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Pages of republic (books 6 - 10)



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republic (books 6 - 10)   


That is most true, he said.

And they are miserly because they have no means of openly
acquiring the money which they prize; they will spend that
which is another man's on the gratification of their desires,
stealing their pleasures and running away like children from
the law, their father: they have been schooled not by gentle
influences but by force, for they have neglected her who is the
true muse, the companion of reason and philosophy, and have
honored gymnastics more than music.

Undoubtedly, he said, the form of government which you
describe is a mixture of good and evil.

Why, there is a mixture, I said; but one thing, and one thing
only, is predominantly seen--the spirit of contention and am-
bition; and these are due to the prevalence of the passionate or
spirited element.

Assuredly, he said.

Such is the origin and such the character of this State, which
has been described in outline only; the more perfect execution
was not required, for a sketch is enough to show the type of
the most perfectly just and most perfectly unjust; and to go
through all the States and all the characters of men, omitting
none of them, would be an interminable labor.

Very true, he replied.

Now what man answers to this form of government--how
did he come into being, and what is he like?

I think, said Adeimantus, that in the spirit of contention
which characterizes him, he is not unlike our friend Glaucon.

Perhaps, I said, he may be like him in that one point; but
there are other respects in which he is very different.

In what respects?

He should have more of self-assertion and be less cultivated
and yet a friend of culture; and he should be a good listener but
no speaker. Such a person is apt to be rough with slaves, un-
like the educated man, who is too proud for that; and he
will also be courteous to freemen, and remarkably obedient to
authority; he is a lover of power and a lover of honor; claiming
to be a ruler, not because he is eloquent, or on any ground of
that sort, but because he is a soldier and has performed feats of
arms; he is also a lover of gymnastic exercises and of the chase.

Yes, that is the type of character that answers to timocracy.

Such a one will despise riches only when he is young; but
as he gets older he will be more and more attracted to them,
because he has a piece of the avaricious nature in him, and is
not single-minded toward virtue, having lost his best guardian.

Who was that? said Adeimantus.

Philosophy, I said, tempered with music, who comes and
takes up her abode in a man, and is the only saviour of his vir-
tue throughout life.

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