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[692a] of the royal strain with the temperate potency of age, by making the power of the eight-and-twenty elders of equal weight with that of the kings in the greatest matters. Then your “third saviour,”1 seeing your government still fretting and fuming, curbed it, as one may say, by the power of the ephors, which was not far removed from government by lot. Thus, in your case, according to this account, owing to its being blended of the right elements and possessed of due measure, the kingship not only survived itself but ensured the survival of all else.

1 Theopompus, king of Sparta about 750 B.C. The institution of the Ephorate is by some ascribed to him (as here), by others to Lycurgus. Cp. Aristot. Pol. 1313a 19ff.

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