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ὥσπερ ῥεῦμα κτλ. The simile becomes almost an identification, as often in Greek: the desires are as it were a stream diverted εἰς ἕν τι. Cf. III 401 C (reading τις—ὥσπερ αὔρα), VII 519 A τὰς τῆς γενέσεως ξυγγενεῖς ὥσπερ μολυβδίδας and VII 534 D note To explain ἀπωχετευμένον as for ἀπωχετευμέναι (with Stallbaum and others) is to obtrude our standpoint upon the Greeks. Schneider formerly agreed with Stallbaum, but afterwards drew back (Addit. p. 45) and translated “wie ein dorthin abgeleiteter Strom.” τὰς δέ . τάς is probably an ‘internal accusative’ depending on ἐκλείποιεν, though rendered easier by the occurrence of περὶ τὴν ἡδονὴν—εἶεν ἄν just before. Schneider carries on περί, but the preposition is difficult to supply when the two clauses have different verbs. Cf. IV 428 C note
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