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Probably the most famous letter writer of the ancient world was Cicero. In 59 B.C., Cicero wrote to Gaius Scribonius: “There are many sorts of letters. But there is one unmistakable sort, which actually caused letter-writing to be invented in the first place, namely the sort intended to give people in other places any information which for our or their…

A recurring theme in Plato’s dialogues, including his Seventh Letter, describes the education of a young man who wants to achieve the highest things, which he considers to be achieved primarily through his ruling the polity. He wants to be a tyrant. This desire, he explains to others, means that he wants to “do good” and thereby receive high honors.…

Tyrants: A History of Power, Injustice, and Terror. Waller R. Newell. New York, NY: Cambridge University Press, 2016.
 
Tyrants is the third book by Waller Newell dealing specifically with the subject of tyranny. As such, it is the product of lengthy, thoughtful, and careful scholarly study spanning a number of decades. Newell’s work as a whole has been the study of…

Tyranny: A New Interpretation. Waller R. Newell. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2013.

 
In recent years whenever I am obliged to teach the history of European political philosophy and development of political knowledge, I keep repeating to my students that not a single idea has come down to our age without serious debate among major political thinkers, who regarded those ideas…