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[461a] “That is,” he said, “the maturity and prime for both of body and mind.” “Then, if anyone older or younger than the prescribed age meddles with procreation for the state, we shall say that his error is an impiety and an injustice, since he is begetting for the city a child whose birth, if it escapes discovery, will not be attended by the sacrifices and the prayers which the priests and priestesses and the entire city prefer at the ceremonial marriages, that ever better offspring may spring from good sires1 and from fathers helpful to the state

1 Cf. Horace, Odes iv. 4. 29.

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