**Meno**

I assure you, Socrates; that was not my intention I only spoke from habit. But if you can somehow prove to me that it is as you say, pray do so.

**Socrates**

It is no easy matter, but still I am willing to try my best for your sake. Just call one of your own troop of attendants there,
[82b]
whichever one you please, that he may serve for my demonstration.

**Meno**

Certainly. You, I say, come here.

**Socrates**

He is a Greek, I suppose, and speaks Greek?

**Meno**

Oh yes, to be sureâ€”born in the house.

**Socrates**

Now observe closely whether he strikes you as recollecting or as learning from me.

**Meno**

I will.

**Socrates**

Tell me, boy, do you know that a square figure is like this?^{1}

**Boy**

I do.
[82c]

**Socrates**

Now, a square figure has these lines, four in number, all equal?

**Boy**

Certainly.

**Socrates**

And these, drawn through the middle,^{2} are equal too, are they not?

**Boy**

Yes.

**Socrates**

And a figure of this sort may be larger or smaller?

**Boy**

To be sure.

**Socrates**

Now if this side were two feet and that also two, how many feet would the whole be? Or let me put it thus: if one way it were two feet, and only one foot the other, of course the space would be two feet taken once ?

**Boy**

Yes.
[82d]

**Socrates**

But as it is two feet also on that side, it must be twice two feet?

**Boy**

It is.

**Socrates**

Then the space is twice two feet?

**Boy**

Yes.

**Socrates**

Well, how many are twice two feet? Count and tell me.

**Boy**

Four, Socrates.

**Socrates**

And might there not be another figure twice the size of this, but of the same sort, with all its sides equal like this one?

**Boy**

Yes.

**Socrates**

Then how many feet will it be?

**Boy**

Eight.

**Socrates**

Come now, try and tell me how long will each side
[82e]
of that figure be. This one is two feet long: what will be the side of the other, which is double in size?

**Boy**

Clearly, Socrates, double.

**Socrates**

Do you observe, Meno, that I am not teaching the boy anything, but merely asking him each time? And now he supposes that he knows about the line required to make a figure of eight square feet; or do you not think he does?

**Meno**

I do.

**Socrates**

Well, does he know?

**Meno**

Certainly not.

**Socrates**

He just supposes it, from the double size required?

**Meno**

Yes.

**Socrates**

Now watch his progress in recollecting, by the proper use of memory. Tell me, boy,