A Glorious and Everlasting Possession

“Every man who wishes to rise superior to the lower animals should strive his hardest to avoid living all his days in silent obscurity, like the beasts of the field, creatures which go with their faces to the ground and are the slaves of their bellies.  We human beings have mental as well as physical powers; the mind, which we share with gods, is the ruling element in us, while the chief function of the body, which we have in common with the beasts, is to obey.  Surely, therefore, it is our intellectual rather than our physical powers that we should use in the pursuit of fame.  Since only a short span of life has been vouchsafed us, we must make ourselves remembered as long as may be by those who come after us.  Wealth and beauty can give only a fleeting perishable fame, but intellectual excellence is a glorious and everlasting possession.” Sallust, Chap. I in The Conspiracy of Catiline, trans. S. A. Handford (London 1963), p. 175.  [Emphasis added]

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