previous next

[351a] are not the same, but that one of them, power, comes from knowledge, or from madness or rage, whereas strength comes from constitution and fit nurture of the body. So, in the other instance, boldness and courage are not the same, and therefore it results that the courageous are bold, but not that the bold are courageous; for boldness comes to a man from art, or [351b] from rage or madness, like power, whereas courage comes from constitution and fit nurture of the soul.

Do you speak of some men, Protagoras, I asked, as living well, and others ill?

Yes.

Then do you consider that a man would live well if he lived in distress and anguish?

No, he said.

Well now, if he lived pleasantly and so ended his life, would you not consider he had thus contrived to live well?

I would, he said.

And, I suppose, to live pleasantly is good, [351c] and unpleasantly, bad?

Yes, he said, if one lived in the enjoyment of honorable things.

But, Protagoras, will you tell me you agree with the majority in calling some pleasant things bad and some painful ones good? I mean to say—Are not things good in so far as they are pleasant, putting aside any other result they may have; and again, are not painful things in just the same sense bad—in so far as they are painful?

I cannot tell, Socrates, he replied, whether I am to answer, in such absolute fashion as that of your question, [351d] that all pleasant things are good and painful things bad: I rather think it safer for me to reply, with a view not merely to my present answer but to all the rest of my life, that some pleasant things are not good, and also that some painful things are not bad, and some are, while a third class of them are indifferent—neither bad nor good.

You call pleasant, do you not, I asked, things that partake of pleasure or [351e] cause pleasure?

Certainly, he said.

So when I put it to you, whether things are not good in so far as they are pleasant, I am asking whether pleasure itself is not a good thing.

Let us examine the matter, Socrates, he said, in the form in which you put it at each point, and if the proposition seems to be reasonable, and pleasant and good are found to be the same, we shall agree upon it; if not, we shall dispute it there and then.

And would you like, I asked, to be leader in the inquiry, or am I to lead?

You ought to lead, he replied, since you are the inaugurator of this discussion.

Well then,


Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

load focus Greek (1903)
hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Visualize the most frequently mentioned Pleiades ancient places in this text.

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide References (1 total)
  • Commentary references to this page (1):
    • E.C. Marchant, Commentary on Thucydides: Book 2, 2.40
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: