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τῷ δικαίῳ was restored by Schneider instead of τῶν δικαίων, on the sole authority of Vind. F. It has since been found that τῷ δικαίῳ is actually the reading of A. τῶν δικαίων βοήθεια would mean something quite different, as Schneider shews; viz. “auxilium vel a iustis vel rebus in iustis, vel contra iustos seu iusta latum vel ferendum.” With the general sentiment cf. Ap. 31 E—32 A, a passage which proves —if proof were needed—that Liebhold's extraordinary proposal to read σπουδάζοι for σῴζοιτο is untenable.

εἰς θηρία ἄνθρωπος κτλ. Herwerden would read ἀνθρώπους ‘among men who are as beasts.’ But the point is that the philosopher in existing commonwealths is like a lonely human being in the midst of wild beasts. Cf. Timon of Athens IV 3 “The commonwealth of Athens is become a forest of beasts.” The comparison may have been suggested to Plato by Pherecrates' Ἄγριοι, to which he alludes in Prot. 327 D. In Pherecrates' play the Ἄγριοι were savages, to whom apparently some Athenians betook themselves, in the hope of finding more happiness than they enjoyed in Athens: see Kock's Com. Graec. Fr. I pp. 146—150. Plato points out that there are savages enough at home. In πᾶσιν ἀγρίοις the emphasis is on πᾶσιν: we should translate ‘to hold out alone where all are savages.’ Cf. ὑπὸ πάντων πολεμίων IX 579 B. Herwerden weakens the effect by adding οὖσιν after ἀγρίοις.

λαβών: singular, in spite of γενόμενοι in 496 C. Cf. I 347 A note

οἷον ἐν χειμῶνι κτλ. Jowett construes χειμῶνι with κονιορτοῦ; but χειμὼν κονιορτοῦ for ‘a storm of dust’ is scarcely a Greek idiom. κονιορτοῦφερομένου is of course a descriptive genitive absolute. In this way Schneider also took the passage. ζάλη is ‘tempestuous rain’ μετὰ ὄμβρου πνοή, as Hesychius explains. χαλάζης was once conjectured by Ast, but he afterwards rightly withdrew the suggestion. Herwerden proposes οἷον ἐν ζάλῃ κονιορτοῦ ὑπὸ κτλ., and Richards ἐν χειμῶνι καὶ κονιορτοῦ ζάλῃ (or ζάλῃ κονιορτοῦ). Neither proposal is supported by any of the ancient citations, except that of Themistius (Or. VIII p. 104 C) whose reproduction of this passage is in other respects, as in this, extremely inaccurate: see Schneider's note. And ζάλη κονιορτοῦ is, to say the least, a questionable phrase. It is not well to mar the wonderful force and beauty of writing such as this by tasteless and inept conjectures. The passage has often been compared with Lucretius' “Suave mari magno,” but the difference is greater than the resemblance. The Platonic philosopher is content (ἀγαπᾷ), if he can keep his own soul pure, because he cannot, as things now are, save both himself and others. But it is no pleasure for him to see “quibus ipse malis careat,” for he would fain help others if they would but let him. That they will not is a misfortune, not for others only, but for him (αὐτός τε μᾶλλον αὐξήσεται κτλ.). We seem to catch in Plato's words a certain tone of sorrow, as if he had not himself attained the highest of which he was capable, because he could not find a philosophic city in which to dwell: see Morgenstern De Plat. rep. p. 161, where reference is made to Ap. 31 E and to the Platonic Epistles V 322 A, B, VII 324 B—326 B, 330 C—331 D: cf. also Gorg. 515 A— 522 E, and Susemihl Gen. Entw. II p. 190.

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hide References (3 total)
  • Commentary references from this page (3):
    • Plato, Apology, 31e
    • Plato, Gorgias, 515a
    • Plato, Protagoras, 327d
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