Chapter VII.—The Way Cleared.
Then the old man answered: “Whether it pleases you, my son, to speak first, or whether you prefer that I should speak, makes no difference, especially with those who discuss in a friendly spirit. However, speak you first, and I will gladly hear; and I wish you may be able even to follow out those things that are to be spoken by me, and to put in opposition to them those things that are contrary to them, and from the comparison of both to show the truth.” Niceta answered: “If you wish it, I can even state your side of the argument, and then answer it.” Then the old man: “Show me first how you can know what I have not yet spoken, and so I shall believe that you can follow out my side of the argument.” Then Niceta: “Your sect is manifest, even by the proposition which you have laid down, to those who are skilled in doctrines of this sort; and its consequence is certain. And because I am not ignorant what are the propositions of the philosophers, I know what follows from those things which you have propounded; especially because I have frequented the schools of Epicurus in preference to the other philosophers. But my brother Aquila has attended more to the Pyrrhonists, and our other brother to the Platonists and Aristotelians; therefore you have to do with learned hearers.” 811 Then said the old man: “You have well and logically informed us how you perceived the things that follow from the statements which have been enunciated. But I professed something more than the tenet of Epicurus; for I introduced the genesis, and asserted that it is the cause of all the doings of men.”
[Comp. Homily XIII. 7.—R.]