Front Page Titles (by Subject) CHAP. XI.: That, when People are virtuous, few Punishments are necessary. - Complete Works, vol. 1 The Spirit of Laws
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CHAP. XI.: That, when People are virtuous, few Punishments are necessary. - Charles Louis de Secondat, Baron de Montesquieu, Complete Works, vol. 1 The Spirit of Laws 
The Complete Works of M. de Montesquieu (London: T. Evans, 1777), 4 vols. Vol. 1.
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That, when People are virtuous, few Punishments are necessary.
THE people of Rome had some share of probity. Such was the force of this probity, that the legislator had frequently no farther occasion than to point out the right road, and they were sure to follow it. One would imagine, that, instead of precepts, it was sufficient to give them counsels.
The punishments of the regal laws, and those of the twelve tables, were almost all abolished in the time of the republic, in consequence either of the Valerian§ or of the Porcian law.¶ It was never observed that this step did any manner of prejudice to the civil administration.
This Valerian law, which restrained the magistrates from using violent methods against a citizen that had appealed to the people, inflicted no other punishment on the person who infringed it than that of being reputed a dishonest man.*
[§ ]It was made by Valerius Publicola soon after the expulsion of the kings, and was twice renewed, both times by magistrates of the same family, as Livy observes, lib. 10. the question was not to give it a greater force, but to render its injunctions more perfect; diligentius sanctum, says Livy, ibid.
[¶ ]Lex Porcia pro tergo civium lata. It was made in the 454th year of the foundation of Rome.
[* ]Nibil ultra quam improbe factum adjecit. Liv.