tor is adequate for people who are willing to
follow a regimen and don’t need drugs when
drugs are needed, we know that a bolder doctor
Glaucon: That’s true. But what exactly do you
have in mind?
Socrates: i mean that it looks as though our rulers will have to make considerable use of falsehood and deception for the benefit of those
they rule. and we said that all such falsehoods
are useful as a form of drug?
Glaucon: and we were right.
Socrates: Well, it seems we were right, especially
where marriages and the producing of children
Glaucon: How so?
Socrates: it follows from our previous agreements, first, that the best men must have sex
with the best women as frequently as possible,
while the opposite is true of the most inferior
men and women, and second, that if our herd
is to be of the highest possible quality, the
former’s offspring must be reared but not the
latter’s. and this must all be brought about
without being noticed by anyone except the
rulers, so that our herd of guardians remains
as free from dissension as possible.
Glaucon: That’s absolutely right.
Socrates: Therefore certain festivals and sacrifices will be established by law at which we’ll
bring the brides and grooms together, and
we’ll direct our poets to compose appropriate
hymns for the marriages that take place. We’ll
leave the number of marriages for the rulers
to decide, but their aim will be to keep the
number of males as stable as they can, taking
into account war, disease, and similar factors,
so that the city will, as far as possible, become
neither too big nor too small.
Glaucon: That’s right.
Socrates: Then there’ll have to be some sophisticated lotteries introduced, so that at each marriage the inferior people we mentioned will
blame luck rather than the rulers when they
Glaucon: There will.
Socrates: and among other prizes and rewards,
the young men who are good in war or other
things must be given permission to have sex
with the women more often, since this will also
be a good pretext for having them father as
many of the children as possible.
Glaucon: That’s right.
Socrates: and then, as the children are born,
they’ll be taken over by the officials appointed
for the purpose, who may be either men or
women or both, since our offices are open to
Socrates: i think they’ll take the children of
good parents to the nurses in charge of the
rearing pen situated in a separate part of the
city, but the children of inferior parents, or
any child of the others that is born defective,
they’ll hide in a secret and unknown place, as
Glaucon: it is, if indeed the guardian breed is to
Socrates: and won’t the nurses also see to it
that the mothers are brought to the rearing
pen when their breasts have milk, taking every precaution to insure that no mother knows
her own child and providing wet nurses if the
mother’s milk is insufficient? and won’t they
take care that the mothers suckle the children
for only a reasonable amount of time and that
the care of sleepless children and all other such