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CHAPTER XII

The myth is continued (322A322D and used to justify the Athenians for listening to promiscuous political advisers, since according to it all men are endowed with πολιτικὴ ἀρετή—as indeed all men believe, otherwise they would not (as they do) regard as insane the man who does not at least pretend to possess justice and πολιτικὴ ἀρετή generally.

1. θείας μετέσχε μοίρας: μοῖρα is ‘dispensation’, and refers to the ἔντεχνος σοφία, which is θεία because derived from Hephaestus and Athena.

2. [dia\ th\n tou= qeou= sugge/neian]. These words are open to objection on two grounds. The singular τοῦ θεοῦ is inaccurate— no single god has been mentioned as akin to man: nor can τοῦ θεοῦ well be taken as God in the monotheistic sense, or as generic for τῶν θεῶν—both usages are alien to the whole tone of the myth. These difficulties might perhaps be got over by reading τοῦ θείου = τῶν θεῶν, but another difficulty remains. The reference in τὴν συγγένειαν can only be to 320Dτυποῦσιν αὐτὰ θεοί, the creatures being regarded as children of their creators as in Tim. 42E νοήσαντες οἱ παῖδες (the created gods) τὴν τοῦ πατρὸς διάταξιν, but there it is not only man but all θνητὰ γένη that are in this sense ‘akin to gods’—why then should not the lower animals also have built themselves fanes? As the phrase is at best a bad case of loose thinking and inaccurate writing in an otherwise careful and elaborate piece of composition, I have followed Kral and Schanz in rejecting the whole phrase. The words were perhaps an (inaccurate) gloss on θείας in θείας μοίρας. For the sentiment which they express see the Editor's Introduction to the Euthyphro, p. xvi.

μόνον: man alone θείας μετέσχε μοίρας: see note in loc. Cobet's μόνος would be more grammatical, but the attraction of ζῴων is too strong.

ἐπεχείρει βωμούς τε ἱδρύεσθαι κτλ. Hom. Od. III. 48 πάντες δὲ θεῶν χατέουσ᾽ ἄνθρωποι.

3. ἔπειτα. πρῶτον μέν and ἔπειτα refer to logical sequence rather than temporal: Protagoras follows the maxim ἐκ Διὸς ἀρχώμεσθα.

6. ηὕρετο. MSS. εὕρετο, but see on 315Babove.

8. ἀπώλλυντο οὖν ὑπὸ τῶν θηρίων. Cf. Polit. 274B τῆς γὰπ τοῦ κεκτημένου καὶ νέμοντος ἡμᾶς δαίμονος ἀρεπημωθέντες ἐριμελείας, τῶν ρολλῶν αὖ θηπίων, ὄσα χαλερὰ τὰς φύσεις ἦν, ἀραγπιωθέντων, αὐτοὶ δὲ ἀσθενεῖς ἄνθπωτοι καὶ ἀφύλακτοι γεγονότες διηρπάζοντο ὑπ᾽ αὐτῶν.

12. ἧς μέρος πολεμική. πολεμική is recognised as a part of πολιτική in Rep. II. 373D ff.

13. σῴζεσθαι κτίζοντες πόλεις. The insufficiency of the individual for his own wants is assigned as the cause of city life in Rep. II. 369B γίγνεται τοίνυνπόλις, ὡς ἐγᾦμαι, ἐπειδὴ τυγχάνει ἡμῶν ἕκαστος οὐκ αὐτάπκης ἀλλὰ ρολλῶν ἐνδεής: τίν᾽ οἴει ἀρχὴν ἄλλην πόλιν οἰκίζειν; οὐδεμίαν, δ᾽ ὄς.

17. αἰδῶ τε καὶ δίκην. The editors cite Hesiod (Works and Days, 192) δίκη δ᾽ ἐν χερσὶ καὶ αἰδὼς οὐκ ἔσται (of the γένος σιδήρεον, where man is corrupt). αἰδώς is a part of δέος (Euthyphr. 12C): it keeps men together by making them fear the censure of their fellows (Laws, I. 647A-B); cf. Hom. Il. XV. 561 ff. φίλοι, ἀνέρες ἔστε, καὶ αἰδῶ θέσθ᾽ ἐνὶ θυμῷ, ἀλλήλους τ᾽ αἰδεῖσθε κατὰ κρατερὰς ὑσμίνας. αἰδομένων δ᾽ ἀνδρῶν πλέονες σόοι ἠὲ πέφανται: φευγόντων δ᾽ οὔτ᾽ ἂρ κλέος ὄρνυται οὔτε τις ἀλκή. δίκη is here the abstract principle ‘law’ like Latin ius: for the original meaning of the word see Verrall on Eur. Med. 411.

18. πόλεων κόσμοισυναγωγοί. The phraseology no less than the rhythm is highly poetical.

19. τίνα οὖν τρόπον. For οὖν retained in the indirect the editors cite Symp. 219D ὥστε οὔθ᾽ ὅπως οὖν ὀργιζοίμην εἶχον οὔθ᾽ ὅπῃ προσαγαγοίμην αὐτὸν ηὐπόρουν. Cobet's δῶ for δοίη is attractive but unnecessary.

20. πότερον ὡς κτλ. ‘Eleganter omissum ἔφη, ut obliqua oratio statim in rectam transeat’ Heindorf, quoting (inter alia) Xen. Cyrop. I. 4. 28 ἐνταῦθα δὴ τὸν Κῦρον γελάσαι τε ἐκ τῶν ρπόσθεν δακπύων καὶ εἰρεῖν αὐτῷ ἀριόντα θαππεῖν ὅτι ραπέσται αὖθις ὀλίγου χρόνου: ὥστε ὁρᾶν σοι ἐξέσται κἂν βούλῃ ἀσκαρδαμυκτεί. Sauppe quotes an exact parallel in 338Bbelow εἶπον οὖν ἐγὼ ὅτι αἰσχρὸν εἴη βραβευτὴν ἑλέσθαι τῶν λόγων. ειτε γὰρ χείρων ἔσται κτλ.

22. εις ἔχων ἰατρικὴνἰδιώταις. This division of labour takes place as soon as men begin to unite in cities: cf. Rep. II. 369Eff.

28. κτείνειν ὡς νόσον πόλεως. κτείνειν is poetical for the ἀποκτείνειν of prose.

30. Ἀθηναῖοι: without the article as in 319Band 324C

33. οὐκ ἀνέχονται, ὡς σὺ φῄς: 319Cοὐδέν τι μᾶλλον ἀποδέχονται. The antithesis between οὐκ ἀνέχονται ὡς σὺ φῄς and εἰκότως ὡς ἐγώ φημι is a poor one, since οὐκ ἀνέχονται has to be repeated with εἰκότως. We should expect some word like ἀλόγως before ὡς σὺ φῄς, or perhaps οὐκ εἰκότως has dropped out after φῄς.

35. ἣν δεῖ διὰ δικαιοσύνηςἰέναι. The antecedent to ἥν is συμβουλήν not ἀρετῆς: cf. Laws, I. 632C (quoted by Heindorf) κατιδὼν δὲ θεὶς τοὺς νόμους ἅπασιν τούτοις φύλακας ἐπιστήσει, τοὺς μὲν (sc. φύλακας) διὰ φρονήσεως, τοὺς δὲ δι᾽ ἀληθοῦς δόξης ἰόντας. The phrase διὰ δικαιοσύνης ἰέναι is equivalent to δικαίαν εἶναι as διὰ φιλίας ἰέναι to φίλον εἶναι.

36. ἅπαντος. Schanz reads παντός on account of παντί following: but Plato frequently interchanges ἅπας and πᾶς; see on Euthyphr. 9E. It is natural that the more emphatic form ἅπαντος should come first.

38. μὴ εἶναι πόλεις. = alioquin is regular with δεῖ, προσήκει, and the like, in the preceding clause: cf. below 323c μὴ εἶναι ἐν ἀνθρώποις and 325A

αὕτητούτου αἰτία: asyndeton as in 318Aτοσοῦτος γε ἡμέτερος λόγος.

39. ὡς τῷ ὄντι ἡγοῦνται. The presence of τῷ ὄντι, as Sauppe remarks, shows that ὡς depends on τεκμήριον in l. 42: cf. below, 324Cὡς μὲν οὖν εἰκότως ἀποδέχονταιἀποδέδεικταί σοι.

52. προσποιούμενον δικαιοσύνην: elsewhere in Plato προσποιεῖσθαι takes the infinitive. Thuc. 1. 137. 7 has ἣν ψευδῶς προσεποιήσατο.

ὡς ἀναγκαῖον: ὄν need not be added, as Heindorf shows: cf. Rep. V. 449C ὡς ἄρα περὶ γυναικῶν τε καὶ παίδων παντὶ δῆλον ὅτι κοινὰ τὰ φίλων ἔσται.

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hide References (21 total)
  • Commentary references from this page (21):
    • Homer, Odyssey, 3.48
    • Plato, Laws, 632c
    • Plato, Laws, 647a
    • Plato, Republic, 369b
    • Plato, Republic, 369e
    • Plato, Republic, 373d
    • Plato, Republic, 449c
    • Plato, Euthyphro, 9e
    • Plato, Symposium, 219d
    • Plato, Protagoras, 319b
    • Plato, Protagoras, 322d
    • Plato, Protagoras, 315b
    • Plato, Protagoras, 318a
    • Plato, Protagoras, 319c
    • Plato, Protagoras, 320d
    • Plato, Protagoras, 322a
    • Plato, Protagoras, 324c
    • Plato, Protagoras, 325a
    • Plato, Protagoras, 338b
    • Plato, Timaeus, 42e
    • Homer, Iliad, 15.561
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