One loyal friend is worth 10,000 relatives, said Euripides. Aristotle thought friendship the best thing in the world. Saint Augustine was devasted by th death of a friend, All that we had done together was now a grim ordeal without himâ. For men as different as Dr Johnson, Coleridge and Cardinal Newman friendship was a great, moral love. For Cirero it was a foundation of social order. For Burke good men must cultivate friendship. To try to lead a good life on one's own is arrogant and dangerous. In past ages business thrived on the trust of friends; armies won battles on the loyalty of men to their comrades and people were attracted to and schooled in medicine, law and academe by friendship. This friendship of the past was high friendship, a friendship of pleasure but also of shared moral life.
In Losing Friends, Dr Digby Anderson contrasts the classical notion of high friends