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This very elliptical sentence must apparently be thus filled up. καὶ εἰ ἀμφίβολος ( νόμος, χρηστέον αὐτῷ from §§ 3, 4, or λεκτέον), ὥστε (so as to, in such a way as to...) στρέφειν (αὐτόν) καὶ ὁρᾷν κ.τ.λ. ‘and if the law (which we have to interpret) be ambiguous, (we must deal with it, treat it, or interpret it) in such a way as to wrest (twist) it (in either direction according as it suits our purpose) and to see to which of the two constructions either strict justice (the letter of the law) or expediency, i. e. equity, (whichever of the two we are arguing for) will adapt itself, and then employ that’. τὸ συμφέρον here stands for ‘equity’, because by accommodating itself to the varying circumstances of particular cases it is more ‘generally serviceable’ than the stiff unbending letter of the law. ἀγωγή (τοῦ νόμου) ‘leading’, ‘guiding’ of the law. This ‘leading of the law’ represents the law itself as leading those who have to use it by the ‘interpretation’ or ‘construction’ that may be put upon it in one or another direction, and corresponds exactly to ductus in the phrase ductus litterarum. The following passage of the Politics, VI (IV) 5, 1292 b 12, throws light upon this use of ἀγωγή, and as they mutually illustrate one another I will quote it entire. οὐ δεῖ δὲ λανθάνειν ὅτι πολλαχοῦ συμβέβηκεν ὥστε τὴν μὲν πολιτείαν τὴν κατὰ τοὺς νόμους μὴ δημοτικὴν εἶναι, διὰ δὲ τὸ ἦθος καὶ τὴν ἀγωγὴν πολιτεύεσθαι δημοτικῶς, ὁμοίως δὲ πάλιν παρ᾽ ἄλλοις τὴν μὲν κατὰ τοὺς νόμους εἶναι πολιτείαν δημοτικωτέραν, τῇ δ̓ ἀγωγῇ καὶ τοῖς ἔθεσιν ὀλιγαρχεῖσθαι μᾶλλον. Here again the ἀγωγή is τοῦ νόμου, the leading, direction given to, or interpretation put upon the law in the actual practice of the society. The difference which sometimes arises between the theory of the constitution as laid down in the laws, and the actual administration and conduct of the government, is accounted for, first, by the character and habits of the people, either natural to them or as cultivated and formed by education; and secondly, by the ‘direction’ they give to, or the ‘interpretation’ they put upon, the actually existing laws, in accordance with the character which they wish to give to the practical administration of the government. Compare καθ᾽ αὑτοὺς ἄγουσι τὴν πολιτείαν, c. 11, 1296 a 26, and Thuc. II 65, of Pericles' direction of the state policy, καὶ οὐκ ἤγετο μᾶλλον ὑπ᾽ αὐτοῦ (τοῦ πλήθους) αὐτὸς ἦγε.

ἀμφίβολος] III 5. 4, ἀμφίβολα, ‘ambiguous phrases’. Rhet. ad Alex. 25 (26). 1, διαφεύγων τὸ ἀμφίβολον, opposed to οἰκεῖα ὀνόματα. Ib. 36 (37). 22, 29. Comp. note on III 5. 4.

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