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18 f.

ἐὰν . . . γένηται: Callicles does not doubt that this future absolute ruler will come.

φύσιν ἱκανήν: “a nature which is equal to all difficulties.” There is no understatement, as in 480 a.—All the following expressions are chosen so as to be appropriate to the muchloved comparison with wild beasts. ἀποσείεσθαι can apply both to the shaking off of any bond or yoke and to the throwing of his rider by a horse; διαρρήξας is used more of breaking a hedge or an enclosure than a halter, etc. ἀπορρήξας would be more natural for the latter; cf. Hom. Z 507 δεσμὸν ἀπορρήξας, which passage quite suits the view of Callicles.

διαφυγών: calls to mind what has been previously said by Polus (473 c).

καταπατήσας: depicts the insolence of the victor to the vanquished. In Δ 157 Homer makes Agamemnon say of the perjured Trojans κατὰ δ᾽ ὅρκια πιστὰ πάτησαν.

γράμματα κτἑ.: the γράμματα denote, in contradistinction to the unwritten laws implanted in man by nature, the “written laws” which limit and regulate the exercise of the will; μαγγανεύματα “works of deceit and witchcraft,” which fetter the reason; ἐπῳδαί “incantations” which palsy the feelings. These ideas correspond in the reverse order to the preceding participles, κατεπᾴδοντες, γοητεύοντες, λέγοντες, and the participles just in advance ἀποσεισάμενος . . . διαφυγών are probably chosen with reference to them. All three ideas serve, moreover, to show from the various sides what objections can be made to the laws which are opposed to nature, and are hence crowded together for greater emphasis.

ἐπαναστάς: is used of one who has lain prostrate for a time and now unexpectedly shows his strength.—

ἀνεφάνη: is ‘gnomic aorist.’ The single past example (aor.) serves as a norm for the general statement (pres.). H. 840; GMT. 155.

δοῦλος: as a result of καταδουλούμεθα above, 483 e, “the one whom we brought up as a slave.”—

ἐξέλαμψε: shone forth in splendor, a poetical word also employed in Rep. iv. 435 a.

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hide References (3 total)
  • Commentary references from this page (3):
    • Plato, Gorgias, 473c
    • Plato, Gorgias, 480a
    • Plato, Gorgias, 483e
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