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[20] But what law is this, O judges, which he amends, or rather totally abrogates? A law framed with the greatest acuteness and the greatest diligence, which gives up the cultivator of the land to the collector of the tenths, guarded by so many securities, that neither in the corn fields, nor on the threshing floors, nor in the barns, nor while removing his corn privately, nor while carrying it away openly, can the cultivator defraud the collector of one single grain without the severest punishment. The law has been framed with such care, that it is plain that a man framed it who had no other revenues; with such acuteness that it was plain that he was a Sicilian; with such severity, that he was evidently a tyrant: by this law, however, cultivating the land was an advantageous trade for the Sicilian; for the laws for the collectors of the tenths were also drawn up so carefully that it is not possible for more than the tenth to be extorted from the cultivator against his will.


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