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Basil to Libanius.

I am dissuaded from writing often to you, learned as you are, by my timidity and my ignorance.  But your persistent silence is different.  What excuse can be offered for it?  If any one takes into account that you are slow to write to me, living as you do in the midst of letters, he will condemn you for forgetfulness of me.  He who is ready at speaking is not unprepared to write.  And if a man so endowed is silent, it is plain that he acts either from forgetfulness or from contempt.  I will, however, requite your silence with a greeting.  Farewell, most honoured sir.  Write if you like.  If you prefer it, do not write.

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