Aeneas Tacticus

 

 

 

 

Preface

1. When men leave their country and engage in warfare and encounter perils beyond their own frontiers, and disaster occurs by land or sea, the survivors still have their own country and city and fatherland between them and utter destruction; 2. but for those who have to fight for all that is most dear to them, for temples and fatherland, for parents and children and all they posses, the struggle is of a wholly different kind: a successful and stout resistance to the enemy will make them dreaded by their foes and more secure from future invasion, while any weakness in meeting the peril will leave them no hope for safety. 3. When, therefore, men have to fight for all these precious stakes, they must omit no preparation and no personal effort: rather they must think beforehand of every possible precaution, that the world may never see them beaten through their own fault, 4. and if disaster does come, the survivors may be able later on to make good the loss, like certain of the Hellenes who have been reduced to the direst straits and yet have recovered.

 

 

 

 

1. Ὅσοις τῶν ἀνθρώπων ἐκ τῆς αὑτῶν ὁρμωμένοις χώρας ὑπερόριοί τε ἀγῶνες καὶ κίνδυνοι συμβαίνουσιν, ἄν τι σφάλμα γένηται κατὰ γῆν ἢ κατὰ θάλασσαν, ὑπολείπεται τοῖς περιγιγνομένοις αὐτῶν οἰκεία τε χώρα καὶ πόλις καὶ πατρίς, ὥστε οὐκ ἂν ἄρδην πάντες ἀναιρεθείησαν: 2. τοῖς δὲ ὑπὲρ τῶν μεγίστων μέλλουσι κινδυνεύειν, ἱερῶν καὶ πατρίδος καὶ γονέων καὶ τέκνων καὶ τῶν ἄλλων, οὐκ ἴσος οὐδὲ ὅμοιος ἀγών ἐστιν, ἀλλὰ σωθεῖσι μὲν καὶ καλῶς ἀμυναμένοις τοὺς πολεμίους φοβεροὺς τοῖς ἐναντίοις καὶ δυσεπιθέτους εἰς τὸν λοιπὸν χρόνον εἶναι, κακῶς δὲ προσενεχθεῖσι πρὸς τοὺς κινδύνους οὐδεμία ἐλπὶς σωτηρίας ὑπάρξει. 3. τοὺς οὖν ὑπὲρ τοσούτων καὶ τοιούτων μέλλοντας ἀγωνίζεσθαι οὐδεμιᾶς παρασκευῆς καὶ προθυμίας ἐλλιπεῖς εἶναι δεῖ, ἀλλὰ πολλῶν καὶ παντοίων ἔργων πρόνοιαν ἑκτέον, ὅπως διά γε αὑτοὺς μηδὲν φανῶσι σφαλέντες: 4. ἂν δὲ ἄρα τι σύμπτωμα γένηται, ἀλλ̓ οἵ γε λοιποὶ τὰ ὑπάρχοντα εἰς ταὐτό ποτε καταστήσαιεν ἄν, καθάπερ τινὲς τῶν Ἑλλήνων εἰς τὸ ἔσχατον ἀφικόμενοι πάλιν ἀνέλαβον ἑαυτούς.



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created 04/07/2017 - updated 04/07/2017