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[335c] “And men, my dear fellow, must we not say that when they are harmed it is in respect of the distinctive excellence or virtue of man that they become worse?” “Assuredly.” “And is not justice the specific virtue of man?”1“That too must be granted.” “Then it must also be admitted, my friend, that men who are harmed become more unjust.” “It seems so.” “Do musicians then make men unmusical by the art of music?” “Impossible.” “Well, do horsemen by horsemanship unfit men for dealing with horses?” “No.” “By justice then do the just make men unjust,

1 The desired conclusion and all the idealistic paradoxes of Socrates, and later of Stoicism, follow at once from the assumption that justice, being the specific virtue of man, is human excellence generally, so that nothing is of import except justice, and no real wrong (or harm) can be done to a man except by making him less just (or wise, or good). Cf Apology 41 D, Crito 44 D. The ambiguity of ἀρετή is similarly used 353 and 609 B-D.

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