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[531e] and dialecticians1? “ “No, by Zeus,” he said, “except a very few whom I have met.” “But have you ever supposed,” I said, “that men who could not render and exact an account2 of opinions in discussion would ever know anything of the things we say must be known?”

1 Cf. Theaet. 146 B, and perhaps Euthyd. 290 C. Though mathematics quicken the mind of the student, it is, apart from metaphysics, a matter of common experience that mathematicians are not necessarily good reasoners on other subjects. Jowett's wicked jest, “I have hardly ever known a mathematician who could reason,” misled an eminent professor of education who infers that Plato disbelieved in “mental discipline” (Yale Review,July 1917). Cf. also Taylor, Note in Reply to Mr. A. W. Benn, Mind, xii. (1903) p. 511; Charles Fox, Educational Psychology pp. 187-188: “ . . . a training in the mathematics may produce exactness of thought . . . provided that the training is of such a kind as to inculcate an ideal which the pupil values and strives to attain. Failing this, Glaucon's observation that he had ‘hardly ever known a mathematician who was capable of reasoning’ is likely to be repeated.” On the text cf. Wilamowitz, Platon, ii. pp. 384-385, and Adam ad loc.

2 λόγον . . . δοῦναιA commonplace Platonic plea for dialectics. Cf. 534 B, Prot. 336 C, Polit. 286 A, Theaet. 202 C, 175 C, 183 D, Soph. 230 A, Phaedo 78 C-D, 95 D, Charm. 165 B, Xen.Oecon. 11. 22. Cf. also λόγον λαβεῖνRep. 402 A, 534 B, Soph. 246 C, Theaet. 208 D, and Thompson on Meno 76 D.

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