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[565c] by the calumniators, attempting to wrong them, why then,1 whether they wish it or not,2 they become in very deed oligarchs, not willingly, but this evil too is engendered by those drones which sting them.” “Precisely.” “And then there ensue impeachments and judgements and lawsuits on either side.” “Yes, indeed.” “And is it not always the way of a demos to put forward one man as its special champion and protector3 and cherish and magnify him?” “Yes, it is.” “This, then, is plain,”

1 For τότ᾽ ἢδη cf. 569 A, Phaedo 87 E, Gorg. 527 D, Laches 181 D, 184 A, and on 550 A, p. 259, note i.

2 So Aristot.Pol. 1304 b 30ἠναγκάσθησαν σύσταντες καταλῦσαι τὸν δῆμον, Isoc. xv. 318ὀλιγαρχίαν ὀνειδίζοντες . . . ἠνάγκασαν ὁμοίους γενέσθαι ταῖς αἰτίαις.

3 Cf. 562 D, Eurip.Or. 772προστάτας, Aristoph.Knights 1128. The προστάτης τοῦ δήμου was the accepted leader of the democracy. Cf. Dittenberger, S. I. G. 2nd ed. 1900, no. 476. The implications of this passage contradict the theory that the oligarchy is nearer the ideal than the democracy. But Plato is thinking of Athens and not of his own scheme. Cf. Introd. pp. xlv-xlvi.

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  • Commentary references to this page (4):
    • Sir Richard C. Jebb, Commentary on Sophocles: Oedipus Tyrannus, 1-150
    • Sir Richard C. Jebb, Commentary on Sophocles: Antigone, 1137
    • Sir Richard C. Jebb, Commentary on Sophocles: Trachiniae, 339
    • J. Adam, A. M. Adam, Commentary on Plato, Protagoras, CHAPTER XVI
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    • Herbert Weir Smyth, A Greek Grammar for Colleges, THE CASES
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