republic (books 6 - 10)
as he began by beating his own father and mother, so now,
if he has the power, he beats them, and will keep his dear
old fatherland or motherland, as the Cretans say, in subjec-
tion to his young retainers whom he has introduced to be their
rulers and masters. This is the end of his passions and desires.
When such men are only private individuals and before they
get power, this is their character; they associate entirely with
their own flatterers or ready tools; or if they want anything
from anybody, they in their turn are equally ready to bow
down before them: they profess every sort of affection for
them; but when they have gained their point they know them
They are always either the masters or servants and never
the friends of anybody; the tyrant never tastes of true free-
dom or friendship.
And may we not rightly call such men treacherous?
Also they are utterly unjust, if we were right in our no-
tion of justice?
Yes, he said, and we were perfectly right.
Let us, then, sum up in a word, I said, the character of the
worst man: he is the waking reality of what we dreamed.
And this is he who being by nature most of a tyrant bears
rule, and the longer he lives the more of a tyrant he becomes.
That is certain, said Glaucon, taking his turn to answer.
And will not he who has been shown to be the wickedest,
be also the most miserable? and he who has tyrannized long-
est and most, most continually and truly miserable; although
this may not be the opinion of men in general?
Yes, he said, inevitably.
And must not the tyrannical man be like the tyrannical
State, and the democratical man like the democratical State;
and the same of the others?
And as State is to State in virtue and happiness, so is man
in relation to man?
To be sure.
Then comparing our original city, which was under a king,
and the city which is under a tyrant, how do they stand as to