Letter CLXXXVI. 2605
To Antipater, the governor. 2606
Philosophy is an excellent thing, if only for this, that it even heals its disciples at small cost; for, in philosophy, the same thing is both dainty and healthy fare. I am told that you have recovered your failing appetite by pickled cabbage. Formerly I used to dislike it, both on account of the proverb, 2607 and because it reminded me of the poverty that went with it. Now, however, I am driven to change my mind. I laugh at the proverb when I see that cabbage is such a “good nursing mother of men,” 2608 and has restored our governor to the vigour of youth. For the future I shall think nothing like cabbage, not even Homers lotus, 2609 not even that ambrosia, 2610 whatever it was, which fed the Olympians.
Placed in 374.223:2606
cf. Letter cxxxvii.223:2607
The Greek proverb was δὶς κράμβη θάνατος, vide Politian. Miscel. 33. cf. “Occidit miseros crambe repetita magistros.” Juv. vii. 154.223:2608
κουροτρόφος. Ithaca is ἀγαθὴ κουροτρόφος, because it bore and bred hardy men. Od. ix. 27.223:2609
Od. ix. 93.223:2610
Od. v. 93.