ANDREIA is ‘courage‘ and it designates one of the four cardinal virtues of many popular, widespread, traditional Greek philosophies. The other three are wisdom (<phronesis>), moderation (<sophrosyne>) and justice/righteousness (<dikayosine>). There is no contradiction in listing, among the four cardinal virtues, either temperance/moderation and courage/manliness. In fact courage does not mean temerity or effrontery. In other words, the recommendation of philosophers is never to be coward, on one side, nor too audacious, on the other side.

There are several other words that cover some aspects that are part of <andreia>. Here we can mention terms like forbearance, strength, endurance and the ability to confront fear, uncertainty and intimidation.

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The North star of any philosophical behavior always is a measured attitude guided by wisdom and righteousness. Therefore there is very little room for thoughtlessness (which would deny the very idea of a conduct guided by the best use of our mind). As a result, the difficulty is not only the implementation of <andreia> in everyday life. But also the understanding of what this virtue really is in comparison to rashness or to cowardice. Hence <andreia> is ‘courage’, but in a very specific way.

All in all, is not surprising to see that such a virtue is quite rare in our societies. Boldness and impudence are certainly much more common. The same with weakness and pusillanimity. This is very often the case with attributes indicating a point of balance between two extremes. An extreme is strong and easy to grasp while the point of balance might frequently result elusive.