The Memorabilia - Recollections of Socrates
by Xenophon
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Hipp. It is reasonable to think so.

Soc. Have no hesitation, therefore, but try to guide your men into this path, (15) whence you yourself, and through you your fellow-citizens, will reap advantage.

(15) Or, "to conduct which will not certainly fail of profit to yourself or through you to..."

Yes, in good sooth, I will try (he answered).


At another time, seeing Nicomachides on his way back from the elections (of magistrates), (1) he asked him: Who are elected generals, Nicomachides?

(1) Cf. "Pol. Ath." i. 3; Aristot. "Ath. Pol." 44. 4; and Dr. Sandys' note ad loc. p. 165 of his edition.

And he: Is it not just like them, these citizens of Athens—just like them, I say—to go and elect, not me, who ever since my name first appeared on the muster-roll have literally worn myself out with military service—now as a captain, now as a colonel—and have received all these wounds from the enemy, look you! (at the same time, and suiting the action to the word, he bared his arms and proceeded to show the scars of ancient wounds)—they elect not me (he went on), but, if you please, Antisthenes! who never served as a hoplite (2) in his life nor in the cavalry ever made a brilliant stroke, that I ever heard tell of; no! in fact, he has got no science at all, I take it, except to amass stores of wealth.

(2) Cf. Lys. xiv. 10.

But still (returned Socrates), surely that is one point in his favour—he ought to be able to provide the troops with supplies.

Nic. Well, for the matter of that, merchants are good hands at collecting stores; but it does not follow that a merchant or trader will be able to command an army.

But (rejoined Socrates) Antisthenes is a man of great pertinacity, who insists on winning, and that is a very necessary quality in a general. (3) Do not you see how each time he has been choragos (4) he has been successful with one chorus after another?

(3) See Grote, "Plato," i. 465 foll.

(4) Choir-master, or Director of the Chorus. It was his duty to provide and preside over a chorus to sing, dance, or play at any of the public festivals, defraying the cost as a state service of {leitourgia}. See "Pol. Ath." iii. 4; "Hiero," ix. 4; Aristot. "Pol. Ath." 28. 3.

Nic. Bless me! yes; but there is a wide difference between standing at the head of a band of singers and dancers and a troop of soldiers.

Soc. Still, without any practical skill in singing or in the training of a chorus, Antisthenes somehow had the art to select the greatest proficients in both.

Nic. Yes, and by the same reasoning we are to infer that on a campaign he will find proficients, some to marshal the troops for him and others to fight his battles?

Soc. Just so. If in matters military he only exhibits the same skill in selecting the best hands as he has shown in matters of the chorus, it is highly probable he will here also bear away the palm of victory; and we may presume that if he expended so much to win a choric victory with a single tribe, (5) he will be ready to expend more to secure a victory in war with the whole state to back him.

(5) See Dem. "against Lept." 496. 26. Each tribe nominated such of its members as were qualified to undertake the burden.

Nic. Do you really mean, Socrates, that it is the function of the same man to provide efficient choruses and to act as commander-in-chief?

Soc. I mean this, that, given a man knows what he needs to provide, and has the skill to do so, no matter what the department of things may be—house or city or army—you will find him a good chief and director (6) of the same.

(6) Or, "representative."

Then Nicomachides: Upon my word, Socrates, I should never have expected to hear you say that a good housekeeper (7) and steward of an estate would make a good general.

(7) Or, "economist"; cf. "Cyrop." I. vi. 12.

Soc. Come then, suppose we examine their respective duties, and so determine (8) whether they are the same or different.

(8) Lit. "get to know."

Nic. Let us do so.

Soc. Well then, is it not a common duty of both to procure the ready obedience of those under them to their orders?

Nic. Certainly.

Soc. And also to assign to those best qualified to perform them their distinctive tasks?

That, too, belongs to both alike (he answered).

Soc. Again, to chastise the bad and reward the good belongs to both alike, methinks?

Nic. Decidedly.

Soc. And to win the kindly feeling of their subordinates must surely be the noble ambition of both?

That too (he answered).

Soc. And do you consider it to the interest of both alike to win the adherence of supporters and allies? (9)

(9) In reference to the necessity of building up a family connection or political alliances cf. Arist. "Pol." iii. 9, 13.

Nic. Without a doubt.

Soc. And does it not closely concern them both to be good guardians of their respective charges?

Nic. Very much so.

Soc. Then it equally concerns them both to be painstaking and prodigal of toil in all their doings?

Nic. Yes, all these duties belong to both alike, but the parallel ends when you come to actual fighting.

Soc. Yet they are both sure to meet with enemies?

Nic. There is no doubt about that.

Soc. Then is it not to the interest of both to get the upper hand of these?

Nic. Certainly; but you omit to tell us what service organisation and the art of management will render when it comes to actual fighting.

Soc. Why, it is just then, I presume, it will be of most service, for the good economist knows that nothing is so advantageous or so lucrative as victory in battle, or to put it negatively, nothing so disastrous and expensive as defeat. He will enthusiastically seek out and provide everything conducive to victory, he will painstakingly discover and guard against all that tends to defeat, and when satisfied that all is ready and ripe for victory he will deliver battle energetically, and what is equally important, until the hour of final preparation has arrived, (10) he will be cautious to deliver battle. Do not despise men of economic genius, Nicomachides; the difference between the devotion requisite to private affairs and to affairs of state is merely one of quantity. For the rest the parallel holds strictly, and in this respect pre-eminently, that both are concerned with human instruments: which human beings, moreover, are of one type and temperament, whether we speak of devotion to public affairs or of the administration of private property. To fare well in either case is given to those who know the secret of dealing with humanity, whereas the absence of that knowledge will as certainly imply in either case a fatal note of discord. (11)

(10) Lit. "as long as he is unprepared."

(11) L. Dindorf, "Index Graec." Ox. ed.; cf. Hor. "Ep." II. ii. 144, "sed verae numerosque modosque ediscere vitae," "the harmony of life," Conington.


A conversation held with Pericles the son of the great statesman may here be introduced. (1) Socrates began:

(1) Or, "On one occasion Pericles was the person addressed in conversation." For Pericles see "Hell." I. v. 16; vii. 15; Plut. "Pericl." 37 (Clough, i. 368).

I am looking forward, I must tell you, Pericles, to a great improvement in our military affairs when you are minister of war. (2) The prestige of Athens, I hope, will rise; we shall gain the mastery over our enemies.

(2) "Strategos."

Pericles replied: I devoutly wish your words might be fulfilled, but how this happy result is to be obtained, I am at a loss to discover.

Shall we (Socrates continued), shall we balance the arguments for and against, and consider to what extent the possibility does exist?

Pray let us do so (he answered).

Soc. Well then, you know that in point of numbers the Athenians are not inferior to the Boeotians?

Per. Yes, I am aware of that.

Soc. And do you think the Boeotians could furnish a better pick of fine healthy men than the Athenians?

Per. I think we should very well hold our own in that respect.

Soc. And which of the two would you take to be the more united people—the friendlier among themselves?

Per. The Athenians, I should say, for so many sections of the Boeotians, resenting the selfish policy (3) of Thebes, are ill disposed to that power, but at Athens I see nothing of the sort.

(3) "The self-aggrandisement."

Soc. But perhaps you will say that there is no people more jealous of honour or haughtier in spirit. (4) And these feelings are no weak spurs to quicken even a dull spirit to hazard all for glory's sake and fatherland.

(4) Reading {megalophronestatoi}, after Cobet. See "Hipparch," vii. 3; or if as vulg. {philophronestatoi}, transl. "more affable."

Per. Nor is there much fault to find with Athenians in these respects.

Soc. And if we turn to consider the fair deeds of ancestry, (5) to no people besides ourselves belongs so rich a heritage of stimulating memories, whereby so many of us are stirred to pursue virtue with devotion and to show ourselves in our turn also men of valour like our sires.

(5) See Wesley's anthem, Eccles. xliv. 1, "Let us now praise famous men and our fathers that begat us."

Per. All that you say, Socrates, is most true, but do you observe that ever since the disaster of the thousand under Tolmides at Lebadeia, coupled with that under Hippocrates at Delium, (6) the prestige of Athens by comparison with the Boeotians has been lowered, whilst the spirit of Thebes as against Athens had been correspondingly exalted, so that those Boeotians who in old days did not venture to give battle to the Athenians even in their own territory unless they had the Lacedaemonians and the rest of the Peloponnesians to help them, do nowadays threaten to make an incursion into Attica single-handed; and the Athenians, who formerly, if they had to deal with the Boeotians (7) only, made havoc of their territory, are now afraid the Boeotians may some day harry Attica.

(6) Lebadeia, 447 B.C.; Delium, 424 B.C. For Tolmides and Hippocrates see Thuc. i. 113; iv. 100 foll.; Grote, "H. G." v. 471; vi. 533.

(7) Reading {ote B. monoi}, al. {ou monoi}, "when the Boeotians were not unaided."

To which Socrates: Yes, I perceive that this is so, but it seems to me that the state was never more tractably disposed, never so ripe for a really good leader, as to-day. For if boldness be the parent of carelessness, laxity, and insubordination, it is the part of fear to make people more disposed to application, obedience, and good order. A proof of which you may discover in the behaviour of people on ship-board. It is in seasons of calm weather when there is nothing to fear that disorder may be said to reign, but as soon as there is apprehension of a storm, or an enemy in sight, the scene changes; not only is each word of command obeyed, but there is a hush of silent expectation; the mariners wait to catch the next signal like an orchestra with eyes upon the leader.

Per. But indeed, given that now is the opportunity to take obedience at the flood, it is high time also to explain by what means we are to rekindle in the hearts of our countrymen (8) the old fires—the passionate longing for antique valour, for the glory and the wellbeing of the days of old.

(8) Reading {anerasthenai}, Schneider's emendation of the vulg. {aneristhenai}.

Well (proceeded Socrates), supposing we wished them to lay claim to certain material wealth now held by others, we could not better stimulate them to lay hands on the objects coveted than by showing them that these were ancestral possessions (9) to which they had a natural right. But since our object is that they should set their hearts on virtuous pre-eminence, we must prove to them that such headship combined with virtue is an old time-honoured heritage which pertains to them beyond all others, and that if they strive earnestly after it they will soon out-top the world.

(9) Cf. Solon in the matter of Salamis, Plut. "Sol." 8; Bergk. "Poet. Lyr. Gr. Solon," SALAMIS, i. 2, 3.

Por. How are we to inculcate this lesson?

Soc. I think by reminding them of a fact already registered in their minds, (10) that the oldest of our ancestors whose names are known to us were also the bravest of heroes.

(10) Or, "to which their ears are already opened."

Per. I suppose you refer to that judgment of the gods which, for their virtue's sake, Cecrops and his followers were called on to decide? (11)

(11) See Apollodorus, iii. 14.

Soc. Yes, I refer to that and to the birth and rearing of Erectheus, (12) and also to the war (13) which in his days was waged to stay the tide of invasion from the whole adjoining continent; and that other war in the days of the Heraclidae (14) against the men of Peloponnese; and that series of battles fought in the days of Theseus (15)—in all which the virtuous pre-eminence of our ancestry above the men of their own times was made manifest. Or, if you please, we may come down to things of a later date, which their descendants and the heroes of days not so long anterior to our own wrought in the struggle with the lords of Asia, (16) nay of Europe also, as far as Macedonia: a people possessing a power and means of attack far exceeding any who had gone before—who, moreover, had accomplished the doughtiest deeds. These things the men of Athens wrought partly single-handed, (17) and partly as sharers with the Peloponnesians in laurels won by land and sea. Heroes were these men also, far outshining, as tradition tells us, the peoples of their time.

(12) Cf. "Il." ii. 547, {'Erekhtheos megaletoros k.t.l.}

(13) Cf. Isoc. "Paneg." 19, who handles all the topics.

(14) Commonly spoken of as "the Return." See Grote, "H. G." II. ch. xviii.

(15) Against the Amazons and Thracians; cf. Herod. ix. 27; Plut. "Thes." 27.

(16) The "Persian" wars; cf. Thucyd. I. i.

(17) He omits the Plataeans.

Per. Yes, so runs the story of their heroism.

Soc. Therefore it is that, amidst the many changes of inhabitants, and the migrations which have, wave after wave, swept over Hellas, these maintained themselves in their own land, unmoved; so that it was a common thing for others to turn to them as to a court of appeal on points of right, or to flee to Athens as a harbour of refuge from the hand of the oppressor. (18)

(18) Cf. (Plat.) "Menex."; Isocr. "Paneg."

Then Pericles: And the wonder to me, Socrates, is how our city ever came to decline.

Soc. I think we are victims of our own success. Like some athlete, (19) whose facile preponderance in the arena has betrayed him into laxity until he eventually succumbs to punier antagonists, so we Athenians, in the plenitude of our superiority, have neglected ourselves and are become degenerate.

(19) Reading {athletai tines}, or if {alloi tines}, translate "any one else."

Per. What then ought we to do now to recover our former virtue?

Soc. There need be no mystery about that, I think. We can rediscover the institutions of our forefathers—applying them to the regulation of our lives with something of their precision, and not improbably with like success; or we can imitate those who stand at the front of affairs to-day, (20) adapting to ourselves their rule of life, in which case, if we live up to the standard of our models, we may hope at least to rival their excellence, or, by a more conscientious adherence to what they aim at, rise superior.

(20) Sc. the Lacedaemonians. See W. L. Newman, op. cit. i. 396.

You would seem to suggest (he answered) that the spirit of beautiful and brave manhood has taken wings and left our city; (21) as, for instance, when will Athenians, like the Lacedaemonians, reverence old age—the Athenian, who takes his own father as a starting-point for the contempt he pours upon grey hairs? When will he pay as strict an attention to the body, who is not content with neglecting a good habit, (22) but laughs to scorn those who are careful in this matter? When shall we Athenians so obey our magistrates—we who take a pride, as it were, in despising authority? When, once more, shall we be united as a people—we who, instead of combining to promote common interests, delight in blackening each other's characters, (23) envying one another more than we envy all the world besides; and—which is our worst failing—who, in private and public intercourse alike, are torn by dissension and are caught in a maze of litigation, and prefer to make capital out of our neighbour's difficulties rather than to render natural assistance? To make our conduct consistent, indeed, we treat our national interests no better than if they were the concerns of some foreign state; we make them bones of contention to wrangle over, and rejoice in nothing so much as in possessing means and ability to indulge these tastes. From this hotbed is engendered in the state a spirit of blind folly (24) and cowardice, and in the hearts of the citizens spreads a tangle of hatred and mutual hostility which, as I often shudder to think, will some day cause some disaster to befall the state greater than it can bear. (25)

(21) Or, "is far enough away from Athens."

(22) See below, III. xii. 5; "Pol. Ath." i. 13; "Rev." iv. 52.

(23) Or, "to deal despitefully with one another."

(24) Reading {ateria}. See L. Dindorf ad loc., Ox. ed. lxii. Al. {apeiria}, a want of skill, or {ataxia}, disorderliness. Cf. "Pol. Ath." i. 5.

(25) Possibly the author is thinking of the events of 406, 405 B.C. (see "Hell." I. vii. and II.), and history may repeat itself.

Do not (replied Socrates), do not, I pray you, permit yourself to believe that Athenians are smitten with so incurable a depravity. Do you not observe their discipline in all naval matters? Look at their prompt and orderly obedience to the superintendents at the gymnastic contests, (26) their quite unrivalled subservience to their teachers in the training of our choruses.

(26) Epistatoi, i.e. stewards and training-masters.

Yes (he answered), there's the wonder of it; to think that all those good people should so obey their leaders, but that our hoplites and our cavalry, who may be supposed to rank before the rest of the citizens in excellence of manhood, (27) should be so entirely unamenable to discipline.

(27) {kalokagathia}.

Then Socrates: Well, but the council which sits on Areopagos is composed of citizens of approved (28) character, is it not?

(28) Technically, they must have passed the {dokimasia}. And for the "Aeropagos" see Grote, "H. G." v. 498; Aristot. "Pol." ii. 12; "Ath. Pol." 4. 4, where see Dr. Sandys' note, p. 18.

Certainly (he answered).

Soc. Then can you name any similar body, judicial or executive, trying cases or transacting other business with greater honour, stricter legality, higher dignity, or more impartial justice?

No, I have no fault to find on that score (he answered).

Soc. Then we ought not to despair as though all sense of orderliness and good discipline had died out of our countrymen.

Still (he answered), if it is not to harp upon one string, I maintain that in military service, where, if anywhere, sobreity and temperance, orderliness and good discipline are needed, none of these essentials receives any attention.

May it not perhaps be (asked Socrates) that in this department they are officered by those who have the least knowledge? (29) Do you not notice, to take the case of harp-players, choric performers, dancers, and the like, that no one would ever dream of leading if he lacked the requisite knowledge? and the same holds of wrestlers or pancratiasts.

(29) {episteme}. See below, III. ix. 10.

Moreover, while in these cases any one in command can tell you where he got the elementary knowledge of what he presides over, most generals are amateurs and improvisers. (30) I do not at all suppose that you are one of that sort. I believe you could give as clear an account of your schooling in strategy as you could in the matter of wrestling. No doubt you have got at first hand many of your father's "rules for generalship," which you carefully preserve, besides having collected many others from every quarter whence it was possible to pick up any knowledge which would be of use to a future general. Again, I feel sure you are deeply concerned to escape even unconscious ignorance of anything which will be serviceable to you in so high an office; and if you detect in yourself any ignorance, you turn to those who have knowledge in these matters (sparing neither gifts nor gratitude) to supplement your ignorance by their knowledge and to secure their help.

(30) Cf. "Pol. Lac." xiii. 5.

To which Pericles: I am not so blind, Socrates, as to imagine you say these words under the idea that I am truly so careful in these matters; but rather your object is to teach me that the would-be general must make such things his care. I admit in any case all you say.

Socrates proceeded: Has it ever caught your observation, Pericles, that a high mountain barrier stretches like a bulwark in front of our country down towards Boeotia—cleft, moreover, by narrow and precipitous passes, the only avenues into the heart of Attica, which lies engirdled by a ring of natural fortresses? (31)

(31) The mountains are Cithaeron and Parnes N., and Cerata N.W.

Per. Certainly I have.

Soc. Well, and have you ever heard tell of the Mysians and Pisidians living within the territory of the great king, (32) who, inside their mountain fortresses, lightly armed, are able to rush down and inflict much injury on the king's territory by their raids, while preserving their own freedom?

(32) For this illustration see "Anab." III. ii. 23; cf. "Econ." iv. 18, where Socrates ({XS}) refers to Cyrus's expedition and death.

Per. Yes, the circumstance is not new to me.

And do you not think (added Socrates) that a corps of young able-bodied Athenians, accoutred with lighter arms, (33) and holding our natural mountain rampart in possession, would prove at once a thorn in the enemy's side offensively, whilst defensively they would form a splendid bulwark to protect the country?

(33) Cf. the reforms of Iphicrates.

To which Pericles: I think, Socrates, these would be all useful measures, decidedly.

If, then (replied Socrates), these suggestions meet your approbation, try, O best of men, to realise them—if you can carry out a portion of them, it will be an honour to yourself and a blessing to the state; while, if you fail in any point, there will be no damage done to the city nor discredit to yourself.


Glaucon, (1) the son of Ariston, had conceived such an ardour to gain the headship of the state that nothing could hinder him but he must deliver a course of public speeches, (2) though he had not yet reached the age of twenty. His friends and relatives tried in vain to stop him making himself ridiculous and being dragged down from the bema. (3) Socrates, who took a kindly interest in the youth for the sake of Charmides (4) the son of Glaucon, and of Plato, alone succeeded in restraining him. It happened thus. He fell in with him, and first of all, to get him to listen, detained him by some such remarks as the following: (5)

(1) Glaucon, Plato's brother. Grote, "Plato," i. 508.

(2) "Harangue the People."

(3) See Plat. "Protag." 319 C: "And if some person offers to give them advice who is not supposed by them to have any skill in the art (sc. of politics), even though he be good-looking, and rich, and noble, they will not listen to him, but laugh at him, and hoot him, until he is either clamoured down and retires of himself; or if he persists, he is dragged away or put out by the constables at the command of the prytanes" (Jowett). Cf. Aristoph. "Knights," 665, {kath eilkon auton oi prutaneis kai toxotai}.

(4) For Charmides (maternal uncle of Plato and Glaucon, cousin of Critias) see ch. vii. below; Plato the philosopher, Glaucon's brother, see Cobet, "Pros. Xen." p. 28.

(5) Or, "and in the first instance addressing him in such terms he could not choose but hear, detained him." See above, II. vi. 11. Socrates applies his own theory.

Ah, Glaucon (he exclaimed), so you have determined to become prime minister? (6)

(6) {prostateuein}.

Glauc. Yes, Socrates, I have.

Soc. And what a noble aim! if aught human ever deserved to be called noble; since if you succeed in your design, it follows, as the night the day, you will be able not only to gratify your every wish, but you will be in a position to benefit your friends, you will raise up your father's house, you will exalt your fatherland, you will become a name thrice famous in the city first, and next in Hellas, and lastly even among barbarians perhaps, like Themistocles; but be it here or be it there, wherever you be, you will be the observed of all beholders. (7)

(7) "The centre of attraction—the cynosure of neighbouring eyes."

The heart of Glaucon swelled with pride as he drank in the words, and gladly he stayed to listen.

Presently Socrates proceeded: Then this is clear, Glaucon, is it not? that you must needs benefit the city, since you desire to reap her honours?

Glauc. Undoubtedly.

Then, by all that is sacred (Socrates continued), do not keep us in the dark, but tell us in what way do you propose first to benefit the state? what is your starting-point? (8) When Glaucon remained with sealed lips, as if he were now for the first time debating what this starting-point should be, Socrates continued: I presume, if you wished to improve a friend's estate, you would endeavour to do so by adding to its wealth, would you not? So here, maybe, you will try to add to the wealth of the state?

(8) Or, "tell us what your starting-point will be in the path of benefaction."

Most decidedly (he answered).

Soc. And we may take it the state will grow wealthier in proportion as her revenues increase?

Glauc. That seems probable, at any rate.

Soc. Then would you kindly tell us from what sources the revenues of the state are at present derived, and what is their present magnitude? No doubt you have gone carefully into the question, so that if any of these are failing you may make up the deficit, or if neglected for any reason, make some new provision. (9)

(9) Or, "or if others have dropped out or been negligently overlooked, you may replace them."

Glauc. Nay, to speak the truth, these are matters I have not thoroughly gone into.

Never mind (he said) if you have omitted the point; but you might oblige us by running through the items or heads of expenditure. Obviously you propose to remove all those which are superfluous?

Glauc. Well, no. Upon my word I have not had time to look into that side of the matter either as yet.

Soc. Then we will postpone for the present the problem of making the state wealthier; obviously without knowing the outgoings and the incomings it would be impossible to deal with the matter seriously.

But, Socrates (Glaucon remarked), it is possible to enrich the state out of the pockets of her enemies!

Yes, to be sure, considerably (answered Socrates), in the event of getting the better of them; but in the event of being worsted, it is also possible to lose what we have got.

A true observation (he replied).

And therefore (proceeded Socrates), before he makes up his mind with what enemy to go to war, a statesman should know the relative powers of his own city and the adversary's, so that, in case the superiority be on his own side, he may throw the weight of his advice into the scale of undertaking war; but if the opposite he may plead in favour of exercising caution.

You are right (he answered).

Soc. Then would you for our benefit enumerate the land and naval forces first of Athens and then of our opponents?

Glauc. Pardon me. I could not tell you them off-hand at a moment's notice.

Or (added Socrates), if you have got the figures on paper, you might produce them. I cannot tell how anxious I am to hear your statement.

Glauc. No, I assure you, I have not got them even on paper yet.

Soc. Well then, we will defer tending advice on the topic of peace or war, in a maiden speech at any rate. (10) I can understand that, owing to the magnitude of the questions, in these early days of your ministry you have not yet fully examined them. But come, I am sure that you have studied the defences of the country, at all events, and you know exactly how many forts and outposts are serviceable (11) and how many are not; you can tell us which garrisons are strong enough and which defective; and you are prepared to throw in the weight of your advice in favour of increasing the serviceable outposts and sweeping away those that are superfluous?

(10) See "Econ." xi. 1.

(11) Or, "advantageously situated." See the author's own tract on "Revenues."

Glauc. Yes, sweep them all away, that's my advice; for any good that is likely to come of them! Defences indeed! so maintained that the property of the rural districts is simply pilfered.

But suppose you sweep away the outposts (he asked), may not something worse, think you, be the consequence? will not sheer plundering be free to any ruffian who likes?... But may I ask is this judgment the result of personal inspection? have you gone yourself and examined the defences? or how do you know that they are all maintained as you say?

Glauc. I conjecture that it is so.

Soc. Well then, until we have got beyond the region of conjecture shall we defer giving advice on the matter? (It will be time enough when we know the facts.)

Possibly it would be better to wait till then (replied Glaucon).

Soc. Then there are the mines, (12) but, of course, I am aware that you have not visited them in person, so as to be able to say why they are less productive than formerly.

(12) Again the author's tract on "Revenues" is a comment on the matter.

Well, no; I have never been there myself (he answered).

Soc. No, Heaven help us! an unhealthy district by all accounts; so that, when the moment for advice on that topic arrives, you will have an excuse ready to hand.

I see you are making fun of me (Glaucon answered).

Soc. Well, but here is a point, I am sure, which you have not neglected. No, you will have thoroughly gone into it, and you can tell us. For how long a time could the corn supplies from the country districts support the city? how much is requisite for a single year, so that the city may not run short of this prime necessary, before you are well aware; but on the contrary you with your full knowledge will be in a position to give advice on so vital a question, to the aid or may be the salvation of your country?

It is a colossal business this (Glaucon answered), if I am to be obliged to give attention to all these details.

Soc. On the other hand, a man could not even manage his own house or his estate well, without, in the first place, knowing what he requires, and, in the second place, taking pains, item by item, to supply his wants. But since this city consists of more than ten thousand houses, and it is not easy to pay minute attention to so many all at once, how is it you did not practise yourself by trying to augment the resources of one at any rate of these—I mean your own uncle's? The service would not be thrown away. Then if your strength suffices in the single case you might take in hand a larger number; but if you fail to relieve one, how could you possibly hope to succeed with many? How absurd for a man, if he cannot carry half a hundredweight, to attempt to carry a whole! (13)

(13) Lit. "a single talent's weight... to carry two."

Glauc. Nay, for my part, I am willing enough to assist my uncle's house, if my uncle would only be persuaded to listen to my advice.

Soc. Then, when you cannot persuade your uncle, do you imagine you will be able to make the whole Athenian people, uncle and all, obey you? Be careful, Glaucon (he added), lest in your thirst for glory and high repute you come to the opposite. Do you not see how dangerous it is for a man to speak or act beyond the range (14) of his knowledge? To take the cases known to you of people whose conversation or conduct clearly transcends these limits: should you say they gain more praise or more blame on that account? Are they admired the rather or despised? Or, again, consider those who do know what they say and what they do; and you will find, I venture to say, that in every sort of undertaking those who enjoy repute and admiration belong to the class of those endowed with the highest knowledge; whilst conversely the people of sinister reputation, the mean and the contemptible, emanate from some depth of ignorance and dulness. If therefore what you thirst for is repute and admiration as a statesman, try to make sure of one accomplishment: in other words, the knowledge as far as in you lies of what you wish to do. (15) If, indeed, with this to distinguish you from the rest of the world you venture to concern yourself with state affairs, it would not surprise me but that you might reach the goal of your ambition easily.

(14) Or, "to talk of things which he does not know, or to meddle with them."

(15) Or, "try as far as possible to achieve one thing, and that is to know the business which you propose to carry out."


Now Charmides, (1) the son of Glaucon, was, as Socrates observed, a man of mark and influence: a much more powerful person in fact than the mass of those devoted to politics at that date, but at the same time he was a man who shrank from approaching the people or busying himself with the concerns of the state. Accordingly Socrates addressed him thus:

(1) See last chapter for his relationship to Glaucon (the younger) and Plato; for a conception of his character, Plato's dialogue "Charmides"; "Theag." 128 E; "Hell." II. iv. 19; "Symp." iv. 31; Grote, "Plato," i. 480.

Tell me, Charmides, supposing some one competent to win a victory in the arena and to receive a crown, (2) whereby he will gain honour himself and make the land of his fathers more glorious in Hellas, (3) were to refuse to enter the lists—what kind of person should you set him down to be?

(2) In some conquest (e.g. of the Olympic games) where the prize is a mere wreath.

(3) Cf. Pindar passim.

Clearly an effeminate and cowardly fellow (he answered).

Soc. And what if another man, who had it in him, by devotion to affairs of state, to exalt his city and win honour himself thereby, were to shrink and hesitate and hang back—would he too not reasonably be regarded as a coward?

Possibly (he answered); but why do you address these questions to me?

Because (replied Socrates) I think that you, who have this power, do hesitate to devote yourself to matters which, as being a citizen, if for no other reason, you are bound to take part in. (4)

(4) Or add, "and cannot escape from."

Charm. And wherein have you detected in me this power, that you pass so severe a sentence upon me?

Soc. I have detected it plainly enough in those gatherings (5) in which you meet the politicians of the day, when, as I observe, each time they consult you on any point you have always good advice to offer, and when they make a blunder you lay your finger on the weak point immediately.

(5) See above, I. v. 4; here possibly of political club conversation.

Charm. To discuss and reason in private is one thing, Socrates, to battle in the throng of the assembly is another.

Soc. And yet a man who can count, counts every bit as well in a crowd as when seated alone by himself; and it is the best performer on the harp in private who carries off the palm of victory in public.

Charm. But do you not see that modesty and timidity are feelings implanted in man's nature? and these are much more powerfully present to us in a crowd than within the circle of our intimates.

Soc. Yes, but what I am bent on teaching you is that while you feel no such bashfulness and timidity before the wisest and strongest of men, you are ashamed of opening your lips in the midst of weaklings and dullards. (6) Is it the fullers among them of whom you stand in awe, or the cobblers, or the carpenters, or the coppersmiths, or the merchants, or the farmers, or the hucksters of the market-place exchanging their wares, and bethinking them how they are to buy this thing cheap, and to sell the other dear—is it before these you are ashamed, for these are the individual atoms out of which the Public Assembly is composed? (7) And what is the difference, pray, between your behaviour and that of a man who, being the superior of trained athletes, quails before a set of amateurs? Is it not the case that you who can argue so readily with the foremost statesmen in the city, some of whom affect to look down upon you—you, with your vast superiority over practised popular debaters—are no sooner confronted with a set of folk who never in their lives gave politics a thought, and into whose heads certainly it never entered to look down upon you—than you are afraid to open your lips in mortal terror of being laughed at?

(6) Cf. Cic. "Tusc." v. 36, 104; Plat. "Gorg." 452 E, 454 B.

(7) Cf. Plat. "Protag." 319 C. See W. L. Newman, op. cit. i. 103.

Well, but you would admit (he answered) that sound argument does frequently bring down the ridicule of the Popular Assembly.

Soc. Which is equally true of the others. (8) And that is just what rouses my astonishment, that you who can cope so easily with these lordly people (when guilty of ridicule) should persuade yourself that you cannot stand up against a set of commoners. (9) My good fellow, do not be ignorant of yourself! (10) do not fall into that commonest of errors—theirs who rush off to investigate the concerns of the rest of the world, and have no time to turn and examine themselves. Yet that is a duty which you must not in cowardly sort draw back from: rather must you brace ourself to give good heed to your own self; and as to public affairs, if by any manner of means they may be improved through you, do not neglect them. Success in the sphere of politics means that not only the mass of your fellow-citizens, but your personal friends and you yourself last but not least, will profit by your action.

(8) {oi eteroi}, i.e. "the foremost statesmen" mentioned before. Al. "the opposite party," the "Tories," if one may so say, of the political clubs.

(9) Lit. "those... these."

(10) Ernesti aptly cf. Cic. "ad Quint." iii. 6. See below, III. ix. 6; IV. ii. 24.


Once when Aristippus (1) set himself to subject Socrates to a cross-examination, such as he had himself undergone at the hands of Socrates on a former occasion, (2) Socrates, being minded to benefit those who were with him, gave his answers less in the style of a debater guarding against perversions of his argument, than of a man persuaded of the supreme importance of right conduct. (3)

(1) For Aristippus see above, p. 38; for the connection, {boulomenos tous sunontas ophelein}, between this and the preceeding chapter, see above, Conspectus, p. xxvi.

(2) Possibly in reference to the conversation above. In reference to the present dialogue see Grote, "Plato," I. xi. p. 380 foll.

(3) For {prattein ta deonta} cf. below, III. ix. 4, 11; Plat. "Charm." 164 B; but see J. J. Hartman, "An. Xen." p. 141.

Aristippus asked him "if he knew of anything good," (4) intending in case he assented and named any particular good thing, like food or drink, or wealth, or health, or strength, or courage, to point out that the thing named was sometimes bad. But he, knowing that if a thing troubles us, we immediately want that which will put an end to our trouble, answered precisely as it was best to do. (5)

(4) See Grote, "Plato," ii. 585, on Philebus.

(5) Or, "made the happiest answer."

Soc. Do I understand you to ask me whether I know anything good for fever?

No (he replied), that is not my question.

Soc. Then for inflammation of the eyes?

Aristip. No, nor yet that.

Soc. Well then, for hunger?

Aristip. No, nor yet for hunger.

Well, but (answered Socrates) if you ask me whether I know of any good thing which is good for nothing, I neither know of it nor want to know.

And when Aristippus, returning to the charge, asked him "if he knew of any thing beautiful."

He answered: Yes, many things.

Aristip. Are they all like each other?

Soc. On the contrary, they are often as unlike as possible.

How then (he asked) can that be beautiful which is unlike the beautiful?

Soc. Bless me! for the simple reason that it is possible for a man who is a beautiful runner to be quite unlike another man who is a beautiful boxer, (6) or for a shield, which is a beautiful weapon for the purpose of defence, to be absolutely unlike a javelin, which is a beautiful weapon of swift and sure discharge.

(6) See Grote, "H. G." x. 164, in reference to Epaminondas and his gymnastic training; below, III. x. 6.

Aristip. Your answers are no better now than (7) when I asked you whether you knew any good thing. They are both of a pattern.

(7) Or, "You answer precisely as you did when..."

Soc. And so they should be. Do you imagine that one thing is good and another beautiful? Do not you know that relatively to the same standard all things are at once beautiful and good? (8) In the first place, virtue is not a good thing relatively to one standard and a beautiful thing relatively to another standard; and in the next place, human beings, on the same principle (9) and relatively to the same standard, are called "beautiful and good"; and so the bodily frames of men relatively to the same standards are seen to be "beautiful and good," and in general all things capable of being used by man are regarded as at once beautiful and good relatively to the same standard—the standing being in each case what the thing happens to be useful for. (10)

(8) Or, "good and beautiful are convertible terms: whatever is good is beautiful, or whatever is beautiful is good."

(9) Or, "in the same breath." Cf. Plat. "Hipp. maj." 295 D; "Gorg." 474 D.

(10) Or, "and this standard is the serviceableness of the thing in question."

Aristip. Then I presume even a basket for carrying dung (11) is a beautiful thing?

(11) Cf. Plat. "Hipp. maj." 288 D, 290 D; and Grote's note, loc. cit. p. 381: "in regard to the question wherein consists {to kalon}?"

Soc. To be sure, and a spear of gold an ugly thing, if for their respective uses—the former is well and the latter ill adapted.

Aristip. Do you mean to assert that the same things may be beautiful and ugly?

Soc. Yes, to be sure; and by the same showing things may be good and bad: as, for instance, what is good for hunger may be bad for fever, and what is good for fever bad for hunger; or again, what is beautiful for wrestling is often ugly for running; and in general everything is good and beautiful when well adapted for the end in view, bad and ugly when ill adapted for the same.

Similarly when he spoke about houses, (12) and argued that "the same house must be at once beautiful and useful"—I could not help feeling that he was giving a good lesson on the problem: "how a house ought to be built." He investigated the matter thus:

(12) See K. Joel, op. cit. p. 488; "Classical Review," vii. 262.

Soc. "Do you admit that any one purposing to build a perfect house (13) will plan to make it at once as pleasant and as useful to live in as possible?" and that point being admitted, (14) the next question would be:

(13) Or, "the ideal house"; lit. "a house as it should be."

(14) See below, IV. vi. 15.

"It is pleasant to have one's house cool in summer and warm in winter, is it not?" and this proposition also having obtained assent, "Now, supposing a house to have a southern aspect, sunshine during winter will steal in under the verandah, (15) but in summer, when the sun traverses a path right over our heads, the roof will afford an agreeable shade, will it not? If, then, such an arrangement is desirable, the southern side of a house should be built higher to catch the rays of the winter sun, and the northern side lower to prevent the cold winds finding ingress; in a word, it is reasonable to suppose that the pleasantest and most beautiful dwelling place will be one in which the owner can at all seasons of the year find the pleasantest retreat, and stow away his goods with the greatest security."

(15) Or, "porticoes" or "collonades."

Paintings (16) and ornamental mouldings are apt (he said) to deprive one of more joy (17) than they confer.

(16) See "Econ." ix. 2; Plat. "Hipp. maj." 298 A; "Rep." 529; Becker, "Charicles," 268 (Engl. trans.)

(17) {euphrosunas}, archaic or "poetical" = "joyance." See "Hiero," vi. 1.

The fittest place for a temple or an altar (he maintained) was some site visible from afar, and untrodden by foot of man: (18) since it was a glad thing for the worshipper to lift up his eyes afar off and offer up his orison; glad also to wend his way peaceful to prayer unsullied. (19)

(18) e.g. the summit of Lycabettos, or the height on which stands the temple of Phygaleia. Cf. Eur. "Phoen." 1372, {Pallados khrusaspidos blepsas pros oikon euxato} of Eteocles.

(19) See Vitruvius, i. 7, iv. 5, ap. Schneid. ad loc.; W. L. Newman, op. cit. i. 338.


Being again asked by some one: could courage be taught, (1) or did it come by nature? he answered: I imagine that just as one body is by nature stronger than another body to encounter toils, so one soul by nature grows more robust than another soul in face of dangers. Certainly I do note that people brought up under the same condition of laws and customs differ greatly in respect of daring. Still my belief is that by learning and practice the natural aptitude may always be strengthened towards courage. It is clear, for instance, that Scythians or Thracians would not venture to take shield and spear and contend with Lacedaemonians; and it is equally evident that Lacedaemonians would demur to entering the lists of battle against Thracians if limited to their light shields and javelins, or against Scythians without some weapon more familiar than their bows and arrows. (2) And as far as I can see, this principle holds generally: the natural differences of one man from another may be compensated by artificial progress, the result of care and attention. All which proves clearly that whether nature has endowed us with keener or blunter sensibilities, the duty of all alike is to learn and practise those things in which we would fain achieve distinction.

(1) Or, "When some one retorted upon him with the question: 'Can courage be taught?'" and for this problem see IV. vi. 10, 11; "Symp." ii. 12; Plat. "Lach."; "Protag." 349; "Phaedr." 269 D; K. Joel, op. cit. p. 325 foll.; Grote, "Plato," i. 468 foll., ii. 60; Jowett, "Plato," i. 77, 119; Newman, op. cit. i. 343.

(2) Or, "against Thracians with light shields and javelins, or against Scythians with bows and arrows"; and for the national arms of these peoples respectively see Arist. "Lysistr." 563; "Anab." III. iv. 15; VI. VII. passim.

Between wisdom and sobriety of soul (which is temperance) he drew no distinction. (3) Was a man able on the one hand to recognise things beautiful and good sufficiently to live in them? Had he, on the other hand, knowledge of the "base and foul" so as to beware of them? If so, Socrates judged him to be wise at once and sound of soul (or temperate). (4)

(3) But cf. IV. vi. 7; K. Joel, op. cit. p. 363.

(4) Reading {alla to... kai to}, or more lit. "he discovered the wise man and sound of soul in his power not only to recognise things 'beautiful and good,' but to live and move and have his being in them; as also in his gift of avoiding consciously things base." Or if {alla ton... kai ton...} transl. "The man who not only could recognise the beautiful and good, but lived, etc., in that world, and who moreover consciously avoided things base, in the judgment of Socrates was wise and sound of soul." Cf. Plat. "Charm."

And being further questioned whether "he considered those who have the knowledge of right action, but do not apply it, to be wise and self-controlled?"—"Not a whit more," he answered, "than I consider them to be unwise and intemperate. (5) Every one, I conceive, deliberately chooses what, within the limits open to him, he considers most conducive to his interest, and acts accordingly. I must hold therefore that those who act against rule and crookedly (6) are neither wise nor self-controlled.

(5) For the phrase "not a whit the more" see below, III. xii. 1; "Econ." xii. 18. Al. "I should by no means choose to consider them wise and self-controlled rather than foolish and intemperate."

(6) "Who cannot draw a straight line, ethically speaking."

He said that justice, moreover, and all other virtue is wisdom. That is to say, things just, and all things else that are done with virtue, are "beautiful and good"; and neither will those who know these things deliberately choose aught else in their stead, nor will he who lacks the special knowledge of them be able to do them, but even if he makes the attempt he will miss the mark and fail. So the wise alone can perform the things which are "beautiful and good"; they that are unwise cannot, but even if they try they fail. Therefore, since all things just, and generally all things "beautiful and good," are wrought with virtue, it is clear that justice and all other virtue is wisdom.

On the other hand, madness (he maintained) was the opposite to wisdom; not that he regarded simple ignorance as madness, (7) but he put it thus: for a man to be ignorant of himself, to imagine and suppose that he knows what he knows not, was (he argued), if not madness itself, yet something very like it. The mass of men no doubt hold a different language: if a man is all abroad on some matter of which the mass of mankind are ignorant, they do not pronounce him "mad"; (8) but a like aberration of mind, if only it be about matters within the scope of ordinary knowledge, they call madness. For instance, any one who imagined himself too tall to pass under a gateway of the Long Wall without stooping, or so strong as to try to lift a house, or to attempt any other obvious impossibility, is a madman according to them; but in the popular sense he is not mad, if his obliquity is confined to small matters. In fact, just as strong desire goes by the name of passion in popular parlance, so mental obliquity on a grand scale is entitled madness.

(7) See K. Joel, op. cit. p. 346; Grote, "Plato," i. 400.

(8) Or, "they resent the term 'mad' being applied to people who are all abroad," etc. See Comte, "Pos. Pol." i. 575; ii. 373 (Engl. trans.)

In answer to the question: what is envy? he discovered it to be a certain kind of pain; not certainly the sorrow felt at the misfortunes of a friend or the good fortune of an enemy—that is not envy; but, as he said, "envy is felt by those alone who are annoyed at the successes of their friends." And when some one or other expressed astonishment that any one friendlily disposed to another should be pained at his well-doing, he reminded him of a common tendency in people: when any one is faring ill their sympathies are touched, they rush to the aid of the unfortunate; but when fortune smiles on others, they are somehow pained. "I do not say," he added, "this could happen to a thoughtful person; but it is no uncommon condition of a silly mind." (9)

(9) Or, "a man in his senses... a simpleton"; for the sentiment L. Dind. cf. Isocr. "ad Demonic." 7 D.

In answer to the question: what is leisure? I discover (he said) that most men do something: (10) for instance, the dice player, (11) the gambler, the buffoon, do something, but these have leisure; they can, if they like, turn and do something better; but nobody has leisure to turn from the better to the worse, and if he does so turn, when he has no leisure, he does but ill in that.

(10) See above, I. ii. 57; and in ref. to these definitions, K. Joel, op. cit. p. 347 foll.

(11) For "dice-playing" see Becker, "Charicl." 354 (Engl. trans.); for "buffoonery," ib. 98; "Symp."

(To pass to another definition.) They are not kings or rulers (he said) who hold the sceptre merely, or are chosen by fellows out of the street, (12) or are appointed by lot, or have stepped into office by violence or by fraud; but those who have the special knowledge (13) how to rule. Thus having won the admission that it is the function of a ruler to enjoin what ought to be done, and of those who are ruled to obey, he proceeded to point out by instances that in a ship the ruler or captain is the man of special knowledge, to whom, as an expert, the shipowner himself and all the others on board obey. So likewise, in the matter of husbandry, the proprietor of an estate; in that of sickness, the patient; in that of physical training of the body, the youthful athlete going through a course; and, in general, every one directly concerned in any matter needing attention and care will either attend to this matter personally, if he thinks he has the special knowledge; or, if he mistrusts his own science, will be eager to obey any expert on the spot, or will even send and fetch one from a distance. The guidance of this expert he will follow, and do what he has to do at his dictation.

(12) Tom, Dick, and Harry (as we say).

(13) The {episteme}. See above, III. v. 21; Newman, op. cit. i. 256.

And thus, in the art of spinning wool, he liked to point out that women are the rulers of men—and why? because they have the knowledge of the art, and men have not.

And if any one raised the objection that a tyrant has it in his power not to obey good and correct advice, he would retort: "Pray, how has he the option not to obey, considering the penalty hanging over him who disobeys the words of wisdom? for whatever the matter be in which he disobeys the word of good advice, he will fall into error, I presume, and falling into error, be punished." And to the suggestion that the tyrant could, if he liked, cut off the head of the man of wisdom, his answer was: "Do you think that he who destroys his best ally will go scot free, or suffer a mere slight and passing loss? Is he more likely to secure his salvation that way, think you, or to compass his own swift destruction?" (14)

(14) Or, "Is that to choose the path of safety, think you? Is it not rather to sign his own death-warrent?" L. Dind. cf. Hesiod, "Works and Days," 293. See Newman, op. cit. i. 393-397.

When some one asked him: "What he regarded as the best pursuit or business (15) for a man?" he answered: "Successful conduct"; (16) and to a second question: "Did he then regard good fortune as an end to be pursued?"—"On the contrary," he answered, "for myself, I consider fortune and conduct to be diametrically opposed. For instance, to succeed in some desirable course of action without seeking to do so, I hold to be good fortune; but to do a thing well by dint of learning and practice, that according to my creed is successful conduct, (17) and those who make this the serious business of their life seem to me to do well."

(15) Or, "the noblest study."

(16) {eupraxia, eu prattein}—to do well, in the sense both of well or right doing, and of welfare, and is accordingly opposed to {eutukhia}, mere good luck or success. Cf. Plat. "Euthyd." 281 B.

(17) Lit. "well-doing"; and for the Socratic view see Newman, op. cit. i. 305, 401.

They are at once the best and the dearest in the sight of God (18) (he went on to say) who for instance in husbandry do well the things of farming, or in the art of healing all that belongs to healing, or in statecraft the affairs of state; whereas a man who does nothing well—nor well in anything—is (he added) neither good for anything nor dear to God.

(18) Or, "most divinely favoured." Cf. Plat. "Euthyphro," 7 A.


But indeed, (1) if chance brought him into conversation with any one possessed of an art, and using it for daily purposes of business, he never failed to be useful to this kind of person. For instance, stepping one time into the studio of Parrhasius (2) the painter, and getting into conversation with him—

(1) {alla men kai}... "But indeed the sphere of his helpfulness was not circumscribed; if," etc.

(2) For Parrhasius of Ephesus, the son of Evenor and rival of Zeuxis, see Woltmann and Woermann, "Hist. of Painting," p. 47 foll.; Cobet, "Pros. Xen." p. 50 (cf. in particular Quint. XII. x. 627). At the date of conversation (real or ideal) he may be supposed to have been a young man.

I suppose, Parrhasius (said he), painting may be defined as "a representation of visible objects," may it not? (3) That is to say, by means of colours and palette you painters represent and reproduce as closely as possible the ups and downs, lights and shadows, hard and soft, rough and smooth surfaces, the freshness of youth and the wrinkles of age, do you not?

(3) Reading with Schneider, L. Dind., etc., after Stobaeus, {e graphike estin eikasia}, or if the vulg. {graphike estin e eikasia}, trans. "Painting is the term applied to a particular representation," etc.

You are right (he answered), that is so.

Soc. Further, in portraying ideal types of beauty, seeing it is not easy to light upon any one human being who is absolutely devoid of blemish, you cull from many models the most beautiful traits of each, and so make your figures appear completely beautiful? (4)

(4) Cf. Cic. "de Invent." ii. 1 ad in. of Zeuxis; Max. Tur. "Dissert." 23, 3, ap. Schneider ad loc.

Parrh. Yes, that is how we do. (5)

(5) Or, "that is the secret of our creations," or "our art of composition."

Well, but stop (Socrates continued); do you also pretend to represent in similar perfection the characteristic moods of the soul, its captivating charm and sweetness, with its deep wells of love, its intensity of yearning, its burning point of passion? or is all this quite incapable of being depicted?

Nay (he answered), how should a mood be other than inimitable, Socrates, when it possesses neither linear proportion (6) nor colour, nor any of those qualities which you named just now; when, in a word, it is not even visible?

(6) Lit. "symmetry." Cf. Plin. xxxv. 10, "primus symmetriam picturae dedit," etc.

Soc. Well, but the kindly look of love, the angry glance of hate at any one, do find expression in the human subject, do they not? (7)

(7) Or, "the glance of love, the scowl of hate, which one directs towards another, are recognised expressions of human feeling." Cf. the description of Parrhasius's own portrait of Demos, ap. Plin. loc. cit.

Parrh. No doubt they do.

Soc. Then this look, this glance, at any rate may be imitated in the eyes, may it not?

Undoubtedly (he answered).

Soc. And do anxiety and relief of mind occasioned by the good or evil fortune of those we love both wear the same expression?

By no means (he answered); at the thought of good we are radiant, at that of evil a cloud hangs on the brow.

Soc. Then here again are looks with it is possible to represent?

Parrh. Decidedly.

Soc. Furthermore, as through some chink or crevice, there pierces through the countenance of a man, through the very posture of his body as he stands or moves, a glimpse of his nobility and freedom, or again of something in him low and grovelling—the calm of self-restraint, and wisdom, or the swagger of insolence and vulgarity?

You are right (he answered).

Soc. Then these too may be imitated?

No doubt (he said).

Soc. And which is the pleasanter type of face to look at, do you think—one on which is imprinted the characteristics of a beautiful, good, and lovable disposition, or one which bears the impress of what is ugly, and bad, and hateful? (8)

(8) For this theory cp. Ruskin, "Mod. P." ii. 94 foll. and indeed passim.

Parrh. Doubtless, Socrates, there is a vast distinction between the two.

At another time he entered the workshop of the sculptor Cleiton, (9) and in course of conversation with him said:

(9) An unknown artist. Coraes conj. {Kleona}. Cf. Plin. xxxiv. 19; Paus. v. 17, vi. 3. He excelled in portrait statues. See Jowett, "Plato," iv.; "Laws," p. 123.

You have a gallery of handsome people here, (10) Cleiton, runners, and wrestlers, and boxers, and pancratiasts—that I see and know; but how do you give the magic touch of life to your creations, which most of all allures the soul of the beholder through his sense of vision?

(10) Reading after L. Dind. {kaloi ous}, or if vulg. {alloious}, translate "You have a variety of types, Cleiton, not all of one mould, but runners," etc.; al. "I see quite well how you give the diversity of form to your runners," etc.

As Cleiton stood perplexed, and did not answer at once, Socrates added: Is it by closely imitating the forms of living beings that you succeed in giving that touch of life to your statues?

No doubt (he answered).

Soc. It is, is it not, by faithfully copying the various muscular contractions of the body in obedience to the play of gesture and poise, the wrinklings of flesh and the sprawl of limbs, the tensions and the relaxations, that you succeed in making your statues like real beings—make them "breathe" as people say?

Cleit. Without a doubt.

Soc. And does not the faithful imitation of the various affections of the body when engaged in any action impart a particular pleasure to the beholder?

Cleit. I should say so.

Soc. Then the threatenings in the eyes of warriors engaged in battle should be carefully copied, or again you should imitate the aspect of a conqueror radiant with success?

Cleit. Above all things.

Soc. It would seem then that the sculptor is called upon to incorporate in his ideal form the workings and energies also of the soul?

Paying a visit to Pistias, (11) the corselet maker, when that artist showed him some exquisite samples of his work, Socrates exclaimed:

(11) Cf. Athen. iv. 20, where the same artist is referred to apparently as {Piston}, and for the type of person see the "Portrait of a Tailor" by Moroni in the National Gallery—see "Handbook," Edw. T. Cook, p. 152.

By Hera! a pretty invention this, Pistias, by which you contrive that the corselet should cover the parts of the person which need protection, and at the same time leave free play to the arms and hands.... but tell me, Pistias (he added), why do you ask a higher price for these corselets of yours if they are not stouter or made of costlier material than the others?

Because, Socrates (he answered), mine are of much finer proportion.

Soc. Proportion! Then how do you make this quality apparent to the customer so as to justify the higher price—by measure or weight? For I presume you cannot make them all exactly equal and of one pattern—if you make them fit, as of course you do?

Fit indeed! that I most distinctly do (he answered), take my word for it: no use in a corselet without that.

But then are not the wearer's bodies themselves (asked Socrates) some well proportioned and others ill?

Decidedly so (he answered).

Soc. Then how do you manage to make the corselet well proportioned if it is to fit an ill-proportioned body? (12)

(12) Or, "how do you make a well-proportioned corselet fit an ill- proportioned body? how well proportioned?"

Pist. To the same degree exactly as I make it fit. What fits is well proportioned.

Soc. It seems you use the term "well-proportioned" not in an absolute sense, but in reference to the wearer, just as you might describe a shield as well proportioned to the individual it suits; and so of a military cloak, and so of the rest of things, in your terminology? But maybe there is another considerable advantage in this "fitting"?

Pist. Pray instruct me, Socrates, if you have got an idea.

Soc. A corselet which fits is less galling by its weight than one which does not fit, for the latter must either drag from the shoulders with a dead weight or press upon some other part of the body, and so it becomes troublesome and uncomfortable; but that which fits, having its weight distributed partly along the collar-bone and shoulder-blade, partly over the shoulders and chest, and partly the back and belly, feels like another natural integument rather than an extra load to carry. (13)

(13) Schneider ad loc. cf Eur. "Electr." 192, {prosthemata aglaias}, and for the weight cf. Aristoph. "Peace," 1224.

Pist. You have named the very quality which gives my work its exceptional value, as I consider; still there are customers, I am bound to say, who look for something else in a corselet—they must have them ornamental or inlaid with gold.

For all that (replied Socrates), if they end by purchasing an ill-fitting article, they only become the proprietors of a curiously-wrought and gilded nuisance, as it seems to me. But (he added), as the body is never in one fixed position, but is at one time curved, at another raised erect how can an exactly-modelled corselet fit?

Pist. It cannot fit at all.

You mean (Socrates continued) that it is not the exactly-modelled corselet which fits, but that which does not gall the wearer in the using?

Pist. There, Socrates, you have hit the very point. I see you understand the matter most precisely. (14)

(14) Or, "There, Socrates, you have hit the very phrase. I could not state the matter more explicitly myself."


There was once in the city a fair woman named Theodote. (1) She was not only fair, but ready to consort with any suitor who might win her favour. Now it chanced that some one of the company mentioned her, saying that her beauty beggared description. "So fair is she," he added, "that painters flock to draw her portrait, to whom, within the limits of decorum, she displays the marvels of her beauty." "Then there is nothing for it but to go and see her," answered Socrates, "since to comprehend by hearsay what is beyond description is clearly impossible." Then he who had introduced the matter replied: "Be quick then to follow me"; and on this wise they set off to seek Theodote. They found her "posing" to a certain painter; and they took their stand as spectators. Presently the painter had ceased his work; whereupon Socrates:

(1) For Theodote see Athen. v. 200 F, xiii. 574 F; Liban. i. 582. Some say that it was Theodote who stood by Alcibiades to the last, though there are apparently other better claimants to the honour. Plut. "Alc." (Clough, ii. p. 50).

"Do you think, sirs, that we ought to thank Theodote for displaying her beauty to us, or she us for coming to gaze at her?... It would seem, would it not, that if the exhibition of her charms is the more profitable to her, the debt is on her side; but if the spectacle of her beauty confers the greater benefit on us, then we are her debtors."

Some one answered that "was an equitable statement of the case."

Well then (he continued), as far as she is concerned, the praise we bestow on her is an immediate gain; and presently, when we have spread her fame abroad, she will be further benefited; but for ourselves the immediate effect on us is a strong desire to touch what we have seen; by and by, too, we shall go away with a sting inside us, and when we are fairly gone we shall be consumed with longing. Consequently it seems that we should do her service and she accept our court.

Whereupon Theodote: Oh dear! if that is how the matter stands, it is I who am your debtor for the spectacle. (2)

(2) In reference to the remark of Socrates above; or, "have to thank you for coming to look at me."

At this point, seeing that the lady herself was expensively attired, and that she had with her her mother also, whose dress and style of attendance (3) were out of the common, not to speak of the waiting-women—many and fair to look upon, who presented anything but a forlorn appearance; while in every respect the whole house itself was sumptuously furnished—Socrates put a question:

(3) Or, "her mother there with her in a dress and general get-up ({therapeia}) which was out of the common." See Becker, "Charicles," p. 247 (Eng. tr.)

Pray tell me, Theodote, have you an estate in the country?

Theod. Not I indeed.

Soc. Then perhaps you possess a house and large revenues along with it?

Theod. No, nor yet a house.

Soc. You are not an employer of labour on a large scale? (4)

(4) Lit. "You have not (in your employ) a body of handicraftsmen of any sort?"

Theod. No, nor yet an employer of labour.

Soc. From what source, then, do you get your means of subsistence? (5)

(5) Or, Anglice, "derive your income."

Theod. My friends are my life and fortune, when they care to be kind to me.

Soc. By heaven, Theodote, a very fine property indeed, and far better worth possessing than a multitude of sheep or goats or cattle. A flock of friends!... But (he added) do you leave it to fortune whether a friend lights like a fly on your hand at random, or do you use any artifice (6) yourself to attract him?

(6) Or, "means and appliances," "machinery."

Theod. And how might I hit upon any artifice to attract him?

Soc. Bless me! far more naturally than any spider. You know how they capture the creatures on which they live; (7) by weaving webs of gossamer, is it not? and woe betide the fly that tumbles into their toils! They eat him up.

(7) Lit. "the creatures on which they live."

Theod. So then you would counsel me to weave myself some sort of net?

Soc. Why, surely you do not suppose you are going to ensnare that noblest of all game—a lover, to wit—in so artless a fashion? Do you not see (to speak of a much less noble sort of game) what a number of devices are needed to bag a hare? (8) The creatures range for their food at night; therefore the hunter must provide himself with night dogs. At peep of dawn they are off as fast as they can run. He must therefore have another pack of dogs to scent out and discover which way they betake them from their grazing ground to their forms; (9) and as they are so fleet of foot that they run and are out of sight in no time, he must once again be provided with other fleet-footed dogs to follow their tracks and overtake them; (10) and as some of them will give even these the slip, he must, last of all, set up nets on the paths at the points of escape, so that they may fall into the meshes and be caught.

(8) See the author's own treatise on "Hunting," vi. 6 foll.

(9) Lit. "from pasture to bed."

(10) Or, "close at their heels and run them down." See "Hunting"; cf. "Cyrop." I. vi. 40.

Theod. And by what like contrivance would you have me catch my lovers?

Soc. Well now! what if in place of a dog you can get a man who will hunt up your wealthy lover of beauty and discover his lair, and having found him, will plot and plan to throw him into your meshes?

Theod. Nay, what sort of meshes have I?

Soc. One you have, and a close-folding net it is, (11) I trow; to wit, your own person; and inside it sits a soul that teaches you (12) with what looks to please and with what words to cheer; how, too, with smiles you are to welcome true devotion, but to exclude all wantons from your presence. (13) It tells you, you are to visit your beloved in sickness with solicitude, and when he has wrought some noble deed you are greatly to rejoice with him; and to one who passionately cares for you, you are to make surrender of yourself with heart and soul. The secret of true love I am sure you know: not to love softly merely, but devotedly. (14) And of this too I am sure: you can convince your lovers of your fondness for them not by lip phrases, but by acts of love.

(11) Or, "right well woven."

(12) Lit. "by which you understand."

(13) Or, "with what smiles to lie in wait for (cf. 'Cyrop.' II. iv. 20; Herod. vi. 104) the devoted admirer, and how to banish from your presence the voluptary."

(14) Or, "that it should be simply soft, but full of tender goodwill."

Theod. No, upon my word, I have none of these devices.

Soc. And yet it makes all the difference whether you approach a human being in the natural and true way, since it is not by force certainly that you can either catch or keep a friend. Kindness and pleasure are the only means to capture this fearful wild-fowl man and keep him constant.

Theod. You are right.

Soc. In the first place you must make such demands only of your well-wisher as he can grant without repentance; and in the next place you must make requital, dispensing your favours with a like economy. Thus you will best make friends whose love shall last the longest and their generosity know no stint. (15) And for your favours you will best win your friends if you suit your largess to their penury; for, mark you, the sweetest viands presented to a man before he wants them are apt to prove insipid, or, to one already sated, even nauseous; but create hunger, and even coarser stuff seems honey-sweet.

(15) Or, "This is the right road to friendship—permanent and open- handed friendship."

Theod. How then shall I create this hunger in the heart of my friends?

Soc. In the first place you must not offer or make suggestion of your dainties to jaded appetites until satiety has ceased and starvation cries for alms. Even then shall you make but a faint suggestion to their want, with modest converse—like one who would fain bestow a kindness... and lo! the vision fades and she is gone—until the very pinch of hunger; for the same gifts have then a value unknown before the moment of supreme desire.

Then Theodote: Oh why, Socrates, why are you not by my side (like the huntsman's assistant) to help me catch my friends and lovers?

Soc. That will I be in good sooth if only you can woo and win me.

Theod. How shall I woo and win you?

Soc. Seek and you will find means, if you truly need me.

Theod. Come then in hither and visit me often.

And Socrates, poking sly fun at his own lack of business occupation, answered: Nay, Theodote, leisure is not a commodity in which I largely deal. I have a hundred affairs of my own too, private or public, to occupy me; and then there are my lady-loves, my dear friends, who will not suffer me day or night to leave them, for ever studying to learn love-charms and incantations at my lips.

Theod. Why, are you really versed in those things, Socrates?

Soc. Of course, or else how is it, do you suppose, that Apollodorus (16) here and Antisthenes never leave me; or why have Cebes and Simmias come all the way from Thebes to stay with me? Be assured these things cannot happen without diverse love-charms and incantations and magic wheels.

(16) For Apollodorus see "Apol." 28; Plat. "Symp." 172 A; "Phaed." 59 A, 117 D. For Antisthenes see above. For Cebes and Simmias see above, I. ii. 48; Plat. "Crit." 45 B; "Phaed." passim.

Theod. I wish you would lend me your magic-wheel, (17) then, and I will set it spinning first of all for you.

(17) Cf. Theocr. ii. 17; Schneider ad loc.

Soc. Ah! but I do not wish to be drawn to you. I wish you to come to me.

Theod. Then I will come. Only, will you be "at home" to me?

Soc. Yes, I will welcome you, unless some one still dearer holds me engaged, and I must needs be "not at home."


Seeing one of those who were with him, a young man, but feeble of body, named Epigenes, (1) he addressed him.

(1) Epigenes, possibly the son of Antiphon. See Plat. "Apol." 33 E; "Phaed." 59 B.

Soc. You have not the athletic appearance of a youth in training, (2) Epigenes.

(2) {idiotikos}, lit. of the person untrained in gymnastics. See A. R. Cluer ad loc. Cf. Plat. "Laws," 839 E; I. ii. 4; III. v. 15; "Symp." ii. 17.

And he: That may well be, seeing I am an amateur and not in training.

Soc. As little of an amateur, I take it, as any one who ever entered the lists of Olympia, unless you are prepared to make light of that contest for life and death against the public foe which the Athenians will institute when the day comes. (3) And yet they are not a few who, owing to a bad habit of body, either perish outright in the perils of war, or are ignobly saved. Many are they who for the self-same cause are taken prisoners, and being taken must, if it so betide, endure the pains of slavery for the rest of their days; or, after falling into dolorous straits, (4) when they have paid to the uttermost farthing of all, or may be more than the worth of all, that they possess, must drag on a miserable existence in want of the barest necessaries until death release them. Many also are they who gain an evil repute through infirmity of body, being thought to play the coward. Can it be that you despise these penalties affixed to an evil habit? Do you think you could lightly endure them? Far lighter, I imagine, nay, pleasant even by comparison, are the toils which he will undergo who duly cultivates a healthy bodily condition. Or do you maintain that the evil habit is healthier, and in general more useful than the good? Do you pour contempt upon those blessings which flow from the healthy state? And yet the very opposite of that which befalls the ill attends the sound condition. Does not the very soundness imply at once health and strength? (5) Many a man with no other talisman than this has passed safely through the ordeal of war; stepping, not without dignity, (6) through all its horrors unscathed. Many with no other support than this have come to the rescue of friends, or stood forth as benefactors of their fatherland; whereby they were thought worthy of gratitude, and obtained a great renown and received as a recompense the highest honours of the State; to whom is also reserved a happier and brighter passage through what is left to them of life, and at their death they leave to their children the legacy of a fairer starting-point in the race of life.

(3) Or, "should chance betide." Is the author thinking of a life-and- death struggle with Thebes?

(4) e.g. the prisoners in the Latomiae. Thuc. vii. 87.

(5) It is almost a proverb—"Sound of body and limb is hale and strong." "Qui valet praevalebit."

(6) e.g. Socrates himself, according to Alcibiades, ap. Plat. "Symp." 221 B; and for the word {euskhemonos} see Arist. "Wasps," 1210, "like a gentleman"; L. and S.; "Cyr." I. iii. 8; Aristot. "Eth. N." i. 10, 13, "gracefully."

Because our city does not practise military training in public, (7) that is no reason for neglecting it in private, but rather a reason for making it a foremost care. For be you assured that there is no contest of any sort, nor any transaction, in which you will be the worse off for being well prepared in body; and in fact there is nothing which men do for which the body is not a help. In every demand, therefore, which can be laid upon the body it is much better that it should be in the best condition; since, even where you might imagine the claims upon the body to be slightest—in the act of reasoning—who does not know the terrible stumbles which are made through being out of health? It suffices to say that forgetfulness, and despondency, and moroseness, and madness take occasion often of ill-health to visit the intellectual faculties so severely as to expel all knowledge (8) from the brain. But he who is in good bodily plight has large security. He runs no risk of incurring any such catastrophe through ill-health at any rate; he has the expectation rather that a good habit must procure consequences the opposite to those of an evil habit; (9) and surely to this end there is nothing a man in his senses would not undergo.... It is a base thing for a man to wax old in careless self-neglect before he has lifted up his eyes and seen what manner of man he was made to be, in the full perfection of bodily strength and beauty. But these glories are withheld from him who is guilty of self-neglect, for they are not wont to blaze forth unbidden. (10)

(7) Cf. "Pol. Ath." i. 13; and above, III. v. 15.

(8) Or, "whole branches of knowledge" ({tas epistemas}).

(9) Or, "he may well hope to be insured by his good habit against the evils attendant on its opposite."

(10) Or, "to present themselves spontaneously."


Once when some one was in a fury of indignation because he had bidden a passer-by good-day and the salutation was not returned, Socrates said: "It is enough to make one laugh! If you met a man in a wretched condition of body, you would not fall into a rage; but because you stumble upon a poor soul somewhat boorishly disposed, you feel annoyed."

To the remark of another who complained that he did not take his foot with pleasure, he said: "Acumenus (1) has a good prescription for that." And when the other asked: "And what may that be?" "To stop eating," he said. "On the score of pleasure, economy, and health, total abstinence has much in its favour." (2)

(1) A well-known physician. See Plat. "Phaedr." 227 A, 269 A; "Symp." 176 B. A similar story is told of Dr. Abernethy, I think.

(2) Lit. "he would live a happier, thriftier, and healthier life, if he stopped eating."

And when some one else lamented that "the drinking-water in his house was hot," he replied: "Then when you want a warm bath you will not have to wait."

The Other. But for bathing purposes it is cold.

Soc. Do you find that your domestics seem to mind drinking it or washing in it?

The Other. Quite the reverse; it is a constant marvel to me how contentedly they use it for either purpose.

Soc. Which is hotter to the taste—the water in your house or the hot spring in the temple of Asclepius? (3)

(3) In the Hieron at Epidauros probably. See Baedeker, "Greece," p. 240 foll.

The Other. The water in the temple of Asclepius.

Soc. And which is colder for bathing—yours or the cold spring in the cave of Amphiaraus? (4)

(4) Possibly at Oropos. Cf. Paus. i. 34. 3.

The Other. The water in the cave of Amphiaraus.

Soc. Then please to observe: if you do not take care, they will set you down as harder to please than a domestic servant or an invalid. (5)

(5) i.e. "the least and the most fastidious of men."

A man had administered a severe whipping to the slave in attendance on him, and when Socrates asked: "Why he was so wroth with his own serving-man?" excused himself on the ground that "the fellow was a lazy, gourmandising, good-for-nothing dolt—fonder of money than of work." To which Socrates: "Did it ever strike you to consider which of the two in that case the more deserves a whipping—the master or the man?"

When some one was apprehending the journey to Olympia, "Why are you afraid of the long distance?" he asked. "Here at home you spend nearly all your day in taking walks. (6) Well, on your road to Olympia you will take a walk and breakfast, and then you will take another walk and dine, and go to bed. Do you not see, if you take and tack together five or six days' length of walks, and stretch them out in one long line, it will soon reach from Athens to Olympia? I would recommend you, however, to set off a day too soon rather than a day too late. To be forced to lengthen the day's journey beyond a reasonable amount may well be a nuisance; but to take one day's journey beyond what is necessary is pure relaxation. Make haste to start, I say, and not while on the road." (7)

(6) {peripateis}, "promenading up and down."

(7) "Festina lente"—that is your motto.

When some one else remarked "he was utterly prostrated after a long journey," Socrates asked him: "Had he had any baggage to carry?"

"Not I," replied the complainer; "only my cloak."

Soc. Were you travelling alone, or was your man-servant with you?

He. Yes, I had my man.

Soc. Empty-handed, or had he something to carry?

He. Of course; carrying my rugs and other baggage.

Soc. And how did he come off on the journey?

He. Better than I did myself, I take it.

Soc. Well, but now suppose you had had to carry his baggage, what would your condition have been like?

He. Sorry enough, I can tell you; or rather, I could not have carried it at all.

Soc. What a confession! Fancy being capable of so much less toil than a poor slave boy! Does that sound like the perfection of athletic training?


On the occasion of a common dinner-party (1) where some of the company would present themselves with a small, and others with a large supply of viands, Socrates would bid the servants (2) throw the small supplies into the general stock, or else to help each of the party to a share all round. Thus the grand victuallers were ashamed in the one case not to share in the common stock, and in the other not to throw in their supplies also. (3) Accordingly in went the grand supplies into the common stock. And now, being no better off than the small contributors, they soon ceased to cater for expensive delicacies.

(1) For the type of entertainment see Becker, "Charicles," p. 315 (Eng. tr.)

(2) "The boy."

(3) Or, "were ashamed not to follow suit by sharing in the common stock and contributing their own portion."

At a supper-party one member of the company, as Socrates chanced to note, had put aside the plain fare and was devoting himself to certain dainties. (4) A discussion was going on about names and definitions, and the proper applications of terms to things. (5) Whereupon Socrates, appealing to the company: "Can we explain why we call a man a 'dainty fellow'? What is the particular action to which the term applies? (6)—since every one adds some dainty to his food when he can get it. (7) But we have not quite hit the definition yet, I think. Are we to be called dainty eaters because we like our bread buttered?" (8)

(4) For the distinction between {sitos} and {opson} see Plat. "Rep." 372 C.

(5) Or, "The conversation had fallen upon names: what is the precise thing denoted under such and such a term? Define the meaning of so and so."

(6) {opsophagos} = {opson} (or relish) eater, and so a "gourmand" or "epicure"; but how to define a gourmand?

(7) Lit. "takes some {opson} (relish) to his {sitos} (food)."

(8) Lit. "simply for that" (sc. the taking of some sort of {opson}. For {epi touto} cf. Plat. "Soph." 218 C; "Parmen." 147 D.)

No! hardly! (some member of the company replied).

Soc. Well, but now suppose a man confine himself to eating venison or other dainty without any plain food at all, not as a matter of training, (9) but for the pleasure of it: has such a man earned the title? "The rest of the world would have a poor chance against him," (10) some one answered. "Or," interposed another, "what if the dainty dishes he devours are out of all proportion to the rest of his meal—what of him?" (11)

(9) Lit. "{opson} (relish) by itself, not for the sake of training," etc. The English reader wil bear in mind that a raw beefsteak or other meat prescribed by the gymnastic trainer in preference to farinaceous food ({sitos}) would be {opson}.

(10) Or, more lit. "Hardly any one could deserve the appellation better."

(11) Lit. "and what of the man who eats much {opson} on the top of a little ({sitos})?" {epesthion} = follows up one course by another, like the man in a fragment of Euripides, "Incert." 98: {kreasi boeiois khlora suk' epesthien}, who "followed up his beefsteak with a garnish of green figs."

Soc. He has established a very fair title at any rate to the appellation, and when the rest of the world pray to heaven for a fine harvest: "May our corn and oil increase!" he may reasonably ejaculate, "May my fleshpots multiply!"

At this last sally the young man, feeling that the conversation set somewhat in his direction, did not desist indeed from his savoury viands, but helped himself generously to a piece of bread. Socrates was all-observant, and added: Keep an eye on our friend yonder, you others next him, and see fair play between the sop and the sauce. (12)

(12) Lit. "see whether he will make a relish of the staple or a staple of the relish" ("butter his bread or bread his butter").

Another time, seeing one of the company using but one sop of bread (13) to test several savoury dishes, he remarked: Could there be a more extravagant style of cookery, or more murderous to the dainty dishes themselves, than this wholesale method of taking so many dishes together?—why, bless me, twenty different sorts of seasoning at one swoop! (14) First of all he mixes up actually more ingredients than the cook himself prescribes, which is extravagant; and secondly, he has the audacity to commingle what the chef holds incongruous, whereby if the cooks are right in their method he is wrong in his, and consequently the destroyer of their art. Now is it not ridiculous first to procure the greatest virtuosi to cook for us, and then without any claim to their skill to take and alter their procedure? But there is a worse thing in store for the bold man who habituates himself to eat a dozen dishes at once: when there are but few dishes served, out of pure habit he will feel himself half starved, whilst his neighbour, accustomed to send his sop down by help of a single relish, will feast merrily, be the dishes never so few.

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