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εἰ δὲ βούλει. This phrase serves to introduce a fresh point, marking the transition from poets to “sophists”; cp. 209 D, 220 D (εἰ δὲ βούλεσθε), Lach. 188 C, etc.: but to add an infin., as here (σκέψασθαι), is unusual.

τοὺς χρηστοὺς σοφιστάς. “The worthy sophists”; considering that Phaedrus is the speaker, we must suppose that the adj. is seriously meant, not ironical.

καταλογάδην ξυγγράφειν. “Writing in prose,” oratione soluta. Cp. Isocr. II. 7 καὶ τῶν μετὰ μέτρου ποιημάτων καὶ τῶν καταλογάδην συγγραμμάτων: Lysis 204 D, Laws 811 E, 975 D.

ὥσπερ...Πρόδικος. This alludes to Prodicus's celebrated parable “The Choice of Heracles,” for which see Xen. Mem. II. i. 21 ff. For Prodicus of Ceos, see Zeller Presocr. Phil. vol. II. pp. 416 ff., 473 (E. T.); Gomperz Gr. Thinkers (E. T.) I. pp. 425 ff.

ἧττον καὶ. For the unusual position of καὶ after the comparative, cp. Xen. Cyr. I. vi. 38 ταῦτα γὰρ μᾶλλον καὶ ἐξαπατᾶν δύναται.

ἐνῆσαν ἅλες. Logically, of course, the subject ought to be ἔπαινος, not ἅλες. The same βιβλίον is alluded to in Isocr. X. 12 τῶν...τοὺς βομβυλιοὺς καὶ τοὺς ἅλας καὶ τὰ τοιαῦτα βουληθέντων ἐπαινεῖν: its authorship is now generally ascribed (as by Sauppe, Blass, Hug) to the rhetor Polycrates: see further Introd. § II. B (e).

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