The workes of Lucius Annæus Seneca, both morrall and naturall Containing, 1. His bookes of benefites. 2. His epistles. 3. His booke of prouidence. 4. Three bookes of anger. 5. Two bookes of clemencie. 6. His booke of a blessed life. 7. His booke of the tranquilitie of the minde. 8. His booke of the constancie of a wiseman. 9. His booke of the shortnesse of life. 10. Two bookes of consolation to Martia. 11. Three bookes of consolation to Heluia. 12. His booke of consolation to Polibius. 13. His seuen bookes of naturall questions. Translated by Tho. Lodge, D. in Physicke.
Seneca, Lucius Annaeus, ca. 4 B.C.-65 A.D., Lodge, Thomas, 1558?-1625., Hole, William, d. 1624, engraver., Lipsius, Justus, 1547-1606.
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CHAP. XII.

TEll me O Marcia, if thy sorrow haue any ground or reason in it, whether it respecteth thine incommodities or these of thy sonne? Whether art thou moued in the losse of thy Sonne,* because thou hast receiued no pleasures by him, or for that thou mightest haue enioyed greater if he had liued longer? If thou say that thou hast receiued none, thou wilt make thy losse more tollerable. For men lesse com∣plaine, the misse of those things that haue giuen them neither ioy not pleasure. And if thou confesse that thy Sonne hath highly contented thee, thou art not to complaine, because hee is taken from thee, but to giue thankes for that thou hast enioyed. Thou hast likewise reaped great fruit of thy labours in his very education, except happily they, who carefully nourish yong whelpes and birds, and such like friuolous delights of the minde, conceiue some pleasure in the sought touch and wanton fawning of mute beasts, and that education it selfe is not the fruit of education, to those that nourish their children. Although therefore his industrie hath profited thee nothing, neither his diligence hath preserued thee, that his prudence hath not employed it selfe to doe thee good, yet that which thou hast had and loued is the fruit of thy labour. But it might either haue beene longer or greater? Yet art thou delt better with all, then if it had not happened at all; for if choice may be giuen, whether it be bet∣ter to be happie for a small time or neuer, it were better for vs to enioy those goods which must quietly passe from vs, then to haue none at all. Hadst thou rather haue had an vnthrift, who had nothing good in him, but the title and name of a Sonne, or this thy Sonne who was of so good a nature? The young man was quickly prudent, quickly pious, quickly a husband, sudainely a father, quickly a magistrate or officer,* and sudainely a Priest; In briefe, all good things appeared sudainely in him. Scarcely doth long and great goods befall any man. There is no felicitie that endureth long, and attaineth his period, but that which encreased by little and little. The immortall gods intending to giue thee a Sonne for a little time, did presently giue thee him, such as hee might haue prooued by continuance. Neither canst thou say this, that thou onely art chosen by the gods to enioy thy Sonne a little while. Cast thine eyes euery way amongst thy acquaintance and strangers, thou shalt euery where meete with greater. Great Captaines and Princes haue tasted hereof. The Poets haue not exempted the gods themselues, and I thinke they haue thus made men belieue that the gods were deiected, that they might pacifie and lesson the sorrow we conceiue in the losse of our neerest friends. Prie I say into euerie place and thou shalt name me: no house so miserable that shall not finde solace considering another that is farre more afflicted and miserable. Assured∣ly I haue not so ill an opinion of thy manners that I would thinke that thou wilt more easily endure thy crosse, if I should recken vp vnto thee a great num∣ber of mourners. A troope of miserable men, is an enuious kind of solace, yet Page  719 some will I recken vp vnto thee, not to the end thou shouldest know, that this is wont to happen vnto men, for it is a ridiculous thing to collect the examples of mortality:* but to the end that thou maist know that there were many who haue lessened their aduersities by bearing them patiently. I will begin with a most happie man, Lucius Scilla lost his sonne, neither did this casualty weaken his malice or his extreame rigor both towards enemies & his cittizens, neither was it the cause why hee might not seeme to vsurpe that surname securlie which he tooke vpon him after the losse of his sonne, neither affraide of the hatred of men on whose miseries his ouer fruitefull felicities consisted neither of the gods displeasure, whose crime it was that Scilla was so happie. But what Scilla was, let vs leaue amongst those things that are vncertaine, yet will his ene∣mies confesse that he tooke vpon him armes happily and gaue them ouer dis∣creetly. And in regard of that whereof we now speake, it appeareth that it is no great euill which attainteth and attaineth those that ar most happie. And no lesse let Greece admire that father, who during the time of his sacrifice recei∣uing tidings of his sonnes death, onely commaunded the musition to hould his peace, and tooke the crowne from his head, and afterwards duely finished the rest of the sacrifice.

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