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[506e] let us dismiss for the time being the nature of the good in itself;1 for to attain to my present surmise of that seems a pitch above the impulse that wings my flight today.2 But of what seems to be the offspring of the good and most nearly made in its likeness3 I am willing to speak if you too wish it, and otherwise to let the matter drop.” “Well, speak on,” he said, “for you will duly pay me the tale of the parent another time.” “I could wish,”

1 Cf. More, Principia Ethica, p. 17 “Good, then, is indefinable; and yet, so far as I know, there is only one ethical writer, Professor Henry Sidgwick, who has clearly recognized and stated this fact.”

2 This is not superstitious mysticism but a deliberate refusal to confine in a formula what requires either a volume or a symbol. See Introd. p. xxvii, and my Idea of Good in Plato's Republic, p. 212. τὰ νῦν repeats τὸ νῦν εἶναι(Cf. Tim. 48 C), as the evasive phrase εἰσαῦθις below sometimes lays the topic on the table, never to be taken up again. Cf. 347 E and 430 C.

3 Cf. Laws 897 D-E, Phaedr. 246 A.

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  • Cross-references to this page (2):
    • Raphael Kühner, Bernhard Gerth, Ausführliche Grammatik der griechischen Sprache, KG 3.5.2
    • William Watson Goodwin, Syntax of the Moods and Tenses of the Greek Verb, Chapter V
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