IV. Now then appeared the class of DEMAGOGUES. The people had been accustomed to change. They had been led against monarchy, and found they had only resigned the one master to obtain the many: - A demagogue arose, sometimes one of their own order, more often a dissatisfied, ambitious, or empoverished noble. For they who have wasted their patrimony, as the Stagirite shrewdly observes, are great promoters of innovation! Party ran high - the state became divided - passions were aroused - and the popular leader became the popular idol. His life was probably often in danger from the resentment of the nobles, and it was always easy to assert that it was so endangered. - He obtained a guard to protect him, conciliated the soldiers, seized the citadel, and rose at once from the head of the populace to the ruler of the state. Such was the common history of the tyrants of Greece, who never supplanted the kingly sway (unless in the earlier ages, when, born to a limited monarchy, they extended their privileges beyond the law, as Pheidon of Argos), but nearly always aristocracies or oligarchies . I need scarcely observe that the word "tyrant" was of very different signification in ancient times from that which it bears at present. It more nearly corresponded to our word "usurper," and denoted one who, by illegitimate means, whether of art or force, had usurped the supreme authority. A tyrant might be mild or cruel, the father of the people, or their oppressor; he still preserved the name, and it was transmitted to his children. The merits of this race of rulers, and the unconscious benefits they produced, have not been justly appreciated, either by ancient or modern historians. Without her tyrants, Greece might never have established her democracies. As may be readily supposed, the man who, against powerful enemies, often from a low origin and with empoverished fortunes, had succeeded in ascending a throne, was usually possessed of no ordinary abilities. It was almost vitally necessary for him to devote those abilities to the cause and interests of the people. Their favour had alone raised him - numerous foes still surrounded him - it was on the people alone that he could depend.