Skip to main content

Full text of "Political Science Of The State"

See other formats

ARISTOCRACY.                                         9
can arise in a ruling faction, of however few it may consist,
as among the thirty at Athens Charicles gained his ascen-
dency by being a demagogue among the thirty [B. C, 404],
and Phrynichus likewise among the four hundred. [B. o.
411.] Again, those are oligarchic demagogues who flatter
the people, as at Larissa the magistrates, c&\\z&politophylaccs,
because the people chose them, played the demagogue
towards the people. The same is true of oligarchies where
the class from which the public officers are selected do not
choose the officers, but while large properties or select clubs
furnish the officers, the heavy armed soldiers or the demus
chose them, as in Abydus. So where the courts of justice
are not filled by the more privileged class of citizens, the pol-
ity is changed by demagogical arts used in reference to trials.
There are changes a^uin when the power is restricted to a
small number, in which case those who claim equality are
forced to call the people to their aid. Changes occur, also,
where members of the oligarchy by riotous living waste their
own property ; for such persons are ready for innovations in
the polity, and either themselves try to gain tyrannical power
or put others up to the gaining of it, ns Hipparmus put Dio~
nysius [the elder] forward, (Pol., via. or v., $, $$ 1-6),
Sometimes they [z. e.t these ruined members of the oligarchy]
try to make some political change, sometimes to steal the
public treasure, from which dissensions arise among the
thieves ; or else those who rise up in arms against the thieves
effect a revolution. A harmonious oligarchy, however, is
not easily destroyed by itself, as the polity of the Pharsalians
proves, for they, though few, are masters of many because
they treat one another well Oligarchies are destroyed
again when a second rises up within a first This takes place
when all the politically qualified being but a few, all of those
few are not admitted to a participation in the principal
offices, Elis affords an instance of this, where the holders
of power being, at the most, a small body, the numbers of
new senators was necessarily very inconsiderable, becati&s
the senators, being In all ninety, held office for life; more-