Translation Cons. Phil. Book 1 Prosa 3
1 In such a manner were the clouds of grief scattered. Then I drew breath again and engaged my mind in taking knowledge of my physician's countenance.
2 So when I turned my eyes towards her and fixed my gaze upon her, I recognised my nurse, Philosophy, in whose chambers I had spent my life from earliest manhood.
3 And I asked her, `Wherefore have you, mistress of all virtues, come down from heaven above to visit my lonely place of banishment? Is it that you, as well as I, may be harried, the victim of false charges ?'
4 `Should I,' said she, `desert you, my nursling? Should I not share and bear my part of the burden which has been laid upon you from spite against my name?
5 Surely Philosophy never allowed herself to let the innocent go upon their journey unbefriended. Think you I would fear calumnies ? that I would be terrified as though they were a new misfortune?
6 Think you that this is the first time that wisdom has been harassed by dangers among men of shameless ways? In ancient days before the time of my child, Plato, have we not as well as nowadays fought many a mighty battle against the recklessness of folly ? And though Plato did survive, did not his master, Socrates, win his victory of an unjust death, with me present at his side?
7 When after him the followers of Epicurus, and in turn the Stoics, and then others did all try their utmost to seize his legacy, they dragged me, for all my cries and struggles, as though to share me as plunder; they tore my robe which I had woven with mine own hands, and snatched away the fragments thereof: and when they thought I had altogether yielded myself to them, they departed.
8 And since among them were to be seen certain signs of my outward bearing, others ill-advised did think they wore my livery: thus were many of them undone by the errors of the herd of uninitiated.
9 But if you have not heard of the exile of Anaxagoras nor the poison drunk by Socrates nor the torture of Zeno which all were of foreign lands, yet you may know of Canius, Seneca and Soranus whose fame is neither small nor passing old.
10 Naught else brought them to ruin but that, being built up in my ways, they appeared at variance with the desires of unscrupulous men.
11 So it is no matter for your wonder if, in this sea of life, we are tossed about by storms from all sides; for to oppose evil men is the chief aim we set before ourselves.
12 Though the band of such men is great in numbers, yet is it to be contemned: for it is guided by no leader, but is hurried along at random only by error running riot everywhere.
13 If this band when warring against us presses too strongly upon us, our leader, Reason, gathers her forces into her citadel, while the enemy are busied in plundering useless baggage. As they seize the most worthless things,
14 we laugh at them from above, untroubled by the whole band of mad marauders, and we are defended by that rampart to which riotous folly may not hope to attain.'