Libanius, Oration 22. To Ellebichus

LCL 452: 374-375

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R ii. 11. Εἰσί τινες, οἳ τοῦθ᾿ ἓν μέγιστον ἀγαθὸν ἀνθρώπῳF ii. 471 νομίζουσι χρήματα καὶ τὸ πλουτεῖν καὶ διὰ τοῦτο κἂν δι᾿ ἐπιορκίας τουτὶ λαβεῖν οὐκ ἀποκνοῦσιν, ἀλλ᾿ εἰ καὶ πείσονταί τι κακὸν ἐντεῦθεν ὕστερον, οὐκ ἀποτρέπονται. ἕτεροι δέ γε βούλοιντ᾿ ἂν ἐπαινεθῆναι μᾶλλον ἢ πάνθ᾿ ὅσα ἐν ἀνθρώποις ἔνι χρήματα κεκτῆσθαι καὶ τοῦθ᾿ ὁμολογοῦντες οὐκ αἰσχύνονται. οἱ δὲ | τοῦ μὲν αὐτοῦ τὴν ἴσην ἔχουσινF 472 ἐπιθυμίαν, προσποιοῦνται δὲ μηδὲν ἐπαίνων δεῖσθαι.

2. κακοὺς τοίνυν ἀμφοτέρους ἡγούμενος ὅσοι τε τὸ πλουτεῖν πρὸ ἐπαίνων ποιοῦνται καὶ ὅσοι μεῖζον ἡγούμενοι τοὺς ἐπαίνους οὔ φασιν οὕτως ἔχειν, ἄνδρας ἀρίστους ἡγοῦμαι τοὺς μήτ᾿ ἀγνοοῦντας ὅσον ἐστὶν ἔπαινος χαίρειν τε τῷ πράγματι λέγοντας, ὥστε καὶ ἐπαγγέλλειν παρὰ τῶν δυναμένων λέγειν. ὧν ἕνα τοῦτον2 εἰδὼς τὸν θαυμαστὸν R ii. 2μαστὸν Ἐλλέβιχον | νῦν οὐκ αἰτοῦντι τοῦτο παρέξω πρότερον ᾐτηκότι δεδωκώς. οἶμαι γὰρ αὐτὸν καὶ


Oration XXII

Oration 22

To Ellebichus

1. Some people think that the greatest single blessing for man lies in money and wealth, and so they do not shrink from its acquisition, even by perjury, but even if they have to suffer some evil in consequence, they are not deterred. Others, though, would prefer to be praised rather than to get all the money in the world, and they are not ashamed to confess it. Others, again, are possessed of an equal desire for the same object, but profess that they have no need of praise.

2. Well, I think that both those who think more of wealth than of praise and those who think praise to be of greater importance and yet deny that it is, are wrong. The best men, I feel, are those who, though not unaware of the value of praise, do not bother about it, so that they actually invite it from those qualified to utter it. Of these I know that our admirable Ellebichus is one, and now I will provide him with it unsolicited, though previously I had conferred it upon him at his request.a In my opinion, he has remained silent through his conviction

DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.libanius-oration_22_ellebichus.1977