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colleague foughtwith Hannibal,and was in great peril of being overthrown; but then Fabius came down from the high grounds, and got the day. Whereupon Hannibal said ; that he did ever think that the same cloud that hanged upon the hills, would at one time or other give a tempest.
177. Hanno the Carthaginian was sent commissioner by the state, after the second Carthaginian war, to supplicate for peace, and in the end obtained it: yet one of the sharper senators said, you have often broken with us the peace, whereunto you have sworn; I pray, by what god will you swear? Hanno answered ; by the same gods that punished the former perjury so severely.
178. One of the seven was wont to say; that laws were like cobwebs; where the small flies were caught, and the great brake through.
179. Lewis the eleventh of France, having much abated the greatness and power of the peers, nobility, and court of parliament, would say, that he had brought the crown out of ward.
180. There was a cowardly Spanish soldier, that in a defeat that the Moors gave, ran away with the foremost. Afterwards when the army generally fled, this soldier was missing. Whereupon it was said by some, that he was slain. No sure, (saith one) he is alive; for the Moors eat no hare's flesh.
181. Anacharsis would say, concerning the popular estates of Grecia, that he wondered how at Athens wise men did propose, and fools dispose.
182. When queen Elizabeth had advanced Raleigh, she was one day playing on the virginals, and my lord of Oxford, and another nobleman stood by. It fell out so, that the ledge, before the jacks, was taken away, so as the jacks were seen: my lord of Oxford, and the other nobleman smiled, and a little whispered. The queen marked it, and would needs know, what the matter was? My lord of Oxford answered; That they smiled to see, that when jacks went up, heads went down.
183. Sir Thomas More, (who was a man, in all his life-time, that had an excellent vein in jesting) at the very instant of his death, having a pretty long beard, after his head was upon the block, lift it up again, and gently drew his beard aside, and said; This hath not offended the king.
184. Demonax the philosopher, when he died, was asked touching his burial. He answered, Never take care for burying me, for stink will bury me. He that asked him, said again; Why would you have your body left to dogs and ravens to feed upon Demonax answered; Why, what great hurt is it, if having sought to do good, when I lived, to men; my body do some good to beasts, when I am dead ?
185. There was a conspiracy against the emperor Claudius by Scribonianus, examined in the senate; where Claudius sate in his chair, and one of his freed servants stood at the back of his chair. In the examination, that freed servant, who had much power with Claudius, very saucily, had almost all the words: and amongst other things, he asked in scorn one of the examinates, who was likewise a freed servant of Scribonianus; I pray sir, if Scribonianus had been emperor, what would you have done? He answered, I would have stood behind his chair and held my peace.
186. One was saying, that his great grand-father, and grand-father, and father, died at sea : said another that heard him ; and I were as you,
I would never coine at sea. Why, (saith he) where did your great grand-father, and grand-father, and father die? He answered; where, but in their beds? He answered ; and I were as you, I would never come in bed.
187. There was a dispute, whether great heads or little heads had the better wit? And one said, it must needs be the little ; for that it is a maxim, One majus continet in se minus.
188. Sir Thomas More, when the counsel of the party pressed him for a longer day to perform the decree, said ; take saint Barnaby's-day, which is the longest day in the year. Now saint Barnaby's-day was within few days following.
be made capons,
189. There was an Epicurean vaunted, that divers of other sects of philosophers did after turn Epicureans; but there was never any Epicureans that turned to any other sect. Whereupon a philosopher that was of another sect, said ; the reason was plain, for that cocks
may but capons
could never be made cocks. 190. Chilon would say, that gold was tryed with the touchstone, and men with gold.
191. Simonides being asked of Hiero what he thought of God? asked a seven-night's time to consider of it: and at the seven-nights end, he asked a fort-night's time; at the fort-night's end, a month. At which Hiero marvelling, Simonides answered; that the longer he thought upon the matter, the more difficult he found it,
192. Mr. Popham, (afterwards lord chief justice Popham) when he was speaker; and the house of commons, had sate long, and done in effect nothing; coming one day to queen Elizabeth, she said to him ; now, Mr. Speaker, what hath passed in the commons house? He answered, if it please your majesty, seven weeks.
193. Themistocles in his lower fortune was in love with a young gentleman who scorned him; but when he grew to his greatness, which was soon after, he sought him : Themistocles said; we are both grown wise, but too late.
194. Aristippus was earnest suitor to Dionysius for some grant, who would give no ear to his suit. Aristippus fell at his feet, and then Dionysius granted it. One that stood by said afterwards to Aristippus; you a philosopher, and be so base as to throw yourself at the tyrant's feet to get a suit. Aristippus answered; the fault is not mine, but the fault is in Dionysius, that carries his ears in his feet.
195. Solon when he wept for his son's death, and one said to him, weeping will not help; answered, alas therefore I weep, because weeping will not help.
196. The same Solon being asked; whether he had given the Athenians the best laws ? answered, the best of those that they would have received.
197. One said to Aristippus ; 'tis a strange thing, why men should rather give to the poor, than to philosophers. He answered, because they think themselves may sooner come to be poor, than to be philosophers.
198. Trajan would say of the vain jealousy of princes, that seek to make away those that aspire to their succession ; that there was never king that did put to death his successor.
199. Alexander used to say of his two friends, Cratuerus and Hephaestion; that Hephaestion loved Alexander, and Cratuerus loved the king.