Chapter III.—A Friendly Conference.
But Peter, walking along leisurely while conversing, was looking out for a suitable place for a conference. And when he saw a quiet recess near the harbour, he made us sit down; and so he himself first began. Nor did he hold the old man in any contempt, nor did he look down upon him because his dress was poor and mean. He said, therefore: “Since you seem to me to be a learned man, and a compassionate, inasmuch as you have come to us, and wish that to be known to us which you consider to be good, we also wish to expound to you what things we believe to be good and right; and if you do not think them true, you will take in good part our good intentions towards you, as we do yours towards us.” While Peter was thus speaking, a great multitude assembled. Then said the old man: “Perhaps the presence of a multitude disconcerts you.” Peter replied: “Not at all, except only on this account, that I am afraid lest haply, when the truth is made manifest in the course of our discussion, you be ashamed in presence of the multitude to yield and assent to the things which you may have understood to be spoken truly.” To this the old man answered: “I am not such a fool in my old age, that, understanding what is true, I should deny it for the favour of the rabble.”