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Now things good have been divided into three classes, external goods on the one hand, and goods of the soul and of the body on the other1; and of these three kinds of goods, those of the soul we commonly pronounce good in the fullest sense and the highest degree. But it is our actions and the soul's active exercise of its functions2 that we posit (as being Happiness); hence so far as this opinion goes—and it is of long standing, and generally accepted by students of philosophy—it supports the correctness of our definition of Happiness.

1 The turn of phrase associates ‘bodily goods’ with ‘goods of the soul,’ both being personal, in contrast with the third class, ‘external goods.’ But it at once appears that the important distinction is between ‘goods of the soul’ on the one hand and all rest (‘the good in the body and those outside and of fortune,’ 7.13.2) on the other. Hence in 8.3 ‘external goods’ must include ‘bodily goods’ as also 8.15 f., where ‘external goods’ are subdivided into the instruments and the indispensable conditions of well-being (and so in more scientific language, 9.7), the latter subdivision including beauty, the only bodily good there specified.

2 See the definition, 7.15.

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