The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 50
University of New Zealand. — Latin Language and Literature. — Paper c
University of New Zealand.
Latin Language and Literature.
(Paper b for Senior Scholarships.)
Translate into Latin Prose:—
A. He argued that lenity and indulgence towards rebels were not only in themselves injurious to a power like Athens, but would now afford an example of levity which would destroy all the stability of the laws, and would stimulate the valour of clever and ambitious men to seek reputation by continually overthrowing what had been maturely resolved on the proposal of another. His opinion remained unchanged, and he could not conceive how any one who was not either seduced by the desire of displaying a pet verse ingenuity, or swayed by mercenary motives, could question the justice and expediency of the decree. Mytilene had been guilty not simply of revolt, but of a malignant wanton conspiracy against an ally who had distinguished her among all her confederates by peculiar honours and privileges. As the offence was aggravated, the punishment ought to be severe. Nor was there any ground for making a distinction, which would only encourage offenders by supplying them with pretexts easily fabricated, between the class which had been active in the rebellion, and that which, by its acquiescence, had shown itself willing to share the risk of the enterprise, and had in fact cooperated with its authors.page 2
B. It is noble to be capable of resigning entirely one's own portion of happiness, or chances of it: but after all this self-sacrifice must be for some end. It is not its own end; and if we are told that its end is not happiness, but virtue, which is better than happiness, I ask, would the sacrifice be made if the hero or martyr did not believe that it would earn for others immunity from similar sacrifices? All honour to those who can abnegate for themselves the personal enjoyment of life, when by such renunciation they contribute worthily to increase the amount of happiness in the world; but he who does it, or professes to do it, for any other purpose, is no more deserving of admiration than the ascetic mounted on his pillar. He may be an inspiriting proof of what men can do; but assuredly he is not an example of what they should.