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[1260a] [1] If intemperate and cowardly he will not perform any of the duties of his position. It is evident therefore that both must possess virtue, but that there are differences in their virtue (as also there are differences between those who are by nature ruled).1 And of this we straightway find an indication in connection with the soul; for the soul by nature contains a part that rules and a part that is ruled, to which we assign different virtues, that is, the virtue of the rational and that of the irrational. It is clear then that the case is the same also with the other instances of ruler and ruled. Hence there are by nature various classes of rulers and ruled. For the free rules the slave, the male the female, and the man the child in a different way. And all possess the various parts of the soul, but possess them in different ways; for the slave has not got the deliberative part at all, and the female has it, but without full authority, while the child has it, but in an undeveloped form. Hence2 the ruler must possess intellectual virtue in completeness (for any work, taken absolutely, belongs to the master-craftsman, and rational principle is a master-craftsman); while each of the other parties must have that share of this virtue which is appropriate to them. We must suppose therefore that the same necessarily holds good of the moral virtues: all must partake of them, but not in the same way, but in such measure as is proper to each in relation to his own function. [20] Hence it is manifest that all the persons mentioned have a moral virtue of their own, and that the temperance of a woman and that of a man are not the same, nor their courage and justice, as Socrates thought,3 but the one is the courage of command, and the other that of subordination, and the case is similar with the other virtues. And this is also clear when we examine the matter more in detail, for it is misleading to give a general definition of virtue, as some do, who say that virtue is being in good condition as regards the soul or acting uprightly or the like; those who enumerate the virtues of different persons separately, as Gorgias does,4 are much more correct than those who define virtue in that way. Hence we must hold that all of these persons have their appropriate virtues, as the poet said of woman: “ Silence gives grace to woman5
” though that is not the case likewise with a man. Also the child is not completely developed, so that manifestly his virtue also is not personal to himself, but relative to the fully developed being, that is, the person in authority over him. And similarly the slave's virtue also is in relation to the master.

And we laid it down that the slave is serviceable for the mere necessaries of life, so that clearly he needs only a small amount of virtue, in fact just enough to prevent him from failing in his tasks owing to intemperance and cowardice. (But the question might be raised, supposing that what has just been said is true, will artisans also need to have virtue? for they frequently fall short in their tasks owing to intemperance. Or is their case entirely different? For the slave is a partner in his master's life, but the artisan is more remote, and only so much of virtue falls to his share as of slavery6

1 This clause seems to have been interpolated; one ms. has a marginal correction, ‘by nature rulers and ruled.’

2 In the mss. this sentence follows the next one, ‘We must suppose—function,’ and begins ‘Hence the ruler must possess moral virtue.’

3 Plat. Meno 74bff.

4 i.e. in Plato, Meno (see 7 above), where this sophist figures as a character in the dialogue; see also 3.1.9, note.

5 Soph. Aj. 293

6 i.e. his excellences as an artisan are the qualities of a subordinate (his virtues as a human being, apart from his trade, are not considered).

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