XXXV. (152) In the next place, will they not have displayed examples, not of treachery only, but of the greatest insensibility, if they allow others to fight in their cause, while they themselves are occupied about their domestic affairs? And shall others be willing to incur contests and dangers in the cause of their safety, which they are afraid to encounter for their own? And shall others cheerfully endure scarcity of provisions, and sleeping on the ground, and other hardships of body and soul, from their desire for victory, while they, covering their houses with stucco and nonsense, no much lifeless ornament, or gathering in their harvests from their fields, and celebrating the festival of the vintage, or coming into connection, now for the first time, with virgins who have long since been betrothed to them, and sleeping with them, as if it were the most opportune reason for marriage, pass their time in such vanities? (153) It is a good thing, no doubt, to take care of one’s walls, to collect one’s revenues, to feast, to revel in wine, to contract marriages, to go courting the old and withered dames (as the proverb calls them); but these are the employments of peace, and to do all these things in the crisis of a war raging in all its freshness and vigour, (154) while neither father, nor brother, nor any relation or connection whatever shares the fatigues of the war; when this, I say, is the case, must we not say that universal cowardice has occupied the whole house? Oh, but you will say there are at all events myriads of relations who are fighting in their cause. Then, while they are encountering danger to their lives, must not those who are spending their time in luxury and delicate living appear to surpass even the worst of wild beasts in the excess of their inhumanity? (155) Again, they will say, but it is hard that others, without enduring any labour themselves, should reap the fruits of our labours. Which, then, is worst, that enemies should come into one’s inheritance while one is still alive, or that friends and relations should do so after one is dead? It is absurdity even to compare things which are so widely different; (156) and yet it is not inconsistent with reason, not only that all the property which belongs to these men who shun military service, but that even they themselves, too, may become the property of their enemies when they have obtained the mastery. So those, indeed, who die in defence of the general safety, even if they have not enjoyed as yet any advantage from those possessions which they previously had, meet with death in its most pleasant form, considering that, by their saving the others, their property goes to those whom they desired to have for their successors.