Primary Source Documents Set #1: Mesopotamia. 1


All documents (in full or excerpted) are, to the best of my knowledge, within the Public Domain, and/or within the guidelines of Fair Use. This collection was assembled solely for the use of students enrolled in HIST 101, World Civilizations I, taught by Dr. David Livingstone

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Table of Contents

Primary Source Documents Set #1: Mesopotamia. 1

The Code of Hammurabi 2

The Book of Deuteronomy. 6

Primary Source Documents Set #2: Ancient India. 9

The Rig Veda. 10

The Chandogya Upanishad. 12

The Bhagavad Gita. 13

Primary Source Documents Set #3: Ancient China. 15

The Analects. 16

The Dao de Jing. 19

The Han Feizi 22

Primary Source Documents Set #4: Ancient Greece. 26

“Pericles’ Funeral Oration,” in The History of the Peloponnesian War 27

“The Mitylenian Debate,” in The History of the Peloponnesian War 30

“The Melian Dialogue,” in The History of the Peloponnesian War 35

Primary Source Documents Set #5: Ancient Rome. 38

The Politics. 39

Histories. 43

Primary Source Documents Set #6: Early Christianity. 50

The Letters of Pliny and Emperor Trajan. 51

Apologia. 53

Ecclesiastical History. 55

Primary Source Documents Set #7: Islam.. 58

The Gardens of the Righteous. 59

“On Jihad”. 63

The Distinguished Jurist’s Primer 65

Primary Source Documents Set #8: East Asian Society. 69

“The Tale of Mulan”. 70

Lessons for a Woman. 70

The Pillow Book. 73

The Tale of Genji 78

Primary Source Documents Set #9: The Mongols. 81

On the Tatars. 82

The Story of the Mongols Whom We Call the Tartars. 84

The Journey of William of Rubruck to the Eastern Parts of the World, 1253-55. 86

Primary Source Documents Set #10: Samurai vs. Mongols. 89

The Tale of the Heike. 90

“Articles of Admonition”. 95

Primary Source Documents Set #11: Church vs State in Medieval Europe. 98

“Capitulary for Saxony”. 99

“Letter to Pope Leo III, 796 A.D.”. 101

Chronographia. 102

Dictatus Papae. 105

“Letter to Hildebrand”. 106

“Treatise on Royal and Papal Power”. 107

Primary Source Documents Set #12: Renaissance Politics. 108

The Prince. 109

Discourses on the First Decade of Titus Livius. 114




Primary Source Documents Set #1: Mesopotamia

Essay Question:

Compare the laws and ethical principles found in Hammurabi and Deuteronomy. What similarities and/or differences do you see in the ethical norms that are presented? What incentives are provided to follow them?


Document #1

The Code of Hammurabi, c. 1780 B.C.


Translated by L.W. King[1]



When Anu the Sublime, King of the Anunaki, and Bel, the lord of Heaven and earth, who decreed the fate of the land, assigned to Marduk, the over-ruling son of Ea, God of righteousness, dominion over earthly man, and made him great among the Igigi, they called Babylon by his illustrious name, made it great on earth, and founded an everlasting kingdom in it, whose foundations are laid so solidly as those of heaven and earth; then Anu and Bel called by name me, Hammurabi, the exalted prince, who feared God, to bring about the rule of righteousness in the land, to destroy the wicked and the evil-doers; so that the strong should not harm the weak; so that I should rule over the black-headed people like Shamash, and enlighten the land, to further the well-being of mankind…

When Marduk sent me to rule over men, to give the protection of right to the land, I did right and righteousness in . . . , and brought about the well-being of the oppressed.



  1. If anyone bring an accusation of any crime before the elders, and does not prove what he has charged, he shall, if it be a capital offense charged, be put to death.
  2. If a judge try a case, reach a decision, and present his judgment in writing; if later error shall appear in his decision, and it be through his own fault, then he shall pay twelve times the fine set by him in the case, and he shall be publicly removed from the judge’s bench, and never again shall he sit there to render judgment.
  3. If anyone is committing a robbery and is caught, then he shall be put to death.
  4. If the robber is not caught, then shall he who was robbed claim under oath the amount of his loss; then shall the community, and . . . on whose ground and territory and in whose domain it was compensate him for the goods stolen.
  5. If persons are stolen, then shall the community and . . . pay one mina of silver to their relatives.
  6. If his son is still young, and cannot take possession, a third of the field and garden shall be given to his mother, and she shall bring him up.
  7. A chieftain, man, or one subject to quit-rent cannot assign his tenure of field, house, and garden to his wife or daughter, nor can he assign it for a debt.
  8. He may, however, assign a field, garden, or house which he has bought, and holds as property, to his wife or daughter or give it for debt.
  9. If a man rent his field for tillage for a fixed rental, and receive the rent of his field, but bad weather come and destroy the harvest, the injury falls upon the tiller of the soil.
  10. If anyone owe a debt for a loan, and a storm prostrates the grain, or the harvest fail, or the grain does not grow for lack of water; in that year he need not give his creditor any grain, he washes his debt-tablet in water and pays no rent for this year.
  11. If anyone open his ditches to water his crop, but is careless, and the water flood the field of his neighbor, then he shall pay his neighbor corn for his loss.
  12. If a merchant give an agent corn, wool, oil, or any other goods to transport, the agent shall give a receipt for the amount, and compensate the merchant therefor. Then he shall obtain a receipt from the merchant for the money that he gives the merchant.
  13. If the agent is careless, and does not take a receipt for the money which he gave the merchant, he cannot consider the unreceipted money as his own.
  14. If a tavern-keeper[2] does not accept corn according to gross weight in payment of drink, but takes money, and the price of the drink is less than that of the corn, she shall be convicted and thrown into the water.
  15. If conspirators meet in the house of a tavern-keeper, and these conspirators are not captured and delivered to the court, the tavern-keeper shall be put to death.
  16. If a “sister of a god”[3] open a tavern, or enter a tavern to drink, then shall this woman be burned to death.
  17. If anyone fail to meet a claim for debt, and sell himself, his wife, his son, and daughter for money or give them away to forced labor: they shall work for three years in the house of the man who bought them, or the proprietor, and in the fourth year they shall be set free.
  18. If anyone “point the finger” (slander) at a sister of a god or the wife of any one, and cannot prove it, this man shall be taken before the judges and his brow shall be marked. (by cutting the skin, or perhaps hair.)
  19. If a man take a woman to wife, but have no intercourse with her, this woman is no wife to him.
  20. If a man’s wife be surprised (in flagrante delicto) with another man, both shall be tied and thrown into the water, but the husband may pardon his wife and the king his slaves.
  21. If a man violate the wife (betrothed or child-wife) of another man, who has never known a man, and still lives in her father’s house, and sleep with her and be surprised, this man shall be put to death, but the wife is blameless.
  22. If a man bring a charge against one’s wife, but she is not surprised with another man, she must take an oath and then may return to her house.
  23. If a man be taken prisoner in war and there be no sustenance in his house and his wife go to another house and bear children; and if later her husband return and come to his home: then this wife shall return to her husband, but the children follow their father.
  24. If anyone leave his house, run away, and then his wife go to another house, if then he return, and wishes to take his wife back: because he fled from his home and ran away, the wife of this runaway shall not return to her husband.
  25. If a man wishes to separate from a woman who has borne him children, or from his wife who has borne him children: then he shall give that wife her dowry, and a part of the usufruct of field, garden, and property, so that she can rear her children. When she has brought up her children, a portion of all that is given to the children, equal as that of one son, shall be given to her. She may then marry the man of her heart.
  26. If a man wishes to separate from his wife who has borne him no children, he shall give her the amount of her purchase money and the dowry which she brought from her father’s house, and let her go.
  27. If there was no purchase price he shall give her one mina of gold as a gift of release.
  28. If he be a freed man he shall give her one-third of a mina of gold.
  29. If a man’s wife, who lives in his house, wishes to leave it, plunges into debt, tries to ruin her house, neglects her husband, and is judicially convicted: if her husband offer her release, she may go on her way, and he gives her nothing as a gift of release. If her husband does not wish to release her, and if he take another wife, she shall remain as servant in her husband’s house.
  30. If a woman quarrel with her husband, and say: “You are not congenial to me,” the reasons for her prejudice must be presented. If she is guiltless, and there is no fault on her part, but he leaves and neglects her, then no guilt attaches to this woman, she shall take her dowry and go back to her father’s house.
  31. If a man take a wife, and she bear him no children, and he intend to take another wife: if he take this second wife, and bring her into the house, this second wife shall not be allowed equality with his wife.
  32. If a man take a wife and she give this man a maid-servant as wife and she bear him children, and then this maid assume equality with the wife: because she has borne him children her master shall not sell her for money, but he may keep her as a slave, reckoning her among the maid-servants.
  33. If a man take a wife, and she be seized by disease, if he then desire to take a second wife he shall not put away his wife, who has been attacked by disease, but he shall keep her in the house which he has built and support her so long as she lives.
  34. If this woman does not wish to remain in her husband’s house, then he shall compensate her for the dowry that she brought with her from her father’s house, and she may go.
  35. If a man be guilty of incest with his daughter, he shall be driven from the place (exiled).
  36. If a man betroths a girl to his son, and his son has intercourse with her, but he (the father) afterward defile her, and be surprised, then he shall be bound and cast into the water (drowned).
  37. If anyone be guilty of incest with his mother after his father, both shall be burned.
  38. If anyone be surprised after his father with his chief wife, who has borne children, he shall be driven out of his father’s house.
  39. If a man wish to put his son out of his house, and declare before the judge: “I want to put my son out,” then the judge shall examine into his reasons. If the son be guilty of no great fault, for which he can be rightfully put out, the father shall not put him out.
  40. If he be guilty of a grave fault, which should rightfully deprive him of the filial relationship, the father shall forgive him the first time; but if he be guilty of a grave fault a second time the father may deprive his son of all filial relation.
  41. If a son strike his father, his hands shall be hewn off.
  42. If a man put out the eye of another man, his eye shall be put out. [ An eye for an eye ]
  43. If he break another man’s bone, his bone shall be broken.
  44. If he put out the eye of a freed man, or break the bone of a freed man, he shall pay one gold mina.
  45. If he put out the eye of a man’s slave, or break the bone of a man’s slave, he shall pay one-half of its value.
  46. If a man knock out the teeth of his equal, his teeth shall be knocked out. [ A tooth for a tooth ]
  47. If he knock out the teeth of a freed man, he shall pay one-third of a gold mina.
  48. If any one strike the body of a man higher in rank than he, he shall receive sixty blows with an ox-whip in public.
  49. If a free-born man strike the body of another free-born man or equal rank, he shall pay one gold mina.
  50. If a freed man strike the body of another freed man, he shall pay ten shekels in money.
  51. If the slave of a freed man strike the body of a freed man, his ear shall be cut off.
  52. If during a quarrel one man strike another and wound him, then he shall swear, “I did not injure him wittingly,” and pay the physicians.
  53. If the man die of his wound, he shall swear similarly, and if he (the deceased) was a free-born man, he shall pay half a mina in money.
  54. If he was a freed man, he shall pay one-third of a mina.
  55. If a man strike a free-born woman so that she lose her unborn child, he shall pay ten shekels for her loss.
  56. If the woman die, his daughter shall be put to death.
  57. If a woman of the free class lose her child by a blow, he shall pay five shekels in money.
  58. If this woman die, he shall pay half a mina.
  59. If a physician make a large incision with an operating knife and cure it, or if he open a tumor (over the eye) with an operating knife, and saves the eye, he shall receive ten shekels in money.
  60. If the patient be a freed man, he receives five shekels.
  61. If he be the slave of someone, his owner shall give the physician two shekels.
  62. If a physician make a large incision with the operating knife, and kill him, or open a tumor with the operating knife, and cut out the eye, his hands shall be cut off.
  63. If a physician make a large incision in the slave of a freed man, and kill him, he shall replace the slave with another slave.
  64. If he had opened a tumor with the operating knife, and put out his eye, he shall pay half his value.

229 If a builder build a house for someone, and does not construct it properly, and the house which he built fall in and kill its owner, then that builder shall be put to death.

  1. If it kill the son of the owner the son of that builder shall be put to death.
  2. If it kill a slave of the owner, then he shall pay slave for slave to the owner of the house.
  3. If it ruin goods, he shall make compensation for all that has been ruined, and inasmuch as he did not construct properly this house which he built and it fell, he shall re-erect the house from his own means.



Laws of justice which Hammurabi, the wise king, established. A righteous law, and pious statute did he teach the land. Hammurabi, the protecting king am I. I have not withdrawn myself from the men, whom Bel gave to me, the rule over whom Marduk gave to me, I was not negligent, but I made them a peaceful abiding-place… The great gods have called me, I am the salvation-bearing shepherd, whose staff is straight, the good shadow that is spread over my city; on my breast I cherish the inhabitants of the land of Sumer and Akkad; in my shelter I have let them repose in peace; in my deep wisdom have I enclosed them. That the strong might not injure the weak, in order to protect the widows and orphans, I have in Babylon the city where Anu and Bel raise high their head, in E-Sagil, the Temple, whose foundations stand firm as heaven and earth, in order to bespeak justice in the land, to settle all disputes, and heal all injuries, set up these my precious words, written upon my memorial stone, before the image of me, as king of righteousness…


Document #2

The Book of Deuteronomy

The Holy Bible, King James Version[4]


Chapter 5

1 And Moses called all Israel, and said unto them, Hear, O Israel, the statutes and judgments which I speak in your ears this day, that ye may learn them, and keep, and do them.

2 The Lord our God made a covenant with us in Horeb.

3 The Lord made not this covenant with our fathers, but with us, even us, who are all of us here alive this day.

4 The Lord talked with you face to face in the mount out of the midst of the fire,

5 (I stood between the Lord and you at that time, to shew you the word of the Lord: for ye were afraid by reason of the fire, and went not up into the mount;) saying,

6 ¶I am the Lord thy God, which brought thee out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage.

7 Thou shalt have none other gods before me.

8 Thou shalt not make thee any graven image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the waters beneath the earth:

9 Thou shalt not bow down thyself unto them, nor serve them: for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me,

10 And shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me and keep my commandments.

11 Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain: for the Lord will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.

12 Keep the sabbath day to sanctify it, as the Lord thy God hath commanded thee.

13 Six days thou shalt labour, and do all thy work:

14 But the seventh day is the sabbath of the Lord thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, nor thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thine ox, nor thine ass, nor any of thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates; that thy manservant and thy maidservant may rest as well as thou.

15 And remember that thou wast a servant in the land of Egypt, and that the Lord thy God brought thee out thence through a mighty hand and by a stretched out arm: therefore the Lord thy God commanded thee to keep the sabbath day.

16 ¶Honour thy father and thy mother, as the Lord thy God hath commanded thee; that thy days may be prolonged, and that it may go well with thee, in the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee.

17 Thou shalt not kill.

18 Neither shalt thou commit adultery.

19 Neither shalt thou steal.

20 Neither shalt thou bear false witness against thy neighbour.

21 Neither shalt thou desire thy neighbour’s wife, neither shalt thou covet thy neighbour’s house, his field, or his manservant, or his maidservant, his ox, or his ass, or anything that is thy neighbour’s.

22 ¶These words the Lord spake unto all your assembly in the mount out of the midst of the fire, of the cloud, and of the thick darkness, with a great voice: and he added no more. And he wrote them in two tables of stone, and delivered them unto me.

23 And it came to pass, when ye heard the voice out of the midst of the darkness, (for the mountain did burn with fire,) that ye came near unto me, even all the heads of your tribes, and your elders;

24 And ye said, Behold, the Lord our God hath shewed us his glory and his greatness, and we have heard his voice out of the midst of the fire: we have seen this day that God doth talk with man, and he liveth.

25 Now therefore why should we die? for this great fire will consume us: if we hear the voice of the Lord our God any more, then we shall die.

26 For who is there of all flesh, that hath heard the voice of the living God speaking out of the midst of the fire, as we have, and lived?

27 Go thou near, and hear all that the Lord our God shall say: and speak thou unto us all that the Lord our God shall speak unto thee; and we will hear it, and do it.

28 And the Lord heard the voice of your words, when ye spake unto me; and the Lord said unto me, I have heard the voice of the words of this people, which they have spoken unto thee: they have well said all that they have spoken.

29 O that there were such an heart in them, that they would fear me, and keep all my commandments always, that it might be well with them, and with their children forever!

30 Go say to them, Get you into your tents again.

31 But as for thee, stand thou here by me, and I will speak unto thee all the commandments, and the statutes, and the judgments, which thou shalt teach them, that they may do them in the land which I give them to possess it.

32 Ye shall observe to do therefore as the Lord your God hath commanded you: ye shall not turn aside to the right hand or to the left.

33 Ye shall walk in all the ways which the Lord your God hath commanded you, that ye may live, and that it may be well with you, and that ye may prolong your days in the land which ye shall possess.


Chapter 6

1 Now these are the commandments, the statutes, and the judgments, which the Lord your God commanded to teach you, that ye might do them in the land whither ye go to possess it:

2 That thou mightest fear the Lord thy God, to keep all his statutes and his commandments, which I command thee, thou, and thy son, and thy son’s son, all the days of thy life; and that thy days may be prolonged.

3 ¶Hear therefore, O Israel, and observe to do it; that it may be well with thee, and that ye may increase mightily, as the Lord God of thy fathers hath promised thee, in the land that floweth with milk and honey.

4 Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God is one Lord:

5 And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.

6 And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart:

7 And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.

8 And thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thine hand, and they shall be as frontlets between thine eyes.

9 And thou shalt write them upon the posts of thy house, and on thy gates.

10 And it shall be, when the Lord thy God shall have brought thee into the land which he sware unto thy fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, to give thee great and goodly cities, which thou buildedst not,

11 And houses full of all good things, which thou filledst not, and wells digged, which thou diggedst not, vineyards and olive trees, which thou plantedst not; when thou shalt have eaten and be full;

12 Then beware lest thou forget the Lord, which brought thee forth out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage.

13 Thou shalt fear the Lord thy God, and serve him, and shalt swear by his name.

14 Ye shall not go after other gods, of the gods of the people which are round about you;

15 (For the Lord thy God is a jealous God among you) lest the anger of the Lord thy God be kindled against thee, and destroy thee from off the face of the earth.


Chapter 7

1 When the Lord thy God shall bring thee into the land whither thou goest to possess it, and hath cast out many nations before thee… seven nations greater and mightier than thou;

2 And when the Lord thy God shall deliver them before thee; thou shalt smite them, and utterly destroy them; thou shalt make no covenant with them, nor shew mercy unto them:

3 Neither shalt thou make marriages with them; thy daughter thou shalt not give unto his son, nor his daughter shalt thou take unto thy son.

4 For they will turn away thy son from following me, that they may serve other gods: so will the anger of the Lord be kindled against you, and destroy thee suddenly.

5 But thus shall ye deal with them; ye shall destroy their altars, and break down their images, and cut down their groves, and burn their graven images with fire.

6 For thou art an holy people unto the Lord thy God: the Lord thy God hath chosen thee to be a special people unto himself, above all people that are upon the face of the earth.

7 The Lord did not set his love upon you, nor choose you, because ye were more in number than any people; for ye were the fewest of all people:

8 But because the Lord loved you, and because he would keep the oath which he had sworn unto your fathers, hath the Lord brought you out with a mighty hand, and redeemed you out of the house of bondmen, from the hand of Pharaoh king of Egypt.

9 Know therefore that the Lord thy God, he is God, the faithful God, which keepeth covenant and mercy with them that love him and keep his commandments to a thousand generations;

10 And repayeth them that hate him to their face, to destroy them: he will not be slack to him that hateth him, he will repay him to his face.

11 Thou shalt therefore keep the commandments, and the statutes, and the judgments, which I command thee this day, to do them.

12 ¶Wherefore it shall come to pass, if ye hearken to these judgments, and keep, and do them, that the Lord thy God shall keep unto thee the covenant and the mercy which he sware unto thy fathers:

13 And he will love thee, and bless thee, and multiply thee: he will also bless the fruit of thy womb, and the fruit of thy land, thy corn, and thy wine, and thine oil, the increase of thy kine, and the flocks of thy sheep, in the land which he sware unto thy fathers to give thee.

14 Thou shalt be blessed above all people: there shall not be male or female barren among you, or among your cattle.

15 And the Lord will take away from thee all sickness, and will put none of the evil diseases of Egypt, which thou knowest, upon thee; but will lay them upon all them that hate thee.

16 And thou shalt consume all the people which the Lord thy God shall deliver thee; thine eye shall have no pity upon them: neither shalt thou serve their gods; for that will be a snare unto thee.



Primary Source Documents Set #2: Ancient India

Essay Question:

Examine the hymns in the Rig Veda, the Upanishads and the Bhagavad Gita. These are in chronological order. What do they suggest about Indians’ evolving ideas about god(s) and nature, and man’s relationship with them?


Document #1

The Rig Veda[5]

Translated by Ralph T.H. Griffith, 1896


Book 1, Hymn 32: “Victory over Vritra”[6]

1 I WILL declare the manly deeds of Indra, the first that he achieved, the Thunder-wielder.
He slew the Dragon, then disclosed the waters, and cleft the channels of the mountain torrents.
2 He slew the Dragon lying on the mountain: his heavenly bolt of thunder Tvaṣṭar[7] fashioned.
Like lowing kine in rapid flow descending the waters glided downward to the ocean.
3 Impetuous as a bull, he chose the Soma[8] and in three sacred beakers drank the juices.
Maghavan[9] grasped the thunder for his weapon, and smote to death this firstborn of the dragons.
4 When, Indra, thou hadst slain the dragon’s firstborn, and overcome the charms of the enchanters,
Then, giving life to Sun and Dawn and Heaven, thou foundest not one foe to stand against thee.
5 Indra with his own great and deadly thunder smote into pieces Vritra, worst of Vritras.
As trunks of trees, what time the axe hath felled them, low on the earth so lies the prostrate Dragon.
6 He, like a mad weak warrior, challenged Indra, the great impetuous many-slaying Hero.
He, brooking not the clashing of the weapons, crushed—Indra’s foe—the shattered forts in falling.[10]
7 Footless and handless still he challenged Indra, who smote him with his bolt between the shoulders.
Emasculate yet claiming manly vigour, thus Vritra lay with scattered limbs dissevered.
8 There as he lies like a bank-bursting river, the waters taking courage flow above him.
The Dragon lies beneath the feet of torrents which Vritra with his greatness had encompassed.
9 Then humbled was the strength of Vritra’s mother: Indra hath cast his deadly bolt against her.
The mother was above, the son was under and like a cow beside her calf lay Danu.[11]
10 Rolled in the midst of never-ceasing currents flowing without a rest for ever onward.
The waters bear off Vritra’s nameless body: the foe of Indra sank during darkness.
11 Guarded by Ahi[12] stood the thralls of Dāsas,[13] the waters stayed like kine held by the robber.
But he, when he had smitten Vritra, opened the cave wherein the floods had been imprisoned.
12 A horse’s tail wast thou when he, O Indra, smote on thy bolt; thou, God without a second,
Thou hast won back the kine, hast won the Soma; thou hast let loose to flow the Seven Rivers.
13 Nothing availed him lightning, nothing thunder, hailstorm or mist which had spread around him:
When Indra and the Dragon strove in battle, Maghavan gained the victory for ever.
14 Whom sawest thou to avenge the Dragon, Indra, that fear possessed thy heart when thou hadst slain him;
That, like a hawk affrighted through the regions, thou crossedst nine-and-ninety flowing rivers?
15 Indra is King of all that moves and moves not, of creatures tame and horned, the Thunder-wielder.
Over all living men he rules as Sovereign, containing all as spokes within the rim.






Book 10, Hymn 90: “Purusha”

  1. A THOUSAND heads hath Purusha,[14] a thousand eyes, a thousand feet.
    On every side pervading earth he fills a space ten fingers wide.
    2 This Purusha is all that yet hath been and all that is to be;
    The Lord of Immortality which waxes greater still by food.
    3 So mighty is his greatness; yea, greater than this is Purusha.
    All creatures are one-fourth of him, three-fourths eternal life in heaven.
    4 With three-fourths Purusha went up: one-fourth of him again was here.
    Thence he strode out to every side over what eats not and what eats.
    5 From him Virāj[15] was born; again Purusha from Virāj was born.
    As soon as he was born he spread eastward and westward o’er the earth.
    6 When Gods prepared the sacrifice with Purusha as their offering,
    Its oil was spring, the holy gift was autumn; summer was the wood.
    7 They balmed as victim on the grass[16] Purusha born in earliest time.
    With him the Deities and all Sādhyas[17] and Ṛishis[18] sacrificed.
    8 From that great general sacrifice the dripping fat was gathered up.
    He formed the creatures of-the air, and animals both wild and tame.
    9 From that great general sacrifice Richas and Sāma-hymns[19] were born:
    Therefrom were spells and charms produced; the Yajus[20] had its birth from it.
    10 From it were horses born, from it all cattle with two rows of teeth:
    From it were generated kine, from it the goats and sheep were born.
    11 When they divided Purusha how many portions did they make?
    What do they call his mouth, his arms? What do they call his thighs and feet?
    12 The Brahman[21] was his mouth, of both his arms was the Rājanya[22] made.
    His thighs became the Vaiśya,[23] from his feet the Śūdra[24] was produced.
    13 The Moon was gendered from his mind, and from his eye the Sun had birth;
    Indra and Agni[25] from his mouth were born, and Vāyu[26] from his breath.
    14 Forth from his navel came mid-air the sky was fashioned from his head
    Earth from his feet, and from his ear the regions. Thus they formed the worlds.
    15 Seven fencing-sticks had he, thrice seven layers of fuel were prepared,[27]
    When the Gods, offering sacrifice, bound, as their victim, Purusha.
    16 Gods, sacrificing, sacrificed the victim: these were the earliest holy ordinances.
    The Mighty Ones attained the height of heaven, there where the Sādhyas, Gods of old, are dwelling.


Document #2

The Chandogya Upanishad[28]

Translated by Max Müller


Book 6

There lived once Svetaketu Âruneya (the grandson of Aruna). To him his father (Uddâlaka, the son of Aruna) said: ‘Svetaketu, go to school; for there is none belonging to our race, darling, who, not having studied (the Veda), is, as it were, a Brâhmana by birth only.’

Having begun his apprenticeship (with a teacher) when he was twelve years of age, Svetaketu returned to his father, when he was twenty-four, having then studied all the Vedas,–conceited, considering himself well-read, and stern.

His father said to him: ‘Svetaketu, as you are so conceited, considering yourself so well-read, and so stern, my dear, have you ever asked for that instruction by which we hear what cannot be heard, by which we perceive what cannot be perceived, by which we know what cannot be known?’

‘What is that instruction, Sir?’ he asked…

‘Fetch me from thence a fruit of the Nyagrodha tree.’

‘Here is one, Sir.’ Break it.’

‘It is broken, Sir.’

‘What do you see there?’

‘These seeds, almost infinitesimal.’

‘Break one of them.’

‘It is broken, Sir.’

‘What do you see there?’

‘Not anything, Sir.’

The father said: ‘My son, that subtle essence which you do not perceive there, of that very essence this great Nyagrodha tree exists.

‘Believe it, my son. That which is the subtle essence, in it all that exists has its self. It is the True. It is the Self, and thou, O Svetaketu, art it.’

‘Please, Sir, inform me still more,’ said the son.

‘Be it so, my child,’ the father replied.

‘Place this salt in water, and then wait on me in the morning.’

The son did as he was commanded.

The father said to him: ‘Bring me the salt, which you placed in the water last night.’

The son having looked for it, found it not, for, of course, it was melted.

The father said: ‘Taste it from the surface of the water. How is it?’

The son replied: ‘It is salt.’

‘Taste it from the middle. How is it?’

The son replied: ‘It is salt.’

‘Taste it from the bottom. How is it?’

The son replied ‘It is salt.’

The father said Throw it away and then wait on me.’

He did so; but salt exists for ever.

Then the father said: ‘Here also, in this body, forsooth, you do not perceive the True, my son; but there indeed it is.

‘That which is the subtle essence, in it all that exists has its self. It is the True. It is the Self, and thou, O Svetaketu, art it.’


Document #3

The Bhagavad Gita[29]

Translated by Swami Swarupananda

Chapter 2

Krishna[30] said:

In such a crisis, whence comes upon thee, O Arjuna, this dejection, un-Aryalike, disgraceful and contrary to the attainment of heaven? Yield not to unmanliness, O son of Prithâ! Ill doth it become thee. Cast off this mean faint-heartedness and arise, O scorcher of thine enemies!

Arjuna said:

But how can I, in battle, O slayer of Madhu, fight with arrows against Bhishma and Drona, who are rather worthy to be worshipped, O destroyer of foes! Surely it would be better even to eat the bread of beggary in this life than to slay these great-souled masters. But if I kill them, even in this world, all my enjoyment of wealth and desires will be stained with blood. And indeed I can scarcely tell which will be better, that we should conquer them, or that they should conquer us. The very sons of Dhritarâshtra,—after slaying whom we should not care to live,—stand facing us. With my nature overpowered by weak commiseration, with a mind in confusion about duty, I supplicate Thee. Say decidedly what is good for me. I am Thy disciple. Instruct me who have taken refuge in Thee. I do not see anything to remove this sorrow which blasts my senses, even were I to obtain unrivalled and flourishing dominion over the earth, and mastery over the gods.

Krishna said:

Thou hast been mourning for them who should not be mourned for. Yet thou speakest words of wisdom. The (truly) wise grieve neither for the living nor the dead.  It is not that I have never existed, nor thou, nor these kings. Nor is it that we shall cease to exist in the future.  As are childhood, youth, and old age, in this body, to the embodied soul, so also is the attaining of another body. Calm souls are not deluded thereat.

Notions of heat and cold, of pain and pleasure, are born, O son of Kunti, only of the contact of the senses with their objects. They have a beginning and an end. They are impermanent in their nature. Bear them patiently, O descendant of Bharata. That calm man who is the same in pain and pleasure, whom these cannot disturb, alone is able, O great amongst men, to attain to immortality.

The unreal never is. The Real never is not. Men possessed of the knowledge of the Truth fully know both these. That by which all this is pervaded,—That know for certain to be indestructible. None has the power to destroy this Immutable. Of this indwelling Self, the ever-changeless, the indestructible, the illimitable,—these bodies are said to have an end. Fight therefore, O descendant of Bharata.

He who takes the Self to be the slayer, he who takes It to be the slain, neither of these knows. It does not slay, nor is It slain. Thus It is never born, nor does It die. It is not that not having been It again comes into being. (Or according to another view: It is not that having been It again ceases to be). This is unborn, eternal, changeless, ever-Itself. It is not killed when the body is killed.

He that knows This to be indestructible, changeless, without birth, and immutable, how is he, O son of Prithâ, to slay or cause another to slay? Even as a man casts off worn-out clothes, and puts on others which are new, so the embodied casts off worn-out bodies, and enters into others which are new. This (Self), weapons cut not; This, fire burns not; This, water wets not; and This, wind dries not. This Self cannot be cut, nor burnt, nor wetted, nor dried. Changeless, all-pervading, unmoving, immovable, the Self is eternal. This (Self) is said to be unmanifested, unthinkable, and unchangeable. Therefore, knowing This to be such, thou oughtest not to mourn. But if thou shouldst take This to have constant birth and death, even in that case, O mighty-armed, thou oughtest not to mourn for This.

Of that which is born, death is certain, of that which is dead, birth is certain. Over the unavoidable, therefore, thou oughtest not to grieve. All beings are unmanifested in their beginning, O Bhârata, manifested in their middle state and unmanifested again in their end. What is there then to grieve about?…This, the Indweller in the bodies of all, is ever indestructible, O descendant of Bharata. Wherefore thou oughtest not to mourn for any creature.

Looking at thine own Dharma, also, thou oughtest not to waver, for there is nothing higher for a Kshatriya than a righteous war. Fortunate certainly are the Kshatriyas, O son of Prithâ, who are called to fight in such a battle, that comes unsought as an open gate to heaven. But if thou refusest to engage in this righteous warfare, then, forfeiting thine own Dharma and honour, thou shalt incur sin.The world also will ever hold thee in reprobation. To the honoured, disrepute is surely worse than death. The great chariot-warriors will believe that thou hast withdrawn from the battle through fear. And thou wilt be lightly esteemed by them who have thought much of thee. Thine enemies also, cavilling at thy great prowess, will say of thee things that are not to be uttered. What could be more intolerable than this?

Dying thou gainest heaven; conquering thou enjoyest the earth. Therefore, O son of Kunti, arise, resolved to fight. Having made pain and pleasure, gain and loss, conquest and defeat, the same, engage thou then in battle. So shalt thou incur no sin…

Thy right is to work only; but never to the fruits thereof. Be thou not the producer of the fruits of (thy) actions; neither let thy attachment be towards inaction…Work (with desire) is verily far inferior to that performed with the mind undisturbed by thoughts of results. O Dhananjaya, seek refuge in this evenness of mind. Wretched are they who act for results. Endued with this evenness of mind, one frees oneself in this life, alike from vice and virtue. Devote thyself, therefore, to this Yoga. Yoga is the very dexterity of work.

The wise, possessed of this evenness of mind, abandoning the fruits of their actions, freed forever from the fetters of birth, go to that state which is beyond all evil.When thy intellect crosses beyond the taint of illusion, then shalt thou attain to indifference, regarding things heard and things yet to be heard. When thy intellect, tossed about by the conflict of opinions—has become immovable and firmly established in the Self, then thou shalt attain Self-realisation…

When a man completely casts away, O Pârtha, all the desires of the mind, satisfied in the Self alone by the Self, then is he said to be one of steady wisdom. He whose mind is not shaken by adversity, who does not hanker after happiness, who has become free from affection, fear, and wrath, is indeed the Muni of steady wisdom. He who is everywhere unattached, not pleased at receiving good, nor vexed at evil, his wisdom is fixed… Objects fall away from the abstinent man, leaving the longing behind. But his longing also ceases, who sees the Supreme.

The turbulent senses, O son of Kunti, do violently snatch away the mind of even a wise man, striving after perfection.The steadfast, having controlled them all, sits focused on Me as the Supreme. His wisdom is steady, whose senses are under control.

Thinking of objects, attachment to them is formed in a man. From attachment longing, and from longing anger grows. From anger comes delusion, and from delusion loss of memory. From loss of memory comes the ruin of discrimination, and from the ruin of discrimination he perishes. But the self-controlled man, moving among objects with senses under restraint, and free from attraction and aversion, attains to tranquility. In tranquility, all sorrow is destroyed. For the intellect of him who is tranquil-minded, is soon established in firmness…

That man who lives devoid of longing, abandoning all desires, without the sense of ‘I’ and ‘mine,’ he attains to peace. This is to have one’s being in Brahman, O son of Prithâ. None, attaining to this, becomes deluded. Being established therein, even at the end of life, a man attains to oneness with Brahman.

Primary Source Documents Set #3: Ancient China

Essay Question:

Compare Confucianism, Daoism, and Legalism with respect to their ideas about government, ethics, and education. What are their implied views about human nature?



Document #1

The Analects[31]


Translated by James Legge


Confucius on the Superior Man

Tsze-kung asked what constituted the superior man. The Mastersaid, “He acts before he speaks, and afterwards speaks according tohis actions.”

The Master said, “The superior man is catholic and not partisan. Themean man is partisan and not catholic.”

The Master said, “Riches and honors are what men desire. If theycannot be obtained in the proper way, they should not be held. Povertyand meanness are what men dislike. If they cannot be avoided in theproper way, they should not be avoided.”The superior man does not, even for the space of a single meal, actcontrary to virtue. In moments of haste, he cleaves to it. Inseasons of danger, he cleaves to it.”The Master said, “The superior man, in the world, does not set hismind either for anything, or against anything; what is right he willfollow.”The Master said, “The superior man thinks of virtue; the small manthinks of comfort. The superior man thinks of the sanctions of law;the small man thinks of favors which he may receive.”The Master said of Tsze-ch’an that he had four of thecharacteristics of a superior man-in his conduct of himself, he washumble; in serving his superior, he was respectful; in nourishing the people, he was kind; in ordering the people, he was just.”The Master said, “The superior man, extensively studying alllearning, and keeping himself under the restraint of the rules ofpropriety, may thus likewise not overstep what is right.”The Master said, “The superior man is satisfied and composed; themean man is always full of distress.”Sze-ma Niu asked about the superior man. The Master said, “Thesuperior man has neither anxiety nor fear.””Being without anxiety or fear!” said Nui, “does this constitute whatwe call the superior man?” The Master said, “When internal examination discovers nothing wrong,what is there to be anxious about, what is there to fear?”Confucius said, “The superior man has nine things which are subjectswith him of thoughtful consideration. In regard to the use of hiseyes, he is anxious to see clearly. In regard to the use of hisears, he is anxious to hear distinctly. In regard to hiscountenance, he is anxious that it should be benign. In regard tohis demeanor, he is anxious that it should be respectful. In regard tohis speech, he is anxious that it should be sincere. In regard tohis doing of business, he is anxious that it should be reverently careful. In regard to what he doubts about, he is anxious toquestion others. When he is angry, he thinks of the difficulties hisanger may involve him in. When he sees gain to be got, he thinks of righteousness.”

Confucius on Virtue

The Master said, “Fine words and an insinuating appearance areseldom associated with virtue.”The Master said, “Those who are without virtue cannot abide longeither in a condition of poverty and hardship, or in a condition ofenjoyment. The virtuous rest in virtue; the wise desire virtue.”The Master said, “Virtue is not left to stand alone. He whopractices it will have neighbors.”Yen Yuan asked about perfect virtue. The Master said, “To subdueone’s self and return to propriety, is perfect virtue. If a man canfor one day subdue himself and return to propriety, all under heavenwill ascribe perfect virtue to him. Is the practice of perfectvirtue from a man himself, or is it from others?”Yen Yuan said, “I beg to ask the steps of that process.” TheMaster replied, “Look not at what is contrary to propriety; listen notto what is contrary to propriety; speak not what is contrary topropriety; make no movement which is contrary to propriety.” YenYuan then said, “Though I am deficient in intelligence and vigor, Iwill make it my business to practice this lesson.”Tsze-chang asked Confucius about perfect virtue. Confucius said, “Tobe able to practice five things everywhere under heaven constitutesperfect virtue.” He begged to ask what they were, and was told,”Gravity, generosity of soul, sincerity, earnestness, and kindness. Ifyou are grave, you will not be treated with disrespect. If you aregenerous, you will win all. If you are sincere, people will reposetrust in you. If you are earnest, you will accomplish much. If you arekind, this will enable you to employ the services of others.”


Confucius on Virtuous Government

The Master said, “He who exercises government by means of his virtuemay be compared to the north polar star, which keeps its place and allthe stars turn towards it.”The Master said, “If the people be led by laws, and uniformitysought to be given them by punishments, they will try to avoid thepunishment, but have no sense of shame.”If they be led by virtue, and uniformity sought to be given them bythe rules of propriety, they will have the sense of shame, andmoreover will become good.”The Duke Ai asked, saying, “What should be done in order to securethe submission of the people?” Confucius replied, “Advance the uprightand set aside the crooked, then the people will submit. Advance thecrooked and set aside the upright, then the people will not submit.”Chi K’ang asked how to cause the people to reverence their ruler, tobe faithful to him, and to go on to nerve themselves to virtue. TheMaster said, “Let him preside over them with gravity;-then they willreverence him. Let him be final and kind to all;-then they will befaithful to him. Let him advance the good and teach theincompetent;-then they will eagerly seek to be virtuous.”Tsze-kung asked about government. The Master said, “The requisitesof government are that there be sufficiency of food, sufficiency ofmilitary equipment, and the confidence of the people in their ruler.”Tsze-kung said, “If it cannot be helped, and one of these must bedispensed with, which of the three should be foregone first?” “Themilitary equipment,” said the Master.Tsze-kung again asked, “If it cannot be helped, and one of theremaining two must be dispensed with, which of them should beforegone?” The Master answered, “Part with the food. From of old,death has been the lot of all men; but if the people have no faith intheir rulers, there is no standing for the state.”The Master said, “When a prince’s personal conduct is correct, hisgovernment is effective without the issuing of orders. If his personalconduct is not correct, he may issue orders, but they will not befollowed.”Tsze-chang asked Confucius, saying, “In what way should a personin authority act in order that he may conduct government properly?”The Master replied, “Let him honor the five excellent, and banish awaythe four bad, things;-then may he conduct government properly… When the person in authority is beneficent without greatexpenditure; when he lays tasks on the people without their repining; when he pursues what he desires without being covetous; whenhe maintains a dignified ease without being proud; when he is majesticwithout being fierce.”Tsze-chang said, “What is meant by being beneficent without greatexpenditure?” The Master replied, “When the person in authoritymakes more beneficial to the people the things from which they naturally derive benefit;-is not this being beneficent without greatexpenditure? When he chooses the labors which are proper, and makesthem labor on them, who will repine? When his desires are set on benevolent government, and he secures it, who will accuse him ofcovetousness? Whether he has to do with many people or few, or withthings great or small, he does not dare to indicate any disrespect;-is not this to maintain a dignified ease without any pride? He adjustshis clothes and cap, and throws a dignity into his looks, so that,thus dignified, he is looked at with awe;-is not this to be majestic without being fierce?”Tsze-chang then asked, “What are meant by the four bad things?”The Master said, “To put the people to death without having instructedthem;-this is called cruelty. To require from them, suddenly, the fulltale of work, without having given them warning;-this is calledoppression. To issue orders as if without urgency, at first, and, whenthe time comes, to insist on them with severity;-this is called injury. And, generally, in the giving pay or rewards to men, to doit in a stingy way;-this is called acting the part of a mereofficial.”


Document #2The Dao de Jing (The Way and Its Power)[32]LaoziTranslated by John C. H. Wu On the Dao[33]1.      TAO can be talked about, but not the Eternal Tao.
Names can be named, but not the Eternal Name.

As the origin of heaven-and-earth, it is nameless:
As “the Mother” of all things, it is nameable.

So, as ever hidden, we should look at its inner essence:
As always manifest, we should look at its outer aspects.

These two flow from the same source, though differently named;
And both are called mysteries.

The Mystery of mysteries is the Door of all essence. 4.      THE Tao is like an empty bowl,
Which in being used can never be filled up.
Fathomless, it seems to be the origin of all things.
It blunts all sharp edges,
It unties all tangles,
It harmonizes all lights,
It unites the world into one whole.
Hidden in the deeps,
Yet it seems to exist for ever.
I do not know whose child it is;
It seems to be the common ancestor of all, the father of things. 14.  LOOK at it but you cannot see it!
Its name is Formless.

Listen to it but you cannot hear it!
Its name is Soundless.

Grasp it but you cannot get it!
Its name is Incorporeal.

These three attributes are unfathomable;
Therefore they fuse into one.

Its upper side is not bright:
Its under side not dim.
Continually the Unnamable moves on,
Until it returns beyond the realm of things.
We call it the formless Form, the imageless Image.
We call it the indefinable and unimaginable.

Confront it and you do not see its face!
Follow it and you do not see its back!
Yet, equipped with this timeless Tao,
You can harness present realities.

To know the origins is initiation into the Tao. 37.  TAO never makes any ado,
And yet it does everything.
If a ruler can cling to it,
All things will grow of themselves.
When they have grown and tend to make a stir,
It is time to keep them in their place by the aid of the
nameless Primal Simplicity,
Which alone can curb the desires of men.
When the desires of men are curbed, there will be peace,
And the world will settle down of its own accord. The Principle of Non-Action2.      WHEN all the world recognises beauty as beauty, this in itself is ugliness.
When all the world recognises good as good, this in itself is evil.

Indeed, the hidden and the manifest give birth to each other.
Difficult and easy complement each other.
Long and short exhibit each other.
High and low set measure to each other.
Voice and sound harmonize each other.
Back and front follow each other.

Therefore, the Sage manages his affairs without ado,
And spreads his teaching without talking.
He denies nothing to the teeming things.
He rears them, but lays no claim to them.
He does his work, but sets no store by it.
He accomplishes his task, but does not dwell upon it.

And yet it is just because he does not dwell on it
That nobody can ever take it away from him. Dao & Government3.      BY not exalting the talented you will cause the people to cease from rivalry and contention.
By not prizing goods hard to get, you will cause the people to cease from robbing and stealing.
By not displaying what is desirable, you will cause the people’s hearts to remain undisturbed.

Therefore, the Sage’s way of governing begins by:

Emptying the heart of desires,
Filling the belly with food,
Weakening the ambitions,
Toughening the bones.

In this way he will cause the people to remain without knowledge and without desire, and prevent the knowing ones from any ado.
Practice Non-Ado, and everything will be in order. 17.     THE highest type of ruler is one of whose existence the people are barely aware.
Next comes one whom they love and praise.
Next comes one whom they fear.
Next comes one whom they despise and defy.

When you are lacking in faith,
Others will be unfaithful to you.

The Sage is self-effacing and scanty of words.
When his task is accomplished and things have been completed,
All the people say, “We ourselves have achieved it!” 26.     HEAVINESS is the root of lightness.
Serenity is the master of restlessness.

Therefore, the Sage, travelling all day,
Does not part with the baggage-wagon;
Though there may be gorgeous sights to see,
He stays at ease in his own home.

Why should a lord of ten thousand chariots
Display his lightness to the world?
To be light is to be separated from one’s root;
To be restless is to lose one’s self-mastery.


Document #3The Han Feizi[34]Han FeiTranslated by W. K. Liao

Chapter 5, “The Tao of the Sovereign”

Tao is the beginning of the myriad things, the standard of right and wrong. That being so, the intelligent ruler, by holding to the beginning, knows the source of everything, and, by keeping to the standard, knows the origin of good and evil. Therefore, by virtue of resting empty and reposed, he waits for the course of nature to enforce itself so that all names will be defined of themselves and all affairs will be settled of themselves. Empty, he knows the essence of fullness: reposed, he becomes the corrector of motion. Who utters a word creates himself a name; who has an affair creates himself a form. Compare forms and names and see if they are identical. Then the ruler will find nothing to worry about as everything is reduced to its reality.

Hence the saying: “The ruler must not reveal his wants. For, if he reveals his wants, the ministers will polish their manners accordingly. The ruler must not reveal his views. For, if he reveals his views, the ministers will display their hues differently.” Hence another saying: “If the like and hate of the ruler be concealed, the true hearts of the ministers will be revealed. If the experience and wisdom of the ruler be discarded, the ministers will take precautions.” Accordingly, the ruler, wise as he is, should not bother but let everything find its proper place; worthy as he is, should not be self-assumed but observe closely the ministers’ motivating factors of conduct; and, courageous as he is, should not be enraged but let every minister display his prowess. So, leave the ruler’s wisdom, then you will find the ministers’ intelligence; leave the ruler’s worthiness, then you will find the ministers’ merits; and leave the ruler’s courage, then you will find the ministers’ strength. In such cases, ministers will attend to their duties, magistrates will have definite work routine, and everybody will be employed according to his special ability. Such a course of government is called “constant and immutable”.

Hence the saying: “So quiet, it rests without footing; so vacant, it cannot be located.” Thus, the intelligent ruler does nothing, but his ministers tremble all the more. It is the Tao of the intelligent ruler that he makes the wise men exhaust their mental energy and makes his decisions thereby without being himself at his wits’ end; that he makes the worthy men exert their talents and appoints them to office accordingly without being himself at the end of his ability; and that in case of merits the ruler gains the renown and in case of demerit the ministers face the blame so that the ruler is never at the end of his reputation. Therefore, the ruler, even though not worthy, becomes the master of the worthies; and, even though not wise, becomes the corrector of the wise men. It is the ministers who do the toil; it is the ruler who gets the spoil. This is the everlasting principle of the worthy sovereign.

Tao exists in invisibility; its function, in unintelligibility. Be empty and reposed and have nothing to do-Then from the dark see defects in the light. See but never be seen. Hear but never be heard. Know but never be known. If you hear any word uttered, do not change it nor move it but compare it with the deed and see if word and deed coincide with each other. Place every official with a censor. Do not let them speak to each other. Then everything will be exerted to the utmost. Cover tracks and conceal sources. Then the ministers cannot trace origins. Leave your wisdom and cease your ability. Then your subordinates cannot guess at your limitations.

Keep your decision and identify it with the words and deeds of your subordinates. Cautiously take the handles  and hold them fast. Uproot others’ want of them, smash others’ thought of them, and do not let anybody covet them. If the ruler is not cautious of the locking or if he does not keep the gate in good repair, the tiger will come into existence. If the ruler does not take precautions for his sway or if he does not cover his realities, the traitor will make his appearance. Who murders the sovereign and takes his place and finds the whole people side in awe with him, is called a tiger. Again, who serves the country by the sovereign’s side and watches for his secret faults with villainous motives, is called a traitor. Scatter his partisans, arrest his supporters, lock up the gate, and deprive him of all assistance. Then there will be no tiger in the country. Be too great to be measured, be too profound to be surveyed, identify norms and names, scrutinize laws and manners, and chastise those doing as they please. Then there will be no traitor in the country.

For these reasons, the lord of men always has to face five kinds of delusion: delusion by ministers impeding the sovereign, delusion by ministers controlling public resources and revenues, delusion by ministers issuing decrees at random, delusion by ministers distributing personal favours, and delusion by ministers feeding dependents. When ministers impede the sovereign, the sovereign loses his viewpoint. When they control public resources and revenues, he loses his advantages. When they issue decrees at random, he loses his ruling authority. When they distribute personal favours, he loses his name. When they feed their dependents, he loses his supporters. All their doings as such should be based on the initiative of the lord of men and should not be started by the ministers at their pleasure.

The Tao of the lord of men regards tranquility and humility as treasures. Without handling anything himself, he can tell skillfulness from unskillfulness; without his own concerns of mind, he can tell good from bad luck. Therefore, without uttering any word himself, he finds a good reply given; without exerting his own effort, he finds his task accomplished. Whenever a reply is given to his question, he holds to its covenant. Whenever any task is accomplished, he holds to its result. And out of coincidence and discrepancy between the consequences of tasks accomplished and the covenants of words uttered reward and punishment are born. Therefore, when a minister utters a word, the ruler should according to the word assign him a task to accomplish, and according to the result of the accomplishment call the task to account. If the result corresponds with the task and the task with the word, the minister should be rewarded. If the result corresponds not with the task and the task not with the word, he should be censured. It is in accordance with the Tao of the intelligent ruler that every minister should utter no word that corresponds not with its proper task.

For this reason, the intelligent ruler, in bestowing rewards, is as benign as the seasonable rain that the masses profit by his graces; in inflicting punishments, he is so terrific like the loud thunder that even divines and sages cannot atone for their crimes. Thus the intelligent ruler neglects no reward and remits no punishment. For, if reward is neglected, ministers of merit will relax their duties; if punishment is remitted, villainous ministers will become liable to misconduct. Therefore, men of real merit, however distant and humble, must be rewarded; those of real demerit, however near and dear, must be censured. If both the reward of the distant and humble and the censure of the near and dear are infallible, the distant and humble will not go idle while the near and dear will not turn arrogant.

Chapter 7,“The Two Handles”

The means  whereby the intelligent ruler controls his ministers are two handles only. The two handles are chastisement3 and commendation. What are meant by chastisement and commendation? To inflict death or torture upon culprits, is called chastisement; to bestow encouragements or rewards on men of merit, is called commendation.

Ministers are afraid of censure and punishment but fond of encouragement and reward. Therefore, if the lord of men uses the handles of chastisement and commendation, all ministers will dread his severity and turn to his liberality. The villainous ministers of the age are different. To men they hate they would by securing the handle of chastisement from the sovereign ascribe crimes; on men they love they would by securing the handle of commendation from the sovereign bestow rewards. Now supposing the lord of men placed the authority of punishment and the profit of reward not in his hands but let the ministers administer the affairs of reward and punishment instead, then everybody in the country would fear the ministers and slight the ruler, and turn to the ministers and away from the ruler. This is the calamity of the ruler’s loss of the handles of chastisement and commendation.

As illustration, that which enables the tiger to subject the dog, is his claws and fangs. Supposing the tiger cast aside its claws and fangs and let the dog use them, the tiger would in turn be subjected by the dog. The lord of men controls his ministers by means of chastisement and commendation. Now supposing the ruler of men cast aside the handles of chastisement and commendation and let the ministers use them, the ruler would in turn be controlled by the ministers.

Thus, T`ien Ch`ang petitioned for rank and bounties, which he in his turn conferred upon the body of officials, and enlarged pecks and bushels, by virtue of which he distributed alms among the hundred surnames. In other words, Duke Chien lost the handle of commendation, which T`ien Ch`ang set to use. In the long run Duke Chien was murdered. Likewise, Tzŭ-han once said to the Ruler of Sung: “Indeed, rewards and charities being what the people like, may Your Highness bestow them! Slaughter and punishments being what the people dislike, may thy servant beg leave to enforce them?” Thenceforth, the Ruler of Sung lost the handle of chastisement, which Tzŭ-han set to use. Hence followed the molestation of the Ruler of Sung. Inasmuch as T`ien Ch`ang used only the handle of commendation, Duke Chien was murdered; inasmuch as Tzŭ-han used only the handle of chastisement, the Ruler of Sung was molested. Therefore, if any minister of the present age uses both the handles of chastisement and commendation, the danger of his ruler will be more serious than that of Duke Chien and the Ruler of Sung. For this reason, every sovereign molested, murdered, deluded, or deceived, because he had lostthe handles of chastisement and commendation and let the ministers use them, invited danger and ruin accordingly.

The lord of men, whenever he wants to suppress culprits, must see norm accord with name and word never differ from task.Whenever a minister utters a word, the ruler should in accordance with his word assign him a task to accomplish, and in accordance with the task call the work to account. If the work corresponds with the task, and the task corresponds with the word, he should be rewarded. On the contrary, if the work is not equivalent to the task, and the task not equivalent to the word, he should be punished. Accordingly, any minister whose word is big but whose work is small should be punished. Not that the work is small, but that the work is not equivalent to the name. Again, any minister whose word is small but whose work is big should also be punished. Not that big work is not desirable but that the discrepancy between the work and the name is worse than the accomplishment of the big work. Hence the minister should be punished.

Once in by-gone days, Marquis Chao of Han was drunk and fell into a nap. The crown-keeper, seeing the ruler exposed to cold, put a coat over him. When the Marquis awoke, he was glad and asked the attendants, “Who put more clothes on my body?” “The crown-keeper did,” they replied. Then the Marquis found the coat-keeper guilty and put the crown-keeper to death. He punished the coat-keeper for the neglect of his duty, and the crown-keeper for the overriding of his post. Not that the Marquis was not afraid of catching cold but that he thought their trespassing the assigned duties was worse than his catching cold.

Thus, when an intelligent ruler keeps ministers in service, no minister is allowed either to override his post and get merits thereby nor to utter any word not equivalent to a fact. Whoever overrides his post is put to death; whoever makes a word not equivalent to a fact is punished. If everyone has to do his official duty, and if whatever he says has to be earnest, then the ministers cannot associate for treasonable purposes.

The lord of men has two difficulties to face: If he appoints only worthy men to office, ministers will on the pretense of worthiness attempt to deceive their ruler; if he makes arbitrary promotions of officials, the state affairs will always be menaced. Similarly, if the lord of men loves worthiness, ministers will gloss over their defects in order to meet the ruler’s need. In consequence, no minister will show his true heart. If no minister shows his true heart, the lord of men will find no way to tell the worthy from the unworthy.

For instance, because the King of Yüeh liked brave men, the people made light of death; because King Ling of Ch`u liked slender waists, the country became full of starvelings; because Duke Huan of Ch`i was by nature jealous and fond of women, Shu Tiao castrated himself in order to administer the harem; because Duke Huan liked different tastes, Yi-ya steamed the head of his son and served Duke Huan with the rare taste; because Tzŭ-k`uai of Yen liked worthies, Tzŭ-chih pretended that he would not accept the state.

Therefore, if the ruler reveals his hate, ministers will conceal their motives; if the ruler reveals his likes, ministers will pretend to talent; and if the ruler reveals his wants, ministers will have the opportunity to disguise their feelings and attitudes.

That was the reason why Tzŭ-chih, by pretending to worthiness, usurped the ruler’s throne; and why Shu Tiao and Yi-ya, by complying with their ruler’s wants, molested their ruler. Thus Tzŭ-k`uai died in consequence of a civil war and Duke Huan was left unburied until worms from his corpse crawled outdoors. What was the cause of these incidents? It was nothing but the calamity of the rulers’ revelation of true hearts to ministers. Every minister in his heart of hearts does not necessarily love the ruler. If he does, it is for the sake of his own great advantage.

In these days, if the lord of men neither covers his feelings nor conceals his motives, and if he lets ministers have a chance to molest their master, the ministers will have no difficulty in following the examples of Tzŭ-chih and T`iench`ang. Hence the saying: “If the ruler’s likes and hate be concealed, the ministers’ true hearts will be revealed. If the ministers reveal their true hearts, the ruler never will be deluded.”


Primary Source Documents Set #4: Ancient Greece

Essay Question:

How did the Peloponnesian War change the nature of Athenian democracy and how Athens waged the war as it dragged on? Use the 3 excerpts from Thucydides in chronological order to make your points.


Document #1 “Pericles’ Funeral Oration,” in The History of the Peloponnesian War[35]ThucydidesTranslated by Richard Crawley 

 Book 2, chapters 34-46

“I shall begin with our ancestors: it is both just and proper that they should have the honour of the first mention on an occasion like the present. They dwelt in the country without break in the succession from generation to generation, and handed it down free to the present time by their valour. And if our more remote ancestors deserve praise, much more  do our own fathers, who added to their inheritance the empire which we now possess, and spared no pains to be able to leave their acquisitions to us of the present generation… But what was the road by which we reached our position, what the form of government under which our greatness grew, what the national habits out of which it sprang; these are questions which I may try to solve before I proceed to my panegyric upon these men; since I think this to be a subject upon which on the present occasion a speaker may properly dwell, and to which the whole assemblage, whether citizens or foreigners, may listen with advantage.

“Our constitution does not copy the laws of neighbouring states; we are rather a pattern to others than imitators ourselves. Its administration favours the many instead of the few; this is why it is called a democracy. If we look to the laws, they afford equal justice to all in their private differences; if no social standing, advancement in public life falls to reputation for capacity, class considerations not being allowed to interfere with merit; nor again does poverty bar the way, if a man is able to serve the state, he is not hindered by the obscurity of his condition. The freedom which we enjoy in our government extends also to our ordinary life. There, far from exercising a jealous surveillance over each other, we do not feel called upon to be angry with our neighbour for doing what he likes, or even to indulge in those injurious looks which cannot fail to be offensive, although they inflict no positive penalty. But all this ease in our private relations does not make us lawless as citizens. Against this fear is our chief safeguard, teaching us to obey the magistrates and the laws, particularly such as regard the protection of the injured, whether they are actually on the statute book, or belong to that code which, although unwritten, yet cannot be broken without acknowledged disgrace.

“Further, we provide plenty of means for the mind to refresh itself from business. We celebrate games and sacrifices all the year round, and the elegance of our private establishments forms a daily source of pleasure and helps to banish the spleen; while the magnitude of our city draws the produce of the world into our harbour, so that to the Athenian the fruits of other countries are as familiar a luxury as those of his own.

“If we turn to our military policy, there also we differ from our antagonists. We throw open our city to the world, and never by alien acts exclude foreigners from any opportunity of learning or observing, although the eyes of an enemy may occasionally profit by our liberality; trusting less in system and policy than to the native spirit of our citizens; while in  education, where our rivals from their very cradles by a painful discipline seek after  manliness, at Athens we live exactly as we please, and yet are just as ready to encounter every legitimate danger. In proof of this it may be noticed that the Lacedaemonians do not invade our country alone, but bring with them all their confederates; while we Athenians advance unsupported into the territory of a neighbour, and fighting upon a foreign soil usually vanquish with ease men who are defending their homes. Our united force was never yet encountered by any enemy, because we have at once to attend to our marine and to dispatch our citizens by land upon a hundred different services; so that, wherever they engage with some such fraction of our strength, a success against a detachment is magnified into a victory over the nation, and a defeat into a reverse suffered at the hands of our entire people. And yet if with habits not of labour but of ease, and courage not of art but of nature, we are still willing to encounter danger, we have the double advantage of escaping the experience of hardships in anticipation and of facing them in the hour of need as fearlessly as those who are never free from them.

“Nor are these the only points in which our city is worthy of admiration. We cultivate refinement without extravagance and knowledge without effeminacy; wealth we employ  more for use than for show, and place the real disgrace of poverty not in owning to the fact but in declining the struggle against it. Our public men have, besides politics, their private affairs to attend to, and our ordinary citizens, though occupied with the pursuits of industry, are still fair judges of public matters; for, unlike any other nation, regarding him who takes no part in these duties not as unambitious but as useless, we Athenians are able to judge at all events if we cannot originate, and, instead of looking on discussion as a stumbling-block in the way of action, we think it an indispensable preliminary to any wise action at all. Again, in our enterprises we present the singular spectacle of daring and deliberation, each carried to its highest point, and both united in the same persons; although usually decision is the fruit of ignorance, hesitation of reflection. But the palm of courage will surely be adjudged most justly to those, who best know the difference between hardship and pleasure and yet are never tempted to shrink from danger. In generosity we are equally singular, acquiring our friends by conferring, not by receiving, favours. Yet, of course, the doer of the favour is the firmer friend of the two, in order by continued kindness to keep the recipient in his debt; while the debtor feels less keenly from the very consciousness that the return he makes will be a payment, not a free gift. And it is only the Athenians, who, fearless of consequences, confer their benefits not from calculations of expediency, but in the confidence of liberality.

“In short, I say that as a city we are the school of Hellas, while I doubt if the world can produce a man who, where he has only himself to depend upon, is equal to so many emergencies, and graced by so happy a versatility, as the Athenian. And that this is no mere boast thrown out for the occasion, but plain matter of fact, the power of the state acquired by these habits proves. For Athens alone of her contemporaries is found when tested to be greater than her reputation, and alone gives no occasion to her assailants to blush at the antagonist by whom they have been worsted, or to her subjects to question her title by merit to rule. Rather, the admiration of the present and succeeding ages will be ours, since we have not left our power without witness, but have shown it by mighty proofs; and far from needing a Homer for our panegyrist, or other of his craft whose verses might charm for the moment only for the impression which they gave to melt at the touch of fact, we have forced every sea and land to be the highway of our daring, and everywhere, whether for evil or for good, have left imperishable monuments behind us. Such is the Athens for which these men, in the assertion of their resolve not to lose her, nobly fought and died; and well may every one of their survivors be ready to suffer in her cause.

“Indeed if I have dwelt at some length upon the character of our country, it has been to show that our stake in the struggle is not the same as theirs who have no such blessings to lose, and also that the panegyric of the men over whom I am now speaking might be by definite proofs established. That panegyric is now in a great measure complete; for the Athens that I have celebrated is only what the heroism of these and their like have made her, men whose fame, unlike that of most Hellenes, will be found to be only commensurate with their deserts. And if a test of worth be wanted, it is to be found in their closing scene, and this not only in cases in which it set the final seal upon their merit, but also in those in which it gave the first intimation of their having any. For there is justice in the claim that steadfastness in his country’s battles should be as a cloak to cover a man’s other imperfections; since the good action has blotted out the bad, and his merit as a citizen more than outweighed his demerits as an individual. But none of these allowed either wealth with its prospect of future enjoyment to unnerve his spirit, or poverty with its hope of a day of freedom and riches to tempt him to shrink from danger. No, holding that  vengeance upon their enemies was more to be desired than any personal blessings, and reckoning this to be the most glorious of hazards, they joyfully determined to accept the risk, to make sure of their vengeance, and to let their wishes wait; and while committing to hope the uncertainty of final success, in the business before them they thought fit to act boldly and trust in themselves. Thus choosing to die resisting, rather than to live submitting, they fled only from dishonour, but met danger face to face, and after one brief moment, while at the summit of their fortune, escaped, not from their fear, but from their glory.

“So died these men as became Athenians. You, their survivors, must determine to have as unfaltering a resolution in the field, though you may pray that it may have a happier issue. And not contented with ideas derived only from words of the advantages which are bound up with the defence of your country, though these would furnish a valuable text to a speaker even before an audience so alive to them as the present, you must yourselves realize the power of Athens, and feed your eyes upon her from day to day, till love of her fills your hearts; and then, when all her greatness shall break upon you, you must reflect that it was by courage, sense of duty, and a keen feeling of honour in action that men were enabled to win all this, and that no personal failure in an enterprise could make them consent to deprive their country of their valour, but they laid it at her feet as the most glorious contribution that they could offer. For this offering of their lives made in common by them all they each of them individually received that renown which never grows old, and for a sepulchre, not so much that in which their bones have been deposited, but that noblest of shrines wherein their glory is laid up to be eternally remembered upon every occasion on which deed or story shall call for its commemoration…”



Document #2“The Mitylenian Debate,” in The History of the Peloponnesian War[36]ThucydidesTranslated by Richard Crawley 

Book 3, chapters 36-50

Upon the arrival of the prisoners with Salaethus, the Athenians at once put the latter to death, although he offered, among other things, to procure the withdrawal of the Peloponnesians from Plataea, which was still under siege; and after deliberating as to what they should do with the former, in the fury of the moment determined to put to death not only the prisoners at Athens, but the whole adult male population of Mitylene, and to make slaves of the women and children. It was remarked that Mitylene had revolted without being, like the rest, subjected to the empire; and what above all swelled the wrath of the Athenians was the fact of the Peloponnesian fleet having ventured over to Ionia to her support, a fact which was held to argue a long meditated rebellion. They accordingly sent a galley to communicate the decree to Paches, commanding him to lose no time in dispatching the Mitylenians. The morrow brought repentance with it and reflection on the horrid cruelty of a decree, which condemned a whole city to the fate merited only by the guilty. This was no sooner perceived by the Mitylenian ambassadors at Athens and their Athenian supporters, than they moved the authorities to put the question again to the vote; which they the more easily consented to do, as they themselves plainly saw that most of the citizens wished someone to give them an opportunity for reconsidering the matter. An assembly was therefore at once called, and after much expression of opinion upon both sides, Cleon, son of Cleaenetus, the same who had carried the former motion of putting the Mitylenians to death, the most violent man at Athens, and at that time by far the most powerful with the commons, came forward again and spoke as follows:

“I have often before now been convinced that a democracy is incapable of empire, and never more so than by your present change of mind in the matter of Mitylene. Fears or plots being unknown to you in your daily relations with each other, you feel just the same with regard to your allies, and never reflect that the mistakes into which you may be led by listening to their appeals, or by giving way to your own compassion, are full of danger to yourselves, and bring you no thanks for your weakness from your allies; entirely forgetting that your empire is a despotism and your subjects disaffected conspirators, whose obedience is ensured not by your suicidal concessions, but by the superiority given you by your own strength and not their loyalty. The most alarming feature in the case is the constant change of measures with which we appear to be threatened, and our seeming ignorance of the fact that bad laws which are never changed are better for a city than good ones that have no authority; that unlearned loyalty is more serviceable than quick-witted insubordination; and that ordinary men usually manage public affairs better than their more gifted fellows. The latter are always wanting to appear wiser than the laws, and to overrule every proposition brought forward, thinking that they cannot show their wit in more important matters, and by such behaviour too often ruin their country; while those who mistrust their own cleverness are content to be less learned than the laws, and less able to pick holes in the speech of a good speaker; and being fair judges rather than rival athletes, generally conduct affairs successfully. These we ought to imitate, instead of being led on by cleverness and intellectual rivalry to advise your people against our real opinions.

“For myself, I adhere to my former opinion, and wonder at those who have proposed to reopen the case of the Mitylenians, and who are thus causing a delay which is all in favour of the guilty, by making the sufferer proceed against the offender with the edge of his anger blunted; although where vengeance follows most closely upon the wrong, it best equals it and most amply requites it. I wonder also who will be the man who will maintain the contrary, and will pretend to show that the crimes of the Mitylenians are of service to us, and our misfortunes injurious to the allies. Such a man must plainly either have such confidence in his rhetoric as to adventure to prove that what has been once for all decided is still undetermined, or be bribed to try to delude us by elaborate sophisms. In such contests the state gives the rewards to others, and takes the dangers for herself. The persons to blame are you who are so foolish as to institute these contests; who go to see an oration as you would to see a sight, take your facts on hearsay, judge of the practicability of a project by the wit of its advocates, and trust for the truth as to past events not to the fact which you saw more than to the clever strictures which you heard; the easy victims of new-fangled arguments, unwilling to follow received conclusions; slaves to every new paradox, despisers of the commonplace; the first wish of every man being that he could speak himself, the next to rival those who can speak by seeming to be quite up with their ideas by applauding every hit almost before it is made, and by being as quick in catching an argument as you are slow in foreseeing its consequences; asking, if I may so say, for something different from the conditions under which we live, and yet comprehending inadequately those very conditions; very slaves to the pleasure of the ear, and more like the audience of a rhetorician than the council of a city.

“In order to keep you from this, I proceed to show that no one state has ever injured you as much as Mitylene. I can make allowance for those who revolt because they cannot bear our empire, or who have been forced to do so by the enemy. But for those who possessed an island with fortifications; who could fear our enemies only by sea, and there had their own force of galleys to protect them; who were independent and held in the highest honour by you- to act as these have done, this is not revolt- revolt implies oppression; it is deliberate and wanton aggression; an attempt to ruin us by siding with our bitterest enemies; a worse offence than a war undertaken on their own account in the acquisition of power. The fate of those of their neighbours who had already rebelled and had been subdued was no lesson to them; their own prosperity could not dissuade them from affronting danger; but blindly confident in the future, and full of hopes beyond their power though not beyond their ambition, they declared war and made their decision to prefer might to right, their attack being determined not by provocation but by the moment which seemed propitious. The truth is that great good fortune coming suddenly and unexpectedly tends to make a people insolent; in most cases it is safer for mankind to have success in reason than out of reason; and it is easier for them, one may say, to stave off adversity than to preserve prosperity. Our mistake has been to distinguish the Mitylenians as we have done: had they been long ago treated like the rest, they never would have so far forgotten themselves, human nature being as surely made arrogant by consideration as it is awed by firmness. Let them now therefore be punished as their crime requires, and do not, while you condemn the aristocracy, absolve the people. This is certain, that all attacked you without distinction, although they might have come over to us and been now again in possession of their city. But no, they thought it safer to throw in their lot with the aristocracy and so joined their rebellion! Consider therefore: if you subject to the same punishment the ally who is forced to rebel by the enemy, and him who does so by his own free choice, which of them, think you, is there that will not rebel upon the slightest pretext; when the reward of success is freedom, and the penalty of failure nothing so very terrible? We meanwhile shall have to risk our money and our lives against one state after another; and if successful, shall receive a ruined town from which we can no longer draw the revenue upon which our strength depends; while if unsuccessful, we shall have an enemy the more upon our hands, and shall spend the time that might be employed in combating our existing foes in warring with our own allies.

“No hope, therefore, that rhetoric may instil or money purchase, of the mercy due to human infirmity must be held out to the Mitylenians. Their offence was not involuntary, but of malice and deliberate; and mercy is only for unwilling offenders. I therefore, now as before, persist against your reversing your first decision, or giving way to the three failings most fatal to empire- pity, sentiment, and indulgence. Compassion is due to those who can reciprocate the feeling, not to those who will never pity us in return, but are our natural and necessary foes… To sum up shortly, I say that if you follow my advice you will do what is just towards the Mitylenians, and at the same time expedient; while by a different decision you will not oblige them so much as pass sentence upon yourselves. For if they were right in rebelling, you must be wrong in ruling. However, if, right or wrong, you determine to rule, you must carry out your principle and punish the Mitylenians as your interest requires; or else you must give up your empire and cultivate honesty without danger… Do not, therefore, be traitors to yourselves, but recall as nearly as possible the moment of suffering and the supreme importance which you then attached to their reduction; and now pay them back in their turn, without yielding to present weakness or forgetting the peril that once hung over you. Punish them as they deserve, and teach your other allies by a striking example that the penalty of rebellion is death. Let them once understand this and you will not have so often to neglect your enemies while you are fighting with your own confederates.”

Such were the words of Cleon. After him Diodotus, son of Eucrates, who had also in the previous assembly spoken most strongly against putting the Mitylenians to death, came forward and spoke as follows:

“I do not blame the persons who have reopened the case of the Mitylenians, nor do I approve the protests which we have heard against important questions being frequently debated. I think the two things most opposed to good counsel are haste and passion; haste usually goes hand in hand with folly, passion with coarseness and narrowness of mind. As for the argument that speech ought not to be the exponent of action, the man who uses it must be either senseless or interested: senseless if he believes it possible to treat of the uncertain future through any other medium; interested if, wishing to carry a disgraceful measure and doubting his ability to speak well in a bad cause, he thinks to frighten opponents and hearers by well-aimed calumny. What is still more intolerable is to accuse a speaker of making a display in order to be paid for it. If ignorance only were imputed, an unsuccessful speaker might retire with a reputation for honesty, if not for wisdom; while the charge of dishonesty makes him suspected, if successful, and thought, if defeated, not only a fool but a rogue. The city is no gainer by such a system, since fear deprives it of its advisers; although in truth, if our speakers are to make such assertions, it would be better for the country if they could not speak at all, as we should then make fewer blunders. The good citizen ought to triumph not by frightening his opponents but by beating them fairly in argument; and a wise city, without over-distinguishing its best advisers, will nevertheless not deprive them of their due, and, far from punishing an unlucky counsellor, will not even regard him as disgraced. In this way successful orators would be least tempted to sacrifice their convictions to popularity, in the hope of still higher honours, and unsuccessful speakers to resort to the same popular arts in order to win over the multitude.

“This is not our way; and, besides, the moment that a man is suspected of giving advice, however good, from corrupt motives, we feel such a grudge against him for the gain which after all we are not certain he will receive, that we deprive the city of its certain benefit. Plain good advice has thus come to be no less suspected than bad; and the advocate of the most monstrous measures is not more obliged to use deceit to gain the people, than the best counsellor is to lie in order to be believed. The city and the city only, owing to these refinements, can never be served openly and without disguise; he who does serve it openly being always suspected of serving himself in some secret way in return. Still, considering the magnitude of the interests involved, and the position of affairs, we orators must make it our business to look a little farther than you who judge offhand; especially as we, your advisers, are responsible, while you, our audience, are not so. For if those who gave the advice, and those who took it, suffered equally, you would judge more calmly; as it is, you visit the disasters into which the whim of the moment may have led you upon the single person of your adviser, not upon yourselves, his numerous companions in error.

“However, I have not come forward either to oppose or to accuse in the matter of Mitylene; indeed, the question before us as sensible men is not their guilt, but our interests. Though I prove them ever so guilty, I shall not, therefore, advise their death, unless it be expedient; nor though they should have claims to indulgence, shall I recommend it, unless it be dearly for the good of the country. I consider that we are deliberating for the future more than for the present; and where Cleon is so positive as to the useful deterrent effects that will follow from making rebellion capital, I, who consider the interests of the future quite as much as he, as positively maintain the contrary. And I require you not to reject my useful considerations for his specious ones: his speech may have the attraction of seeming the more just in your present temper against Mitylene; but we are not in a court of justice, but in a political assembly; and the question is not justice, but how to make the Mitylenians useful to Athens.

“Now of course communities have enacted the penalty of death for many offences far lighter than this: still hope leads men to venture, and no one ever yet put himself in peril without the inward conviction that he would succeed in his design. Again, was there ever city rebelling that did not believe that it possessed either in itself or in its alliances resources adequate to the enterprise? All, states and individuals, are alike prone to err, and there is no law that will prevent them; or why should men have exhausted the list of punishments in search of enactments to protect them from evildoers? It is probable that in early times the penalties for the greatest offences were less severe, and that, as these were disregarded, the penalty of death has been by degrees in most cases arrived at, which is itself disregarded in like manner. Either then some means of terror more terrible than this must be discovered, or it must be owned that this restraint is useless; and that as long as poverty gives men the courage of necessity, or plenty fills them with the ambition which belongs to insolence and pride, and the other conditions of life remain each under the thralldom of some fatal and master passion, so long will the impulse never be wanting to drive men into danger. Hope also and cupidity, the one leading and the other following, the one conceiving the attempt, the other suggesting the facility of succeeding, cause the widest ruin, and, although invisible agents, are far stronger than the dangers that are seen. Fortune, too, powerfully helps the delusion and, by the unexpected aid that she sometimes lends, tempts men to venture with inferior means; and this is especially the case with communities, because the stakes played for are the highest, freedom or empire, and, when all are acting together, each man irrationally magnifies his own capacity. In fine, it is impossible to prevent, and only great simplicity can hope to prevent, human nature doing what it has once set its mind upon, by force of law or by any other deterrent force whatsoever.

“We must not, therefore, commit ourselves to a false policy through a belief in the efficacy of the punishment of death, or exclude rebels from the hope of repentance and an early atonement of their error. Consider a moment. At present, if a city that has already revolted perceive that it cannot succeed, it will come to terms while it is still able to refund expenses, and pay tribute afterwards. In the other case, what city, think you, would not prepare better than is now done, and hold out to the last against its besiegers, if it is all one whether it surrender late or soon? And how can it be otherwise than hurtful to us to be put to the expense of a siege, because surrender is out of the question; and if we take the city, to receive a ruined town from which we can no longer draw the revenue which forms our real strength against the enemy? We must not, therefore, sit as strict judges of the offenders to our own prejudice, but rather see how by moderate chastisements we may be enabled to benefit in future by the revenue-producing powers of our dependencies; and we must make up our minds to look for our protection not to legal terrors but to careful administration. At present we do exactly the opposite. When a free community, held in subjection by force, rises, as is only natural, and asserts its independence, it is no sooner reduced than we fancy ourselves obliged to punish it severely; although the right course with freemen is not to chastise them rigorously when they do rise, but rigorously to watch them before they rise, and to prevent their ever entertaining the idea, and, the insurrection suppressed, to make as few responsible for it as possible.

“Only consider what a blunder you would commit in doing as Cleon recommends. As things are at present, in all the cities the people is your friend, and either does not revolt with the oligarchy, or, if forced to do so, becomes at once the enemy of the insurgents; so that in the war with the hostile city you have the masses on your side. But if you butcher the people of Mitylene, who had nothing to do with the revolt, and who, as soon as they got arms, of their own motion surrendered the town, first you will commit the crime of killing your benefactors; and next you will play directly into the hands of the higher classes, who when they induce their cities to rise, will immediately have the people on their side, through your having announced in advance the same punishment for those who are guilty and for those who are not. On the contrary, even if they were guilty, you ought to seem not to notice it, in order to avoid alienating the only class still friendly to us. In short, I consider it far more useful for the preservation of our empire voluntarily to put up with injustice, than to put to death, however justly, those whom it is our interest to keep alive. As for Cleon’s idea that in punishment the claims of justice and expediency can both be satisfied, facts do not confirm the possibility of such a combination…”

Such were the words of Diodotus. The two opinions thus expressed were the ones that most directly contradicted each other; and the Athenians, notwithstanding their change of feeling, now proceeded to a division, in which the show of hands was almost equal, although the motion of Diodotus carried the day. Another galley was at once sent off in haste, for fear that the first might reach Lesbos in the interval, and the city be found destroyed; the first ship having about a day and a night’s start. Wine and barley-cakes were provided for the vessel by the Mitylenian ambassadors, and great promises made if they arrived in time; which caused the men to use such diligence upon the voyage that they took their meals of barley-cakes kneaded with oil and wine as they rowed, and only slept by turns while the others were at the oar. Luckily they met with no contrary wind, and the first ship making no haste upon so horrid an errand, while the second pressed on in the manner described, the first arrived so little before them, that Paches had only just had time to read the decree, and to prepare to execute the sentence, when the second put into port and prevented the massacre. The danger of Mitylene had indeed been great.

The other party whom Paches had sent off as the prime movers in the rebellion, were upon Cleon’s motion put to death by the Athenians, the number being rather more than a thousand. The Athenians also demolished the walls of the Mitylenians, and took possession of their ships. Afterwards tribute was not imposed upon the Lesbians; but all their land, except that of the Methymnians, was divided into three thousand allotments, three hundred of which were reserved as sacred for the gods, and the rest assigned by lot to Athenian shareholders, who were sent out to the island. With these the Lesbians agreed to pay a rent of two minae a year for each allotment, and cultivated the land themselves. The Athenians also took possession of the towns on the continent belonging to the Mitylenians, which thus became for the future subject to Athens. Such were the events that took place at Lesbos.



Document #3“The Melian Dialogue,” in The History of the Peloponnesian War[37]ThucydidesTranslated by Richard Crawley 

Book 5, chapters 84-116

The next summer Alcibiades sailed with twenty ships to Argos and seized the suspected persons still left of the Lacedaemonian faction to the number of three hundred, whom the Athenians forthwith lodged in the neighbouring islands of their empire. The Athenians also made an expedition against the isle of Melos with thirty ships of their own, six Chian, and  two Lesbian vessels, sixteen hundred heavy infantry, three hundred archers, and twenty mounted archers from Athens, and about fifteen hundred heavy infantry from the allies and the islanders. The Melians are a colony of Lacedaemon that would not submit to the Athenians like the other islanders, and at first remained neutral and took no part in the struggle, but afterwards upon the Athenians using violence and plundering their territory, assumed an attitude of open hostility. Cleomedes, son of Lycomedes, and Tisias, son of Tisimachus, the generals, encamping in their territory with the above armament, before doing any harm to their land, sent envoys to negotiate. These the Melians did not bring before the people, but bade them state the object of their mission to the magistrates and the few; upon which the Athenian envoys [and Melian commissioners] spoke as follows:

Athenians: Since the negotiations are not to go on before the people, in order that we  may not be able to speak straight on without interruption, and deceive the ears of the  multitude by seductive arguments which would pass without refutation (for we know that this is the meaning of our being brought before the few), what if you who sit there were to pursue a method more cautious still? Make no set speech yourselves, but take us up at whatever you do not like, and settle that before going any farther. And first tell us if this proposition of ours suits you.

Melians: To the fairness of quietly instructing each other as you propose there is nothing to object; but your military preparations are too far advanced to agree with what you say, as we see you are come to be judges in your own cause, and that all we can reasonably expect from this negotiation is war, if we prove to have right on our side and refuse to submit, and in the contrary case, slavery. ..

Athenians: … we shall not trouble you with specious pretenses- either of how we have a right to our empire because we overthrew the Mede, or are now attacking you because of wrong that you have done us- and make a long speech which would not be believed; and in return we hope that you, instead of thinking to influence us by saying that you did not join the Lacedaemonians, although their colonists, or that you have done us no wrong, will aim at what is feasible, holding in view the real sentiments of us both; since you know as well as we do that right, as the world goes, is only in question between equals in power, while the strong do what they can and the weak suffer what they must…

Melians: So… you would not consent to our being neutral, friends instead of enemies, but allies of neither side.

Athenians: No; for your hostility cannot so much hurt us as your friendship will be an argument to our subjects of our weakness, and your enmity of our power.

Melians:Is that your subjects’ idea of equity, to put those who have nothing to do with you in the same category with peoples that are most of them your own colonists, and some conquered rebels?

Athenians: As far as right goes they think one has as much of it as the other, and that if any maintain their independence it is because they are strong, and that if we do not molest them it is because we are afraid; so that besides extending our empire we should gain in security by your subjection; the fact that you are islanders and weaker than others rendering it all the more important that you should not succeed in baffling the masters of the sea.

Melians. But do you consider that there is no security in the policy which we indicate?… How can you avoid making enemies of all existing neutrals who shall look at case from it that one day or another you will attack them? And what is this but to make greater the enemies that you have already, and to force others to become so who would otherwise have never thought of it?

Athenians. Why, the fact is that continentals generally give us but little alarm; the liberty which they enjoy will long prevent their taking precautions against us; it is rather islanders like yourselves, outside our empire, and subjects smarting under the yoke, who would be the most likely to take a rash step and lead themselves and us into obvious danger.

Melians. Well then, if you risk so much to retain your empire, and your subjects to get rid of it, it were surely great baseness and cowardice in us who are still free not to try everything that can be tried, before submitting to your yoke.

Athenians. Not if you are well advised, the contest not being an equal one, with honour as the prize and shame as the penalty, but a question of self-preservation and of not resisting those who are far stronger than you are.

Melians. But we know that the fortune of war is sometimes more impartial than the disproportion of numbers might lead one to suppose; to submit is to give ourselves over to despair, while action still preserves for us a hope that we may stand erect.

Athenians. Hope, danger’s comforter, may be indulged in by those who have abundant resources, if not without loss at all events without ruin; but its nature is to be extravagant, and those who go so far as to put their all upon the venture see it in its true colours only when they are ruined; but so long as the discovery would enable them to guard against it, it is never found wanting. Let not this be the case with you, who are weak and hang on a single turn of the scale; nor be like the vulgar, who, abandoning such security as human means may still afford, when visible hopes fail them in extremity, turn to invisible, to prophecies and oracles, and other such inventions that delude men with hopes to their destruction.

Melians. You may be sure that we are as well aware as you of the difficulty of contending against your power and fortune, unless the terms be equal. But we trust that the gods may grant us fortune as good as yours, since we are just men fighting against unjust, and that what we want in power will be made up by the alliance of the Lacedaemonians, who are bound, if only for very shame, to come to the aid of their kindred. Our confidence, therefore, after all is not so utterly irrational.

Athenians. When you speak of the favour of the gods, we may as fairly hope for that as yourselves; neither our pretensions nor our conduct being in any way contrary to what men believe of the gods, or practise among themselves. Of the gods we believe, and of men we know, that by a necessary law of their nature they rule wherever they can. And it is not as if we were the first to make this law, or to act upon it when made: we found it existing before us, and shall leave it to exist for ever after us; all we do is to make use of it, knowing that you and everybody else, having the same power as we have, would do the same as we do. Thus, as far as the gods are concerned, we have no fear and no reason to fear that we shall be at a disadvantage…

The Athenians now withdrew from the conference; and the Melians, left to themselves, came to a decision corresponding with what they had maintained in the discussion, and answered: “Our resolution, Athenians, is the same as it was at first. We will not in a moment deprive of freedom a city that has been inhabited these seven hundred years; but  we put our trust in the fortune by which the gods have preserved it until now, and in the help of men, that is, of the Lacedaemonians; and so we will try and save ourselves. Meanwhile we invite you to allow us to be friends to you and foes to neither party, and to retire from our country after making such a treaty as shall seem fit to us both.”

Such was the answer of the Melians. The Athenians now departing from the conference said: “Well, you alone, as it seems to us, judging from these resolutions, regard what is future as more certain than what is before your eyes, and what is out of sight, in your eagerness, as already coming to pass; and as you have staked most on, and trusted most in, the Lacedaemonians, your fortune, and your hopes, so will you be most completely deceived.”

The Athenian envoys now returned to the army; and the Melians showing no signs of yielding, the generals at once betook themselves to hostilities, and drew a line of circumvallation round the Melians, dividing the work among the different states. Subsequently the Athenians returned with most of their army, leaving behind them a certain number of their own citizens and of the allies to keep guard by land and sea. The force thus left stayed on and besieged the place.

About the same time the Argives invaded the territory of Phlius and lost eighty men cut off in an ambush by the Phliasians and Argive exiles. Meanwhile the Athenians at Pylos took so much plunder from the Lacedaemonians that the latter, although they still refrained from breaking off the treaty and going to war with Athens, yet proclaimed that any of their people that chose might plunder the Athenians. The Corinthians also commenced hostilities with the Athenians for private quarrels of their own; but the rest of the Peloponnesians stayed quiet. Meanwhile the Melians attacked by night and took the part of the Athenian lines over against the market, and killed some of the men, and brought in corn and all else that they could find useful to them, and so returned and kept quiet, while the Athenians took measures to keep better guard in future.

Summer was now over. The next winter the Lacedaemonians intended to invade the Argive territory, but arriving at the frontier found the sacrifices for crossing unfavourable, and went back again. This intention of theirs gave the Argives suspicions of certain of their fellow citizens, some of whom they arrested; others, however, escaped them. About the same time the Melians again took another part of the Athenian lines which were but feebly garrisoned. Reinforcements afterwards arriving from Athens in consequence, under the command of Philocrates, son of Demeas, the siege was now pressed vigorously; and some treachery taking place inside, the Melians surrendered at discretion to the Athenians, who put to death all the grown men whom they took, and sold the women and children for slaves, and subsequently sent out five hundred colonists and inhabited the place themselves.


Primary Source Documents Set #5: Ancient Rome

Essay Question:

Compare Aristotle’s analysis of the various forms of government with Polybius’ analysis of the Roman constitution. In what respects does Polybius borrow from Aristotle and in what respects does he differ? What would be the ideal government for Aristotle and why?




Document #1The Politics[38]AristotleTranslated by Benjamin Jowett 

Book I

Our purpose is to consider what form of political community is best of all for those who are most able to realize their ideal of life. Three alternatives are conceivable: The members of a state must either have (1) all things or (2) nothing in common, or (3) some things in common and some not. That they should have nothing in common is clearly impossible, for the constitution is a community, and must at any rate have a common place—one city will be in one place, and the citizens are those who share in that one city. But should a well ordered state have all things, as far as may be, in common, or some only and not others? For the citizens might conceivably have wives and children and property in common, as Socrates proposes in the Republic of Plato. Which is better, our present condition, or the proposed new order of society?

Should the citizens of the perfect state have their possessions in common or not? Three cases are possible: (1) the soil may be appropriated, but the produce may be thrown for consumption into the common stock; this is the practice of some nations. Or (2), the soil may be common, and may be cultivated in common, but the produce divided among individuals for their private use; this is a form of common property which is said to exist among certain barbarians. Or the soil and the produce may be alike common. When the farmers are not the owners, the case will be different and easier to deal with; but when they till the ground for themselves the question of ownership will give a world of trouble. If they do not share equally enjoyments and toils, those who labor much and get little will necessarily complain of those who labor little and receive or consume much. These are only some of the disadvantages which attend the community of property; the present arrangement, if improved as it might be by good customs and laws, would be far better.

Property should be in a certain sense common, but, as a general rule, private; for, when everyone has a distinct interest, men will not complain of one another, and they will make more progress, because everyone will be attending to his own business. And yet by reason of goodness, and in respect of use, ‘Friends,’ as the proverb says, “will have all things common.” Even now there are traces. For, although every man has his own property, some things he will place at the disposal of his friends, while of others he shares the use with them. Again, how immeasurably greater is the pleasure, when a man feels a thing to be his own; for surely the love of self is a feeling implanted by nature and not given in vain, although selfishness is rightly censured. No one, when men have all things in common, will any longer set an example of liberality or do any liberal action; for liberality consists in the use which is made of property. Such legislation may have a specious appearance of benevolence; men readily listen to it, and are easily induced to believe that in some wonderful manner everybody will become everybody’s friend, especially when someone is heard denouncing the evils now existing in states, suits about contracts, convictions for perjury, flatteries of rich men and the like, which are said to arise out of the possession of private property. These evils, however, are due to a very different cause—the wickedness of human nature.


Book III

He who would inquire into the essence and attributes of various kinds of governments must first of all determine “What is a state?” A state is composite, like any other whole made up of many parts; these are the citizens, who compose it. It is evident, therefore, that we must begin by asking, who is the citizen, and what is the meaning of the term? For here again there may be a difference of opinion. He who is a citizen in a democracy will often not be a citizen in an oligarchy. Leaving out of consideration those who have been made citizens, or who have obtained the name of citizen any other accidental manner, we may say, first, that a citizen is not a citizen because he lives in a certain place, for resident aliens and slaves share in the place; nor is he a citizen who has no legal right except that of suing and being sued; for this right may be enjoyed under the provisions of a treaty. But the citizen whom we are seeking to define is a citizen in the strictest sense, against whom no such exception can be taken, and his special characteristic is that he shares in the administration of justice, and in offices. He who has the power to take part in the deliberative or judicial administration of any state is said by us to be a citizens of that state; and, speaking generally, a state is a body of citizens sufficing for the purposes of life.

Like the sailor, the citizen is a member of a community. Now, sailors have different functions, for one of them is a rower, another a pilot, and a third a look-out man…Similarly, one citizen differs from another, but the salvation of the community is the common business of them all. This community is the constitution; the virtue of the citizen must therefore be relative to the constitution of which he is a member. A constitution is the arrangement of magistracies in a state, especially of the highest of all. The government is everywhere sovereign in the state, and the constitution is in fact the government. For example, in democracies the people are supreme, but in oligarchies, the few; and, therefore, we say that these two forms of government also are different: and so in other cases.

First, let us consider what is the purpose of a state, and how many forms of government there are by which human society is regulated. We have already said, in the first part of this treatise, when discussing household management and the rule of a master, that man is by nature a political animal. And therefore, men, even when they do not require one another’s help, desire to live together; not but that they are also brought together by their common interests in proportion as they severally attain to any measure of well-being. This is certainly the chief end, both of individuals and of states. And also for the sake of mere life (in which there is possibly some noble element so long as the evils of existence do not greatly overbalance the good) mankind meet together and maintain the political community….

The words constitution and government have the same meaning, and the government, which is the supreme authority in states, must be in the hands of one, or of a few, or of the many. The true forms of government, therefore, are those in which the one, or the few, or the many, govern with a view to the common interest; but governments which rule with a view to the private interest, whether of the one or of the few, or of the many, are perversions. Of forms of government in which one rules, we call that which regards the common interests, monarchy; that in which more than one, but not many, rule, aristocracy (and it is so called, either because the rulers are the best men, or because they have at heart the best interests of the state and of the citizens). But when the citizens at large administer the state for the common interest, the government is called a polity. And there is a reason for this use of language.

Of the above-mentioned forms, the perversions are as follows: of monarchy, tyranny; of aristocracy, oligarchy; of polity, democracy. For tyranny is a kind of monarchy which has in view the interest of the monarch only; oligarchy has in view the interest of the wealthy; democracy, of the needy: none of them the common good of all. Tyranny, as I was saying, is monarchy exercising the rule of a master over the political society; oligarchy is when men of property have the government in their hands; democracy, the opposite, when the indigent, and not the men of property, are the rulers….Then ought the good to rule and have supreme power? But in that case everybody else, being excluded from power, will be dishonored. For the offices of a state are posts of honor; and if one set of men always holds them, the rest must be deprived of them. Then will it be well that the one best man should rule? Nay, that is still more oligarchical, for the number of those who are dishonored is thereby increased….The discussion of the first question shows nothing so clearly as that laws, when good, should be supreme; and that the magistrate or magistrates should regulate those matters only on which the laws are unable to speak with precision owing to the difficulty of any general principle embracing all particulars.


Book VII

Now it is evident that the form of government is best in which every man, whoever he is, can act best and live happily….If we are right in our view, and happiness is assumed to be virtuous activity, the active life will be the best, both for every city collectively, and for individuals. In what remains the first point to be considered is what should be the conditions of the ideal or perfect state; for the perfect state cannot exist without a due supply of the means of life…In size and extent it should be such as may enable the inhabitants to live at once temperately and liberally in the enjoyment of leisure. And so states require property, but property, even though living beings are included in it, is no part of a state; for a state is not a community of living beings only, but a community of equals, aiming at the best life possible.

Let us then enumerate the functions of a state, and we shall easily elicit what we want: First, there must be food; secondly, arts, for life requires many instruments; thirdly, there must be arms, for the members of a community have need of them, and in their own hands, too, in order to maintain authority both against disobedient subjects and against external assailants; fourthly, there must be a certain amount of revenue, both for internal needs, and for the purposes of war; fifthly, or rather first, there must be a care of religion which is commonly called worship; sixthly, and most necessary of all there must be a power of deciding what is for the public interest, and what is just in men’s dealings with one another. These are the services which every state may be said to need. For a state is not a mere aggregate of persons, but a union of them sufficing for the purposes of life; and if any of these things be wanting, it is as we maintain impossible that the community can be absolutely self-sufficing. A state then should be framed with a view to the fulfillment of these functions. There must be farmers to procure food, and artisans, and a warlike and a wealthy class, and priests, and judges to decide what is necessary and expedient.

Now, since we are here speaking of the best form of government, i.e., that under which the state will be most happy (and happiness, as has been already said, cannot exist without virtue), it clearly follows that in the state which is best governed and possesses men who are just absolutely, and not merely relatively to the principle of the constitution, the citizens must not lead the life of mechanics or tradesmen, for such a life is ignoble, and inimical to virtue. Neither must they be farmers, since leisure is necessary both for the development of virtue and the performance of political duties. Again, there is in a state a class of warriors, and another of councilors, who advise about the expedient and determine matters of law, and these seem in an especial manner parts of a state. Now, should these two classes be distinguished, or are both functions to be assigned to the same persons? It remains therefore that both functions should be entrusted by the ideal constitution to the same persons, not, however, at the same time, but in the order prescribed by nature, who has given to young men strength and to older men wisdom. Besides, the ruling class should be the owners of property, for they are citizens, and the citizens of a state should be in good circumstances; whereas mechanics or any other class which is not a producer of virtue have no share in the state.

Since every political society is composed of rulers and subjects let us consider whether the relations of one to the other should interchange or be permanent. For the education of the citizens will necessarily vary with the answer given to this question. Now, if some men excelled others in the same degree in which gods and heroes are supposed to excel mankind in general, so that the superiority of the governors was undisputed and patent to their subjects, it would clearly be better that the one class should rule and the other serve. But since this is unattainable, and kings have no marked superiority over their subjects, such as Scylax affirms to be found among the Indians, it is obviously necessary on many grounds that all the citizens alike should take their turn of governing and being governed. Equality consists in the same treatment of similar persons, and no government can stand which is not founded upon justice….

We conclude that from one point of view governors and governed are identical, and from another different. And therefore their education must be the same and also different. For he who would learn to command well must, as men say, first of all learn to obey….Since the end of individuals and of states is the same, the end of the best man and of the best constitution must also be the same; it is therefore evident that there ought to exist in both of them the virtues of leisure; for peace, as has been often repeated, is the end of war, and leisure of toil. But leisure and cultivation may be promoted, not only by those virtues which are practiced in leisure, but also by some of those which are useful to business. For many necessaries of life have to be supplied before we can have leisure. Therefore a city must be temperate and brave, and able to endure: for truly, as the proverb says, “There is no leisure for slaves,” and those who cannot face danger like men are the slaves of any invader.

Since the legislator should begin by considering how the frames of the children whom he is rearing may be as good as possible, his first care will be about marriage—at what age should his citizens marry, and who are fit to marry? The union of male and female when too young is bad for the procreation of children; it also conduces to temperance not to marry too soon; for women who marry early are apt to be wanton; and in men too the bodily frame is stunted if they marry while the seed is growing (for there is a time when the growth of the seed, also, ceases, or continues to but a slight extent). Women should marry when they are about eighteen years of age, and men at seven and thirty; then they are in the prime of life, and the decline in the powers of both will coincide. The constitution of an athlete is not suited to the life of a citizen, or to health, or to the procreation of children, any more than the valetudinarian or exhausted constitution, but one which is in a mean between them. A man’s constitution should be inured to labor, but not to labor which is excessive or of one sort only, such as is practiced by athletes; he should be capable of all the actions of a freeman. These remarks apply equally to both parents. Women who are with child should be careful of themselves; they should take exercise and have a nourishing diet. Their minds, however, unlike their bodies, they ought to keep quiet, for the offspring derive their natures from their mothers as plants do from the earth. As to adultery, let it be held disgraceful, in general, for any man or woman to be found in any way unfaithful when they are married, and called husband and wife.

As to the exposure and rearing of children, let there be a law that no deformed child shall live, but that on the ground of an excess in the number of children, if the established customs of the state forbid this (for in our state population has a limit), no child is to be exposed, but when couples have children in excess, let abortion be procured before sense and life have begun. The Directors of Education, as they are termed, should be careful what tales or stories the children hear, for all such things are designed to prepare the way for the business of later life, and should be for the most part imitations of the occupations which they will hereafter pursue in earnest. Indeed, there is nothing which the legislator should be more careful to drive away than indecency of speech; for the light utterance of shameful words leads soon to shameful actions. The young especially should never be allowed to repeat or hear anything of the sort. And since we do not allow improper language, clearly we should also banish pictures or speeches from the stage which are indecent. Let the rulers take care that there be no image or picture representing unseemly actions, except in the temples of those Gods at whose festivals the law permits even ribaldry, and whom the law also permits to be worshiped by persons of mature age on behalf of themselves, their children, and their wives. And therefore youth should be kept strangers to all that is bad, and especially to things which suggest vice or hate.



The citizen should be molded to suit the form of government under which he lives. And since the whole city has one end, it is manifest that education should be one and the same for all, and that it should be public, and not private. Neither must we suppose that any one of the citizens belongs to himself, for they all belong to the state, and are each of them a part of the state, and the care of each part is inseparable from the care of the whole. The customary branches of education are in number four; they are—(1) reading and writing, (2) gymnastic exercises, (3) music, to which is sometimes added (4) drawing. Of these, reading and writing and drawing are regarded as useful for the purposes of life in a variety of ways, and gymnastic exercises are thought to infuse courage. Concerning music a doubt may be raised.—in our own day most men cultivate it for the sake of pleasure, but originally it was included in education, because nature herself, as has been often said, requires that we should be able, not only to work well, but to use leisure well; for, what ought we to do when at leisure? Clearly we ought not to be amusing ourselves, for then amusement would be the end of life. But if this is inconceivable, we should introduce amusements only at suitable times, and they should be our medicines, for the emotion which they create in the soul is a relaxation, and from the pleasure we obtain rest…..



Document #2Histories, Book VI[39]Polybius 

An Analysis of the Roman Government

THE THREE kinds of government, monarchy, aristocracy and democracy, were all found united in the commonwealth of Rome. And so even was the balance between them all, and so regular the administration that resulted from their union, that it was no easy thing to determine with assurance, whether the entire state was to be estimated an aristocracy, a democracy, or a monarchy. For if they turned their view upon the power of the consuls, the government appeared to be purely monarchical and regal. If, again, the authority of the senate was considered, it then seemed to wear the form of aristocracy. And, lastly, if regard was to be had to the share which the people possessed in the administration of affairs, it could then scarcely fail to be denominated a popular state. The several powers that were appropriated to each of these distinct branches of the constitution at the time of which we are speaking, and which, with very little variation, are even still preserved, are these which follow.

The consuls, when they remain in Rome, before they lead out the armies into the field, are the masters of all public affairs. For all other magistrates, the tribunes alone excepted, are subject to them, and bound to obey their commands. They introduce ambassadors into the senate. They propose also to the senate the subjects of debates; and direct all forms that are observed in making the decrees. Nor is it less a part of their office likewise, to attend to those affairs that are transacted by the people; to call together general assemblies; to report to them the resolutions of the senate; and to ratify whatever is determined by the greater number. In all the preparations that are made for war, as well as in the whole administration in the field, they possess an almost absolute authority. For to them it belongs to impose upon the allies whatever services they judge expedient; to appoint the military tribunes; to enroll the legions, and make the necessary levies, and to inflict punishments in the field, upon all that are subject to their command. Add to this, that they have the power likewise to expend whatever sums of money they may think convenient from the public treasury; being attended for that purpose by a quaestor; who is always ready to receive and execute their orders. When any one therefore, directs his view to this part of the constitution, it is very reasonable for him to conclude that this government is no other than a simple royalty. Let me only observe, that if in some of these particular points, or in those that will hereafter be mentioned, any change should be either now remarked, or should happen at some future time, such an alteration will not destroy the general principles of this discourse.

To the senate belongs, in the first place, the sole care and management of the public money. For all returns that are brought into the treasury, as well as all the payments that are issued from it, are directed by their orders. Nor is it allowed to the quaestors to apply any part of the revenue to particular occasions as they arise, without a decree of the senate; those sums alone excepted. which are expended in the service of the consuls. And even those more general, as well as greatest disbursements, which are employed at the return every five years, in building and repairing the public edifices, are assigned to the censors for that purpose, by the express permission of the senate. To the senate also is referred the cognizance of all the crimes, committed in any part of Italy, that demand a public examination and inquiry: such as treasons, conspiracies, poisonings, and assassinations. Add to this, that when any controversies arise, either between private men, or any of the cities of Italy, it is the part of the senate to adjust all disputes; to censure those that are deserving of blame: and to yield assistance to those who stand in need of protection and defense. When any embassies are sent out of Italy; either to reconcile contending states; to offer exhortations and advice; or even, as it sometimes happens, to impose commands; to propose conditions of a treaty; or to make a denunciation of war; the care and conduct of all these transactions is entrusted wholly to the senate. When any ambassadors also arrive in Rome, it is the senate likewise that determines how they shall be received and treated, and what answer shall be given to their demands.

In all these things that have now been mentioned, the people has no share. To those, therefore, who come to reside in Rome during the absence of the consuls, the government appears to be purely aristocratic. Many of the Greeks, especially, and of the foreign princes, are easily led into this persuasion: when they perceive that almost all the affairs, which they are forced to negotiate with the Romans, are determined by the senate.

And now it may well be asked, what part is left to the people in this government: since the senate, on the one hand, is vested with the sovereign power, in the several instances that have been enumerated, and more especially in all things that concern the management and disposal of the public treasure; and since the consuls, on the other hand, are entrusted with the absolute direction of the preparations that are made for war, and exercise an uncontrolled authority on the field. There is, however, a part still allotted to the people; and, indeed, the most important part. For, first, the people are the sole dispensers of rewards and punishments; which are the only bands by which states and kingdoms, and, in a word, all human societies, are held together. For when the difference between these is overlooked, or when they are distributed without due distinction, nothing but disorder can ensue. Nor is it possible, indeed, that the government should be maintained if the wicked stand in equal estimation with the good. The people, then, when any such offences demand such punishment, frequently condemn citizens to the payment of a fine: those especially who have been invested with the dignities of the state. To the people alone belongs the right to sentence any one to die. Upon this occasion they have a custom which deserves to be mentioned with applause. The person accused is allowed to withdraw himself in open view, and embrace a voluntary banishment, if only a single tribe remains that has not yet given judgment; and is suffered to retire in safety to Praeneste, Tibur, Naples, or any other of the confederate cities. The public magistrates are allotted also by the people to those who are esteemed worthy of them: and these are the noblest rewards that any government can bestow on virtue. To the people belongs the power of approving or rejecting laws and, which is still of greater importance, peace and war are likewise fixed by their deliberations. When any alliance is concluded, any war ended, or treaty made; to them the conditions are referred, and by them either annulled or ratified. And thus again, from a view of all these circumstances, it might with reason be imagined, that the people had engrossed the largest portion of the government, and that the state was plainly a democracy.

Such are the parts of the administration, which are distinctly assigned to each of the three forms of government, that are united in the commonwealth of Rome. It now remains to be considered, in what manner each several form is enabled to counteract the others, or to cooperate with them.

When the consuls, invested with the power that has been mentioned, lead the armies into the field, though they seem, indeed, to hold such absolute authority as is sufficient for all purposes, yet are they in truth so dependent both on the senate and the people, that without their assistance they are by no means able to accomplish any design. It is well known that armies demand a continual supply of necessities. But neither corn, nor habits, nor even the military stipends, can at any time be transmitted to the legions unless by an express order of the senate. Any opposition, therefore, or delay, on the part of this assembly, is sufficient always to defeat the enterprises of the generals. It is the senate, likewise, that either compels the consuls to leave their designs imperfect, or enables them to complete the projects which they have formed, by sending a successor into each of their several provinces, upon the expiration of the annual term, or by continuing them in the same command. The senate also has the power to aggrandize and amplify the victories that are gained, or, on the contrary, to depreciate and debase them. For that which is called among the Romans a triumph, in which a sensible representation of the actions of the generals is exposed in solemn procession to the view of all the citizens, can neither be exhibited with due pomp and splendor, nor, indeed, be in any other manner celebrated, unless the consent of the senate be first obtained, together with the sums that are requisite for the expense. Nor is it less necessary, on the other hand, that the consuls, howsoever far they may happen to be removed from Rome, should be careful to preserve the good affections of the people. For the people, as we have already mentioned, annuls or ratifies all treaties. But that which is of greatest moment is that the consuls, at the time of laying down their office are bound to submit their past administration to the judgment of the people. And thus these magistrates can at no time think themselves secure, if they neglect to gain the approbation both of the senate and the people.

In the same manner the senate also, though invested with so great authority, is bound to yield a certain attention to the people, and to act in concert with them in all affairs that are of great importance. With regard especially to those offences that are committed against the state, and which demand a capital punishment, no inquiry can be perfected, nor any judgment carried into execution, unless the people confirm what the senate has before decreed. Nor are the things which more immediately regard the senate itself less subject than the same control. For if a law should at any time be proposed to lessen the received authority of the senators, to detract from their honors and pre-eminence, or even deprive them of a part of their possessions, it belongs wholly to the people to establish or reject it. And even still more, the interposition of a single tribune is sufficient, not only to suspend the deliberations of the senate, but to prevent them also from holding any meeting or assembly. Now the peculiar office of the tribunes is to declare those sentiments that are most pleasing to the people: and principally to promote their interests and designs. And thus the senate, on account of all these reasons, is forced to cultivate the favor and gratify the inclinations of the people.

The people again, on their part, are held in dependence on the senate, both to the particular members, and to the general body. In every part of Italy there are works of various kinds, which are let to farm by the censors, such are the building or repairing of the public edifices, which are almost innumerable; the care of rivers, harbors, mines and lands; everything, in a word, that falls beneath the dominion of the Romans. In all these things the people are the undertakers: inasmuch as there are scarcely any to be found that are not in some way involved, either in the contracts, or in the management of the works. For some take the farms of the censors at a certain price; others become partners with the first. Some, again, engage themselves as sureties for the farmers; and others, in support also of these sureties, pledge their own fortunes to the state. Now, the supreme direction of all these affairs is placed wholly in the senate. The senate has the power to allot a longer time, to lighten the conditions of the agreement, in case that any accident has intervened, or even to release the contractors from their bargain, if the terms should be found impracticable. There are also many other circumstances in which those that are engaged in any of the public works may be either greatly injured or greatly benefited by the senate; since to this body, as we have already observed, all things that belong to these transactions are constantly referred. But there is still another advantage of much greater moment. For from this order, likewise, judges are selected, in almost every accusation of considerable weight, whether it be of a public or private nature. The people, therefore, being by these means held under due subjection and restraint, and doubtful of obtaining that protection, which they foresee that they may at some time want, are always cautious of exciting any opposition to the measures of the senate. Nor are they, on the other hand, less ready to pay obedience to the orders of the consuls; through the dread of that supreme authority, to which the citizens in general, as well as each particular man, are obnoxious in the field.

Thus, while each of these separate parts is enabled either to assist or obstruct the rest, the government, by the apt contexture of them all in the general frame, is so well secured against every accident, that it seems scarcely possible to invent a more perfect system. For when the dread of any common danger, that threatens from abroad, constrains all the orders of the state to unite together, and co-operate with joint assistance; such is the strength of the republic that as, on the one hand, no measures that are necessary are neglected, while all men fix their thoughts upon the present exigency; so neither is it possible, on the other hand, that their designs should at any time be frustrated through the want of due celerity, because all in general, as well as every citizen in particular, employ their utmost efforts to carry what has been determined into execution. Thus the government, by the very form and peculiar nature of its constitution, is equally enabled to resist all attacks, and to accomplish every purpose. And when again all apprehensions of foreign enemies are past, and the Romans being now settled in tranquility, and enjoying at their leisure all the fruits of victory, begin to yield to the seduction of ease and plenty, and, as it happens usually in such conjunctures, become haughty and ungovernable; then chiefly may we observe in what manner the same constitution likewise finds in itself a remedy against the impending danger. For whenever either of the separate parts of the republic attempts to exceed its proper limits, excites contention and dispute, and struggles to obtain a greater share of power, than that which is assigned to it by the laws, it is manifest, that since no one single part, as we have shown in this discourse, is in itself supreme or absolute, but that on the contrary, the powers which are assigned to each are still subject to reciprocal control, the part, which thus aspires, must soon be reduced again within its own just bounds, and not be suffered to insult or depress the rest. And thus the several orders, of which the state is framed, are forced always to maintain their due position: being partly counter-worked in their designs; and partly also restrained from making any attempt, by the dread of falling under that authority to which they are exposed.


Rome and Carthage Compared

The government of Carthage seems also to have been originally well contrived with regard to those general forms that have been mentioned. For there were kings in this government, together with a senate, which was vested with aristocratic authority. The people likewise enjoy the exercise of certain powers that were appropriated to them. In a word, the entire frame of the republic very much resembled those of Rome and Sparta. But at the time of the war of Hannibal the Carthaginian constitution was worse in its condition than the Roman. For as nature has assigned to everybody, every government, and every action, three successive periods; the first, of growth; the second, of perfection; and that which follows, of decay; and as the period of perfection is the time in which they severally display their greatest strength; from hence arose the difference that was then found between the two republics. For the government of Carthage, having reached the highest point of vigor and perfection much sooner than that of Rome, had now declined from it in the same proportion: whereas the Romans, at this very time, had just raised their constitution to the most flourishing and perfect state. The effect of this difference was, that among the Carthaginians the people possessed the greatest sway in all deliberations, but the senate among the Romans. And as, in the one republic, all measures were determined by the multitude; and, in the other, by the most eminent citizens; of so great force was this advantage in the conduct of affairs, that the Romans, though brought by repeated losses into the greatest danger, became, through the wisdom of their counsels, superior to the Carthaginians in the war.

If we descend to a more particular comparison, we shall find, that with respect to military science, for example, the Carthaginians, in the management and conduct of a naval war, are more skillful than the Romans. For the Carthaginians have derived this knowledge from their ancestors through a long course of ages; and are more exercised in maritime affairs than any other people. But the Romans, on the other hand, are far superior in all things that belong to the establishment and discipline of armies. For this discipline, which is regarded by them as the chief and constant object of their care, is utterly neglected by the Carthaginians; except only that they bestow some little attention upon their cavalry. The reason of this difference is, that the Carthaginians employ foreign mercenaries; and that on the contrary the Roman armies are composed of citizens, and of the people of the country. Now in this respect the government of Rome is greatly preferable to that of Carthage. For while the Carthaginians entrust the preservation of their liberty to the care of venal troops; the Romans place all their confidence in their own bravery, and in the assistance of their allies. From hence it happens, that the Romans, though at first defeated, are always able to renew the war; and that the Carthaginian armies never are repaired without great difficulty. Add to this, that the Romans, fighting for their country and their children, never suffer their ardor to be slackened; but persist with the same steady spirit till they become superior to their enemies. From hence it happens, likewise, that even in actions upon the sea, the Romans, though inferior to the Carthaginians, as we have already observed, in naval knowledge and experience, very frequently obtain success through the mere bravery of their forces. For though in all such contests a skill in maritime affairs must be allowed to be of the greatest use; yet, on the other hand, the valor of the troops that are engaged is no less effectual to draw the victory to their side.

Now the people of Italy are by nature superior to the Carthaginians and the Africans, both in bodily strength, and in courage. Add to this, that they have among them certain institutions by which the young men are greatly animated to perform acts of bravery. It will be sufficient to mention one of these, as a proof of the attention that is shown by the Roman government, to infuse such a spirit into the citizens as shall lead them to encounter every kind of danger for the sake of obtaining reputation in their country. When any illustrious person dies, he is carried in procession with the rest of the funeral pomp, to the rostra in the forum; sometimes placed conspicuous in an upright posture; and sometimes, though less frequently, reclined. And while the people are all standing round, his son, if he has left one of sufficient age, and who is then at Rome, or, if otherwise, some person of his kindred, ascends the rostra, and extols the virtues of the deceased, and the great deeds that were performed by him in his life. By this discourse, which recalls his past actions to remembrance, and places them in open view before all the multitude, not those alone who were sharers in his victories, but even the rest who bore no part in his exploits, are moved to such sympathy of sorrow, that the accident seems rather to be a public misfortune, than a private loss. He is then buried with the usual rites; and afterwards an image, which both in features and complexion expresses an exact resemblance of his face, is set up in the most conspicuous part of the house, enclosed in a shrine of wood. Upon solemn festivals, these images are uncovered, and adorned with the greatest care.

And when any other person of the same family dies, they are carried also in the funeral procession, with a body added to the bust, that the representation may be just, even with regard to size. They are dressed likewise in the habits that belong to the ranks which they severally filled when they were alive. If they were consuls or praetors, in a gown bordered with purple: if censors, in a purple robe: and if they triumphed, or obtained any similar honor, in a vest embroidered with gold. Thus appeared, they are drawn along in chariots preceded by the rods and axes, and other ensigns of their former dignity. And when they arrive at the forum, they are all seated upon chairs of ivory; and there exhibit the noblest objects that can be offered to youthful mind, warmed with the love of virtue and of glory. For who can behold without emotion the forms of so many illustrious men, thus living, as it were, and breathing together in his presence? Or what spectacle can be conceived more great and striking? The person also that is appointed to harangue, when he has exhausted all the praises of the deceased, turns his discourse to the rest, whose images are before him; and, beginning with the most ancient of them, recounts the fortunes and the exploits of every one in turn. By this method, which renews continually the remembrance of men celebrated for their virtue, the fame of every great and noble action become immortal. And the glory of those, by whose services their country has been benefited, is rendered familiar to the people, and delivered down to future times. But the chief advantage is, that by the hope of obtaining this honorable fame, which is reserved for virtue, the young men are animated to sustain all danger, in the cause of the common safety. For from hence it has happened, that many among the Romans have voluntarily engaged in single combat, in order to decide the fortune of an entire war. Many also have devoted themselves to inevitable death; some of them in battle, to save the lives of other citizens; and some in time of peace to rescue the whole state from destruction. Others again, who have been invested with the highest dignities have, in defiance of all law and customs, condemned their own sons to die; showing greater regard to the advantage of their country, than to the bonds of nature, and the closest ties of kindred.

Very frequent are the examples of this kind, that are recorded in the Roman story. I shall here mention one, as a signal instance, and proof of the truth of all that I have affirmed. Horatius, surnamed Cocles, being engaged in combat with two enemies, at the farthest extremity of the bridge that led into Rome across the Tiber, and perceiving that many others were advancing fast to their assistance, was apprehensive that they would force their way together into the city. turning himself, therefore, to his companions that were behind him, he called to them aloud, that should immediately retire and break the bridge. While they were employed in this work, Horatius, covered over with wounds, still maintained the post, and stopped the progress of the enemy; who were struck with his firmness and intrepid courage, even more than with the strength of his resistance. And when the bridge was broken, and the city secured from insult, he threw himself into the river with his armor, and there lost his life as he had designed: having preferred the safety of his country, and the future fame that was sure to follow such an action, to his own present existence, and to the time that remained for him to live. Such is the spirit, and such the emulation of achieving glorious action, which the Roman institutions are fitted to infuse into the minds of youth.

In things that regard the acquisition of wealth, the manners also, and the customs of the Romans, are greatly preferable to those of the Carthaginians. Among the latter, nothing is reputed infamous, that is joined with gain. But among the former, nothing is held more base than to be corrupted by gifts, or to covet an increase of wealth by means that are unjust. For as much as they esteem the possession of honest riches to be fair and honorable, so much, on the other hand, all those that are amassed by unlawful arts, are viewed by them with horror and reproach. The truth of this fact is clearly seen in the following instance. Among the Carthaginians, money is openly employed to obtain the dignities of the state: but all such proceeding is a capital crime in Rome. As the rewards, therefore, that are proposed to virtue in the two republics are so different, it cannot but happen, that the attention of the citizens to form their minds to virtuous actions must be also different.

But among all the useful institutions, that demonstrate the superior excellence of the Roman government, the most considerable perhaps is the opinion which the people are taught to hold concerning the gods: and that, which other men regard as an object of disgrace, appears in my judgment to be the very thing by which this republic chiefly is sustained. I mean, superstition: which is impressed with all it terrors; and influences both the private actions of the citizens, and the public administration also of the state, in a degree that can scarcely be exceeded. This may appear astonishing to many. To me it is evident, that this contrivance was at first adopted for the sake of the multitude. For if it were possible that a state could be composed of wise men only, there would be no need, perhaps, of any such invention. But as the people universally are fickle and inconstant, filled with irregular desires, too precipitate in their passions, and prone to violence; there is no way left to restrain them, but by the dread of things unseen, and by the pageantry of terrifying fiction. The ancients, therefore, acted not absurdly, nor without good reason, when they inculcated the notions concerning the gods, and the belief of infernal punishments; but much more those of the present age are to be charged with rashness and absurdity, in endeavoring to extirpate these opinions. For, not to mention effects that flow from such an institution, if, among the Greeks, for example, a single talent only be entrusted to those who have the management of any of the public money; though they give ten written sureties, with as many seals and twice as many witnesses, they are unable to discharge the trusts reposed in them with integrity. But the Romans, on the other hand, who in the course of their magistracies, and in embassies, disperse the greatest sums, are prevailed on by the single obligation of an oath to perform their duties with inviolable honesty. And as, in other states, a man is rarely found whose hands are pure from public robbery; so, among the Romans, it is no less rare to discover one that is tainted with this crime. But all things are subject to decay and change. This is a truth so evident, and so demonstrated by the perpetual and the necessary force of nature, that it needs no other proof.

Now there are two ways by which every kind of government is destroyed; either by some accident that happens from without, or some evil that arises within itself. What the first will be is not always easy to foresee: but the latter is certain and determinate. We have already shown what are the original and what: the secondary forms of government; and in what manner also they are reciprocally converted each into the other. Whoever, therefore, is able to connect the beginning with the end in this enquiry, will be able also to declare with some assurance what will be the future fortune of the Roman government. At least in my judgment nothing is more easy. For when a state, after having passed with safety through many and great dangers, arrives at the highest degree of power, and possesses an entire and undisputed sovereignty; it is manifest that the long continuance of prosperity must give birth to costly and luxurious manners, and that the minds of men will be heated with ambitious contest, and become too eager and aspiring in the pursuit of dignities. And as these evils are continually increased, the desire of power and rule, and the imagined ignominy of remaining in a subject state, will first begin to work the ruin of the republic; arrogance and luxury will afterwards advance it: and in the end the change will be completed by the people; as the avarice of some is found to injure and oppress them, and the ambition of others swells their vanity and poisons them with flattering hopes. For then, being with rage, and following only the dictates of their passions, they no longer will submit to any control, or be contented with an equal share of the administration, in conjunction with their rulers; but will draw to themselves the entire sovereignty and supreme direction of all affairs. When this is done, the government will assume indeed the fairest of all names, that of a free and popular state; but will, in truth, be the greatest of all evils, the government of the multitude.

As we have thus sufficiently explained the constitution and the growth of the Roman government; have marked the causes of that greatness in which it now subsists; and shown by comparison, in what view it may be judged inferior, and in what superior, to other states; we shall here close this discourse. But as every skillful artist offers some piece of work to public view, as a proof of his abilities: in the same manner we also, taking some part of history that is connected with the times from which we were led into this digression and making a short recital of one single action, shall endeavor to demonstrate by fact as well as words what was the strength, and how great the vigor, which at that time were displayed by this republic.

When Hannibal, after the battle of Cannae, had taken prisoners eight thousand of the Romans, who were left to guard the camp; he permitted them to send a deputation to Rome, to treat of their ransom and redemption. Ten persons, the most illustrious that were among them, were appointed for this purpose: and the general, having first commanded them to swear that they would return to him again, suffered them to depart. But one of the number, as soon as they had passed the entrenchment, having said that he had forgotten something, went back into camp, took what he had left, and then continued his journey with the rest; persuading himself that by his return he had discharged his promise, and satisfied the obligation of the oath. When they arrived at Rome, they earnestly entreated the senate not to envy them the safety that was offered, but to suffer them to be restored to their families, at the price of three minae for each prisoner, which was the sum that Hannibal demanded; that they were not unworthy of this favor; that they neither had through cowardice deserted their post in battle, nor done anything that had brought dishonor upon the Roman name; but that having been left to guard the camp, they had been thrown by unavoidable necessity, after the destruction of the rest of the army, into the power of the enemy.

The Romans were at this time weakened by repeated losses; were deserted by almost every one of their allies; and seemed even to expect that Rome itself would instantly be attacked; yet when they had heard the deputies, they neither were deterred by adverse fortune from attending to what was fit and right, nor neglected any of those measures that were necessary to the public safety. But perceiving that the design of Hannibal in this proceeding was both to acquire a large supply of money and at the same time to check the ardor of his enemies in battle, by opening to their view the means of safety, even though they should be conquered, they were so far from yielding to this request, that they showed no regard either to the distressed condition of their fellow citizens, or to the services that might be expected from the prisoners: but resolved to disappoint the hopes and frustrate the intentions of this general, by rejecting all terms of ransom. They made a law also, by which it was declared that the soldiers that were left must either conquer or must die; and that no other hope of safety was reserved for them, in case that they were conquered. After this determination they dismissed the nine deputies, who, on account of their oath were, willing to return, and taking the other, who had endeavored to elude by sophistry what he had sworn, they sent him bound back to the enemy; so that Hannibal was much less filled with joy from having vanquished the Romans in the field, than he was struck with terror and astonishment at the firmness and magnanimity what appeared in their deliberations.



Primary Source Documents Set #6: Early Christianity

Essay Question:

Consider the correspondence of Pliny & Emperor Trajan, Tertullian, and Eusebius. Why did Romans persecute the early Christians, and was that persecution justifiable?




Document #1The Letters of Pliny and Emperor Trajan[40]Pliny the Younger & Emperor TrajanTranslated by William Melmoth 


IT is my invariable rule, Sir, to refer to you in all matters where I feel doubtful; for who is more capable of removing my scruples, or informing my ignorance?

Having never been present at any trials concerning those who profess Christianity, I am unacquainted not only with the nature of their crimes, or the measure of their punishment, but how far it is proper to enter into an examination concerning them. Whether, therefore, any difference is usually made with respect to ages, or no distinction is to be observed between the young and the adult; whether repentance entitles them to a pardon; or if a man has been once a Christian, it avails nothing to desist from his error; whether the very profession of Christianity, unattended with any criminal act, or only the crimes themselves inherent in the profession are punishable; on all these points I am in great doubt.

In the meanwhile, the method I have observed towards those who have been brought before me as Christians is this: I asked them whether they were Christians; if they admitted it, I repeated the question twice, and threatened them with punishment; if they persisted, I ordered them to be at once punished: for I was persuaded, whatever the nature of their opinions might be, a contumacious and inflexible obstinacy certainly deserved correction. There were others also brought before me possessed with the same infatuation, but being Roman citizens, I directed them to be sent to Rome.

But this crime spreading (as is usually the case) while it was actually under prosecution, several instances of the same nature occurred. An anonymous information was laid before me containing a charge against several persons, who upon examination denied they were Christians, or had ever been so. They repeated after me an invocation to the gods, and offered religious rites with wine and incense before your statue (which for that purpose I had ordered to be brought, together with those of the gods), and even reviled the name of Christ: whereas there is no forcing, it is said, those who are really Christians into any of these compliances: I thought it proper, therefore, to discharge them. Some among those who were accused by a witness in person at first confessed themselves Christians, but immediately after denied it; the rest owned indeed that they had been of that number formerly, but had now (some above three, others more, and a few above twenty years ago) renounced that error. They all worshipped your statue and the images of the gods, uttering imprecations at the same time against the name of Christ.

They affirmed the whole of their guilt, or their error, was, that they met on a stated day before it was light, and addressed a form of prayer to Christ, as to a divinity, binding themselves by a solemn oath, not for the purposes of any wicked design, but never to commit any fraud, theft, or adultery, never to falsify their word, nor deny a trust when they should be called upon to deliver it up; after which it was their custom to separate, and then reassemble, to eat in common a harmless meal. From this custom, however, they desisted after the publication of my edict, by which, according to your commands, I forbade the meeting of any assemblies. After receiving this account, I judged it so much the more necessary to endeavor to extort the real truth, by putting two female slaves to the torture, who were said to officiate in their religious rites: but all I could discover was evidence of an absurd and extravagant superstition.

I deemed it expedient, therefore, to adjourn all further proceedings, in order to consult you. For it appears to be a matter highly deserving your consideration, more especially as great numbers must be involved in the danger of these prosecutions, which have already extended, and are still likely to extend, to persons of all ranks and ages, and even of both sexes. In fact, this contagious superstition is not confined to the cities only, but has spread its infection among the neighbouring villages and country. Nevertheless, it still seems possible to restrain its progress. The temples, at least, which were once almost deserted, begin now to be frequented; and the sacred rites, after a long intermission, are again revived; while there is a general demand for the victims, which till lately found very few purchasers. From all this it is easy to conjecture what numbers might be reclaimed if a general pardon were granted to those who shall repent of their error.



You have adopted the right course, my dearest Secundis, in investigating the charges against the Christians who were brought before you. It is not possible to lay down any general rule for all such cases. Do not go out of your way to look for them. If indeed they should be brought before you, and the crime is proved, they must be punished; with the restriction, however, that where the party denies he is a Christian, and shall make it evident that he is not, by invoking our gods, let him (notwithstanding any former suspicion) be pardoned upon his repentance. Anonymous information ought not to be received in any sort of prosecution. It is introducing a very dangerous precedent, and is quite foreign to the spirit of our age.



Document #2Apologia[41]TertullianTranslated by S. Thelwall If, again, it is certain that we are the most wicked of men, why do you treat us so differently from our fellows, that is, from other criminals, it being only fair that the same crime should get the same treatment? When the charges made against us are made against others, they are permitted to make use both of their own lips and of hired [advocates to plead] their innocence. They have full opportunity of answer and debate; in fact, it is against the law to condemn anybody undefended and unheard. Christians alone are forbidden to say anything in exculpation of themselves, in defence of the truth, to help the judge to a righteous decision; all that is cared about is having what the public hatred demands— the confession of the name [“Christian”], not examination of the charge: while in your ordinary judicial investigations, on a man’s confession of the crime of murder, or sacrilege, or incest, or treason, to take the points of which we are accused, you are not content to proceed at once to sentence—you do not take that step till you thoroughly examine the circumstances of the confession— what is the real character of the deed, how often, where, in what way, when he has done it, who were privy to it, and who actually took part with him in it. Nothing like this is done in our case, though the falsehoods disseminated about us ought to have the same sifting, that it might be found how many murdered children each of us had tasted; how many incests each of us had shrouded in darkness; what cooks, what dogs had been witness of our deeds. Oh, how great the glory of the ruler who should bring to light some Christian who had devoured a hundred infants!But, instead of that, we find that even inquiry in regard to our case is forbidden. For the younger Pliny, when he was ruler of a province, having condemned some Christians to death, and driven some from their steadfastness, being still annoyed by their great numbers, at last sought the advice of Trajan, the reigning emperor, as to what he was to do with the rest, explaining to his master that, except an obstinate disinclination to offer sacrifices, he found in the religious services nothing but meetings at early morning for singing hymns to Christ and God, and sealing home their way of life by a united pledge to be faithful to their religion, forbidding murder, adultery, dishonesty, and other crimes. Upon this Trajan wrote back that Christians were by no means to be sought after; but if they were brought before him, they should be punished. O miserable deliverance—under the necessities of the case, a self-contradiction! It forbids them to be sought after as innocent, and it commands them to be punished as guilty. It is at once merciful and cruel; it passes by, and it punishes. Why do you play a game of evasion upon yourself, O Judgment? If you condemn, why do you not also inquire. If you do not inquire, why do you not also absolve? Military stations are distributed through all the provinces for tracking robbers. Against traitors and public foes every man is a soldier; search is made even for their confederates and accessories. The Christian alone must not be sought, though he may be brought and accused before the judge; as if a search had any other end than that in view! And so you condemn the man for whom nobody wished a search to be made when he is presented to you, and who even now does not deserve punishment, I suppose, because of his guilt, but because, though forbidden to be sought, he was found…I am a Christian, the man cries out. He tells you what he is; you wish to hear from him what he is not. Occupying your place of authority to extort the truth, you do your utmost to get lies from us. I am, he says, that which you ask me if I am. Why do you torture me to sin? I confess, and you put me to the rack. What would you do if I denied? Certainly you give no ready credence to others when they deny. When we deny, you believe at once. Seeing, then, that in everything you deal differently with us than with other criminals, bent upon the one object of taking from us our name (indeed, it is ours no more if we do what Christians never do), it is made perfectly clear that there is no crime of any kind in the case, but merely a name…And so, having made these remarks as it were by way of preface, that I might show in its true colours the injustice of the public hatred against us, I shall now take my stand on the plea of our blamelessness… Monsters of wickedness, we are accused of observing a holy rite in which we kill a little child and then eat it; in which, after the feast, we practise incest, the dogs— our pimps, forsooth, overturning the lights and getting us the shamelessness of darkness for our impious lusts.[42] This is what is constantly laid to our charge, and yet you take no pains to elicit the truth of what we have been so long accused. Either bring, then, the matter to the light of day if you believe it, or give it no credit as having never inquired into it. On the ground of your double dealing, we are entitled to lay it down to you that there is no reality in the thing which you dare not [investigate]…”You do not worship the gods,” you say; “and you do not offer sacrifices for the emperors.” Well, we do not offer sacrifice for others, for the same reason that we do not for ourselves—namely, that your gods are not at all the objects of our worship. So we are accused of sacrilege and treason. This is the chief ground of charge against us…We do not worship your gods, because we know that there are no such beings. This, therefore, is what you should do: you should call on us to demonstrate their non-existence, and thereby prove that they have no claim to adoration; for only if your gods were truly so, would there be any obligation to render divine homage to them…


Document #3Ecclesiastical History[43]EusebiusTranslated by C. F. Cruse Book V

When the storm had incessantly raged against us into the sixth year,[44] there had been before this a vast number of confessors of true religion in what is called the Porphyry quarry [near Thebes, Egypt]. Of these, one hundred, wanting three, men, women, and young infants, were sent to the governor of Palestine, who, for confessing the supreme God and Christ, had the ankles and sinews of their left legs seared off with a red hot iron. Besides this they had their right eyes first cut out, together with the lids and pupils, and then seared with red hot iron, so as to destroy the eye to the very roots. All this was done by the order of Firmilianus…in obedience to the imperial command. After this he committed them to the mines in Palestine, to drag out a miserable existence in constant toil and oppressive labour.

Nor was it enough, that those who endured such miseries were deprived of their eyes, but those natives of Palestine, also, whom we have already mentioned, as condemned to pugilistic combats,[45] as they neither would suffer themselves to be supported from the imperial treasury, nor undergo the exercises preparatory to the combat, hence they were now brought, not only before the governors, but before Maximinus[46] himself, where, displaying the noblest firmness in their confessions, by enduring hunger and stripes, they suffered finally the same that the former did, with the addition of other confessors from the same city. Immediately after these, others were seized, who had assembled in the city of Gaza to hear the Holy Scriptures read, some of whom suffered the same mutilations in their eyes and feet; others were obliged to endure still greater sufferings, by having their sides furrowed and scraped in the most dreadful manner. Of these, one who was a female in sex, but a man in reason, not enduring the threat of violation, and having used a certain expression against the tyrant, for committing the government to such cruel judges, she was first scourged, then raised on high on the rack, was lacerated and galled in the sides. But as those who were appointed for this incessantly and vehemently applied the tortures according to the orders of the judge, another woman, who, like the former, had contemplated a life of perpetual virginity, though ordinary in bodily form, and common in appearance, yet possessing a mind otherwise firm, and an understanding superior to her sex, was unable to bear the merciless, cruel, and inhuman scene before her, and with a courage exceeding all the far-famed combatants among the Greeks for their liberty, she exclaimed against the judge, from the midst of the crowd, “And how long, then, will you thus cruelly torture my sister?” He, the more bitterly incensed by this ordered the woman immediately to be seized. She was then dragged into the midst, and after she had called herself by the august name of our Saviour, attempts were first made to bring her over to sacrifice by persuasion. But when she refused, she was dragged to the altar by force, But her sister remaining the same, and still adhering to her purpose, with a resolute, intrepid step, she kicked the altar, and overturned all on it, together with the fire, Upon this, the judge, exasperated, like a savage beast, applied tortures beyond all that he had done before, all but glutting himself with her very flesh, by the wounds and lacerations of her body. But when his madness was gratified to satiety, he bound her and the former, whom she called sister, together, and condemned them to the flames. The former of these was said to be of Gaza, but the other, Valentina by name, was a native of Caesarea, and well known to many.

Book X

But thanks be to God, the omnipotent and universal Sovereign, thanks also to the Saviour and Redeemer of our souls, Jesus Christ, through whom we pray that peace will be preserved to us at all times, firm and unshaken by any temporal molestation from without, and troubles from the mind within. Attended with your prayers, O most holy Paulinus,[47] whilst we superadd this tenth book to the preceding ones of our ecclesiastical history, we shall dedicate this to you, announcing you as the seal of the whole work. Justly, indeed, shall we here subjoin in a perfect number, a complete discourse and panegyric on the renovation of the churches yielding to the Spirit of God, inviting us in the following manner: “Sing to the Lord a new song, because he hath done wonderful works. His right hand hath saved him, and his holy right arm. The Lord hath made known his salvation, his righteousness hath he openly showed in the sight of the heathen.”[48] Thus, then, as the Scriptures enjoin upon us to sing a new song, we shall accordingly show that after those dreadful and gloomy spectacles and events, we have been privileged to see such things, and to celebrate such things as many of the really pious and martyrs of God before us ardently craved to see, and did not see them, and to hear, and did not hear them. But they, indeed, hastening on their course, obtained “what was far better,” being transferred to the heavens themselves, and to the paradise of celestial pleasures. But we freely acknowledging this state of things in our day as better than what we could expect, have been beyond measure astonished at the magnitude of the grace manifested by the author of our mercies, and justly do we admire and adore him with all the powers of our mind, and bear witness to the truth of those declarations recorded, where it is said, “Come hither and behold the works of God, the wonders that he hath done upon the earth; he removeth wars until the ends of the earth, he breaketh the bow and snappeth the spear asunder, and burneth the shields in fire.”[49] Rejoicing in these things fulfilled in our day, we shall pursue the tenor of our history.

All the race of the enemies of God were destroyed in the manner we have stated, and were thus suddenly swept away from the sight of men, as the divine word again declares: “I saw the wicked lifted up and exalted like the cedars of Lebanon, and I passed by, and lo, he was not; and I sought, and his place was not found.”[50] And now a bright and splendid day, with no overshadowing cloud, irradiated the churches in the whole world with its celestial light; neither was there any indisposition, even on the part of those who were strangers to our faith, to enjoy with as the same blessings, or of sharing at least in the overflowings of these as they were provided from God.

All men, then, were liberated from the oppression of the tyrant, and those who had been delivered from the miseries previously existing, acknowledged, one in one way, and another in another, that the only true God was the protector of the pious, To us especially, all whose hopes are suspended on the Christ of God, there was an incessant joy, and there sprung up for all a certain celestial gladness, seeing every place, which but a short time before had been desolated by the impieties of the tyrants, reviving again, and recovering as from a long and deadly distemper, temples again rising from the soil to a lofty height, and receiving a splendour far exceeding those that had been formerly destroyed. Moreover, those who held the supreme power, confirmed the privileges granted us by the divine beneficence to a still wider and greater extent by their constant decrees in favour of the Christians, and epistles of the emperor were issued, addressed to the bishops, with honours and superadded donations of monies. Of which it may not be singular to insert extracts in the proper place in this book, as in a certain sacred tablet, as we have translated them from the Latin into the Greek language, that they may remain recorded for those that come after us…

To him, therefore, the Supreme God granted from heaven above the fruits of his piety, the trophies of victory over the wicked, and that nefarious tyrant,[51] with all his counsellors and adherents, he cast prostrate at the feet of Constantine. For when he proceeded to the extremes of madness in his movements, the divinely favoured emperor regarded him as no more to be tolerated, but taking his prudent measures and mingling the firm principles of justice with his humanity, he determines to come to the protection of those who were so miserably oppressed by the tyrant; and in this, by banishing smaller pests, he thus advanced to save vast multitudes of the human race. For as he had exercised only his humanity, in commiserating him the time before this, a man who was by no means deserving of compassion, it proved of no avail to him, who would not renounce his iniquity, but rather increased his madness against the people his subjects. But to the oppressed there was no hope of salvation left, in the cruelties they endured from the savage beast. Wherefore, also, Constantine, the protector of the good, combining his hatred of wickedness with the love of goodness, went forth with his son Crispus, the most benevolent Caesar, to extend a saving arm to all those that were perishing. Both, therefore, the father and son, having as it were God the universal King, and his Son our Saviour, as their leader and aid, drawing up the army on all sides against the enemies of God, bore away an easy victory; all things being prospered to them by God in the conflict according to their wishes. Suddenly then, and sooner than said, those that but yesterday breathed threats and destruction, were no more, not even leaving the memory of their name. Their paintings, (their effigies,) their honours received the deserved contempt and disgrace, and those very scenes which Licinius had seen occurring to the iniquitous tyrants, these same he experienced himself. As he would neither receive instruction, nor grow wise by the chastisements of his neighbours, he proceeded in the same course of impiety, and was justly hurled down the same precipice with them. He, therefore, lay prostrated in this way.

But the mighty and victorious Constantine, adorned with every virtue of religion, with his most pious son, Crispus Caesar, resembling in all things his father, recovered the east as his own, and thus restored the Roman empire to its ancient state of one united body; extending their peaceful sway around the world, from the rising sun to the opposite regions, to the north and the south, even to the last borders of the declining day. All fear, therefore, of those who had previously afflicted them was now wholly removed. They celebrated splendid and festive days with joy and hilarity. All things were filled with light, and all who before were sunk in sorrow, beheld each other with smiling and cheerful faces. With choirs and hymns, in the cities and villages, at the same time they celebrated and extolled first of all God the universal King, because they thus were taught, then they also celebrated the praises of the pious emperor, and with him all his divinely-favoured children. There was a perfect oblivion of past evils, and past wickedness was buried in forgetfulness. There was nothing but enjoyment of the present blessings, and expectation of those yet to come. Edicts were published and issued by the victorious emperor, full of clemency, and laws were enacted indicative of munificence and genuine religion.

Thus, then, after all the tyranny had been purged away, the empire was justly reserved, firm and without a rival, to Constantine and his sons. Who first sweeping away that enmity to God, exhibited by the former rulers, sensible of the mercies conferred upon them by God, exhibited also their own love of religion and God, with their piety and gratitude to Him, by those works and operations which they presented to the view of all the world.



Primary Source Documents Set #7: Islam

Essay Question:

Jihad has the broader meaning of “struggle” or “striving” as well as the more widely known usage of “Holy War.” What various interpretations of jihad are expressed in these documents? Under what circumstances is violence justified and when is it not?



Document #1The Gardens of the Righteous[52]Abu Zakaria Mohiuddin Yahya Ibn Sharaf al-NawawiTranslated by Aisha Bewley Chapter 31: On Putting Things Right Between People

Allah Almighty says,

“There is no good in much of their secret talk, except in the case of those who enjoin sadaqa, or what is right, or putting things right between people,” (W4:113; H4:114)

“Reconciliation is better.” (W4:127l H4:128)

“So have [pious awareness] of Allah and put things right between you,” (8:1)

“The believers are brothers, so make peace between your brothers.” (49:10)


  1. Abu Hurayra reported that the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, “There is sadaqa [charity] owed by every joint people have every day on which the sun rises. Putting things right between two people is sadaqa. Helping a man with his mount and helping him up onto it or lifting up his baggage onto it is sadaqa. A good word is sadaqa. Every step you take to the prayer is sadaqa. Removing an obstruction from the road is sadaqa…”
  2. Umm Kulthum bint ‘Uqba ibn Abi Mu’ayt said, “I heard the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, say, ‘Someone who puts things right between people and promotes good or says good cannot be called a liar…'”

It adds in the variant of Muslim, she said, “I did not hear him make an allowance regarding anything that people said except for three things: war, putting things right between people, and a man speaking to his wife and a wife speaking to her husband…”


Chapter 32:On the Excellence of the Weak, Poor and Obscure Muslims

Allah Almighty says,

“Restrain yourself with those who call on their Lord morning and evening, seeking His Face, and let not thine eyes pass beyond them.” (18:28)


  1. Haritha ibn Wahb said, “I heard the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, say, “Shall I inform you about the people of the Garden? All who are weak and thought to be weak. If they were to take an oath by Allah, Allah would carry it out. Shall I tell you about the people of the Fire? All those who are coarse, domineering, and arrogant…'”
  2. Usama reported that the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, “I stood at the entrance to the Garden and most of the people who entered it were the poor whereas the people of wealth were held back. The people of the Fire were ordered to the Fire, and I stood at the entrance to the Fire and most of those who entered it were women…”


Chapter 33: Kindness to Orphans, Girls, the Weak, the Very Poor, and the Downtrodden

Allah Almighty says,

“And take the believers under your wing,” (15:88)

“Restrain yourself patiently with those who call on their Lord morning and evening, desiring His Face. Do not turn your eyes from them.” (18:28)

“So as for the orphans, do not oppress them, and as for beggars, do not berate them,” (93:9-10)

“Have you seen him who denies the Judgment? He is the one who harshly rebuffs the orphan and does not urge the feeding of the poor.” (107:1-3)…

  1. Abu Hurayra reported that the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, “‘Someone who strives on behalf of widows and the poor is like someone who fights in the way of Allah.’ I think that he also said, ‘And like someone who continually stands at night in prayer and like someone who continually fasts…'” 267. Anas reported that the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, “I and anyone who brings up two girls until they come of age will be like these two on the Day of Rising,” and he put his fingers together…            269. ‘A’isha said, “A poor woman came carrying two of her daughters and I gave her three dates. She gave each of them a date and lifted the other date to her mouth to eat it and then her daughters asked to eat it, so she divided between them the date which she was going to eat. I was astonished at what she did and I mentioned what she had done to the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace. He said, ‘Allah has made the Garden mandatory for her because of it – or freed her from the Fire because of it.'”            270. Abu Shurayh Khuwaylid ibn ‘Amr al-Khuza’i said, “The Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, ‘O Allah! I consider it a wrong action that the rights of two weak ones be violated: orphans and women.” Chapter 35: On the Rights of a Husband [Concerning] His WifeAllah Almighty says, “Men have charge of women because Allah has preferred the one above the other and because they spend their wealth on them. Right-acting women are obedient, safeguarding their husband’s interests in his absence as Allah has guarded them.” (4:34)…            283. Ibn ‘Umar reported that the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, “All of you are shepherds. Each of you is responsible for his flock. An amir is a shepherd. A man is a shepherd in respect of his family. The woman is a shepherd in respect of her husband’s house and children. All of you are shepherds and each of you is responsible for his flock…”284. Abu ‘Ali Talq ibn ‘Ali reported that the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, “When a man calls his wife to attend to his need, she should come to him, even if she is at the oven…”            286. Umm Salama reported that the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, “Any woman who dies at a time when her husband is pleased with her will enter the Garden.””287. Mu’adh ibn Jabal reported is that the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, “A woman does not injure her husband in this world without his wife among the houris[53] saying, ‘Do not injure him, may Allah fight you! He is a guest with you who is about to leave you for us.” 288. Usama ibn Zayd reported that the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, “I have not left after me any temptation more harmful to men than women.” Chapter 234: The Excellence of Jihad            Allah Almighty says, “But fight the idolaters totally just as they fight you totally, and know that Allah is with the god-fearing,” (9:36)…”Allah has bought from the believers their selves and their wealth in return for them having the Garden. They fight in the way of Allah, and they kill and are killed. It is a promise binding on Him in the Torah, the Injil[54] and the Qur’an and who is truer to his contract than Allah? Rejoice then in the bargain you have made. That is the great victory.” (9:111)… “O you who believe! Shall I direct you to a transaction which will save you from a painful punishment? That you believe in Allah and His Messenger and do jihad in the Way of Allah with your wealth and yourselves. That is better for you if you only knew. He will forgive you your wrong actions and admit you into Gardens with rivers flowing under them, and fine dwellings in the Gardens of Eden. That is the Great Victory. And other things you love: support from Allah and imminent victory. Give good news to the believers!” (61:10-13)                        1288. Anas reported that the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, “A morning spent in the way of Allah or an evening is better than this world and everything it contains…”            1290. Sahl ibn Sa’d reported that the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, “Manning the frontier (ribat) for one day in the way of Allah is better than this world and everything in it. The place in the Garden of one of your whips is better than this world and everything in it. Any evening or a morning when a slave goes out in the way of Allah Almighty is better than this world and everything in it…”            1292. Fadala ibn ‘Ubayd reported that the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, “The actions of every dead person are sealed except for the murabit[55] in the way of Allah. His actions will go on increasing until the Day of Rising. and he will be safe from the trials of the grave.” 1293. ‘Uthman said, “I heard the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, say, “Fighting on the front line (ribat) in the way of Allah is better than a thousand years doing anything else…”1302. Abu Bakr ibn Abi Musa al-Ash’ari said, “I heard my father say when he was in the presence of the enemy, ‘The Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, “The gates of the Garden are under the shadow of the swords.”‘ A man of ragged appearance stood up and said, ‘Abu Musa, did you really hear the Messenger of Allah say this?’ He said, ‘Yes.’ He returned to his companions and said, ‘I give the greeting to you.’ Then he broke his sword’s scabbard, threw it away and walked with his sword towards the enemy, striking with it until he was killed.” 1303. Abu ‘Abs ‘Abdu’r-Rahman ibn Jabr stated that the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, “The Fire will not touch anyone whose feet become dusty in the way of Allah…”1322. Anas reported that the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, “Anyone who sincerely seeks martyrdom will be given the reward of it, even if he is not wounded.” 1323. Abu Hurayra reported that the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, “Martyrs only experience the blow which kills them as one of you might experience the prick of a sting…”1340. Abu Umama reported that the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, “If anyone fasts a day in the way of Allah, Allah will put a ditch between him and the Fire whose width is the same as the space between heaven and earth.”1341. Abu Hurayra reported that the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, “Anyone who dies without going on an expedition and without having thought of himself as going on an expedition has died with a characteristic of hypocrisy…”1345. Abu Umama reported that a man said, “Messenger of Allah, give me permission to travel.” The Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, “Travel of my community is jihad in the way of Allah, the Mighty and Exalted…” 1349. Anas reported that the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, “Fight against the idolaters with your wealth, selves and tongues…”


Document #2“On Jihad”[56]Abu Muhammad Abdullah ibn Abi Zayd al-QayrawaniTranslated by Aisha Bewley Linguistically jihad is derived from jahd, which, according to al-Misbah, is effort in what someone does, or juhd which is ability. It is a technical term for the Muslim fighting the unbelievers who have no treaty with the intention of elevating the word of Allah azza wa jall or presenting Islam.Jihad has obligations which must be met. They are:Obeying the ruler and so when he recommends going in a particular direction to fight, it is binding to go there.Ghulul (misappropriation) must be abandoned: it means to take from the booty before it is divided.He must honor a safe-conduct pledge, and so when an unbeliever is granted safe-conduct, he must abide by it and he is not permitted after that to deem it lawful to kill him.One must not flee when the odds are two to one: which means standing firm in the fray.Jihad has two categories; individual obligation and general obligation. When it becomes a specific duty to do it and it cannot be opposed, whether if the person is one of those who are responsible for the obligation of jihad or not, like the slave and child who cannot fight and women, as when the enemy arrives suddenly in the place and only these people are available, then it is an individual obligation for them…Jihad is an obligation which can be taken on by some of the people on behalf of others. By the words of the Almighty: “Those believers who stay behind – other than those forced by necessity – are not the same as those who do jihad in the way of Allah.” (Holy Qur’an 4:95)…And it is preferable, according to us, that the enemy are not fought until they have been invited to [accept Islam] except if they attack first. The Malikis prefer that each group be called upon to abandon their disbelief and be called to the shahadah[57] whose contents are not prescribed. He calls to the general message of the Holy Prophet… for three days in succession unless they attack first. Then the call is not recommended. Indeed, it becomes obligatory to fight them…They can either accept Islam or pay the jizya (tax on non-Muslims); if not they are to be fought. His apparent words mean that they are given a choice between the two at the same time. If they accept one, they are left. Otherwise they are fought. Al-Jawhar describes the call as Islam being offered to them. If they answer, they are left. If they refuse, then jizya is offered to them, If they refuse, they are fought. All ofthat is when there is a delay and there is time. If they attack before the call, preventing our call, they are fought because then the call is unlawful…Jizya is only acceptable in places where they are subject to our law. If they are a long way from our jurisdiction jizya can only be accepted from them if they move to our territory. If they do not do this they are to be fought… Fleeing from the enemy is a major wrong action when their number is twice that of the Muslims or less. This is when the unbelievers are twice that of the Muslims in strength or stronger, or the business is not known. It is the well-known position when they are considered weak according to the number, not the force, as opposed to Shaikh ibn al-Majishun… He says that they must be established as more than twice the number if they are superior to the unbelievers in weapons and stronger in strength and resolve. The prohibition against flight is when he flees and does not intend to return. If he does that as a trick or to join another group so that the enemy sees the retreat and follows him and he returns or he rejoins the amir or the group of the Muslims to help them, then it is not unlawful…There is no harm in killing an enemy prisoner but you may not kill anyone after a pledge of security has been given, nor may you break a treaty. When there is benefit in killing him. After security is given by the Imam or someone else in the well-known position, contrary to the one who says that security given by other than the Imam is dependent on the view of the Imam. The basis of the well-known position is the words of the Holy Prophet… about a banner being set up for the treacherous on the Day of Rising, when it will be said, “This is the betrayal of so-and-so.” It means that he will be known as treacherous on the Day of Rising so that the people there will censure him. Nor is a treaty to be broken.Nor may you kill women and children. Since that prohibition is sound from the Holy Prophet… Similarly jizya is not imposed on them. The Imam can give them choice between three: enslavement, freedom and ransom.Killing monks and priests should be avoided unless they are involved in the fighting. Similarly, women who fight can also be killed… Priests (rabbis) are left unless they actually fight. It is said that this refers to women and children as well. Women can be killed if they are involved in the actual fighting. Abdullah ibn ‘Umar (radhi‟Allahu anhu) limits this to the state of fighting. When fighting is over, women are not killed. The predominant opinion is that when women fight with weapons, they can be killed during the fighting or afterwards, even if they did not fight anyone. According to the Mukhtasar, monks and nuns retain their freedom, and it is forbidden either to kill them or to reduce them to slavery.A pledge of security given by the least of the Muslims is binding on the rest… This security is granted to specific people, i.e. specific unbelievers. The people of a region or town are not granted security except by the ruler. If someone else makes such a contract, the ruler can break it if he wishes. We read in al-Jawahir, “The precondition of the security is that there is no harm in it for the Muslims. If someone grants security to a spy or scout or one who contains harm, it is not binding.”This also applies when women do this, and also children provided they are able to understand what is involved. It is also said that this is only acceptable if the man in charge says it is acceptable, i.e. if the child knows that it is unlawful to violate security, then he is obliged to observe it.When the Muslims gain booty by having fought and won it, their leader takes one fifth and divides the remaining four-fifths between those doing the fighting. It is better for this dividing up to take place where the battle was fought… A share of the booty is only given to those who take part in the fighting or who are prevented from doing so by being occupied with the jihad in some other way. An active presence is meant, whether fighting or being present to face the enemy. When the rows are formed and fighting has not begun, there is no share for someone who dies then, but there is a share for the one who dies after the fighting stops. Also those who are prevented by things like scouting or bringing equipment or the like receive a share. There is a share for the one who gets lost from the army in enemy territory… Slaves do not get a share nor do women nor do children, unless the children are really able to fight, have been given permission by the Imam, and do actually participate in the fighting in which they are given a share… The hadith quoted by Shaikh ibn Wahb… related that the Holy Prophet…did not give a share to slaves, women or children…You cannot go on jihad without the permission of your parents. If they are both Muslims according to Shaikh ibn al-Qasim… and with Shaikh Sahnun… in general whether they are Muslims or unbelievers… If there is a sudden attack on the people of a certain town, then the people of the town have to defend it. It is obligatory for the onewith a father or without, slave or free…


Document #3The Distinguished Jurist’s Primer[58]Abū l-Walīd Muḥammad bin ʾAḥmad bin Rušd (Averroes)Translated by Imran Ahsan Khan Nyazee Ch.1, Section 1: Identification of the Hukm[59] of This ActivityWith respect to the hukm of this activity, the jurists agreed unanimously that it is a collective and not a universal obligation, except for Abd Allah Ibn al- Hasan who said it is voluntary. The majority of the jurists adopted this view because of the words of the Exalted, “Warfare is ordained for you, though it is hateful unto you, but it may happen that ye hate a thing which is good for you, and it may happen that ye love a thing which is bad for you, Allah knoweth, ye know not.”[60] Its imposition as a communal obligation, that is, when some undertake it the rest are absolved of it, is based upon the words of the Exalted, “And the believers should not all go out to fight. Of every troop of them, a party only should go forth, that they (who are left behind) may gain sound knowledge in religion, and that they may warn their folk when they return, sothat they may beware,[61] and on His words, “Unto each Allah hath promised good, but he hath bestowed on those who strive a great reward above the sedentary.”[62] Further, the Prophet (God’s peace and blessings be upon him) never went out to battle unless he had left some of the people behind. Taken together all these (evidences) imply that this activity constitutes a collective obligation. The activity is obligatory on men, who are free, have attained puberty, who find the means (at their disposal) for going to war, are of sound health, and are neither ill nor suffer from a chronic disease. There is no dispute about this because of the words of the Exalted, “There is no blame for the blind, nor is there blame for the lame, nor is there blame for the sick,”[63] and His words, “Not unto the weak nor unto the sick nor those who can find naught to spend is any fault (to be imputed though they stay at home).”[64] With respect to the obligation being restricted to free men, I know of no disagreement. The jurists in general agreed that a condition for this obligation is the permission of parents, except when it becomes a universal obligation; for example, when there are not enough people to carry out the obligation unless all (present) undertake it. The basis for this is the established tradition which relates that “a person said to the Messenger of Allah (God’s peace and blessings be upon him), ‘I wish to participate in the jihad.’ He asked, ‘Are your parents alive?’ The man said, ‘Yes.’ He said, ‘Then struggle in their cause…'”  Ch. 1, Section 2: Identification of the Persons to Be Fought             The jurists agreed, with respect to the people who are to be fought, that they are all of the polytheists (muskrikun), because of the words of the Exalted, “And fight them until persecution is no more, and religion is all for Allah,”[65] except what is narrated from Malik, who said it is not permitted to commencehostilities against the Ethiopians, nor against the Turks, because of the reportfrom the Prophet (God’s peace and blessings be upon him), “Leave the Ethiopians in peace as long as they leave you alone.” Malik was questioned about the authenticity of this tradition. He did not acknowledge it, but said, “People continue to avoid an attack on them.” Ch. 1, Section 3: Identification of the Harm Permitted to Be Inflicted upon the Enemy             Harm allowed to be inflicted upon the enemy can be to property, life, or personal liberty,that is enslavement and ownership. Harm that amounts to enslavement is permitted by way of consensus for all categories of the polytheists, I mean, their men and women, old and young, and the common people and the elite with the exception of monks. One group of juristsmaintained that they (the monks) are to be left alone and not to be captured; in fact, they are to be left unharmed and not to be enslaved because of the saying of the Messenger of Allah (God’s peace and blessings be upon him), “Leave them and that to which they have devoted themselves,” and also because of the practice of Abu Bakr.             The majority of the jurists maintained that the imam has different types of choices regarding the prisoners of war including their pardon, enslavement, execution, demand for ransom, and the imposition of jizya (poll tax) on them. A group of jurists maintained that it is not permitted to execute the prisoners. Al-Hasan ibn Muhammad al-Tamimi has related that there is a consensusof the Companions on this.            The reason for their disagreement stems from the conflict of the apparent meanings of the verses in this context, the conflict of the acts (of the Prophet), and the conflict of the apparent meaning of the Quranic text with the acts of the Prophet (God’s peace and blessings be upon him). This is because the apparent meaning of the words of the Exalted, “Now when ye meet inbattle those who disbelieve, then it is smiting of the necks until, when ye have routed them,”[66] is that after taking prisoners the imam can only pardon or take ransom. (This conflicts with) the words of the Exalted, “It is not for any Prophet to have captives until he hath made slaughter in the land,”[67] and with the occasion of the revelation that indicates through the (case of the) prisoners of the battle of Badr that execution is better than enslavement. The Prophet (God’s peace and blessings be upon him), however, executed the prisoners on some occasions, pardoned them (on others), and enslaved women.            Abu Ubayd has related that he never enslaved free male Arabs. The Companions, after him, agreed upon the permissibility of enslavement of the People of the Book, both male and female.             Those who maintained that the verse, which is specific about the matter of captives (prohibiting execution), has abrogated the acts of the Prophet, said that the captive is not to be executed. Those who maintained that the verse neither mentions captives nor is its purpose the final disposal of the question of what is to be done to the captives, and that the act of the Prophet (God’s peace and blessings be upon him) is an addition to what is in the verse, when they take into account the censure of the failure to execute the captives said that the execution of the captives is permitted.             Execution is permitted in cases where the guaranty of safe conduct (aman) is not available. There is no disagreement among Muslims on this; however, they differ as to who can grant safe conduct and who cannot. They agreed on the permissibility of safe conduct granted by the imam. The majority of the jurists permitted safe conduct granted by free Muslim males, except that Ibn al-Majishun was of the view that it is contingent upon the consent of the imam. They disagreed about the safe conduct granted by a slave or a woman. The majority permitted this while Ibn al-Majishun and Sahnun used to say that safe conduct granted by a woman is contingent upon the consent of the imam. Abu Hanifa said that safe conduct granted by a slave is not permitted, unless he participates in fighting…            Whatever the nature of the aman it is not effective (in affording protection) against enslavement, but only against execution. It is possible for us to relate this disagreement to their dispute about the words used for the masculine plural, whether they include women, that isin accordance with legal usage.             The harm aimed at life is by killing, and there is no disagreement among the Muslim jurists that it is permitted in war to slay the male polytheists, who have attained puberty and are waging war. There is, however, disagreement about execution after captivity, as we have already discussed. Similarly, there is no dispute among them that it is not permitted to slay minors or women, as long as they are not waging war. If a woman fights the shedding of her blood becomes permissible. This was established as “the Prophet (God’s peace and blessings be upon him) prohibited the killing of women and children, and saidwhen he saw a slain woman, ‘She was not one who would have engaged in fighting.'”             They disagreed about the case of hermits cut off from the world, the blind, the chronically ill, the old who cannot fight, the idiot, and the peasants and serfs. Malik said neither the blind nor idiots nor hermits are to be slain, and enough of their wealth is to be left to them by which they may survive.Similarly, the old and decrepit are not to be slain, in his view, and this was also the view of Abu Hanifa and his disciples. Al-Thawri and al-Awza’i said that only the old are to be spared. Al-Awza’i added that the peasants are not to be slain either. According to al-Shafi’i’s most authentic opinion, all of these categories (of people) are to be put to death. The basis for their disagreement stems from the conflict of the specificity in some traditions with the general implication of (some verses of) the Qur’an, and also the generality of the authentic saying of the Prophet (God’s peace and blessings be upon him), “I have been commanded to fight mankind until they say, ‘There is no God but Allah.'” The words of the Exalted, “Then, when the sacred months have passed, slay the idolaters wherever ye find them,”[68] imply the slaying ofevery nonbeliever whether or not he is a monk, and so does the saying of the prophet (God’s peace and blessings be upon him), “I have been commanded to fight mankind until they say, ‘There is no God but Allah.'”            The traditions laid down about the sparing of all these categories include the traditions related by Dawud Ibn al-Husayn from ‘Ikrimah from Ibn ‘Abbas “that the Prophet (God’s peace and blessings be upon him) used to say while sending out his armies, ‘Do not kill hermits.’” There is also the tradition related from Anas Ibn Malik from the Prophet (God’s peace and blessings be upon him), “Do not slay the old and decrepit nor young children nor women, and do not purloin [the booty]”. It is recorded by Abu Dawud. There is also among these the tradition related by Malik from Abu Bakr that he said, “You will come across a people who will claim that they have devoted themselves to Allah, so leave them and that to which they have devoted themselves,” and it includes the words, “Never kill women, children, and the old weakened with age”.             It appears that the chief source of disagreement in this issue springs from the apparent conflict between the words of the Exalted, “Fight in the way of Allah against those who fight you, but begin not hostilities. Lo, Allah loveth not aggressors,”[69] and His words, “Then when the sacred months have passed, slay the idolaters wherever ye find them.”[70] Those who held that the latter verse has abrogated the (meaning of the) words “Fight in the way of Allah those who fight you,”[71] as fighting is prescribed primarily against those who fight, said that the latter verse stands unrestricted upon its generality. On the other hand, those who maintained that the former verse is the governing verse, and that it includes all categories not involved in fighting, exempted it from the generality of the latter (in other words restricted the latter to those who do or can provide hostility, thus excluding children, old and decrepit etc.).Al-Shafi’i argued on the basis of the tradition of Samura that the Prophet (God’s peace and blessings be upon him) said, “Kill the old among the polytheists and keep alive their young”. It appears that theeffective underlying cause for slaying, in his view, is kufr (disbelief). It is necessary then that this causebe applied to all the non-believers.             Those who maintained that the peasants are not to be slain argued on the basis of what isrelated from Zayd Ibn Wahb, who said, “We received a letter from ‘Umar, may Allah be pleased with him, saying, ‘Do not misappropriate (the spoils), do not be perfidious, do not kill infants, and fear Allah in the case of the peasants.'” A prohibition has been laid down in the tradition of RabahIbn Rabi about the slaying of non-believing serfs, that “he went out with the Messenger of Allah (God’s peace and blessings be upon him) for a battle which he fought and he (Rabah) and the Companions of the Messenger of Allah passed by a slain woman. The Messenger of Allah stopped near her and then said, ‘She was not the one to be engaged in fighting’. He then turned to face the group and said to one of them: ‘Hurry and go to Khalid Ibn al-Walid (and convey to him) that he must not slay infants, serfs or women.'”            The reason leading to their disagreement, on the whole, arises from their dispute about the effective underlying cause of slaying. Thus, those who maintained that the effective underlying cause for this is disbelief (kufi), did not exempt anyone out of the polytheists, while those who maintained that the underlying cause in it is the ability to fight, there being a prohibition about the killing of women though they be non-believers, exempted those who do not have the ability .to wage war, or those who have not affiliated themselves with it, like the peasants and the serfs…            The majority of the jurists agreed about the permissibility of attacking fortresses by means of mangonels, irrespective of women or children being in them, because of the report that the Prophet (God’s peace and blessings be upon him), positioned mangonels against the people of Ta’if. If there are Muslim captives and Muslim children in the fortress then, according to a group, mangonels should not be used, and that is the opinion of al-Awza’i. Al-Layth permitted this. The reliance of those who do not permit this is on the words of the Exalted, “If they (the believers and the disbelievers) had been clearly separated, We verily had punished those of them who disbelieved withpainful punishment.”[72] It appears that those who permitted this relied on jurisprudential interest (maslahak).             This, then, is the extent of harm that is allowed to be inflicted upon their life and liberty…


Primary Source Documents Set #8: East Asian Society

Essay Question:

Taking into consideration the prevailing influence of Confucianism, compare the roles and places of women in Chinese &Japanese society as reflected in the treatise by Ban Zhao, the Poem of Mulan, the Pillow Book, and the Tale of Genji.

Document #1“The Tale of Mulan”70 


“Say, maiden at your spinning wheel,Why heave that deep-drawn sigh?Is’t fear, perchance, or love you feel?              Pray tell—oh, tell me why!” “Nor fear nor love has moved my soul—        Away such idle thought!          A warrior’s glory is the goalBy my ambition sought. “My father’s cherished life to save,My country to redeem,            The dangers of the field I’ll brave:I am not what I seem.  “No son has he his troop to lead,No brother dear have I;So I must mount my father’s steed,And to the battle hie.” At dawn of day she quits her door,At evening rests her headWhere loud the mountain torrents roarAnd mail-clad soldiers tread.
The northern plains are gained at last,The mountains sink from view;The sun shines cold, and the wintry blastIt pierces through and through. A thousand foes around her fall,And red blood stains the ground;But Mulan, who survives it all,Returns with glory crowned. Before the throne they bend the kneeIn the palace of Chang’an,Full many a knight of high degree,But the bravest is Mulan. “Nay, prince,” she cries, “my duty’s done,No guerdon I desire;But let me to my home begone,To cheer my aged sire.” She nears the door of her father’s home,A chief with trumpet’s blare;But when she doffs her waving plume,She stands a maiden fair.



Document #2Lessons for a Woman[74]Ban ZhaoTranslated by Nancy Lee Swann I, the unworthy writer, am unsophisticated, unenlightened, and by nature unintelligent, but I am fortunate both to have received not a little favor from my scholarly Father, and to have had a cultured mother and instructresses upon whom to rely for a literary education as well as for training in good manners. More than forty years have passed since at the age of fourteen I took up the dustpan and the broom in the Cao family [the family into which she married]. During this time with trembling heart I feared constantly that I might disgrace my parents, and that I might multiply difficulties for both the women and the men of my husband’s family. Day and night I was distressed in heart, but I labored without confessing weariness. Now and hereafter, however, I know how to escape from such fears.Being careless, and by nature stupid, I taught and trained my children without system. Consequently I fear that my son Gu may bring disgrace upon the Imperial Dynasty by whose Holy Grace he has unprecedentedly received the extraordinary privilege of wearing the Gold and the Purple, a privilege for the attainment of which by my son, I a humble subject never even hoped. Nevertheless, now that he is a man and able to plan his own life, I need not again have concern for him. But I do grieve that you, my daughters, just now at the age for marriage, have not at this time had gradual training and advice; that you still have not learned the proper customs for married women. l fear that by failure in good manners in other families you will humiliate both your ancestors and your clan. I am now seriously ill, life is uncertain. As I have thought of you all in so untrained a state, I have been uneasy many a time for you. At hours of leisure I have composed… these instructions under the title, “Lessons for Women.” In order that you may have something wherewith to benefit your persons, I wish every one of you, my daughters each to write out a copy for yourself.From this time on every one of you strive to practice these lessons. HUMILITYOn the third day after the birth of a girl the ancients observed three customs: first to place the baby below the bed; second to give her a potsherd [a piece of broken pottery] with which to play; and third to announce her birth to her ancestors by an offering. Now to lay the baby below the bed plainly indicated that she is lowly and weak, and should regard it as her primary duty to humble herself before others. To give her potsherds with which to play indubitably signified that she should practice labor and consider it her primary duty to be industrious. To announce her birth before her ancestors clearly meant that she ought to esteem as her primary duty the continuation of the observance of worship in the home.These three ancient customs epitomize woman’s ordinary way of life and the teachings of the traditional ceremonial rites and regulations. Let a woman modestly yield to others; 1et her respect others; let her put others first, herself last. Should she do something good, let her not mention it; should she do something bad let her not deny it. Let her bear disgrace; let her even endure when others speak or do evil to her. Always let her seem to tremble and to fear. When a woman follows such maxims as these then she may be said to humble herself before others.Let a woman retire late to bed, but rise early to duties; let her nor dread tasks by day or by night. Let her not refuse to perform domestic duties whether easy or difficult. That which must be done, let her finish completely, tidily, and systematically, When a woman follows such rules as these, then she may be said to be industrious.Let a woman be correct in manner and upright in character in order to serve her husband. Let her live in purity and quietness of spirit, and attend to her own affairs. Let her love not gossip and silly laughter. Let her cleanse and purify and arrange in order the wine and the food for the offerings to the ancestors. When a woman observes such principles as these, then she may be said to continue ancestral worship.No woman who observes these three fundamentals of life has ever had a bad reputation or has fallen into disgrace. If a woman fails to observe them, how can her name be honored; how can she but bring disgrace upon herself? HUSBAND AND WIFEThe Way of husband and wife is intimately connected with Yin and Yang [these are the two basis elements of the Universe: Yin, the soft yielding feminine element, and Yang the hard aggressive male element. Every substance contains both elements in varying proportions]. and relates the individual to gods and ancestors. Truly it is the great principle of Heaven and Earth, and the great basis of human relationships. Therefore the “Rites” [The Classic of Rites] honor union of man and woman; and in the “Book of Poetry” [The Classic of Odes] the “First Ode” manifests the principle of marriage. For these reasons the relationships cannot but be an important one.If a husband be unworthy, then he possesses nothing by which to control his wife. If a wife be unworthy, then she possesses nothing with which to serve her husband. IF a husband does not control his wife, then the rules of conduct manifesting his authority are abandoned and broken. If a wife does not serve her husband, when the proper relationship between men and women and the natural order of things are neglected and destroyed. As a matter of fact the purpose of these two [the controlling of women by men, and the serving of men by women] is the same.Now examine the gentlemen of the present age. They only know their wives must be controlled, and that the husband’s rules of conduct manifesting his authority must be established. They therefore teach their boys to read books and study histories. But they do not in the least understand that husbands and masters must also be served, and that the proper relationship and the rites should be maintained. Yet only to teach men and not to teach women — is that not ignoring the essential relation between them? According to the “Rites,” it is the rule to begin to teach children to read at the age of eight years, and by the age of fifteen years they ought then to be ready for cultural training. Only why should it not be that girls’ education as well as boys’ be according to this principle? RESPECT AND CAUTIONAs Yin and Yang are not of the same nature, so man and woman have different characteristics. The distinctive quality of the Yang is rigidity; the function of the Yin is yielding. Man is honored for strength; a woman is beautiful on account of her gentleness. Hence there arose the common saying: “A man though born like a wolf may, it is feared, become a weak monstrosity; a woman though born like a mouse may, it is feared, become a tiger.”Now For self-culture nothing equals respect for others. To counteract firmness nothing equals compliance. Consequently it can be said that the Way of respect and acquiescence is woman’s most important principle of conduct. So respect may be defined as nothing other than holding on to that which is permanent; and acquiescence nothing other than being liberal and generous. Those who are steadfast in devotion know that they should stay in their proper places; those who are liberal and generous esteem others, and honor and serve chem.If husband and wife have the habit of staying together, never leaving one another, and following each other around within the limited space of their own rooms, then they will lust after and take liberties with one another. From such action improper language will arise between the two This kind of discussion may lead co licentiousness. But of licentiousness will be born a heart of disrespect to the husband. Such a result comes From not knowing that one should stay in one’s proper place.Furthermore, affairs may be either crooked or straight; words may be either right or wrong. Straightforwardness cannot but lead to quarreling; crookedness cannot but lead to accusation. If there are really accusations and quarrels, then undoubtedly there will be angry affairs. Such a result comes from not esteeming others, and not honoring and serving them.If wives suppress not contempt for husbands, then it follows that such wives rebuke and scold their husbands. If husbands stop not short of anger, then they are certain to beat their wives. The correct relationship between husband and wife is based upon harmony and intimacy, and conjugal love is grounded in proper union. Should actual blows be dealt, how could matrimonial relationship be preserved? Should sharp words be spoken, how could conjugal love exist? If love and proper relationship both be destroyed, then husband and wife are divided. WOMANLY QUALIFICATIONSA woman ought to have four qualifications: (1) womanly virtue; (2) womanly words; (3) womanly bearing; and (4) womanly work. Now what is called womanly virtue need not be brilliant ability, exceptionally different from others. Womanly words need be neither clever in debate nor keen in conversation. Womanly appearance requires neither a pretty nor a perfect face and form. Womanly work need not be work done more skillfully than that of others.To guard carefully her chastity; to control circumspectly her behavior; in every motion to exhibit modesty; and to model each act on the best usage, this is womanly virtue.To choose her words with care; to avoid vulgar language; to speak at appropriate times; and nor to weary others with much conversation, may be called the characteristics of womanly words.To wash and scrub filth away; to keep clothes and ornaments fresh and clean; to wash the head and bathe the body regularly, and to keep the person free from disgraceful filth, may be called the characteristics of womanly bearing.With whole-hearted devotion to sew and to weave; to love not gossip and silly laughter; in cleanliness and order to prepare the wine and food for serving guests, may be called the characteristics of womanly work.These four qualifications characterize the greatest virtue of a woman. No woman can afford to be without them. In fact they are very easy to possess if a woman only treasure them in her heart. The ancients had a saying: “Is love afar off? If I desire love, then love is at hand!” So can it be said of these qualifications. IMPLICIT OBEDIENCEWhenever the mother-in-law says, “Do not do that,” and if what she says is right, unquestionably the daughter-in-law obeys. Whenever the mother-in-law says, “Do that,” even if what she says is wrong, still the daughter-in-law submits unfailingly to the command. Let a woman not act contrary to the wishes and the opinions of parents-in-law about right and wrong; let her not dispute with them what is straight and what is crooked. Such docility may called obedience which sacrifices personal opinion. Therefore the ancient book, “A Pattern for Women,” says: “If a daughter-in-law who follows the wishes of her parents-in-law is like and echo and shadow, how could she not be praised? 


Document #3The Pillow Book[75]Sei ShōnagonTranslated by Ivan Morris Especially Delightful Is the First Day            Especially delightful is the first day of the First Month, when the mists so often shroud the sky. Everyone pays great attention to his appearance and dresses with the utmost care. What a pleasure it is to see them all offer their congratulations to the Emperor and celebrate their own new year!            I also enjoy the seventh day…This is the day when members of the nobility who live outside the palace arrive in their magnificently decorated carriages to admire the blue horses.  As the carriages are drawn over the ground-beam of the Central Gate, there is always a tremendous bump, and the heads of the women passengers are knocked together; the combs fall out of their hair and may be smashed to pieces if the owners are not careful.   I enjoy the way everyone laughs when this happens…            The fifteenth day is the festival of the full-moon gruel when a bowl of gruel is presented to His Majesty. On this day all the women of the house carry gruel-stick, which they hide carefully from each other. It is most amusing to see them walking about, as they await an opportunity to hit their companions. Each one is careful not to be struck herself and is constantly looking over her shoulder to make sure that no one is stealing up on her. Yet the precautions are useless, for before long one of the women manages to score a hit. She is extremely pleased with herself and laughs merrily. Everyone finds this delightful—except, of course, the victim, who looks very put out…            In a certain household a young gentleman had been married during the previous year to one of the girls in the family. Having spent the night with her, he was now, on the morning of the fifteenth, about to set off for the Palace. There was a woman in the house who was in the habit of lording it over everyone. On this occasion she was standing in the back room, impatiently awaiting an opportunity to hit the man with her gruel-stick as he left. One of the other women realized what she had in mind and burst out laughing. The woman with the stick signaled excitedly that she should be quiet. Fortunately the young man did not notice what was afoot and he stood there unconcernedly.             ‘I have to pick up something over there,’ said the woman with the stick, approaching the man. Suddenly she darted forward, gave him a great whack, and made her escape. Everyone in the room burst out laughing; even the young man smiled pleasantly, not in the least annoyed. He was not too startled; but he did blush a little, which was charming.             Sometimes when the women are hitting each other the men also join in the fun. The strange thing is that, when a woman is hit, she often gets angry and bursts into tears; then she will upbraid her assailant and say the most awful things about him—most amusing. Even in the Palace, where the atmosphere is usually so solemn, everything is in confusion on this day, and no one stands on ceremony.            It is fascinating to see what happens during the period of appointments… candidates of the Fourth and Fifth Ranks come to the Palace with their official requests. Those who are still young and merry seem full of confidence. For the candidates who are old and white-haired things do not go so smoothly. Such men have to apply for help from people with influence at Court; some of them even visit ladies-in-waiting in their quarters and go to great lengths in pointing out their own merits. If young women happen to be present, they are greatly amused. As soon as the candidates have left, they mimic and deride them—something that the old men cannot possibly suspect as they scurry from one part of the Palace to another, begging everyone, ‘Please present my petition favourably to the Emperor’ and “pray inform her Majesty about me.’ It is not so bad if they finally succeed, but it really is rather pathetic when all their efforts prove in vain… When I Make Myself Imagine            When I make myself imagine what it is like to be one of those women who live at home, faithfully serving their husbands—women who have not a single exciting prospect in life yet who believe that they are perfectly happy—I am filled with scorn. Often they are of quite good birth, yet have had no opportunity to find out what the world is like. I wish they could live for a while in our society, even if it should mean taking service as Attendants, so that they might come to know the delights it has to offer.            I cannot bear men who believe that women serving in the Palace are bound to be frivolous and wicked. Yet I suppose their prejudice is understandable. After all, women at Court do not spend their time hiding modestly behind fans and screens, but walk about, looking openly at people they chance to meet. Yes, they see everyone face to face, not only ladies-in-waiting like themselves but even Their Imperial Majesties (whose august names I hardly dare mention), High Court Nobles, senior courtiers, and other gentlemen of high rank. In the presence of such exalted personages the women in the Palace are all equally brazen. Small wonder that the young men regard them as immodest! Yet are the gentlemen themselves any less so? They are not exactly bashful when it comes to looking at the great people in the Palace. No, everyone at Court is much the same in this respect.Women who have served in the palace, but who later get married and live at home, are called Madam and receive the most respectful treatment. To be sure, people often consider that these women, who have displayed their faces to all and sundry during their years at Court, are lacking in feminine grace. How proud they must be, nevertheless, when they are styled Assistant Attendants, or summoned to the Palace for occasional duty, or ordered to serve as Imperial envoys during the Kamo Festival! Even those who stay at home lose nothing by having served at Court. In fact they make very good wives. For example, if they are married to a provincial governor and their daughter is chosen to take part in the Gosechi dances, they do not have to disgrace themselves by acting like provincials and asking other people about procedure. They themselves are well versed in the formalities, which is just as it should be… Hateful Things            One is in a hurry to leave, but one’s visitor keeps chattering away. If it is someone of no importance, one can get rid of him by saying, “You must tell me all about it next time”; but, should it be the sort of visitor whose presence commands one’s best behaviour, the situation is hateful indeed…            A man who has nothing in particular to recommend him discusses all sorts of subjects at random as though he knew everything…            I hate the sight of men in their cups who shout, poke their fingers in their mouths, stroke their beards, and pass on the wine to their neighbours with cries of “Have some more! Drink up!” They tremble, shake their heads, twist their faces, and gesticulate like children who are singing, “We’re off to see the governor.” I have seen really well-bred people behave like this and I find it most distasteful.            To envy others and complain about one’s own lot; to speak badly about people; to be inquisitive about the most trivial matters and to resent and abuse people for not telling one, or, if one does manage to worm out some facts, to inform everyone in the most detailed fashion as if one had known all from the beginning—oh, how hateful!            One is just about to be told some interesting piece of news when a baby starts crying…            An admirer has come on a clandestine visit, but a dog catches sight of him and starts barking. One feels like killing the beast.            One has been foolish enough to invite a man to spend the night in an unsuitable place—and then he starts snoring.            A gentleman has visited one secretly. Though he is wearing a tall, lacquered hat, he nevertheless wants no one to see him. He is so flurried, in fact, that on leaving he bangs into something with his hat. Most hateful! It is annoying too when he lifts up the Iyo blind that hangs at the entrance of the room, then lets it fall with a great rattle. If it is a head-blind, things are still worse, for being more solid it makes a terrible noise when it is dropped. There is no excuse for such carelessness. Even a head-blind does not make any noise if one lifts it up gently when entering and leaving the room; the same applies to sliding-doors. If one’s movements are rough, even a paper door will bend and resonate when opened; but, if one lifts the door a little when pushing it, there need be no sound.            One has gone to bed and is about to doze off when a mosquito appears, announcing himself in a reedy voice. One can actually feel the wind made by his wings, and, slight though it is, one finds it hateful in the extreme…One is in the middle of a story when someone butts in and tries to show that he is the only clever person in the room. Such a person is hateful, and so, indeed, is anyone, child or adult, who tries to push himself forward.            One is telling a story about old times when someone breaks in with a little detail that he happens to know, implying that one’s own version is inaccurate—disgusting behaviour!…            Some children have called at one’s house. One makes a great fuss of them and gives them toys to play with. The children become accustomed to this treatment and start to come regularly, forcing their way into one’s inner rooms and scattering one’s furnishings and possessions. Hateful!…            A man with whom one is having an affair keeps singing the praises of some woman he used to know. Even if it is a thing of the past, this can be very annoying. How much more so if he is still seeing the woman! (Yet sometimes I find it is not as unpleasant as all that.)            A person who recites a spell himself after sneezing. In fact I detest anyone who sneezes, except the master of the house.            Fleas too, are very hateful. When they dance about under someone’s clothes, they really seem to be lifting them up…            I cannot stand people who leave without closing the panel behind them.            I hate people whose letters show that they lack respect for worldly civilities, whether by discourtesy in the phrasing or by extreme politeness to someone who does not deserve it. This sort of thing is, of course, most odious if the letter is for oneself, but it is bad enough even if it is addressed to someone else.            As a matter of fact, most people are too casual, not only in their letters but in their direct conversation. Sometimes I am quite disgusted at noting how little decorum people observe when talking to each other. It is particularly unpleasant to hear some foolish man or woman omit the proper marks of respect when addressing a person of quality; and, when servants fail to use honorific forms of speech in referring to their masters, it is very bad indeed. No less odious, however, are those masters who, in addressing their servants, use such phrases as ‘When you were good enough to do such-and-such’ or ‘As you so kindly remarked.’ No doubt there are some masters who, in describing their own actions to a servant, say, ‘I presumed to do so-and-so’!            Sometimes a person who is utterly devoid of charm will try to create a good impression by using very elegant language; yet he succeeds only in being ridiculous. No doubt he believes this refined language to be just what the occasion demands, but, when it goes so far that everyone bursts out laughing, surely something must be wrong…            A man who has nothing in particular to recommend him, but who speaks in an affected tone and poses as being elegant…            Ladies-in-waiting who want to know everything that is going on…            A lover who is leaving at dawn announces that he has to find his fan and his paper.[76] “I know I put them somewhere last night,” he says. Since it is pitch-dark, he gropes about the room, bumping into the furniture and muttering, “Strange! Where can they be?” Finally he discovers the objects. He thrusts the paper into the breast of his robe with a great rustling sound; then he snaps open his fan and busily fans away with it. Only now is he ready to take his leave. What charmless behaviour! “Hateful” is an understatement.            Equally disagreeable is the man who, when leaving in the middle of the night, takes care to fasten the cord of his headdress. This is quite unnecessary; he could perfectly well put it gently on his head without tying the cord. And why must he spend time adjusting his cloak or hunting costume? Does he really think that someone may see him at this time of night and criticize him for not being impeccably dressed?            A good lover will behave as elegantly at dawn as at any other time. He drags himself out of bed with a look of dismay on his face. The lady urges him on: “Come, my friend, it’s getting light. You don’t want anyone to find you here.” He gives a deep sigh, as if to say that the night has not been nearly long enough and that it is agony to leave. Once up, he does not instantly pull on his trousers. Instead, he comes close to the lady and whispers whatever was left unsaid during the night. Even when he is dressed, he still lingers, vaguely pretending to be fastening his sash.            Presently he raises the lattice, and the two lovers stand together by the side door while he tells her how he dreads the coming day, which will keep them apart; then he slips away. The lady watches him go, and this moment of parting will remain among her most charming memories.            Indeed, one’s attachment to a man depends largely on the elegance of his leave-taking. When he jumps out of bed, scurries about the room, tightly fastens his trouser-sash, rolls up the sleeves of his Court cloak, over-robe, or hunting costume, stuffs his belongings into the breast of his robe and then briskly secures the outer sash—one really begins to hate him. Women and High Office            At long last a man has received the governorship for which he has been waiting. He looks radiantly happy. In the past everyone treated him with rudeness and disdain; but, painful as it was, he bore it all patiently, realizing that he had no choice. Now even his superiors respect the man and play up to him with remarks like, “I am entirely at Your Excellency’s service.” He is attended by women and surrounded by elegant furnishings and clothing that he has never known before. Seeing all this, one wonders whether he can really be the same man whom even simple servants used to scorn. Then this fortunate governor is appointed Middle Captain in the Inner Palace Guards. Oh, what a triumphant look he has on his face! To be a captain of the Guards seems far grander to him than it would to a young nobleman who received the same appointment.            High office is, after all, a most splendid thing. A man who holds the Fifth Rank or who serves as Gentleman-in-Waiting is liable to be despised; but when this same man becomes a Major Counsellor, Great Minister, or the like, one is overawed by him and feels that nothing in the world could be as impressive. Of course even a provincial governor has a position that should impress one; for after serving in several provinces, he may be appointed Senior Assistant Governor-General and promoted to the Fourth Rank, and when this happens the High Court Nobles themselves appear to regard him with respect.            After all, women really have the worse time of it. There are, to be sure, cases where the nurse of an Emperor is appointed Assistant Attendant or given the Third Rank and thus acquires great dignity. Yet it does her little good since she is already an old woman. Besides, how many women ever attain such honours? Those who are reasonably well born consider themselves lucky if they can marry a governor and go down to the provinces. Of course it does sometimes happen that the daughter of a commoner becomes the principal consort of a High Court Noble and that the daughter of a High Court Noble becomes an Empress. Yet even this is not as splendid as when a man rises by means of promotions. How pleased such a man looks with himself!   


Document #4The Tale of Genji[77]Murasaki ShikibuTranslated by Helen Craig McCullough Chapter 2, “The Broom Tree”

It was a hushed evening toward the end of a long rainy day… “I’ve gradually come to realize that it’s almost impossible to find a woman one can regard as beyond criticism, [Tō-no-chūjō] continued. “There seem to be many who possess surface attractions—they write a beautiful hand, know how to make just the right reply to a letter, and in general perform rather well in terms of what might be expected of them. But even so, if I were really choosing on the basis of such accomplishments, it would be hard to find someone of whom I would think, ‘I absolutely can’t let her slip from my grasp…’

“Sometimes, a man will get excited over reports of a skill possessed by a girl with a pair of doting parents who are rearing her in strict seclusion… She’s beautiful, gentle, innocent—and, with time on her hands because she doesn’t mingle in society yet, she’s become absorbed in some little art… When the people who look after her mention her to others, they keep her weak points to themselves and talk up the reasonably good ones. And since the man has never seen her, how can he be sure that he should dismiss their reports as false, merely on the basis of the guesswork? But once he gets on intimate terms with her… she invariably disappoints his expectations…”

Uma-no-kami and Tō Shikibu-no-jō arrived to participate in the ritual seclusion. They were great sophisticates, clever at argumentation, and Tō-no-chujō drew them into a debate…

They talked on, comparing various types. “The world is full of women,” said Uma-no-kami, “but when a man tries to pick a dependable spouse, he learns how hard it is to settle on anyone, even a person who would seem perfectly all right as somebody else’s wife… The superior accepts help from the inferior, the inferior defers to the superior, and broad-ranging functions are performed in a spirit of accommodation. When we come to think about the lone woman who must act as mistress within the narrow confines of a household, we can see that she’ll have to have a great number of indispensable qualities… It isn’t that he deliberately adopts the role of a dilettante, indulging a flirtatious heart by meeting and comparing all kinds of women—no, he merely wants to satisfy himself that a girl is the wife for him, so he throws himself into the attempt to at least find someone he can love, and whose flaws are not egregious enough to require correction and instruction. His first such choice is bound to be hard…

“While women remain pretty and young-looking, they all make irreproachable behavior a point of pride. One of them may write to a man, but her ambiguous language and faint handwriting will keep him guessing. Or let’s say a man calls on a woman and makes up his mind not to leave without actually meeting her. He’ll be subjected to an unconscionable wait, and then, when he ventures a gallant sally, in the hope of at least eliciting a word or two, she merely murmurs a little something under her breath. All this is an excellent way to hide defects.

“Sometimes a man falls head over heels in love, fascinated by a woman’s apparent gentleness and femininity, but the moment he begins catering to her whims, she turns into a tease. Of all their faults, I think this is the worst.

“Seeing to her husband’s needs is the one responsibility a wife can’t neglect, so it would seem just as well for her not to brood over the pathos of ephemerality, or feel an obligation to respond with sensitivity to every fleeting phenomenon, or immerse herself in elegant pursuits. On the other hand, there’s the plain-looking housewife who demonstrates her sense of responsibility by tucking her hair behind her ears and devoting herself heart and soul to domestic concerns. Her husband thinks, ‘I can’t talk to some outsider about everything that happens at court and elsewhere while I’m away—what people do, the good and bad things I remember seeing and hearing. If only I could discuss matters with a wife who would listen to me and understand what I say!’…

“Actually, it’s not a bad idea to look for a completely childlike, docile woman, train her a little, and marry her. The man may have misgivings about her reliability, but at least he can feel she’s educable, And to be sure, he’ll overlook the faults she commits in his presence the more readily because she’s such an appealing little thing. But once they’re apart and he sends a message about something that needs to be done, she lacks the judgment to decide how to take care of it…

“And then there’s the woman who’s usually blunt and disagreeable but makes a wonderful appearance when the occasion calls for it.” The omniscient debater heaved a deep sigh, unable to reach a conclusion…

“A man should simply choose for his lifetime companion anyone who is serious and placid by nature. If, in addition, she happens to be talented and discriminating, he’ll rejoice. If she’s a bit inferior in some respects, he won’t dwell on her deficiencies: as long as she’s faithful and not unreasonably jealous, he’ll see that she acquires surface accomplishments in the natural course of events.

“A gentle, shy woman of the second kind may pretend not to notice things about which she might justifiably complain. To all outward appearances, she has nothing on her mind. But when she reaches the breaking point, she flees in secret to some remote mountain dwelling or isolated shore, leaving behind an indescribably poignant letter, a pathetic poem, and mementos that are sure to make the man think of her, whether he wants to or not… Even if a wife has to put up with something at the moment, what could be more foolish than to doom herself to a lifetime of misery by ignoring her husband’s sincere devotion, running away into hiding as though unaware of his feelings, and causing him no end of trouble—all in order to test his heart? Her emotion swells, fed by people who praise her decision, and she’s a nun before you know it. She seems to be in a state of enlightenment when she reaches her decision, and it doesn’t occur to her that she may someday look back on her secular life with regret… As she gropes for the tresses that once brushed her cheeks, her own face contorts with misery…[78] And even if the karmic bond is so strong that the man finds her before she takes the vows, the memory is bound to rankle in his mind. The truly strong, impressive marriage is the one in which the woman stays at the man’s side through thick and thin, overlooking disagreeable incidents. Escapades like this are bound to leave a residue of uneasiness and constraint.

“It’s also foolish for a woman to show open resentment and pick a quarrel with a man just because he gets involved in a meaningless affair with someone else. As long as he associates the wife fondly with the early days of their love, he will value the relationship, however attractive the other woman may seem; but the marriage may well end if she deluges him with complaints.

“A husband’s love will increase if a woman remains calm in every situation, merely hints at her knowledge of causes for jealousy, and speaks only in an unobjectionable, roundabout fashion of matters at which she might easily take offense. In more cases than not, he’ll be moved to mend his ways. On the other hand, a woman will find herself dismissed as negligible, no matter how sweet and appealing she may be, if she simply stands back, inordinately reluctant to interfere, and lets her husband do whatever he pleases. A man doesn’t really get any fun out of drifting like an unmoored boat, wouldn’t you agree?”



Primary Source Documents Set #9: The Mongols

Essay Question:

Considering the Mongols’ lifestyle, gender relations, military organization, and sociopolitical order as they are represented in the sources, how were the Mongols feared, admired, and despised all at the same time?

Document #1On the Tatars[79]Ali ‘Izz al-Din Ibn al-Athir al-Jazari For some years I continued averse from mentioning this event, deeming it so horrible that I shrank from recording it and ever withdrawing one foot as I advanced the other. To whom, indeed, can it be easy to write the announcement of the death-blow of Islam and the Muslims, or who is he on whom the remembrance thereof can weigh lightly? O would that my mother had not born me or that I had died and become a forgotten thing ere this befell! Yet, withal a number of my friends urged me to set it down in writing, and I hesitated long, but at last came to the conclusion that to omit this matter could serve no useful purpose. I say, therefore, that this thing involves the description of the greatest catastrophe and the most dire calamity (of the like of which days and nights are innocent) which befell all men generally, and the Muslims in particular; so that, should one say that the world, since God Almighty created Adam until now, has not been afflicted with the like thereof, he would but speak the truth. For indeed history does not contain anything which approaches or comes near unto it. For of the most grievous calamities recorded was what Nebuchadnezzar inflicted on the children of Israel by his slaughter of them and his destruction of Jerusalem; and what was Jerusalem in comparison to the countries which these accursed miscreants destroyed, each city of which was double the size of Jerusalem? Or what were the children of Israel compared to those whom these slew? For verily those whom they massacred in a single city exceeded all the children of Israel. Nay, it is unlikely that mankind will see the like of this calamity, until the world comes to an end and perishes, except the final outbreak of Gog and Magog. For even Antichrist will spare such as follow him, though he destroy those who oppose him, but these Tatars spared none, slaying women and men and children, ripping open pregnant women and killing unborn babes. Verily to God do we belong, and unto Him do we return, and there is no strength and no power save in God, the High, the Almighty, in face of this catastrophe, whereof the sparks flew far and wide, and the hurt was universal; and which passed over the lands like clouds driven by the wind. For these were a people who emerged from the confines of China, and attacked the cities of Turkestan, like Kashghar and Balasaghun, and thence advanced on the cities of Transoxiana, such as Samarqand, Bukhara and the like, taking possession of them, and treating their inhabitants in such wise as we shall mention; and of them one division then passed on into Khurasan, until they had made an end of taking possession, and destroying, and slaying, and plundering, and thence passing on to Ray, Hamadan and the Highlands, and the cities contained therein, even to the limits of Iraq, whence they marched on the towns of Adharbayjan and Arraniyya, destroying them and slaying most of their inhabitants, of whom none escaped save a small remnant; and all this in less than a year; this is a thing whereof the like has not been heard. And when they had finished with Adharbayjan and Arraniyya, they passed on to Darband-i-Shirwan, and occupied its cities, none of which escaped save the fortress wherein was their King; wherefore they passed by it to the countries of the Lan and the Lakiz and the various nationalities which dwell in that region, and plundered, slew, and destroyed them to the full. And thence they made their way to the lands of Qipchaq, who are the most numerous of the Turks, and slew all such as withstood them, while the survivors fled to the fords and mountain-tops, and abandoned their country, which these Tatars overran. All this they did in the briefest space of time, remaining only for so long as their march required and no more. Another division, distinct from that mentioned above, marched on Ghazna and its dependencies, and those parts of India, Sistan and Kirman which border thereon, and wrought therein deeds like unto the other, nay, yet more grievous. Now this is a thing the like of which ear has not heard; for Alexander, concerning whom historians agree that he conquered the world, did not do so with such swiftness, but only in the space of about ten years; neither did he slay, but was satisfied that men should be subject to him. But these Tatars conquered most of the habitable globe, and the best, the most flourishing and most populous part thereof, and that whereof the inhabitants were the most advanced in character and conduct, in about a year; nor did any country escape their devastations which did not fearfully expect them and dread their arrival. Moreover they need no commissariat, nor the conveyance of supplies, for they have with them sheep, cows, horses, and the like quadrupeds, the flesh of which they eat, naught else. As for their beasts which they ride, these dig into the earth with their hoofs and eat the roots of plants, knowing naught of barley. And so, when they alight anywhere, they have need of nothing from without. As for their religion, they worship the sun when it rises, and regard nothing as unlawful, for they eat all beasts, even dogs, pigs, and the like; nor do they recognise the marriage-tie, for several men are in marital relations with one woman, and if a child is born, it knows not who is its father. Therefore Islam and the Muslims have been afflicted during this period with calamities wherewith no people hath been visited. These Tatars (may God confound them!) came from the East, and wrought deeds which horrify all who hear of them, and which you shall, please God, see set forth in full detail in their proper connection. And of these was the invasion of Syria by the Franks (may God curse them!) out of the West, and their attack on Egypt, and occupation of the port of Damietta therein, so that Egypt and Syria were like to be conquered by them, but for the grace of God and the help which He vouchsafed us against them, as we have mentioned under the year 614 (A.D. 1217-18). Of these, moreover, was that the sword was drawn between those who escaped from these two foes, and strife was rampant, as we have also mentioned: and verily unto God do we belong and unto Him do we return! We ask God to vouchsafe victory to Islam and the Muslims, for there is none other to aid, help, or defend the True Faith. But if God intends evil to any people, naught can avert it, nor have they any ruler save Him. As for these Tatars, their achievements were only rendered possible by the absence of any effective obstacle; and the cause of this absence was that Muhammad Khwarazmshah had overrun the lands, slaying and destroying their Kings, so that he remained alone ruling over all these countries; wherefore, when he was defeated by the Tatars, none was left in the lands to check those or protect these, that so God might accomplish a thing which was to be done. It is now time for us to describe how they first burst forth into the lands. Stories have been related to me, which the hearer can scarcely credit, as to the terror of the Tatars, which God Almighty cast into men’s hearts; so that it is said that a single one of them would enter a village or a quarter wherein were many people, and would continue to slay them one after another, none daring to stretch forth his hand against this horseman. And I have heard that one of them took a man captive, but had not with him any weapon wherewith to kill him; and he said to his prisoner, “Lay your head on the ground and do not move,” and he did so, and the Tatar went and fetched his sword and slew him therewith. Another man related to me as follows: “I was going,” said he, “with seventeen others along a road, and there met us a Tatar horseman, and bade us bind one another’s arms. My companions began to do as he bade them, but I said to them, “He is but one man; wherefore, then, should we not kill him and flee?’ They replied, ‘We are afraid.’ I said, ‘This man intends to kill you immediately; let us therefore rather kill him, that perhaps God may deliver us.’ But I swear by God that not one of them dared to do this, so I took a knife and slew him, and we fled and escaped.’ And such occurrences were many.


Document #2The Story of the Mongols Whom We Call the Tartars[80]John Pian del CarpiniTranslated by Erik Hildinger Their appearance is quite different from that of everyone else. Tartars have eyes and cheeks wider apart than other men. Their cheeks stick out a good deal from the jaw and they have a flat middle-sized nose and small eyes and eyelids raised to the eyebrows. They are generally narrow in the waist, except for a few, and almost all are of middling height. Few of them have much of a beard, though some have a small amount of hair on the upper lip and in the beard which they seldom trim. They cut the hair on the top of the head like a cleric, and generally everyone shaves from one ear to the other to a width of three inches by which cut of the crown the ears are joined. Everyone shaves above the forehead to the width of two inches in a similar way, however, the hair which is between the crown and the shaved fringe they allow to grow to the eyebrows and because each side of the forehead is cut more than in the middle, they grow the middle hair long; the rest of the hair they let grow as women do and make two braids of it and tie each one behind the ear. They have middle-sized feet…We must tell about their customs which we shall treat this way: first we shall tell what is good about the Tartars, second what is bad…The…Tartars… obey their lords more than anyone else in the world, whether clergymen or laymen, and they respect them greatly and do not easily lie to them. The Tartars seldom argue to the point of insult, and there are no wars, quarrels, injuries or murders among them. In fact, there are no robbers and thieves of valuables there, so that the camps and carts where they keep their treasures are not protected by locks or bars. If animals become lost, whoever finds them leaves them or sends them to men who are commissioned for this; the owners ask for them and receive them with no difficulty. Each man respects his fellow and they are friendly to each other, and though food is scarce among them, still there is enough to share, Their life is so hard that when they fast for a day or two and eat nothing they do not seem unhappy, but sing and play just as though they ate well…Nor are the men touchy; they do not appear jealous of their neighbors, and it seems that none are envious. No man turns another away, but instead helps him and supports him as much as possible. Their women are chaste, and one never hears scandals about them, though they tell coarse and vulgar jokes. The women seldom or never have affairs. Sometimes they become quite drunk, yet while drunk they never fight with words or blows. Now that we have described the Tartars’ good points, we must set down the bad. The Tartars are prouder than other men and despise everyone else; indeed it is as though they held outsiders for nothing whether noble or base born…The Tartars become quite angry with other men, are indignant by nature and lie to all outsiders: almost no truth is found in them. At first they are very mild, but in the end they sting like a scorpion. The Tartars are subtle and treacherous and, if they can, they get around everything by cunning. The men are filthy with regard to their clothing, food and other things, and whatever evil they wish to do to others they hide amazingly well so that the victims cannot protect themselves or find a solution to their cunning…They are very jealous and greedy, demanding of favors, tenacious of what they have and stingy givers, and they think nothing of killing foreigners. In short, because their evil habits are so numerous they can hardly be set down…Chingis Khan organized the army this way: one man is set over ten and I call him a “decanus”, one man is placed over ten decani whom I call a “centenarius”, one man is placed over ten centenarii whom I call a “millenarius”, one man is placed over ten millenarii and they call this rank “darkness”. Two or three generals are placed over the entire army but one is supreme. When the line goes into battle, if one or two or three or more flee from the squad of ten, all ten are killed; and if all ten flee, unless the rest of the hundred flee, all of them are killed. Briefly, unless they give way together, all who flee are killed. Also, if one or two or more proceed daringly into the fight and the remainder of the ten do not follow, they are killed; and if one or more of the ten is captured and the other comrades to not free them, again they are killed.Everyone must have at least these weapons: two or three bows or at least one good one, and three large quivers filled with arrows, a battle-axe and ropes for dragging machines. The rich, however have swords which are sharp at the tip and honed on only one edge and somewhat curved, and they have horse armor, leg armor and a helmet and cuirass… of leather…Some Tartars have lances with a hook at the head with which they drag men from the saddle if they can. The length of Tartar arrows is two feet and one palm and two fingers…You should know that when the Tartars see the enemy they advance and everyone shoots three of four arrows, and if they see that they cannot overwhelm the enemy they go back to their comrades. And this is a trick, so that their adversaries follow them to a place where the Tartars have prepared an ambush. If their enemies follow them into this trap, the Tartars circle around them and wound and kill them. If the Tartars see that the enemy is very numerous, they sometimes turn away for a day or two and invade and despoil a different area…If they find they cannot do this, they sometimes retreat for ten or twelve days and stay in a safe place until their adversaries’ army disbands and then they secretly come and depopulate the entire country…The generals or princes of the army do not go into the battle, but stay a long way from the enemy and they have boys and women on horses next to them, and sometimes they put dummies of men on horses. They do this so that the number of their soldiers will seem great. The Tartars send a battle line of captives and other people who are among them against the front of the enemy and perhaps some Tartars go with them. They place the other battle groups of the stronger men to the right and left so they will not be seen… and thus they circle about the enemy and draw them into the middle and they begin to attack from all sides… If the enemy fights well the Tartars make way for them to flee; and once they begin to flee and become separated from one another the Tartars attack them and then kill as many in flight as they would in battle…You should know that the emperor said with his own mouth that he wished to send an army into Livonia and Prussia. And because he intends to overthrow the whole world or reduce it to servitude, and because slavery is intolerable to our people, as we said above, we must fight them. If one province does not wish to cooperate with another, the Tartars will choose to attack that land, and they will use the men whom they capture to fight against another country, and those men will be in the forefront. If they fight badly they will be killed by the Tartars, while if they fight well the Tartars will hold them with promises and praise and indeed, if they do not flee from them, the Tartars will promise to make them great lords. Afterwards, though, when the Tartars are certain that they will not run away, they will make unhappy slaves of them; and as for the women, to those whom they wish to keep as servants and concubines they will do the same thing.  Thus, with the men of defeated provinces they will destroy the next country, nor will another province be able to resist them by itself, just as we have seen, unless God wishes to defend them…Therefore if the Christians wish to save themselves, their country, and Christianity, they must gather in one body the kings, princes, barons, and rectors of the lands and send men to fight the Tartars under a single plan…They should organize their battle groups as the Tartars do, by commanders of thousands, and hundreds, by captains of ten and generals of the army…


Document #3The Journey of William of Rubruck to the Eastern Parts of the World, 1253-55[81]William of Rubruck Translated by William W. Rockhill Nowhere have they fixed dwelling-places, nor do they know where their next will be. They have divided among themselves [Scythia], which extendeth from the Danube to the rising of the sun; and every captain, according as he hath more or less men under him, knows the limits of his pasture lands and where to graze in winter and summer, spring and autumn. For in winter they go down to warmer regions in the south: in summer they go up to cooler towards the north. The pasture lands without water they graze over in winter when there is snow there, for the snow serveth them as water. They set up the dwelling in which they sleep on a circular frame of interlaces sticks converging into a little round hoop on the top, from which projects above a collar as a chimney, and this (framework) they cover over with white felt…The felt around this collar on top they decorate with various pretty designs. Before the entry they also suspend felt ornamented with various embroidered designs of color…making vines and trees, birds and beasts. And they make these houses so large that they are sometimes thirty feet in width…Furthermore they weave light twigs into squares of the size of a large chest, and over it from one end to the other they put a turtle-back also of twigs, and in the front end they make a little doorway; and they cover this [chest] or little house with black felt coated with tallow or ewe’s milk, so that the rain cannot penetrate it, and they decorate it likewise with embroidery work. And in such [chests] they put all their bedding and valuable, and they tie them tightly on high carts drawn by camels, so that they can cross rivers (without getting wet). Such [chests] they never take off the cart. When they set down their dwelling-houses, they always turn the door to the south…The matrons[82]make for themselves most beautiful…carts, which I would not know how to describe to you unless by a drawing, and I would depict them all to you if I knew how to paint. A single rich [Mongol] or Tartar has quite 100 or 200 such carts with [chests]. Baatu has 26 wives, each of whom has a large dwelling, exclusive of the other little ones which they set up after the big one, and to each of these (large) dwellings are attached quite 200 carts. And when they set up their houses, the first wife places her dwelling on the extreme west side, and after her the others according to their rank, so that the last wife will be in the extreme east; and there will be the distance of a stone’s throw between the [yurt] of one wife and that of another. The [camp] of a rich [Mongol] seems like a large town, though there will be very few men in it. One girl will lead 20 or 30 carts, for the country is flat, and they tie the ox or camel carts the one after the other, and a girl will sit on the front one driving the ox, and all the others follow after with the same gait. Should it happen that they come to some bad piece of road, they untie them, and take them across one by one. So they go along slowly, as a sheep or an ox might walk.When they have fixed their dwelling, the door turned to the south, they set up the couch of the master on the north side. The side for the women is always the east side, that is to say, on the left of the house of the master, he sitting on his couch with his face turned south. The side for the men is the west side, that is, on the right. Men coming into the house would never hang up their bows on the side of the women.And over the head of the master is always an image of felt, like a doll or statuette, which they call the brother of the master; another similar one is above the head of the mistress, which they call the brother of the mistress, and they are attached to the wall; and higher up between the two of them is a little lank one, who is, as it were, the guardian of the whole dwelling. The mistress places in her house on her right side, in a conspicuous place at the foot of her couch, a goat-skin full of wool or other stuff, and beside it a very little statuette looking in the direction of the attendants and women. Beside the entry on the women’s side is yet another image, with a cow’s tit for the women, who milk the cows; for it is part of the duty of the women to milk the cows. On the other side of the entry, toward the men, is another statue with a mare’s tit for the men who milk the mares. And when they have come together to drink, they first sprinkle with liquor this image which is over the master’s head, then the other images in order. Then an attendant goes out of the dwelling with a cup and liquor, and sprinkles three times to the south, each time bending the knee, and that to do reverence to the fire; then to the east, and that to do reverence to the air; then to the west to do reverence to the water; to the north they sprinkle for the dead. When the master takes the cup in hand and is about to drink, he first pours a portion on the ground. If he were to drink seated on a horse, he first before he drinks pours a little on the neck or the mane of the horse. Then when the attendant has sprinkled toward the four quarters of the world he goes back into the house, where two attendants are ready with two cups and platters to carry drink to the master and the wife seated near him upon the couch. And when he hath several wives, she with whom he hath slept that night sits beside him in the day, and it becometh all the others to come to her dwelling that day to drink, and court is held there that day, and the gifts which are brought that day are placed in the treasury of that lady…In winter they make a capital drink of rice, of millet, and of honey; it is clear as wine: and wine is carried to them from remote parts. In summer they care only for [qumis].[83] There is always [qumis] near the house, before the entry door, and beside it stands a guitar-player with his guitar…And when the master begins to drink, then one of the attendants cries with a loud voice, “Ha!” and the guitarist strikes his guitar, and when they have a great feast they all clap their hands, and also dance about to the sound of the guitar, the men before the master, the women before the mistress. And when the master has drunken, then the attendant cries as before, and the guitarist stops. Then they drink all around, and sometimes they do drink right shamefully and gluttonly… Of their food and victuals you must know that they eat all their dead animals without distinction, and with such flocks and herds it cannot be but that many animals die. Nevertheless, in summer, so long as lasts their [qumis], that is to say mare’s milk, they care not for any other food. So then it happens that an ox or a horse dies, they dry its flesh by cutting it into narrow strips and hanging it in the sun and the wind, where at once and without salt it becomes dry without any evil smell. With the intestines of horses they make sausages better than pork ones, and they eat them fresh. The rest of the flesh they keep for winter. With the hides of oxen they make big jars, which they dry in admirable fashion in the smoke. With the hind part of the hide of horsed they make most beautiful shoes.With the flesh of a single sheep they give to eat to 50 or 100; for they cut it up very fine in a platter with salt and water, for they make no other sauce; and then with the point of a knife or a fork which they make for the purpose, like that which we use to eat coddles pears or apples, they give each of the bystanders a mouthful or two according to the number of the guests. Prior to this, before the flesh of the sheep is served, the master takes what pleases him; and furthermore if he gives to anyone a special piece, it is the custom that he who receives it shall eat it himself, and he may not give it to another; but if he cannot eat it all he carries it off with him, or gives it to his servant if he be present, who keeps it’ otherwise he puts it away in his… square bag which they carry… in which they store away bones when they have not time to gnaw them well, so that they can gnaw them later and that nothing of the food be lost.It is the duty of the women to drive the carts, get the dwellings on and off them, milk the cows, make butter and gruit,[84] and to dress and sew skins, which they do with a thread made of tendons… They also sew the boots, the socks and the clothing. They never wash clothes, for they say that God would be angered thereat, and that it would thunder if they hung them up to dry. They will even beat those they find washing them…Furthermore, they never wash their bowls, but when the meat is cooked they rinse out the dish in which they are about to put it with some of the boiling broth from the kettle, which they pour back into it. They also make the felt and cover the houses. The men make bows and arrows, manufacture stirrups and bits, make saddles, do the carpentering on (the framework of) their dwellings and the carts; they take care of the horses, milk the mares, churn the [qumis] or mare’s milk, make the skins in which it is put; they also look after the camels and load the,. Both sexes look after the sheep and goats, sometimes the men, other times the women, milking them…As to their marriages, you must know that no one among them has a wife unless he buys her; so it sometimes happens that girls are well past marriageable age before they marry, for their parents always keep them until they sell them. They observe the first and second degrees of consanguinity, but no degree of affinity; thus (one person) will have at the same time or successively two sisters. Among them no widow marries, for the following reason: they believe that all who serve them in this life shall serve them in the next, so as regards a widow they believe that she will always return to her first husband after death. Hence this shameful custom prevails among them, that sometimes a son takes to wife all his father’s wives, except his own mother; for the [camp] of the father and mother always belongs to the youngest son, so it is he who must provide for all his father’s wives who come to him with the paternal household, and if he wishes it he uses them as wives, for he esteems not himself injured if they return to his father after death. When then anyone has made a bargain with another to take his daughter, the father of the girl gives a feast, and the girl flees to her relatives and hides there. Then the father says: “Here, my daughter is yours; take her wheresoever you find her.” Then he searches for her with his friends till he finds her, and he must take her by force and carry her off with a semblance of violence to his house.


Primary Source Documents Set #10: Samurai vs. Mongols

Essay Question:

Considering the previous week’s readings on the Mongols, what were the similarities and differences between Mongol and samurai warfare? What made it possible for the Japanese to repel the Mongol invasion?

Document #1The Tale of the Heike[85]Translated by A. L. Sadler IntroductionThe sound of the bell of Gionshoja[86]echoes the impermanence of all things.The hue of the flowersof the teaktree declaresthat they who flourish must be brought low. Yea, the proud ones are butfor a moment, like an evening dream in springtime.The mighty are destroyed at the last, they arebut as the dust before the wind.If thou ask concerning the rulers of other countries far off [in China]; [Zhao Gao of Qin], [Wang Mang of Han],[Zhu Yi of Liang], [An Lushanof Tang],[87] all these, not following in the paths of the government of allthe King and Emperors who went before them, sought pleasure only ; not entering into councilnor heeding the disorders of their Country, having no knowledge of the affliction of their people,they did not endure, but perished utterly. So also if thou enquire concerning our owncountry, Masakadoin the period Shōhei, Sumitomo in Tengyō, [Yoshichika] in Kōwa,[Nobuyori] inHeiji,[88] all were arrogant and bold of heart in divers manners, yet if we consider what is told of theformer Prime Minister Prince Taira no Ason Kiyomori, the Lay priest of Rokuhara, of a morerecent time, neither in their words nor their intentions were they his equal… The Reputation of the Eastern WarriorsThen Gon-no-suke Shosho [Taira] Koremori[89] summoned to him Nagai-no-Saito Betto Sanemori, who was their guide to the eastern provinces, and asked him: “Are there many samurai in the eight eastern provinces[90] who are as mighty archers and as bold as you are?” “Do you then consider me a mighty archer?” answered Sanemori with a scornful smile, “I only draw an arrow of thirteen handbreadths, and in the eastern provinces there are any number of Bushi who can do that. One who is really a famous archer never draws a shaft of less than fifteen, and his bow is so strong that it needs four or five ordinary men to bend it. When these shoot they can easily pierce two or three suits of armour at once. Those who have the title of Daimyo never ride with less than five hundred horsemen, and they are bold riders who know not how to fall, neither do their horses stumble even on the roughest ground. Moreover when they fight they do not heed even if their own parents or children are killed, but ride on over their bodies and continue the battle. The samurai of the western provinces are quite different. If their parents are killed they retire and perform Buddhist rites for the repose of their souls, and make the customary mourning; if their children are slain they are overcome with grief and can fight no more. When they grow the rice for the soldiers’ rations they plant the fields in the spring and reap them in the autumn and then go out to fight; they dislike the summer because it is hot and grumble at the cold of winter. This is not the way of the warriors of the eastern provinces. Moreover the Genji of Kai and Shinano,[91] as they know the ground well, will most likely come round the plains at the foot of Mt. Fuji to take us in the rear. Perhaps you may think that I speak thus with the intention of causing apprehension in the mind of the General, but that is not so, for an army does not depend on the number of its men, but on the strategy of the Commander.” Now the hour of Hare (6 a.m.) on the twenty-fourth day was the time fixed for the beginning of the fight between the two armies, so on the preceding evening the outposts of the Heike went forth to observe the disposition of the enemy. But the farmers and inhabitants of Izu and Suruga,[92] in terror at the movements of the armies, had fled away, some to the moorland, some to the hills,and some in boats on the sea and river, and had kindled their cooking fires everywhere, so that the Heike, seeing them on all sides, were struck with consternation, exclaiming “Ah, see! The camp fires of the Genji are without number! Truly the mountains and sea and river and plain are all full of warriors. What is to be done?”Also about the middle of the same night the water fowl of the marshes of Mt. Fuji were startled by something or other, and rose suddenly all together with a whirring of wings like the sound of thunder or a mighty wind, and the Heike soldiers hearing it shouted out: “It is the army of the Genji coming on to attack us! Saito Betto warned us yesterday that the men of Kai and Shinano would come round the foot of Fuji to take us in the rear. There are hundreds of thousands of them. We must fall back to the Owari river at Sunomata or we shall be cut off.” So, panic-stricken, they abandoned their positions and fled precipitately without even taking their belongings with them, for so great was their haste that some snatched up their bows without any arrows, or arrows without any bow, springing on to each other’s horses, and even mounting tethered animals and whipping them up so that they galloped round and round the post to which they were tied. There were some too who had procured some singing girls and courtesans, and were banqueting and making merry with them when the alarm took place, and these women were hustled and thrown down and trampled on in the confusion, so that they were injured in the head or body and added their cries to the uproar. Then on the twenty-fourth day at the hour of the Hare, the Genji, numbering two hundred thousand horsemen, advanced to the Fujikawa and shouted their war cry three times so that the heavens reverberated and the earth shook, but on the side of the Heike there was nought but silence. When the vanguard approached their camp there was not a man to be seen, whereupon they raised a shout that the enemy had fled, while some went and gathered up the armour they had left behind, and others bore away in triumph the curtains of the camp that had been left standing. “There is not so much as a fly stirring in the Heike camp,” they reported to their Commander. Then Hyoe-no-suke [Minamoto]Yoritomo alighted from his horse, and, taking off his helmet, washed his hands and rinsed his mouth. Turning toward the Imperial Palace he reverently made obeisance and said: “It is not through any merit on my part that this victory has been gained, it is owing to the favour of Hachi man Dai-bosatsu and none other.” Then the provinces that were captured were assigned, Suruga to Ichijo-no-Jiro Tadayori, and Totomi to Yasuda-no-Saburo Yoshisada, and as it was not advisable to extend the attack further, owing to the uncertainty of the situation in his rear, the leader of the Genji withdrew his forces again to Kamakura. At this time the singing girls and courtesans who dwelt by the sea shore mocked the Heike saying: “Ah, what a disgusting General to run away and avoid a battle; how mean spirited are these Heike, not only do they but look at the enemy and run away, they listen to our songs and run away without paying!” Western “Courtier-Warriors”            Kumagai Jirō Naozane [of the Genji forces] came riding along a narrow path on to the beach, with the intention of intercepting one of [the Taira’s] great captains. Just then his eye fell on a single horseman who was attempting to reach one of the ships in the offing, and had swum his horse out some twenty yards from the water’s edge. He was richly attired in a silk hitatare embroidered with storks, and the lacing of his armour was shaded green; his helmet was surmounted by lofty horns, and the sword he wore was gay with gold. His twenty four arrows had black and white feathers, and he carried a black-lacquered bow bound with rattan. The horse he rode was dappled grey, and its saddle glittered with gold mounting, Not doubting that he was one of the chief captains, Kumagai beckoned to him with his war fan,, crying out: ” Shameful! to show an enemy your back. Return! Return! ”             Then the warrior turned his horse and rode him back to the beach, where Kumagai at once engaged him in mortal combat. Quickly hurling him to the ground, he sprang upon him and tore off his helmet to cut off his head, when he beheld the face of a youth of sixteen or seventeen, delicately powdered and with blackened teeth, just about the age of his own son, and with features of great beauty.             “Who are you? ” he enquired; “Tell me your name, for I would spare your life.”             “Nay, first say who you are”; replied the young man.             “I am Kumagai Jirō Naozane of Musashi, a person of no particular importance.”             “Then you have made a good capture,” said the youth. “Take my head and show it to some of my side and they will tell you who I am.”             “Though he is one of their leaders,” mused Kumagai, “if I slay him it will not turn defeat into victory, and if I spare him, it will not turn victory into defeat. When my son Kojirō was but slightly wounded at Ichi-no-tani, did it not make my heart bleed ? How pitiful then to put this youth to death.” And so he was about to set him free, when, looking behind him, he saw Doi and Kajiwara coming up with fifty horsemen.             “Alas ! look there,” he exclaimed, the tears running down his face, “though I would spare your life, the whole country side swarms with our men, and you cannot escape them. If you must die, let it be by my hand, and I will see that prayers are said for your re-birth in bliss.”             “Indeed it must be so,” said the young warrior, “so take off my head at once.”             Then Kumagai, weeping bitterly, and so overcome by his compassion for the fair youth that his eyes swam and his hand trembled so that he could scarcely wield his blade, hardly knowing what he did, at last cut off his head.             “Alas!” he cried, “what life is so hard as that of a soldier? Only because I was born of a warrior family must I suffer this affliction! How lamentable it is to do such cruel deeds!” And he pressed his face to the sleeve of his armour and wept bitterly.             Then, wrapping up the head, he was stripping off the young man’s armour, when he discovered a flute in a brocade bag that he was carrying in his girdle. ” Ah,” he exclaimed, “it was this youth and his friends who were amusing themselves with music within the walls this morning. Among all our men of the Eastern Provinces I doubt if there is any who has brought a flute with him. What esthetes are these Courtiers of the Heike !”             And when he brought them and showed them to the Commander, all who saw them were moved to tears; and he then discovered that the youth was Taiyū Atsumori, the youngest son of Shūri-no-taiyū Tsunemori, aged seventeen years.             From this time the mind of Kumagai was turned toward the religious life and he eventually became a recluse.             The flute of Atsumori was one which his grandfather Tadamori, who was a famous player, had received as a present from the Emperor Toba, and had handed down to his father Tsunemori, who has given it to Atsumori because of his skill on the instrument. It was called ‘Saeda’.[93]Concerning this story of Kumagai we may quote the saying that “even in the most droll and flippant farce there is the germ of a Buddhist Psalm.”[94] The Death of Kiso Yoshinaka            Now Kiso had brought with him from Shinano two beautiful girls named Tomoe and Yamabuki, but Yamabuki had fallen sick and stayed behind in the Capital. Tomoe had long black hair and a fair complexion, and her face was very lovely; moreover she was a fearless rider whom neither the fiercest horse nor the roughest ground could dismay, and so dexterously did she handle sword and bow that she was a match for a thousand warriors, and fit to meet either god or devil. Many times had she taken the field, armed at all points, and won matchless renown in encounters with the bravest captains, and so in this last fight, when all the others had been slain or had fled, among the last seven there rode Tomoe. At first it was reported that Kiso had escaped to the North either through Nagasaka by the road to Tamba, or by the Ryūge pass, but actually he had turned back again and ridden off toward Seta, to see if he could hear aught of the fate of Imai Kanehira. Imai had long valiantly held his position at Seta till the continued assaults of the enemy reduced his eight hundred men to but fifty, when he rolled up his banner and rode back to Miyako to ascertain the fate of his lord; and thus it happened that the two fell in with each other by the shore at Ōtsu. Recognizing each other when they were yet more than a hundred yards away, they spurred their horses and came together joyfully.             Seizing Imai by the hand, Kiso burst forth: “I was so anxious about you that I did not stop to fight to the death in the Rokujō Kawara, but turned my back on a host of foes and hastened off here to find you.”             “How can I express my gratitude for my lord’s consideration? ” replied Imai. “I too would have died in the defence of Seta, but I feared for my lord’s uncertain fate, and thus it was that I fled hither.”            “Then our ancient pledge will not be broken and we shall die together,” said Kiso, “and now unfurl your banner, for a sign to our men who have scattered among these hills.”             So Imai unfurled the banner, and many of their men who had fled from the Capital and from Seta saw it and rallied again, so that they soon had a following of three hundred horse. “With this band our last fight will be a great one,” shouted Kiso joyfully, “who leads yon great array ?”             “Kai-no-Ichijō Jirō, my lord.”             “And how many has he, do you think?”             “About six thousand, it seems.”             “Well matched!” replied Yoshinaka, “if we must die, what death could be better than to fall outnumbered by valiant enemies? Forward then!”             That day Kiso was arrayed in a hitatare of red brocade and a suit of armour laced with Chinese silk; by his side hung a magnificent sword mounted in silver and gold, and his helmet was surmounted by long golden horns. Of his twenty four eagle feathered arrows, most had been shot away in the previous fighting, and only a few were left, drawn out high from the quiver, and he grasped his rattan bound bow by the middle as he sat his famous grey charger, fierce as a devil, on a saddle mounted in gold. Rising high in his stirrups he cried with a loud voice: “Kiso-no-Kwanja you have often heard of; now you see him before your eyes! Sama-no-kami and Iyo-no-kami, Asahi Shōgun, Minamoto Yoshinaka am I! Come! Kai-no-Ichijō Jirō! Take my head and show it to Hyōye-no-suke Yoritomo!”             “Hear, men!” shouted Ichijō-no Jirō in response; “On to theattack! This is their great Captain! See that he does not escape you now!” And the whole force charged against Kiso to take him.             Then Kiso and his three hundred fell upon their six thousand opponents in the death fury, cutting and slashing and swinging their blades in every direction until at last they broke through on the farther side, but with their little band depleted to only fifty horsemen, when Doi-no-Jirō Sanehira came up to support their foes with another force of two thousand. Flinging themselves on these they burst through them also, after which they successively penetrated several other smaller bands of a hundred or two who were following in reserve. But now they were reduced to but five survivors, and among these Tomoe still held her place.             Calling her to him Kiso said: “As you are a woman, it were better that you now make your escape. I have made up my mind to die, either by the hand of the enemy or by mine own, and how would Yoshinaka be shamed if in his last fight he died with a woman?”             Even at these strong words, however, Tomoe would not forsake him, but still feeling full of fight, she replied, “Ah, for some bold warrior to match with, that Kiso might see how fine a death I can die.” And she drew aside her horse and waited. Presently Onda-no-Hachirō Moroshige of Musashi, a strong and valiant samurai, came riding up with thirty followers, and Tomoe, immediately dashing into them, flung herself upon Onda and grappling with him dragged him from his horse, pressed him calmly against the pommel of her saddle and cut off his head. Then stripping off her armour she fled away to the Eastern Provinces.             Tezuka-no-Tarō was killed and Tezuka-no-Bettō took to flight, leaving Kiso alone with Imai-no-Shirō. “Ah,” exclaimed Yoshinaka, “my armour that I am never wont to feel at all seems heavy on me today.”             “But you are not yet tired, my lord, and your horse is still fresh, so why should your armour feel heavy? If it is because you are discouraged at having none of your retainers left, remember that I, Kanehira, am equal to a thousand horse-men, and I have yet seven or eight arrows left in my quiver. Let me hold back the foe while my lord escapes to that pine wood of Awazu that we see yonder, that there under the trees he may put an end to his life in peace.”             “Was it for this that I turned my back on my enemies in Rokujō-kawara and did not die then?” returned Yoshinaka; “by no means will we part now, but meet our fate together.”             And he reined his horse up beside that of Imai towards the foe, when Kanehira, alighting from his horse, seized his master’s bridle and burst into tears: “However great renown a warrior may have gained,” he pleaded, “an unworthy death is a lasting shame. My lord is weary and his charger also, and if, as may be, he meet his death at the hands of some low retainer, how disgraceful that it should be said that Kiso Dono, known through all Nippon as the ‘Demon Warrior ‘ had been slain by some nameless fellow, so listen to reason, I pray you, and get away to the pines over there.”             So Kiso, thus persuaded, rode off toward the pine wood of Awazu. Then Ima-no-Shirō, turning back, charged into a party of fifty horsemen, shouting: ” I am Imai Shirō Kanehira, foster-brother of Kiso Dono, aged thirty-three. Even Yoritomo at Kamakura knows my name so take my head and show it to him, anyone who can!” And he quickly fitted the eight shafts he had left to his bow and sent them whirring into the enemy, bringing down eight of them from their horses, either dead or wounded. Then, drawing his sword, he set on at the rest, but none would face him in combat hand-to-hand: “Shoot him down! Shoot him down!” they cried as they let fly a hail of arrows at him, but so good was his armour that none could pierce it, and once more he escaped unwounded.            Meanwhile Yoshinaka rode off alone toward Awazu, and it was the twenty third day of the first month. It was now nearly dark and all the land was coated with thin ice, so that none could distinguish the deep ricefields, and he had not gone far before his horse plunged heavily into the muddy ooze beneath. Right up to the neck it floundered, and though Kiso plied whip and spur with might and main, it was all to no purpose, for he could not stir it.             Even in this plight he still thought of his retainer, and was turning to see how it fared with Imai, when Miura no Ishida Jirō Tamehisa of Sagami rode up and shot an arrow that struck him in the face under hishelmet. Then as the stricken warrior fell forward in his saddle that his crest bowed over his horse’s head, two of Ishida’s retainers fell upon him and struck off his head. Holding it high on the point of a sword Ishida shouted loudly: “Kiso Yoshinaka, known through the length and breadth of Nippon as the ‘Demon Warrior’, has been killed by Miura-no-Ishida Jirō Tamehisa.”             Imai was still fighting when these words fell on his ears, but when he saw that his master was indeed slain cried out: “Alas, for whom now have I to fight? See, you fellows of the East Country, I will show you how the mightiest champion in Nippon can end his life!” And he thrust the point of his sword in his mouth and flung himself headlong from his horse, so that he was pierced through and died.


Document #2“Articles of Admonition”[95]Imagawa RyōshunTranslated by Carl Steenstrup Written to his adopted son, Nakaaki1.      As you do not understand the Arts of Peace, your skill in the Arts of War will not, in the end, achieve victory.2.      You like to roam about, hawking and cormorant-fishing, relishing the purposeless taking of life.3.      You have minor offenders put to death without trial.4.      But out of favoritism you pardon grave offenders. 5.      You live in luxury by fleecing the people and plundering the shrine.6.      In your actions you disregard the moral law by evading your public duties and considering your private benefit first. 7.      To build your own dwelling, you razed the pagoda and other buildings of the memorial temple of our ancestor.8.      You do not discriminate between good and bad behavior of your retainers, but reward or punish them without justice.9.      You permit yourself to forget the kindness that our lord and father showed us; thus you destroy the principles of loyalty and filial piety.10.  You tell different things to different people and enjoy the trouble you stir up among them.11.  You do not understand the difference in status between yourself and others; sometimes you make too much of other people, sometimes too little.12.  You disregard other people’s viewpoints; you bully them and rely on force.13.  When making decisions you spurn wise retainers and favor flatterers.14.  You should not envy those who prosper by wickedness, nor should you take moral decay lightly.15.  You excel at drinking bouts, amusements and gambling, but you forget the business of our clan.16.  Deluded by belief in your own sagacity, you scoff at others’ advice in any matter. 17.  When people come to see you, you feign illness so that no interview can take place18.  In a high-handed manner you force men into retirement without show ing forbearance.19.  You provide yourself lavishly with clothes and weapons, but your retainers are poorly equipped.20.  You live a life of ease, honoring what ought to be despised, not understanding that pride goes before a fall.21.  You ought to show the utmost respect to Buddhist monks and priests, and carry out the ceremonies properly.22.  You impede the flow of travelers by erecting barriers everywhere in your territory.23.  A lord should scrutinize his own conduct as critically as that of his retainers.The above articles should be kept constantly in mind. a.       Expertise in archery, horsemanship and strategy is the warrior’s routine. What first of all makes him distinguished is his capacity for management.b.      It appears clearly from the Four Books, the Five Classics,[96] and the Military Literature that he who can only defend his territory but has no learning, cannot govern well.c.       Therefore, from childhood you should associate with upright companions, and not for a moment submit to the influence of bad friends. d.      It is indeed true that a man’s companions make him good or bad, just as water follows the square or round shape of a vessel.e.       That is why it is common knowledge that the shugo[97]—who actually rules the province—favors men of wisdom and humanity, whereas the kokushi[98]—who just preys upon the people—favors flatterers.f.       It is well known that if one wants to know a ruler’s mentality, one need only look at the companions he prefers, and find out what they think. [You too may be seen through in this way]. Indeed, you would then incur shame.g.       A wise and virtuous man favors friends who are better than himself, and shuns those who are worse. h.      But do not infer from the above that you should be partial among your retainers.i.        What I intend is simply that you should not favor the bad ones. j.        Whether you are in charge of anything—such as a province or a district—or not, it will be difficult to put your abilities to any use if you have not won the sympathy and respect of ordinary people.k.      A skillful general understands that when one of his warriors is unpopular, it is a sign that this warrior does not first of all set his mind on battle. In much the same way, you should be able to discern the good and bad in your own mind. Regard it as good when people, high and low, come in crowds to you; but if everyone shuns you—although you invite them—and you are deserted, know then that this is because your inclinations are wicked.l.        Remember that there are two kinds of reasons why people may flock to you. [First, on account of popularity. Second,] even lawless and tyrannical lords will sometimes be in fear [and may come to ask for your support]; also, when retainers illegally fleece the people or gangs of thugs rob them, then the people will gather in crowds in front of the gates of the man who holds power [in order to ask his protection].m.    When you can distinguish like this [between the symptoms of consensus and those of danger], you will be able to restrain the lawlessness of retainers, to rule according to precedents, and to lay down laws.n.      There is a rule for the employment of all kinds of personnel. As the sun and moon shine impartially on vegetation and territories, so you should ponder day and night on how you can be benevolent when you reward or punish your retainers, whether they serve near to you or not. Include in your benevolence estate officials far away in the mountains and along the coasts, and make use of everyone according to his qualities.o.      One who leads many warriors but lacks wisdom, talent or training, or is just negligent, will be much criticized by his followers, both high and low.p.      Just as the Buddhist scriptures tell us that the Buddha incessantly strives to save mankind, in the same way you should exert your mind to the utmost in all your activities, be they civil or military, and never fall into negligence.q.      It should be regarded as dangerous if the ruler of the people in a province is deficient even in a single of the cardinal virtues of human-heartedness, righteousness, propriety, wisdom, and good faith.r.        When you administer punishment in accordance with established governmental procedures, people will not resent it. s.       But when capital punishment is administered irregularly, there will be deep resentment.t.        For do you think that you can escape the law of retribution?u.      The most important thing is to make sure whether your retainers are loyal or not; further, it is necessary to reward them sometimes.v.      No matter how immense a man’s possessions may be, it is useless to give him a fief if he is no good for war, because he thinks of his own interests and spends the proceeds of the fief futilely providing for his wife and children. Nor should you enfeoff persons who have not a number of able-bodied men under them.w.     You should follow precedent toward the various clans in your territory. Do not change the distribution of their fiefs;but you may, if necessary, increase or diminish a fief according to the present holder’s attitude toward you.x.      You were born to be a warrior, but you mismanage your territory, do not maintain the army, and are not ashamed although people laugh at you. It is, indeed, a mortifying situation for you and our whole clan.  This is my letter of instruction.Oei Era, 19th year, 2nd month.[99]The novice Ryōshun


Primary Source Documents Set #11:Church vs State in Medieval Europe

Essay Question:

Compare the relationship of church and state in Byzantium and in the West. How did the relationship between religious and secular authority differ, and why?

Document #1“Capitulary for Saxony”[100]CharlemagneTranslated by D. C. Munro 1.       It was pleasing to all that the churches of Christ, which are now being built in Saxony and consecrated to God, should not have less, but greater and more illustrious honor, than the shrines of the idols had had.2.       If any one shall have fled to a church for refuge, let no one presume to expel him from the church by violence, but he shall be left in peace until he shall be brought to the judicial assemblage; and on account of the honor due to God and the saints, and the reverence due to the church itself, let his life and all his members be granted to him. Moreover, let him plead his cause as best he can and he shall be judged; and so let him be led to the presence of the lord king, and the latter shall send him where it shall have seemed fitting to his clemency.3.      If anyone shall have entered a church by violence and shall have carried off anything in it by force or theft, or shall have burned the church itself, let him be punished by death.4.      If anyone, out of contempt for Christianity, shall have despised the holy Lenten fast and shall have eaten flesh, let him be punished by death. But, nevertheless, let it be taken into consideration by a priest, lest perchance any one from necessity has been led to eat flesh.5.      If anyone shall have killed a bishop or priest or deacon, let him likewise be punished capitally.6.      If anyone deceived by the devil shall have believed, after the manner of the pagans, that any man or woman is a witch and eats men, and on this account shall have burned the person, or shall have given the person’s flesh to others to eat, or shall have eaten it himself, let him be punished by a capital sentence.7.      If anyone, in accordance with pagan rites, shall have caused the body of a dead man to be burned and shall have reduced his bones to ashes, let him be punished capitally.8.      If any one of the race of the Saxons hereafter concealed among them shall have wished to hide himself unbaptized, and shall have scorned to come to baptism and shall have wished to remain a pagan, let him be punished by death.9.      If anyone shall have sacrificed a man to the devil, and after the manner of the pagans shall have presented him as a victim to the demons, let him be punished by death.10.  If anyone shall have formed a conspiracy with the pagans against the Christians, or shall have wished to join with them in opposition to the Christians, let him be punished by death; and whoever shall have consented to this same fraudulently against the king and the Christian people, let him be punished by death.11.  If anyone shall have shown himself unfaithful to the lord king, let him be punished with a capital sentence.12.  If anyone shall have ravished the daughter of his lord, let him be punished by death.13.  If anyone shall have killed his lord or lady, let him be punished in a like manner.14.  If, indeed, for these mortal crimes secretly committed any one shall have fled of his own accord to a priest, and after confession shall have wished to do penance, let him be freed by the testimony of the priest from death.15.  Concerning the lesser chapter all have consented. To each church let the parishioners present a house and two mansi of land, and for each one hundred and twenty men, noble and free, and likewise liti [freedmen], let them give to the same church a man-servant and a maid-servant.16.  And this has been pleasing, Christ being propitious, that whencesoever any receipts shall have come into the treasury, either for a breach of the peace or for any penalty of any kind, and in all income pertaining to the king, a tithe shall be rendered to the churches and priests.17.  Likewise, in accordance with the mandate of God, we command that all shall give a tithe of their property and labor to the churches and priests; let the nobles as well as the freemen, and likewise the liti, according to that which God shall have given to each Christian, return a part to God.18.  That on the Lord’s day no meetings and public judicial assemblages shall be held, unless perchance in a case of great necessity or when war compels it, but all shall go to the church to hear the word of God, and shall be free for prayers or good works. Likewise, also, on the especial festivals they shall devote themselves to God and to the services of the church, and shall refrain from secular assemblies.19.  Likewise, it has been pleasing to insert in these decrees that all infants shall be baptized within a year; and we have decreed this, that if any one shall have despised to bring his infant to baptism within the course of a year, without the advice or permission of the priest, if he is a noble he shall pay 120 solidi[101] to the treasury, if a freeman 60, if a litus,[102] 30.20.  If any shall have made a prohibited or illegal marriage, if a noble 60 solidi,if a freeman 30, if a litus 15.21.  If anyone shall have made a vow at springs or trees or groves, or shall have made any offerings after the manner of the heathen and shall have partaken of a repast in honor of the demons, if he shall be a noble 60 solidi, if a freeman 30, if a litus15.  If, indeed they have not the means of paying at once, they shall be given into the service of the church until the solidi are paid. 22.  We command that the bodies of Saxon Christians shall be carried to the church cemeteries and not to the mounds of the pagans.23.  We have ordered that diviners and soothsayers shall be given to the churches and priests.


Document #2“Letter to Pope Leo III, 796 A.D.”[103]Charlemagne Karl, by the grace of God king, of the Franks and Lombards, and patricius of the Romans, to his holiness, pope Leo, greeting… Just as I entered into an agreement with the most holy father, your predecessor, so also I desire to make with you an inviolable treaty of mutual fidelity and love; that, on the one hand, you shall pray for me and give me the apostolic benediction, and that, on the other, with the aid of God I will ever defend the most holy seat of the holy Roman church. For it is our part to defend the holy church of Christ from the attacks of pagans and infidels from without, and within to enforce the acceptance of the catholic faith. It is your part, most holy father, to aid us in the good fight by raising your hands to God as Moses did [Ex. 17:11], so that by your intercession the Christian people under the leadership of God may always and everywhere have the victory over the enemies of His holy name, and the name of our Lord Jesus Christ may be glorified throughout the world. Abide by the canonical law in all things and obey the precepts of the holy fathers always, that your life may be an example of sanctity to all, and your holy admonitions be observed by the whole world, and that your light may so shine before men that they may see your good works and glorify your father which is in heaven [Matt. 5:16]. May omnipotent God preserve your holiness unharmed through many years for the exalting of his holy church.


Document #3Chronographia[104]Michael PsellusTranslated by E.R.A. Sewter Book 7            Once [Emperor Isaac I Comnenus] had taken the government on his own shoulders — from the moment of his coronation indeed—and once he had, by his coronation, legalized his position as emperor, his policy was radically opposed to that of the aged [Emperor] Michael [VI]. Donations[105] which Michael had given, Isaac took away; wherever Michael had done something of note, Isaac destroyed it. Then, becoming gradually more bold, he went too far in his reforms, and here too he wiped out and rescinded much of Michael’s work. Quite a number [238] of his measures he completely annulled. The consequence was that the people came to hate him, and no small section of the army agreed with them—all those soldiers, in fact, who found themselves deprived of their wealth by their new ruler. Having gone so far, instead of relaxing his program somewhat, he went further, like the grammarian who in analysis starts with the complex and then proceeds to the simple. He classed under one heading the acts of his predecessors, thus attacking all and bringing all into discredit at once. In pursuit of such a policy it was inevitable that he should add to his other victims the priests of the Church. Indeed, he cut off the greater part of the monies set apart for their sacred buildings, and having transferred these sums to the public funds, he estimated the bare necessities for the clergy, thereby making the name, “place of meditation” really appropriate. He did this with the insouciance of a man picking up a grain of sand from the seashore. He just set his hand to the task, and it was all done without the slightest commotion. Indeed, I never saw any man on earth so deliberate in his reasoning; or so quiet in the execution of vast ideas.            This conduct at the time seriously alarmed most of his subjects, but after a while the majority became more resigned to it. Obviously, if men wished to vilify the emperor’s actions, it was sufficient for him to point out that they were in the public interest. And the policy would have been hailed with applause, if only the emperor, like a man who has swum to shore out of the sea, had given himself some time to get back his breath. Isaac, however, did not know what it was to lie at anchor for a while, or rest in harbour. On the contrary, he braved the sea a second time, a different sea this time, and then a third, and after that a greater and most fearful one, as if he were not merely engaged in stirring up the waves of politics, but in cleaning up the dung of Augeas’s stable.[106]As I have emphasized before, if this emperor had chosen the proper time for his reforms; if he had condemned one practice, shall we say, and allowed another to stand for the time being, destroying it at some later date; if, after the amputation, he had rested before attempting another operation; if he had advanced thus, step by step, in his extermination of evil, quietly and without attracting attention like the Creator in Plato, this man who, like him, had inherited a world—in his case the world of politics—in a state of flux, without harmony, without order, then he too, I affirm, would have brought it back from chaos to calm, and he too would have introduced real harmony into the affairs of state. God is described by Moses, the leader of His people, as creating the universe in six days, but if Isaac did not complete his whole task in a single day, he reckoned the failure intolerable, such was the excessive zeal with which he tried to accomplish his purpose. Nothing on earth restrained him, no proffering of wiser counsels, no fear for the future, no hatred of the mob, none of the other factors which, in normal men, curb vanity or check mighty ambition. Had some rein kept him under control, he would have overrun the whole inhabited world, country by country. He would have won glory on every battlefield, and none of the emperors before him would have been his rival. But lack of restraint, refusal to accept reason as his guide, these were the ruin of his noble character.I have described more or less, the alarm and confusion he caused in the political world. In the world of foreign affairs, his ambition was to effect a union of the eastern and western barbarians. They themselves were heartily afraid of him. For the first time they changed their usual tactics. Having observed the quality of the man they had to deal with, instead of pursuing an aggressive strategy they sought safety in obscurity. The Sultan of Parthia, for example, the arch-revolutionary of former times, now adopted an almost retrogressive policy. In no place would he stay for any length of time, had no fixed abode, and—a thing which is really astonishing—went into complete retirement, cutting himself off from intercourse with everyone. The ruler of Egypt, too, even to this day is terrified of the man and still courts his favour with flattery. He even goes so far as to lament Isaac’s downfall. The truth is, the emperor’s appearance and the emperor’s words were as potent as his hands were strong, hands with which he had torn down many a city and destroyed walls defended by thousands of warriors.He preferred to be ignorant of nothing, even down to the smallest detail, but since he knew this to be impossible, he would try to obtain his information by indirect means. He used to send for an expert and, without questioning him on the subject about which he was ignorant, by clever maneuverings round it, he would make the other reveal what he himself did not know, in such a way that the expert was apparently explaining something that was common knowledge to both of them alike. He often tried to catch me like that too, but when on one occasion I ventured to tell him it was a secret, he was taken aback and blushed as if he had been caught doing something wrong. Being a man of great pride, he had a horror of being rebuked, whether openly or subtly.An example of this is found in his treatment of the Patriarch Michael [I Cerularius]. The latter had spoken frankly to him on a certain occasion, using language that was somewhat bold. At the time the emperor passed it over and checked his anger, but he cherished resentment deep in his heart. It broke out unexpectedly, and in the belief that he was following a precedent he expelled Michael from the city. He was condemned to exile in a circumscribed area, and it was there that he died. However, I will not explain how this came about now, for it is a long story. If anyone cares to examine the quarrel between these two, he will blame the one for the start of it, the other for its ending, when the emperor cast the patriarch off as if he were a load on his shoulders. One point here that I almost forgot: a messenger returning from a distant mission brought to him the news of the patriarch’s death, with the air of a man who was freeing him from all trouble in the future, but Isaac, when he heard of it, his heart immediately touched, bewailed loudly an unusual thing for him — and mourned him deeply. He was sorry for the way he had treated the patriarch and often tried to propitiate his soul. As if to justify himself, or rather to appease the dead man, he at once granted to Michael’s family the privilege of speaking freely in his presence, and they were allowed to join his immediate retinue. As Michael’s successor in the sacred office, he presented to God and honoured with high rank one whom his previous life had shown to be blameless, one whose eloquence had left him without a rival, even among the most eminent scholars.This gentleman was none other than the famous Constantine [Leichudes], who in the past had on more than one occasion restored peace to a storm-tossed Empire and had been much sought after by many of the emperors.[107] The crowning-point of his career came with his elevation to the Patriarchate [in 1059]. All other candidates for the office yielded to his claims. All were agreed that he had pre-eminent qualities which fitted him for the duty above the rest. And to the glorification of this dignity he dedicated all his efforts, a man who lived the life of a priest, yet possessed qualities of statesmanship and great public spirit. In the case of other men, virtue is supposed to be some such thing as not yielding to circumstances, not tempering one’s freedom of speech, not attempting by one’s own mildness of character to turn men of sterner material into slaves. So it has come about that mankind has dared every sea, gone in the face of all winds, and some, caught by the waves, have sunk, while others have been rebuffed with much violence. With Constantine, however, the varied pattern of his life enabled him to deal successfully with every precise philosophic problem, and at the same time with all questions of practical government. Moreover, he handled affairs, not like an orator, but as a philosopher would deal with them: there were no wasted words, no histrionics. He played either role, churchman or politician, without deviating one iota from his natural habits. As a politician, he impressed his interrogators by his priestly dignity, yet when you approached him in his capacity of Patriarch, even if you stood in considerable awe of him and trembled a bit, he still appeared human, with the graceful manners of a diplomat, a man of sturdy character and smiling gravity. His whole life inspired confidence: on the one side, his military and political career, on the other, his great dignity, his courtesy. It was natural, even before this appointment, that I should often predict for him promotion to the Church’s highest offices. His manner of life taught me what to expect in the future, and now, after he has actually become High Priest, I still see in him a gentleman of the noblest character.By appointing such a man as Michael’s successor, therefore, the emperor paid a compliment to the late Patriarch…


Document #4Dictatus Papae[108]Pope Gregory VIITranslated by Ernest F. Henderson 1.      That the Roman church was founded by God alone.2.      That the Roman pontiff alone can with right be called universal.3.      That he alone can depose or reinstate bishops.4.      That, in a council his legate, even if a lower grade, is above all bishops, and can pass sentence of deposition against them.5.      That the pope may depose the absent.6.      That, among other things, we ought not to remain in the same house with those excommunicated by him.7.      That for him alone is it lawful, according to the needs of the time, to make new laws, to assemble together new congregations, to make an abbey of a canonry; and, on the other hand, to divide a rich bishopric and unite the poor ones.8.      That he alone may use the imperial insignia.9.      That of the pope alone all princes shall kiss the feet.10.  That his name alone shall be spoken in the churches.11.  That this is the only name in the world.12.  That it may be permitted to him to depose emperors.13.  That he may be permitted to transfer bishops if need be.14.  That he has power to ordain a clerk of any church he may wish.15.  That he who is ordained by him may preside over another church, but may not hold a subordinate position; and that such a one may not receive a higher grade from any bishop.16.  That no synod shall be called a general one without his order.17.  That no chapter and no book shall be considered canonical without his authority.18.  That a sentence passed by him may be retracted by no one; and that he himself, alone of all, may retract it.19.  That he himself may be judged by no one.20.  That no one shall dare to condemn one who appeals to the apostolic chair.21.  That to the latter should be referred the more important cases of every church.22.  That the Roman church has never erred; nor will it err to all eternity, the Scripture bearing witness.23.  That the Roman pontiff, if he have been canonically ordained, is undoubtedly made a saint by the merits of St. Peter; St. Ennodius, bishop of Pavia, bearing witness, and many holy fathers agreeing with him. As is contained in the decrees of St. Symmachus the pope.24.  That, by his command and consent, it may be lawful for subordinates to bring accusations.25.  That he may depose and reinstate bishops without assembling a synod.26.  That he who is not at peace with the Roman church shall not be considered catholic.27.  That he may absolve subjects from their fealty to wicked men.


Document #5“Letter to Hildebrand”[109]Henry IVTranslated by Ernest F. Henderson             Henry, king not through usurpation but through the holy ordination of God, to Hildebrand, at present not pope but false monk.            Such greeting as this hast thou merited through thy disturbances, inasmuch as there is no grade in the church which thou hast omitted to make a partaker not of honour but of confusion, not of benediction but of malediction. For, to mention few and especial cases out of many, not only hast thou not feared to lay hands upon the rulers of the holy church, the anointed of the Lord-the archbishops, namely, bishops and priests-but thou hast trodden them under foot like slaves ignorant of what their master is doing. Thou hast won favour from the common herd by crushing them; thou hast looked upon all of them as knowing nothing, upon thy sole self, moreover, as knowing all things. This knowledge, however, thou hast used not for edification but for destruction; so that with reason we believe that St. Gregory, whose name thou has usurped for thyself, was prophesying concerning thee when he said: “The pride of him who is in power increases the more, the greater the number of those subject to him; and he thinks that he himself can do more than all.” And we, indeed, have endured all this, being eager to guard the honour of the apostolic see; thou, however, has understood our humility to be fear, and hast not, accordingly, shunned to rise up against the royal power conferred upon us by God, daring to threaten to divest us of it. As if we had received our kingdom from thee! As if the kingdom and the empire were in thine and not in God’s hand! And this although our Lord Jesus Christ did call us to the kingdom, did not, however, call thee to the priesthood. For thou has ascended by the following steps. By wiles, namely, which the profession of monk abhors, thou has achieved money; by money, favour; by the sword, the throne of peace. And from the throne of peace thou hast disturbed peace, inasmuch as thou hast armed subjects against those in authority over them; inasmuch as thou, who wert not called, hast taught that our bishops called of God are to be despised; inasmuch as thou hast usurped for laymen and the ministry over their priests, allowing them to depose or condemn those whom they themselves had received as teachers from the hand of God through the laying on of hands of the bishops. On me also who, although unworthy to be among the anointed, have nevertheless been anointed to the kingdom, thou hast lain thy hand; me whoas the tradition of the holy Fathers teaches, declaring that I am not to be deposed for any crime unless, which God forbid, I should have strayed from the faith-am subject to the judgment of God alone. For the wisdom of the holy fathers committed even Julian the apostate not to themselves, but to God alone, to be judged and to be deposed. For himself the true pope, Peter, also exclaims: “Fear God, honour the king.” [1 Peter 2:17] But thou who does not fear God, dost dishonour in me his appointed one. Wherefore St. Paul, when he has not spared an angel of Heaven if he shall have preached otherwise, has not excepted thee also who dost teach other-wise upon earth. For he says: “If any one, either I or an angel from Heaven, should preach a gospel other than that which has been preached to you, he shall be damned.” Thou, therefore, damned by this curse and by the judgment of all our bishops and by our own, descend and relinquish the apostolic chair which thou has usurped. Let another ascend the throne of St. Peter, who shall not practise violence under the cloak of religion, but shall teach the sound doctrine of St. Peter. I Henry, king by the grace of God, do say unto thee, together with all our bishops: Descend, descend, to be damned throughout the ages.


Document #6“Treatise on Royal and Papal Power”[110]John of ParisTranslated by Ernest F. Henderson             Kingship, however, is ordered to the end that a community bebrought together and live together according to virtue… And this in turn is further ordered to a higher end,the enjoyment of God, the direction of which was entrusted toChrist, of Whom priests are the vicars and ministers. Therefore,priestly power is of greater dignity than secular power.This is commonly conceded…spiritual power is greater; hence it excels the other in dignity.However, if the priest is greater than the prince in dignity andabsolutely, it is not necessary for him to be superior in all things; for the latter secular power does not relate to the higher spiritualpower in such a way that it arises or derives from it. This is howthe power of the proconsul relates to the power of the emperor; andthe latter is greater in all things because the proconsul’s power isderived from the emperor. The relationship, rather, is like thatbetween the power of the head of a family and that of a master ofsoldiers; one is not derived from the other, but both are derivedfrom some superior power. Therefore, secular power is greater thanspiritual power in some things, namely, temporal things; and it isnot subject to the spiritual power with reference to them in anyway, because secular power does not arise from spiritual power.The two arise directly from a single supreme power: the divinepower. Whereforethe inferior is not subject to the superior in allthings, but only in those things in respect of which the supremepower made it subordinate to the superior. For who would saythat, because a teacher of literature or an instructor in morals orderseveryone in a household to a more noble end, namely, to the knowledge of truth, a physician who is concerned with a lesser end, thehealth of the body, is therefore subject to either of these in thepreparation of his medicines? This simply does not follow, sincethe head of the household, who appointed both to his household,would not for that reason subordinate the physician to one who hasa higher purpose. Hence, the priest is superior principally in spiritual matters; and, conversely, the prince is superior in temporalmatters, although the priest is superior absolutely insofar as thespiritual is superior to the temporal.


Primary Source Documents Set #12: Renaissance Politics

Essay Question:

How does the justification for power and authority as seen in Machiavelli’s writings differ from medieval European arguments? What role do religion and the people play?

Document #1The Prince[111]Niccolo MachiavelliTranslated by W. K. Marriott CHAPTER XV: CONCERNING THINGS FOR WHICH MEN, AND ESPECIALLY PRINCES, ARE PRAISED OR BLAMED            It remains now to see what ought to be the rules of conduct for a prince towards subject and friends. And as I know that many have written on this point, I expect I shall be considered presumptuous in mentioning it again, especially as in discussing it I shall depart from the methods of other people. But, it being my intention to write a thing which shall be useful to him who apprehends it, it appears to me more appropriate to follow up the real truth of the matter than the imagination of it; for many have pictured republics and principalities which in fact have never been known or seen, because how one lives is so far distant from how one ought to live, that he who neglects what is done for what ought to be done, sooner effects his ruin than his preservation; for a man who wishes to act entirely up to his professions of virtue soon meets with what destroys him among so much that is evil.            Hence it is necessary for a prince wishing to hold his own to know how to do wrong, and to make use of it or not according to necessity. Therefore, putting on one side imaginary things concerning a prince, and discussing those which are real, I say that all men when they are spoken of, and chiefly princes for being more highly placed, are remarkable for some of those qualities which bring them either blame or praise; and thus it is that one is reputed liberal, another miserly, using a Tuscan term (because an avaricious person in our language is still he who desires to possess by robbery, whilst we call one miserly who deprives himself too much of the use of his own); one is reputed generous, one rapacious; one cruel, one compassionate; one faithless, another faithful; one effeminate and cowardly, another bold and brave; one affable, another haughty; one lascivious, another chaste; one sincere, another cunning; one hard, another easy; one grave, another frivolous; one religious, another unbelieving, and the like. And I know that everyone will confess that it would be most praiseworthy in a prince to exhibit all the above qualities that are considered good; but because they can neither be entirely possessed nor observed, for human conditions do not permit it, it is necessary for him to be sufficiently prudent that he may know how to avoid the reproach of those vices which would lose him his state; and also to keep himself, if it be possible, from those which would not lose him it; but this not being possible, he may with less hesitation abandon himself to them. And again, he need not make himself uneasy at incurring a reproach for those vices without which the state can only be saved with difficulty, for if everything is considered carefully, it will be found that something which looks like virtue, if followed, would be his ruin; whilst something else, which looks like vice, yet followed brings him security and prosperity. CHAPTER XVI: CONCERNING LIBERALITY AND MEANNESS            Commencing then with the first of the above-named characteristics, I say that it would be well to be reputed liberal. Nevertheless, liberality exercised in a way that does not bring you the reputation for it, injures you; for if one exercises it honestly and as it should be exercised, it may not become known, and you will not avoid the reproach of its opposite. Therefore, anyone wishing to maintain among men the name of liberal is obliged to avoid no attribute of magnificence; so that a prince thus inclined will consume in such acts all his property, and will be compelled in the end, if he wish to maintain the name of liberal, to unduly weigh down his people, and tax them, and do everything he can to get money. This will soon make him odious to his subjects, and becoming poor he will be little valued by any one; thus, with his liberality, having offended many and rewarded few, he is affected by the very first trouble and imperiled by whatever may be the first danger; recognizing this himself, and wishing to draw back from it, he runs at once into the reproach of being miserly.            Therefore, a prince, not being able to exercise this virtue of liberality in such a way that it is recognized, except to his cost, if he is wise he ought not to fear the reputation of being mean, for in time he will come to be more considered than if liberal, seeing that with his economy his revenues are enough, that he can defend himself against all attacks, and is able to engage in enterprises without burdening his people; thus it comes to pass that he exercises liberality towards all from whom he does not take, who are numberless, and meanness towards those to whom he does not give, who are few.We have not seen great things done in our time except by those who have been considered mean; the rest have failed. Pope Julius the Second was assisted in reaching the papacy by a reputation for liberality, yet he did not strive afterwards to keep it up, when he made war on the King of France; and he made many wars without imposing any extraordinary tax on his subjects, for he supplied his additional expenses out of his long thriftiness. The present King of Spain would not have undertaken or conquered in so many enterprises if he had been reputed liberal. A prince, therefore, provided that he has not to rob his subjects, that he can defend himself, that he does not become poor and abject, that he is not forced to become rapacious, ought to hold of little account a reputation for being mean, for it is one of those vices which will enable him to govern.And if anyone should say: Caesar obtained empire by liberality, and many others have reached the highest positions by having been liberal, and by being considered so, I answer: Either you are a prince in fact, or in a way to become one. In the first case this liberality is dangerous, in the second it is very necessary to be considered liberal; and Caesar was one of those who wished to become pre-eminent in Rome; but if he had survived after becoming so, and had not moderated his expenses, he would have destroyed his government. And if anyone should reply: Many have been princes, and have done great things with armies, who have been considered very liberal, I reply: Either a prince spends that which is his own or his subjects’ or else that of others. In the first case he ought to be sparing, in the second he ought not to neglect any opportunity for liberality. And to the prince who goes forth with his army, supporting it by pillage, sack, and extortion, handling that which belongs to others, this liberality is necessary, otherwise he would not be followed by soldiers. And of that which is neither yours nor your subjects’ you can be a ready giver, as were Cyrus, Caesar, and Alexander; because it does not take away your reputation if you squander that of others, but adds to it; it is only squandering your own that injures you.And there is nothing wastes so rapidly as liberality, for even whilst you exercise it you lose the power to do so, and so become either poor or despised, or else, in avoiding poverty, rapacious and hated. And a prince should guard himself, above all things, against being despised and hated; and liberality leads you to both. Therefore it is wiser to have a reputation for meanness which brings reproach without hatred, than to be compelled through seeking a reputation for liberality to incur a name for rapacity which begets reproach with hatred. CHAPTER XVII: CONCERNING CRUELTY AND CLEMENCY, AND WHETHER IT IS BETTER TO BE LOVED THAN FEAREDComing now to the other qualities mentioned above, I say that every prince ought to desire to be considered clement and not cruel. Nevertheless he ought to take care not to misuse this clemency. Cesare Borgia was considered cruel; notwithstanding, his cruelty reconciled the Romagna, unified it, and restored it to peace and loyalty. And if this be rightly considered, he will be seen to have been much more merciful than the Florentine people, who, to avoid a reputation for cruelty, permitted Pistoia to be destroyed.Therefore a prince, so long as he keeps his subjects united and loyal, ought not to mind the reproach of cruelty; because with a few examples he will be more merciful than those who, through too much mercy, allow disorders to arise, from which follow murders or robberies; for these are wont to injure the whole people, whilst those executions which originate with a prince offend the individual only.And of all princes, it is impossible for the new prince to avoid the imputation of cruelty, owing to new states being full of dangers. Hence Virgil, through the mouth of Dido, excuses the inhumanity of her reign owing to its being new, saying:             . . . against my will, my fate            A throne unsettled, and an infant state,            Bid me defend my realms with all my pow’rs,            And guard with these severities my shores.[112] Nevertheless he ought to be slow to believe and to act, nor should he himself show fear, but proceed in a temperate manner with prudence and humanity, so that too much confidence may not make him incautious and too much distrust render him intolerable.Upon this a question arises: whether it be better to be loved than feared or feared than loved? It may be answered that one should wish to be both, but, because it is difficult to unite them in one person, it is much safer to be feared than loved, when, of the two, either must be dispensed with. Because this is to be asserted in general of men, that they are ungrateful, fickle, false, cowardly, covetous, and as long as you succeed they are yours entirely; they will offer you their blood, property, life, and children, as is said above, when the need is far distant; but when it approaches they turn against you. And that prince who, relying entirely on their promises, has neglected other precautions, is ruined; because friendships that are obtained by payments, and not by greatness or nobility of mind, may indeed be earned, but they are not secured, and in time of need cannot be relied upon; and men have less scruple in offending one who is beloved than one who is feared, for love is preserved by the link of obligation which, owing to the baseness of men, is broken at every opportunity for their advantage; but fear preserves you by a dread of punishment which never fails.            Nevertheless a prince ought to inspire fear in such a way that, if he does not win love, he avoids hatred; because he can endure very well being feared whilst he is not hated, which will always be as long as he abstains from the property of his citizens and subjects and from their women. But when it is necessary for him to proceed against the life of someone, he must do it on proper justification and for manifest cause, but above all things he must keep his hands off the property of others, because men more quickly forget the death of their father than the loss of their patrimony. Besides, pretexts for taking away the property are never wanting; for he who has once begun to live by robbery will always find pretexts for seizing what belongs to others; but reasons for taking life, on the contrary, are more difficult to find and sooner lapse. But when a prince is with his army, and has under control a multitude of soldiers, then it is quite necessary for him to disregard the reputation of cruelty, for without it he would never hold his army united or disposed to its duties.Among the wonderful deeds of Hannibal this one is enumerated: that having led an enormous army, composed of many various races of men, to fight in foreign lands, no dissensions arose either among them or against the prince, whether in his bad or in his good fortune. This arose from nothing else than his inhuman cruelty, which, with his boundless valour, made him revered and terrible in the sight of his soldiers, but without that cruelty, his other virtues were not sufficient to produce this effect. And short-sighted writers admire his deeds from one point of view and from another condemn the principal cause of them. That it is true his other virtues would not have been sufficient for him may be proved by the case of Scipio, that most excellent man, not only of his own times but within the memory of man, against whom, nevertheless, his army rebelled in Spain; this arose from nothing but his too great forbearance, which gave his soldiers more license than is consistent with military discipline. For this he was upbraided in the Senate by Fabius Maximus, and called the corrupter of the Roman soldiery. The Locrians were laid waste by a legate of Scipio, yet they were not avenged by him, nor was the insolence of the legate punished, owing entirely to his easy nature. Insomuch that someone in the Senate, wishing to excuse him, said there were many men who knew much better how not to err than to correct the errors of others. This disposition, if he had been continued in the command, would have destroyed in time the fame and glory of Scipio; but, he being under the control of the Senate, this injurious characteristic not only concealed itself, but contributed to his glory.Returning to the question of being feared or loved, I come to the conclusion that, men loving according to their own will and fearing according to that of the prince, a wise prince should establish himself on that which is in his own control and not in that of others; he must endeavour only to avoid hatred, as is noted. CHAPTER XVIII: CONCERNING THE WAY IN WHICH PRINCES SHOULD KEEP FAITHEvery one admits how praiseworthy it is in a prince to keep faith, and to live with integrity and not with craft. Nevertheless our experience has been that those princes who have done great things have held good faith of little account, and have known how to circumvent the intellect of men by craft, and in the end have overcome those who have relied on their word. You must know there are two ways of contesting,[113] the one by the law, the other by force; the first method is proper to men, the second to beasts; but because the first is frequently not sufficient, it is necessary to have recourse to the second. Therefore it is necessary for a prince to understand how to avail himself of the beast and the man. This has been figuratively taught to princes by ancient writers, who describe how Achilles and many other princes of old were given to the Centaur Chiron to nurse, who brought them up in his discipline; which means solely that, as they had for a teacher one who was half beast and half man, so it is necessary for a prince to know how to make use of both natures, and that one without the other is not durable. A prince, therefore, being compelled knowingly to adopt the beast, ought to choose the fox and the lion; because the lion cannot defend himself against snares and the fox cannot defend himself against wolves. Therefore, it is necessary to be a fox to discover the snares and a lion to terrify the wolves. Those who rely simply on the lion do not understand what they are about. Therefore a wise lord cannot, nor ought he to, keep faith when such observance may be turned against him, and when the reasons that caused him to pledge it exist no longer. If men were entirely good this precept would not hold, but because they are bad, and will not keep faith with you, you too are not bound to observe it with them. Nor will there ever be wanting to a prince legitimate reasons to excuse this non-observance. Of this endless modern examples could be given, showing how many treaties and engagements have been made void and of no effect through the faithlessness of princes; and he who has known best how to employ the fox has succeeded best.But it is necessary to know well how to disguise this characteristic, and to be a great pretender and dissembler; and men are so simple, and so subject to present necessities, that he who seeks to deceive will always find someone who will allow himself to be deceived. One recent example I cannot pass over in silence. Alexander the Sixth did nothing else but deceive men, nor ever thought of doing otherwise, and he always found victims; for there never was a man who had greater power in asserting, or who with greater oaths would affirm a thing, yet would observe it less; nevertheless his deceits always succeeded according to his wishes, because he well understood this side of mankind. Alexander never did what he said,            Cesare never said what he did.[114] Therefore it is unnecessary for a prince to have all the good qualities I have enumerated, but it is very necessary to appear to have them. And I shall dare to say this also, that to have them and always to observe them is injurious, and that to appear to have them is useful; to appear merciful, faithful, humane, religious, upright, and to be so, but with a mind so framed that should you require not to be so, you may be able and know how to change to the opposite.And you have to understand this, that a prince, especially a new one, cannot observe all those things for which men are esteemed, being often forced, in order to maintain the state, to act contrary to fidelity, friendship, humanity, and religion. Therefore it is necessary for him to have a mind ready to turn itself accordingly as the winds and variations of fortune force it, yet, as I have said above, not to diverge from the good if he can avoid doing so, but, if compelled, then to know how to set about it.For this reason a prince ought to take care that he never lets anything slip from his lips that is not replete with the above-named five qualities, that he may appear to him who sees and hears him altogether merciful, faithful, humane, upright, and religious. There is nothing more necessary to appear to have than this last quality, inasmuch as men judge generally more by the eye than by the hand, because it belongs to everybody to see you, too few to come in touch with you. Everyone sees what you appear to be, few really know what you are, and those few dare not oppose themselves to the opinion of the many, who have the majesty of the state to defend them; and in the actions of all men, and especially of princes, which it is not prudent to challenge, one judges by the result.For that reason, let a prince have the credit of conquering and holding his state, the means will always be considered honest, and he will be praised by everybody; because the vulgar are always taken by what a thing seems to be and by what comes of it; and in the world there are only the vulgar, for the few find a place there only when the many have no ground to rest on.One prince of the present time,[115] whom it is not well to name, never preaches anything else but peace and good faith, and to both he is most hostile, and either, if he had kept it, would have deprived him of reputation and kingdom many a time.


Document #2Discourses on the First Decade of Titus Livius[116]Niccolo MachiavelliTranslated by Ninian Hill Thomson CHAPTER IX: That to give new Institutions to a Commonwealth, or to reconstruct old Institutions on an entirely new basis, must be the work of one Man.             It may perhaps be thought that I should not have got so far into the history of Rome, without some mention of those who gave that city its institutions, and saying something of these institutions themselves, so far as they relate to religion and war. As I have no wish to keep those who would know my views on these matters in suspense, I say at once, that to many it might seem of evil omen that the founder of a civil government like Romulus, should first have slain his brother, and afterwards have consented to the death of Titus Tatius the Sabine, whom he had chosen to be his colleague in the kingship; since his countrymen, if moved by ambition and lust of power to inflict like injuries on any who opposed their designs, might plead the example of their prince. This view would be a reasonable one were we to disregard the object which led Romulus to put those men to death. But we must take it as a rule to which there are very few if any exceptions, that no commonwealth or kingdom ever has salutary institutions given it from the first or has its institutions recast in an entirely new mould, unless by a single person. On the contrary, it must be from one man that it receives its institutions at first, and upon one man that all similar reconstruction must depend. For this reason the wise founder of a commonwealth who seeks to benefit not himself only, or the line of his descendants, but his State and country, must endeavour to acquire an absolute and undivided authority. And none who is wise will ever blame any action, however extraordinary and irregular, which serves to lay the foundation of a kingdom or to establish a republic. For although the act condemn the doer, the end may justify him; and when, as in the case of Romulus, the end is good, it will always excuse the means; since it is he who does violence with intent to injure, not he who does it with the design to secure tranquility, who merits blame. Such a person ought however to be so prudent and moderate as to avoid transmitting the absolute authority he acquires, as an inheritance to another; for as men are, by nature, more prone to evil than to good, a successor may turn to ambitious ends the power which his predecessor has used to promote worthy ends. Moreover, though it be one man that must give a State its institutions, once given they are not so likely to last long resting for support on the shoulders of one man only, as when entrusted to the care of many, and when it is the business of many to maintain them. For though the multitude be unfit to set a State in order, since they cannot, by reason of the divisions which prevail among them, agree wherein the true well-being of the State lies, yet when they have once been taught the truth, they never will consent to abandon it. And that Romulus, though he put his brother to death, is yet of those who are to be pardoned, since what he did was done for the common good and not from personal ambition, is shown by his at once creating a senate, with whom he took counsel, and in accordance with whose voice he determined. And whosoever shall well examine the authority which Romulus reserved to himself, will find that he reserved nothing beyond the command of the army when war was resolved on, and the right to assemble the senate. This is seen later, on Rome becoming free by the expulsion of the Tarquins, when the Romans altered none of their ancient institutions save in appointing two consuls for a year instead of a king for life; for this proves that all the original institutions of that city were more in conformity with a free and constitutional government, than with an absolute and despotic one.            In support of what has been said above, I might cite innumerable instances, as of Moses, Lycurgus, Solon, and other founders of kingdoms and commonwealths, who, from the full powers given them, were enabled to shape their laws to the public advantage; but passing over these examples, as of common notoriety, I take one, not indeed so famous, but which merits the attention of all who desire to frame wise laws. Agis, King of Sparta, desiring to bring back his countrymen to those limits within which the laws of Lycurgus had held them, because he thought that, from having somewhat deviated from them, his city had lost much of its ancient virtue and, consequently much of its strength and power, was, at the very outset of his attempts, slain by the Spartan Ephori, as one who sought to make himself a tyrant. But Cleomenes coming after him in the kingdom, and, on reading the notes and writings which he found of Agis wherein his designs and intentions were explained, being stirred by the same desire, perceived that he could not confer this benefit on his country unless he obtained sole power. For he saw that the ambition of others made it impossible for him to do what was useful for many against the will of a few. Wherefore, finding fit occasion, he caused the Ephori and all others likely to throw obstacles in his way, to be put to death; after which, he completely renewed the laws of Lycurgus. And the result of his measures would have been to give fresh life to Sparta, and to gain for himself a renown not inferior to that of Lycurgus, had it not been for the power of the Macedonians and the weakness of the other Greek States. For while engaged with these reforms, he was attacked by the Macedonians, and being by himself no match for them, and having none to whom he could turn for help, he was overpowered; and his plans, though wise and praiseworthy, were never brought to perfection.All which circumstances considered, I conclude that he who gives new institutions to a State must stand alone; and that for the deaths of Remus and Tatius, Romulus is to be excused rather than blamed. CHAPTER LV: That Government is easily carried on in a City wherein the body of the People is not corrupted: and that a Princedom is impossible where Equality prevails, and a Republic where it does not.             Though what we have to fear or hope from cities that have grown corrupted has already been discussed, still I think it not out of place to notice a resolution passed by the senate touching the vow which Camillus made to Apollo of a tenth of the spoil taken from the Veientines. For this spoil having fallen into the hands of the people, the senate, being unable by other means to get any account of it, passed an edict that every man should publicly offer one tenth part of what he had taken. And although this edict was not carried out, from the senate having afterwards followed a different course, whereby, to the content of the people, the claim of Apollo was otherwise satisfied, we nevertheless see from their having entertained such a proposal, how completely the senate trusted to the honesty of the people, when they assumed that no one would withhold any part of what the edict commanded him to give; on the other hand, we see that it never occurred to the people that they might evade the law by giving less than was due, their only thought being to free themselves from the law by openly manifesting their displeasure. This example, together with many others already noticed, shows how much virtue and how profound a feeling of religion prevailed among the Roman people, and how much good was to be expected from them. And, in truth, in the country where virtue like this does not exist, no good can be looked for, as we should look for it in vain in provinces which at the present day are seen to be corrupted; as Italy is beyond all others, though, in some degree, France and Spain are similarly tainted. In which last two countries, if we see not so many disorders spring up as we see daily springing up in Italy, this is not so much due to the superior virtue of their inhabitants (who, to say truth, fall far short of our countrymen), as to their being governed by a king who keeps them united, not merely by his personal qualities, but also by the laws and ordinances of the realm which are still maintained with vigour. In Germany, however, we do see signal excellence and a devout religious spirit prevail among the people, giving rise to the many free States which there maintain themselves, with such strict observance of their laws that none, either within or without their walls, dare encroach on them.            That among this last-named people a great share of the ancient excellence does in truth still flourish, I shall show by an example similar to that which I have above related of the senate and people of Rome. It is customary with the German Free States when they have to expend any large sum of money on the public account, for their magistrates or councils having authority given them in that behalf, to impose a rate of one or two in the hundred on every man’s estate; which rate being fixed, every man, in conformity with the laws of the city, presents himself before the collectors of the impost, and having first made oath to pay the amount justly due, throws into a chest provided for the purpose what he conscientiously believes it fair for him to pay, of which payment none is witness save himself. From this fact it may be gathered what honesty and religion still prevail among this people. For we must assume that each pays his just share, since otherwise the impost would not yield the sum which, with reference to former imposts, it was estimated to yield; whereby the fraud would be detected, and thereupon some other method for raising money have to be resorted to.           At the present time this virtue is the more to be admired, because it seems to have survived in this province only. That it has survived there may be ascribed to two circumstances: first, that the natives have little communication with their neighbours, neither visiting them in their countries nor being visited by them; being content to use such commodities, and subsist on such food, and to wear garments of such materials as their own land supplies; so that all occasion for intercourse, and every cause of corruption is removed. For living after this fashion, they have not learned the manners of the French, the Italians, or the Spaniards, which three nations together are the corruption of the world. The second cause is, that these republics in which a free and pure government is maintained will not suffer any of their citizens either to be, or to live as gentlemen; but on the contrary, while preserving a strict equality among themselves, are bitterly hostile to all those gentlemen and lords who dwell in their neighbourhood; so that if by chance any of these fall into their hands, they put them to death, as the chief promoters of corruption and the origin of all disorders.But to make plain what I mean when I speak of gentlemen, I say that those are so to be styled who live in opulence and idleness on the revenues of their estates, without concerning themselves with the cultivation of these estates, or incurring any other fatigue for their support. Such persons are very mischievous in every republic or country. But even more mischievous are they who, besides the estates I have spoken of, are lords of strongholds and castles, and have vassals and retainers who render them obedience. Of these two classes of men the kingdom of Naples, the country round Rome, Romagna, and Lombardy are full; and hence it happens that in these provinces no commonwealth or free form of government has ever existed; because men of this sort are the sworn foes to all free institutions.And since to plant a commonwealth in provinces which are in this condition were impossible, if these are to be reformed at all, it can only be by some one man who is able there to establish a kingdom; the reason being that when the body of the people is grown so corrupted that the laws are powerless to control it, there must in addition to the laws be introduced a stronger force, to wit, the regal, which by its absolute and unrestricted authority may curb the excessive ambition and corruption of the great. This opinion may be supported by the example of Tuscany, in which within a narrow compass of territory there have long existed the three republics of Florence, Lucca, and Siena, while the other cities of that province, although to a certain extent dependent, still show by their spirit and by their institutions that they preserve, or at any rate desire to preserve, their freedom: and this because there are in Tuscany no lords possessed of strongholds, and few or no gentlemen, but so complete an equality prevails, that a prudent statesman, well acquainted with the history of the free States of antiquity, might easily introduce free institutions. Such, however, has been the unhappiness of this our country, that, up to the present hour, it has never produced any man with the power and knowledge which would have enabled him to act in this way.            From what has been said, it follows, that he who would found a commonwealth in a country wherein there are many gentlemen, cannot do so unless he first gets rid of them; and that he who would found a monarchy or princedom in a country wherein great equality prevails, will never succeed, unless he raise above the level of that equality many persons of a restless and ambitious temperament, whom he must make gentlemen not in name merely but in reality, by conferring on them castles and lands, supplying them with riches, and providing them with retainers; that with these gentlemen around him, and with their help, he may maintain his power, while they through him may gratify their ambition; all others being constrained to endure a yoke, which force and force alone imposes on them. For when in this way there comes to be a proportion between him who uses force and him against whom it is used, each stands fixed in his own station.But to found a commonwealth in a country suited for a kingdom, or a kingdom in a country suited to be a commonwealth, requires so rare a combination of intelligence and power, that though many engage in the attempt, few are found to succeed. For the greatness of the undertaking quickly daunts them, and so obstructs their advance they break down at the very outset. The case of the Venetian Republic, wherein none save gentlemen are permitted to hold any public office, does, doubtless, seem opposed to this opinion of mine that where there are gentlemen it is impossible to found a commonwealth. But it may be answered that the case of Venice is not in truth an instance to the contrary; since the gentlemen of Venice are gentlemen rather in name than in reality, inasmuch as they draw no great revenues from lands, their wealth consisting chiefly in merchandise and chattels, and not one of them possessing a castle or enjoying any feudal authority. For in Venice this name of gentleman is a title of honour and dignity, and does not depend on any of those circumstances in respect of which the name is given in other States. But as in other States the different ranks and classes are divided under different names, so in Venice we have the division into gentlemen (gentiluomini) and plebeians (popolani), it being understood that the former hold, or have the right to hold all situations of honour, from which the latter are entirely excluded. And in Venice this occasions no disturbance, for reasons which I have already explained.Let a commonwealth, then, be constituted in the country where a great equality is found or has been made; and, conversely, let a princedom be constituted where great inequality prevails. Otherwise what is constituted will be discordant in itself, and without stability.

[1] Hammurabi, “The Code of Hammurabi,” Ancient History Sourcebook, (accessed June 6, 2014).

[2] In Ancient Babylon, women were traditionally tavern keepers & wine sellers, likely tied to the fact that Siduri was the Goddess of Wine.

[3] Priestess.

[4] Deuteronomy 5-7 (King James Version)

[5]The Rig Veda, Sacred Texts, (accessed June 13, 2014).

[6] Dragon.

[7] Name of a diety.

[8] Soma is a Vedic ritual drink thought to induce an altered state of mind.

[9] Another name for Indra, meaning “Bountiful Lord.”

[10] Imagery of forts depicts clouds containing moisture.

[11] Goddess, linked to the primeval waters of creation, the mother of Vritra.

[12]Another term for Vritra, meaning “snake.”

[13] Word with several meanings, such as demons or servants. In this case, it likely has the meaning of demon.

[14] Purusha is a representation of the universe; it multiple heads, eyes, & arms symbolize omniscience, omnipresence, omnipotence.

[15] The feminine side of creation.

[16] Grass was laid out in Vedic sacrifices to the gods as a place for the gods to sit.

[17] Demigods.

[18] Sages.

[19] Different parts of the Rig Veda.

[20] Sacrificial chants.

[21] Priestly caste.

[22] Warrior caste.

[23] Merchant & artisan caste.

[24] Peasant & laborer caste.

[25] God of fire & sacrifice.

[26] Wind.

[27] Prepared for ritual sacrifice by fire.

[28]The Chandogya Upanishad, trans. Max Müller,Sacred Texts, (accessed June 13, 2014).

[29]The Bhagavad Gita, trans. Swami Swarupananda, Sacred Texts, (accessed June 13, 2014).

[30] Krishna is the avatar of the Hindu God, Vishnu.

[31] Confucius, Confucian Analects, trans. James Legge, Sacred Texts,  (accessed June 13, 2014).

[32] Laozi, The Tao Te Ching, trans. John C. H. Wu, DaMo Qigong & Taoist Internal Alchemy, (accessed June 13, 2014).

[33] There are two prominent ways to transliterate the word. “Dao” is the currently accepted method, following Pinyin style adopted by the People’s Republic of China. “Tao” is the older transliteration. Both have the same meaning and the same pronunciation (Pinyin more closely aligns with the correct pronunciation).

[34] Han Fei, The Complete Works of Han Fei tzu: A Classic of Chinese Political Science, trans. W. K. Liao, Traditions of Exemplary Women, (accessed June 13, 2014).

[35] Thucydides, History of the Peloponnesian War, trans. Richard Crawley, The Internet Classics Archive, (accessed June 13, 2014).

[36] Thucydides, History of the Peloponnesian War, trans. Richard Crawley, The Internet Classics Archive, (accessed June 13, 2014).

[37] Thucydides, History of the Peloponnesian War, trans. Richard Crawley, The Internet Classics Archive, (accessed June 13, 2014).

[38] Aristotle, The Politics, trans. Benjamin Jowett, Ancient History Sourcebook, (accessed June 16, 2014).

[39] Polybius, “Rome at the End of the Punic Wars,” in The Library of Original Sources: Vol. III: The Roman World,ed. Oliver J. Thatcher (Milwaukee: University Research Extension Co., 1907), pp. 166-193, (accessed June 16, 2014).

[40] Pliny the Younger, “The Letters of Pliny the Consul,” in The Letters of Pliny the Consul, with Occasional Remarks, vol. II, ed. William Melmoth (Edinburgh: James Ballantyne & Co., 1807), 313-319, Project Gutenberg (accessed June 16, 2014).

[41] Tertullian, “Apology,” in Ante-Nicene Fathers: Translations of the Writings of the Fathers down to A.D. 325, Volume III: Latin Christianity: Its Founder, Tertullian, ed. Alexander Roberts, et al (Buffalo, NY: Christian Literature Publishing Co., 1885), Google Books, (accessed June 16, 2014).

[42] It was believed that a string was tied to a lighted candle and then to a dog; when food was thrown to the dog, it jumped after it, thereby pulling down the candle and exterminating the flame, leaving the mixed-gender Christian congregation in darkness to do unspeakable things…

[43] Eusebius Pamphilus, Ecclesiastical History, trans. C. F. Cruse (London: George Bell and Sons, 1874), Google Books, (accessed June 16, 2014).

[44] The sixth year of the persecutions against Christians, 303 A.D.

[45] They were forced to fight as boxing gladiators in the circus.

[46] Maximus Daia, Emperor of the eastern half of the empire from 305-313.

[47] Bishop of Tyre, respected by Eusebius.

[48] “Psalms 98:1-2,” The Holy Bible, King James Version.

[49] “Psalms 46:8-9.”

[50] “Psalms 37: 35-36.”

[51] Licinius, junior emperor of the eastern half of the empire from 308-313, becoming sole emperor of the east in 313, until Constantine reunited the Roman Empire in 324.

[52]Abu Zakaria Mohiuddin Yahya Ibn Sharaf al-Nawawi, Riyad as-Salihin (The Meadows of the Righteous), trans. Aisha Bewley, Aisha Bewley’s Islamic Home Page, (accessed June 23, 2014).

[53] Houri is a pure being promised to the worthy who enter Paradise.

[54] The Gospels of the New Testament.

[55] Those who patrol the frontier.

[56]Abu Muhammad Abdullah ibn Abi Zayd al-Qayrawani, “On Jihad,” in Ar-Risala,” trans. Aisha Bewley, 664-682,  (accessed June 23, 2014).

[57] The Testimony, formally recited when converting to Islam.

[58]Abū l-Walīd Muḥammad bin ʾAḥmad bin Rušd (Averroes), The Distinguished Jurist’s Primer, trans. Imran Ahsan Khan Nyazee (Garnet, 1996), 664-682, Internet Archive, June 23, 2014).

[59] Islamic laws.

[60]Qur’an, 2:216.

[61]Qur’an, 9:122.

[62]Qur’an, 4:95.

[63]Qur’an, 48:17.

[64]Qur’an, 9:91.

[65]Qur’an, 8:39.

[66]Qur’an, 47:4.

[67]Qur’an, 8:67.

[68]Qur’an, 9:5.

[69]Qur’an, 2:190.

[70]Qur’an, 9:5.

[71]Qur’an, 2:190.

[72]Qur’an, 40:25.

[73] “The Tale of Mulan, in The World’s Story: A History of the World in Story, Song, and Art, Vol. 1, China, Japan, and the Islands of the Pacific, ed. Eva March Tappan (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1914), 57-59, Modern History Sourcebook, July 1, 2014).

[74] Ban Zhao, Lessons for a Woman, in Pan Chao: Foremost Woman Scholar of China, trans. Nancy Lee Swann (New York: Century Co., 1932), 82-90, Chinese Cultural Studies, July 1, 2014).

[75] Sei Shōnagon, The Pillow Book of Sei Shōnagon, trans. Ivan Morris(London: Penguin Books, 1971), 21-193.

[76] Colored paper that gentlemen carried in the folds of their robe for notes and use as tissue.

[77] Murasaki Shikibu, Genji and Heike: Selections from The Tale of Genji and The Tale of the Heike, trans. Helen Craig McCullough(Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1994), 42-47.

[78] When becoming a Buddhist nun, a woman is required to shave her head as a symbol of abandoning the desires of the world.

[79]Ali ‘Izz al-Din Ibn al-Athir al-Jazari, “On the Tatars,” in A Literary History of Persia, vol. II, ed. Edward G. Browne (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1902), 427-431, Medieval Sourcebook, (accessed July 4, 2014).

[80] Giovanni Di Plano Carpini, The Story of the Mongols Whom We Call the Tartars, trans. Erik Hildinger(Boston: Branden Publishing Company, 1996),39-90, Google Books, (accessed July 4, 2014).

[81]William of Rubruck, The Journey of William of Rubruck to the Eastern Parts of the World, 1253-55,trans. William W. Rockhill(London: Bedford Press, 1900),53-78, Google Books, (accessed July 4, 2014).

[82] Married women.

[83] Qumis is an alcoholic beverage made from fermented mare’s milk.

[84] Curd cheese.

[85] A. L. Sadler, “The Heike Monogatari,” Transactions of the Asiatic Society of Japan, 46.2 (1918): 1–278 and 49.1 (1921): 1–354,  (accessed July 4, 2014).

[86] Japanese name for Jetavana, the second monastery established in India for Siddhartha Gautama, where the Buddha held several retreats for his followers.

[87] A list of famous usurpers in Chinese history.

[88] A list of famous usurpers of the Nara and Heian periods in Japan.

[89] Grandson of Taira Kiyomori.

[90] The region of northeastern Japan located around modern-day Tokyo.

[91] Two eastern provinces dominated by Genji (Minamoto) warrior networks.

[92] The location of the impending battle, in the shadow of Mt. Fuji which lies between modern-day Tokyo and Osaka along the Pacific coast.

[93] Little Branch.

[94] Another translation of this line is, “It is deeply moving that music, a profane entertainment, should have led a warrior to the religious life.” From Helen McCullough, The Tale of the Heike (Stanford University Press, 1988), 317.

[95] Carl Steenstrup, “The Imagawa Letter: A Muromachi Warrior’s Code of Conduct Which Became a Tokugawa Schoolbook,” Monumenta Nipponica,28:3 (1973): 295-316.

[96] References to the Confucian Classics.

[97] Military governor appointed by the Shogun.

[98] An imperial official, which by Ryōshun’s time had become known for his corruption.

[99]March-April 1412.

[100] Charlemagne, “Capitulary for Saxony,” trans. by D. C. Munro, in Translations and Reprints from the Original Sources of European History, vol. VI, no. 5 (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1900), 2-4, Medieval Sourcebook, (accessed July 5, 2014).

[101] Measurement of weight; 1/72 of a pound of gold.

[102] A Litus was someone who was somewhere between a slave and a freeman.

[103] Charlemagne, “Letter of Karl to Leo III,” in TA Source Book for Mediaeval History: Selected Documents Illustrating the History of Europe in the Middle Age, ed. Oliver J. Thatcher and Edgar Holmes McNeal (New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1905), 107, Online Library of Liberty, (accessed July 5, 2014).

[104] Michael Psellus, Chronographia, trans. E. R. A. Sewter (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1953), Medieval Sourcebook, (accessed July 5, 2014).

[105] Gifts given to the nobility.

[106] A reference to the sixth labor of Heracles (Hercules).

[107] Constantine was a member of the Senate and had served as Prime Minister to a previous emperor, in addition to being a priest.

[108] Pope Gregory VII, “Dictatus Papae,” trans. Ernest F. Henderson, in Select Historical Documents of the Middle Ages (London: George Bell and Sons, 1910), 366-367, Medieval Sourcebook,  (accessed July 5, 2014).

[109] Henry IV, “Letter to Pope Gregory VII,” trans. Ernest F. Henderson, in Select Historical Documents of the Middle Ages (London: George Bell and Sons, 1910), 372-372, Medieval Sourcebook,  (accessed July 5, 2014).

[110] John of Paris, On Kingly and Papal Powerin On Royal and Papal Power: ATranslation, with Introduction, of the De potestate regia et papali of John of Paris, trans.  Arthur P. Monahan (New York: Columbia University Press, 1974), 19-20.

[111] Niccolo Machiavelli, The Prince, trans. W. K. Marriott, Project Gutenberg (accessed July 5, 2014).

[112] Translation attributed to Christopher Pitt.

[113] Striving for mastery.

[114]Italian Proverb.

[115] Machiavelli refers to Ferdinand of Aragon.

[116] Niccolo Machiavelli, Discourses on the First Decade of Titus Livius, trans. Ninian Hill Thomson (London: Kegan Paul, Trench & Co., 1883), Project Gutenberg (accessed July 5, 2014).

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