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It will probably be from the whole of Crete and of the rest of the Greeks, they seem most ready to admit people from the Peloponnese as fellow-settlers. For it is quite true, as you said just now, that we have some here from Argos, amongst them being the most famous of our clans, the Gortynian, which is a colony from Gortys, in the Peloponnese. [708b] Athenian
It would not be equally easy for States to conduct settlements in other cases as in those when, like a swarm of bees, a single clan goes out from a single country and settles, as a friend coming from friends, being either squeezed out by lack of room or forced by some other such pressing need. At times, too, the violence of civil strife might compel a whole section of a State to emigrate; and on one occasion an entire State went into exile, when it was totally crushed by an overpowering attack. [708c] All such cases are in one way easier to manage, as regards settling and legislation, but in another way harder. In the case where the race is one, with the same language and laws, this unity makes for friendliness, since it shares also in sacred rites and all matters of religion; but such a body does not easily tolerate laws or polities which differ from those of its homeland. Again, where such a body has seceded owing to civil strife due to the badness of the laws, but still strives to retain, owing to long habit, the very customs which caused its former ruin, then, because of this, it proves a difficult and intractable subject for the person who has control of its settlement and its laws. [708d] On the other hand, the clan that is formed by fusion of various elements would perhaps be more ready to submit to new laws, but to cause it to share in one spirit and pant (as they say) in unison like a team of horses would be a lengthy task and most difficult. But in truth legislation and the settlement of States are tasks that require men perfect above all other men in goodness.Clinias
Very probably; but tell us still more clearly the purport of these observations. [708e] Athenian
My good Sir, in returning to the subject of lawgivers in our investigation, I may probably have to cast a slur on them; but if what I say is to the point, then there will be no harm in it. Yet why should I vex myself? For practically all human affairs seem to be in this same plight.Clinias
What is it you refer to?Athenian
I was on the point of saying that no man ever makes laws,
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