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It is difficult, my dear fellow, to set forth any of the greater ideas, except by the use of examples; for it would seem that each of us knows everything that he knows as if in a dream and then again, when he is as it were awake, knows nothing of it all.

Younger Socrates
What do you mean by that?

I seem at present in absurd fashion to have touched upon our experience in regard to knowledge.

Younger Socrates
In what respect?

Why, my friend, the very example I employ requires another example.1

1 i.e. the nature of example is to be explained below by means of an example. The example of the letters of the alphabet is employed also in the Plat. Theaet. 202 ff, but the Stranger cannot properly refer to that, as he was not present at the time. Or is this a dramatic slip on PlatoÕs part?

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