previous next
[754a] a beginning that is well made.

Clinias
Very true.

Athenian
Let us not then wittingly leave this first step unmentioned, nor fail to make it quite clear to ourselves how it is to be brought about. I, however, am by no means fertile in resource, save for one statement which, in view of the present situation, it is both necessary and useful to make.

Clinias
What statement is that?

Athenian
I assert that the State for whose settlement we are planning has nobody in the way of parents except [754b] that State which is founding it, though I am quite aware that many of the colony-States often have been, and will be, at feud with those which founded them. But now, on the present occasion, just as a child in the present helplessness of childhood—in spite of the likelihood of his being at enmity with his parents at some future date—loves his parents and is loved by them, and always flies for help to his kindred and finds in them, and them alone, his allies,—so now, as I assert, this relationship exists ready-made for the Cnosians towards the young State, owing to their care for it, and for the young State [754c] towards the Cnosians. I state once more, as I stated just now,1—for there is no harm in duplicating a good statement—that the Cnosians must take a share in caring for all these matters, choosing out not less than 100 men of those who have come into the colony, the oldest and best of them they are able to select; and of the Cnosians themselves let there be another hundred. This joint body2 must, I say, go to the new State and arrange in common that the magistrates [754d] be appointed according to the laws and be tested after appointment. When this has been done, then the Cnosians must dwell in Cnosus, and the young State must endeavor by its own efforts to secure for itself safety and success. As to the men who belong to the thirty and seven,3 let us select them for the following purposes: First, they shall act as Wardens of the laws, and secondly as Keepers of the registers in which every man writes out for the officials the amount of his property, [754e] omitting four minae if he be of the highest property-class, three if he be of the second class, two if he be of the third, and one if he be of the fourth class. And should anyone be proved to possess anything else beyond what is registered, all such surplus shall be confiscated; and in addition he shall be liable to be brought to trial by anyone who wishes to prosecute—a trial neither noble nor fair of name, if he be convicted of despising law because of lucre. So he that wishes shall charge him with profiteering, and prosecute him by law before the Law-wardens themselves; and if the defendant be convicted, he shall take no share of the public goods,

1 Plat. Laws 752d.

2 This body of 200 is to be appointed, as a temporary expedient, to give the State a start by selecting its first necessary officials.

3 See above, Plat. Laws 752e.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

load focus Greek (1903)
hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Visualize the most frequently mentioned Pleiades ancient places in this text.

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: