (the vessels get more and more numerous); not to speak of the rest of his business, and his distraction. Where, I beseech you, is left now our king, the man who has leisure for the public interest,

Who hath charge of the folk and for many a thing must be watchful?[23]

Where, pray, is this king, whose duty it is to oversee the rest of men; those who have married; those who have had children; who is treating his wife well, and who ill; who quarrels; what household is stable, and what not; making his rounds like a physician, and feeling pulses? "You have a fever, you have a headache, you have the gout. You must abstain from food, you must eat, you must give up the bath; you need the surgeon's knife, you the cautery." Where is the man who is tied down to the duties of everyday life going to find leisure for such matters? Come, doesn't he have to get little cloaks for the children? Doesn't he have to send them off to a school-teacher with their little tablets and writing implements, and little notebooks; and, besides, get the little cot ready for them? For they can't be Cynics from the moment they leave the womb. And if he doesn't do all this, it would have been better to expose them at birth, rather than to kill them in this fashion. 75See to what straits we are reducing our Cynic, how we are taking away his kingdom from him.—Yes, but Crates married.—You are mentioning a particular instance which arose out of passionate love, and you are assuming a wife who is herself another Crates. But our inquiry is concerned with ordinary marriage apart from special circumstances,[24] and from this point of view we do not find that marriage, under present conditions, is a matter of prime importance for the Cynic.

How, then, said the young man, will the Cynic still be able to keep society going?—In the name of God, sir, who do mankind the greater service? Those who bring into the world some two or three ugly-snouted children to take their place, or those who exercise oversight, to the best of their ability, over all mankind, observing what they are doing, how they are spending their lives, what they are careful about, and what they undutifully neglect? And were the Thebans helped more by all those who left them children than by Epaminondas who died without offspring? And did Priam, who begot fifty sons, all rascals, or Danaus, or Aeolus, contribute more to the common weal than did Homer? What? Shall high military command or writing a book prevent a man from marrying and having children, while such a person will not be regarded as having exchanged his childlessness for naught, and yet shall the Cynic's kingship not be thought a reasonable compensation? 80Can it be that we do not perceive the greatness of Diogenes, and have no adequate conception of his character, but have in mind the present-day representatives of the profession, these "dogs of the table, guards of the gate,"[25] who follow the masters not at all, except it be in breaking wind in public, forsooth, but in nothing else? Otherwise such points as these you have been raising would never have disturbed us, we should never have wondered why a Cynic will never marry or have children. Man, the Cynic has made all mankind his children; the men among them he has as sons, the women as daughters; in that spirit he approaches them all and cares for them all. Or do you fancy that it is in the spirit of idle impertinence he reviles those he meets? It is as a father he does it, as a brother, and as a servant of Zeus, who is Father of us all.

If you will, ask me also if he is to be active in politics. you ninny, are you looking for any nobler politics than that in which he is engaged? Or would you have someone in Athens step forward and discourse about incomes and revenues, when he is the person who ought to talk with all men, Athenians, Corinthians, and Romans alike, not about revenues, or income, or peace, or war, but about happiness and unhappiness, about success and failure, about slavery and freedom? 85When a man is engaging in such exalted politics, do you ask me if he is to engage in politics? Ask me also, if he will hold office. Again I will tell you: Fool, what nobler office will he hold than that which he now has?

And yet such a man needs also a certain kind of body, since if a consumptive comes forward, thin and pale,[26] his testimony no longer carries the same weight. For he must not merely, by exhibiting the qualities of his soul, prove to the laymen that it is possible, without the help of the things which they admire, to be a good and excellent man, but he must also show, by the state of his body, that his plain and simple style of life in the open air does not injure even his body: "Look," he says, "both I and my body are witnesses to the truth of my contention." That was the way of Diogenes, for he used to go about with a radiant complexion,[27] and would attract the attention of the common people by the very appearance of his body. But a Cynic who excites pity is regarded as a beggar; everybody turns away from him, everybody takes offence at him. No, and he ought not to look dirty either, so as not to scare men away in this respect also; but even his squalor ought to be cleanly and attractive.

90Furthermore, the Cynic ought to possess great natural charm and readiness of wit—otherwise he becomes mere snivel, and nothing else—so as to be able to meet readily and aptly whatever befalls; as Diogenes answered the man who said: "Are you the Diogenes who does not believe in the existence of the gods?" by saying, "And how can that be? You I regard as hated by the gods!"[28] Or again, when Alexander[29] stood over him as he was sleeping and said,

Sleeping the whole night through beseems not the giver of counsel,

he replied, still half asleep,

Who hath charge of the folk, and for many a thing must be watchful.[30]

But above all, the Cynic's governing principle should be purer than the sun; if not, he must needs be a gambler and a man of no principle, because he will be censuring the rest of mankind, while he himself is involved in some vice. For see what this means. To the kings and tyrants of this world their bodyguards and their arms used to afford[31] the privilege of censuring certain persons, and the power also to punish those who do wrong, no matter how guilty they themselves were; whereas to the Cynic it is his conscience which affords him this power, and not his arms and his bodyguards. 95When he sees that he has watched over men, and toiled in their behalf; and that he has slept in purity, while his sleep leaves him even purer than he was before; and that every thought which he thinks is that of a friend and servant to the gods, of one who shares in the government of Zeus; and has always ready at hand the verse

Lead thou me on, O Zeus, and Destiny,[32]

and "If so it pleases the gods, so be it,"[33] why should he not have courage to speak freely to his own brothers, to his children, in a word, to his kinsmen?

That is why the man who is in this frame of mind is neither a busybody nor a meddler; for he is not meddling in other people's affairs when he is overseeing the actions of men, but these are his proper concern. Otherwise, go call the general a meddler when he oversees and reviews and watches over his troops, and punishes those who are guilty of a breach of discipline. But if you censure other men while you are hiding a little sweet-cake under your arm, I'll say to you: Wouldn't you rather go off into a corner and eat up what you have stolen? What have you to do with other people's business? Why who are you? Are you the bull in the herd, or the queen bee of the hive? Show me the tokens of your leadership, like those which nature gives the queen bee. But if you are a drone and lay claim to the sovereignty over the bees, don't you suppose your fellow-citizens will overthrow you, just as the bees so treat the drones?

100Now the spirit of patient endurance the Cynic must have to such a degree that common people will think him insensate and a stone; nobody reviles[34] him, nobody beats him, nobody insults him; but his body he has himself given for anyone to use as he sees fit. For he bears in mind that the inferior, in that respect in which it is inferior, must needs be overcome by the superior, and that his body is inferior to the crowd—the physically weaker, that is, inferior to the physically stronger. Therefore, he never enters this contest where he can be beaten, but immediately gives up what is not his own; he makes no claim to what is slavish.[35] But in the realm of the moral purpose, and the use of his sense-impressions, there you will see he has so many eyes that you will say Argus was blind in comparison with him. Is there anywhere rash assent, reckless choice, futile desire, unsuccessful aversion, incompleted purpose, fault-finding, self-disparagement, or envy? 105Here is concentrated his earnest attention and energy; but, as far as other things go, he lies flat on his back and snores; he is in perfect peace. There rises up no thief of his moral purpose, nor any tyrant over it. But of his body? Certainly. And of his paltry possessions? Certainly; and of his offices and honours. Why, then, does he pay any attention to these? So when anyone tries to terrify him by means of these things, he says to him, "Go to, look for children; they are scared by masks; but I know that they are made of earthenware, and have nothing inside."

Such is the nature of the matter about which you are deliberating. Wherefore, in the name of God I adjure you, put off your decision, and look first at your endowment. For see what Hector says to Andromache. "Go," says he, "rather into the house and weave;

but for men shall war be the business.
Men one and all, and mostly for me."[36]

So did he recognize not only his own special endowment, but also her incapacity.


  1. The Cynics were the intransigent and uncompromising moralists, resembling the holy men, ascetics, and dervishes of the Orient. Epictetus idealizes them somewhat in this discourse, regarding them as a kind of perfected wise men, like some of the early Christian anchorites, but points out very clearly that their style of life was not practicable for every man, indeed not even for one so humble and frugal as he himself was.
  2. Quite like modern dervishes.
  3. That is, the trusted servant who attended constantly the boys of the well-to-do families, and in particular watched over their deportment and morals.
  4. ἐμπεσεῖν seems to me to be used as in III. 7, 12. This is a rare meaning, indeed, but supported to some extent also by the gloss in Hesychius: ἐμπεσεῖν· εἰς δεσμωτήριον ἀχθῆναι. The word is also used of getting caught in a trap, Xenophon Mem. II. 1, 4: τοῖς θηράτροῖς ἐμπίπτουσι. That is probably the original form of expression from which the intransitive use derives. Schenkl (not Schweighäuser, to whom I owe the above references to Hesychius and Xenophon) appears to me to be wrong in rendering the word "decipior," although Matheson is inclined to follow him. Capps suggests that "the κοινὸς παιδευτής is God," and that ἐμπέσῃ means "break in upon." But that might be somewhat inconsistent with ὰπὸ τυχῆς, which seems hardly appropriate of an action on the part of God.
  5. Compare I. 24, 3-10. The philosopher is a sort of spy sent on in advance into this world, to report to the rest of us what things are good and what evil.
  6. [Plato], Cleitophon, 407 A—B.
  7. Probably famous athletes or gladiators of the day; otherwise unknown.
  8. Iliad, X. 15.
  9. v. 91.
  10. v. 94 f.
  11. Iliad, XVIII. 289.
  12. Specifically alluding to the position of Agamemnon in the situation referred to above.
  13. This is a distinct over-statement of the case. Obviously it makes a great deal of difference for a State (and it is in his capacity as head of a State that Agamemnon is here appearing), whether its fighting men are killed all at once, or die one at a time in the course of nature.
  14. Presumably a king is expected to commit suicide before becoming "unfortunate," as suggested in § 34. If he survived under the circumstances here described, he certainly must be "unfortunate," at least as a man, in any ordinary sense of the term. Capps, however, thinks the meaning of Epictetus to be that a king qua king, that is, while really holding the sceptre of Zeus, is blessed of fortune. If "unfortunate" he is simply not such a king. This refinement would be similar to the well-known argument concerning the "ruler qua ruler," in the first book of Plato's Republic. The more common-sense view of the case is well expressed by the Scholiast on Homer's Odyssey XI. 438, thus: "A king is unfortunate when his subjects fare ill."
  15. Referring to the common Homeric designation of a ruler as the "shepherd of the folk."
  16. Capps proposes the novel view that ἤρχου is from ἄρχουαι, and "takes up ἀρχόμενοι [35] . . . Agamemnon, by allowing himself to be dominated by an ἀλλότριον πρᾶγμα, has become a subject, a sheep."
  17. See sections 24 and 25 above, and note there.
  18. Meibom's conjecture, εἰσελθόντα, which is sometimes accepted, would mean, "The man who carelessly enters the contest." But the punishment of flogging would probably be reserved for the person who failed to appear finally in the lists, since everyone had to have a month's preliminary training on the spot, during which time those who had entered would suffer the inconveniences described below.
  19. Referred to also by Jerome, Adv. Jovinianum, 2, 14.
  20. An ancient scholiast, probably Arethas (cf. Schenkl², p. lxxx), remarks at this point, that Epictetus had probably read the Gospels and Jewish literature. But this particular passage does not furnish any very cogent argument, for the evidence adduced, namely the injunctions about "turning the other cheek" and "loving your enemies" (Matth. 5, 39 and 44), has nothing in common with the somewhat vainglorious speech of Diogenes. Probably, however, the scholium actually belongs at § 54, where there is, indeed, a certain resemblance. Fairly apposite, also, is the citation of James 1, 2: πᾶσαν χαρὰν ἡγήσασθε, ἀδελφοί, ὅταν πειρασμοῖς περιπέσητε ποικίλοις, in connection with the next sentence. But even at the best, these words from the New Testament are only parallels, certainly not sources. On the general question, see Introd., Vol. I., p. xxvi f.
  21. Of Persia.
  22. The word means also "staff," as in 57.
  23. Homer, Iliad, II. 25.
  24. That ancient marriages (which would appear to have been quite as successful as any other) were very seldom concerned with romantic passion, is well known, but seldom so explicitly stated as here.
  25. Homer, Iliad, XXII. 69.
  26. Said by the Scholiast to be a reference to the otherwise unknown philosopher Sannio; but this note certainly, as Capps suggests, belongs back at § 84, and is there a false inference from the word σαννίων, which is addressed to the young man. For a similar dislocation of a scholium, see the note on § 58.
  27. Due in part at least to his regular use of oil for anointing. Diogenes Laertius, 6, 81.
  28. See Diogenes Laertius, 6, 42; the same joke appears already in Aristophanes (Eq. 32–4), as Capps remarks.
  29. The same account in Theon, Progymn. 5 (Stengel, II. p. 98). The famous meeting of these two men is pretty clearly apocryphal, at least in certain details. See Natorp in the Real-Encylopädie², V. 767.
  30. Homer, Iliad, II. 24 and 25. The only point in the anecdote seems to be that Diogenes could say something more or less apposite even when only half awake; for the completion of the quotation is in no sense a real answer to the reproach.
  31. The rather curious imperfect tense here (at which several scholars have taken offence) may be due to an attempt to avoid the suggestion that the Roman emperors might also be evil men themselves.
  32. See note on II. 23, 42, in Vol. I.
  33. Plato, Crito, 43 D.
  34. That is, actually or effectually, for the mere act without any effect is as nothing.
  35. Like the body, his own or that of another. His rule is over the mind and the moral purpose.
  36. Homer, Iliad, VI. 492-3.