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[12]

In respect of truth then, the middle character may be called truthful, and the observance of the mean Truthfulness1; pretence in the form of exaggeration is Boastfulness, and its possessor a boaster; in the form of understatement, Self-depreciation, and its possessor the self-depreciator.

1 From Bk. 4.7 it appears that the quality intended is sincerity of speech and conduct in the matter of asserting one's own merits. The observance of the mean in this respect is there said to have no name; and here the form of expression apologizes for using ‘Truthfulness’ in so limited a sense. The defect in this respect Aristotle expresses by εἰρωνεία, a word specially associated with the affectation of ignorance practised by Socrates. Neither this nor its other shades of meaning correspond very closely to that of its English derivative irony.

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