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Then will you accomplish nothing of what you came for?
But if I choose the other one?
Take whichever one you choose,
And go; so that you won't have come in vain.
Bless you! Come, listen to this.
I came down here for a poet. For what purpose?
So that the city might be saved to stage its choruses.
So whichever of you will give the state some useful
advice, that's the one I think I'll take.
Now first, concerning Alcibiades, what opinion
does each of you have? For the city is in heavy labor.
What opinion does she have concerning him?
She longs for him, but hates him, and yet she wants him back.
But tell me what you two think about him.
I hate that citizen, who, to help his fatherland,
seems slow, but swift to do great harm,
of profit to himself, but useless to the state.
Well said, by Poseidon! What's your opinion?
You should not rear a lion cub in the city,
[best not to rear a lion in the city,]
but if one is brought up, accommodate its ways.
By Zeus the Savior, I can't decide.
For one has spoken cleverly, and the other one clearly.
Now each of you once more tell me your opinion
about the state, what plan you have to save her.
If you feathered Cleocritus with Cinesias,
the breezes would lift them over the ocean's plane.
That would be funny, but what does it mean?
If there were a sea battle, and then they had bottles of vinegar,
they could squirt them in the enemies' eyes.
I do know and wish to tell.
When we what faithless is do faithful hold
And what is faithful faithless...
How's that? I don't understand.
Speak with less erudition and more clarity.
If we distrusted those citizens in whom
We now place confidence, and employed
those we don't use now, we would be saved.
If we now are suffering under the present circumstances,
why wouldn't we be saved by doing the opposite?
Well done, Palamedes, you cleverest creature!
Did you discover this yourself, or did Cephisophon?
Just me; but Cephison added the vinegar bottles.
And what about you? What do you say?
As to the state, now tell me,
first, what people does she employ? The good ones, perhaps?
Where'd you get that idea?
She hates them worst of all—
But loves the scoundrels?
No, she really doesn't. She uses them perforce.
How could anyone save such a city,
that likes neither finespun wool nor scratchy goatskin?