Author: Aristotle  | Date: 350 BC


We maintain that the true forms of government are three, and that the best must be that which is administered by the best, and in which there is one man, or a whole family, or many persons, excelling all the others together in virtue, and both rulers and subjects are fitted, the one to rule, the others to be ruled, in such a manner as to attain the most eligible life. We showed at the commencement of our inquiry that the virtue of the good man is necessarily the same as the virtue of the citizen of the perfect state. Clearly then in the same manner, and by the same means through which a man becomes truly good, he will frame a state that is to be ruled by an aristocracy or by a king, and the same education and the same habits will be found to make a good man and a man fit to be a statesman or a king.

Having arrived at these conclusions, we must proceed to speak of the perfect state, and describe how it comes into being and is established.


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Chicago: Aristotle, "XVIII," Politics, trans. Benjamin Jowett Original Sources, accessed June 9, 2023, http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=4MKRDXQG3GVLGQN.

MLA: Aristotle. "XVIII." Politics, translted by Benjamin Jowett, Original Sources. 9 Jun. 2023. http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=4MKRDXQG3GVLGQN.

Harvard: Aristotle, 'XVIII' in Politics, trans. . Original Sources, retrieved 9 June 2023, from http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=4MKRDXQG3GVLGQN.