22-23: ‘The mantle ... little baby.’ According to Seneca, maturity and virtue at an early age almost predetermines a child’s premature death: "the brighter their spirits the briefer their day." To Marcia on Consolation XXIII 4. How the onset of some terminal illness in a young child could be brought on by an overabundance of virtuous qualities is hard to fathom. However, Kochanowski would find consolation in Seneca's words: "Undertake to estimate him by his virtues, not by his years, and you will see he lived long enough" (XXIII 5).