And now bills were passed, not only for national objects but for individual cases, and laws were most numerous when the commonwealth was most corrupt.

[Corruptissima re publica plurimae leges.]

Tacitus (c.56-c.120) Roman historian, orator, politician [Publius or Gaius Cornelius Tacitus]
Annals, Book 3, ch. 27 (AD 117)

More common variants:

  • "The more numerous the laws, the more corrupt the government."
  • "The more corrupt the state, the more laws."
Added on 9-Apr-10 | Last updated 4-May-15
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