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[1282a] [1] and that this is the case similarly with regard to the other arts and crafts. Hence just as a court of physicians must judge the work of a physician, so also all other practitioners ought to be called to account before their fellows. But ‘physician’ means both the ordinary practitioner, and the master of the craft, and thirdly, the man who has studied medicine as part of his general education (for in almost all the arts there are some such students, and we assign the right of judgement just as much to cultivated amateurs as to experts). Further the same might be thought to hold good also of the election of officials, for to elect rightly is a task for experts—for example, it is for experts in the science of mensuration to elect a land-surveyor and for experts in navigation to choose a pilot; for even though in some occupations and arts some laymen also have a voice in appointments, yet they certainly do not have more voice than the experts. Hence according to this argument the masses should not be put in control over either the election of magistrates or their audit. But perhaps this statement is not entirely correct, both for the reason stated above,1 in case the populace is not of too slavish a character (for although each individual separately will be a worse judge than the experts, the whole of them assembled together will be better or at least as good judges), and also because about some things the man who made them would not be the only nor the best judge, in the case of professionals whose products come within the knowledge of laymen also: [20] to judge a house, for instance, does not belong only to the man who built it, but in fact the man who uses the house (that is, the householder) will be an even better judge of it, and a steersman judges a rudder better than a carpenter, and the diner judges a banquet better than the cook.

This difficulty then might perhaps be thought to be satisfactorily solved in this way. But there is another connected with it: it is thought to be absurd that the base should be in control over more important matters than the respectable; but the audits and the elections of magistrates are a very important matter, yet in some constitutions, as has been said, they are assigned to the common people, for all such matters are under the control of the assembly, yet persons of a low property-assessment and of any age take part in the assembly and the council and sit on juries, whereas treasury officials, generals and the holders of the highest magistracies are drawn from among persons of large property. Now this difficulty also may be solved in a similar way; for perhaps these regulations also are sound, since it is not the individual juryman or councillor or member of the assembly in whom authority rests, but the court, the council and the people, while each of the individuals named (I mean the councillor, the members of assembly and the juryman) is a part of those bodies. Hence justly the multitude is sovereign in greater matters, for the popular assembly, the council and the jury-court are formed of a number of people, and also the assessed property of all these members collectively is more than that of the magistrates holding great offices individually or in small groups.

Let these points therefore be decided in this manner.

1 See 6.4.

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