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ἐπ̓ αὐτὸ -- εἶμι: ‘well, said I, I will enter on the very topic which’ etc. Cf. Thuc. II 36. 4 εἶμι καὶ ἐπὶ τὸν τῶνδε ἔπαινον. I have returned to the most authoritative reading, though previously I read (with Richards) ἐπ᾽ αὐτῷ δὴεἰμί. In point of sense, εἶμι is only a sort of quasi-future, and should be compared with ἀλλ᾽ εἶμι in the mouth of characters just about to leave the stage (e.g. Soph. Trach. 86). Cf. also Phaed. 100 B ἔρχομαιἐπιχειρῶνκαὶ εἶμι πάλιν ἐπ᾽ ἐκεῖνακαὶ ἄρχομαι κτλ. According to KühnerBlass (Gr. Gr. I 2, p. 217) the present use of εἶμι is found only in poetry and late prose; but ἀνίασιν in VII 531 C is a certain case, and so also in my opinion are ἐπίασιν and ἀπίασι in Thuc. IV 61. 3, 8. It should also be remembered that Plato by no means abjures archaic and poetic forms and idioms: see I 330 B note Vind. F reads ἐπ᾽ αὐτῶ (i.q. αὐτῷδ᾽ εἰμι, and εἰμί was the reading of q^{1}. ἐπ᾽ αὐτῷ δή εἰμι is highly idiomatic and may be supported (with Richards) by VI 490 D, Pol. 274 B; but it is safer to follow the MSS, which are all but unanimous.

εἰ καὶ -- κατακλύσειν: ‘even al though it is likely—just like a wave with its cachinnations—to swamp me with laughter and disgrace.’ Hartman would insert <με> before μέλλει, but the object is easily supplied; and με before μέλλει is very cacophonous. For other views of this passage see App. VI.

ἐὰν μὴ κτλ. Cf. Laws 709 E ff. Plato's famous and often quoted paradox is not in its essence so paradoxical as it appears. The abiding truth of Plato's suggestion is “that somehow or other the best and deepest ideas about life and the world must be brought to bear on the conduct of social and political administration if any real progress is to take place in society” (Bosanquet). But it was a paradox in the Athenian democracy, or so at least Plato, like Socrates, thought: hence πολὺ παρὰ δόξαν ῥηθήσεται 473 E. See for example Prot. 319 A—323 A and Gorg. 514 A—519 D: and cf. Krohn Pl. St. p. 93. Political evil is in Plato's view the result of a divorce between political power and knowledge of the good; it can only be cured by effecting their reconciliation. In the Politicus Plato's remedy is to make the philosopher (who is the true king) act through the statesman (305 C ff.: cf. Nohle Die Statslehre Platos pp. 82, 88, whose interpretation is—wrongly, as I think—questioned by Zeller^{4} II 1, p. 901 note 5): but in the Republic the union between Thought and Action is complete, and the philosopher is himself a statesman. Whether even then he would be strong enough to found the perfect city of the Republic, depends upon the amount of resistance which he would be likely to encounter: see on VI 499 B and IX 577 A.

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hide References (4 total)
  • Commentary references from this page (4):
    • Plato, Phaedo, 100b
    • Plato, Gorgias, 514a
    • Plato, Protagoras, 319a
    • Sophocles, Trachiniae, 86
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