Volume 88, 2014
Dispositions, Habits, and Virtues
Mary Elizabeth Tetzlaff
The Peculiar Virtues of the Rulers and the Ruled in Politics III.4
At the end of Book III, chapter 4 of Aristotle’s Politics, Aristotle identifies the virtue peculiar to the excellent ruler as prudence. The ruled’s complementary virtue is true opinion. All the other virtues are held in common, albeit in different forms. Why these habits? The answer to this question lies in Aristotle’s discussion of the good man and the serious citizen in III.4, and of the rule of law in III.16.