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‘And similarly in respect of passion and appetite. And they will be temperate (sober-minded, under self-control) with courage, and courageous with self-control: for in the young and old these two are separated (or distinguished), the young being brave and licentious (devoid of self-control), and the elders sober and temperate but cowardly’. ‘Selfcontrol’ is the form in which the virtue appears especially in Plato's Gorgias and Republic, where it is described as a regulating principle which guides the whole man, ordering and harmonising his entire moral constitution. ‘And, speaking in general terms, all the advantages (good qualities, elements of good character) that youth and old age have divided between them (=ἔχει διῃρημένα), both of these the others enjoy; and whereinsoever (the two first) are excessive or defective, in these (they observe, subaudi οἱ ἀκμάζοντες ἔχουσιν) a due moderation (or mean) and a fitness or propriety of conduct’. ὅσα διῄρηται ἡ νεότης καὶ τὸ γῆρας] I think διαιρεῖσθαι must be here middle, said of those who divide amongst themselves, have shares in any joint work or possession. Thuc. VII 19, διελόμενοι τὸ ἔργον. An objection might be taken to this, that διῄρηται is singular and not plural, and that no one can share a thing with himself. But although the verb is singular in form, being connected grammatically with νεότης alone, which stands next to it, yet it is evident that γῆρας is meant to be included in the distribution as well as the other. It is accordingly equivalent to διῃρημένα ἔχουσιν. I think it cannot be passive; the analogy of πιστεύεσθαι τι ‘to be trusted with something’, ἐπιτετράφθαι τι, and the like, cannot be applied to this case. τὸ μέτριον] is Plato's summum bonum, the highest in the scale of goods, in the Philebus; also the Horatian aurea mediocritas: it may also stand for the Aristotelian μέσον, which at all events is the sense in which it is employed here. τὸ ἅρμοττον] that which fits, the fitting; derived by metaphor from the carpenter's, joiner's and builder's trades; is nearly equivalent to τὸ πρέπον, and like it refers us to the fitness of things, as a standard of good, to a harmonious organisation or order of the universe, a system physical or moral which has all its parts dove-tailed, as it were, together, arranged in due order and subordination, carefully and exactly fitted together; Cicero's apta compositio (membrorum, of the human figure [de officiis I 28. 98]).
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