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[2]

And inasmuch as some pleasures are necessary and others not, and the former are only necessary within certain limits, excessive indulgence in them not being necessary, nor yet deficient indulgence1 either, and inasmuch as the same holds good also of desires and of pains, one who pursues excessive pleasures, or pursues things2 to excess and from choice, for their own sakes and not for the sake of some ulterior consequence, is a profligate; for a man of this character is certain to feel no regret for his excesses afterwards, and this being so, he is incurable,3 since there is no cure for one who does not regret his error. The man deficient in the enjoyment of pleasures is the opposite of the profligate; and the middle character is the temperate man. And similarly, he who avoids bodily pains not because his will is overpowered but of deliberate choice, is also profligate.

1 This addition is illogically expressed, but it is a reminder that to take too little of certain ‘necessary’ pleasures is as wrong as to take too much: see 4.5, first note.

2 i.e., necessary things; see the tripartite classification of 4.5.

3 Incurable, and therefore profligate, ἀκόλαστος, which means literally either ‘incorrigible’ or ‘unchastized’ : see note on 3.12.5.

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