Modern statue representing Tacitus
outside the Austrian Parliament Building
|Born||c. 56 AD|
|Died||c. 120 AD (aged c. 64)|
|Occupation||Senator, consul, governor, historian|
|Genre||History, Silver Age of Latin|
|Subject||History, biography, oratory|
It is less difficult to bear misfortunes than to remain uncorrupted by pleasure.
Valor is of no service, chance rules all, and the bravest often fall by the hands of cowards.
All enterprises that are entered into with indiscreet zeal may be pursued with great vigor at first, but are sure to collapse in the end.
Love of fame is the last thing even learned men can bear to be parted from.
Abuse if you slight it, will gradually die away; but if you show yourself irritated, you will be thought to have deserved it.
Truth is confirmed by inspection and delay; falsehood by haste and uncertainty.
A shocking crime was committed on the unscrupulous initiative of few individuals, with the blessing of more, and amid the passive acquiescence of all.
To plunder, to slaughter, to steal, these things they misname empire; and where they make a wilderness, they call it peace.
It is always easier to requite an injury than a service: gratitude is a burden, but revenge is found to pay.
Fear is not in the habit of speaking truth; when perfect sincerity is expected, perfect freedom must be allowed; nor has anyone who is apt to be angry when he hears the truth any cause to wonder that he does not hear it.
Be assured those will be thy worst enemies, not to whom thou hast done evil, but who have done evil to thee. And those will be thy best friends, not to whom thou hast done good, but who have done good to thee.
We see many who are struggling against adversity who are happy, and more although abounding in wealth, who are wretched.
Noble character is best appreciated in those ages in which it can most readily develop.
Many who seem to be struggling with adversity are happy; many, amid great affluence, are utterly miserable.
To show resentment at a reproach is to acknowledge that one may have deserved it.
He that fights and runs away, May turn and fight another day; But he that is in battle slain, Will never rise to fight again.
Prosperity is the measure or touchstone of virtue, for it is less difficult to bear misfortune than to remain uncorrupted by pleasure.
When men are full of envy they disparage everything, whether it be good or bad.