Editor’s Notepg 13Editor’s NoteGORGIAS
Callicles. 447This is the way they say you ought to join a war and a battle, Socrates.
Socrates. You mean we've missed the feast, as they say, and we're too late?5
C. Yes, and a most elegant feast it was; for Gorgias put on many fine displays for us a little while ago.
S. But Chaerephon here is responsible for this, Callicles; he forced us to linger in the market-place.
Chaerephon. Editor’s NotebNo matter, Socrates; for I'll cure the trouble too. For Gorgias is a friend of mine; and he'll put on a display for us now, if you think fit, or another time, if you wish.5
C. What, Chaerephon? Does Socrates desire to hear Gorgias?
Ch. Yes; that's the very thing we have come for.
C. Then visit me at home whenever you want to; for Gorgias is staying with me, and he'll give you a display.
S. Editor’s NotecA good idea, Callicles. But would he be willing to have a dialogue with us? For I want to learn from him what the power of the man's craft is, and what it is that he advertises and teaches; the rest of the display he can put on another time, as you suggest.5
C. There's nothing like asking the man himself, Socrates. For indeed, that was one part of his display; just now in fact he was inviting anyone in the house to ask whatever question he liked, and said he would reply to them all.
S. A good idea. You ask him, Chaerephon.10
Ch. Ask him what?
S. dWho he is.
Ch. How are you speaking?
S. Well, for instance, if he happened to be a craftsman of shoes, he would presumably answer you that he was a shoemaker. Don't you understand how I'm speaking?
Ch. I understand, and I'll ask him. Tell me, Gorgias, is what Callicles here says true, that you advertise that you answer whatever anyone asks you?pg 14
G. 448Quite true, Chaerephon. In fact I was advertising this very thing just now; and I tell you that no one has asked me anything new for many years now.
Ch. Then no doubt you'll find it easy to answer, Gorgias.5
G. You have a chance to test that Chaerephon.
Polus. Look, by Zeus, test me, if you please, Chaerephon. For I think Gorgias is actually worn out. He's just finished a long performance.
Ch. What, Polus? Do you think you would answer better than Gorgias?
P. Editor’s NotebWhat does that matter, as long as it satisfies you?
Ch. Not at all. Answer then, since you want to.
Ch. Yes, I'm asking. If Gorgias happened to have knowledge of 5the same craft as his brother Herodicus, what would we rightly call him? Wouldn't it be the same as his brother?
Ch. Then if we claimed he was a doctor, we would be speaking well.10
Ch. And if he were experienced in the same craft as Aristophon the son of Aglaophon or his brother, what would we rightly call him?
P. Editor’s NotecClearly a painter.
Ch. In fact, though, what craft has he knowledge of, and what would we rightly call him?
P. There are many crafts among men, Chaerephon, found by 5experience from experience; for experience makes our age follow craft, inexperience chance. Various men in various ways share in various of these crafts, and the best men in the best. Among the best is Gorgias here, and he shares in the finest of the crafts.
S. dWell, Gorgias, Polus seems to be finely equipped for discussions (logos). However, he is not doing what he promised to Chaerephon.
G. How exactly, Socrates?5
S. He doesn't seem to me to altogether answer the question he's being asked.
G. Well, you ask him, if you wish.pg 15
S. No I won't, if you wish to answer yourself. I'd much rather ask you. For it's clear to me even from what he's said that Polus is 10more practised in what is called the rhetorical craft than in dialogue.
P. Editor’s NoteeWhy is that, Socrates?
S. Because Chaerephon asked you, Polus, what craft Gorgias has knowledge of; and you are praising his craft, as though someone were attacking it; but you didn't say which it is.5
P. But didn't I answer that it is the finest?
S. Indeed you did. But no one is asking you what Gorgias' craft is like, but what craft it is, and who Gorgias should be called. Just as Chaerephon offered the previous ones to you, and you answered him 449well and briefly, so too now say what the craft is, and what we ought to call Gorgias. Or rather, you tell us yourself, Gorgias, what we ought to call you, as someone with knowledge of what craft?5
G. The rhetorical craft, Socrates.
S. Then you ought to be called a rhetor?
G. Yes, and a good one, Socrates, if you really want to call me 'what I boast I am', as Homer said.
S. I do want to.
G. Then call me that.
S. Editor’s NotebAnd aren't we to say that you are capable (dunaton) of making other people rhetors too?
G. Yes indeed. That is what I advertise, not only here, but elsewhere too.
S. Then would you be ready, Gorgias, to continue our present 5method of dialogue, asking one question, answering another, and to put off to another time long speeches like the one Polus began? Come now, don't betray your promise, but be ready to answer the question briefly.
G. cSome answers require long speeches, Socrates; but still, I'll try to answer as briefly as I can. For indeed, this is also one of my claims, that nobody could say the same things more briefly than I can.5
S. Well, that's what is needed, Gorgias. And give me a display of that very thing, the brief style, and the lengthy style another time.
G. All right, I'll do it; and you'll say you never heard anyone speak more briefly.pg 16
S. Come, then. You say you have knowledge of the rhetorical Editor’s Notedcraft, and that you can make someone else a rhetor. Which of the things that are is rhetoric really about? For instance, weaving is about the production of clothes, isn't it?
S. And isn't music about the production of melodies?
S. By Hera, Gorgias, I do admire your answers; you answer as briefly as anyone could.
G. Yes, Socrates; I think I do it reasonably well.
S. You're right. Come, then, answer me in the same way about rhetoric too. It is knowledge about which of the things that are?
G. Editor’s NoteeAbout speech (logos).
S. What kind of speech, Gorgias? The kind that explains the treatment to make sick people well?
S. Then rhetoric is not about all speech.
G. No, true enough.5
S. But still it makes men powerful (dunatos) at speaking.
S. And at understanding the things they speak about?
S. 450Now does the medical craft we've just mentioned make people powerful at understanding and speaking about the sick?
G. It must.
S. Then apparently medicine as well is about speech.
S. Speech about diseases, that is.
S. And isn't gymnastics too about speech, about the good and bad condition of bodies?
G. Yes, quite.
S. Editor’s NotebAnd indeed the other crafts too are this way, Gorgias; each of them is about the speech which is about the thing which each craft is the craft of.
S. Then why ever don't you call the other crafts rhetorical, when pg 175they are about speech, since you call whatever craft is about speech rhetorical?
G. Because, Socrates, practically all the knowledge of the other crafts is about manual working and suchlike activities, but there is not such manual work in rhetoric; all its activity and its achievement cis through speech. That is why I claim that the rhetorical craft is about speech, and claim it rightly, so I say.
S. Now do I understand what you want to say it is like? But I'll 5soon know more clearly. Answer me now — we have crafts haven't we?
S. Out of all the crafts, I suppose, some are mostly work, and need little speech, and some need none at all, but the task of the craft might be accomplished even in silence, as in painting, sculpture, dand many others. I think you speak of crafts like these when you say that rhetoric is not about them. Is that right?
G. Your assumption is quite right, Socrates.5
S. But now there are other crafts which carry on everything through speech, and need practically no work, or only a very little, such as arithmetic, calculating, geometry, and indeed draughts-playing and many other crafts; in some of these the speech is equal to the activities, but in most it is predominant, and altogether the Editor’s Noteewhole of their activity and achievement is through speech. I think you are saying that rhetoric is one of the crafts of this kind.
G. What you say is true.
S. And yet I don't think you want to call any of those I've 5mentioned rhetoric — though indeed your actual words were that the craft which achieves its results through speech is rhetoric, and if someone wanted to be quarrelsome in argument (logos) he might assume, 'So, Gorgias, you're calling arithmetic rhetoric?' But in fact I don't think you call either arithmetic or geometry rhetoric.
G. 451Yes, what you think is correct, Socrates, and your assumption is just.
S. Come now, and finish the answer to my question yourself. I 5mean — since in fact rhetoric is one of those crafts which mostly use speech, but there are also other such crafts — try to say — the craft achieving its result in speech about what is rhetoric? For instance, if pg 18someone asked me about one or another of the crafts I was mention-bing just now, 'Socrates, what is the arithmetical craft?', I would tell him, as you just said, that it is one of those which achieve their results through speech. And if he asked me again, 'One of the crafts about what?', I would say that it is one of the crafts about the odd and the even, however many each of them may be. And if he next 5asked, 'And what craft do you call calculation?', I would say that this too is one of those which achieve everything by speech; and if he asked me over again, 'The craft about what?', I would say, like cthose who draft resolutions in the people's Assembly, 'For the rest, calculation is the same as arithmetic, for it is about the same thing, the odd and the even; but it differs this much, that calculation considers how numerous the odd and the even are, both relative to themselves and relative to each other.' And if someone asked about 5astronomy, when I said that this craft too achieves everything by speech, and asked, 'And what is the speech of astronomy about, Socrates?', I would say it is about the movement of the stars, the sun, and the moon, how they are related in speed to each other.
G. Yes, what you say would be right, Socrates.
S. Editor’s NotedCome, then, you too, Gorgias — now rhetoric is actually one of those crafts which carry out and achieve everything through speech, isn't it?
G. That's right.5
S. Tell me, then — it is one of the crafts about what? Which of the things that are is it that this speech used by rhetoric is about?
G. The greatest things in human affairs, Socrates, and the best.
S. But this is also something disputable that you're saying, Editor’s NoteeGorgias, and still nothing clear. For I suppose you've heard at drinking-parties people singing this song where they count up the best things — best of all is health, the second is to be born fair 5(kalon), and the third — so the composer of the song says — wealth without deceit.
G. Yes, I've heard it. But why do you say this?
S. 452Because suppose you had standing in front of you all at once the craftsmen of the goods praised by the composer of the song — a doctor, a gymnastic trainer, and a money-maker. And suppose first of all the doctor said, 'Gorgias is deceiving you, Socrates; for it's not pg 195his craft which is about the greatest good for men, but mine.' Then if I asked him, 'And who are you who say this?', he would presumably say he was a doctor. 'Then what are you saying? Is the work of your craft really the greatest good?' 'Of course health is the greatest good, Socrates', he would presumably say; 'what is a greater good for men than health?'
And suppose after him the trainer said again, 'I would also be surprised, Socrates, if Gorgias could display to you any greater good from his craft than I can display from mine.' Then I would say again 5to him too, 'And you, my good man, who are you, and what's your work?' 'A trainer', he would say, 'and my work is to make men fair and strong in body.'
cAfter the trainer I expect the money-maker would say, in complete disdain for them all, 'Well, look and see, Socrates, if Gorgias or anyone else clearly possesses any good greater than wealth.' Then we would say to him, 'What then? Are you the craftsman of that?' He would say 'Yes.' 'And who are you?' 'A money-maker.' 'Well then, do 5you estimate that the greatest good for men is wealth?' we will say. 'Of course', he will say. 'But look, Gorgias here contends that his craft is responsible for a greater good than yours', we would say. Editor’s NotedWell, it's clear that after that he would ask, 'Then what is this good? Let Gorgias answer.'
Come, then, Gorgias, suppose you are being asked by these people and by me, and answer what this thing is which you say is the greatest good for men, and that you are the craftsman of it.5
G. It is in reality the greatest good, Socrates, and is responsible for freedom for a man himself, and at the same time for rule over others in his own city.
S. Then what do you say this is?
G. Editor’s NoteeI say it is the power to persuade by speech jurymen in the jury-court, council-men in the Council Chamber, assembly-men in the Assembly, and in every other gathering, whatever political 5gathering there may be. And I tell you, with this power you will hold the doctor as your slave, the trainer as your slave — and this money-maker here will turn out to make money for someone else — not for himself, but for you with the power to speak and persuade the masses.pg 20
S. 453Now I think you have very nearly shown what craft you think rhetoric is, Gorgias, and if I understand you at all, you are saying that rhetoric is a craftsman of persuasion, and that its whole business and the sum of it results in this; or can you mention any broader 5power for rhetoric than to produce persuasion in the soul of hearers?
G. Not at all, Socrates, but I think you are defining it adequately; for that is the sum of it.
S. bNow listen, Gorgias — for be sure I am persuaded that if anyone ever has a dialogue with anyone else from a desire to know the thing which the discussion is about, I too am one of these people; and I'm sure you are too.
G. Well, Socrates, so what?5
S. I'll tell you now. This persuasion from rhetoric that you mention, you can be sure I don't know clearly just what it is and what things it is persuasion about — and yet I have a suspicion at any rate of what persuasion I think you're speaking of and what it is about; but none the less I'll ask you just what you say is the persuasion cfrom rhetoric and about what. Now because of what am I going to ask you when I already have a suspicion, rather than saying myself? Not because of you, but because of the discussion, so that it will progress in the way that will make what is discussed clearest to us. 5For see if you think it is just for me to ask you again. For instance, if I happened to be asking you who among figure-painters is Zeuxis, and you said to me that he is the one who paints figures, wouldn't it be just for me to ask you what sorts of figures he paints, and where?
S. dBecause there are other figure-painters too, painting many other figures?
S. But if no one else besides Zeuxis were a painter, your answer would have been a good one?
G. Of course.
S. Come now, and tell me about rhetoric too. Do you think only rhetoric produces persuasion, or do other crafts as well? I'm talking 10about this sort of thing; whoever teaches anything, does he persuade about what he teaches, or not?
G. He most certainly does persuade, Socrates.pg 21
S. eNow let's talk again about the same crafts as just now. Doesn't arithmetic, and the arithmetician, teach us how many are the things belonging to number?
S. And doesn't it also persuade?
S. Then arithmetic too is a craftsman of persuasion?
S. If someone asks us what sort of persuasion this is, and about 454what, won't we answer that it is persuasion which teaches about how many the odd and the even are? And we will be able to show that the other crafts we just now mentioned are all craftsmen of persuasion, and of what persuasion, and about what, won't we?
S. Then not only rhetoric is a craftsman of persuasion.
G. You're right.
S. Then since it is not the only craft which produces this work, but others also do it, wouldn't it be just for us to ask the previous speaker over again after this, as about the figure-painter, 'Rhetoric is the craft of what sort of persuasion, and about what?'? Or don't you Editor’s Notebthink it would be just to ask over again?
G. Yes, I do.
S. Then answer, Gorgias, since you think so too.5
G. Well then, Socrates, I say it is the craft of persuasion in jury-courts, and in other mobs, as I was saying just now indeed, and about the things which are just and unjust.
S. I also of course suspected you were talking of this persuasion 10about these things, Gorgias. But so that you won't be surprised if a little later also I ask you something of this kind again, which seems cclear to me, but I ask it over again — for, as I say, I ask questions so that the discussion will proceed to its conclusion in good order — not because of you, but so that we won't get used to surmising and premature snatching at what each of us says, and so that you can 5proceed to your conclusion as you want to on your assumption.
G. And I think you are doing the right thing, Socrates.
S. Come then, and let's examine this as well. Do you call something having learnt?pg 22
G. I do.
S. And do you call something being convinced?d
G. I do.
S. Then do you think having learnt and being convinced or learning and conviction are the same, or different?
G. Myself, Socrates, I think they're different.
S. Yes, you're right in thinking so; and you'll realize it from this: 5— If someone asked you, 'Gorgias, is there any true and false conviction?', you would say there is, I think.
S. Now then, is there true and false knowledge?
G. Not at all.
S. Then it's clear that it's not the same.
G. What you say is true.
S. Editor’s NoteeAnd yet, both those who have learnt and those who have reached conviction are persuaded.
G. That's so.
S. Then do you want us to lay down two forms of persuasion, one yielding conviction without knowing, the other yielding knowledge?
S. Then which persuasion does rhetoric produce in jury-courts and the other mobs, about just and unjust things? The persuasion from which conviction comes without knowing, or that from which knowing comes?
G. Presumably it's clear, Socrates, that it's the kind from which conviction comes.
S. 455Then it seems rhetoric is the craftsman of persuasion which yields conviction but does not teach about the just and the unjust.
S. Then neither does the rhetor teach juries and the other mobs 5about just and unjust things, but only produces conviction. For presumably he couldn't teach such great matters to such a large mob in a short time.
G. No indeed.
S. bCome then, let's see exactly what we are saying about rhetoric; for I tell you, I can't yet grasp what I'm saying either. When there is a gathering of the city about the choice of doctors or shipbuilders or pg 235some other kind of craftsmen, surely the rhetor will not advise them on that? For it's clear that in each choice they should choose the best craftsman. Nor will he advise when there is a gathering about the building of walls or the equipment of harbours or dockyards, but the master-craftsmen; nor again when advice is given about the choice of generals or some disposition against the enemy or Editor’s Notecoccupation of strong points — experts in generalship advise then, not experts in rhetoric. Or what do you say about these cases, Gorgias? For since you say you are a rhetor yourself and make others experts 5in rhetoric, it's a good thing to find out from you what belongs to your craft. You must suppose that I'm also looking out for you now; for perhaps there's actually someone among those in this house who wants to become your pupil — I notice there are some, indeed quite a few — and they might be too embarrassed to cross-question you. Editor’s NotedAnd so you must suppose that when I ask you the questions, they are asking you too, 'What will be in it for us, Gorgias, if we are with you? What will we be able to advise the city about? Only about just and unjust, or also about these things Socrates was speaking of just 5now?' So try to answer them.
G. Yes, I'll try to reveal clearly the whole power of rhetoric to you, Socrates. For you showed the way well yourself. I take it you eknow that these dockyards and the Athenians' walls and the harbour-equipment have come from Themistocles' advice, some from Pericles', but not from the craftsmen.5
S. Yes, Gorgias, that's said about Themistocles. And I was listening to Pericles myself when he was advising us about the middle wall.
G. 456Yes, Socrates, and whenever there is a choice of those people you were speaking of just now, you see that the rhetors are those who give advice, and who prevail with their opinions about these things.
S. Yes, that's what amazes me, Gorgias, and that's why I've been 5asking you all this time just what the power of rhetoric is. For it seems to be some superhumanly great power when I look at it like this.
G. Yes, and if only you knew the whole of it, Socrates — that it practically captures all powers and keeps them under its control. Editor’s NotebAnd I'll give you a strong proof of this. I have often in the past gone pg 24with my brother and the other doctors to some sick man refusing to 5drink a medicine or let the doctor cut or burn him; when the doctor couldn't persuade him, I persuaded him, by no other craft than rhetoric. And I tell you, if a rhetor and a doctor went into any city you like and had to (dein) compete in speeches (logos) in the Assembly or in any other gathering about which of them should be chosen Editor’s Noteca doctor, the doctor would end up nowhere, but the man powerful at speaking would be chosen if he wanted it. And if he were competing against any other craftsman whatever, the rhetor more than anyone else would persuade them to choose him; for there is nothing 5on which he wouldn't speak more persuasively than any other craftsman, among a mass of people.
Well, that is the kind of power the craft has, and that is how great it is. But now, Socrates, rhetoric should be used the same way as any dother competitive craft. For indeed someone should not use other competitive crafts against everyone, just because he has learnt to box and to do mixed fighting and to fight in armour so as to beat friends 5and enemies alike — he shouldn't, just because of this, strike, wound or kill his friends. Nor yet, by Zeus, if someone has his body in good condition and has become a boxer after going to the training-school, and then strikes his father and mother, or some other relative or efriend, we shouldn't, just because of that, detest the trainers and teachers of armed combat, and expel them from the cities. For they transmitted these crafts to be used justly, against enemies and those 457who do injustice, in defence, not in aggression; but these pupils pervert their strength and craft, and use it wrongly. And so it is not the teachers who are base (ponēros), nor is the craft responsible or base because of this, but, I take it, those who don't use it rightly. And the 5same account (logos) applies to rhetoric too. For the rhetor is powerful at speaking against anyone about anything, so as to be more persuasive among masses of people about, in short, whatever he wants; but that is no more reason why he should steal their reputation either from the doctors, just because he has the power to do that, or from the other craftsmen, but he should use rhetoric 5justly as well, as any competitive craft should be used. But I think that if someone acquires the rhetorical craft and then does injustice with this power and craft, we should not detest his teacher and pg 25expel him from the city. For he transmitted his craft for a just man to use, but the pupil is using it the opposite way; and so it is just to detest, expel, and kill the one who used it wrongly, but not his teacher.
S. I think that you as well as I, Gorgias, have had experience of 5many discussions (logos), and have noticed this sort of thing in them: — People can't easily define for each other whatever things they undertake to have a dialogue about, and then learn from each dother, teach each other, and so conclude the meeting. No; if they dispute about anything, and one says that the other is speaking wrongly or obscurely, they are annoyed, and think he is speaking from jealousy towards them, competing for victory, not inquiring 5into what is proposed in the discussion; and some end up by parting in the most shameful way, covered in insults, when they have said and heard such abuse of each other that the people present are annoyed for themselves that they have seen fit to give a hearing to characters like these.
Editor’s NoteeNow why do I say this? It's because I think now you're saying things which don't quite follow from or harmonize with the things you said at first about rhetoric. And so I'm afraid to complete my examination (dielenchein) of you, for fear you will suppose I am not 5competing to make clear the matter we are discussing, but to defeat 458you. And so, if you are the same kind of man as I am, I would be pleased to continue the questions; if not, I would rather let it go. And what kind of man am I? One of those who would be pleased to 5be refuted (elenchein) if I say something untrue, and pleased to refute if someone were to say something untrue, yet not at all less pleased to be refuted than to refute. For I think that being refuted is a greater good, in so far as it is a greater good for a man to get rid of the greatest evil himself than to rid someone else of it — for I think there is no evil for a man as great as a false belief about the things which our discussion is about now. And so, if you also say that you are that kind of man, let us continue the dialogue; but if in fact you think we ought to let it go, let us let it go, and finish the discussion.5
G. Not at all; I do say that I am also the kind of man you suggest, Socrates. But perhaps we ought to have thought of these people here too. For look, I presented many displays to them for a good while pg 26cbefore you people came as well, and now perhaps we'll prolong it too far if we have a dialogue. So we ought to consider them too, in case we keep some of them back when they want to do something else as well.
Chaer. You can hear the noise yourselves, Gorgias and Socrates, 5from these men who want to hear whatever you say. And for myself I hope I'm never so busy that I would miss discussions like these conducted this way and find something else more pressing to be done.
Call. Editor’s NotedYes indeed, Chaerephon, I tell you, I've been present before at many discussions, but I don't know when I've been pleased by one as much as now; so you'll gratify me even if you want to go on with the dialogue the whole day.5
S. Certainly, Callicles; as far as I'm concerned, there's nothing to stop it, if Gorgias is willing.
G. It's coming to be shameful for me to be unwilling at this stage, when I have myself advertised that anyone could ask me what-eever he wanted. If these people want it, then, go on with the dialogue, and ask what you want to.
S. Then I'll tell you what I am surprised at in what you are saying, Gorgias; for of course it may be that you are speaking cor-5rectly, and I take you up wrongly. You say you can make someone a rhetor if he wants to learn from you?
S. That is, about everything, so as to be persuasive in a mob, not 459teaching, but persuading?
S. Now remember you were saying just now that even about the healthy the rhetor will be more persuasive than the doctor.
G. Yes indeed, I was saying so — in a mob, that is.
S. Doesn't 'in a mob' come to this — among those who don't 5know? For presumably he won't be more persuasive than the doctor among those who know?
G. You're right.
S. So if he will be more persuasive than the doctor, he turns out being more persuasive than the one who knows?
G. Quite.pg 27
S. bThough he isn't himself a doctor — isn't that right?
S. And yet the non-doctor presumably has no knowledge of those things which the doctor has knowledge of.
G. Clearly not.
S. Then the man who doesn't know will be more persuasive than the man who knows among those who don't know, when the rhetor 5is more persuasive than the doctor. Is that what comes about, or something else?
G. That comes about in this case, anyhow.
S. And aren't the rhetor and rhetoric the same way with all the other crafts too? There is no need (dein) for it to know how things Editor’s Notecactually are, but only to have found some persuasive device so that to those who don't know it will seem to know more than those who know.
G. And doesn't that make it very easy, Socrates? You needn't 5learn the other crafts, but only this one, and you never lose to the craftsman.
S. Whether the rhetor does or doesn't lose to the others because he's this way — we'll consider that by and by if it's at all relevant to the discussion. But for the moment let's consider this first, whether Editor’s Notedthe rhetor is the same way about the just and the unjust, the fine and the shameful, and the good and the bad as about the healthy and the other things which the other crafts are about — he doesn't know the things themselves, what is good or bad, what is fine or 5shameful or just or unjust, but has devised persuasion about them so that though he doesn't know, among those who don't know he Editor’s Noteeappears to know, rather than the man who knows. Or must he know these things, and should someone who is to learn rhetoric know these things before he comes to you? Or if he doesn't, will you, as teacher of rhetoric, teach none of these things to someone who comes to 5you — since it's not your work — but make him seem to know these things among the many when he doesn't know them, and to seem good when he isn't? Or will you be altogether unable to teach him rhetoric unless he already knows the truth about these things? Or how is it 460about these things, Gorgias? And by Zeus, do reveal the power of rhetoric, as you lately said you would, and tell us just what it is.pg 28
G. Well, Socrates, I think that if someone in fact doesn't know these things, he will learn them also from me.5
S. Hold it there — you're speaking well. If ever you make anyone a rhetor, he must know the just and the unjust things, either previously, or else later, learning them from you.
G. Editor’s NotebQuite.
S. Well now; is someone who has learnt carpenter's things a carpenter, or isn't he?
G. Yes, he is.
S. And isn't someone who has learnt musical things a musician?
S. And isn't someone who has learnt medical things a doctor? And in other cases by the same account (logos) isn't the man who has 5learnt each of these things such as his knowledge makes him?
S. Then according to this account isn't also the man who has learnt just things just?
G. Certainly, I presume so.
S. And, I take it, the just man does just things.
S. cThen isn't it necessary for the rhetor to be just, and for the just man to want to do just things?
G. Yes, apparently.
S. Then the just man will never want to do injustice.
S. And it is necessary from this account for the rhetor to be just.
S. Then the rhetor will never want to do injustice.
G. Apparently not.
S. Well, do you remember saying a little earlier that we should dnot accuse the trainers or expel them from the cities if the boxer uses his boxing craft, and uses it unjustly and does injustice, and similarly if the rhetor uses rhetoric unjustly, it's not the teacher who 5should be accused or expelled from the city, but the man who does injustice, who uses rhetoric wrongly. Was that said, or not?
G. It was said.pg 29
S. Editor’s NoteeAnd now we find that this same man, the rhetor, would never do injustice — don't we?
S. Now it was being said in the opening discussions (logos), Gorgias, that rhetoric is about speech (logos), not speech about 5the odd and even, but speech about the just and unjust. Isn't that so?
S. Well, when you were saying that, I supposed that rhetoric would never be an unjust thing, when it always produces its speech about justice; and when you were saying a little later that the rhetor 461might actually use rhetoric unjustly, that was why I was surprised, and thought that the things being said did not harmonize; and so I made those remarks (logos), that if you thought it a gain to be refuted, as I think, the dialogue would be worth while, but otherwise 5we should let it go. But now when we examine the question, you see for yourself that it's agreed on the contrary that the rhetor is powerless to use his rhetoric unjustly and to be willing to do injustice. And so how exactly these things stand — by the dog, Gorgias, it will take quite a long meeting to investigate adequately.
Polus. What, Socrates? Do you really believe what you're saying now about rhetoric? Do you really suppose — just because Gorgias 5was ashamed not to agree further with you that the rhetor would also know the just, the fine, and the good things, and that if he didn't know them when he came to Gorgias, Gorgias himself would teach him, and then perhaps from that agreement some opposition Editor’s Noteccame about in his statements (logos) — the thing that you're so satisfied about, when you yourself led him into those questions — for who do you suppose would deny that he himself knew the just things and would teach others? It's simply the height of bad breeding to lead the discussion (logos) to such things.5
S. Finest Polus, that's exactly why we acquire companions and sons, so that when we get old and stumble, you younger people will come and set our lives straight, both in our actions and in our dspeech. And so now, if Gorgias and I are stumbling at all in our speech, you must come and set us straight — that is the just thing — and I'm willing to withdraw anything you like of what has been pg 30agreed, if you think it was wrongly agreed — provided that you are careful about one point for me.5
P. What's that?
S. If you restrain those long speeches you began earlier, Polus.
P. What? Won't I be at liberty to say as much as I want to?
S. Editor’s NoteeIndeed it would he hard on you, my good friend, if you came to Athens, where there is the most liberty to speak in Greece, and then you were the only one here denied it. But on the other hand consider this; if you made long speeches, and weren't willing to 5answer the question asked, wouldn't it be hard on me, if I'm not to 462be allowed to go away and not listen to you? No — if you care at all about the discussion that has just finished and you want to set it straight again, as I was saying now, then withdraw whatever you please, ask and answer in your turn, like Gorgias and me, and examine 5(elenchein) and be examined. For I take it you also say you know what Gorgias says he knows, don't you?
P. I do indeed.
S. And don't you also tell people to ask you whatever they want to any time, claiming that you know how to answer?10
S. Editor’s NotebWell then, do whichever of these you want to now; ask questions or answer them.
P. All right, I'll do that. Now answer me, Socrates: — Since 5you think Gorgias is at a loss about rhetoric, which do you say it is?
S. Are you asking me which craft I say it is?
P. I am indeed.
S. Well, I think it's no craft, Polus, to tell you the truth.10
P. Then what do you think rhetoric is?
S. Editor’s NotecA thing which you say has produced craft, in the work I've recently read.
P. What's this you're talking about?
S. I say it's a certain knack.
P. Then you think rhetoric is a knack?5
S. I do — unless you say something else.
P. A knack of what?
S. Of the production of a certain gratification and pleasure.pg 31
P. Then don't you think rhetoric is a fine thing, the ability to gratify people?
S, What's that, Polus? Have you already found out from me what dI say it is, so that you ask the next question, if I don't think it's fine?
P. Yes; haven't I found out that you say it's a certain knack?5
S. Well then, since you admire gratification, would you like to gratify me in a small thing?
P. Yes, I would.
S. Ask me now what craft I think cookery is.
P. All right, I ask you, what craft is cookery?10
S. No craft, Polus.
P. Then what? Tell me.
S. All right; I tell you it's a certain knack.
P. What knack? Tell me.
S. eAll right, Polus, I tell you it's a knack of producing pleasure and gratification.
P. Then is cookery the same as rhetoric?
S. No, not at all; but it's a part of the same practice.5
P. What practice is this you're speaking of?
S. I'm afraid it may be a bit ill-bred to say what's true. For I shrink from saying it, because of Gorgias, for fear he may think I'm ridiculing his own practice. But anyhow, whether the rhetoric 463Gorgias practises is like this, I don't know — for in fact nothing was made clear for us in our recent discussion about just what he thinks — but anyhow what I call rhetoric is a part of something not at all fine.5
G. A part of what, Socrates? Tell us; don't be embarrassed for my sake.
S. Well, Gorgias, I think it is a practice, not of a craftsman, but of a guessing, brave soul, naturally clever at approaching people; and bI call the sum of it flattery. I think this practice has many other parts too, and cookery is also one of them; it seems to be a craft, but 5on my account (logos) it isn't a craft, but a knack and procedure. I call rhetoric a part of this too, and also cosmetics and sophistry — these four parts set over four things. And so if Polus wants to find Editor’s Notecout, he should find out; for he hasn't yet found out what sort of part of flattery I say rhetoric is; he hasn't noticed that I haven't yet pg 32answered, but goes on to ask if I don't think it is fine. But I won't 5answer him whether I think rhetoric is fine or shameful until I first answer what it is — that would not be just, Polus. But if you want to find out, ask me what sort of part of flattery I say rhetoric is.
P. All right, I'm asking you. Answer what part it is.
S. Editor’s NotedThen would you understand if I answered? Well, on my account rhetoric is an image of a part of politics.
P. All right, then; do you say it is fine or shameful?5
S. I say it is shameful, since I call evil things shameful — for I must (dein) reply to you as though you already knew what I am saying.
G. By Zeus, Socrates, I don't understand what you're saying either.
S. Editor’s NoteeAnd reasonably enough, Gorgias; for I'm not saying anything clear yet. But Polus the Colt here is fresh and frisky.
G. Well, let him alone and tell me how you say rhetoric is an image of a part of politics.5
S. All right, I'll try to explain what I think rhetoric is; and if it 464isn't really that, Polus here will refute me. You call something body and soul?
G. Of course.
S. And don't you also think there is a good condition of each of them?
G. I do.
S. Well then, is there also an apparent good condition which isn't one? For instance, I'm talking about this sort of thing: — Many 5people appear to have their bodies in good condition, and no one would easily notice that they are not, except a doctor or a gymnastics trainer.
G. You're right.
S. I say there is this sort of thing both for the body and for the soul. It makes the body or the soul appear to be in good condition, Editor’s Notebbut it's still in no better condition.
G. That's right.
S. Come then, I'll try to display more clearly to you what I'm saying, if I can. For these two things I say there are two crafts; the 5one set over the soul I call the political craft; I can't off-hand find a pg 33single name for the single craft set over the body, but still body-care is one craft, and I say there are two parts of it, the gymnastic and the medical crafts. The part of politics corresponding to gymnastics Editor’s Notecis legislation, and the part corresponding to medicine is justice. Each member of these pairs — medicine and gymnastics, justice and legislation, shares with the other, in so far as they are both about the same thing; but still they differ to some extent from each other. 5Here are four crafts, taking care of either body or soul, aiming at the best. Flattery noticed them — I don't say it knew, but it guessed — and divided itself into four impersonating each of these parts, and Editor’s Notedpretends to be what it impersonates; it does not care a bit for the best, but lures and deceives foolishness with what is pleasantest at the moment, making itself seem to be worth most. Cookery impersonates medicine, then, and pretends to know the best foods for the body; and so if a doctor and a cook had to (dein) compete among children, or among men as foolish as children, to decide which of ethem understands more about worthy and base food, the doctor or the cook, then the doctor would die of starvation.
Well then, I call it flattery, and I say this sort of thing is 465shameful, Polus — since I'm saying this to you — because it guesses at the pleasant without the best. And I say it is not a craft, but a knack, because it has no rational account (logos) by which it applies the 5things it applies, to say what they are by nature, so that it cannot say what is the explanation of each thing; and I don't call anything a craft which is unreasoning (alogon). If you dispute any of this, I am ready to undergo a discussion (logos).
Editor’s NotebAs I say, then, cookery is the flattery disguised as medicine; and cosmetics is disguised as gymnastics in the same way — crooked, 5deceptive, mean, slavish, deceiving by shaping, colouring, smoothing, dressing, making people assume a beauty (kallos) which is not their own, and neglecting the beauty of their own which would come through gymnastics. To avoid going on at length, I want to tell you, Editor’s Notecas the geometricians would — for now perhaps you might follow me — as cosmetics is to gymnastics, so is sophistry to legislation, and as cookery is to medicine, so is rhetoric to justice. But as I say, this is how they differ by nature, but since they are so close to each other, 5sophists and rhetors are mixed up in the same area and about the pg 34same thing, so that they don't know what to make of themselves, and other people don't know what to make of them. Indeed, if the dsoul did not control the body, but the body controlled itself, and if the soul did not examine and distinguish cookery and medicine, but the body by itself discriminated by guesswork from the gratifications to it, then the Anaxagorean condition would be everywhere, Polus 5my friend — you're familiar with that; 'all things together' would be mixed up in the same area, with no distinction between matters of medicine and health and of cookery.
What I say rhetoric is, then — you've heard it. It corresponds to cookery, doing in the soul what cookery does in the body. Now eperhaps I've done something absurd. I didn't allow you to make long speeches, but I've drawn out my own speech to this length. Well, it's fair for you to excuse me; for when I was speaking briefly, you weren't understanding, and you couldn't do anything at all with the 466answer I gave you, but you needed an explanation. And so if I can't do anything with your answer either, then draw out your speeches; but if I can, let me do it; for that's only just. And now if you can do anything with this answer, do it.5
P. All right then, what are you saying? You think rhetoric is flattery?
S. No. I said it's a part of flattery. Can't you remember at your age, Polus? What will you be like before long?10
P. Then do you think that good rhetors count as worthless in the cities, as flatterers?
S. Editor’s NotebAre you asking that as a question, or are you beginning some speech?
P. I'm asking.
S. I think they don't count at all.
P. What do you mean, they don't count? Don't they have the 5greatest power in the cities?
S. No — not if you say that having power is a good to the man with the power.
P. Well, I do say so.
S. Then I think the rhetors have the least power of anyone in the city.
P. cWhat? Aren't they like tyrants? Don't they kill whoever they pg 35want to, and expropriate and expel from the cities whoever they think fit (dokein)?
S. By the dog, Polus, I tell you, I can't decide about each thing you say whether you're speaking for yourself and presenting your 5own opinion, or asking me.
P. I tell you, I'm asking you.
S. All right, my friend. Then are you asking me two questions at once?
P. How are they two questions?
S. Editor’s NotedWeren't you just now saying something like this; 'Don't rhetors kill whoever they want to, like tyrants, and expropriate and expel from the cities whoever they think fit?'?
P. Yes, I said so.5
S. Then I say that these are two questions here, and I'll answer you both of them. For I say, Polus, that both the rhetors and the Editor’s Noteetyrants have least power in the cities, as I was saying just now; for they do practically nothing, I say, that they want to, but do whatever they think is best.
P. And isn't this having great power?
S. No — at least Polus doesn't agree.5
P. I don't agree? Of course I agree.
S. No, by the.… Indeed you don't. For you said that having great power is a good to the man who has it.
P. Yes. I still say so.
S. Then do you think it is a good if someone does whatever 10seems best to him, when he has no intelligence? Do you call even this having great power?
P. No, I don't.
S. Then won't you show that the rhetors have intelligence and 467that rhetoric is a craft, not flattery, by refuting me? If you leave me unrefuted, the rhetors who do what they think fit in the cities and 5the tyrants will have gained no good by it; but power, you say is a good, and you also agree that doing what we think fit without intelligence is an evil, don't you?
P. Yes. I do.
S. Then how are the rhetors or the tyrants to have great power in pg 36the cities, unless Socrates is refuted by Polus and convinced that 10they do what they want to?
P. Editor’s NotebThis fellow …
S. I say that they don't do what they want to. So come on, refute me.
P. Weren't you just now agreeing that they do what they think best?5
S. Yes, and I agree now too.
P. Then don't they do what they want to?
S. I deny it.
P. Though they do what they think fit?
S. I agree.10
P. This is shocking and monstrous stuff you're saying, Socrates.
S. Editor’s NotecDon't abuse me, peerless Polus — to address you in your own style. But if you have questions, display my mistake. If you haven't, answer yourself.
P. All right, I'm ready to answer; then I'll really find out what you're saying.5
S. Then do you think people want the thing they are doing at any time, or the thing for the sake of which they do the thing they do? For instance, do you think that those who take drugs from doctors want what they're doing, to take the drug and suffer pain, or 10the thing — being healthy — for the sake of which they take it?
P. dIt's clear they want to be healthy.
S. And similarly for seafarers, and those who do other kinds of business for profit. What they want isn't what they do at any time — for who wants to go sailing and be in danger and have all that bother? 5But, I take it, what they want is the thing for the sake of which they go sailing; to be wealthy — for they sail for the sake of wealth.
S. Then isn't it just the same in every case? If anyone does something for the sake of something, he doesn't want the thing he does, Editor’s Noteebut the thing for the sake of which he does it?
S. Now is there any of the things that are which isn't either good or bad, or intermediate between them, neither good nor bad?
P. It must be as you say, Socrates.pg 375
S. Then don't you say wisdom is a good, and health and wealth and other such things, and the opposities of them are evils?
P. I do.
S. And do you say that the neither good nor evil things are of 468this kind — things which sometimes share in the good, sometimes in the evil, and sometimes in neither, things like sitting, walking, running, sailing, and again things like stones and sticks and other such things? Aren't these what you speak of, or do you call some other things the neither good nor evil things?
P. No — these things.5
S. Then do people do these intermediate things for the sake of the good things, when they do them, or do they do the good things for the sake of the intermediate things?
P. Editor’s NotebPresumably they do the intermediate things for the sake of the good things.
S. Then it is in pursuit of the good that we both walk when we walk, thinking it is better, and on the other hand stand still when we stand still, for the sake of the same thing, the good. Isn't that so?
S. Then don't we also kill, if we kill anyone, and expel and expropriate them, thinking that it is better for us if we do it than if we don't?
P. Yes, quite.
S. Then it is for the sake of the good that those who do these things do them all.
P. I agree.
S. Now didn't we agree that whatever things we do for the sake cof something, we don't want the things we do, but the thing for the sake of which we do them?
S. Then we don't want to butcher or expel from the cities or expropriate, just like that, but if these things are beneficial, we want to 5do them, but if they are harmful, we don't want to. For we want good things, you say, but we don't want the neither good nor evil things, nor the evil things. Is that right? Do you think what I say is true, or not, Polus? Why don't you answer?
P. It's true.pg 38
S. Editor’s NotedThen since we agree on this, if someone kills a man or expels him from the city, or expropriates him, whether he is a tyrant or a rhetor, thinking it is better for him, when in fact it is worse, he presumably does what he thinks fit. Isn't that so?5
S. Then does he also do what he wants to, if the things he does are in fact bad? Why don't you answer?
P. No, I don't think he does what he wants to.
S. Editor’s NoteeThen is there any way such a man has great power in this city, since having great power is some kind of good, according to your agreement?
P. No, there's no way.
S. Then I was saying what is true, when I said it is possible for someone who does what he thinks fit in a city not to have great 5power, and not to do what he wants.
P. Ha! I suppose you wouldn't choose to have the liberty to do what you think fit in the city, rather than to lack it, Socrates, and you aren't envious whenever you see that someone has killed or expropriated or imprisoned anyone he thought fit!10
S. Justly or unjustly, are you saying?
P. 469Whichever he does, isn't it something to envy both ways?
S. Quiet, Polus.
P. But why?5
S. Because we oughtn't to envy the unenviable or the wretched, but to pity them.
P. What? Do you think that's how it is with the people I'm speaking of?
S. Of course.10
P. Then whoever kills anyone he thinks fit, killing him justly, you think he's wretched and pitiable?
S. No, I don't; but not enviable either.
P. Didn't you say just now that he was wretched?
S. Editor’s NotebI said the man who kills unjustly is wretched, my friend, and pitiable as well; but the man who kills justly is unenviable.
P. Well, I suppose the man who is killed unjustly is pitiable and wretched.pg 39
S. Less than the man who kills unjustly, Polus, and less than the man who is killed justly.
P. And how's that, Socrates?
S. This way: — because doing injustice is really the greatest of evils.10
P. What? Is that the greatest? Isn't suffering injustice greater?
S. No, not at all.
P. Then would you want to suffer injustice rather than do it?
S. Editor’s NotecI'd want neither of them. But if it were necessary for me either to do or to suffer injustice, I'd elect to suffer injustice rather than do it.
P. Then you wouldn't choose to be a tyrant?
S. No — not if you say being a tyrant is what I say it is.5
P. Well, I say it's what I said just now, having the liberty to do whatever you think fit in the city, so that you can kill, expel, go to all lengths, following your own opinion.
S. My splendid man, let me speak, and then object with your dargument. Suppose I took a dagger up my sleeve, and said to you in a crowded market-place, 'Polus, I've just got a terrific tyrannical 5power. For if I think that one of the people you see should be dead on the spot, he'll be dead, whoever I think fit. And if I think one of them should have his head smashed, he'll have it smashed on the espot; if his cloak should be in pieces, it will be in pieces — that's how great my power is in this city.' And now, if you didn't believe me and I showed you the dagger, when you saw it, I suppose, you'd say, 'Socrates, everyone could have great power that way; that way any house you thought fit might be burnt as well, yes, and the 5Athenians' dockyards and triremes and all the boats, private and public.' So after all, having great power isn't this, doing what you think fit; or do you think so?
P. Well, not that way.
S. 470Then can you say why you object to that kind of power?
P. Yes, I can.
S. Well, why? Say.5
P. Because someone who acts that way is bound to be punished.
S. And isn't being punished evil?
P. Of course.
S. Then don't you think once again, my excellent friend, that if pg 40acting beneficially follows for someone acting as he thinks fit, then it is a good, and this is apparently having great power; but otherwise Editor’s Notebit is an evil, and is having little power. And let's consider this too: — Don't we agree that it's sometimes better to do the things we were mentioning just now, to kill, expel, and expropriate people, and sometimes not?5
S. Then this apparently is agreed both by you and by me.
S. Then when do you say it's better to do these things? Tell me 10what definition you define.
P. No — you answer that, Socrates.
S. cWell, Polus, if it pleases you more to hear it from me, I say — whenever someone does these things justly, it's better, and whenever unjustly, worse.5
P. Yes, it's hard to refute you, Socrates. Why, couldn't even a child refute you and show that what you're saying isn't true?
S. Then I'll be very grateful to the child, and equally grateful to you if you refute me and rid me of nonsense; now don't be slow to benefit a friend, but refute me.
P. Editor’s NotedWell, Socrates, there's certainly no need (dein) to refute you with old stories. For these things that have happened yesterday or the day before are enough to refute you thoroughly and show that many men doing injustice are happy.
S. What sorts of things are these?5
P. I suppose you see this character Archelaus, son of Perdiccas, ruler of Macedon?
S. Well, if I don't, I hear of him.
P. Then do you think he's happy or wretched?
S. I don't know, Polus; I've never met the man.
P. Editor’s NoteeWhat? You could tell if you'd met him, but otherwise you can't tell at once that he's happy?
S. Indeed I can't, by Zeus?
P. Then it's clear, Socrates, that you'll say you can't even tell 5that the Great King is happy.
S. Yes, and I'll say what's true. For I don't know how he is off for education and justice.pg 41
P. What? Is the whole of happiness in that?10
S. Yes, so I say, Polus. For I say that the fine and good man and woman is happy, and the unjust and base is wretched.
P. Then this fellow Archelaus is wretched, on your account 471(logos)?
S. Yes, my friend, if he is unjust.5
P. Why, of course he's unjust! None of the rule he now has was fitting for him. He was the son of a woman who was the slave of Alcetas, the brother of Perdiccas. By justice he was a slave of Alcetas, and if he had wanted to do the just things, he would have stayed a slave to Alcetas and been happy, on your account. But as it is, he's turned out incredibly wretched, since he's done the greatest injustices. Editor’s NotebFor first of all he sent for this man Alcetas, his master and uncle, pretending that he would restore to him the kingdom taken off him by Perdiccas. He entertained the uncle and his son Alexander, his own cousin of almost the same age. He got them drunk, shoved them into a wagon, took them off at night, then murdered and got rid of them. And after doing these injustices, he became utterly wretched cwithout noticing it, and didn't regret it. A little later he didn't want to become happy by justly bringing up his brother, the legitimate son of Perdiccas, a boy of about seven to whom the kingdom was coming by justice, and by restoring the kingdom to him. Instead he 5threw him into a well and drowned him, and then told his mother Cleopatra that he had fallen in and drowned when he was chasing a goose. And as you see now, since he's done the greatest injustices of anyone in Macedon, he's the most wretched of all the Macedonians, Editor’s Notedand not the happiest. And I suppose there is some Athenian, beginning with yourself, who would choose to become any other Macedonian rather than Archelaus.
S. I praised you at the beginning of our discussion (logos) too, Polus, just as now, because I think you're well educated in rhetoric. But I still say, as I said then, that you've neglected dialogue. And now is this the argument (logos) by which even a child could refute me? And do you think I'm quite refuted by you now with this argument when I say that the man who does injustice is not happy? How's that, my good friend? I tell you, I agree with you on none of the things you say.pg 42
P. Editor’s NoteeNo, because you don't want to agree, though you think as I say.
S. My excellent friend, it's because you're trying to refute me rhetorically, like those who think they're refuting people in the jury-courts. For there one side think they are refuting the other 5whenever they produce many respectable witnesses for whatever statements (logos) they make, and the man who says the opposite provides himself with only one or none at all. But this kind of 472refutation is worth nothing towards the truth. For sometimes someone might actually be beaten by many false witnesses thought to amount to something. And in this case almost all Athenians and foreigners will agree with you on what you're speaking of, if you want to produce witnesses against me to say that I'm saying what is not true. 5You will have for witnesses, if you want them, Nicias, the son of Niceratus, with his brothers, whose tripods are in the precinct of Dionysus standing in a row; or, if you want, Aristocrates, the son of Scellias, who in turn has that fine dedication in the precinct of Pythian Apollo; or, if you want, the whole house of Pericles, or whatever other family you want to select from those in Athens. But I, all alone, don't agree; for you don't compel me, but you produce 5all these false witnesses against me and try to dislodge me from my property and the truth. But if I can't produce you, all alone by yourself, as a witness agreeing on the things I'm talking about, I think I have achieved nothing of any account (logos) in what our discussion (logos) is about. And I don't think you'll have achieved anything either unless I, all alone, bear witness for you, and you let all the others go. Here is one form of refutation, so you and many others think. But there is another one too, so I think, for my part. So let's 5compare them with each other, and look whether they will differ at all from each other. For remember, the things we are disputing over are not at all trivial, but they are practically the things which it is finest to know, and most shameful not to know; for the sum of them is to come to know or not to know who is happy and who is not. Now first our discussion is about this; you think that a man who does injustice and is unjust is capable of being blessed, since you think Archelaus is unjust but happy. Are we to suppose that this is what you think?pg 435
P. Yes, quite.
S. And I say he's incapable (adunaton) of it. Here is one thing we dispute about. All right. Now will he be happy when he does injustice, if he meets justice and vengeance?
P. Not at all. For that way he would be most wretched.
S. eBut now if the man doing injustice doesn't meet justice, he'll be happy, on your account?
P. That's what I say.5
S. And on my view, Polus, the man who does injustice and the unjust man is wretched in any case, but more wretched if he doesn't pay justice and suffer vengeance when he does injustice, and less wretched if he pays justice, and meets justice from gods and men.
P. 473These are absurd things you're undertaking to say Socrates.
S. And I'll try to make you say the same things as me, my friend — for I regard you as a friend. Now at any rate the things we differ 5about are these. Consider for yourself. I said, didn't I, in the earlier discussion that doing injustice is worse than suffering it?
S. Whereas you said suffering it is worse.
S. And I said that those who do injustice are wretched, and I was refuted by you.
P. Yes, by Zeus.
S. Editor’s NotebSo you think, Polus.
P. Yes, and I think what's true.
S. Perhaps. Now you think those who do injustice are happy if they don't pay justice?5
S. Whereas I say that these people are the most wretched while those who pay justice are less wretched. Do you want to refute this too?
P. Oh, that's even harder to refute than the first claim was, Socrates.10
S. No, Polus, it's impossible. For what's true is never refuted.
P. Editor’s NotecWhat do you say? If someone doing injustice is caught plotting against a tyranny, he's put on the rack, he's mutilated, his eyes are burnt out, and when he has himself suffered all kinds of other terrible pg 44outrages, and has seen his wife and children suffer them, he's finally 5crucified or burnt in a pitch coat, will he be happier than if he escapes punishment, becomes tyrant, and lives out his life ruling in the city, doing whatever he wants to, envied and congratulated for Editor’s Notedhis happiness by the citizens and by foreigners too? Is this what you say can't be refuted?
S. You're trying to scare me with bogy-men this time, noble Polus, and not refuting me. Just now you were calling witnesses. Still, 5refresh my memory a little. You said, if he's unjustly plotting against a tyranny?
P. I did.
S. Then neither of them will ever be happier, neither the one who has achieved the tyranny unjustly nor the one who pays justice — for out of two wretched ones there couldn't be a happier one — Editor’s Noteebut still the one who escapes and has gained the tyranny is more wretched. What's this Polus? You're laughing? Is this still another kind of refutation, to laugh someone down whenever he says something, but not to refute him?
P. Don't you think you've been thoroughly refuted, Socrates, 5when you say things like this, that not a single man would say? For look, ask one of these people here.
S. I'm not one of the politicians, Polus. Last year I was chosen by lot to sit on the Council, and when my tribe was presiding and I 474had to put the question to the vote, I caused laughter when I didn't know how to put the question. So don't tell me now either to put the question to a vote, to these people present; but if you've no better refutation than these, then do what I was saying just now — 5give me my turn, and face examination as I think it should be. For I know how to produce just one witness to whatever I say — the man I am having a discussion with whoever he may be — but I forget about the many. I know how to put the question to a vote to one man, but I don't even have a dialogue with the many. And so see if you will be willing in your turn to undergo examination, by answering the questions asked. For I think that I and you and other men believe that doing injustice is worse than suffering it, and that not paying 5justice is worse than paying it.
P. And I think that I don't think it, and neither does any other pg 45man. For look; would you choose to suffer injustice rather than do it?
S. Yes, and so would you, and so would all other men.10
P. Far from it. I wouldn't; you wouldn't; no one else would.
S. Editor’s NotecThen you'll answer?
P. Certainly; for I'm anxious to know what on earth you'll say.
S. Well then, so that you'll know, tell me this, as though I were 5asking you from the beginning: — Which do you think is worse, Polus — doing injustice or suffering it?
P. I think suffering it is worse.
S. Now then — do you think it's more shameful to do injustice or to suffer it? Answer.
P. To do it.
S. Then isn't it also worse, if it's more shameful?
P. Not at all.
S. Editor’s NotedI understand. Apparently you don't think that the same thing is fine and good or evil and shameful.
P. Certainly not.
S. Then what about this? All fine things, such as bodies, colours, shapes, sounds, practices — do you look to nothing in calling them fine each time? First of all, for instance, don't you say that fine 5bodies are fine either because of use, for whatever each of them is useful for, or because of some pleasure, if they give onlookers enjoyment when they look on? Can you mention anything besides these things about what is fine in a body?
P. eNo. I can't.
S. And don't you call all the other things fine too in this way — shapes and colours — either because of some pleasure or because of some benefit or because of both?
P. I do.
S. And don't you call sounds and everything to do with music 5fine in the same way?
S. And further, the case of laws (nomos) and practices — the fine ones — presumably does not lie beyond this, being either beneficial or pleasant or both.
P. 475I agree.pg 46
S. And isn't it the same with the fineness of branches of learning?
P. Quite. Indeed, you're defining finely now, Socrates, when you define the fine by pleasure and good.
S. And surely also when I define the shameful by the opposite, 5distress and evil?
P. That must be so.
S. Then when one of two fine things is finer, it is finer by exceeding either in one of these things or in both, either pleasure or benefit or both.
S. bAnd further, when one of two shameful things is more shameful, it will be more shameful by exceeding either in distress or in evil. Mustn't that be so?
S. All right, then. What was being said just now about doing and suffering injustice? Weren't you saying that suffering it is worse and 5doing it is more shameful?
P. I was.
S. Then if doing injustice is more shameful than suffering it, then isn't it either more distressing, and more shameful by exceeding in distress, or by exceeding in evil, or in both?
P. Of course.
S. Editor’s NotecThen first of all, let's see if doing injustice exceeds suffering it in distress, and whether those who do injustice are more in pain than those who suffer it.
P. That's certainly not right, Socrates.
S. Then it doesn't exceed in distress.
P. No indeed.5
S. And if it doesn't exceed in distress, it couldn't any longer exceed in both.
P. Apparently not.
S. Then it remains open that it exceeds in the other thing.
S. In evil.
P. It looks like it.
S. Then by exceeding in evil doing injustice is worse than suffering it.pg 47
P. Yes. It's clear that it is.
S. Now didn't the mass of men and you agree with us earlier that Editor’s Noteddoing injustice is more shameful than suffering it?
S. And now it has turned out worse.
P. It looks like it.5
S. Then would you choose the more evil and shameful over the less? Don't shrink from answering, Polus — you won't be harmed at all; but present yourself nobly to the argument (logos) as to a edoctor; answer, and say either yes or no to what I'm asking you.
P. Well, no; I wouldn't choose it, Socrates.
S. And would any other man?
P. I don't think so — by this argument anyway.
S. Then I was saying what was true, that neither I nor you nor 5any other man would choose doing injustice over suffering it; for it's actually worse.
S. You see, then, Polus, that when this refutation is compared with that one it is not at all like it. You have everyone else agreeing 476with you except me, but I am quite satisfied with you just by yourself, agreeing and being my witness. I put the question for a vote to you alone, and let all the others go. Well, let us take this to be so. And after this, let's consider the thing we disputed about second, 5whether doing injustice and paying the just penalty is the greatest of evils, as you supposed, or not paying it is worse, as I supposed for my part.
Now let's consider it this way. Do you call paying justice and being punished (kolazesthai) justly for doing injustice the same thing?
P. I do.
S. bThen can you say that not all just things are fine in so far as they are just? Consider carefully before you say.
P. No, I think they are, Socrates.
S. Now consider this too: — If someone does something, must 5there also be something affected by the doer?
P. I think so.
S. Is it affected by what the doer does to it, and by such a thing pg 48as the doer does to it? I'm saying this kind of thing; if something strikes, must something be struck?
P. It must.
S. cAnd if the striker strikes hard or quickly, mustn't the thing struck also be struck in the same way?
S. Then what is done to the thing struck is of whatever kind the striker does?
S. And if someone burns, mustn't something be burnt?
P. Of course.5
S. And if he burns hard or painfully, mustn't the thing burnt be burnt however the burner burns?
S. And if something cuts, isn't it the same account (logos)? For something is cut.
S. Editor’s NotedAnd if the cut is large or deep or painful, the thing cut is cut with the kind of cut with which the cutter cuts?
S. Then altogether, see if you agree, as I was saying just now, about everything — that whatever the doer does to it, that is how the thing affected is affected.
P. Yes. I agree.5
S. Now if this is agreed, is paying justice being affected somehow or doing something?
P. It must be being affected, Socrates.
S. And by some doer?
P. Of course; by the punisher.
S. eAnd the man who punishes rightly punishes justly?
S. Doing just things, or not?
P. Just things.
S. Then isn't the man who pays justice in being punished affected by just things?
S. And, I take it, just things are agreed to be fine.pg 49
S. Then one of these two does fine things, and one is affected by them, the man punished.
S. 477If they are fine, aren't they good? For they are either pleasant or beneficial.
P. They must be.
S. Then the man who pays justice is affected by good things.
P. It looks like it.
S. Then he is benefited?
S. Does he get the benefit I suppose? Does he become better in soul if he is justly punished?
P. Yes, that's likely.
S. Then the man who pays justice is rid of evil of soul?
S. Editor’s NotebThen is he rid of the greatest evil? Consider it this way: — In the condition of his possessions do you see any other evil state of a man than poverty?
P. No. Only poverty.
S. And what about the condition of the body? Would you say that its evil state is weakness and sickness and ugliness (aischos) and 5the like?
P. I would.
S. And wouldn't you also say that there is a kind of baseness in the soul?
P. Of course.
S. Then don't you call this injustice and stupidity and cowardice and the like?
S. Editor’s NotecNow for these — possessions, body, and soul, three things — haven't you mentioned three kinds of baseness, poverty, sickness, injustice?
S. Then which is the most shameful of these kinds of baseness? Isn't it injustice, and altogether baseness of soul?
P. Very much so.pg 505
S. Then if it's most shameful, isn't it worst?
P. What are you saying, Socrates?
S. I'm saying this: — Always the most shameful is most shameful by producing the greatest distress or harm or both, from what was agreed in the previous discussion.
S. And isn't it just now agreed by us that injustice and all baseness of soul is most shameful?
P. Yes. It's agreed.
S. Then isn't it either the most painful, and the most shameful of them by exceeding in pain, or by exceeding in harm, or in both ways?
P. Editor’s NotedIt must be.
S. Then is it more painful than being poor and sick to be unjust 5and intemperate (akolastos) and cowardly and stupid?
P. I don't think so, from what we've said, Socrates.
S. Then it is by exceeding the other things in some remarkably eserious harm and amazing evil that baseness of soul is the most shameful of all, since it doesn't exceed in pain, on your account.
S. But now presumably the thing which exceeds by the greatest harm would be the greatest evil of the things that are.
S. Then injustice and intemperance (akolasia) and the rest of the soul's baseness is the greatest evil of the things that are?
S. Now which craft rids us of poverty? Isn't it money-making?
S. And which rids us of sickness? Isn't it medicine?
P. 478It must be.
S. And which craft rids us of baseness and injustice? If you don't find this easy, consider it this way: — Where and to whom do we take people sick in body?
P. To the doctors, Socrates.
S. And where do we take those who do unjust and intemperate (akolastainontes) actions?5
P. To the court of justice, are you saying?pg 51
S. And don't we take them to pay justice?
P. I agree.
S. Then don't those who punish (kolazein) rightly practise some kind of justice when they punish?
P. It's clear they do.
S. Editor’s NotebThen money-making rids us of poverty, medicine of sickness, and the administration of justice rids us of intemperance (akolasia) and injustice?
S. Now which is the finest of these?
P. Of what?
S. Of money-making, medicine, and the administration of justice.5
P. The administration of justice is far superior, Socrates.
S. Then again, doesn't it produce either most pleasure or most benefit or both, since it is the finest?
S. Then is having medical treatment pleasant? Do patients enjoy it?
P. I don't think so.
S. But still it's beneficial, isn't it?
P. Editor’s NotecYes.
S. For he gets rid of a great evil, so that it profits him to endure the pain and be healthy.
P. Of course.
S. Now would a man be happiest, as far as his body is concerned, this way — being medically treated — or if he was never ill at all?5
P. Clearly if he was never ill at all.
S. Yes; for happiness doesn't seem to be this, getting rid of evils, but never acquiring them at all.
P. That's right.
S. Editor’s NotedWell then, which is the more wretched of two people who have an evil either in body or in soul, the one who is treated and gets rid of the evil, or the one who isn't treated and still has it?
P. The one who isn't treated, I think.5
S. Now isn't paying justice getting rid of the greatest evil, baseness?
P. Yes, it is.
S. Yes, for presumably administration of justice makes people pg 52temperate and more just, and is in fact the medical craft to cure baseness.
S. Then the man with no evil in his soul is happiest, since this Editor’s Noteeappeared the greatest of evils.
P. Yes. That's clear.
S. And presumably second to him is the man who gets rid of the evil.
P. It looks like it.
S. And this is the man who is corrected and reprimanded and pays justice.
S. Then the man who has the evil in his soul and does not get rid 5of it lives worst.
S. And isn't this man in fact whoever does the greatest injustices 479and exercises the greatest injustice and manages not to be corrected or punished (kolazesthai) and not to pay justice — as you say Archelaus and the other tyrants and rhetors and dynasts managed to do?
P. It looks like it.5
S. Yes, for these people have managed to do about the same thing, my friend, as if someone suffering from the most serious illnesses, managed not to pay justice for the faults in his body to the doctors and not to be treated — afraid like a child of the burning and Editor’s Notebcutting because it is painful. Don't you think so too?
P. I do.
S. Apparently it's because he doesn't know what health and 5excellence (aretē) of body are like. And from what we've agreed now, those who try to escape justice also seem to do the same sort of thing, Polus. They notice what is painful in it, but are blind to what is beneficial. They don't know how much more wretched than Editor’s Notecan unhealthy body is life with a soul that isn't healthy, but rotten, unjust, and impious. That's why they go to all lengths to avoid paying justice and getting rid of the greatest evil, but equip themselves with money and friends and the most persuasive speaking they can 5manage. But if what we are agreed on is true, Polus, do you observe pg 53the things that follow from the argument? Do you want us to work them out?
P. If you think we should.
S. Then does it follow that injustice and doing injustice is the greatest evil?
P. Editor’s NotedYes, apparently.
S. And apparently paying justice is getting rid of this evil?
P. It seems to be.
S. Whereas not paying justice is the persistence of the evil?
S. Then doing injustice is second in greatness among evils; doing injustice and not being punished is really the greatest of all and first of evils.
P. It looks like it.
S. Now didn't we dispute about just this, my friend? Didn't you Editor’s Noteecall Archelaus happy who did the gravest injustices and paid no justice, while I thought on the contrary that it is fitting for Archelaus, or any other man who does injustice and does not pay justice, to be wretched beyond other men, and that always the man who does 5injustice is more wretched than the man who suffers it, and the man who does not pay justice is more wretched than the man who pays it? Wasn't this what I said?
S. And hasn't it been proved that it was said truly?
S. 480All right. If these things are true, then what is the great use of rhetoric, Polus? For in fact from what has been agreed now a man should most of all take care for himself so that he doesn't do injustice, knowing that he will have a great enough evil if he does. Isn't that right?5
S. And if he or whoever else he cares about does do injustice, he should go voluntarily wherever he will pay justice as quickly as possible, to the court of justice as to the doctor, eager to Editor’s Notebprevent the disease of injustice from being chronic and making his soul festering and incurable — or what else are we saying, Polus, if our previous agreements remain firm? Mustn't what we say pg 545now agree with what we said then only this way, and otherwise not?
P. Yes indeed. What else are we to say, Socrates?
S. Then for someone's defence for his own injustice, or when his parents or his friends or his children or his native state do injustice, crhetoric is no use at all to us, Polus, unless someone supposes it is useful for the opposite purpose — that he should denounce most of all himself, then his relatives, and whatever other friend does injustice; and should not conceal the unjust action, but bring it into the open, 5to pay justice and become healthy; and compel himself and others not to shrink in cowardice, but to close their eyes and offer themselves well and bravely, as though to the doctor for cutting and burning; he should pursue the good and fine, not counting the pain, but doffering himself for flogging, if his unjust action deserves flogging, for prison, if it deserves prison, paying a fine, if it deserves a fine, accepting death, if it deserves death; he should himself be the first denouncer of himself and of the rest of his relatives, and use his 5rhetoric for this, to have his unjust actions exposed and get rid of the greatest evil, injustice. Are we to say yes or no to this, Polus?
P. Editor’s NoteeWell, I think it's absurd, Socrates; but no doubt you find that it agrees with what was said before.
S. Mustn't those things be undone too, or else mustn't these things follow?
P. Yes; that's so anyhow.5
S. And then, turning it around the opposite way, if we really should harm anyone — an enemy or anyone at all — as long as we don't ourselves suffer any injustice from the enemy — for we must be careful about that — but if our enemy treats someone else unjustly, 481we should take every precaution, in speaking and in action, to prevent him from paying justice and appearing before the court of justice. And if he appears, we must arrange it so that he escapes and doesn't pay justice, but if he has stolen a lot of money, we must see he doesn't pay it back, but keeps it and spends it on himself and his 5relatives, unjustly and godlessly; and if he has done injustice deserving death, we must see he does not suffer death — best of all never, to be immortal in his baseness, but otherwise to live the longest possible life in this condition. For these sorts of things I think rhetoric is useful, Polus, since for someone who isn't about to act pg 55unjustly, its use doesn't seem to me to be all that great — if indeed it 5has any use at all, for it wasn't evident anywhere in what was said previously.
Callicles. Tell me Chaerephon, is Socrates in earnest about all this, or is he joking?
Chaerephon. Well, to me he seems remarkably in earnest, Callicles. But there's nothing like asking him.
C. I'm certainly anxious to do that, by the gods. Tell me, Socrates, care we to suppose you're in earnest now, or joking? For if you're in earnest, and all these things you say are really true, then wouldn't the life of us men be upside down? And don't we apparently do everything that's the opposite of what we should do?5
S. Callicles, if some men were not affected one way, and others the same way, and if one of us had some private affection quite Editor’s Noteddifferent from other people's, it would not be easy for anyone to indicate his own affection to another. I say this realizing that you and I are now actually affected the same way; each of us is a lover of two beloveds, I of Alcibiades the son of Cleinias and of philosophy, 5and you of two beloveds, the demos of Athens and the Demos of Pyrilampes. Yes, I notice you each time, clever though you are — whatever your beloved says and however he says things are, you ecan't contradict him, but you change this way and that. In the Assembly, if you're saying something and the Athenian demos says it's not so, you change and say what it wants. And with this fine young man the son of Pyrilampes you're affected in other similar 5ways. For you're incapable of opposing the proposals and speeches of your beloved; and if someone were amazed whenever you say the things you say because of your beloveds, at how absurd these things are, then no doubt you'd tell him, if you wanted to tell him what's 482true, that unless someone stops your beloved from saying these things, you'll never stop saying them either.
And so you must suppose that you're bound to (chrēnai) hear the same sorts of things from me. Don't be amazed that I say these 5things, but stop my beloved, philosophy, saying them. For she says what you hear from me now, my friend; and she's much less impulsive than my other beloved. For this son of Cleinias here says now Editor’s Notebthis, now that; but philosophy says always the same. She says what pg 56amazes you now, and you were present yourself when it was said. And so either refute her, as I was saying just now, and show that doing injustice and doing injustice without paying justice are not the 5worst of evils; or if you leave this unrefuted, then by the dog, the god of the Egyptians, Callicles himself will not agree with you, Callicles, but he will be discordant with you in the whole of your life. And yet I think, my excellent friend, that it is superior to have my lyre Editor’s Notecout of tune and discordant, and any chorus I might equip, and for most men to disagree with me and contradict me, than for me — just one man — to be discordant with myself and contradict myself.5
C. Socrates, I think you swagger in your speeches, as if you were really a mob-orator. And now you're making this speech when you've done the same thing to Polus that Polus was denouncing Gorgias for letting you do to him. For remember he said that you dasked Gorgias whether, if anyone wanting to learn rhetoric came to him without knowing just things, he would teach him. Then Gorgias was ashamed, said Polus, and said he would teach him, because of men's habit, since they would be offended if someone said he couldn't teach about just things. Because of this agreement, said Polus, Gorgias 5was forced to contradict himself, and this is exactly what you like. And then Polus laughed at you, rightly, I think. But now you have done the same thing over again to him. And for just this I can't admire Polus myself, for his concession to you that doing injustice is Editor’s Noteemore shameful than suffering it; for from this agreement he himself in turn was bound up by you in the argument, and was muzzled, after being ashamed to say what he thought. For indeed, Socrates, you lead things to these vulgarities and stock themes of mob-orators, 5though you claim to pursue the truth — things which are not fine by nature, but only by rule (nomos). For mostly these are opposed to 483each other, nature and rule; and so if someone is ashamed and dare not say what he thinks, he is compelled to contradict himself. And this is the clever device you've thought of and use to make mischief in discussion; if someone speaks according to rule, you craftily question him according to nature, and if he speaks of what belongs 5to nature, you ask him about what belongs to rule — just as lately about these things — doing injustice and suffering it — Polus was speaking of the fine according to rule, but you pursued the argument according to nature.
pg 57For by nature everything is more shameful which is also worse, suffering injustice, but by rule doing injustice is more shameful. For Editor’s Notebthis isn't what happens to a man, to suffer injustice; it's what happens to some slave for whom it's better to die than to live — for if he suffers injustice and abuse, he can't defend himself or anyone else 5he cares about. But in my view those who lay down the rules are the weak men, the many. And so they lay down the rules and assign Editor’s Notectheir praise and blame with their eye on themselves and their own advantage. They terrorize the stronger men capable of having more; and to prevent these men from having more than themselves they say that taking more is shameful and unjust, and that doing injustice 5is this, seeking to have more than other people; they are satisfied, I take it, if they themselves have an equal share when they're inferior. That's why by rule this is said to be unjust and shameful, to seek to have more than the many, and they call that doing injustice.
Editor’s NotedBut I think nature itself shows this, that it is just for the better man to have more than the worse, and the more powerful than the less powerful. Nature shows that this is so in many areas — among 5other animals, and in whole cities and races of men, that the just stands decided in this way — the superior rules over the weaker and has more. For what sort of justice did Xerxes rely on when he Editor’s Noteemarched against Greece, or his father against the Scythians? And you could mention innumerable other such things. But I think these men do these things according to nature — the nature of the just; yes, by Zeus, by the rule of nature, though no doubt not by the rule 5we lay down — we mould the best and strongest among us, taking them from youth up, like lions, and tame them by spells and 484incantations over them, until we enslave them, telling them they ought to have equal shares, and that this is the fine and the just.
But I think that if a man is born with a strong enough nature, he will shake off and smash and escape all this. He will trample on all 5our writings, charms, incantations, all the rules contrary to nature. He rises up and shows himself master, this slave of ours, and there Editor’s Notebthe justice of nature suddenly bursts into light. And I think Pindar too indicates what I say, in the song where he says, 'Rule, the king 5of all, mortals and immortals.…' This, he says, 'leads and makes just what is most violent, with overpowering hand; I judge this by the pg 5810works of Heracles, since without paying the price.…' He says something like this — for I don't know the song — but he says that without payment and without receiving them as a gift from Geryon Heracles Editor’s Notecdrove off the cattle, assuming that this was the just by nature, that the better and superior man possesses the cattle and other goods of the worse and inferior men.
Well then, that's how the truth is. And you'll find it out if you 5move on to greater things and finally leave philosophy behind. For I tell you, Socrates, philosophy is a delightful thing, if someone touches it in moderation at the right time of life; but if he persists in it longer than he should, it's the ruin of men. For even if someone has an altogether good nature, but philosophizes beyond the right dage, he is bound to end up inexperienced in all these things in which anyone who is to be a fine and good and respected man ought to have experience. For indeed they turn out inexperienced in the laws (nomos) of the city, and in the speech they should use in meeting 5men in public and private transactions, and in human pleasures and desires; and altogether they turn out entirely ignorant of the ways of men. And so whenever they come to some private or political ebusiness, they prove themselves ridiculous, just as politicians, no doubt, whenever they in turn come to your discourses and discussions, are ridiculous. For it happens as Euripides says; 'Each man 5shines in that and strives for it, devoting the greatest part of the day 485to it — where he finds himself best', and wherever he is inferior, he avoids it and abuses it, praising the other thing, from good will to himself, supposing that this way he is praising himself.
But I think that the most correct thing is to have a share in both. 5It is fine to have a share in philosophy far enough for education, and it is not shameful for someone to philosophize when he is a boy. But whenever a man who's now older still philosophizes, the thing Editor’s Notebbecomes ridiculous, Socrates. I'm struck by the philosophizers most nearly the way I'm struck by those who mumble and act childishly. I mean — whenever I see a child, when that kind of dialogue is still fitting for him, mumbling and being childish, I enjoy it; I find it 5charming, suitable for a free citizen, suiting the age of a child. And whenever I hear a child speaking a clear dialogue, I find it unpleasing; it annoys my ears; and I find it fit for a slave instead. But whenever pg 59csomeone hears a man mumbling, or sees him act childishly, he finds it ridiculous, unmanly, deserving a beating.
Well, philosophizers strike me the same way too. For when I see 5philosophy in a young boy, I admire it, I find it suitable, and I regard him as a free man, and a non-philosophizer as un-free, someone dwho will never expect anything fine or noble from himself. But when I see an older man still philosophizing and not giving it up, I think this man needs a beating, Socrates. For, as I was saying just now, this person is bound to end up being unmanly, even if he has 5an altogether good nature; for he shuns the city centre and the public squares where the poet says men win good reputations. He is Editor’s Noteesunk away out of sight for the rest of his life, and lives whispering with three or four boys in a corner, and never gives voice to anything fit for a free man, great and powerful.
Now, Socrates, I'm quite friendly towards you. And so I find you strike me now as Amphion struck Zethus in Euripides, whom I 5recalled just now. For indeed, the sorts of things come to me to say to you that Zethus said to his brother; 'Socrates, you are careless of what you should care for; you twist this noble nature of your soul 486in a childish shape; you could not make a speech correctly to the council of justice, nor seize anything likely and persuasive, nor propose any daring resolution to help another.' And look, my dear Socrates — and don't be annoyed with me at all, when I'll be saying 5it out of goodwill to you — don't you find it shameful to be the way I think you are, along with all those who go further and further into philosophy?
For as it is, suppose someone arrested you, or some other philosopher, and threw you into gaol, claiming you were doing injustice Editor’s Notebwhen you were doing none; you know you'd have no idea what to do with yourself; you'd be dizzy, you'd gape, not knowing what to say; you'd go into court, to face some inferior wretch of an accuser, and you'd be put to death if he wanted the death penalty for you. 5Now how can this be wise, Socrates? — 'this craft which takes a man of good nature and makes him worse' — with no power to defend himself or save himself or anyone else from the greatest dangers, Editor’s Notecwith only the power to be despoiled of all his property by his enemies, and to live altogether dishonoured in the city. With someone pg 60like this, to put it crudely, anyone is at liberty to push his face in and get off scot-free.
5My excellent friend, listen to me; 'stop these examinations; practise the culture of the world's affairs'; practise what will earn you the reputation of wisdom; 'leave these subtleties to others' — whether we ought to call them nonsense or rubbish — 'from which you will live in an empty house'. Don't emulate those who examine these Editor’s Notedtrifles, but those with a living, reputation, and many other goods.
S. If I had a soul made of gold, Callicles, don't you think I'd be delighted to find one of those stones on which they test gold — the 5best one, so that if I brought my soul to it, and it agreed that my soul was well cared for, I would be sure I was in good condition and needed no other touchstone?
C. eAnd what's your point in asking that, Socrates?
S. I'll tell you. I think I've stumbled on that kind of lucky find now, by stumbling on you.
C. Why's that?5
S. I know well that if you agree with what my soul believes, 487these very beliefs are the true ones. For I believe that someone who is to test adequately the soul which lives rightly and the soul which does not should have three things, all of which you have; knowledge, goodwill, and free speaking. For I meet many people incapable of 5testing me because they aren't wise as you are. Others are wise, but unwilling to tell me the truth because they don't care for me as you do. And these foreign visitors, Gorgias and Polus, are wise and friends of mine, but short of free speaking, and more prone to shame than they should be. Of course they are; for they are so far gone in shame that because of his shame each of them dares to contradict himself 5in front of many people, and on the most important questions. But you have all the things the others lack. You are educated adequately, many Athenians would say; and you're well disposed to me. What's my evidence? I'll tell you. I know that four of you have become associates in wisdom, Callicles; you, Teisander of Aphidnae, Andron 5the son of Androtion, and Nausicydes of Cholargeis. And once I overheard you deliberating about how far wisdom should be cultivated, and I know that some opinion of this kind was prevailing with you — not to be eager to philosophize as far as exactness; you pg 61were warning each other to be careful not to become wise beyond what is needed, and so find you had been ruined unawares. And so now when I hear you advising me just as you advised your closest companions, it's good enough evidence for me that you are really 5well disposed to me. And as for being the type to speak freely without shame, you say it yourself and your speech a little earlier agrees with you.
Editor’s NoteeClearly, then, this is how it is now with these questions: if you agree with me about anything in the discussion, then this will have been adequately tested by me and you, and it will no longer need to be brought to another touchstone. For you would never have 5conceded it either from lack of wisdom or from excess of shame, nor would you concede it to deceive me; for you are a friend to me, as you say yourself. In reality, then, agreement between you and me will finally possess the goal of truth.
And this inquiry is the finest of all, Callicles, about those questions on which you attacked me; what a man ought to be like, and what 488he ought to practise, and how far, when he is older and younger. For if I do something wrongly in my own life, be sure that my fault is not voluntary, but from my own stupidity. And so don't you give up 5reproving me the way you began to, but show me adequately what I should practise and how I might acquire it. And if you catch me having agreed with you now, and later on not doing the same things that I agreed about, count me a complete idiot, and don't bother to reprove me ever again, since I won't deserve anything.
But now repeat for me again from the beginning — how do you say the just is, you and Pindar — the just by nature? Is it for the superior man to remove by force what belongs to the inferior men, 5and for the better man to rule worse men, and for the nobler man to have more than the baser man? You aren't saying that the just is anything else, are you? Or do I remember correctly?
C. Yes. That's what I was saying then, and say now.
S. Editor’s NotecAnd do you call the same man better and superior? For I tell you, I wasn't able then or now to learn from you just what you were saying. Do you call the stronger men superior, and should the weaker men listen to the stronger man? I think that was what you indicated 5before, that great cities attack smaller according to the just by pg 62nature, because they are superior and stronger — on the assumption that the superior and the stronger and better are the same. Or is it possible to be a better man, but inferior and weaker, and superior Editor’s Notedbut more wretched? Or does the same definition belong to the better and the superior? Define this very thing for me clearly; are the superior and the better and the stronger the same thing, or something different?
C. Yes. I'm telling you clearly that they're the same.5
S. Aren't the many superior to the one man according to nature? For after all, they establish the rules against the one man, as you yourself were saying just now.
C. Of course.
S. Then the rules of the many are the rules of the superior men?
S. eThen aren't they the rules of the better men? For presumably the superior are better, on your account.
S. Then aren't the rules of these men fine by nature, when these men are superior?
C. I agree.
S. Then don't the many recognize this rule, as you were saying yourself just now, that having an equal share is just and doing 489injustice is more shameful than suffering it? Is that so, or not? And mind you aren't caught being ashamed here. Do the many recognize the rule, or do they not, that having an equal share, not having more, is just, and that doing injustice is more shameful than suffering it? 5Don't grudge me an answer to this, Callicles; and then, if you agree with me, I'll be confirmed by you, because a man who is adequate to decide the question has agreed with me.
C. All right. The many do recognize this rule.
S. Then it's not only by rule that doing injustice is more Editor’s Notebshameful than suffering it, or that having an equal share is just, but also by nature. And so it looks as though you aren't speaking the truth in what you said before, or denouncing me correctly, when you say that rule and nature are opposed, and that I realize this and make 5mischief in discussions — if someone speaks according to nature, pg 63leading him to the rule, and if anyone speaks according to the rule, leading him to nature.
C. This fellow here just won't stop his rubbish. Tell me, Socrates, aren't you ashamed to be hunting after names, at your age, and Editor’s Notecthinking it a bit of luck if someone goes wrong in a word? For do you think I'm saying that being superior men is anything else than being better men? Haven't I been telling you for ages that I say the better and the superior are the same thing? Or do you think I'm 5saying that if a rabble of slaves and all sorts of people worth nothing, except perhaps in bodily strength, collect together, and these people assert it, then what they assert is the rule?
S. Well, wisest Callicles, is that what you say?
C. It certainly is.
S. dWell, my splendid man, I've been guessing myself for some time that you're saying that the superior is something like that; and I repeat my question from eagerness to know clearly what you're saying. For presumably you don't think that two men are better 5than one, or that your slaves are better than you, just because they're stronger than you. But now say again from the beginning what do you say the better men are, since you say they're not the stronger? And teach me more gently, so that I don't desert your school.
C. Editor’s NoteeYou're being sly, Socrates.
S. No I'm not, Callicles, by Zethus, whom you relied on for all your sly attacks on me just now. But come, tell me; who do you say the better men are?
C. I say they're the worthier men.5
S. Now do you see that you're just saying names, making nothing clear? Won't you tell me — do you say that the better and the superior men are the wiser men, or some others?
C. Yes indeed. I say they are, very much so.
S. 490Then often one wise man is superior to thousands with no wisdom, on your account, and he should rule them, and they should be ruled, and the ruler should have more than the ruled. I think 5that's what you want to say — and I'm not trying to catch you with a word — if the one is superior to the thousands.
C. Yes, that's what I'm saying. For this is what I think the just pg 64by nature is — that the man who is better and wiser should rule over the lower men, and have more than them.
S. Editor’s NotebNow stop there. What exactly are you saying now? If many of us are all together in the same place as now, and hold a lot of food and drink in common, and we are people of all sorts, some strong, 5some weak, but one of us is wiser about food and drink, being a doctor, while it's likely that he's stronger than some and weaker than others — won't this man, since he's wiser than us, be better and superior in this area?
S. Editor’s NotecThen is he to have more of this food than us, because he's better? Or should he distribute everything, because he rules, but not take more in spending it and using it on his own body, to avoid 5suffering himself? Shouldn't he rather have more than some and less than others? And if he turns out to be weakest of all, shouldn't the best man have least of them all, Callicles? Isn't that so, my friend?
C. You talk about food and drink and doctors and a lot of Editor’s Notedrubbish. But I'm not talking about that.
S. Don't you say that the wiser man is superior? Say yes or no.
C. I do.5
S. But shouldn't the better man have more?
C. No — not more food and drink.
S. I see — but perhaps more cloaks? Should the best weaver have the biggest cloak and go around dressed up in the most and the finest clothes?10
C. Ha! Cloaks indeed!
S. eThen clearly the wisest and best in that area should take more shoes. Perhaps the shoemaker should walk around wearing the biggest and the most shoes?
C. Shoes indeed! What rubbish!5
S. Well, if you're not talking about that sort of thing, perhaps it's something like this: — For instance, a farming man, wise and fine and good about the soil — he's the one, I presume, who should take more seeds and should use the most possible seed on his own soil.
C. Ah, you're always saying the same, Socrates.10
S. Not only that, Callicles, but about the same things too.
C. 491That's true enough, by the gods. You simply never stop your pg 65endless talk about cobblers and cleaners and cooks and doctors, as though our discussion were about them.5
S. Won't you say what the superior and wiser man has more of when he justly takes more? Will you neither put up with my suggestions nor say yourself?
C. But I've been saying for a long time. First of all I say who the Editor’s Notebsuperior men are — I don't say shoemakers or cooks; they're whoever are wise in the city's affairs, about how to govern it well, and not only wise, but also brave, and capable of fulfilling what they intend — and who don't slacken because of softness of soul.5
S. Do you see, excellent Callicles, that you and I don't accuse each other of the same thing? For you say I'm always saying the same thing, and you blame me for it, but on the contrary I accuse cyou of never saying the same about the same things. Previously you were defining the better and superior men as the stronger, then as the wiser, now again you've come bringing something else. Some kind of braver men are what you call the superior and the better men. Come on, my friend, tell me once and for all, just who do you 5call the better and superior — better and superior in what?
C. But I've told you — those who are wise in the city's affairs, Editor’s Notedand brave. For it is fitting for these to rule cities, and the just is this, for them to have more than the rest — for the rulers to have more than the ruled.5
S. But what about themselves, my friend? Rulers or ruled in what way?
C. What are you talking about?
S. I'm talking about each one of them ruling himself. Or shouldn't he do this at all, rule himself, but only rule the others?
C. What are you talking about, 'ruling himself'?10
S. Nothing complicated, but just as the many say — temperate, Editor’s Noteemaster of himself, ruling the pleasures and appetites within him.
C. How funny you are. You're calling the fools the temperate people.
S. What? Anyone would realize that's not what I'm saying.5
C. But it certainly is, Socrates. For how could a man become happy who's enslaved to anything at all? No. The fine and just according to nature is this, what I'm speaking freely of to you now pg 66— the man who is to live rightly should let his appetites grow as large 492as possible and not restrain (kolazein) them, and when these are as large as possible, he must have the power to serve them, because of his bravery and wisdom, and to fill them with whatever he has an appetite for at any time. But I think this isn't in the power of the many. And so they blame these people out of shame, concealing 5their own powerlessness, and say that intemperance (akolasia) is actually shameful, as I was saying previously, enslaving the men with the best natures; and when they haven't the power to find fulfilment for their pleasures, they praise temperance and justice because of their own unmanliness. For when men to begin with are sons of kings, or themselves by nature have the power to obtain some sort of rule, tyranny, or dynasty, what would in truth be more shameful or 5evil than temperance and justice for these men? — though they were at liberty to enjoy goods without hindrance, they set up a master over themselves in the rules (nomos) and speech and blame of the mass of men. Or how could they help being wretched in living under what justice and temperance count as fine, doing nothing more for their friends than for their enemies, even though they're rulers in their own city? But in truth, Socrates — the truth you say you 5pursue — it is this way; luxury, intemperance (akolasia), and freedom, if it is well supplied, this is virtue and happiness; and those other things, those ornaments, those agreements of men contrary to nature, those are rubbish, worth nothing.
S. dYou're carrying through your speech nobly, Callicles, and speaking freely. For now you're saying clearly what the others think but aren't willing to say. And so I'm asking you not to slacken at all, 5so that it will really become clear how we should live. And tell me this: — Do you say that a man must not restrain (kolazein) his appetites, if he's to be as he should be, but should let them grow as great as possible, and find fulfilment for them from anywhere at all, Editor’s Noteeand that virtue is this?
C. That's what I say.
S. Then it's wrong to say that those who need (dein) nothing are happy.5
C. Of course. Otherwise stones and corpses would be happiest.
S. But the life you speak of is a strange one too. For I tell you, pg 67I wouldn't be surprised if Euripides speaks the truth in those verses 10where he says, 'Who knows if being alive is really being dead, and 493being dead being alive?' And perhaps we too are really dead. For once I heard from some wise man that we are dead now, our body is our tomb; and that of our soul with appetites in it is liable to 5be persuaded and to sway back and forth. And a subtle man, perhaps some Sicilian or Italian, who told this story, played on the name, and because it was persuadable (pithanon) and impressionable called it a jar (pithon), and called the foolish (anoētous) the uninitiated (amuētous), and said that in the foolish men that of the soul with appetites, the foolish, intemperate, and insatiable in it, was a leaking jar, because it couldn't be filled. This man indicates — contrary to you, Callicles — that of all those in Hades — speaking of the 5unseen (aides) this way — these are the most wretched, the uninitiated, and that they carry water to this leaky jar with another leaky thing, a sieve. And so he's saying — so the man who told me said — that the sieve is the soul; and he likened the soul of the foolish to a sieve because it was leaky, since it could hold nothing, from its unreliability and forgetfulness.
Now this is all fairly strange. But he shows what I'd like to indicate 5to you, so that I persuade you, if I can, to change your mind, and instead of the insatiable and unrestrained life to choose the orderly life adequately supplied and satisfied with whatever it has at any dtime. But now do I persuade you at all to change your mind, and agree that the orderly are happier than the intemperate? Or even if I tell you many more stories like this one, won't you change your mind any the more?
C. You're nearer the truth there, Socrates.5
S. Come on then, I'll tell you another comparison, from the same school as that one. See now if you're saying something like this about the life of each of the two men, the temperate and the intemperate: — Suppose for instance that each of two men has a lot of jars, eand one has sound and full jars, one full of wine, another of honey, another of milk, and many others full of many things. And suppose the sources for each of these things are scarce and hard to find, provided only with much severe effort. Now when one man has 5filled up, he brings in no more, and doesn't care about them, but is pg 68at rest as far as they are concerned. The other man has sources like the first man's that can be drawn on, though with difficulty. But his 494vessels are leaky and rotten, and he is forced to be always filling them day and night, or else he suffers the most extreme distresses. Now if this is how each man's life is, do you say that the intemperate man's life is happier than the orderly man's? When I tell you this, do 5I persuade you at all to concede that the orderly life is better than the intemperate, or don't I persuade you?
C. No, you don't, Socrates. For that one who has filled up has no pleasure at all any more. It's what I was saying just now — living like Editor’s Noteba stone once he has filled up, with no more enjoyment or distress. No; living pleasantly is in this — in having as much as possible flowing in.
S. But if the inflow is large, mustn't the outflow be large too, and mustn't there be big holes for the outflow?5
C. Of course.
S. Then you're speaking of some kind of torrent-bird's life, not a corpse's or a stone's. Tell me now; are you talking about something like being hungry and eating when you're hungry?
C. I am.
S. Editor’s NotecAnd being thirsty and drinking when you're thirsty?
C. That's what I'm talking about — and about having all the other appetites and having the power to fill them and enjoy it, and so living happily.
S. That's good, my excellent man. You're continuing the way 5you began, and mind you don't slacken from shame. And it looks as though I mustn't (dein) slacken from shame either. And first of all, tell me if itching and wanting to scratch, with no restriction on scratching, and continuing to scratch all your life, is also living happily.
C. Editor’s NotedHow absurd you are, Socrates — a real mob-orator.
S. Yes, Callicles. You see that's how I shocked both Polus and Gorgias, and made them ashamed. But you certainly won't be 5shocked or ashamed — you're brave. Now just answer.
C. All right. I say that the scratcher would also live pleasantly.
S. And if pleasantly, then happily too?
S. Editor’s NoteeSuppose he only wants to scratch his head … or what am I to pg 69ask you now? See what you'll answer, Callicles, if someone asks you in order everything following that. And when these all come to a head — considering what they're like — in the life of catamites, isn't that 5strange and shameful and wretched? Or will you dare to say that these people are happy if they have what they need without restriction?
C. Aren't you ashamed to lead the discussion to such things, Socrates?
S. Well, is it me who's leading it there, my noble friend, or is it 10whoever says with no qualification that those who have enjoyment, 495however they have enjoyment, are happy, and doesn't distinguish among pleasures those which are good and bad? But tell me even now; do you say that the same thing is pleasant and good, or that there is something of pleasant things which is not good?5
C. Well, so that I don't leave my argument (logos) inconsistent, if I say that they're different, I say they're the same.
S. You're destroying the previous discussion (logos), Callicles, and you'd no longer be properly searching for the truth with me if you speak contrary to what you think.
C. Editor’s NotebOf course I do; and you do it too, Socrates.
S. Then I'm not doing the right thing, if I do that, and neither are you. But come, blessed man, consider. Surely this isn't the good, enjoying in any way? For all these many shameful things just hinted 5at clearly follow, if that's so, and many others.
C. So you think, Socrates.
S. Then do you really insist on this, Callicles?
C. I do.
S. Editor’s NotecThen should we undertake the discussion on the assumption that you're in earnest?
S. Come then, since that's how it seems, distinguish these things: — I presume you call something knowledge.
C. I do.5
S. And weren't you just now saying that there is a kind of courage with knowledge?
C. Yes, I was saying that.
S. Then weren't you speaking of courage and knowledge as different, and so as two things?pg 70
C. Very much so.
S. Well then, were you saying that pleasure and knowledge are the same or different?
C. dDifferent, of course, you wisest of men.
S. And that courage too is different from pleasure?
C. Of course.
S. All right then, let's remember this, that Callicles of Acharnae said that the same thing is pleasant and good, but knowledge and 5courage are different from each other and from the good.
C. And Socrates here of Alopece doesn't agree with this; or does he?
S. Editor’s NoteeNo, he doesn't. Nor Callicles either, I think, whenever he views himself correctly. For tell me, don't you think that those who do badly are affected the opposite way from those who do well?5
C. I do.
S. Then since these are opposite to each other, mustn't it be the same with them as with health and sickness? For, I take it, a man isn't at the same time healthy and sick, nor does he get rid of health and sickness at the same time.10
C. What are you saying?
S. Well, for instance, take any part of the body you like, and 496consider it. Can't a man have a sickness in the eyes, called 'eye-disease'?
C. Of course.
S. Then he is hardly healthy in these same eyes at the same time.
C. Not by any means.
S. And what about when he gets rid of the eye-disease? Does he 5get rid of health in his eyes, and is he finally rid of both?
C. Not at all.
S. Editor’s NotebNo indeed. I think that's an amazing and absurd result, isn't it?
C. Very much so.
S. But I think he gains and loses each thing in turn.
C. I agree.
S. Isn't it the same for strength and weakness?
S. And speed and slowness?5
C. Quite.pg 71
S. And goods and happiness and the opposite of these, evils and wretchedness — doesn't a man also gain each of these in turn and lose each in turn?
S. cThen if we find some things that a man gets rid of at the same time and has at the same time, it's clear that these won't be the good and the evil. Do we agree on this? Consider carefully before you reply.5
C. I very much agree.
S. Then return to what has been agreed before. In speaking of hunger, were you saying that it is pleasant or painful? I'm talking about hunger itself.
C. I say it's painful. But I say that eating when you're hungry is pleasant.
S. Editor’s NotedI understand. But at any rate, being hungry itself is painful, isn't it?
C. I agree.
S. And isn't thirst too?
C. Very much so.
S. Then will I ask still more questions, or do you agree that every lack and appetite is painful?5
C. I agree. You needn't go on asking.
S. All right. Now don't you say that drinking when you're thirsty is pleasant?
C. I do.
S. And presumably 'when you're thirsty' in what you say is 'when you're in distress'?
C. Editor’s NoteeYes.
S. And drinking is a filling of the lack, and a pleasure?
S. Now don't you say that in drinking someone has enjoyment?
C. Very much so.
S. When he's thirsty, that is.
C. I agree.
S. When he's distressed?
S. Then do you see what follows, that you say someone is pg 72distressed and enjoying at the same time, when you say he is thirsty and drinks? Or doesn't this come about at the same time and in the same place, in soul or body — for I think it makes no difference? Is that so or not?
C. It is.
S. But now you say it's impossible for someone doing well to do 497badly at the same time.
C. Yes, I do.
S. While you are agreed that it's possible to be in pain and enjoyment at the same time.
S. Then enjoying is not doing well, nor is being in pain doing badly; and so the pleasant turns out to be different from the 5good.
C. I don't know what sort of sophistry you're at, Socrates.
S. You know, but you're acting soft, Callicles. Go further on, band see how wise you are when you take me to task. Isn't each of us finished with his pleasure from drinking at the same time as he is finished being thirsty?
C. I don't know what you're saying.5
Gorgias. No, no, Callicles. Do answer — for our sakes too, so that the discussion can progress.
C. But Socrates is always like that, Gorgias. He keeps asking these petty, worthless questions, and cross-examines.
G. Well, what does it matter to you? Anyhow, it isn't for you to put a value on it, Callicles. Do allow Socrates to cross-examine as he 10wishes.
C. cThen go on you, and ask these petty trifles, since that's what Gorgias thinks.
S. You're a happy man, Callicles; for you're an initiate of the greater mysteries before the lesser. I didn't think that was allowed. 5Then answer from where you left off; doesn't each of us cease from his pleasure at the same time as he ceases being thirsty?
C. I agree.
S. And don't we cease from hunger and all the other appetites and from pleasures at the same time?
C. That's right.pg 73
S. dThen don't we cease from distresses and pleasures at the same time?
S. But now, we don't cease from goods and evils at the same time, as you were agreeing then; don't you agree now?
C. Yes, I do. So what?5
S. Then goods turn out not to be the same as pleasant things, my friend, and evils not to be the same as painful things. For we cease from pleasant and painful things at the same time, but not from good and evil things, since they're different from pleasant and painful. Then how can pleasant things be the same as goods, or painful things the same as evils?
Editor’s NoteeBut if you wish, consider it this way too — I don't think you agree to it this way either; but consider it. Don't you call good men good by the presence of goods, just as you call beautiful (kalon) those to whom beauty is present?
C. I do.
S. Well then, do you call fools and cowards good men? You didn't 5just now, anyway; you were saying the brave and wise are good. Aren't these the ones you call good?
S. Now did you never see a foolish child enjoying himself?
C. I did.
S. And did you never see a foolish man enjoying himself?
C. I think I did. What about it?
S. 498Nothing at all. Just answer.
C. I did see one.
S. Well, did you see a man of intelligence in distress and enjoyment?
C. I did.
S. Which ones have more distress and enjoyment, the wise men or the foolish?
C. I think they don't differ that much.
S. Well, that's enough. Now did you ever see a coward in war?
C. Of course.
S. Now when the enemy withdrew, who did you think had more enjoyment — the cowards or the brave men?pg 74
C. I thought they both had enjoyment; perhaps the cowards had bmore, or if not, about the same.
S. It doesn't matter. At any rate, the cowards too have enjoyment?
C. Very much so.
S. And the foolish men, it seems.
S. And when the enemy advance, are only the cowards in distress, or the brave men too?
S. In the same way?
C. Perhaps the cowards are in more distress.
S. And when the enemy withdraw, haven't they more enjoyment?
S. Then don't they have distress and enjoyment, both the foolish cand the wise and the cowards and the brave men, about the same, you say, but the cowards more than the brave men?
C. I agree.
S. But now the wise and the brave are good, the cowardly and foolish bad?
S. Then the good and the bad have about the same enjoyment and distress?
C. I agree.
S. Then are the good and the bad about equally good and bad, or are the bad even better?
C. dBy Zeus, I don't know what you're saying.
S. You don't know that you say good men are good by the presence of goods, and evil men evil by the presence of evils? And that the pleasures are the goods and pains evils?
C. I agree.5
S. And aren't the goods, the pleasures, present to those having enjoyment, if they are having it?
C. Of course.
S. Then when goods are present men having enjoyment are good?
S. Well, and aren't the evils, distresses, present to those in pain?
C. Yes, they're present.pg 75
S. eAnd you say that evil men are evil by the presence of evils? Or don't you say it any longer?
C. Yes, I say it.
S. Then those who have enjoyment are good, and those in pain are evil?
S. And those who have more enjoyment or pain are better or worse, those who have less are less bad or less good, and those who 5have equal amounts are equally good or bad?
S. Now don't you say that the wise and the foolish, and the brave men and the cowards, have about the same enjoyment and distress, or the cowards even still more?
C. I do.
S. Then work out together with me what we find to follow from what has been agreed; for 'twice and thrice', as they say, it's a fine 499thing to say and consider fine things. We say that the wise and brave man is good, don't we?
S. And that the foolish and cowardly man is bad?
C. Of course.
S. And again that the man who has enjoyment is good?
S. And that the man in distress is bad?
C. It must be so.
S. And that the good and bad men have pain and enjoyment similarly, but perhaps the bad man has even more?
S. Then doesn't the bad man turn out to be good and bad Editor’s Notebsimilarly to the good man, or even better? Doesn't this follow, with those previous things, if someone says that the same things are pleasant and good? Mustn't this follow, Callicles?5
C. I've been listening to you for a long time and agreeing, Socrates, thinking that even if someone concedes something to you as a joke, you fasten on it gleefully like young boys. As though you really suppose that I or any other man don't think some pleasures are better and others worse.pg 76
S. cAh Callicles, what a scoundrel you are. You treat me like a child, telling me now that the same things are this way, and again that they're some other way, and deceiving me. And I didn't think at the start that you'd voluntarily deceive me, because I thought you were a friend. But it turns out I was misled; and it seems I must 5'make the best of what I have', as the old saying goes, and accept what you're offering me. And that is, you're saying now, that there are pleasures, some good and some bad. Isn't that right?
C. Editor’s NotedYes.
S. Then are the beneficial ones good, and the harmful ones evil?
S. And those which produce some good are beneficial, and those which produce some evil are evil?
C. I agree.
S. Are you speaking of these kinds of pleasures — in the body, 5for instance, among the pleasures found in eating and drinking that we were speaking of just now — those which produce health in the body, or strength or some other excellence (aretē) of the body, are Editor’s Noteethese good, and the ones which produce the opposites of these things evil?
S. And similarly among distresses, aren't some worthy, others base?
C. Of course.
S. Then mustn't we choose and do the worthy ones, both pleasures and distresses?5
S. But not the base ones?
C. Clearly not.
S. Yes; for I take it we agreed that we must do everything for the sake of goods, if you remember — Polus and I. Do you agree with us too, that the good is the end of all actions, and that for the sake of it 500we should do all the other things, not do it for the sake of the other things? Do you cast a third vote with ours?
C. I do.
S. Then for the sake of goods we should do other things, including pleasant things, not good things for the sake of pleasant things?pg 77
S. Now is it for anyone to select which kinds of pleasant things are good and which evil? Or does it need a craftsman for each thing?
C. It needs a craftsman.
S. Then let's recall another thing I was saying to Polus and Editor’s NotebGorgias. I was saying, if you remember, that there are practices, some limited to pleasure, only that one thing, ignorant of the better and the worse, and other practices which know what is good and what is bad. And I was assigning to the practices concerned with 5pleasures the knack — no craft — of confectionery, and to those concerned with the good the medical craft. And for the sake of the god of friendship, Callicles, don't think you should make jokes at me, Editor’s Notecand don't answer capriciously, contrary to what you think, nor again take what I say that way, as making jokes. For you see that our discussion is about this — and what would anyone with the slightest intelligence be more seriously concerned about than this? I mean — what way ought we to live? The way to which you encourage me, 5doing what a real man does, speaking in the people's Assembly, practising rhetoric, conducting politics the way you conduct it now — or the life spent in philosophy? And how does the one life differ dfrom the other? Perhaps it's best, then, to divide these lives as I set about it lately; when we've divided them, and agreed with each other, if there are these two distinct lives, we should consider how they differ from each other, and which of them is to be lived. Perhaps you don't yet know what I'm saying.5
C. No. Indeed I don't.
S. Well, I'll tell you more clearly. Since you and I are agreed that something is good and something is pleasant, that the pleasant is different from the good, and that there is a training and practice for 10the gaining of each, one a pursuit of the pleasant, the other of the Editor’s Noteegood — then accept or deny this point first of all. Do you accept it?
C. Yes, I do.
S. Come then, and accept what I was saying to these people too, if you really thought I was saying what was true then. I think I was 5saying that cookery doesn't seem to me to be a craft, but a knack, 501while medicine is a craft. I said that medicine has considered the nature of what it cares for and the explanation of what it does, and pg 78can give a rational account (logos) of each of these things. But the knack concerned with pleasure, which all its care aims at, goes after 5this entirely without a craft, not at all considering the nature or the explanation of the pleasure, and altogether without reason, making practically no distinctions. By habit and experience it keeps only memory of what usually happens, by which it produces its pleasures. And so consider first whether you think this is adequately stated and whether there are also other such practices associated with the soul, some of them with craft-knowledge, with forethought for what is 5best about the soul, and others which despise the best, and have considered, as we said about cookery, only how the pleasure of the soul might come about, but neither consider what pleasure is better or worse nor care about anything else than giving gratification, better or worse. I think there are these practices, Callicles, and I say that this kind of thing is flattery, for the body, for the soul, and for anything else whose pleasure anyone cultivates, when he fails to 5consider the better and the worse. Do you deposit the same opinion about this as ours, or do you speak against it?
C. No I don't. I'm going along with you, to let the discussion progress for you, and to gratify Gorgias here.
S. Editor’s NotedIs this so for one soul, but not for two or for many?
C. No. It's so for two and for many as well.
S. And isn't it also possible to gratify souls all in a crowd at the 5same time, not considering the best at all?
C. Yes, I think so.
S. Then can you tell me which are the practices that produce this? Or rather, if you like, I'll ask the questions; agree with what eyou think is right, and deny what you think is wrong. And first of all, let's consider flute-playing. Don't you think it is the kind of practice we mentioned, Callicles, pursuing only our pleasure, and concerned with nothing else?
C. I think so.5
S. And aren't all of this kind similar — such as lyre-playing before large audiences?
S. And what about the teaching of choruses, and the making of dithyrambs? Isn't it apparently something of the same kind? Or do pg 7910you think Cinesias the son of Meles cares at all about saying the kind of thing to make the audience better? Or does he care about what 502will gratify the mob of spectators?
C. That's clear, Socrates, about Cinesias anyway.
S. And what about his father Meles? Did you think he was 5looking to what is best when he sang on the lyre? Or didn't he even consider what was pleasantest? For he used to torture the spectators when he sang. But consider — don't you think that all singing to the lyre and composition of dithyrambs has been discovered for the sake of pleasure?
C. I do.
S. Editor’s NotebThen what about this august and wonderful pursuit, the composition of tragedy, and its concern? Is its undertaking and concern, in your opinion, just to gratify the spectators? Or does it also struggle, 5if anything is pleasant and gratifying to them, but base, to avoid saying it, and if something is without pleasure but beneficial, to say and sing this, whether they enjoy it or not? Which way do you think the composition of tragedies is equipped?
C. Editor’s NotecThis much is clear, Socrates, that it concentrates on pleasure and on gratifying spectators.
S. And didn't we say just now that this sort of thing is flattery, Callicles?
S. Well now, if someone took away from all poetic composition the melody, the rhythm, and the metre, doesn't what is left turn out to be speech (logos)?
C. It must be.10
S. And isn't this speech addressed to a large mob of the people?
C. I agree.
S. Then poetic composition is a kind of public oratory.
S. And surely public oratory is rhetoric. Or don't you think the poets practise rhetoric in the theatres?
C. Yes, I think so.5
S. And so we've found a kind of rhetoric addressed to the people, including children and women and men all together, and slaves and free. And we can't altogether admire it; for we say it's flattering.pg 80
S. All right. What about rhetoric addressed to the Athenian people 10and the other peoples of the cities, the peoples composed of free Editor’s Noteemen, exactly what do we find this is? Do you think that rhetors always speak with an eye on what is best, and aim to make the 5citizens as good as possible by their speeches? Or do they too concentrate on gratifying the citizens, despising the common interest for the sake of their own private interest? Do they approach the people 503in cities as children, trying only to gratify them, with no concern about whether they will be better or worse from it?
C. That's not just one question you're asking any more. There are some who care about the citizens when they say what they say, and others who are as you claim.5
S. That's all right. For if there are really two types here, I presume one type is flattery, and shameful public oratory, while the other is fine — trying to make the souls of the citizens as good as possible, and working hard in saying what is best, whether it is pleasant or bunpleasant to the audience. But you've never yet seen this kind of rhetoric; or if you can mention a rhetor of this type, why haven't you told me as well who he is?5
C. Well, by Zeus, I can't mention any of the present rhetors to you.
S. Well then, can you mention someone of earlier times who's reputed to have made the Athenians better, after he began his public speaking, when they had previously been worse? For I don't know who this is.
C. Editor’s NotecWell, don't you hear it said that Themistocles proved himself a good man, and Cimon and Miltiades, and Pericles? — he's lately died and you've heard him speak yourself.
S. Yes, Callicles; if real virtue is what you were saying before — 5filling up appetites, our own or other people's. But if it's not that, but it's what we were forced to agree to in the later discussion — that we should fulfil those appetites which make a man better when Editor’s Notedthey are fulfilled, and not fulfil those which make him worse, and that this is some kind of craft — then I can't say that any of these men had that kind of virtue.
C. Well, if you look properly, you'll find one.pg 815
S. Then let's see, considering calmly this way, whether any of these men proved to be virtuous. Come now, the good man who Editor’s Noteespeaks with a view to the best, surely he won't speak at random, but will look to something? He will be like all other craftsmen; each of them selects and applies his efforts with a view to his own work, not at random, but so that what he produces will acquire some form. Look for instance if you like at painters, builders, shipwrights, all 5other craftsmen — whichever one you like; see how each of them arranges in a structure whatever he arranges, and compels one thing 504to be fitting and suitable to another, until he composes the whole thing arranged in a structure and order. All craftsmen, including those we were talking of just now, gymnastic-trainers, and doctors, form the body into order and structure, don't they? Do we agree 5that this is so, or not?
C. Let's say this is so.
S. Then when a house gets structure and order, it will be worthy, and when it lacks structure, wretched?
C. I agree.10
S. And surely a boat the same way?
S. And don't we say the same about our bodies?
S. And what about the soul? Will it be worthy if it lacks 5structure, or if it gains some kind of structure and order?
C. From what's been said before, we must agree on this too.
S. Then what's the name for what comes to be in the body from structure and order?
C. I suppose you're talking about health and strength.
S. Editor’s NotecI am. And what's the name for what comes to be in the soul from structure and order? Try to find and say the name for this as for the body.
C. And why don't you say it yourself, Socrates?5
S. Well, if it pleases you more, I'll say it myself. But you, if you think I speak well, agree, and if you don't, examine me, and don't give in to me. I think that the name for the structures of the body is 'healthy' from which health and the rest of bodily excellence (aretē) come to be in the body. Is that so, or isn't it?pg 8210
C. It is.
S. Editor’s NotedAnd for the structures and orderings of the soul the name is 'lawful' and 'law', from which people become lawful and orderly; and these are justice and temperance. Do you say so, or not?
C. Let it be so.5
S. Then won't that rhetor, the craftsman, the good one, look to these things when he applies whatever speeches he makes to souls, and when he applies all his actions to them, and when he gives whatever he gives, and when he takes away whatever he takes away? He'll always have his mind on this; to see that the souls of the citizens Editor’s Noteeacquire justice and get rid of injustice, and that they acquire temperance and get rid of intemperance (akolasia) and that they acquire the rest of virtue and get rid of vice. Do you agree or not?5
C. I agree.
S. Yes, for what's the benefit, Callicles, of giving lots of the most pleasant food or drink or anything else to a sick body in wretched condition, which won't help it one bit more than the opposite method, on the right account, and will help even less? Is that so?
C. 505Let it be so.
S. Yes; for I suppose it's no profit for a man to live with bodily wretchedness; in that condition you must live wretchedly too. Isn't that so?5
S. And don't the doctors mostly allow a healthy man to fulfil his appetites, for instance to eat and drink as much as he wants when he's hungry or thirsty? And don't they practically never allow a sick 10man to fill himself with what he has an appetite for? Don't you also agree with this much?
C. I do.
S. Editor’s NotebAnd isn't it the same way, my excellent man, about the soul? As long as it's corrupt, senseless, intemperate, unjust, and impious, we should restrain it from its appetites, and not allow it to do 5anything else except what will make it better. Do you say so, or not?
C. I do.
S. For, I take it, that way it's better for the soul itself.
C. Quite.pg 83
S. And isn't restraining it from what it has an appetite for tempering it?10
S. Then being tempered is better for the soul than intemperance, which you just now thought was better.
C. Editor’s NotecI don't know what you're saying, Socrates. Ask someone else.
S. This man won't abide being helped and tempered, and himself undergoing the very thing our discussion is about — being tempered.5
C. No; I don't care about anything you say; I've answered these questions of yours for Gorgias' sake.
S. Well, what will we do, then? Are we breaking off the discussion in the middle?
C. That's up to you.10
S. Well, they say it's not right to break stories off in the middle Editor’s Notedeither; we should put a head on it, so that it won't go around headless. So answer the rest of the questions too, so that our discussion will get its head on.5
C. You're so insistent, Socrates. Listen to me, and let this discussion go, or have a dialogue with someone else as well.
S. Then who else is willing? Surely we mustn't leave the discussion incomplete.
C. And couldn't you finish the discussion yourself? Say it all in your own person, or answer your own questions.
S. eThen Epicharmus' words will be true for me; I'll be enough, all alone, for what 'two men were saying before'. It seems that this will be absolutely necessary. But if we do it, I believe we all ought to 5compete to know what's true and false in the things we're speaking of. For it's a common benefit to all when this becomes clear. Well, 506I'll go through the discussion myself the way I think it is; and if one of you thinks that what I'm agreeing on with myself isn't what's true, you ought to seize on it, and examine me. For remember I don't have knowledge any more than you have when I say what I 5say. I search in common with you; and so if my opponent is clearly saying something, I will be the first to concede it. Now I'm saying this in case you think the discussion ought to be completed; but if you don't want that, let's let it go now and leave.
bGorgias. Well, I don't think we ought to leave yet, Socrates. You pg 84should go through the discussion; and I think the rest agree. For myself, I'd like to hear you go through the rest on your own.
S. Well, Gorgias, for myself I'd be pleased to continue the 5dialogue with Callicles here, until I've paid him the discourse of Amphion in return for the discourse of Zethus. But since you aren't willing to finish the discussion, Callicles, none the less listen to me, and pull Editor’s Notecme up if you think I say anything wrongly. And if you refute me, I won't be annoyed with you the way you were with me, but I'll keep you inscribed as my greatest benefactor.
C. Say it yourself, my good man, and finish it.5
S. Then listen to me while I take up the discussion again from the beginning. Are the pleasant and the good the same?
— Not the same, as Callicles and I agreed.
— Then is the pleasant to be done for the sake of the good, or the good for the sake of the pleasant?
— The pleasant for the sake of the good.
Editor’s Noted— And the pleasant is that which, if it has come to be present, we take pleasure, and the good that which, if it has come to be present, we are good?
— Now we are good, and so is anything else which is good, when some virtue has come to be present.
— I think it's necessary, Callicles.
5— But now, the virtue of each thing, a tool, a body, and, further, a soul and a whole animal, doesn't come to be present in the best way just at random, but by some structure and correctness and craft, the one assigned to each of them. Is this so?
— I say so.
Editor’s Notee— Then the virtue of each thing is something structured and ordered by a structure?
— I would say so myself.
— Then it is some order — the proper order for each of the things that are — which makes the thing good by coming to be present in it.
— I myself think so.
5— Then a soul with its own proper order is better than a disordered soul?
— It must be.
pg 85— But now the soul which has order is orderly?
— Of course it is.
507— And the orderly soul is temperate?
— It certainly must be.
— Then the temperate soul is good.
— For myself I can say nothing else besides this, my dear Callicles.
If you can say anything else, instruct me.
C. Go on, my good man.5
S. Well, I say that if the temperate soul is good, the soul affected the opposite way to the temperate soul is bad; and this was agreed to be the senseless and intemperate (akolastos) soul.
— And now the temperate man would do fitting things towards both gods and men. For surely he wouldn't be acting temperately if he did unfitting things?
Editor’s Noteb— This must be so.
— Now by doing fitting things towards men he would do just things, and by doing them towards gods, he would do pious things. And someone who does just and pious things must be just and pious.
— That's so.
5— And further he must be brave too. For it's not what a temperate man does to avoid or pursue unfitting things; he will avoid or pursue the things and people, pleasures and pains he should, and will resist Editor’s Notecand endure where he should. And so, Callicles, since the temperate man is just and brave and pious, as we described him, he definitely must be a completely good man; and the good man must do whatever he does well and finely; and the man who does well must be 5blessed and happy, and the base man who does badly must be wretched — and this would be the man who is the opposite way to the temperate man — the intemperate (akolastos) man whom you were praising.
And so I set these things down this way, and say that these things Editor’s Notedare true. And if they are true, then apparently the man who wants to be happy must pursue and practise temperance, and flee intemperance as fast as each of us can run. He must manage, best of all, to have no need of tempering (kolazesthai); but if he or any of his own, 5an individual or a city, needs tempering, justice and tempering must pg 86be imposed, if he is to be happy. I believe this is the goal a man should look to in living, on which he should concentrate everything of his own and the city's — to see that justice and temperance are Editor’s Noteepresent in everyone who is to be blessed — this is the way he should act. He should not allow his appetites to be intemperate and try to fulfil them — an endless evil — while he lives the life of a brigand.
For no other man would be a friend to such a man; nor would god. For he is incapable of community; and when there is no 5community with a man, there can be no friendship with him. Now the 508wise men say, Callicles, that heaven and earth, gods and men are bound by community and friendship and order and temperance and justice; and that is why they call this whole universe the 'world-order', not 'disorder' or 'intemperance', my friend. But I think you 5don't heed them, though you're wise yourself. You haven't noticed that geometrical equality has great power among gods and men; you think you should practise taking more, because you are heedless of geometry.
Editor’s NotebWell then; either we must refute this argument and show that it is not by possession of justice and temperance that the happy are happy, and that the wretched are not wretched by the possession of vice; or else if this argument is true, we must examine what are the results that follow. All those previous things follow, Callicles — you 5asked me if I was serious when I said them, when I said that a man should denounce himself and his son and his companion if he does any unjust action, and should use rhetoric for this. And those things you thought Polus conceded to me out of shame were after all true, Editor’s Notecthat doing injustice is as much worse than suffering it as it is more shameful; and after all someone who is going to be a rhetor in the right way should be a just man, one who knows about just things — which again Polus said Gorgias had conceded out of shame.
5Since that is so, let's consider what you're abusing me for, whether it's well said or not. You say indeed that I'm unable to help myself or any of my friends or relatives, or save them from the most serious dangers, but I'm in the power of whoever wishes, just as the Editor’s Noteddishonoured are at the mercy of whoever feels like it — whether he wants to push my face in, in your vigorous expression, or to confiscate my money, or to expel me from the city, or finally to kill me — pg 875and this condition is the most shameful of all, on your account. Now what my argument is has often enough been said already, but nothing prevents it being said over again. I say, Callicles, that having my face Editor’s Noteepushed in unjustly is not the most shameful thing — nor is having my body or my purse cut. But to strike and cut me and mine unjustly is more shameful and evil, and likewise robbing, enslaving, 5housebreaking, and in short, any injustice against me and mine is both worse and more shameful for the man who does the injustice than for me who suffer it.
These things which appeared true to us earlier in the previous 509arguments (logos) are held firm and bound down, so I say — even if it is a bit impolite to say so — by iron and adamantine arguments; so at least it appears so far. And if you, or someone more vigorous than you, doesn't untie them, no one who says anything besides what I say now can be right. For my argument (logos) is always the same, 5that I myself don't know how these things are, but no one I've ever met, just as now, is able to speak otherwise without being ridiculous.
Editor’s NotebWell then, again I lay it down that this is so. Now if it's so, and if injustice is the greatest of evils for the man who does injustice, and an even greater evil than the greatest, if that is possible, is doing injustice and not paying justice — then what lack of power to defend himself would make a man really ridiculous? Won't it be the lack of 5power to defend himself against the greatest of harms to us? Surely this defence definitely must be the most shameful for us to lack power to provide, for ourselves and for friends and family. And the csecond most shameful will be the lack of defence against the second most serious evil, and the third most shameful against the third most serious evil, and so on in the same way — the greater each evil is, the finer it is to have the power to defend ourselves against it, and the more shameful it is to lack the power. Is that how it is, or some other way, Callicles?5
C. No other way.
S. Then of these two things, doing injustice and suffering it, we say that doing injustice is the greater evil, and suffering it the lesser. Editor’s NotedThen how should a man equip himself for self-defence, so as to gain both of these benefits, from not doing injustice and from not suffering it? Does he need power or wish? I'm saying this: — Is it by not pg 88wishing to suffer injustice that a man will avoid suffering it, or by 5equipping himself with some power for not suffering it?
C. It's clear that this is the way, by having a power.
S. And what about doing injustice? If a man doesn't want to do injustice, will that be enough, because he won't do injustice? Or for Editor’s Noteethis too should he equip himself with some power and craft, since if he doesn't learn and practise them he'll do injustice? Why haven't 5you answered me that, Callicles, whether you think Polus and I were right or not when we were forced to agree in the previous discussion, when we agreed that no one wants to do injustice, but all those who do it do it involuntarily?
C. 510You can say that that's so, Socrates, so that you can complete the argument.
S. Then for this too, apparently, we must equip ourselves with some power and craft, so that we won't do injustice.5
S. Then what is the craft equipping us to suffer injustice not at all, or as little as possible? See if you think it's the one I think it is. I think it's this one: Either someone should himself be ruler in the 10city or even tyrant, or he should be an ally of the political system in power.
C. Editor’s NotebDo you see how ready I am to praise you, Socrates, if you say something well? I think that was altogether well said.
S. Then consider if you think this is well said too. I think one man is a friend to another most of all when, as wise men of old say, 5like is friend to like. Don't you think so too?
C. Yes, I do.
S. Then wherever a brutal and uneducated tyrant is the ruler, won't he surely be afraid of anyone in the city who is far better than Editor’s Notechim, and won't he be quite unable to become a friend to him with all his mind?
C. That's so.
S. And if someone is far worse than himself, he won't be a friend either; for the tyrant will despise him, and never treat him seriously 5as he would treat a friend.
C. That's true too.
S. Then the only friend to such a man worth consideration who's pg 89left is whoever has a similar character, blames and praises the same things, and is willing to be ruled by the ruler and to be subject to Editor’s Notedhim. This man will have great power in this city; no one will do injustice against him without being sorry for it. Isn't it so?
S. Then suppose some young man in this city thought, 'How might I win great power so that no one does injustice to me?' Apparently this is the road for him; he must accustom himself from youth to enjoy and hate the same things as the tyrant, and manage to be as like the tyrant as possible. Isn't that the way?10
S. And so won't this man, on your account, have gained protection eagainst suffering injustice and gained great power — on the account (logos) you offer — in the city?
S. Then will he also have gained protection against doing 5injustice? Far from it, surely, if he's to be like the tyrant who is unjust, and is to have great power with him. But I think myself that, quite the opposite, he'll equip himself to be capable of doing the most possible injustice and avoid paying justice for it. Won't he?
S. 511Won't the greatest evil belong to him when his soul is wretched, and he is disfigured by his imitation of his master and by his power?5
C. Somehow you always twist the discussion upside down, Socrates. Don't you know that this imitator will kill that non-imitator of yours, if he wants to, and confiscate all he has?
S. Editor’s NotebYes, I know it, my good Callicles, if I'm not deaf. I've often heard it from you and Polus just now, and from practically everyone else in the city. But now you listen to me too. He will kill him if he wants to, but it will be a base man killing a fine and good man.5
C. And isn't that exactly what is deplorable?
S. Not if we have any intelligence — so the argument (logos) indicates. Surely you don't think a man should equip himself for this — to live the longest time he can, and should practise those crafts cwhich save us from dangers any time, as rhetoric does — the craft you encourage me to practise, which keeps us safe in courts?
C. Yes, by Zeus; and I'm giving you the right advice.pg 90
S. Well then, my good man; do you think that the knowledge of 5swimming is also something impressive?
C. No, by Zeus, I certainly don't.
S. And yet it also saves people from death, when they fall into conditions where this knowledge is needed. But if this knowledge Editor’s Notedseems trivial to you, I'll tell you a more important kind than it — the pilot's knowledge, which saves not only souls, but also bodies and property from extreme dangers, as rhetoric does. Now this science is plain and orderly, and does not put on impressive airs, dressed up as 5though it were achieving something extraordinary. When it has done the same as the forensic science, if it brings someone safely here from Aegina, I suppose it has earned two obols; if it brings us from Editor’s NoteeEgypt or the Pontus, then at the very most, for this great service, when it has kept safe all the things I was mentioning just now — the man himself, children, property, women — and brought them ashore in the harbour, it has earned two drachmas; and the man with this 5craft who has achieved all this gets out and walks along by the sea and his ship with a modest attitude. For I suppose he knows enough to reason that it's not clear which passengers he has benefited by not 512letting them drown, and which ones he has harmed; he knows he has put them ashore no better than they were when they boarded, either in body or in soul. He reasons, then, that if someone suffering serious and incurable diseases in his body who has not expired is 5wretched because he has not died, and has gained no benefit from him — if that is so, then if someone has many incurable diseases in what is more honourable than his body — his soul — it will not be worth living for him, and the pilot will not benefit him by saving him from the sea or the law-court or anywhere else; the pilot knows it is not better for the wretched man to live; for he is bound to live badly.
That's why it is not the rule (nomos), my splendid man, for the pilot to put on imposing airs, even though he saves our lives, or for 5the machine-maker who can sometimes save us no less than the general, let alone the pilot or anyone else, can — for sometimes he saves whole cities. Do you think he's up to the level of the advocate? And yet, if he wanted to say the things you rhetors say, Callicles, Editor’s Notecmaking the thing sound imposing, he'd bury you with his speech pg 91(logos), speaking and exhorting to show that we should become machine-makers, because other things amount to nothing — he would have quite an adequate speech to make. But none the less you 5despise him and his craft; you would call him a 'machine-maker' by way of insult, and would never be willing to marry your daughter to his son, or to accept his daughter yourself. But on the grounds on which you praise what you have, what just argument (logos) have dyou for despising the machine-maker and the others I was speaking of just now? I know you'd say you are a better man and of better family. But if what is better isn't what I say it is, if just this is virtue — for a man to save himself and what he has, whatever condition he 5may be in — then see how ludicrous your reproaches turn out to be against the machine-maker and the doctor and whatever other crafts have been devised to preserve us alive.
But no, blessed man. See if what is noble and good is something else besides preserving life and having it preserved. For surely a real eman should forget about living some particular length of time, and should not be anxious about his life. He should leave all this to the god, and believe the women when they say that not a single man can escape destiny. Then he should consider the next question; how best 5to live, for however long he is to live — should he live conforming 513himself to the political system he lives under, and should you now become as much like the Athenian people as possible, if you are to be a friend of theirs and gain great power in the city? See if this benefits you and me, so that the same thing doesn't happen to us, 5my excellent man, as they say happens to the women who draw down the moon, the Thessalian women; for we will risk what is dearest to us when we choose this power in the city.
bBut if you think anyone will pass on to you some craft which will make you powerful in this city when you are unlike this political system, better or worse than it — then I think you are planning wrongly, Callicles. For you shouldn't be an imitator, but like them 5in your own nature if you are to achieve anything genuine towards friendship with the Athenian demos — yes, with Demos the son of Pyrilampes too. And so whoever makes you most like them, he will make you a politician the way you want to be one, a politician and Editor’s Noteca rhetor. For each audience enjoys speeches delivered in its character, pg 92and dislikes those in an alien character — unless you disagree, my dear friend. Do we say anything against that, Callicles?5
C. Somehow or other I think you're speaking well, Socrates. But the same thing happens to me as to most people; I'm not quite convinced by you.
S. That's because the love of Demos is present in your soul and Editor’s Notedopposes me, Callicles. But if we thoroughly consider these same questions often and better, you'll be convinced. But now recall that we said that the practices concerned with the care of each thing, body and soul, were two, one which approaches it aiming at pleasure, 5the other aiming at the best, not gratifying it, but struggling with it. Weren't these the things we defined then?
S. And doesn't the first one, the one aiming at pleasure, turn out to be a poor thing, nothing other than flattery? Isn't that so?
C. eIt can be so for you if you like.
S. And the other is concerned so that what we care for, whether it's body or soul, will be as good as possible?
S. Then are we to set about caring for the city and its citizens in this way, aiming to make the citizens themselves as good as possible? For without this, as we were finding out in what went before, it is 514no help to supply any other benefit at all, if the people's mind is not fine and good when they are to receive great wealth or rule over some others or any other power at all. Are we to say that it is so?
C. Quite — if it pleases you more.5
S. Then suppose, Callicles, we were encouraging each other in some building project, intending to undertake the city's public business in some large-scale buildings, city-walls, dockyards, or btemples: — Should we not consider and scrutinize ourselves first of all to see whether we knew the craft or didn't know it, the building craft, and who we learned it from? Should we do this or not?
S. And shouldn't we then consider this second, whether we have ever built any building in private business for any of our friends or for ourselves, and whether this building is fine or ugly (aischron)? cAnd if in considering we found we had had good and reputable pg 93teachers, that we had built many fine buildings with our teachers' help, and also many of our own after we left our teachers — if we were in this condition, we would be acting like intelligent men if we 5went in for public works. But if we could point to no teacher of ours, and to no buildings, or to many buildings, but worthless ones, in that case it would surely be senseless to undertake public works and encourage each other to it. Will we say this is correct or not?
S. And isn't it the same in all cases? For instance, if we had undertaken public business and were encouraging each other by 5saying we were competent doctors, then presumably we would scrutinize each other; 'Come now, by the gods, what is Socrates' own bodily condition, as far as health goes? Or has anyone else got rid of disease yet because of Socrates, either slave or free man? And I imagine I'd ask the same sorts of questions about you; and if we efound that no one had become better as far as his body goes because of us, neither foreigner nor Athenian, neither man nor woman, then surely, by Zeus, wouldn't it be really ludicrous, Callicles, if people 5went to such lengths of foolishness that before they had many failures and successes in private business, and had adequate training in their craft, they tried to learn pottery on the big jar, as they say, undertook public business themselves, and encouraged others just as unqualified? Don't you think it would be senseless to do this?
C. I do.
S. 515But as things are, my good man, since you yourself are just beginning to engage in the city's business, and exhort me to do it, and abuse me because I don't, surely we'll scrutinize each other this 5way: 'Let's see, has Callicles ever yet made any citizen better? Is there anyone who was previously base, unjust, intemperate, and senseless, who because of Callicles has become fine and good — a foreigner or an Athenian, a slave or a free man?' Tell me, if someone tests you this way, Callicles, what will you say? What man will you say you've made better by association with you? Do you shirk from answering, from saying whether there's something you achieved while you were in private life before you undertook public business?5
C. You're competitive, Socrates.
S. No, I'm not asking questions to be competitive, Callicles. It's pg 94because I really want to know just how you think the city's business Editor’s Notecshould be conducted here. Will we find that you have entered the city's business concerned for anything else than for how we citizens will be as good as possible? Haven't we agreed over and over that this is what the politician should do? Have we or haven't we? Answer. 5We have — I'll answer for you. Then if this is what the good man should arrange for his city, recall now those men you were speaking of a little earlier, and tell me about them, whether you still think Editor’s Notedthat they have proved themselves good citizens — Pericles, Cimon, Miltiades, Themistocles.
C. Yes, I do.
S. Then if they were good, it's clear that each of them was making the citizens better from being worse. Was he or not?5
S. Then when Pericles was beginning to speak among the people, weren't the Athenians worse than they were when he was speaking for the last time?
S. No; not perhaps, my good man. They must have been, from 10what we've agreed, if Pericles was a good citizen.
C. Editor’s NoteeSo what?
S. So nothing. But tell me this as well: — Is it said that the Athenians became better because of Pericles, or just the opposite — that they were corrupted by him? For that's what I myself hear said, that 5Pericles has made the Athenians idlers and cowards, chatterers and spongers, by starting them on drawing pay.
C. It's the people with torn ears you hear say that, Socrates.10
S. Well, here's something I don't just hear said, but I know it clearly, and so do you: — At first Pericles had a good reputation, and the Athenians never convicted him on any shameful charge, when 516they were worse. But when they had been made fine and good by him, at the end of Pericles' life, they convicted him of theft, and nearly condemned him to death, clearly because they supposed he was base.
C. So what? Did that make Pericles bad?5
S. Well, a keeper of donkeys or horses or cattle who was like him would be thought bad, if they did not kick or butt or bite him when pg 95he took them over, and finally he left them doing all these things Editor’s Notebfrom wildness. Or don't you think anyone is a bad keeper of any animal whatever if he takes them over tame and finally leaves them wilder than they were when he took them over? Do you think so or not?
C. Yes, quite — just to gratify you.5
S. Then gratify me by answering this too. Is man also one of the animals or not?
C. Of course.
S. Wasn't Pericles a keeper of men?
S. Well then, shouldn't they, as we were agreeing recently, have Editor’s Notecbecome more just through him, after being more unjust, if he was their keeper and was good in politics?
S. Now aren't the just tame, as Homer said? What do you say? Isn't it so?5
S. But now Pericles left them much wilder than when he took them over, and wilder against him, which he would have wanted least of all.
C. Do you want me to agree with you?
S. Yes, if you think I'm saying what's true.10
C. Well, let it be so.
S. Then if they were wilder, weren't they more unjust and worse?
C. Editor’s NotedLet's say so.
S. Then Pericles was not good in politics, on this argument (logos).
C. Well, you say he wasn't.5
S. And so do you, from what you were agreeing. But now tell me about Cimon. Didn't those Athenians he was caring for ostracize him so that they wouldn't hear his voice for ten years? And didn't they do the same to Themistocles, and punish him with exile as well? And Miltiades of Marathon — didn't they vote to throw him into the pit, Editor’s Noteeand but for the prytanis wouldn't they have thrown him in? But if these had been good men, as you say they were, that would never have happened to them. Surely good drivers don't avoid being pg 965thrown out of the seat at the start, and then — when they take care of the horses, and become better drivers themselves — get thrown out after all that. That doesn't happen in driving chariots or in any other work. Or do you think it does?
C. No, I don't.
S. 517Then what we said earlier was true, it seems, that we don't know of anyone who turned out to be a good man in politics in this city. You were agreeing about men now, but not about men of previous times, and you chose these men above others. But these have turned out to be in the same position as men now, so that if 5they were rhetors, they practised neither true rhetoric — for then they wouldn't have been thrown out — nor flattering rhetoric.
C. But no, Socrates — surely no one now will achieve such works Editor’s Notebas any one you like of those previous men.5
S. My friend, I'm not reproaching them any more than you are, as servants of the city. No; I think they've proved to be better servants than the present people, and more capable of supplying the 5city with what it had an appetite for. But for forcing change in their appetites, not indulging them, persuading and forcing them towards what will make the citizens better — here they were virtually no Editor’s Notecdifferent from people now — and that's the only work for a good citizen. But ships, walls, dockyards, and many other things — I too agree with you that the previous people were cleverer than the people now at supplying them.
Well, now we're doing a ridiculous thing, you and I in our discussion. All the time we're having a dialogue we never stop coming round to the same place all the time, with each not knowing what the other is saying. At any rate, I believe you've several times agreed Editor’s Notedand recognized that the practice concerned with the body and with the soul is twofold; one practice is the serving kind, by which we have the power to provide food if our bodies are hungry, drink if they are thirsty, cloaks if they are cold, beds, shoes, other things 5bodies have appetites for — and I'm deliberately using the same images to tell you, so that you'll grasp it more easily.
If a vendor or a merchant or a producer of one of these things, a Editor’s Noteebaker, cook, weaver, shoemaker, tanner, supplies these fulfilments of bodily appetites, it is not surprising that when he is like this, he pg 97and other people suppose that he takes care of the body. Everyone supposes this who doesn't know that there is another craft, gymnastics 5and medicine, besides all these, which is really care of the body, and which fittingly rules over all crafts and uses their works — for it knows what food and drink is worthy and base for the excellence 518(aretē) of the body, while all the others are ignorant of it. And this is why these other crafts are slavish, with the tasks of servants, not free men, in the treatment of the body, while the gymnastic and medical crafts are mistresses of these, according to what is just.
5That these same things apply to the soul too — sometimes I think you understand what I say, and you agree as though you know what bI say. But a little later you come along saying that fine and good men have been citizens in the city. Whenever I ask you who they are, I think the sort of men in politics you offer are just as if I had asked you about gymnastics which men have previously proved to be or 5are now good in care for the body, and you told me quite seriously, 'Thearion the baker, Mithaecus who wrote the Sicilian cookery-book, and Sarambus the vendor, because they are terrific at care of cthe body — one supplies terrific bread, one cooked dishes, the third wine.'
Now perhaps you'd be annoyed if I said to you, 'My dear fellow, you don't understand a thing about gymnastics. You're telling me about servants and suppliers of appetites who understand nothing 5fine and good about them. If it happens that way, they'll fill up and fatten people's bodies, and be praised by them for it, and then destroy their original flesh as well. And then the people themselves Editor’s Notedwill be too inexperienced to hold the providers of the feast responsible for their diseases and the loss of their original flesh. No; they'll blame any who happen to be there giving them advice at the time. 5When their previous filling up brings disease to them much later — since they had it without the healthy — these are the ones they'll hold responsible and blame and do some evil to if they can, while Editor’s Noteethose previous ones who were responsible for the evils — they'll eulogize them.'
And what you're doing now, Callicles, is just like this. You're eulogizing people who feasted the Athenians, indulging them with what they had an appetite for. It's said that they made the city pg 98519great; but that it's swelling and festering because of these earlier people — no one notices this. For without justice and temperance they have left the city full of harbours and dockyards and walls and tribute and that sort of rubbish. And so when that crisis of the disease 5comes, they'll hold responsible the advisers who are there at the time, and eulogize Themistocles and Cimon and Pericles, the ones responsible for the evils. And perhaps they'll seize on you, if you're not careful, and on my companion Alcibiades, when they lose both their more recent gains and what they had before, though you aren't wholly responsible for the evils, but perhaps partly responsible.
But it's a senseless thing I see going on now and hear about the men of earlier times. For I notice that when the city lays hands on 5any of the political men for injustice, they're annoyed and scandalized, saying that it's a terrible thing being done to them; they've done much good to the city and now they're being ruined unjustly by it — that's their argument. But the whole thing's false. For not a csingle leader of a city can ever be destroyed unjustly by the very city he leads.
For it looks as though those who claim to be politicians and those who claim to be sophists are the same. For the sophists too, though 5they're wise about the other things, do an absurd thing here; they claim to be teachers of virtue, but then they often accuse their pupils of doing injustice to them, depriving them of their fees, and Editor’s Notedgiving no other reward in return when they've benefited from them. Now what could be less reasonable than this argument? They say that men who have been made good and just, when they have lost injustice and acquired justice because of their teacher, do injustice to 5him, because of what they don't have. Don't you think this is absurd, my friend? You've really forced me to be a mob-orator, Callicles, when you wouldn't answer.
C. And you were the one who wouldn't be able to speak unless someone answered you?
S. Editor’s NoteeWell, it looks as though I can. At least I'm stretching my speeches (logos) to some length now, since you're unwilling to answer me. Come now, my good man, tell me by the god of friendship, don't you think it's unreasonable for someone who claims to have pg 995made someone else good to blame the other man because he has become good from him, he is still good, and then he is base?
C. I think it is.
S. Don't you hear this said by those who claim to educate men to virtue?
C. 520I do. But what can you say about such worthless people?
S. Then what can you say about those people who claim to be leaders of the city and to be in charge of it to make it as good as poss-5ible, and then accuse it, when the occasion arises, of being thoroughly base? Do you think these people are any different from the sophists? The sophist and the rhetor are the same, or close and very similar, as I was saying to Polus; but you because of your ignorance think that bone, rhetoric, is altogether fine, and despise the other. In fact sophistry is finer than rhetoric, by just as much as legislative science is finer than judicial, and gymnastic science than medical. And I thought only the public orators and the sophists were not in a position 5to blame the people they have educated for being base to them, unless by the same argument (logos) they condemned themselves too for having benefited not at all those whom they say they benefit. Isn't it so?
S. And only these, presumably, are in a position, it seems likely, to offer benefits for no fee, if what I was saying was true. For someone who has been given some other benefit, who has been made a 5quick runner, for instance, by a trainer, might deprive him of the reward if the trainer trained him free, and didn't agree on a fee and then receive payment, as far as possible at the same time as he makes dthe pupil speedy. For I suppose it's not from slowness that men do injustice, but from injustice. Is that right?
S. Then if someone removed this very thing, injustice, he need have no fear of suffering injustice. He's the only one who can safely confer this benefit for nothing, if he really had the power to make people good. Isn't that right?
C. I agree.
S. Then apparently that's why, when other advice is given, about building, for instance, or the other crafts, taking payment is not at all shameful.pg 100
C. Editor’s NoteeApparently.
S. But in this activity, how to be as good as possible and how best to govern one's own house or the city, it's counted (nomizein) 5shameful to say you won't give advice unless you're paid. Isn't that right?
S. For it's clear that this is the explanation; this is the only benefit which makes its beneficiary anxious to confer benefits in 10return for benefits received. That's why you think it's a fine sign of having conferred this kind of benefit, that you benefit in return, and if you haven't, you don't. Is this so?
C. 521It is.
S. Then define for me what kind of care for the city you're urging on me. Do you want me to struggle, as a doctor would, to 5make the Athenians as good as possible, or to serve them and approach them aiming at their gratification? Tell me the truth, Callicles. Since you began by speaking freely to me, it's only just that you should go on saying what you think. Tell me now as well as before, well and nobly.
C. Well, I'm telling you you should serve them.
S. bThen it's flattery you're urging on me, my most noble friend.
C. Yes, if it pleases you more to call a Mysian a Mysian, Socrates. For if you don't do that.…
S. Don't tell me what you've often told me, that anyone who 5wants to will kill me. Save me the trouble of telling you in reply, 'He'll be base, and I'll be a good man.' And don't tell me he'll take away anything I have, or I'll reply, 'But when he takes it, he'll have no good use for it. He took it from me unjustly, and in the same way Editor’s Notecwhen he's taken it, he'll use it unjustly, if unjustly then shamefully, and if shamefully then badly.'
C. How confident you seem that none of these things will ever happen to you, Socrates. You think you live out of harm's way, and 5that you'll never be dragged into court, perhaps by some wretched scoundrel.
S. Then I'm really senseless, Callicles, if I don't think that anything might happen to anyone in this city. But here's something I Editor’s Notedknow full well. If I'm brought to court and face one of these penalties, pg 101as you say, my prosecutor will be a base man — for no worthy man would ever prosecute someone who wasn't doing injustice — and it wouldn't be at all extraordinary if I were put to death. Do you want me to say why I expect this?5
S. I think I am one of a few Athenians — not to say the only one — who undertake the real political craft and practise politics — the only one among people now. I don't aim at gratification with each Editor’s Noteeof the speeches I make, but aim at the best, not the pleasantest, and I'm not willing to do 'these subtle things' that you advise me. That's why I won't know what to say in court. But the same account applies to me that I was telling to Polus. For I will be judged as a doctor might be judged by a jury of children with a cook as prosecutor. 5For consider how such a man would defend himself if he found himself before such a jury, if someone accused him and said 'Children, this man has inflicted many evils on you. He ruins the youngest of 522you by cutting and burning. He leaves you confused, slimming and choking you, giving you those terribly bitter potions, and compelling you to go hungry and thirsty. He's not like me. I used to feast you on many pleasant things of all kinds.' What do you think a doctor caught in this evil would be able to say? Or suppose he told the truth, 5and said, 'It was healthy, children, all that I was doing.' What sorts of protests would he hear from such jurymen? Wouldn't they be loud?
C. Perhaps. We ought to suppose so.
S. Don't you think he'd be caught at a complete loss about what Editor’s Notebhe ought to say?
S. And yet I know that the same thing would happen to me too if I came before a jury-court. For I won't be able to tell them the 5pleasures I have provided — which they think are benefits and advantages, while I envy neither the providers nor those provided with them. And suppose someone says that I ruin the younger men by confusing them, or that I speak evil of the older people by harsh remarks in private or in public. Then I'll be able to say neither Editor’s Notecwhat's true — 'All this that I say and do is just, gentlemen of the jury' (as you rhetors say) — nor anything else. And so perhaps whatever it turns out to be will happen to me.pg 102
C. Then do you think, Socrates, that it's a fine condition for a 5man in the city when he's like this, and without power to defend himself?
S. Yes — if he had this one thing which you have often agreed Editor’s Notedon, Callicles; if he had secured his own defence, by saying and doing nothing unjust towards men or gods. For we have often agreed that this is the supreme form of self-defence. And so if someone refuted me and showed that I have no power to defend myself or anyone else with 5this defence, then I would be ashamed if I were refuted before many people or before few, or with the two of us by ourselves; and if I were put to death because I lacked this power, I would be annoyed. But if I died because I lacked flattering rhetoric, I know for sure that Editor’s Noteeyou would see me bearing death easily. For being put to death itself — no one fears that unless he's altogether unreasoning and unmanly; it is doing 5injustice that he fears. For if the soul is full of many injustices when it arrives in Hades, that is the ultimate of all evils. And if you wish, I'd like to tell you an account (logos) of how this is so.
C. Well, since you've completed everything else, complete this too.
S. 523Hearken then, as they say, to a perfectly fine account. I suppose you'll think it's a tale, but I think it's an account; for I'll tell you what I'm about to tell you in the belief that it's true.
Well, as Homer tells, Zeus and Poseidon and Pluto divided their 5dominion when they took it over from their father. Now there was this rule (nomos) about men in the time of Cronus, and it still remains always and until now bamong the gods — that whoever among men had gone through life justly and piously, when he died, he should depart to the Isles of the Blessed and live in all happiness, away from evils, but the man who had lived unjustly and godlessly should go to the prision of retribution and justice, which they call 5Tartarus. In the time of Cronus, and early in Zeus' reign, these men were judged while they were still living, by judges still living, judging them on the day they were to die; and so the cases were being judged badly. And so Pluto and the overseers from the Isles of the Editor’s NotecBlessed would come and tell Zeus that undeserving men were arriving in both places.
Then Zeus said, 'Well, I'll stop what's happening', he said. 'For pg 103now the cases are judged badly. For those being judged (he said) are judged with clothes on; for they are judged while they're still alive. 5And so many (he said) with base souls are covered in fine bodies and noble birth and riches; and when their judgement comes, many witnesses come to support them and to testify that they have lived Editor’s Notedjustly. And so the judges are impressed by all this; and at the same time they judge with clothes on, obstructed by eyes and ears and their whole body in front of their soul. All these things, then, are in their way, both 5their own coverings and the defendants'.
'First of all, then (he said), we must stop them knowing their death in advance; for now they do know it. And so Prometheus has Editor’s Noteeactually been told to stop them. Next, they are to be judged stripped of all these things; for they should be judged when they are dead. And the judge should be stripped too, and dead; he should look with his soul by itself on the soul by itself of each man when he has died 5without warning, without covering, bereft of all kinsfolk, after leaving all that adornment behind on earth, so that the judgement will be just. Now I have realized this before you, and appointed sons 524of mine as judges — two from Asia, Minos and Rhadamanthys, and one from Europe, Aeacus. And so when they die, they will judge in the meadow at the three ways from which lead the twin ways, the first to the Isles of the Blessed, the second to Tartarus. And those 5from Asia Rhadamanthys will judge, those from Europe Aeacus. To Minos I will give seniority, to make a further judgement if the other two are at a loss about anything, so that men will have the most just judgement possible about their passage.'
Editor’s NotebThis is what I have heard, Callicles, and believe to be true. And from these accounts (logoi) I infer (logizomai) that something like this follows: — Death, it seems to me, is in fact nothing other than the separation of two things, the soul and the body, from each 5other. When they are separated, then, from each other, each of them keeps not much less its own condition which it had when the man was alive. The body keeps its nature, the ways it has been cared for, cwhat has happened to it — all clear to see. For instance, if someone's body was large by nature or by nurture or by both when he was alive, this man's corpse is also large when he dies. And if his body was fat, the corpse is fat also when he has died, and the other things the same pg 104way. And again, if he grew his hair long, this man's corpse is also 5long-haired. Again, if someone was a hardened criminal, and had traces of the blows in scars on his body from whips or other wounds when he was alive, when he is dead also his body can be seen to keep them still. Or if someone's limbs were broken or twisted when he dwas alive, when he is dead also these same things are clear to see. And in one account, just as each man's body had been equipped in his life, these things are clear when he has died too, all or most of them for some time.
Well then, I think the same is true about the soul as well, Callicles. 5Everything is clear in the soul when it is stripped of the body, what belongs by nature and what has happened to it, all that the man acquired in his soul from each of his practices. And so, when they Editor’s Noteeappear before the judge, those from Asia before Rhadamanthys, he stops them and examines each man's soul. He doesn't know whose soul it is, but often he has taken hold of the Great 5King, or some king or dynast or other, and noticed that nothing in the soul was healthy, but it was thoroughly whip-marked and full of scars from 525false oaths and injustice — all that each of his actions stained into the soul — and everything was crooked from lying and insolence, and nothing straight, from being brought up without truth; and he 5saw that from liberty and luxury and excess and incontinence in actions the soul was full of disproportion and shamefulness. And when he saw this, he sent this soul off dishonoured straight to the guardhouse where it is to go and bear what is fitting for it to undergo.
Editor’s NotebNow it is fitting for everyone undergoing vengeance and rightly suffering vengeance from another either to 5become better and be benefited, or to become an example to the rest, so that when others see him undergoing whatever he undergoes, they will be afraid and become better. Those who are benefited and pay justice at the hands of gods and men are those who are at fault with curable faults; but still their benefit comes to them through pain and sufferings both here and in Hades — for there is no other way to get rid of injustice. Editor’s NotecBut those who commit the ultimate injustices and because of such injustices become incurable, the examples are made from them. And they no longer gain benefit themselves, since they are incurable. But 5others are benefited who see that for their faults they are undergoing pg 105the greatest, most painful, and most frightening suffering for all time, simply examples hung up there in Hades in the prison, spectacles and reproofs for the unjust arriving at any time.
Editor’s NotedAnd I say that Archelaus will be one of these, if what Polus says is true; so will anyone else who is that kind of tyrant. Indeed I think most of these examples have been made from tyrants, kings, dynasts, 5and those who conducted cities' affairs; for because they have the liberty, these are at fault with the greatest and most impious faults. And Homer too testifies to this; for he presents kings and tyrants as ethose who suffer vengeance in Hades for all time, Tantalus and Sisyphus and Tityus. But Thersites or any other base private man — no one has presented him caught in terrible vengeance as an incur-5able; for, I take it, he didn't have the liberty, and so was happier 526than those who had it. Indeed, Callicles, while those who become thoroughly base come from the powerful, still nothing prevents good men from appearing even among these. And indeed those who do appear deserve great admiration. For it is hard, Callicles, and deserves 5much praise, if someone finding himself with large liberty to do injustice lives out his life justly. Such men appear rarely; but they have appeared here and elsewhere, and I think they will — men fine and good in this virtue of justly managing whatever is entrusted to them. And one of them has become widely famous among the rest of the Greeks too, Aristeides the son of Lysimachus — but most dynasts, my excellent friend, turn out evil.
5As I was saying, then, whenever Rhadamanthys there takes hold of someone like that, he knows nothing else about him, neither who he is nor whose son he is, but only that he's some base character. And when he noticed this, he sent him off to Tartarus, marking on him whether he seemed to be curable or incurable; and when he arrives there, he undergoes what is fitting. But some-Editor’s Notectimes he noticed another soul that had lived piously and with truth, of a private man or of someone else; but most of all, so I say, Callicles, of some philosopher who did his own work and was no meddler during his life; then he admired this and sent him 5off to the Isles of the Blessed. And Aeacus there does the same. Each of them holds a staff and pronounces judgement, while Minos sits overseeing them, the only one with a gold staff, as Homer's pg 106Editor’s NotedOdysseus says he saw him — 'holding a gold staff, judging among the dead'.
For myself, then, Callicles, I am persuaded by these accounts, and 5I consider how to present my soul as healthy as possible before the judge. And so I dismiss the honours accorded by most men. I practise the truth. And I will try to be really the best that is in my power in Editor’s Noteelife and, whenever I die, in death. And I call all other men, as far as it is in my power — yes, I call you, Callicles, in reply to your call — to this life and this contest, which I say is worth more than all the 5contests here. And I reproach you because you won't be able to defend yourself when you face that court of justice and that judgement I was speaking of just now. No, you'll come before the judge, 527the son of Aegina, and when he gets hold of you and leads you off, you'll gape and reel — you there no less than I here — arid perhaps someone will dishonour you by pushing your face in, and abuse you all ways.
5Now perhaps you think these things I've said are a tale, like an old wife's, and you despise them. And certainly it wouldn't be at all surprising to despise them, if we could search and somehow manage to find something better and truer. But, as it is, you see that the three of you who are wisest among the Greeks now, you and Polus Editor’s Noteband Gorgias — you three can't manage to show that we should live any other life than this, which is shown to be profitable for there too. No; among so many arguments (logos), when the others are being refuted, only this argument is stable — that we must avoid 5doing justice more than suffering it, and above all a man must practise, not seeming good, but being good, in private and public life; if someone becomes evil in some way, he is to be punished, and this is Editor’s Notecthe second good after being just — to become just and pay justice in being punished. All flattery, to oursevles or to others, few or many, we must shun; this is how we should use rhetoric — always in the direction of justice — and every other activity.
5And so be convinced by me, and follow me to where you will be happy, both in life and in death, as the account signifies. And let anyone despise you for being senseless and abuse you if he likes; yes, Editor’s Notedby Zeus, you should confidently let him strike you with that dishonouring blow. For nothing serious will happen to you if you're pg 107really fine and good, and practise virtue. And then, when we have practised it together this way, then finally, if you think we ought to, we'll undertake political business, or we'll deliberate about whatever 5we think fit — we'll be better at deliberating than we are now. For it's shameful for people in the condition we seem to be in now to swagger as though we were something, when we never think the Editor’s Noteesame about the same questions, and when these are the greatest questions — that is how uneducated we are. And so let us take as our leader this account revealed to us now, which signifies to us that this way is the best way of life — to practise justice and the rest of virtue 5in life and in death. Then let us follow this account and call others to follow it, not that account you believe when you call me to follow it; for it is worth nothing, Callicles.