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532E - 533A 30 οὐκέτι κτλ. With the general tenour and form of the sentence cf. (with Jackson) Symp. 210 A. I can see no reason for suspecting the text (with Madvig, who proposes εἴ γ᾽ ἔτι, or εἰ σύ γ᾽ ἔτι, and Badham, who would insert εἰ before οἷός τ᾽ ἔσει). Glauco has not without difficulty (517 C) followed Socrates thus far: nor is there anything rude in telling him frankly that he has reached his limit, and even if there were, Socrates does not spare Glauco's feelings (cf. 527 D, 529 A). That his audience would not be able to follow a description of the Good, has already been implied in VI 506 E ff. βουλοίμην ἄν, εἶπον, ἐμέ τε δύνασθαι αὐτὴν (the account of the Good itself) ἀποδοῦναι καὶ ὑμᾶς κομίσασθαι. Here Socrates appears to be a trifle more confident of his own expository powers, though he is careful, as before, to avoid the appearance of dogmatism and therefore introduces the expression γε δή μοι φαίνεται etc. (cf. τοῦ γε δοκοῦντος ἐμοί l.c.) and προθυμίας (cf. προθυμούμενος δὲ κτλ. VI 506 D). Krohn (Pl. St. pp. 179 ff.) bitterly complains of Socrates for drawing back; and Whewell (Phil. of Discovery p. 436) observes “We may venture to say that it does not appear that he had any answer ready.” The dialectical method recommended by Plato in the Republic is doubtless, in its full significance, an unrealised ideal (cf. nn. on ἀρχὴν ἀνυπόθετον VI 510 B and τοῦ ἀνυποθέτου 511 B), just as the ultimate object of Dialectic, the Idea of Good, will still recede as we approach it. The description which follows merely recapitulates the account already given in Book VI, with a few additional characteristics already familiar in the Socratic school: but the majority of the Platonic dialogues furnish practical illustrations of many essential features in Plato's dialectical method: so that it is possible to form a tolerably clear idea of the kind of answer which the Platonic Socrates might have made in reply to Glauco's invitation. See on the whole subject App. III.

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