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A mind freed from the false opinions of the multitude

Thursday, 9 Mar 2017

Erasmus on Dr John Dunn. First posted Wednesday, 11 May 2016 at 10:21

Erasmus on the philosopher king.

“Unless you are a philosopher, you cannot be a prince, only a tyrant.”

“And so Plato is nowhere more meticulous than in the education of the guardians of his republic, whom he would have surpass all the rest not in riches and jewels and dress and ancestry and retainers, but in wisdom only, maintaining that no commonwealth can be happy unless either philosophers are put at the helm, or those to whose lot the rule happens to have fallen embrace philosophy—not that philosophy, I mean, which argues about elements and primal matter and motion and the infinite, but that which frees the mind from the false opinions of the multitude and from wrong desires and demonstrates the principles of right government by reference to the example set by the eternal powers.”

Erasmus: The Education of a Christian Prince. (Addressed to the future Holy Roman Emperor, Charles V)

Posted by John Dunn.

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