More of Cicero, Milo and the Brains versus Brawn Narrative

I’m continuously adding to the page of classical sources of the Milo stories and as I do so, the narrative of Milo as the big dumb jock is becoming more and more apparent. So far, in my reading, Cicero is the biggest proponent:

Whoever has a reasonable portion of strength, and exerts it to the best advantage will feel no great need of more. Milo is said to have walked the race course at Olympia, carrying a live bull on his shoulders. Which would you rather have, strength like his, or a genius like that of Pythagora? Employ the boon of bodily vigor well while it remains; when it is gone, do not bewail it, unless indeed, young men should crave boyhood, and the middle-aged should covet youth. Cicero, Cato the Elder: Or, a Treatise on Old Age 10.33

While there may be young men out there who do not crave boyhood, I can guarantee that almost all middle-aged men covet youth at one point or another. Perhaps we shouldn’t, but I know I often do.

*As I work on this project, I intend to do individual posts on new quotes I add. All quotes will be archives on the main sources page.


About seanv2

Scholar, gentleman, jock. I run the website Milo and the Calf. There you will find the Boston Qualifier Questionnaire where runners share their stories of qualifying for the Boston Marathon. You'll also find my thoughts on endurance sports, ancient history, Judaism, and hundreds of book reviews.
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