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Express Scribe Old Version 4.30 Full Version


For a full description of R, see Boter 2014, 22-23. R was copied by three scribes; the second of these has been identified as Isidorus of Kiev, who also owned the manuscript. The most recent watermarks in R suggest are attested for the fifties of the fifteenth century. It must have been written before 1463, because Isidorus bequeathed R to the Vatican library on his death in 1463. Like V, R only contains VA.




Express Scribe old version 4.30 full version


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III. But, on the contrary, we early entertained an esteem for theorator; though he was not at first a man of learning, but only quick atspeaking: in subsequent times he became learned; for it is reported thatGalba, Africanus, and Lælius were men of learning; and that even Cato,who preceded them in point of time, was a studious man: then succeededthe Lepidi, Carbo, and Gracchi, and so many great orators after them,down to our own times, that we were very little, if at all, inferior tothe Greeks. Philosophy has been at a low ebb even to this present time,and has had no assistance from our own language, and so now I haveundertaken to raise and illustrate it, in order that, as I have been ofservice to my countrymen, when employed on public affairs, I may, ifpossible, be so likewise in my retirement; and in this I must take themore pains, because there are already many books in the 11Latin languagewhich are said to be written inaccurately, having been composed byexcellent men, only not of sufficient learning; for, indeed, it ispossible that a man may think well, and yet not be able to express histhoughts elegantly; but for any one to publish thoughts which he canneither arrange skilfully nor illustrate so as to entertain his reader,is an unpardonable abuse of letters and retirement: they, therefore,read their books to one another, and no one ever takes them up but thosewho wish to have the same license for careless writing allowed tothemselves. Wherefore, if oratory has acquired any reputation from myindustry, I shall take the more pains to open the fountains ofphilosophy, from which all my eloquence has taken its rise.


XVIII. With regard to his form, we are directed partly by nature andpartly by reason. All men are told by nature that none but a human formcan be ascribed to the Gods; for under what other image did it everappear to any one either sleeping or waking? and, without havingrecourse to our first notions,87 reason itself declares the same; foras it is easy to conceive that the most excellent nature, either becauseof its happiness or immortality, should be the most beautiful, whatcomposition of limbs, what conformation of lineaments, what form, whataspect, can be more beautiful than the human? Your sect, Lucilius (notlike my friend Cotta, who sometimes says one 227thing and sometimesanother), when they represent the divine art and workmanship in thehuman body, are used to describe how very completely each member isformed, not only for convenience, but also for beauty. Therefore, if thehuman form excels that of all other animal beings, as God himself is ananimated being, he must surely be of that form which is the mostbeautiful. Besides, the Gods are granted to be perfectly happy; andnobody can be happy without virtue, nor can virtue exist where reason isnot; and reason can reside in none but the human form; the Gods,therefore, must be acknowledged to be of human form; yet that form isnot body, but something like body; nor does it contain any blood, butsomething like blood. Though these distinctions were more acutelydevised and more artfully expressed by Epicurus than any common capacitycan comprehend; yet, depending on your understanding, I shall be morebrief on the subject than otherwise I should be. Epicurus, who not onlydiscovered and understood the occult and almost hidden secrets ofnature, but explained them with ease, teaches that the power and natureof the Gods is not to be discerned by the senses, but by the mind; norare they to be considered as bodies of any solidity, or reducible tonumber, like those things which, because of their firmness, he callsΣτερέμνια;88 but as images, perceived by similitude and transition. Asinfinite kinds of those images result from innumerable individuals, andcentre in the Gods, our minds and understanding are directed towards andfixed with the greatest delight on them, in order to comprehend whatthat happy and eternal essence is.


XXXII. It is now incumbent on me to prove that all things are subjectedto nature, and most beautifully directed by her. But, first of all, itis proper to explain precisely what that nature is, in order to come tothe more easy understanding of what I would demonstrate. Some think thatnature is a certain irrational power exciting in bodies the necessarymotions. Others, that it is an intelligent power, acting by order andmethod, designing some end in every cause, and always aiming at thatend, whose works express such skill as no art, no hand, can imitate;for, they say, such is the virtue of its seed, that, however small itis, if it falls into a place proper for its reception, and meets withmatter conducive to its nourishment and increase, it forms and produceseverything in its respective kind; either vegetables, which receivetheir nourishment from their roots; or animals, endowed with motion,sense, appetite, and abilities to beget their likeness.


And Philus said: Very well; I obey you, and wilfully, with my eyes open,I will undertake this dirty business; because, since those who seek forgold do not flinch at the sight of the mud, so we who are searching forjustice, which is far more precious than gold, are bound to shrink fromno annoyance. And I wish, as I am about to make use of the antagonistarguments of a foreigner, I might also employ a foreign language. Thepleas, therefore, now to be urged by Lucius Furius Philus are those[once employed by] the Greek Carneades, a man who was accustomed toexpress whatever [served his turn].335 * * *336429Let it be understood,therefore, that I by no means express my own sentiments, but those ofCarneades, in order that you may refute this philosopher, who was wontto turn the best causes into joke, through the mere wantonness of wit. 350c69d7ab


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