Family is the seed-bed of political community

“For since it is by nature common to all animals that they have a drive to procreate, the first fellowship exists within marriage itself, and the next with one’s children.  Then, there is the one house in which everything is shared.  Indeed that is the principle of a city and seed-bed, as it were, of a political community.  Next there follow bonds between brothers, and then between first cousins and second cousins, who cannot be contained in one house, as if to colonies.  Finally there follow marriages and those connections of marriage from which even more relations arise.  In such propagation and increase political communities have their origin.” Cicero, On Duties I. 54. eds. and trans. M.T. Griffin and E.M. Atkins (Cambridge 1991), p. 23.

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