Thursday, September 21, 2023


Confidence in Novelty

Cassius Dio 6.24.1 (tr. Earnest Cary):
Human nature is for some reason accustomed in trouble to scorn what is familiar, even though it be divine, and to admire the untried. For, believing that they are not helped by the former in their present difficulty, men expect no benefit from it in the future either; but from what is strange they hope to accomplish whatever they may desire, by reason of its novelty.

φιλεῖ γάρ πως τὸ ἀνθρώπειον ἐν ταῖς συμφοραῖς τοῦ μὲν συνήθους, κἂν θεῖον ᾖ, καταφρονεῖν, τὸ δὲ ἀπείρατον θαυμάζειν. παρ᾽ ἐκείνου μὲν γὰρ ἅτε μηδὲν ἐς τὸ παρὸν ὠφελεῖσθαι νομίζοντες οὐδὲ ἐς τὸ ἔπειτα χρηστὸν οὐδὲν προσδέχονται, παρὰ δὲ δὴ τοῦ ξένου πᾶν ὅσον ἂν ἐθελήσωσιν ὑπὸ τῆς καινοτομίας ἐλπίζουσιν.

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