the power of one word.




Philip II of Macedon was the father of Alexander the Great. His son would one day conquer the (known) world, but Philip got things started by conquering all the city-states of ancient Greece. Well, almost all. Sparta, on the southernmost tip of the land Philip sought to control, was a strict military culture known for its brutal martial prowess.

In 346 B.C, Philip sent a message to intimidate the Spartans. “You are advised to submit without further delay, for if I bring my army on your land, I will destroy your farms, slay your people and raze your city.” The term “Laconic wit,” comes from the Spartan region Laconia.

The Spartans employed it to great effect with their one word response to Philip: “If.”

Philip never attempted to conquer Sparta.

48 responses »

  1. Threats…without back up. Reminds me of dealing with children and making only promises that you can fulfill to garner trust. The questions to ask are; Would you like to go to bed now or five minutes from now? Not; Would you like to go to bed now? Because if the child answers no, you should honor that choice. Because if you don’t then you are only showing the child that you are a bully to force your authority. I know as a parent we get tired too, and sometimes we just forget that children are little people.

    I hope you got to go on your boat tour. I did. On the Kentucky River. The storm did cause power outages. But that wasn’t my net issue. That it turns out was an incomplete up grade that just didn’t reach my floor. So I’ll work from the lobby for the next few days. A minor inconvenience.

    Life after all is an adventure.

    Liked by 2 people

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