XXIII. (100) These duties which are as it were in the middle, appear to me to be properly looked upon in the same light as those trees, which admit of being cultivated and used for food; for each of them bears most useful fruits, the one for the body, and the other for the soul. But in the middle there must necessarily be many injurious plants springing up with and growing along-side of them, which must be removed in order that the better sorts may not be injured. (101) May I not call the restoration of a deposit a useful plant of the soul? But still this plant requires purification and exceeding attention. What then is the purification? This. Having taken a deposit from a man while he is sober, you must not restore it to him while he is drunk, or intemperate, or mad; for in such a case though he may have received the advantage of having his own back again, he will have no opportunity of being benefited by it. Again. You must not restore a deposit to debtors or to slaves while their creditors or their masters are present; for that is betraying, and not a restoration of a deposit. Nor must you keep faith in small things in the hope merely of gaining confidence, so as to have greater things entrusted to you. (102) For those who fish, and who let down small baits into the sea, with the view of catching larger fish, are not very much to be blamed, as they say that they are providing for the good supply of the market, and in order that they may supply men with unlimited food for every day. (103) But no one should use as a bait, the restoration of a deposit of small value by way of obtaining a larger one, holding forth in his hands, and displaying the deposit of one individual, and that a trifling one, and in his intention appropriating the deposits of every body, and those too of unspeakable value. If, therefore, you remove the uncleanness of your deposit, as of these trees, namely, the inquiries threatened by plotters, the evils arising from want of opportunity and treachery, and all things of similar kinds; you will bring into a state of cultivation and usefulness, that which was on the point of becoming wild.