Jerome on Naval Warfare

Those who fight in naval combat turn their rudders, draw out their oars, and prepare their iron grapples and hooks beforehand in port. They arrange the soldiers on the decks and get them used to standing with smooth footing even on a slippery surface. They do this so that what they have learned in a practice fight they do not fear in a real battle. So it is with me.

Qui navali praelio dimicaturi sunt, ante in portu et in tranquillo mari flectunt gubernacula, remos trahunt, ferreas manus, et uncos praeparant, dispositumque per tabulata militem, pendente gradu, et labente vestigio stare firmiter assuescunt, ut quod in simulacro pugnae didicerint, in vero certamine non pertimiscant. Ita et ego.

—Jerome, Vita Malchi monachi captivi 1

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