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In all dissimilar1 friendships, it is proportion, as has been said, that establishes equality and preserves the friendship; just as, in the relations between fellow-citizens, the shoemaker receives payment for his shoes, and the weaver and the other craftsmen for their products, according to value rendered.

1 Or ‘heterogeneous,’ i.e., friendships between dissimilar people, e.g. one pleasant and the other useful, so that the benefits they confer on each other are different in kind. This class of friendship has not been named before, thought it has been recognized, e.g. 8.4.1, 2. It is however incorrectly stated here that the notion of proportion has been applied to it; for the benefits exchanged in such friendships, though different in kind, are not ‘proportional,’ but actually equal in amount or value, just as much as in the friendships where they are the same in kind; see 8.6.7. The term ‘proportion’ has hitherto been used of ‘unequal’ friendships, where the superior party bestows more benefit (of whatever kind) than he receives, and equality is only restored by his receiving more affection than he bestows: see 8.7.2, 13.1 (and also 14.3, to which at first sight this passage might be taken to refer). No doubt a friendship might be both ‘dissimilar’ and ‘unequal.’ That between a good man and a superior in rank who also surpasses him in goodness, which seems to be contemplated at 8.6.6, is a complex example of this nature; the great man confers both material benefit and moral edification, the good man returns moral edification only, but makes up the deficit by the greater regard which the great man's superior goodness enables him to feel.

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