Plutarch's Lives


Ι. Ἐκκειμένων δὲ τῶν πράξεων, ὅσας ἡγούμεθα λόγου καὶ μνήμης ἀξίας εἶναι, τὰς μὲν πολεμικὰς ἐπ᾿ οὐδέτερον ποιούσας ῥοπὴν μεγάλην ὁρᾶν ἔστιν. ὁμαλῶς γὰρ ἀμφότεροι πολλὰ μὲν στρατιωτικῆς ἔργα τόλμης καὶ ἀνδρείας, πολλὰ δὲ καὶ τέχνης καὶ προνοίας στρατηγοῦντες ἐπεδείξαντο, 2πλὴν εἰ μή τις θέλοι τὸν Ἀλκιβιάδην, ὅτι καὶ κατὰ γῆν καὶ κατὰ θάλατταν ἐν πολλοῖς ἀγῶσι νικῶν καὶ κατορθῶν διετέλεσεν, ἀποφαίνειν τελειότερον στρατηγόν· ἐπεὶ τό γε παρόντας καὶ ἄρχοντας ὀρθοῦν ἀεὶ προδήλως τὰ οἰκεῖα καὶ προδηλότερον αὖ πάλιν βλάπτειν μεθισταμένους 3ἀμφοτέροις ὑπῆρξε. πολιτείαν δὲ τὴν μὲν Ἀλκιβιάδου τὴν ἄγαν λαμυρὰν καὶ τὸ μὴ καθαρεῦον ἀναγωγίας καὶ βωμολοχίας ἐν τῷ πρὸς χάριν ὁμιλεῖν τοῖς πολλοῖς οἱ σώφρονες ἐβδελύττοντο, τὴν δὲ Μαρκίου παντάπασιν ἄχαριν καὶ ὑπερηφανον


Alcibiades and Coriolanus

Comparison Of Alcibiades And Coriolanus

I. Now that all the deeds of these men are set forth, so far as we consider them worthy of recollection and record, it is plain that their military careers do not incline the balance either way very decidedly. For both alike gave many signal proofs of daring and valour as soldiers, as well as of skill and foresight as commanders; except that some may give the preference to Alcibiades, because he was continually successful and victorious in many struggles by sea, as well as by land, and declare him therefore the more consummate general. It is certainly true of each that, when he was at home and in command, he always conducted his country’s cause with manifest success, and, contrariwise, inflicted even more manifest injury upon it when he went over to the enemy. As statesmen, if the exceeding wantonness of Alcibiades, and the stain of dissoluteness and vulgarity upon all his efforts to win the favour of the multitude, won the loathing of sober-minded citizens, it was equally true that the utter ungraciousness of

DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.plutarch-lives_comparison_alcibiades_coriolanus.1916