Socrates begins to apply the results of the previous discussion to
the subject of his dispute with Protagoras.
Pleasure is good and pain evil, and no one willingly encounters
what he believes to be evil. But fear is the expectation of evil:
therefore no one will willingly encounter what he fears.
3. ὦ Ἱππία τε καὶ Πρόδικε
. Here and in 358E
has dropped out in the MSS. after preceding -ω
. The effect of
its omission would be to render the address unduly abrupt.
. So the MSS. Sauppe's ἡμῖν
is not necessary. ὑμῖν
means all three sophists: and ὁ λόγος
is not the discussion as a
whole, but the speaking, viz. in answer (cf. δοῦναι καὶ δέξασθαι
). Throughout this chapter all the sophists reply: in the
next Socrates makes use of their united admissions to destroy
7. διαἰρεσιν τῶν ὀνομάτων
: see note on 314C
9. εἴτε ὁπόθεν καὶ ὅπως—ὀνομάζων
. This mode of
address insinuates that Prodicus was a θεῖος ἀνήρ
, since a god
was addressed in a similar way. See Crat. 400E ὥσπερ ἐν ταῖς
εὐχαῖς νόμος ἐστὶν ἡμῖν εὔχεσθαι, οἵτινές τε καὶ ὁρόθεν χαίπουσιν
and cf. Euthyd. 288A θαυμάσιά γε λέγετ᾽, ὦ ἄνδρες
Θούριοι, εἴτε Χῖοι εἴθ᾽ ὁπόθεν καὶ ὅπῃ χαίρετον ὀνομαζόμενοι
Symp. 212C ὅ τι καὶ ὅπῃ χαίρεις ὀνομάζων, τοῦτο ὀνόμαζε
similar effect is produced in Symp. 176C
by the words Σωκράτη
δ᾽ ἐξαιρῶ λόγου
, since there was a proverb τὸ θεῖον ἐξαιρῶ λόγου
cf. Rep. VI. 492E θεῖον μέντοι κατὰ τὴν παροιμίαν ἐξαιρῶμεν λόγου
The multitude of epithets given to gods is best illustrated by
such a hymn as the Homeric Hymn to Ares, ll. 1 ff. Ἆρες
ὑρεπμενέτα, βπισάπματε, χπυσεορήληξ, ὀβπιμόθυμε, φέπασρι.
πολισσόε, χαλκοκορυστὰ κτλ.
In the multitude of names the
suppliant hopes to include the acceptable one.
11. πρὸς ὃ βούλομαι
: emphatic, ‘with a view to my meaning’
)( πρὸς ὃ ὀνομάζω
13. ἐπὶ τούτου
. This usage can only be on the analogy of ἡ
ἐπὶ Σάρδεων ὁδός
and the like: actions are looked on as ways
leading to a goal or destination or τέλος
: cf. above 354C
To take the words (with Sauppe) as ‘in the case of this’, ‘in this
domain’, would give a wrong meaning; the moral character of
an act being determined by its end, it is καλόν
only if its end is
. The expression is however very curious, and perhaps
unique. I once thought that ἅπασαι
might conceal some present
participle such as ἄγουσαι
—agreeing with πράξεις
: but the
occurrence of ἁπάσας
below in 359E
probably genuine here. The reasoning is this. Pleasure, the end,
is good, pain evil; consequently all actions aiming at the end are
, and therefore good (as usual ὠφέλιμος
is but a synonym
for ‘good’); therefore— as no one willingly selects evil rather
than good—no one willingly does the worse (i.e. selects evil
actions) when he might act better. As it is with πράξεις
bravery and cowardice are concerned, it is necessary for Plato to
establish that ‘no one willingly seeks the worse’ is true of
individual acts as well as of ultimate ends.
14. ἆρ᾽ οὐ καλαί
. The words καὶ ὠφέλιμοι
which follow οὐ
in the MSS. are rightly rejected because they anticipate
the identification in the next line.
17. ἢ ἃ ποιεῖ, καὶ δυνατά
is Heindorf's emendation of the
corrupt ἢ ἃ ἐποίει καὶ δύναται
of the MSS.
18. ἥττω εἶναι αὑτοῦ κτλ.
The phrases ἥττων αὑτοῦ
are here substituted for ἥττων τῆς ἡδονῆς
and κρείττων τῆς ἡδονῆς
. Cf. the discussions in Rep. IV. 430E
and Laws, I. 626E
ff., where κρείττω
and ἥττω εἶναι ἑαυτοῦ
interpreted as the victory of the better part in us over the worse
and conversely. As the worse part is the part which seeks ἡδονή
i.e. τὸ ἐπιθυμητικόν
, the identification is just.
30. καλεῖτέ τι δέος
. Heindorf's emendation for καλεῖτε δέος
of the MSS. See note on 330C
: a common definition; cf. Lach.
198B δέος γὰρ εἶναι προσδοκίαν μέλλοντος κακοῦ. φόβος
1. 644C is defined as ‘expectation before pain’ (πρὸ λύπης ἐλπίς
46. δέος, φόβος δ᾽ οὔ
. Prodicus' distinction is just, though
often dropped in practice: in φόβος
‘the physical agitation due
danger (ἡ παραυτίκα πτόησις
, says Ammonius) is the
leading idea’, in δέος
the apprehension of evil to come (κακοῦ
). See note on Euthyphr. 12B
, where Plato implicitly
recognises the difference.
35. ἀλλὰ τόδε
: sc. διαφέρει. οὐδὲν διαφέρει
does not of course
mean ‘there is no difference’, but ‘it doesn't matter’.