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[467d] and shrewd judges of which campaigns are hazardous and which not?” “Presumably,” he said. “They will take the boys with them to the one and avoid the others?” “Rightly.” “And for officers, I presume,” said I, “they will put in charge of them not those who are good for nothing else but men who by age and experience are qualified to serve at once as leaders and as caretakers of children.” “Yes, that would be the proper way.” “Still, we may object, it is the unexpected1 that happens to many in many cases.” “Yes, indeed.” “To provide against such chances, then, we must wing2 the children from the start so that if need arises they may fly away and escape.”

1 παρὰ δόξαν: cf. Thucydides i. 122ἥκιστα πόλεμος ἐπὶ ῥητοῖς χωρεῖ, ii. 11, iii. 30, iv. 102, vii. 61.

2 πτεροῦν: metaphorical. In Aristophanes Birds 1436-1438 literal.

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