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FRAGMENTS FROM ANTONIUS MELISSA / IX. FRAGMENT OF THE TREATISE
ON MARRIAGE / X. FRAGMENTS OF OTHER LOST BOOKS
FRAGMENTS FROM ANTONIUS MELISSA.
1.--BOOK I. SERMON 17, ON CONFESSION.
Repentance then becomes capable of wiping out every sin, when on the
occurrence of the soul's fault it admits no delay, and does not let
the impulse pass on to a long space of time. For it is in this way
that evil will be unable to leave a trace in us, being plucked away
at the moment of its assault like a newly planted plant.
As the creatures called crabs are easy to catch, from their going
sometimes forward and sometimes backward; so also the soul, which at
one time is laughing, at another weeping, and at another giving way
to luxury, can do no good.
He who is sometimes grieving, and is sometimes enjoying himself and
laughing, is like a man pelting the dog of voluptuousness with
bread, who chases it in appearance, but in fact invites it to remain
2. BOOK I. SERMON 51, ON PRAISE.
Some flatterers were congratulating a wise man. He said to them, If
you stop praising me, I think myself something great after your
departure; but if you do not stop praising me, I guess my own
Feigned praise is worth less than true censure.
3. BOOK II. SERMON 46, ON THE LAZY AND INDOLENT.
To the weak and infirm, what is moderate appears excessive.
4.BOOK II. SERMON 55, ON YOUR NEIGHBOUR--THAT YOU ARE TO BEAR HIS
The reproof that is given with knowledge is very faithful. Sometimes
also the knowledge of those who are condemned is found to be the
most perfect demonstration.
5. BOOK IL SERMON 74, ON THE PROUD, AND THOSE DESIROUS OF
To the man who exalts and magnifies himself is attached the quick
transition and the fall to low estate, as the divine word teaches.
6. BOOK II. SERMON 87.
Pure speech and a spotless life are the throne and true temple of
IX.--FRAGMENT OF THE TREATISE ON MARRIAGE.
MAXIMUS, SERMON III. P. 538, ON MODESTY AND CHASTITY. ALSO, JOHN
OF DAMASCUS, BOOK III.--PARALLEL CHAP. 27.
It is not only fornication, but also the giving in marriage
prematurely, that is called fornication; when, so to speak, one not
of ripe age is given to a husband, either of her own accord or by
X.--FRAGMENTS OF OTHER LOST BOOKS.
MAXIMUS, SERMON 2.--JOHN OF DAMASCUS, II. CHAP. 70.--ANTONIUS
MELISSA, BOOK I. SERMON 52.
Flattery is the bane of friendship. Most men are accustomed to pay
court to the good fortune of princes, rather than to the princes
MAXIMUS, SERMON 13, P. 574.--ANTONIUS MELISSA, SERMON 32, P. 45,
AND SERMON 33, P. 57.
The lovers of frugality shun luxury as the bane of soul and body.
The possession and use of necessaries has nothing injurious in
quality, but it has in quantity above measure. Scarcity of food is a
MAXIMUS, SERMON 52, P. 654.--ANTONIUS MELISSA, BOOK I. SERMON 54.
The vivid remembrance of death is a check upon diet; and when the
diet is lessened, the passions are diminished along with it.
MAXIMUS, SERMON 55, P. 661.
Above all, Christians are not allowed to correct with violence the
delinquencies of sins. For it is not those that abstain from
wickedness from compulsion, but those that abstain from choice, that
God crowns. It is impossible for a man to be steadily good except by
his own choice. For he that is made good by compulsion of another is
not good; for he is not what he is by his own choice. For it is the
freedom of each one that makes true goodness and reveals real
wickedness. Whence through these dispositions God contrived to make
His own disposition manifest.