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Anabasis

is idiomatic Greek for a journey inland from the sea. “Going up,” literally, because if you’re in Greece three thousand years ago the sea is always down.

So one ascends. The country is scrubby, hot and full of bees. No need to watch for wolves on the hilltops: agriculture has done its job and killed all predators but one. The only risk on this journey is sabotage.

The risk is greatest when alone.

Xenophon, Leonidas, Ulysses: each followed greatness into nothing. Thus always the furious Greek? Strip to your sandals; drop your spear and helmet. You need only carry your doom.

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