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[568b] ‘Tyrants are wise by converse with the wise.1’ He meant evidently that these associates of the tyrant are the wise.” “Yes, he and the other poets,” he said, “call the tyrant's power ‘likest God's’2 and praise it in many other ways.” “Wherefore,” said I, “being wise as they are, the poets of tragedy will pardon us and those whose politics resemble ours for not admitting them3 into our polity, since they hymn the praises of tyranny.” “I think,” he said, “that the subtle minds4

1 Cf. Theages 125 B f. The line is also attributed to Sopholces. Cf. Stemplinger, Das Plagiat in der griechischen Literatur, p. 9; Gellius xiii. 18, F. Dümmler, Akademika, p. 16. Wilamowitz, Platon, i. p. 119 thinks this an allusion to Euripides and Agathon at the court of Archelaus of Macedon. Isocrates ix. 40, like the poets, praises the tyrants, but ii. 3-5 contrasts their education unfavorably with that of the ordinary citizen. Throughout the passage he is plainly thinking of Plato.

2 Cf. Vol. I. p. 119, note c, Eurip.Tro. 1169, Isoc. ii. 5.

3 Cf. 394 D, What Plato Said, p. 561, 598 ff.

4 κομψοί is used playfully or ironically.

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