previous next
[491d] “We know it to be universally true of every seed and growth, whether vegetable or animal, that the more vigorous it is the more it falls short of its proper perfection when deprived of the food, the season, the place that suits it. For evil is more opposed to the good than to the not-good.1 “Of course.” “So it is, I take it, natural that the best nature should fare worse2 than the inferior under conditions of nurture unsuited to it.” “It is.” “Then,” said I, “Adeimantus,

1 This is for Plato's purpose a sufficiently clear statement of the distinction between contradictory and contrary opposition. Plato never drew out an Aristotelian or modern logician's table of the opposition of propositions. But it is a misunderstanding of Greek idiom or of his style to say that he never got clear on the matter. He always understood it. Cf. Symp. 202 A-B, and on 437 A-B, What Plato Said, p. 595 on Soph. 257 B, and ibid. p. 563 on Rep. 436 B ff.

2 “Corruptio optimi pessima.” Cf. 495 A-B, Xen.Mem, i. 2. 24, iv. 1. 3-4. Cf. Livy xxxviii. 17 “generosius in sua quidquid sede gignitur: insitum alienae terrae in id quo alitur, natura vertente se, degenerat,” Pausanias vii. 17. 3.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

load focus Notes (James Adam)
load focus Greek (1903)
hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: