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[377b] For it is then that it is best molded and takes the impression1 that one wishes to stamp upon it.” “Quite so.” “Shall we, then, thus lightly suffer2 our children to listen to any chance stories fashioned by any chance teachers and so to take into their minds opinions for the most part contrary to those that we shall think it desirable for them to hold when they are grown up?” “By no manner of means will we allow it.” “We must begin, then, it seems, by a censorship

1 The image became a commonplace. Cf. Theaetetus 191 D, Horace Epistles ii. 32. 8, the Stoic τύπωσις ἐν ψυχῇ, and Byron's “Wax to receive and marble to retain.”

2 Cf. the censorship proposed in Laws 656 C. Plato's criticism of the mythology is anticipated in part by Euripides, Xenophanes, Heracleitus, and Pythagoras. Cf. Decharme, Euripides and the Spirit of his Dramas, translated by James Loeb, chap. ii. Many of the Christian Fathers repeated his criticism almost verbatim.

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