μάλιστα μὲν πάντων ἀνθρώπων, εἰ δὲ μή, ὡς πλείστων: καὶ σύ γ' ἂν οἶμαι καὶ οἱ ἄλλοι πάντες ἄνθρωποι—ἔτι δέ γε ἴσως μᾶλλον θεὸς γενέσθαι—ἀλλ' οὐ τούτου ἔλεγον ἐπιθυμεῖν.
ἀλλὰ τί δή ἐστί ποτε οὗ ἐπιθυμεῖς; οὐ τῶν πολιτῶν φῂς ἄρχειν ἐπιθυμεῖν;
οὐ βίᾳ γε οὐδ' ὥσπερ οἱ τύραννοι ἀλλ' ἑκόντων, ὥσπερ καὶ οἱ ἄλλοι οἱ ἐν τῇ πόλει ἐλλόγιμοι ἄνδρες.
ἆρά γε λέγεις ὥσπερ Θεμιστοκλῆς καὶ Περικλῆς καὶ Κίμων καὶ ὅσοι τὰ πολιτικὰ δεινοὶ γεγόνασιν;
νὴ Δία τούτους λέγω.
τί οὖν εἰ τὰ ἱππικὰ ἐτύγχανες ἐπιθυμῶν σοφὸς
if possible, over all men, and failing that, over as many as might be; so would you, I imagine, and everybody else besides: nay, even more, I daresay, that I might become a god; but I did not say I desired that.
Well, what on earth then is it that you do desire? Do you not say you desire to govern the citizens?
Yes, but not by force, or as despots do, but with their consent, as is done by all the other men of importance in the state.
Do you mean, as by Themistocles and Pericles and Cimon, and by all those who have shown themselves able statesmen?
Yes, in good earnest, I mean those people.