Even then as a skilful musician will make use of all sorts of instruments, and play on every one of them, accommodating himself in such manner as its quality can bear and as shall be fit to make it yield the sweetest sound, but yet, if he will follow Plato's counsel, will lay aside fiddles, many-stringed virginals, psalteries, and harps, preferring [p. 398] before all other the lute and bandore; in like manner, an able statesman will dexterously manage the Laconic and Lycurgian seignory or oligarchy, fitting and accommodating his companions who are of equal authority with him, and by little and little drawing and reducing them to be managed by himself. He will also carry himself discreetly in a popular state, as if he had to deal with an instrument of many and differently sounding strings, one while letting down and remitting some things, and again extending others, as he shall see his opportunity and find it most convenient for the government, to which he will vigorously apply himself, well knowing when and how he ought to resist and contradict; but yet, if he might be permitted to make his choice from amongst all sorts of government, as from so many musical instruments, he would not, if Plato's advice might be taken, choose any other but monarchy or regal authority, as being that which is indeed alone able to support that most perfect and most lofty note of virtue, without suffering him either by force or by grace and favor, to frame himself for advantage and gain. For all other sorts of governments do in a manner as much rule a statesman as he does them, no less carrying him than they are carried by him; forasmuch as he has no certain power over those from whom he has his authority, but is very often constrained to cry out in these words of the poet Aeschylus, which King Demetrius, surnamed the Town-taker, often alleged against Fortune, after he had lost his kingdom:
Thou mad'st me first, and now undoest me quite.

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