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435E - 439E The presence of three kinds or characters in the city establishes the existence of the same characters in the individual; but the question is, do they exist in him as three separate elements, or not? Do we employ the whole soul in every psychical act, or do we learn with one part, feel angry with a second, desire with a third? In examining this question we begin by laying it down that the same thing cannot do or suffer opposites at the same time in the same part of itself, and with reference to the same thing. This rule is of universal application; apparent exceptions there may be, but never real. Desire and Aversion are opposites; and Hunger and Thirst are two specific varieties of Desire, relating to meat and drink, considered absolutely and without qualification. Now it sometimes happens that we are at one and the same moment both thirsty and unwilling to drink, in other words, experience both Desire and Aversion. But Desire and Aversion are opposites. They must therefore spring from different psychical elements. The truth is, in such cases it is one part of soul, the Rational part, which says ‘Refrain!’, another, the Appetitive, which bids us drink.

ὅτι γε -- πόλει. Broadly speaking, what Plato says is true, that the predominant character of a State depends on the predominant character of the individual citizens (cf. Bosanquet Companion pp. 147 f.): but it does not necessarily follow, because a city contains three psychologically different classes of citizens, that each of us (ἑκάστῳ ἡμῶν) has within his soul the three corresponding psychological elements. In making this assertion, Plato relies upon the fundamental hypothesis of the Republic, viz. that the individual is a commonwealth writ small. See on II 369 A. γε after ὅτι, though omitted in Ξ, is strictly appropriate, and warns us of a further point—τόδε δὲ ἤδη χαλεπόν 436 A—on which agreement is not so easy.

οἳ δὴ -- αἰτίαν: ‘that is, among peoples who bear this reputation.’ ταύτην is τοῦ θυμοειδεῖς εἷναι. The phrase αἰτίαν ἔχειν is used both in a good and in a bad sense as the passive of αἰτιῶμαι: for the good sense cf. (with Ast) Gorg. 503 B. What follows is (as Teichmüller observes Lit. Fehd. I p. 146) conceived in the vein of Hippocrates' enquiries as to the influence of climate on character: see his treatise de aere aquis locis 12 ff. ed. Kuehlewein, and cf. also Arist. Physiog. 2. 806^{b} 15, Probl. XIV 8, 15, 16, and especially Pol. H 7. 1327^{b} 23—33 with Susemihl's note. Aristotle for his part represents the Greek nature as the mean between the two extremes of oriental διανοητικόν and τεχνικόν and northern θυμός. There is no good reason for supposing (with Steinhart Einleitung p. 191) that Plato was thinking of the wild races of the North when he instituted his second order of citizens, and of Egyptians etc. when he established his third. On the Phoenician and Egyptian characters cf. Laws 747 C ff.

τὸν ἄνω τόπον: ‘the Northern region,’ not ‘the highland country’ (L. and S.): cf. Arist. Meteor. II 5. 362^{a} 33 τὸν ἄνω πόλον and Hdt. I 142 al.

αἰτιάσαιτο . εἶναι should be understood. For the construction cf. X 599 E.

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