1. What is vice? A familiar sight enough. So in everything that befalls have the thought ready: This is a familiar sight. Look up, look down, everywhere thou wilt find the same things, whereof histories ancient, medieval, and modern are full; and full of them at this day are cities and houses. There is no new thing under the sun. Everything is stereotyped, everything fleeting.
2. How else can thy axioms be made dead than by the extinction of the ideas that answer to them? And these it lies with thee ever to kindle anew into flame. I am competent to form the true conception of a thing. If so, why am I harassed? What is outside the scope of my mind has absolutely no concern with my mind. Learn this lesson and thou standest erect.
Thou canst begin a new life! See but things afresh as thou usedst to see them; for in this consists the new life.
3. Empty love of pageantry, stage-plays, flocks and herds, sham-fights, a bone thrown to lap-dogs, crumbs cast in a fish-pond, painful travail of ants arid their bearing of burdens, skurryings of scared little mice, puppets moved by strings. Amid such en vironment therefore thou must take thy place graciously and not snorting defiance, nay thou must keep abreast of the fact that everyone is worth just so much as those things are worth in which he is interested.
4. In conversation keep abreast of what is being said, and, in every effort, of what is being done. In the latter see from the first to what end it has reference, and in the former be careful to catch the meaning.
5. Is my mind competent for this or not? If com petent, I apply it to the task as an instrument given me by the Universal Nature. If not competent, I either withdraw from the work in favour of some one who can accomplish it better, unless for other reasons duty forbids; or I do the best I can, taking to assist me any one that can utilize my ruling Reason to effect what is at the moment seasonable and useful for the common welfare. For in whatsoever I do either by myself or with another I must direct my energies to this alone, that it shall conduce to the common interest and be in harmony with it.
6. How many much-lauded heroes have already been given as a prey unto forgetfulness, and how many that lauded them have long ago disappeared!
7. Blush not to be helped; for thou art bound to carry out the task that is laid upon thee as a soldier to storm the breach. What then, if for very lame ness thou canst not mount the ramparts unaided, but canst do this with another's help?
8. Be not disquieted about the future. If thou must come thither, thou wilt come armed with the same reason which thou appliest now to the present.
9. All things are mutually intertwined, and the tie is sacred, and scarcely anything is alien the one to the other. For all things have been ranged side by side, and together help to order one ordered Universe. For there is both one Universe, made up of all things, and one God immanent in all things, and one Substance, and one Law, one Reason common to all intelligent Creatures, and one Truth, if indeed there is also one perfecting of living creatures that have the same origin and share the same reason.
10. A little while and all that is material is lost to sight in the Substance of the Universe, a little while and all Cause is taken back into the Reason of the Universe, a little while and the remembrance of everything is encairned in Eternity.
11. To the rational creature the same act is at once according to nature and according to reason.
12. Upright, or made upright.
13. The principle which obtains where limbs and body unite to form one organism, holds good also for rational things with their separate individualities, constituted as they are to work in conjunction. But the perception of this shall come more home to thee, if thou sayest to thyself, I am a limb of the organized body of rational things. But if [using the letter R] thou sayest thou art but a part not yet dost thou love mankind from the heart, nor yet does well-doing delight thee for its own sake. Thou dost practise it still as a bare duty, not yet as a boon to thyself.
14. Let any external thing, that will, be incident to whatever is able to feel this incidence. For that which feels can, if it please, complain. But I, if I do not consider what has befallen me to be an evil, am still unhurt. And I can refuse so to consider it.
15. Let any say or do what he will, I must for my part be good. So might the emerald or gold or purple never tire of repeating, Whatever any one shall do or say, I must be an emerald and keep my colour.
16. The ruling Reason is never the disturber of its own peace, never, for instance, hurries itself into lust. But if another can cause it fear or pain, let it do so. For it will not let its own assumptions lead it into such aberrations.
Let the body take thought for itself, if it may, that it suffer no hurt and, if it do so suffer, let it proclaim the fact. But the soul that has the faculty of fear, the faculty of pain, and alone can assume that these exist, can never suffer; for it is not given to making any such admission.
In itself the ruling Reason wants for nothing unless it create its own needs, and in like manner nothing can disturb it, nothing impede it, unless the disturbance or impediment come from itself.
17. Well-being is a good Being, or a ruling Reason that is good. What then doest thou here, O Imagination?  Avaunt, in God's name, as thou earnest, for I desire thee not! But thou art come according to thine ancient wont. I hear thee no malice; only depart from me!
18. Does a man shrink from change? Why, what can come into being save by change? What be nearer or dearer to the Nature of the Universe? Canst thou take a hot bath unless the wood for the furnace suffer a change? Couldst thou be fed, if thy food suffered no change, and can any of the needs of life be provided for apart from change? Seest thou not that a personal change is similar, and similarly necessary to the Nature of the Universe?
19. Through the universal Substance as through a rushing torrent all bodies pass on their way, united with the Whole in nature and activity, as our members are with one another.
20. I am concerned about one thing only, that I of myself do not what man's constitution does not will, or wills not now, or in a way that it wills not.
21. A little while and thou wilt have forgotten everything, a little while and everything will have forgotten thee.
22. It is a man's especial privilege to love even those who stumble. And this love follows as soon as thou reflectest that they are of kin to thee and that they do wrong involuntarily and through ignorance, and that within a little while both they and thou will be dead; and this, above all, that the man has done thee no hurt; for he has not made thy ruling Reason worse than it was before.
23. The Nature of the Whole out of the Substance of the Whole, as out of wax, moulds at one time a horse, and breaking up the mould kneads the material up again into a tree, then into a man, and then into something else; and every one of these subsists but for a moment. It is no more a hardship for the coffer to be broken up than it was for it to be fitted together.
24. An angry scowl on the face is beyond measure unnatural, and when it is often seen there, all comeliness begins at once to die away, or in the end is so utterly extinguished that it can never be rekindled at all. From this very fact try to reach the conclusion that it is contrary to reason. The consciousness of wrong-doing once lost, what motive is left for living any more?
25. Everything that thou seest will the Nature that controls the Universe change, no one knows how soon, and out of its substance make other compounds, and again others out of theirs, that the world may ever renew its youth.
26. Does a man do you a wrong? Go to and mark what notion of good and evil was his that did the wrong. Once perceive that and you will feel compassion not surprise or anger. For you have still yourself either the same notion of good and evil as he or another not unlike it. You need to forgive him then. But if you notions of good and evil are no longer such, all the more easily shall you be gracious to him that sees awry.
27. Dream not of that which thou hast not as though already thine, but of what thou hast pick out the choicest blessings, and do not forget in respect of them how eagerly thou wouldst have coveted them, had they not been thine. Albeit beware that thou do not inure thyself, by reason of this thy delight in them, to prize them so highly as to be distressed if at any time they are lost to thee.
28. Gather thyself into thyself. It is characteristic of the rational Ruling Faculty to be satisfied with its own righteous dealing and the peace which that brings.
29. Efface imagination! Cease to be pulled as a puppet by thy passions. Isolate the present. Recognize what befalls either, thee or another. Dissect and analyze all that comes under thy ken into the Causal and the Material. Meditate on thy last hour. Let the wrong thy neighbour does thee rest with him that did the wrong;
30. Do thy utmost to keep up with what is said. Let thy mind enter into the things that are done and the things that are doing them.
31. Make thy face to shine with simplicity and modesty and disregard of all that lies between virtue and vice. Love human-kind. Follow God. Says the Sage: All things by Law, but in very truth only elements. And it suffices to remember that all things are by law: there thou hast it briefly enough.
32. OF DEATH: Either dispersion if atoms; or, if a single Whole, either extinction or a change of state.
33. OF PAIN: When unbearable it destroys us, when lasting, it is bearable, and the mind safeguards its own calm by withdrawing itself, and the ruling Reason takes no hurt. As to the parts that are impaired by the pain, let them say their say about it as they can.
34. OF GLORY: Look at the minds of its votaries, their characteristics, ambitions, antipathies. Remember too that, as the sands of the sea drifting one upon the other bury the earlier deposits, so in life the earlier things are very soon hidden under what comes after.
35. [From Plato.] Dost thou think that the life of man can seem any great matter to him who has true grandeur of soul and a comprehensive outlook on all Time and all Substance? "It cannot seem so," said he. Will such a man then deem death a terrible thing? "Not in the least."
36. [From Antisthenes.] 'Tis royal to do well and be ill spoken of.
37. It is a shame that while the countenance is subject to the mind, taking its cast and livery from it, the mind cannot take its cast and its livery from itself.
38. It nought availeth to be wroth with things,
For they reck not of it.
39. Unto the deathless Gods and to us give cause for rejoicing.
40. Our lives are reaped like the ripe ears of corn,
And as one falls, another still is born.
41. Though me and both my sons the Gods have spurned,
For this too there is reason.
42. For justice and good luck shall bide with me.
43. No chorus of loud dirges, no hysteria.
44. [Citations from Plato]:
I might fairly answer such a questioner: Thou art mistaken if thou thinkest that a man, who is worth anything at all, ought to let considerations of life and death weigh with him rather than in all that he does consider but this, whether it is just or unjust and the work of a good man or a bad.
45. This, men of Athens, is the true state of the case: Wherever a man has stationed himself, deeming it the best for him, or has been stationed by his commander, there methinks he ought to stay and run every risk, taking into account neither death nor any thing else save dishonour.
46. But, my good sir, see whether nobility and goodness do not mean something other than to save and be saved; for surely a man worthy of the name must waive aside the question of the duration of life how ever extended, and must not cling basely to life, bid leaving these things in the hands of God pin his faith to the women s adage, 'his destiny no man can flee,' and thereafter consider in what way he may best live for such time as he has to live.
47. Watch the stars in their courses as one that runneth about with them therein; and think constantly upon the reciprocal changes of the elements, for thoughts on these things cleanse away the mire of our earthly life.
48. Noble is this saying of Plato's. Moreover he who discourses of men should, as if from some vantage-point above, take a bird's-eye view of the things of earth, in its gatherings, armies, husbandry, its marriages and separations, its births and deaths, the din of the law-court and the silence of the desert, barbarous races manifold, its feasts and mournings and markets, the medley of it all and its orderly conjunction of contraries.
49. Pass in review the far-off things of the past and its succession of sovranties without number. Thou canst look forward and see the future also. For it will most surely be of the same character, and it cannot but carry on the rhythm of existing things. Consequently it is all one, whether we witness human life for forty years or ten thousand. For what more shalt thou see?
50. All that is earth-born gravitates earthwards,
Dust unto dust; and all that from ether
Grows, speeds swiftly back again heavenward;
that is, either there is a breaking up of the closelylinked atoms or, what is much the same, a scattering of the impassive elements.
With meats and drinks and curious sorceries
Side-track the stream, so be they may not die.
When a storm from the Gods beats down on our bark,
At our oars then we needs must toil and complain not.
52. Better at the cross-buttock, may be, but not at shewing public spirit or modesty, or being readier for every contingency or more gracious to our neighbour if he sees awry.
53. A work that can be accomplished in obedience to that reason which we share with the Gods is attended with no fear. For no harm need be anticipated, where by an activity that follows the right road, and satisfies the demands of our constitution, we can ensure our own weal.
54. At all times and in all places it rests with thee both to be content with thy present lot as a worshipper of the Gods, and to deal righteously with thy present neighbours, and to labour lovingly at thy present thoughts, that nothing unverified should steal into them.
55. Look not about thee at the ruling Reason of others, but look with straight eyes at this, To what is Nature guiding thee? - both the Nature of the Universe, by means of what befalls thee and thy nature by means of the acts thou hast to do. But everyone must do what follows from his own constitution; and all other things have been constituted for the sake of rational beings - just as in every other case the lower are for the sake of the higher -  but the rational for their own sake.
Social obligation then is the leading feature in the constitution of man and, coming second to it, an uncompromising resistance to bodily inclinations. For it is the privilege of a rational and intelligent motion to isolate itself, and never to be overcome by the motions of sense or desire; for either kind is animal-like. But the motion of the Intelligence claims ever to have the pre-eminence and never to be mastered by them. And rightly so, for it is its nature to put all those to its own use. Thirdly, the rational constitution is free from precipitancy and cannot be misled. Let the ruling Reason then, clinging to these characteristics, accomplish a straight course and then it comes into its own.
56. Consider yourself dead, and the life you have lived till now gone; now count the rest of your days as a reprieve from death, and live according to Nature.
57. Love only what befalls thee and is spun for thee by fate. For what can be more befitting for thee?
58. In every contingency keep before thine eyes those who, when these same things befell them., were straightway aggrieved, estranged, rebellious. Where are they now? Nowhere! What then? Wouldst thou be like them? Why not leave those alien deflections to what deflects and is deflected by them, and devote thyself wholly to the question how to turn these contingencies to the best advantage? For then wilt thou make a noble use of them, and they shall be thy raw material. Only in thought and will take heed to be beautiful to thyself in all that thou doest. And remember, in rejecting the one and using the other, that the thing which matters is the aim of the action.
59. Look within. Within is the fountain of Good, ready always to well forth if thou wilt alway delve.
60. The body too should be firmly set and suffer no distortion in movement or bearing. For what the mind effects in the face, by keeping it composed and well-favoured, should be looked for similarly in the whole body. But all this must be secured without conscious effort.
61. The business of life is more akin to wrestling than dancing, for it requires of us to stand ready and unshakable against every assault however unforeseen.
62. Continually reflect, who they are whose favour able testimony thou desirest, and what their ruling Reason; for thus wilt thou not find fault with those who unintentionally offend, nor wilt thou want their testimony, when thou lookest into the inner springs of their opinions and desires.
63. Every soul, says Plato, is reft of truth against its will. Therefore it is the same also with justice and temperance and lovingkindness and every like quality. It is essential to keep this ever in mind, for it will make thee gentler towards all.
64. Whenever thou art in pain, have this reflection ready, that this is nothing to be ashamed of, nor can it make worse the mind that holds the helm. For it cannot impair it in so far as it is rational or in so far as it is social. In most pains, however, call to thy rescue even Epicurus when he says that a pain is never unbearable or interminable, so that thou remember its limitations and add nothing to it in imagination. Recollect this too that many of our every-day discomforts are really pain in disguise, such as drowsiness, a high temperature, want of appetite. When inclined to be vexed at any of these, say to thyself: I am giving in to pain.
65. See that thou never have for the inhuman the feeling which the inhuman have for human kind.
66. How do we know that Telauges may not have excelled Socrates in character? For it is not enough that Socrates died a more glorious death, and disputed more deftly with the Sophists, and with more hardi hood braved whole nights in the frost, and, when called upon to fetch the Salaminian, deemed it more spirited to disobey, and that he carried his head high as he walked - and about the truth of this one can easily judge - ; but the point to elucidate is this: what sort of soul had Socrates, and could he rest satisfied with being just in his dealings with men and religious in his attitude towards the Gods, neither resentful at the wickedness of others nor yet lackeying the ignorance of anyone, nor regarding as alien to himself anything allotted to him from the Whole, nor bearing it as a burden intolerable, nor letting his intelligence be swayed sympathetically by the affections of the flesh?
67. Nature did not make so intimate a blend in the compound as not to allow a man to isolate himself and keep his own things in his own power. For it is very possible to be a godlike man and yet not to be recognized by any. Never forget this; nor that the happy life depends on the fewest possible things; nor because thou hast been baulked in the hope of becoming skilled in dialectics and physics needest thou despair of being free and modest and unselfish and obedient to God.
68. Thou mayest live out thy life with none to constrain thee in the utmost peace of mind even though the whole world cry out against thee what they will, even though beasts tear limb from limb this plastic elay that has encased thee with its growth. For what in all this debars the mind from keeping itself in calmness, in a right judgment as to its environment, and in readiness to use all that is put at its disposal? so that the judgment can say to that which meets it: In essential substance thou art this, whatever else the common fame would have thee be. And the use can say to the object presented to it: Thee was I seeking. For the thing in hand is for me ever material for the exercise of rational and civic virtue, and in a word for the art of a man or of God. For everything that befalls is intimately connected with God or man, and is not new or difficult to deal with, but familiar and feasible.
69. This is the mark of a perfect character, to pass through each day as if it were the last, without agitation, without torpor, without pretence.
70. The Gods - and they are immortal - do not take it amiss that for a time so long they must inevitably and always put up with worthless men who are what they are and so many; nay they even befriend them in all manner of ways. But thou, though destined to die so soon, criest off, and that too though thou art one of the worthless ones thyself.
71. It is absurd not to eschew our own wickedness, which is possible, but to eschew that of others, which is not possible.
72. Whatever thy rational and civic faculty discovers to be neither intelligent nor social, it judges with good reason to fall short of its own standard.
73. When you have done well to another person and another has fared well at your hands, why go on like a fool to look for a third thing besides, that is, the credit also of having done well or a return for the same?
75. No one wearies of benefits received; and to act by the law of Nature is its own benefit. Weary not then of being benefited therein, wherein thou dost benefit others.
75. The Nature of the Whole felt impelled to the creation of a Universe; but now either all that comes into being does so by a natural sequence, or even the most paramount things, towards which the ruling Reason of the Universe feels an impulse of its own, are devoid of intelligence. Recollect this and thou wilt face many an ill with more serenity.
 Eccles. i. 9. cp. also Justin's Apol. i. 57, addressed to Pius and Marcus.
 ii. 2 etc.
 cp. ix. 41 (Epicurus).
 v. 16. cp. Dem. Olynth. iii. 32: 'άττα γαρ αν τα επιτηδ, εύματα των ανθρώπων η, τοιουτον αναγκη και το φρόνημα έχειν. cp. Clem. Alex. Strom. iv. 23.
 vi. 53.
 iv. 12.
 iii. 10; iv. 33; viii. 21.
 x. 12. See also The Sayings of Marcus (5), Capit. xxii. 4.
 vi. 38.
 iv. 45.
 iv. 4.
 ii. 12.
 Sen. de Vit. Beat. 8.
 cp. vii. 7; but see iii. 5.
 The pun may be kept by limb - rim.
 cp. iv. 20.
 vii. 33; viii. 28
 iv. 7, 39.
 vii. 14, 33.
 vi. 52; vii. 14, 33; viii. 40 etc.
 Defined by Chrysippus as "harmony of our δαίμων with God's will."
 vii. 29; cp. Ecclesiasticus, xxxvii. 3.
 iv. 43; v. 23; vi. 15.
 Referred by some (see Zeller, Stoics, p. 158, Engl. trans.) to the theory that at each cyclical regeneration of the world the same persons and events repeat themselves. But see x. 31.
 Aul. Gellius ii. 18 speaks of Epict. as recently dead; Them. Or. v. p. 63 D. implies that he was alive under the Antonines. Lucian, adv. Ind. 13 speaks of his earthenware lamp having been bought by an admirer for 3,000 drachmas.
 Fronto, ad Ver. ii. 2: Hominis maxime proprium ignoscere. cp. St. Matt. v. 44; Dio 71. 26, § 2.
 cp. St. Luke xxiii. 34.
 iv. 6.
 ii. 1; ix. 38.
 vii. 25. cp. St. Paul, Rom. ix. 20.
 vii. 23.
 cp. ii. 13; x. 30; Herodian i. 4, § 2; Dio 71. 10, § 4.
 xi. 18, § 4.
 Epict. Frag. 129.
 cp. Hor. Ep. i. 10, 31.
 iv. 3 ad init.; viii. 48.
 vii. 17; viii. 29; ix. 7.
 ii. 2 etc.
 ii. 5.
 ix. 20, 38.
 vii. 4.
 1 St. Peter, ii. 17. cp. Sen. de Vit. Beat. 15: Deum sequere. Dio Chrys. ii. 98 R.
 The reading and meaning are uncertain. The is Democritus, and we should expect atoms rather than elements to be mentioned. Leopold aptly quotes Sext. Emp. vii. 35: νόμω γλυκυ και νόμω πικρόν, νόμω θερμον νόμω ψυχρόν... ετεη δε άτομα και <κένον τε>. Fournier cleverly makes a hexameter of the words πάντα νομίστ', ετεη δε μόνα στοιχεια .
 Sen. Ep. 65 ad fin.: Mors aut finis aut transitus.
 vii. 16, 64. cp. Aesch. Frag. 310: θάρσει∙ πόνου γαρ άκρον ουκ έχει χρόνον; Diog. Laert. Epicurus xxxi. 4.
 vii. 14; viii. 40.
 vi. 59.
 Rep. 486 A.
 cp. Epict. iv. 6, § 20; 1 St. Peter, ii. 20. See Diog. Laert. Antisthenes § 4. Plutarch attributes the saying to Alexander.
 vii. 60.
 Eur. Bellerophon, Frag. 289; xi. 6. Twice quoted by Plutarch.
 Eur. Hypsipyle, Frag. 757; xi. 6. Cio. Tusc. iii. 25, § 59. Vita omnibus metenda, ut fruges. Epict. ii. 6. 14. cp. Job v. 26.
 Eur. Antiope, Frag. 207 ; xi. 6.
 sc. σύμαχον έσται Eur. Frag. 910. Twice quoted by Cicero (ad Att. vi. 1, § 8; viii. 8, § 2). cp. Arist Ach. 661.
 Plato, Apol. 28 B. Socrates is answering a question whether he is not ashamed of risking his life in a vocation such as his.
 Plato, Apol. 28 E.
 Plato, Gorgias, 512 DE.
 What follows is obviously not a saying of Plato. We must therefore refer back to what precedes, or suppose that Plato s words have dropped out.
 ix. 30. cp. Lucian, Char. § 15; Icaro-Men. § 12.
 If κατα αγελας be read, it will mean literally, drove by drove, i.e. in its aggregations; if κάτω, αγελας, the latter word must refer to gatherings of men.
 This might mean treaties of peace, but there seems to be a system of contrasted pairs.
 vi. 37.
 Ear. Ckrys. Frag. 836. Constantly quoted, cp. Lucr. ii. 991; Genesis iii. 19: γη ει και ες γην απελεύση; Ecclesiasticus xl. ll.
 Eur. Suppl. 1110.
 Plutarch, Apophth. 2. 206 E.
 v. 16, 30; xi. 10.
 cp. Sen. Ep. 12 ad fn. Quisquis dixit "Vixi," quotidie ad lucrum surgit.
 Or, taken by surprise. cp. viii. 15.
 St. John iv. 14.
 vii. 37. cp. vii. 24.
 St. Paul, Eph. vi. 12.
 vi. 59; vii. 34.
 Quoted by Epictetus (i. 63, 28 § 4) as from Plato (see Plato, Soph. 238 C; Rep. iii. 412); viii. 14; x. 30; xi. 18, § 3.
 The same word is used of Marcus by Galen (xii. 17 Kühn); Athenag. Apol. 1. 1; Lucian, Peregr. 17 ; and Aristides, ad Reg. §§ 105, 112.
 vii. 33.
 viii. 49.
 vi. 2.
 cp. vi. 29.
 Son of Pythagoras. See Diog. Laert, Pyth. 22. 26.
 Plato, Apol. 20 C; Epict. iv. 7 § 30.
 Or γενναιότερον, more honourable.
 Arist. Nub. 363 ; Plato, Symp. 221 B. The meaning of the parenthesis is not clear.
 cp. Dio Orat. iii. ad init.
 Sen. (Ep. 79) instances Democritus, Socrates, and Cato.
 Julian, Conviv. 427.21, where Marcus, asked in what consists the imitation of the Gods, says δεισθαι των ελαχιστων. cp. Lucian, Cynic. 12 : οι δ' έγγιστοι θεοις ελαχίστων δέονται. Diog. Laert. Socr. 11.
 i. 17, § 8; cp. v. 5; viii. 1.
 xi. 3. Applies accurately to the Christians. cp. i. 6; iii. 16; viii. 48, 51, § 2.
 iv. 1.
 ii. 5.
 St. Matt. v. 45.
 v. 17; ix. 42.
 v. 6 ; ix. 42. cp. Fronto, de Nep. ad fin.
 cp. St. Paul, Gal. vi. 9 ; 2 Thess. iii. 13. For the Stoic view see Stob. Ecl. ii. 188.
 iv. 45 ; ix. 28.
 Marcus means that we must consider the second alternative given above as incredible.