Cicero's political thought is pervaded by analogies of private law that helped him to overcome philosophical difficulties. One serious difficulty was the demand of natural law that property must be owned by the one capable of managing it. This posed a problem to that most remarkable piece of property of all: the res publica. While incapable of managing it, the people was the only theoretically possible owner of the res publica. The legal concept "guardianship" offered a solution. In Cicero's writings the minor, guardian, and object under care demonstrably correspond to the Roman people, the magistrates, and the res publica.