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ἐν οἷς=‘among whom’ is surely better and more natural than ἐν αἷς, which Richards has conjectured. The tyrant lays aside the mask in his own family.

τραγικῆς σκευῆς=“theatrical garb” (D. and V.) again betrays “a feeling of the kinship between the shows of tyranny and those of tragedy” (Bosanquet: cf. VIII 568 A note). Dionysius I was himself a writer of tragedies, and notoriously jealous—so we are told—of his poetical reputation (Grote X pp. 302 ff.): but it would be frigid to suppose that this was in Plato's mind when he wrote the word τραγικῆς.

αὖ τοῖς was first conjecturally restored by Heindorf (on Soph. 262 A), following Ficinus, instead of the vulgate αὐτοῖς. It has since been found to be the reading of most of the other MSS as well as A.

κελεύοιμεν. The singular κελεύοιμι (q Flor. U) is still read by Stallbaum. There is surely no reason why Socrates should not associate Glauco with himself in this hypothetical invitation.

ὀρθότατ̓ ἂν -- προκαλοῖο forms the apodosis to what Socrates has said (cf. 582 E), but refers “ad initium potius quam ad exitum orationis Socraticae” (Schneider. Cf. V 465 E note). Glauco admits most fully the claim that Plato has earned a right to speak with authority on this subject.

προσποιησώμεθα κτλ. Plato cannot appear in propria persona, so that it is necessary for Socrates and Glauco to pretend that they also belong to the number of those ‘who would be able to judge’ and have met with τύραννοι and τυραννικοί. The fiction is rendered necessary by the laws of dialogue as ἵναἐρωτῶμεν frankly states. We must beware of supposing that it is Plato who ‘pretends’: Plato does not pretend, but is δυνατὸς μὲν κρῖναι, ξυνῳκηκὼς δὲ ἐν τῷ αὐτῷ κτλ. (577 A). Richards objects to ἄν with δυνατῶν, and it is certainly unusual to find ἄν with an adjective in this way. But as δυνατῶν can itself take an infinitive, it hardly differs from the participle δυναμένων, and the suggestions δυνατῶν ὄντων, or δυνατῶν ἂν <ὄντων>, are unattractive. I should add in conclusion that nearly all critics are now agreed in holding that Plato throughout the whole of this passage is referring to his own experience of Dionysius I: see for example Susemihl Gen. Entw. II pp. 240, 294 ff., Teichmüller Lit. Fehd. I p. 110, Hirmer Entst. u. Komp. d. Pl. Pol. pp. 667 ff., with Zeller^{4} II p. 413 note 1. The date of Plato's first visit to the elder Dionysius was in or near 388 B.C. Compare Epp. VII 324 A—327 D. Whether this epistle be genuine or not, the visit is abundantly attested, as Zeller proves (l.c. pp. 413—415 notes), and it is strange that J. and C. should still have doubts upon the subject. See also on V 473 D, VI 496 B, 499 B and infra 579 B note

577B - 580C Like the city whose counterpart he is, the tyrannical man is in reality a slave, powerless to work his will, penniless and insatiate, full of fear and lamentation. A still greater depth of misery awaits him if he becomes a tyrant. Imagine the piteous plight of one who is suddenly transported into a solitary place where he is at the mercy of his own slaves, and surrounded by free neighbours who make common cause with them! Such is the position of the tyrant, a prisoner in his own palace, tormented by longings which he can never appease. To sum up, he is the supreme embodiment of vice and misery, and the longer he holds sway, the worse he becomes.

Let us now give judgment. In respect of virtue and happiness the different individuals stand as follows: (1) Kingly, (2) Timocratical, (3) Oligarchical, (4) Democratical, (5) Tyrannical. He who is most kingly is best and happiest, he who is most a tyrant over himself and city, worst and most miserable,—whether their true character be hidden from men and gods, or not.

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