answer; for if simple unity could be adequately perceived by the sight
or by any other sense, then, as we were saying in the case of the
finger, there would be nothing to attract towards being; but when there
is some contradiction always present, and one
neighbour's wall - one set of them declaring that they distinguish an
intermediate note and have found the least interval which should be the
unit of measurement; the others insisting that the two sounds have
passed into the same - either party setting th
this is but the prelude to the actual strain which we have to learn? For
you surely would not regard the skilled mathematician as a dialectician?
Assuredly not, he said; I have hardly ever known a mathematician who was
capable of reasoning.
But do you ima
perceive even with their weak eyes the images in the water (which are
divine), and are the shadows of true existence (not shadows of images
cast by a light of fire, which compared with the sun is only an image)
- this power of elevating the highest princi
And assuredly no one will argue that there is any other method of
comprehending by any regular process all true existence or of
ascertaining what each thing is in its own nature; for the arts in
general are concerned with the desires or opinions of men, o
At any rate, we are satisfied, as before, to have four divisions; two
for intellect and two for opinion, and to call the first division
science, the second understanding, the third belief, and the fourth
perception of shadows, opinion being concerned with
The same natures must still be chosen, and the preference again given to
the surest and the bravest, and, if possible, to the fairest; and,
having noble and generous tempers, they should also have the natural
gifts which will facilitate their education.
is well awake here, he arrives at the world below, and has his final
In all that I should most certainly agree with you.
And surely you would not have the children of your ideal State, whom you
are nurturing and educating - if the ideal ever beco
idle: as, for example, when a man is a lover of gymnastic and hunting,
and all other bodily exercises, but a hater rather than a lover of the
labour of learning or listening or enquiring. Or the occupation to which
he devotes himself may be of an opposite
double, or the truth of any other proportion.
No, he replied, such an idea would be ridiculous.
And will not a true astronomer have the same feeling when he looks at
the movements of the stars? Will he not think that heaven and the things
in heaven are fr
You, I replied, have in your mind a truly sublime conception of our
knowledge of the things above. And I dare say that if a person were to
throw his head back and study the fretted ceiling, you would still think
that his mind was the percipient, and not h
That is true.
And our guardian is both warrior and philosopher?
Then this is a kind of knowledge which legislation may fitly prescribe;
and we must endeavour to persuade those who are prescribe to be the
principal men of our State to go and lea
Now, suppose a person were to say to them: O my friends, what are these
wonderful numbers about which you are reasoning, in which, as you say,
there is a unity such as you demand, and each unit is equal, invariable,
indivisible, - what would they answer?
Let this then be made one of our subjects of education. And next, shall
we enquire whether the kindred science also concerns us?
You mean geometry?
Clearly, he said, we are concerned with that part of geometry which
relates to war; for in pitc
departments of knowledge, as experience proves, any one who has studied
geometry is infinitely quicker of apprehension than one who has not.
Yes indeed, he said, there is an infinite difference between them.
Then shall we propose this as a second branch o
They have in view practice only, and are always speaking? in a narrow
and ridiculous manner, of squaring and extending and applying and the
like - they confuse the necessities of geometry with those of daily
life; whereas knowledge is the real obj
Then take a step backward, for we have gone wrong in the order of the
What was the mistake? he said.
After plane geometry, I said, we proceeded at once to solids in
revolution, instead of taking solids in themselves; whereas after the
Yes, I said.
And you placed astronomy next, and then you made a step backward?
Yes, and I have delayed you by my hurry; the ludicrous state of solid
geometry, which, in natural order, should have followed, made me pass
over this branch and
But where are the two?
There is a second, I said, which is the counterpart of the one already
And what may that be?
The second, I said, would seem relatively to the ears to be what the
first is to the eyes; for I conceive that as the eyes are desig
That would not be creditable.
Certainly not, I said; and yet perhaps, in thus turning jest into
earnest I am equally ridiculous.
In what respect?
I had forgotten, I said, that we were not serious, and spoke with too
much excitement. For when I saw philoso
the body; but knowledge which is acquired under compulsion obtains no
hold on the mind.
Then, my good friend, I said, do not use compulsion, but let early
education be a sort of amusement; you will then be better able to find
out the natural be
After that time those who are selected from the class of twenty years
old will be promoted to higher honour, and the sciences which they
learned without any order in their early education will now be brought
together, and they will be able to see the natu
How would they address us?
After this manner: - A city which is thus constituted can hardly be
shaken; but, seeing that everything which has a beginning has also an
end, even a constitution such as yours will not last for ever, but will
in time be dissolv
of the law of births, and unite bride and bridegroom out of season, the
children will not be goodly or fortunate. And though only the best of
them will be appointed by their predecessors, still they will be
unworthy to hold their fathers' places, and when
I believe that you have rightly conceived the origin of the change.
And the new government which thus arises will be of a form intermediate
between oligarchy and aristocracy?
Such will be the change, and after the change has been
Yes, I said; and men of this stamp will be covetous of money, like those
who live in oligarchies; they will have, a fierce secret longing after
gold and silver, which they will hoard in dark places, having magazines
and treasuries of their own for the dep
Philosophy, I said, tempered with music, who comes and takes her abode
in a man, and is the only saviour of his virtue throughout life.
Good, he said.
Such, I said, is the timocratical youth, and he is like the timocratical
His origin is a
Very true, he replied.
Now what man answers to this form of government - how did he come into
being, and what is he like?
I think, said Adeimantus, that in the spirit of contention which
characterises him, he is not unlike our friend Glaucon.
Perhaps, I s
And you know, I said, that the old servants also, who are supposed to be
attached to the family, from time to time talk privately in the same
strain to the son; and if they see any one who owes money to his father,
or is wronging him in any way, and he fa
257 Immorality & a morality
257 - Psychological and ethical Egoism
272 - Utilitarianism how to come to a solution
283 2nd paragraph; importance of supreme moral law
296-297 Virtue ethics
310 Cultural relativism