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He certainly would not.Athenian
Must not we three act thus on the present occasion?Clinias
What is it you mean?Athenian
We are about to make laws, and Law-wardens have been appointed by us; therefore, since we are in the evening of life, while those compared to us are youthful, we should not only legislate, as we say, ourselves, but also make legislators, as well as Law-wardens, of these very same men, so far as we can. [770b] Clinias
We should,—if, that is to say, we are capable of so doing.Athenian
At any rate we must try, and try hard.Clinias
By all means.Athenian
Let us address them thus:— “Beloved Keepers of the Laws, in many departments of our legislation we shall leave out a vast number of matters (for we needs must do so) ; yet, notwithstanding, all important matters, as well as the general description, we shall include, so far as we can, in our outline sketch. Your help will be required to fill in this outline; and you must listen [770c] to what I say about the aim you should have before you in doing so. Megillus, Clinias and I have often stated to one another that aim, and we agree that it is rightly stated; so we desire you to be in immediate unison with us, as our disciples, and to aim at those objects at which, as we three have agreed, the lawgiver and Law-warden ought to aim. The sum and substance of our agreement was simply this: that whatsoever be the way [770d] in which a member of our community—be he of the male or female sex, young or old,—may become a good citizen, possessed of the excellence of soul which belongs to man, whether derived from some pursuit or disposition, or from some form of diet, or from desire or opinion or mental study, to the attainment of this end all his efforts throughout the whole of his life shall be directed; and not a single person shall show himself preferring any object which impedes this aim; [770e] in fine, even as regards the State, he must allow it to be revolutionized, if it seems necessary, rather than voluntarily submit to the yoke of slavery under the rule of the worse, or else he must himself quit the State as an exile: all such sufferings men must endure rather than change to a polity which naturally makes men worse. This is what we previously agreed upon1: so do you now keep both these objects of ours in view as you revise the laws, and censure all the laws which are unable to effect them,
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