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    • Join Date: Jun 2008
    • Posts: 2

    A wise man loses nothing...

    A wise man loses nothing, if he but save himself.

    Michael Eyquen de Montaigne

    Hello...I hope this is the right place for quotations.

    Anybody know what this is all about? if he but save himself from what?
    I am assuming there is some context to this, but I can't find the source of the original quotation.

    • Join Date: Nov 2007
    • Posts: 5,409

    Re: A wise man loses nothing...

    So much for love...and this modern day nonsense of 'giving your heart to someone' !! or, So much for religion, the influence of the church, celibacy, and someone lost in their own egocentrism and fast disappearing up his own backside?
    Which is it?

    "Stilpo having escaped from the burning of his town, where he lost wife, children, and goods, Demetrius Poliorcetes seeing him, in so great a ruin of his country, appear with an undisturbed countenance, asked him if he had received no loss? To which he made answer, No; and that, thank God, nothing was lost of his.—[Seneca, Ep. 7.]—This also was the meaning of the philosopher Antisthenes, when he pleasantly said, that "men should furnish themselves with such things as would float, and might with the owner escape the storm";—[Diogenes Laertius, vi. 6.] and certainly a wise man never loses anything if he have himself. When the city of Nola was ruined by the barbarians, Paulinus, who was bishop of that place, having there lost all he had, himself a prisoner, prayed after this manner: "O Lord, defend me from being sensible of this loss; for Thou knowest they have yet touched nothing of that which is mine."—[St. Augustin, De Civit. Dei, i. 10.]—The riches that made him rich and the goods that made him good, were still kept entire. This it is to make choice of treasures that can secure themselves from plunder and violence, and to hide them in such a place into which no one can enter and that is not to be betrayed by any but ourselves. Wives, children, and goods must be had, and especially health, by him that can get it; but we are not so to set our hearts upon them that our happiness must have its dependence upon them; we must reserve a backshop, wholly our own and entirely free, wherein to settle our true liberty, our principal solitude and retreat. And in this we must for the most part entertain ourselves with ourselves, and so privately that no exotic knowledge or communication be admitted there; there to laugh and to talk, as if without wife, children, goods, train, or attendance, to the end that when it shall so fall out that we must lose any or all of these, it may be no new thing to be without them. "

    • Join Date: Oct 2006
    • Posts: 19,434

    Re: A wise man loses nothing...

    Montaigne's essay on "Solitude".

    • Join Date: Jun 2008
    • Posts: 2

    Re: A wise man loses nothing...

    Excellent, that's what I needed, thanks for helping me out.

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