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[597c] “Now God,whether because he so willed or because some compulsion was laid upon him1 not to make more than one couch in nature, so wrought and created one only,2 the couch which really and in itself is. But two or more such were never created by God and never will come into being.” “How so?” he said. “Because,” said I, “if he should make only two, there would again appear one of which they both would possess the form or idea, and that would be the couch that really is in and of itself, and not the other two.” “Right,” he said. “God, then, I take it, knowing this and wishing

1 In Tim. 31 A the same argument is used for the creation of one world ἵνα . . . κατὰ τὴν μόνωσιν ὅμοιον τῷ παντελεῖ ζώῳ. See my De Plat. Idearum doct. p. 39. Cf. Renan, Dialogues Phil. p. 25: “Pour forger les premières tenailles, dit le Talmud, il fallut des tenailles. Dieu les créa.”

2 The famous argument of the third man. Cf. What Plato Said, p. 585, on Parmen. 132 A and Introd. p. xxiii.

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