Page 171


10. To Seneca Paul greeting Whenever I write to you and place my name after yours, I commit a serious fault and one incompatible with my status. For I ought, as I have often claimed, to be all things to all men and to observe towards you what the Roman law has granted for the honour of the senate—namely, to choose the last place when I have finished my letter, lest I desire to perform in an inadequate and disgraceful manner what is my own will. Farewell, most devoted of teachers. Written 27 June in the con­ sulship of Nero III and Messala [� ad 58].

11. Seneca to Paul greeting Greetings, my dearly beloved Paul. Do you think I am not saddened and grieved because you innocent people are repeat­ edly punished? Or because the whole populace believes you so implacable and so liable to guilt, thinking that every mis­ fortune in the city is due to you? But let us endure it calmly and take advantage of whatever opportunity fortune allots to us, until invincible happiness gives us release from our troubles. Earlier ages endured the Macedonian, the son of Philip, the Cyruses, Darius, Dionysius; our own age endured Gaius Caesar; all of them were free to do whatever they pleased. The source of the frequent fires which the city of Rome suffers is plain. But if lowly people had been allowed to tell the reason, and if it were permitted to speak safely in these times of illfortune, everyone would now understand everything. Christians and Jews, charged with responsibility for the fire—alas!— are being put to death, as is usually the case. That ruffian, whoever he is, whose pleasure is murdering and whose refuge is lying, is destined for his time of reck­


oning, and just as the best is sacrificed as one life for many, so he shall be sacrificed for all and burned by fire. One hundred and thirty-two private houses and four thousand apartment-houses burned in six days; the seventh day gave respite. I hope that you are in good health, brother. Writ­ ten 28 March in the consulship of Frugi and Bassus [� ad 64].

12. Seneca to Paul greeting Greetings, my dearly beloved Paul. If such a great man as you and one who is beloved of God is to be, I do not say joined, but intimately associated in all respects with me and my name, then your Seneca will be wholly satisfied. Since, therefore, you are the peak and crest of all the most lofty mountains, do you not, then, wish me to rejoice if I am so close to you as to be considered a second self of yours? Therefore do not think that you are unworthy of having your name in first place in your letters, or else you may seem to be tempting me rather than prais­ ing me, especially since you know that you are a Roman citizen. For I wish that my position were yours, and that yours were as mine. Farewell, my dearly be­ loved Paul. Written 23 March in the con­ sulship of Apronianus and Capito [� ad 59].

13. Seneca to Paul greeting Many writings composed by you are throughout allegorical and enigmatic, and for that reason you must adorn that powerful gift of truth and talent which has been bestowed upon you not so much with embellishment of words as with a certain amount of refinement. And do not fear, as I remember I have frequently

Profile for sheekh 3arb