previous next

The third virtue, σωφροσύνη, temperantia, is likewise represented under a political aspect. It is a virtue by which men's bodily appetites are regulated according to the dictates of the laws of the state, ‘are so disposed towards bodily pleasures as the law enjoins’. In Eth. Nic. III cc. 13, 14, there is no regular definition of it; but we gather from the contents of the two chapters that it is a virtue of self-control, which consists in a mean state with regard to the indulgence in bodily pleasures, (pains having less to do with the virtue); and in a due measure or estimate of the value of them. It is thus a ‘mean’ between ἀκολασία, ‘excessive indulgence in them’, and ἀναισθησία, total ‘insensibility’. II 7, 1107 b 4.

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.

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