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S.A. Bent, comp. Familiar Short Sayings of Great Men. 1887.

Antigonus I.

  • [Surnamed the “one-eyed,” a general of Alexander the Great; born in Macedon about 382 B.C.; obtained after Alexander’s death Lycia and other provinces; made himself master of a large portion of Asia, but was opposed by successive coalitions, by the last of which he was defeated and slain at Ipsus in Phrygia, 301.]
  • Thy words smell of the apron.

  • To Aristodemus, supposed to be a cook’s son, who advised him to moderate his gifts and expenses.—PLUTARCH: Apothegms. So Pytheas, the orator, said of the orations of Demosthenes, “They smell of the lamp,” alluding to the underground cave to which the orator retired for study, and which was lighted by a lamp. Demosthenes retorted sharply, “Yes, indeed; but your lamp and mine, my friend, are not conscious of the same labors.”—Life of Demosthenes.
  • When urged to put a garrison into Athens, to keep the Greeks in subjection, Antigonus replied, “I have not a stronger garrison than the affections of my people.”
  • He corrected a sycophant who told him that the will of kings was the rule of justice: “No: rather justice is the rule of the will of kings.”
  • Coming up behind Antagoras the poet, who was boiling a conger-eel, the king asked, “Do you think, Antagoras, that Homer boiled congers when he wrote the deeds of Agamemnon?” To which Antagoras replied, “Do you think, O king, that Agamemnon, when he did such exploits, was peeping in his army to see who boiled congers?”—Apothegms.
  • When Thrasyllus the cynic begged a drachm of him, “That,” said Antigonus, “is too little for a king to give.”—“Then give me a talent [6,000 drachms].”—“That is too much for a cynic [i.e., a dog] to receive.”—Ibid.
  • He that teacheth the king of Macedon teacheth all his subjects.

  • Like princes, like people (qualis rex, talis grex).