pensable to good men and to Chê. But good men are scarce and bad men plentiful, so that the good the Sages do to the world is little and the evil great.
Therefore it has been said, "If the lips are gone, the teeth will be cold." It was the thinness of the wine of Lu which caused the siege of Han Tan.
- The prince of Ch'u held an assembly, to which the princes of Lu and Chao brought presents of wine. That of Lu was poor stuff, while the wine of Chao was rich and generous. Because, however, the Master of the Cellar to the prince of Ch'u failed to get a bribe of wine from the prince of Chao, he maliciously changed the presents; and the prince of Ch'u, displeased at what he regarded as an insult, shortly after laid siege to Han Tan, the chief city of Chao.
It was the appearance of Sages which caused the appearance of great robbers.
Drive out the Sages and leave the robbers alone,—then only will the empire be governed. As when the stream ceases the gully dries up, and when the hill is levelled the chasm is filled; so when Sages are extinct, there will be no more robbers, but the empire will rest in peace.
On the other hand, unless Sages disappear, neither will great robbers disappear; nor if you double the number of Sages wherewithal to govern the empire will you do more than double the profits of Robber Chê.