XXXVI. But while they were feeling disposed in this way, and revolving such thoughts in their souls, a sudden and unexpected confusion came upon them, for the steward of the household, being commanded to do so, ran after them as if to attack them, bringing with him a vast multitude of servants, waving his hands, and making signs to them to stop, and then coming up to them out of breath he said, “You have now set the seal to all the accusations that have been brought against you; you have returned evil for good, and turned back upon the same road of iniquity as before; you have not only stolen and carried off the price of the corn, but you have committed even a greater offence than that, for wickedness which has obtained forgiveness gets more shameless; you, you very grateful and very peaceful men, have stolen the most beautiful and most valuable drinking cup belonging to my master, the very cup in which he pledged you; you who did not even know what was meant by the name of spy, and who brought back double money to restore that which you had previously paid and professed to have found in your sacks,—a trick, as it should seem, and a bait to enable you to catch and snare a more valuable prize; but wickedness does not always prosper, but though always endeavouring to escape notice it is detected.” While he was running on in this way against them they stood motionless and speechless, those most grievous of all evils, sorrow and fear, falling upon them thus suddenly, so that they were unable even to open their mouths, for the advent of unexpected evils makes even those who are eloquent actually speechless; but at length they recovered themselves, and lest they should seem to be silent, because they were self-convicted by their own consciences, they spoke and said, “How shall we reply and defend ourselves, and to whom? for you who are our accuser are going to be our judge also; you, who even if others had accused us ought to have been our advocate from the experience that you have already had of us. The money which on the former occasion we found replaced in our sacks, we brought back again in order to restore it, though no one had convicted us of having received it again, and do you suppose that after that we became so completely changed as to requite our entertainer with injury and theft? This was not so; and never let it enter your mind that we have done any such thing; but whichever of us brethren is found to have the cup let him die the death; for if any such wicked deed has been done there are many reasons why we should suffer death in atonement of it; in the first place, because covetousness and a desire for the property of others is a most wicked thing; secondly, because to attempt to injure those who have done one good is a most impious action; thirdly, because for men who are proud of the nobility of their birth to dare to destroy the reputation of their ancestors by scandalous actions of their own is a most shameful disgrace; and since if any one of us has stolen the cup of the governor he is liable to all these reproaches, let him die as one who has performed actions worthy of ten thousand deaths.”