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C.D. Warner, et al., comp.
The Library of the World’s Best Literature. An Anthology in Thirty Volumes. 1917.

The State

By Alcæus (c. 620–c. 580 B.C.)

Translation of Sir William Jones

WHAT constitutes a State?

Not high-raised battlement, or labored mound,

Thick wall or moated gate;

Not cities fair, with spires and turrets crown’d;

No:—Men, high-minded men,

With powers as far above dull brutes endued

In forest, brake or den,

As beasts excel cold rocks and brambles rude:—

Men who their duties know,

But know their rights, and knowing, dare maintain;

Prevent the long-aimed blow,

And crush the tyrant, while they rend the chain.