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1 Ironical. Quite fanciful is Dümmler's supposition (Kleine Schriften, i, p. 99) that this passage was meant as destructive criticism of Isocrates Panegyricus and that Antidosis 62 is a reply. Plato is obviously thinking of practical politicians rather than of Isocrates.
3 For the list cf. Pindar, Pyth. iii. 50-54.οὐδ᾽ αὖ emphasizes the transition to superstitious remedies in which Plato doesn't really believe. Cf. his rationalizing interpretations of ἐπῳδαί, Charmides 157 A, Theaetetus 149 C.Laws 933 A-B is to be interpreted in the spirit of the observation in Selden's Table Talk: “The law against witches does not prove that there be any but it punishes the malice,” etc. [Demosthenes] xxv. 80 is sceptical.
4 Cf. any lexicon, Shakespeare 1 Henry VI. v. iii. 2 “Now help, ye charming spells and periapts,” and Plutarch's story of the women who hung them on Pericles' neck on his death-bed.
5 Cf. 480 A, 354 A.
7 We return from the illustration to its application to the state.
8 Cf. 497 B, Aristotle Politics 1301 b 11. Cf. the obvious imitation in the (probably spurious)Epistle vii. 330 E. For the thought, from the point of view of an enemy of democracy, cf. the statement in [Xenophon]Rep. Ath. 3. 9, that the faults of Athens cannot be corrected while she remains a democracy. The Athenians naturally guarded their constitution and viewed with equal suspicion the idealistic reformer and the oligarchical reactionary.
9 Cf. , p. 65 note d, and Laws 923 B. The phraseology here recalls Gorgias 517 B, Aristophanes Knights 46-63. Cf. “Plato's Laws and the Unity of Plato's Thought,”Class Phil. vol. ix. (Oct. 1914) p. 363, n. 3.
10 Almost technical. Cf. 538 B.
11 Here “serve,” not “flatter.”
12 This word εὐχέρεια is often misunderstood by lexicons and commentators. It is of course not “dexterity” (L. and S.) nor yet probably “complaisance,” nor yet “humanitas” or “Gutmütigkeit” as Adam and Schneider think. It expresses rather the light-heartedness with which such politicians rush in where wiser men fear to tread, which is akin to the lightness with which men plunge into crime. Cf. Laws 690 Dτῶν ἐπὶ νόμων θέσιν ἰόντων ῥᾳδίως and 969ἀνδρειότατος. Plato's political physician makes “come out of that” a precondition of his treatment. Cf. Laws 736-737, Politicus 299 A-B, 501 A, 540 E, Epistle vii. 330 C-D, and the story in Aelian. V.H. ii. 42. of Plato's refusal to legislate for the Arcadians because they would not accept an equalization of property.
13 Cf. Euthyphro 2 C-D, Gorgias 513 B, Politicus 275 C and 292 D.
14 Plato often condescendingly and half ironically pardons psychologically inevitable errors. Cf. 366 C, Phaedrus 269 B, Euthydemus 306 C.
15 For οὐκ αὖ cf. 393 D, 442 A, Theaetetus 161 A, Class. Phil. vol. xxiii. pp. 285-287.ἔγωγε above concurs with ἄγασαι, ignoring the irony.πλήν γε etc. marks dissent on one point. This dissent is challenged, and is withdrawn by οὐκ αὖ . . . τοῦτο γε（οἶμαι).
16 τῷ ὄντι points the application of the proverbial ὕδραν τέμνειν, which appears in this now trite metaphorical use for the first time here and in Euthydemus 297 C. Cf. my note on Horace iv. 4. 61. For the thought cf. Isocrates vii. 40, Macrob.Sat. ii. 13 “leges bonae ex malis moribus procreantur,” Arcesilaus apudStobaeus Flor. xliii. 981οὕτω δὴ καὶ ὅπου νόμοι πλεῖστοι ἐκεῖ καὶ ἀδικίαν εἶναι μεγίστην, Theophrastus apudStobaeus Flor. xxxvii. 21ὀλίγων οἱ ἀγαθοὶ νόμων δέονται.
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