- Describing the power struggle between rich and poor, Plato asserts, "and when the poor win, the result is a democracy."
- "A democracy...will promote to honor anyone who merely calls himself the people's friend."
- Warning about the dangers of popular rule, he says, "modesty and self-control, dishonored and insulted as the weaknesses of an unmanly fool, are thrust out into exile..."
- Describing the transition from democracy to tyranny, Plato asserts, "The insatiable desire for this good to the neglect of everything else may transform a democracy and lead to a demand for despotism."
- "...society cannot hold wealth in honor and at the same time establish a proper self-control in its citizens."
- Describing democracy, he says, "[it's] a wonderfully pleasant life, surely, for the moment."
- "Oligarchy was established by men with a certain aim in life: the good they sought was wealth, and it was the insatiable appetite for money-making to the neglect of everything else that proved its undoing."
- "...the only outcome of too much freedom is likely to be excessive subjection."
- Describing men ruled by their appetites, Plato remarks, "...they resent the slightest application of control as intolerable tyranny, and in their resolve to have no master they end by disregarding even the law, written or unwritten."
- "And the people always put forward a single champion of their interests, whom they nurse to greatness. Here, plainly enough, is the root from which despotism invariably springs."
The Republic: Top Ten Quotes