" 'I was thinking,' Xerxes replied; 'and it came to my mind how pitifully short human life is - for of all these thousands of men, not one will be alive in a hundred years' time.'
'Yet,' said Artabanus, 'we suffer sadder things in life even than that. Short as it is, there is not a man in the world, who is happy enough not to wish - not once only but again and again - to be dead rather than alive. Troubles come, diseases afflict us; and this makes life, despite its brevity seem all too long. So heavy is the burden of it that death is a refuge which we all desire, and it is common proof amongst us that God who gave us a taste of this world's sweetness has been jealous in his giving.' "