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“Yes, Socrates,” cried Pericles, “and I wonder how our city can have become so degenerate.”

“My own view,” replied Socrates, “is that the Athenians, as a consequence of their great superiority, grew careless of themselves, and have thus become degenerate, much as athletes who are in a class by themselves and win the championship easily are apt to grow slack and drop below their rivals.

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