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[209] Suppose, gentlemen of the jury, that these men—never may it so befall, as indeed it never will—made themselves masters of the State, along with Meidias and others like him; and suppose that one of you, who are men of the people and friends to popular government, having offended one of these men,—not so seriously as Meidias offended me, but in some slighter degree—came before a jury packed with men of that class; what pardon, what consideration do you think he would receive? They would be prompt with their favour, would they not? Would they heed the petition of one of the common folk? Would not their first words be, “The knave! The sorry rascal! To think that he should insult us and still draw breath! He ought to be only too happy if he is permitted to exist”?

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