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[14] Let me give you an instance, and let no one interrupt me till I have finished my story. You know that a day or two ago the treasury of the Parthenon1 was broken into. So the speakers in the Assembly, one and all, cried that the democracy was overthrown, that the laws were null and void, and so on. And yet, Athenians, though the culprits—mark whether my words are true—deserved death, it is not through them that the democracy is endangered. Again, a few oars were stolen. “Scourge the thieves torture them,” cried the orators; “the democracy is in danger.” But what is my opinion I say, like the others, that the thief deserves death, but not that the democracy is endangered by such means.

1 The chamber at the back of the cella of the Parthenon was used as a treasury.

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