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In undertaking the investigations summarised in this 
volume, the author's chief aim was to explain the origin 
of Logic by a psychological study of the first logician. 
This required a knowledge of the chronology of Plato's 
writings, not supplied by our historical tradition nor by 
the extant Platonic investigations. English and French 
scholars mostly believed this problem to be insoluble ; the 
prevalent opinion in Germany, represented by the suc- 
cessive editions of Zeller's and Ueberweg's handbooks on 
^Greek philosophy, was plainly wrong. Under these cir- 
cumstances there was need of a new method in order to 
attain a greater certainty as to the order in which Plato 
wrote his dialogues. The method here proposed improves 
the stylistic tests used heretofore by formulating the 
theoretical principles on which a new science of Stylo- 
metry should be based (pp. 145-161) and by applying 
these principles (pp. 162-193) to five hundred peculiari- 
ties of Plato's style (observed in fifty- eight thousand 
cases) collected in the course of fifty years by some twenty 
authors working independently (pp. 74-139). This stylo- 
metric method, supplemented by many comparisons of 
the contents of Plato's works (for instance, pp. 3'29, 333, 
366, 368, 372, 396, 430, 452, &c.), and by such observa- 
tions and suggestions as were found available in the 


Platonic literature of all countries, led the author to 
determine the chronological order of about twenty among 
the most important of the Platonic dialogues. 

On this basis an account of Plato's logical theories 
and of their development is given here for the first time. 
It is ascertained that the theory of ideas, generally 
believed to be the unique form of Plato's logic, was only 
a first attempt of the philosopher to settle the difficulties 
of the relation between Knowledge and Being ; and that, 
when past fifty, he produced a new logical system, in 
which he anticipated some conceptions of modern 
philosophy, arriving at the recognition of the substantial 
existence of the individual soul and substituting a 
classification of human notions for the intuition of 
divine ideas. 

This being a work of research, not a general hand- 
book, the reader need not expect a digest of literature. 
The authors chiefly quoted are those who were the first 
to make an important observation, or who have expressed 
more amply the author's own views on some subject 
briefly treated here, or whose remarkable want of judgment 
makes them instructive as examples to avoid. A full 
indication of the bibliography on any special question has 
nowhere been attempted except in Chapter III on Plato's 
style. However, it has been sought to demonstrate the 
merits of some writers as yet insufficiently appreciated 
(for instance, pp. 83, 112, 352). As a Pole, the author 
may possibly be more impartial than the representatives of 
other nations more active in Platonic research. The works 
of British scholars are little known in Germany, and, on 
the other hand, many special German investigations are 
overlooked in France and Great Britain. Here the results 
obtained through unconscious international collaboration 
have been summed up and presented in a general outline, 


though without bibliographical completeness. The 
absence of alphabetical indices in the majority of works 
on Plato makes it hard to remember by whom a given 
observation was first made. These historical debts have 
been acknowledged in many instances, and wherever 
such an acknowledgment is missing, this should be 
attributed to defective memory. 

The peculiar method of research used in the present 
work is a result of the author's previous study of natural 
sciences and mathematics (1881-1885), and he feels much 
indebted to his teachers at the late German University of 
Dorpat ' : Carl Schmidt, Arthur von Oettingen, Johannes 
Lemberg, Gustav Bunge, Wilhelm Ostwald, Andreas 
Lindstedt, and Jan Baudouin de Courtenay, all of whom 
in their lectures and also in private intercourse with their 
pupils insisted on exactness of method in scientific in- 
vestigation. His interest in Plato the author owes to 
Gustav Teichmiiller,^ from whom however he now differs 
somewhat in his views on the method of Platonic research 
and on Plato's philosophy (pp. 57-59, 102-103). 

' To acknowledge this debt of gratitude is all the more a duty, as since 
the change of this German seat of learning into the Eussian University of 
Jurjew all its most eminent professors have been obliged to resign, and 
Dorpat University is now but a historical reminiscence, dear to all its 
ancient pupils. 

^ Under Teichmiiller's influence the author wrote ten years ago his 
first work on Plato : Erhaltung unci Untergang der Staatsverfassungen, 
nach Plato, Aristotelcs tmd Machiavelli, Dorpat 1887 (Breslau 1888), 
wherein Plato's views on political revolutions are shown to be the source of 
later theories on that subject. The chief contents of Chapter I of the 
present work have been more amply treated in the author's Polish publica- 
tions : Logice Platona, Part I, Krakow 1891 and Part II, Warszawa 1892, 
condensed in the French Bulletin de VAcadimie des sciences de Cracovie, 
April 1890 and November 1891. Also Chapters V, VII and VIII rest chiefly 
on a Polish work of the author : pierwszych trzech tetralogiach dziet 
Platona, published by the Academie des sciences de Cracovie, Cracow 
1896 ; condensed in the same Bulletin for October, November 1895, and 
in the Archiv filr Geschichte der Philosophie, vol. is. pp. 67-114, October 


The author feels deeply obliged to all who have helped 
him, and in the conviction that the collaboration of many 
is needed to bring full light to bear upon the difficult 
problems dealt with in this volume, he ventures to invite 
his readers also to assist him in his further studies on Plato 
by pointing out such errors or even formal deficiencies, 
however minute, as may be observed (address, care of 
Longmans, Green, and Co., 39 Paternoster Eow, London). 

La Coruna, Spain : 
October 1897. 




Progress of logic questioned, p. l (^Mill against Plato^ nd Kant, 2— Univer- 
sality and permanence of kno'wledge to be tested by history of logic, 2 — 
Plato the first logician, 3 — Exceptional preservation of his works, 3 — Its 
reasons, 4 — Permanence of the Academy, 5 — Protection by the Christian 
clergy, 6 — Plato's logic unknown, 7 — Opinion of Plethon, 8 — of Gen- 
nadios, 8 — Champier, 9 — Patrizi and other historians of the XVIth 
century, 10 — Morainvillier, 11 — Stanley and Gassendi, 12 — Eeaction 
against Plato in the XVIIth century, 13 — Tennemann, 13 — He did not 
attempt to represent the evolution of Plato's logic, 14— Various opinions 
on Platonic ideas, 15 — Van Heusde and other writers in the XlXth 
century, 16 — Eecent logical writers, 17 — They were ignorant of Platonic 
chronology, 18 — Susemihl first combined both problems, 19 — Ueberweg 
first recognised the difference between Plato's earlier and later logic, 
20 — Misunderstood by Oldenberg, 21 — Confirmed by Peipers, 22 — Jack- 
son, 23 — Benn, 23 — Aristotle still held by some historians to be the first 
logician, 23 — Many useless dissertations on Plato's dialectic, 24 — and 
theory of ideas, 25 — Conditions of a better study of Plato's logic, 27 — 
Zeller objects to the representation of Plato's logic, 28 — Our aim is to 
learn about Plato's logic more than he expressed himself in his works, 
29 — To explain his psychological evolution, 30 — To know him better 
than he could know himself, 31 — To find out how he progressed in his 
views, 33 — and what was the last stage of his thoughts, 34 


(pp. 35-63) 

Order of dialogues proposed by Patrizi, like that of Serranus, of no import- 
ance, 35 — First inquiry by Tennemann, 35 — SchleieiTaacher agrees with 
Tennemann on important jDoints, 36 — He left uncertain the order of 
small dialogues, 37 — He supposed that Plato had planned from the 


beginning the whole of his literary activity, 37— Difference between 
early Socratic criticism and the later Platonic criticism, 37— Progress 
from ethics to metaphysics, from i^olemical to didactic tone, 38— Ast 
denies the authenticity of all Socratic small dialogues, 38— Socher 
recognises a gradual evolution of Plato, 39— but proclaims the dialectical 
dialogues as spurious, 39— Stallbaum in favour of a late date of the 
Phaedrus, 39 — H. Eitter, 40 — Hermann establishes a Socratic period 
from which such important works as Parmenides must be excluded, 40 
— In many particulars Hermann agrees with Stallbaum and Schleier- 
macher, 41— All these authors are wrong as to the supposed early date 
of the dialectical dialogues, 42— First origin of the myth of a Megaric 
period, 42 — Erroneous identification of the presumed date of a conversa- 
tion and the date of the composition of a dialogue, 43 — Based on equally 
wrong identification of the Platonic and the historic Socrates, 43 — 
Residence of Plato in Megara based on no valid testimony, 43 -but on 
an isolated opinion of an unknown and evidently ignorant witness, 43 — 
There was no danger for Plato to remain in Athens, 44— The author of the 
Crito was not a coward, 44 — Cicero trustworthy as to Plato's life, quotes 
Egypt as the first place whereto Plato travelled after Socrates' death, 
45— Schleiermacher speaks of Plato's ' flight ' without quoting authori- 
ties, 45 — Ast increases the duration of the supposed sojourn at Megara, 

46 Influence of Euclides on Plato taken for granted by Stallbaum, 46 — 

This myth repeated by Eitter and Hermann, 47 — Its acceptance a con- 
sequence of the same esthetical prejudice which reigned in the method 
of editing Plato's text before the Zurich edition, 47— Ingenious hypo- 
thesis preferred to careful weighing of the evidence, 48 — A change in the 
beautiful theory of ideas esthetically objectionable, 48— Every historian 
built on some wrong leading hyijothesis, 49 — We must get rid of such 
prejudice and learn to measure probabilities, 49 — Plato's philosophical 
consistency more probable than his cowardice, 49— Hermann recognised 
that Hermodorus' testimony deserved no confidence, 49— and dis- 
trusted it as to the date of Plato's first journey, 50— Followers of Her- 
mann and Schleiermacher, 50 — Suckow, in a work full of errors, first 
recognised an important truth : the late date of the dialectical dialogues, 
51— He was followed by Munk, 52— True genetic method first applied by 
Susemihl, 52 — who recognised the near relation between Phaedrus 
and Theaetetus, 53— Ueberweg the first logician who investigated the 
problem of Platonic chronology, 54 — and gave strong reasons for the 
late date of the dialectical dialogues, 55— but he came to doubt the 
authenticity of the Parmenides, 55— In this scepticism he was followed 
by Schaarschmidt, 56— while Grote and Chaignet defended the authen- 
ticity of all the dialogues, 56— Jowett, 50— Philosophers begin after 
Ueberweg to investigate his problem, 57 — Tocco defended the authen- 
ticity and late date of the Parmenides and other dialectical dialogues^ 
57_Teichmuller exaggerated the polemical aspect of Plato's works, 57 — 
but he supported XJeberweg's conclusions as to the late date of the 
dialectical dialogues, 58— This confirmed by Peipers, who convinced 
Susemihl, 59— but Zeller and the editor of XJeberweg's ' History of 
Philosophy ' maintain the old mythus of the Megaric period, 59 - and 


are therein followed by other popular writers, 60 — New arguments in 
favour of the late date of the dialectical dialogues, collected by Bergk, 
Eohde, Christ, Siebeck, remain little known, GO — Diimmler confirms 
Ueberweg's finding by new applications of Teichmliller's method, 61 — 
Anarchy in Platonic literature, 61 — Not removed by the efforts of the 
French Academie des sciences morales, 61 — which crowned a work in 
which the chronological problem is regarded as insoluble, 62 — This is 
contradicted by the whole progress of these studies, 62 — to which the 
comparison of the logical contents will add new conclusions, 63 


THE STYLE OF PLATO (pp. 64-193) 

Style as a mark of identity of a writer, 64 — What Plato thought of it, 65 — 
Modern science deals with problems beyond the reach of Plato, 65 — 
Identification of handwriting, 66, not easier than that of style, 66 — ■ 
Peculiarities of vocabulary, 67 — Kinds of words, 68 — Their frequency, 
69 — Arrangement of words, 70— Other stylistic marks, 71— Stylistic 
investigations easy and useful, 72 — A new Lexicon Platonicum and a 
full bibliograi^hy of Platonic literature needed, 73 


(pp. 74-139) 

Engelhardt, 74 — Peculiarities 1-5 (anacoluthiae), 76 — Kaysslcr, Braun, 
Lange,ll—Kopetsch: Peculiarities &-11 (adjj. in tos), 78-79 — Schone, 
79 — Martiniiis, 81 — Camphcll, 82 — Eemained unknown for twenty-eight 
years, 84 — Peculiai-ity 12, 85 — Peculiarities 13-20, 86-87 — Peculiarities 
21-22, 88 — Originality of Plato's vocabulary, 89— Affinities with the 
latest group, 90— First table of stylistic affinity, 92 — Peculiarity 23, 
93 — Peculiarities of later vocabulary 24-181, 94-97 — Classification of 
these peculiarities, 98 — Biddell, 99 — Peculiarity 182, 100 — Schanz, 
Lingcnherg, Imme, 100 — Blass, Bocper, 101 — Peculiarity 183, 101 — 
Peculiarities 184-198, 102 — Teichviiillcr, 102 — Dittenhcrger, pecu- 
liarity 199, 103— Peculiarities 200-206, 104— .7cc7^^ 105— Peculiarities 
207-222, lOiS-lOl—Frederking, Hoefcr, 107— Peculiarities 223-235, 107- 
109— Pei]?ers, 109— Peculiarities 236-249, 109-110—1^*^667-, pecuHarities 
250-253, 111 — Droste, 111 — Newly invented adjectives in etS^s and 
<i57)s, 112— Their distribution, 113-114— Peculiarities 254-278, 115-117 
— Eugler, 117— PecuUarities 279-308, 118-120 — Schanz, peculiarities 
309-311, 120— Gomperz, 120— C. Bitter, 121— Peculiarities 312-355, 
122-124- TTfli6^ peculiarities 356-375, 125-126— Siebeck, 126— Pecu- 
liarities 376-378, 127-128— Tiema7in, peculiarities 379-388, 128-129— 
Li7ia, 129— Pecuharities 389-447, ld0-13d— Baron, van Cleef, 133— 
Gruniuald, Bertram, 134 — Campbell, 135 — von A^-nirn, 136 — Peculiari- 
ties 448-457, 137 -138— Campbell, peculiarities 458-500, 138-139 


acknowledged, 279 — Allusions to the theory of ideas, 280 — Analogy 
between individual and state, 281— Relation to the Phaedo, 282— Traces 
of oral teaching, 282 — Increased interest in logic, 283 — Method of 
exclusion, 283 — Hegemony of justice, 284 — Conception of a self-sufficient 
aim, 285 — Relation to Cratylus and Meno, 285 — To Symposium, 286 — 
and Phaedo, 287— To Laches, 288 — Pretended relation to Aristophanes, 
288— Contradicted by Aristotle and Plato, 289— Date of Books II.-IV., 
289 — Books V.-VII. a natural part, 290 — Even if added later belong to 
the plan of the whole, 291— Theory of ideas, 291— Terminology, 292-293 
— Intuition of the good, 294 — Metaphors explained, 295 — Philosophical 
training, 290 — Philosopher opposed to the mere practical man, 297 — 
Idea of Good, 298 — Initiation through mathematical study, 298 — Units 
and figures, 299 — Solid geometry, 300 — Nature of theoretical knowledge, 
300 — Contempt for observations, 301 — Probabilities neglected, 301 — 
Science limited to truth, 301 — Dialectic based on absolute principles, 
302 — System of human knowledge, 303 — Final cause of universe, 303 — ■ 
Allegory of the cave, 304 — Use of hypotheses in mathematics, 305 — Dis- 
tinction between StdvoLa and iiriffTyiixri irrelevant, 305 — as that between 
elKaaia and iriaTis, 306 — Object of opinion defined, 307 — Accident and 
substance, 307 — Thought independent of the body, 307— Not-Being, 308 
— Relation to the Phaedo, 308 — Traces of teaching activity, 309 — Re- 
lation to Symposium, 310 — Books VIII.-IX. : happiness of the philo- 
sopher, 311 — True opinion and science, 312 — Book X. : ideas of manu- 
factured things, 313 — Unity of each idea, 313 — Immortality, 314 — Truth 
found in thought, 315 — Unity of consciousness, 315 — Method of revision, 
315 — Relation to the Phaedo, 316 — Opinion and knowledge, 317— Law 
of contradiction, 318 — Contempt of poets, 318 

(Style and date of the Republic. . Early style of Book I., 319 — Earlier 
thanCratyTusrSST^AlI other books later than Phaedo, 322 — Books V.- 
VII. probably later than Book IX., 323 — ^The Republic composed in 
about six years, 325 

II. Phaednis on rhetoric, 326 — Speech of Lysias authentic, 327 — 
Use of examples, 328 — Widened horizon, 329 — Spirit of conciliation, 330 
— Contempt of poets and tyrants, 331 — Relation to Symposium, 331 — 
Dialecticians, 332 — Proof of immortality, 332 — Compared with that of 
the Republic, 334 — Later than Phaedo, 334— Compared with the Laws, 
335 — Partition of the soul, 336 — Classification of men, 337 — Authority of 
the philosopher, 338— -Metaphorical representation of ideas, 339 — Thei 
relation to particulars, 340 — Analysis and synthesis, 341 — Teaching and 
rhetoric, 342 — Programme of a future art, 344 — Plato's and Aristotle's 
view of writing, 345 — Invitation to the Academy, 346 — Recognition of 
Isocrates and others, 347 — Thompson and Teichmiiller on the Pane- 
gyricus, 348 — Date of the Phaedrus, 348 — Arguments in favour of an 
early date, 349— Thompson unknown, 352 — Relation of the Phaedrus to 
the Phaedo, 353— To the Symposium, 354— To the Republic, 355— To 
the Cratylus and Gorgias, 356 — Style of the Phaedrus, 357 

Middle Platonism, 358 — Lasted up to Plato's fiftieth year, 358 — 
Transformation of the theory of ideas, 359 — Objective idealism, 360 — 
Plato compared with Kant, 361 



EEFOEM OF PLATO's LOGIC (pp. 363-415) 

Ideas independent of particulars, 363 — Problem of the order of ideas, 364 — 
General classification, 364 — Theaetetus and Parmenides as critical 
dialogues, 365 — Qualitative change a kind of movement, 365 — This dis- 
tinction unknown in Bepublic and Phaedrus, 366 — Its fundamental 
importance, 867— Highest kinds or categories, 368 — Progress from intui- 
tion to discursive investigation, 369 — Influence of physical studies, 370. 

I. Theaetetus, 371 — Earlier definitions of knowledge, 371 — Unity of 
consciousness, 372 — Specific energy of the senses, 372 — Senses instru- 
ments of the soul, 373— -Common predicates of different perceptions, 373 
— Immediate activity of the soul, 374 — Illusions of the senses, 374 — 
Refutation of materialism, 375 — Knowledge expressed in judgments, 375 
Afiirmation and negation, 376 — Unity of judgment, 376 — Different 
meanings of x6yos, 377 — Definitions not peculiar to knowledge, 378 — 
HeracUtus refuted, 378 — Training of philosophers, 379— Widened 
horizon, 380 — Impartiality of research, 381 — Ehetoric and philosophy, 
381 — Ideas and categories, 382 — Example of antinomies, 382 — Axioms 
in the soul, 383 — Activity and passivity, 384 — Conditions of error, 384 — 
Difference between earlier and later inconclusiveness, 384 — Date of the 
Theaetetus, 385 — Zeller's arguments in favour of an early date, 386 — 
Corinthian war, 386 — Peltasts, 387 — List of twenty-five ancestors, 388 
— Relation to the Republic, 389 — To the Symposium, 389 — To Antis- 
thenes and Euclides, 390 — To later dialogues, 390 — Allusions to Plato's 
school, 391 — To his travels, 392 — Dramatic form, 392 — Twelve kinds of 
dialogue, 393 — Theaetetus later than Republic, 395 — Than the Phaedrus, 
397 — Probably later than 367 b.c, 398 — Stylistic confirmation, 399 

II. The Parmenides, 400 — Authenticity, 400 — Objections to the 
theory of ideas, 402 — Ideas as notions, 403 — Increasing importance of 
the soul, 404 — Perfect ideas and imperfect notions, 404 — Hypothetical 
reasoning, 405 — Mutual relations of all things, 405 — Antinomies of 
reason, 406 — Definition of knowledge, 406^Progress of ideas, 407 — Late 
date of the Parmenides, 408 — Meeting of Parmenides with Socrates, 409 — 
Eleatic influence increasing, 410 — Stylistic comparison of Theaetetus 
and Parmenides, 411 — Date of the Parmenides, 412 

Critical Philosophy, 413 — Knowledge existing in an ascending scale 
of souls, 413 — Movement chief factor, 413 — Mode of exposition, 413 — 
Protreptic character, 414 — Results obtained, 415 


NEW THEORY OF SCIENCE (pp. 416-471) 

I. The Sophist, 416 — Historical method, 416 — Form of the dialogue, 417 — 
Didactic authority, 418 — Logical method, 418 — Disinterestedness of 
science, 419 — Definition and classification, 420 — Progressive logical 
exercise, 421 — New difi1°"ti" '^'^•? — True ^"'""Qi ^'^^ — ^^ '" animated ideas, 
424 — System of souls, 424;— Object o f Knowledge, ) t26 — Relations of 
ideas, 427 — Influence of experience, 427 — Fixity of ideas, 428 — Not- 
Being, 428 — Origin of error, 429 — Judgment analysed, 430 — Subject and 
predicate, 431— Variety of predication, 431 — Meaning of negation, 432 — 


Materialism and idealism, 433 — Existence of souls, 433 — Criticism of 
earlier metaphysics, 434 — Authenticity of the Sophist, 43ArzR§l>i-ticaLto 
the Parmenides, 435 — Style of the Sophist, 43'/«;^Kelation to the Republic,v 
438 — Confirmation by Hirzel, 438 — by Ivo Bruns, 440 — DateTof the 
Sophist, 441 

II. The Politicus, 442 — Appreciation of method, 442 — Logical traininc;, 
443 — Building up of a system of knowledge, 444 — Intolerance, 44') 
— Unity and divisions of science, 445 — Kules of classification, 440— 
Meaning of ideas, 447 — Use of analogy, 449 — Examples, 450 — Ideal 
standard, 451 — Final and efficient cause, 452 — Authenticity of the 
Politicus, 453 — Schaarschmidt's arguments, 454 — Pielation to the Be- 
public, 455 — Silence of Aristotle, 450 — Huit's objections, 457 — Date of 
the Politicus, 458 

III. T]ie Philebus, 458 — Its authenticity, 459 — Eelation to the Ee- 
public, 400 — Horn's arguments, 401 — Power of reason, 402 — Final aim 
of the universe, 403 — Juvenile logic, 403 — System of notions, 403 — 
Ideas only in the soul, 404 — Middle terms, 404 — Importance of dialectic, 
465 — Imperfection of physical science, 400 — Genus and species, 400 — 
Theory of sensation, 407 — Judgments in the soul, 408 — Relation of 
Philebus and Politicus, 409— Date of the Philebus, 470 

New dialectic, 470 — Different meaning of existence, 471 — System of 
knowledge, 471 



I. TJie Timaeus, 473 — Opinion and knowledge, 473 — Priority of the soul, 

474— Unity of the world, 475— Divine rule, 476— Eternal ideas, 477— 
Partial immortality, 478 — Eeincarnation, 479 — Categories, 480 — Judg- 
ment and sentence, 480 — Physical science, 481 — Time and space, 482 — 
Matter, 484 — Causality, 485 — Date of the Timaeus, 480 — Eelation to 
the EepubUc, 488 

II. TJie Critias, 490 

III. The Laws, 491— Theory of ideas, 491— View of philosophy, 492 
— Priority of the soul, 494 — True Being, 495 — Soul as self-moving 
principle, 490 — Protreptic character of the Laws, 498 — Oral teaching, 
499 — Nature of the soul, 500— Divine Providence, 501 — Telepathy, 502 
— Hierarchy of souls, 502 — Insignificance of human life, 503 — Aims of 
human activity, 505 — Unity of consciousness, 506 — Classification of 
faculties, 506 — Knowledge and opinion, 507 — Experience and reason, 509 
— Unity of science, 511 — Metaphysical truth, 512 — Power of reason, 513 
— Definitions and names, 514 — Eternity of mankind, 515 — Eeconcilia- 
tion with Athens, 515 — Hierarchy of souls, 516 


PLATO's LOGIC (pp. 517-527) 
Limitations of Plato's writings, 517 — Socratic stage, 519 — Theory of 
ideas, 520 — Middle Platonism,521 — Critical reform, 522 — New dialectic, 
523 — Logical rules, 524 — Power of the soul, 525 — Relation to later 
Ijhilosophy, 526 — Unique philosophical excellence of Plato, 527 

Index 529 






While the amount of scientific knowledge, as distin- 
guished from mere opinion and prejudice, constantly 
increases, there is not such progress in its quality, or in 
the degree of certainty attained, as to make knowledge 
undeniable and infallible. This certainty, being not 
inherent in reasoning, but dependent upon the logical 
perfection of our investigations, can be increased only 
through the development of logical method. Yet we 
see that the highest truths of natural science are 
questioned, and not even the law of gravitation is 
held sacred. Kant said in the introduction to his 
Kritik der reinen Vernunft that the logical rules for- 
mulated by Aristotle have the rare privilege of being a 
permanent and unchangeable scientific acquisition. But 
we have since witnessed vehement attacks on the 
Aristotelian theory of syllogism, and to some logicians of 
our century even our oldest logical principles seem to be 

After two thousand years of philosophical specula- 
tion, based on concepts of pure reason, came Mill, with 



his belief that general notions could be built up, by some 
mental process unknown to Kant and to Plato, out of 
particular sensible experiences. And Mill is reputed in 
his own country and elsewhere to be a great logician. 
He stands not alone : his predecessors range from Demo-__ 
critos and Protagoras downwards, and his adherents are 
numerous. If not even our mathematical notions are 
acknowledged to be independent of sensation, then every 
advance in mental philosophy might be questioned, and 
the crowd of ignorant ^dvava-oi would exult in proclaiming 
the uselessness of philosophy. 
History of In these discussions on the foundations of human 
logic : in- knowledge, small use has been made of historical investi- 
strumental g^tion concerning the origin of prevailing logical theories. 
ogic. gtill^ it cannot be denied that such inquiries form an 
essential part of logical science itself. If there is some- 
thing like truly universal and permanent knowledge, it 
must have had this character from the beginning, and to 
show its beginning is to explain its permanence. If, on 
the other hand, all our knowledge be mere personal 
opinion, and if it be impossible for man to attain fixed 
and certain knowledge, if every truth pretending to be 
scientifically proven hold good only till it be replaced by 
a better truth, then we can convince ourselves of the 
provisional condition of our certitude by no better means 
than by discovering such changes in the fundamental 
principles of science, in the theory of science itself, which 
we call logic. 
Plato the The origin of logic has been largely discussed. Old- 

first fashioned historians ^ thought that logic was as old as 

logician, mankind, and wrote on the logic of Adam or of Pro- 

' It was a general custom in early times to begin the history of every 
science with the creation of man. See, for instance, .Jacob Friedrich 
Keimmann, Vcrsuch eincr Einleifung in die Historiam litcrariam antedi- 
luviaiiam, Halle 1709, wherein the author quotes in a humorous way such 
historians of logic. Much later Antonio Genovesi said in his widely read 
Logic (Antonii Genuensis artis logicocriticae libri V., editio iv, Neapoli 
1758), p. 7 : ' Ego non negaverim, quin, cum Ada magna sapientia a Deo 


jmetheus.^ But, leaving aside such conceits, the oldest 
accessible documents for the history of logic are the 
works of Plato. In such difficult matters second-hand 
testimony is worthless, and of philosophers earlier than 
Plato we have only fragments. These fragments — pre- 
served by Plato, Aristotle, and later writers as casual 
quotations — may give rise to conjectures and discussions ; 
they never afford a clear and full representation of their 
authors. We can only infer from them that all philo- 
sophers before Socrates were more interested in the 
nature of Being than in the conditions of Knowledge. 
They used their reason and imagination without making 
reason itself an object of reasoning. 

The first man whom we meet in the history of human 
thought as a logician, or at least the first logician whose 
writings have reached us in a form as complete as they 
were known by his contemporaries, is Plato. 

The complete preservation of his works is amazing, if Excep- 
we consider that no other Attic writer is so well known tional pie- 
to us by his own writings. Of one hundred: and thirty ^^"^ation 
jworks by Sophocles seven survive ; of ninety-two by ° ^^ 
Euripides we have but nineteen. Of forty-four comedies 
by Aristophanes only eleven are preserved ; and the comic 
author who succeeded Ai'istophanes in Plato's time, 
Anti^phanes, is said to have written two hundred and sixty 
comedies, of which not one remains. Of the five hundred 
and twenty-six plays written by these four poets, the most 
renowned dramatists of Plato's age, we know only thirty- 
seven— a fourteenth of the whole. When Plato in his 

fuerit oniatus, usu rationis plurimum valuerit, id est, quin egregius 
fuerit Logicus.' 

• The strange hypothesis that Prometheus was the first logician is 
due to a misinterpretation of p. 16 c of the Philebus, where Plato speaks of 
' some Prometheus ' who might have brought the light of reason from heaven. 
Pierre de la Eamee {Petri Rami Scholae in libcrales artes, Basileae 1578, 
p. 312) infers that Pi'ometheus was the first logician according to Plato. He 
also credits Plato with a great logical importance, remarking (p. ,325) 
' logica Platonis non tantum 4 dialogis continetur, ut videtur Laertius dicere, 
sed omnibus fere aspergitur.' 

B 2 


Hepuhlic proclaimed war against dramatic poets, he could 
not foresee that his verdict would be so mercilessly enforced 
b}^ time. 

No happier was the fate of the orators, against whom 
Plato wrote. Lysias was known to him by four hundred 
and twenty-five speeches, of which but thirty-four remain. 
Of the sixty works ascribed to his rival Isocrates, two- 
thirds have disappeared. We have to judge of the famous 
speeches of these two orators by a fractional part (one 
ninth) of their work. 

Philosophers fared no better. Democritos, reputed 
to have written sixty works, had great influence on his 
time. His notion of atoms still remains the basis of 
our conception of matter, and his ethical principles 
anticipated Christian teaching : but not one of his works 
is left. Of all the philosophical literature of Plato's 
time to which he refers, scarcely anything remains. Not 
even the works of Aristotle have reached us in a shape 
nearly so complete or so correct as Plato's. 
Peculiar Our most ancient manuscript of Plato is a thousand 

conditions years old, and might well proceed from some MS. pre- 
for the served in Plato's Academy. It has been shown ^ that the 
preservii- pjiaedo of Plato was known to readers two thousand two 
hundred years ago in copies less correct than our present 
editions. A papyrus of the third century B.C. containing 
fragments of the Phaedo embodies evident blunders, 
unknown to our best manuscripts, and differs in few par- 
ticulars from the text as read in the nineteenth century. 

The creation by Plato of a philosophic school per- 
manently fixed in one place during centuries ^ explains 

^ L. Campbell, ' On the text of the Papyrus fragment of the Phaedo ' in 
the Classical Review, Oct.-Dec. 1891, vol. v. pp. 363-365, 454-457. The 
detailed analysis of all the readings of the papyrus leads to the conclusion 
that ' the amount both of incrustation and of decay is extremely small ' and 
that ' the readings of the papyrus are not to be accepted without question.' 
Of. H. Usener, ' Unser Platontext,' pp. 25-50, 181-215 in NacliHchten der 
Kunigliclien Gesellschaft der Wissenschaften zu GUttingen, 1892. 

* Up to the year 87 b.c. the Academy was undisturbed. Sulla obliged 
the Academicians to leave the gardens of Academos, but the Platonic 

tion of 


the preservation of his works in so remarkable a state of 
correctness and purity. The accidental name of Academy, 
given to that spot, has been more honom-ed than that of 
the Lycemn, where Aristotle gave his lessons. Wilamo- 
wJtz-Moellendorfi' ^ made it seem probable that the school 
founded by Plato had the character of a religious associa- 
tion, thus possessing a stability greater than any purely 
scientific institution could attain. Such associations were 
respected by the Koman conquerors, and lasted till the 
jChristia n monasteries gave to Plato's works a refuge not 
less safe than his own Academy. 

In such a monastery, on the isle of Patmos, at the 
beginning of this century, Clarke found the manuscript 
now preservedVjjQ the Bodleian Library, and written 
896 A.D. : one of the most ancient Greek manuscripts in 
existence.*"' This continuity of religious protection was a 
very exceptional circumstance : alone among the authors 
of the fourth century B.C. Plato has been read con- 
tinuously for twenty-three centuries. His school, lasting 
more than nine hundred years, outlived the schools of 
Aristotle and Epicurus. 

It was fortunate, too, that the Academy was still in 
being, when the great improvement of writing materials ^ 
occurred in our fourth and fifth centuries. The light papy- 
rus rolls were then copied on stout and lasting parchment : 

school continued to exist in Athens up to 529 a.d., when Justinian dissolved 
ihe philosophical schools. On Plato's school see Grote's Plato, London 1888, 
vol. i. p. 265, Zumpt, ' Ueber den Bestand der philosophischen Schulen in 
Athen ' {Ahh. der Akad. d. Wiss. zu Berlin aus dem J. 1842, Berlin 1844, 
pp. 27-119), n. KouvffTavTi.viSos, 'H 'AKaSrifxia 'qroi Trpa-yfiaTeia wepl ttjs ' Adrift] a i 
U\aTooviKris (rxoArjs, iv ^EpXdvyri, 1874, Usener, ' Organisation der wissen- 
schaftlichen Arbeit ' (Preussiche Jahrbilcher, Band 53, 1884), E. Heitz, ' Die 
Philosophenschulen zu Athen' {Deutsche Bevue, 1884), 0. Immisch, 'Die 
Academic Platons ' in Fleckeisens JaJirb. 1894, pp. 421-442. 

^ Wilamowitz-Moellendorff, Philologische Uiitersuchungen, 1881, Heft iv. 

'' Gardthausen, Griechische Palciographie, Leipzig 1879, p. 344, gives a 
list of the oldest dated Greek manuscripts and quotes only one older than 
the Clarkianus, a MS. of Euclid, also at Oxford. 

' On this reform see T. Birt, Das antike Buchwesen in seinem 
Verhciltniss zur Litteratur, Berlin 1882. 


one parchment volume, including the matter of many 
papyrus rolls, occupied less space. Such copies are the 
definite form in which we now possess the oldest texts 
of Greek writers, while the papyri have preserved for us 
only tattered fragments. 

Plato's works, copied on parchment while his Academy 
still flourished, survived in a more correct shape than the 
text of other writers whose works were not continually 
read in a school lasting over nine centuries. And it is no 
mere supposition that they were read, because we know 
that, up to the last scholarch Damascius, many leaders of 
Plato's Academy spent their lives in writing commentaries 
on the Master's dialogues. Such commentaries as those 
of Proclus (411-485 a.d.), head of the Academy eight 
hundred years after Plato's death, show great care for 
correctness of text, a religious awe and conviction of the 
deep meaning of each word. Our oldest manuscripts of 
Plato (Clarkianus and Parisinus A) were written in Greece, 
and this increases the probability of their descent from the 
copies of the Academy, while many other Greek works 
came to us through Alexandria and Rome. Moreover, 
though Plato's writings were often edited in Alexandria 
and Rome, our oldest manuscripts were written byiGxeeks 
for Greek scholars, as is shown by the indications of the 

While other pagan writers were despised by the early 
Christian clergy, Plato found admirers among the Christian 
bishops: as, for instance, Eusebius (264-340), St. Augustine 
(354-430), Theodoretus (390-457), and many others. ""817 
Augustine thought that Plato came nearer to Christianity 
than any other writer.** This means that Christianity 
was built upon Plato more than upon any other philo- 
sopher. The monk who, in the ninth century, copied the 
works of Plato, knowing that these writings were 
admired by the greatest authorities of the Church, 

' St. Augustine, Dc Civitate Dei, lib. viii. cap. iv-xi. in the edition of 
Migne, torn. vii. pp. 227-236. 


transcribed with the greatest care, feeHng the same 
veneration for these texts as Plato's own followers in the 

These unique circumstances explain the survival of 
Plato's text in a state more correct and authentic than 
that of contemporary poets or orators, and they further 
explain why not one of the works written by Plato 
has perished. There is no valid testimony as to the ex- 
istence of a single work by Plato not contained in our 

Considering these facts, and the varied contents of Plato's 
Plato's dialogues, we might expect that each part of the l°g'<' 
philosophy of Plato would have been made the subject of '^^g^^^*'^"- 
special investigation by all who were interested in the origin 
of philosophic thought. But, strange to say, Plato's logic 
remains almost unknown, as may easily be seen from a 
short survey of the chief opinions expressed on this 
subject. Such a survey is tedious, but it helps us to 
establish the proper method of resolving the proposed 
problem : What was the origin and growth of Plato's 
logic ? This problem, under the peculiar circumstances 
of the case, becomes identical with the apparently more 
important problem of the origin of logic generally, and 
the origin of scientific certitude as opposed to unscien- 
tific and transitory opinions. 

Early ^lat^mists up to the fourteenth century are of 
little importance for cur purpose, because their writings 
are very insufiiciently preserved and we could not easily 
obtain_a_clearjdea of the progress, if any, made by them in 
the study of the Platonic writings. Our present scientific 
tradition begins with the fifteenth century and the revival 
of classical studies in Italy, so that it suffices to learn 
what has since been done for the knowledge of Plato's 

The first champion in modern times of the general im- 

* On the completeness of Plato's works see Zeller, Philosophie der 
Griechen, A" Aufl., II Tbeil, 1 Abth. Leipzig 1889, pp. 436-440. 


of the 

Piatonists portance of Plato's logic was Georgios Gemistos,'" named 

and Aris- also Plethon, who came TTT_JI4jg^nrnj3!- rpppp t i O Tfgly jj ^ 

take part in the Council of Ferrara. He wrote a pam- 
phlet" on the difference between Plato a nd Aristot le, 
wherein he insists on the logical merit s _q1 Plato, against 
Aristotle's assertion at the end of his Organon (183 b 34) 
that he was the first to find a method of reasoning (/xe$oSos 
Tcov \6ycov, De SopJcisticis Elenchis, cap. xxxiv. 6, 183 
b 13; cf. Plato, SopJiist 227 a, Politicus 266 d, &c.). 
Plethon accuses Aristotle of acting in this particular like 
a sophist and in a way unworthy of a philosopher,^^ 
because the method of reasoning was well known to 
Plato, as is shown by his writings. 

Gemistos did not take the trouble to go into details, 
but his allusion to Plato's ' method of reasoning ' shows 
that he gave much more importance to Plato's Sophist 
and Politicus than has been usual in this century with 
the great majority of Platonic scholars. 

Georgios Scholarios Gennadios answered with a plea in 
favour of Aristotle, and Plethon rejoined,'^ insisting upon 

'" Georgios Gemistos, born 1355 in Constantinople, died 1450. He 
appears to have been named Plethon only after coming to Italy in 1438. 
On him see : Fritz Schultze, Georgios Gemistos Plctlion unci seine reforma- 
torisclien Bestrebungcn, Jena 1874. 

" The first edition of Plethon's work was published according to 
Fabricius at Venice 1532, together with a Latin iDaraphrase of it, written by 
Bernardino Donato. The British Museum has an edition of 1540 : Ber- 
nardini Donati Veronensis, De Platonicac atqtic Aristotelicae jy^^HosopMae 
differentia, Venetiis 1540, 8vo. In this publication, after seventy-one pages 
of Latin text, begins the Greek original of Plethon : ' recupyiou tov Tf/xLa-Tov 
Tov Kol YlK^OoDvos, wepl S>v 'ApiCToreATjs trphs IlKaruva Siafpfperat, ' with a separate 
pagination of twenty-three leaves. Both the Latin and the Greek text were 
reprinted at Paris, 1541, 8vo, in the same order. The Latin text of Donato 
differs from the Greek of Plethon in so far as the last chapter is used as 
introduction, and the whole put into the form of a dialogue between 
Policarpus and Callistus, the second representing Plato's thoughts. Schultze 
quotes only the edition in 4to. published at Basel 1574. Plethon's pamphlet 
has been reprinted in vol. 160, pp. 889-934, of Migne's Patrologia Graeca, 
Paris 1806. 

'- Page 23 of the Venice edition (Migne 928 d) : 'Apia-TOT(\T)s . . . irdvv 

(TO(pl(TTtKhv TOVTO 1T0LO3V KoL (plKO<T6<pOV TpdlTOV aWOTpitllTaTOV. 

'^ The pamphlet of Gennadios is lost, but Plethon's reply to it was pub- 


Plato's superiority. These Greek polemics, continued 
later in the fifteenth century by George of Trebizond '•* 
and Bessarion/-^ were more rhetorical than scientific, and 
led to no objective study of Plato's logic. For those who 
wrote on that subject in the fifteenth and sixteenth 
centuries the chief aim was not to ascertain Plato's 
logical theories, nor how he found them. They acted 
rather as political opponents, fighting under the standard 
of Plato or of Aristotle. The champions on Plato's side 
failed to give exact quotations from his text in proof of 
their assertions. 

In such comparisons between Plato and Aristotle some 
authors ascribed to their favourite thinker more than he 
would have claimed himself. In France, for instance, 
Champier*'^ (1516, 1537) ventured to say that Plato in- 
vented the figures of syllogism ; in Italy, Patrizi '^ (1571) 

lished by W. Gass in vol. ii. pp. 54-117 of his work : Ocnnadms und Pletho, 
Aristotelismus und Platonismus in der Griechischen Kirche, Breslau 1844 : 
' Plethonis liber contra Gennadii scripta pro Aristotele ex codiee Vratisla- 
viensi nunc primum editus.' 

'^ Comparationes Philosopliorum, Aristotelis et Platonis a Georgia 
Trapezuntio . . . Venetiis 1523. Plato is, in this author's opinion, 
' rudis, turpis, arrogans, invidiosus, obtrectator in 4 viros Graeciae salva- 
tores,' &c. 

'* Bessarionis Cardinalis Sabini et Patriarchac Constantinopolitani 
capitula libri primi adversus calumniatorem Platonis, without date, but 
printed at Kome 1469. Another edition, In calumniatorem Platonis libri 
qiiatuor, Venetiis 1503, is also in the British Museum. The author 
is anxious to show that Plato used all moods of all the figures of syllo- 

'" Symphoriani Champerii, Symphonia Platonis cum Aristotele et 
Galeni cum Hippocrate, Parrhisiis 1516. Of the same author : Libri VII. 
de Dialcctica, Rhetorica, Geometria, Arithmetica, Astronomia, etc., Basileae 
1537. In this work, chap. v. of part 2, ' Quid syllogismus secundum Pla- 
tonem,' contains the assertion ' Plato noster syllogismorum tractatu utitur 
arguendo et demonstrando.' Then, in the next chapter, ' De syllogismis 
cathegoricis,' we read ' Syllogismorum cathegoricorum tres figuras posuit 

" Francesco Patrizi (on him see R. Bobba, ' Commentatori italiani di 
Platone,' Jan. 1892, Rivista italiana di filosofia) wrote : Discussionum 
peripateticarum tomi IV., Basileae 1581 (first published at Venice 1571). 
On p. 180 Plato is named ' logices sive dialectices inventor ; ' p. 189 : 
' syllogismi frequens est apud Platonem mentio.' In another work, Novade 


supposed that Aristotle wrote under his own name 
accounts of Plato's oral teaching; Kamus ^^ (1578), 
Buratelh'^ (1573), Mazoni^" (1576), andTheupolis ^i (1576) 
insisted upon the identity of the Platonic and Aristotelian 
teachings. On Plato's side were also Bernardi ^^ (1599), 
Calanna23 (1599), and Wower ^^ (1603). 

Again, Zabarella ^■'' (1587) in Italy and Keckermann ^^ 

imiversis pliilosopliia llbris quinquaginta comprchensa,N eneiiis 1593 (first 
published in Ferrara 1591), in the chapter ' Plato exotericus,' p. 42, he starts 
the supposition that Plato's dialogues represent faithfully the historical 
Socrates, while Aristotle has written out the secret doctrine of Plato. He 
adds confidently, ' in philosoiAia Aristotelis nihil est certmn,' and ' in 
philosophia Platonis rarissima sunt ea quae non sint certissima ' (p. 44). 

*** P. Eamus says (Scholae in liberales artes, p. 325) : ' Speusippo 
nunquam persuasisset Aristoteles, Aristotelem primum logicae artis aucto- 
rem fuisse, cum hac in arte Speusippi discipulus Aristoteles potius fuisset 
et ex ejus emptis libris suos libros contexuisset.' Against the Aristotelicae 
animadversioncs of the same author, published 1543, is directed : T. 
Carpentarii Platonis cum Aristotele in universa philosophia comparatio, 
Lutetiae 1573, wherein Plato is treated in George of Trebizond's manner. 

•'' Gabriel Buratellus, Gonciliatio praccipnarum, coiitroversiarum Aris- 
totelis et Platonis, Venetiis 1573. Morhof (Polyhistor litcrarius, ed. 2*, 
Lubecae 1714, p. 40) is right in saying on the author : ' potius suo quam 
auctorum ingenio rem egit, ut solent plerumque omnes conciliatores.' 
Buratelli has been followed in Sweden by J. Rising (Pracside . . . F. 
Turner, ideavi Platonis breviter delincatam . . . proponit J. Hising, 
Upsaliae 1706). 

-" Jacobi Mctzonii Cacsenaiis cle triplici hominum vita, Caesenae 1576, 
fol. 148, quaestio 2142 : ' Plato demum veram excogitavit dialecticam, 
quam Aristoteles auxit. . . .' In a later work. In tiniversam Platonis et 
Aristotelis Philosophiam Praclndia, Venetiis 1597, p. 118 FF., he enu- 
merates the points in which both philosophers agree. 

^' Stephani Thenpoli, Benedictl Jilii, patricii Veneti Academicarum con- 
templationum libri decern, Venetiis 1576. 

'^'^ J. B. Bernardi, Seminarium philosophicum continens Platonicorum 
definitiones, Venetiis 1599. 

-^ Petri Calannac Philosophia senior, sacerdotia ct Platonica, Palermi 

'-* Joann. a Wower, Dc polymathia tractatio, Basileae 1603, chap. xx. 

" Jacobi Zabarellac Patavini Opera, Lugduni 1587, p. 42. 

-° Praecognitorwn logicorum tracfatus, a B. Keckermamio 'Dantiscano 
secunda editione recogniti, Hanoviae 1606, II. ii. 15, p. 82. This history of 
logic, published for the first time in 1598, was also reprinted in Keckermanni 
Opera, Genevae 1614. The author proclaims himself a Pole (vol. ii. 
p. 1009 of his works), despite his German name. 


(1598) in Poland strongly favoured Aristotle's pretension 
to be considered as the founder of logic, while Crispi ^^ 
(1594) denounced Plato as having given rise to a great 
number of heresies. All these works, some containing 
hundreds of pages occupied with Plato's logic, are devoid 
of scientific value, because their authors disdained the 
systematic and detailed study of Plato's own logical 
theories, and accepted too easily certain late authorities 
as exponents of Plato's teaching. 

The first attempt to represent Plato's logic without Historians 
any polemical aim was made by Morainvilher d'Orgeville-' °* *^® 
(1650) in a work which had httle vogue. But Morani- ^^^^^ 
villier's object was not the history of human thought : he (.g^^ury. 
simply sought in Plato materials for a commentary on the 
teaching of the Church. He places Plato on the same 
footing with Proclus and Plotinus as authorities for 
Platonic teaching, and this is only one instance of the 
want of critical judgment which belonged to historians of 
philosophy of that epoch. 

Thomas Stanley, in his History of Philosophy, and 
P. Gassendi, in his History of Logic, first treated the 
logic of Plato from a purely historical point of view. 

-'. J. Baptistae Crispi, Dc cthnicis philosophis caiite legendis, Eomae 
1.594. The author enumerates on 529 pages in folio the heresies which he 
supposes to have emanated from Plato, and loses no opportunity of showing 
that Aristotle agrees better with the Church. This work is remarkable for 
its excellent indices. 

2» L. de Morainvillier d'Orgeville, Examcn pliilosophiae Platonicae, 
Maclovii 1650, 8vo. 634 pages. This work, though it exists in the British 
Museum and the Bodleian Library, is not quoted in the bibliographies 
of Brunet, Graesse and Georgii, nor is the author's name mentioned 
in the biographical dictionaries of Michaud, Didot, Dezobry, and Bouillet, 
nor in the encyclopaedias of Brockhaus and Meyer. We learn from the 
introduction that the author was vicar of the bishop at Saint Malo and 
that Neoplatonic manuscripts brought from Constantinople by his uncle, 
the Bishop Achilles de Harley de Sancy, were entrusted to him that he 
might study them and use their contents for the benefit of the Church. 
This he did much better than a similar writer, Francesco de Vieri [Gom- 
penclio clella doftrina di Platone in qucllo die ella e conforme con la fede 
nostra, 191 pp. Fiorenza 1577), who, in his exposition of Plato's philosophy 
for the use of the Church, omitted logic altogether. 



Both did so very briefly, and tliey were unable to dis- 
tinguish between logical theories and logical reasoning. 
Stanley '^^ enumerates the kinds of syllogism used by Plato 
without noticing that the use of syllogisms is no more 
evidence of a knowledge of syllogistic theory than is throw- 
ing a stone of a knowledge of the science of mechanics, 
Gassendi ^'^ wonders how Aristotle could boast of being 
the first inventor of syllogism, since Plato had frequently 
reasoned in syllogisms. To do this without knowing the 
syllogistic art he believed to be no less impossible than to 
make shoes without having learned the art of shoe-making. 
Though Fabricius^' noticed these strange errors committed 
by historians of logic, he gave no detailed account of the 
logic of Plato, so that his observations remained without 
consequence for our subject. 
Keaction After Gassendi and Stanley there came in the seven- 

against teenth century a general reaction against Plato's logic, 
Voss (1658) in Holland ^^ and Kapin ^^ (1678) in France, 

-" Thomas Stanley, The Histonj of Philosophy, London 1655-56-60, 
3 vols. vol. ii. pp. 58-67 treats of Plato's logic. He attributes to Plato ' the 
analytical method, the best of methods ' (p. 17) and the use of syllogisms 
(p. 60). 

'" Petrus Gassendus, Opera, Lugduni Batavorum 1658, vol. i. contains : 
' De origine et varietate logicae,' reprinted in Petri Gassendi Logica, 
Oxonii 1718, wherein chap. iv. (pjD. 42-49) bears the title' Logica Platonis.' 
The passage mentioned in the text is pp. 25-26 of the same edition. 

^' B. J. A. Fabricii Opusculorum historico-critico-literarioruin syllogc, 
Hamburg! 1738, contains, pp. 161-184 : ' Specimen elencticum historiae 
logicae,' first published at Hamburg in 1690; p. 165: ' Aliud longe est 
gaudere ratione, aliud esse logieum.' 

^- G. Joli. Vossii de logices et rhetoricae natura et constitutione, Hagae 
comitis 1658 (chap. viii. § 5: ' Priorum inventa, etiam quae apud Platonem 
leguntur, levia sunt prae iis, quae Aristoteles repperit '). To the same epoch 
belongs G. Wegneri de origine logices, Oelsnae Silesiorum 1667 ; C. F. 
Ayrniann, De dialectica veterum, Vitembergae 1716. M. H. Trierenberg {De 
\6ytj> ct vw Platonico, Wittenberg 1676) deals only with the meaning of some 
words in Plato and in later writers. M. K. Dauth's Plato coecutiens, 
Wittebergae 1686, is only idle talk on Plato's moral principles. 

^^ Pere Eapin, CEuvrcs diverscs, Amsterdam 1693, 2 vols. In vol. i. 
pp. 269-432 : ' La comparaison de Platon et d'Aristote avec les sentiments 
desperes sur leur doctrine,' written according to the dedication before 1678, 
Chap. i. of part III. : La logique de Platon : ' Si Ton examine soigneuse- 


while acknowledging certain logical merits in Plato, placed 
Aristotle far above him. Samuel Parker "''•* (1666) argued, 
not only that Plato was no logician, but that he was 
not free from logical blunders. Stollen^'^ (1718), writing 
the history of logic, did not mention Plato, while Walch ^^ 
(1721) and Amort " (1730), in their works on the same 
subject, were clearly on the side of Aristotle. Still later, 
a very popular logical writer, Genovesi ^** (1745), thought 
that Plato's logic was not essentially different from the 
Socratic teaching. 

Towards the end of the eighteenth century, after some Tenne- 
less important writings by others,^" there appeared the first mann. 

ment la logique de Platon, on trouvera qu'il en a une, dont la fin est de 
delivrer I'esprit de I'erreur et de I'opiniou, pour y introduire la science ' 
(p. 333). But in the same author's ' K6flexions sur la logique ' (vol. ii. 
pp. 370-384) we read (p. 374) : ' il ne parut rien de r6gle et d'etabli sur la 
Logique devant Aristote.' 

^* Sam. Parker, A free and impartial censure of the Platonick Philo- 
sophic, Oxford 166fi, contains (pp. 34-40) ' An account of the Platonick 
Logick.' The author says, against Bessarion, that Plato's inferences 
' bottom upon uncertain and inevident principles,' that ' they are cir- 
cular,' and ' that there is some flaw and incoherence in some of the inter- 
mediate propositions ' (p. 37). Also Wagner (under the i^seudonym Eealis 
de Vienna, Discursiis et dubia in Chr. Thomasii Introdttctioncm ad 
Philosophiam aitlicam, Katisbonae 1691) says (p. 137) ' Plato ad logicos 
vix referri potest.' This agrees with the contempt for logic generally pro- 
fessed by J. F. Eeimmann in his Critisircnder Gcschichtscalender von der 
Logica, Francfurt 1699, and other works {Versuch einer Einleitung in die 
Historiavi literariam, Halle 1708, Versuch einer Einleitung in die His- 
torlam lite^'ariam antediluvianam, Halle 1709). 

'^ Gottlieb Stollen, Kurtze Anleitung zur Historic der Gelahrthcit, Halle 
1718, 3 vols., contains (vol. ii. pp. 115-172) an history of logic. 

"^ J. G. Walchii Parerga Acadcmica, Lipsiae 1721, contains (pp. 453- « 

848) an history of logic. On Plato he says ' ingenii vis fuit major in 
Platone quam judicii, quo si quis destitutus, haud aptus erit ad genuinam 
utilemque logicae artem ornandam ' (p. 520) ; ' Aristoteles logicam redegit 
in formam artis ' (p. 529). 

'' E. D. E. Amort, Philosophia Pollingana, Augustae Vindelicorum 1730, 
contains (j)p. 539-544) a chapter—' de logica Platonis ' — wherein the author 
endeavours to show the superiority of Aristotle. 

*>* Antonii Genneiisis artis logicocriticae libri V., ed. iv", Neaj)oli 1758 
(first edition 1745). On p. 9 he credits Socrates and Plato with the art of : 
'recte definiendi, dubitandi opportune, inductionis analyticae.' 

^^ J. G. Darjes, Via ad Veritatein,ed. 2'^, Jenae 1764 (pp. 210-217 : ' de logica 


work on Plato's logic that was based on Plato's own 
writings. This also gave some indication of the impor- 
tance of a true chronology of the Platonic dialogues as a 
help towards the right understanding of Plato's philo- 
sophy. Tennemann's ''° treatise on Plato's logic under the 
title of Theorie des VorsteUens, Benhens unci Erkennens 
occupies the greater part of the second volume of his 
System der Platonischen Philosophie. Compared with 
his predecessors, his great merit is that he quotes Plato 
exactly, and relies on Plato alone as the interpreter 
of the Platonic teaching. But, being unable to resolve 
the problem of Platonic chronology, he did not attempt 
to give an account of the evolution of Plato's logical 

Platonis '). S. C. Hollmannus, Philosophiae rationalls ed. auctior, Goet- 
tingae 1767 (contains, pp. 53-76, a short history of logic). J. A. Eberhard, 
Allgemeinc Theorie des Denhens und Empfiiidens, Berlin 1776 (pp. 109 sqq.). 
J. J. Engel, Versuch einer Methodedie Vernunftlclirc aiis Platonischen Dia- 
logcn zu entwickeln, Berlin 1780 ; (also pp. 339-512 in Kleine Schriften von 
J. J. Engel, Berlin 1795, deals chiefly with Plato's Meno, and is intended 
for use in the schools). J. J. H. Nast, Dc inetJwdo Platonis pMlosophiam 
docendi dialogica, published first 1787, then reprinted in Opuscula latina, 
Tubingae 1821 (pp. 123-141) ; complains that the neoplatonists ' veros 
philosophi sensus turpiter depravarunt ' (p. 125), but admits that it is 
difficult ' veros Platonis sensus eruere ' (p. 133). F. V. Leberecht Blessing, 
Memnonium, Leipzig 1787, and Versnche zur Aufklarung der Philosophie 
des altesten Alter thums, Leipzig 1788-1790, vol. i. ; believes, like J. J. Syrbius 
[Institutiones philosophiae p^-irnae , ed. 2", Jenae 1726), that Platohas taken all 
his philosophy from the East, and Aristotle owes everything to Plato ; against 
this view wrote J. J. Combes Dounous, Essai historique sur Platon, Paris 
1809 (2 vols.). Dieterich Tiedemann, Geist der spcculativen Philosophie 
(6 vols.), Marburg 1791-1797 ; (vol. ii. pp. 63-198 deals with Plato, whom he 
credits with the discovery (p. 87) ' dass die wissenschaftliche Erkenntniss 
unveranderliche, nothwendige Grundsatze und Begriffe heischt '). J. F. 
Dammann, De Jminanae sentiendi et cogitandi facultafis natura ex menta 
Platonis, Helmstadii 1792 (2 parts). J. Gottlieb Buhle, ' Commentatio de 
philosophorum graecorum ante Aristotelem in arte logica invenienda et 
perficienda conaminibus ' (pp. 234-259) in the Commentationes societatis 
rcgiae scientiarum Gottingcnsis ad annas 1791-92, vol. xi. Gottingae 1793, 
insists on the importance of Plato's logic. 

■•" W. G. Tennemann, System der platonischen Philosophie, Leipzig 
1792-95, 4 vols. (vol. ii. p. 215: 'Plato verwechselte das Denken mit dem 
Erkennen '). Tennemann deals also with Plato's logic in his Geschichte der 
Philosophie, vol. ii. Leipzig 1799 (pp. 242-314). 


theories. He quotes chiefly the dialectical works — 
Theaetetus, Parmenides, Sophist, Politicus, Philebus, 
which, according to him, were written soon after the 
death of Socrates, though really they are among Plato's 
latest works. His predilection for these dialogues enabled 
Tennemann to perceive that Plato's ideas were for him 
nothing but notions of the human mind ; while Brucker 
and many other writers,** including such authorities of our 
own time as E. Zeller, conceived the Platonic ideas as 
independent beings, separated from the material world, 
much as they are represented in certain passages of 
Aristotle. Tennemann gave the first impartial exposition 
of the logic of Plato, as it is to be found in Plato's own 
works, free from later corruptions. But, unaware of the 
order in which the works were written, he quotes early 
and late dialogues indifferently, and makes some serious 
mistakes : as, for instance, in his contention that Plato 
did not distinguish thought from knowledge. He admits 
that Plato had a theory of proof, that he gave valuable 

" Most of the ancient Platonists, as Albinus, Plotinus, Porphyrius, 
.Jambliclius, Proclus, as well as Plethon and Ficinus in the fifteenth cen- 
tury, explained the Platonic ideas as existent in God. This view has been 
also maintained by : — E. Goclenius {Idea Pliilosophiac Platonicae, Marpurgi 
1612, p. 176 : ' Plato intelligit ideas ... in mente divina immortales et 
immutabiles ') ; Scipio Agnelli (Disceptationes de ideis, Venetiis 1615, 
p. 33 : ' Peripatetici absurdam illam opinionem Platoni tribuunt quae 
tanto Philosopho penitus indigna est. Volunt Platonem existimasse . . . 
seorsum a divina niente subsistentes Ideas esse ') ; E. Cudworth (The True 
Intellectual System of the Universe, London 1678 ; also C. E. Lowrey, Tlie 
Philosophy of R. Cudworth, New York 1884) ; J. L. Mosheim (in his 
Latin translation 'of E. Cudworth's Systcma intellectuale hujus universi, 
•Jenae 1733, vol. i. pp. 662-663) ; J. Helwig {De ideis platonicis, in 
Electorali Viadrina, 1650). In opposition to this view, there has been put 
forth another opinion, according to which Plato's ideas were substances 
independent of God and separated from him. This was chiefly sup- 
ported by M. J. Thomasius {Orationcs, Lipsiae 1683, pp. 275-300, oratio xiii. : 
' De ideis Platonicis exemplaribus,' habita die 9 Aprilis a. 1659) ; J. Brucker 
{Historia philosophica doctrinae de ideis, Augustae Vindelicorum 1723, with- 
out the author's name, p. 36 : ' ideae Platoni sunt aeterna rerum sensi- 
bilium exemplaria et formae, quae propria substantia gaudent.' Also in 
J. Bruckeri Historia critica philosophiae , Lipsiae 1742, vol. i. p. 691) ; 
M. G. E. Schulze {De ideis Platonis, Wittemberg 1786). 


hints as to the method of scientific investigation, and that 
he was probably famihar with that theory of syllogism 
which caused Aristotle to be considered by many historians 
as the first logician. 

Tennemann's work appeared at a time when other 
writers '*^ also favoured Plato in greater measure than here- 
tofore. It became generallj^ recognised that Plato alone 
is a trustworthy witness as to his own logic, and the 
philosopher Herbart **^ insisted upon the importance of 
interpreting Plato by his own writings. 
Van The next attempt to give an account of Plato's logic 

Heusde. ^g^g niade by van Heusde ''^ in his work on Platonic 
philosophy. Van Heusde's aim was chiefly to give an 
introduction to the reading of Plato's dialogues. In his 
appreciation of Plato, enthusiastic as it is, there is a 
strange contempt for the theory of proof, and he sees in 
Plato's dialogues chiefly a theory of invention. He 
forgets that no truth is really invented before it is proved. 
He neglects to prove his own assertions, and his three 
volumes are less a scientific investigation than a brilliant 
anthology from Plato's works, with the editor's comments 
on them. On the pretext that it is not advisable to break 
up an organic whole, van Heusde abstains from comparing 
the text of various dialogues, and limits himself to an 
epitome. He regards Plato's logic as standing quite apart 
from later logic, and even from the logic of Aristotle. We 

''" G. G.Fiilleborn, ' Kurze Geschichte der Logik bei den Griechen,' in Bey- 
trage zur GcscMchtc dcr Pliilosophic, Ziillichau und Freystadt 1794, p. 167 ; 
K. Morgenstern, Entivurf von Platans Lebcn aus dcvi englischen ilbcrsctzt 
und mit Zusdtzcn versehen, Leipzig 1797 (from the anonymous Remarks on 
the Life and W^ritings of Plato, Edinburgh 1760) ; J. J. Wagner, Wort/'r- 
buch der 'platonisclicn Philosopliie, Gottingen 1799 (very superficial). 

" J. F. Herbart, De platonici systematis fundamento, first published 
1805, reprinted in vol. i. of Herbart's Klcinere philosophische Schriften her. 
V. Hartenstcin, Leipzig 1842 ; believes the theory of ideas the most impor- 
tant in Plato's philosophy, and holds the ideas to be independent sub- 

** P. G. van Heusde, Initia philosophiae platonicae, 3 vols., Trajecti ad 
Rhenum 1827-1831-1836 ; a 2nd ed. in 1 vol., Lugduni Batavorum 1842. 



may either accept or reject it, but are not expected to 
find a continuity in the development of logic from Plato 
down to our own times. Van Heusde thinks, and in this 
he shares the opinion of Herbart, that it is useless to seek 
a * logic ' in Plato's dialogues, though they contain a 
' philosophy of truth ' and a ' theory of invention.' He 
speaks throughout of a philosophy of Plato as a whole, 
without any distinction of epochs in Plato's own develop- 
ment. He seems unaware of the possibility of inferences 
from the comparison of passages, or of such inferences 
about Plato as might go beyond the first impressions of 
an attentive reader of the dialogues. For van Heusde a 
modern representation of any part of Plato's philosophy 
is no more than an epitome of Plato's works. 

After the publication of the work of van Heusde, most Recent 
writers on Plato's logic, or on any portion of it, limited logical 
their attention to a small number of Plato's works,'*"' some- 
times to a single dialogue, and this prevented them from 
forming any idea of a logical evolution in Plato. Even 
Prantl, ^'^ who looks upon Plato as a simple predecessor 

*^ Such small contributions, which are rather commentaries on some 
passages than historical investigations, rarely show in their titles the limi- 
tation of the subject, as for instance : K. Eichhoff, Logica triuvi dialogorum 
Platonisexplicata (Meno, Crito, Phacclo), Duisburg 1854 ; E. Kleinpaul, i)er 
Begriff cler Erkenntniss in Platos Thcdtet, Gotha 1867 ; Holzer, Grundzilge 
der Erkcnntnisstheorie in Platos Staat, Cottbus 1861 ; H. Dittel, Platos 
Anschauungen ilber die Methods des wissenschaftlichen Gesprdchs nach 
den Dialogen Protagoras Gorgias Meno, Salzburg 1869 ; Fr. Schmitt, Die 
Verschiedcnheit der Idecnlehre in Platos Rcpublik und Philebus, Giessen 
1891 ; W. Brinckmann, Die Erkenntnisstheo^'ie in Platons Theatct, Berge- 
dorf Programm, Jena 1896. Other authors preferred more general titles : 
F. Ebben, De Platonis idearum doctrina, Bonn 1849 ; C. F. Cooper, On the 
Genius and Ideas of Plato, Gottingen 1864 ; P. Durdik, Wie urtheilt 
Plato ilber das Wissen? Prag 1875 ; R. Wutzdorff, Die platonischen 
Ideen, Gorlitz 1875 ; 0. Ihm, Uebcr den Begriff der platonischen 5<5|a tmd 
deren Verhdltniss zum Wisseyi der Ideen, Leipzig 1877 ; J. Wagner, Zu 
Platos Ideenlehre, Nikolsburg 1881 ; M. Guggenheim, Die Lehre vom 
apriorischen Wissen, Berlin 1885. 

*' Carl Prantl, ' Ueber die Entwickelung der Aristotelischen Logik aus 
der Platonischen Philosophie,' p. 129 sqq., in Abhandlungen der philo- 
sophisch-philologischen Classe der koniglich-bayerischen Akademie der 



of Aristotle, and gives him in his history of logic an 
exceedingly modest place, did nothing beyond collect- 
ing a very reduced nmnber of logical quotations — chiefly 
from Plato's latest v^orks. He said clearly that Plato's 
ideas had nothing to do v^ith logic (p. 83). 

Other w^riters, as Janet ^^ and Heyder, *^ who compared 
Plato and Aristotle with Hegel, or Waddington, ^•' who 
argued that Plato was wholly independent of eastern 
philosophy, or Fouillee,''^ who exaggerated the importance 
of the theory of ideas in Plato's philosophy, or those who, 
like Lukas,-^' treated some special problems of Plato's 
logic,^^ agree in one respect : that they are ignorant of the 

Wissenschaften, vii" Band 1'^ Abt., Miinchen 1853 ; also Gcschichte der 
Logik im Abendlande, vol. i. pp. 59-84, Leipzig 1855. 

■" Paul Janet, ^tude sur la dialectique dans Plato7i et dans Hegel, 
Paris 1848, 2nd ed. 1860. On the same subject : A. Vera, Platonis, Aris- 
totelis et Hegelii de medio termino doctrina, Paris 1845. 

■** Carl L. W. Heyder, Kritische Darstellung und Vergleichung der 
Methoden aristotelischer und liegelscher Dialektik, Erlangen 1845 ; on Plato 
pp. 59-131 ; and by the same author : Die Lehre von den Idcen, Frankfurt 
a. M. 1874, wherein only pp. 4-12 deal with Plato. 

*^ C. Waddington, Essais de Logique, Paris 1857 (le9ons faites a la 
Sorbonne 1848-1856). In this book, p. 81 : Essai iii. De la decouverte du 
syllogisme. On p. 93 the author asserts that the word syllogismos is 
unknown in Greece before Aristotle. This is an error, for the word 
occurs in the Cratylus and in the Theactetus, as the author could have 
easily seen from Ast's Lexicon Platonicum. Such an error appears quite 
natural when we know that the same author thirty years later thought that 
Serranus edited in Bale in 1578 an edition of Plato ' qui fait encore 
autorit6 ' {Stances et travaux de VAcaddniic des sciences morales, tome 126, 
p. 5 : Ch. Waddington, ' De I'authenticite des ecrits de Platon,' Paris 1886). 
Anybody who studies Plato knows that the edition of 1578, published in 
Geneva, not in Bale, by Stephanus and not by Serranus, has no authority 
whatever in comparison with the editions of Bekker, Hermann, and 

*" Alfred Fouillee, La 2^^i'iloso]}hie de Platon, Paris 1869, 2nd ed. Paris 
1888, 4 vols., of which vol. i. contains ' Theorie des id^es et de I'amour.' 

^' F. Lukas, Die Methode der Eintheilung bei Platon, Halle 1888, deals 
only with nine dialogues, but represents very completely the theory and 
practice of classification used in these works. 

*■- On special parts of Plato's Logic there are some very valuable con- 
tributions : J. B. Lichtenstiidt, Platons Lehren auf dem Gebiet der 
Naturforschung und der Hcilkundc, Leipzig 182G (pp. 85-96 : ' Empfinden 
und Wahrnehmen ') ; L. Dissen, De arte combinatoria in Platonis Theaeteto, 


decisive distinction between the philosopher's earher and 
later writings. 

On the other hand, the problem of the ohronology of Philo- 
Plato's dialogues was much discussed by writers more logical 
interested in the philological details, or in the historical iii'iui"«s. 
allusions of Plato's dialogues, than in his logic. Some- 
times, as in the voluminous works of H. Kitter and 
Brandis,'^^ the chronology was discussed without any 
bearing on the subsequent exposition of Plato's philosophy. 
K. F. Hermann acknowledged a gradual development of 
Plato's thoughts, and intended to give an account of this 
development, but he published no more than the first 
volume of his work, and treated in it only the chronology 
of Plato's writings, not the evolution of his philosophy. 

The first to attempt a combination of both problems 

Gottingen 1836, reprinted in : Kleiiie lateinische und deutsche Schriften, 
Gottingen 1839 ; G. Bode, Materia apud Platonem qualem habeat vim 
atque naturam, Neu Euppin 1853 ; C. Kiesel, Dc ratione qiiam Plato arti 
77iathcmaticae cum dialcctica intercedere voliierit, Koln 1840. Of the same 
author: De primis artis logicae praeceptis Platone duce tradcndis, 1851; 
Exempla ad illiistrandam concludcndi doctrinam ex Platonis libris, Diissel- 
dorf 1857; and De conclusionibus j^lato^iicis, T>usse\dori 1863; Martinius, 
Uebcr die Fragestellitng in den Dialogen Platos, Norden 1871 ; Th. Keck, 
' Ein Kapitel aus der formalen Logik, angewendet auf Aristoteles und 
Platon ' (in Hermes, vol. xviii. pp. 546-557, Berlin 1883) ; Saueressig, 
Ueber die Definitionslehre Platos, Oberehnheim 1884 ; A. Beckmann, Num 
Plato artefactorum ideas statuerit, Bonn 1889. On Plato's relation to Kant : 
J. Heidemann, Platonis de ideis doctrinam quomodo Kantius et intellexerit et 
excoluerit, Berolini 1863 ; Stiickel, Der Begriff der Idee bei Kant imd bei 
Plato, Rostock 1869 ; C. Fuchs, Die Idee bei Plato und Kant, Wiener 
Neustadt 1886. On Aristotle and Plato : Fr. Michelis, De Aristotele Platonis 
in idearum doctrina adversaria, Brunsbergae 1864 ; H. Cazac, PoUmique 
d^Aristote contre la thiorie platonicienne des idies, Tarbes 1889 ; A. Biach, 
' Aristoteles Lehre von der sinnlichen Erkenntniss in ihrer Abhangigkeit 
von Plato ' in Philosophische Monatshefte, vol. xxvi. pp. 270-287, Heidel- 
berg 1890. 

^^ H. Bitter, Geschichte der Philosophic alter Zeit, Hamburg 1836-38. 
The author settles the chronology and authenticity of Plato's writings in 
vol. ii. pp. 159-208, but in his later account of Plato's logic on pp. 259- 
388 makes no use of the order of Plato's work recognised by him. Also 
Brandis, Handbuch der Geschichte der gricckisch-romischen Philosophic, 
vol. ii. Berlin 1844, accepts a certain order of Plato's dialogues on pp. 161- 
179, but makes no use of that order in his account of Plato's Philosophy. 

c 2 


was Susemihl,'^^ who represented the philosophical theories 
of each dialogue separately, in what appeared to him to 
be the historical order of their composition. Susemihl's 
work was not limited to Plato's logic, and it consisted 
chiefly in an epitome of each dialogue, with commentaries 
on the theories contained in it. He laid no special stress 
on logic, and at the time of writing did not perceive the 
true order of the dialogues as clearly as he perceived it 

After Susemihl, the relation between the philological 
question of the chronology of dialogues and the philo- 
sophical aim of understanding the growth of the theories 
contained in these dialogues was insisted upon by 
Michelis,-'^'^ but he dedicates only a few pages of his work 
to the logic of Plato, dealing chiefly, like Eibbing,'^^ 
with the theory of ideas. 
Ueberweg Ueberweg," in his treatment of the chronological 

problem, has shown that the comparison of logical 

^* F. Susemihl, Die genetische Entwlckelung cler platoniscUen Pliilo- 
sophie, Leipzig 1855-1857-1860, i-epresents the Sophist and Politicus as 
earlier than the Banquet and Republic. The same opinion is held by 
H. Eibbing, Genetische Darstellung cler platonischen Ideenlehre, Leipzig 1863- 
64 (first published in Swedish at Upsala in 1858), and by W. Eosenkrantz, 
Die Wissenschaft des Wissens, Miinchen 1866-68, vol. ii. pp. 1-54 : ' Ueber 
die platonische Ideenlehre.' The ' genetische Methode ' had been previously 
advocated by Hermann (Gescliichte und System der Platonischen Philo- 
sophic, I'-"'' Theil, Heidelberg 1839), but he did not fulfil his promise of a 
systematical exposition of Plato's philosophy. 

^^ Susemihl has changed his former opinions under the influence of later 
investigations, and he recognised in 1884 [Wochenschrift ficr Elassische 
Philologie, 1" Jahrgang, Leipzig 1884, p. 523, in a review of Peipers' 
Ontologia Platonica) that the Sophist and the Politictis were written after 
the Repiiblic. 

*" F. Michelis, Die Philosophic Platons in ihrer inneren Beziehung zur 
geoffenharten Wahrheit, Miinster 1859-60 ; the author held the Sophist 
and Politicus, as well as the Parmenides, to be earlier than the Republic, 
and even than the Banguet, Phacdo, and Phacdrus. 

" Ueberweg's JJntersuchungen iiber die Echtheit und Zeitfolge Platoni- 
scher Schriften, Wien 1861, is one of the most important works on the 
subject of Plato's writings. The only authors before Ueberweg who 
believed the SopJiist to be later than the Republic were G. F. W. Suckow 
(Die luisscnscJiaftlichc und kilnstlerischc Form der platonischen Schrifteyi, 


theories is of importance in determining the order of 
the dialogues ; and on that basis he was the first to show 
the very late date of the Sopliist and Politicus, which had 
been almost unanimously placed by former philologers 
earlier than the Bepuhlic, and by most of them even 
earlier than the Banquet. But Ueberweg limited his 
valuable observations to a few dialogues, ' and to a few 
striking logical opinions expressed in them. After him 
many writers touched upon different points of Plato's logic, 
without attempting to give a full account of it and of the 
changes which took place in his logical theories. 

In 1873 the philosophical faculty of the University of Oldenberg 
Gottingen offered a prize for a work on the Platonic 
dialectic. The prize was awarded to a brief dissertation 
on this subject by Oldenberg.^*^ The author tried to find 
a difference between the earlier and the later dialectic 
of Plato, but he neglected Ueberweg's arguments, and 
ignored Campbell's introduction to the Sophist and to 
the Politicus ; so that, under the influence of the pre- 
vailing authority of Schleiermacher and Hermann, he 
conceived the form of dialectic which appears in the 
Sophist and Politicus to be earlier than that in the 
Bepuhlic. This he might have avoided, had he cared to 
compare the Laws with these dialogues. 

The general inclination to limit the inquiry to a few Peipers 
dialogues has led some authors to strange extravagances : 

Berlin 1855) and Ed. Munk {Die natiirliche Ordnung der platonischen 
Schriftcn, Berlin 1856), but they thought so chiefly because they imagined 
the conversations between Socrates and his pupils as written in the same 
order as they had been held, and the Sophist is the continuation of the 
Thcactetus at the end of which Socrates goes to meet the accusation of 

^* H. Oldenberg, De Platonis arte dialectica, Gottingae 1873, very super- 
ficial. Besides this, another dissertation on the same subject, by .J. Wolff, 
was also awarded a prize by the philosoi^hical faculty at Gottingen, and 
published in the Zeitschrift fib- Philosophie zmd pliilosopliische Kritik, 
vol. Ixiv. pp. 200-253, vol. Ixv. pp. 12-34, and vol. Ixvi. pp. 69-85, 185-220 
(Johannes Wolff : ' Die platonische Dialektik, ihr Wesen und ihr Werth 
fiir die menschliche Erkenntniss '). But Wolff' did not understand the 
importance of chronology and he misunderstood Plato in many points. 


as, for instance, in disguising the restricted ground of 
their investigations under very promising titles. D. 
Peipers ^^ wrote more than seven hundred pages of com- 
mentary on a single dialogue, the Theaetetus, and he divided 
his work into such parts as ' Consideration of the second 
part of the Theaetetus,'' and ' Consideration of the third 
part of the Theaetetus,'' closing it with a ' Consideration 
of the first part of the Theaetetus.' He devoted to com- 
parisons with other dialogues about one-eighth of his 
volume : not more, in fact, than anybody should have 
given in a good commentary on any single dialogue. 
This very conscientious commentary of Peipers' is styled 
Erhenntnisstheorie Platos, a misleading title, which has 
so completely deceived some reviewers that, for instance, 
Stein,'"^ in his short history of the Greek theory of know- 
ledge, says that the Platonic theory of knowledge has found 
in Peipers an able exponent. Peipers himself, though 
his work was received by philological reviewers with the 
greatest consideration,'''^ writing at a later date on the 
ontology of Plato, gave — not a commentary on some other 
dialogue, but — an exposition of the ontological and of 
some logical theories of Plato, in their chronological order. 
And he had the great merit of finding by this method, 
quite independently of others who had earlier arrived at 
the same result, that the Sophist, the Politicus, and the 
Philebus are later than the Bepublic. 

Since Peipers, nobody has attempted to give a full 

^^ D. Peipers, Die Erkcnntnisstheorie Platos, Leipzig 1874. 

•"> L. Stein, Die Erkcnntnisstheorie der Stoa, Berlin 1888, contains, 
pp. 70-77, a short chapter, ' Platos Erkcnntnisstheorie.' 

"' Susemihl in Bursians Jahresbcricht, vol. iii. p. 309, says that Peipers' 
work is ' tief eindringend und scharfsinnig gearbeitet, klar und schon 
geschrieben.' K. Hirzel in Jenaer Literaturzeitung, 2"' Jahrg. Jena 1875, 
p. 469, recognises in Peipers' work ' Scharfsinn, Methode, Wissen, 
Klarheit, Durchsichtigkeit,' and H. Schmidt, in vol. cxi. pp. 477-487 of the 
Jahrbilcher far classiscJie Philologie (Leipzig 1875), admits the ' Griind- 
lichkeit, Tiefe, Klarheit ' of the same. Not one of these reviewers com- 
plained about the misleading title, as if it were quite natural to name a 
commentary to a single dialogue Erkenntnisstheoric Platos. 


account of Plato's logic, but among the recent writers on Differ- 
Plato's philosophy H. Jackson ^^ has confirmed Ueberweg's ences of 
and Peipers' finding as to the late date of the dialectical opi°io"s 
dialogues according to the modification of the theory , 

of ideas they contain ; and A. Benn ''^ by independent j^gj^ 
observations found in the Sophist the transition from 
the Platonic to the Aristotehan logic, thus implying that 
the So2)hist and Philehus were written later than the 
Bepuhlic, which contains the classical theory of ideas 
nearly in the form which is criticised by Aristotle. Benn 
also insisted upon the very important fact, that the so- 
called doctrine of ideas was by no means the chief logical 
theory of Plato, and that in his later works his earlier 
opinions are considerably modified. But it did not form 
part of the scope of Benn's work to give a detailed 
account of these changes, and thus the history of Plato's 
logical evolution remains as yet untold. Nothwithstand- 
ing the many defenders of Plato's logical merits,*^^ there 
are still historians of logic, as for instance Franck, Kuno 
Fischer, Babus, Hirzel, who choose to see in Aristotle 
the founder of that science."'^ 

^ H. Jackson, ' Plato's later theory of ideas,' in the Journal of Philology, 
vols. X., xi., xiii., xiv., xv., London 1882-8(5. 

"» A. W. Benn, The Greek Philosophers, London 1882, vol. i. p. 264. 

^* Plato's logical merits have been insisted upon by T. G. Danzel {Plato 
philosophiae in formam disciplinae redactae parens et auctor, Lipsiae 1845), 
J. B. Tissandier (Examen critique de la Psychologie do Platon, Paris 1851), 
L. Szczerbowicz (Parmenidcs filozof z Elei, Warszawa 1868, p. 38), and in 
general histories of logic by C. F. Bachmann {System der Logik, Leipzig 
1828), Troxler {Logik, Stuttgart 1829-1830, 3 vols.), Ch. Eenouvier {Manuel 
de philosophie ancienne, Paris 1844), H. Siebeck ('Die Anfange der Erkennt- 
nisslehre in der griechischen Philosophie ' in Zcitschrift fur exacte 
Philosophic, vol. vii. pp. 357-380, Leipzig 1867), Giov. Cesca {La tcorica 
delta conoscenza nella filosofia greca, Verona 1887). 

"^ Aristotle is estimated as the founder of logic by Fr. Calker {Denklehre, 
Bonn 1822), Ad. Franck {Esqitisse d'line histoire de la logigue, Paris 1838), 
Kuno Fischer {Logik und Metaphysik, Stuttgart 1852), L. Eabus {Logik und 
Metaphysik, Erlangen 1868), E. Hirzel (' De logica Stoicorum ' in Satura 
philologa, Hermanno Saicppio obtulit amicorum decas, Berolini 1879). 
What K. Fischer ascribes only to modern philosophy, ' die freie voraus- 
setzungslose Erkenntniss ' (p. 17), is to be found already in Plato. 


Besides the authors named, a great number have 
written in general terms on Plato's dialectic, promising 
more in the titles of their works than they could give.^^ 

*^ Many works bearing on their titles the name of Plato do not really 
belong to Platonic bibliography, because they contain nothing of any im- 
portance for our knowledge of Plato. Some authors of popular histories of 
philosophy writing about Plato invent freely what they think will interest 
their readers. Aston Leigh (Tlie Story of Philosophy, London 1881) counts 
among Plato's pupils Isocrates, his rival and enemy, and regrets that Plato 
was born before his time. A. Lef^vre {La philosophie, Paris 1879) makes 
Plato a sceptic. To the same class belongs Courdaveaux (La pliilosophie 
grccq2ie mise a la porUe de tons, Paris 1855). Some other authors go still 
farther in their imagination : E. Welper (Plafon unci seme Zeit, Kassel 1866) 
represents Plato as defending himself against the love of a girl unknown to 
history, and selUng olive-oil in Egypt. E. I'OUivier (La mithode de Platan, 
Paris 1883) pays a visit to Plato in the Champs Elysees, where he meets 
him in company of Plotinus and Proclus, speaking Latin. A. T. Haymann 
(Ariston Platan, sein Lehcn und Wirken im Lichte seiner Zeit, Dresden 
1871) makes the discovery that Plato began at an early age to learn Greek, 
and accumulates within a few pages an incredible number of blunders, though 
he quotes as his source of information Brockhaus' Canversationslexicon. 
J. de Sales (Ma Ripublique, autcur Platon, Paris 1790) and another anony- 
mous author (Platanc in Italia, Milano 1804) use the name of Plato to give 
authority to their political predictions. G. A. Heigl (Die platonische Dialek- 
tik, Landshut 1812) mixes up fragments of Plato's dialogues with his own 
inventions. Enoch Pond (Plato : his Life, Works, Opinions, Portland, Maine 
1847) finds as the chief result of his study of Plato (in Taylor's trans- 
lation) ' the divine origin and unspeakable importance of the Bible.' The 
same conclusion is reached by Dietrich Becker (Das philosophische System 
Platons in seiner Beziehung zum christlichen Dogma, Freiburg 1862), and 
E. Bobertag (De ratione inter spiritum sanctum ct mentem humanam ex 
Platonis philosophia intercedente, Vratislaviae 1824). Among books on 
Plato for general readers, G. P. Weygoldt (Die Platonische Philosophie 
nach ihrcm Wescn und ihren Schicksalen fur hohergebildete alter Stdnde 
dargestellt, Leipzig 1885) has happily avoided striking errors, while 
A. Arnold (Platons Werke einzeln erklart und in ihrem Zusammcnhange 
dargestellt, Berlin 1835-1836, Erfurt 1855 ; System der platonischen Philo- 
sophic, Erfurt 1858 ; Einleitung in die Philosophie durch die Lehre Platos 
vermittelt, Berlin 1841) undertook a task exceeding his knowledge. Besides 
these works there has always been idle talk on Plato in many smaller 
dissertations : G. Schultgen (De Platonis arte dialectica, Wesel 1829) ; 
C. F. Wieck (De Platonica philosophia, Merseburgi 1830) ; Fr. Hoffmann 
(Die Dialektik Platons, Miinchen 1832) ; F. W. Braut (Bemerkungen ilhcr 
die pilatonische Lehre vom Lcrncn als eincr Wiedcrerinnerung, Brandenburg 
1832) ; H. Brueggemann (De artis dialecticac, qua Plato sibi viam ad 
scientiam veri mimivit, forma ac ratione, Berolini 1838) ; C. Kilhn (De 
dialectica Platonis, Berolini 1843) give much less than might be expected 


Of such contributions to Platonic literature, most are 
devoted to the discussion about Platonic ideas, which 
are held by some to be independent substances,*^^ by others 
to be God's thoughts,*'^ and again by others to be certain 

from the titles, and do very little more than collect quotations without order 
or method. E. Doehn {Dc speculalivo logices platonicae ijrincijno, Gryphiae 
1845) gives a series of comparisons between Plato and other philosophers 
from Anaximander to Hegel. Carl Giinther (' Betrachtungen iiber die pla- 
tonische Dialektik ' in Philologus, Band v. pp. 36-84, Gottingen 1850) and 
E. Alberti {' Zur Dialektik des Plato,' pp. 112-168 in I" Supp. Band of 
Jahrbilcher fur classische Philologic, Leipzig 1855) have been at least 
more modest in the title of their articles, and Alberti acknowledges that he 
wi'ote more for his own pleasure than for his readers' benefit. E. Schulte's 
Platos Lehre von cler Erkcnntniss, Fiirstenwalde 1868, is a jest, because 
the reader, whose expectations have been raised by the title, is disappointed 
when he finds some pages of comments on certain passages of a single 
dialogue. F. Faber (De univcrsa cognitionis lege, gualem Plato statuit, mm 
aristotelea comparata, Vratislaviae 1865) causes a similar disappointment 
to the reader; and 0. Caspari {Die Irrthilnicr der altdassischen Philo- 
sophen in Hirer Bedeutung filr das philosopMsche Princip, Heidelberg 
1868) seems to know Plato only from references. Schnippel (Die Haupt- 
epochen in der Entivickelung der Erkcnntnissprohleme, Gera 1874) gives 
only a summary of the Theaetctus. C. A. Funke {Die Lehre Platos von 
den Seelenver7nuge7i, Paderborn 1878) accuses Plato ' keinen Begriff vom 
Ich gehabt zu haben.' Carl Schmelzer {Eine Verteidigung Platos, Bonn 
1885) thinks that Plato's political theories are not meant seriously, and 
have to be taken as jokes. All these writings, quoted here only to show 
how Plato's name is abused, are not worth reading. 

'^' The ideas were explained as self-existing substances after Herbart 
chiefly by L. Wienbarg {De primitivo idcarum platonicarum sens2c, Marburgi 
1829), F.W. Graser {Ueber Platos Idcenlehrc, Torgau 1861), T. Maguire 
{An essay on the Platonic idea, London 1866), Alfr. Fouill6e {Histoire de la 
philosophic, Paris 1875, p. 90), Aemilius Kramm {Dc ideis Platonisa Lotzci 
judicio defensis, Halae 1879), Al. Chiappelli {Delia intcrprctazione pan- 
tcistica di Platone, Firenze 1881, p. 131), W. Pater {Plato and Platonism, 
London 1893), and Zeller. 

'^'^ The old explanation of ideas as of God's thoughts is upheld in this 
century by Stallbaum {Platonis Parmcnides cura G. Stallhaumi, Prolego- 
mena p. 266, and in many other Prolegomena to Platonic dialogues), 
H. F. Eichter {De ideis Platonis, Lipsiae 1827), L. Lefranc {De la critique 
des idies platoniciennes par Aristote, Paris 1843), E. Blakey {Historical 
Sketch of Logic, Edinburgh 1851), J. Felix Nourisson {Qiiid Plato de ideis 
senserit, Lutetiae Parisiorum, 1852. Exposition de la tlUorie platonicienne 
des idies, Paris 1858), Alfred Fouillee (in his earlier work La Philosophic 
de Platon, Paris 1869), G. Behneke {Platos Ideenlehrc im Lichte der 
aristotelischen Mctaphysik, Berlin 1873), W. T. Harris (' Plato's Dialectic 


notions of the human mind.*^^ These differences of 
opinion upon a subject so frequently dealt with by Plato 

and Doctrine of Ideas ' in the Journal of Speculative Pliilosopliy, January 
1888, pp. 94-112, April 1888, pp. 113-117). 

'''' That the Platonic ideas are neither substances nor God's thoughts, 
but a kind of notions of the human mind, was first supposed in modern 
times by Kant in his Eritik cler reinen Vernunft (p. 370 of second edition of 
1787), in so far as he alluded to the possibility of ' eine mildere Auslegung ' 
of what Plato said about ideas. Kant's indication has been followed out 
by G. Faehse [De ideis Platonis, Lipsiae 1795) and also arrived at 
independently by Tennemann. Then Trendelenburg {Platonis dc ideis ct 
numeris doctrina ex Aristotele illustrata, Lipsiae 1826), after a careful 
comparison of all quotations from Aristotle, proved that only a wrong 
interpretation of some passages could have led to the supposition 
that the ideas are self-subsistent substances. Trendelenburg thinks-: 'si 
sunt ideae a rebus sejunctae nee tamen alicubi extra eas positae, nihil 
restat, nisi ut menti insint ' (p. 45), which leads him to give that ' mildere 
Auslegung ' of ideas to which Kant alluded. Trendelenburg's argument 
is the more important, inasmuch as he builds his conclusions on the text 
of Aristotle, while the same text wrongly interpreted leads Zeller to admit 
that Plato held his ideas to be substances existing apart from objects of 
experience. Trendelenburg's view was also sustained by J. G. Mussmann 
(De idealismo sive philosophia ideali, Berolini 1826), Dr. Schmidt ( Ueber die 
Ideen des Plato, Quedlinburg 1835), H. Ritter and Brandis (see above note 53). 
After these historians came a very important dissertation of C. Leveque 
{Quid Phidiac Plato dcbuerit, Parisiis 1852), in which the analogy between 
the philosophic ideas and the ' in mente insita aeternae pulchritudinis 
effigies ' was shown with great skill. A similar argumentation led Hermann 
Cohen (' Die Platonische Ideenlehre,' pp. 403-464 in vol. iv. of the Zeit- 
schrift filr Volkerpsychologie, Berlin 1866), independently of Leveque, to 
the understanding that the ideas were ' geschaut ' by Plato in the same way 
as the artist sees in his own thoughts the work he intends to produce. But 
Cohen still believed that for Plato each idea was a substance, and only later 
{Platons Ideenlehre und die Mathematik, Marburg 1879) he came to accept 
Lotze's interpretation (Lotze, Logik, Leipzig 1874, p. 501), according to 
which the ova-ia of ideas is only a ' gelten,' not a separate substantial 
existence. The idea as a general notion has been also accepted by 
J. Steger {Platonische Studien, Innsbruck 1869-1872, part 1 p. 39), Carl 
Heyder {Die Lchre von den Ideen, Frankfurt a. M. 1874, p. 5 : ' der 
Ausgangspunkt der Ideenlehre war jedenfalls wie nach der einen Seite ein 
logischer, das im Begriff gedachte Allgemeine und Beharrliche, so anderer- 
seits ein ontologisch-metaphysischer ; denn dies Allgemeine und Unwandel- 
bare in der Vielheit und in der Veranderung der Erscheinungen ist zugleich 
das wahre Sein und Wesen der Sache '), Dieck {Untersuchung zur plato- 
nischen Ideenlehre, Naumburg 1876, develops Lotze's view), G. M. Bertini 
(Nuova interpret azione delle idee Platoniche, Torino 1876, p. 18 : ' quando 
Platone dice che le idee sono, non le trasforma con cio in sostanzc individue, 


are plainly due to the neglect of chronology, without 
which a scientific exposition of Plato's logic or of any 
other part of his philosophy is impossible. 

The works of our predecessors contain valuable hints Inferences 
of the way in which Plato's logic should be studied, from the 
First of all, most modern writers on the subject advise us iite'^ature 
to trust only Plato himself as to his own- logical theories, . 
and not to be deluded by later writers, who, without 
a scientific method of investigation, attributed to him 
opinions absent from his writings. A philosopher who 
spent more than fifty years in composing and polishing 
works which are well preserved, may be assumed to have 
expressed his views in them almost as fully as in his oral 
teaching, about which we have no direct testimony beyond 
a vague allusion in Aristotle. 

We also see clearly from existing works on the logic 
of Plato that it is indispensable to take into account the 
order of his writings, because we may reasonably expect 
him to have progressed during his long life, and because 
between some of his dialogues there exist contradictions 
so important as to have led Socher and Schaarschmidt to 
doubt the authenticity of the Parmenides, Sophist, Politi- 
cus, and PJiilelms. If we wish to obtain a clear repre- 
sentation of Plato's logic we cannot follow Peipers in 
limiting our study to one dialogue ; we must include in 

ma dice solo che esse hanno realita in quel modo che possono averla, senza 
cessare di essere quello che sono, cio6 idee . . . essenze, forme necessaria- 
mente possibili, of. p. 79, ibidem), Th. Achelis (' Kritische Darstellung der 
platonischen Ideenlehre,' pp. 90-113 in vol. Ixxix. of the Zeitschrift fur 
PJiilosophie %md philosophische Kritik, Halle 1881, accepts Lotze's view), 
August Auffarth {Die platonische Ideenlehre, Berlin 1883, develops the views 
of Cohen and credits Plato with the merit of having been the first representa- 
tive of critical idealism), G. Schneider {Die platonische Metaphysik, Leipzig 
1884, p. 54: 'Ideen sind ein eigenthiimliches Besitzthum des menschlichen 
Geistes '), P. Shorey (De Platonis idearum doctrina atque mentis 
humanae notionihus commentatio, Miinchen 1884), P. Weber {Die Entste- 
Mmg des Begrlffes der Idee bei Platon, Briix 1888), etc. This survey 
shows that the great majority of competent Platonists after Tennemann 
have abandoned the old theory of ideas as substances, and only Zeller, in 
dealing with this question as with many others, remains too conservative. 



our examination all the dialogues where logical doctrines 
are found. These two conditions, (1) the distinction be- 
tween the age of each dialogue and (2) the inclusion of all 
Plato's works in the study of each part of his philosophy, 
have never yet been fulfilled by those who have written 
upon this subject. The importance of these two condi- 
tions w^ill appear in their true light when applied, but it 
is manifest that a scientific knowledge of Plato's logic is 
impossible unless we form our judgment at least upon all 
his more important works, and unless we know the stages 
through which his thought reached its final shape. 

Some objections to the aim of our study are raised by 
a scholar whose competence and command of Plato are 
incontestable, and whose opinion, therefore, should be well 
weighed before venturing upon a path condemned by 
him. Zeller agrees with van Heusde's opinion, according 
to which it is unjustifiable to form an artificial system of 
logic by collecting the logical theories which we find 
scattered through the philosopher's writings. If Zeller 
be right, all attempts to argue about Plato's logic are 
superfluous, and deserve no attention from historians of 
philosophy. They are condemned beforehand on this 
showing as a useless logical exercise that can lead to no 
scientific result. Zeller himself, in his extensive work on 
Plato, ignores Plato's logic as such, while he blends 
logical, ethical, metaphysical, psychological problems in 
accordance, as he thinks, with Plato's own indications. 
He begins with the theory of perception and imagination, 
then deals with virtue, with love, with the formation of 
concepts and their division ; he treats in one page of the 
logical rules of Plato, and proceeds to the theory of 
language, of ideas, and of moral aims, then states 
Plato's views on matter, reason, and necessity, the 
world's soul, the world's beginning and the constitution 
of the stars, the soul's immortality and metempsychosis, 
the freedom of the will, the relation between body and 
soul, and so forth. 


Now, although a reading of Zeller's work does not 
give the impression of discontinuity produced by the 
above enumeration, everybody who knows Plato under- 
stands at once that this order of matters selected by 
Zeller is his own invention and cannot be supported by 
Plato's authority, nor can it give a more faithful idea of 
Plato's philosophy than a systematic exposition. Zeller 
condemns Tennemann's work because he represented 
Plato's philosophy according to modern divisions, which, 
as Zeller thinks, led him into inaccuracies and induced 
him to attribute to Plato thoughts which were not his. 
Every other division of an exposition of Plato's philo- 
sophy leads to the same danger, and, if we wish to leave 
Plato's views unchanged by our systematic prejudice, 
the safest plan is to present Platonic philosophy in 
the form of a mere epitome of his dialogues. Many 
authors, in writing on the philosophy of Plato — as, 
for instance, Grote — have thus understood their task. 
But such analyses contain but the repetition of Plato's 
works ; they give no new results. Even had Plato left a 
systematic work on logic we could not be bound by the 
order of his exposition in our historical account. 

The aim of an investigation on the history of philo- Aim of the 
sophy is not to repeat or to epitomise what each history 
philosopher said in his works, for then the best history °^ philo- 
would be a faithful edition of the chief texts. Our aim ^°^ ^' 
in investigating the logic of Plato is to learn what the 
philosopher thought, even though he gave no full expres- 
sion to his thoughts. This constitutes the labour of the 
historian in all departments — to manifest a reality not 
fully given by any single witness, to draw inferences 
from facts, and in this way to produce new truths. 
In the history of philosophy we are expected to offer a 
better understanding of a philosopher's thoughts than 
could be immediately derived from the mere reading of 
his writings. 

A philosopher, whom all must admit to be a com- 



method in 

of a philo- 

petent witness, Kant,'^° recognised this possibility and 
explained it, pointing out that we may understand a 
philosopher better than he understood himself, just as by 
means of scientific method we understand the properties 
of any being better than they could be understood by the 
being itself. If we wish to gain a scientific knowledge 
of a plant or an animal, we seek to determine its chief 
properties and their interdependence. Then only do we 
obtain scientific knowledge, very much higher than any 
knowledge derived from external description. We seek 
to show by what properties a particular object is dis- 
tinguished from all others and how these properties were 
developed. Taking a philosopher as an object of scientific 
study, we may ask many questions of no interest to him, 
and not directly answered in his writings. We need not 
repeat his mere words nor describe his writings, because 
all such descriptions teach us no more than the works 
themselves. We need not fear to join what is separated 
nor to sunder what is united in his works, if the sunder- 
ing and joining be done upon a rational principle, and if 
the relative date of each expression of opinion be borne in 

Our aim is to get an insight into the psychological 
evolution of our philosopher, though he nowhere mentions 
his evolution — though he disregarded his change of con- 
victions and perhaps even attempted to conceal such 
changes. We seek the true meaning, the bases and conse- 
quences of his theories, though he may mention them 
only occasionally or may give no importance to them. 
We desire to trace the origin of what we admit to be 
important truths of our science, though, at the outset, 

'" Kant's Kritik der rcinen Vernunft, Riga 1787, p. 370 : 'Ichmerke nur 
an, class es gar nichts Ungewohnliches sei, sowohl im gemeinen Gesprach 
als in Sehriften, durch die Vergleichung der Gedanken, welche ein Verfasser 
iiber seinen Gegenstand iiussert, ihn sogar besser zu verstehen als er sich 
selbst verstand, indem er seinen Begriff nicht genugsam bestimmte, und 
dadurch bisweilen seiner eigenen Absicht entgegen redete oder auch 


they may not have been expressed with a full knowledge 
of their importance. 

Just as the notion of a heavy body is other in ana- True 
lytical mechanics than in current talk, so the scientific knowledge 
knowledge of a philosopher differs from the first im- °* ^ phiio- 
pression obtained by reading his works. Those historians ^"P^®^^^*^ 
who, when speaking of Plato, object, to the use of , ^^^. 
the word logic, on the plea that this word was not reading 
used by him, do not write history : they merely collect of his 
quotations. Such historical writings always give the works, 
unprejudiced reader the impression of vain labour, of an 
unskilful repetition of texts. In investigating the history 
of human thought, our object is not only to ascertain 
facts, but to explain their causation. An historian of 
philosophy can do this better than the philosopher in- 
vestigated, since he can make comparisons that are impos- 
sible to the philosopher himself. It is true that a certain 
subjective element enters into every historical study. 
We may suspect that Plato's idea of his logical system 
differed from the idea we form of it. But if our idea 
corresponds to the true meaning of Plato's thoughts, and 
if we attribute to him nothing against his testimony, then 
our appreciation of his system may be more trustworthy 
than his own. Possibly he did not always perceive the 
deeper connection between all his thoughts, but there is a 
bond uniting them, which gives the key to his detached 

Thus Tennemann and Prantl understood their task, 
and though their knowledge of Plato's logic remained in- 
complete, there is a marked progress between the first and 
the second in eliminating the subjective element, though 
neither cared to preserve in his exposition the accidental 
order in which Plato's logical hints are found in his own 
dialogues. To admit beforehand that an historian must 
have some subjectivity is simpler than to persuade our 
readers that we take from Plato himself the systematic 
order which allows us fully to understand his logic. 



to other 

The know- 
ledge of 
the true 
order of 
able for an 
tion of his 

Plato was 
the first 
and he 
two suc- 

Plato never professes to teach logic ; he always intro- 
duces logical questions as subsidiary to psychological, 
metaphysical, and ethical problems. To understand his 
logic we must first determine the changes and the pro- 
gress of his logical views ; and this cannot be done with- 
out a careful investigation into the chronology of his 

The majority of writers dealing with Platonic chro- 
nology had no special interest in his logic : those who 
were interested in his logic seem to have been unaware 
of the importance of the chronological distinctions. It 
is our task to unite both aims, and to show how the 
study of Plato's logic yields definitive truths as to the 
chronological order of his writings, and how by the 
knowledge of this order we may obtain a deeper insight 
into his logical development. Compared with other 
philosophical sciences, logic has the privilege of steadier 
progress. It is not uncommon to see changes in meta- 
physical convictions occurring in opposite directions — as, 
for instance, from pantheism to spiritualism, and from 
spiritualism to pantheism, from free will to necessity, and 
from necessity to free will. But it is inconceivable that 
a philosopher who had reached the stage of logical reflec- 
tion should fall back into illogical dogmatism, or that 
anybody could forget or cease to apply logical methods 
once found and tested. 

Plato was the first thinker to appreciate the import- 
ance of logic, — not only to seek the truth, but to ask why 
the truth was true, and how it. could safely be distin- 
guished from error. He insisted throughout his works 
on the difference between knowledge and opinion, and 
attempted through more than one solution to fix the limits 
where knowledge begins. His first solution of that problem 
is known as the theory of ideas, and is generally believed 
to have remained his unique theory of knowledge. This 
belief is produced chiefly by the prejudice which prevented 
the great majority of readers from studying, with all the 


attention they deserve, those dialogues which contain a 
new theory of knowledge, differing from the theory of ideas. 
Plato is chiefly known by his poetical masterpieces, the 
Banquet, the Phaedo, and the Bepublic. His dialectical 
dialogues, the Sophist, the Politicus, the Philehus, being 
more difficult to understand, have not been so widely 
studied. The general assumption is that they were 
written earlier than the poetical masterpieces, and that 
they are less noteworthy. It becomes of the first impor- 
tance to solve this problem : whether the poetical logic of 
the Bepublic or the dialectical logic of the Sophist is the 
definitive teaching of Plato. 

This is no mere historical question. The two con- Poetical 
flicting views on logic are as opposed as ever. Does vision of 
knowledge always exist ? and is our acquisition of it only ® ®^^^ 
the discovery of pre-existing knowledge '? Or is knowledge 
created by us, produced by our own exertions, not existent ^^^ ^^le 
save in our own minds ? The former hypothesis may be psycho- 
named idealistic, the latter psychological. logical 

Plato and his great pupil Aristotle are generally creation 
counted among the idealists, notwithstanding many "* know- 
differences between them. The psychological view is a *^ ^^' 
modern one, chiefly supported by Kant. If we could show 
that in his later age the father of idealism came near to 
psychologism, and that he had been misunderstood by his 
pupils and readers for two thousand years, — this dis- 
covery would change the general aspect of the history of 

It is worth while to grapple with tedious details in order ^^^^° 
to resolve such a decisive problem, of which the key is to ^^^ ^^^^ 
be found in a previous solution of chronological difficulties. ^^^^^^ J 

. . . counted 

The order of the Platonic dialogues, though it has been ^^^ ^^le 
discussed for a century, is by no means settled, and the idealists, 
best authorities on the subject differ. Zeller, who is though 
generally esteemed the most competent authority on Plato, he pro- 
agrees with Hermann and Schleiermacher in placing the guessed 
Sophist and the Politicus before the Bepublic and the ^^^°^^ 




idealism Banquet. Other investigators, unknown to each other, 
in his have accumulated evidence in support of the opposite view. 

Nobody has yet undertaken to piece together the small 
indications contained in these partial investigations, and 
to exhibit the result. Nor can this easily be done in the 
present volume with equal precision for all dialogues. 
But it belongs to our task to show the steady progress 
brought about by these minute investigations, and to 
discuss with due accuracy the date of the chief dialogues 
in order to decide whether Plato, as the outcome of his 
life's experience, bequeathed to mankind a merely poetical 
idealism, or the foundations of a theory of self-created 
science. Are the dialectical works mere juvenile jokes 
— a kind of school exercises, or are they the ultimate issue 
of mature thought ? This is the chief question for an 
historian of Plato's logic. 

The treatment of the chronological problem has 
heretofore been twofold — the comparative study of the 
contents of each dialogue, and the study of Plato's style. 
Our next task is to review the results obtained by both 
methods and to compare them with each other. 




It is commonly assumed that Tennemann was the first 
to deal with the problem of the Platonic chronology. 
Before the end of the sixteenth centmy, indeed, Patrizi ^' 
wrote a chapter ' De dialogorum (sc. Platonis) ordine,' 
but he gave no scientific reasons for the order proposed. 
It was, like the strange order invented by Serranus,^^ 
rather an order of reading Plato's works than a guessing 
at the order in which Plato wrote them. 

Tennemann *^ treats the chronology of Platonic dia- 
logues without going into many details. But at least he 
guessed that the Phaedrus, of which he recognised the 
importance, could not, as had been supposed, belong to 
the earliest period of Plato. He puts the Sophist and the 
Politicus before the Banquet, and believes them to 
have been written in Megara, soon after the death of 

" In F. Patritii Nova de tiniversis pliilosophia libris quiiTqicaginta com- 
jyrehensa, Venetiis 1593 (the first edition at Ferrara 1591 is not in the 
British Museum) there is a part under the title ' Plato et Aristoteles 
mystici atque exoterici ' with separate pagination, and fol. 44 begins a 
chapter ' de dialogorum ordine.' The order proposed is, with omission of 
some spurious dialogues : Alcibiades, Philebiis, Euthydemus, Cratylus, 
Tlieaetetiis, Sophistes, Politicus, Gorgias, Phaedrus, Banqiiet, Ion, Hippias, 
Protagoras, Meiw, Laches, Menexenus, Charniides, Lysis, Republic, Timaeus, 
Critias, Parmenides, Euthyphro, Crito, Apologia, Phaedo, Laios. 

'- Serranus translated Plato's text for the edition of Plato by Stephanus 
1578, and he introduced the order, or rather disorder, which has been 
maintained in many editions of Plato, including the edition of Didot, Paris 

D 2 








agree as 

to some 


except the 

date of the 









Tennemann had no such doubts concerning authen- 
ticity as the next eminent writer on that subject, 
Schleiermacher ^^ (1804), who did not hesitate to pro- 
nounce many dialogues spurious, though they had pre- 
viously been held by every reader for authentic. Some of 
these, not amounting in all to one-seventeenth of the 
texts bearing Plato's name, namely, Hipparchus, Minos, 
Alcihiades II., Theages, Amatores, Hippias major, Cli- 
topho, Epino7nis, have since been generally recognised 
either as spurious or as written by some pupil of 
Plato. Other dialogues condemned by Schleiermacher, 
as Hippias minor, lo, Alcihiades I., Menexenus, have 
been more recently defended against his suspicions, 
but they are of no importance for the study of Plato's 
philosophy, and they do not exceed, taken together, the 
volume of a single dialogue such as the Gorgias. In the 
great questions of the date of the Phaedrus and Pai'- 
menides, Schleiermacher chose the opposite solution to 
that of Tennemann : he believed the Phaedrus to be the 
first work of Plato, and the Parmenides also to have been 
written before or immediately after the death of Socrates. 

As to other dialogues, there are several important points 
in which Schleiermacher agreed with Tennemann : both 
place the Lysis, Laches, Charmidcs, Protagoras before the 
death of Socrates ; both agree that the Euthyphro, Apology, 
Crito had been viT:itten about 399 B.C. ; both put the 
Meno, Gorgias, Theaetetus, Sophist, and Politicus before 
the Banquet, which they both held to have been written 
about 385 B.C., as Wolf ^'^ had shown in his introduction 
to the Banquet. Also in looking upon the Bepublic, 
Timaeus, Critias, and Laivs as the latest works of Plato, 
Schleiermacher followed Tennemann's indications. He 
dissented from him chiefly as to the date of the Phaedrus 
and Parmenides, which he placed much earlier, and of 

'•' Platons Werke, von F. Schleiermacher, Berlin 1804-1828 (3 parts in 
C vols.). 

■ ' Platons Gastmahl, herausgegeben von F. A. Wolf, Leipzig 1782. 


the Cratylus, Euthydemus, Philehus, and Phaedo, which 
appeared to him later than Tennemann had supposed 
them to be. 

As to the smaller dialogues of doubtful authen- 
ticity and little philosophical importance, Schleiermacher 
recognised better than Tennemann the great difficulty 
of assigning to each of them a definite place in the 
general order of Plato's works. They have no in- 
fluence on our judgment as to any serious aspect of 
Plato's philosophy, and their study belongs rather to 
literary investigations on the history of the Greek dia- 
logue generally than to the history of human thought. 

Schleiermacher tried to ascertain the sequence in which Schleier- 
Plato might have written his dialogues, if it were supposed macher 
that from the beginning he had planned out the whole ^^^ ^°* 
of his literary activity. This starting-point in judging ^ ™^ P"^"' 
about chronological questions was suggested by the in- ^q^^„ 
fluence of the mode of German idealism, which prevailed tigj^ to 
in the first years of the present century. According to criticism. 
such a view, a man's life is an harmonious whole, and a 
man's works must form a consequent exposition of his 
doctrines, taking the sum of these doctrines as co-existent 
in the author's mind before his entrance on a literary 
career. Schleiermacher had observed the didactic and 
dogmatic character of the Bepuhlic, and he believed that 
this alone gave sufficient reason for thinking that this 
work was written after the Sophist and the Politicus, 
which are rather critical than dogmatic. It is strange 
that Schleiermacher should not have profited in this 
regard by the example of Kant's evolution from dog- 
matism to criticism ; he would then have been less 
confident in representing dogmatism as the latest stage 
of Plato's thought. It is true that Plato, as a disciple of 
Socrates, began with criticism. But there is a great 
difference between such criticisnas as we see in the 
Protagoras or the Gorgias, which are of a personal 
character, dealing with simple ethical problems, and the 


criticism of the Sophist and the PoUticus, directed not 
against persons, but against general errors to which 
human reason is naturally liable, and rising from a merely 
ethical to a metaphysical point of view. 

There is greater force in the argument that the latest 

works might be expected to be more didactic than the earlier. 

But according to this standard the Parmenides, Sophist, 

and PoUticus are found to be later than the Bepublic, 

because in them the leader of the conversation proceeds 

with less regard for the diverging opinions of his hearers 

than is shown by the Socrates of the Bepublic for the 

objections of Adeimantus and Glaucon, or by the Socrates 

of the Phaedo for those of Simmias and Cebes. Schleier- 

macher, while believing that Plato already during Socrates' 

lifetime developed his theory of ideas so far as it is shown 

in the Phaedrus, was guiltj^ of a curious inconsistency in 

maintaining a Socratic stage of Plato's philosophy. He 

reckoned as monuments of this Socratic stage precisely 

those dialogues which have been also by all later 

historians called Socratic : the Protagoras, Laches, Char- 

mides, Lysis, as well as the Euthyphro, Apology, and 


Ast exag- This inconsequence of Schleiermacher was noticed 

gerates by Ast '''" (1816), who simplified the problem by proclaim- 

the funda- jj^g g^g gpurious all merely Socratic dialogues except the 

mental Protagoras. He followed Schleiermacher in his worst 

„ error as to the date of the Phaedrus, while he wrongly 

quence of . t n ^ • 

Schleier- dissented from hnn as to the date of the Gorgias and 

macher. Phaedo, which he believed with Tennemann to have 

been written about the time of Socrates' death. 

In order to sustain the high opinion of Plato's great 
literary power, Ast denied the authenticity of twenty-one 
dialogues attributed to Plato, amounting to more than 
two-fifths of the matter bearing Plato's name. This was 
the final consequence of seeking in Plato's works an 
harmonious whole, without recognising that even the 

" Friedrich Ast, Platons Lcbcmaid Schriftcn, Leipzig 1816. 



greatest writer must undergo a certain mental develop- 
ment, and may not have continued to think at eighty 
what he thought at twenty. 

The view of a gradual evolution of Plato's thought was First 
proclaimed by J. Socher '''' some years after the completion attempt of 
of Ast's work. Socher (1820) did not pretend to fix the date genetic ex- 
of each dialogue ; he only attempted to distinguish four sue- ^ ^^^ ^°° 

. by Socher, 

cessive stages of Plato's thought. He did not venture to 
impugn the authority of Tennemann, Schleiermacher, and 
Ast by attributing the Parmenides, Sophist, and Foliticus 
to Plato's old age ; but, perceiving the difference between 
these dialogues and others that were probably written 
soon after Socrates' death, he denied their authenticity, 
at the same time re-affirming the authenticity of a dozen 
other dialogues which had been held to be spurious by Ast. 
As to the chief dialogues, whose authenticity was unques- 
tioned, Socher agrees with Ast, Schleiermacher, and 
Tennemann in placing the Bepublic after the PJiilebus 
and immediately before the Timaeus and Critias ; but he 
differs from them in so far as he believes the Protagoras 
to have been written after the death of Socrates, and he 
returns, against Schleiermacher and Ast, to Tennemann's 
opinion in favour of a later date for the Phaednis. These 
results of the first attempt to treat Plato psychologically 
are not to be despised if we take into account that the 
date of the Phaedrus is of the greatest importance, and 
that critics are still found who maintain that ' youth- 
fulness ' of this dialogue, so confidently affirmed by 

This fancied youthfulness of the Phaednis was, developed 
however, also opposed by Stallbaum, who spent his life by Stall- 
in an original study of Plato. Stallbaum'" followed baum. 
Tennemann in putting the Euthydemus, Protagoras, 

'* J. Socher, Ueber Platons Schriften, Miinchen 1820. 

" Platonis dialogos selectos rec. G. Stallbaum, vol. i., Gothae et Er- 
fordiae 1827. See also the introductions to the single dialogues frequently 
edited by Stallbaum. 



H. Kitter. 

the Socra- 
tic stage 
of Plato's 

Cratyhis, Charmides, Laches, Lysis before the death of 
Socrates, the Euthyphro, Apology, Crito about 399, the 
Theaetetus, Sophist, Politicus, and Parmenides between the 
death of Socrates and the founding of the Academy, the 
Bepiiblic very late, immediately preceding the Timaeus. 
Against Tennemann and Ast he accepted Schleiermacher's 
view that the Phaedo and Philebus were written after the 

A like eclectic method was followed by H. Eitter ^** 
(1838), in whose opinion the Phaedrus and Protagoras 
were the earliest works of Plato, and therefore older 
than the Apology, Crito, and Phaedo. He dissented from 
Schleiermacher chiefly in placing the Parmenides after 
Socrates' death, and the Phaedo and Philebus before the 

A fresh start in the study of the chronology and authen- 
.ticity of the Platonic Canon was made by K. F. Hermann " 
(1839), who tried to find in Plato's genuine dialogues a 
steady progress at once with respect to philosophical 
contents and to literary perfection. His method, very 
different from the method of Schleiermacher and Ast, led 
him to results which, in some particulars, corrected the 
most glaring errors of his predecessors. The imperfection 
of some lesser works, which had been declared by Ast to 
be spurious and unworthy of Plato, was explained by 
Hermann's admission that the genius of Plato could not 
reach its full height in the first years of his literary 
activity. Hermann succeeded in demonstrating to every 
' unprejudiced reader the absurdity of ascribing such 
masterpieces as the Phaedrus and the Parmenides to a 
young Athenian of about twenty-five years of age, who 
even at thirty could do no better than the Euthyphro, the 
Apology, and the Crito. Hermann ascribed to Plato's 

" H. Eitter, Geschichtc dcr Philosophic alter Zcit, Hamburg 1836-1838, 
vol. ii. pp. 159-522, on Plato. 

"' K. F. Hermann, Geschichtc und System dcr platmiischcn PhilosophiCy 
Heidelberg 183'.), only vol. i. pubhshed. 


preliminary stage some small dialogues, such as the 
Hippias minor, lo, Alcihiades I., which Schleiermacher 
suspected to have been written by Plato's pupils. He 
added to these the Charmides, Lysis, Laches, Prota- 
goras, which Schleiermacher had also placed before 
the death of Socrates. The Euthydemus, Meno, and 
Gorgias, placed by Schleiermacher near the Theaetetus, 
were thought by Hermann to belong to the time of 
the Apology, Crito, and EutJnjphro. But in this he 
betrayed inconsistency, because these dialogues are in all 
respects riper in thought than the trilogy on the death of 

The second period, according to Hermann, produced but he 
the Cratyliis, the Theaetetus, the Sophist, and the Politicus, agrees 
also the Parmenides, and following these after a short with stall- 
interval came the Phaedrus and the Menexenus. Hermann "°^ 
and Schleiermacher agreed as to the chronology of all the „ , , . 

'=' ^"^ Schleier- 

dialogues that were held by them to be later than the ^acher 
Banquet, viz. the Phaedo, Philehus, Bepiiblic, Timaeus, as to the 
Critias, and Laws. It passed almost unnoticed that dialectic 
Hermann's view as to the order of Platonic dialogues did dialogues, 
not differ essentially from Stallbaum's ; at least, as regards ^^^ ^^ *° 
the chief works of Plato, beginning with the Theaetetus, 
they agree completely ; and this coincidence is the more 
remarkable since the Theaetetus and the twelve dialogues ^^^ 
which, according to Stallbaum and Hermann, are later Banq^uet. 
(the Sophist, Politicus, Parmenides, Phaedrus, Menexenus, 
Banquet, Phaedo, Philehus, Bepuhlic, Timaeus, Critias, 
Laics), form over seven-tenths of the volume of the 
twenty-eight dialogues which Hermann held to be auth- 
entic. Hence we may regard the chief common results of 
Hermann and Stallbaum as the best obtainable by their 

Their partial agreement with Schleiermacher, and even The 
with Ast and Socher, gives them an appearance of scientific <^ommon 

obiectivity which commands rational assent. On the „ , , . 

. . . - Schleier- 

other side, as later nivestigations have shown, all these u^acher 




baum, and 


based on 

an error : 




period in 




origin of 
this old 

gives no 

too much 

authors are wrong in the most important point, namely 
in their assumption that Plato wrote, or began to write, 
in Megara soon after the death of Socrates, his trilogy- 
consisting of the Theaetetus, the Sophist, a,ndth.e Politicus. 

If we inquire into the origin of this error we shall 
understand why the method of Hermann, as well as that 
of his predecessors, was insufficient, notwithstanding the 
more plausible nature of the assumptions on which it was 
based. The advance made by Hermann consists in his 
having recognised the impossibility of reckoning the 
Phaedrus and the Parmenides among the 'Socratic' 
dialogues. But the old error of placing the dialectical 
trilogy soon after the death of Socrates is shared by 
Hermann with all his predecessors. 

It is interesting to observe how this error originated 
and grew in strength until it seemed almost an acknow- 
ledged certainty. It already appears in the old tetralogic 
order of the dialogues, which is retained in nearly all 
manuscripts of Plato's text, and was probably due to 
Plato's first successors. According to this order, the 
Theaetetus trilogy is paired with an evidently early dia- 
logue, the Cratijlus, and placed immediately after the 
first tetralogy which contains the details of the death of 
Socrates. "We know nothing of the reasons which led to 
this order, and probably the editor who first arranged 
Plato's dialogues in tetralogies was less interested in 
Platonic chronology than we are now. He may have 
grouped together those dialogues which, to a superficial 
judgment, might be considered as treating of the same 
subject, or were united by Plato himself as continuing one 
another. From a similar point of view Patrizi placed the 
Theaetetus trilogy before the Banquet and Phaedrus. 
Tennemann invented more elaborate reasons for such an 
early date of these three dialogues. His judgment was 
determined by the purely external circumstance that at 
the end of the Theaetetus the Platonic Socrates mentions 
the accusation of Meletus. Thence Tennemann infers 


that this dialogue, since it seems to record one of the last the 
days of Socrates' life, must have been written shortly Platonic 
after his death. It is the same fallacy which led him to ^^^^^^^^ 
assign an early date to the Phaedo. Such an argument is J] 

1-1 ■ ^ ■^ ■^^ ■ • historic 

built on a smiple possibility which is not even a proba- gocrates 
bility. It has been often repeated since Tennemann by 
those who identify the Platonic Socrates with the historic 
Socrates, and take Plato's poetical fiction for literal truth. 
Like Patrizi, they look upon Plato as a man whose merit 
lay in writing down what he had heard from Socrates. 
The absurdity of such a view becomes evident to any one 
who impartially compares Xenophon's Memorabilia with 
Plato's dialogues. Tennemann himself felt that a men- 
tion of Socrates' accusation at the end of a dialogue 
afforded no ground for chronological inferences as to the 
date of the composition of that dialogue, and he cautiously 
added another supposition, that Plato wrote the Theaetetus, 
' perhaps at the time when he dwelt with Euclides at 

Now, the fact of a residence of Plato in Megara is by 
no means certain, and Tennemann's belief in it was based 
on no valid historical testimony. He quotes Diogenes Diogenes 
Laertius as his authority. This author says : (II. 106) Laertius 
Trpbs TovTov (sc. Euclides of Megara) cfirjcnv 6 'Ep/j,68copos ^"^ 
a(f>iKea6ai TlXdrcova koI tovs \olttov!, <pLKoa6<^ovs fjusra rrjv 
rov ^(OKpuTovs Ts\svT'>]v, hsicravras rrjv wfMorrjra rcov 
Tvpdvvbiv. Elsewhere he states the same thing in fewer 
words : ysvofisvos oktw koX stKoaiv srcov sis Msyapa irpos 
^vkXslStjv avv koI dXkois rial ^ooKpariKols v'!r£')(0)prj(TSV 
(III. 6). Obviously Hermodorus was of opinion that, at 
the time when some pupils of Socrates, fearing a fate like 
their master's, fled to Euclides in Megara, Plato joined 
them. This is given, not as an unquestioned fact, but as interpre- 
an opinion of Hermodorus. Were we sure that this tation of 
Hermodorus was that same whom Cicero and Suidas the alleged 
mention as Plato's pupil who spread his writings through ^^ i^^ony- 
Sicily, this witness would be discredited by his ignorance 


of well-known facts. For it was not the ' tyrants ' whom 
Plato had to dread, but the democracy as revived after 
the expulsion of the Thirty. On authority so shadowy 
we need not believe that the author of the Crito thus fled 
to another city as fearing the anger of the mob. Even 
were the fact so far admitted, it would not follow that 
his sojourn at Megara was long enough for the com- 
position of three dialogues in which so much of his 
cardinal thinking is condensed. But at the outset the 
story is suspicious, because of the mention of the tyrants 
and of an improbable danger. If others had to fear 
Plato had anything, this was less probable of Plato, as nephew of 
no neces- Critias, and belonging to an influential family. And 

/ \r^ Plato's flight to Megara is contradicted by a witness 

to Megara « , . 

or to perfectly trustworthy m such thmgs, and quite com- 

remain petent as to the history of Plato's life. Cicero (De 

there. rep. I. X. 16) says ' audisse te credo Platonem Socrate 

mortuo primum in Aegyptum discendi causa, post in 

Italian! et in Siciliam contendisse ut Pythagorae inventa 


'^^^ In this passage Cicero enumerates all the travels of 

SI ence Plato, and there was no reason for omitting his journey to 

„. Megara, had he known of it, or had he thought of Euclides 

Cicero. . 

as one who had influenced the philosophy of Plato. If 
Cicero quotes Egypt as the first place whereto Plato 
travelled after the death of Socrates, then we may assume 
that Cicero at least knew nothing of that Megaric period 
in Plato's life which is to-day generally admitted on the 
authority of a witness much less trustworthy than Cicero. 
Again, far from suggesting that Plato was indebted to 
Megaric influence, Cicero says that the Megaric school 
owes much to Plato (Academica II. 42 § 129). 

The trustworthiness of Cicero has been frequently 
questioned in matters of philosophy, and no great im- 
portance attaches to his testimony in a question of 
Cicero's Platonic doctrine. But in matters of fact, recent in- 
testimony vestigations have shown more clearly than ever that 


Cicero's judgment as to the date of the Phaedrus was as to the 

sounder than Schleiermacher's and Ast's. He was c^ateofthe 

interested in Plato's life, he had visited the Academy; -^'^^^*""s 
and m a passage where he clearly intends to convey the 

impression that change of place and study are important confirmed 

to the philosopher, he could not have left unmentioned that we 

the Megaric period of Plato's life, had he heard anything can be- 

of it, and had this Megaric period been of such import- li^ve him 

ance in Plato's life as Tennemann thought. Megara is, *^'"^*' 

according to our present notions of distance, very near "^^^ ^ ^^ 

to fSjpim 

Athens, but we must not forget that it belonged to „ ^.i . , 

. . ^ '^ oi Plato's 

another republic, sometimes at war with the Athenians, jjfg 
and could only be approached from Attica by sea or by a 
mountainous road. Plato's journey thither should have 
been included in the enumeration of Cicero, especially if, 
as Ast supposes, it led to a residence of several years. 
Cicero often alludes to Plato's travels and Plato's teachers ; 
he never mentions Euclides among the latter, nor Plato's 
emigration to Megara after Socrates' death. Arguments 
from silence have been frequently abused ; but, in this 
particular case, the silence of Cicero, and his unvarying 
omission of Megara when speaking of Plato's voyages, is 
surely significant. It would prove nothing had Cicero 
not indicated Egypt as the first place to which Plato 
travelled after his master's death. This circumstance 
confirms the presumption raised by the weakness of the 
evidence on which Tennemann's acceptance of Plato's 
residence in Megara is founded. 

Tennemann was cautious ; he introduced his supposi- How the 
tion with a ' perhaps.' This ' perhaps ' has been dropped myth of 
by Schleiermacher without producing any new argument the 
in favour of the probability of a residence of Plato Meganc 
in Megara (p. 20, part 2, vol. i.). Schleiermacher speaks ^"^^"^ 

srew and 

of Plato's flight CFlucht,' p. 103, part 1, vol. ii.) to Megara l^^^^^^ ^ 
as a well-established fact, without even the formality tradition 
of quoting Diogenes Laertius. But he shows modera- by mere 
tion in so far as he limits Plato's literary production repetition. 


in Megara to the Parmenides, leaving the Theaetetus, 
Sophist, and Politicus for a later time. He thus de- 
prives the story of the plausibility which it might other- 
wise receive from the preface to the Theaetetus. Ast, on 
the other hand, boldly declares that the Theaetetus was 
'undoubtedly' written in Megara (p. 185), and this not- 
withstanding his admission that the mention of the 
Corinthian war {Theaetetus 142 A) refers to a date seven 
or eight years later than the death of Socrates. Hence 
Ast accepts as an historical fact that Plato lived at 
Megara for seven or eight years, and is unaware that 
even the presence of Plato in Megara shortly after 399 is 
uncertain. For him it is decisive that the introductory 
conversation between Euclides and Terpsion is repre- 
sented by Plato as occurring in Megara. He seems to 
believe that a dialogue alleged to take place in Megara 
must have been written there, as if Plato had need to 
reside in Phlius in order to write the Phaedo, or in Crete 
while he wrote the Laios. And he does not limit this 
special connection with Megara to the Theaetetus ; he 
extends it to the Sophist and Politicus (p. 234) which, 
according to him, are really, as they profess to be, mere 
continuations of the Theaetetus. He does not go so far 
as to say that the Politicus was also undoubtedly written 
in Megara, but he sees in the dialectic of this dialogue a 
Megaric influence. 
Stall- Stallbaum also admitted without hesitation that Plato 

baum lived at Megara after the death of Socrates, that Euclides 
popu- Yvd,di a great influence on his theory of ideas, and that the 
plan of the Theaetetus, Sophist, and Parmenides was 
sketched during Plato's residence in Megara. In his 
introduction to the Theaetetus ^° Stallbaum feels bound to 
give reasons for this view, but his reasons add nothing to 
the feeble arguments of Ast and Schleiermacher. We 

*"' Platonis Theaetetus, ree. G. Stallbaum, Gothae et Erfordiae 1839, 
Prolegomena, p. 8 : ' Theaeteti, SopMstae et Parmenidis scribendi consilium 
subnatum esse videtur, ((uo tempore Megaris sit commoratus.' 

larised it 
in his 


observe here the birth and growth of one of these myths, 
which, hke tales of the sea-serpent, are repeated be- 
cause nobody takes the trouble to examine their source. 
Plato, according to Stallbaum, had no reason for introdu- 
cing Euclides in the Theaetetus, and for representing the 
dialogue as having been held at Megara, apart from his 
personal residence in Megara. 

After Stallbaum the myth of a Megaric period in Plato's 
life, and of the Megaric influence in the Theaetetus, 
SopJiist, PoUticus became generally received, though 
nobody found the smallest evidence on its behalf. H. 
Kitter, in his History of Philosophy, accepts the legend 
as a matter of course. Hermann (p. 52) quotes Cicero as Hermann 
the 'oldest witness' to Plato's travels; but he does not did not 
notice the omission of Megara among the places men- ^^^'^ *li^" 
tioned by him, and he relies, like his predecessors, on ''"^^ '^"^ 
Diogenes Laertius as to the asserted residence in , , , 


Megara. Hermann has no other authority to quote in 
favour of Plato's residence at Megara than the above 
passages from Diogenes Laertius ; still, he believes 
(p. 490) that the time spent by Plato in Megara was one 
of the ' most important periods ' in the philosopher's life : 
as it would be, had he produced there such considerable 

If we ask how these eminent students of Plato Analogy 
could invent facts and give them out for a part of the between 
history of Plato's life, we recognise the same proceeding ^^' 
which led Bekker and Stallbaum to some altera- , ,. 
tions of Plato's text. These editors, if a passage was ^^^-^ ^^^^^^ 
obscure, and if they found in some manuscript a more and the 
plausible reading, did not ask very much about the origin esthetical 
of that manuscript : they corrected the text, in the belief consideia- 
that Plato could never have written otherwise than **°°^ 
according to the most ingenious suggestions of one of his y^^S'^^^S 

copyists. Only with the Zurich edition a new method of , . 

. . . biograpni- 

editing Plato's text was first proposed, and it was developed calmytho- 

by Hermann and Schanz. According to this method, logy. 


the chief point is to know which among the many manu- 
scripts are really trustworthy, and the most obscure 
reading of a trustworthy manuscript, if it has some 
meaning, is preferred to the most elegant and plausible 
reading of an untrustworthy manuscript, even if this last 
reading gave Plato credit for more artistic skill than 
the first. This progress in editing Plato's text, to which 
Hermann contributed in a very important degree, was not 
extended by him to the method of writing Plato's life and 
the history of his works. Here he continued to prefer 
Truth ingenious hypothesis to careful weighing of the evidence, 
about dia- It was an ingenious hypothesis to explain some of the 
lectieai most original works of Plato by the Megaric influence, 
ogues r^-jr^Q truth, that these original works — so different from 
,. ,, everything Plato had written — were a product of a radical 

pleasant, change of opinion in the philosopher's old age, was not so 
ingenious and did not agree with the boundless admiration 
professed for Plato's perfection. 
The aim The theory of ideas, as professed in the Bepuhlic, was 

of an har- poetically beautiful. It was united to Plato's name all 
monious ^^^^ ^^iQ world, even by those who only knew of Plato 
concep- ^^^^ T^^ j^^^ imagined a theory of ideas. It gave a better 
PI t ' lif esthetic impression to say that those dialogues, in which, 
originated instead of poetical ideas, we find only abstract notions of 
the error, pure reason, were a preparatory introduction to the Be- 
public than to admit that they were written after the 
Bepuhlic, and that they condemned the most popular of 
Platonic theories, almost Platonism itself. Thus all the 
above writers from Tennemann to Hermann were led by 
an esthetic desire to have an harmonious representation of 
Plato's life, just as earlier editors of Plato's text were 
anxious rather to read the best and most beautiful text that 
Plato might have written than the text most probably 
written by Plato. They thought that any representation of 
Plato's development, based on whatever ancient evidence, 
was likely to be true if it agreed with the leading hypothesis 
which was their starting point. The leading hypothesis 


for Schleiermacher was a systematic interdependence of 
all works of Plato, each preparing for the next and prepared 
by the preceding. For Ast it was the esthetical perfection 
which Plato, according to him, sought above everything 
and could always produce. For Hermann it was the 
author's development from Socratism to the Platonism of 
the Bepublic. The superficial connection of the Bepublic 
with the Timaeiis made the Bepublic appear as a sample 
of Plato's most mature thought, and every dialogue of 
different tendency had to be placed earlier. 

If we wish to know what Plato really was and how he Logical 
became what he was, we must get rid of esthetical pre- dealing 
judice, and look only at the evidential value of the testi- ^i*^ *®s*i- 
monies we are dealing with. We must know all the ™°"i^^ 
facts and distinguish them from personal opinions on 
those facts. Plato's residence in Megara is not a fact. It 
is a myth, founded upon a most uncertain tradition, that 
some of Socrates' disciples fled to Megara after the 
Master's death. This tradition reaches us through a single 
witness, and is nowhere confirmed by other witnesses 
whom we might expect to know it. It is contradictory to 
what we know of Plato's personal character from his 
own writings. If we have recourse to hypothetical argu- 
ment, the hypothesis that a philosopher like Plato 
acted according to his philosophical principles is much 
more probable than the hypothesis that Hermodorus 
was right in accusing Plato of cowardice. On the other 
hand there is no reason whatever for building upon the 
testimony of a single untrustworthy witness a theory as 
to the Megaric influence on Plato's life. 

Hermann himself recognises (p. 106, note 82) that the Both Her- 
above quoted passages from Diogenes Laertius are the only mann and 
source of the tradition of Plato's emigration to Megara, Schleier- 
and he adds with the greatest simplicity that these °^^^^*^^' 
passages betray such a want of knowledge about Plato . 

that they deserve no confidence as to the date of the ^^^^^ ^j^^^ 
journey to Megara. He means that this may have logicians. 




Their fol- 

merit of 

occurred some years later. But if he does not trust his 
only authority as to the date of this removal, why trust 
it as to the place whither Plato first travelled after 
leaving Athens ? Manifestly he selects the testimonies, 
not according to their historical value, but according to 
the esthetical impression they produced on him. He 
liked the idea that the dialectical dialogues were inspired 
by the Megarics ; he disliked esthetically the idea that 
these dialogues were the result of a change of opinion 
in Plato after his artistic masterpiece, the Bepuhlic. 
Brandis *' (1844) and Eibbing -^ followed Schleiermacher, 
with the difference that they put the Pannenides after 
Socrates' death. Hermann was followed with slight 
differences by Schwegler,*^^ Steinhart, -^ Michelis,** and 

Suckow ^^ (1855) wrote under a misleading title a large 
commentary on the Phaedrus, preceded by a dissertation 
on the authenticity of other dialogues. This work, though 
written under the influence of a strange prejudice, which 
led the author to reject the authenticity of such important 
works as the Politiciis, Critias, and Laws, contains a 
curious exemplification of the truth, that a wrong method 
may sometimes lead to correct results. Suckow, being 
unable to understand that no author can bind himself for 

*' Brandis, Handbuch der GeschicJite dcr (jriccliisch-raiidschen Philo- 
sophic, Berlin 1835-1866. In vol. ii. Berlin 1844, pp. 134-570, on Plato. 

>*- S. Eibbing, Genetisk framstdllning af Platans idecldra, Upsala 1858, 
translated into German : Geyictischc Darstellimg der Platonischcn Idcen- 
lehrc, Leipzig 1863-1864. 

*■'' A. Schwegler, Geschichte dcr Philosophic, Stuttgart 1848 ; Geschichtc 
der griechischen Philosophic, Tiibingen 1859. 

>** Platons sdmmtlichc Wcrkc, iibers. von H. Miiller, mit Einleitungen 
begleitet von Karl Steinhart, Leipzig 1850-1866, 8 vols. 

'^ F. Michelis, Die Philosophic Platons in ihrcr inneren Bcziehung zur 
gcoffenbarten Wahrheit, Miinster 1859. 

''" TiKaT-xiviKol SiaXoyoi, eKSiSti^ej/oi /car' eK\oyr]v viro Fiocpylov MicrTpttirou, eV 
'Adrjvais 1872. 

"' G. F. W. Suckow, Die wissenschaftlichc und kilnstlerische Form der 
platonischcn Schriften, Berlin 1855 ; of the same author : De Platonis 
Parmcnidc, Vratislaviae 1823 (against the authenticity). 


life by rules which he has laid down in one of his works, 
believed that Plato, after having placed in the Phaedrus the 
philosopher above the lawgiver, could never degrade him- 
self to writing the Laws ; he took as a sign of authenticity con- 
such a superficial distinction as the number of chief parts t'^asted 
and their subdivisions, believing that Plato would write all ^^ 
his life and on all subiects according to the same formal . , 
plans. He sought the key of our problem of the order of 
the Platonic writings in a fragment of the old ' Introduc- 
tion to Plato ' by Albinus, who advised the reader to 
begin with the Alcihiades and Phaedrus. After such tire- 
some rubbish, extended over more than 500 pages, 
Suckow suddenly gives in a few words his opinion on the 
order of Plato's dialogues, according to which Plato's aim 
was to give an ideal biography of Socrates ; and we learn 
that he considered the following order as the most prob- 
able : Parmenides, Protagoras, Symposium, Phaedrus, 
Bepiiblic, Timaeus, Philehus, Theaetetiis, Sophist, Apology, 
and Phaedo. This order, radically different from any- 
thing proposed before, implies the first positive recognition 
of an important truth, unknown to all previous inquirers, 
namely that the Theaetetiis, Sophist, and Philehus are later 
than the Bepublic. Unhappily, Suckow did not fulfil 
his promise of giving ampler reasons for this opinion. 
Judging from his book, and from a small dissertation on the 
Par^nenides written by him thirty-two years before (1823), 
he was unable to give good reasons and consistent argu- 
ments ; but, at all events, we must recognise his merit in 
proclaiming for the first time, amidst a heap of errors, a 
truth of the greatest importance for the understanding 
of Plato's philosophy. He quotes Morgenstern and 
Tchorzewski, who advocated an early date of the Bepublic 
on account of its supposed relation to the Ecdesiazusae of 
Aristophanes. '^^ 

The order proposed by Suckow was substantially the Munk 

gives no 
*' C. Morgenstern, De Platonis Bepublica, Halis Saxonum 1794 ; 

Tchorzewski, De Politia Tiviaeo et Critia, Kasan 1847. 




reasons for 
his admis- 
sion of the 
late date 
of the dia- 




to free 



same as that which shortly afterwards was sustained by 
Munk,^^ with the difference that Munk extended it to a 
greater number of dialogues, adding after the Protagoras : 
Charmides, Laches, Gorgias, Ion, Hippias, Cratylus, 
Euthtjdemus ; after the Timaeus : Critias and Meno ; after 
the Sophist : the Politicus and Euthyphro ; after the 
Apology : the Crito, and putting the Philebus imme- 
diately before the Bepublic, while Suckow had placed this 
dialogue after the Bepublic and Timaeus. Munk was less 
reticent than Suckow as to the reasons which decided 
him to adopt an order so very different from the con- 
clusions which were common to Schleiermacher and 
Hermann. He argued that Plato's chief aim in writing 
his dialogues was to give an extensive biography of 
Socrates, so that each dialogue had its place assigned 
according to the apparent age of Socrates at the supposed 
date of the dialogue. The Theaetetus, from this point of 
view, should be later than the Bepublic, chiefly because in 
this dialogue Socrates is represented as older than in the 
Bepublic. On this ground Munk was obliged to look 
upon the Phaedo as the last work of Plato for the mere 
reason that it represented the death of Socrates. It 
may be remembered that for the same reason it has 
been affirmed to be his earliest work. 

Such conclusions illustrate the uselessness of all 
generalisations, leading to a fictitious solution of the pro- 
blem of Platonic chronology by a single ingenious hypo- 
thesis. The true genetic method should include a careful 
study of detail, with many parallel comparisons between 
every dialogue and those immediately preceding or imme- 
diately following. Such a painstaking inquiry, without 
prejudice, without a general formula for the whole of 
Plato's literary activity, was first attempted by Susemihl 
in a work ^'* which deserves very great consideration for 
its method, though it did not avoid some old errors. 

•*" E. Munk, Die natilrUche Ordnung der platonisclicn Schriften, Berlin 


Susemihl (I. 286, 477) recognised that the testimony of esthetieal 

Diogenes Laertius about a retreat of Plato to Megara prejudice 

immediately after the death of Socrates was of no value, ^^ *° *^® 

though he still retained, on no better evidence, the tradition 

of a Megaric period, coinciding with the composition of ,. , 

the Eiithydemus and Cratylus. But he does not show 

such confidence as Hermann, and he admits that the 

Sophist and Politicus were written at least a dozen years 

after Socrates' death, though before the Banquet and 


The order of those dialogues supposed to be later than but he 
the Banquet ^0,^ the same for Susemihl as it had been for stillagrees 
Schleiermacher, Stallbaum, and Hermann. But he came ^" '"^^y 
nearer to the truth than his predecessors as to the place 
of the Phaedrus, which he puts next to the Theaetetus, Hermann. 
an arrangement which has been confirmed by many later 
investigations. He accepted Hermann's view that the 
Parmenides followed the Politicus, and Schleiermacher's 
as to the connection of the Euthydemus with the Cratylus. 
He differs from both by assuming (with Socher and 
Stallbaum) a very early date for the Meno, which he 
supposed to have been written before the death of 

Though the question of the chronology of Plato's Only 

writings had been raised by an historian of philosophy Ueberweg 

(Tennemann), and for the sake of a philosophical under- ^^^^ 

standing of Plato's theories, we see from the above survey ^^^^^^ 

of subsequent writers on that subject, that up to 1860 it " 

^ . . reasons 

was a problem dealt with chiefly by philologers, and, ac- f^j, ^-^^ 
cording to philological traditions, from a philological- late date 
esthetic point of view. Though Schleiermacher, chiefly of the dia- 
a theologian, enjoys in Germany a certain philosophical lectical 
reputation, he approached our problem as a translator of •^^^^logues, 
Plato's works, and translation is a philological business. 
Stallbaum, Hermann, Susemihl gave their lives mostly 
to philological work ; even Ast, though h.e published some 
philosophical handbooks, cannot be called a philosopher. 




ing them 

with the 






as known 



and the few philosophers who wrote about Platonic 
chronologj^ in the first half of the nineteenth century 
generally accepted without criticism the verdict of one 
or other of the philologers. Now it happened for the 
first time about 1860 that a philosopher, who was chiefly 
a logician, set himself to investigate the question of 
the order of Plato's dialogues. The opportunity for this 
had been given by the Academy of Sciences of Vienna, 
which offered a prize for a new investigation as to the 
authenticity and chronology of Plato's works. The prize 
was awarded to Friedrich Ueberweg, then a teacher of 
philosophy in the University of Bonn, and author of a 
Logic later known throughout the philosophical world, as 
well as his next handbook on the History of Philosophy. 
This was the first attempt of a logician to understand 
Plato better than his philological interpreters, and the 
result has shown ever since that good logical training, and 
a perfecting of previous methods, are the surest means 
for attaining real progress in the knowledge of Plato's 
mental development. Ueberweg did not pretend to give 
a general theory concerning the order of Plato's works, 
nor did he take into consideration all these works ; but 
he proceeded with such excellent method that he suc- 
ceeded for the first time in supporting by valid argument 
the late date of the Theaetetus, Soj^Mst, and Politicus, 
already affirmed by Suckow and Munk on insufficient 
grounds. Some years before, in his dissertation on the 
Soul of the World (' Ueber die platonische Weltseele,' 
Rheinisches Museum 1853, Vol. ix, pp. 37-84), he had 
incidentally anticipated this opinion (p. 70, note 35) ; but 
it is only in his JJntersuchungen iiher die Echtheit unci 
Zeitfolge Platonischer Schriften, published at Vienna in 
1861, that for the first time we find a strong logical 
argument in favour of the very late date of the Sophist, 
the Politicus, and the Philebus, showing their affinity 
with the Timaeus and that form of the Platonic doctrine 
which is known from Atistotle to be the latest. Besides, 


Ueberweg called attention to certain characteristic marks 
of these dialogues, which make their late appearance 
probable. A ' younger Socrates ' is introduced, whom we 
know from Aristotle {Metaphysic, vii. 1036 b 25) to have 
been Plato's pupil when Aristotle belonged to the Academy : 
that is, within twenty years of Plato's death. Also the 
person of the elder Socrates as represented in the Sophist 
and Politicus is very different from the character attri- 
buted to him in the Bepublic ; he is now no longer the 
leader of the conversation, but only a witness of the teach- 
ing of an unnamed foreigner, the ' Eleatic guest.' 

This transformation of Socrates is common to the Charac- 
Sophist, Politictis, and Parmenides, with the Timaeus, teristiesof 
known to be a late work — later, at all events, than the Socrates 
Bepublic. It is shown to be probable on artistic grounds ' ^ f"^^ 

that Plato, when he began to teach a doctrine differing ,. , 

' o /^ dialogues 

greatly from what he had placed in Socrates' mouth in from 
earlier times, felt it inconvenient to credit Socrates with what they 
the new teaching. He chose other persons, named or were in 
unnamed : first Parmenides, then an Eleatic Stranger, earlier 
later Timaeus, Critias, and Hermocrates, finally the ''^'^i*i"gs- 
Athenian Stranger in the Laws, to represent the author's 
views. Ueberweg also noticed that the Sophist and the 
Politicus resemble the Timaeus and the Laws in the 
absence of the dramatic action so characteristic of the 
Bepublic and earlier dialogues. All these hints taken 
together constitute a strong plea in favour of the sup- 
position that the Sophist and Politicus belong to the 
same period of Plato's life as the Timaeus and the Laws. 
The same remark applies to the Parmenides, in which 
Ueberweg also found many indications of a later time, so 
much so that he believed this dialogue to have been 
written after Plato's death by one of his pupils. Ueberweg 
collected many historical indications from Plato's works 
as well as from other witnesses to show the limits 
of time within which many dialogues were written. He 
compared metaphysical, psychological, and ethical theories, 




doubts and 
reduced by 
Jowett to 
a just 
by return- 
ing to 
and Her- 


and found in these comparisons a confirmation of the late 
date of the Sophist and Puliticus, while he had less con- 
fidence in assuming a very late date for the Phaedo. 

Ueberweg's doubts as to the authenticity of the Pcw- 
menides were soon afterwards extended to the Sophist and 
Politicus, as well as to many other dialogues, by Schaar- 
schmidt,^° who left unattacked only nine out of thirty-five 
works of Plato, while at about the same time Grote,'" and 
after him Chaignet,^^ defended the authenticity even of 
those dialogues which since Schleiermacher have been 
almost unanimously held for spurious. Jowett "' reduced 
these extremes of scepticism on one side and over-con- 
fidence on the other to a just measure. Returning to 
Schleiermacher's verdict as to the authenticity, and reject- 
ing only an insignificant part of the traditional text of Plato, 
he accepted as authentic all the works of real import- 
ance. Though Jowett placed the Sophist and Politicus 
after the Bepublic in his translation, and though he refers 
to them (and in his last edition also to the Philehus) as 
late dialogues, showing upon many occasions their affinity 
with the Laws, he strangely enough protests against every 
supposition of a change in the fundamental doctrines of 
Plato, and he invokes against Jackson the authority of 
Zeller, a position which seems hard to reconcile with his 
own admission — that the Sophist and Philehus belong to 
Plato's old age. 

After Ueberweg, the philosophical importance of the 
chronology of Plato's dialogues began to be generally re- 
cognised, and we see this problem taken over from the 
philologers by philosophers. Later on, under Schaar- 

"° C. Schaarschmidt, Die Samtnlung der platonisclien Schriften, zur 
Schcidung dcr cchtcn von don uncchtcn untersuckt, Bonn 1866. The same 
scepticism is brought to the last extreme by Krohn, Der Platonische Staat, 
Halle 1876. 

"' G. Grote, Plato and the other Companions of Sokrates, London 18G5, 
quoted in the following after the new edition in 4 vols., London 1885. 
A. E. Chaignet, La vie ct Ics dcrits de Platan, Paris 1871. B. Jowett, The 
Dialogues of Plato translated into English, 5 vols. 3rd ed. Oxford 1892. 

sees in 


Schmidt's influence, Ueberweg himself came to doubt the as Tocco, 

authenticity of the dialectical dialogues. But an Italian Teich- 

philosopher, Felice Tocco,''^ fourteen years after Ueber- ^^] ^^' 

weg's publication supplemented his arguments in favour ,. ' , 
ci r J- X o continued 

of the late date of the Sophist and Philebus, defending ueber- 
also the authenticity and equally late date of the Par- weg's 
menides on account of the modification of Plato's philo- work, 
sophical doctrines in these dialogues, attributed by Tocco 
to Pythagorean influence and coinciding with Aristotle's 

Other philosophers became interested in the problem, Teich- 
and sought new arguments by detailed observation, thus m^^Her 
dividing the general problem into as many special problems 
as there are separate works of Plato. Ueberweg's method , 

cniefly a 
of fixing what we may know about the date of each controver- 

dialogue, without prejudging the general plan of all the dia- sialist, but 

logues, has been developed in an original manner by Teich- his obser- 

miiller,^^ who claimed to have been the first to give a clear vations 

definition of the literary character of Platonic dialogues. 

He looked upon them as polemical tracts, and thought 

that Plato's aim was to ridicule his enemies and to in- ^ , , 

dently of 

crease the repute of his school. As such literary foes -^is funda- 
Teichmiiller quotes besides Isocrates, in whose relation mental as- 
to Plato Spengel '-^^ had already seen some indications for sumi^tion. 
Platonic chronology, also Xenophon, Lysias, and even 
Aristotle. He further sees in Plato's dialogues polemi- 
cal digressions referring to Antisthenes, Aristophanes, 
Aristippus, Democritus, and other contemporaries not 
named by Plato. Many allusions thus conjectured by 
Teichmiiller are of some probability, and his works are a 
mine of valuable suggestions for the student of Plato. 
Teichmiiller's merit is further enhanced by his rare know- 

*•- F. Tocco, Biccrche Platoniche, Catanzaro 1876, Del Parmenide, del 
Sofista e del Filebo, Firenze 1893, also in vol. ii. pp. 391-469, of the Sttidi 
di Filologia classica. 

"' Teichmiiller, Literarische Fehden, Breslau 1881-1884. Spengel, 
'Isokrates und Plato,' Miinchen 1855, in the Abh. d. Akad. d. Wissen- 
schaften zu Miinchen, vol. vii. pp. 729-769. 




He dis- 
a better 
of foreign 
on the 
and had a 
very clear 
form of ex- 

From his 
point of 
gave an 
ent confir- 

ledge of English, French, and Itahan hterature on Plato, 
which had never before been taken so much into con- 
sideration by German scholars. And the form of his 
work makes it still more useful. He has learnt from 
English writers how indispensable it is to supply the 
reader with good indices, and his indices make it easy to 
find at once in his many volumes on Plato what one 
wants ; while it is exceedingly difficult to find a required 
passage in the volumes of Schleiermacher, Ast, van 
Heusde, Hermann, Susemihl, and even Ueberweg, none of 
whom understood the necessity and usefulness of a good 
alphabetical index in a work containing a mass of various 
information. In his own country Teichmliller has not 
been appreciated according to his merits, because he met 
with a prejudiced critic in Zeller, who reigns as an 
authority on Plato in Germany. But English, French, 
and Italian scholars have recognised his great skill and 
acute judgment, and since his death he has also risen in 
the opinion of his own countrymen. He was a violent 
polemical writer himself, and this led him to generalise 
the polemical digressions found in Plato, and to see in the 
greatest thinker of humanity a controversialist full of 
vanity and personal ambition. Such a view of Plato as a 
general explanation of his literary activity is even more 
erroneous than the broad assumptions of Schleiermacher 
and Hermann. But the scattered polemical allusions 
discovered by Teichmiiller lose no importance as chrono- 
logical indications, even though we admit them to be 
only of secondary importance in the writer's mind. 

It is significant that Teichmiiller, a good logician like 
Ueberweg, should confirm Ueberweg's conclusions as to 
the date of the dialectical dialogues. He recognised that 
the Parmenides, Sophist, and Politicus belong to the same 
epoch as the Timaeus and the Laws. Some other con- 
clusions of Teichmiiller, such as his very late date of the 
Gorgias (375 B.C.) and Meno (383 B.C.), are more question- 
able. Teichmiiller dissented from all his predecessors in 


his assumption of a very late date for some so-called mation of 

Socratic dialogues — the Euthyphro, Apology, Crito, Ueber- 

Cratylus, — which he believed to have been written after ^^^'^ ^°°' 

the Theaetetus. But this opinion, which he advanced ^ ^^^^^^ 

chiefly on philological grounds, is less important in its , , , , 

bearing on the question of Plato's philosophical develop- of the 

ment ; while it is of the greatest importance to see how dialectical 

Teichmiiller's investigation confirmed Ueberweg's first dialogues, 
attempts to prove the late date of the dialectical dialogues. 

iinother philosopher who after Teichmiiller undertook Also 

our problem, Peipers,^^ reached the same conclusions by Peipers 

careful comparison of the ontological theories expressed ®^™^ *° 
by Plato. He found that the dialectical dialogues. Par- ^ ^^^^ 

menides, Sophist, Politicus, and Pkilehus, contain an onto- , . , ^ 

. . . his study 

logical doctrine which can only be explained as a con- of Platonic 
tinuation of the standpoint reached in the Pliaedrus and ontology, 
the Bepuhlic. Peipers has also succeeded in showing which 
that these dialogues are nearer to the Laios than any convinced 
other writing of Plato, and his argument convinced Susemihl, 
one of the most competent hving investigators of Plato, 
Susemihl,'^' who publicly acknowledged that he abandoned 
his former opinions, expressed thirty years earlier, as to 
the date of the dialectical dialogues. Susemihl's impar- 
tiality, which allowed him to make this confession, was 
compensated by the obstinacy of Zeller, who, in his 
authoritative work on Plato, in each successive edition 
maintained the old assumption of a Megaric period to 
which he referred the Sophist, Politicus, and Philehus, 
alleging them to have been written before the Bepuhlic. 

Also the editor of the later editions of Ueberweg's but Zeller 
History of Greek Philosop)hy, M. Heinze, adhered to and 
the old error of Hermann and Schleiermacher, and Hemze m 
continued to spread the conviction that the Sophist and 
Politicus were written before the Banquet. If we take . . 
into account that Ueberweg's and Zeller's works on histories 
Greek philosophy enjoy up to the present time the greatest of philo- 

"^ Peipers, Ontologia Platonica, Lipsiae 1883. sophy 



to the 
as well as 

While the 
reader is 
thus kept 
in ignor- 
ance of 
the latest 
tions, new 
of Bergk, 

popularity, there will be no exaggeration in saying that 
Ueberweg's earlier conclusions, which he afterwards 
abandoned, although confirmed with new arguments by 
Tocco, Teichmiiller, and Peipers, remain almost unknown 
to general readers of Plato. In a very popular work on 
Plato, written by Weygoldt, we still find the dialectical 
dialogues placed before the Bepublic, and the same order 
occurs '^'^ in the most recent work of E. Pfleiderer on 
Socrates and Plato. 

Since Susemihl's conversion, however, many special 
investigations have fortified Ueberweg's conclusion in 
favour of a late date for the Sophist and Politicus. 
Besides such philological investigations as those of 
Bergk, -"^ Eohde,^^ and Christ,'-** who declared in favour of a 
very late date for the Theaetetits and consequently also 
for the Sophist and Politicus, we have in the last ten 
years a new confirmation, through an investigation 
by H. Siebeck, •''■' author of a history of psychology. 
Siebeck started from the question whether Plato did 
not quote his own works, as is frequently done by 
Aristotle. He observed certain allusions which led him 
to affirm that Plato not only quotes the Bepublic and the 

"^ Weygoldt, Die platonischc Philosophie, Leipzig 1885 ; E. Pfleiderer, 
Socrates und Plato, Tiibingen 1896. The views of this author have to be 
specially dealt with in connection with the date of the Republic, as he sub- 
ordinates the whole order of Plato's dialogues to a distinction of some succes- 
sive stages in the Republic, wherein he follows Krohn (see note 90). 
Pfleiderer's conclusions as to the order of other dialogues are not very distant 
from Hermann's views, with the difference that Pfleiderer against every pro- 
bability places the Euthydemus after the Sophist, and the Phacdo before 
the Sympos'ium. 

"^ T. Bergk, Filnf Abhandlungen zur Geschichte der griechischen Philo- 
sophic und Astronomic, Leipzig 1883 ; Griecliische LiteraturgcschicJUe, 4" 
Bd. Berlin 1887. 

"' Eohde, ' Die Abfassungszeit der platonischen Thedtct ' in Jahrbilcher 
filr Philologic und. Pddagogik, vol. cxxiii. p. 321. vol. cxxv. p. 80 ; also in 
Philologus, vol. xlix. p. 2, vol. 1. p. 1, vol. U. p. 474 (1890-1892). 

•'" W. Christ, • Platonische Studien,' pp. 453-512 in vol. xvii. of Abli. der 
yhilos. pliilol. Classe der Konigl. bayer. Akad. Mimchen, 1886. 

"" H. Siebeck, Untersuchungen zur Philosophic der Griechen, Freiburg 
i. B. 1888. 


Politicus in the Laws, but that he also in the BepuhUc increase 

announces a later settling of matters dealt with in the the 

Sophist and Philehus. amount of 

Also Diimmler,^"'^ who continued Teichmiiller's studies ^^'^"^^^^^^ 
on supposed feuds between Plato and his contemporaries, 

added to the considerable stock of arguments in favour of ^^ ,^ 

a late date of the dialectical dialogues, by a special inquiry opinion, 
into the relations of Plato to Antisthenes, Antiphon, 
Aristippus, Aristophanes, Aristotle, Empedocles, Euri- 
pides, Gorgias, Heraclitus, Hippias, Isocrates, Polycrates, 
Prodicus, Protagoras, Xenophon, and others. 

Besides these works, which deal with a great number Theneces- 

of writings, there are many special dissertations on each sity of an 

dialogue, which constitute, taken together, ample evi- impartial 

dence for a definitive solution of the problem of their co-ordina- 

date. But this literature has grown so much that nobody *^°" *^^ ^^^ 

has attempted to collect all such detailed observations and . 

1 • en T • 1. mvestiga- 

to give a clear picture of all arguments urged m favour ^^j^^^g -^^^ 

of each hypothesis. We have here specially insisted been ap- 

on the. date of the dialectical dialogues because of their preciated 

exceptional importance for Plato's logic, but on each by the 

other work, as the BepuhUc, Gorgias, Phaedo, Phaedrus, ^^^^^^ 

hundreds of authors have expressed various opinions, ^" ^'""^ 

generally based only on a very limited knowledge of other 

^ , " . scieiices 

investigators. So long as all these separate observations morales 

are not summed up, every new writer on this subject but the 

runs the risk of repeating discoveries already made, work of 

or falling into errors easy to avoid. In these cir- ^- ^"it 

cumstances a new general work on Plato's dialogues, ^^^i'<^^^*^^ ^ 

summarising all the separate observations made in this P^'^®*^"^^' 

1 -T T ^ , i^ Poi ^°* corre- 

century, becomes indispensable to the progress of further ^^.^ , 
investigations concerning Plato's philosophy. This need ^he pur- 
has been felt by the French A cademie des Sciences pose, the 
morales et politiques, a learned society which has author 
awarded many considerable prizes for works on Plato, neglecting 

"'° Diimmler, Akademika, Giessen 1889 ; Chronologisclic Beifrage zti 
ciiiigcn j^lf^foiiischen Dialogcn, Basel 1890. 



the pro- 
blem of 

logy of 
not an 
as has 

thought in 

It is at 
least easy 
to prove 
the late 
date of the 

among which those of Chaignet and Fouillee were not 
without value. But the last answer to the summons 
of this Academy, a work in two volumes written by 
C. Huit under the title La vie et Vceuvre de Platon, 
published in Paris 1893, falls short of the most modest 
critical requirements, and by no means satisfies its purpose. 
The author knows so little of the special literature of 
his subject that he repeats Schaarschmidt's arguments 
against the authenticity of the most important works 
of Plato without being aware that these arguments have 
been often refuted during the last thirty years. He also 
ignores the steady progress in chronological investiga- 
tions since Ueberweg, and regards the problem of Platonic 
chronology as almost insoluble. 

Such is not the conviction which results from an 
impartial survey of what has been already done for our 
problem. There is a progress in the validity of conclu- 
sions, as well as in the method employed from Tennemann 
to Schleiermacher, from Schleiermacher to Hermann, 
from Hermann to Susemihl, and from Susemihl to 
Ueberweg. Besides these inquiries referring to the 
majority of the works of Plato, there has been real 
progress also in the special investigations referring to 
each single dialogue. All these results should be co-ordi- 
nated in a general subject index showing all arguments 
in favour of and against every hypothesis as to the date 
of each several dialogue. Then only it would be inevitably 
seen that there is overwhelming evidence in favour of 
some conclusions and against others. 

It is not the purpose of the present work to furnish 
the reader of Plato with such an extensive index, but 
chiefly to indicate the agreement of the chief arguments 
advanced in favour of a late date of the dialectical dia- 
logues, in order to show that the logical science founded 
by Plato was advanced during his own lifetime by his 
renewed efforts. 

Before we enter upon the task of tracing this logical 


development through Plato's works, it is a duty to give For this, 

the reader some information about a special kind of in- no* only 

vestigation, subsidiary to the general study of Platonic *^^ 

chronology. We have limited the above review to those ^°^ ^^ ^ 

authors who sought to establish the order of Plato's dia- , 

° . compared, 

logues on arguments taken from their contents ; because j^^^ g^^g^ 
it is our own purpose likewise to compare the contents of the style, 
a series of Platonic dialogues as to their logical theories, which has 
But, admitting all the importance of the contents, we been in- 
must still contend that the form and style of Plato's vestigated 
writings also give some indications as to their chronolo- °^^^ ^° 
gical order, and it is useful to compare the conclusions . 
arrived at by both methods. The study of the style of 
Plato is much more recent than that of Plato's philosophy, 
but it has led to very important conclusions as to the 
order of his writings, and it is our duty to consider these 
conclusions before we venture to represent the origin and 
growth of Plato's logic. 




g. 2 If we wish to assure ourselves of the identity of a friend, 

a mark whose thoughts and actions are famiHar to us, the simplest 

of the plan is to appreciate his appearance and to verify our im- 

identity of pression by the tone of his voice. Could one of our best 

an author friends perfectly disguise his voice and his features, it 

indepen- ^ould be difficult to recognise him by the manifestations 

'^^^ ^ of his thoughts or by the moral character of his actions. 

of the o J 

, , Now the external form of a writer is his style, and it be- 


of his trays him even when he for some reason may be profes- 
writings. sing thoughts very different from those which we usually 

associate with his name.^t A thought can be expressed in various ways in the 

differences Same language ; it might even be said that the notion of 
of style any one language includes as many languages as there 
between havc been original writers in it. This is truer of Greek 
°"^ than of any modern language, and is especially true of 

Greek prose writing in the fourth century B.C. A student 
■in ther having read and understood all the works of Xenophon 
and in the might be unable to understand many passages in Plato, 
works of Plato's language differs from Xenophon 's, though both 
the same wrote Attic prose. 

author. That there are peculiarities of style which distinguish 

a writer among many others is almost self-evident ; that 
the style of some writers has changed in the course of 
years is a patent fact ; yet many objections have been 
made to stylistic study as a means of settling problems of 
ascription and chronology. Everybody knows the dis- 
cussions which this method provoked when applied to 


Shakespeare, though, as regards Shakespeare, the difficulty 
is diminished by the fact that metrical intricacies and the 
poet's resources are more varied than is the case with prose, 
even the prose of such a writer as Plato. But it is to be 
noted on the other hand that Plato's literary activity 
was continued through a period twice as long as Shake- 

Since most readers think that style is indefinable, they Definition 
infer that it must afford an insecure basis for scientific of style 
reasoning. So Plato thought concerning all physical ^^iflicult, 
movements in the universe. According to him, their ^" ^*° 

infinite variety hindered genuine scientific investigation , , , , 
'' " ^ . have held 

(JPhileh. 59 a c) ; they could only be guessed at with itto^einj. 
some degree of probability {Tim. 29 c, 48 d) ; and such possible, 
guesses constituted ' a pleasure not to be repented of, and 
a wise and moderate pastime ' {Tim. 59 D : a/jLsra/j,s'\.r]Tov 
rjSovrjv . . fjiSTpiov iraiBiav Kul (f)p6vi/u,ov), but they did not 
admit of accurate determination {Tim. 68 c D). 

This Platonic view of natural science extended also to But 
linguistics {Crat. 421 d), and the Master would have modem 
smiled at those who count words in his writings. But if n^ethods 
the science of modern mechanics, by application of new 
infinitesimal methods, unknown to Plato, has reached a .,, 

' _ _ _ ' with many 

degree of certainty by which it claims rank as a more problems 
exact science than any investigation of the human soul, beyond 
then we need not allow Plato's linguistic scepticism to the reach 
keep us from the ' moderate pastime ' of investigating his of Plato, 
style. If an exact definition be possible of the notes 
which distinguish Plato's style from the style of other 
writers, or by which a work written contemporaneously 
with the Laios differs from a work written at the time 
when Plato founded the Academy, then we may hope to 
ascertain the true order of Platonic dialogues according 
to the stylistic variations observed in them. 

There is no exaggeration in this pretension, since identity 
questions of identification are generally settled by purely of hand- 




no more 
of style. 

It con- 
sists in a 
of pecu- 
only those 
need con- 

marks of 
style may 
be found 
first by 
tion of the 
lary of an 

This in- 
cludes his 

external tests. The identity of handwriting, consisting- 
in manj^ minute signs difficult of definition, is held to be 
so far ascertainable, that on an expert's decision in such 
matters a man's life may sometimes depend. The limited 
number of marks of identity contained in a signature is 
sufficient to decide its authenticity for all purposes. A 
banker requires no further security for paying out the 
deposits left with him under his responsibility. Docu- 
ments written by a prisoner, despite his denial of then- 
authenticity, may prove his guilt in the eyes of any 

If handwriting can be so exactly determined as to afford 
certainty as to its identity, so also with style, since style 
is still more personal and characteristic than handwriting. 
But the definition of style requires a deeper'study, because 
style is not, like handwriting, accessible to the senses. 
It may be objected that, since style has an almost infinite 
number of characteristic notes, it cannot be reduced to 
one fixed formula. The answer is, that a like infinity of 
characteristics exists in every object of natural science, 
and that science is possible only through the distinction of 
essential marks from those which are unessential. 

What, then, are the essential marks of style ? In- 
dividuality of style is developed along two different lines, 
each of which requires special study. An author uses words 
as the raw material for the expression of his thoughts, 
and the choice of words affords him the most obvious 
opportunity for displaying his individual taste. There are 
cases when one given word, and no other, expresses a 
given idea ; but this is not the general rule. In most 
phrases there are words which might easily be changed 
for others. In every language there are many words 
which have never been used by some authors, and other 
words used only once by their inventor. The contrivance 
of new compounds, and even of entirely new meanings 
for old and simple words, is of common occurrence in the 


style of great writers. A knowledge of the words invented tendency 

by an author and only once used by him is an important to invent 

factor in determining questions of style and ascription. We ^^"^ words 

need a full index of such words invented by all authors °^ °°™' 

who lived in Plato's time. In comparing them we should ^j.^^^^^^ 

probably find that Plato proceeded in some respects classes of 

differently from others in his new formations. We should notions. 

be led to observe what methods of composition were used 

by him in each of his works. We should be enabled to 

classify the occasions when he was most inclined to have 

recourse to such new formations, as, for instance, in 

employing mathematical, physical, or dialectical terms ; 

and we should remark a difference between the manner of They vary 

expressing these notions at various epochs of Plato's life, in various 

taking as our starting point a few productions undoubtedly '^^■^^^ ^^' 

written very late, as the Laws, and comparing them , 

With other works, as to which there is ample evidence j-j^ten at 

that they date earlier: for example the Apology. No- different 

body doubts that the tenth book of the Bepublic was epochs. 

written after the first book, and many authors agree that 

it belongs to a much later period. In some cases there is 

also a general agreement as to the relative date of two 

dialogues ; thus it is certain that Plato wrote the Politiciis 

after the Theaetetus, the Timaeus after the Bepublic, and 

it is scarcely less certain or less generally admitted 

that the Philebus was written after the Laches and 

Charmides. A comparison between such groups would 

lead to definite conclusions as to the direction taken by 

Plato in the modifications of his style. 

Besides this chapter on new words, we need in Poetical 

Platonic lexicography another chapter on rare words "^^^'^^^ 

borrowed from poets. It is not usual to introduce into "^^ ^ 


philosophical prose words which have been heretofore ,, 

r r r more than 

used only in poetry. The language of verse always differs ^„ o^her 
from prose language, and the difference is exceptionally prose 
manifest if we compare the tragedians with the Attic writers. 

F 2 



Use of 

Kare and 
used dif- 

of each 
word in 
Plato not 
yet inves- 

for the use 
of each 
kind of 

orators. Plato is known to have used liberally words which 
before him were peculiar to dramatic poetry, and it is an 
interesting question to answer, whether this taste be 
equally prominent in all his works, or be chiefly apparent 
in some of them. 

Words borrowed from a foreign dialect would form a 
third class of rare words to be classified and enumerated. 
This classification could be definitely settled only after 
collecting all the lexicographical evidence, because it would 
serve no purpose to form classes out of a few chosen 

In the above three classes we should include first 
of all such rare words as are used for the expression of 
some peculiar idea. Their use depends mainly on the 
thoughts they convey, and is essentially different from 
that of common words occurring frequently and not 
generally indispensable in cases where they occur. Among 
these common words the particles are conspicuous. The 
new compounds, poetical and foreign words were closely 
related to the contents of the text ; it is not so with 

We are still far from possessing a complete index of 
the Platonic vocabulary, informing us precisely how 
often a characteristic word occurs in each dialogue. 
Assuming that no word used by Plato is missing from 
Ast's Lexicon '"' and Mitchell's Index,*''^ it might be 
easily ascertained how many different words, and espe- 
cially how many substantives, verbs, adjectives, etc., he 
used. But a separate effort would be required to calculate 
the frequency of each word in each work. Even if we knew 
the exact number of times each word occurred, there would 
still remain the special task of calculating the oppor- 
tunities for its occurrence. Such calculations are needed 
for but a small part of the vocabulary, because words of 
rare occurrence in all works form the majority. Ast's 

"" F. Ast, Lexicon Platonicum, vols, i.-iii. Lipsiae 1835-1836-1838. 
'"'- T. Mitchell, Index Graecitatls Platonicae, 2 vols. Oxonii 1832. 


Lexicon contains on 1,975 pages approximatively 10,000 words are 
different words used by Plato, while the whole number of not the 
words in the text of all the works of Plato amounts ^^'^^• 
roughly to 600,000.i«3 

If each word in Plato's text be used, on an average, A limit 
sixty times, we might be justified in defining as rare words, between 
words which in all the writings of Plato occur less than sixty ^^^'^ ^"^ 
times, or on average less than once in twenty pages (ed. . 

Didot). These would form the majority, and a certain -^^ 
natural limit of scarcity would soon be detected, by the by the 
absence of certain degrees of recurrence. Suppose for average 
instance that, as appears from some inedited calculations frequency, 
by Tadeusz Micinski, the number of words occurring less 
than ten times is above 7000, and that x^ is the number 
of words occurring between ten and twenty times, gene- 
rally x„ the number of words occurring between lOn 
and 10(?i-l-l) times, then the limit of rare words will 
be reached when x^^ — 0=x,^^^=x„^.^ .... We should at Limit of 
once observe that there are no words occurring more than scarcity 
m and less than m + y times, and with those occurring reached 

m + 11 times would began the series of common words up 

. . certain 

to such words as occur a maximum of times, possibly ^^ ^^^^ ^^ 

thousands. Such statistics of Plato's vocabulary would frequency 

require immense labour. A new Lexicon Platonicum are 

with all the above indicated details, in spite of the utmost missed. 
economy of space, could not occupy less than several 
volumes like Bonitz's Index Aristotelicus. 

Even this would give us knowledge only of one aspect Arrange- 

of Plato's style : its vocabulary. But, as Plato himself ment of 
observed, we should examine in a speech not only the 

'"^ This number of different words used by Plato has been calculated 
by Tadeusz Micinski upon the assumption that each 100 entries fills 20 pages 
of Ast's Lexicon, as has been found by counting the entries on 20 pages in 
twenty-five different parts of the lexicon. The total number of words used 
by Plato results approximately from the consideration that the text of all 
the 35 works bearing Plato's name, including the small spurious dialogues 
and some of doubtful authenticity, fills in Didot's edition only 1245 pages 
of 54 lines, with 8-11 words in each line. 




by Plato 
from their 
ratio of 
the parts 
of speech 
of fre- 
and the 
teristics of 

very char- 
in Plato's 
later style, 
as may 
be seen 
from two 
samples of 
500 words 
in Prota- 
goras and 

choice of words, but also their arrangement {Phaedr. 236a) . 
The arrangement of words is more difficult to define than 
their number. The same thought may be rendered not 
only by different words but also by a different arrange- 
ment of the same words. 

One of the characteristics of arrangement is the 
numerical proportion between verbs, adjectives, substan- 
tives, and other kinds of words, because in many cases 
the same word appears as adjective or verb or substantive ; 
the repetition of a noun can be avoided by a pronoun, 
and this allows many possible variations. For instance, 
' a wise man is unable to become anjust ' and ' vvisdom 
forbids injustice ' express substantially the same thought, 
while in the first we have thrice as many adjectives as 
substantives, and in the second no adjective at all. It is 
highly probable that Plato did not always preserve the 
same proportion in the use of various parts of speech. 
More especially the numerical relations between adjec- 
tives and substantives, between substantives and verbs, 
between these and adverbs, afford very characteristic 
properties of style, which might enable us to notice 
similarities or differences between one composition and 

The knowledge of these quantitative relations of every 
kind of word is intermediate between the lexicographical 
statistics of the scarcity or frequency of each term and 
the study of the construction of phrases. Here the 
immediate object of study would be the relative position 
of subject and predicate, of nouns and determinatives, 
adverbs and verbs, which may all occupy the first or the 
second place. No author follows a uniform practice in 
this respect, and variation is the rule ; but at each period 
of life an author may show a certain predilection for one 
or another order in the phrase. Taking only the first five 
hundred words in the Laws and comparing them with 
the first five hundred words in the Protagoras, we may 
readily see how great are the differences between the two 



dialogues as to the use and order of the substantives and 
the adjectives : 

Number of 

In Protagoras, 
words 1-500 

In Laics, 
words 1-500 



Verbs (including participles) . 
Adjectives preceding the correlated \ 

substantive / 

Adjectives following the correlated! 

substantive / 






If further calculations confirmed these, then it would 
appear that in his later style Plato used many more sub- 
stantives and adjectives than in his earlier writings, and 
that he acquired in old age a predilection for putting the 
noun before its qualifying words. But in order to draw 
such conclusions the examination should be extended to 
all the works of Plato, and should include the position of 
adverbs before or after the verb, of genitives before or 
after the noun on which they depend, and of all kinds of 
words in their mutual interdependence. 

If we observe that the Philebus has some hundred 
peculiarities in common with the Laios, and has very few 
constant characters in common with other dialogues, then 
we may be justified in ascribing the Philebus and the 
Laws to the same epoch of Plato's life, w^th a certainty 
scarcely less than that which enables us to recognise that 
Plato and Demosthenes both wrote Attic prose. 

But, besides these, there remain some other classes 
of stylistic peculiarities : the length, construction, and 
interdependence of phrases ; the rhythm produced in- 
tentionally or resulting naturally from the order of 
words selected ; the recurrence or exclusion of certain 
phonetic effects, as, for instance, avoidance of the hiatus 
or the repetition of syllables with the same vowels or 
consonants ; a preference for certain sounds ; the use 
made of quotations and proverbs ; the frequency of 


tests are 
if their 
number be 

Variety of 

such tests 
will be 
with the 
of similar 



ness of 
upon the 
ance of the 
logy of 
and is far 
than that 
of idle 
on Plato's 

based on 
of the 
which are 

rhetorical figures and tropes ; and many other points which 
would be suggested in the course of such inquiries. 

Such investigations are useful, inasmuch as they lead 
us to a better knowledge of the mental development of 
one of the greatest of all thinkers. Hundreds of German 
dissertations on Plato contain mere repetitions and A^ague 
generalities, of no importance for our knowledge of this 
philosopher. Had their authors spent the same time in 
studying some special property of Plato's style, they would 
have made valuable additions to the positive knowledge 
of his development. The task of investigating every 
detail of style seems immense, but the number of persons 
fit for such work is much greater than the number of 
those capable of passing judgment on Plato's philosophical 
doctrine. Any student, with a moderate knowledge of 
Greek, is made richer for life by a single reading of all 
Plato's works, and this requires but an hour's study a day 
during a year. And if in such a reading attention be 
directed mainly to some special peculiarity of Plato's 
style, the impression produced by the contents need not 
be weakened. Each year in all countries hundreds of 
students dedicate their time to classical philology. If 
but one in a dozen undertook a study of Plato's style, 
within ten years our knowledge of Platonic chrono- 
logy would have progressed more than in these twenty 

Of the foregoing programme of investigation but a 
very small part has been executed, and this without any 
systematic common aim. Zeller, criticising chronological 
conclusions based on stylistic investigations (Philosophie 
der Griechen, II. i. p. 512), objects that the number of 
characteristics investigated is too small, and that only if 
it amounted to hundreds could we thence draw inferences 
as to the chronological order of Plato's dialogues. Of 
all the investigations made, Zeller quotes only those of 
Dittenberger, Schanz, Frederking, Gomperz, and Hoefer. 
He is apparently unaware that besides these authors there 


are many others whose study of Plato's style does extend 
over hundreds of stylistic peculiarities. It is unfortunate 
that these studies are little known, being chiefly pub- 
lished in school programmes or as university disserta- 
tions. The authors, generally unaware of the work of 
their predecessors, were therefore unable to appreciate 
the cumulative evidence afforded by the coincidence of 
results obtained through different methods. A full biblio- 
graphy of Plato '"^ is as necessary and desirable as a 
complete Lexicon Platonicum,^^^ and neither is likely to 
appear very soon, for such works require an amount of 
material resources which is rarely at the command of 
Platonic scholars. 

Important contributions to the knowledge of Plato 
have been buried in introductions to the text of a single 
dialogue, or in dissertations privately printed for the pur- 

'"^ The bibliography of Plato is, up to the present time, very incomplete. 
Besides such general works as those of Ueberweg and Zeller, many indica- 
tions of older literature are found in : W. S. Teuffel, Uebersicht der 
Platonischen Litcratur, Tubingen 1874 ; J.Vahlen, ' Zur Litteratur des Plato ' 
(Zcitschrift fur Oesterrcichische Gymnasien, 23'" Jahrgang, 1872, p. 518) ; 
W. Engelmann, Bibliothcca scriiJtomm classiccyrum, 8th ed. Lipsiae 1880. 
The current literature is indicated almost exhaustively in the quarterly 
Bibliothcca i^hilologica classica, published since 1873 by S. Calvary in 
Berlin. For a full Platonic bibliography it would be indispensable to sup- 
plement the information contained in these publications by a careful 
comparison of the catalogues of larger public libraries, and even of smaller 
university libraries in Germany, France, Great Britain, and Italy. Also the 
numerous antiquarian catalogues issued yearly by many German second- 
hand booksellers contain titles of some smaller publications not easily found 
elsewhere. A Platonic bibliography based on all these sources would very 
much facilitate special investigations, if it contained not only the titles but 
also a short account of the contents of rare publications. But such a work 
implies much travelling, because all the materials could no''where be found 

'°^ The mere cost of reprinting Ast's Lexicon, which is now very rare, has 
been estimated at 700Z., and as the work is incomplete, a revision and 
thorough comparison with the text of the best edition of Plato would be 
indispensable. The cheapest cost of such a labour has been estimated by 
Dr. C. Bitter (cf. note 134) at 750Z., which raises the expense of a new edition 
of Ast's work to 1,450L, while the number of buyers for such a work could 
scarcely exceed a few hundreds. This removes the probability of such a pub- 
lication being undertaken in the ordinary way. 

in small 
tracts or 
in peri- 
No biblio- 
graphy of 

A survey 
and com- 
parison of 



sable as 
tion of the 
above as- 
though it 
is difficult 
to make 
it exhaus- 

tions on 
made by 
hardt of 

From his 
work some 

pose of obtaining degrees. Many are rarely to be found 
in circulation or in public libraries, and for this reason 
writers on Plato often neglect their predecessors. In 
these circumstances it may be useful to give here a short 
review of over forty publications referring to Plato's style, 
and to insist upon the lesson they teach when their con- 
clusions are compared. It is probable that besides these 
authors others have written on this subject, without 
being aware of the importance of their investigations. 
It is common to all these detailed inquiries that, con- 
sidered separately, they seem inconclusive, while taken 
together they prepare the way for a complete change 
of the prevailing views on the matter to which they 

I. Engelhardt. The merit of priority in considering 
the question of Plato's style (but without chronological 
applications) belongs to Friedrich Wilhelm Engelhardt, 
late director of the gymnasium in Gdansk (Danzig). 
He published in the course of thirty years (1834- 
1864) five dissertations on Plato's style ^"^ in five school 
programmes never mentioned in any later work on that 
subject. His aim was not chronology but grammar, 
and he undertook in the first three dissertations a very 
careful study of the examples of anomalous construction 
in Platonic phraseology. After a long enumeration of all 
' anacolutha ' found in the works of Plato, he classified 
these stylistic phenomena, and repeated very carefully 
for each class the indication of all passages containing an 
example of that particular construction. 

From these very interesting tables we can easily 
gather some indications bearing on the Platonic chrono- 

""* F. G. Engelhardt, Aiiacoluthorum Platonicorum spccimina, i. ii. iii. 
program. Gymnasii Gedanensis 1834, 1838, 1845. The third dissertation 
contains on pp. 37-46 and 47-48 two indices of the passages enumerated also 
in the first two. By the same author, also as programme of the same gym- 
nasium in Gdansk : De pcriodorum Platonicarum structura, dissertatio 
prima (pp. 1-36), Gedani 1858, dissertatio altera (pp. 1-27), Gedani 
1864 (iv-v). 


logy. In order not to increase the bulk of our refer- pecu- 

ences, we must limit our quotations to those stylistic liarities of 

marks which may be regarded as characteristic of later l^'*^^ style 

style, being either limited in their occurrence to the latest 

. . ... gathered 

dialogues, or at least increasing m their frequency. To ^^^ j^ 

exclude characteristics occurring occasionally in earlier eluded in 
dialogues would deprive us of a useful measure of affinity the follow- 
between each of them and the latest group. With a view ^^s list 
to clearness of exposition and arrangement we take for °* ^^^ 
granted what will only appear as the ultimate result of ^"' ^^ 
our inquiry, namely, that the Sophist, Politicus, PJiilebus, ,. .,. 
Timaeus, Critias, and Laws form the latest group of of piato's 
Plato's works. This, as will be seen in the course of this style. 
exposition, becomes probable beyond reasonable doubt 
by the totality of stylistic observations, because these six 
dialogues have hundreds of stylistic peculiarities which 
occur nowhere else in Plato, and likewise show an increas- 
ing frequency of peculiarities which in other dialogues are 
exceptional. For easy reference the stylistic peculiarities 
of Plato's later style follow here in the chronologic order 
of their observation, and are numbered consecutively.* 
Among the twenty classes of altered construction 

* In the following enumerations the dialogues are quoted in their 
probable chronological order; the numbers placed after the name of 
each dialogue indicate the number of occurrences ; where no number 
is given, the occurrences have not been counted. The numbers 
are printed in different type to show their relative importance. 2, 3, &c. 
mean that a peculiarity is repeated 2 or 3 times in the dialogue named, but 
is not frequent. 3, 4, &c. mean that the same peculiarity, occurring 3 or 4 
times, must be looked upon as frequent, in view of the size of the 
dialogue, if each occurrence is found on average more than once in 12 pages 
^ed. Didot). Numbers printed thus : 34, mean that a peculiarity is very 
frequent^ occurring once or more in every two pages. + means a word not 
used before Plato ; (A), a word used by Aristotle ; * an oiro| etprj^eVoj/ 
according to the author from whom the observation is taken. Dialogues 
of dubious authenticity {Clitopho, Minos, Hippardius, Epinoniis, Theages, 
Hippias Major, Alcibiades I. and II., Amatores) or of no logical import- 
ance (Hippias Minor, lo, Menexcnus, Lysis) are omitted in this list. The 
writings on the style of Plato are numbered consecutively in the notes by 
small Eoman numbers placed after each title : i-xlv. 



of con- 
by Engel- 
hardt are 
in the 
Laws and 
other late 

tions of 
hardt are 
not pecu- 
liar to 
later style 
or do not 
refer to all 
the works 
of Plato. 

enumerated by Engelhardt the following characterise 
the later style : 

1. ' Anacoluthiae genus quod ex symmetriae studio oritur' 
(Anacol. Platon. sioec. III. p. 39) is a change of construction 
produced by Plato's increasing taste for symmetry, and consists in 
beginning the second part of the phrase in the same manner as 
the first, as for instance in Phaedr. 233 b : roiavTa yap 6 i'pas 
fTrideiKwrar 8v(rTvxovi'Tas p.ev, a fxrj Xvtttjv tois (iWois Trapex^h 
dvLapa TToiel vopi^dv evTV)(ovuTas 8e Ka\ ra fxi) i]8ovr]S a^ia 
nnp^ eKeLvcov ina'ivnv avayKa^fi Tvy^avf iv. Such changes of 
construction were observed by Engelhardt in : Gorg. 1 Crat. 2 
Phaedo 1 ; Rep. 1 Phaedr. 1 ; Soph, 1 Phil. 1 Tim. 2 Legg 3. 

2. Change of construction in consequence of the more con- 
venient form of the continuation (ex commodiore sequentis 
structurae forma, p. 39), as, for instance, Euthyd. 281 d : Kiv^vv^vei 
av fiTravra, a to irpSoTov '4(papev dyaOa elvai, ov n(p\ tqvtov 6 \6yos 
avTols eivai, oVcuf avrd ye Ka6' avrd rricfiVKii' dyadd. . . . Such 
anacoluthife are found : Meno 1 Euthyd. 1. Symp. 1 ; Rep. 5 ; 
Polit. 1 Phil. 4 Tim. 4 Legg. 4. 

3. Two different constructions co-ordinated and dependent 
on the same enunciation (III. p. 41 : anacolutliia fit duabus 
structuris conjunctis), as for instance, optat. with Av and infinitive 
both dependent on doKel in Lach. 184 b, or o)v with genit. partic. 
and infinitive in Charm. 164 e. Such cases were foiind : Apol. 1 
Charm. 1 Lach. 1 Gorg. 1 ; Rep. 4 ; Legg. 9. 

4. Anacolutliia ex transitu orationis suspensae in directam vel 
contra (III. p. 41) : Gorg. 1 Symp. 1 Phaedo 4 ! Rep. 3 Phaedr. 1 
Theaet. 2 ; Soph. 1 Phil. 1 Legg. 2. 

5. Cases of omitted apodosis are quoted (p. 44) by Engelhardt : 
Gorg. 2 Symp. 2 Phaedo 2 ; Rep. 1 ; Phil. 1 Legg. 8. 

The other kinds of change of construction enumerated 
by Engelhardt do not appear to be specially frequent in 
the latest dialogues. His collections extend over all the 
works of Plato, and include more than four hundred cases. 
Being unaware of the chronological application of his 
work, he perhaps did not attempt a painful completeness 
of quotations. But even if he collected only those 
changes of construction which struck his attention in 
a first reading, we may assume that he had no special 
reason to notice the actual occurrence of such cases in one 
work more than in another. His observations are therefore 
valuable, and they may be accepted as at least approximate. 


This author's later investigations on the construc- 
tion of phrases are hmited to the PJiaedo and Bepuhlic, 
so that they afford no matter for comparison. It is 
interesting, however, to notice that according to Engel- 
hardt co-ordination of phrases prevails in Plato over 
subordination, and that the principal sentence generally 
precedes all subordinate clauses. Herein he sees a 
radical difference between Plato and Demosthenes, who 
inverted more frequently the natural order. Engel- 
hardt thinks {Period. Plat. I. p. 26) that this difference 
in the order of co-ordinate and subordinate sentences 
is due to the dialogical character of Plato, as opposed 
to the rhetorical character of Demosthenes. He would 
perhaps have been less confident as to the essential 
difference between the style of Plato and Demos- 
thenes, had he given as much attention to the Laios ■ 
as to the Bepuhlic and Phaedo. It remains an inter- 
esting problem to compare the Laws and other dialogues 
as to the construction of phrases, and Engelhardt's 
classification would be most useful for this purpose. 

II. Kayssler. Of less importance is a small disser- other 
tation by Kayssler '°^ (1847) on Platonic terminology. The authors of 
author accuses Plato of inconsistency in the use of terms, *^^^ ^^™^ 
even as defined by himself, and enumerates the terms ^P°°_^^^® 
which he held to be the most important, without any 
attempt at comparing earlier with later dialogues, or 
at using the difference in terminology as an instrument 
of chronological determination. 

III.-V. J. Braun io« (1847, 1852) and A. Lange 'o^' 
(1849), quoted by Engelhardt, seem also to have left 

"" Kayssler, TJchcr Plato's i^hilosopMsche Eunatspraclic, Oppeln (Polish 
Opole) 1847 (vi). The inexactitude of quotations is seen from the fact that 
Kayssler aflirms p. 13 to have found crvvaywyi] and Siaipeats only in Phaedr. 
Soph., while they occur also in Theaet. Eep. Phil. 

""* J. Braun, De hijpcrhato Platonico i. ii. progr. gymnas. Culmensis 
(Cheimno), 1847, 1852 (vii-viii). 

'"^ A. Lange, Dc Constriictione periodorum, imprimis Platonis, Vratis- 
laviae 1849 (ix). 

less im- 



of Lyk 
an in- 
tion on a 
class of 
have been 
by Plato, 
but few 
can be 
in this 


tion of 
is incom- 

chronology out of the question in their investigations on 
Plato's phraseology. To the same time belongs the 
dissertation of F. Michelis ""^ (1849), which deals more 
with Plato's views on style and grammar than with any 
specialities of Plato's own style. 

VI. Kopetsch. Some interesting observations are 
contained in the dissertation of Gustav Kopetsch (1860), 
teacher in the gymnasium of Lyk."' He also had no 
chronological purpose, but his grammatical aim to collect 
from Plato's writings every kind of information about 
the use of adjectives in to9 and tsos gives us an oppor- 
tunity to select from his enumerations such uses of this 
class of words as appear to be peculiar to Plato's later 
style : 

6. Adjectives in tos composed from a substantive and a verb 
are very rare. Kopetsch enumerates only (pp. 4 and 19) : Phaedr. 2 
{(r(j)vpr]\nTos 236 B, vvfx(f)6XT]7rTOi 238 d) Tim. 1 {nvpiKavros 85 c) 
Critias 1 {x^fiponoir^Toi 118 c), Legg. 1 {alxp.a^(i>ros 919 A). 

7. Adjectives in ro$, oxytona, formed from compound verbs 
(p. 6) : Prot. 2 Meno 3 Phaedo 1 ; Rep. 1 Phaedr. 1 ; Polit. 1 Tim. 4 
Legg. 3 {napaiTrjTOS, Sta/SaTo's, f/cXe/croy). 

8. Superlatives in TOTaros, beginning with 8vs or ev (p. 7) : 
Phaedo 2 {bvcrikeyKToTarov, evappocrroTarov) Tim. 3 (SiicraXtordraroi', 
tvaKiVTjTOTaTov, evKivrjroTnrov) Legg. 1 {dvapfraxei-pKTTOTaTov). Suj)er- 
latives in totutos of other adjectives occur besides: Apol. 1 Prot. 1 
Symp. 3 Rep. 3 Soph. 1 Phil. 3 Tim. 2 (with the preceding Tim. 5). 

9. Adjectives in tos composed of an adjective and verb : 
Phaedo 1 {noXvdpvXrjros) ; Rep. 1 (TToXvdpvXrjTos) Phaedr. 1 
{laropeTprjTov) ; Polit. 2 {oXoo-xi^ttos) Tim. 1 (veorprjTos) (p. 19). 

Kopetsch quotes many other uses of adjectives in 
TOS, but without attempting completeness of quotation 
except in the above cases of very rare occurrence. Of 
some hundred adjectives quoted and classified by this 
author, many might be included in our list, had their 

no -p. Michelis, De enuntiationis nahira, sive dcvi quam in gramviatica 
habuit Plato (pp. 1-63), Doctor's dissertation, Bonn 1849 (x). 

"' G. Kopetsch, Dc verbalibtis in tos et Teas Platonicis dissertatio, cui 
intextae stent breves dc Homcricis adnotationcs, Lyck 1860, programme of the 
German Gymnasium in Lyk (xi). 


occurrence been completely investigated. This was not 
the aim of Kopetsch, since he was not aware of any 
application of his work to Platonic chronology. For 
his purpose it was sufficient to quote a few characteristic 
occurrences of each word. A full investigation of the use 
of adjectives in tos and tsos in the works of Plato remains 
a very interesting problem for future special inquiry. 
Here we quote only two more single words which, 
according to Kopetsch, as well as Ast, occur but seldom 
in Plato : 

10. dyfvrjTos (p. 27) : Prot. 1 ; Phaedr. 1 ; Legg. 1. 

11. nefXTTTos (p. 21) : Theaet. 1; Legg. 1. 

VII. K. ScHONE. The first author who insisted Schone 

energetically on the importance of stylistic observations recognised 

as leading to chronological conclusions seems to have *^® ^"P®' 

been R. Schone ^'^ (1862) in his dissertation on Plato's "°"*y°^ 

Protagoras. But he had a very superficial knowledge , . 

of Plato and of the means of defining literary style, means of 

Schone, despising enumeration of stylistic characteristics, chrono- 

quotes the authority of art critics, who judge whether a logical 

picture has been painted by Raphael or Murillo, without conclu- 

condescending to give special reasons for it, and he wishes ^^°"^' ^^^ 
to introduce into Platonic chronology such artistic intuitive 

judgment without the help of reasoned evidence. Still, ^^^^.-^ ^-^t 

Schone is right in his fundamental argument as to the method of 

comparative value of style and contents for chronological measuring 

conclusions. He declares that an author can put in each differ- 

work such contents as he chooses, while his style will ^°°^^ °^ 

simply be the result of his effort to write as well as he ^^ ^' 
can, if he is so careful about the form of his writings as 
Plato was. Hence style is the surest measure of the 
stage of a great writer's evolution. Schone quotes Lessing 
and Goethe as competent authorities for such a view on 

"- Eichard Schone, Uchcr Platons Protagoras, Leipzig 1862 (xii). The 
author confesses his indebtedness for a great part of his theories to Prof. 
Weisse's lectures on Plato delivered in 1860-1861 at the University of 


the stylistic progress of great writers, and he concludes : 
* wir diirfen den Stil als ein schlechthin allgemeines und 
sicheres Kriterium betrachten, wo es sich um Echtheit 
und Zeitfolge der platonischen Schriften handelt ' (p. 21). 
But after having thus clearly set forth the importance 
of stylistic study in determining Platonic chronology, 
Schone fails to find a right method for such investiga- 
tions. He believes an exact analysis of style impossible, 
ignoring the labours of Engelhardt, Braun, Lange, and 
Kopetsch ; and invokes a mysterious power, the ' feeling 
of style.' 

This ' feeling ' led Schone to see a higher degree of 
stylistic perfection in narrated conversation than in 
dramatic dialogue. He inferred that all narrated dia- 
logues — the Charmides, Protagoras, Banquet, Phaedo, 
Republic, and Parmejiides — are later than all the works 
whose form is dramatic. Schone did not perceive that 
Plato, after having used the form of narrated dialogues, 
grew tired of the repetitions which it involves, and 
returned to the primitive dramatic mode. Had Schone 
limited his judgment to the relation between Protagoras 
and the small dramatic works, such as the Laches, Crito, 
Euthyphro, his observation of the stylistic perfection of 
a narrated dialogue could not have led him to the 
absurdity of placing the Lmos and even Timaeus earlier 
than the Bepublic. Thus he discredited the method 
which he was the first to propose. He did not under- 
stand that for a philosopher contents are more important 
than form, and that the artistic skill which Plato 
exercised on his narrated dialogues was peculiar to a 
time when the deepest problems of thought had not yet 
absorbed the writer's whole attention and endeavour. 
Schone represents Plato as struggling during his maturity 
for perfection in the form of the philosophical dialogue, 
after spending earlier years in elaborating philosophical 
convictions. Thus the Sophist and Philehus appear to 
Schone earlier than the Protagoras. He had the merit 


and boldness of drawing extreme consequences from his 
theory, arriving at the untenable conclusion that Plato 
renounced dialectical aims for the sake of artistic perfec- 
tion (p. 82). 

VIII. C. Martinius. What Schone attempted by a Martinius 
mistaken route has been more successfully carried out knew the 
as regards a special characteristic of Plato's style by "8^* 
C. Martinius"^ (1866, 1871), who, himself a teacher, "'^'^'?'^' 
began with the conviction that Plato as a teacher must 

" . . work 

have progressed in the art of interrogating, and that vemained 

therefore differences in the form of questions might incom- 

lead to chronological conclusions as to the order of the plete, 

dialogues. Martinius first collected what Plato himself being only 

had said upon the art of asking questions, and then pro- ^ ^^°' 

ceeded to classify the interrogations found in Plato's ^^^^^ 

. . . deserving 

dialogues. Ji/numeratmg not less than eighteen differ- ^j^^ ..^ 

ent kinds of questions, he invites the reader to continue tion of 
the inquiry as to the occurrence of each of these in future 
the entire works of Plato, in order to establish the pro- investi- 
gress made by the philosopher in his practice as a teacher. ga,tors of 
Martinius himself published, five years after his first 
effort, a very short summary and continuation,"^ in which 
he insists on the importance of ' Suggestivfragen,' that 
is, questions which take for granted something not yet 
accepted or discussed. 

Such questions seek to determine something sup- 
posed to be known, while it is really not known, as 
if a prisoner were asked the time when he committed 
a crime which he has not admitted. In Plato's dia- 
logues the imputed object is not an action but a know- 
ledge, as, for instance, when {Phaedr. 276 a) Socrates 
asks whether another kind of teaching is not much 

"^ C. Martinius, ' Ueber die Fragestellung in den Dialogen Platos,' in 
the Zeitschrift fiir das Gyinnasialwesen, xx" Jahrgang, Berlin 1866, 
pp. 97-119, and 497-516 (xiii). 

"^ C. Martinius, ' Ueber die Fragestellung in den Dialogen Platos und 
liber eine besondere Eigenthiimlichkeit derselben,' Jahresbericht ilber das 
Progymnasium zu Norden, 1871, 4to., pp. 1-18 (xiv). 






Tlie pro- 
blem of a 
tion of 
in Plato's 
by Ueber- 

of a 

of the 
of Platonic 
logy by 

better and more powerful, while he had not yet named 
that other kind and obtained assent as to its existence. 
Such questions were seen by Martinius (ii. pp. 9-13) in 
Gorg. 486 d, Bep. 414 b, 421 c d, Phaedr. '276 A, Theaet. 
158 B, 187 c D, 190 E, Farm. 156 d, Polit 218 a, 290 a, 
302 B, PJiil. 38 DE, Legg. 646 e, 691 b. We cannot 
include these quotations in our list of characteristics 
of later style, because Martinius did not profess to give a 
complete enumeration but only examples of each kind 
of questions. He seems not to have continued and 
completed these investigations, which are remarkable 
for their method and originality, and might serve as a 
starting point for anybody who undertook to realise 
the programme proposed by the ingenious Hanoverian 

The problem of defining the differences between 
various modes of putting a question in Plato's dialogues 
had been also slightly broached by Ueberweg (Unter- 
suclumgen, p. 207), who observed that in the SojjJiist, 
the Politicics, and the Philebus, as also in the Timaeus, 
Critias, Laws, the play of question and answer becomes 
more and more conventional and more remote from 
the tone of natural conversation, approaching to the 
form of an uninterrupted lecture. The observation of 
such a peculiarity limited to only six dialogues (Soph. 
Polit. Phil. Tim. Critias Legg.) was in so far a very 
important first step in conscious determination of Plato's 
later style, since it could not well be attributed to chance. 

IX. Lewis Campbell. No single characteristic of 
style, however important, suffices for general conclusions, 
as the case of Schone shows. It is edifying to see the 
great contrast between Schone's confidence and the 
modest caution with which stylistic inferences were 
justified by an author who alone enumerated and com- 
pared more characteristics of the style of Plato than all 
other investigators put together. This contribution to 
the study of Plato's style, still after thirty years the 


most important of all, is contained in the introduction means of 
to an edition of the Sophist and Politicus of Plato by the study 
Lewis Campbell, then Professor of Greek in the Uni- °* Plato's 
versityof St. Andrews (1867). '*^^^- 

Campbell ^^^ knew none of the authors enumerated 
above, and he approached the study of Plato's style quite 
independently, with the special purpose of determining 
the date of the dialogues which he edited while main- 
taining their genuineness. He had the original idea of 
going through Ast's Lexicon Platonicicm and of finding 
out what words are peculiar to each dialogue in common 
with the group of Timaeus, Critias, Laws, which are 
recognised to be the latest works of Plato. 

He assumed that a word, for which Ast quotes Campbell 

references only from a few dialogues, does not occur else- based his 

where. This assumption is probably correct in the great i^^^^tiga- 

majority of cases, and is quite justifiable in a first general 

inquiry, though it would be desirable, after collecting j^^y.^^.^^ 

such words as Ast quotes only from a few dialogues, to ^nd had 

examine the bulk of Plato's text in order to be certain thespecial 

that they occur nowhere else. When Ast prepared his purpose of 

Lexicon Flcitonicum, more than seventy years ago, he <letermm- 

could not foresee the importance now attached to precise '°". .^ 

reference ; and for some particles, which have been ^ ^, 

.of the 

specially investigated afterwards, and are peculiarly ^liaiogueg 
characteristic of Plato's later style (as, for instance, he edited. 
yu,7;y), Ast quotes only a small number of the instances 
remarked by later writers. 

In the introduction to an edition of two dialogues, 
Campbell could not go into so many details as later 
investigators of Plato's style ; he does not quote the 
single passages in which each word occurs, nor even 
all the words observed, and he condenses the results 
of a long and tedious labour into a few pages of dry 

"* The Sophistcs and Politicus of Plato, luith a revised text and 
English notes, by the Eev. Lewis Campbell, M.A., Professor of Greek in the 
University of St. Andrews : Oxford, at the Clarendon Press, 1867 (xv). 

u 2 



His work 
to all later 
gators of 
style, and 
he did not 
insist on 
the im- 
of his dis- 

Thus it is 
to explain 
his obser- 

enumeration (Introduction, pp. xxv-xxx), which, to 
be fully appreciated, needs more comments than the 
author cared to give. His observations are of such 
novelty, that, giving so many new facts, he left the 
reader to weigh them and to judge the correctness of the 
conclusions drawn with admirable sagacity by the 

Such readers as he had did not notice the importance 
of the evidence collected. Having brought together ma- 
terials sufficient to prove that the Sophist and Politicus 
must have been written in Plato's old age, Campbell con- 
cludes with the modest phrase : ' If our hypothesis of 
the comparatively late origin of these dialogues is correct, 
the non-appearance of the Philosopher coincides with and 
renders more significant the abandonment of meta- 
physical inquiry in the Laws.' He had laid the first 
foundations of a new solution of the problem of Platonic 
chronology. Twenty-two years later, reviewing a Ger- 
man book, which on a much smaller basis proclaimed 
like results with much greater confidence, Campbell 
said''*' with equal candour: 'Now, if not before, it is 
clearly proved that the Sophistes, Politicus, Philehus, 
Timaeus, Critias, and Leges, in this order, or nearly so, 
form a separate group, and are the latest written . . . 
inquiries wholly independent of each other have led to 
this coincidence of result.' 

An author capable of such self-effacement could not 
impress upon the reader his convictions as definitive 
truths, and, accordingly, Campbell's investigations re- 
mained entirely unnoticed for nigh thirty years. "^ It 

'"^ TJic Classical Review, February 1889, pp. 28-29, review of C. Ritter, 
Unterstic]iU7igen ilber Plato, by Lewis Campbell. 

'" The first public recognition of the exceptional importance of 
Campbell's investigations on the style of Plato is contained in the vol. ix. 
pp. 07-114 of the ArcJtivfiir Geschichte cler Philosophie (October 1895) in an 
article ' Ueber Echtheit Reihenfolge und logische Theorien von Platos drei 
ersten Tetralogien ' and in the Bulletin dc VAcad&mie des sciences de Cracovie, 
October 1895 pp. 2G8_277, where the Polish work O pierwszych trzech 


was also not suspected that the introduction to an edition vations 

of the text of two isolated dialogues could contain a capital in order to 

inquiry into the vocabulary of all the works of Plato, enable 

Under these circumstances it may be well to recall '^^^^^^ 

Campbell's chief observations, the more so as these should ,° ^^^^^ 

. . them. 

be repeated, m order to give them greater exactness 

than can be afforded by our confidence in the relative 

completeness of Ast's lexicon. 

Assuming, with all competent writers, that the Laws, He chiefly 

as well as Timaeus and Critias, belong to Plato's latest sought 

period, Campbell sought for peculiarities of style which, ^^^ P^^*^" 

being common to these works, are also observed in others. ^^^^^^^^ 


He found the following points in which the Sophist and , 
Politicus, partly also the Philebus, are similar to the similarity 
Timaeus, Critias, and Laws : of SopUst, 

12. The Sophist and Politicus are both the middle pair of an un- Politicus, 
finished tetralogy, sketched out in the second dialogue of the series ; so and Phile- 
are the Timaeus and Critias (Introduction, p. xix). In both tetralogies Ims to 
the plan of the four consecutive dialogues was not indicated in Timaeus, 
the first of the series. Neither in the Eepublic is there any hint Critias 
as to the author's intention of writing the Timaeiis, Critias, and andiaws 
Hermocrates ; nor is there in the Theaetetus any clear indication con- . , 
cerning the Sophist, the Politicus, and the Philosopher as an intended , 
continuation. In both tetralogies the fourth dialogue remained un- 
written. There is no evidence that Plato ever wrote the Hermocrates 
announced in the Timaeus, or the Philosopher announced in the '^''''^iogy 
Sophist. The first dialogue of both tetralogies is condiicted by planned 
Socrates, while in the second and third Socrates remains a listener, in the 
who merely proposes the subject of conversation at the outset. Soi^hist 
The idea of planning out four consecutive dialogues as one larger 

tetralogjach dziet Platona, by W. Lutosiawski, is announced. In France 
Campbell's discoveries became known only after a lecture delivered on 
May 16, 1896, in the Institut de France, in Paris, before the Acad^mie des 
sciences morales et politiques, and published in vol. cxlvi. of the Conipte 
rendu des seances et travaux de VAcadimie des sciences morales et politiques, 
also apart with an additional preface : W. Lutosl-awski, Sur une nouvelle 
m&thode pour determiner la chronologie des dialogues de Platon, Paris, 
H. Welter, 1896. More detailed is the account of Campbell's investi- 
gations in the Polish work of the same author, ' pierwszych trzech 
tetralogjach dziei Platona,' published by the Cracow Academie des Sciences 
in vol. xxvi. pp. 31-195 of the philological memoirs of that society, and also 
in a separate volume, Cracow 1896. 



and that 
which is 
in the 

Socrates is 
no longer 
the chief 
teacher in 
nor in the 

and he 
appears as 
a pupil of 
in the 
sium, of 
nides in 
the Par- 

whole corresponds to the great length of the last work of Plato, the 
Laws. It is also psychologically plausible that Plato, grown old, had 
more to say, and said it in an ampler manner. His recognised earliest 
productions, the so-called Socratic dialogues, are much shorter than 
the works of his matme age. The most obvious reason which 
prevented him from finishing the two intended tetralogies is the 
shortness of life, and this alone would lead us to ascribe the second 
and third dialogues of these unfinished tetralogies to a later time than 
both first parts : that is later than the Republic, and later than the 
Theaetetus. On the other side the Republic and Theaetetus being 
singled out among aU the other works by the circumstance that a 
continuation to them has been given, it seems probable that this 
relation of both to later dialogues is due to their relatively late date, 
because Plato is more likely to have connected his latest works with 
those precedmg them, than with works written very much earlier. 
If we take into account also that the Laws differ from all earlier 
dialogues by their volimae, and that they may be considered as 
consisting of at least four parts, we may observe that the late 
peculiarity of uniting several dialogues into a larger whole extends 
to Soph. Polit. Tim. Critias Zieg-g*. (and to a certain degree 
also to Bep. and Tlieaet.) 

13. The Sophist and Politicus, as weU as Timaeus, Critias, Laws, 
also in some degree the Parmenides and Symposium, are the only 
works of Plato in which Socrates is not the principal figure in the 
conversation, and in which other teachers take his place (Introduc- 
tion, p. xix). Wliile these are named in the Symposium, Parmenides, 
Timaeus, and Critias, they are but tmnamed abstract personalities 
in Sophist, Politicus, and Laws. The stranger from Elea, the 
Athenian stranger, are representatives of pure reason and 
experience, while the Platonic Socrates of other dialogues is 
generally a concrete personage, with a certain historic idiosj'ncrasy, 
although freel}' adapted to the expression of Plato's theories. The 
predominance of other teachers over Socrates characterises only 
seven dialogues : Soph. Polit. Tim. Critias Iieg-g*. and to a 
certain degree Sijmp. and Farm. 

14. The exposition in the latest works is chiefly didactic (Intro- 
duction, p. xx), and the Socratic dissimulation of knowledge, still 
appearing in the Theaetetus, is definitively forgotten. ' The 
Philosopher guides his pupil by a path familiar to himself to 
conclusions which he foreknows ' (p. xx) . ' The speakers are 
playing at a laborious game (Parni. 137 b) to which they are 
evidently not unaccustomed, and which proceeds according to 
certain rules ' (p. xxi). With no sudden gust of eloquence as in the 
RepubUc or Theaetetus, but with a gravity akin to solemnity, Plato 
discusses in these works subjects loftier than those proposed at the 
outset, and displays a fixed conviction of human nothingness. 


This refers to : Farm. Soph. Polit. Phil. Tim. Critias The latest 

teg-g-. seven 

15. From the conversational freedom of the Repubhc we are led dialogues 

to scientific exactness and compression (Introduction, p. xv) ; there jj^yg „ 

is an air of self-imposed restraint : an appearance of studied order 

1 -ci-i 1,. more pro- 

and arrangement becomes manifest also m the occasional reference 

to earlier dialogues, as in the Soph. 217 c the Parmenides is quoted, 

in the Soph. 216 a the Theaetetus, in Polit. 284 b the Sophist, in ^^^^^^^^ 

Tim. 17 c the Eepublic, in the Critias 106 b the Timaeus, and less character 

clearly in the Laws 711a, 712 a, 739 bcd, the Republic. Also tlian all 

the ' preludes ' and ' recapitulations,' disdained in the Phaedrus, earlier 

are quite as common in the Sophist and Politicus as in the works. 

Laws, the Timaeus, and Critias (p. xxiii). This care for form. We notice 

while the perfection of form wanes, may be best explained in them a 

by the increasing preoccupation with the philosophical contents, methodic 

peculiar to the writer's old age. The dry light of reason accompanied proceed- 

the decline of poetical grace and power. A vein of refined and , •, 

caustic satire succeeds to the simple and playful humour of 

earUer times (p. xix). This special and evident care for exactness 

of expression, leading to a fixed termmology, belongs to : Parm. ^ 

Soph. Polit. Phil. Tim. Critias Legrg-. works; 

16. The periods are more elaborate and less regular than in the ^ special 
Republic: (Introduction, p. xxxviii) Sojjh. Polit- Phil. Tim. Critias care for 
Legg. form and 

17. The natural order of words is more often inverted, and the termino- 
hyperbaton in the use of particles is specially frequent (p. xxxvii) : logy. 
Soph. Polit. Phil. Tim. Critias Legg. Phraseo- 

18. The monotonous recurrence of a certain rhythmical cadence Jq„„ more 

(Introduction, pp. xx and xl) under the increasing fascination of gioVjorate 

rhythmical linguistic music : Soph. Polit. Phil. Tim. Critias . 

^ "^ ° -^ Inversion 


19. Careful balancing of words so as to relieve the tediousness 

of a prolonged phrase by the counterposition of noun and epithet, ^^ ^ 

verb and participle, subject and object, and by the alternation of effects 
emphatic and unemphatic words (Introduction, p. xli) : Soph. Polit. sought for. 
Phil. Tim. Critias Legg. Symmetry 

20. The adjustment of long and short syllables so as to quicken in the 
or retard the movement of the sentence. Sometimes short order of 
syllables are accumulated as in choric metres ; more often a words and 
sentence is concluded with an iambic hemistich, or with a dochmiac, even in the 
each generally terminating with a dissyllable, which is often divorced Qj-^gr of 
from the immediate context (Introduction, p. xlii) : Soph. Polit. ,, ,, 
Phil. Tim,. Critias Legg. 

For all these peculiarities Campbell quotes examples These 
which need not be repeated here, because points 16-20 points 



be in- 
of the 
by Blass. 
Of many 
cal pecu- 

quoted by 
only one 
can be in- 
cluded in 
our list 
he did not 
ness of 

The vo- 
of Plato's 
is very 
ing many 

deserve renewed inquiry, as they have not been treated 

21. The avoiding of the hiatiis, a peculiarity of the same order, 
though not expressly noticed by Campbell in 1867, is implied in the 
influence of rhetorical artifice on Plato, to which Campbell directs 
our attention (p. xl). According to later investigations of F. 
Blass '-- (1874) the avoidance of hiatus is limited to the following 
dialogues : Soph. Polit. Phil. Tim. Critias Iieg-g-. 

22. The use of the Ionic dative plural in ai was indicated by 
CampbeU (p. xxiv) as a characteristic of later style. Its occurrence 
has been later exactly determined by C. Ritter, and found only 
in : Rep. 6 Phaedr. 3 Polit. 4 Tim. 2 Legg. 85 (C. Ritter, Unter- 
suchungen, p. 9 ; also Jowett and Campbell, Republic, vol. ii. 
p: 52). 

Some other grammatical peculiarities of later style, 
observed by Campbell, as : perfects with present meaning, 
participles with auxiliary verb, neuter article with the geni- 
tive to express the abstract notion of a thing, ellipse of to 
fisv etc. with TO 8s etc. following, redundant or explicit use 
of the participle, repetition of a verbal notion which has 
been already expressed or implied (Introduction, pp. xxiv- 
xxvii) cannot be included in our list, because they are in- 
dicated without a complete quotation of their occurrences 
in all the writings of Plato. These points ought to 
be investigated anew by some philologer acquainted with 
Campbell's work, and they would yield very interesting 

The most important peculiarity of Plato's vocabulary 
in his later works is its originality, leading the author to 
invent many new words, or to mould old words to new ideas 
with an affectation of variety and minuteness of distinc- 
tion (Introduction, p. xxx). In the Laws Campbell found 
1,065 words occurring nowhere else, on 317 pages of text 
(ed. Stephani ; Campbell quotes 345 pages because he did 
not take into account the space without text at the end of 
each book). This yields a proportion of 336 original words 
to each 100 pages, an originality of vocabulary absent from 
earlier works of Plato. The Timaeus and Critias show 


the same tendency to the use of rare words, as they have used 
on 90 pages 427 words unused elsewhere by Plato, only 
This raises the proportion to 474 original words in 100 °°^^* 
pages. It does not imply that Plato in writing the 
Timaeus and Critias tends to a greater use of new and 
rare words than in writing the Laws, for physics exceed 
politics in the opportunities for such usage. In such a 
political treatise as the Laws, 336 new words to 100 pages 
show as great a leaning to an original vocabulary as 427 
new words to 100 pages in a physical treatise. Turning 
to the Sophist and Politicus taken together as one whole, 
in 107 pages there are 255 new rare words not found else- 
where in Plato, a proportion which corresponds to that of 
239 in 100 pages. That this bent towards the use of rare But this 
words was increasing we can easily see by comparing the peculiarity 
three dialogues which were avowedly written by Plato in "°* 
succession. In the Theaetetus he employs 93 new words ^^ 

. investi- 

unused elsewhere, that is 133 to 100 pages (ed. Steph.), m ^^^ 
the Sophist 187 to 100 pages, in the Politicus 295 to 100 through- 
pages ; but in the Philehus only 100 to 100 pages, and in out all the 
the Phaedrus 326 to 100 pages. (These last numbers are works of 
given in vol. ii. of the edition of the Bepublic by Jowett ^^^^° '^^^ 
and Campbell, pp. 53-55.) It is to be regretted that 
nobody has as yet calculated these proportions for the n n 
Parmenides, Republic, and for earlier dialogues. The terms, 
numbers given by Campbell refer only to : Phaedr. 
Theaetet. Soph. Polit. Phil. Tim. Critias Legg. 

This originality of vocabulary is a very powerful 
argument in favour of the late date of the Sophist 
and Politicus, but cannot be included in our list of 
marks of later style, so long as comparative statistics 
about all the works of Plato in this respect are not estab- 

The absence of a fixed terminology, which is observed 
by readers of the earlier dialogues, is less noticeable 
in the Sophist and later works. In all these dialogues 
a great number of rare words recur, besides those used 



used in 
besides in 
only one 
of the 

allows a 
of affinity 
each dia- 
logue and 
the latest 

only once, and this repetition of new and rare words 
shows an incHnation to ' fix in language some of the 
leading generalisations of philosophy ' (Introduction, 
p. xxx). 

Taking the Timaeus, Critias, Laics, as containing 
Plato's latest terminology, Campbell counted the words 
which each dialogue shared with this latest group, and 
which occur nowhere else in Plato. If we reduce the 
numbers given by Campbell to the proportion of 100 
pages, and if we allow a correction consisting in count- 
ing as common and peculiar to Sophist and the group 
of the Laws also those words which, besides these four 
dialogues, have been used only in Politicus — then we 
have in the Sophist to 100 pages 108 new words common 
and peculiar to the Sophist and to the group of the Laws. 
In the Politicus the number of such words rises to 136 
in 100 pages, counting also those which besides occur 
only in the Sophist. Of the other Platonic dialogues, 
the Phaedrus alone shows a vocabulary which in almost 
equal measure approaches that of Plato's recognised latest 
writings, containing a proportion of 117 rare words to 100 
pages (ed. Steph.), which apart from this dialogue are used 
only in the group of the Laws. This does not necessarily 
prove that the Phaedrus belongs to the same epoch, 
since, the Phaedrus being in more senses than one a pro- 
gramme, and a work of rare poetic richness and artistic 
excellence, it is natural that Plato should have retained 
in use many words there first employed. Among the 
other writings, the Philebus affords a remarkably low 
proportion of such words. They are only sixty-two to 
100 pages, though in many other respects the Philebus 
is more nearly related to the Sophist and Politicus, and 
also to the group of the Laivs, than the Phaedrus. This low 
figure is explained by the circumstance that no account 
was taken of such words as occur, besides in Philebus and 
the latest three dialogues, also in Sophist and Politicus. 
Assuming that Plato wrote the Philebus at about the 


same time as the Politicus, it would be natural that he 
should use in both some rare words peculiar to the group 
of the Lmvs. Allowing for such words, the figure rises 
to ninety-two rare words in 100 pages (ed. Steph.) com- 
mon and peculiar to the Philebiis with the latest three 
dialogues. The importance of these figures is apparent 
on comparison with those of other works in which 
Campbell counted the words peculiar to the group of 
the Latos. These are seen from the table on the next 
page (calculated on Campbell's table, p. xxxiii). 

In this table some anomalies require explanation. This first 
The Protagoras, being an early dialogue, has more words table of 
peculiar to the latest group than could have been ex- affinity 
pected. To explain this we should require to know what ^^1""^^ 
words these are, because if they refer to some special ^. 

. ' "^ . ^ tions as to 

subject treated in the Laws as well as in the Protagoras, ^he Par- 

the coincidence would be natural. Later inquiries have menides, 

not confirmed such an affinity between the Protagoras Theaete- 

and the latest dialogues. On the other side the numbers ^"*' ^^^ 

for the Theaetetus and Parmenides are remarkably low. -P'^^^^'^'**' 

This might be explained by the circumstance that Camp- 

111 -.• 1 • 1 -. -■•-■ -in- 1 have been 

bell according to his method did not include m these ,j^ , 

numbers those words which, besides occurring in each later 
of these dialogues, are found in some other dialogue investiga- 
belonging to the same epoch. The correction of the error tions to be 
resulting from this omission can be made here only for nearer to 
the Sophist, Politicus, and Philebus, and has altered very *^^ Laws. 
much the proportions given by Campbell. Keally, if a 
word is peculiar to the latest dialogues and is found besides 
in two other works, the occurrence of this word in these 
two works is as much a sign of affinity between them and 
the latest group as (and is perhaps more significant than) 
if the occurrence were limited to one dialogue besides the 
three latest works. The Theaetetus has many words in 
common with the Bepublic, the Parmenides many words in 
common with the Theaetetus and Sophist, as later investi- 
gations have sufficiently shown. All these words were 



Statistics of rare words in Plato according to Lewis Campbell. 

Name of 


Number of 

of i-are '' 
words oc- 
curring in 
each dia- 
logue, and 
only in 

Proportion to 
100 pages. 

of rare 
in one 


and no- 

else by 

to 100 pages. 








Euthyphro . 
Apology . . 
Crito . . . 
Channides . 
Laches . . 
Lysis . . . 
Protagoras . 
Meno . . . 
(rorgias . . 
Cratylus . . 
Symposium . 
Phaedo . . 

Crito . . 
Charm. . 
Lach. . 
Lys. . . 
Prot. . . 
Gorg. . 
Crat. . . 
Symp. . 
Phaedo . 



4 or 3 " 






29 or 21 


33 or 25 


II 1 


r 3 s ^ 

^X ? 











Republic . . 

Theaetetus . 

Rep. . . 
Phaedr. . 
Theaet. . 









Parmenides . 
Politicus . . 
Philebus . . 
Timaeus . . 
Critias . . 

Laws . . . 

Parm. . 
Soph. . 
Polit. . 
Phil. . . 
Tim. . . 
Critias . 

Legg. . 







52 = 
j over 
I 508 = 

over 1146" 

15 16 

108 142 

136 174 

92 121 

over over 1 

564 794 1 

( over over ) 

1361 488 f 










Menexenus . 
Ion .... 

Hipp. Minor 
Alcibiades I. 

Menex. . 
lou . . 
Hipp. I. 
Ale. I. . 














' The dialogues are in their presumed chronological order, as resulting from the sum 
of stylistic observations, 1834-1896 ; in some doubtful cases, as for the first six small 
dialogues, the traditional order preserved in Manuscripts (tetralogies) has been main- 
tained. The Rejnihlic is placed between Phaedo and Fhaedrus, with reference to the greater 
part of it, though it is supposed tliat the beginning of the Rep. was written before the 
Phaedo, and some other parts after the Pliaedrus. Those which have no logical import- 
ance and wiU not be dealt with in tlie present work (Menex., Ion, Hipp. I., Ale.) are omitted 
and follow only in this table after the Laws. 

- These numbers are not given by Campbell, but are calculated on his 'numerical ratios.' 

' The pages ed. Didot are more eiiually printed than in any other edition ; and they form 
the best measure of the amount of text. 

■* Corrected after elimination of an error resulting from the circumstance that Campbell 
counted in Rep. and Legg. also some pages without text, between every book and the 

' This immber contains the words common to Tim. Critias with Legg., and those occur- 
ring in Tim. Critias, and nowhere else, according to J. and C, Rep. Vol. II. p. 57. 

" This number contains the words common to Tim. Critias with Legg., and those of Legg. 

' Including five such words wliich also occur in Polit. 

' Including five words which are also found in Soph. 

" Including eight such words, which are also found in Soph. Polit. 

'° This number results from the ratio ^ given by Campbell, counting 295 pp. as he 
counted. The proportion is increased through the omission of pages without text. 

" From the ratio given by Campbell the result would be 3J words ; he may have found 
three or four. 


excluded by Campbell from the number of words 
* common and peculiar ' to each dialogue with the group 
of the Laivs. Thence, partly, the low figures for Theaetetus 
and Parmenides. As to the Parmenides, the very peculiar The 
and exceptionally abstract contents of this dialogue also affinity of 
make it impossible to find many rare words in it, because ^°P^^^^^ 

,1 J. X 1 £ -\ t I , Politicus, 

the greatest number oi rare words refer to concrete ^, , 

1 • ] A X i- ii -1 1 -■ -1 ■ Philebtis, 

objects. Apart irom these easily explained exceptions, ^^^.j^ 

Campbell's observations, as represented in the above table, Timaeus 

show clearly that the Sophist, Politicus, Pkilehus, also Critias, 

the Bepuhlic and Phaedriis, have the greatest affinity in Laws, is 

vocabulary to the latest dialogues. There results the ^vi'ient- 

following important addition to our list : 

23. Occurrence of rare words common and peculiar to each 
dialogue with the latest group once or more in each page (ed. Didot) 
is confined to : Rep. 246 Phaedr. 61 Soph. 57 Polit. 75 Phil. 52 Tim. 
and Critias SOS Legg. 1146, while such words are scarcer, but 
still occur more than once in two pages in : Symp. 33 Phaedo 4.? 
Theaet. S7. 

Campbell found by this method over seven hundred 
characteristics of the later style of Plato, each word 
recurring in certain dialogues being as much a pecu- 
liarity of the style of these dialogues as any of the 
more general stylistic properties. He inferred that the The 
Theaetetus and Phaedrus form with the Bepuhlic an group of 
earlier group (p. xxxix) than Sophist, Politicus, and ^^puhlic, 
Philebus, and that these more nearly approach Timaeus, ^^'■"S' 
Critias, Laws m their stvie than any other works of , 

'^ THS also 

Plato. He could not have so correctly recognised the recoe- 
middle group of Republic, Phaedrus, and Theaetetus, had nised by 
he simply considered the number of characteristic Campbell, 
peculiarities, without taking into account also their though his 
nature. The weighing of evidence in every kind of ^'^^^^^'^^ 
statistics is the indispensable condition of correct con- . 
elusions, and Campbell has shown a surprising power ^i^^^^^ v^ 
of divination in connecting the Theaetetiis and Phaedrus phaedrus 
with the Bepuhlic in face of the purely numerical data he much 



later and 
the Theae- 

But he 



method of 
all later 
The Par- 
some sig- 
terms re- 
in later 
The vo- 
of the 
is poor 
but very 

had collected. All later inquiries have confirmed this 
connection and removed the anomalies which Camp- 
bell's statistical table still offered. Had Campbell relied 
blindly on nmnbers alone, he would have concluded 
according to the evidence afforded by his observations that 
the Parmenides is one of the earliest works of Plato, as 
Schleiermacher imagined ; that the Theaetetus belongs, as 
Zeller thinks, to about the same period as the Protagoras ; 
and that finally the Pliaedrus is later than the Philebus. 
These natural errors he happily avoided and this gives 
to his work a methodic value far above everything done 
after him in the study of Plato's style, since later in- 
quirers frequently discredited their method by unjusti- 
fiable generalisations from a single occurrence of a single 
expression in a small dialogue, as for instance of tc ix-qv in 
the Lysis. 

The Parmenides has a poor vocabulary, but it contains, 
as Campbell has shown, some highly characteristic words 
(Introduction, pp. xxv-xxx compared with Ast's Lexicon 
as to the number of occurrences). 

24. yevos as a logical term : Phaedr. 1 Parrn. 3 Soph. 4^ Polit. 1 
Phil. 2 Tim. 7 Legg. 1. 

25. Secr/io?, as a bond uniting ideas : Parm. Soph. Polit. Phil. 
Tim. Legg. (This special meaning has not been distinguished by 
Ast, and Campbell does not give the number of occurrences.) 

26. fiede^Ls : Parm. 3 Soph. 2 (A). 

27. /xepi'C'^ : Parm. 4 Soph. 1 Polit. 2 Tim. 3. 

28. TToXiof : Parm. 1 Polit. 1 Tim. 1. 

Also the vocabulary of the Philebus, though less rich 
than that of the Politicus, is quite sufficient to indicate 
the place of this dialogue. Of words used in the Philebus, 
Campbell enumerates the following as very characteristic 
terms common to later dialogues (Intro, pp. xxv-xxx) : 

29. yevfcris, in the sense of production in general : Soph. Polit. 
Phil. Tim. Legg. (A). 

30. a-vfim^is : Soph. Polit. Phil. Tim. Legg. 

31. vXtj, in the general sense of matter or in a sense approach- 
ing this : Polit. Phil. Tim. Critias Legg. 

32. axlC<^ ■■ Soph. Polit. Phil. Tim. 


33. 8ianeplCo) : Polit. Phil. Legg. teristic, as 

34-36. cifjLeTpos, 8idKpi(Tis, aapa ( = body in general): Soph, it contains 

Phil. Tim. Legg. , 

, . . a great 

37-38. avyKpiais, auideais : Soph. Phil. Tim. Legg. (A). , 

39. 8iaxcoplC<o : PoHt. Phil. Tim. ' number 

40-41. BLaXuyi^ofiai, eiriKKrjv : Soph. Phil. Tim. 

42-43. areWopat, arrtSfZt/: Soph. Phil. Legg. *^^™^ ^^' 

44. dy^pcos: Polit. Phil. Tim. Legg. curringin 

45. TrXaros : Polit. Phil. Critias Legg. Timaeus 
46-48. (TvyK€(j)a\aiovpai, ivdpidpos, 8o^o(To(f}ia : Soph. Phil. or Laws. 
49-51. nrj^is, o-vyKpnaLu, KaTanavoi : Polit. Phil. 

52. aveiXiTTQ), in Phil, corresponds to dvelXi^is in Polit. 

53. ptxPi-^fR '• Soph. 1 Polit. 3 Phil. 1 Tmi. 4 Critias 1 Legg. 16. 
(The number of occiurrences for this word was found later by 
C. Ritter, see p. 59 of his TJntersuchungen ilber Plato. In all 
other dialogues ewo-Trep is used, which occurs also concurrently with 
pexpmep and oftener than this, except Tim. Critias Legg. in which 
both words occur an equal number of times, according to Ditten- 

One glance at these words shows for what kind of This 
notions Plato sought new terms in his later writings, shows the 
Eight words refer to division and reconstitution of unities influence 
(30, 32, 33, 35, 37, 39, 49, 50) which Plato had proclaimed °^ ^""^"^^ 
in the Phaedrus (266 b) as a divine art, worthy of the 
greatest admiration. Four words indicate logical opera- 
tions (40, 42, 43, 46), six physical and mathematical 
notions (29, 31, 36, 38, 45, 52). This agrees perfectly 
with what we know of Plato's latest investigations. His 
dream was a general theory of science and classification 
of human knowledge. 

Campbell's study of the vocabulary of the Sophist and The 
Politicus confirms the above enumerated general analogies ^'^P^'''^^^ 
between these dialogues and the group of the Laws. ^" 
Striking, indeed, is the number of words used by Plato 
only in the Laws and m one of these dialogues. richer in 

The following twenty-six words, first used in the terms 
Sophist, recur in the Laws (Intro, pp. xxv-xxx) : proper to 

54. * ayKUTTpiVTiKOi in Soph, corresponds to * dyKiarpeia in ^^^^'^ ^ 
Legg. ^^^^^ ^*y^®' 

55. * fvvypodrjpiKos in Soph, corresponds to * ivvypodrjpevTrjs in denoting 



cal, physi- 
cal, and 

ance of 
from the 
poets and 

56-58. * vovdeTTjTiKos, * avvofioXoyia, * crvvdiaTrova) : Soph. Legg. 

59-63. dya>vi(TTLKJj, (iiaa-TiKos, eiKacrTiKrj, eipccviKOS, (f>apfiaKOTro(Tia. 

64. opvidevTLKoi in Soph, corresponds to opvidfvrrjs in Legg. 

65-68. Terms expressing logical operations: didyvaxris, pepls, 
Trapcoirvpiov, Trpoa-Koivcjvai : Soph. Legg. 

69-73. Poetical words : ddaios, cinXfTos, ^evios, 7rapa(f)po(Tvvr} (in 
Soi^h. corresponds to wapcKppav in Legg.), TrXaoTaJs' : Soph. Legg. 

74-79. Compounds and derivatives : dKparrjs, dvaaraTos, dcjjep- 
firivevco, aKOToSivia, To\p.T]p6s, p-Lcrdaxris (A) : Soph. Legg. 

The following forty-three words occur in the Politicus 
and in the Laics (Intro, pp. xxv-xxix) : 

80-84. dpvvTTjpios, Tiaiyviov, ttK^ktiko^, aKiTvaapa (A), (TTaaiacrTiKOi 
(in Polit. corresponds to o-racrtcoreia in Legg.) : Polit. Legg. 

85-89. Dialectical terms : dnopfpi^co, dnoa-xi^a, eKKplvco {eKKpiros 
Legg.), fniveixco, "^ yvapLcris : Polit. Legg. 

90-100. Physical and mathematical : dvaroXr], a(})e(Tis (A), 
yvpvaa-Tris, * dpvoropiKr] (in Polit. corresponds to * 8pvorofj.La in Legg.), 
iiriCTKevd^opaL, enicnrevda, pcTprjais, perprjTos, * avpno8r]yovpm (in 
Polit. corresponds to irohrjyfiv in Legg.), vnepoxh, v<prj : Polit. Legg. 

101. dBfOT-q^: Polit. Legg. 

102-108. Poetical : dvTU^io^, -yeirofw, evoiirvpos, T]av)(aLOS, Kprjnis, 
(Tvvbpopos (A), avPTpoc})os (A) : Polit. Legg. 

109 122. Compounds and derivatives: d(f)vXaKTos, i'yKaipos, 
eKdoaii, ipTTopevTiKos (in Polit. corresponds to epTropeCopat in Legg.), 
evXal3r]f, IrapoTT]! (in Polit. corresponds to Irapas in Legg.), prjwrrjs, 
fjiovapxia, Trpoa-plyvvpi, Trpoarv)(T]s, avyKaraa-Kevd^u), rjpepaios (A), 
BvpavXelv (A), vopoOerrjpa (A) : Polit. Legg. 

The following are found only in the Sophist or 
Politicus, and in the Timaeus or Critias : 

123-127. Dialectical : KadapriKos (A), ua-xicrTos (A), Stax/jt/SoXo- 
yovpai, TTpoopoXoyovpai, diaSpavo) : Soph. Tim. 

128-130. Physical : 8irj6e'iv (A), (vkvkXos (used first in a quota- 
tion from the philosopher Parmenides), iVoTraXe? (also from Par- 
menides) : Soph. Tim. 

131-132. Poetical : ^lanepdw, Kpvipalos : Soph. Tim. 

133-134. Compounds or derivatives: pedrjpepivos, to. cjxjouijflevTa : 
Soph. Tim. 

135-141. 8iaXvTiK(')i, KaTaKocrprjCTis, KaraOpava ,TTapdXXa^is , (TvpniXw, 
(Tvvv(paLvoL), (TvXXayxdvco : Polit. Tim. 

142. duaKVKXrjaLs (in Polit. corresponds to dvuKVKXovpni in Tim.). 

143 144. biopicrpos (A), avvcmepyn^fcrdai (A) : Polit. Tim. 

145 146. * kvkXt^o-is, *pa({)r]: Polit. Tim. 

147-148. ^poxos, rrjKTos : Soph. Critias. 

149. 8i<iXnyxdvM : Polit. Critias. 


Many words enumerated by Campbell are not limited Some of 
to two dialogues, being in different ways characteristic of these 
later style: words are 

found in 
150-155. * StoTTopo), * OTTjiTj-fp, Kvpros, napd(f)opos (in Soph, Legg. , ,, 

corresponds to Trapa(f)op6TT]s in Tim.), crvpcpvijs, xfpo"«'os : Soph. 

TT- two Cllcl- 

im. Legg. ^ 

156-158. inev/opai, ciyios, x'^^f^oTrjs: Soph. Critias Legg. ° 

159-165. * 8uiv6rj(ris,d7rXavr]i, 7rpo^o\rj, rpoTTT) (as an astronomical 
term), decnroTis, TpinXovs, ndixTrav (A) : Polit. Tim. Legg. 

166-167. dypdpixciTos, fTTeyaapa : Polit. Tim. Critias. 

168-170. a-vvoXos (A), ^aiva, fvirpfTTrjs: Soph. Polit. Legg. 

171. avve(f)enopaL : Soph. Tim. Critias Legg. 

172-173. avvvofjios (A), nepiXfiiro) : Polit. Tim. Critias Legg. 

174-176. fvv8pos (A), TOfiT] (metaphorical), nXtyna : Soph. Polit. 
Tim. Legg. 

Some words are limited to Sophist and Politicus only 
(Intro, pp. xxvi-xxix) : 

177-181. * ap.(f)icri3riTrjTi.K6s, '"' yva<p€VTiKds, avTOTru>X.r)s, dneprjpoo), 
(Twripvu) : Soph. Polit. 

Here we have a list of 158 characteristic words Words 

observed by Campbell in more than one of the six latest "^^'^ °'^'y 

dialogues of Plato, and showing clearly the direction of ^^_ "'^^ 

Plato's tendency to use rare and new words in his old , 

'' nave no 

age. Besides these Campbell enumerates 93 words used chrono- 
by Plato in the Sophist and nowhere else, and 157 logical im- 
words used only in the Politicus. Among these 250 words portance 
whose use is limited to a single dialogue, 60 have not 
been used by any other Greek author (14 in Sophist and 
46 in Politicus), and 39 have passed into the language of 
Aristotle (14 from Sophist and 25 from Politicus). The 
numerical proportions of all these peculiarities of vocabu- 
lary may readily be seen from the table based on Camp- 
bell's enumerations, given on p. 98. 

In addition to these, Campbell gives also a list of Campbell 
fourteen words which, without being peculiar to the later has thus 
dialogues, occur with greater frequency in them than in ^^^^' 
Plato's other writings. Among these ^pd^o), aTrspyd^o/jiai, "^^^^^ 
TTpoaipsladai, (f)v\ov, i/jL(j)avc^o), (fiavrd^scrOaiy diro^acns, 





anq ja^uAA aaqijo 
a'iiu .tq pasn ^on 





-^-a g m' =! S C i '-^ 

"f.^: ai-i " S . -< 
C = S3 13 .2 43 1 

^"■° . !D ? S S 


A'q pasn , 

















-Hai puB 
•nqa: "Odog nj 



. = ° 



* puB -odes ni 



o = " 

00 ~ 

puB -odos ni 






.* 1-1 

m i 


pui; -odog Ul 





.2 P J, -5 « b g. 

a •odog m 





00 r-1 


6, 'W^l 
puT! •:;iiod: lit 








put! -imod ni 






O^.S 31-: 2 a) «-g 

= d-^ 5EH3t> 3 t 

ais.- s 5^"?- 

5 - = ■■^' = ""^ Ji ^-S 
■« ©"S ^ ^ -S •< ., , i t; 

"^ 7 <" S 5 S 2 S-o 

■^ C ^ -r, -^ A § = 3".S. 
-= ..sS-* d^3 b T 

a -c s 3 ,§ .' a 2 b 

S ^cc -J " S '-' ■? °- ** 

■is;;^4!^'S i b-g'". 

g -I, t^ t^ " tJ _b ^ „-o 






O (M 

puB -qdog UI 








puB -qdog UI 


U5 '"' 

o = ° 

X " 



9m ni 




o ■' 



Leti = Tim. Critias Legg. as one 
whole. Sopo = Soph, and Polit. as one 

a , 


rt 61) M 

C8 O O 


a. 1-3 




^ o 
S Ss 

.2 3 

o S 

• a. ■ 
■r '^ 


• i • 

S bi.<J 



' ' ' \ 


■-C- ■ 
m f- 

£:- &- 


pr}6sv, Trp6(rpr]fxa, the indefinite irorspos. are characteristic late date 
of the increasing logical interest, while Trspisxoo, irspt- o* the 
Xafi^dvo), fisrprjTiKos, /jl£to')(^os illustrate the fondness for '^o^)'!**^ 
compounds and derivatives. The number of stylistic cha- '' ' 

racteristics observed by Campbell m the latest group thus 
reaches 434, of which twelve are of a general character, 
255 refer only to Sophist or Politicus, 153 are common to 
these two with the latest three dialogues (twenty-five to 
the Philebus with the preceding two groups), and fourteen 
refer to the increased frequency of words also used in 
earlier dialogues. Till it be shown that as many 
peculiarities unite the Sophist, Politicus, Philehus with 
some other dialogue, we have good reason to follow 
Campbell in joining them with the group of Timaeus, 
Critias, and Laws. 

X. RiDDELL. At the same time, another editor of Eiddeli's 
another dialogue of Plato undertook an almost equally Digest of 
laborious investigation on the style of Plato, with this Platonic 
difference, that the friend who published it took the pre- ^ ^°™^' 

... . . . llOWGVGr 

caution of mentioning it in the title of the edition. James , , , 
'^ . valuable, 

Eiddell,''** late fellow and tutor of Balliol College, Oxford, affords no 
buried in his edition of the Apology of Plato an appendix of chrono- 
135 pages under the title Digest of Platonic Idioms. He logical 
classifies the idioms used by Plato and quotes examples of conelu- 
all dialogues, but without aiming at complete enumera- ^^°"'^" 
tion, and without being aware of the bearing of such 
stylistic researches on Platonic chronology. Though the 
Apology has more readers than the Sophist, Riddell's 
Digest of Idioms remained almost as unnoticed, at 
least out of England, as Campbell's Introduction to the 
Sophist. As Riddell does not compare the relative fre- 
quency of each idiom in each dialogue, little can be 
gained from his enumerations for the chronology, because 
idioms are less often limited in their occurrence to a few 

'"* The Apology of Plato, tvith a revised text and English Notes, and a 
digest of Platonic idioms, by theEev. James Riddell, M.A., fellow and tutor 
of Balliol College, Oxford, 1877 (misprinted for 1867) (xvi). 


but con- 
firms the 
of the 

on Plato's 


dialogues than peculiar words. Still at least one very 
characteristic idiom observed by Eiddell is peculiar to the 
latest dialogues alone : 

182. The periphrastic use of the participle, with auxiliary verb 
substantive (p. 167) : Soph. 1 Polit. 4 Tim. 3 Legg. 1. 

For those who assert with Schaarschmidt that the 
style of the Sophist, the Politicus, and Philebus is un- 
Platonic, it may be interesting to learn that Eiddell 
found in the Sophist forty Platonic idioms belonging also 
to other dialogues whose authenticity is beyond even 
Schaarschmidt's suspicions. In the Politicus he found 
thirty-six such idioms and in the Philebus forty-five. Few 
dialogues are as much quoted in the 325 paragraphs of 
this interesting monograph as the Sophist, Politicus, 
Philebus, Timaeus, and Laws. 

XI.-XII. ScHANZ, LiNGENBERG. Shortly after the 
labours of Campbell and Eiddell, Schanz i^^ (1870) wrote 
on the hypothetical period in Plato, but at that time he, 
like Lingenberg '*' in his dissertation (1874) on metaphors 
and proverbs in Plato, left the question of chronology out 
of sight. 

XIII. Imme. The same indifference to chronological 
arrangement appears in a dissertation of T. Imme on the 
forms of interrogation '■^' (1873) in Plato. This author 
limited his work to an attempt at classifying interroga- 
tions psychologically, and quoted for each kind only a few 
examples, insufficient for chronological inferences. In 
this case the author's ignorance of the work of others 
on the same subject has done him much wrong. Had 

"" M. Schanz, Bifurcation clcr Uypothctischcn Periodc nach Platon, 
1870 (xvii). 

'•■■'» W. Lingenberg, Platonische Bildcr unci Sprichwortcr, Koln, without 
date, but published 1874 (xviii). The author enumerates proverbs on God, 
men, products of human activity, proper names, uses and customs, and 
literary proverbs. 

'-' Th. Imme Culmensis (of Chelmno), De enuntiationum interroga- 
tivarum naturagencrihusquepsychologorum rationibics atqtie usti maxime 
platooiico illnstratis, doctor, dissert. Lipsiae 1873 (xix). 


Imme known the dissertations of Martinius, he might 
have made an instructive and interesting addition to our 
knowledge of Plato's style. But he quotes only examples 
of each kind of interrogation without aiming at an exhaus- 
tive enumeration. 

XIV. Blass. Another scholar, F. Blass,'^'- the author 
of the History of Greek Eloquence (1874), made a very 
curious observation, thereby unexpectedly confirming 
Campbell's conclusions, though unaware of Campbell's 
work. He remarked that the hiatus is less frequent in 
the Phaedrus than, for instance, in the Symposium, and 
that it is still more rare in Sophist, Politicus, Philebiis, 
TimaeiLs, Critias, and Laivs, where the hiatus is chiefly 
limited to very frequent words as /cat, si, rj, f^/] or the 
article, while all kinds of hiatus are frequent in the 
Bepuhlic and earlier works. Blass inferred from this 
single observation that Soph. Polit. Phil. Tim. Critias 
Legg. were the latest writings of Plato. 

XV. RoEPEE. When four years later (1878) Eoeper^'^^ Koeper 
published his investigation on the dual number in Plato, distin- 
he knew none of the twenty contributions to the know- s"^^^^*^^ 
ledge of Plato's style which have been mentioned above. 

TT T • -1 T/T T 1 • -r-M and mten- 

He distinguishes two dinerent uses of the dual m Plato : ,. , 

*= _ _ tional use 

in earlier writings the common use as in the current of the 
language of the fifth century B.C., and in later writings, dual from 
at the time when the dual fell into disuse, Plato em- the pnmi- 
ployed it intentionally to lend a phrase an air of solemnity. ^^^^ °°™' 
This usage is shown by Roeper to be frequent in Soph. "^""^ ^^^' 
Polit. Phil., though not limited to these dialogues. Very 
characteristic of a time when the use of the dual began 
to be abandoned is : 

183. hvoiv with the phiral of a substantive (p. 26) : Prot. 1 ; 
Rep. 1 ; Soph. 1 Poht. 1 Phil. 1 Legg. 2 (Prot. 355 b and Rep. 546 c 

'-- F. Blass, Attische Beredsamkeif, vol. ii. p. 426, Leipzig 1874 (xx) ; 
also on Dittenberger in Bursians Jahresberichf, vol. xxxiii. p. 234, for 1883. 

'■-^ Augustus Roeper, Gedanensis, De dualis usu Platonico (doctor's dis- 
sertation univers. Bonn), Gedani 1878 (xxi). 


Many uses 
of dual 
forms are 
limited to 
the latest 
group or 
in fre- 





are held doubtful by Eoeper, but these passages must be covuited 
on the authority of the best MS.)- 

Other peculiarities of later style observed by Eoeper, 
but not singled out as such by him, are : 

184. Article ralv (p. 17) : Polit. 1 Tim. 1 Legg, 3. 

185. TO) 8vo without substantive (p. 25) : Soph. 2 Polit. 1 
Legg. 2 (generall}' in other passages ra 8vn). 

186. vav (p. 16): Symp. 1; Phaedr. 1 Theaet. 1; Soph. 1 
Poht. 3 Phil. 4 Legg. 2. 

187. Adjectives and participles in -mv (p. 5) : Rep. 1 ; Soph. 1 
Polit. 1 Tim. 1 Legg. 3. 

188. rexva as dual of rcx^r] (p. 5) : Rep. 2 ; Soph. 1 Polit. 1 
Legg. 1. 

189. Subst. in -mv (p. 6) : Rep. 2 ; Parm. 1 Poht. 2 Legg. 6. 

190. Dual of substantives neutr. in -^ (p. 12) : Rep. 2 Phaedr. 1 
Theaet. 1 ; Soph. 4 Polit. 1 Phil. 1 Tim. 2 Legg. 2 (counting only 
indubitable dual forms ; besides these Roeper quotes many passages 
in which such forms may be either plural or dual, occurring chiefly 
in Soph. Polit. Legg.). 

191. Dual in d (p. 3) ' nominum, quorum etiam in a formas 
licebat praeferre ' : Symp. 1 ; Rep. 2 Theaet. 1 ; Polit. 2 Legg. 1. 

192. Dual TovToi gener. communis (p. 4) : Rep. 2 Phaedr. 1 
Theaet. 3 ; Phil. 1 Legg. 2. Similar to this are also ttoiw Theaet. 
175 c and novoi Legg. 777 c. 

193. Dual of nouns in -oiv II decl. with dficpolv (p. 11) : Prot. 1 ; 
Rep. 2; Parm. 1 Polit. 1 Phil. 1 Critias 1. 

194. a-(p(ou (p. 16): Euthyd. 4; Theaet. 1; Legg. 12. This 
coincidence between Euthyd. and Legg. Roeper explains by the 
circumstance that in both dialogues one person is speaking to 
two others, intimately associated. 

195. 8vo) instead of SJo, according to the best codices, Clarkianus 
or Parisinus A (p. 20) : Rep. 2 ; Soph. 1 Phil. 1. 

196. Tolv dvolv (p. 25) : Crat. 1 ; Soph. 2 Polit. 1 Phil. 1 Legg. 2. 

197. Dual of verb following plural of subject (p. 30) : Euthyd. 2 ; 
Rep. 1 ; Polit. 1 Tim. 2 Legg. 2. 

198. Dual of nouns in -otf with 8voiv (p. 10) : Prot. 1 Meno 2 
Euthyd. 2 Gorg. 3 ; Rep. 1 ; Parm. 3 ; Tim. ."> Critias 1 Legg. 2. 

XVI. Teichmuller. a counterpart of Schone's 
theory of perfection in style was Teichmiiller's '"^^ (1879) 
stylistic test, according to which the dramatic dialogues 
are written later than the narrated dialogues, because 

'■-' Gustav Teichmuller, Die ReiJienfolgc dcr Platonischen Dialoge, 
Leipzig 1879 (xxii). 


Plato in the Theaetetus (143 c) criticises the form of a Schsne, 
narrated dialogue and introduces the dramatic form as o°e styhs- 
more convenient. This easy way of classifying the *^^ ^^°^' 
dialogues according to a single peculiarity of style led ^'^^ ^ 
Teichmiiller to some conclusions as strange as those of (jgcigiyg. 
Schone, though less extravagant, because all the later 
dialogues are dramatic in form, and Plato seems actually 
to have given up the form of a narrated dialogue in his 
old age. But the dramatic form cannot be treated as a 
special invention, and to place with Teichmiiller the Meno, 
Gorgias, and Gratylus after the Theaetetus is almost as 
rash as to recognise with Schone the Timaeus as an 
earlier work than the Bepuhlic. Still Teichmiiller was 
led by his argument to the correct conclusion that the 
Sophist, Politicus, Philebus are later than the Bepuhlic. 

XVII. DiTTENBERGER. A uew method of stylistic I>itten- 
research was proposed by Dittenberger '^'^ (1881), who, berger m- 
though knowing none of his predecessors, happily avoided ^^^"^ "^^' 
the repetition of work already done, and directed his 
attention to a subject not yet investigated, namely the Ya,ience 
relative frequency of synonyms preferred or rejected in ^f ^^^ 
Plato's different works. This effort brought into pro- synonym 
minence some fresh peculiarities of later style : over 

/I- T T^- 1 1 /• another, 

199. Kadanep occurs (according to Dittenberger, and. tor some 

dialogues according to later corrections of C. Ritter, p. 58) : Lach. 1 

Meno 1 Euthyd. 1 Gorg. 1 Crat. 2 Symp. 2 ; Rep. 6 Phaedr. 4 *^^^ ^^^■" 

Theaet. 2 ; Soph. 14 Polit. 34 Phil. 27 Tim. 18 Critias 5 Legg. 148. ^^i" ^^o^'^^^ 

In all other dialogues oxmep is used instead, and prevails very are pecu- 

much over Kaddnfp even in the Bepuhlic (212 times against 6 liar to one 

Kiiddnep), in the Phaedr us (27 against 4 KaOdnf^o), and in the group of 

Theaetetus (47 times against 2 KaOdnep). dialogues, 


The prevalence of one synonym over another is a ^^Yiqv 

peculiarity of style not less remarkable than the total words of 
absence or the appearance of some rare word, and Ditten- the same 

'-^ Dittenberger, ' Sprachliche Kriterien fiii- die Chronologie der pla- 
tonischen Dialoge ' in Hermes, vol. xvi. p. 321, Berlin 1881 (xxiii). The 
numbers quoted by Dittenberger have, in some cases, been corrected by 
C. Eitter, and are given here according to these corrections. 

in other 


meaning berger had the great merit of extending the stylistic 
are used studv to the relative frequency of synonyms ; herein he 
developed independently an idea to which Campbell had 
alluded in a footnote (p. xxxii) when he quoted fourteen 
words of increased frequency in the later dialogues. 

200. (oa-nep is scarcer than KaBdrrep only in : Soph, fl/i^, Polit. 
16134 Phil. 9127 Tim. 10118 Critias ^/5 Legg. ^^/i^^. This scarcity 
of axTTvep, a word which is very frequent in all other dialogues of 
Plato, is certainly one of the most characteristic peculiarities of 
Plato's later style, and coincides with the use of p-^xpinep for eacrnep 
noticed above (Nr. 53). 

201. rdxa 'ia-as : Soph. 2 Polit. 3 Phil. 3 Tim. 1 Legg. 11. 

202. rl pi]v; Eep. 35 Phaedr. 12 Theaet. 13; Parm. 6 Soph. 12 
. Polit. 20 Phil. 26 Legg. 45. 

203. ye p^v: Euthyd, 1 Symp. 1 ; Rep. 2 Phaedr. 1 Theaet. 1 ; 
Parm. 5 Soph. 6 Polit. 8 Phil. 7 Tim. 7 Critias 1 Legg. 25. 

204. oKka . . . p^v: Symp. 2; Rep. 11 Phaedr. 1 Theaet. 1;. 
Parm. 2 Soph. 2 Polit. 3 Phil. 2 Legg. 2. 

205. Kcu pi^v. Euthyph. 1 Charm. 2 Lach. 3 Prot. 2 Meno 5 
Euthyd. 4 Gorg. 9 Crat. 9 Symp. 9 Phaedo 7 Rep. 44 Phaedr. 3 
Theaet. 11 Parm. 25 Soph. 24 Polit. 24 Phil. 20 Tim. 1 Legg. .56. 

This expression, though occurring in so many earlier 
dialogues, may nevertheless be counted among the pecu- 
liarities of later style, because it becomes very frequent 
only in the later dialogues, in which it supplants aWa 
fjirjv, preferred to Kal fx-qv in earlier writings of Plato. 

206. hWd prjv is scarcer than kuI prjv only in : Lach. 2j3 Symp. 
219; Theaet. Gjll ; Soph. 10124 Polit. 7124 Phil. 7120 Tim. Ojl 
Legg. 8j36, while in all other dialogues «XXa prjv prevails over 
Kal pr)v (except Charm. 2 Meno 5 Crat. 9 Rep. 44 Parm. 25 
Critias 0, in which both occur an equal number of times). This 
relative scarcity of dWa ptjv is the more striking inasmuch as the 
strong prevalence of the shorter Kal pr^v cannot be accidental. 

He com- Besides these Dittenberger counted ovhs f^/jv which 

pared the cannot be looked upon as peculiar to later style. He 
c angesm q^^^q^ ^q ^j^g strength of his conclusions by the observation 

the style , i , / ■?, • -, ,. ■, ■ 

of Plat ^^^^ occurs with increased frequency also m the works 

with those ^^ other authors who wrote about the time when Plato 

occurring was over sixty. As Ti fiTjv in the meaning of an affirmative 

in the answer was not used in the Attic dialect, Dittenberger 


inferred that Plato brought it from Sicily. But the style of 
occurrence of ri ^xrjv in a work like the Lysis, which in other 
all other respects has the style of earlier dialogues, tells '''"t^ors. 
against Dittenberger's inference. Even granting the 
Sicilian origin of the expression, there had been, for some 
years before the death of Socrates, sufficient intercourse 
between Sicily and Athens to familiarise Plato with tC 
fxt]v before he visited Sicily himself. His predilection 
for this formula, apparent in all later works, is a result 
of his increasing tendency to strong affirmation, because 
Ti jjLTjv ; has the character of a great logical certainty, 
excluding every doubt : ' What else ? ' i.e. ' How could it 
be otherwise ? ' 

Dittenberger's article was the first investigation of Ditten- 
Plato's style which attracted the general attention of bergei-'s 
German philologers, so much so that, of late, the merit of "^ferences 
introducing statistics of style as a method for determining 
the chronology of Plato's dialogues has been frequently , , 
attributed to him. It was a happy circumstance that jjg^g^^ q,^ 
Dittenberger, in his conclusions from a very small number quite in- 
of observations, committed no greater error than the sufficient 
uncertain assumption that the Lysis came among the evidence, 
dialogues of the second group, between the Symposium 
and Phaedrus. But he correctly recognised the group 
of the latest six dialogues, and admitted that the Be- 
public, Phaedrus, Theaetetus preceding these are later 
than the Symposium, Phaedo, Cratylus, and all Socratic 

XVni. Jecht. Since Dittenberger's publication the jecht in- 
subject of the statistics of Plato's vocabulary has been vestigated 
widely discussed by writers on the chronology of Plato, the use of 
Blass ^^^ recognised the new method as leading to the ^^^ ^^ 
surest results, while Zeller opposed it as too superficial. ^ ° ^ 

works 3.I1Q 

Dittenberger's pupil Jecht '^"^ (1881) chose as the subject » ,' 
for his doctor's dissertation the use of r/S?; in Plato's 

'^•^ Ricardus Jecht, De iisu particulae ijSr) in Platonis dialogis qui 
fcruntur (Doctor's diss. Univ. Halle a. S.), Halis Saxonum 1881 (xxiv). 


some dif- 

But he 
did not 
draw the 
from his 

dialogues. From his observations it results that the 
following uses prevail in later dialogues : 

207. ovK ijtri ; /j^rj . . . ovk or ovk . . . r;S/; ; (p. 12) : Lach. 1 Meno 1 
Gorg. 1 ; Rep. 3 Farm. 4 ; Soph. 2 Phil. 1 Legg. 1. 

208. epredBev rj8r] (p. 50) : Theaet. 1 Polit. 1 Tim. 1 Legg. 1. 

209. Tj^T] TO (or to) iifTo. TovTo {oT TavTo) to effoct a transition 
(p. 50) : Soph. 1 Phil. 1 Tim. 1. 

210. rj^r] Tvas (p. 8) : Euthyd. 1 ; Rep. 4 Phaedr. 2 ; Soph. 1 
Polit. G Phil. 2 Tim. 3 Legg. 6, including also passages, where 
fj8rj is separated by other words from ttq?, ^vfinas, ^vvawa^, -nap-TTa^ 
in their various cases, with or without preposition. 

211. 7r5s rfbr) (p. 8) : Euthyd. 1 Crat. 1 ; Rep. 1 ; Parm. 1 Polit. 1 
Phil. 1 Tim. 1 Legg. 2. 

212. avTos fjhrj or I'jbrj civtos (p. 9) : Crat. 1 Rep. 3 Theaet. 1 
Parm. 3 Phil. 1 Critias 1 Legg. 1, including also such passages 
where a Se or ye separates ^dr] from nvTos. 

213. >j8r] with perfect designing an action terminated only in 
the present time (p. 21), with the meaning of 'by this time' 
{nunmelir) : Rep. 2 Soph. 1 Phil. 1 Tim. 1 Legg. 1. 

214. vivrj^i) (p. 44) : Phaedo 1 Rep. 2 Phaedr. 1 ; Soph. 1 Phil. 2 
Tim. 1 Legg. 2 (rjbr) vvv does not occur). 

215. vvv . . . rjhrj separated by one or more words (p. 45) : 
Charm. 1 Prot. 1 Meno 1 ; Rep. 1 Phaedr. 1 Theaet. 1 ; Soph. 2 
Polit. 2 Phil. 1 Legg. 4. 

216. TOT TJ8r] meaning ' then already ' {damals bereits, p. 46) : 
Rep. 2 Phaedr. 1 ; Parm. 1 Soph. 1 Polit. 1 Critias 1 Legg. 3, while 
in some earlier passages as Lach. 181 d, Gorg. 527 d, Phaedo 87 e 
the meaning is 'not until then' ['■ dann erst' = tuin demum), 
which meaning occurs also in Theaet. and Legg. This difference of 
meaning, similar to the difference appearing in the use of oZtqis rjdi] 
(see below Nr. 220), is very characteristic. Impatient youth 
complains that things were ' not done until then ' (Fr. enfin) ; 
resigned old age is fain to be content that they are ' done so soon,' 
or ' already ' (Fr. deja). 

217. TOT ' fj^T] in apodosi (p. 4G) : Lach. 2 Prot. 1 ; Rep. 2 
Phaedr. 1 Theaet. 1 ; Tim. 1 Critias 1 Legg. 1. 

218. r]8r] between a participle and an adjective belonging to it 
(p. 4) : Rep. 1 Theaet. 1 Legg. 2. 

219. /ier« ToOro tj?)r] (p. 9) : Rep. 2 Tim. 1 Legg. 3. 

220. ovrtuy (y'Srj (p. 9) : Crat. 1 Symp. 2 Phaedo 2 ; Rep. 1 ; Parm. 1 
Polit. 1 Tim. 1, including one instance of ovTmi av fjbr) in Parm. 
145 c. It is important to notice that in the passages of Crat. Symp. 
Phaedo the meaning is ' then ' or 'not until then' Cdann erst'), 
while beginning witli the Republic the four later passages are best 

' translated by 'thus already' {so bereits), which is parallel to the 
use of ror' fj^i]. 



221. r]8r] Kal (p. 13) : Charm. 2 Prot. 2 Meno 1 Crat. 1 Symp. 1 
Phaedo 1 ; Rep. 3 ; Parm. 1 Soph. 2 Poht. 1 Phil. 1 Critias 1 Legg. 3. 

222. fjdr] with phisquam-perfectum (p. 21) : Euthyph. 1 Prot. 1 
Crat. 1 ; Rep. 1 ; Polit. 2 Tim. 2 Legg. 1. 

XIX.-XX. Frederking and Hoefer. Dittenberger's Freder- 

article aroused opposition. In order to show that statistics king's 

of particles are at times inconsistent, Frederking of Dorpat objections 

undertook (1882) to count how many times Plato used ts 

and some other words.'-' He counted roughly and failed , 

I ° ^ _ by a more 

to distinguish the various uses of ts. Hence his investiga- gj^a,ct 

tion loses all importance, all the more that the counting inquiry of 

has been better done by Hoefer '-* (1882), who also studied Hoefer, 

the use of t£ and some other particles, adding to the stock ^^° ^"*^''- 

of peculiarities distinctive of Plato's later style. Hoefer, P^'^'^^^tiy 

as his dissertation shows, knew none of his predecessors 

• n A^l out know- 

save Dittenberger, though he occasionally quotes Camp- j ^^^ 

bell's emendations of the Sophist and Politicus, probably clerking, 

from the original edition. Obviously he had not read counted 

Campbell's Introduction, yet he perceived the importance the same 

of stylistic studies for Platonic chronology. Moreover, particles, 

he recognised that his observations were too few to allow ^^ °^^^ 

of definite conclusions as to the order of the dialogues, ' 

^ ' or T€ and 

wherein he has shown greater caution than some other toi limited 
authors. His careful and complete enumerations yield to the 
the following data : same 

223. Toiyapnvu (p. 40) : Soph. 3 Legg. 2, while in some earher dialogues 
dialogues roiyciprot is used instead, occurring Lach. 1 Euthyd. 1 in which 
Gorg. 2 Symp. 1 Phaedo 1 ; Rep. b Theaet. 1, and never later. Kaddnep 
Hoefer points out that Thiicydides always used rojya'/jrot and never prevails 
Toiyapovv, while in Aristotle only the second form is used. Isocrates, over 
Xenophon, and Demosthenes use hoth. « 

224. Kai p.i)v (w8e (p. 40) : Rep. 2 ; Parm. 1 Soph. 1 Polit. 1 Legg. 1. 

225. yap . . .8r] separated by a verb (p. 25) : Parm. 1 Legg. 2. 

226. /if 1/ . ..T€ (p. 17) : Rep. 1 Phaedr. 1 ; Tim. 1 Legg. 2. 

227. re used after a single word (not a sentence), adding a third 
object after two enmiierated (p. 9) : Rep. 3 Theaet. 3 ; Polit. 1 Tim. 9. 

'" A. Frederking, ' Sprachliche Kriterien fiir die Chronologie der pla- 
tonischen Dialoge,' in Jahrbilcher fur classische Philologie, 28" Jahrgang, 
p. 534, 1882 (xxv). 

'^^ Hermann Hoefer, Dc particulis platonicis capita selecta (Doctor's 
diss. Univers. Bonn), Bonn 1882 (xxvi). 


Even the 
simple T€, 
which at 
first sight 
occurs in- 
in early 
and late 
may be 
used for 
sions if 
some dis- 
are made 
the dif- 

228. Tf . . . re (p. 11) : Charm. 1 Gorg. 1 Crat. 1 Symp. 2 Phaedo 2 ; 
Rep. 35 Phaedr. 12 Theaet. 5 ; Farm. 1 Soph. 3 Polit. 3 Phil. 2 
Tim. 11 Critias 1 Legg. 50. 

229. re ... re connecting single words, not phrases (p. 11) : 
Rep. 5 Phaedr. 5 ; Polit. 1 Tim. 3 Critias 1 Legg. 16. Here we see 
how by distinguishing the various uses of a word the affinity of 
dialogues belonging to the later time is made evident, even if at 
first sight a word's use is not limited to them. This becomes still 
more instructive by the following distinction : 

230. re . . .re connecting two words not separated by any other 
part of the phrase, as in Tim. 37 e : rd r' rjv t6 t ftrrai or Critias 
121 B : TrayKoXoL re fxaKapioire (p. 12) : Tim. 1 Critias 1 Legg. 1. In 
this way sometimes an expression which at first sight appears not 
to be peciiliar to a group of dialogues, may b}^ subsequent distinc- 
tions be used to characterise several groups. According to 
Frederking n . . .re was used indistinguishably in early and late 
dialogues, while according to the above distinctions established by 
Hoefer one particular use is limited to the Republic and dialogues 
later than the Republic, while another particular use exists only 
in the three latest dialogues, Timaeus, Critias, Laws. 

231. The simple re, whose frequent occurrence according to 
Frederking gave no chronological indications, is also shown by 
Hoefer to fmrnish some chronological distinctions. It occurs 
(pp. 5-6) : Apol. 1 Crito 1 Charm. 2 Prot. 1 Gorg. 1 Symp. 1 Phaedo 1 
Rep. So Phaedr. 23 Theaet. 6 ; Parm. 2 Soph. 3 Polit. 6 Phil. 1 
Tim. 193 Critias 27 Legg. 155. It results that it is used more 
than twice only in Rep. Phaedr. Theaet. Soph. Polit. Tim. Critias 
Legg., and more than twice in every five pages only in Tim. 
Critias Legg. This word appears to have two epochs of greatest 
frequency, the proportion being in Rep. 13 times to 100 pp. 
(ed. Didot), rising in Phaedr, to 54 times in 100 pp., rapidly 
declining in the later dialogues until in Phil, it occurred only 
once (corresponding to a proportion of 2 in 100 pp.), to rise 
again to a maximum of 373 times in 100 pp. in Tim., 245 times in 
100 pp. in Critias, and to decline once more in the Laws to 65 
times in 100 pp. There is no reason whatever to doubt that Plato 
might have twice increased and then diminished the use of a 
word, re being frequent in all books of the Laws, it tells against 
C. Ritter's opinion that the Philebus was written at the same 
time as the earlier books of the Laws. Although no positive 
chronological inferences can be drawn from a single stylistic 
peculiarity, we may doubt whether Plato avoided almost completely 
in one work the use of a word frequently iised by him at the same 
time in another work, especially as the use of this word is entirely 
independent of the contents. But such observations are never 
decisive so long as they remain isolated. If some other equally 
important stylistic differences between Phil, and Legg. are found, 


then only the presently observed difference will acquire its full 

232. T€ connecting phrases, placed immediately after the verb 
(p. 7) : Crito 1 Rep. 3 Phaedr. 1 ; Parm. 1 Phil. 1 Tim. ,S' Critias 1 
Legg. 5. 

233. re adding a third phrase to two preceding phrases, which 
are united by kcu, re, re . . . kol, /neV ... re, or fiev . . . 8e (p. 7) : Phaedr. 3 
Tim. r> Critias 1 Legg. 9. Hoefer (p. 7) quotes also two other 
cases of re peculiar to Timaeus and Laws only, too special for 
inclusion in onr list, but very instructive as samples of acute 
distinction in stylistic statistics, showing the close relation between 
these two dialogues. 

234. re used dvaKoXovdoos (p. 13) : Gorg. 1 Phaedo 2 Rep. 4 
Phaedr. 2 Theaet. 1 Tim. 1. 

235. re . . . /cat . . . Se (p. 15) : Critias 1 (118 d) Legg. 1 (708 a). 

Other particles investigated by Hoefer, as yap, rot, ttov, 
St], fisvTot, and their various combinations are more 
characteristic of the earher than of the later style. 

XXI. Peipers. Following closely upon these statistics Pelpers 
of the use of particles appeared the first special work con- '^^^'^^ 
cerning an important part of Plato's terminology, the use ^""^^ f""^' 

. > • ■ . ■ Cllll3.1*ltlP^ 

of the words 6v and ovala. This philological inquiry is f p, , , 
contained in Peipers' ^^ Platonic ontology (1883), and later style 
exceeds in volume all preceding treatises on Plato's style, though 
Of his predecessors, Peipers only knew Dittenberger, style was 
though he quotes Campbell's commentary to the Sophist, not the 
which he used without examining the Introduction. He object of 
observed some differences in the use of the terms investi- "'^ ^*^^ ^' 
gated, but did not build on such stylistic tests any 
chronological conclusions, while he correctly inferred the 
very late date of Parm. Soph. Polit. Phil, from their 
philosophical contents. From his exhaustive enumera- 
tions it results that many expressions may be looked upon 
as peculiarities of later style. 

236. ovras ov, in the meaning of metaphysical being, or ovala He classi- 
ovTcai, in the same meaning, generally ouTa^ as a metaphysical fied the 
term, are found by Peipers (pp. 30-31, 514, 540) in : Rep. 3 Phaedr. 3 ; various 
Soph. 8 Polit. 7 Phil. 2 Tim. 3 Legg. 3. meanings 

237. iwa-ia meaning ' aliquid totum et absolutum, rebus nas- ^ .-^^ 
centibus et incrementa capientibus oppositum ' (pp. 88-108, 515), , „ 
which is a mixed substance between ideal and material being (of n . / 
Trepas and aneipov, dfie'picrTov and fiepicrrov, ravrov and ddrepov). This ' 


and found 
of these 
terms very 
in the 

obscure ; 
his work 
should he 
from the 

notion is, according to Peipers, very near to the Aristotelian con- 
ception of substance, and is found only in Phil. S Tim. 2 Legg. 2. 

238. ovaia = complexus omnium reruua, quas entium nomine 
appellare homines solent (pp. 28-29 and 512) : Eep. 1 (486 a) 
Soph. 1 (261 E) Tim. 2 (35 a, 37 a). 

239. o ea-Ti (pp. 38-41 and 541) : Crat. 2 Symp. 1 Phaedo 7 ; 
Rep. 8 Phaedr. 1 (247 k) ; Parm. .9 Tim. 1 (39 k). 

240. oi-Tcos Kcu aXr]6a>i (p. 124) : Rep. 1 Soph. 1 Phil. 1. 

241. (ivTMs meaning dXrjdois (pp. 125 and 513) : Crat. 1 Rep. 3 
Phaedr. 2 Theaet. 1 ; Soph. 6 Polit. 4 Phil. 11 Tim. 6 Legg. 49. 

242. ou or 01/0-1(1 = res vera, opposita fictitise (pp. 132-152 and 
513) : Euthyd. 1 (290 c) Gorg. 2 (472 B, 495 a) Symp. 1 (202 a) 
Phaedo 7 ; Rep. 9 Theaet. 7 ; Soph. 13 Polit. 1 Phil. 3 Legg. 35. 

243. TO ov = id quod tarn a loci quam a temporis conditionibus 
liberum, neque nascitur, neque interit, sed immutabile et constans 
eodem modo semper se habet, objectum philosophandi (pp. 50 and 
514) : Crat. 1 (424 a) Rep. 22 Phaedr. 4 Theaet. 1 Soph. 36 Phil. 2 
Tim. 2 Legg. 2. 

244. TO ovra in the same meaning as above (pp. 63-66) : Crat. 2 
Phaedo 2 ; Rep. 5 Phaedr. 3 Theaet. 1 ; Parm. 2 Soph. 5 Pliil. 2 Tim. 4. 

245. ovaia = substance as object of knowledge (pp. 67 and 515) : 
Crat. 9; Rep. 11 Phaedr. 4 Theaet. 5; Parm. 3 Soph. 6 Polit. 3 Tim. 1 
Legg. 5. Some isolated passages quoted by Peipers from other 
dialogues, as Euthyph. 11 a Charm. 168 c d Prot. 349 b Meno 72 b, 
seem not to belong here, as they offer a different meaning of ouert'a, 
as 'nature,' 'object,' 'property,' 'definition.' 

246. TO 01' = what exists, opposed to fnqhiv (pp. 11-16 and 512) : 
Euthyd. 3 Crat. 2 Symp. 1 ('205 b) ; Rep. 11 Theaet. 11 ; Soph. 3X 
Polit. 1 Phil. 1 Tim. 1 Legg. 5. 

247. ovaia = what exists (pp. 17 and 539) : Rep. 2 Theaet. 5 ; 
Soph. 7 Polit. 1 Tim. 1. 

248. Ta oi'Ta = Ta Trpay/iarn (pp. 19-28, 512, 540): Charm. 3 
Meno 3 Euthyd. 6 Gorg. -T Crat. 25 Symp. 2 Phaedo 9 ; Rep. 4 
Phaedr. 6* Theaet. S; Parm. .7 Soph. 4 Polit. 3 Phil. 6 Tim. 3 Legg. 6. 

249. TO oi' = Veritas cognitione aut oratione expressa (pp. *2'22- 
230) : Euthyd. 4 Gorg. 1 Crat. 2 ; Rep. 4 Phaedr. 3 Theaet. 5 ; Parm. 1 
Soph. 4- 

Peipers' distinctions are sometimes obscure, and the 
nmnerous quotations collected in his work are not con- 
veniently arranged. The Laws are treated apart in a 
few pages towards the end of the work (pp. 512-516). 
Peipers did not count the passages quoted, nor did he 
distinguish the number of occurrences in a single passage. 
His work remains a valuable collection of texts, which 
calls for a complete digest by some clearer expositor. 


His conclusions on the order of dialogues do not precisely point of 
correspond to considerations of style. Against the purely stylistic 
statistical evidence, Peipers separates the Phaedrus from "^^^stiga- 
the Bepublic by the Banquet, and puts the Theaetetus 
later than the Timaeus, following alleged differences of 
ontological doctrines not easily definable. But he had the 
great merit of recognising the very late date of Soph. 
Polit. Phil., as written after the Bepublic. 

XXII. P. Webee. After so many investigations on P. Weber 
Plato's vocabulary, P. Weber '^^ (1884) returned to the old also 
problem of the construction of phrases in Plato. But he ig^^ored 
seems to have wholly ignored the relation between the style 
and the chronology of Plato's writings, and he neither ^ ^, 

'='•' _ o ' tween the 

distinguishes the single dialogues nor enumerates the g^y^g ^nd 

passages, except when dealing with some very rare stylistic the chro- 

peculiarity. Under these circumstances Weber's disser- nology, 

tation is chiefly of interest as contributing to the stylistic ^^^ §^^^ 

definition of Plato's works as a whole, for comparison with °" ■''/" ^ 
other authors, but containing very few hints for distinc- 

" "^ stances 

tions between early and later style : complete 

250. iva with conjunct. ' nach Nehenzeiten^ and referring to enumeia- 
a design lasting up to the present time (p. 11) : Crito 1 Prot. 2 tions of 
Meno 1 Crat. 1 Synip. 2; Rep. 1 Theaet. 3 Parm. 1; Tim. 3 passages 

Legg- 2- . . by which 

251. OTTO)? with coniunct. ^ nach Hauptzeiten, in vollstdndiqen . . 

;; -^ -^ omission 

. Ftnalsatzen ' (p. 13) : Symp. 1 Legg. 9. 

252. oTTcof with OT^tativ. 'pvaes. 'nach Nebenzeiten, in voUstand- 
igen Finalsdtzen' (p. 14) : Prot. 1 Phaedr. 1 Tim. 5. ^ 

253. oncos liv with conjunct, 'in vollstdndigen und iinvoll- o*^ ^^^ny 
stdndigen Finalsdtzen ' (pp. 14, 21) : Lach. 1 Prot. 1 Gorg. 6 Symp. 1 "seful in- 
Phaedo 1 ; Rep. 9 Phaedi-. 1 ; Tim. 1 Legg. ^^. dications. 

Weber also gives the number of all occurrences of final 

sentences with [xi^, JW, ottws, 6)s, with various tenses and 

moods, but without distinction of single dialogues, so that 

his work must be repeated if it is to afford chronological 


XXIII. Droste. a marked contrast to both the Droste 

»''3 Dr. Philipp Weber, Der Absichtssatz bei Plato, Wiirzburg 1884. A ^^'^* ^'^^" 
Doctor's dissertation of the university of Wiirzburg. This is the xxviiith tinguished 
publication on this subject, Peipers' being the xxviith. 


classes of 
rare words 
to the 
mode of 
their for- 
mation, so 
a progress 
in the 
method of 

preceding writers as to the clearness of exposition 
and excellent method of investigation is presented in 
the dissertation of P. Droste '^"^ of Diisseldorf (1886), 
who undertook to represent Plato's use of adjectives 
terminating in stS/]^ and coBrji. Since Campbell nobody 
had examined the formation of new rare words by 
Plato, and Droste knew none of his predecessors ex- 
cept Dittenberger, yet he unconsciously perfected the 
Scotch investigator's method, distinguishing classes of 
new rare words according to the mode of their formation, 
and not only according to their meaning or origin. This 
endows Droste with a merit scarcely dreamed of by him, 
and manifests at the same time how progress in scientific 
method may be realised apart from wide knowledge. 
Droste dissects Plato's art of word-building under one of 
its aspects, dealing with words mostly very rare and 
invented by Plato for the expression of his thoughts 
against the general usage of his times : of seventy given 
adjectives, forty-six are never used before (13 in st8t]s and 
33 in (oS7]9), and thirty-seven are later accepted by Aristotle 
(7 in £lS'}]s and 30 in (oSrjs). Droste minutely compared 
Plato's use of such adjectives with their employment by 
earlier and later authors. Before Plato these words were 
rare, and since Plato they became very common, as is 
easily seen from the following table : 

of different 

used by poets : 

historians : 

phers : 


hi ea 



































adjj. in etSijs 





adjj. iu cuSt)s except 

those derived 

from o^id 





This table is re-arranged according to the table given by Droste (p. 39). It follows that' 
Aeschylus, Sophocles, Euripides, Aristophanes, Pindar, Herodotus, and Thucydides taken 
all together had used a smaller number of adjj. in €i5tjs than Plato alone, while after Plato 
the use of both kinds of adjj. rapidly increased. 

'«• p. Droste, De adjecHvorum in 6<5^s et in c^Stjs desinentium apud 
Plaioncm iisu (Doctor's diss. Univ. Marburg), Marpurgi, without date, pub- 
lished 188G according to Hinrich's Catalogue (xxix). 



This interesting comparison proves how well chosen was 
the use of such adjectives, as constituting an important pecu- 
liarity of Plato's style. The relative occurrence in various 
dialogues is seen from the following table, constructed 
from the materials given by Droste, pp. 18-19, 37-41, re- 
arranged in a more systematic manner than in his tables : 












of all i 
tives t 


lof i 
idjec- ! 
g iu 




Observations. — All quoted adjectives are used only once by- 
Plato, unless the number of occuiTences in each dialogue is 
shown. Adjectives invented by Plato and used for the first time 
are printed in heavy type. += not used before Plato; * = not 
used before nor after Plato ; A = accepted by Aristotle ; Aesch. = 
used by Aeschylus ; Eur. = used by Euripides ; Her. = used by 
Herodotus ; Xeii. = used by Xenophon ; Horn. = used by Homer ; 
Hes. = used by Hesiod ; Iso. = used by Isocrates. 

Crito . . 

Charm. . 

Lach. . 
Meno . . 
Euthyd. . 
Gorg. . 


(1) eveiS-ris (Aesch. Eur. Her. Xenoph.) occurs Crito 1 
Eep. 2, A. — [1] voa-dSr^s (Iso.) is found in Plato 
more often than any other adjective in wS-qs, 
occurring 24 times : Crito 1 Charm. 3 Lach. 1 
Symp. 2 Eep. 9 Theaet. 1 Polit. 3 Legg. 3 
(Ale. I. 1) A. 

[1].— [2] + alviYM-o-TuS-ns, A, seems to be the first 
adjective in diSrts invented by Plato, occurs 
Charm. 1 Theaet. 1 and Ale. II. 1. 

[1] 195 c. 

[3] 6yK(iS-ns (Xen.) A. 

[4] TepaTioSris (Aristophanes) A. 

(2) + d€i8iis occurs Gorg. 1 Crat. 1 Phaedo 12, A. 

Crat. . . 

Symp. . 
Phaedo . 












+ (2).— (3) * Tpavo€u8Tis— [5] + v^-oioStis, A 
— [6] +ko\\uStis, a, — [7] + <t)\)(T6)ST)S, A — 
[8] + aKOTcJ8-ns, A, occurs Crat. 1 Phaedo 1 Rep. 2 | 
Legg. 1— [9] ^ i,T\[i.i<j8r\£, A, occurs Crat. 5 
Legg. 2— [10] + 8Leijpa(jL0(j8-ns — [H] 67)piw5r)s \ 
(Eur. Xen.), A, occurs Crat. 1 Eep. 1 PoHt. 1 Tim. 1 \ 
Legg. 3. — [12] TTvevfxaTcoSrjs, A. Only these 8 adjec- 
tives in a>dr]s are enumerated, occurring 12 times, 
while according to Droste's table 9 different adjec- 
tives are used in the Cratylus 13 times. 

(4) + tiovoeiStis, A, used Symp. 2 Phaedo 3 Rep. 1 
Theaet. 1 Tim. 1— [13] evdSris (Horn.), used 
Symp. 1 Phaedr. 1 Tim. 1 Critias 1, A.— [14] 
drSpairoSoJSjjs (Xen.) used Symp. 1 Phaedo 1 Eep. 1 
Phaedr. 1 Legg. 1, A. 

+ (2) — + (4)— (5) voAvfiS-ns (Thucydides) occurs j 
Phaedo 1 Eep. 3 Phaedr. 3 Soph. 1, A.- 
(6) Oeofi^s (Horn. Hes.) occurs Phaedo 1 Rep. 1 
Phaedr. 1, Epinomis. — (7) XP'"''''*'^'''* (Xen.) A — 
(8) rr/cioe(5r)s (Aristoph.) A — (9) + GvTiToeiS-ns — 
(10) + CTio|xaTO£L5Tic, used Phaedo 5 Eep. 1 Polit. 1 
Tim. 2, A— [14]— [15] TrrjAdJSrjs (Thucyd.) A— 
[16] + S-nM,c55Tis: Phaedo 1 Legg. 1— [17] + pop- 

PopuSns, A [18] + veuSris : Phaedo 2 Tim. 3 

Critias 1, A. 


Rep. . 


Number of 
ing in 

-eiSijs -coSrjs 


Total of 
of all adjec- 
tives termi- 
nating in 





Observations. — AU quoted adjectives are used only once by 
Plato, unless the number of occurrences in each dialogue is 
shown. Adjectives invented by Plato and used for the first time 
are printed in heavy type. + = not used before Plato ; * = not 
used before nor after P"lato ; A = accepted by Aristotle; Aescli.= 
used by Aeschylus; Em-. = used by Euripides; Her. = used by 
Herodotus ; Xen.= used by Xeuophon ; Horn. = used by Homer ; 
Hes. = used by Hesiod ; Iso. = used by Isoorates. 

(1)— + (4)— (5)— (6)—+ (10)— (11): evfxoeiS-fis (Xen.) 
used in the meaning ' hot-tempered,' chiefly of 
restive horses : Kep. 8 Legg. 2, distinguished 
from the philosophical term + GviioeiStis : Eep. 19 
Tim. 1, A— (12) +d.7a9oeLS-ns— (13) + -fiXioeiSTis : 
Eep. 2, A— [1]— + [8]— [11]— [14]— ri9] + Qp-r]v6- 
8ti9 Eep. 3 Legg. 1— [20] vTrvdSvs (Eur.) A— [21] 
+ (J)\e7|j.aTG5Sr|5, A — [22] + (xeipaKKoStis, Eep. 2, 
A — [23] + d\iTTipitdST|9, Eep. 1 Legg. 2— 
[241 + o-7rTi\aic5STis— [25] /j-vdiliiS-ns (Isocr.) A — 
[26] + K-n(})Tivo)STis— [27] + A.€ovTc38-ns, A— [28] 
+ 6(j)6GSStis, A— [29] + 6x\tSSTis— [30] irerpdiSris 
(Sophocl.) A, in the order of occurrences ; Droste 
counted 26 instead of 28. 

(5) — (6) — [13] — [14], as in Phaedo and Symposium. 

+ (4)— + [2]— [31] + KOTrpuS-ns, A— [32] + XtipuSris, 
A— [33] + XiGtoSTis, A. 

Phil. . 
Tim. . 


1 1 












12 1 






[34] + •TrpaYn.aT€i(38'ns. 
(5) — (14) SvffetSr)s (Sophocl. Her.). 
+ (10)— [11]— [1]— [35] + KpoKciS-ns. 
(15) * TrepaToeiSiis — [36] + TraiSapniSSTig, A. 
+ (4) _+ (10) — + (11) — (16) ffipaipoiiHi (Xen.) 
Tim. 4, A— (17) + XieoeiS-rig- (18) + depoeiSiis, 

A (19) "*" KT|pO€LSTis— (20) """ CTapKOeiStlSj A — 

(21) * ffrepeoeiS^s— [11]— [13]— + [18]— [37] a.d>Z-t)s 
— [38] (xapKioSns (Her. Xen.) A — [39] x<'^'^5'J^» 
Tim.3, A — [40] + ItAavTioSTis — [41] + oIcttpuStis, 
Tim. 1 Legg. 1— [42] + \itpo58tis— [43] + pTJcSSms, 
A— [44] + GopvPcoSris, Tim. 1 Legg. 1, A— [48] 
+ v€vp(5STis has not been counted by Droste, 
though it is quoted p. 34 ; this increases the 
number of adjectives to 12, of occurrences to 16. 

[13]__-^ [18]— [45] TTvpwSvs (Aristoph.) A. 

(11)— (22) *Trvpo€iS-ns— [1]— + [8]—+ [9]— [11] 
— [14] — + [16] — + [19] — + [23]—+ [41]—+ [44] 
— [46] + yoojStis, A— [47] +al(Ji,aCTic5STis. 

In no other dialogue adjectives in ei&ri<; or <ifijj! are found, except Epinomis (6) Ale. I. [1] [14] and 
Ale. II. [2], in each of wliich occur only 1-2 adjectives used by Plato in authentic dialogues, and in 
Ale. I. irpeniaSiji, taken from Aristophanes. 

New- The most interesting general result of Droste' s in- 

invented vestigation is that not one of the spurious dialogues 
adjectives contains new-invented adjectives in stS'^s or coBt)^, and 



that even those introduced by Plato are used only in four in eiHs 
isolated instances in probably spurious dialogues, as ^"^^ '^^'^^ 
Alcihiades I. and II. and Epinomis. This shows the ^°^°^ 
originality of vocabulary to be an inimitable peculiarity of 
Plato's style, and further increases the improbability of aialogues, 
anybody but Plato having written such original works as while they 
the Parmenides, Sophist, and Politicus. In these dialectical are fre- 
dialogues adjj. in stStjs and mStjs are scarce, while many <i"eut in 
new-formed adjectives in lkos abound ; Droste counted 
'224 such adjectives in the Sophist, and 320 in the 
Politicus, while only 12 occur in the Phaedo. Droste's 
dissertation offers important additions to our list of 
peculiarities of later style : 

254. New-invented adjj. in eibrjs occur (p. 18)": Gorg. 1 Crat. 2 
Symp. 2 Phaedo 21 ; Rep. 24 Theaet. 1 ; Polit. 1 Phil. 1 Tim. 8 
Legg. 1. (These numbers are not given by Droste ; they result 
from the above table.) 

265. New-invented adjj. in a8r]s (pp. 38 and 31-35) : Charm. 1 
Crat. 10 Phaedo 4 ; Eep. 14 Theaet. 4 ; Parm. 1 Polit. 1 Phil. 1 
Tim. 9 Critias 1 Legg. 11. 

256. no\vei8^s: Phaedo 1 Rep. 3 Phaedr. 3; Soph. 1, A (Table (5), 
Droste, p. 11). 

257. >oi/oeiSj/s : Symp. 2 Phaedo 3 ; Rep. 1 Theaet. 1 ; Tim. 1, A 
(Table (4), Droste, p. 11). 

In these adjectives the primitive meaning of the Plato first 

termination is preserved, though here, too, slSos often iritro- 

means species and not form. This use of adjj. in siSijs 'l^^cedthe 
to designate a species corresponds to a logical tendency, 
as Droste well observed, and was never attempted before 

Plato. Plato introduced it into the Greek language designate 

' ex necessitate quadam et ex philosophandi angustiis ' a species, 

(p. 19). and he 

used them 

258. Adjj. in eib^s designating a species (p. 14) : Phaedo ( (6) (8) frequently 
(9) (10) ) 8 Eep. ( (10) (11) (12) (13) ) 23 PoHt. ( (10) ) 1 ^j^^ .^ 
Phil. ( (15) ) 1 Tim. ( (10) (11) (18) (19) (20) (21) ) 7 Legg. ( (22) ) 1. "J^J 

Among these adjectives some are specially character- ™^^°^"gs 

. , . well 

istic : 

259. ^a-cofxaroei^s (p. 15) : Phaedo 5 Eep. 1 Polit. 1 Tim. 2, A. ^^^^^^ 

by Droste. 

use of 
such ad- 
jectives to 


260. ^v/xoetS^y (p. 16), in the same meaning as in Xenophon: 
Rep. 8 Legg. 2 (see table (11) ). 

261. ^OvfioeiSijs (p. 15), as philosophical term, used also 
later by A. : Rep. 19 Tim. 1. 

262. Adjectives in €l8t]s or ui^rjs designating form or colour 
(including deiSi^s) (pp. 10, 13-14, 31) : Crito ( (1) ) 1 Gorg. ( (2) ) 1 
Crat. ( (2) (3) ) 2 Phaedo ( (2) (7) ) 13 Rep. ( (1) (6) ) 3 Phaedr. 
( (6) ) 1 Soph. ( (14) ) 1 Tim. ( (16) (17) [39] ) 7. {6eoet8fjs is 
used in this meaning only Rep. 501 b Phaedr. 251 A, while in 
Phaedo 95 c and Epinomis it designates a species.) 

More frequent are the adjectives in coSrjs, which are 
classified by Droste according to their meaning. Those 
derived from o^co form one class, containing only svcoSrjs 
and adoBijs, of which the second is used only once 
{Tim. 50 E). 

263. evoidijs : SjTiip. 1 Phaedr. 1 Tim. 1 Critias 1, A (Droste, 

p. 31, table [13]). " 

264. Adjectives in a8r]s designating similarity (pp. 31-32) : 
Crat. ([10] [11]) 2 Phaedo ( [16] ) 1 Rep. ( [11] [14] [22] [26-30] ) 9 
Phaedr. ([14]) 1 Theaet. ([31] [33])2 Polit. ([11]) 1 Phil. ([36]) 1 
Tim. ( [40] [41] ) 2 Critias ( [45] ) 1 Legg. ( [11] [16] [41] ) 5. 
Among these the following are characteristic : 

265. ej]pi^8rjs : Crat. 1 Rep. 1 Polit. 1 Tim. 1 Legg. 3.— A. 
(in Tim. 91 E it designates a species, while in Legg. 909 a 
it means 'like brutes,' and in other passages, as Rep. 571 c, 
Legg. 906 B, it has a similar meaning). 

266. "S^jliwSt?? : Phaedo 1 Legg. 1. 

267. dv8pa77o8<i>8,]s (p. 32) : Symp. 1 Phaedo 1 Rep. 1 Phaedr. 1 
Legg. 1 (in Symp. 215 e and Legg. 880 a it designates a species. 
Droste omitted Phaedo 69 b, whei-e it means similarity). 

268. *ol(TTpa}dr]s : Tim. 1 Legg. 1. 

269. Adjectives in u^rjs designating a species (pp. 32-33) : Crito 
( [1] ) 1 Charm. ( [1] [2] ) 4 Lach. ( [1] ) 1 Crat. ( [5-8] [12] ) 5 
Symp. ( [1] [14] ) 2 Phaedo ( [17] [18] ) 3 Rep. ( [1] [24] 6 Theaet. 
( [1] [2] ) 2 Polit. ( [1] [35] ) 4 Tim. ( [11] [18] [42] [43] ) 5 Critias 
([18]) ILegg. ([14] [47]) 2. 

270. voaadrjs, designating a species: Crito 1 Charm S 
Lach. 1 Symp. 1 Rep. 5 Theaet. 1 Polit. 3, A. This meanmg, 
as for instance Rep. 438 e, is different from the following : 

271. voadodrjs : meaning sickl3% diseased, opposed to vytfti-of : 
Symp. 1 Rep. 4 Legg. 3, A. (Droste omitted Rep. 556 e, and 
quotes therefore only three passages in Rep.) 

272. yed^bijs : Phaedo 2 Tim. 3 Critias 1, A (in Tim. 66 b 
it does not designate a species, but local connection). 



273. (TKOTo)8i]s: Crat. 1 Phaedo 1 Rep. 2 Legg. 1, A (of 
these only in Crat. 412 b is a species designated, while the 
other passages use that word in the meanmg called by Droste 
' of local connection,' as ' full of darkness '). 

274. Adjectives in oiBrjs indicating local connection (p. 34) 
meaning ' ftill of . . .' : Meno ( [3] ) 1 Euthyd. ([4]) 1 Crat. ( [8]) 1 
Symp. ( [1] ) 1 Phaedo ( [8] [15]) 2 Rep. ( [1] [8] [25] ) 7 Theaet. 
([82]) 1 Parm. ([34]) 1 Tim. ( [18] [38] [39] [48] ) 5 Legg. ([1] 
[8] [19] [46]) 6. This use is distinguished by Droste from the pre- 
ceding, and also from the following, as may be seen by comparing 
the meaning of 6pr]vd>8Tjs in Legg. 792 b (274) and Rep. 398 e (275), 
of xo^^8t)s in Tim. 86 e (274) and Tim. 71 b, 83 b (262). 

275. Adjectives in w^rjs denoting causal relations (p. 34) : 
Crat. [9] 5 Rep. [19, 20, 21, 23] 6 Tim. [44] (42 d) 1 Legg. [9] 
(650 a, 690 e) [23] (854 b, 881 e) [44] (671a) 5. 

Among these the following occur in more than one dialogue : 

276. uXiTTjpmdrjs (p. 34) : Rep. 1 Legg. 2. 

277. t'/J^"^S'/s' (P- ^4) : Crat. 5 Legg. 2 (Droste omitted Crat. 
418 a, B). 

278. dopv^a>8T,s (p. 35) : Tim. 1 Legg. 1. 

Droste's dissertation is a model of stylistic investiga- 
tion made for the purposes of Platonic chronology. We 
see that in the above enumeration the Phaedo very fre- 
quently occurs together with later works, and Droste in- 
ferred that the Phaedo was written after the Phaedrus. 
But this cannot be decided without considering many 
other peculiarities of vocabulary and style, besides the 
adjectives investigated by Droste ; it will then appear 
that the Phaedrus is much nearer to the Bepublic as 
well as to the latest six dialogues than the Phaedo, 
though in some respects the Phaedo may approach 
the style of the Bejjublic more nearly than does the 
Phaedrus. The natural explanation is that the Phaedo 
immediately preceded the Republic, while the Phaedrus 
followed it. 

XXIV. F. KuGLER. A dissertation published at the 
same time as Droste's, by F. Kugler,''" of Basel, on roi 
and its compounds, shows also certain analogies between 

'^' F. Kugler, Dissertatio inauguralis de particulae roi ejusque com- 
positortim apiid Platonem tisii (Doct. diss. Univ. Basel), Trogen 1886 (xxx). 

tion a 
model of 
though one 
of his con- 
chisions is 

not later 
than the 
as Droste 

many uses 


of ToivVV 

in the 
group ; 
the syllo- 
gistic use 
in conclu- 

the Phaedrus and the latest group which are lacking in 
the Phaedo, and many others between the P/iaerZo and the 

279. fxivTOL used to oppose to each other two parts of the same 
phrase (p. 26) : Prot. 4 Meno 1 Euthyd. 1 Gorg. 2 Symp, 1 
Phaedo 2 ; Rep. 4 Phaedr. 2 Theaet. 1 ; Parm. 1 PoHt. 1 Phil. 1, in- 
cluding also some cases of opposition by means of ov fievroi, and 
fif] fievTOi. 

280. ye . . . ixfvroi (p. 27) : Crito 1 Euthyd. 1 Gorg. 2 ; Rep. 3 
Phaedr. 1 Theaet. 4 ; Soph. 1 Phil. 1 Legg. 1. 

281. roi between article and substantive (p. 7) : Symp. 1 
Theaet. 1 Soph. 1 Phil. 1. 

282. Toi after the verb (p. 7) : Gorg. 1 Phaedo 1 ; Theaet. 1 
Soph. 1. 

283. Kairoi = et vero (pp. 17-18) : Gorg. 2 ; Rep. 1 Theaet. 1 ; 
Phil. 1 Legg. 3. 

284. Toivvv in the conclusion of a syllogism or of a similar 
argmnent (p 32): Crito 1 (44 a) Charm. 2 (162 b syll.) Meno 2 
Gorg. 4 Crat. I (432 d syll.) Phaedo 3 (62 c syll.) Rep. IS (368 e, 
603 a syll.) Phaedr. 4 Theaet. I (192 e syll.) Soph. 8 Polit. 4 
Phil. iOKincluding three syll. 3Be,41 d, 56 c) Legg. 14. 

This increasing use of a word which was afterwards 
so much used by Aristotle in logical conclusions is very 
characteristic of the progress made by Plato in his logical 

285. To'ivvv eVt in transitions (p. 34) : Charm. I Phaedo 1 ; Soph. 3 
Polit. 2 Phil. 2 (the form eVt toivvv is much more often used). 

286. ert ^ Toivvv : Phil. 1 (52 a) Legg. 1 (817 e). 

287. Kill TOLvvv (p. 34) : Soph. 2 Polit. 1 Legg. 3 (while Ka\ . . . 
TOIVVV was used earlier, in Charm. 1 Gorg. 1 Rep. 4 Theaet. 1 and 
also in Phil. 1). 

288. TTpuTov fiev roivvv (p. 35) : Crat. 1 (426 c) Phaedo 1 (90 d) 
Rep. 1 Poht. 1 Phil. 2 Legg. 3. 

289. TOLVVV begins a new argument (p. 35) : Apol. 1 Euthyph. 1 
Crito 1 Charm, o Gorg. 1 Crat. 9 Symp. 1 Phaedo 6'; Rep. 13 
Phaedr. 6 Theaet. 6; Parm. 1 Soph. 10 Polit. 13 Phil. 9 Legg. 21. 

290. TOLVVV in transitions (p. 35) : Crito 1 Crat. 9 Symp. 1 
Phaedo 1 ; Rep. 14 Theaet. 4 ; Soph. 4 Polit. 1 Phil. 4 Legg. 9. 

291. S-7 TOIVVV (p. 36) : Rep. 1 Phil. 1 Legg. 5. 

292. TOLVVV hi] : Gorg. 1 Legg. 1. 

293. rj^ Tolvvv (p. 36) : Meno 1 Crat. 1 ; Poht. 1 Phil. 1 Legg. 1. 

294. ^li] TOLVVV (p. 36) : Crito 1 Charm. 1 Lach. 1 Meno 1 
Symp. 1 Phaedo 1 ; Rep. 4 Theaet. 3 ; Soph. 7 Polit. 1 Phil. 2 
Legg. 6. 


295. ov — Toivvv (p. 36) : Soph. 1 Legg. 1. 

296. TOIVVV, instead of being the second word of the phrase as 
usual, is placed in the third place or further (p. 36) : Apol. 1 
Euthyph. 1 Charm. 1 Meno 1 Euthyd. 1 Crat. 1 Phaedo 1 ; Eep. 10 
Phaedr. 1 Theaet. 1 ; Soph. 5 Poht. 7 Phil. 3 Legg. 8. 

297. &)? 8ri Toi (p. 12), beginning an evident conclusion : Eep. 1 
Phaedr. 1 Tim. 1. 

298. KaiToi . . . Se or o/i&jy 8i (p. 19) : Apol. 1 Lach. 1 Meno 1 
Euthyd. 1 Gorg. 1 ; Eep. 3 Phaedr. 2 ; Parm. 1 Phil. 1 Critias 1 
Legg. 3. 

299. dXrjdrj fievToi (in affirmative answers, p. 23) : Lach. 1 Eep. 1 
Soph. 1 Legg. 5. 

300. TJToi . . . rj (^. 14) : Prot. 2 Meno 2 Gorg. 2 Crat. 5 
Phaedo 2 ; Eep. 2 Phaedr. 1 Theaet. 3 ; Parm. 3 Phil. 2 Legg. 2. 

301. KaiToi . . . aX\d (p. 19) : Lach. 3 Gorg. 1 Crat. 1 Phaedo 1 ; 
Parm. 1 ; Polit. 1 Legg. 2. 

302. Simple /uwi' (p. 40) : Prot. 1 Meno 2 Euthyd. 2 ; Eep. 1 
Theaet. 1 ; Soph. 2 Poht. 2 Phil. 1 Legg. 5. 

303. fxSiv ovv (p. 40) : Soph. 2 Polit. 2 Phil. 4 Legg. 10 (includ- 
ing one ovv fj.o)v). 

304. tiSiv ov (p. 40) : Soph. 3 Polit. 2 Phil. 4 Legg. 10. 

305. fj.S)v ixi) (p. 40) : Phaedo 1 Eep. 2 Soph. 1 Phil. 1. 

306. Toivvv more than four times oftener than fievroi (p. 45) : 
Soph. 55113 Poht. ^GjV Phil. .5,^/S Legg. 1WJ17 while in all other 
works Toivvv is much scarcer, occurring in no other dialogue twice 
as often as fievrot, the proportion to nevroi being m Eep. Phaedr. 
Theaet. ^|f , in Euthyphr. Apol. Crito Charm. Lach. Prot. f f, in 
Meno Euthyd. Gorg. Crat. Symp. Phaedo ^§|, in Parm. ^^g, in 
Tim. Critias g. 

. It would be unjustifiable to draw any inference from These ob- 
the absence of both, particles in Tim. Critias, or from the servations 
scarcity of roivvv in Parm. The only conclusion allowed ^"^^ "'^^^• 
is, that Soph. Polit. Phil. Legg. have the pecuHarity in ^'^'®' ^"* 
common of an exceptional predominance of roivvv over ^^.^ 
fisvToi. From a single peculiarity no chronological conclu- ^^^ ^^ . 
sions can be drawn, but this peculiarity, joined to many import- 
others, offers a measure of affinity between the dia- ancetothe 
logues in question. scarcity of 

307. fievToi occurs less than once in two pages only in (p. 45) : 
Criio 2 Prot. 19 Meno 6 Gorg. 23 Symp. 18 ; Phaedr. 16 Parm. 13; 
Soph. 13 Polit. 7 Phil. 8 Tim. O Critias o Legg. 17 being less 
than once in five pages only in Polit. Phil. Tim. Critias Legg. 
This acquires a special importance if we consider that /xe'j/rot went 

Tolvvv in 
the Par- 



bell's con- 

the con- 
by both 
ger and 

out of frequent use in Plato's time as Kugler has shown by com- 
paring other authors, from Xenophon, in whose writings fieWoi 
greatly prevails over to'lvw, down to Demosthenes, who uses 
fxevToi very rarely. 

308. To'ivvv is very frequent, occurring once in two pages or 
oftener in : Crito 5 Charm. 20 Lach. 10 Meno 13 Crat. 32 ; Eep. 133 
Theaet. 39 ; Soph. 55 Polit. j!^6 Phil. 52 Legg. 120. 

From these and many other uses of rot Kugler inferred 
quite correctly that the Sophist, Politicus, Philehus 
belong to the same period as Timaeus, Critias, Laws. 

XXV. M. Schanz. The same conclusion is also 
reached by Martin Schanz/^^ the editor of Plato, who 
simultaneously with the dissertations of Kugler and Droste 
published his article on the development of Plato's style. 
Though he quotes Campbell's emendations to the Sophist 
in his critical edition of the same dialogue, Schanz seems 
not to have read Campbell's Introduction. Directing 
his attention to expressions designating truth and being, 
he found : 

309. oi/rw? : Euthyd. 1 Crat. 1 ; Rep. 9 Phaedr. 6 Theaet. 1 ; 
Soph. 21 Polit. 11 Phil. 15 Tim. 8 Legg. 50, while in earlier 
works Tw ovTi is used instead, wlaich is entirely absent from Polit. 
Phil. Tim. Critias Legg., and occurs but once in Soph. 

310. a\r]6eia (used instead of r^ aXrjQfia) only in Prot. 3 Phil. 1 
Tim. 1 Legg. 3. 

311. aXrjdais (instead of ws aXrjdays) : Apol. 1 Euthyph. 1 Prot. 1 
Meno 2 Euthyd. 1 Phaedo 2 ; Eep. 8 Phaedr. 1 Theaet. 1 ; Soph. 6" 
Polit. 4 Phil. 7 Tim. 3 Legg. 6. 

XXVI. Gomperz. Only these few observations of 
Schanz, with those of Dittenberger, became generally 
known to German philologers. They did not convince 
Zeller, but they were held sufficient for the styHstic 
definition of the latest group of Plato's works by another 
most competent historian of Greek philosophy, Theodor 
Gomperz •'^^ (1887), of the University of Vienna. He 

'^- Martin Schanz, ' Zur Entwickelung des platonischen Stils ' in 
Hermes, vol. xxvi. pp. 437-459, for 1886 (xxxi). 

'^^ Th, Gomperz, ' Platonische Aufsiitze,' in Sitztinrjsherichtc der Kaiser- 
lichen Akademie der Wisscnschaftcn zu Wien, vol. cxi v. pp. 741-766, Vienna 
1887 (xxxii). 


repeated Dittenberger's observations, and insisted on their and he 

decisive importance as to the order of the Platonic dia- insisted 

logues. Gomperz argued that the more or less frequent "P°° *^® 

recurrence of words does not lead to such certain con- ^P"*" " 

ance or 

elusions as does the complete absence of certam words m neeative 
certain dialogues ; and in this he unconsciously agreed evidence, 
with Campbell, who also had chiefly directed his attention 
to the presence or absence of certain words in some 
dialogues. Yet it cannot be denied that observations on 
the comparative frequency or rarity of words give valu- 
able confirmation of conclusions obtained from complete 
changes of vocabulary, and also that the number of 
words increasing in frequency is vastly greater than the 
number of expressions replaced by synonyms. We 
have no reason to disdain supplementary evidence on a 
matter in which, as in other historical problems, even 
the greatest amount of testimony leads only to pro- 
gressive probability. 

XXVII. C. KiTTER. The question of comparative c. Bitter 
recurrence was the object of the first book on Plato's style, ^^^^' ^"^y 
a monument of patient labour, by Constantin Eitter '^"' ^^® ^^^ 

(1888), now teacher at the gymnasium of Ellwangen in . 

. . . decessors, 

Wiirtemberg. Until the publication of this book the ^uthe 

investigations on the style of Plato were published as achieved a 
academic dissertations, articles in reviews, or as with great pro- 
Campbell, Riddell, Blass, and Peipers, in volumes on a g^^ss in 
different subject. Eitter was the first to write a special *^^ ^^^^^ 
work on the matter, but he likewise knew only a few 
among his predecessors. He quotes Blass, Dittenberger, jQga,surin 
Frederking, Schanz, and Eoeper, out of all the authors the oppor- 
who had preceded him in studying Plato's style. But, tunities 
again, as with Droste, this incomplete bibliographical for the 
equipment did not prevent Eitter from achieving a occnr- 
great progress towards the full solution of our pro- ^"^'^^ °* 

blem, and even perfecting earlier methods. He not 

. . assertions 

only corrected numerical errors committed by Ditten- ^^^^j ^^^ 

'^^ C. Eitter, Untcrsiiclmngen ilbcr Plato, Stuttgart 1888 (xxxiii). tions. 


C. Bitter 
gated a 
number of 
ties than 
any of his 
sors, and, 
though he 
did not 

berger, Frederking, and Schanz : he introduced a new 
method of estimating the recurrence of words, undertaking 
to calculate the number of opportunities for the intro- 
duction of at least one important class of words used 
by Plato. Previous writers had only reckoned the words 
occurring — or the number of times each word recurred in 
each dialogue — or the proportion of occurrences to a page 
of text. Nobody had counted the number of opportunities 
for using a given word. This Eitter did, and found for 
various kinds of affirmative and negative answers a better 
basis of comparison than that of the proportion to a page 
of text. He accepted the sum of all such forms of answer 
as the number of opportunities for the occurrence of each 
special form of answer, and referred to this number the 
particular observations of each form. 

This was an important step in advance as regards 
method, to which corresponded also a remarkable progress 
in the knowledge of Platonic chronology. Before Eitter 
only the order of the last six dialogues was well as- 
certained. His merit lies in giving a detailed justification 
of Campbell's earlier supposition that the group preceding 
the SopJiist consisted of the Bepuhlic, Fhaedrus, and 
Theaetetus. From the numerous observations of Eitter 
the following more especially characterise the latest group 
of six dialogues : 

312. rrpenov av e'lr] (p. 6) : Tim. 2 Legg. 16. 

313. TTMs KM nfi (p. 67) : Phil. 1 Tim. 1 Legg. 2. 

314. a>s dwiiTov (p. 6) : Phil. 1 Legg. 4. 

315. KaOanepd (p. 58) : Polit. 1 Phil. 3 Tim. 1 Legg. 1. 

316. xpfwi/ (p. 6) : Soph. 1 Polit. 1 Tim. 3 Critias 2 Legg. 57. 

317. iliTov predominates over eXeyou (p. 10) : Symp. 3\2 
Parm. 5/5 Soph. 4/i Polit. 5/4 Phil. 5/4 Tim. 3\0 Critias i/0 
Legg. ^4/6\ 

318. Answers such as eywyf, i'/xoLye, and the like (doKel fioi, ip.o\yovv 
SoKei) which denote a subjective assent, are very rare, occurring less 
than once in sixty answers (p. 17) : Phaedr. i/6'9 Parm. 7\Jf86 Soph. 
11215 Polit. S]251 Phil. SlSlJ^ Tim. o/X3 Critias O/O Legg. 0/568 
(in earlier dialogues they occur very often, namely, once in five 
answers in Euthyph. Meno, once in six answers in Lach. Euthyd. 
Gorg., once in seven to ten answers in Apol. Crito Charm. Crat. 


Theaet., once in sixteen to eighteen answers in Prot. Phaedo know 

Rep.). Campbell, 

319. Kara ye rrjv e'/zr/i' (p. 68) : Polit. 2 Phil. 1 Tim. 1 Legg. 1. reached 

320. Inversion of the ordinary position of \eyeis, as for instance siinilar 
Xeyeis d\rj6eaTaTa instead of okrjdea-TaTa XeyeLs (p. 56) : Soph. 4 conclu- 
Polit. 2 Legg. 3. sio^g^ 

321. TO TTdfiirau (p. 72) : Polit. 2 Tim. 2 Legg. 3. 

322. elKos yovv (p. 57) : Parm. 1 Soph. 4 Polit. 7 Phil. 5 Legg. 16. 

Other peculiarities of later style extend also over the 
group of Eep. Phaedr. Theaet. : 

323. ndvTTi Trdurcos (pp. 67, 101) : Phaedr. 1 Parm. 1 Tim. 1 
Legg. 2. 

324. ei,j,]Tai (p. 10) : Phaedi'. 1 Theaet. 1 Soph. 1 Polit. 2 Tim. 3 
Legg. 11. 

325. Superlatives dXrjOea-TaTn, opOoTara Xeyets prevail over 
corresponding positives in affirmative answers (Ritter, p. 19, 
corrected by Tiemann, '•■'' p. 580) only in : Phil. 22/6 Legg 36/22 
and are half as frequent or oftener in Phaedo 4!^ Rep. ^9J4S 
Phaedr. 2j£ Theaet. SJU Soph. 6110 Polit. TjS. 

326. yap ovv in short answers (pp. 57, 100) : Rep. 4 Theaet. 1 
Parm. 22 Soph. 6 Polit. 5 Phil. 1 Legg. 1. 

327. ndvToas Ka\ T^avrij (p. 67) : Rep. 1 Phil. 1. 

328. rj nw9 . . .f) TTws (p. 57) : Rep. 1 Phil. 5 Legg. 6. 

329. fivpia (p. 5) : Rep. 1 Polit. 1 Phil. 1 Tim. 1 Legg. 2. 

330. dvayKulov, dvayKaukaTa (p. 20) : Rep. 3 Soph. 1 Phil. 7 
Legg. 4. 

331. rj TTibs ; (p. 24, in questions exacting afhrmative answers) : 
Rep. 1 Parm. 1 Soph. 4 Polit. 3 Phil, o Legg. 3. 

332. wfj ; (p. 25) : Rep. 4 Parm. 3 Soph. 7 Polit. 6 Phil. 3 
Legg. 3. 

333. TTw? eiyres ; (p. 25) : Rep. 1 Polit. 3 Phil. 1 Legg. 1. 

334. S^Xoi/ d)? (pp. 2-3) : Rep. 2 Phaedr. 3 Soph. 8 Polit. 2 
Phil. J Tim. 4 Critias 1 Legg. 14. 

335. p.aKp(i (p. 5) : Rep. 2 Theaet. 1 Phil. 2 Tim. 1 Legg. 4. 

336. eppi^et) (p. 10) : Rep. 1 Theaet. 1 Soph. 1 Polit. 6 Phil. 1 
Tim. 1 Critias 2 Legg. 8. 

337. ip.o\ yoiv doKtl (p. 17) : Rep. 4 Theaet. 1 Phil. 2 Legg. 1. 

338. ovKovv xpn or dWd xpn (P- 22) : Rep. 4 Theaet. 1 Parm. 1 
Soph. 2 PoHt. 4 Phil. 3 Legg. 1. 

339. Kol nms ; (p. 23) : Rep. 6 Theaet. 2 Parm. 1 Soph. 6 PoUt. 1 
Phil. G Legg. 11. 

340. Kal nas liv ; (p. 24) : Rep. 2 Theaet. 2 Parm. 1 Soph, 1 
Phil. 1. 

341. e^ dvdyKT]s (p. 67) : Rep. 6 Phaedr. 2 Theaet. 1 Soph. 5 
Poht. 4 Phil. 2 Tim. 13 Legg. S2. 


This co- 
shows the 
ority of 
nation of 
logy over 

342. oKyjOecTTaTa, opdcbs, opdoTura without Xe'yet? and opdorara 
Xeyeis in affirmative answers (pp. 17, 56): Rep. 57 Phaedr. 1 
Theaet. n ; Farm. 22 Soph. 16 Polit. 26 Phil. 32 Legg. 38. 
(Aruim : Soph. 18 Polit. 29 Legg. 40 ; Tiemann : Rep. 55 Polit. 28 
Phil. 31 Legg. 35.) 

343. 8^\ov (pp. 20, and 36, 100) : Rep. ;34 Phaedr. 1 Theaet. 2 
Parm. 2 Polit. 4 Phil. 1 Legg. 4. 

There remain some peculiarities, which, though more 
frequent in the later dialogues, occur also exceptionally 
in one or other of the earlier works : 

344. oi'Sapfj ovSapcos or p.r] nr]8afj.a)S (p. 66) : Pliaedo 1 
Theaet. 1 Parm. 3 Phil. 2 Tim. 2 Legg. 8. 

345. KciWia-Tos Kcii api(TTo<: (p. 7) : Symp. 1 Phaedr. 1 Tim. 4 
Legg. 4. 

346. els or koto, hvvapiv (p. 6) : Crat. 1 Rep. 6 Phaedr. 1 Soph. 3 
Polit. 11 Phil. 4 Tim. 10 Critias 1 Legg. 63. 

347. elnes or e'iprjKas in answers (p. 19) : Gorg. 1 Rep. 1 Theaet. 1 
Soph. 2 PoHt. 7 Phil. 8 Legg. 11. 

348. vneXciSes (p. 20) : Rep. 2 Theaet. 1 Legg. 5. 

349. TTai'Tunaa-t p-ev ovu (pp. 28, 36) : Lach. 1 Rep. 38 Phaedr. 3 
Theaet. 9 Parm. 7 Soph. 10 Poht. 4 Phil. 4 Tim. 1 Legg. 13. 

350. axfSov without ri (p. 3) : Apol. 2 Crito 1 Charm. 1 Gorg. 3 
Phaedo 2 Rep. 7 Phaedr. 4 Soph. 26 Polit. 13 Phil. I4 Tim. 9 
Critias 4 Legg. 122. 

351. Tu vvv as adverb (p. 7) : Charm. 1 Prot. 1 Phaedo 1 Rep. 1 
Soph. 5 Polit. 5 Phil. 9 Tim. 5 Critias 3 Legg. 79. 

352. KttL pcAa (p. 23) : Euthyph. 1 Euthyd. 1 Phaedo 1 Rep. 47 
Phaedr. 3 Theaet. 4 ; Parm. 2 Soph. 4 Poht. 2 Phil. 7 Legg. 6. 

353. Questions by means of tto'ios (p. 25) : Lach. 1 Crat. 2 
Phaedo 1 Rep. 48 Phaedi-. 4 Theaet. 13 Parm. 3 Soph. 32 Poht. 36 
Phil. 33 Legg. 47. 

364. TTcirv pev ovu prevails over vrdw ye in (Ritter, pp. 22-23, 
corrected by Arnim,'" p. 6) : Crito 1/0 Rep. 64I4O Phaedr. 311 
Theaet. Wjo Soph. I4IIO Polit. 1817 Phil. 2319 Legg. 4.9/4, and 
is over half as frequent in Lach. 6/10 Prot. 3/3 Phaedo 21/23 
Parm. 15/28. 

355. x^P^" (P- 59) : Prot. 1 Gorg. 3 Sjmp. 1 Rep. 12 Phaedr. 8 
Theaet. 4 Soph. 1 Polit. 3 Phil. 3 Tim. 7 Critias 2 Legg. 33. 

These considerable additions to the number of pecu- 
liarities of Plato's later style led C. Eitter to the same 
general conclusions as those arrived at by Campbell 
twenty years earlier, namely that Soph. Polit. Phil. 
Tim. Critias Legg. are the last works of Plato, and that 

made no 
use of 


Rep. Phaedr. Theaet. form a group preceding them. 
At the same time, other inquirers added new observations, 
all confirming this distinction of the above two groups of 
Plato's works, and happily avoiding repetition of work 
already done. 

XXVIII. Walbe. The philological seminary of Bonn Waibe's 
University, where the dissertations of Eoeper and Hoefer observa- 
were written, produced in 1888 a third doctoral disserta- ^^'^^^ °" 
tion on the style of Plato, by E. Walbe '^'^ (1888) who ''"' ^""^ 
counted the occurrences of irds, its compounds and the p^yn^jg 
expressions containing it. Of his predecessors he only lead to 
knew Roeper, Dittenberger, Hoefer, and Schanz. Among the same 
over a hundred uses of nds enumerated by Walbe, the results, 
following deserve our special attention : though he 

356. ^uvimas (p. 3) : Soph. 3 Polit. 1 Phil. 2 Tim. 3 Legg. 1. 

357. ol ^vfinavTes or ra ^Vfinavra (p. 11) : Soph. 1 Polit. 1 Phil. 1 
Legg. 3. 

358. was ovTos or ovtos nas (p. 3G) : Crat. 1 ; Soph. 2 Parm. 2 *^^*^'"' 
Phil. 1 Tim. 2 Critias 1 Legg. 5. attaching 

359. nas 6<tti(tovv (p. 37) : Polit. 1 Phil. 1 Legg. 1. chronolo- 

360. ra ndvTa yevq (p. 35) : Soph. 1 Tim. 2. gical im- 

361. TO. TTCLvra e'lbr) or fxipr} (p. 35) : Rep. 1 Theaet. 6 Parm. 4 portance 
Legg. 1. only to the 

362. TovvavTiov anav or Cnrav Toiivavriov (p. 16): Polit. 1 Phil. 1 frequency 

I^egg- 3- of a few 

363. TO iifinav (p. 9): Phaedr. 1 Soph. 1 Polit. 1. ^.^^ 

364. nav ^(oov, meaning ' every animal ' (p. 20) : Rep. 1 PoUt. 1 
Phil. 2 Tim. 2 Legg. 5. 

365. ^vfiTTds prevails over anas only (p. 4) : Soph. 20!S Polit. 
45118 Phil. 21119, while in aU other dialogues anas is more frequent, 
being in Tim. Legg. over twice as frequent as ^vfinas. 

366. nds and its compounds occur over four times in a page ed. 
Didot (p. 4) in : Soph. 181 Polit. 239 Phil. 209 Tim. 375 Critias 
67 Legg. 1290, rising in Polit. Tim. Critias Legg. to more than five 
and even up to seven times in a page, while in all other dialogues 
they are much scarcer (Euthyd. 102 Crat. 137 Symp. 142 Rep. 601 
Theaet. 188 Parm. 91, elsewhere less). 

367. anas, ^vfinas, ^vi'dnas occur over once in two pages in • 
(p. 4) : Apol. 12 Crito 7 Each. 10 Prot. 23 Euthyd. 17 Parm. 17 
Soph. 31 PhU. 4^, and over once in a page in : Polit. 64 Tim. 62 

''5 E. Walbe, SUesius, Syniaxis Platonicae Specimen (Doctor's diss.), 
Bonn 1888 (sxxiv). 


tions on 
ties of 

by Plato's 

This is a 
in the 

Critias 11 Legg. 255, in all other dialogues less, being over once 
in three pages only in : Meno 8 Gorg. 28 Phaedo 17 Eep. 73 
Phaedr. 17 Theaet. 20. 

368. irav octov (p. 7) : Symp. 1 Soph. 1 Polit. 1 Tim. 4 Legg. 3. 

369. Tvavra ^<uo or ^wa TvaiTci (p. 31) : Phaedo 2 Eep. 2 Soph. 1 
Phil. 3 Tim. 2 Legg. 3 (including two occurrences of fwa ^vfinavra 
in Legg.). 

370. anas or cinav without article or substantive (pp. 5, 7) : 
Symp, 1 Phaedo 1 Phaedr. 1 Parm. 3 Tim. 2 Legg. 4. 

371. TO irav, meaning the universe {omnittin rerum universitas, 
p. 10), is limited to : Crat. 3 Symp. 1 Eep. 1 Theaet. 3 Parm. 1 
Soph. 8 Polit. 7 Phil. 10 Tim. 38 Legg. 11. 

372. T-6 nav 8i.a(f)€pei,v (pp. 10-11) : Polit. 1 Legg. 2. 

373. TTcicra or arraaa dvdyKr] (p. 23) : Phaedo 2 Eep. 5 Phaedr. 2 
Theaet. 2 Soph. 2 Phil. 1 Tim. 4 Legg. 2. 

374. nas or compounds used together with eKaaros (p. 37) : 
Euthyd. 1 Eep. 2 Theaet. 1 Parm. 1 Soph. 1 Tim. 6 Legg. 1. 

375. rras used with o\os (p. 88) : Eep. 2 Soph. 1 Legg. 3. 

XXIX. SiEBECK. In the same year as Walbe's dis- 
sertation and Hitter's work was published an original 
investigation on Plato's style by H. Siebeck,'^'^ author of 
the History of Psychology. Siebeck, as a psychologist, 
sought for characteristics of Plato's style revealing 
changes in the author's state of mind which are capable 
of psychological explanation. He chose for his purpose 
the different classes of affirmative answers, and made a 
step further in the right method of calculating opportu- 
nities for the occurrence of each particular answer, not 
taking, as Eitter did, the sum of all answers as a com- 
parative measure, but the sum of all affirmative answers 
only. Siebeck, moreover, classified all these answers and 
distinguished problematic, assertive, and apodictic affirma- 
tions. The apodictic affirmations, as for instance akrjdsa-- 
Tura, opOoTara, iravTaTraai, &c., are, as Siebeck shows, 
in all cases when the chronological order of two 
dialogues is known from other certain sources, more 
numerous in the later works. They form in the Bepublic 

^'-"^ H. Siebeck, Untcrsiiclmngen zur Philosophic dcr Griechen, 2" A., 
Freiburg in B., 1888, pp. 253-2G6 : ' Nachtriige die platonische Frage 
betreffend, I. Sprachstatistisches ' (xxxv). Siebeck knew among his pre- 
decessors Dittenberger, Frederking, Hoefer, Schanz, and Gomperz. ^ 


fifty per cent, of all affirmative answers, and in the Lmvs method of 
fifty-four per cent. A similar relation is observed in the stylistic 
dialectic trilogy. In the Theaetetus Siebeck found thirty- ^^^'^^ ^°^ 
eight per cent, apodictic answers, in the Sophist forty-two ^^^^^' 
per cent., in the Politicus forty-nine per cent. — while in 
the Protagoras, generally recognised as an early dialogue, as can be 
such answers form only fifteen per cent, of all. More- tested on 
over, in the separate books of the Bepubiic we notice the those 
like progress from a more problematic to an apodictic ^orks 
certainty. In Book I we find thirty-eight per cent. ^^°^^ 
apodictic affirmations, as in the Theaetetus ; in Books II- 
IV they rise to forty-six per cent. ; in Books V-IX ^^.^gj. jg 
to fifty-four per cent. ; in Book X they decline a little, otherwise 
being fifty-three per cent, of all affirmative answers. It known. 
would be an exaggeration to affirm that these numbers 
correspond precisely to the chronological order, because 
the special subject of each work gives greater or fewer 
opportunities for apodictic certainty, and if the Phaedo 
contains forty-nine per cent, apodictic replies, this is no 
sufficient reason for inferring that this dialogue was 
written after the Sophist ; still, Siebeck's method of cal- giebeck's 
culating the opportunities for different kinds of answers calcula- 
marks a progress over Bitter's first attempt. Siebeck tio°s add 
also counted the number of simple direct questions, with- ^®^^ ^^' 
out any interrogative particle, or with ri or apa or umv ^°^ ^ 

. , % ^ ^^ , . ' . ^, ^ informa- 

only, m order to find the relative recurrence of these par- ^j^^ ^^ ^^j. 
tides ; and he found the percentage of questions with apa knowledge 
or fiMv to be very high in the dialogues of the latest group, of Plato's 
These investigations increase our list by some charac- style. 
teristics whose importance outweighs their number : 

376. Over forty in each hundred affirmative answers are They 
apodictic (p. 260) only in: Phaedo 83/168 Kep. 669/1342 .show that 
Phaedi-. 42/76 Parm. 159/394 Soph. 140/329 Polit. 130 268 apodictic 
Phil. 198/323 Legg. 312/578. In other dialogues the proportion affirma- 
is much smaller, coming nearest to the later style in Euthyd. tions and 
451130 Gorg. 1051321 Crat. 77J238 Theaet. 1011263 "(in these certam 
dialogues over 30 %). j^.^^^ ^^ 

377. To each problematic answer correspond at least four 


tions in- 
crease in 
in the 

tions and 
them on 
tion on 
the use of 
and of 
kinds of 
peculiar to 
later style. 

apodictic answers or more : Phaedo 20/83 Rep. 141/669 Phaedr. 
10/42 Soph. 31/140 Phil. 32/198 Legg. 69/312. In othe'r 
dialogues the problematic answers occur much oftener, being less 
than one to three apodictic answers only in Euthyd. ISj^S Gorg. 
331105 Parm. 531159 Polit. 351130. 

378. Interrogations by means oiapa form 24 % or more of all 
simple interrogations : Parm. 50/207 Soph. 46/171 Polit. 31/106 
Phil. 56/186 Legg. 9 5/329, while in all other dialogues apa is 
much scarcer, the proportion being above 15 % only in : Prot. 
37J140 Crat. 341173 Phaedo SljlGl Rep. 183J931 Phaedr. 11173 
Theaet. 39J339, and in other dialogues less. 

XXX. Tiemann. Stylistic investigations on Plato 
became better known after 1888 ; tbose of Dittenberger, 
Sclianz, Eitter, and Siebeck receiving most attention, but 
still they met with obstinate opposition, and Zeller con- 
tinued to disdain them. J. Tiemann,^^'^ under the influence 
of Ritter's work, investigated the use of some participles 
with slvai, and noticed among others the following 
peculiarities : 

379. Particip. aorist. with elvai (p. 559) : Polit. 2 Tim. 1 Legg. 1. 

380. Tvpenov with emu : Lach. 1 Gorg. 1 Symp. 1 Tim. 2 
Critias 2 Legg. 7. 

381. TTpo(Tr)KU)v with elvai : Rep. 3 Phaedr. 1 Tim. 1 Legg. 2. 

382. Part, praes. with elvai : Euthyph. 1 Prot. 1 Meno 2 Gorg. 2 
Crat. 2 Symp. 1 Phaedo 1 ; Rep. 8 Phaedr. 3 Theaet. 3 ; Soph. 6 
Polit. 8 Phil. S Tim. 4 Critias 1 Legg. 11. 

383. Pleonastic use of participles (yy. 55G) : Lach. 1 Prot. 1 Meno 3 
Euthyd. 1 Gorg. 3 Crat. 1 Symp. 2 Phaedo 2 ; Rep. 14 Phaedr. 4 
Theaet. 3 ; Soph. 7 PoUt. 13 Phil. 7 Tim. 13 Critias 4 Legg. 34. 

384. Periphrastic impersonal expressions (p. 556) : Symp. 1 
Rep. 1 Soph. 1 Polit. 2 Tim. 7 Critias 2 Legg. 10. 

385. akrjOr] without Aeyet? in atifirmative answers (p. 586) : 
Charm. 3 Lach. 1 Prot. 1 Gorg. 1 Phaedo 1 Rep. 29 Theaet. 9 
Parm. 18 Soph. 7 Polit. 5 Phil. 2 Legg. 4. (The occurrence of 
oK-qdr] in Prot. and Gorg. has not been noticed by Tiemann, nor by 
C. Ritter, but is mentioned by von Arnim '^^ p. 9, and has been 
admitted here on his testimony, because an involmitary omission 

''' J. Tiemann, ' Zum Sprachgebrauch Platos ' in Wochenschrift fur 
klassisclic Philosoplde, 1889, columns 248-253, 362-366 ; also in his exten- 
sive review of C. Eitter's work in the same journal, columns 791-797, 
839-842, Berlin 1889 (xxxvi). The numbers for Parmenidcs omitted by 
Tiemann have been in some cases added from Arnim's (see note 144) 


appears more probable than a wrong observation, unless Arnim 
counted as simple aXrjdfj some aXrjdrj Xeyeis.) oXtjOtJ Xeyeis, very 
common in earlier dialogues, is scarcer afterwards. 

Already C. Eitter had noticed that the abridged forms 
opdois, aXrjdiaTara, opdorara without \syeis, as well as 
opOoTara even with Xsysis, were limited to Kep. Phaedr. 
Theaet. Parm., and to the six latest dialogues, occurring 
nowhere earlier (342). Tiemann counted the occurrences 
of each of these forms of affirmative answers, and found 
that opdods, opOoTara, and aXTjOsa-rara, with or without 
XsysLs, though not limited to the latest works, occur in 
them with increased frequency, and may therefore be 
looked upon as peculiarities of later style : 

386. opdcos with or without Xe'-yet? in affirmative answers 
(p. 586) : Euthyph. 1 Charm. 1 Meno 1 Crat. 1 Phaedo 1 Rep. 35 
Phaedr. 1 Theaet. 5 Parm. 18 Soph. 10 Polit. 17 Phil. 13 Legg. 24. 
(Arnim agrees generally with these mmabers, but he found no 
6p6<os in Meno and Crat., and only two in Phil., 25-26 in Legg.) 

387. ak-q6eaTaTa with or without Xeyets in affirmative answers 
(p. 586) : Lach. 1 Crat. 1 Symp. 1 Phaedo J^ Rep. S8 Phaedr. 2 
Theaet. 7 Parm. G Soph. 5 Polit. 7 Phil. 16 Legg. 23 (Arnim 
Legg. 24). 

388. opdorara with or without Ae'yfiy in affirmative answers 
(p. 586) : Rep. 10 Phaedr. 1 Theaet. 1 Parm. 1 Soph. 4. Polit. 8 
Phil. 10 Legg. 12. Arnim : Rep. 11 Phaedr. 2 Soph. 5 Poht. 12 
Phil. 12 Legg. 15 or 16. (In this and the preceding Nos. 385-387 
the niunbers for Parmenides, omitted by Tiemann, are quoted 
from Arnim, who sUghtly differs from Tiemann and Ritter in other 

XXXI. LiNA. Simultaneously with Tiemann, Lina '^^ Llna 
published at Marburg a dissertation wherein he classi- counted 
fies no fewer than twenty-one thousand eight hundred ^^^ "^^^ °^ 
and eighty-one occurrences of prepositions in Plato's p^^p°^^' 
works. From his lists the following confirmation of ^^.^^^ ^^ 
earlier results is gathered : tind a 

"* T. Lina, De praepositionum usu platonico ; dissertatio inauguralis 
Marpurgi 1889 (xxxvii). Of his predecessors Lina knew Dittenberger, 
Schanz, and Ritter. 



of fre- 
quency in 
their use 
early and 

he used 
a wrong 
of text. 
His obser- 
teach us, 
a great 
of pecu- 
liarities of 
later style, 
kinds of 
are pro- 

389. Kara with the accusative prevails over all other prepositions 
except ev (p. 9) : Crat. 75 Polit. 130 Critias r>0 Legg. 697, and 
over eV in Soph. 115 Tim. 253. In these dialogues Kara cum ace. 
forms 12-15 % of the whole number of prepositions, while 
in other works it is much scarcer, reaching 9 % only in the 
Theaet. and falling to the fourth rank in Parm. (after ev, irpos, tK), 
Phil, (after ev, els, Trepi), Legg. B. vi. x. xii. (after ei, els and eK or 
nepl). The prevalence of Kara in some dialogues is so ninch the 
more characteristic, as in the whole of Plato's text ev (4143), Tiepi 
(3267), Trpo'f (2292), prevail much over Kara (2065). 

390. Twenty-one or more prepositions on each page (ed. Didot) 
occur only in : Phaedr. 819 Polit. 916 Tim. 1733 (32 in one 
page) Critias 363 (33 in one page) Legg. 5249 (22 in one page), 
over 19 in: Lach. 35.3 Phaedo 9^5 Rep. 3865 Soph. 757; over 33 in 
two pages in : Prot. 678 Symp. 737 Theaet. 885 Parm. 512 Phil, 
778, elsewhere less. (In this case the superiority of Didot's edition 
over Teubner's, as a measiu-e of text, is manifest. Lina gives 
for Polit. the proportion of 11 prepositions to one page, the 
same as for Prot., while from the numbers he quotes it results 
that one page ed. Didot contains in Prot. 17*4 prepositions, in 
Polit. 21-3. This should be carefully borne in mind by all 
fiiture inquirers, who wish to determine how often per page a 
word occurs. The proportion of 11 prepositions to one page ed. 
Teubner is given by Lina also for Lach., with 19*5 preposi- 
tions on one page ed. Didot ; according to his calculations Symp, 
[18'9 prepositions on one page ed, Didot] and Phaedo [19*3 
prepositions on one page ed. Didot] would contain more preposi- 
tions [12 on each page ed. Teubner] than the Politicus [11 pre- 
positions on one page ed. Teubner, and 21'3 prepositions on one 
page ed. Didot], while they really contain two prepositions less on 
each page ed. Didot. It follows that the standard of a page varies, 
and that we must be cautious in selecting a measure of text. So 
long as the ideal measure, the number of words of each dialogue, 
remains unknown, there is no safer standard than the pages of 
Didot's edition for measuring Plato's text.) 

391. 7rep\ c, accus. prevails over Trepi c. gen. (p. 12): Symp, 40/39 
Soph. 76J71 PoHt. 9SI53 Tim. 1161S8 Critias 20121 Legg. iii. v. 
vi. vii. 182\lJi,7. This is a very characteristic peculiarity, because 
in all other dialogues the predominance of Trepl c. gen. over nepX 
c. ace. is so great that in the dialogues not specified by Lina 
1552 TTfpi c. gen. correspond to 804 nep\ c. ace. 

392. Kara sundered from the corresponding accus. by brj (jj. 14) : 
Meno 1 Rep. 1 Parm. 2 Soph. 2 Polit. 1 Phil. 1 Tim, 1 Legg. 1. 

393. idem, by p.(v (p. 14) : Gorg. 1 Rep. 2 Theaet. 2 Polit. 1 
Phil. 1 Tim. 1 Legg. 2. 

394. idem, by Sc (p. 14) : Gorg. 1 Crat. 2 Rep. 4 Theaet. 4 
Parm. 3 Soph. 1 Phil. 1 Tim. 5 Critias 3 Legg. 2. 


395. idem, by re (p. 14) : Eep. 2 Phaedr. 1 Theaet. 1 Polit. 1 
Phil. 1 Tim. 4 Legg. 8. 

396. idem, by yk (pp. 14, 75) : Charm. 2 Gorg. 1 Crat. 1 Phaedo 1 
Eep. 1 Theaet. 1 Soph. 1 Poht. ^ Phil. 5 Tim. 1 Legg. 4. 

397. idem, by a genitive (p. 14) : Crat. 1 Eep. 1 Phaedr. 1 
Parm. 1 Polit. 1 Legg. 3. 

398. idem, by more than one word (p. 15) : Gorg. 1 Crat. 1 
Symp. 1 Parm. 1 Polit. 1 Critias 1 Legg. 2. 

399. Trepi sundered from the corresponding genitive by Sr; (p. 16) : 
Theaet. 1 Soph. 1 Poht. 1 Tim. 2 Legg. 2. 

400. idem, by U (p. 16) : Lach. 2 Prot. 3 Crat. 2 Symp. 2 
Rep. 1 Phaedr. 2 Theaet. 2 Soph. 2 Polit. 2 Phil. 2 Tim. 2 
Legg. 12. 

401. idem, by ye (p. 16) : Euthyph. 2 Phaedo 1 Eep. 1 
Theaet. 1 Phil. 1 Legg. 4. 

402. idem, by re (p. 16) : Euthyph. 1 Crito 1 Charm, 1 
Symp. 1 Phaedo 1 Eep. 7 Theaet. 1 Soph. 1 Polit. 3 Phil. 2 
Tim. 2 Critias 1 Legg. 4. 

403. idem, by a genitive (p. 16) : Euthyd. 3 Gorg. 3 Phaedo 1 
Phaedr. 2 Theaet. 2 Polit. 2 Critias 1 Legg. 4. 

404. idem, by /xei/ yap (p. 17) : Eep. 1 Theaet. 1 Polit. 1. 

405. idem, by three to five words (p. 17) : Crat. 2 Eep. 1 
Phil. 1 Tim. 2 Legg. 3. 

406. Trept, sundered from the corresponding accus. by ye 
(p. 18) : Crat. 1 Legg. 2. 

407. idem, by Se (p. 18) : Gorg. 3 Eep. 1 Phaedr. 1 Theaet. 2 
Soph. 3 Polit. 3 Phil. 2 Critias 2 Legg. 2. 

408. idem, by peV (p. 19) : Gorg. 2 Eep. 1 Phaedr. 1 Theaet. 2 
Soph. 3 Polit. 1 Phil. 1 Tim. 1 Legg. 3. 

409. idem, by re' (p. 19) : Phaedo 1 Eep. 2 Phaedr. 1 Polit. ^ 
Phil. 1 Tim. 4 Legg. 9. 

410. idem, by a genitive (p. 19) : Euthyph. 1 Lach. 1 
Euthyd. 1 Crat. 1 Symp. 1 Eep. 3 Phaedi*. 2 Polit. 1 Phil. 1 
Legg. 3. 

411. idem, by two or three words (p. 19) : Symp. 1 Eep. 2 
Phaedr. 1 Tim. 1. 

412. Trept placed after the substantive which depends on it The very 
(anastrophe) was not very much used by writers earUer than Plato frequent 
(as for instance Thucydides), while in Plato it forms over 17 % use of Tre'pi 
of all occurrences of this preposition, and after Plato it became j^ ana- 
still more common. But this use is not equally frequent in all strophe 
dialogues; it does not occur in Crito Charm., forms under 5 % j, jj-^g 
of all occurrences of Trepi in Prot. Euthyd. Crat, Phaedo, rises . , , 
above 6 % in Apol. 2/24 Euthyph. 3/37 Meno 5/50 Gorg. 9/92 ^^ 
Symp. 3/39 Parm. 2/30 Critias 2 21, above 10 % in Lach. 10\1l8 ''^'^ ^^' 
Theaet. 11^\123 Tim. 1S\88 ; and above 20 % only in : Eep, 60 ^'"^^^ ^°™® 

K 2 


tions are 
later more 

Also some 
are pre- 
valent in 
the latest 
works, as 
it results 

(22 %) Phaedr. 18 (21 %) Soph. 16 (22 %) Polit. 11 (21 %) 
Phil. 21 (32 %) Legg. 139 (29 %) (calculated from the table 
given by Lina on p. 29). 

413. Betvpeen a genitive and a foUowing nepi belonging to it, 
is placed a ye (p. 26) : Gorg. 1 Phil. 1. 

414. idem, 8e (p. 27) : Gorg. 1 Rep. 1 Legg. 9. 

415. idem, 8^ (p. 27) : Prot. 1 Phaedr. 2 Soph. 1 Polit. 1 Phil. 1 
Legg. 8. 

416. idem, re (p. 27) : Euthyph. 1 Gorg. 1 Symp. 1 Phaedo 1 
Rep. 17 Theaet. 1 Soph. 1 Polit. 2 Phil. 3 Tim. 1 Critias 1 
Legg. 12. 

417. idem, a genitive (p. 27) : Phil, 1 Legg. 2. 

418. Between a genitive depending on nepi and the following 
TTfpL is placed another word (not one of the above particles (413- 
416), but including the genitives counted in 417) or more words 
(p. 27) : Apol. 1 Lach. 1 Rep. 1 Phaedr. 3 Theaet. 1 Soph. 3 
Polit. 1 Phil. 3 Legg. 17. 

419. dva Xoyov (in the same meaning as Kara 'Koyov = in pro- 
portion) or dva Tov avTov \6yov (p. 35) : Phaedo 2 Rep. 2 Tim. 6 
Legg. 1. 

420. Kara c. genit. after a verbum dicendi in the same mean- 
ing as Trept (p. 87) : Charm. 1 Meno 2 Euthyd. 1 Crat. 1 Symp. 1 
Phaedo 1 Rep. 1 Phaedr. 1 Soph. 1 Legg. 2. 

421. idem, after a verbum agendi (p. 37) : Meno 2 Phaedo 1 ; 
Soph. 1 Phn. 1 Legg. 1. 

422. Kara c. accus. to designate the direction of a movement 
(for which generally the genitive is used) meaning towards or to or 
in (pp. 39, 40) : S3'mp. 1 (190 e : kuto. ttjv yaarepa) Phaedo 1 (114 A : 
Kara ttjv Xipvijv) Rep. 1 (614 d) Tim. S Critias 4 Legg. 1 (905 a). 

423. idem, metaphorically (pp. 39-41) : Crat. 1 Symp. 4 (205 d: 
Kara xp^H-aTi.rTfj.6v etc.) Rep. 1 (396 d) Phaedr. 2 Theaet. 2 Parm. 2 
Soph. 4 PoHt. 1 Phil. 1 Tim. 2 Legg. 4. 

424. Kara c. accus. to designate the diffusion of something over 
or through some space or place (p. 41) : Prot. 1 (313 d : Kara ras 
noXfis) Crat. 1 Symp. 1 Phaedo 2 Rep. 1 Phaedr. 2 Theaet. 1 
Tim. IS Critias 1 Legg. 2 (indicatnr aliquid per aliquem locum 

425. idem, metaphorically : Rep. 1 Theaet. 1 Parm. 1 Soph. 2 
Polit. 1 Phil. 2 Legg. 6. 

426. Kara c. acc. to designate a place ( = in) in such phrases as 
KUTa Tonov, or Kara x^P°-V'> Ol^ '^it' acrrv {Kara nokiv is not coimted, 
because Lina does not quote all the numerous occurrences of this 
phrase) (p. 43) : Gorg. 1 Rep. 1 Tim. 4 Critias 4 Legg. 6. 

427. Kara p.€aov (p. 43) : Phaedo 1 (118 a) Rep. 1 Soph. 1 
Tim. 1 Critias 4 Legg. 2. 

428. Kara BaKarrav (p. 44) : Rep. 1 Polit. 1 Legg. 9. 


429. Kar dyopdp or kut dyopds (p. 44) : Eep. 2 Theaet. 1 Farm. 1 
Polit. 1 Legg. 7. 

430. Kara Kaipov (p. 47) : Polit. 1 Legg. 2. 

431. Kar eKelvov tov xpdvov (p. 47) : Polit. 2 Tim. 3 Legg. 5. But he has 

432. Kctd' Cnvov (p. 47) : Tim. 3 Legg. 1. made no 

433. Kara^paxv = pauhmi, nonmultum (p. 57 ) : Soph. 2 Tim. 1 chrono- 
Legg. 2 (In Prot. and Gorg. the same words mean according to jogjca,! use 
Lina breviter). of these 

434. Karh (to) 6p66v (p. 57) : Soph. 1 Tim. 1 Legg. 1. observa- 

435. Karh p.4pos (p. 59) : Soph. 1 Legg. 2. 

436. Kar^ a^pn (p. 59) : Eep. 1 Theaet. 1 Parm. 4 Tim. 3 "" ^' ^ 
Legg. 2. ^^^^:^""y 

437. Kari fifiva (p. 60) : Kep. 1 Legg. 3. allhispre- 

438. Kard rvxnv (p. 63) : Rep. 1 Phaedr. 1 Soph. 1 Legg. 2. decessois 

439. ofjLoiov Kara riva (p. 67) : Phaedo 1 Polit. 1 Tim. 1 Legg. 1. except 

440. TO (or rd) (card rt (ro amp-a, rds eina-Trjfias, &c.), meaning Campbell 
' ampliorem quam simplex suhstantivum notionem ' (p. 71) : ignored 
Euthyd. 1 Gorg. 1 Phaedo 1 Rep. 1 Phaedr. 1 Soph. 1 Critias 1 t^g me- 
Legg. 8. _ thodical 

441. Kara c. accus. without any grammatical relation to any ^^^^^ 
part of the phrase, and meaning ' qiiod attinet ad,' is fomid only 

(p. 72) : Meno 1 (72 a : Kara rfjv elKova) Rep. 1 (614 D : Kara tw 

erepo)) Theaet. 1 (153 D : koto to. oppara) Phil. 1 (17 c : Kara P^^^° ^ 

T€xvr)v) Critias 1 (109 c: kut' HWovs roTrovj) Legg. 1 (812 a: Kara accidental 

. f //] x pecu- 

TT)V VTroaecriv), '■ 

442. Kara c. acc. meaning ' quantum attinet ad ' (p. 72) : liarities. 
Symp. 1 (185 b: Kaff avrov) Legg. 2 (715 D, 928 b). 

443. Kara with the accus. meaning 'according to somebody,' 
or after somebody's fashion (p. 56) : Apol. 1 Meno 1 Euthyd. 1 
Gorg. 2 Symp. 2 Phaedr. 3 Theaet. 1 Parm. 1 Legg. 2. 

444. Kara napciSfiypa or Kara a-vvrideiav after a verbum dicendi 
or agendi (p. 52) : Meno 2 Soph. 1 Poht. 2 Tim. 2 Legg. 1. 

445. Kara forming a hiatus with a following a, f, »y or o (pp. 22- 
23) : Meno 2 Gorg. 1 Symp. 1 Rep. 5 Phaedr. 2 Parm. 3 Polit. 1 
Critias 1 Legg. 5. 

446. Kara 6e6v (p. 63 divina quadam sorte) : Euthyd. 1 
Rep. 1 Soph. 1 Legg. 3. 

447. Kara c. acc. in the distributive meaning after a verbum 
dividendi (except kot' e'i8rj biaipeladai which is too frequent for 
enumeration, p. 58) : Meno 1 Rep. 1 Phaedr. 1 Soph. 3 Polit. 3 
Tim. 3 Legg. 3. 

XXXII.-XXXIII. Baron. Van Cleef. After so Van 
many investigations on the Platonic vocabulary in three Cleef's 
years (1886-1889), the subject remained untouched during '^^Ton' 
the following seven years, though some authors wrote on 


the use of 
in Plato 
are very 
but as he 
did not 
guish the 
single dia- 
logues he 
our apply- 
ing his 
work to 

The same 

other aspects of Plato's style, ignoring the relation 
between style and chronology. Compared with the 
laborious German dissertations, the French these of 
C. Baron '^^ on the form of Plato's writings appears 
almost a rhetorical exercise. A student of the Univer- 
sity of Bonn, Van Cleef,^^" of Ohio, spent much time in 
minute research on the use of attraction in Plato, but 
he deprived us of some additional characteristics of 
Plato's later style by mixing in his statistical tables 
dialogues of different dates without any distinction of 
single works. He followed Christ in uniting Rep. Parm. 
Soph. Polit. Phil. Tim. Critias Legg. into one class of 
so-called constructive dialogues ; and he observed that 
the use of attraction, while occurring in the sum of Plato's 
works about thirty-eight times in every one hundred 
pages, is reduced in this group to only fourteen cases in 
one hundred pages of text. This result tends to show 
that attraction generally was not a peculiarity of later 
style, but we are left uncertain whether this refers 
equally to all the eight dialogues of the group, or only to 
some of them. The group which Van Cleef calls con- 
structive dialogues contains, besides the recognised six 
latest dialogues, only Bepublic and Parmenides, so that 
we may admit as probable that the use of attraction 
decreased in Plato's later style ; and as all the passages 
are enumerated by Van Cleef, whoever cared to under- 
take the task of a new classification and methodic dis- 
position of the materials collected by him might draw 
very interesting chronological conclusions, or at least 
afford fresh confirmation to the chronological conclusions 
arrived at otherwise. 

XXXIV.-XXXV. Geunwald. Berteam. From 
the instructive collection of proverbs found in Plato by 

"° C. Baron, Dc Platonis diccndi genere, Paris 1891 (xxxviii). 
'" F. L. van Cleef, Ohianus, De attractionis in enuntiationihus relativis 
usuplatonico (Doctor's diss. Bonn University), Bonn 1890 (xxxix). 


E. Grtinwald ^*^ it is again impossible to draw any chrono also to 
logical inferences, because proverbs are seldom repeated, publica- 
and cannot be regarded as peculiar to any given period *^°°^ ^^ 
of Plato's style. Also Bertram's interesting contribution ^^^'^^'^ ' 
on the use of metaphor in Plato ""^ contains nothins: that -^ ^ 

. -^ . '~ Jbertrara. 

could be included in our list. 

XXXVI. Campbell. All the foregoing writers on Camp- 
Plato's language, from Eoeper to Van Cleef, ignored bell's 
Campbell's Introduction to the Sophist and Politicus, ^'^^^^^ 
though after the publication of Eitter's book Campbell ^" 

. 1 . „ T , . ^ . . . tioiis de- 

again on several occasions recalled his first mvestigations. ,, 

o _ f^ serve the 

But he published these later articles in journals of attention 

limited circulation on the Continent, as the Transactions of Platonic 

of the Oxford Philological Society, or the Bibliotheca scholars 

Platonica. '^•' Consequently the coincidence of results °°^ ^^^^ 

between Campbell and the German style statisticians *'/'^° ^^ 
was known to none but the Scotch philologer himself, .? ,. 

*^ " tributions 

while the few generally known German dissertations to Platonic 
naturally failed to secure a general recognition of the literature 
results obtained by them alone. There is reason to thirty-five 
think that Campbell's more recent investigations on years ago. 
Plato's use of language, filling 175 pages in the second 
volume of the monumental edition of the Republic by 
Jowett and Campbell (3 vols., Oxford 1894), will likewise 
escape the attention of German and French students of 
Platonic style, unaccustomed to look for such original 

'" Dr. Eugen Griinwald, Spriclnoorter uiid sprichwortliche Redensartcn 
bei Plato, Berlin 1893. (Programme des Cours du College Eoyal Fran(;ais 
de Berlin) (xl). 

'^'- Heinrich Bertram, ' Die Bildersprache Platons,' Beilage zuvi Jahres- 
berichf der koniglichcn Landcsschiilc Pforta, Naumburg a. S. 1895 (xli). 

•" Transactions of the Oxford Philological Society, 1888-1889, pp. 25- 
42, June 14, ' On the position of the Sophistes, Politicus, and Philebus in 
the order of the Platonic Dialogues, and on some characteristics of Plato's 
latest writings,' by Professor Lewis Campbell of St. Andrews (xlii) ; and on 
the same subject in Bibliotheca Platonica, an exposition of the Platonic 
Philosophy edited by Thos. M. .Johnson, Osceola, Mo. LT.S.A. vol. i. July, 
August 1889, N. 1, pp. 1-28 : Prof. L. Campbell : ' On some recent attempt 
towards ascertaining the chronological order of the composition of Plato's 
dialogues ' (xliii). 



or even 
came to 
the same 
though his 
method of 

labours in the Appendices to an edition of a single 
dialogue. It would, however, exceed the limits of the 
present survey to epitomise this last work of Campbell, 
which should stand on the shelves of every philological 
library. Enough to state that this new publication of 
Campbell is of no less importance for our knowledge of 
Plato's style than his Introduction to the SopJiist and 
Politicus written thirty years ago, and forms a splendid 
continuation of the work he began in 1861 by his edition 
of the Theaetetus. A full syntax of Plato's language, 
illustrated by quotations not only from the Bepublic but 
from other dialogues, it confirms in many details the 
close relation of the Phaedrus and Theaetetus to the 
Bepublic on one side, and of the SopJiist, Politicus, 
Philehus to Timaeus, Critias, Laios on the other side. 

XXXVII. Von Aenim. The want of centralisation 
in Platonic studies is illustrated by the curious fact that 
quite recently an author who undertook researches on 
one aspect of Plato's vocabulary, J. von Arnim ^^^ (1896), 
Professor at the University of Kostock, not only knew 
nothing of Campbell's publications, but even ignored 
Hitter's book, having read nothing on the style of Plato 
but the articles of Dittenberger and Schanz. 

On the other hand, it is very instructive to note that 
von Arnim, after careful comparison of twenty-six cha- 

'^* Joannis ab Arnim, De. Platonis dialogis, Quaestiones chronologicae, 
ad scholas quae in hac universitate Rostochiensi per seinestre liibcrnum 
inde a d. XVI M. Octobris A. MDCCCXCVI habehuntur invitant Rector 
et concilium. Eostock 1896 (xliv). The numbers given by Arnim are in 
some cases different from the numbers given by C. Eitter. In such cases 
the larger number has been included in our list, because an omission is more 
likely to happen than that one passage should be counted as two, if the work 
is done carefully. But von Arnim sometimes changes his classification, so 
that he quotes different numbers for the same dialogue, as, for instance, twelve 
opOSraTu Xeyeis in the Laivs in § 13, and thirteen in § 14 ; two aAndea-rara 
\4yeis in the Politicus in § 10, and five in § 14 ; one opOws Ae'^eis in the 
Politicus in § 14, and none in § 11, &c. Also his numbers for the pecu- 
liarities which have been collected by C. Eitter and Tiemann show some 
considerable differences, as, for instance, he did not find opBws in the 
Philebus, while C. Eitter and Tiemann found it eleven times. 


racteristic marks of Plato's style, came independently to many ex- 
the same conclusions as Campbell in 1867, and as Eitter pressions 
in 1888. He recognised that Soph. Polit. Phil. Tim. ^° °°^ 

ploOQ 3,11(1 

Critias Legg. are the latest of Plato's works, and that 

&o . 7 • T-.7 counting 

the group preceding them contains the Bepubkc, Phae- ^^^^ ^^_ 
driis, Theaetetus, and Parmenides. Many of Arnim's gather is 
observations are new, and furnish us with several somewhat 
additional peculiarities of Plato's later style : arbitrary. 

448. vai, irdvv ye, ndvv fieu ovv form less than one-third of all 
affirmative answers (p. 6) : Rep. 195 Phaedr. 11 Theaet. 68 Parm. 97 t^atrheto- 
Soph. 71 Polit. 54 Phil. 53 Legg. 76, being in Rep. Phaedr. "calmter- 
Phil. Legg. even less than one-fourth of all affirmative answers, rogations 
while they form in all earlier dialogues over one -third, and in and also 
Meno Euthyd. Gorg. Crat. even over one-half of all answers. interro- 

449. KaXms and kqXcos ravrd ye, as affirmative answers (p. 9) : gations 
Rep. 1 Soph. 2 Polit. 6 Legg. 6. asking for 

450. KciXXiara and KaXXia-rd ye as affirmative answers (p. 9) : ^ better 
Phil. 1 Legg. 1. explana- 

451. Rhetorical interrogations meaning affirmative answers (as: j^- ^ 

ri ut'iv : dWd ri ariv ; t'l yap KoiXiiei ; dWd ri ue'AXet ; ri yap ov neXXei ; . 

<C' \ „ . \ „.■>., . '^^ ' r, « ^ . * «NN something 

Ti Or] yap ov ; Ti yap ov ; tl o nv fxeAAei; tl 6 ov ; ttcos yap av uAAcas ; -i, f 

7rS)S yap ov jxeWei ; ttcos yap ov ; ttws 5' ovpeXXei; Kai nais ov ; ttws 

t'ov ;) were increasing in Plato's later works. They form over ^^® pecu- 

20 % of all interrogations in (p. 14) : Phaedi-. 14/62 Soph, liar to 

49/240 Polit. 46/210 Phil. 59/257 Legg. 105/409, over one- later style. 

tenth in Euthyph. 6JU Crito SjU Rep. 125!935 Theaet. 331198 

Parm. 381298, over 5 % in Each. 4/49 Gorg. 16/239 Phaedo 

12/131 and less in Charm. 3/67 Meno 3/130 Euthyd. 1/68 Crat. 


452. Interrogations by tI prevail over those by ttcos only in 
(p. 15) : Phaedi-. 13!2 Theaet. 1518 Phil. 34125 Legg. 58155, while 
they are in aU other dialogues much scarcer (being in Rep. 49/71 
Parm. 9/29 Soph. 15/34 Polit. 22/24). 

453. Interrogations asking for a better explanation of something 
said before (p. 16) are missed in many dialogues. They are found 
in : Each. 4 Gorg. 1 Crat. 7 Rep. 6;^ Phaedr. 6 Theaet. 15 Parm. 3 
Soph. 37 Polit. 41 Phil. 43 Legg. 63. 

454. KaXas, KuXXiara, apiara, opdois, opBorara, diKaioTara, kul jj-oX 
eiKOTcos in affirmative answers with other verbs than Xiyeis, 
namely, with eiVes, e'iprjKus, af }^€yois, eiTTd>i>, e'iprjTai, form a class 
missed in earlier dialogues, but found in (p. 11) : Rep. 3 Phaedr. 2 
Soph. 3 Polit. 7 Phil. 8 Legg. 17. 

455. KaXas, KoXXtcrra, apia-ra, opdws, opdoTara, aacjiecrrara, 
dXr]6e(TTaTa, dvayKaiorara, used as affirmative answers without verb, 


are limited to (p. 11) : Rep. 59 Phaedr, 2 Theaet. 7 Farm. 13 
Soph. 23 Polit. 38 Phil. 19 Tim. 1 Legg. 36. 

456. (Ikos used in affirmative answers (p. 12) : Lach. 1 Prot. 1 
Meno 1 Gorg, 1 Crat. 3 Phaedo 5 Rep, W Theaet. 3 Parm. 2 
Polit. 5 Phil. 3 Legg. 12 (in earlier dialogues e'oiKev prevails). 

457. Instead of the ordinary formula i'fioiye So/ceZ appear later 
a class of other similar expressions (SoksI. jjloi, SoKa yap /xot, fioi So/cet, 
Kai €fiol SoKfl, efjLol fiev boKfl, k(u ejxol ovto) SoKel, ou8' efiol I'iXkais Sofcet, 
ffxol yovv doKf'i), which are found in (p. 12) : Lach. 1 Meno 3 Crat. 7 
Symp. 1 Phaedo 1 Rep. IS Tlieaet. 2 Phil. 2 Legg. 1. (See above 
No. 337.) 

paper on 
the Pa?-- 
that this 
has many 
only in 
the latest 
group and 
teristic of 

studies or 
of his in- 
to intro- 

XXXVIII, Campbell's last observations. As 
Campbell was the first to apply the study of Plato's 
vocabulary to Platonic chronology, so it happens that he 
also added thirty years later the final supplement to 
these investigations. '■'•^ The position of the Parmenicles had 
been one of the most difficult problems, and had been 
recognised as such by C. Eitter, who was even led to doubt 
the authenticity of this dialogue. Campbell recently 
undertook to prove that, however exceptional the stylistic 
character of this dialogue maj^ be, it contains a consider- 
able number of words peculiar to the latest group, or at 
least not used before the Bepuhlic, namely : 

458. aTr€ip'ui meaning infinitas : Parm. 1 Phil. 1 
(nmiibers according to Ast). 

459. SiapeXerS) : Parm. 1 Critias 1 Legg. 1. 

460. 'laov as adverb : Parm. 2 Tim. 2 Critias 1. 

461. la-Tiov: Parm. 1 Legg. 1. 

462. (Tvv8vo : Parm. 1 Tim. 1 Legg. 1 (in Symp. a-vv re 8v' 
quoted from Homer). 

463. fxepia-Tos : Parm. 2 Tim. 1. 

464. p-ovas : Parm. 1 Tim. 1. 

465. TTappeyedr]s : Parm. 2 Legg. 1. 

466. iravToSancos : Parm. 1 Legg. 1. 

467. yvpvaala : Theaet. 1 Parm. 1 Legg. 2. 

'*^ L. Campbell, ' On the place of the Parmcnides in the order of the 
Platonic Dialogues,' in the Classical Review for April 1896, vol. x. pp. 129- 
136. This closes the list of forty-five publications on the style of Plato 
here reviewed, out of which only twenty contained materials suitable for 
our chronological purposes, and included in our list of peculiarities. 



Phaedr. 2 Parm. 2 Soph. 1 Legg. 1. 

Rep. 2 Theaet. 2 Parm. 2 Soph. If. Tim. 6 

Rep. 1 Parm. 1 Phil. 1 Legg 
Rep. 2 Phaedr. 2 Theaet. 

1 Parm. 8 PoHt. 3 

3 Parm. 9 

1 Tim. 2 Critias 1. 
3 Parm. 7 Polit. 2 Phil. 

468. ofioico^a : 

469. aKLvrfTos '■ 
Legg. 8. 

470. dwjTraDXa : 

471. avn^oioTT]s 
Tim. 2 Legg. 1. 

472. avoyLoiu, : Rep. 1 Theaet. 3 Parm. 3 Tim. 1. 

473. iineipos = infinitus : Rep. 5 Phaedr. 1 Theaet. 
Soph. 2 Polit. 2 Phil. IS Legg. 3. 

474. anepavToi : Rep. 1 Theaet. 2 Parm. 1 Soph. 3 Polit. 1 Phil. 
Tim. 1 Critias 1 Legg. 1. 

475. uTTix^ = clisto : Rep. 1 Parm. 2 Tim. 1 Critias 2 Legg. 2. 

476. cnridavos : Phaedr. 1 Parm. 1 Legg. 1. 

477. aTTpen-fjs : Rep. 1 Parm. 2 Legg. 1. 

478. ^ifir]Ka = inaisto : Rep. 1 Parm. 

479. ypufipLu = Hber : Rep. 1 Phaedr. 
Tim. 5 Critias 4 Legg. 10. 

480. SeanroTfin : Rep. 1 Parm. 3 Legg. 1. 

481. 8iaKovo>: Rep. 1 Parm. 2 Soph. 1 Polit. 1 Tim. 1. 

482. 8ia(f,op6TT]s : Rep. 1 Theaet. 4 Parm. 1 Phil. 2. 

483. f^KTovpai : Rep. 1 Parm. 1 Legg. 1. 

484. endveifjii - revertor, rejjeto : Rep. 3 Theaet. 2 Parm. 1 
Polit. 3 Tim. 1 Legg. 4. 

485. ovK fVKoXos = difficult : Rep. 1 Parm. 1 Legg. 2 (while 
in Rep. I 329 d, o30 a, evKoXos is used in another meaning). 

486. evneriji : Rep. 3 Phaedr. 1 Parm. 1 Soph. 2 Legg. 2. 

487. Ixvfvo) : Rep. 1 Phaedr. 1 Parm. 1 Polit. 1 Legg. 2. 

488. fifdiarapai : Rep. 4 Parm. 1 Legg. 1. 

489. prj^npoi : Rep. 1 Parm. 2 Soph. 1 Phil. 1 Legg. 3. 

490. fj-iKTos : Rep. 2 Parm. 1 Phil. 5 Tim. 1 Legg. 1. 

491. ndnnos : Rep. 3 Theaet. 2 Parm. 1 Legg. 3. 

492. e(TKiaypa(Pi]fi(i'os : Rep. 3 Parm. 1 Legg. 1. 

493. cnipopai, Med. : Rep. 4 Phaedr. 2 Theaet. 1 Parm. 2 Soph. 1 
Phil. 1 Legg. 4. 

The following words occur also exceptionally in some 
earlier dialogue : 

494. amaos : Phaedo 1 Rep. 2 Parm. .5 Phil. 1 Tim. 5 Legg. 5. 

495. ai'iauTTjs : Phaedo 1 Parm. 3 Tim. 2. 

496. Seo-TToCw : Phaedo 3 Rep. 2 Parm. 1 PoUt. 1 Legg. 5. 

497. Trai/TfXwy : Pliaedo 2 Rep. 9 Parm. 2 Soph. 1 Polit. 1 Phil. 1 
Tim. 1 Legg. 2. 

498. crvyKplvfa-dai : Phaedo 2 Parm. 2 Tim. 4 Legg. 2. 

499. oo-osTTfp : Gorg. 2 Rep. 2 Parm. 3 Soph. 1 Tim. 1 Legg. 1. 

500. (TvppeTpos : Meno 1 Theaet. 3 Parm. 2 Phil. 4 Tim. 5 

into the 
of prose. 
This valu- 
able addi- 
tion to our 
Hst makes 
the num- 
ber suf- 
ficient for 
a more 
tation of 
tions than 
has been 

choice of 
ties of 


Some other words quoted by Campbell, as /xarpov, 
6/xoico, opfjui], TTspas, TTspisxcy, might be included in our 
list, as they occur besides the Parmenides only in later 
dialogues and occasionally in Meno and Cratylus. But 
for the purpose of drawing our conclusions from these 
long enumerations, a round number of five hundred 
stylistic peculiarities (including more than fifty-eight 
thousand observations) is more convenient, and suffices 
to show by what method correct chronological conclu- 
sions can be obtained from such observations. 

On the interpretation of stylistic observations. 

Limita- In selecting the above five hundred peculiarities of 

tionof our piato's style from the much greater number found in the 
writings of so many authors, the choice has been limited 
to characteristics occurring in one or more of the six 
later" st le dialogues held independently by Campbell, Dittenberger, 
to those Schanz, C. Eitter, and von Arnim to be the latest, 
for which Another limitation was imposed by the circumstance that 
complete the great majority of authors, ignoring the chronological 
enumera- l^earing of their researches, often failed to state ex- 
pressly whether a collection of passages containing a 
certain word or expression was intended to be exhaustive, 
might be ^^^ such enumerations could not be included in our list, 
found in though they might have been very suitable for our pur- 
the pose, and were perhaps looked upon as complete by the 

authors to investigators. A further deficiency of our list results 
whom we fj^gm the circumstance that nobody has made such a 
owe our gpecial study of the vocabulary of other dialogues as 
Campbell has of the SojjJiist and PoUticus. This gives 
in the above enumeration a prominence to these two 
dialogues slightly exceeding the real proportional measure. 
Otherwise we may offer the above list as a fair and 
impartial sample of observations made on Plato's style, 
prepared without any preconceived aim other than the 
knowledge of facts necessary for a methodical inquiry 

tion of 




into the question as to how far styhstic observations afford 
means of setthng chronological difficulties. 

The method of interpreting stylistic observations We need 

has been heretofore very defective in almost all the merhod^ 

authors reviewed. Generally little care or thought has for the 

been given to the logical co-ordination of results obtained tat^on^of 

through tiresome philological labour. It seems that the ^^^^^ t*^^° 

, . . our pre- 

elementary conditions of a calculation of probabilities decessors, 
by their numerical evaluation were utterly ignored by ^^^^ ^^^. 
all except Lewis Campbell. This discredited the stylis- much 
tic method in the eyes of impartial thinkers like Zeller. phiio.° 
In order to obtain correct conclusions, future inquirers logical 
should avoid the following errors common to the majority 
of the authors above mentioned : 

1. While a general notion of the necessity of mea- no 
suring the length of each dialogue before comparing uniform 
stylistic peculiarities was universally accepted, nobody measure 
tried to compare methodically the different possible of text has 
measures ; and the pages of Stephanus or of Teubner '^ " ' 
were considered nearly uniform, while they differ widely, .^^, 
according to the number of notes in Stephanus and the editions 
more or less dramatic character of the text in Teubner's generally 
edition : so much so that in the latter one page may quoted 
contain twice as many words as another (see, for in- being 
stance, p. 7 or 48, ed. Teubner, in Parmenides correspond- "°^^'^^i- 
ing to thirty-four lines in Didot, and p. 425 in Politicus, .^ . 
occupying only twenty-one lines in Didot's edition). That ■,... 
this may greatly influence our conclusions, we have seen that of 
specially in the case of Lina's statistics of prepositions. Didot 
Here for the first time a more precise measure has tas been 
been found by comparing all the editions of Plato from ^^"""^ ^° 
Stephanus up to the present time. The pages of the ^^°^^ 
editio princeps (Aldina 1503), though uniformly printed, 
are too large for a measure. Among modern editions measure 
the most equal pages convenient for comparison are of text. 
those of the edition of Didot. These are used in the 
following calculations ; though the best measure would 


The num- 
ber of 
ties com- 
pared by 
cient for 
valid con- 
tions were 
given an 
ated im- 
of the 
nature of 
Even the 
number of 
tions used 
by Camp- 
bell would 
have been 
cient if 

be a hundred or a thousand words. This has not yet 
been appHed to the text of Plato. 

2. Nobody except Campbell had a correct idea as to 
the number of peculiarities required for correct conclu- 
sions. Campbell had compared hundreds of peculiarities 
and he was cautious enough to look upon his conclusions 
as only probable, not certain. Dittenberger and Schanz 
believed that a few important observations were sufficient 
for a stylistic classification of dialogues, wherein they 
came near to Teichmiiller and Schoene, who decided the 
question of style on a single stylistic peculiarity. C. 
Eitter was so confident after an observation of forty pecu- 
liarities of later style that he declined further discussion 
with those who did not recognise the correctness of 
his view. Even such a methodical author as Droste 
was led to a wrong conclusion about the Phaedo by a 
very small number of observations. Kugler doubted 
the authenticity of the Parmenides because he found a 
dozen more occurrences of /xsptol than he expected in 
this dialogue. Von Arnim placed the Lysis after Sym- 
posium and Phaedo because he found rt /j,i]v once used in 
this small dialogue. All such conclusions are based on 
an erroneous conception of the use of statistics. Style 
statistics, like all statistics, require great numbers. Even 
nearly seven hundred peculiarities observed by Campbell 
were insufficient to determine the place of Theaetetiis, 
Phaedrus, and PJiilebus. If Campbell avoided in an 
admirable way the smallest error in his conclusions, 
he owes it not alone to the number of his observations, 
but to his intuitive estimate of their importance. He 
dealt chiefly with very accidental peculiarities, words 
occurring only in two or three dialogues ; and this 
explains why his great numbers were only sufficient 
for a determination of the latest group. In our own 
list we have many peculiarities of great importance, 
and thus, though the total number of peculiarities is 
smaller than in Campbell's calculations, our conclusions 


not only confirm his results, but extend over some earlier not sup- 
dialogues, as to the order of which nothing could be I'lemented 
inferred by previous authors from stylistic observations. ^^ ^ ^^^"^ 
We must lay it down as a rule for future inquirers ^PP*"®^^^" 
that no inferences from less than some hundred pecu- „ . 

.... . ■•- their rela- 

liarities are valid, and that the correctness of the inferences ^j^.g i^. 
from smaller numbers of observations made by Ditten- poitance. 
berger, Schanz, C. Bitter, von Arnim, is due to the cir- 
cumstance that they selected exceptionally important 

3. Nobody has hitherto observed that only exactly Samples 
equal amounts of text should be compared in order to ^jg^^- 
give precise conclusions. Dialogues of different size in extent 
were compared, instead of taking as a standard measure pared^""^ 
a certain amount of text of each dialogue. For this ^^'^^ic' only 
purpose it is necessary to quote the passages in which tions 0°^ 
every observed peculiarity occurs. As this has been ^^^^ ^^^ 
done neither by Campbell, nor by Dittenberger, nor able. A 
Schanz, nor C. Kitter, nor Tiemann, nor Siebeck, on ^^^^\. 
whose observations a great part of our list is based, we pecuiiari- 
are unable to introduce the required completeness into style^Lay 
our calculations, but we shall make due allowance for the ^^ ^'^■ 
size of the compared dialogues, admitting as a rule that' in a larger 
the stylistic comparisons are inconclusive unless the pre- ^'''°^^- 
sumed later work is equal or smaller in size. A greater 
number of later peculiarities in a longer work can lead 

to valid conclusions only under exceptional circumstances. 

4. The different importance of stylistic peculiarities A- classifi- 
has not been accounted for, except by Campbell in one peculiari- 
way, and by C. Kitter to a certain extent, when he dis- ties ac- 

. . , , , 1 • • • • cording 

tmguished the repeated peculiarities contained m Bejmblic, to their 
Phaedriis, and Theaetetus, as well as in the latest group, f^f^^^^^^ 
This distinction is quite insufficient ; and at least four auce is 
degrees of importance must be accepted in order to give ^ ^^' 

us the full advantage of the existing observations. . . , 


5. Nobody except Campbell made a projper use of pecuiiari- 
accidental peculiarities, which are far the most numerous ties were 


very valu- 
able mate- 
rial for 

Each pe- 
should be 
apart, not 
with many 
into one 
class, ex- 
cept when 
the class 
as such is 
This has 

found only 
in a few 
some pe- 

class of observations. Very important peculiarities are 
very few, while accidental coincidences may be found bj'' 
the thousand. And their accidental character, even if 
fully recognised as accidental, does not deprive them of 
chronological importance, if sufficient numbers of such 
accidental coincidences are taken into consideration. The 
single occurrence is accidental, though it may be ex- 
ceedingly significant, as, for instance, the occurrence of 
fisds^is in Parme7iicles and Sophist. But if one dialogue 
has twice as many accidental coincidences with the Laws 
as another, this result is no more accidental than the 
difference of mortality between England and Spain. 

6. The tendency to limit observation to peculiarities 
appearing to be important had the result that artificial 
classes of similar peculiarities were counted together. 
Sometimes such divisions are justified, as, for instance, Sie- 
beck's classification of answers into apodictic, problematic, 
and assertive, or von Arnim's rhetorical interrogations and 
interrogations asking for a better explanation. Also the 
classes of newly invented adjectives, or of adjectives desig- 
nating a species, are perfectly natural and characteristic. 
But in all such cases the single peculiarities forming a 
class should also be counted apart, whereby a much more 
exact numerical evaluation of affinity between different 
works might be secured. This has not been done by 
C. Eitter, nor by von Arnim, or at least they only give 
the total number of occurrences of different expressions 
not forming a natural class, as, for instance, val, irdvv js, 
irdvv fisv ovv, which have nothing else in common than 
that they are the most frequent answers. This should 
be avoided in future investigations. Many very valuable 
observations were cast away as useless, because they did 
not show at once an evident difference between one group 
of dialogues and another. C. Kitter confesses to having 
traced through all the works of Plato many expres- 
sions, which he did not include in his tables, merely 
because they appeared not to be peculiar to well-marked 


groups. All these observations have their value if they from each 
are treated by the right method. other. 

Method of measuring stylistic affimties. 

The above critical observations on the work of our A much 

predecessors are made in the hope that future inquirers gi'eater 

will turn them to account. Our aim is not to add new "'^^^^^ 
facts, nor even to give an exhaustive survey of facts found 

by others. From Eiddell's digest of idioms, from van ^^^^^ 

Cleef's long enumerations, specially from Ast's Lexicon, easily be 

and from nearly all the publications above quoted, it gathered 

would be easy to collect some thousands of style-charac- f^'om the 

teristics, instead of the half thousand included in our authors 

list. But the mere enumeration leads to no valid con- ^^^] ^ ' 

. and a 

elusions, unless we attempt an exact numerical denni- ^^g^^ 

tion of the affinities existing between several dialogues, of ^g^g 

For a first attempt to find a numerical equivalent of Lexicon 

stylistic affinity between various works not by mere would 

counting but also by weighing of the evidence, we ^^^^^ *^® 

needed a greater number of facts than has been known ^ 

to some 

heretofore to any single author ; but we found that five ^^^^_ 

hundred peculiarities, selected at random from the special sands, 

investigations, were sufficient for our purpose. We feel But the 

also justified in limiting the comparison to twenty-two aim of the 

dialogues of unquestionable authenticity, which at the pi'^sent 

same time happen to be the only works containing some ^^^^^*'g^- 
hints as to the logical theories of Plato, while the remain- , ^ 

^ , . only to 

ing spurious or doubtful dialogues are of no logical improve 
importance. Still, so far as these other dialogues have the 
been taken into account by some of the authors to whom method of 
we owe our facts, it appears that they contain a surpris- interpre- 
ingly small number of Platonic idioms. It is extremely *^*^°" ^^ 
exceptional to find a rare use of language illustrated by ^^ ^' ^^° 
examples from other dialogues than those of admitted g^i^^^^g, 
authenticity, even on the part of inquirers who had tive 



of the 

The most 

searched all the texts bearing Plato's name, including 
those which are generally recognised to be spurious. 

In order to draw our conclusions, we begin by recog- 
nising four degrees of importance, distinguishing stylistic 
peculiarities : 

I. The most numerous class are accidental peculiarities, 
numerous g^ch as words or idioms occurring only once in a dia- 
class IS logue. As a word cannot occur less than once, it is not 
orme y ^^^^ ^^^^ ^^ ^^^^ accidental when occurring once in a small 
accidental . 

dialogue than m a large one. in all such cases the ob- 

pecu- o _ '-' 

liarities, Served coincidence is liable to be removed by some emenda- 
occurring tion, or might be due to an alteration of text, this being 
only once less improbable with small words than with longer ones, 
in a dia- Therefore great numbers of such accidental peculiarities 
are needed to afford a measure of comparison. Within this 
class it would be easy to distinguish several degrees of 
importance. Eeally accidental is the recurrence of a word 
which was generally used by other authors, but which 
denotes some object about which Plato had no opportunity 
of writing except in two or three of his works. If, for 
instance, Plato uses ^id\r) only in Symposium, Critias, 
on y w en ^^^ Laws, this has no deeper reason than the accidental 
opportunity for the use of a word denoting a thing not 
usually spoken of by Plato. Such words have been 
generally excluded from our list, though they are not 
even a quite without value if they occur in very great numbers, 
single oc- ^g i^ every epoch the familiar circle of objects selected 
for examples is characteristic of the author's turn of 
thought. It is, for instance, not quite accidental that 
'^oXkos is used six times in works later than the Bepuhlic, 
and only once in a work earlier than the Bepuhlic. Some- 
times a word used only once in a dialogue may be very 
cording to significant, as, for instance, fMsraa-'y^scrLs in the Phaedo 
the mean- ^]^oi c) . This is highly characteristic of a time when Plato 
ing of the ^g^g £qj^^ q^ inventing new logical terms, many of which 
were soon abandoned, like siKaala, Stdvoia, irlaris in the 
special logical meaning which was given to these terms 

acquire a 
gical im- 




is some- 
more or 

less signi- 
ficant ac- 


in fhe Republic. This period could not be that imme- sociations 

diately following the death of Socrates, and it would be H evokes. 

impossible to find a similar accidental occurrence in the -^"^ *^®^*^ 

Apology, while such new-formed words abound in the '^^^*^'^^" 

Phaedrus much more than in the Phaedo. A word occur- , , ,^ , 

. . . „ . be left for 
rmg only once m a dialogue is still more characteristic if it ^^^.^ 

is of constant use in some other work recognised as late, special 

But in order to avoid complicating our evaluations, and to investiga- 

eliminate from them as much as possible every subjective 

element, we count as accidental all peculiarities occurring t^^ey would 

only once in one dialogue, including in this class also those 

peculiarities whose number of occurrences is unknown, as ^g^^^j^g 

for instance all rare words observed by Campbell in the element. 

Sophist and Politicus. 

II. The next degree of importance belongs to pecu- Another 

liarities repeated, or occurring twice in a small dialogue class is 

(Euthyph. Apol. Crito Charm. Lach. Critias), twice or fo""ed by 

thrice in an ordinary dialogue (Prot. Meno Euthyd. Crat. ^'^^^^ ^' 


Symp, Phaedo Phaedr. Parm. Soph. Polit. Phil.), and two 

•' ^ ^ ' rences. 

to four times in a large dialogue, such as the Gorgias, the jj^jg ^^^gg 

Theaetetus, and the Timaeus. As to the Picpuhlic and includes 

the LaiDS, in dealing with these exceptionally large works different 

we include in the class of repeated peculiarities every degrees of 

word or idiom which occurs twice or more, but less than I'^P^tition 
once in twelve pages, as then it will be termed frequent. " 

Thus the difference of extent is taken into account, jg^g^jj 

although imperfectly, because the best method would be ^f each 

to take as a sample of style exactly the same amount of dialogue, 

text from each dialogue. So long as we deal with each It will in- 

dialogue as a whole — and we are obliged to do so in ""^^^'^ "° 

consequence of the absence of detailed indications of '^^'^"g^^^* 
passages in most of our sources — we are bound to the , 

■{■ ° ... ... count each 

inconsequence of including in one class peculiarities of lepeated 

widely different degrees of frequency. A peculiarity pecu- 

occurring twice in the Euthyphro is found on average Harity as 

once in five pages, while one occurring twice in the Phaedo equivalent 

is found once in twenty-five pages. But all these repeated *° *^" 

L 2 


peculiar! - 

There is 
also in- 
cluded a 
of some 

ties are 
and a 
of special 
tions on 
the pre- 
of one 

peculiarities may be assumed to be more important than 
the accidental peculiarities, and for the sake of simplicity 
we count each as equivalent to two accidental peculiarities. 
If two hundred peculiarities of the first class were admitted 
as denoting a certain degree of af&nity between two 
dialogues in which they are found, then we shall estimate 
a common occurrence of a hundred peculiarities of the 
second class as equivalent evidence for an equal affinity. 
Here we include also the following special peculiarities : 

354. Trdvv jxev ovv more than half as frequent as Trdvv ye, but not 
prevailing over it. 

367. dwas, avunas, avvdnas more than once in three pages, and 
less than once in two pages. 

390. Between 33 and 38 prepositions in every two pages. 

412. Trepi after the substantive, forming between 6 and 10 % of 
all occurrences of Trept. 

448. vai, Trdvv ye, ndw fxev nvv being less than one-third but more 
than one-quarter of all affirmative answers. 

451. Rhetorical interrogations between 5 and 10 % of all 

These peculiarities might easily be thought more 
important than other repeated peculiarities, so that we do 
not incur the danger of exaggerating observed affinities if 
we count each of them as equivalent to two accidental 
coincidences between an earlier dialogue and the latest 

III. There must be recognised a difference between a 
peculiarity occurring repeatedly and one that occurs much 
oftener. Peculiarities occurring more than twice in a 
small dialogue (Apol. Euthyph. Crito Charm. Lach. 
Critias), more than thrice in an ordinary dialogue (Prot. 
Meno Euthyd. Crat. Symp. Phaedo Phaedr. Parm. Soph. 
Polit. Phil.), more than four times in a large dialogue 
{Gorgias, Theaetetus, Timaeiis), once in twelve pages or 
more in Bepiiblic or Laivs, form a class of important 
peculiarities. This class will include a word occurring 
20-117 times in the Laws, 5- 26 times in Theaetetus or 
Timaeus, and generally any frequent repetition up to 


once in two pages (ed. Didot), when we shall call it very synonym 
frequent. Besides such peculiarities we include here the over 
following special observations whenever they refer to a ^"other 

-1 • 1 or on 

dialogue : 


12. Being the first member of a tetralogy projected later — this „eneral 
refers onlj' to Republic and Theaetetus. properties 

13. Partial prevalence of other teachers over Socrates. This » , , 

1 • T -r-. • ct 1 • "^ style or 

refers only to Symposium and Parmenides. For m Sophist 

Politicus Timaeus Critias Laws Socrates is already completely 

supplanted by other teachers, and this constitutes a more important 

characteristic. ^^^' 

16. Periods less regular. ^^^^ °^^^^ 

17. Natural order of words inverted, as generally observed by includes 
Campbell. also 

18. Recurrence of rhythmical cadence, as generally observed by higher 
Campbell. degrees of 

19. Balancing of words to achieve harmony and symmetry. frequency 

20. Adjustment of longer and shorter syllables, idem. ^^ ^ 

23. Words common and peculiar to Timaeus, Critias, Laws (.qj^^^^^jj 

more than once in two pages, but less than once in a page. . , 

««« r, 1 r ^ /I' words, and 

200. coa-rrefj less frequent than KaOaTrep. 

206. aWu (iT]v less frequent than km firjv. 

306. Toiuvi' more than four times oftener than fievrot. peculiau- 

307. fiivToi less than once in two pages, but over once in five ^'^^^ ^^^' 
pages. nierated, 

308. Toivvv more than once in two pages. observed 

317. eliTov prevailing over 'fKeyov. by various 

318. Answers denoting subjective assent less than once in sixty authors. 
answers. Each of 

325. Superlatives in affirmative answers more than half as ^^^j^ j^^ 
frequent as positives, but not prevailing over positives. , 

354. TTi'ivv ixkv ovv prevailing over iraw ye. ,. . 


365. ^vfinus prevailing over diras. 

366. Tras and compounds between four and five times in one 

„ counted as 


367. avas, ^vfinas, ^vvdnns more than once in two pages, but equivalent 
less than once in a page. to three 

376. Apodictic answers between 30 and 40 % of all answers. accidental 

377. To each problematic answer between three and four or to one 
apodictic answers. repeated 

378. Literrogations by means of apa between 15 and 24 % of ^^^ g^g 
all interrogations. accidental 

389. Kara c. accus. prevailing over all other prepositions 
except ev. .. . 

390. Between 19 and 21 prepositions m one page (ed. Didot). 


391. Trepi c. accus. prevailing over nepl c. genitive. 

413. Tre'pi placed after the substantive between 10 and 20 % of 
all occurrences of -rrfpl. 

448. vai, TTi'iiw ye, navv fxev ovv less than one-quarter of all affirma- 
tive answers. 

451. Rhetorical interrogations between 10 and 20 % of all 

452. Interrogations by tL prevailing over those by ttcos-. 

A fourth 
class is 
formed by 
a very fre- 
quent oc- 
of any 
Very fre- 
quent we 
term the 
rence of 
any word 
once in 
two pages. 
To this 
class be- 
long also 

special ob- 
Each very 
liarity will 
be counted 

All these peculiarities are much more important than 
those of class II, and each of them will be estimated as 
equivalent to three peculiarities of class I, or to one of 
class II and one of class I. 

IV. There remains a class of peculiarities still more 
significant, of which a small number is equivalent to 
more than thrice that number of peculiarities of class I. 
To this belongs first a very frequent occurrence of any 
word or idiom, as for instance, 118 times or more in the 
Laws, 97 times or more in the Bepuhlic, generally more 
than once in every two pages (ed. Didot). Besides, we 
include here a small number of the most characteristic 
peculiarities of style, namely : 

12. Belonging to a tetralogy as second or third member. 

13. Complete substitution of other teachers for Socrates. 

14. Didactic and authoritative character. 

15. Quotations of earlier dialogues, preludes and recapitula- 

21. Avoiding of hiatus. 

23. Occurrence more than once in a page (ed. Didot) of rare 
words common and peculiar to a dialogue with Timaeus, Critias, 

307. fxivroL less than once in five pages. 

318. Answers of subjective assent entirely absent. 

325. Superlatives in affirmative answers prevailing over corre- 
sponding positives. 

366. Tra? and its compounds over five times in a page. 

367. aTTcis, ^vfj-TTds, ^vvd-rrai more than once in a page. 

376. Apodictic answers more than 40 % of all answers. 

377. Problematic answers fewer than one to four apodictic 

378. Interrogations by apa more than 24 % of all interrogations. 
389. KUTci with the accusative prevailing over eV. 


390. More than 21 prepositions in a page. as equiva- 

412. nepi placed after the word to which it belongs forming lent to four 

more than 20 % of all occurrences of rrepl. accidental 

451. Rhetorical interrogations forming more than 20 % of all pg^y. 

mterrogations. ^.^^.^.^^^ 

All these peculiarities being very important, it will 
be fair to count each as equivalent to two repeated, or to 
three accidental, or to one accidental ■ and one important 

In the above classification of peculiarities we have ^^^ ^^^"''^ 
endeavoured to reduce to a minimum the relative im- 
portance of each peculiarity, in order to avoid every , 
^ , '^ -^ ' ... . lence are 

exaggeration of the measure of affinity uniting two dia- i^jQij^g,! 
logues. Any error committed will thus rather diminish in order to 
the apparent affinities than increase them. If a word avoid ex- 
occurs once in each page, or more than two hundred times aggeration 
in the Laios, this will be counted as only four times more °^ ^ffi'"- 
important than a single occurrence. Later inquiries may ^^^' ™' 
prove that this is a very low estimate of the importance . 

i '^ . . . ^ is not pro- 
of frequency. But any classification of stylistic pecu- portjonai 

liarities according to their importance must take into to fre- 

account that importance is very far from being propor- quency, 

tional to frequency. If one word occurs ten times in one and in- 

dialogue and ten times in another, this is very far from ureases at 

being a link equivalent to ten single occurrences of ten ^ "^^^ 

different words in both dialogues. Our classification is , 

° rate. 

here proposed not as definitive, but only as a first attempt rpj^g ^bove 

at a numerical evaluation of stylistic affinities. Future classifica- 

inquirers dealing with many thousands of compared pecu- tion is not 

liarities may find reasons for a different classification. As definitive, 

our purpose is only to find the lowest figures, which may ^""^ ^™^ 

be increased later, but can never be diminished, the above ^ . . 

distinction of four degrees of frequency and importance ^^^^ 

is sufficient. minimal 

Now, in order to apply our method, we must state value of 

clearly the highest hypothesis on which it is founded and affinities. 
define its terms. This highest hypothesis has been here- 


Law of 
The num- 
bers of 
ties in 
two works 
must differ 
at least by 
one tenth 
for valid 
gical infer- 
The total 
number of 
ties dealt 

should ex- 
ceed 150 
in a dia- 
logue of 
The Laws 
of com- 

tofore tacitly admitted, but has not been methodically dis- 
cussed. It is the following law of stylistic affinity. 

Of tivo works of the same author and of the same size, 
that is nearer in time to a third, ivhich shares loith it the 
greater number of stylistic peculiarities, provided that 
their different importance is taken into account, and that 
the number of observed peculiarities is sufficient to deter- 
mine the stylistic character of all the three works. 

As to the meaning of terms in this psychological law 
the following may be observed : 

1. Nearer in time implies nothing as to priority, 
unless independent evidence is forthcoming that some 
one work of the author is the latest. In Plato's case 
the Laws are generally admitted to be such a work. 
But even were this doubted, a very great number of 
peculiarities observed would finally lead also to the de- 
termination of an order of priority, because the more 
varied style of an author has every chance of belonging 
to a later time. 

2. A greater number of peculiarities does not mean 
any greater number, because if the difference is insig- 
nificant, no valid inference is allowed. We accept pro- 
visionally, as a minimum of difference between two works 
justifying chronological inferences, a difference of one- 
tenth of the observed peculiarities, and in some special 
cases we shall even require a greater difference. 

3. A sufficient number to determine the stylistic 
character must be a greater number than has been used 
generally heretofore, except by Campbell. But this de- 
pends upon the importance of each peculiarity. In the 
present case we shall assume that the occurrence of fifty 
out of five hundred peculiarities allows a probable infer- 
ence, but that this probability approaches certainty only 
when a hundred and fifty peculiarities of later style are 
found in an ordinary dialogue. 

4. The Laws are our standard of comparison for the 
next latest five dialogues, and for earlier works the group 


of the six latest dialogues, Sophist, Politicus, Philehus, 
Timaeus, Critias, Laivs. 

If now we ask how the law of stylistic affinity can The law 

be verified, the first and nearest answer lies in the psycho- of stylistic 

logical property of style as a mark of identity, entirely affinities 

depending on the totality of familiar expressions at any ™"^"' ® 

time in the writer's consciousness. Every writer could . ^ ' 

. . . -A- test on 

find easily in his own experience sufficient evidence in another 
favour of this psychological law. It has been suggested author 
that it ought to be tested on the writings of a great than the 
modern writer like Goethe, as we know exactly when he author to 
wrote each of his works. But this way of testing it ^^'^om we 
would cost an immense additional labour, and would still ^^^ ^ ^ 
remain inconclusive, since an obstinate sceptic might . 

' _ r o incon- 

object that the psychological development of Goethe elusive, 

differed from that of Plato — that the German language Wehave 

has peculiarities distinct from those of the Greek means of 

language, &c. testing 

We propose, therefore, another and better way of test- °"'' P"°" 

ing, with special reference to Plato, the law of stylistic *^,^'\^^ ^^ 

V . . -n ■ their con- 

affinity, and at the same tnne also our own classification gjg^gng^ 

of stylistic peculiarities, which is subsidiary to our on the 

chronological conclusions, and requires even more strict works of 

verification than the psychological law, which will appear Plato, 

obvious to many readers. among 

We have sufficient means of testing our method, if 

some QiYG 

we take into account that, however little is positively ... , 

' ^ "^ positively 

known in Platonic chronology, there are some works known to 

connected by Plato himself into tetralogies, and there- be later 

fore necessarily following each other, though perhaps than 

at intervals. Further, there can be no doubt that the others, for 

successive parts of a larger work, as a rule, must have i"^*^^^®' 

followed each other, at least if the later part contains . 

. ^ tinuation 

clear allusions to the preceding text. If, then, our method ^^ ^ 

jdelds conclusions in agreement with these evident facts, larger 

we may confidently apply it to the solution of more work is 

difficult problems in Platonic chronology. We submit, later than 


its be- 

Such tests 
could be 
in great 
if all the 

quoted the 
A certain 
number of 
tests is 
from the 
and later 
books of 

except the 
sixth and 
with the 
and ninth, 
as their 
order is 
not quite 
Any book 
is later 
than the 
first, the 

therefore, to the impartial judgment of our readers the 
following tests : 

1. The first tetralogy sketched out by Plato consists 
of Bepublic, Timaeus, Gritias (unfinished), with the Her- 
mocrates, which was projected but never written. We 
begin by comparing the first with the last book of the 
Bepublic, because some intermediate books have been con- 
sidered by certain critics as later additions, while nobody 
doubts that the tenth book must be somewhat later than 
the first. We find in the first book 28 accidental, 6 
repeated, and 3 important peculiarities of later style, 
amounting together to 49 units of affinity. In the tenth 
book, which is a little smaller and offers therefore even 
fewer opportunities for the occurrence of each peculiarity, 
we find 35 accidental, 14 repeated, 15 important, and 6 
very important peculiarities of later style, equivalent to 
132 units. For the sake of conciseness and easy com- 
parison we express this stylistic relation in the follow- 
ing formula : 

1. Rep. I 327-354 (20^ pp. Did.) : 28 (I) 6 (11) 3 (III) =49 (I) 
-*Rep. X 595-621 (19* pp. Did.) : 35 (I) 14 (II) 15 (III) 6 

(IV) = 132 (I). 

2. It is equally certain that the fourth book of the 
Bepublic must be written later than the second. If we 
take for comparison two samples of text of a size nearly 
equal to the Symposium, we find the following stylistic 
relation : 

[Symposium 172 A-223 d (39 pp. Did.) : 42 (I) 16 (II) 8 
(III) = 98 (I).] 

2. Rep. II 357 a— III 412 a (37* pp. Did.) : 47 (I) 20 (II) 22 
(111)2 (IV) = 161 (I). 

^Rep. Ill 412 B— V 471 c (39 pp. Did.) : 45 (I) 23 (II) 31 
(III) 2 (IV) = 192 (I). 

[Cf. Phaedrus (39 pp. Did.) : 54 (I) 36 (II) 22 (III) 7 (IV) 
= 220(1).] 

3. The above two tests can be confirmed also by com- 
parison of larger samples. If we compare the last three 


books of the Bepuhlic, equal in size to the Theaetetus, fourth is 
with an exactly equal amount of B. II-IY, we find the l^^^r than 
following stylistic relation (the indications about the *^® 
style of other dialogues are of course quoted here not as ^^^^'■' 
tests, but only for comparison) : i ' h 

3. Eep. II 368 a— IV 445 e (53 pp. Did.) : 47 (I) 30 (II) 32 (III) case the 

2 (IV) = 211 (I). earliertext 

^Rep. VIII-X (53^ pp. Did.) : 54 (I) 36 (II) 29 (III) 5 (IV) ^^, f,^,^ 

= ^^^(^)- peculiari- 

[Theaetetus (53 pp. Did.) : 58 (I) 41 (II) 31 (III) = 233 (I).] ^. 

X16S 01 

4-7. As there is no doubt that the single books of later style, 
the Bepuhlic were wntten in their present order (except t^^^^i- 
B. V-VII, which are supposed to have been completed 
last of all), we may compare different parts of almost . .., 
equal length, in order to see whether the later text always being- 
offers more peculiarities of later style. Such comparison given by 
will be easily appreciated in the following short enumera- Plato 

tion : himself. 

4. Rep. I 327-11 367 e (28 pp. Did.) : 36 (I) 10 (II) 3 (III) 
= 65(1). 

->Rep. II 368 A-412 a (30 pp. Did.) : 42 (I) 17 (II) 22 (III) 
2 (IV) = 150 (I). 

Cf. Euthydemus (28 pp. Did.) : 22 (I) 5 (II) 7 (III) = 53 


5. Rep. II-IV (60^ pp. Did.) : 47 (I) 37 (II) 32 (III) 2 (IV) 
= 225 (I). 

^Rep. V-VII (60 pp. Did.) : 56 (I) 29 (II) 40 (III) 7 (IV) 
= 262 (I). 

Cf. Gorgias (60 pp. Did.) : 31 (I) 20 (II) 6 (III) = 89 (I). 
Cf. Phaedo (49 pp. Did.) : 43 (I) 26 (II) 17 (III) 2 (IV) 
= 154(1). 

6. Rep. II 357 a-III 412 a (37A pp. Did.) : 47 (I) 20 (II) 22 (III) 
2 (IV) = 161 (I). 

->Rep. VIII-IX (34 pp. Did.) : 47 (I) 22 (II) 27 (III) 3 (IV) 
= 184 (I). 

7. Rep. II 368-IV 445 e (53 pp. Did.) : 47 (I) 30 (II) 32 (III) 
2 (IV) = 211 (I). 

Rep. V 471 D-VII 641 (44 pp. Did.) : 50 (I) 21 (II) 38 (III) 
7 (IV) = 234 (I). 

In the above seven test cases the earlier part has 
always fewer peculiarities of later style, and in every case 


The same 
from a 
parts of 

and the 
whicli are 
later, for 


than any 
book of 

the evidence of priority is given by Plato himself, as we 
compared the acknowledged continuation with the pre- 
ceding text. We excluded from our comparisons the 
relation of B. V-VII to the following books, because 
this part of the Bepublic in its present form has been 
supposed to be later, and cannot therefore be used as a 
test case. Many other parts of the Republic could be 
compared with equal lengths of text undoubtedly later, 
but the above seven samples give a sufficient notion of 
the text of the Bepublic, and we may now proceed to 
compare the Bepublic with Timaeus and Critias. A 
direct comparison between Timaeus and Critias is im- 
possible, because the size of the two dialogues differs 
too much. 

8. In order to compare the Bepublic with the Ti- 
maeus, a good test is afforded by the last three books, 
which are equal in size to the Timaeus : 

8. Rep. VIII-X (53^ pp. Did.) : 54 (I) 36 (II) 29 (III) 5 (IV) 
= 233(1). 

-^Timaeus (53 pp. Did.) : 123 (I) 58 (II) 44 (III) 14 (IV) = 
427 (I). 

9. The Critias is almost too small for any comparison, 
being scarcely longer than half a book of the Bepublic. 
It is certain that the Critias is later than the last book 
of the Bepublic, and if notwithstanding its small size 
the Critias has more peculiarities of later style, this 
gives an evident confirmation to the law of stylistic 
affinity, and to the rules above admitted. We find : 

9. Rep. X (m pp. Did.): 35 (I) 14 (II) 15 (III) 6 (IV) = 
132 (I). 

-^Critias (11 pp. Did.): 51 (I) 8 (II) 18 (III) 12 (IV) = 
169 (I). 

This test is specially important, because we have 
taken the last book of the Bepublic, apparently separated 
from the Critias only by the length of the Timaeus, and 
we have found that to the chronologic distance there 
corresponds a considerable stylistic distance between the 



two works. We might add as test comparisons each of 
the other books of the Bepublic, and we should find that . 
the Critias exceeds them all in number and importance 
of peculiarities of later style. But this being evident 
after our preceding comparisons, we need not insist 
upon it. 

10. In order to compare the Laws with the Bepublic, 
we must allow for the difference of size, the Latvs being 
43 pp. (Did.) longer. If we add the Gorgias to the 
Bepublic, we obtain a whole slightly exceeding the Laws 
in size and affording a convenient comparison, because 
nobody doubts that the Gorgias and Bepublic are both 
earlier than the Laics. It results : 

10. Gorg. + Rep. as one whole (256 pp. Did.) : 76 (I) 124 (II) 
30 (III) 4 (IV) = 430 (I). 

-^Laws (238 pp. Did.) : 175 (1) 176 (II) 37 (III) 20 (IV) = 
718 (I). 

The Laics being acknowledged as the latest work of 
Plato, many new tests would result from a comparison 
of the Laws with different combinations of other dia- 
logues equal together in size to the Latvs. But as our 
list has been compiled on the principle of a selection of 
peculiarities of later style, and the standard of later style 
has been taken from the Laics and those other works 
which in stjde come nearest to the Laws, it might be 
denied that such tests confirm the law of stylistic 

11. "We turn to the other tetralogy indicated by Plato 
himself, and beginning with the Theaetetus. We com- 
pare first the Theaetetus with the Sophist, which is its 
recognised continuation according to Plato's own indis- 
putable testimony : 

11. Theaet. (53 pp. Did.) : 58 (I) 41 (II) 31 (III) = 233 (I). 
->Soph. (40 pp. Did.) : 139 (I) 36 (II) 59 (III) 20 (IV) = 

468 (I) 

12. The Sophist and Politicus are as closely connected 
as if they were one dialogue, and still there is a difference 

shows a 
style later 
than even 
the last 
book of 
the larger 
but earlier 
To com- 
pare the 
vnth the 
we must 
add some 
text to the 
Then we 
find that 
the style 
of the 
is much 
than the 
style of 
the Laws. 

The two 

written by 
Plato as 
tion of the 
tus also 
show a 


much later of style between them, the latter having more peculiarities 
style. of later style : 

12. Soph. (40 pp. Did.): 139 (I) 36 (II) 59 (III) 20 (IV) = 
468 (I). 

->Polit. (43 pp. Did.) : 163 (I) 43 (II) 56 (III) 19 (IV) = 
493 (I). 

tests are 
given by 
ing those 
about the 
date of 
thei'e is 
a general 
ment, for 
with the 
Meno, or 
with the 
Also in 
this case 

the best 


13-14. The above twelve test comparisons refer to 
samples of text, for whose chronological order Plato 
himself has given clear indications. They confirm the 
law of stylistic affinity as well as the rules laid down 
for the application of this psychological law, including 
our classification of stylistic peculiarities according to 
the degree of their importance. We need not pause 
here to test our fundamental principles. There are 
some pairs of dialogues, which, though not forming one 
whole or not continuing each other as the above, are 
recognised as standing in a certain chronological relation 
because one of them contains allusions to an exposition 
which appears in the other. Many of such allusions 
are disputable, but there are at least two which are 
sufficiently recognised by all competent authors, includ- 
ing Zeller, to justify their use as tests. These are the 
allusion found in the Phaedo (72 b) to the theory of 
reminiscence first set forth in the Meno (82b-8G a), and 
the allusion of the Philebus (14 c) to the difficulties of 
defining the relation between the One and the Many 
which are nowhere treated with such consciousness of 
the complexity of the problem as in the Parmenides 
(129 B-E and the whole dialogue). If now we compare 
the style of these four dialogues we find again a complete 
agreement between our own method of settling chrono- 
logical difficulties and the most certain hints about the 
order of some dialogues obtained otherwise : 

13. Meno (23 pp. Did.) : 20 (I) 16 (II) 3 (III) = 61 (I). 

-> Phaedo (49 pp. Did.): 43 (I) 26 (II) 17 (III) 2 (IV) = 
154 (I). 


Here the difference of size could not be accounted 
for, but is compensated by the very great difference of 

14. Parmenides (31 pp. Did.) : 56 (I) 42 (II) 21 (III) 10 (IV) = 
243 (I). 

->Philebus (43 pp. Did.) : 100 (I) 38 (II) 55 (III) 16 (IV) = 
405 (I). 

Here also the difference of size is more than com- 
pensated by the great difference of style. 

15. Other similar allusions are too uncertain, and a similar 
sometimes evidently mistaken, so that we cannot use ^i^^ ^^ , 

... . onered by 

them as tests. But to remam within the limits of the the three 
greatest probability, we may take for granted that the aklogues 
three small dialogues referring to the death of Socrates — referring 
Apology, Euthyphro, Crito — are earlier than the Sym- (j^eath of 
posium which nearly equals them in size. We find : Socrates, 

which are 
15. Apology Euthyphro Crito as one whole (41 jjp. Did.) : 21 (I) ^\^^^ ^-^e 
7 (II) 6 (III) = 53. Sym- 

^Symposium (39 pp. Did.) : 42 (I) 16 (II) 8 (III) = 98. posium. 

16. It were easy to increase the number of similar Anim- 
tests by many others, taking the whole of Socratic portant 
dialogues as certainly earlier than Philehus, Timaeua testotcon- 
and Critias, and our list offers sufficient material for ^^^^^^^'^^ ^^ 

comparisons which can be readily made by those of our 

^ , -^ -^ compariDg 

readers who think that the above fifteen trustworthy groups of 

tests are insufficient. We add only one test of a different dialogues. 

character, in order to show how the coincidence of A group of 

accidental characters operates on greater agglomerations ^i^log^^s 

of texts. Were our method wrong, it might happen "^'^^^^^ '^^' 

that a certain number of single dialogues, each of which 

^ ^ contain 

has been found earlier than one of the dialogues of ^^^^ 
another group, taken together as one whole and treated peculiari- 
as to the distinction of degrees of importance in the ties of 
same way as the Bepuhlic, would appear later than the style 
group consisting of dialogues which taken individually are "^^"^ ^°^ 
later. Now, a good test of the consistency of our method ^^^^^' 


sarily con- 
tain also 
a greatei' 
number of 
ties if the 
were not 
caused by 
the later 

ly tested, 
as no 

is to form two groups of dialogues, one consisting of 
dialogues which by individual comparison have been 
found to be earlier than the Bepiihlic, and the other of 
those which have been found to be later. Then, if our 
method and our rules are correct, the later group must 
show a greater number of peculiarities of later style than 
the Bepuhlic, while the earlier group must also have 
a smaller equivalent of affinity with the later style. 
Those dialogues which according to individual stylistic 
tests precede the Bepiihlic are the Phaedo, Symposium, 
Cratylus, Gorgias, amounting together very nearly to the 
size of the Bepublic. On the other side, the Theaetetus, 
Parmenides, Philebiis, Timaeus and Critias form a group 
also equal in size to the Bepublic, and consisting of dia- 
logues of which each has been found later than some 
part of the Bepublic. If we compare both groups with 
the Bepublic, counting as important only the peculiari- 
ties which occur in each group, at least so many times 
(17) as is needed to call them important, if they occurred 
in the Bepublic, then we find the following results : 

16. Gorg. Crat. Symp. and Phaedo as one whole (191 pp. Did.) : 
50 (I) 84 (II) 8 (III) = 242 (I). 

-^Republic I-X (195 pp. Did.) : 81 (I) 110 (II) 30 (III) 4 
(IV) = 407 (I). 

->Theaet. Parm. Phil. Tim. and Critias as one whole (191 
pp. Did.) : 107 (I) 210 (II) 40 (III) 9 (IV) = 683. 

This test of consistency has also an independent 
value for many competent Platonists who recognise that 
the Bepublic is later than Gorgias, Cratylus, Symposium 
and Phaedo, but earlier than Theaetetus, Parmenides, 
Philebus, Timaeus and Critias. 

Now, having thoroughly tested our instrument of in- 
quiry, it is fair to apply it to those more difficult pro- 
blems of Platonic chronology, on which other investi- 
gators have heretofore failed to agree. First as to the 
date of the Theaetetus tetralogy, it results from the above. 


that the Theaetetus must at least be later than the method 

first books of the Bepublic (see test comparison No. 3). before, 

The difference of style between the Theaetetus and the ^^^ ^^^^^ 

last books of the Bepublic is too insignificant to allow ?'^° *'°°" 

direct chronological conclusions, though it shows also , 

that the Theaetetus has a greater number of peculiarities worthy 

than B. Vlll-Xf In order to decide whether the it holds 

Theaetetus is later than the whole of the Bepublic, we good in 

shall be obliged to have recourse to a ' longer way ' than <:^oubtful 

our present method. For the present we must be content ''^^^^• 

to say that the Theaetetus is evidently later than the . ,. 

„ . tain difli- 

Syniposium and P/iaedo, as can be seen from the above ^^m^^ 

tests 3 and 5. A further important result from the remain 

validity of our method is that the Phaedrus is undoubtedly unsettled. 

later than the Phaedo, and the Phaedo later than the What our 

Symposium (see above tests 2 and 5). For the relation caicula- 

between the Phaedrus and Theaetetus the above obser- '°"^ 

vations afford no sufficient basis. P v i y 

be seen 

Many new mvestigations are needed to settle all details ^^.^^ ^-^e 

with the complete certainty which the above reasoning following 

shows to be possible in chronological inferences from table of 

stylistic observations. The present calculations, based on affinities, 

the work of others, are by no means sufficient to determine ^ ^°'^' 

the order of all the works of Plato. For this it would be *-®°^^' ^^" 

.1 T i p , 1- • 1- • • pressionof 

necessary to have a list oi stylistic peculiarities ten , g., 

times longer than our list of 500 stylistic characters, eight 

among which only very few are important, the majority thousand 

being accidental. In order to enable the reader to extend facts 

comparisons similar to the above to other dialogues and hitherto 

groups of dialogues, the measure of relative stylistic ^^**^^ 
affinities is given in the following table, which supple- 
ments Campbell's and C. Bitter's similar tables by a 
methodic co-ordination of over fifty-eight thousand facts, 
collected by twenty authors, of -svhom none knew more 
than a few of his fellows : 














I— I 









i-'-^ 2 

o aj o 


> o 2 ai I— I ■ 

c3 cS 


;i3 =e 

W o 

3 "'iSm- 

CD O ri!J II 

^ ^ O c3 Q 
3 ^^ <d'^ 

'-S '^ -^ OJ 

;3 eS 

,3 bJO 

a 5 


C3 ^ -*^ O rH o 

H CJi (D jS O 

•{■Bijuapiooy -J 





h-( • 



Ph 5 

S-,?- '^ 




•^w '^ 

,-~~. „..^a-. o 


« d. M^. 





» — 1 

-1^ " 

I- H 

c5 -^ ". 

m ^ o^^ 


-^ r.^ 


o ^ "S o 

cS r^ -^ -t^ -t^ 0"S O i-<-i-=-i-3 S-^ 

CO QO •-• 05 CO GO i-H QO 00 O ©J ?^ 

CO 00 03 05 >-H •-< T*l ID 1-1 '^O 
OKMCidCO'^'^OO'* <J0 


-aoduii -III 


•pa't'Badea -n 



2 "^ 

S I • 
c3 CO ~S - 

o S ^ 

-® "S 2 - 


=* S » 2 

o " i^ -^ 
3 « §^ 

s § s s 

^^ OJ ^ '^ CD 

<. ti O tc--; 
S" P< a -^ 

5^ bc-S-3 

^.S §1.3 

























^,— ^ 










„c., a; a a 
a_; M ® a- 


a~~" • "^ ^^ 
® a~" a ^ 



„„ '^ rrir:^ .^ S"^. 


a~i" H-'-ia 

^-'. 3"' a'^H^' "cB "o 
^ o 'o'l-jj^^^'^ a" 



a^ S^a^a'^ » «^3^^^ 
a ^ ii" eg ^ii-M"'^ — 




^ a«a" «a « crS^:S„=o 
-K .^^r.Q^„^ ,;;i-K^ 3.; 



ja "■ — '' — ' <aoSO(3or^"^os 



S ^^3 3 -a cC-lSs Pm 
nsa . S S >^Sa 3a 3". 



s^-*J-^+:: ^ o^ tiba> o 

®_ti tuoS S-O ;^_^i ;-i^ f-i^ 


cSo-eo 5.-S o ^ i^l^ 

c^oP-i rfci~*:^cc-5i:^/-)c5o 






O Ph pq pL| Q o h-l O dn o 




o e» lo QO oo o j-H .-H o lo 

o -f 


1 1 1 


1 1 


^ KB 


^ a 



1— 1 














1 1 CQ 1 

1 • CO 

O Q) 

O <D 

' ° g 

1 O pi 

O) H^ 

OI ->^ 

^ 3»c 

^ 1 ^ 

'^ 1 -^ 

.S °'' fl 

«* 3 sp4i 

1 3 6cJ 

o S3 fH 

' o a !^ 





^■2 ® 


■^ !=* o 

O . 


f^ lit- 




M 2 


<D Oi en 

3 -3 ^ 
'^ ^ CO 

■ « ShH o 

p '"0 o 
o a; o 

-^ -j: O 

o ■" mM 

^ , 02 m :^ 

O CD pJ hH 
* I— ( 

<2 ^ r^ '^ Jo O ^ ^ 


o — 1 _ S 

r2 W o 2 

J -i- Cl, cc O ^ 



■ roq 

© "TS 



cJ o 





M r^ 


cS cS 

O H 

o _t^ g 

o ^ o3 

o tt> T? w -4-= t:^ -1-= 

'-'-^ J= H ^ ^ H ^ 

'S ^ "§ ^ fcb"^ ^" 
fin f^ ^ fl< O ^ hJ 

CD 1 



<M 04 (M C<8 00 ^ <M CO Cj >5 

o s 


rS — 'm m q; 

SO ° 

o o 

3 S P 

:rl o e_, ci 

3 ^ 


05 t^ CO 05 03 CO 
05 O m O? tJ^ VO 
v-4 <M «M <M CO CO 

ft J.'? s 

^ ■ '« S to 

ft? e- 

i-S 5b' 





J > 


3 Ss 

-uii ^.i8A -AI 

-aocluri; -jjj 

•pa:j'Ba(J8g -jj 

•['B'juapioDY "I 

° s 

CD -"^ 

c3 CO 

lo 't:; 





° a 

^ I • 

_cS CO "g 

,-. rH f_ 


S 6^ S 

~ tl =s 2 

S '^ <D 

5» CO 

O II ^ 


O ft 






ID >-H -bS 

1-1 "^ !h 

5 5 '^ 




J re 
O <D 

<D ho 

&0^ ' >-> • ►^ CLi P- 

(B -t= ri^H -t-^ zi -'^ S r/~) 
J ^ 'o ^ EH ^ ^ 

.,s„; Ci 


'00 w 



o . 

O ". 


So d 

O <D 



- - cS 


_ (D -r O 






o . 




« o 




a* II 







O SnSC;:^^'— lO 


e .S tS a3_^'T^ g 



t g .i§|«>< 


§ -^ S o 0) a II J^l 

pjJearing in 
t time. 
by its current 
ic i^eculiariti 
mes of the tw 
urs. Also til 
3 Republic is i 
ep. Book I, b 
-IX, e = Boo 
the table. 



ecuUarities a 
for the firs 
is designated 
undred stylist 
xbbreviated na 
peculiarity rec 
3ach part of tli 
ackets. a = E 
= Books VIII 
ons following 

r-o r1 -'^ O r^a o p^ o^.-S ?:! 

^" '^ CM " -«•!:: ^ O P^ ^ 
>~> >^ ^ CD r:3 0^ TS • . 

• 2 

-d,5_^^S?^2^, S-^&^l 


;^ CD • &J0^ 03 CJD^ 

tion of I 

of five h 
pear the 
le same 
arity in ( 
ed in br 
V-VII, d 

H H O fin EH Ah EH Ph lC O 










i 'S^53:2S,„8» 

t !. 

1—5 hA 





l.f_§^ ft .re S «5 



-§s^|g^ S^l 






^ ^ O ^ hO^ -^^ 2s 

J >^ ° s ^ £ ^-is 



o 3 -S a ^ S s o- s 



<a^ ^^ ao 5* 

-nil KxQj^ -^i 

1 s s 

, < CQ 

1 O g 

-joduq; jw 

0) -« 

^ "43 CO 


-2^4 s t 

.^^ fl 

s "§ '^ 

■p9!jT;9d9a -ji 

2 -^ w)ii 

'^ 3 &oii 

O fl fn 

O fl ^ 


i:> •" o 

.._ (11 .3 r^ 

^ Ph Id & 

„ P-i t; f=^ 


q'B!)U9piooY -J 

O 3 g 

« 55 .a 

S g^ S 

S tj^ <Ii 


tei-f? — 

CO ro 

-2 'H t^ 



9 a 

--si =; • 

Names of 
in their pi 
nological o 
in this tabl 



&q II o 

00 <M 




..• ! 








_q' 'a"" • "■ --i ■ -^ <a • 




o®a ^.rS^' an3^— '5u«^. 





2 >-S^ gop^ 


•~^^'^' >^EH CC„ -^ a -S P-i P-i H EH oQ 
^ P p -«-u r/) M>-i-u5-is-ia 


.a "• ^ .".". 
-« • &/; cs bo be to 
;^ ^ ^ *> ^ ^ fH 
'3 g o.^ 2 ° 2 


>.^-a g^ <Dr^r^ S g^ OS.S >,-ia Xijd C3 









t^ CO CO -^C5i <:o f^ 



03 ^ o 3i ^ ?^ es. 


00 lO OO 05 «* OJ C5 Oi »-l >— ( ©J 00 05 

r-» Oi r}^ ^ <^ <S0 "30 



(M d OJ ©J CO CO CO CO Tj< rj< ^ OJrtl^«^ 




l-H ^ 






1— 1 H-H 











° a 




1 -^ 

• i^ >o G 


'3 £>Dii 
a »-i 

Ph ^ S^ 




0^ & 







O ^ 'J^ '^•Z^ 

^ ■- a; C 

sm"S s 


O) o 
^ CO ■ 

-J^ .J ^ ^ = ^ -3 


^.2 a s 

;^ rW II m 



p S; 

.2 5 Is 
^ ^ 7 

9i S d 


^ =„ CD 
o O A, 

J ;5 ,=3 03 p- Cr 


&_-S f 


W Q 

,S S 

O O 

'^ '-ci 


f^ g <^ 

!» K. 2 

^ s a 

cS O _- 

_ S-l O) 

r' r3 <D 

HH O) fl 

-fa ■« 



03 CM 

fcOrrt O 

o3 cS 


& <» 

CD r^ >0 

S, CD o 

O a ca CO 


s^ <D -:::- 

H O 


0| CD ^ r! eg ;'~| 1^ 
O -^ f>>-^ ^ O rCj 

02 H CO Ph P-i PL| PM 

CO CC8 O "-H CO 10 CO 
05 — H <M ^ "^ CO i* 
1-1 <M <M C<! <>J (N CJ 







1 o 

CO eg 



"-" r-K 


"t§ *-l Pj 
.^ Q ft 

6 II CO 
O Tff 






J=i J=i 







251: Leg 

edo Phaedr. 
: Theaefc. S( 
: Soph. Pol 



> P4 




«'^ - 3., o o • '=^ CO 


=5 ,-H QO 
• ;?<»CO 

2 '• 







^g--^3..e^ =^/- 







V — '„ "^ "O 5-1 " . '"> CO O ^^ 

. ^:: CO o ojrT^^'-cs aiO---^ 




^ CD ci ^* 


3 O'^ '^Sj 05-. t^ ^U 

,2Ji==; ..2° .FH'iLjs 


r. The 
fc. PoH 
r. Tim 

r. Tin 




.5 S ^ ^ 

i^ t^ -Q 5 

"0 H 

9. c 



QJ ni " . rg 173 

i-C; 1-3 "TS r^ -• 

^ S 


o3 cu 6X) CD 




CD 3 

^ ^ 


CD 03 br oi 



c^ cS CS c3 -^ 

!S S 

fe ^ 
® g 

5 o 


^-^ 0^ 


^^ ^ ^ CS 

r^ CS 


g & 

P^ H Ph I-:] Ph PM 02 

;:li pLn Ph PM Ph Pm Ph 

fl S^ 


f '^ 





'1 ?N. 



OO 05 CO t^ Ti< t^ QO 

»— 1 w m ^ 

^"J T-^ 

<N CO CO «* (M <M (?J CO ^ 0^ (^i 0> 



■-H (N C4 CO CO CO '* ■^ C<8 C3 


J re' 


o <^ 

1 ] 


l-H 1— i 



l—i l-H 

H "^ 

1— 1 l-H 

t-H hH 










■ QQ 







.S4* a 












fl <i> 


^ fii 


CO ft 


11 0. 



















a) ai cc =":='." sh 

sm-s ? S o 

fe g;i55-^^ 

•-< o. CO . a; HH 

V. ^ 

(H rO 

» 'Ht^ 

J .2 H ?^ 

CD >i O , 

/-> '« ■+^ ."t^ ,^3 

o H H 

»i ■ r^ 

Q S o 


ao! ^ - 5 ^ 

j::; -^ 5s o !D 




c3 O 

Pm ^ 

rt ^- ;r^ .S '-^ r-^ ^ 
.1 d Ph EH -r; ;^ „ 

H '^ a a ^ ^ "^ 



bo a ® 

a> o r^ 

1-^ OQ en 

o o 

w. Pm 

^ f-i pj 

•rH O r^ 

H (X! Ph 


.C ^ •" -S 7; s ^'2 
S a 2 g § ~ °^fg. 

(5 « 0) 


-rat iJja^ ■ 


-joduij -jjj 


•pa'j'Bada'jj -jj 


•{'Bq.napiooy 'j 


6 g 

o .3 

^ o ^ a 

S ^ !S tu 

i:3 ^-^^ 


^ . 




















l-i CC 














t-H • 






































a , 




























*"* • 
















































































»— 1 









































1— J 











;SCO fl- 

o fl ^ 


^ S 


s ^ -2 g "o ^ >r ^ 


1— 1 

Sj ■*"'^5d9^S7'5 


= s r- §• 2 ^'^ ^ o 


^ '^ 


ber 1 

3ks I 



e ^ r,; '^ S 11 


§ ^ g o 2 S " ^ 


H ' 


•-^ £; a 0) o o h-rm 


cidiarities cqjpea.ring 
for the first time. 
designated by its cu 
ndred stylistic peculi 
)breviated names of th 
jculiarity recurs. Als 
ch xiart of the Republi 
•kets. a = Rej). Book 
= Books VIII-IX, e = 
ns following the table. 


• "• • • c^ 

^^ ^ ^ -^ ^ -^ 

<a .2b(3E.";s"o 

B a> OJ 



-T- X) <1> r.d C3 • CS 

^j >r' 'S. O riS ^A 

tt c3 cS c3 
CO -^ ..d ^ 

Gq a S & 2 S S 

°' -s 3:'^ 2-- gB S 

CO P4pL| Pm PM 

-* lOPm CCH EH H 


<1 1> •* QO CO 

-^ 00 CM CO CO 05 I^ 

e OJ ^ -j:3 't: 2 33 m 

t- C5 00 ■^ 00 

X OO Oi fH T-H rH 00 

O CC8 CO ^ ".JH 

O rH rH CM C^ CM CO 

i j3;=cr'o®~g'! 

"^ 1 


CO 1 

i lil-sll^l 



II J; 


h- 1 






on tl 






^io.iM?S-2 S5 


lent t 
the fo 

of uni 











-uit Xj9^ -^ 













,-^t? tc 

-.TOduq -ni 






■pa'j'Badaar -n 







- cu 


ties c 
in ea 

•I'B'jnaptoov -J 







1 s oii a 






nd a 



















1— 1 


< ^ 





1— 1 



L- f^ 

00 ^pi 


in their 

; nological 


in this ta 







O C5 

CO oq 


T— 1 





."t3 a.,"~^a 

!o ^ ^!!^ '• S ^ 
Cu • '^ a^.3 -, 

n^ M i-H - *-' tri a 
. CO M "' O M „ m; • ■ 

^ ". a.. ". d^^« ". 

•^05 .r-.Jr,.a>".CDcD -l^ 
P ^ c3 bn a _a ci3 hn r c3 (-j -^^ ^ 

n S 2 bo jg bb ft^ bo S 2 H ^ 2 


^^J3 cS.^ cS c3^^J^-=! a; ^ 





CO . 
CO ^A 

eoa=^ ^ 

•• ^^3 a s s ^ 

^". S .". g !:^ ^ 3 

gLi-u) ;-i n n CO " eg s-i 

ft;^ =« 'ft'aPM PM Ph 03 

cqPM .CO CO ".>:.«. . 


-tH sSrfl ce cs-^piq-d-fl 



^ 1 1 

II J; Ja 

New peculiarities : 3 accidental, 2 repeated in 
bi ; 14 accidental, 4 repeated, 4 important in h.^ ; 
8 accidental, 1 repeated in bj. In bj peculiarities 
occurring 3 times are important, in bo peculiarities 
occurring 4-14 times, in hg 4-11 times. In b as 
one whole (bj + b.^ + bg) occur 22 accidental, 9 re- 
peated, J important new peculiarities. 


l-H 1—5 







1-t CO 





Sj "^-*^so9^ai'2 

O fln3oSSKHC 

e "^ slj 53 >.'-' jH 

•;s tH -s -S S rO cc o 

(^ J^SS'^'g^ 


= Bo 

la "^ o Oi p " .isj 


uB ^ o'"i-rm 

S^ S;S5^;S^ II 6 

'qT • ^^ ^-N 


rst time. 

by its c 
stic pecu 
lames of 
ecurs. A 
he Repub 
Rep. Boo 
II-IX, e 
g the tab] 



for the fi 
s designateo 
mdred styli 
peculiarity i 
ach part of t 
ickets. a = 
= Books VI 
ons followin 

^ ^ q; ^ cs o o ^ ^ 03 J:^ 

m 2 =^ 

r-i S 2 



^ t^ 

? OJ ^ ft^-T^^ Ji OJ 



l3 ^.l^'jS^^S 



g ^ -^ S .H s, .„ 8 »= 

^ 1 1 

^ 1 


in wh 
each ] 
c = B 

11^ Jh 

rH 1— 1 











^ sb O^ 6Dg-2 S» 











-raijtjaA -AI 


6 g 






" g -43 - 

•r! (M . 

S 1 -+= - 




-jodrai -III 




.^^ S 

Si— ' rM 

•pa^^isadaa "H 

3 bc_=i 
o a ^ 

ties of 
in eacl 


•^'B^^uapiooy -J 


2 o .i) S 
=; jj cs <u 







er, an 
sed for 

• S 

• Q 
1-^ o ai 

1 s^ 

1 ^ 

•^ <a u -' o 


> II d. 
^ II 6 


•^ -«*< 

1— 1 





o c3 

a fl 


•rt 0) 


nS n3 


-2 " 


=« s 


0^ CO 




CD 1,^5 



, ^ 

. .^ 


^ ^ 

c3 d 






f> acciden 
eated in 
nt in c. 

CD • • 
". <D g q 

a '(Dm 




3- •^^CCS'^'i^^^ 

ties : 
2 rep 

O ^ tC J « „ -, 

„ ■^. h-l P4 .• . 


. . '^ in TJ CD Q 

A A ^z .^ ® o3 ce 

g cs g g cu c3 


^oji^ii-^ o^oi a> fij S &<» 

s a 

ci^ Oj'-H ; J CO o) Ol 

hj 0) ^ r; o3 cB 

O-^-^ O Or^r^ C3 <A O-d 

c6 ^"^ 

O o r^ ja -i^ ^ -a 

cd ^ c3 03 ^ ja 


;5 J-H 






!^.|:i -2 








^ 2 


►— i 


1— ( 


1— 1 







« §1 


-16 ti 


.:ii -:*< fl 

°* O G Jh 

^ ^^^ 

^ o .y 

6. Bepuhlic 

B. VIII-IX = d. 

33-7 pp. ed. Did. 




a> ai t>; =" ^^ 1^" 

52 § °'^> 

_C rg O >: a-. Hh 

'" .S "^ 3 >~.^ 
cPQ "S 9 S o 

^ is -3 

CI 7:; p O 
00 D ° H-CC 

:S a M M a) I 
aj 1^ (^ £_! 

^■2 § g S ^ I 

fcs j:.5^ 

-. rs '^ ^ U 

Pj a 


(E a> ^ ^ 


.i, " g o g 

^"5 > e > j2 Q) 

3 > O 







CO 00 
CO !>. 

S 'r^ cS 



O S 

..;2 O 

S cu r1 

QJ (D <B 








•— 1 















•"• ^ 



f— 1 







<^ ;^ 

IJU -rt -ts r, ,TL_i 




> 1— I I— I 
^ l-H 

o o icS Or/5 

P4 tH fin EH P4 Ph H 

^ .^ CO CO 00 ^ ■^:> 

<N « i^ CO ^ '"> 

CO ^ ^ t-j -<>. 

• rt O) 





. 2 oil S 

X i^ c3 <!) 



Q- ra ■« 

•^^ s g 


.. .Q 

1 order, 
ons used f 

® . 



= 0) .- iS 



Rh II 


. OS 1 


t- l-H 

00 CO 


tH . 






^•'-' S3 


© ^ eg 


« S1^ 


-r3 O 


^- ^ 



K I^H 


-^ o "^ 



O ;-i ^ 


es c 


•n <D 



■^ . 

&. § a 

's-^; ^--ti 


s ^ . 

.-s vV ^ a c) ^ o 

, Tim. 
. Polit. 

L. Legg, 

ntal p( 
us is 

,a -►^ tD43^-S to • • tiD^"'- • bo^ o 'Si; S 

00-*^ r^ a 

rS _g O CD 

tp-^ en n 

&-^ tcr^ra.-« teg a seU g S tc&.a2 S ^ 

CD o O eS 

'o ® ."S 

O O ® O -^ i- o ■- .S O o -=3 -S <Xi o .S ->> 


^ ^ •'H 

"2 " "S 

-^H QjS 

rH 00 C3i !>■ 

^b^ 3 

»0 00 "D (M OO 05 rH C4 rd< CO CO O CO lO ?N. 1 di oS 

rH O OiCO 

2 o 



'3 ■" i ^ 

<N CO "<^ 'Sj^ nl< t44 ^ T^ T^T}4^ -^i* ^o 

1 II S 2- 


^ o « 

1— 1 1— 1 ix 











i i s 

o 6 S 

1 O rj 

■<rH ©a 

O) -*= 

(K -*3 

.^^ a 

•S'* a 

''^ O fl f.^ 

^ o a "S . , ^' 



<i5 .a o ' 

« §.3 ; . 



CO '-H 

2 .Q 

:i ^ 

-2 i^ 

^ ^"^ 

^ S o' 

s S "^ 

^ II o 

R^ II qq 



a o 

















§ i'^^l'it^ 

CJ5 ■* 6£ ? C 1 -« 


ber in 
t dialo 


-g i^si-.>°^- 

S " ^ o £ £ II -^ 

g fM^^-s-^i 

"^ 2 •§ o c o hh'« 

ftj ^.S^iS;:= ^ II o 

•P^ s^ir^-a-o;! 

n^ies appeal 
the first tim 
gnated by its 
stylistic pec 
iated names o 
irity recurs 
rt of the Rep 
a = Rep. B 
)ks VIII-IX, 
lowing the ta 

'o !5 13 1^ 


^ s • - s -5 

J^ l^%-%^^oO 




«J a5='500'7^ II a 

« .2a-2;L,ciS"o 
s^ ^~" 2 2 c -3 - =3 



©"o^S CO 

1 »-H '-H rH 1-1 



»0 CO t^ O CO 


<M ^ lo in 

•2 g'Sa2.§S>S 


,-( rH ,-( ,— 1 

1 "^ 

ch p 
= Bo 

1 " 

«1 -= 2 c * "S iJ 

^ esa.SuJ^O'C 

.S .•? 2 -t? & , re 2 «• 







oiit to 
10 fol- 
■ units 






•— < 




o -^ -^ — a o e 




O g 

O fl 


6 S 

-TOT jCj9A -AI 


CM •- 


° 1 




m '-13 


O) -t^ 

_'^t? tc 

-.lodmi -in 


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ber of 
1 dialo 


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1 order, an 
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a :2 


n • S II 

a P ? 



The Among the inferences which can be drawn from the 

length has above table, nothing is of greater importance than the 

a great great influence of the size of a dialogue on the number of 

stylistic peculiarities found in it. We see that the 

on the _,-'.. -^ . , . ^ 

equivalent ^^'^^^'^^^ on its eleven pages contams less than half the 
of affinity, number of peculiarities found in the Timaeus, which, being 
but the nearly five times larger, was written immediately before the 
number of Critias. Hence it results that eleven pages, being more 
peculiar!- than the size of the Crito and some other small dialogues, 
IBS oun ^^^ insufficient for a stylistic determination, so long as 

ID GRcll • 

we deal only with a few hundred stylistic tests. The 

sample . / "^ 

of text is <iifficulty might be removed by extending stylistic obser- 
not pro- vation over a far greater number of particulars, a task 
portionai which requires only additional research. But we under- 
to the size, stand at once that our equivalents of affinity for such 
Smgle small dialogues as the Euthijijhro or Crito are very far 
pecu lan- £j,qj^ ^j^g truth, and that for instance no valid inference 
"n i nifi ^^^ ^® drawn from the apparently greater affinity of the 
cant, and Criz^o with the later style. This shows also the insignifi- 
the order caiice of a single test applied to such a complicated 
of small problem. One tl /j,7]v ; or one Kadairsp occurring any- 
diaiogues where proves nothing, if even seventeen peculiarities of 
later style found in the Laches and missing in Charmides 
are according to our rules no sufficient evidence for the 
priority of Charmides. 
The We are warned also against the error of supposing the 

increase opportunities for the occurrence of a greater number of 
of the peculiarities to be proportional to volume. In this respect 

, ^ .^ the subdivision of each part of the Bepiihlic into several 
of amnity . ■"- . . -^ 

is not pro- ^^^P^^s of text IS Very instructive. Even those who 
portionai believe the Bepuhlic to have been written during many 
to the years cannot deny that B III-IV are the immediate 
size of the continuation of B. II, and with it form one whole. The 
sample of style of equal samples of text in these books is also very 
. ^ ^'^'^^^" uniform. But the influence of the size becomes evident 
Q , " if we compare a small sample with a larger one. Part bj 
amounts (^^''^ ^ — ^^'^ ^) °^ ^i PP- (®^- Didot) contains only an 



equivalent of 21 units of affinity, while the following of text are 
29| pages, being four times larger, have seven times more compar- 
peculiarities. In another case two succeeding samples of ^^^^ ^° 
text differ much less, namely, c^ (471 c— 541 b), being lo^g^swe 
nearly thrice as long as Ci (449 a — 471 b), has less than „ 
twice as many peculiarities of later style. The whole of hundred 
the Republic, being ten times larger than the tenth book, pecuUari- 
contains only a little more than thrice as many pecu- ties 
liarities of later style. From these examples, which observed, 
might be indefinitely multiplied, it becomes evident that 
only equal amounts of text should be compared. Future 
inquirers should base their calculations on an amount 
of text equal for each dialogue, or divide each dialogue 
into such equal samples of text, for instance, of ten 
thousand words each. 

Another lesson of the highest importance is taught by The 
the stylistic comparison of the first book of the Bepublic author's 
with the following books. Nobody doubts that the revision 
Bepublic in its present shape is one whole, and that the °°* 

first book, even if mainly composed much earlier, has 
been revised and worked into unity with the following ^^ jj^^. 
text. Now it has a surprisingly early style, having less character 
than half as many peculiarities of later style as the first of the 
sixteen pages of the fifth book, even fewer than the text, and i 
Laches, which is inferior in size. This shows on one side styhstic 
the early date of the first book, and on the other side it ^^^p^^^'^ 
shows that no revision can substantially alter those ^, 

... the rela- 

peculiarities of style which are the subject of our investi- ^^^^ ^g^^^ 
gation. Therefore all explaining away of the late style of a work 
of the Phaedrus and Theaetetus by the supposition that even if 
we possess these dialogues in a late and revised edition is applied to 
of no value whatever for chronological purposes. If later ^ ^^*®^ 
revision could alter stylistic affinities, then the first ^ ^ ^^"^ 
book of the Bepublic, which must have been revised, ^ 
emended, and corrected in order to be absorbed into author, 
the larger work, could not have remained as remote This is 
from the later style as the Laches, while already the very 


for a 

of the date 
of the 
and The- 
were re- 
vised by 
The first 
book of 
the Re- 
public un- 
and cor- 
rected has 
a surpris- 
ingly early 

and dia- 
also un- 
so many 
ties of the 
and Poli- 

second book shows a style later than the Phaedo and 
Symposium. This conclusion is quite independent of any 
speculation on the exact date of the Bepuhlic, or on the 
date of the Laches. If anybody supposes that the first 
book of the Bepuhlic could have been written as early as 
the Laches (as Siebeck does), then he is bound to account 
for the difference of style between the Laches and the 
second book of the Bepuhlic. At all events, we have here 
a work which has been left by Plato as one whole, and 
which nevertheless betrays by stylistic tests the differ- 
ence of the times in which it was begun and continued. 
According to our rules the number of peculiarities of later 
style found in the first book of the Bepuhlic is insufficient 
for an exact determination of its place among the early 
dialogues, and it may be even later than the Gorgias. 
To settle this question it would be necessary to collect a 
much greater number of observations, and to compare 
with the first book of the Bepuhlic a part of the Gorgias 
exactly equal in size. This we are unable to do, as a great 
number of authors from whom we have taken the number 
of occurrences of each peculiarity did not enumerate all 
the passages. 

The relation between the Philehus and Timaeus on 
one side and Sophist and Politicus on the other side 
cannot be decided according to our table, because we have 
included in our list more than one hundred words observed 
by Campbell in the Sophist and Politicus, while no such 
special study has been made of the Philehus, Timaeus, 
and Critias. These words were included in the list 
because the late date of the Sophist and Politicus is less 
generally recognised than the late date of the Timaeus, 
Critias, and Philehus ; it therefore appeared necessary to 
bring out with the greatest clearness this late character 
of the two dialectical dialogues, even at the risk of making 
them appear later than the Philehus, Timaeus, and Critias. 
As soon as these later dialogues shall have been investi- 
gated with as much care as Campbell spent on the two 


continuations of the Theaetetus, the true chronological ticus have 

order will not be obscured as it is now in the later part of been in- 

our table. Even now it is easy to eliminate a part of the eluded m 
error by excluding a number of peculiarities which have 
been first observed in Sophist and PoUticus. If we omit 
peculiarities 12, 13, 54-181 of our list, reducing thus the 
total number to 370 peculiarities under investigation, then 
the Philebus will not be affected by this change, while the 
Laios lose 102 units of affinity, the Timaeus 53, the 
PoUticus 86, and the SopJiist 69. 

The relative affinity calculated on these reduced Reducing 
numbers will be 0-65 for the Sophist, 0-66 for the Poli- our list by 
ticus, 0-66 for the Philebus, and 0-61 for the Timaeus. i^o pecu- 
This calculation shows that the most important figures ^^^ 
of our table are those of the relative affinity, which are relative 
very constant, and change little if they are calculated on affinity of 
a very much reduced or very much increased number of the So- 
observations, changing less with the increasing number P^'-^^t will 
of observations. We see that the relative affinity of the "°* ^® 
Sophist, which was found to be 0-65 for 500 peculiarities, ^ ' 
is just the same for 370 peculiarities. It is probable that ^^ ^^^ 
increasing our list to 5,000 peculiarities, this constant puuhtis 
relation would not be altered by more than a small rises above 
percentage. We have therefore in the relative affinity a the So- 
powerful instrument for chronological purposes, of the P^'^st&nA. 
same constant character as the physical constants ^'^_^'^ ^ 
measured in natural science. If the density of pure 
iron has been found by a series of experiments to be 7-8, relative 
everybody understands that further experiments of a affinity 
greater exactness can only alter this constant relation has the 
very slightly, adding new decimals and showing it to be character 
more exactly 7-84, but never 7-5 or 8-0. We claim the °* ^ 
same permanent character for the relative affinity, calcu- 

. „ , • /-t • constant 

lated on a sufficient number of observations. Comparing ^.j^^ ^^^ 

these numbers, calculated on a smaller or greater part of constants 

our materials, we have found that relative affinities under in 

0-1 have no value whatever, and can be changed to the physical 



This gives 
an unpre- 
to our con- 

The latest 
group of 
works con- 
sists of the 
and Laws, 
with a 
affinity of 
0-5 in 
of text 

extent of at least half their value by calculations based on 
a greater number of observations. But the remaining 
relative affinities in our list are exact in their first decimal, 
and any number of observations added can increase them 
only in the second decimal, except in the Philebus for the 
reasons explained above. But even the Philehus, if we 
measure its relative affinity by one decimal, will maintain 
it, whatever number of new observations may be added. 
Thus we claim to have proved the following general 
conclusions about the order of the works of Plato : 

1. The latest works of Plato are: the SojjJiist, 
Politicus, Philebus, Timaeus, Critias, Laios. This group 
is distinguished from all other works by a relative affinity 
of over 0*5 in samples of text exceeding 40 pages (ed. 
Didot). This means that out of any number of stylistic 
peculiarities investigated (provided those peculiarities are 
selected which are not limited to one dialogue, and 
provided the number of peculiarities so investigated 
exceeds 300) more than half the number found in the 
Laios will be found in any sample of text of 40 pages of 
these dialogues. As the Critias has only 11 pages, for 
the investigation of the Critias the preceding 29 pages of 
the Timaeus must be added. Or, if we calculate the 
relative affinity of the Critias apart, it must be com- 
pared v/ith an exactly equal amount of text of the 
Timaeus ; then it cannot be expected that the relative 
affinity of such a small portion of text should exceed half 
the value of the affinity of larger units, as the relative 
affinity is in close relation to the amount of text to which 
it is applied. With an increasing number of peculiarities 
observed, the influence of the size of a sainple of text 
would be less important, and the size of the Critias is 
insufficient to define its stylistic affinity only so long as 
we deal with a reduced number of observations. The 
number of possible peculiarities of style is practically 
infinite, and may easily exceed the number of words 
contained in a sample of text. 


2. The latest group is preceded by a middle group, The 
consisting of Bepuhlic B. II-X, Phaedrus, Theaetetus middle 
and Farmenides. In these the relative affinity is under S'^o"? 
0-5, and even under 0-4 for samples of text of 30-60 ^^^^^^ a 
pages. The mean afiinity of dialogues belonging to this ^1.^ !^^ 
group is only 0-3, or only half as much as the affinity of ^^^^^^ Q.g 
equal dialogues of the latest group. The middle group 

is distinguished from all earlier dialogues by a great 
number of important and very important peculiarities 
appearing here for the first time, as may be seen from the 

3. The middle group is preceded by a first Platonic The 
group, consisting of three dialogues, Cratyhcs, Symposium, Cratylus, 
and Fliaedo, which are characterised by a relative affinity '^^/"i- 
inferior to that of equal samples of text of the middle ^^''^"*"*' 
group, being about 0-2, and not exceeding 0-21 for samples , ,. 
of text of 40-50 pages. The first Platonic group is having a ' 
distinguished from all Socratic dialogues by many special relative 
pecuharities appearing here for the first time, and indi- affinity of 
Gated in our table. o^iiy 0"2- 

4. Among the Socratic dialogues, which show an That the 

apparent relative affinity of 0-1, or even less, the Gorgias Gorgias 

appears with probability to be the latest, having 18 ^^ *^® 

peculiarities in common with the first Platonic and later \ ^^„ 
. , . . of all 

groups, which are missed m other Socratic dialogues, gocj-atic 

But this number, which was held to be sufficient by C. dialogues 
Eitter to define the middle group, is according to our is pro- 
improved method insufficient, and affords only a certain bable. 
probability, increased by internal evidence resulting from 
the comparison of contents, but requiring further support 
by a much greater number of observations. 

5. Last, not least, we repeat the important conclusion, Certainty 
which is perhaps the greatest gain of our investigations, '^^ stylis- 
viz. that stylistic tests if properly directed afford cer- ^'^^ *^°"' 
taintij as to the chronological order of Plato's dialogues ; '^ "^^*^"^ 

1 • /> i 1 • i • • 1 • indepen- 

and conciusions from stylistic comparisons cannot be m- . , . 
validated by assuming fictitious later editions, corrections 



and revisions, as it has been seen on the first book of the 
Bepuhlic that such later changes cannot affect the essential 
characteristics of style as these are now known. 

later than 
sium and 
Cratylus ; 
later than 
Uis and 
drus ; 
later than 

easily be 
decided by 
the same 
method if 
applied on 
a larger 
Our con- 
arrived at 
by stylis- 
tic study 
and com- 

The above five conclusions are worth the labour spent 
on our study of Plato's style. We do not pretend to give 
for certain anything more about the order of dialogues 
within each group, except that the Phaedo is later than 
Symposium and Cratylus, the Par-menides later than 
Theaetetus and Phaedrus, the Philehus later than the 
Sophist. The relative position of Bepuhlic, Phaedrus, 
and Theaetetus, of Politicus, Philehus, and Timaeus, can- 
not be decided on the above observations alone. These 
problems are of less importance than the distinction of 
groups, and now that the method of stylistic calculation 
has been shown on a small example of five hundred pecu- 
liarities, it will be very easy to apply it on a much larger 
scale, and to settle all the minor difficulties left to future 
inquirers. It is to be hoped that nobody hereafter will 
attempt to judge about Plato's style from small numbers 
of observations. Any new observations ought to be 
added to those existing, in order to achieve a progress 
of knowledge in these matters. The group of the latest 
six dialogues, recognised independently by Campbell, 
Dittenberger, C. Ritter, and von Arnim, is now still better 
defined and is established beyond all reasonable doubt. 
The anomaly observed by Campbell as to the Philehus, 
Parmenidcs, and Theaetetus, is removed, and the true 
place of these three dialogues found in accordance with 
their style. This entirely changes the current traditional 
conception of Platonism, as taught by Schleiermacher 
and Hermann, and still in our own day represented by 
the great name of Zeller. The differences between these 
authors become insignificant in view of their grave and 
common error in placing the dialectical dialogues before 
the Syviposium and Bepuhlic, This error produces a 
complete distortion of the true view of Plato's philo- 


sophical career. It is as if some eminent critics pro- the 
posed to look upon Kant's Kritik der reinen Vernunft current 
as a juvenile eccentricity, and to seek the chief contents ''oncep- 
of Kant's philosophy in his P rincipiorum primorum *^°" °* 
cognitionis metapJiysicae nova dilucidatio, published in . 
1755, and written under the influence of the then pre- prosed 
vailing philosophy of Leibniz and Wolff. subjects 

We should fall into the error of premature generalisa- for future 
tion if we pretended to go further in our conclusions and inquirers. 
to decide anything about the order of Socratic dialogues ^^^y^^^^t 
in which the relative affinity sinks below 0-1. Our in- ''^"^P^y^ 
strument is not fine enough for these small differences , 

, , , logue with 

between dialogues probably removed forty years from the all others 
Critias and from the latest books of the Laios. To and spe- 
determine their order, another standard is required than cially all 
the Laivs, with which they have too little in common. Socratic 
The Gorgias being the latest and also the longest of the '^^'^^^g'^^s 
group of Socratic dialogues, the best plan would be to J^* ? ^ 
collect and classify peculiarities common to each of 
them with the Gorgias. But if five hundred peculiarities 
were needed to fix the order of dialogues later than the 
Gorgias, for those earlier a much gTeater number of 
observations is required, and can be reached only through 
well-organised labour of many scholars. 

A distinction of only four degrees of importance of Theciassi- 
stylistic marks might ultimately prove insufficient, but fication of 
even if we classify the peculiarities observed otherwise, it pecuiiari- 
will always be indispensable to make due allowance for ties can be 
the different importance of accidental, repeated, frequent, ^™P''°^®' • 
and very frequent peculiarities, as well as for the more or 
less essential character of certain observations. 

One of the most immediate aims for further inquiry The order 
is to investigate peculiarities in the order of words and of words 
in the construction of phrases. By means of a great and con- 
number of such peculiarities it will be possible to st'^^'^t'o" 

determine the relative affinity of all dialogues among ° ^ 

,1 -. ,1 • 1 -n -,11?-, should be 

each other, and this alone will probably lead to the 



A revision 
of work 
done is 

Number of 
words in 
each work 
should be 

can easily 
be applied 
to other 
logy, and 
leads to 
a new 
science of 

of results 
by the 
tion of 
style than 

definitive solution of all difficulties of the Platonic 

There is no reason to fear that the amount of time 
spent on such inquiries will be lost. In every science 
there arises at certain points a necessity for much detailed 
research leading to no new conclusions, and only confirming 
previous generalisations. The familiar example of modern 
organic chemistry shows that valuable investigations were 
made by beginners, following a method already fixed, with 
results foreseen by general theory. Such investigations, 
though they teach us few new truths, increase the certi- 
tude of the general theory which they illustrate. Further 
study of Plato's style will probably not change our know- 
ledge as to the order of the three groups which are now 
found, but it may modify our views concerning the order 
of dialogues within each group, and may help to fix the 
order of earlier dialogues, which is at present uncertain. 

Besides further research on the lines here indicated 
a systematic co-ordination of the results already ob- 
tained is also necessary. There are discrepancies 
between the numbers given by various authors for the 
occurrence of the same peculiarity, and the calculation 
of proportions between different uses might be very much 
improved. The number of words contained in each 
dialogue should be taken as the true measure of text and 
of the opportunity for the occurrence of expressions for 
which no better calculation of opportunities can be 

When once the importance of this field of research is 
generally recognised, it will very soon appear that the 
exact determination of style is the safest way of settling 
the difficulties, not only of Platonic chronology, but also 
of the chronology of other authors, the date of whose 
writings is unknown. There will be scarcely another 
case in which the mere question of the chronology of 
some writings would be of such unparalleled importance 
for the history of human thought as in the question of 


Platonic chronology. This exceptional importance of by any in- 
one particular case will have produced a new science of formation 
style, which will enable us to decide questions of authen- ^^^^^ on 
ticity and chronology of literary works with the same '^^^^ ^^ ^' 
certainty as palaeographers now know the age and 
authenticity of manuscripts. This future science of 
stylometry may improve our methods beyond the limits 
of imagination, but our chief conclusions can only be 
confirmed, never contradicted by further research. That 
the dialectical dialogues are later than the Republic is 
now as clearly demonstrated as any other fact in his- 
tory can be. Equally certain is the conclusion that the 
Bepublic, Phaedrus, Theaetetus, and Parmenides are^'later 
than the Phaedo and Symposiuin. These facts must be 
accepted now as if they were supported by the clearest testi- 
mony. The certitude attainable by a consistent theory 
is even much greater than the certitude of the best 
evidence ; every astronomer believes himself to know 
more of the present and past movements of the moon 
than an historian can know of the movements of Caesar's 
army. Historical testimonies have always but the 
value of the sensible evidence on which they are based, 
while our results as to the order of Plato's works rely on 
the higher authority of reason, producing, according to 
Plato, infallible knowledge whenever a good method is 


from other 
works of 



Small dia- When the Platonic works are compared with regard to 

logues dis- their volume, we find a nmnerous class of dialogues 

tmguished which do not attain to half the size of the Protagoras, 

and which can be distinguished from the rest as small 

dialogues. No fewer than eight among them, the 

Clitoplio, Minos, Hipparchus, Epiiiomis, Theages, Ama- 

tores, Alcihiades II. and the Greater Hippias, have 

since Schleiermacher been generally regarded as spurious. 

They represent seventy-two pages of text (ed. Didot), less 

than one-third of the Laws, and contain nothing that 

could be included in Plato's logic. 

Their The lo, Hippias Mi)ior, Lysis and Menexenus, though 

chrono- successfully defended against doubts as to their authen- 

logical ticity, remain outside the pale of our inquiry. All these 

°!1. ^ y^^'^ small dialogues offer greater difficulties than larger works, 

difficult to ^ . . . ^ 

determine because their limited volume makes a complete appre- 

on account ciation of their style and doctrine less easy. They 
of their require a special study through which their mutual 
size. relations might be determined and a certain place assigned 

to each of them. Such an inquiry would alone fill a 
volume, if it were intended to lead to definitive con- 
clusions, based on a careful weighing of many details. So 
long as their chronological order has not been determined 
by patient and impartial stylometric inquiry, we must 
for our part abstain from all attempt to fix this order 
from the few logical hints which they contain. 
A Socratic The existence of a Socratic stage in Plato's logic is 
stage in far more probable than the myth of a Megaric period. 


We have the clear testimony of Aristotle {Metaph. 987 Plato's 

b 1) that Plato owed to Socrates the tendency to form develop- 

exact definitions of ethical notions. It is precisely in °ientvery 

the small dialogues that we see the illustration of this ^'° ^ ^' 
tendency. In another passage Aristotle teaches us that , 

•'■'-_" we know 

the direct philosophical merits of Socrates were inductive from 
reasoning and definition by means of general notions Aristotle 
{Metaj)h. 1078 b 27). In the small dialogues we find that Plato 
accordingly the constant employment of inductive reason- °^^®^ 
ing and repeated attempts to define by means of the ™ *° 
nearest general notion, in application chiefly to ethical 
purposes. Though faithful even in his later period to 
induction as a method of investigation, Plato gave in his 
dialectical works a far greater importance to deductive 
classification. The thoroughly inductive character of the 
small dialogues is more Socratic than Platonic. The 
influence of Socrates on Plato is not, like the alleged 
Megarian influence, attested only by a late and un- 
trustworthy witness : it is known from numerous 
passages in the writings of Aristotle, and results also 
from the manner in which Socrates is again and again 
represented by Plato as the teacher of true wisdom. 

Were it not for Plato's strange desire to represent, and it 
in more than twenty literary masterpieces, his own results 
thoughts as enunciated by Socrates, we might have given ^^^° *^'°°^ 
to the latter no more credit than to Anaxagoras, ^ ^^^ 

Heraclitus, or Parmenides, nor would his name even m . , 

Plato s 

to-day be synonymous with Sage. Hence it is natural teacher 

to suppose a Socratic stage in the development of in his 

Plato's philosophy, and to seek for the vestiges of dialogues 

this period in his works. 

These vestiges are precisely found in the small Socratic 

dialogues, and in the four works in which Socrates is influence 

represented as triumphant over the sophists. These ^P^^^i^^^^y 

are the traditional sixth tetralogy, consisting of Prota- , 

the small 
goras, Meno, Euthydemus and Gorgias, which form a ^^^^o 

natural group, though they have not been connected by and in 

o 2 


the sixth 


All these 







sophy had 
a pre- 

are the 

Of all 








Plato himself into one series. They have in common 
with the small dialogues the predominating ethical aim, 
and they deal with the definition of virtue and various 
parts of virtue, as well as with the question whether 
virtue can be taught. Such ethical questions are 
abandoned in later works : even in the Philebus, where 
the avowed aim is the solution of an ethical problem, 
the whole argumentation takes a metaphysical and logical 
turn, which is wholly absent from the small dialogues 
and from the four others above named. 

The character of Socrates' philosophy was also 
mainly ethical, and this authorises us to see the pre- 
dominance of Socratic influence in those dialogues which 
are limited to ethical inquiry. Plato's own philosophy 
had another character : he was rather a politician, a 
metaphysician, and a logician, than a simple moralist. 
He set perfection above mere virtue, and even despised 
the traditional virtue of the common citizen, which was 
the starting point of Socratic ethics. 

We shall not be far from the truth, if we admit that 
the small dialogues are earlier than the logical investi- 
gations which commence with the Cratylus, and are 
continued in the Phaedo and Bepublic. For an exact 
determination of their order the data are not yet col- 
lected, because their style is very much less characteristic 
than the style of the latest group. We can only observe, 
that of all peculiarities of later style only very few and 
unimportant examples are to be found in the small 

For the investigation of the development of Plato's 
logic only five among them are of any importance : the 
trilogy about the death of Socrates, consisting of the 
E'uthyphro, Apology, Crito, and the two companion 
dialogues of the Protagoras, namely the Laches and 
Charmides. We omit the first Alcibiades, though its 
authenticity has been sustained by Socher, Stallbaum, 


Hermann, Steinhart, Andreatta/^*' and Kopliiniotes,^^^ Char- 
against Schleiermacher, Ast, Susemihl,'^^ E. Hirzel ^^^ and snicks, 
manj^ others. Strong suspicion is roused by the noticeable ^^'^^^^ 
contradiction between style and contents in this dialogue. 
According to its style the Alcihiades would be later than ^T^^^ 
the Symposiuin, while the general contents place it among 
the small dialogues, as has been recognised by all defenders 
of its authenticity. Quite recently Ivo BrunSj^-^*^ by com- Alcihiades 
paring the characterisation of persons in Plato's dialogues, is pro- 
came also to the conclusion that the first Alcihiades ^^^^^ 
could not have been written by Plato. spunons. 
As to logical contents, the ^ZciiiftcZe.s presents, besides Identity 
some theories sufficiently known from other works of of man 
Plato, a singular identification of the soul with man ^"^^ ^°"^ 
(130 C: fiTjZev aX\o rov clvdpcoTrov XsiTrerai avfi^aivsiv rj 
yfrvxv^), which recalls a passage from a notoriously ^^ ^^^ 
spm'ious dialogue {Axiochus 365 E : rjixsls ia-fMSvyjrvxv)- ^^ Alcihiades 

the Gorgias (464 a) every man is supposed to consist of is unpla- 

soul and body, and at all times Plato defined man as an tonic, and 

animal {Crat. 399 c, Polit. 271 e, Legg. 765 e, &c.), contra- 

with a soul (ylrvYv avdoMTrov Prot. 312 B, Sijmp. 192 D, ^^""^^ 
PJiaedr. 249 e, Rei). 590 a, &c.) ; the identification of man 


and soul seems to belong to some later Academicians, teaching 
This contradiction between the first Alcihiades and the of Plato, 
current Platonic teaching on an essential point is not of 
the same kind as many quite superficial contradictions 
quoted by those who oppose the authenticity of some of 
Plato's other works. Man as consisting of body and soul 
is a familiar notion to Plato's readers, and if the author of 

"" Andreatta, SuW autenticitd delV Alcihiade primo, Koveredo 1876. 

'<" J. K. Kophiniotes in vol. iv. pp. 289-296, 310-315 of the Epliemeris, 
Athens 1881. 

'« Platons Alkibiadcs I. mid II. ilbersetzt von F. Susemihl, Stuttgart 

'" R. Hirzel, ' Aristoxenos und Platons erster Alkibiades,' in Rhein. 
Museum, vol. 45, pp. 419-435, Frankfurt a. M. 1890. 

'^'' I. Bruns, Das Uterarische Portrat der Griechen Berlin 1896, 
p. 339. 


ticity of 
phro suc- 

of Euthy- 

the Alcibiades takes the trouble to give a demonstration 
of the identity between man and soul, he must have felt 
that this was an innovation against the general opinion. 
If Plato had given this demonstration himself, he could 
scarcely have disregarded it throughout his other works, 
from the Protagoras to the Laivs. Therefore we are 
justified in excluding the first Alcibiades, as well as the 
second, from the list of Plato's works. 

The doubts raised against the authenticity of the 
Euthypliro, chiefly by Ast, Ueberweg, Schaarschmidt, and 
J. AVagner,'-'^^ have been sufficiently refuted by Stallbaum, 
Hermann, Yxem,'-^^ Wells, ''^^ Adam,^-^^ and Jezierski,'''^ 
so that there is no need to return to this question. All 
arguments against the authenticity of this and many 
other works can be reduced to two principal heads : 1. 
Plato would have written otherwise ; 2. Analogies with 
other dialogues show an imitator's hand. Such argu- 
ments are necessarily subjective, and we can only 
affirm with certainty that Plato would have written 
otherwise, if we notice, as in the Alcibiades, some essen- 
tial contradiction to well-known and constantly expressed 
Platonic teaching. Nothing of that kind can be said of 
the Euthyjjhro. 

The logical contents of this little dialogue *'** corre- 
spond to what might be expected of a work written while 
the influence of Socrates on Plato still remained un- 
altered by further philosophical progress. The rule of 
definition of terms by general notion and specific 
difference is applied to a particular case : (12 d : si /ispos 

'^' J. Wagner, Zur Athctcsc cles Dialogs E%i,thyphron, Briinn 1883. 

'^- Yxem, Ueber Platos Euthyphron, Berlin 1842. 

153 rpj^^ Euthypliro of Plato, with an introduction and notes, by George 
Henry Wells, London 1881. 

'^' The Euthyphro of Plato, with introduction and notes, by J. Adam, 
Cambridge 1890. 

'" A. Jezierski, Platona Eutyfron, Tarnopol 1890. 

'*" On the logic of the Euthyphro, see also V. Poggi, L' Eutifrone di 
Platoiie, Roma 1891. 


TO oaiov Tov SiKalov, Ssi . . s^svpstv TO TTolov ixipos), but 

without any methodic digression on logical theory 

such as appears in all the dialectical dialogues. Induction induction 

and analogy are used frequently (as 13 a, 14 a, &c.) and and defi- 

the necessity of establishing permanent notions is insisted ^^itions, 

upon (11 D : e/SovXo/jLtji' dv fiot rovsXoyovs /xsvsiv kol aKivy]- *'^'^*1^^^"* 

Tws iSpvcrdai adWov i) irpos Trj i\aiSd\ov aocbta to, 

, ' , / /) . analogy. 

lavToXov ■)(^p)]fxaTa 'ysvsauai : see also 5 D). Enumeration 

of examples is shown to be insufificient to give such per- 
manence to a notion (6 d : ov^ ^^ ^t V ^^o tmv ttoWmv 
0(Ti(ov, aW sKSivo avTo to siSos, oi TrdvTa to, ocria oatd 
icTTiv) and the characteristic mark is sought for. 

This characteristic mark is here named slSos, in the sense Though 
in which Thucydides used this word when he spoke of an ^'^^"^ and 
siSos voa-ov (Thucyd. 2, 50). Some authors, as for instance '^*" ^°*^ 
M. Waddington,'-^^ thought it possible to draw chrono- °^''"''i" 

logical inferences from the absence of the words slhos or „ „ 
,» , . . Euthy- 

tdsa m many small dialogues. M. A¥addington is ^^jy^^ 

evidently not aware of the fact that both words are these 

anterior to Plato, and are used by Thucydides and other words 

earlier writers in the same sense as by Plato in his early ^^^^ "o* 

dialogues. In the Euthyphro as in the Gharmides they ^^^ *^^'^ 

both occur, Ihsain the meaning of form, property, or ^^^"^^^^ 

characteristic mark (6 E : p,ta ISsa Td ts dvoaia dvocna 

slvai), but not in the later meaning of a metaphysical entity. 

From the occurrence of these words, which are not yet 

used as logical terms, we cannot infer that the Euthyphro 

is later than any other small dialogue, such as the Apology 

or Crito, from which these words are absent. 

There is a greater difficulty in the circumstance that The same 

in the Euthyjyhro (6 E : 'x^pdyixsvos avTr) (t^ ISsa) refers to 

7rapaS£iyfj,aTi) the idea is said to be a paradeigma, as '^"P"-' 

this seems at first sight to approach the later theory of ^'^'*"' 

eternal forms or paradeigmatic ideas. But such eternal 

'*' C. Waddington, ' Observations sur le Memoire de W. Lutostawski,' 
Compte rendtc des stances ct travaux de Vacadimie des sciences morales et 
politiques, vol. cxlvi*. N. 7. See above, note 49. 



Date early 
but un- 

forms are ' TrapaSsly/xara iv rj] (})vasL ' {Farm. 132 D 
= Bep. 597 B, cf. Theaet. 176 e), while here Plato only 
speaks of using the characteristic of holiness as a standard 
for distinguishing holy actions from sinful deeds. Such a 
use of the word TrapdBst'y/u.a does not essentially differ 
from that of Thucydides and the early orators ; it 
cannot be regarded as peculiar to Plato. 

An important logical distinction is made in the 
Euthij'pliro between activity and quality : the quality is a 
result of a determinate activity, but never cause or 
ground of this activity (10 c : sX n r^i<yvsTai, rj tl irdcrx^h 
ov^ OTL 'ycyvofisvov scttl, jlypsrai, dW otl yiyvsrac, 
ytyvofisvov scttiv • ovS' on irda^ov sent, 7rda')(^si, dW' 
OTL irdaj^^si, irda-^ov iari'v). This is here explained by a 
number of analogies before it is expressed in a general 

These few hints of a logical character offer no 
means of determining the date of the Euthyphro. The 
scene of the dialogue proves that it could not have 
been written before the accusation of Socrates. With 
regard to the later limit of time we can infer nothing 
beyond that the Euthyphro precedes the Meno and 
Gorgias on grounds of style, '''^ composition, and 
contents. ^^'^ 

''" stylistic observations ]}[a,ce the Euthypliro at the beginning of Plato's 
literary career. It contains many peculiarities of earlier style : wairep used 
always instead of Kadairep, rqi ovTi instead of byrws, yueVroi prevailing over 
Toivw ; i-ywye, i/.i.oiye, SoKel fjioi forming 19 per cent, of all answers, irepi with 
the genitive prevailing over all other prepositions, &c. (See table of 
affinity, p. 163.) 

'*" Schleiermacher, Socher, Schierenberg {Ueber die Zcit der Abfassung 
dcs platonischcn Euthyphro, Lemgau 1830), Stallbaum, Steinhart, Zeller 
agree in placing the Euthyphro before the death of Socrates ; Susemihl, 
Georgii (Platos Euthyphron ilbcrsetzt von Georgii, Stuttgart 1875), Bergk, 
Diimmler believe the Euthyphro to be written some years later chiefly on 
account of holiness being here a part of justice, while in the Gorgias it is a 
fifth virtue besides justice. Also H. Bitter, Braudis, Michelis, Bibbing, 
Mistriotes, Peipers, Weygoldt, Windelband, Christ, who admit the date of the 
Euthyphro as uncertain, agree, however, as to the Socratic character and 
early origin of this work. Only Teichmiiller (ii. 355) places the Euthyphro 


The Apology shows, hke the Euthyphro, a frequent In the 

use of induction and analogy (e.g. 25 BC), and contains apology 

several repetitions of the well-known Socratic principle, ^^® ^^^ * 

that he who knows his own ignorance is wiser than „ 

use of 
those who believe themselves to know what they do not ^^^i^ 

know (21 CD, 22 c, 29 a, 33 c, 41 b). This principle is 
carried to the extreme consequence, .that all human 
knowledge is of little worth and that only God is wise 
and infallible (21 b, 23 a). Such a scepticism, bearing 
even upon the future life (29 a : olBs ouSsls tov 
Odvarov .... also 42 A), does not extend to ethical con- 
victions (30 D : to do injustice is worse than death — 
30 B : virtue imports more than all besides). 

The uncertainty manifested as to a future life shows Chaiac 
that the Ajjology was written earlier than the Meno and teristic 
Gorgias, in which as in all later dialogues Plato professes ""^^er- 
the greatest certainty on this subject. Also the style of the ^^ ^ 
Apology, very similar to the style of the Euthyjjhro, makes ^ 
it probable that both dialogues were written not later ^fg^ 
than within the first years after the death of Socrates, and 
though the Euthyplu'O represents an earlier scene, there 
is no decisive reason to place it before the Apology. ^'^^^ 

The Crito forms the third act in the tragedy of which In the 
the Euthyphro and Apology represent the first scenes. (^^'^^° 
We remark here a curious distinction between honest '^o^^s* 
('X^prjaTas) and immoral opinions (47 a: irovrjpas So^as), 
which is parallel to the later constantly repeated contrast opi^jQ^g 
between mere opinion and knowledge. This way of distin- 
estimating a judgment according to its moral value, with- guished. 
out asking for a logical standard of truth, is peculiar to 
the Socratic stage of Plato's logic, and shows us how 

after the Symposium and even after the Theaetetus, under the intiuence of 
his wrong theory of the styUstic criterion (see above, p. 102). 

"^ Zeller and Ueberweg beheved the Apology to be a faithful account of 
what Socrates said before his judges. But Eiddell (see above, p. 99) and 
Stock (The Apology of Plato, with introduction and notes by S. G. Stock, 
Oxford 1887) have sufficiently demonstrated the improbability of this 


tent au- 


of reason 
not yet es- 

later than 

Plato was led from the moral teaching of his master 
to his own logical investigations. When he wrote the 
Crito, he seems not yet to have arrived at his later ideal 
of objective knowledge : he is satisfied with an ' honest ' 
opinion of a competent expert {eiratwv 47 d) whom he 
trusts more than the opinion of the many {ho^a twv 
ttoWmv 47 c). 

In agreement with such a practical standpoint, funda- 
mental differences of opinion between men are recognised 
as inevitable, and here, as in the Euthijphro, are admitted 
to produce hatred and contempt, if they touch upon 
ethical subjects {Crito 49 c d, Euthyphro 7 d). This 
view is very characteristic, because in the Gorgias and 
all later dialogues the Platonic Socrates is represented as 
possessing objective truth about ethical as well as about 
other matters, a truth which can be proved and com- 
municated even to such enemies of philosophy as Kallikles. 
Here we see only competent opinion or the authority of 
the ' best ' reason (46 B : firjSsvl dW(p irsidscrdai rj tw \6y(p 
OS av fjboi \oji^o/j.sva) jSsXrKnos (paiMTjrai) . This ' best 
reason is not yet ' the reason ' familiar to the readers of 
later dialogues. 

From these logical particulars we can only infer that 
the Crito,^*'^ forming with the preceding two dialogues a 
natural group, is earlier than the Meno and Gorgias. There 
is a great probability that the Crito is later than the 
Apology, because in p. 45 b Plato makes a clear allusion 
to his Apology. This allusion might also refer to a coin- 
cidence between the Platonic Apology and the historical 
defence of Socrates, but if we consider that also the style 

"" The doubts as to the authenticity of the Crifo expressed by Ast, and 
later by Schaarschmidt, have been sufliciently refuted by J. H. Bremi 
[Philologische Beitrcige cms der Schweiz, Ziirich 1819, vol. i. p. 131 sqq.), 
Georgii (Ajiologie unci Krito ubersetzt von L. Gcorgii, Stuttgart 1883), 
•J. Adam (Platonis Crito, with introduction, notes, and Appendix, Cambridge 
1888), and many others. The relation of the Crito to the Gorgias is 
dealt with also in Plato'' s Apology of Socrates and Crito, on the basis of 
Cronos edition, by L. Dyer, Boston 1885. 


of the Crito shows a shght advance over the style of the 
two preceding dialogues (see above, p. 163), we have 
good reason to admit that Plato himself intended this 
work as the supplement of the preceding. 

Less evident is the chronological relation of the In the 
Charmides "''^ to the above three dialogues. It is charac- (^''^'^'>'- 
teristic of the stage of logical advance which Plato had '" 
reached when he wrote this small work, that his So- 


crates commits a paralogism, inferring from the beauty y^^^^i^^^g^ 
of both temperance and quickness that quickness is 
temperate (159 d). Such logical blunders occur also in 
other small dialogues, and we have no reason to suppose 
that Plato was conscious of them. So long as the logical 
interest was not awakened, even a thinker like Plato 
might unconsciously commit logical errors. On the 
other hand, we notice a correct syllogism (161 a : alSons 
ovK a'yaOov . . . aoicbpoavvrj a'yaOov . . . ovk clpa crcocjipo- 
avi'Tj av SIT] alScos) of the form Cesare, introduced by the 
word avWoyLad/xsvos (160 E), which, however, has not 
yet the meaning of a logical term. 

The aUusion made by Critias to a possible division import- 
of sciences into practical and theoretical (165 e : ri^s ^^^^ °^ 
XoyiariKrjs . . ri sartv tolovtqv spyov oIop olKiaoLKoSofiiKrjs), 
carried out later in the Gorgias, is not developed here ; 
siTLa-TqfjL'q and ri')(vr) are used as synonyms (165 e), but cognised 
theoretical knowledge, independent of personal considera- 
tions, is recognised as a great advantage to mankind 

'"'- Doubts as to the authenticity of the Charmides put forth by Ast, 
Socher, Suckow, Schaarschmidt, and recently by Troost {Inlialt und 
Echthcit dcr platonischen Dialogc auf Grund logischer Analyse, Berlin 
1889) have been sufficiently refuted by Schleiermacher, Ochmann {Char- 
mides Platonis num sit gcnninus qtiacritur, Vratislavise 1827), Stallbaum, 
H. Bitter, Hermann, Steinhart, Munk, Susemihl, Spielmann {Die Echtheit des 
platonischen Dialogs Charmides, Innsbruck 1875), Alberti (' Gesichtspunkte 
fiir angezweifelte Platonische Gesprache,' Philologus, 3" Suppl. Bd. p. 101, 
Gottingen 1878), and Georgii {Laches und Charmides, ilhers. von L. Geoigii, 
Stuttgart 1882). Also Zeller, who formerly believed the Charmides to be 
spurious, has since defended the authenticity against Troost {Arch. f. 
Gesch. d. Philos. vol. iv. p. 134). 

cal know- 
ledge re- 



of know- 

acting on 
selves ad- 
journed as 
a future 
mides is 
the exact 
date un- 

belongs to 

(166 D : Kocvbv dyaOov sivai ct'^sSov tl irdacv dvdpoiirois, 
<yi<yvS(76aL Kara^avss skucttov tcop ovtcov ottj) s'^Si). 

Again, a sceptical tone is perceptible in the doubt 
whether certitude as to knowledge is possible (172 A : 
d<ya6bv sir] to slSsvai d rs olSsv tls koI a fxr] olSsv .... 
ovSa/jLOV £7riaT7]/u,7] ouSsfita rotavrr] ovaa Trscpavrai) . Very 
characteristic of the Socratic stage of Plato's logic is the 
appreciation of the knowledge of knowledge according 
to a standard of usefulness (169 B : ovk dTroSs-^o/jbat . . . 
irplv dv sTTicrKs^lrcofxai,, sirs n dv rjfxds dxpsXol, 172 D : crKS-^d)- 
fisOa, si dpa tl koX yfxds ovi'jasi . . to slSsvai d ts olSsv 
KOI d fir) olhsv). This would not occur in any dialogue 
after the Meno, but is very natural at the time when 
Plato had not entirely emancipated himself from the 
prevailing ethical preoccupations of his teacher. 

A beginning of later Platonic tendencies appears in 
the care with which the question, whether an activity can 
have itself as its object, is discussed. By many examples 
Plato tries to prove that most human activities have not 
this property, that, for instance, there is no perception of 
perception (167 c), no desire of a desire, no will of a willing 
(167 e), no love of love, no fear of fear, because each of 
these activities has an object different from itself, but the 
general question of the existence and possibility of a know- 
ledge of knowledge is here not settled, only adjourned as a 
problem requiring for its solution a great thinker (169 A) . 

Nearly all investigators agree in placing the Charmides 
among Plato's early works. Many believe that it may 
have been written even before the death of Socrates, to 
which it contains not the slightest allusion. But an exact 
chronological determination in this case requires further 
stylistic research, and the attempt of Teichmiiller to dis- 
cover in the Cliarmides allusions to the Memorabilia of 
Xenophon has failed. 

At all events the Laches "'•* belongs to the same period. 

"'■'' Ast, Schaarschmidt, and to a certain extent Giltbauer {Philologische 
Strcifzilge, Freiburg 188G) doubted the authenticity of the Laches, but 


It is noteworthy that Plato mentions here as objects of the same 
knowledge truths which are conceived as independent of period. 
time (198 D : Trspl ocroiv icrrlv sTriaTi^firj, ovk oXXt} /xsv 
slvat TTspl ysyovoTos, slSsvat oirrj ysyovsv, ciWrj Ss Trspl 
yiyvo/jLEvcov^ oTTj) yLjvsTai, . . . ciXk' t] avTrj). Such truths 
are found more easily by a single competent man than by 
an incompetent majority (185 A : si sanv ris ts^^^vlkos . . . 
sKsivcp 7rsL0scr6ai svl ovrt, rovs S' oiXkovs hav), because know- 
ledge is a safer criterion than great number (184 e : iiricrr-r^fir) 
Bsi Kp'ivscrOaL (iKX' ov TrKrjOsi to fisWov /caXws KpLdr^asadaC). 

This short acknowledgment of knowledge as superior Personal 
to opinion rises above the moral standard of honest authority 
opinions required in the Crito. But Plato does not yet °* *^^ ^^^^ 
pretend, as in later works, to possess such a knowledge. *^^*^"^^"- . 
He advises his readers to seek the best teacher, without 
sparing monej'' or anything else (201 a), but he offers no 
definitive solution of the proposed difificulties. In all 
the above small dialogues we see discussions leading to 
a Socratic confession of ignorance, and not to a definite 
doctrine. Opinions of others are criticised, but not defi- 
nitely corrected. 

The character of Socrates is similar in these works to in the 
what we know about the historical Socrates : he is repre- small dia- 
sented as a friend of young men, detecting their errors, Rogues no 
not yet as the ideal master of wisdom. Of a similar *^^ ^^.^^^^ 
critical character is the first larger work written by Plato, 
the Protagoras. In this dialogue also logical questions 
are only incidentally touched upon, and it is evident that 
the author cares chiefly for ethical problems. These are Also the 
treated in a manner which presupposes the previous Protago- 
particular inquiries given in the small dialogues, and the *'^^ ^^^ ^ 
logical power also appears increased. The inconvertibility ^° emica 
of general affirmative judgments is insisted upon 

these suspicions have been refuted by Stallbaum, Georgii, Bonitz, and 
Tatham (The Ladies of Plato, with introduction and notes, London 1888). 
Also ZeUer abandoned his earlier doubts as to the authenticity of the 


of general 

Law of 

The Pro- 
seems to 
be later 
than the 

tions of 

(350 c-351 B) by means of several analogies. If we 
observe that this logical lesson is put into the mouth of 
Protagoras, and not of Socrates, we must admit as 
probable, that the discovery was made outside of the 
Socratic society. The perfect knowledge vainly sought 
for in the Charmides is not yet found by Plato. He still 
expects progress from discussion (348 d) . His certitude 
is increased by the acquiescence of others, and not by its 
own absolute infaUibility, as in later times, when he 
condemned to death those who thought otherwise 
{Laivs 909 a, 958 a : cf. Polit. 308 e). Still he recognises 
knowledge as the chief power in man, reigning over all 
feehngs (352 c, 357 c), and settling all doubts (356 e : 
hrfXcaaaora to aXi]6ss rjavxiciv av STroirjcrsp s^Siv rr}V -^v^V^ 
fjisvovcrav sirl Ta> aXrjBzl . . . )• ^s one of the logical 
means of arriving at knowledge, Plato states the principle 
that each notion has only one contradictory to itself 
(332 C : svl SKaarq) tmv ivavTLCov sv /jiovov sarlv avavriov 
Kol ov TToWd) and exemplifies this rule by many instances, 
but without making any distinction between contrary 
and contradictory terms. 

These observations seem to indicate a further stage of 
logical development than is seen in the small dialogues. 
In the Charmides the subject, though restricted to one 
form of virtue, was to a great extent the same as in the 
Protagoras, and it seems more plausible that the greater 
work should contain no allusion to the smaller than that 
Plato should have written the Charmides after the Prota- 
goras without some allusion to the more general discussion 
on the same problem. The special subject of the Laches 
also is contained in the Protagoras, and the definition 
of courage {Lach. 195 a : tmv Bslvmv kol OappaXscov 
sTTLaTriiJbTJ), arrived at in the Laches after a long conversa- 
tion, and shown by Socrates to refer not only to courage 
but to every virtue, is repeated in the Protagoras (360 D : 
7] crodiLa tmv Sslvmv koX fir] Sslvmv avSpsla scrTiv), and 
remains unrefuted (see also Bep. 429 c). 


Some allusions to contemporaneous facts, contained in Allusions 
the Protagoras, seem to show that this dialogue was to known 
written at least seven years after the death of Socrates, ^^^'^^s as 
Kroschel "'^ and after him Teichmiiller have supposed ^ \°^°" 
that the mention of irzKraariK-r] (350 a) as a familiar . ,. 
example was not probable before the introduction of this tions 
arm into the Athenian army by Iphikrates, between 393- confirm 
391 B.C. Also Teichmiiller and after him Diimmler see the later 
in the Protagoras (347 c-350 b) allusions to Xenophon's *^^te. 
Memorabilia, which appear to have been published some 
years after the death of Socrates. This agrees with our 
supposition that the Protagoras followed the above five 
small dialogues, and also with the observations on the style, 
according to which the Protagoras is intermediate between 
the small dialogues and the Gorgias (see above, p. 165). 

The Meno is generally held to be a continuation of 
the Pi'otagoras}^-' Theories of the greatest importance, Meno con- 
amounting to logical discoveries, are for the first time tinues the 
expressed in the Meno, which in size exceeds only by a fi'^'^^^^o" 
very little the limits of a small dialogue, and amounts to 
less than two-thirds of the volume of the Protagoras. 
Logical exercise, so often recommended in the dialectical 
works, is here first introduced as a methodical way of 
progressing on the path of truth (75 A : in order to enable 
Meno to find the definition of virtue, Socrates proposes 
the definition of form: 'iva koL •yivrirai aoo ixsXirrj). 
The aim of logical definition is indicated as the deter- 
mination of the substance (72 b : ovaid) of things, that 

'"^ J. S. Kroschel, ' Studien zu Platons Protagoras ' {Jahrbiicher fur 
classischc Philologic, vol. 87, p. 825, 1863), also in his review of Cron's 
edition of the Protagoras {Zcitschrift fiir das Gymnasiahoesen, vol. xx., for 
18(56), and in his edition of this dialogue (Gotha 1865, as 3'' ed. of Stallbaum). 

'" Nearly all investigators agree that the Meno is later than the Prota- 
goras: Tennemann, Schleiermacher, Hermann, Susemihl,Eibbing, Steinhart, 
Zeller, Ueberweg, Pfleiderer, Natorp, Siebeck, Gomperz, Eitter, J. Bartunek 
{Ucber die Arifcinanderfolge der Dialoge Protagoras, Gorgias und Mcnon, 
Progr. Ezeszow 1897) &c. ; only Stallbaum, Sehone, and F. Horn ad- 
vocated the priority of the Meno on quite insufficient grounds ; E. Hirzel 
{Rheinischcs Museum, vol. 42, p. 249) sees in the Meno allusions to 
Polykrates' KaT-qyopia 'SaiKpa.rovs. 

raised in 
the Pro- 


Unity of 


of investi- 

tion of 
and par- 

which brings unity among the variety of external appear- 
ances (72 C : avTO tovto w ovSsv hiac^spovcn, dWa ravrov 
slatp airaaaC). This unity is called slho9, not yet the later 
Platonic idea, but already a distinct logical term, cor- 
responding to species (72 C : 'iv ^ys tc elBos ravrov ciTraaat 
E')(ovaiv, hi slaiv apsrai). The unity of species is the 
true essence of the things which it embodies (100 B : avro 
Ka6' avro ri iror scrnv apsrrj). 

Having thus established the aim of research, Plato 
proceeds to give some rules as to the method. Here appear 
for the first time the ' dialectical ' requirements. Xeno- 
phon had once applied {Memor. iv. 5, 12: dvSpa? SiaXs- 
KrtKcordrovs) the word ' dialectical ' in the sense of ' best 
able to conduct conversation,' but Plato, converting it 
into a logical term, requires of all who wish to discuss 
dialectically that they should base their reasoning on 
recognised notions or premisses (75 D : sari Ss tacos ro 
SiaXsKTLKcorspov fxi] /jbovov rciXrjdrj diroKpivsaOai, aXXa 
Kal hi sKSiVcov o)V av Trpocro/jioXo'yj] siSsvaL 6 spofisvos). 

As a method of verifying doubtful suppositions, Plato 
proposes to look for the consequences following from each 
hypothesis. This method he describes as hypothetical 
argument (86 E : i^ inroOsascos atcoiralaOai . . . oiairsp ol 
jsco/jbsrpaL), and transfers it from geometry to philoso- 
phical inquiry. He applies it successfully to the problem 
which he could not yet resolve in the Protagoras, and 
finds that virtue, so long as it is not taught, but merely 
practised according to common traditional experience, 
appears not to be, as was supposed in Charmides, Laches, 
and Protagoras, a kind of knowledge. 

Another sign of the awakened logical interest is the 
careful distinction between particular and general affirma- 
tion (73 E, 89 A). Such progress in respect of formal 
reasoning corresponds to an equally remarkable develop- 
ment of some fundamental logical doctrines about which 
neither in the Protagoras nor in any of the small dialogues 
had Plato expressed any opinion. The theory of innate 


ideas is not only introduced with a striking audacity, innate 
but founded on so general a metaphysical axiom as the ideas, 
unity of nature (81 d: ars yap rrjs (pvasws airdar^s 
avyysvovs ovarjs, koI fxs/jbaOrjKVias T7]s -v/ru^r}? UTravra, 
ovSsv K(o\ij£t sv jjLovov dvafivtjo'dsvTa . . . rdWa iravra . . . 
dvsvpsZv) . 

The metaphysical certainty of a priori knowledge, A priori 
proclaimed by Plato in the Meno, is a new principle in knowledge 
the light of which the old Socratic irony and ignorance ^^^^^ ^'^°' 
are disappearing. Still the author condescends to give an ^ ®^ 
experimental and inductive proof of his assumption, after ^^ . 
the caution that such a proof is not easy (82 a). The 
choice of the experiment and the manner in which it is 
executed show an educational mastery far greater than 
that visible in the small dialogues (82 b-85 c). 

All doubts about the possibility and reality of infallible Know- 
science have been removed ; the Platonic Socrates boldly ledge pro- 
asserts his absolute certainty of the existence of a science claimed as 
far above right opinion (98 B : ore 8s sarlv re dWolov opdv ^^^^^ ^^ ^ 
oo^a KUi STTia-Tij/xr], ov iravv fiot ookw tovto slku^slv, ^ 
dW siTTsp Ti aWo (jiairjv dv slSevai, okiya 8' dv i^airjv, %v 8' ovv opinions 
Kol TOVTO BKeivwv Osltjv dv o)v ol8a), and that this science because it 
may be awakened in everybody by means of skilful inter- is founded 
rogations (86 a : dXrjOsl^ 86^aL spoiTi'^asL sTrsyspOstaai '^^ 
sinaTrifiai yiyvovTaC). The difference between right belief S^ouncs. 
and scientific knowledge consists in the co-ordination and 
causal relation peculiar to true knowledge (98 a : d\r)dsls 
Bo^at . . . ov TToWov d^ial siaiv, k'cos dv Tty avTas Brjar] 
a It Las Xoy la fj,oj . . . sirsihav hs Ssdoxrtv, irpoiTOv fisv 
SIT LCTTri ijuai yiyvovTai, sirsiTa fiovi/xoi,' Kal Bia TavTa 
. . . Bca(f)sp£c Bsa/xrZ stt lctti] p-rj opdrjs Bo^rjs). Science is 
therefore more valuable than mere belief, even if it be right 
belief. Armed with his new weapon, Plato enters upon 
its application to the ethical field, and introduces the Applica- 
immortality of the soul first as a true and beautiful tale ^^^^ ^° ^^' 
of priests and poets (81 a), which he then confirms by a ^^°''*^i*^y- 
reflection on the nature of human thought (86 b : ovkovv 



Date of 
the Meno 
395 B.C. 








sophy and 

St asl }) aK.i]6sLa rjfxlv row ovtcov iarlv sv rf] '^v)(fi, uOdvaros 
av r) "^vyrj scr]). 

This far-reaching logical importance of the Meno, 
noticed already by Guggenheim ^'''^ and Oldenberg,^" 
tells against those who like Socher and Stallbaum 
believe that the Meno could have been written before the 
death of Socrates. The allusion to the bribery of 
Ismenias, indicated by Boeckh and Schleiermacher, shows 
that the Meno is later than 395 B.C. Less evident is 
another allusion to Polykrates, maintained by Hirzel and 
Diimmler, who place the Meno after the Symposium, an 
order which appears impossible, if we take into account 
the stylistic tests (see above, p. 166). What may be 
safely affirmed is that the Meno is later than the Prota- 
goras and all smaller dialogues. 

The logical interest awakened in the Meno bursts out 
only occasionally, but with great intensity in the Euthy- 
demus,^*^^ which has all the appearance of a polemical 
work written for a certain practical purpose, and against 
enemies whom it is not quite easy for us to identify. 
Plato is so proud of his acquired certainty of knowledge 
that he would not give it up even for immortality, if not 
accompanied by knowledge how to use it (289 b). While 
in the Protagoras the word philosophy was still used in 
the meaning of love of wisdom (835 d, 342 d), here we 
see it defined as acquisition of knowledge (288 d : 
<^i\o(xo(^la KTrjais h7rL(Tr7]/jb7)s), and the dialectician, who 
had received his first rules in the Meno, becomes the 
highest judge of every particular knowledge (290 c) . • 

"^•^ M. Guggenheim, Die Lehre vom apriorischen Wissen in Hirer Bedeii- 
tung filr die Entwickelung dcr Ethik und ErkcmitnisstJieorie in dcr 
Sokratisch-Platonischen Fhilosophie, Berlin 1885. 

'"" H. Oldenberg, De Flatonl.s arte dialectica, Gfittingen 1873. 

'"" Doubts as to the authenticity of the Euthydonus, emitted by Ast 
and later by Schaarschmidt, have been sufficiently refuted by A. Polzer 
(Ueber die Eclithcit des Euthydcmos, Olmiitz 1874) and Bonitz (Platonische 
Studien, Berlin 1886). Bonitz gives also an elaborate classification of 
more than twenty sophisms contained in the Euthydemus. 


These dialecticians, thus placed so high above the defended 
mathematicians and all other inquirers, are evidently andplaced 
Plato himself and his school. For the writer of the ^^°^^ 
Euthydemus is clearly a teacher, though probably not yet ^^.^ ^^^ ^^ 
the head of the Academy, Philosophy is the subject of 
his teaching, and he passionately defends his science 
against those who call philosophy a worthless and vain 
occupation (304 e). 

To the right belief, explained in the Meno, Plato adds Many 
in the Euthydemus his explanation of error and wrong sophisms 
belief, whose existence is proved against the Sophists by ^^^^^^^^ 
the hypothetical method taught in the Meiio {Eiithyd. 
284 a, 287 e). Plato gives an interesting collection of ^^ lained 
current sophisms resulting from the use of the same word 
in two different meanings, the misinterpretation of predi- 
cation, the omission of limiting determinations, and the 
double meaning of phrases according to their grammatical 

The date of the Euthydemus can be approximately Date of 
determined by its admission of the possibility of teaching the Eu- 
virtue (as in the Bepiihlic and Laws), whence we conclude t^w^^i^^''^ 

• • • Vin^ nppri 

that it was written after the Protagoras and Meno, m 

. . ... supposed 

which the same question is discussed. Those who, like ^^ ^^^^ 
Tennemann, Stallbaum, Steinhart, C. Eitter, believe the ^.jters to 
Euthydemus to have been written before the death of be very 
Socrates cannot account for the logical enthusiasm which early, 
is here manifested and is absent from all earlier dialogues. 
Those who, like Bergk, Siebeck, and Weygoldt, place the 
Euthydemus after the Symposium are not aware of the 
great difference in style between the Euthydemus and all 
dialogues later than the Cratylus and Symposium (see 
above, p. 166). 

There is no contradiction from the standpoint either Allusion 
of logical or of styHstic development in admitting the *° ®°' 
close relation between the Euthi/demus and Isocrates' 

•^ _ . ^ discourse 

discourse against the Sophists. This relation, first a,gainst 

p 2 



is a safe 
tion, and 
this con- 
firms in- 
from style. 

the tran- 
from the 

noticed by Spengel,'*^^ and Thompson/'" has been since 
investigated by Teichmliller, Sudhaus,'"' Diimmler, and 
recognised by Zeller and Susemihl, without any note- 
worthy opposition. According to these investigations, the 
Euthyde^nus must have been pubhshed not before 390 
and probably not much later. Another allusion to Lysias, 
although supported with great ingenuity by Teichmiiller, 
is not quite so evident, and also the references to Anti- 
sthenes, alleged by Teichmiiller, Urban, ^"^ and Diimmler, 
are possible, but not certain. If we admit that Plato 
wrote the Euthydemus ^'^ about 390 B.C., this agrees very 
well with the general character of the dialogue, which 
directs the most acute polemic against wrong education, 
thus seeming to indicate that the author had already 
acquired some educational experience, and gathered 
around him a number of pupils, preparing the foundation 
of that philosophical school which achieved such an un- 
paralleled importance in the history of human thought. 

This educational character reaches a still higher level 
in the Goi'gias, which represents the transition from the 
Socratic to the peculiar Platonic philosophy. In its 
ethical character the Gorgias is still Socratic, but the 
method of argumentation and the apodictic certainty with 

"*' Spengel, ' Isokrates und Plato,' Abhandlungcn dcr Akademie zu 
MiLnchen, vol. vii. pp. 729-769, Miinchen 1855. 

"" The Phaedrus of Plato, with English notes and dissertations, by 
W. H. Thompson, London 1868, p. 179. 

'" Sudhaus, ' Zm- Zeitbestimmung des Euthydem, des Gorgias und der 
Eepublik,' Rheinisches Museum, vol. xliv. p. 52, Frankfurt a. M. 1889. 

'"■- Urban, TJehcr die Erwdhnungen der Philosophie des Antisthenes in 
den platonischen Schriften, Konigsberg 1882. 

'" Some authors inferred from the use of irdpeaTL Euthyd. 301 a that 
Plato when he wrote the Euthydcmus had already produced his theory of 
ideas. But this is by no means probable, because irapuvai is used in exactly 
the same manner in some of the small dialogues, as Charm. 159 a and 
Lys. 217 D, like TrapayiyveffeaL in the Laches 189 e. This use does not 
correspond to the terminology of ideas. Instead of -rrdpecm KoiWos n 
[Exithyd. 301 a) Plato would have said later ndpecTi rh KaWos (avrh Ka6^ 
avT6). Generally irapui/ai is very little used by Plato in connection with 


which ethical principles are proclaimed (509 a : ov8sls ol6s stage to 
T scnlv aXkcos Xsycov /xrj ov KaraysXacrTos slvai) belong to original 
Plato, are his own creation, and are manifested constantly P^atomc 
in all his later works. The literary skill displayed in the ^^^°" 
Gorgias reaches a higher perfection than in the small 
dialogues, and even than in the Protagoras, Meno, or 
Euthydemus. Plato has now arrived at a mastery of 
form, which approaches to the highest beauty attained by 
human language, and has been exceeded perhaps only by 
Plato himself in the Phaedo, the Phaedrus, and parts of 
the Symposium, the Rejmhlic, and the TJieaetetics. 

The teaching of those dialecticians, who were indicated Philo- 
in the Euthydemus as treasurers of knowledge, is now sophyper- 
personified and attributed to ' Philosophy.' This Philo- sonified, 
sophy is loved more than all human beings, and is ^°' 


credited with eternal truths, which never change (482 A : . 

' " ^ immor- 

rj (f>t\oao(pia dsi to)v avrcov iarl Xoycov). The power of tality. 
these truths is based on our own consciousness, nor can 
any man contradict them without contradicting himself 
(482 B : /; (f>L\oao(f>i.av i^sXsy^ov , . . rj ov aot, ofxoXoyija-si, 
KaWiKkijs, 0) KuWlkXscs, aXXa Sta(f)(ovi]cr£c sv airavTt, tm 
/Stw). And to all faithful followers of this his Queen, 
Plato promises after death a happy life, apart from other 
human beings (526 c). In this he still betrays a juvenile 
egoism, which was abandoned later, when he bade the 
philosophers descend like gods among mortals to teach 
them a better life. 

The difference between right belief and scientific Difference 
knowledge, found in the Meno, is here appHed to the art of between 
persuasion, and leads to the distinction of two kinds of ^^^^^^ ^^^ 
rhetoric, one based on knowledge, the other on faith ^°^ ^. ^^ 

, ,^ « /, <.. V V / / recognised 

(454 E : hvo stoT] dcofjbsv irsiaovs, to fxsv Tncmv iraps-x^ofjievov ^^ 

avsv Tov slSsvai, rb 8' i7naW]iJ,T]v) : knowledge alone is in- applied. 

fallible (454 d: sTnaTt^^rj ovhafids sarlv yjrsvStjs), while 

belief may be true or false. In full accordance with this 

increasing separation between science and opinion, Plato 

distinguishes more clearly than in the Charmides between 



To do 
wrong is 
than to 
is not 
the aim 
of life. 


ence of 

theoretical and applied or practical sciences (450 c-451 d), 
and he insists on the importance of the division of con- 
cepts (500 D : ^sXriaTov scttlv . . . StatpslcrOaL, BisXofisvovs 
Bs Kal ofMoXoy^aavras dWi^Xois . . . (TKs-yjraadac^ ri ts Bia- 
(f)sp£Tov dWrjXoiv) . 

The reasoning proceeds on granted premisses, according 
to the rnle given in the Meno, and the logical connection 
is carefully shown by means of logical terms (498 e : 
crvWoyiaat, n ijfilv a-vfi^aivsi sk tow MfMoXoyrj/xspoov). 
Inevitable repetitions are excused bj- the logical aim 
(499 A : Kal Sis yap roc Kal rpcs (f)acnv koXov slvac ra KaXa 
Xsystv TS Kal sinaKOTrslcrOaL, cf . 508 D) . This gives the im- 
pression of an author who is used to personal teaching, 
and has already found the truths he wishes to convey to 
his hearers, but professes to seek them again in company 
with his pupils. AVhat in the Apology (30 D) and Crito 
(49 A c) has been expressed as a personal belief, that one 
should by no means do wrong, is here affirmed as a well- 
founded scientific truth (509 a: ravra . . . ri/xiv ovrw 
(jiavsvra KaTs-^srai Kal SsSsrat cnhr^pols Kal dhafiavrLVOLS 
Xcyois), and is so far extended as to imply even the 
necessity of punishment if one has done wrong (482 b, 
527 B). The aim of human life is not, as it seemed to be 
in the Protagoras, pleasure but ' the good ' (513 d : 8v 
h(f)a/jL£v slvat ras irapaaKSvas sirl to SKaaTov OspaTrsvetv, 
. . . fxiav fJbkv irpos ijSovyv ofMiXstv, TrjV STspav Ss irpos to 
jBiXTiaTov). The politician's duty is to make better the 
X^eople whom he leads. 

In the Protagoras and Meno Plato still maintained 
the popular belief that Pericles and Themistocles were 
great and wise men. He only complained that they were 
unable to impart their greatness and wisdom to their 
children or others. But now, from the height of the 
newly founded philosophy, Plato dares to say that these 
idols of the Athenians were bad politicians and corrupters 
of the people (515 E). This bold contemj^t of the men 
who had generally been esteemed greatest among the 


citizens of Athens shows how rapidly the breach is and public 

widening for Plato between vulgar common sense and opinion. 

the teachings of philosophy. He has risen from Socratic 

ignorance and irony to that full independence of tradition 

and public opinion which in all ages characterises a great 


Another indication of the later date of the Gorgias is Gorgias 

the hatred of tyranny (525 d) here expressed and henceforth ^^^ ^^.test 

maintained by Plato throughout his life. Stylistic inquiry 

places this dialogue after all the above-mentioned works, ,. , 


and between the Euthydemus and the Cratyhis (see above, ^^ results 
p. 167). If we admit with Teichmiiller that the Pro- from its 
tagoras and Euthydemus were written between 393- contents 
390 B.C., we are not obliged to accept his supposition and style. 
that the Gorgias is fifteen years later. Teiclimtiller 
(ii. 357) as well as Sudhaus '"' place the Gorgias after 
Isocrates' discourse to Nicocles, which is supposed to have 
been written 376 B.C. But the allusions to this discourse 
supposed to be contained in the Gorgias are not evident, 
while Diimmler, who also specially investigated Plato's 
relation to Isocrates, assigns to the Gorgias a much earlier 
date. The most certain conclusions as to the date of the This 
Gorgias that can be drawn from the contents have been confirms 
indicated by Natorp '"^ : the Gorgias is probably later ^ ^°°" 
than the Protagoras, Meno, and all above-mentioned ,^ 
small dialogues. This is also the result reached by Horn ^.^^ Horn, 
in his comparison of the ethical theories of these works. 
The Gorgias '"■' closes the Socratic stage of Plato's 

"* P. Natorp, ' XJeber Grundansicht und Entstehungszeit von Platos 
Gorgias ' (Archiv filr Geschichtc dcr Philosophie, vol. ii. p. 394, Berlin 

'" The Gorgias is one of the few works of Plato which has escaped the 
searching criticism of those who have doubted the authenticity of many other 
dialogues. Voluminous and instructive commentaries on the Gorgias have 
been published by Findeisen (Platonis Gorgias, Gothae 1796, 624 pp.), 
D. Coray {'Eevo(l)cl)vros ^Airofivrifj.oi/€viJ.ara koI IlXarccvos rSpyias eKSiSovros Kal 
StopdovvTos 'ABafiavTiov Koparj, iv Xlapifflois 1825), Ast {Annotationes in Pla- 
tonis Opera, torn. ii. Lipsiae 1832), Woolsey {The Gorgias of Plato, Boston 
1842), Cron (Beitrage znr Erkldrung des PlatoniscJien Gorgias, Leipzig 



moral pro- 
blems to 
His dis- 
covery of 

Eules for 


philosophy, and leads from the ethical problems which 
occupied him in the first years after the death of his 
master to the logical and metaphysical inquiries which 
filled the greatest part of his manhood. 

Looking back over the above survey of Plato's first 
steps in logic, we see that he started from ethical problems, 
agitated by his teacher, and that his first attempts to find 
a definition of particular virtues and of virtue generally 
were made with moral purposes. In order to be temperate 
it seems to be indispensable to know what temperance 
is, and where is the limit separating this virtue from in- 
temperance. Among such inquiries on particular virtues 
Plato became interested in the more general problem of a 
definition of virtue. This he began to seek, and after 
some vacillation recognised the identity of virtue and know- 
ledge. But he was still unable to attain certainty of 
knowledge ; only after years of educational practice he 
found that such certainty is possible, and not to be sought 
for in the assent of any majority, nor in tradition, nor in 
idle discussion, but in the inward power of the soul which 
sees the truth with absolute certainty. To trace the 
origin of this power, felt by him when he imparted his 
moral convictions to his pupils, he recurred to the 
hypothesis of a previous existence of the soul, and 
deduced also the soul's immortality. 

We see the influence of his activity as a teacher in the 
rules for dialectic discussion, consisting in starting from re- 
cognised premisses, in dividing and distinguishing notions, 
in following up the consequences of each hypothesis, and 
avoiding unjustifiable generalisation. By these means 
Plato reached a degree of certitude not experienced before. 
He created an ideal of infallible knowledge, far above 
traditional opinions, and he distinguished this scientific 
knowledge from common belief by his ability to show a 
reason for each assertion. The methodic connection of 

1870, G. Lodge (Gorgias, edited on the basis of the Deuschle Cron's 
edition, Boston 1891, 308 pp.), and many others. 


thought gave to his conchisions a permanence and con- 
sistency which unscientific opinion never reaches. 

The new power of philosophy, acquired by logical New 
exercises undertaken with ethical purposes, reacted first method 
on the moral problems from which Plato started. He ^^^^ ^^^ 
applied his logical method first to the great questions ^^^^^ *° 

which had been unsuccessfully discussed in his earlier j, . , ^^ 

'' . 01 virtue 

writings, and he produced a consistent theory of virtue jg^j ^-^en 
and of the aims of life in the Gorgias. But the logical to other 
progress achieved will not be limited in its effect to the subjects, 
subject for which it has been devised. We see already in 
the Meno, in the Eiithy demits, and in the Gorgias, that 
Plato begins to feel an interest in logical method in- 
dependently of its applications, and this logical interest, 
once awakened, will lead him to special logical investiga- 
tions, and to further development of methods in order to 
acquire and communicate to others an infallible know- 

An almost fanatical enthusiasm and love of absolute Eeality of 
science explains certain exaggerations : the new know- t^^ world 
ledge referred only to very few principles, but Plato is as °^ thought 
proud of it as if he had already extended it to all depart- P'^^P^^'^ 

ments of Being. He obtained a glimpse of a world ^, 

o _ . . Gorgias. 

different from the world in which he lived, and he had 
the audacity to believe more in the reality of this new 
world of his thoughts than in all other authorities. Thus 
he progressed out of the Socratic stage to his own 
philosophy, and created the theory of ideas, which has 
been so often identified with Platonism. 

We cannot agree with Zeller who sees vestiges of this But theory 
theory of ideas already in the Meno, Euthydemus, and of ideas 
Gorgias. Here we have only the germ from which the "°* ^^^ 
theory of ideas was afterwards developed. This germ is ^^P^^^^^ • 
the consciousness of infallible knowledge arrived at when . ,, 

° . . . IS the con- 

Plato wrote the Meno, becoming a special science in the gciousness 

Euthydemus, and in the Gorgias entrusted with the ofintui- 

direction of human life. This consciousness was in the tive 


infallible beginning purely personal and based on experience in 
know- teaching. Plato enjoyed it as a new sense, a feeling of 
ledge. higher life, and he did not yet undertake to explain it fully. 
The absolute certainty was reached in his own mind, and 
referred really only to a few ethical truths ; he had im- 
parted it to some of his pupils, and he generalised the 
faculty of absolute knowledge, postulating such knowledge 
for all departments of being. The complete theoretical 
explanation of the possibility of such knowledge was not 
yet given — scarcely asked for. But the consciousness of 
absolute knowledge, created in the soul of Plato, was 
transmitted from generation to generation, and since his 
time has never deserted European philosophy. 


ledge first 




When Plato had discovered in his own consciousness Certainty 
the existence of an infalHble knowledge {a priori) and ot know 
applied this knowledge to the ethical problems which 
were the chief subject of his teacher's philosophy, it 
was natural for him to seek an explanation of the nature , ^^ .^^^j 
of knowledge itself. A priority of knowledge with its f^ct, th 
accompanying certainty appeared to him first as a psycho- investi- 
logical fact, a feeling concerning certain thoughts. This gated as 
feeling from a psychological point of view might still ^ logical 
be an illusion. The logical standpoint was not yet P^"°'^'*^'^- 
reached, or at least is not known to have been reached 
by anybody before Plato. The fact of an a jjriori know- 
ledge proclaimed by Plato in the Meno was for him a 
psychological fact, the difference between the state of 
mind of one who knows and knows reasons of his know- 
ledge, and that of one who believes, and does not care 
to find out why he believes. The dialectician, whom 
Plato had described in the Euthydevius as the master 
of every knowledge, distinguished his knowledge from 
other people's opinions by the circumstance, that he 
had reasons to quote for his judgments. The doctrine 
of an absolute morality was presented in the Gorgias 
as a knowledge above and beyond all changes of opinion ; 
but Plato had not yet inquired into the ultimate founda- 
tions of the certainty which he experienced and imparted 
to his pupils. The antenatal existence mentioned in the 
Meno was rather an inference from the fact of a priori 
knowledge than the explanation of it. 


Not all 
the steps 
of the 

points of 
view ap- 
in the 

This explanation was the next task undertaken by 
Plato after giving his definitive solution of the moral 
problem in the Gorgias. We cannot expect Plato to 
record for us every step of his new investigations. We 
must ourselves supply the connection between one work 
and another, because the works themselves do not exhibit 
a continuity of evolution. The dialogues were not 
intended as a diary of investigations, but as an artistic 
embodiment of certain conclusions with an ideal indica- 
tion of a method by which they might have been reached, 
not necessarily coinciding with the actual steps through 
which the author had arrived at them. 

Such artistic reminiscences of a long inquiry were 
the Frotagoras, Meno, Eutlnjdemus, and Gorgias ; they 
were never connected by Plato into one whole, nor are 
they a progressive account of the development of the 
author's theories, but represent only occasional mani- 
festations of his original thoughts. The next movement 
in advance of these ethical dialogues is visible in the 
Cratylus and Symposium, which approach the solution 
of the logical problem of a priori knowledge from two 
different sides, which may be described as the linguistic 
and the esthetical. A third note is struck in the Phaedo, 
and it is really only in the Phaedo that the theory of 
ideas takes a definitive shape, and is based on meta- 
physical considerations. All these three dialogues are 
undoubtedly later than the ethical series, because their 
style has many more characteristics peculiar to the latest 
group (see above, pp. 168-169). 

I. The Cratylus. 

(Relative affinity to the latest group, lueasured on the 
Laws as unity, = 0-16 ; see above, p. 168.) 

Cratylus The Cratylus, which recalls the Euthyde?nus by the 

presents humour displayed in it, offers many difficulties to the 
difficulties interpreter, because it is not quite easy to distinguish 


what is meant seriously from what is a parody of con- of inter- 
temporary hnguistics. Cratyhis, who is here represented pretation. 
as debating with Socrates, might be the same about 
whom Aristotle '"'^ says that he was a follower of Hera- 
clitus and a teacher of Plato. But while Aristotle repre- 
sents Plato as faithful in an essential point to the 
doctrine of this his first teacher, we see in the present 
dialogue how he frees himself from a prejudice main- 
tained by Cratylus, according to which philology took 
the place of philosophy, and the truth about being was 
to be sought in etymology. 

It is very characteristic of the dialogue which makes Moral 
the starting point of Plato's logic, that in order to prove judgments 
that things are not necessarily as they appear, that there ^^^^^ ^^ 
is an existence independent of appearance, and a certainty 
not liable to doubt, Plato uses an ethical example, and certainty 
quotes as one of such certainties the existence of bad and 
good men (386 b). Thus the existence of things is treated 
as independent of the words we use to define them, and 
they are viewed as having their own permanence of 
substance (386 a : s)(^scv avra avrtov riva /Ss^acorrjra ttjs 
ovcrlas — 423 D : ovaia hoKcl elvai SKtiaru), Mairsp koI 
-^^pcofia . . • irpoiTov avrw tco ■^poofMari kuI ttj (Jxovt} sartv 
ovaia ris sKaTspco avTcov, Kul tols ciWocs traaiv oaa -q^iwraL 
ravTrjs tyjs 7rpo(rp7]asa)s rov sivai). Neither is Protagoras Protago- 
right in affirming that everything is as it appears to ^'^^ ^^^ 
everybody (386 c), nor Euthydemus in believing that ^"*^y<i^- 
everything is for everybody the same alwavs (386 d) , for in "^^^ *^°^^' 

,,,,„„ ,"',... damned ; 

either case no room would be left for the distinction be- .,, 

with a 

tween good and bad, and this distinction Plato since writing i-eference 
the Gorgias looked upon as incontestable. The opinion to the 
here ascribed to Euthydemus is found in the dialogue of dialogue 

''^ Aristotle in the Metaphysics (987 a 32) quotes Cratylus as Plato's 
teacher, and says that he was a follower of Heraclitus. Proclus in his 
commentary on the Cratylus of Plato (ed. J. F. Boissonade, id. 4) identifies 
with this Heraclitean Cratylus the Cratylus of Plato's dialogue. 



this name, and if we compare the passages, the Cratylus 
seems to refer to the Euthy demus : 

while ap- 

nence of 
notions a 
of know 

Cratyl. 386 d : olbk kuO' Evdv- 
brifxav ye oifxaL croi hoKel Tvacn ndvTCi 
ofioLws elvai afia Ka\ aei' ovSe yap 
av ovTcos euv in fxef xprjcrTOL, ol 5e 
TtovTjooi, ei ofioias anairi Koi ael 
ap€Ti) Te Koi KaKia eir]. 

Eutliyd. 294 E: irorepou Trdvra 
vvv pLovov eniiTTacrBov rj Koi aei ; — 
Kal del — answers Euthyd. and he 
says : 295 A : eVtSet'^w Kal ae ravra 
TCI davpaard exovra. After a 
sophistical argument he conchides 
with saying to Socrates : 296 d : 
a e I yap wpoXoyriKas eTTLUTacrdai Kal 

a pa wavra. This is then proved hy Socrates to be wrong 297 A b^' the 
exainple of the evident falsehood of a judgment such as ' good men 
are unjust.' 

What this substance or nature of things and even 
of actions (387 D) is, Plato does not yet fully explain. 
His first step is only to ascertain that it must be per- 
manent, while appearance is changing. The permanence 
of the substance of things results from the possibility of 
knowledge, which, since it has been established in the 
Meno, is no more liable to doubt, and is here accepted as 
a basis of reasoning. If things never remained the same, 
there would be nothing in them whereof Being might 
be predicated (439 e: ttms ovv av zIt] tX sksivo, o 
firjSsTTOTS oocravTws s'^^i ; • . . si Ss asl oxravrcos s%£i Kal 
TO avro san, ttms av rovro <ys /xsra/SdWoi rj kivolto fiTjSsv 
i^ca-Ta/jisvov rrjs avrov ISias ;). When a thing changes it 
becomes another, and no longer corresponds to the idea we 
first conceived of it. In such continuous changes know- 
ledge becomes impossible, because knowledge refers to 
a determinate being, and if that being becomes another, 
then our knowledge can no more refer to it, since know- 
ledge cannot know an indeterminate object (440 A : 
yvaxTLS B/] irov ovSsfXLa yoyvcoaKSt o yiyvayaKSi fjLTjSafifbs 
sxov) . Knowledge itself, if it be knowledge, must remain 
unaltered and without change, because if it changes and 
no longer corresponds to the notion of knowledge, then 
it ceases to be knowledge at all (440 a b : aXV ovSs 
yvo)(TLV slvai (f)dvai sUos, si /xsraTTLTTTSt, Trdvra ')(^p')j/j,aTa 

with ever- 






fisvov OVTS TO yvcocrOriaofMSPov av sct]). This reasoning is 
of fundamental importance for Plato's logic, and for the 
origin of logic generally. It returns many times in later 
writings ; the existence of a knowledge that is different 
from mere opinion is an axiom and the foundation of ] 
science. But knowledge cannot deal with ever-changing know- 
matter. The aim is to discover fixity in its objects, and Wlge can 
these, the notions of our mind, if grasped by real know- /^°^ ^^^^ 
ledge, cannot undergo change. If they change, then 
they were not at first obtained by knowledge but by a 
wrong opinion. 

It is inconceivable how Schaarschmidt (pp. 262-263) Material 
could believe that the objects of knowledge referred to so things are 
frequently (as to, ovto) in the Cratylus were material °°* *'^'"® 
things. Plato says clearly that the substance of things, -^^^^s- 
as being invariable, is different from material appearances, ° ^ 
and he quotes as illustrations of such substances the ^^^^^^ 
knowing subject, the known object, the beautiful, the or the 
good (440 B : si ha saTi fxsv del to y tyvMaKov, saTi Bs knowing 
to yifyvaxTKOfisvov, scttl hs to Ka\6v, saTi 8s to subject 

(lyaOoV, SCTTL hs %V S KUCTTOV TOiV OVTOiV, 01) fXOi ®^^^* 

,' -« " ■' ,^«r/^-/ r«,^v really. 

(paLVSTUL TavTa o/xoia ovTa, a vvv ijfjLsis Xsyofisv, poij ovosv '' 

ovKs (f)opa). He expressly warns his disciples that the 

beautiful is not the same as a beautiful face, since the 

beautiful face can change, while the beautiful remains 

always the same (439 D : auTo to koKov toiovtov usl so-tlx/I 

olov saTLv). If it did not remain the same, we could not^ 

even name it or think of it. j 

The negative determination of the substance as Substance 

different from particular things leaves open the inquiry tleter- 

whether this substance has an ideal or a real existence. '^I'^^d ne- 

The beautiful might be independent of our own individual ^^^^'^^ y- 

reason, and might still exist only in some personal reason, 

being a necessary form of thought, as has been admitted 

by Kant. Or the beautiful might have a separate 

existence as a power independent of any personal 


No trace 
of sub- 
in the 


to earlier 
and could 
not refer to 
or Thcae- 

Use of the 

being, the origin and cause not only of all beautiful 
particular things, but also of our personal notion of the 

If we look at all the places in the Cratylus where the 
existence of an idea is postulated, we find in none of 
them any hint as to whether Plato in writing this 
dialogue was aware of the above alternative and wiiether 
he had already made a choice between the two possible 
answers to the question in which manner the substance 
of things exists. In every passage where he uses the 
words slSos, IBsa or similar expressions (as 389 d : avro 
sKslvo sariv, 389 A : rotovrov rt o TrscpvKs) we can render 
them by ' notion,' 'form,' 'idea,' and we need not have 
recourse to the supposition that Plato had already 
imagined a world of self-existing ideas, as in his later 

He is very cautious in taking his first steps in logic, 
and he confesses that the definitive solution of these 
problems is very difficult (440 c), but he exhorts his 
readers to investigate courageously and well, and not to 
desist from that investigation (440 d). He seems to 
promise further exposition, because Socrates and Cratylus 
at the end of the dialogue mutually advise each other to 
consider the matter. This is in perfect accordance with 
the position of this dialogue as introductory to Plato's 
special logical studies. 

The necessity of a substance of things, as the true 
object of knowledge, is here alluded to as dreamt of 
many times (439 c : iroWdKcs ovsipcoTTco). Some inter- 
preters have inferred that this imphes earlier exposi- 
tions of the same problem, and have accordingly placed 
the Cratylus after other dialogues, as for instance 
Pfleiderer i" held it to be 'indubitable' that the 
Phaedrus and even Theaetetus preceded the Cratylus. 
But we must be cautious in such inferences, because 
Plato did not look upon his works as a continuous series 

'" E. Pfleiderer, Socrates rind Plato, Tiibingen 1896, p. 31S sqq. 


of handbooks, in which each presupposes all that precede. elSos and 
An allusion to frequent discussions on a particular 'Sea not 
subject may refer much more probably to Plato's technical, 
oral teaching than to his previous works. The use of 
ovala in the meaning of the true substance of a thing as 
opposed to its appearance is not found in the ethical 
dialogues preceding the Cratylus, and appears here for 
the first time.'^'* It cannot easily be taken in the later 
meaning of a transcendental idea, because the only marks 
of substance here insisted upon are its permanence, and 
its difference from appearance and opinion. Both can be 
predicated of concepts of our mind, and when Plato began to 
understand something else by an idea, he said so expressly 
in quite different terms. If anybody from the mention of the 
form of a shuttle (389 b : slhos KspKiBos) infers that Plato 
in the Cratylus admitted ideas of manufactured articles, 
then of course he would find the Platonic theory of ideas 
already in Thucydides. But in the light of an impartial 
interpretation, the theory of ideas is only prepared in the 
Cratijlns, not yet formulated.'"'' 

The power of the dialectician, assumed in the The dia- 
Eutlnjdemus, is again asserted in the Cratylus. The lectician 
dialectician, however, is here defined as ' he who knows ^^"^^^^^ the 
how to ask and to answer questions ' (390 c : 6 spwrav 
sTTLcrTu/jLsi/oy Koi airoKpivsaOai) ; this definition is not 
given here as something new, but as well known and 

'"** Peipers (Ontologia Platonica, p. (57) quotes some passages from 
earlier dialogues, whei'e according to him oixrla refers to ideas, but on con- 
sideration, in all these passages another meaning is obvious. Eutlnjph. 
11a ovaia <5(rtou = definition of holiness (.Towett : essence); Charm. 168 d 
ovffia = nature (.Jowett) or quality ; Protag. .349 b ovcrta {ovcfjiaros) koX 
irpay/xa = object and thing (Jowett : ' essence and thing ') ; Mcno 72 b 
oi/iria ^€A.iTT7jy = definition of a bee (.Jowett: nature of a bee); Gorg. 472 b 
fK^dWeiv (K T^s ouffias (.Jowett : inheritance). In none of these passages is 
oiia-ia opposed to appearance, as in the Cratylus and in many later works. 

"" That the Cratylus is introductory to the theory of ideas has been 
also recognised by Susemihl (see note 54), who observed that the words elSos 
and (Se'o have in all jDassages of the Cratylus whenever they occur the 
meaning of ' species,' ' kind,' ' form,' but not the later meaning of Platonic 
ideas (Gcnetische Entwickelung, vol. i. p. 161). 


of new 


First ele- 
ments of 
must be 
first ex- 
of things. 

Origin of 
error in 
the wrong 
use of 
language : 
it is the 
of the 
tician to 
use words 

recognised, though it had not been given in any earlier 
work of Plato. In the Euthydemus, the only earlier 
dialogue where the dialectician is mentioned, the term was 
also assumed as known, and it may have been used by 
Socrates, as it occurs in Xenophon's Memorabilia. But 
here the privilege of the dialectician to judge every kind 
of knowledge is extended also to the art of creating words. 
The maker of words has to recognise as his master the 
dialectician (390 D : po/moOstou spyovopo/xa, sTVLcrrdrrjv s^ovros 
ScaXsKTLKov avSpa), and here Plato is clearly conscious of 
his dialectical superiority over contemporary philologers, 
and, as he expressly states, over the sophists (391 c) and 
poets (391 D-393 b). 

Related to this is the demand that the first elements 
of everything must be explained unless the whole is 
to remain unexplained ; which is here applied to the 
origin of language (426 A : irspi tmv irpcoTCDv ovofidroiv 
. . fidXtard ts Kal KadapoiTara Zsl s-)(_£Lv airoZel^ai^ i) sv 
slhivau, on rd ys varspa ijSr} (pXvaprjaa). Things have 
their natural divisions, according to which we must divide 
them if we do not wish to err (387 a : Kara rijv (pvaiv rov 
TSfjLvsLv T£ Kal Ts/xvsaOai Kal u> TTscfyvKs). Things are as 
they are, according to their own nature (386 E : Ka6' aura 
Ttpos TTjv avTwv ovaiav s^ovra fjirsp 7r£cf)VK£v) and not 
according to our imaginations (386 E : ov Trpos rj/jids 
ovh£ v(f)' rjiMwv, s\K6p,£va dvo) Kal Kdrco rw 7j/jL£T£p(f) 
<f)avrdafjLart), which produce error and wrong belief as 
opposed to truth (385 B). Against those who pretended 
that error is impossible (429 d) Plato shows the origin 
of error in the incompetent use of language. Words are 
instruments (388 a : opyavov) of thought, for educational 
purposes and for logical distinctions (388 c : SiSacrKaXtKov 
Kal StaKpLTLKou rfjs ovalas) ; they imitate things (430 B : 
ovofMa fjilfjurj/jia tov TrpdypLaros) as their symbols (433 B : 
hrjXwfia avWa^ats Kal ypd/MfMacn TrpdyfxaTos, also 435 B), 
and yet are not always similar to them (432 D), because 
a good word-maker is the rarest of all artisans (389 a : 


SrjfjLtovpyMv air av LOOT aros), and if he does not work after in the 
the dialectician's directions, he may have named things proper 
not according to their nature (432 E). The competent ^^^^ 
use of right words is the dialectician's privilege (390 c) 
and those who do not possess the dialectical power are 
liable to employ words in a manner contrary to their 
intention, whence mistakes arise (431 B). Thus truth 
differs from falsehood (385 B). The worst source of error 
is self-deception, because the deceiver never abandons the 
deceived (428 d) and makes him disagree with himself 
(433 B : cf. Gorg. 482 B). 

Here Plato confirms what he said in the Gorgias Consist- 
about contradiction as the mark of error, and consistency ency a 
as the condition of truth. Truth is found in the unity condition 
and similarity of things (438 e : fiaeeiv {ra ovra) . . . °^ *'"*^- 
hi aWifKoiv, el tttj ^vyyevrj scmv, kuI avra hC avrSiv). What 
method should be used for ascertaining truth Plato de- 
clines to explain (439 b: /xsl^ov I'acos £<tt\v iyvcoKsvaL rj 
Kar ifxs kuI as), but he insists that knowledge is not to 
be gathered from words (439 B : dyaTrrjrov Ss koI tovto 
o/jboXoyrja-aaOai oti ovk s^ ovofMUTcov, aWa ttoXv /xdWov 
avra s^ aurtov koI /xaOrjrsov koX ^rjTrjTsov), for the first 
word-maker, if he named things according to their nature, 
must have had a knowledge of them not gained through 
words (438 b). 

Plato thus claims for his philosophical pursuit the philo 

authority to judge about the propriety of words (425 a), sopher's 

to change their meaning and to make new words accord- mdepend- 

ing to the requirements of his dialectic. He has largely ^^'^^ ° 

used that liberty in his later works, whereas but few new f 

"^ . . and power- 

words occur in the Socratic dialogues. The Cratylus pro- ^^^g^ 

claims the philosopher's independence of and power over language. 

language. Faithful to the a priori character of his 

knowledge, Plato despises statistics (437 D) and inferences 

from a majority of cases. He wants a sound basis and 

beginning for each theory (436 D : het irepl rrjs ap')(f)s 

iravTos Trpdy/jiaTOS iravrX dvBpl rov ttoXvv \6yov slvat Kal 


origin of 
not ac- 
cej^ted as 

is not 
Only ex- 
tremes re- 

TT]v TToWrjv aKsylrLv) and betrays his geometrical predilec- 
tions by adducing the familiar analogy of a small error 
unnoticed in the commencement of a geometrical con- 
struction (436 D : Bcaypa/jifj.dTo}v svlots rov irpoiTOv crpbiKpov 
Kol ahrjXov "^svhovs ysvofMsvou, ra Xolttcl TrdfiTToWa rjhrj 
ovra sTTo/jLsva ofjuoXoyslv dWijXois). He does not recognise 
a reference to divine origin as an explanation of anything, 
comparing it with the introduction of gods on the dramatic 
stage, when no better solution is forthcoming (425 d), and 
calling it a clever evasion of the duty of giving reasons 
and proofs (426 a). Still, the religious spirit of the Gorgias 
is not extinct, and God remains free from human con- 
tradictions (438 c) , while the future life is assumed as a 
matter of course (403 d), with the addition, that it is 
dominated by philosophy (404 a) . 

It is curious, however, to see that this increasing con- 
fidence in the power of dialectic and philosophy seems to 
fail him in the concrete problems with which he is chiefly 
concerned in the Cratijlus. The avowed purpose of the 
inquiry is to ascertain the origin of language, and the dis- 
cussion, not invariably quite serious, of many etymologies 
ends in a compromise between two conflicting theories. 
As a result of the Cratylus we must recognise the view 
that there is a certain natural phonetic expression of 
thoughts, but that this is adulterated through the word- 
maker's errors, which remain in the language by tacit 
consent of the people speaking any dialect. Both extreme 
theories of language, as the result of an agreement, or as 
a product of divine inspiration, are here repudiated. Plato 
in this dialogue employs a method very familiar to the 
readers of his later writings, consisting in beginning a dis- 
cussion with some secondary topic, and passing from this 
to a deeper consideration of some problem not thought of 
at the outset. Here the question of the origin of language 
is a pretext leading to the metaphysical distinction 
between substance and appearance, and identifying the 
substance of a tiling with the object of true knowledge. 


This is a logical investigation, widely different from the 
simpler ethical inquiries which pervade the Socratic 

The importance of the Cratylus as a first chapter in Logical 
Platonic logic has not been always recognised. Plato has consist- 
even been supposed to imply that consistency is no test of ®°°7 ^^' 
truth (Jowett, i. 263). This inference is based on the \_ 

. . by a geo- 

passage in which Plato explains by a geometrical analogy n^etrical 

the possibility of concealing an initial error of reasoning analogy. 

beneath a subsequent 'enforced' consistency (436 d: to 

irpSiiov <T<^aXels 6 rids/xsvos raWa r/Br] irpos tovt s^lu^sto 

Koi ^v/x(p(ov£lv rivdyKa^sv). Such an artificial and only Only arti- 

apparent consistency was clearly distinguished by Plato ficiai and 

from true self-consistency, which had been proclaimed wrong 

alreadv in the Gorqias (482 B : ov aot otxoXoyiiasi KaWcKkrjs, 

" , r 1 T •■ 1 encyisnot 

CO KaXXt/cXets) as a test of truth, and is agam used as such ^ ^^^^ ^^ 

a test in the Cratylus (433 B : el ravra afi(f>6Tepa ipsls, truth. 
ov'^ olos r' s'jsc aufi(f)(ov£tv aavru>). The familiar example 
of a wrong consistency was adduced only in order to 
show the decisive importance of the first principles in 
every science (436 D). The ideal consistency required by ideal con- 
philosophy is not expected by Plato to be found in a sistency 
language (435 c), though he affirmed that language to be not found 
the most beautiful in which the greatest consistency ^°l*°- 
reigned (435 D), To build such an ideal language by ^"*^®" 
creating a philosophical terminology was a task which 
Plato subsequently undertook in part, but which he 
almost ridiculed when he wrote the Cratylus (433 E ; cf. 
Polit. 261 E : fjLT) airovBd^scv ettI toIs ovofiaat). 

The Cratylus, a literary masterpiece comparable in its The 
originality to the Parmenides, was held by the successors Cratylus 
of Plato in an esteem attested by the commentary of ^^ ^®^° 
Proklos,"*" and has up to the present day exercised the , 

by many 
perspicacity of numerous commentators, as can be seen comjjjgQ. 

"*° Ex Prodi scholiis i?i Cratylum Platonis cxccrpta e. codd. edit. J. F. 
Boissonade, Lipsiae 1820. 


and its 

quoted to 
a si'eat 
by the 
state of 

from the writings of Dittrich,'*' Benfey/^''^ Hayduck,"^^ 
Eosenstock,^^^ Heath,^-'' P. Meyer,'^'^ and Bonitz "^^ on 
this dialogue. What Schaarschmidt (p. 245 sqq.) said 
against the authenticity of the Cratylus has been suffi- 
ciently refuted by Alberti,'*** Lehrs,''^^ Luckow,'^" Drey- 
korn,'"' and H. Schmidt,'-''^ so that even Huit (ii. p. 187), 
who popularised in France Schaarschmidt 's doubts as to 
many other dialogues, thought it advisable to dissent in 
this respect from his master, and to defend the authenticity 
of the Cratylus. 

One of the grounds alleged by Schaarschmidt, the 
apparent absurdity of the etymologies proposed, has been 
explained by Schaublin,'^'^ who compared these etymo- 
logies with other evidence about the knowledge of 
etymology accessible to Plato, and found that among 120 
etymologies attempted by Plato over sixty were perfectly 
justified according to the knowledge of his times, and 
twenty stand even the test of our present knowledge of 
Greek. Schaublin has also carefully compared the 

'-'" E. M. Dittvich, De Cratijlo Platonis, Berolini 1841. 

"*- T. Benfey, Uebn- die Aufgabc dcs platonischen Dialogs Cratylus, 
Gottingen 1866. 

IS3 Yf Hayduck, Dc Cratyli Platonici fine ct consilio, Vratislaviae 1868. 

'*" P. E. Rosenstcck, Platos Cratylus ^md die Sprachphilosophie der 
Neuzeit, Strassbuig 1893. 

"*» D. Heath, ' On Plato's Cratylus,' in the Joiirn. of Philol. for 1888, 
vol. xvii. p. 192. 

'*•' P. Meyer, Quacsfioiies Platonicae, Leipzig 1889, pp. 12-25. 

'" Bonitz, ' Ueber Platos Cratylus,' Monatsber. Berliner Akadcm. 1869, 
p. 703. 

''^ Alberti, ' 1st der dem Plato zugeschriebene Dialog Cratylus acht? ' in 
Rheinisches Museum, vol. xxi. p. 180 sqq., and vol. xxii. p. 477 sqq. 

"*" Lehrs in Rheinisches Museum, vol. xxii. p. 436, 1867. 

'•'" R. Luckow, De Platonis Cratylo, Treptow 1868. 

'•" Dreykorn, Der Eratyhis ein Dialog Platos, Zweibriicken 1869. 

'"- H. Schmidt, Platos Kratylus im Zusammenhange dargcstcllt, Halle 
1869, an excellent commentary. 

'"^ F. Schaublin, Ueber den platonischen Dialog Krafylos, Basel 1891. 
The same subject had been treated very differently by C. Lenormant 
(Commcntairc sur le Cratyle de Platon, 316 pp., Ath^nes 1861), in his 
voluminous edition and commentary. 


etymologies given in the Cratijlus with other etymologies in Plato's 
occasionally indicated by Plato, and he demonstrates their times 
similarity and good faith against Steinthal '"^ who be- 
lieved all the etymologies given in the Cratylus to be 

Competent writers disagree widely as to the date of The date 
the Cratylus. Even C. Eitter, notwithstanding his o^ ^^^ 
stylistic observations, believed it possible for the <^''«'2/^«^ 
Cratiilus to have been written before the death of ,.^. 

•^ dinerently 

Socrates, as has been thought also by the poet Gray,'^-^ ^^^^^_ 

by Socher, Stallbaum, and others. This opinion is mined. 

opposed by those who believe the Cratylus to be later Mention 

than the Pliaedo and Phaedrus, as for example by Ast, ofAegina 

and in recent times by Peipers and Bergk. The style ^^^^ ^ 

would (see above, p. 168) place this dialogue clearly 

» 1 / t » •/ dication. 

between the Gorgias and Phaedo, and the logical contents 
also point to the same result, the Cratylus being intro- 
ductory to the logical theories of the Phaedo, while pre- 
supposing the conclusion of ethical inquiries summed up 
in the Gorgias. Some other hints confirm the position 
here given to the Cratylus as the first logical work sub- 
sequent to the complete series of ethical dialogues. 
Diimmler '^'^ observes that the allusion (433 a) to the early 
closing of the gates in Aegina presupposes a time of 
peace in which Athenians and more especially Plato's 
students could make excursions to the neighbouring town. 
But such a time of peaceable intercourse between Athens 
and Aegina was not possible, so Diimmler thinks, before 
the peace of Antalcidas, or 387 B.C. The Cratylus must 
then have been written later, after Plato's return from his 

^^* Steinthal, Geschichte dcr Sprachwissemchaft bei den Griechen and 
Romern, Berlin 1862. 

'" Thomas Gray, Notes on Plato, in vol. iv. pp. 67-338 of the Works, 
edited by E. Gosse, London 1884 (first published 1814), p. 164, calls the 
Cratylus ' the least considerable ' of the works of Plato. 

""* Diimmler, Chronologische Beitragc zu einigen platonischen Dialogen 
nus den Reden dcs Isokmtcs, Basel 1890, p. 48 ; Christ, Platonische Studien, 
p. 8, made it probable that Plato had money transactions in Aegina. 


spoken of 
as equal, 
as in later 
seems to 
that the 
perhaps at 
the begin- 
ning of his 

first voyage to Sicily, and also after his captivity in 
Aegina, — if the story of this captivity is true. 

Another confirmation of this view is given by the im- 
partiality with which Plato treats foreign nations in the 
Cratylus as equal to the Greeks (383 a : 6p66T7]ra ovo- 
fiarcov Kal ' RWrjai Kal Idap^cipoiS rrjv avrrjv airacrLV .... 
390 A : rov vofxoOsTTjv rov rs ivddSs Kal rov sv rols 
^ap/Sdpois .... 425 E : slat Sh i)fio)v dp')(^aL6r£poL 
/3dp,8apoL, see also 385 e, 390 c, 409 e). This concep- 
tion remains unchanged in many later works, as the 
Symposium, Phaeclo, Bepublic, Theaetetus, Politicus, 
Timaeus, while it is opposed to the narrow Greek and even 
Athenian patriotism, shown in the Protagoras, in which 
Athens is called the seat of wisdom {Prot. 337 d : irpv- 
ravslov rrjs ao(j)ias) by the non-Athenian Hippias. In the 
Gorgias Athens is praised as the place in Hellas where the 
greatest freedom of speech is to be found (461 E : 'A^>;Va^e 
a(f)LKo/jisvos, ov rfjs 'EWaSo? TrXsiari] iarlv i^ovcTLa rov 
XsysLv), without any mention of foreign countries, such as 
occurs repeatedly in the Cratylus, whenever the whole of 
Greece or the Greeks are named. This frequent mention 
of foreign nations in the Cratylus seems to belong to a 
time when the horizon of Plato's experience had been 
considerably enlarged by his travels abroad, while the 
subject of the origin of Greek language, generalised into 
the inquiry about the origin of human speech and the 
relation of thought to it, would seem to have been 
specially debated in Plato's school. The moral problems 
discussed in the preceding dialogues were inherited from 
Socrates, though their solution m the Gorgias is already 
Platonic : the problem of language as a source of know- 
ledge has been attributed to Antisthenes,'-*' and the 
peculiar proof that philosophic truth is independent of 

'"' The very uncertain allusions of the Cratylus to this philosopher are 
treated by Diimmler, Akademika, pp. 148-161 ; K. Barlen, Antisthenes unci 
Plato, Progr. Neuwied 1881 ; K. Urban, Ucher die Erwahnungen der 
Philosophie des Antisthenes in den platonischcn Schriften, Konigsberg 1882 


language, contained in the Cratylns, is a worthy inaugu- 
ration of Plato's own philosophical career, in which he 
was distinguished from all predecessors by his power over 
language as an external instrument for conveying thought. 
Plato, the great word- maker, could not better begin his 
new philosophy than by this inquiry into the relation 
between thought and speech. The counterpart of this, 
the inauguration of Plato's logic, is to be found in the 
Symposium, where the philosopher was led to a new 
vision of truth as consisting in eternal and self-existent, 
independent ideas, those Platonic ' ideas ' which have 
been accepted by so many readers as the quintessence 
of Platonism. 

II. The Symposium. 

(Relative affinity to the latest group, measm-ed on the Laws 
as unity, = 0"14 ; see above, p. 169.) 

Nearly every other work of Plato admitted of discus- chief sub- 
sion as to the author's purpose and the chief contents, ject of the 
The Symposium, however, is distinguished by a clear Sympo- 
announcement of its aim, and deals apparently only with ^^'"" ^°'^®' 
one subject, love, teaching the first lesson of that new 
feeling discovered by Plato and in its first stage known j^^^ 
even to-day as Platonic by some people who know nothing leading 
else of Plato. It would appear that in this lesson of love to know- 
no room could be left for logic. But Plato, who is ledge. 
at once a great poet and a great logician, initiates us 
into the mystery of his first logical discovery through 
this triumphant poem of victorious love. It is love. For the 
he says, that leads to the highest knowledge of truth, first time 
But not the love of a single person, however pure, nor Socrates 
the love of a single city, be it the greatest on earth, ^^ ^"^' 

^11 i. • , • rr,, • P 1 11 planted by 

nor the love oi a smgle science. There is tar above all ^ .^ 
these feelings a new and powerful love, difficult to under- teacher 
stand even for Socrates, who has heretofore been repre- but not a 
sented as the wisest of men. The explanation of this historical 
feeling, expressed by nobody before Plato, he puts person. 

but a new 
kind of 


to Thucy- 
dicles : 
by Plato 
in order 
to give 
to his own 


poetically in the mouth of a woman. This woman, 
Diotima of Mantinea, is invented by Plato, though he 
gives her an historic appearance bj'' the assertion that 
through her prayers she preserved the Athenians from the 
plague. If she had been, as Plato makes his readers 
believe, a well-known and inspired priestess, Thucydides 
could not have failed to mention her. But no Greek 
writer '^^ before Plato knows anything about a Diotima of 
Mantinea, and all later mentions of her are based on the 

We may therefore assume that the new theory, here 
ascribed to Diotima, is Plato's own invention. For the 
first time in all Plato's dialogues, Socrates ceases to be 
the sole teacher of wisdom, and Plato unmistakably 
implies that his new wisdom may be above the under- 
standing even of his teacher (210 a : ravra fxsv ovv ra 
spcoTifca taws, w ^coKparss, kuv crv fivTjdsirjs' ra 8s rsXsa Kal 


ouK otS' si olos T av s'lrjs .... irstpoi sir s crdac, av 
olos Ts fjs). He clearly hesitates to expose the treasure 
found in solitary meditation to the unprepared adherents 
of vulgar love. He apologises repeatedly for the admitted 
obscurity of his teaching (201 d : Trscpuao/xac BisXOsiv . . . , 
OTTcos av 8vv(o/jiai. 204 D : TrsLpdcrofiat BcSci^ai . . . 
(Ta<ps(Trspov spoj (also 206 C) . . . 206 B : fiavrslas hslrac 
6 ri TTOTs \s'^/sts . . . 207 c : fir] Oav/xa^s (also 208 b) 
210 A : ipcb pisv ovv Kal irpoOvixlas ovBsv dirdXsi-^w . . . 
210 E : TTSipw 8s [xoL Tov vovv irpoasj^siv ws olov TS 
fxaXiara). It is evident that the new-found knowledge is 
looked upon as far more important than anything which 
has been said in earlier dialogues. Like a precious gem, 
it is set in the poetical gold of the Symposium — the most 
consummate work of art which even Plato's genius has 

If we ask wherein consists the new logical knowledge 

'"" The unhistorical character of Diotima was made evident by Her- 
mann, De Socratis magistris et disciplina juvcnili, Marburg 18.37, p. 12 sg^. 


immortalised by the Symposium, we see it condensed in a of ideas 

few pages of the highest eloquence, which may be read as based on 

a record of personal experience, and as the result of the *^® p^'®" 

long previous development of Greek art. Leveque '^^ in ^^ ^^^ 

France and Cohen ^''° in Germany have noticed the near „ , 

. . "^ . Greek art. 

relation between the origin of Plato's theory of ideas and 
this preceding growth of Greek art. What Plato says 
about his discovery amounts to this : if somebody grows 
accustomed to generalisations and to the progress from 
particulars to general notions, then, at a certain moment The idea as 
of his life, he will become suddenly (210 e : e^aL<^vT)s) the cause 
aware of the existence of the general idea as something o^ P^'^'^i- 
which does not depend upon particulars, but is the true ^" ^^^" 
origin of all particular qualities. This sudden vision, 
here pictured with the natural delight of a first discovery, 
is the aim of all intellectual development (211 A : tovto 
sKUi'o ov hh svsKa Kal ol sfXTrpoadsv iruvrss ttovoc t)(Tav), 
a marvellous beauty (210 E : dav/xaa-Tov rr)v <f)vcnv 
KaXoi^) leading to every kind of virtue and to the 
immortalitj^ of man (212 a : tskovti dpsTrjv 0X7)67) koX 
Opeyfra/xsi'M vTrdp^si dsocpiXsL <ysvsa6aL, Kal etirsp ro) dWa) 
ui'OpcoTrcov, ddavdrw Kal sksIvo)). 

What kind of existence the idea of the beautiful Existence 
possesses is difficult to express in human language, o^ ^^^^^ 
according to Plato's own confession. But this existence di^^^^it *» 
was clearlv meant by Plato, when he wrote the Sij77i- l^ . . ' 

"^ , "^ It IS inde- 

2x>sium, to be a solution of the problem of substance pendent of 

})roposed in the Cratylus. In that dialogue he limited opinions 
his indications as to the substance of things to a few and ap- 

"'" Carolus Leveque, Qicicl Phidiae Plato debtcerit, Parisiis 1852, p. 60 : 
' Quaecumcjue Plato de pulchritudine scripsit . . . haec in Phidiae deorum 
\ ultu expressa et ut ita dicam sculpta inveuerit, ita tamen ut ad intelli- 
gendumpenitus Phidiae ingenium ingenio Platonis opus fuerit. Ab illo qua 
via ad summae pulchritudinis ideam perveniatur didicit.' 

-"" Hermann Cohen, ' Die platonische Ideenlehre, psychologisch ent- 
wickelt,' in vol. iv. pp. 403-464 of Zeitschrift fiir yblkerpsycholocjie und 
Sprachivisscnschaft, Berlin 1866, p. 413 : ' Platos That wie sein Geist 
wachst hervor aus dem gemeinsamen Samen der hellenischen Weltarbeit.' 


The idea 
is more 
than a 
work of 

of ideas is 
by exer- 
cise in 

determinations, such as permanence and objectivity. 
Now he has ' suddenly ' perceived a beauty not only 
eternal (211 a : dsl ov koX ovts 'yi'yvo^svov ovrs arrroWv- 
/jLsvov, outs av^avofxevov ovrs <p62vov) and objective, but 
also absolute, that is, independent of time and space, and 
of concrete appearances as v^ell as individual opinions 
{ov Tj] fjbsv Ka\ov, rfj S' ala'^pov, ovSs tots /jlsv, tots Ss ov, 
ouBs irpos /jlsv to koXov, Trpos Bs to ala^pov, ovS^ sv6a ixsv 
KoXov, svda Bs ala'x^pov). It is natural that Plato, being 
himself an artist and living in an age when art had 
reached an ideal perfection, should formulate this first 
assertion of a self-existent absolute idea with reference 
to the idea of beauty. He saw the distance between all 
human models and such a creation of art as the Olympian 
Zeus of Phidias. He imagined that even the most 
perfect work of art is only a particular instance of the 
ideal beauty, which he did not claim to perceive with 
the mortal eye, but with the divine insight of an en- 
thusiastic soul. He recommends his readers to acquire 
this superior faculty of intellectual intuition by exercise 
in generalisation. He says clearly that the idea is not 
only immaterial (211 A : ouS' av (bavTaadi'^asTai avTco to 
KoKov olov TTpoacoTTov Ti ovBs -^scpss ouBe aWo ovBsv cov 
(To)/jLa fiSTs-^sc) but not even intellectual (211 A : ovBs tis 
Xoyos, ovBs Tcs sTricrTrjixrj, ovBs irou ov sv ^Tspw tlvl, olov sv 
^(pw i) sv <yf] rj sv ovpavw i) sv tw dWo)), nor inherent in 
the soul as a notion, nor in anything else. Here we have 
an evident indication that Cohen's ^°' doubts as to the 
separate existence of Platonic ideas, however justified 
with reference to other works, are inadmissible so far as 
concerns the Symposium, and the idea of Beauty, the 
first discovered by Plato and the only idea spoken of in 

-"' H. Cohen, Platons Idecnlehrc unci die Mathematik, Marburg 1879, 
p. 9 : ' Diese Auffassung des x'^P"''M<^^ ist einmal des Aristoteles eigenste 
verantwortliche That. Ob vvir sie hatten, ob Jemand aus den Platonischen 
Dialogen sie herausgelesen haben wiirde, wenn Aristoteles sie nicht als die 
legitime gelehrt und — unerschrocken verhohnt hatte, das darf wenigstens 
bezweifelt werden.' 


the Symposium. This idea is certainly not immanent, 
but separated from concrete things. The relation of 
single beautiful things to the idea of beauty is expressed 
here by the word fisTsx^Lv, not used in any earlier dia- 
logue to express the relation of a particular thing ^^^ to 
a general notion. It means that all beautiful things owe .^^^ ^^ 
their beauty to the idea of Beauty. This idea is not here beauty is 
called slhos or Ihia, but is named ' the beautiful ' (211 B • the source 
TO KoXov). It is self-existent, needs nothing else to enable of all 
it to exist eternally (211 B : avro kuO' avro jmsO^ avrov beautiful 
uovoslSss del 6v), and Plato has invented the term jjlovo- ^ ^°^^' 

• • • 6XlstS 

siUs, first used in the Symposium, to mark its simplicity. 
According to modern terminology Platonic Beauty is ^^^^^ g^^ 
then a simple substance, the original cause of all in- ject to no 
dividual beauty, suffering no alteration through its changes in 
action on the particular things, to which it imparts its itssim- 
own quality, though in a lesser degree. phcity. 

Plato admits this ideal Beauty to be an object of ^"^^^^ ^^ 
science and knowledge (211 c : fiu6r)/j.a), but he leaves ° ^^V^^ 
it uncertain whether he pretends to know it as it really 
is, or only as it appears to him. When, however, he rently 

202 rpjjjg tgj.Qj jn Synip. 211 B i.= paraphrased rather than translated by 
Jowett in the words : ' Beauty absolute . . . which . . . is imparted to 
the ever growing and perishing beauties of all other things.' /uerfx*'" 
meaning the relation of things to ideas is used for the first time in the 
Sympoaiinn, while in earlier works it had the current meaning with which 
it is found in other authors, translated (Jowett) by ' share in ' {Prot. 322 d, 
823 A, virtue and other arts), 'take part in ' (conversation, Eutlnjd. 271 b, 
danger, 279 e), ' are intermediate between ' (philosophy and politics, Euthyd. 
306 a b), ' is proficient ' (in an art, Gorg. 448 c), ' partake ' (of good and evil, 
Gorg. 467 e). The technical meaning of utrex^^^ as designating the relation 
of things to ideas is limited almost entirely to the Symposium and Pltacdo 
(100 c, 101 c, cf. Rep. V. 476 r>), while in the Parinenides (where the abstract 
noun fxedf^is also occurs) it is mentioned and criticised. In other dialogues 
/xerexeif is used in the ordinary meaning (as for instance Bep. 432 b, 455 d, 
465 E, 520 b, &c, ; Phaedr. 247 b, 249 e, 272 i. ; Phil. 11 c, 54 b, 56 c ; Tim. 
27 c, 53 c, 58 e ; Legg. 721 d, 755 a, 963 e, Ac). The peculiar use of /j-^rex^^^ 
in the Sophist (as 251 e) to mark the relation between two general notions is 
quite different from the meaning of a participation of things in ideas. An 
alternative term for ixtrixfiv is /ueraAo^ySoi'tij'. Cf. Jowett and Campbell, 
Rep. vol. ii. p. 309. 


•with our 


based on 
grounds or 
reason, in 
the Sym- 
like in the 

speaks of exercise, as enabling us to improve our sight 
of absolute Beauty (211 B : orav . . . siraviMv sksIvo to 
KoXov ap'^rjrai Kadopdv, cr-^sBov civ tl aTrrocro rod rsXovs), 
we must infer that he allowed the possibility of an 
immediate intuition of absolute Beauty as it is, without 
subjective error. He did not yet see the peculiar diffi- 
culties of such a position. 

Though Plato in the Symposium thus presents a new 
object of knowledge, he seems not to have progressed as 
to the definition of knowledge itself beyond the dis- 
tinction given in the Meno, according to which knowledge 
differs from right opinion by the reasons which we are' 
bound to give when we know something. Here he recalls 
this distinction : 


and Philo- 

Meno 98 A : do^ai dXrjde'is . . . 
ov TToXXoO (i^iai elcriv, ecos civ m 
avras 8'](T]] alrias Xoyicrfxai. fTreiBav 
Se 8(6(i)(riv, TTpmrov fxev emrrrrifiai 
ytyvovTaifeneiTa ixoi/ifioi- . . . . koI 
8ia Tavra S17 TiiJ.ia)Tfpov fTrta-Trjfir] 
opBrjs 86^r}s icTTLV, Ka\ 8ia(f)epei 

Symposium 202 a : t6 6p6a 

bo^a^dv avev rov e'x^"' ^oyov 8ovvai, 
ovT€ i-nicTTaa'Ba'i eariv • aXoyov yap 
Trpayp-a tt5>s av e'lr] enKTTrjpr] ; ovre 
ajxadia ' to yap tov oPTOi Tvy\d- 
vov TTUiS av €iT] apaftia ; ecrriv 8e 8r] 
nov roiovTov fj 6p6t) 86^a, pera^v 
<f)povr](rea>s Ka\ apaOia^. 

If right opinion without reasons is not knowledge, 
yet knowledge might still be for a modern logician 
something else than right opinion with reasons for it, 
but if Plato had changed his view of the nature of know- 
ledge expressed in the Meno, he could not conceal it here, 
because every unprejudiced reader infers that knowledge, 
not being right opinion without reasons, is right opinion 
based on reasons, as had been stated expressly in the 
Meno, and denied only much later in the Theaetetus. 

A fresh point is gained in the distinction between 
wisdom and philosophy, which is repeated later in the 
Phaedrus, and here founded on the etymology of the 
name ' philosopher,' as one who desires wisdom and 
therefore does not yet possess it. It is noteworthy that 
even in the etymologies of the CratyJus Plato did not 
allude to this new meaning of ' philosophy,' which is 


first explained in the Sijniposium (203 E : dsoiv ovSels Sympo- 
(f)i\o(TO(f)sl ov8' sTTidufjisl ao<pos ysvsadat • sart yap " ovS' si smw^i and 
Tis dWos ao(f)6s, ou (f)c\oao(f)si) . This exaltation of a P^^edrus. 
wisdom above philosophy, which in the Euthydemus and 
Gorgias was still the highest science, corresponds to 
the new power of intuition of Beauty, w^hich is placed 
above all other knowledge. Plato became conscious of 
the limitations of that purely ethical knowledge of which 
he was so proud in the Gorgias. He felt an artistic long- 
ing for a perfection beyond pure logical investigation and 
reasoned knowledge, even beyond knowledge based on 
full consciousness of all reasons. He was thus led to this 
almost unthinkable conception of absolute Beauty. 

Another consequence of the new idealism is the change Different 
of position as to personal immortality. It is not clearly view of 
denied, at least for the philosopher (212 a), but the i"^™"';- 
rehffious faith as laid down in the Gorgias has been f" ^ ^/" 

® ... ,. , . , Gorgias 

converted mto a pantheistic view according to which ^^^^ ^ 

immortality consists in the eternal reproduction of the posmm. 

same ideal form (208 a : tovtm tco rpoirco irav to dvrjrov 

crco^STai, ou ru) TravTcnraacv to avTOv usl sivac oxjirsp to 

dsiov, aXXa tm to uttlov kol Trakaiovfisvov STspov vsov 

syKaTaXeiTTSLv olov avTo rjv, cf. Legg. 721 C). 

This renovation of particulars is applied even to Peculiar 

knowledge (208 A : iroXv Be aToirooTspov stc, otl kuI al stti- ^i^w of in- 

(JTi-jixai fJLT] OTL ai fjLSV ytyvovTat, ai oe airoWvvTai 7]fiLV, Kat 

,^/ f > / , .^.v ^ \ , , '->> V exercise 

ovosTTOTS 01 avTOi scTusv ovos KttTu Tas sTTia-Triaas, aKXa 

V / t / „ , - , V / T-, • compared 

Kal fMia SKaaTT} twv sirLaTrjfiwv TavTov Traa^et). Exercise ^^.-^^^ reno- 

keeps knowledge apparently the same, yet constantly vation of 

renewed, and creates new knowledge which seems to matter. 

be "the same as that w^hich we had before (208 A : /xsXstt] 

ttoKlv Kaivrjv s/jbTTOcovaa uvtI ttjs cnriovarjs aw^si, tyjv 

sTTLCTTij/jL'qv, oiaTs TTjv avTTjv SoKsiv slvai) . This surprises 

Plato himself more than the exchange of elements in the 

body, and it seems to contradict the identity of knowledge 

admitted in the Gorgias. But the contradiction is only 

apparent, as the identity referred to the objective know- 


naerits of 
the Sym- 

Date of 
the Stjvi- 
385 B.C., 

ledge, and the successive substitutions are attributed to 
the individual. It was a consequence of the growing 
admiration of Plato for knowledge, that at this stage 
the subject disappeared as compared with the object, 
which became the only true reality. Thus was founded 
the system of idealism, known as the Platonic theory 
of ideas. In the Symposium it appears as a first attempt 
and is limited to the idea of Beauty. 

This logical importance of the Symposium has been 
little noticed up to the present time, being overshadowed 
by its literary perfection. Such poets as Kacine -"^ and 
Shelley ^"'^ have attempted to render it in modern lan- 
guage, and many editors and commentators have spent 
their leisure on the text.'^""' 

There is an almost general agreement as to the date 
of the Symposium, the mention of the recent partition 
of Mantinea, which occurred 385 B.C., being admitted as 
a sufficient indication that the dialogue cannot have 
been written much later.^'^''' This conclusion was suffi- 

-"' Lc Banquet de Platon, trad, par J. Kacine, M'"'= cle Eochechouart et 
Victor Cousin, Paiis 1868; also in CEuvres de J. Racine, ed. L. Aim6 
Martin, Paris 1844, vol. v. pp. 95-186. Eacine's translation extends only up 
to the speech of Eryximachus. 

•'"' Percy Bysshe Shelley, The Banquet of Plato, London 1887 (first ed. 
1840). Shelley held the Symposium to be ' the most beautiful and perfect ' 
among the works of Plato. 

'^"^ Besides modern editions of F. A. Wolf (Lipsiae 1782, also 1828), Ast 
(Landshut 180'J), P. A. Eeynders (Groningae 1825), L. J. Kiickert (Lipsiae 
1829), A. Hommel (Lipsiae 1834), de Sinner (Paris 1834), Jahn (Bonn 
1864, re-edited by Usener, Bonn 1875), C. Badham (London 1866), G. F. 
Eettig (Halle 1875-76), it is worth noticing that the Symposium (ed. 
Salamanca 1553) was the first Greek publication of the famous Salamanca 
University Press. An extensive commentary on the Symposium was 
written already by the second French translator Loys Le Roy {Lc Sympose 
de Platon, Paris 1559), who omitted the discourse of Aleibiades as too 
indecent for his French readers of the sixteenth century ! The first trans- 
lation v/as Lc Banquet de Platon, trad, par M. Herat, Paris 155(3, a beauti- 
ful specimen of typography. 

206 However, Plato sometimes refers with a vfwari to events over twenty 
years old, as for instance in the Gorg. 503 c the death of Pericles is called recent 
(vfotTTi), while from Gorgf. 473 e it results, that the conversation between 
Gorgias and Socrates is assumed to have taken place 405 b.c. or twenty-four 


ciently established in the last century by F. A. Wolf and unani- 
has been successfully defended -"^ against some attempts mously 
at another interpretation.-"^ The mention of this event ^■cceptecl 
comes out so naturally that it cannot be regarded as a later ^^^^'^^'^^ 
interpolation added by the author or by his copyists. , 
But it would still leave it open whether the Symposium anachron- 
was written in the same year or some years later, because ism. 
for any contemporary reader an historical fact which 
occurred four or five years ago is still quite recent. Other 
considerations, however, make even the year 385 B.C. 
seem a late date for the Symposium, so that there is no 
probability in favour of a later time. The chief reason Great 
which makes it improbable that Plato could have written number 
the Symposium much after 385 B.C. is the great number °^ works 
of works which, as our further inquiry will show, are ^^^^"^ *''^'^" 
later than the Si/mposium, and which also must be ^ ^"^ 
earlier than the change characterismg the latest stage of gujaii 
Plato's authorship. On the other hand, the number of number 
works which precede the Symposium is very small for of larger 
the space of fifteen years since the death of Socrates, works pre- 
Admitting the Euthydemiis to have been written about ceding it. 
390 B.C., as has been made very probable by Spengel, 
Teichmiiller, Sudhaus, and Diimmler, we have for the 
five following years only the Gorgias and the Cratylus, 
which is not much for a gifted author about the age 
of forty and at the height of his literary power. This 

years after the death of Pericles. But in referring to a time so far back 
Plato is careless of the exact dates. 

-"' Besides Wolf in his edition of the Symposium (1782), also J. Spiller 
(De temporibus Convivii Platonici, Glivitti 1841), Uebervveg (Untersuch. 
p. 219), Teichmiiller (ii. p. 2C2), L. v. Sybel {Platans Syviposion, Marburg 
1888), Kassai (Melctemata Platonica, p. 859, Budapest 1886), have shown 
that the Symposium must have been liVTitten about 385 u.c. 

'-'"* A. Hommel, in his edition of this dialogue, tried to get rid of the 
anachronism by an emendation of the text. Diimmler believes that the 
reference to the partition of Mantinea might have been made also about 371, 
when the reunion of the separated parts of Mantinea was intended. Ke- 
cently U. v. Wilamowitz-Moellendorff [Hermes, vol. xxxi. p. 102) suggested 
the dissolution of the Arcadic Union in 418 b.c. as the event alluded to by 



The Sym- 
])osium as 
an acade- 
mical pro- 





tion of 
Beauty or 
the idea 
of Beauty 

difficulty is avoided by those who place before the Sym- 
posium such dialogues as the Phaedo and Phaedrus,-^^^ 
not to speak of the dialectical works. But our subsequent 
exposition will prove beyond all doubt that these works 
must have been written after the Symposium. Besides, 
the Symposium, according to the very plausible reason- 
ing of Sybel and also of Teichmiiller, bears the character 
of having been written under the fresh impression of the 
successful beginning of Plato's Academy, which was 
probably founded in 387 B.C. 

Various other indications confirm the intermediate 
position of the Symposium between the Cratylus and 
Phaedo, after the Gorgias and the other Socratic dialogues. 
In the Cratylus, Plato did not advance beyond a general 
distinction between substance and appearance, without any 
close determination of substance. In the Symposium this 
determination is given in regard to the substance of Beauty 
in a manner which makes it very probable that Plato is for 
the first time announcing his discovery of absolute being. In 
all earlier dialogues Socratic notions were ' present ' in the 
things, or immanent {Charm. 159 A : Trdpsarc acocfipoavvr), 
Lys. 217 D : Xsvkottjs^ 217 e : irapovcria ajaOou, Euthyd. 
801 A : KoXXos, Gorg. 497 e, 498 d: a'ya66)v irapovcLa) ; in 
the Symposium the higher doctrine of a participation of 
particulars in the idea is taught. The doctrine of pre- 
existence, which had been formulated in the Meno, is 

""'■> If C. Huit {Etudes surle Banquet de Platon,Va,ris 1889) believes that 
all competent writers agree in placing the P/iacfZrus before the Symposium, 
except Bitter and Teichmiiller, he betrays his ignorance of many authors, as 
Suckow, Munk, Thompson, Campbell, Blass, Dittenberger, Schanz, Droste, 
Kugler, Gomperz, Lina, Tiemann, who all agree in placing the Pliacdrus 
after the Symposium. It is true that against these fourteen authors, who 
up to the time of Huit's strange assertion held the Symposium to be 
earlier than the Phaedrus, many others, as for instance, Schleiermacher, 
Stallbaum, Steinhart, Susemihl, Ueberweg, Liebhold, Teuffel, Peipers, 
Windelband, Christ, Zeller, were of the contrary opinion. But majorities 
cannot decide such questions, and since 1889 the proportion is reversed, so 
that the majority of new investigators take the later date of the Pliacdrus 
for granted. 


here only alluded to casually in the discourse of Aristo- 
phanes. ^^° 

The rule laid down in the Protagoras (347 c) to Eefer- 
exclude flute girls and similar artists from philosophical ences to 
ba.nquets is repeated in the Symposium (176 e), with the ^°"^® 
recommendation to find the best entertainment in con- 
versation (Prot. 347 C : hua to yu,?) Svvaa-dac aWi]\ois 
Bt' savTOiv crvvstvat . . . Bia tyjs savrcov (f)Q)vr}s Koi twv 
\6yoyv TMV kavTOiv viro airaLhsvcrias, Tifxias iroLOvat ras 
avXr^rpihas : cf. Symp. 176 E : slarjyovfjbaL ttjv fisv dpri 
siasXOovaav avXrjTpiSa '^aipsiv sav . . . -qixas Be Bia Xoycov 
dXX.i]\ois crvvsivai). This appears, if we compare the 
passages, to be said in the Symposium as a matter of 
course, while it is explained at length in the Protagoras. 
Some other references to earlier dialogues are of the same 
kind : 

Gorg. 490 e : Socrates says : — Symp. 221 e : et idiXot. ns rwf The vul- 

Tov (TKVToro^ov i(r<af neytaTa Sei ^coKpaTovs aKovfiv Xo'ycoi/, (^avelev rraritv of 

viTohr]p.aTa KOI Trkfiara vnohi^efxevov av yeXotoi to npioTov . . . ovovs pyomnl 

TreptTrareTj/, to which Kalhkles yap . . . Xeyei Koi )(a\Keas rivas ii 

answers : (f>\vape'is . . . and del koi aKVTOT6u.ovs . . . kqI del 8ia 

. > X ' A01 ..' -.-V.,,, ., quoted by 

Tavra Aeyetj, — 4yi A . ov ctkvto- tcov avTcov ra avra (paiufTat. Xeyeiv. 

> \ ' MM ■. y , M A Socrates 

TOfiovs Aeyw . . . tocrre mreipos icai avorjros avapa- 

Crat. 388d : dp' ovv nds X"^" ^"^ """^ ^^ ^'^^ Xoyav Karaye- "Stenclea. 

Kev s TjO Tr]i> Te)(vr]v '4x<^v, also 389 E Xdcr e Lfv. 

anas ;(aXKei;f. EiUhyd. 278 D : 198 C : Kai ydp /^e Fopyt'ot' 6 Xdyos 

p-T] pov KaTayeXdre. Gorg. 473 E : dvepipv-qaKfv . . . fciio^ovprju prj poi 

Socrates complains of Polos, who reXevraiv 6 'Ayddcoi^ Vopylov K€(f)a- 

is represented as /(TTfipoy /cat ai'dr^T-o? : Xrjv Beivov Xeyetv eV tc3 Xoyco enl 

«XXo ail TovTo eidos eXey^ov , , . rov ipbv Xoyov Trepyj/as avrou pe 

KaraytXdv. Gorg. 512 D : Kara- Xtdov rfj d<pcovia Tj-oirjaeiev' Kal 

yeXacTTOs aoi 6 \//-dyos yiyj/erai evevoijcra rare I'lpa KarayeXacrTOS 

refers to 484 d: {(j)iX6ao(f)oi) Kara- a)i>. 
yiXaa-Toi y'lyvovrai. 

Gorg. 456 B : eTreia-a, ovk ciXXt) Tfxvr) r/ rfj prjropiKJj. 

-'" This seems to have been overlooked by Grote (vol. iii. p. 17) when he 
says that in the Symposium no such doctrine is found. It is important to 
notice this, because the entire absence of the pre-existence theory in the 
Symposium vai^i lead to wrong chronological conclusions, at least as to the 
date of the Meno. 

B 2 


and Bar- 

llelation to 
made pro- 
bable by 
miiller ; 
this con- 
Urms our 


to earlier 








cannot be 


than the 



It seems as if the examples chosen in the Gorgias 
and Cratylus had provoked some critics, whom. Plato 
answers in the Symposium, though the description given 
hy Alcibiades corresponds also to the historical Socrates 
as represented by Xenophon. 

The mention of Hellenes and Barbarians (209 e) as 
equal to each other also places the Symposium above the 
Gorgias, and on a level with the Cratylus. 

Teichmiiller (I. p. 120) made it very probable that the 
Symposium must be later than Isocrates' Busiris, in which 
we read (222 c) that nobody except Polycrates had ever 
asserted that Alcibiades had been a disciple of Socrates. 
This c^uld not be said by Isocrates if he knew Plato's 
Symposium, in which the near relation and friendship 
between Alcibiades and Socrates is clearly represented. 
Teichmiiller infers that Plato in introducing Alcibiades 
answered Isocrates' pretension to place Alcibiades above 
Socrates, and at the same time defended Alcibiades 
against the calumnious attacks of Lysias. The Busiris 
was written, according to Blass, some years after 391, and 
this would well agree with the admitted date of the 
Symposium, 385 B.C. 

We need no further evidence as to the priority of the 
Cratylus, Gorgias, and all Socratic dialogues, because 
these have generally been admitted to be earlier than the 
Symposium. The proof that some other dialogues, as the 
Phaedo and Phaedrus, which were also held by many 
critics to be earlier than the Symposium, are later, will be 
given when we come to deal with the date of each of 
them. For the present we may admit as certain, that 
the Symposium was written about 385 B.C., and after the 
Cratylus, Gorgias, Eutliydemus, Meno, Protagoras, and 
all smaller dialogues. This result is not new ; it is one 
of the few points of general agreement among writers on 
Plato. The comparison of logical contents has confirmed 
it, and also the style of the Syiivposiuin (see above, p. 169) 
is clearly intermediate between Gorgias and Phaedo. 


III. The Phaedo. 

(Relative affinity to the latest group, measured on the Laivs 
as unity, = 0"21 ; see above, p. 170.) 

The Phaedo is less artistically simple than the Sijtn- The 

posium ; it contains many threads of argument united Phaedo 

with such skill that there is room for various opinions has been 

as to the chief purpose of the author and the main '°*^^" 

subject of his work. The dialogue has been regarded ^f^" ^" 

as an historical account of the death of Socrates,^*' ^ ^^^ 

as a treatise on the immortality of the soul,'-'- as the jg chiefly 

poetical tragedy announced at the end of the Symposium,-^^ important 

as a general psychology,^'^ as an ideal pictiure of the true as the first 

philosopher,-'-^ and even as a treatise on the underground attempt to 

rivers. 2"^ There is some truth in all these assumptions ^"^^^"^ ^ 

if not taken absolutely ; but for our present purpose the ^jg^j 

Phaedo deserves particular attention as containing the ^^^ theory 

theoretical substantiation of Plato's first logical theory, of ideas, 

We have seen in earlier works many allusions to logical which had 

problems discussed by Plato with his pupils. In the been only 

Gratijlus the subsidiary problem of the relation between P^^*^^^ y 

thought and language led to the hypothesis of an existent ^^^^ .^ 

substance of things,* different not only from all appear- ^-^^ ^ 

ances, but also from all possible expression in human posiiun. 

-" This exceedingly improbable opinion has been sustained in recent 
times by T. Bergk (Griechische Literaturgeschichtc , 'i^" Bd. Berlin 1887). 

-''■- This is the ordinary view, represented in our century especially by 

'-'■' The well-known passage, Symp. 223 d, has been interpreted as refer- 
ring to the Symposium as comedy, and to the Phaedo as tragedy. 

■-" Plutarch {Moral. 120 e) quotes the Phaedo by the title irepl 4"^X'Js. 
which appears also in the manuscripts. 

■-'^ Schleiermacher believed the Phaedo and Symposium to be the con- 
tinuation of the Politicus, and to constitute between them the definition of 
the philosopher which had been promised in So2)histes 217 a b and Politi- 
cus 257 A. This is impossible, the Politicus being much later than both 
Sympositmi and Plmedo. 

-'*' This would result from a doubtful interpretation of Varro, de lingua 
latina, lib. VII. cap. iii. 88. 


was the 
first idea, 
in the 
PJiaedo to 
a system 
of ideas. 

Value of 
sense per- 
They are 
found to 
be mis- 

Ideas per- 
ceived by 
the soul 
help of 
the body. 
They are 
more evi- 

language. In the Symposium one aspect of such a 
substance was displayed as an ecstatic vision insufficiently 
pictured by the witness who experienced it but found 
himself unable to give expression in words to this unique 
and marvellous revelation. The first substance thus 
discovered by Plato was Beauty, bearing some relation to 
the Good, or ethical Beauty {Symp. 205 e : o S' sjxos Xojos 
ovTs rjfjuiasos (prjaiv sivai, tov hpcora oiirs oXov^ iav /xr) TVj)(di y 
ys TTOV, Si iralps, afyaOov 6v. 212 A: opSivrt oo oparov to 
KoXov, TLKTSiv ovK elhoiXa dpS7rJ9, drs ovk sISojXov icfjair- 
TOfMsvo), aXX,' dXr]6r], ars rou d\r)6ov9 s(f)a7rT0fi£V(p) . This 
Beauty, called already in the Symposium the Good, Truth, 
or reality, appeared in the first moment, suddenly raised 
above all human standards, as the only substance of the 
Universe. Soon, however, growing accustomed to the 
ideal existence of Beauty, he generalised this experience, 
extending it to other notions. This he does for his readers 
first in the Phaedo. He builds a system of ideas and 
gives an account of the way leading to his idealism ; so 
resuming the inquiry commenced in the Cratylus. 

After refuting all attempts to find truth in words, he 
discusses the value of knowledge gained by sense percep- 
tion, and held by ordinary ' common sense ' to be the most 
certain of all. He at once distinguishes sight and hearing 
as the best of all senses (65 b), but finds that even these 
give us no correct notions, as has been already recognised 
even by the poets (65 b: ol Troirjral r]fuv del OpvXovaLv), 
and, we might add, by such philosophical predecessors of 
Plato as Heraclitus and Parmenides. 

As in the Symposium the ecstatic vision of Beauty 
was independent of the senses and different from any 
material representation, so now in the Phaedo appear 
many other ideal substances, perceived by the soul alone, 
without help of the body (65 B c : ?} ■^vxv . . . orav [xsra 
Tov (ToiixaTos STTi'^^sipfj Ti aKOTTUv, byjXov on tots s^a'rraTaTai 
vir avTov). This is done through reasoning (65 c: h tS 
\oyl^sa6at) in moments when neither sight, nor hearing. 


nor bodily pain or pleasure affect us, and when we feel as if dent to 
we had left the body in order to approach true being (65 c : reason 

Xoyl^STat, . . . KdWicrra, orav . . . icocra ^alpsiv to ■ awfxa, '''^^" 

\ /I, w r. / \ -« > •^ ?■? r / material 

Kai K.av oaov ovvarai ixrj Kotvcovovaa avTco arjo aTnoubsvT} 
, , „ „ n 1 T '• n 1 T i • things to 

opsyrjTac tov ovtos). buch substances as ideal Justice, or 

Beauty, Health, or Power, have an existence more evident 

to our reason than is the existence of particular things to 

our senses (65 D), though we can neither grasp them with 

our sight nor any other sense. We know them best by 

pure thinking (65 E : 09 av fxaXtara rj/xojv kol aKpt^so-Tara 

7rapaaK£vdcn]Tai avro sKaarov 8iavo7]d>]vac irspl ov (tkottsI, 

ovTOS dv SfyyvTara 'lot tov '^/vaivat skucttov), emancipated 

from the influence of sense perception (65 e : Stavoia . . . 

fisTo, TOV Xoyiafiov . . . fM7]Te ttjv oyfrtv irapaTLt^sfisvos sv to3 

htavostadai fjitjTS tivcl dWrjv aiadrjaiv) . 

Human passions, illness, and physical necessities or Body puts 

desires put obstacles in our way to knowledge (66 B : obstacles 

IMvpias . . . da^oXias Trajs^st to a-oJ/jbo), and lead to wars i" our way 

or other conflicts (65 c). Thence Plato infers that ideal ^° 

knowledge will be attainable for us chiefly after death , °j' 

{()6 E), and that in earthly life our only way to approach knowledge 

truth is to limit the activity of senses to what is indis- expected 

pensable (67 A : sv m dv ^m/msv . . . iyyvTuro) saofxsda tov after 

slhsvai^ sdv 6 ti fidXiara /j-rjBsv o/J-tXojfMSv to) aco^aTi). Only "eath. 

the pm^e soul can reach pure truth (67 B : fir] Kadapw ® P"^® 

Kadapuv sdidTTTsadai fxr} ov BsfxiTov f/). We can learn 

nothing from our senses, because our soul possesses .^ 

eternal innate wisdom, and all our learning consists in truth, and 

remembering what we knew before this life (72 e : fiddrjais possessed 

ovK dX\o Ti r) dvdixvrjais Tvy^dvet ovcra . . . dvdyKT) irov it before 

't]p,ds sv TrpoTspw Tivl J(^p6v(p ixsfiadrjKSvai a vvv dva^xifivrj- entering 

(TKOfxsda}. The reminiscence depends upon similarity or ^^ ° ^' 

dissimilarity of absolute ideas with the concrete objects of 

earthly experience (74 a : aufi^alvsi ttju dvafjuvrjcnv slvai fisv 

d<p' o/jbOLcov, slvat he koI air dvop-oifov). Still we notice m 

every case the difference between a perfect idea and the 

sensible experience which reminds us of this idea (74 a: 


idea and 
lars illus- 
trated by 
a mathe- 
There is no 
equality in 
the world, 
though it 
is easy to 
stand ideal 

This truth 
was not 
gained by 
or experi- 
ment, but 
to be the 
result of 

ava'yKaiov t68s irpoaTrdcrysLv, svvoslv sirs n iWsiTrsi rovro 
Kara rrjv ofMoiorrjra are yu.?; skslvov ov avsjJjVr^aOrj). 

Here Plato introduces a classical example of this 
radical difference between an idea and sensible particulars : 
an example which has lost nothing of its logical import- 
ance up to the present time, and which also shows a 
far-reaching apprehension of the sensible world. This 
example he finds not in the distance between a concrete 
work of art and the artist's ideal, but in the perfection of 
a mathematical notion. He knows equality as the basis 
of all mathematical reasoning, and dares to assert that 
there is no such equality in the phj^sical world. AVe 
know in our times, after many difficult measurements, 
that no one grain of sand is equal to another, nor a drop 
of water to another drop. But Plato had no microscopes 
and micrometers at his disposal, and it was a deep in- 
sight into the nature of physical phenomena that allowed 
him such an audacious generalisation against the evidence 
of his senses. He quotes as examples stones and pieces 
of wood, which only appear to be equal (74 B), but are 
not. He certainly knew physical objects which, accord- 
ing to all his means of observation, were really equal to 
each other, as for instance two stars of the same size and 
brilliancy, two wings of a small insect, or even two coins 
of the same mint. He could not ascertain the small 
existing differences between such objects by exact measure- 
ments and observations as we are enabled to do now ; he 
had not arrived at liis conviction of the impossibility of 
physical equality by Socratic induction. It was for him 
a knowledge a 'priori, quite as much as the knowledge of 
moral ideas. His reasoning was not built 'apon attempts 
to establish differences between apparently equal objects. 
He knew beforehand that the idea of equality w^as too 
perfect to be realised in the physical world. And this a 
priori knowledge of Plato has been confirmed by the 
experience of all the generations which have come after 


Plato had never alluded in his earlier writings to that A process 

difference between idea and appearance. In the Cratylus ^^^ o^- 

he mentioned things corresponding to the notion formed s^'^^^^le 
of them, and even derived general notions from particular 

. writings 

experiences. In the Symposium he reached the sight of ^^^^ ^^^e 

absolute Beauty by progressive generalisations which p^acdo. 
might be described as a continuation of Socratic induction. 
It is only in the Phaedo that ho undertakes to construct a 
knowledge entirely independent of concrete particulars, 
and shows us the first model of such absolute ideas in the 
mathematical notion of equalit}^ not derived from ex- 

We have already seen in the Meno the theory of tran- Even in 

scendental knowledge exemplified through a psychological t^ie -^^^o 

experiment. But in the Meno there is no mention of ^^^^^ 

a difference between ideal and physical equality. The f*^"^ ^ ^ 

figures were assumed to be equal, and their equality known. ,. . 

Here in the Phaedo we meet the assertion that there are guished. 

no two equal objects in this life's experience, and that still, 

therefore all notion of equality is older than the present sense per- 

life. The apparent equality of two material objects ception 

approaches indefinitely the limit of absolute equality ^'^^^^"^^ ^ 

/rrf- , . ■> / / ^ , T V V ,f sjv necessary 

I/O A. opsiysrai iravra TavTa slvul olov to lcov, eysi os ,. . 

^ , . . . condition 

ivBsi-a-Tspoos) , and offers us the only opportunity of recalling i^^. ^^y. 

the notion of absolute equality (75 a: ofioXoyovfisv, firj training in 

aWodsv avTO svvsvor^Ksvat . . . ahX' rj bk tov ISeiv rj a'^acOaL the intui- 

■q SK Tivos aW'qs twv ala-BrjaecDv). This reluctant concession tion of 

leaves a certain importance to the activity of the despised ^'^^^^• 
senses. Without their perceptions we could not find an ^ ^"^^ '^^' 

opportunity of remembering general ideas as the object , 

of our transcendental knowledge. But once remembered, ^^.g^g ^„_ 

absolute equality is known to be radically different from pearances 

any equality observed, and cannot therefore proceed from of eternal 

particular instances of approximative equality. This '^^^^^^ 

principle is extended to other ideas, not only of mathema- ^^^^"^ 


tical relation but also of justice, holiness, and everything 
that is predicated of particulars (75 D : irspl airdvroiv oh 


fore our 

more real 
and they 

nence of 
ideas a 
of un- 
able know- 

of philo- 
equal to 

sTTiacfipayi^o/Lisda to o sarc). All these ideas must have 
been known before we began to see, to hear, and to receive 
other impressions of our senses (75 b : Trpo rov apa dp^a- 
adai r)/j,ds opdv Kal aKoveiv Kal raWa alcrOavsadai rvyHv sSsl 
'7T0V el\7]4)6Tas i7rLoTi]/j-riu uvTov Tov 'I'aov 6 re scTTiv) in order to 
enable us to refer every sense perception to such eternal 
ideas (75 b: ra sk tojv aladyaecov tcra sKslas avoLcrsiv, ore 
irpodv/xsiTaL julsv irdvra roiavTu eivai olov skslvo, scttc Bs 
avrou (pavkoTspa). These ideas have an eternal existence, 
independent of the changes of sensible things. Beauty 
and similar ideas have the most real kind of existence, 
much more than any material appearances (77 A : ovk 
'^X^ ^7<^7^ ovSsp ovTO) jxoi svapyss ov coy rovro, to Trcivra ra 
roiavT SLvat ois olov re fxaXtara, koXov rs Kal ajadop Kal 
ToXXa irdvra a au vvv Srj sXsjss) . Only through these ideas 
do we begin to understand the outward world (76 d : 
sari . . . -rraaa rj roLavrrj ovaia, Kai sttl ravrrji/ ra sk r(uv 
aiaOyjcrscov irdvra dva(^spo^jb£v). 

Everything that exists belongs to one of these two 
kinds (79 A : Ooiixsv hvo scStj tmv ovtwv) : the visible material 
world, continuously changing, and the invisible ideal 
world, eternally the same, consisting of ideas and souls. 
No permanent and durable knowledge can refer to any 
but eternal objects, ideas without change. AVhen the 
soul investigates ideas, certainty and knowledge are 
attained, and this we call activity of reason (79 d : irspl 
SKslva dsi Kara ravrd coaavrois e%£t, drs rotovroov s<pa7rTo/jbsvr)- 
Kai rovro avrrjs ro irddrjixa (f)p6vr]crL9 KSKXijrai,). Such an 
activity implies happiness, and frees us from error and 
all human sufferings (81a). 

And far more than even this, the victor} over illusions 
of the senses leads a philosopher to become after death 
equal to the gods (82 C : sis dswv ysvos /j,r} ^Ckoao^rjcravri 
Kai TTavrsXcbs Ka6apa> dmovrt ov Os/nis d<^iKvsi(x6at dJOC 77 r(o 
^iXofxadsl). A philosopher holds to be true only what he 
knows independently of the senses, through the pure 
activity of his soul, which gives an immediate, intuitive 


knowledge of ideas (83 a : rj (bi\oao(f>La . . . t7]v y^vxv^ 

TTupafiudsLTat . . . TTapaKsXsvofMsvT] inarsveLv /xrjSsvl aXXrp 

aW' Tf avTTJv abrfi, 6 n av voijarj avTi) Kad' uvttjv civto KaO 

avTo Toyv6vT(ov). 

Here we read for the first time about a science of Necessity 

thought or logic (90 b: >} irspl rovs Xoyovs tsxvv)} which of logic 

is indispensable in order to preserve us from utter seep- ^^^sisted 

ticism. He who trusts his own thoughts without an "^°°' ^ 

objective logic will often change his opmion, and this will g^epticism 

lead him to a general distrust of human thought (90 c : jq the 

TsXsvTwvTSS otovrai . . . KaTavevorjKsvai fMOvoi on ovrs rdu want of 

rrpayfidroiv ovBsvos ovSev vyies- ovSs /Ss^aioi' ovrs tcov Xoywv) . logic. 

Such men believe themselves to have discovered that there Scepti- 

is no truth, and that any and every opinion may be sue- ^^^^ ^'''"" 

cessfullv defended by arguments among which none is ^^'^^ 

"^ ./ o o misan- 

decisive. This is an abnormal state of mmd resulting ^^^.^^y 

from over-confidence, and similar to the misanthropy 

born of trusting men without knowing how to distinguish 

the good from the bad (89 d). If, with this unhmited 

confidence, a man should be deceived by those on whom 

he relied, he will fall straight into the contrary extreme, 

and cease to put any trust in his fellows. To this wrong Ignorance 

conclusion he is brought by his ignorance of psychology of logic 

(89 E : avsv Tsx^Tji tyjs irspl ravdpcoTnia), and in like 

manner ignorance of logic may lead to a general distrust \ , 

, , V , 1 ,, of psycho- 

of human reason (90 C D : oUrpov av nrj to ttuSos, si ovros j 

Si] Tivos uXrjdovs Kal /3s^aiov Xoyov kul Suvarov KUTavor^aai, Logic 

STTSLTa . . . puri savTOV Tis alriaJTO iirjhs rrjv savTOV aT£')(yLav, unjustly 

dXA,a . . . sttX lovs Xoyovs acp' savrou rrjv aWlav aircoaaLTu accused. 

. . . Twi/ 8s ovTcov Tpjs dXrjdsuis re /cat £7n(TTj]/jbTis aTSpijdsLr)). ower o 

In this case they lose, by their own fault, the opportunity ^^ 

•^ "^ reason to 

of knowing Truth and Being, and have no right to accuse ^^^^^^^ 

human reason generally of imperfection. Plato himself ^^.^^jj ],y 

is certain that human reason possesses the power of an means of 

infallible knowledge, and that we owe our errors, not to logic, 
the weakness of our reason, but to the influence of the 


above me- 

aim of 
unity of 
and ex- 


we can in- 
vestigate ■ 
in our 

To find absolute Truth our thought must be pure 
thought, and we must take care not to trust other expla- 
nations of reality than those based upon an understanding 
of the ideal aim of everything (97 c : si ovv ns ^ovXotro 
Trjv acTLav svpsiv Trspl SKaarov . . . rovro hsiv irspl avrou 
supsLv, OTTT] ^s\t larov avro) sariv r} slvac i) aWo otlovv 
TrdcT'x^sLv rj ttolsIv). This ideal cause is esteemed by Plato 
very much above all mechanical causation, vs^hich for him 
is no causation at all, but mere succession of events, or at 
most a necessary condition of real causation (99 b : aWo 


atrcov ovK ar ttot' slt] alriov). Plato rises here to the 
smnmit of his new idealistic metaphysics, despising all 
mechanical explanation of Being as quite unsatisfactory 
and criticising his great predecessor Anaxagoras (98 b-e) 
for not having understood the importance of final 
causes. The only true cause appears to be that divine 
power which leads everything to the best, and according 
to the aims of the whole as well as of all parts (99 c : rriv 
Tov (OS olov T£ iSeXTiara avra Tsdr]vai Svvaficv . . . Sat/xovLav 

But the immediate knowledge of this ideal cause is 
beyond the scope of mankind, and Plato seeks an indirect 
way in order to find out the causes of things (99 c : iyco 
fxsv ovv rrjs TOLavrrjs alrlas, ottt] ttots s%£t, iMaOrjrrjs orovovv 
"tjoiar^ av j£voLfjbr]v • sTrsiBrj Bs TavTrjs iarsp/jOrjv /cat ovt 
avros svpsiv ovrs trap aXXov pbaOslv olos rs i<ysv6fji,i]v, tov 
BsvTspov irXovv airl rr/y rrjs alrias ^i]Tr]aiv TrSTrpayfxc'nsv- 
ixat). This second-best choice is based on the reflection 
that human thought is, as it were, an image of reality, 
and that exact knowledge of thought leads to a know- 
ledge of truth (99 E : sBo^s Bi] ixol 'X^p'rjvaL sis rovs Xoyovs 
KaTa(f)V'yovTa iv skslvols aKOvslv twv 6vtwi> ttjv aXrjdsiav), 
just as we can observe the image of the sun reflected in a 
well, thus avoiding the injury to our eyes attendant upon 
looking at the sun itself. 

Once on this path Plato soon recognised that thought 


is more than a mere image of Being (100 A : ov irdw Thought 
GV'y')(wpoi rov sv rols \6yois aKOTTovp.svov ra ovra sv sLKocrt. is even 
/jidWov (TKoirslv fj rov h tois spyois) , as he had explained ^°^^ ^^^^ 
it in the Symposium. He now appHed the hypothetical ^^ "^^§® 
method proposed in the Meno, seeking for the safest q^j^^^ 
hypothesis on which he could rely, admitting as true ^^^^ ^f ^ 
everything in agreement with, and rejecting as false highest 
anything contradictory to this fundamental proposition principle 

(100 A : vTToOsfisvos sKacTTOTE Xoyov Of av Kpivco sppco/jbsvscjTa- °^' ^ypo" 

^ i\ \ >; 5. '< / J. '> 'zj ' thesis, 

Tov swat, a fisu av fiot ooktj tovtw (JU/xcpcovsiv, TLur)/xt cos 

dXrjOrj ovra, a 8' av fx-q, tw? ovk oKr^drj). As such a funda- 

mental hypothesis he proposes to accept the independent existence 

existence of Beauty as set forth in the Symposium, and of ideas. 

also of other ideas (100 b : vtrodiixsvos slvat ti KaXov avro 

Ka6' avro koX uyadov koI jxiya Kal raXXa iravra). This he 

calls here, nothing new (100 b : ovhev kuivov), but already 

frequently spoken of. It would be, however, an error to 

infer that another written exposition of the theory of ideas 

preceded, besides the first initiation in the Symposium. 

If the Platonic Socrates asserts that he constantly repeats Apparent 

the same truth in other as well as in the present conversa- allusion 

tion (100 B : det Kal aWoTS Kal sv tco TrapsXrjXvOori \6yo)) , " ^^^ ^^^ 

this is a rhetorical artifice by which, on the one hand, ^^P°^^ 

• 1 • -11 tions ex- 

Plato brmgs his new ideas into close relation with the ia,ined 

old Socratic notions as subsisting still in the Euthydemus T^e only 
(301 a) and Gratylus (439 d) , while on the other hand he earlier ex- 
refers to conversations with his pupils which may have position in 
been suggested by the argument of the Symposium. *^® ^v"^' 
Among the literary works of Plato none can be thought -P"^"'"'* 
of as referred to in this passage of the Phaedo, because 
none contains a more elementary and fundamental ex- 
planation of the theory of ideas, the Phaedrus and Bepuhlic 
being undoubtedly later, as will be seen from their psycho- 
logy, and as has been already made evident by their style. 
An earlier written exposition of this theory would have 
rendered superfluous the painstaking didactic tone of the 
Phaedo, and the difficulty of understanding expected by 


and Syiii- 
in the 
theory of 

idea and 
lars simi- 
lar to that 
between a 
notion and 

the Platonic Socrates, and admitted by his hearers 
(100 A : /SovXofiac Ss croi aa(f)£crrspov slirslv a Xsyco ' olfxai 
lydp as vvv ov fiavddvsiv — ov /Jid tov Aca, £(f)r] o Ks/Bvs, ov 
o(f)6Bpa). This reminds us of the admitted obscurity of 
the speech of Diotima in the Sijmposiuin, and gives the 
impression of a first attempt at a written account of the 
new theory. 

The theory as it stands in the Phaedo is a generahsa- 
tion of the esthetic experience related in the Symposium. 
Particulars are what they seem to us to be, through their 
participation in the idea, and not only in the idea of 
Beauty but also in the ideas of all other general notions. 
The term /xsTs^eti* used here (100 c : (palveTai <ydp /xoc, sc 
Tt s(JTiv dXko Ka\6v, ovhs Bl eif dWo koKov zlvai rj Scotl 
fisTS'^st SKs'ivov Tov KoXov ' Kol irdvra Brj ovtcos Xs^yco), as in 
the Symposium, is already felt to be not quite sufficient, 
and is supplemented by other terms, irapovaria and Koivtovia 
(100 D : ovK dWo TL TTOLSt avTo koKov Tj 7] sKSLvov Tov KoXov 
SITS irapuvata sirs Koivcopla . . . ov >ydp sti tovto Biia-)(ypl- 
^o/jlul, dX}C oTi ToS KaXa> to. KoXd <yiyvsTai KaXd). The idea 
is present in the particulars, or is shared by them, this 
makes no difference for Plato : the only expression of his 
hypothesis which he believes to be perfectly certain is 
that beautiful things become beautiful through Beauty, or 
owe their particular beauty to the general idea. This 
relation between idea and particulars is formally similar 
to the relation between a Socratic notion and the 
particulars ; as expressed already in the Euthyphro (6 E : 
slhos, w Trdvra rd oaia ocnd iariv . . . /jiia IBsa rd re nvocna 
dvoata koX rd ocna ocna). But the Socratic notion was 
immanent {Euthypli. 5 D : tuvtov ecttiv sv itdcrr] irpd^si to 
ocTLOv avTo nvT&j, Kol TO dvoatov av tov /xsv oalov Travros 
iuavTLOv, avTO Bs avTm ofiotov koL S'xpv fxlav Ttvd IBsav irdv 
6 TL TTsp dv /MsXXr) dvoaLov shat)^ found in the concrete 
things as their point of similarity, while the Platonic 
idea is self-existent,. independent of particulars, perceived 
by pure reason against all illusions of the senses. More- 


over, the terms slBos and ISsa, which were freely used to Use of 

designate general notions in earlier dialogues, up to the terms. 

Gorgias and Cratylus, preserve generally the same mean- ^''■"ety of 

ine; in the Symposimn and Phaedo,'^^'^ while the transcen- ™t 

the ideas, 
dental ideas are chiefly designated by the neuter of the p • ■+ f 

adjective, sometimes with such determinations as sksIvo t^g i^i^^ 
{Synip. 210 e, Phaedo 103 c) or avrb KaO'' avro {Symp. 
211 B, Phaedo 100 b) and by the verb dvai and its deriva- 
tives. The direct and constant use of ethos or Ihea to 
designate a transcendental idea belongs to a somewhat 
later stage of Plato's logic. In the Symposium and Phaedo 
he still hesitates, and this hesitation produces great variety 
of terms for the peculiar relation between idea and 
particulars.^'** He says expressly that he does not insist 
upon any of these terms,^'^ and that the only thing he is 
sure of is the priority of the idea, or that the given idea 

2" (i^os as well as iSe'a means shape, form, or appearance in such passages 
as Symp. 189 e, 196 a, 204 c, 215 b; Phaedo Id a, 104 d, 108 d, 109 b. 
The meaning of a Socratic species or notion appears in Symp. 205 b d ; 
Phaedo 91 d, 100 n, &c. Campbell has shown in §§ 24-32 of his essay on 
Plato's use of language (Plato's Republic, vol. ii. pp. 294-305) that both 
words have been used frequently by Plato in the same meaning as by 
earlier writers besides the new applications, chiefly illustrated from later 
dialogues. In the formula tJ) i-n' d^a Ka\hv (Symp. 210 b) we also miss 
the specific Platonic use of eI5os. The possible identity of el^os and the 
absolute idea seems to be admitted in the formula : dual n fKaarov twv 
eiSwv (102 b). But here also the eiSri mean ethical notions of which 
substantial existence is predicated. Only Plmedo 104 b (5ea and 104 c eiSyj 
might be equivalent to the Platonic ' ideas.' 

-''' Besides n^rix^'-^i Tfapovcria, Koivwuia we read : fj.eTa\a/j.0dveiv 102 b, 
■TrpoffSfXfO'dai 102 d, irpoaiivai 102 E, 103 D, SixecrOai 102 E, 103 D, ^veivat 
103 B, fxeTdffxffris 101 c. 

^"' Pliaedo 100 d : ov yap en tovto SucrxvpiCo/iai has been interpreted as 
a reference to an earlier different opinion by Diimmler (AJMdcmika,-p. 204), 
P. Natorp (Philosophische Monatshefte, vol. xxvi. p. 467), and Pfleiderer 
(p. 395). But this interpretation is based upon the assumption that Plato 
wrote about the theory of ideas before the Phaedo. If the Pliacdo, as 
results from the present inquiry, is the first methodic exposition of Plato's 
theory of ideas, then ' ov yap en ' does not signify ' no longer,' but ' not 
further,' ' not moreover.' The whole phrase would then mean : I am only 
sure that beautiful things are beautiful through Beauty, but I do not go so 
far as to affirm anything definitively about the exact manner in which this 


rule as to 
the judg- 
ment on 
an hypo- 
thesis, and 
its conse- 

sive gene- 
up to a 


and de- 

is the cause of the corresponding quality in each particular 
thing in which it is recognised. 

On this fundamental hypothesis, according to Plato, a 
consistent system of science can be built up (101 d : 
s')(^o^svos SKSivov rov a.a(f)a\ovs Ttjs viroOsasws). He 
develops the hypothetical method given in the Meno, and 
recommends his disciples always to distinguish between 
an hypothesis and the consequences drawn from it. In a 
skilful discussion, the agreement of all consequences 
with each other must precede any inquiry as to the 
truth of the hypothesis on which the consequences 
depend (101 d : si 8s ris avrf]^ tyjs viroOsasois scpoiro, 
y^alpscv scprjs civ Kol ovk airOKpLvaco, scos av ra wtt' skslvijs 
opfiriOsvTa (TKsylraiO, si croi aXkrfKois crv/ji(f)aivsl rj Biacf^ovsT) . 
He advises rising from one hypothesis to another until 
irrefragable transcendental axioms are reached, which 
have no further need of demonstration (101 d : sttslSt) 
Bs SKSivris avTrjs Ssol as SiBovai Xoyov, d>aavT(OS av SiSoiTjS, 
dW7]v av VTroOscriv vttoOs/jlsvos^ i]ris rcov avwOiv /SsXr laTT) 
(fyaivocTO, scos siri tl Ikuvov sXOois). He warns us against 
coupling illogically (101 e : coaTTsp ol avrtXoyiKOi), in one 
and the same discussion, arguments for or against the 
hypothesis itself with arguments for or against the 
derived consequences (101 c : a/xa ovk av cpvpois irspl rs 
rrjs ap)(7]S SiaXsyo/jiSvos xat rcov i^ skscpt^s a)p/jur]/jisvcov, SLirsp 
0ovXoi6 TL rwv ovTwv svpsiv). 

This exhortation to a methodic investigation is aimed, 
as Diimmler thinks, against Antisthenes, and is emphati- 
cally assented to by Cebes and Simmias simultaneously 
(102 A), and by Echecrates who hears Phaedo's report of 
the conversation. Phaedo adds that to all present, even 
to those who had the least understanding of philosophy, 
it seemed to be wonderfully clearly expressed (102 A: 
stirsp si TO)V ^i\oa6(})a)V . . . davfjiaaroiis Soksl o)9 svap'^Sis 
TQj Kal (TfjuiKpov vovv s-)(0VTi . . . iraaL rols irapovaLV sho^sv 
. . . Kal yap rj/Jilv toIs avroucrt, vvv Ss aKOVovaiv). This 
insistent asseveration of the importance of the logical 


rule — to distinguish the consecutive steps of each argu- adver- 
ment, and to require internal consistency before criti- saries. 
cising the foundations of a course of reasoning, shows that 
Plato is introducing a new method {jjuidohos, 79 E, 97 b), 
with full consciousness of its bearings. This new method 
is generalised from the inductive process by which, in the Progress 
Si/mposium, he reached his vision of absolute Beauty. As from hy- 
he then proceeded from particulars to the idea, he now pothesis 
wishies through hypothetical argumentation to reach ° "°^" 
absolute certainty. Every successive hypothesis must bs . ' 

•^ ■ •' . -^ ^ . avoiding 

' better ' or logically more evident than the preceding, circular 
until by such approximations the goal is attained — namely, reasoning, 

Even then he will not indulge in the self-conceit of 
those who are delighted with their own circular reasonings 
(101 E : ol avTtKoyLKol . . . tKavol vtto cro(pias o/j,ov nravTa 
KVKMVTSi ofjbws avTol avrols apsaKsiv) . The true philosopher First prin 
is obliged to examine again and again even the highest ciples re- 
generalisations or first principles (107 B : kuI tus virodsasLs examined. 
ras irpcoras, Koi el Tnaral vfuv slaiv, ofKos STna-KSinsa 
an(f)saTi-pov ' . . . Kad' oaov Suvarov fiuXiar dvOpcoTro)) m 
order to advance as far as human reason may. 

Plato acknowledges that his own highest hypothesis, p/-obable 
when he wrote the Phaeclo, was the independent existence identity. 
of ideas as true substances, alwaj^s the same, eternal, ^ "^^^^_ 
divine, simple, and representing the highest reality of /^ . . 
Being. Were it not for the repeated assertion of the/ 
independence of the ideas, we might identify them withLg^jjo„_ 
general notions. We have no clear indication either in 
the Phaedo or in the Syinposium of any distinction 
between our subjective notions and the corresponding 
transcendental ideas. Everything confirms our supposi- 
tion that Plato, at the time of writing the Phaedo, as w^ell 
as when he wrote the Symposium, believed it to be possible 
for the human soul to know ideas as they are. and in such 
absolute intuition the general notion would be identical 
with the idea, while the idea remains equally the same 



of ideas 
with ex- 

Law of 

of the 
in the 
and inde- 
of ideas. 


both when manifest in us and outside of us (103 B : avro 
TO svavTLov savTO) svavTiou ovk av ttots ysvoiro, ovrs to sv 
r)/jLiv ovrs to sv ttj (fiucrsi). 

The logical consequence of this doctrine was the power 
of reason to acquire all truth accessible to mankind by 
pure intuition, by contemplative meditation without or 
almost without external experience. In other words, our 
reason is able to discover the nature of things by intense 
reflection on the nature of her own ideas, which ideas are 
common both to human reason and to every other possible 
reason of any superior being here called God. The logical 
side of this doctrine culminates in the law of contradic- 
tion, expressed here as one of the chief arguments 
demonstrating the existence of ideas (102 E : to afiiKpov 
OVK sOsXsi iroTS ^siya '^'u^vsaQai ovBs slvai, ovB' d)0^o ovSsv 
TWv ivavTLcov 'in ov oirsp r)v a/u,a rovvavTiov ylyvsadac ts koI 
slvat). Each idea is only what it is, and, therefore, per- 
fectly simple {/j,ovosiSs9, 83 e). 

We see that Plato in the Phaedo gave his solution of 
the problem proposed in the Cratylus, and definitively 
decided against Heracliteanism. In the Cratylus he 
recognised the extreme difficulty of the problem and 
announced a further inquiry ; in the Phaedo he communi- 
cates the results of this inquiry, postulating not only the 
stability of notions, already' acknowledged in the Cratylus, 
but their independence of human intelligence. He goes so 
far now as to deny every process of becoming in the w'orld, 
or at least to decline any explanation of changes (97 B : ovhs 
ys Bi Tt sv yiyvsTat &)$■ sTrtaTafj^ai stc 'rrsiOoi s/xavrov, ovB' 
dWo ovBsv svL \6yw Bl b tl yiyvsTai rj airoWvTat rj hcrrc, Kara 
rovrov Tov TpoTTov rrjs fj,s66Bov). Two unities added to each 
other cannot become two ; it is not the addition which 
could produce a new idea. Addition is only the subjective 
side of the eternal relation subsisting independently of 
our reason between unity and the idea of two. The same 
explanation of all apparent changes through eternal rela- 
tions between immutable ideas is the result of the absolute 


reality attributed to ideas and opposed to the phenomenal 
appearance of all material things. 

The Phaedo brings Plato's Ideahsm to its highest The 
point and contains a conscious representation of all con- Phaedo 
sequences deriving from the fundamental hypothesis contains 
sought for in the Cratylus, perceived in the Sijmijosium, ^^^ ^^^^ 
and demonstrated here, so far as it could be, for Plato's ^^P^^'_ 

1 ' 1 • sentation 

lollowers. We shall meet this theory m later works, ^j i^q^A- 

while there is no clear trace of it in works that were ism. 
certainly written before the Phaedo. 

The importance of the Phaedo for the development Unqnes- 

of Plato's logic is increased by the circumstance that the *ionable 

authenticity of this dialogue has passed unquestioned, ^". ^"" 

even by such sceptical critics as Ast and Schaarschmidt. . 

•^ '- _ increases 

It has been advanced '^"^^ that the Stoic Panaetius in the i^g impor- 
second century B.C. doubted the authenticity of the tance. 
Phaedo, but Zeller has clearly shown the untrustworthi- 
ness and even the contradictoriness of the testimonies 
adduced in favour of that assumption — the first mention 
of these pretended doubts occurring some centuries after 
the death of Panaetius and betraying a complete igno- 
rance of Panaetius as well as of the reason of his imputed 
scepticism. The Phaedo has been so frequently quoted 
by Greek and Latin writers that we must admit that this 
work was generally regarded as undoubtedly authentic. 

The extreme idealism here professed has provoked Plato's 
severe criticisms, as for instance those of Crawford 2'^' in ^'^^^^^'^m 
the eighteenth and of Prantl ^-- in the present century. ^'^^^^ ^' 

But even these criticisms show that, if Plato's idealism 


was mistaken, such mistakes can be made only by a ^ut was of 

--" E. Hirzel, Untersuchuncjen zu Ciceros philosopJtischen Schriftcn, 
1877, vol. i. p. 282 ; Chiappelli, ' Panezio ' in Filosofia clelle scuole italiane 
for 1882 ; also Teichmiiller, vol. i. p. 12(5. 

-'■-' C. Crawford, A Dissertation on the Phaedo of Plato, London 1773. 
The author evidently had a very superficial knowledge of Plato and pro- 
fessed a shallow materialism. 

--- Prantl, Geschichte der Logik im Abendlande, p. 78, Leipzig 1855; 
also in his translation of the Phaedo, Berlin 1884. 

s 2 


ance in the 
history of 

of immor- 
Proofs not 
but meant 

philosopher of genius, and they are indispensable for the 
progress of philosophy, just as many failures of expe- 
ditions undertaken with the aim of discovering the 
sources of the Nile were indispensable for the progress 
of geography. Idealism is one obvious solution of the 
metaphysical problem, and it was necessary to follow out 
all the consequences of this solution in order to decide 
upon its value. In the Phaedo Plato is still struggHng 
against some consequences of his idealism. His love of 
the religious traditions about the immortality of the 
soul, as set forth in the Me)io and Gorgias, and indirectly 
confirmed in the Euthydemus and Cratyhis, is really 
not quite consistent with the doctrine of idealism, and 
though we have no direct evidence whether he was aware 
of this inconsistency, we see that in the Syinposium, to- 
gether with the first glimpse of eternal ideas, there 
appears almost a substitution of immortal influence for 
the immortality of the person taught in the Gorgias. 
Now in the Phaedo the avowed purpose of the Platonic 
Socrates is a demonstration of immortality, and he 
connects this demonstration with the exposition of the 
theory of ideas, which really might have impaired the 
religious belief in immortality. But if w^e examine 
the arguments in the Phaedo, we see that those from 
the beginning up to the objection of Cebes (87 a) prove 
only the persistence of the individual soul for some time 
after death, not for all time. The remaining arguments 
refer more to the idea of soul than to the individual soul, 
though they seem intended as a defence of personal 
immortality. Archer Hind '-^'^^ argued this question against 
Hegel and Teichmiiller, and made it very probable that 
Plato in writing the Phaedo still really believed in a 
prolongation of individual existence after death, without 
any suspicion of inconsistency. If we look at the final 
conversation of Socrates with Crito (115 d : sirsthav tt/w to 

"^ The Phaedo of Plato, edited by E. D. Archer Hind, London 1883, 
pp. 18-26. 


<f)dp/j.aKOv, ovKSTL vfjuv TTtipa/xcva), dW' ol^/ja-o/xaL uttlcov . . . ) 
we must admit that Plato perfectly understood the con- 
sequences of personal immortality and believed them. 
The inconsistency between immortality and idealism 
arises only if by immortality is meant, according to our 
modern notions, absolute eternity of the soul, while an 
indeterminate continuation of the soul's existence after 
death is not inconsistent with idealism. It is difficult 
to doubt that Plato meant his arguments as sufficient 
to establish individual immortality, because his conclusion 
does not admit of another interpretation (107 a : ttuvtos 
fjbdWov dpa ylrv^^T] dduvarov KoX dv(o\sdpov Koi tm ovtl 
scrovrat rjfMcbv at i/rup^ai sv " \ihov). It is also a natural 
psychological consequence of the profound dissatisfaction 
with the present conditions of life, manifested by Plato 
in the Phaedo, that he could not easily throw off his 
hopes of a better state, and of a deliverance from physical 

The physical theory of the Phaedo, representing the Physical 
insignificance of the world accessible to our knowledge as theories 
compared with a wider world even physically more perfect, °^ ^^^ 
confirms the place assigned to the Phaedo in the de- *^^ ^ 
velopment of Plato's thought. Here he appears no , 
longer as an Athenian, nor as a Greek, but rises even ^^f^gj. ^^^ 
above the standpoint of international equality between sijm- 
Hellene and Barbarian attained in the Cratylus. In posium. 
the Phaedo there speaks a philosopher whose interests 
are not limited to the earth, but extend over the universe, 
though maintaining still the position of the earth at the 
centre, in conformity with the traditional religious beliefs 
which Plato afterwards discarded. 

The position of the Phaedo after the Symposium is Some 
evident from all the above comparisons, but additional direct con- 
evidence is not wanting as to the relation between these 

F . ^ , . of this 

two dialogues, a relation generally admitted by writers . 

o ' fc> J ^ J view are 

on Plato since Schleiermacher. This relation allowed fg^^jj ^y 
by Stallbaum, Hermann, Steinhart, Susemihl, and many comparing 


both dia- otliers,'^-^ has been in recent times very successfully 

logues, defended by Teichmiiller against the older view of 

which are Tennemann, Ast, and Socher, vi^ho thought that the Phaedo 

ose y i2iust have been written soon after the death of Socrates. 

connected, -r-, • . . . 

Besides the logical theories m the Phaedo, which are 

found to be a continuation of those in the Sfjmjjosium, 

there are some other indications of the priority of the 

Symposium. The mention at the end of the Syynjwsium 

of a discussion about the identity of the tragic and comic 

poet has no visible aim at that place, but is very well 

explained if we take it as an apology for the prevalent 

comic character of the Symposium, and an announcement 

of a more serious encomium on Socrates to be delivered in 

the Phaedo. Also the words of Alcibiades, that nobody 

has yet praised Socrates as he deserves, if referred to 

Plato's own time, are better justified if the Phaedo 

The order had not then been written. There is a further proba- 

of writing ijiiity that the picture of Socrates in the Symposium, 

mig t in ^£ planned about the same time as that of the dying 

.^, Socrates, should have been executed first, however im- 

agree with ' .... 

order of probable may be the generalisation of similar reasonings 

events re- as carried out by Munk. Also the view on immortality 
presented, implied ill the Symposium presents an earlier stage 
than in the Phaedo. In the first moment of the con- 
templation of absolute Beauty, Plato could look upon 
immortal fame as an equivalent of immortal life. But 
so dear had been the belief in immortality to the 
author of the Gorgias that it became a natural task to 
base this personal immortality on the new logical theory 
emancipated from traditional authority. Philosophic 
reasoning in favour of immortality is a new departure, 
compared with the earlier representations of immortality 
as a traditional belief, a beautiful tale, true and worthy 

-■-* A. Bischoff, Platons Phaedo, Erlangen 1866, pp. 282-306; L. Noack, 
Philosophiscli-cjeschichtliches Lexicon, Leipzig 1879 ; also Michelis, Eibbing, 
and others, while Peipers, Diimmler, Christ, and Pfieiderer still believe in 
the priority of the Phaedo. 


to be believed in, but not within the scope of positive 

The recognition in the S'//wiposm7?iof immortal fame as 
desirable shows a regard for human opinion far greater 
than that professed in the Pliaedo, which in this respect 
approaches nearer to the disposition of mind shown in the 
Phaedrus, Theaetetus, and Parmenides. On the other Disregard 
hand, while his esteem for public opinion was decreasing, °^ human 
Plato's consciousness of his own power was undoubtedly °P^°^°"- 
growing, and here again we have an argument in favour . p, , , 
of the later date of the Pliaedo. In the Phaedo the philoso- certainty 
pher is equal to the gods (82 b c), while in the Symposium visible in 
the gods are very much above the philosopher. The the pro- 
proportion of apodictic affirmations, such as aXiidsa-raru, poition of 
in the Phaedo is an additional proof of its later date. These ^^° ^^ ^^ 

form here 49 per cent, of all affirmations, while in no earlier ,. 

^ . ' . tions. 

dialogue do they exceed 85 percent., which ratio they surpass 
in all later dialogues, rising above 50 per cent, in the Laws. 
This places the Phaedo in a line with the later works, and 
is a very characteristic sign of the increasing certainty 
which Plato professed to have attained— a certainty which 
remained with him through life, together with his conscious- 
ness of the high and divine vocation of the philosopher. 

This growing confidence is specially evident if we Plato's 
compare two predictions about his own philosophical growing 
career put in the mouth of Socrates once in the Apology, ^'^■' confidence 
and again much later in the Phaedo "'^ : illustrated 

^ by the 

Apology 31 a : toiovtos ovv aWos Phaedo 78a: noXXfj fiev rj 'EXXny, allusions 

ou padihis v^xiv yevrjcrirai ... ... TroXXa bi Ka\ ra rav ^apf:idp(ov j.q ^lis own 

39 C D : nXeiovs eaovrai Vfjicis o'l y^vr), ovs Trdvras XP^ biepevvda-Oai activity 

iXiyXOVTfs, ous viiv f'y(i) KaTe'ixov, (rjToiivras toiovtov fTro)86v, . . • Ct''^'^'' + • i 

'-s>^ > '/I' V N t>- > v)v iJ-N'x » contained 

Vfifis oe ovK 7]aaav€(TTC Kai ;^aAe- 0( xprj KaiavTovs fifr a\Xr]\(o V ktcos . 

ncoTfpoi eaovrai ocra vaorepoi yap av ovoe paOLccs fv poire fiaA- 

fi(riv, Kaivp.fis paA.KovayavaKTT](T(Tf. \ov v p. u> v ovvap.evovs tovto noifiv- 

_^__^___ Phaedo. 

•i-is This passage has been already understood as a prediction about 
Plato by Natorp (Philosophische Monatshefte, vol. xxvi. p. 453) ; Sybel 
{De Platonis proocmiis Acadeviicis, Marburg 1889) and others. 

-■-« On Phaedo, 78 a, see Teichmiiller, i. 123. 


to Plato's 

and Sym- 
posium in 
the treat- 
ment of 

Also in 

style the 




the Sym- 


According to the Apology there was no hope of finding 
a worthy successor to Socrates ; in the Phaedo it is 
admitted as probable that such a successor, even if 
sought for all over the world, could not be easily found 
outside the circle of Socrates' disciples, and this is said 
with a clear reference to Plato's travels in search of 
truth. In the Apology Plato speaks of the indignation 
which will be produced by his writings ; in the Phaedo 
he is already conscious of the charm exercised by his 
philosophy, and he calls himself a charmer. We shall 
see how Plato progressed even to a further point in the 
consciousness of his own power. 

Another indication of the priority of the Symposinm 
is the different treatment of Beauty. While in the 
Symposium Beauty is the highest ideal, it is in the 
Phaedo only one among many ideas, as in the Phaedriis. 
In the Symposium Plato quotes poets and lawgivers as 
truly eminent men, deserving immortality of fame ; in the 
Phaedo (65 b) the poets are quoted with a certain irony, 
as if Plato meant that any truth observed by them must 
be clear even to a child. While in the Symp)osium 
Aristophanes is represented as a friend of Socrates, and 
Plato thus forgives the gibes of the great comic poet 
against his master, he refers in the Phaedo (70 c : ovkqvv 
7' av ol/JLai, slirsiv riva vvv uKovaavra^ ou8' si Kco/jLcohtonoLos 
SiT], coy a3o\s(7-)(^(o Kai ov irspl irpocn^KovTOiv tovs Xoyovs 
irotov/jLai) to comic poets with a certain air of superiority 
and contempt ; this reminds us of the Bepuhlic, and 
seems to be directed against comic poets of Plato's own 
time who criticised, perhaps, the wild and playful tone of 
the Symposium. 

The position of the Pliaedo after the Gratylus and 
Symjjosium is fully confirmed by the considerable number 
of peculiarities of later style, which bring the Phaedo 
nearer to the Bepuhlic and to the latest group than any 
of the preceding dialogues (see above, p. 170). If we take 
into consideration that no other work of Plato is likely to 


have been composed between the Symposium and Phaedo, 
we must infer that the two dialogues were not separated 
by a great interval, since it is unlikely that Plato would 
remain long unproductive as an author at the period of 
his life in which his chief works betray. such incomparable 
ease and mastery of form. 

The stylistically well-defined group consisting of the Logical 
Cratijlus, Symposium, and Phaedo, contains the first character 
exposition of the theory of ideas, and shows us how Plato °^ * 
was led to this theory from different starting-points. In e'"/"*' 
these three dialogues the ethical questions so much dis- ^^^^^^^ ^^^ 
cussed before become secondary, and the logical problem phaedo 
of knowledge, blended with the metaphysical inquiry contrasted 
about Being, begins to occupy the philosopher's attention, with 
He reaches a degree of certainty and a consciousness of i^iconclu- 
his power forming a remarkable contrast with the incon- 
clusiveness and modesty of the Socratic dialogues up to ^ja,iogues 
the Meno. Also his literary skill, admirable already in 
the Euthydemus and Gorgias, arrives in the Symposiimi 
and Phaedo at a perfection not exceeded by himself in 
later writings, and equalled only in the Bejmblic and Preva- 
Phaedrus. The polemical tone of the Euthydemus and lence of 
Gorgias is disappearing, and the didactic character begins <i"^actic 
to prevail. The aim of life, which in the Gorgias was , . , 

. . 1 1 • J3 polemical 

defined as justice founded on knowledge, becomes chieny ^^^^ 

knowledge, with virtue as one of its consequences. The connec- 

stage reached by Plato in the Cratylus, Symposium, and tion of 

Phaedo is introductory to that of the Bepublic and these 

Phaedrus, which represent the doctrine taught by Plato ^^^^^ 

during the mature years of his life. Stylistic and ^^ og'^^s 
1-1 • • -,1^.70 confirmed 

logical comparison agree m connecting the Cratylus, Sym- ^ ^^^^.^ 

yosium, and Phaedo into one group of works succeeding g^yj^ 

each other in the first years of Plato's activity in his They were 

Academy. The great number of works later than these written in 

reduces the limits of time for their composition to a few tlie first 

years. If the Symposium was written about 385 B.C., we ^^^^^ 


of the 
of the 

have no reason to put the Phaedo later than about 384, 
or between 384 and 383 B.C., as will be seen from a com- 
parison between the Phaedo and later works, proving 
that after the Phaedo Plato must have written more than 
twice as much as he had written before. 




When Plato reached the development of his logical phiio- 
theories as these are known to us from the Phaedo, he was sophicai 
anxious to apply them to practical aims with the purpose theories 

of promoting the moral progress of his contemporaries. ^PP^^^'^ ^° 

He was not satisfied with knowing the truth for himself, ^^]^^ ]^^, 

. . . . aims in the 

and he wanted to impart it to others. Two practical appli- ^ ,,• 

cations of philosophy occupied his attention : politics and and 

education. "We have the results of his meditation on these Phacdrus. 

subjects in tw^o works, the Bepuhlic and the Phaednis. 

The Bepuhlic no longer deals with the moral pro- Politics 

blem in the fashion of the Meno or Gorgias. In these succeed 

Socratic dialogues Plato asked and tried to answer moral *° ^"•^'^ 

questions referring to the conduct of the individual, in '^^'^"^^ 

any given state, without expressly contemplating an 

altered condition of the state. He still professed 

Socratic ignorance as to politics, while he already had 

resolved the pr^ohle m of individual conrlno.t] indivi- 

dual relations between citi zens, seeing therein the true 

politics {(j-org. 521 D). But having gained a higher meta- The state 

pKysical knowledge, Plato no longer dared to decline has an 

the responsibilities it implied. He was deeply interested influence 

in the reasons of the general decay of Greek states in °" ^"" 

his time, and he understood that the Socratic precept 

. J . ^ ^ conduct, 

to ' mmd one's own business ' {to, eavrov TrpdrrsLv) ^nd thus 

would not work, if the political conditions of the state moral re- 
offered constant opportunities for the perversion of the form must 
individual. If the state was acknowledged to be a ^^gi" ^7 
necessity, the citizen and especially the philosopher could *^^ reform 


of the not remain indifferent to the mode in which the state was 
state, and to be ruled. Plato's interest in this problem led him to 
t>y the write one of his greatest works, the Bepuhlic, in which 
educational and political topics are skilfully blended. 
Having recognised education as one of the chief instru- 
ments of political reform, he dedicated another dialogue, 
the Phaedrus, chiefly to educational questions. 

reform of 

tional size 
of the 
must be 
taken into 
account if 
we wish to 
the time 
spent in 

to some 
this was 
very con- 

I. The Bepuhlic . 

Every reader of Plato is familiar with the fact that 
the Bepuhlic is very much larger than any other work of 
Plato except the Laws. This impression led even Grote 
to a curious exaggeration, when he said (vol. iv. p. 1) that 
each book of the Bepuhlic is as long as any one of the 
preceding dialogues. He was thinking chiefly of the 
small spurious dialogues held by him to be authentic. In 
reality four of the preceding dialogues, Gorgias, Cratylus, 
Symposium, and Phaedo, contain in all about the same 
amount of text as the Bepuhlic, and it is important to 
bear in mind this relation if we wish to arrive at 
correct conclusions on the much-debated question of the 
unity of the Bepuhlic. An incidental observation of 
Hermann (p. 539), that B. V-VII appear to be 
written later than B. VIII-IX, and that B. X must 
have been added later still, has been more recently 
developed by Krohn, and after him by E. Pfleiderer, into 
a theory which breaks the continuity of the Bepuhlic, 
by supposing different parts of it to have been pro- 
duced at intervals during the greater part of Plato's life. 
For anybody who wishes to understand the growth of 
Plato's philosophy it becomes a very important pre- 
liminary question whether Krohn was right in be- 
lieving that Plato wrote much of the Bepuhlic before 
he had WTitten any other dialogue. This view has been 
recently carried by Pfleiderer to the extreme of placing the 
first five books of the Bepuhlic even before the Apology, 


which heretofore had been ahnost unanimously held to be 
one of the earliest writings of Plato. 

If we consider that the Bepublic contains one-sixth The 
of the texts bearing Plato's name, and that it is -R^i^'^^^c 
generally admitted that he was occupied with literary .®^°^ °^^' 
labours for at least fifty years, it becomes evident that , , 
even the continuous production of the Bepublic could not ^yritten in 
have been the work of a short time. In our own century fifty years, 
a volume of this size and on such an all-important it is pro- 
subject is rarely written in less than several years, and ^^^^^ *^^* 
there are immense differences between our methods of ^* °° 

writing and the mode of literary composition which 

. . . . . years to 

probably prevailed in Plato's time. Without referring to ^^j^g 
fountain pens and typewriting machines, the superiority 
of our ordinary writing materials over those that were 
available two thousand years ago has diminished many 
times the mechanical labour involved. The invention of Difference 
printing and the custom of revising proofs affords an ^^ the 
infinitely easier and quicker way of correcting and ™ 
maturing our works than was practicable on old papyrus ^^^^^^ 
rolls, with an all too limited space for additions. But ^j^^^ 
besides all these mechanical and material improvements, we have 
there are also deep psychological differences between an in the 
ancient Greek writer and ourselves. Any ordinary student present 
of the present day has read ten or even a hundred times t^i^emany 
as much as Plato could have done at the same age ; we 
are also generally far more practised in writing from our ^.^ 
earliest years : even our elementary education includes ^q ^^jte at 
besides gymnastics and music many literary studies. Keep- a greater 
ing all this well in mind, we must ask the question : how speed, 
many years must the composition of the Bepublic have iiiustra- 
required even if it were not interrupted by other labours ? tion from 
We suppose that in the first ten years after the death of *^® ^^°^"^ 
Socrates Plato wrote about half-a-dozen small dialogues, ^"^"^^^ ° 

, T 1 r the works 

and only two larger works (Frotaqoras and Meno), not ,. 

^ " V ^ " preceding 

amounting together to more than about three-quarters of ^^le 
the extent of the Bepublic. This was the beginning, RcpuUic. 


In about 
six years 
five dia- 
had been 
the size 
of the 

B. II-X 

of the 

and the 
are equal 
in size to 
the works 


It is pro- 
bable that 
the bulk 
of the 
and the 
in the 
last six 

and it is reasonable to expect that the author's speed in 
composition was increasing. In fact the next six years 
(390-384 B.C.) produced five dialogues {Euthydemiis, 
Gorgias, Cratylus, Sijinposium, Fhacdo), which taken 
together slightly exceed the size of the Bepublic. Be- 
sides, there is ample reason to suppose that some work 
preparatory to the Republic had been already done at the 
time of writing the Sympodmn, and the tenour and 
language of the first book have an obvious affinity to 
those of the Gorgias. Taking this for granted, there is 
on the other side the Phaedrus, which could not have 
been written before the Phaedo, as will be seen, and 
which also is probably not much later than the last 
books of the Bepublic. The Phaedrus, together with 
B. II-X of the Bepublic, corresponds very nearly to 
the total amount of the works which we place between 
390 and 384 B.C. These works are so important and 
betray such a wonderful facility of composition, united 
with so complete a mastery of the language and of the 
subjects, that we have no reason to expect that Plato in the 
next period still further increased the speed of his writing, 
especially while his oral teaching must have occupied 
more and more of his time. Thus it becomes consistent 
with probability to suppose that the Phaedrus and 
Bepublic occupied him for another six years after 384, 
and this brings us to his fiftieth year, completed in 
377 B.C. 

If we say that according to the above reasoning Plato 
worked on his Bepublic nearly up to the age of fifty, this 
remains only a probable inference. But where we have 
no direct evidence as to facts, we are justified in weighing 
probabilities and admitting provisionally the greatest 
probability, in order to obtain a distinct conception of im- 
portant events. For a knowledge of Plato's philosophy 
it is sufficient to settle the consecutive order of his 
works, and it is not indispensable to name a date for 
each work or each part of a work. But dates are useful 


as an illustration of results arrived at by the detailed com- years 

parison of each work with all the others, and it is only in before 

order to convey to our readers a clear representation of ^^^^^ 

what results from the above inquiry that we say : if Plato ^^^^ ^^ 

wrote the Bepublic as one continuous work, and after the ^.^ 
Phaedo, as we shall attempt to prove, this work 
probably filled his time for about six years before he 
reached the age of fifty. 

We know he was forty when he formally founded his An author 

Academy. His Eutliijdemus and Gorgias had prepared between 

the way for this, and the first years of the existence of the ^^"^^^ ^^^ 

Academy brought out the Gratijlus, Symposium, and y™*y 
Phaedo, enouncing the new theorv of ideas. The 

'=' " _ . . • some 

Bepublic and Phaedrus were then written within the things in 

first ten years of the existence of the Academy. If this the plan 

be so, one important point of discussion is at once dis- of a work 

missed. It is natural that an author between forty and continued 

fifty, labouring at one production during about six years, ^°^ ^^^^' 

while his thoughts were still maturing, should insensibly J^^^^- 

alter something in its original plan, adding new matter ,. , . 

_ *^ _ . f tional aim 

and even falling into some trifling contradictions. Cor- explains 

rections were not then so easy as they are to-day, and the why no 

standard of literary consistency was, even for Plato, not mention 

so high, as we can see from nearly all his works. He was of the 

above everything an educator, and he did not feel obliged ^^^^°^'y 

to say all things at once. He had taught in the 

r, • ■ ■ • I. ^ Ti occurs in 

Symposium a progressive exposition of truth, and he ^.j^^ ^^.g^. 

conformed to these precepts in preparing the Bepublic. books. 

In B. I-IV we see no direct allusion to the theories Natural 

explained in the Phaedo, and we might receive the im- partitions 

pression that the author did not yet know the eternal °**^^ 

ideas. At the beginning of B. V we have a clear ^^i^*^^^^ 

indication that what follows is an expansion of the 

^ prevent 

original plan, and at the beginning of B. VIII the itg u^jty. 
thread of B. IV is resumed. B. I is called in 
B. II expressly an introduction {Trpoolfjuiov 357 A), and 
B. X has distinctly the form of a conclusion, somewhat 


loosely tacked on to what precedes. There is no possible 
discussion about the existence of these partitions, which 
are evident to every reader, and have been acknowledged 
generally. But on the other side frequent hints unite 
these parts into one whole (see Jowett and Campbell, 
Bepuhlic, vol. ii. pp. 11-20). For our purpose, we 
must consider each part separately, before drawing 
inferences as to the whole, and we recognise in the 
Bepuhlic five chief divisions : B. I, B. II-IV, B. V-VII, 
B. VIII-IX, and B. X. 

Book I 

Different Plato's mind during many of the best years of life 

moods in seems to have alternated between a resolute withdrawal 

Plato's from the world, indulging contemplation with a few 

wor s an (jig^ipigg^ and the endeavour to go forth and influence the 

, world and bring the results of contemplation to bear on 

aims nave ... . 

a limited ^^® social life of humanity. It is natural that his style 
influence should alter with the alteration of aim. Yet such 
on the alteration of style has limits, and it is hardly conceivable 
style. that in a single w^ork produced without intermission he 

should approach the characteristic form in part of earlier 

and in part of later writings. 
First book The first book of the Bej^ichlic, equal in size to the 
of the Apology, presents a strikingly close affinity to the Gorgias 
Bepublic both in matter and form. The gentle treatment of 
closely Cephalus may be compared with the ironical respect for 

Gorgias, the puzzling of Polemarchus with the easy 
Gordas in i"efutation of Polus, the sudden onslaught of Thrasy- 
contents machus with the brusque interposition of Callicles. And 
and style, the presumption raised by these comparisons is confirmed 

by the stylistic evidence, which yields very few examples 

of later peculiarities. 
Probable We See here Thrasymachus rising to defend a position 

allusion which had to be abandoned by Polus in the Gorgias. 
to the Polus had admitted that injustice though advantageous 


is uglier than justice (Gorg. 475 B : to ahiKsla-dat kuklov Gorgias 

. . . TO Se aSiKsiv aicT'x^toi/) , and this led to his defeat in in the 

the discussion with Socrates. Now Thrasymachus, as if ^'^'^^ ^°^^ 

he had been present then, dares to assert that perfect 

. . . . . , , Bepuohc. 

injustice is beautiful {Bep. 348 d e), whereby he places 

himself above traditional opinion. Socrates recognises 
the greater consistency of this position (348 e : tovto tj^tj 
aTspswTSpov . . . si 'yap \vcms\slv fisv rrjv aBiKiav srldicro^ 
KaKuiv fisvroi rj ala'^pov avTO oifxoXoysts sjvat, (oairsp 
aWoi TtvsSf sc'x^ofxsv av ri Xsystv Kara to. vop^i^opisva) ; 
we might take this as an allusion to the earlier work, and 
as a sign that, however the first book might be earlier than 
the other books, we need not admit it to be earlier than 
the Gorgias. The standpoint of the author is far more More 
advanced, since he acknowledges that his argumentation, advanced 
though sufficient to overthrow a sophist's impudence, is stand- 
not satisfactory to himself, so long as he has not given a ^°^° 
definition of ju stice, which accordingly becomes the pro- ^^ . 
f essed aim of the whole work. In the small dialogues no ^^e 
definition of any virtue is accepted as definitive, and in sophists 
the larger ethical dialogues the question whether virtue secondary. 
is teachable overshadowed the logical inquiry as to the 
nature of virtue. It is only in the Bepuhlic that this 
problem is undertaken, and with a new purpose, to apply 
it to politics. 

There are some hints which show that the first book First book 
was not, as Hermann (p. 538) thought, originally meant ^o* an in- 
as an independent whole, to which the following was dependent 
added later. The mention of this life as preparing us for 
death (330 E : iyyvTspco wv rwv sksI fxdWov n Kadopa avrd -,, 
. . . 331 a: tjBsla sXirls asl ■ndpsaTi) shows US that Plato, relation 
even when he began to write his Bepuhlic, had passed to the 
beyond the stage of the small dialogues, and perhaps following 
planned already in writing the first book the final myth books, 
concluding the tenth book. 

Also the threefold partition of the soul, which is the 
most important doctrine of the fourth book, is here as in 



tion of 

fully ex- 
in the 
Duty of 
to accept 
denied in 

tion of 
in the 

I Difference 

1 of terms 

places the 
first book 
to the 
to the 

the Phaedo already prepared, when Socrates says that 
the rulers of a state are paid in money, honour, or the 
advantage of escaping a penalty for refusing to rule 
(347 A : fxiaOov rots fxiWovaiv sOsXrjastv ap'^siv, rj npjvptov 
fj Ti/j,7)v rj ^Tjfiiav, mv firj ap')(r]). This is here a riddle for 
Glaucon, and is fully explained only in the seventh book, 
where the obligation of the philosopher to rule a state 
against his inclination is clearly expounded. This doctrine 
is in advance of the Gorgias, where Plato said that in 
order to get political influence the ruler must be like the 
people {Gorg. 513 B : ocms as rovrois ofjuoiorarov uTrspyd- 
^STUi, ovTos as iroirjasi, cos sTTidu/Msls slvai, TroXirtfcov koI 
pyjropLKov) . He then saw true politics only in individual 
educational influence (521 D : olfiai . . . sirLxstpslv rrj ws 
d\r]6(os TToXiTLKjj Ts'^vr) Kol Trpcmsiv ra iroXiTiKa), and 
rejected Callicles' exhortations to him to take an active 
part in the rule of the state. 

Now we see that already in the first book of the 
Bepublic Plato is conscious of the duty of obtaining 
political power in order to avoid the penalty of being 
ruled by his inferiors (347 c : rr)* ^rj/jblas fisryiaTT) to viro 
TTovijpoTspov apxsodai). The three different kinds of men 
are also in the same passage opposed to each other (347 b : 
^iXoTLjxov rs Kol (^ikdp'yvpov — ol dryaOoi) very much as in the 
Phaedo (82 C : (f)t\oao(f)ovvT£s — (fnXo-^p-qfiaroi — (i>L\6rLfjboi,). 
As in the Phaedo we see here the origin of the threefold 
partition of the soul. In the Phaedo Plato puts on one 
side the philosopher, and on the other side those who are 
not philosophers, almost identifying the ambitious and 
the money-lover (Phaedo 68 c : the opposite of the 
philosopher is named ^iXoawfjuaros and subdivided : 6 avTov 

Ss TTOV OVroS TVyXaVSL OiV KOl (f)L\0-)(pT']fJ,aT09 Kal (f)l\6rL/X0S, 

TjTOL rd sTspa tovtcov rj dp,(j)6Tspa). Here, likewise, we have 
not a direct trichotomy but a dichotomy with a subsequent 
division of one of the two parts, without a definite name 
for the third part, for which in the Phaedo the term 
(f)i\6ao(j}os is used. This seems to show that B. I is 


earlier than the Phaedo, and we find a confirmation of it results 
in the circumstance that for the lover of money the word also from 
(piXdpjvpos is used, as in the Gorgias (515 e : HspiKksa *^^ differ- 
irsTTOLTjKsvai ^A6r]vaiovs (piXapyvpovs), while in the Phaedo ^f' 
this word is replaced by (f)iXo')(pr]/j,aTQs, which also fre- 
quently recurs as a constant term in the later books of ^j^^ ^^^at 
the Republic. The same relation between the Phaedo ijfe is 
and the first book results from the comparison of the peculiar 
following passages : to soul. 

Rep. I. 353 D, aftei' a long enu- Phaedo 105 c: without anypre- 

meration of tpya (innov, 352 E, liminary explanation of \Yhat spyoi/ 

o(^6a\yLu>v, etc.) follows : /txera means, or of what activities of the 

ravra robe cmei^rai • ^v^^s ccttl ti soul constitute life, comes the 

epyov, o aXXw tS)v ovtcov oiib' av kv\ (j^uestion : ' AnoKpivov . . . <a av t'l 

npa^aii, . . . to eTTtpeXe^adai kcu eyyevrjTai trutpnTi, ^cov earai; 'Q,i av 

ap^fiu Ka'i ^ovXfvecrdaL K(ii rci rot- ^^Xly ^'4"1- ovkdvv del tovto ovtcos 

uiira iravra, ead' orw aXAo) rj '^v\^ ^X^*' """^^ y^P ^^K*-' V ^' ^^• 
BiKaioos av avra dnoSo'ipev, Ka\ (pdlp-ev 
'i,8ia €K€tvr]s eivat ; — ov8ev\ (iXKco. — 

Ti S' ail TO C^v ; '^v^^is cjiricropfv epyov dvai; puXiaTa, 

It seems improbable that Pla to should have explaine d This, 

hi s thought abo ut_Jifp «■« «■ ppmilinr_^oWe r of soul wi th based on 

such^j^_series_of_indiicti©B-s, if the result had been earlier ^°°g i"" 

stated to be evident, and on the other side, the short |^^<^*'^°'^^ 

statement of the Phaedo is best justified by the more „ 


elementary exposition preceding it. It is not the length ^^^^^^ ^^ 
of an explanation which decides the question of priority, evident 
because a longer elucidation might be a supplement to a in the 
previous short statement of the question. But here we Phaedo. 
have on one side an elementary induction, and on the 
other side the result of this induction quoted as evident 
truth. Under these circumstances the longer explanation 
may be reasonably held to be the earlier. 

The position of Book I between the Gorgias and Order in 
Phaedo is further confirmed by the notion of the peculiar the soul, 
virtue of the soul, which appears here as a development of 'Mentioned 
what in the Gorgias was named the peculiar order in a ^" 
soul : 

T 2 


here de- 

of the 
senses re- 
but with- 
out insis- 

Gorg, 506 e: rd^et rerayiievov 
Kcil K€KOCT firjixevov iuTiv rj apf.Ti] 
eKcia-Tov . . . Koa fios Tis apa 
f-yyevofievos iv eKcicrrco 6 eKacrrov 
olKflos aya6ov rrapexei fKaarov 
rav ovTa>v . . . kqi ■v|/wx') K"0'I^ov 
€)(ovaa Tov eavrrjs afxeivcop rrji 

Be]). 353 E : ap' ovv n-ore yf/vxrj 
Til avTTjs epyn ev uTrepyuo-erat 
a-Tepofxevr] rrfs olKeias apeTrjs, 
^ ciSvvaToi' ; — ^AbvvaTov — 'AvuyKT] 
apa KUKj) ■v/'i'X^ KCiKas ap)(eii' KCti 
eTTLpfKeiadai, t[] 8e dyadf] iravTa 
ravTu ev wpaTTeiv, Cf. 335 B : tcov 
Kvvav dpfTi], also rtov Imraiv. 

The notion of a peculiar power of the soul is intro- 
duced in connection with the observation that each kind 
of perception also depends upon a peculiar faculty, 
resulting in a special activity, which cannot be fulfilled by 
any other instrument than the corresponding organ of 
sense (352 E : sa6^ orqy av aXXw Xhoisf rj ocpdoKfjuots ; ov hrjra 
. . cLKOVcraLs aWw rj oocriv ; ovSafMws. 353 B C : ap' av ttots 
o/jL/jLara to avroiv spyov KaXcos airspjdcyatvTo fj,r] £')(pvra ttjv 
avroiv oiKsiav dpsTrjv . . .). This is a clear statement of the 
theory known in our century as the law of specific energies 
of the senses. But Plato did not give any special im- 
portance to this observation, and it served him only as 
an analogy tending to establish his general view of human 
faculties. However, a variety of psychic faculties is not 
yet discovered in the first book, and the soul as in the 
Phaedo is spoken of as one indivisible whole. 

third, and 
of the 
the primi- 
tive state. 

Books II-IV 

These three books, together equal in size to the 
Gorgias, form one whole, and represent the primitive 
state, including some considerations on poetry and 
primary education. The end of this part does not exactly 
coincide with the end of the fourth book, because p. 445 b 
begins a new argument, the explanation of a variety of 
states corresponding to the variety ,of souls, very 
soon interrupted at the beginning of the fifth book 
by the digression on the equality of the sexes. If 
we disregard this last page of the fourth book, connecting 
it with B. A' and preparing for B. VIU-IX, we are justi- 


fied in treating B. II-IV as representing one important 
division of the Republic, independently of the question 
whether the following parts were added immediately 
afterwards or later. 

We see here chiefly one theory which belongs more to Threefold 
psychology than to logic, but which is indispensable for psirtition 
an adequate appreciation of Plato's logical progress. This ° 
is the theory of the th reefold par tition '^^ ^^'^ cnnl, intro- 
duced here for the first time and based on the logical law contra- 
of contradiction. Plato discovered a truth of which he diction, 
evidently was not yet aware in writing the PJiaedo, which ap- 
namely that the soul has multiple opposed activities pears here 
unified only through constan t efforts (448 e : sva yevo/xsvov notonlyas 
i/c ttoWmu). He acknowledges the great difficulty of ^^ ° 
deciding whether the different activities do not belong to , . '^ 
one and the same soul (436 A B : x^Xeira Sioploaadat d^icos n^eta- 
Xoyov . . . si oXt] rfi yjrv^f) Kuti' sKacTTOU avTCOv irpUTTOfxiv . . . physical 
rj Tpialv ovcnv dXXo aXXtp). But he invents a safe method principle, 
for the solution of his new problem. He puts it down 
as an unquestionable truth, that the same thing cannot 
act or be acted upon simultaneously in contrary ways 
(436 B : ravrov ravavria ttoislv rj Trda'^siv Kara ravrov ye Koi 
irpos ravrov uvk sdsXtiasi dixa, repeated 437 A, 439 B).' 

This sharp and general formulation of the law of contra- 
diction not only as a law of thought, as in the PJiaedo, but 
for the first time as a law of being, as a metaphysical 
axiom, repeated several times with great insistence, is a 
very important step, not easily to be accounted for by those 
who believe the first part of the Bejjublic to belong to 
about the same time as the Protagoras. Also the ter- 
minology used to express this truth betrays a stage much 
more advanced. Plato speaks here as a philosopher ^'^*° 
already accustomed to exact definition, not the youthful 
inquirer hesitating and declining the definitive solution of j^ 
every proposed problem, as he appeared in the Protagoras thesis is 
and earlier dialogues. He is now familiar with the taken for 
hypothetical method (437 a: v-noOsfjisvoi cds tovtov ovtws gianted 


ally, and 
may be 

of the 

called also 
kinds or 
do not 
spond to 
will, feel- 
ing, and 

ledge and 
the will to 
act ac- 
cording to 
it belong 
to one 
feeling is 

eyovTos sis to irpocrOsv irpoiaifjLSV, 6/j,o\o<yr]aavTSS, sav irors 
dWy (fyavfi ravra ?) ravrt], Trdvra tjfMtu ra airo rovrou 
^vfi^aivovra \sXv/Jisva sasadaC) and proceeds according to 
the logical rule given in the Phaedo (100 A), arguing out 
the consequences of the most probable hypothesis. 

This leads him to the conclusion that as our sensual 
desires are frequently in contradiction with "our reas on, 
desire and reason must be different from each other 
(439 c D) . He thus establishes three powers or facuHTes 
of the soul for which he does not yet use the term hvvaixis 
(B. V 477 C: ^i^aoixsv hvvdfjbsis elvaL jsvos tl tmv ovtcov) ^ 
calling them s'lBv (402 c, 437 d, 439 e, 440 e), yivv (^^3 d), 
or /xspr] {4:4:2 c) , with some hesitation as to their relation 
to the whole. He seems to have looked upon the faculties 
as organs or instruments of the soul, according to the 
analogy of the senses, which are instruments of the body. 
The three Platonic faculties do not exactly correspond to 
will, feeling, and reason, which have been later generally 
used for the classification of psychical acts. Plato's Xoytari- 
Kov (439 D : TO CO Xoyi^srai, XoyLarLKOv Trpoaayopsvovrss rrjs 
ylrv^^rjs), though it is apparently the organ of reasoning, 
includes also the will-power, because it could otherwise 
not command (441 E : rcS Xoyta-TtKtp ap'^sw Trpoa- 
r]K£L)f Plato did not distinguish between pure objective 
thougEt and the decisions of will resulting from a 
certain intellectual knowledge. For him knowledge and 
the will to act according to this knowledge were one. 
Again, he did not link into one all kinds of feelings, >but 
separated sensual feelings, under the general appellation 
of desire, from the moral feeling. Thus two of his faculties 
{kiriOvixia d.i\di 6vp6s) correspond to one of later psychology, 
while he finds one faculty where later the will has been 
distinguished from the intellect. This union of will and 
intellect, as taught by Plato, is preserved in the current use 
of the word reason, even in tlie philosophical theories of 
Spinoza, and in the ' Praktische Vernunft ' of Kant. 

Plato assumes a gradation of faculties, placing first 


reason, then the moral feehng (439 e : w 6vfiov/jis6a — Opposi- 

441 E : TftJ 8vpL0£t^£i TTpoarjKii VTTrjKOW slvaL Koi ^v^fxdyw tio'^i of 

Tovrov {rov XoyicrTtKov), also 441 A), and at the lowest ^^°^ 

stage the sensuous desire (439 d : to to sod ts koI irsLvrj koX ^°" ^ 
. \ . V V „ \ n ' ,' ' ' ' to the 

oiy^T} Kai TTspi ras aXXas sTriovfiias srrTorjrai aXoytarov rs ,, 

Kal sTndv/jLTjTLKov) . He argues from the contradictions 

and conflicts of these three faculties to their independent 

existence. First, the sensuous desires are frequently Dift'erence 

opposed to reason and moral feeling, then the moral in their 

feeling itself is developed earlier than the reason (441 b : growth. 

dvfjLov fJLSv svdvs yevofjLSL'a /xsaTa iari, Xojlct/ulov ^' svioi fisv 

Sfioiya Sotcovoiv ovSsTrore fUTaXajji/Bdvsiv, ol hs ttoWo) oyjrs 

TTOTs). Here we notice that to dv/xosiBss does not entirely 

correspond even to the notion of moral feeling, because it 

could not then be attributed to animals (441 b : iv toIs 

drjplois dv Tts' IhoL o Xsysts). 

It is a very curious circumstance that the term Limita- 

dvfjLosiBss, very frequent in this part of the Republic, and tion in 

also in B. VIII and IX, is entirely absent from the use of 

B. V-VII and from B. X, recurring besides these parts ^ ^[^ 

of the Bepubhc only once m Plato m the Timaeus, in 

connection with a recapitulation of the contents of the 

Bepublic. It seems that Plato had a passing fancy for this 

term and soon recognised it as insufficient, as he clearly 

avows later in B. VI (504 a : TpLTJa dbr) -yfrv^^ijs Biaarr)- 

adfJb£V0L . , . B : sppi'jdr) ra tots Tip- /j,cv aKpt/Bstas, ojs 

sfjLo'i i^atvsTo, iXXcirr/ . . . ). Here also he already con- Imperfec- 

fesses the imperfection of the method used (435 d : sv y tion of 

ladt . . . uKpi^Ms fjusv TovTO sK TOiouTCov fisdoScov, oiais ™^ *^' 

^, --x' ' n >' -^ ' rt \ 1 confessed 

vvv sv Tots Xoyo(S -ypcofisua, ov /jltj ttots Xapcofxsv) ana 

announces a ' longer way ' (435 d : dXXr] yap /xaKporspa ^ ^- 

Kal irXeidiv oSos rj stti tovto dyovoa) leading with a greater ^^.^y ^n- ' 

certainty to truth. This longer way, however, is not nounced, 

fully shown in the Bepublic, and when later, in the sixth but not ' 

book, Glaucon insists on having it explained (506 d : ^"^ly 

tf 5- / / v , / > - "^ ^ shown. 

waiTSp oiKaLoavvrjS irspi Kac aa^(ppo(TVPi]s Kat tmv aXXwv 

SiiiXdsi, ovTQ) Kal TTspt, rou dyadov SisXdys), Socrates con- 


The idea 
of the 

could not 
be taught 



The men- 
tion of a 
longer way 
is an 
to the 
of ideas. 
In the 
and the 
also, the 
of ideas 
was not 

It is an 

peculiar to 
Plato to 
sively new 

fesses himself unable to do it (506 e : avro fjusv rl ttot' iari 
rajaOov, sdawfisv ro vvv slvai ' ttXsov <ydp fxot (fiaLvsrai tj Kara 
rr]v Trapovaav opfxriif e(f)LKsadat rov ys Sokovvtos ifiol to, vvv), 
and returns to his beautiful allegories and metaphors. 
It was really beyond the reach not only of the historic 
Socrates, but even of the Platonic Socrates. "When Plato 
set himself to expound the ' longer way,' he selected as 
his spokesmen Parmenides and the Eleatic Stranger, and 
made Socrates a hearer of their wisdom. 

The allusion to the longer way in B. IV is very 
valuable as a chronological sign, because it dismisses at 
once the supposition that this part of the Bejpuhlic could 
have been written before the discovery of the theory of 
ideas. Plato looked upon his newly discovered treasure as 
a viysteri'um too deep to be constantly and familiarly 
referred to. In the Symposium the greatest part of the 
dialogue does not contain any allusion to the avro to 
KoKov, and then by a surprise the beautiful vision is pre- 
sented in the speech of Diotima, suddenly as it had 
appeared to Plato himself in his meditations. The same 
order and method were observed also in the Phaedo. In 
the beginning (up to p. 65 d) there is no mention of ideas, 
then the ideas are mentioned as notions {SiKaioi' avro 
65 d), these notions are slowly worked out into indepen- 
dence of the senses (74 C : ov ravrov dp' sa-rlv ravrd ts rd 
taa KoX avro to l(tov), and only after the final objections of 
Simmias and Cebes, after the criticism of Anaxagoras and 
other philosophers, appears the theory of ideas introduced 
ironically as something well known and implied in the 
preceding argument (100 B : ovSsv Kaivov, dXX' dnsp dd 
Kol dWoTS Kal sv TM TrapsXrjXvdoTt \6<ya> oiSsv TTSTrav^iai 
Xsywv). This rhetorical artifice of Plato, which deceived 
some inquirers so far as to make them doubt the fact that 
the Phaedo is the first written exposition of the theory 
of ideas, is repeated on a larger scale in the Bepuhlic. 
Campbell (Eep. II. p. 11) compares the late revelation 
of the ideas in B. V with the peripeteia of a drama. 


Sybel "^ explained this way of proceeding by educational points of 

motives. It is quite natural that Plato should reserve view of 

the application of the theory of ideas for special occasions, 8"^®^*®^ 

and he found no such occasion in the first sketch of his ^ 


political views. It was sufficient for him to allude to the 

longer way. 

Xh e thre efold partition of the soul is Q«rt intro duced Analogy 

as a psychological problem, nor as subsidiary to some between 

logical investigation, but simply i n order to show the ^^^*^ ^"'^ 

parallelism_jbfitffieen the three classes in a s tate (rulers, . 

^ c 7— "-^ — :_ denotes 

soldiers, and middle class) and the parts of an individual ^ Y&tev 

soul. This analogy between the individual and the state, stage of 

which can boast of such a long history after it had been thought 

invented by Plato, is not the idea of a young Socratic than the 

pupil, but of the Master of the Academy, and is a con- pu^ly 

sequence of the theory of ideas. When he began to ^"^ ^^i' "^ 

, • ■ -, ■, -, , • 1 • ^11- point of 

generalise widely and to seek m everything the ruhng . 
idea, he thought that he discovered an identity of ^f ^j^g 
principle between the state and the individual, and this Sociatic 
led him from the individualistic ethics of the Gorcjias to dialogues, 
the politics of the Republic. The transition is already 
indicated in the Symposium (210 c : riKTBiv Xojovs roiov- 
Tovs ^rjTeiv, o'iTivs9 'jroLy]aov(TL ^sXr lov s rovs vsovs, iva ava/y- 
KaaQfi av BedaacrOaL to si> rols sTTLriiSsv/jLaat kuc roli- vofMois 
KoXov KoX tout' Ihelv on irav avro avTW ^vyysvss sanv), 
and this indication has been taken for an allusion to the 
Bepuhlic by those who cling to the belief of a Bepuhlic 
written very early, within the first ten years after the 
death of Socrates. 

Such a belief is founded on a gross misconception of Relation 
the relations between Plato and Aristophanes, and between 
illustrates the uselessness of interpreting Plato from 

--'■ L. von Sybel, Platons Tcchnik an Symposion imd Euthydem 
nachgctviesen, Marburg 1889 ; of the same author on the same subject : 
Platons Symposion, ein Progranim der Akademie, Marburg 1888 ; on some 
smaller articles of the same author, see a review by Natorp in Philosophische 
Monatslicfte, vol. xxvi. p. 449. 

Plato and 


tation of 
in favour 
of later 
of the 
of the soul 
to the 
with the 
from the 
with the 

ments in 
a very 

uncertain allusions found in the works of others, instead 
of explaining him from his own writings. There is much 
to show that, though the method in the first books of the 
Bepuhlic is avowedly elementary, the threefold partition 
of the soul represents a later stage than the Phaedo. 
This has been best proved by Schultess ^-^ (p. 55), whose 
arguments have never been refuted. The theory of three 
parts of the soul, maintained by Plato in the Timaeus, is a 
later theory than the simplicity of the soul affirmed in the 
Phaedo, and could not be left out of consideration in the 
Phaedo if Plato professed it at that time. We have in the 
tenth book of the Bepublic a sample of the manner in 
which Plato deals with this subject afterwards. Though 
he speaks of the immortality of the soul generally, he 
adds there expressly that the true nature of the soul, its 
multiplicity or simplicity, will best be seen in the next 
life (61'2 A : tot av ris tSoi avTrjs tyjv aXrjOr] c^vatv, sits 
7roXvsi8r]s slts fiovosiB/]s). A similar allusion to the parts 
of the soul would certainly be found in the Phaedo, if the 
Phaedo had been written after the first books of the 
Bepublic . 

The later date of this work is also seen in another 
peculiarity of Plato's later writings, already visible in the 
Phaedo but further develo]3ed in the Bepublic and even 
later. Plato takes every possible opportunity to establish 
subtle logical distinctions in which we may discern the 
trace of his oral teaching in the Academy. He is de- 
lighted to bring such distinctions into a very concise form, 
which requires an explanation and is repeated afterwards. 
Any unprejudiced reader will recognise that a phrase 
like : ' haa ly' saTl TotavTU ola slvai rov, ra ^?v ttolu uttu 


(438 B, repeated 438 d) requires some logical training to 
be understood at first reading. Such phrases would be 
vainly sought for even in the Cratylus or the Symposium, 
and they are far above the sophisms of the Euthydemus. 

'-"-** Fritz Schultess, Platonisclie Forschungen, Bonn 1875. 


The Platonic Socrates delivers this logical riddle as if it to be un- 
were something quite natural, but Plato's experience as derstood, 
a teacher showed him that it was too difficult for the ^^^d ex- 
ordinary reader, and Glaucon answers at once that he ^ ^'^^ ^ 
^ T . T examples, 

does not understand, m order to get the necessary ex- ^-^^^ 

planation from Socrates. Socrates explains by a number repeated. 

of examples that correlated terms remain correlated after This pro- 

the addition of a qualification to each of them. If a duces di- 

science is the science of a knowledge, then mathematical gressions 

science will be the science of mathematical knowledge. °°* 

Plato pushes his caution so far as to observe that the , 
. . , . . to the 

qualification of both terms need not consist m the same progress of 
word, as for instance th$ science of health is not healthy, argument, 
After this lengthy explanation he repeats his logical and shows 
theorem almost in the same words, and concludes with increased 
another example, until Glaucon is satisfied and acknow- interest 
ledges himself to have understood (438 e) . This digression ^° ^^^^' 
was not indispensable to the progress of the argument, 
and appears to have been introduced not to meet ob- 
jections really made by somebody, but only as a result 
of Plato's increasing fondness for logic, and his experience 
about wrong inferences from dictum simpliciter {dirXtos 
438 E) ad dictum secundum quid, a sophism exemplified 
already in the Euthydemus, but treated methodically for 
the first time in the Republic. 

A similar logical digression gives us the method of Method of 
exclusion or of remainders, by which one part of a whole exclusion 
is investigated through elimination of the other parts ^'^*^'°' 
(428 A : wairsp aXXcov rivcbv rsTTcipcov, si sv ri s^TjTovfisv 
aviwv sv orwovv . . . si ra rpla irporspou iyvcoplaafisv, ,. 

avTU) CIV TovTfp syvcopicTTO TO ^T}Tovfj,£voi>) . This is here (jefinit 


introduced as leading to the definition of justice after of justice, 

separating from the general notion of virtue the three then not 

other virtues which together with justice constitute, "^^^' ^^' 

according to Plato, the whole of virtue, namely temper- ^^^^^ ^ 

ance, courage, and wisdom. But if we look at the end . . 

of the discussion we see that the method of exclusion „„.^^,.^ 


to be the 
source of 
not co- 
to the 

In earlier 
works wis- 
dom had 
the first 
place, now 
given to 
justice, as 
also in the 
first book 
of the 

has not been applied to the particular case for which it 
was introduced, because when justice appears at last, 
it is not discovered as the remaining part of virtue. 
After the elucidation of the three virtues corresponding 
to the three parts of the soul and to the three classes of 
citizens, Plato pretends to be still in the dark about 
justice (432 C : 8va/3ar6s ys rts o tottos (jyalvsrai, kul 
sirlaKios' scTTi 'yovv (TKorsivbs koI SvcrSispsvvrjTos) and 
takes this opportunity to invent one word and to use 
another in a new meaning for describing this special 
darkness. It is the same laborious play as later in the 
Farmenides : justice is found not as a virtue co-ordinated 
to the three others, but as the source of them (433 b : 
b iraatv skslvols tijv Svvafj,tv 7rapscr')(^sv, ooars ijjavsadai). 

Here also we find a point of view in advance of the 
Phaedo, in which wisdom was the chief virtue, and every 
other virtue to be exchanged for wisdom {Phaedo 69 b). 
The prevalence of wisdom is proper to the earlier thought 
of Plato, as we see in the Protagoras (352 d, cf . 357 c) and 
Euthydemus (282 a). In the ^Symj^osm^Tt likewise the first 
place is given to <})p6vr}cris (209 a : "^vxfj Trpoa-ijKst tsksIv 
(f)p6v7}aiv T£ Kot rrjv aXkrjv apsrtjv), and it is a new de- 
parture in the JRepublic to recognise the peculiar position 
of justice as a link between all other virtues. This view, 
maintained also in the first book of the Laics (631 c : 
SK {(j)povr}<7£(os Koi a(o<i>poavvi]s) /u-sr' avdpsias KpaOsvTwv 
TpLTov ai' s'lrj SiKuLoavvT] . . . TO)v dsioiv dyaOcov), is the later 
view of Plato, while in his earlier works justice was only 
a part of virtue, co-ordinate vdth holiness or temperance 
{Prot. 329 c). In the Meno (79 d : /jli] toIvvv firjSs ov 
sri ^i]Tovfisi'r]s dpSTrjs dXrjs 6 rt scrriv ol'ou Sia TOiv TavT7]9 
fjLopioiv ciTTOKpcpo/jisvos BrjXoiasLv avTTjV oraiovv, rj clWo ortovu 
TovTcp TO) avTM TpoTTfp Xsycov) the identification of virtue 
with justice is even expressly denied, while already in the 
first book of the Bepuhlic justice appears to be the essence 
of virtue (353 E : dpsTi-jv yp-v^r/s SiKaLoaviojv — 335 c : hcKato- 
avvT) avdpayrrsia dpsTrj), a position which seems to have been 


again modified in favour of vov9 and (^ypovrjais in the 
Timaeus and the later books of the Laios. 

We may admit that the increasing importance of import- 
justice in the Platonic ethics is one of the practical results ance of 
of the theory of ideas, which required at the summit of Justice 
Being an Ihsa dyaOov, prepared already in the Symposium ^^^^ *^ 
(212 a) and in the Phaedo (99 c). Also in the second book ^.^^^^ ^ 
of the Bcpuhlic we meet the conception of good as a self- jjeas. 
sufficient aim (357 B : TOiovhs rt ayaOov, o Ss^al/uLsd'' av 
e-)(SLV ov TMv aTTofiatvovTcov e(f}isfjLSvoc, aW ' avTo avrov svSKa 
doTTtiXo/jisvoi}, closely related to that of Aristotle in his 

For the date of this part of the Bepuhlic as coming Relation 

next after the Phaedo and the preceding dialogues, we find to the 

some other hints which it will be sufficient to mention -P'^c^^o. 
briefly : 

1. Speech as an imitation of thought (382 b c : to 75 Speech 
£u Tois Xojois jjiLixriixd rt, rod sv tt} 'v/^'f;)^^ sari Tradtj/xaros Kal ^''^^ 
vorspov ysyovbs slSmXov) seems to refer to the Cratylus thought. 
(430 B : ovofMa fii/MiJiMa rov Trpdy/jiaTOs). 

2. STrLaryjfxri is opposed to ho^a (444 a : (TO(f)iav rijv lOiow- 
eiriaTarovaav ravrr] rf) irpd^SL iTnaTtjfMTjv . . . dfiaOiav . . . ledge and 
ho^av) as in the Meiio (86 a, cf. 97 c, 98 b). In the Meno opinion 
the distinction is introduced as new, and in the Bepuhlic ^^^' ^^^' 
it is assumed to be generally known. That Plato again *"^""^^^^^ 
in the Bepuhlic also currently uses e-jncTrrjixr] in a primitive 

, I . , 1)116 XGrms 

meaning, equivalent to rs'^yrj, signifies nothing, because a changed. 
careful fixity of terminology was not yet acquired by 
Plato, as we see even later in B. V-VII. 

3. God is free from error and lying (382 D : irotrjTr^s simplicity 
fjbkv dpa -ylrsvBijs sv 6sm ovk svl . . . E : iravrrj dpa dyjrsvhss and unity 
TO BaifJLOPLov T£ Kol TO Oslov). This agTccs with the of God, 
Cratylus (438 c: otet svavria dv stlOsto uvtos avrS 6 Oeis^ along with 
cbv Bat/x(ov Tis y] Ofos;), only here the unity and simplicity 

of God is insisted upon, which marks an advance beyond ^^ ^^^ 

the traditional polytheism of earlier dialogues, which still ditional 

survives in some expressions (381 c : dhvyarov Osm iOeXsiv gods. 


of one God 
peculiar to 
later Pla- 

of labour. 

Change of 
the poets 
is defini- 
tive, and 
up to 
latest age. 

No recon- 
and thus 

avTov aX^oiovv, aXA-', cos solks, KoKKicrros kuI apiaros o)v sls- 
TO Sviarov SKacTTos avTMV fisvsL asl airXois sv rfj avTov 
fiop(f)7J). But an occasional mention of more than one 
god, occurring in a criticism of traditional polytheism, 
is no evidence against Plato's progress towards mono- 
theism, as we see from other passages in which 6 6s6s is 
used in a monotheistic sense (382 e : o Oso^ airXovv koI 
ak7}f>ss sv IS spyo) h'al iv Xoyw, koI ovts avros fjisOlararav 
ovre d\.Xovs s^airard ; also 379 C : o Ssos, sttsiBt] a<yad6s, . . . 
TOiv afyadoiv atrtos, and elsewhere 379 a, 380 d, etc. Cf . 
Phaeclo 62 c: 6s6s). The doctrine of one God, a perfect 
Being, developed in the Republic, is adhered to in the 
Timaeus and Lmos, while in earlier dialogues up to the 
Symposium a plurality of gods is either tacitly implied or 
expressly admitted. 

4. A curious contradiction to a statement of the 
Symposium is contained in the principle ' one man one 
work ' (394 E : els sKacrros iy /xsv av s7riTijSsv/u,a koXms sTmrj- 
hsvoi, TToWa 8' ov) when applied specially to the production 
and acting of comedy and tragedy (395 a : ovBs ra Bokovptu 
syyvs aWtjXcov slvai hvo fJbiixrjfJiaTa BvvavTcii ol avTol afxa £v 
fii/jieicrOai, olov Kco/xq)SLav koX rpayayBlau ttoiovvtss), while in 
the Symposium Socrates is made to prove the identity of 
the comic and tragic poet (223 d). This discrepancy is in 
close relation to the change of Plato's attitude towards 
the poets. While in the Symposium the tragic poet and 
the comic poet are represented as friends of Socrates ; 
and Homer and Hesiod, as deserving immortal fame, are 
placed in one line with Lycurgus and Solon (209 de), 
Plato now despises poetry as a mere /xlp^ijaLs and banishes 
Homer from his state. It is strange that some erudite 
critics, who readily believe in an irreconcilable enmity 
between Plato and Isocrates, and take such a supposition 
for a firm basis of Platonic chronology, at the same time 
admit the possibility of Plato's reconciliation with the 
poets, which would have taken place if the Symposium- 
were written after the Bepuhlic or Phaedrus. It is much 


less probable that a philosopher like Plato should remain the S^jm- 
all his life hostile to a living man, than that he should posium 
become untrue to fundamental principles once recognised ™"^* 
and repeatedly urged. We know from the last books of ^^^^ ^^^° 
the Laivs (941 b, 967 c, cf . 890 a, 964 c, and many other ^^'"^'' 
passages) that Plato up to his latest age thought poets 
dangerous, and we have no reason whatever to believe 
that he changed his opinion after he had written the 
Republic. Thence it results that the Republic, at least 
from B. II onwards, must be later than the Syni- 

5. While in the Symposium the educational influence Educa- 
of Beauty began vdth the love of beautiful- bodies (210 a), tional im- 
in the Republic harmony and rhythm are acknowledged portance 
to be the chief factors in education (400 d-401 c) and are °^ ^^^' 
said to creep into the soul unobserved (401c). If we '^'^"^^" 

1,1,,, . . rhythm. 

remember that the same view recurs m the Latvs (665 e) 
and Timaeus (47 d), it will be easy to recognise that also 
in this respect the Republic is later than the Si/mposium,. 

6. The purification of the senses (411 d : 8iaKadaipo- Purifica- 
fxsvoov rcov aladijascov) is a very concise term scarcely used *^°° °^ 
before the Phaedo, where the necessity of such a purifica- ^'^°^^^- 
tion is explained at length. 

7. The love of the Beauty of the soul (402 d) is here Love 
mentioned as entirely independent of corporeal Beauty, of the 
while in the Symposium (210 b) such a love is a higher ^^^^^y °* 
degree to which the pupil is led, after beginning with *^® ^°"^' 
the love of physical Beauty. In the Symposium sensual 

love as a lower degree is almost excused, and here we 
find it absolutely condemned (403 b). 

8. Although the method of exposition is a popular Terms 
one and not based on the theory of ideas, in some passages taken 
terms first explained in the Symposium and Phaedo are ^^^m the 
employed as if they were familiar. This occurs apparently *^^°^y 
against the author's intention, but furnishes us with a °* ^'^^^^' 
valuable evidence against Krohn's opinion that the theory °\^-^ ^^ 
of ideas was entirely ignored by the author of the first against 



later date 
of com- 


with that 
of the 
Praisp of 
j ustice 
in the 

with rhe- 

of the 
to Aris- 
ziisae not 

books of the Bepublic. This would leave no room for 
a distinction between avra ra tvjs a-wcppoavvrjs slh-q (402 c) 
and sIkovus ainoiv, nor for Koka ijdr] sv rco £i8sl o/jloXo- 
yovvra sksivols xal ^vfjut^wvovvra, rov avrov fisrs'^^ovTa tvttov, 
as a KaWiaTov Osafia tcC hvvajjusvw dsaaOat (402 D). This 
power of superhuman vision here invoked is certainly 
the same which we know from the 8y?nposium and 
Phaedo. Nor are traces of the theory of ideas limited to 
these passages. We read also rt t' scjtlv auro kuO^ uvto 
(358 B) — avTo BiKacoavvrjV (363 A) — avrb S' sxdrspop ry aurov 
hvvdfiSL sv rfj rod s^^ovros '^v^l} (366 E). 

9. It need scarcely be added that the definition of 
courage (430 B : SwafiLS koI o-corrjpla Sid ttuvtos S6^r]S opdrjs 
Ts KOI vofMt/iiov SsivMv TTspt KoX fMT]) , wliich has been held by 
an eminent critic to be earlier than the Laches because of 
the promise to treat this subject again (430 c), shows a 
marked advance beyond the discussion on courage in the 
Laches. And the supposition that the Gorgias is later 
because Glaucon says that nobody has as yet praised 
justice as it deserves (358 d) is likewise based on a mis- 
conception. The Gorgias cannot be looked upon by 
Plato at this stage as an adequate encomium on justice, 
because it deals with the more special question whether 
to suffer wrongs is better than to do them, not to dwell 
on the absurdity of drawing matter-of-fact inferences 
from a rhetorical figure. Such assertions as that about 
the praise of love in the Symposium or the praise of 
justice in the Republic cannot be taken literally ; any 
more than Isocrates' saying in the Euagoras that nobody 
before him has written an encomium on a living man. 

The above considerations fully confirm the conclusions 
about the date of the first part of the Bepublic which 
resulted from our study of style. There cannot be the 
smallest doubt that the first part of the Bepiublic, except 
the first book which is probably earlier, was written after 
the Symposium and Phaedo, and that therefore it is 
impossible to admit that Aristophanes in 391, when he 


produced his Ecclesiazusae, meant Plato's (IV. 424 a) otherwise 
short alhision to the community of wives, or his later ^e should 
exposition in B. V. If this comedy were a parody of ^^^^ 
Plato's Bepublic, then Plato would not have represented ° ^ ^"^® 
Aristophanes a few years afterwards with all the sym- , 
pathy and friendship which are evident in the Symposium, ^^xe Sym- 
It is a strange inconsequence to believe that Plato on one posium. 
side would feel a lifelong resentment for the insignificant Similarity 
attacks of Isocrates, and then to represent him as in- between 
different to a ribald parody of his most cherished ideals, -^^i^"^^*^ 
Between equality of women and the rule of women thete 


is a great difference. If Plato in the Timaeus (18 c d) ^^^ xecoa- 
and Aristotle in his Politics (1266 a 34) both clearly say nigga by 
that Plato was the first, and according to Aristotle the Aristotle 
only writer, who advocated community of wives, then it or by 
is evident that neither Plato nor Aristotle recognised the ^'^^*'°- 
similarity which some modern critics have seen between 
the absurd caricature of mad women in the Ecclesia- 
zusae and the plea for equality of sexes brought forward 
by Plato as the result of his meditations. The chief 
point for Plato was the unity of the state and the 
equality of the sexes. He was no advocate of abnormal 
sexual relations. The progress of mankind has not con- 
firmed Plato's view, but his opinion cannot have been 
such an absurdity in the eyes of Aristophanes as it Commu- 
appeared to some modern readers. That the conception "ity of 
of a community of wives, on which Plato laid no special ^^^^^^^ 
stress, was not a wholly novel conception, we see from a ^"88^^*^*^ 
fragment of Euripides (quoted by Clem. Alex. Strom, vi. 
p. 751). 

The coincidences quoted between the Ecclesiazusae Coinci- 
and the Republic refer chiefly to the fifth book, and are fences 
not very striking. The subject need not be further dis- between 
cussed, as all consideration of it is precluded by the , 

... phanes 

date of the Bepublic, which is placed after 385 B.C. A-pii 
according to our comparisons of style as w^ell as of iireievant. 
logical theories. So long as it is supposed that the 



1 ated im- 
has been 
given to 

less cer- 
tain than 
the result 
of a com 
study of 
style and 

Ecclesiazusae were produced 391 B.C., there is no possi- 
bility whatever of admitting that they refer to Plato's 
Bepiiblic. And if some eminent "WTiters accepted this 
supposed relation, they acted like Schoene and Teich- 
miiller in the question of style : giving an exaggerated 
importance to a single observation of doubtful value. It 
is an error of method to rely upon uncertain external 
allusions more than on the study of contents or style. 
If our information seems to involve contradictions, we 
must carefully weigh against each other the evidence 
in favour of both contradictory views. We have seen 
above a great nmnber of sound arguments proving that 
the Beiyublic is later than the Phaedo in style and 
contents. This gives us a consistent view of Plato's 
evolution which cannot be overthrown by the very 
uncertain supposition that a play in which Plato is not 
at all mentioned, written by one of Plato's friends, could 
be intended as an attack on Plato's greatest work. 

tion of the 
tion of 
tions by 
the ques- 
tion about 
position of 
This form 
of intro- 
ducing a 
new sub- 
ject might 
be inten- 
tional, or 

Books V-VII 

At the beginning of the fifth book Adeimantos inter- 
rupts Socrates' classification of constitutions by a question 
about the position of women in the ideal Republic. The 
thread of the argument here interrupted is resumed 
only in B. Vlll, and thus B. V-VII form a natural 
division of the whole and deserve to be considered apart. 
The view has been advanced that a more important 
division begins towards the end of B. V, p. 471 c, 
where the question of the rule of philosophers is raised, 
which fills the whole of B. VI-VII, offering many 
opportunities for logical reflections. But the transition 
from the particulars dealt with in the first part of B. V 
to problems of the highest philosophy is made quite 
plausible and natural, while the interruption at the 
beginning of B. V might be intentional and made in 
order to attract the reader's special attention to the 


new subjectl bvthe rhetorical artifice of an apparently un- that 
expected difhculty. The subjects dealt with in B. V-VII ^- V-VII 
belong to the plan of the whole, and are not an afterthought, ^^^ '^^^^ 
though this part of the Republic, if we trust stylistic 
comparisons, seems to have been completed somewhat .-^ ^ 
later than the following books. If^it is once recognised, poi^t^ 
as it must be on the authority of the same evidence, that though 
there could not be any considerable distance of time theyhe- 
between this part and the preceding fourth book, it ^^^^^.^ ^° 
becomes almost indifferent whether B. VI- VII were ^ ^ ^" 
completed later or earlier than B. VIII-X. Admitting , , 

^ ^ whole. 

that they are probably written after B. IX and even after 
B. X, we do not agree for that reason with those who 
deny the unity of the Republic and the architectonic 
skill with which the parts of the whole structure are co- 

The Platonic Republic would not be complete without The r.ule • 
the rule of philosophers, and it is irrelevant whether the of philo-^ 
explanation of this condition of the ideal state is better sophersan 

dealt with before or after the investigation of imperfect 

. . . PI condition 

governments. As it stands, it crowns the picture of the ^^ ^^^^ 
ideal state and prepares the way for a representation of piatonic 
less perfect states. Even the discussion about the equality BepubUc, 
of sexes and the digression about international limitations 
of warfare (in B. V) are not out of place as an introduc- 
tion to the central part of the Republic. These essential 
pecuHarities of the ideal state could be realised only 
under the rule of philosophers. Thus we are justified 
in leaving to this part of the Republic the place given to 
it by Plato, and in limiting our inquiry for the present 
to the relation between B. V-VII and the preceding, 
with reference to what has been already proved of earlier 

The theory of ideas no longer takes the form of an Theory of 
hypothesis, as in the Phaedo, but appears as a well- ^^^^^ 
established truth, and the terms s7.Sos and ISsa begin to be ^pp^^'^''^ 
used currently to denote ideas, along with the familiar 

V 2 


and the 
e'iSos and 
ISea are 
to the 
and Sym- 
with a 
in the 
Phaedo to 
earlier ex- 

No fixity 
of ter- 
use of 

terms avrb naO' avjo, or avro, or o sanv. We have here 
an idea of beauty (479 a: IMav riva aurou kciWovs), of 
each Being (486 D : rov ovjos ISsav sKaa-rov), of justice 
(479 E : avTo TO SUatov), of injustice (476 A), of the good 
(505 A, 517 B, 534 c : toO dyadov ISsav), and of all other 
general notions. These ideas remain always the same 
(479 E : dsl Kara ravra diaavToos ovra, repeated 484 B), and 
each of them is the unity of many particulars (507 B : 
avTo Br] KaXoi' Kol avrb djadov Kol ovtco irspl ttuvtcov, a tuts 
dus TToWd aTiOe/xsv, iraXiv av kut' ISsav fitav sKaaTOu oos fxids 
ovarjf tlOsvtss, o sotlv SKaarov Trpoo-ayopsvofMSv). This is 
here stated to have been already frequently repeated 
(507 A : Ta t' sv Tols sfiTTpoadsv p7}dsvTa koL dWore r'jhri 
TToWdKLs slprj/jisva). Such a reference to the theory of 
ideas as familiar to Socrates can only allude to the SijDir- 
posiiwi and Phaedo, and is more explicit than the famous 
designation of the ideas in the Phaedo as rd Trdkvdpv'SijTa 
(100 b), which has appeared to some critics a reason for 
placing the Phaedo after the Phaedrus and Pepuhlic. In 
the Phaedo the mention ' a 6pv\ov/ dsl ' (76 d) does not 
even necessarily refer to the theory of ideas, but only 
to the notions of the beautiful, the good, &c. : ' if the 
beautiful, the good, and all similar attributes, about which 
we are always talking, have real existence,' not : ' if, as 
we are always repeating, the good, &c., have real existence.' 
In the same way 'tu iroX.vOpuX'rjTa' (100 b) may refer 
to moral ideas generally, and not to their transcendental 
existence as substances. But in Bep. V the theory of 
ideas is manifestly referred to. 

Moreover, no special stress is laid in the Rejjublic on 
the separate and independent existence of ideas. The 
ideas are an object of thought (507 c : Tas ISsas vosladai 
(fittfxsv, opdaOat S' ov). The relation of things to ideas is 
still described with the same terms (476 D : avTo koI Ta 
sKSLvov fjiSTsyovTo) as in the Phaedo and Symijosium, but 
how careless Plato was about the fixity of terms is evident 
if we consider that he speaks also of ' seeing ' the idea of 


the beautiful (476 B : ol kir avro to KaXov Svvurol Uvai rs 
Kal opdv Kad' avro . . . airdvcoi av slsv). This is obviously 
a metaphor, which had been used also in the Symposium 
(210 E : KaroyjrsTai tl Oavfiaarrov rrjv ^vctlv koKov), and 
means that the intellectual intuition of ideas is quite as 
immediate and objective as the sight of visible things. 
This knowledge of ideas is even much clearer than the Know- 
ordinary knowledge based on perception (511c: aa4>scrT£pov ledge of 
TO VTTo TTjS rod SiaXsysaOai iiricr-rjixr^s' rov ovroi re Kal vorjrov ^'^^^^ 
BewpovfMsi'ov . . ). Plato insists that the ideas are inde- '^ ^^^^^ 

pendent of the senses (532 A : ovro) orav rts reS SidXsysadat, 

^ ^ ' ' penence 

siri'^sipfi, avsv iraaSiv rSiV aiaO^ascov Sia tov \6yov sir' avro ^f ^jjg 
o kaTLv sKacTTOv opfxa, koI firj airocn^, irplv av avro o sartv sensg 
ayadou avrrj vo/jcrsi Xd^rj, cf. 537 D), and it seems as if 
the senses no longer enjoyed even the merit of remember- 
ing ideas through the similarity of our perception to 
absolute notions. This marks a development in the 
direction of pure idealism beyond the Phaedo. The Similarity 
similarity between concrete things and the ideas, how- between 

ever, continues to be maintained (476 c : 6 KaXa p,sv ^^^^^^ ^^^ 

/ /(, > \ ?>-'-. 'v \ '4- ^ ideas a 

IT pay (Mara vofii^fov, avro oe kuXXos /xt] vo/jli^cov ... to 
" ' V " ,.., , V f « T T ,1 \ „„ cause of 

Ofiotov T&) /JLT] ofJLOLov uXX. avTO ijyrjrat, SLvai o) soiksv), as 

the cause of errors, because every idea seems to be many, Power of 

while it is really one (476 a : vdvTcou roiv eiBo)v irspi 6 avros knowing 

Xoyos, avro /jlsv ^v SKa<TTov slvat, rfj hh tmv 7rpd^£(ov Kal ideas has 

(Jtw/iarcoy Kill dXXrjXcov KOivcovia iravTay^ov (f^avra^Ofisva different 

iroXXa ^ali'sadaL SKacrrov). The power or faculty of '^^°^^^- 

knowing the ideas as they are is here presented under 

different names, as yvcofxr) (476 D), yvoycrcs (478 c, also 

508 E), S7rta-ri]/jbr] (478 A), vorjais (532 B, 511 E), vovs 

(511 D), tov BtaXsysa-daL hvvajMis (511 B). 

This variety of vocabulary need not awaken suspicion Variety of 

as to the perfect unity of thought in the theory. It was vocabu- 

Plato's usual manner in that time, to use many names for ^^^'^ * 

his new ideas, and he blamed those who stick to names , 

' ' \ ^ </ ' « /I / V Plato's 

(454 A : Kar avro ro ovop^a Simksiv rod X£-)(devros rrjv „Qgj+;Q„ 

evavrluiaLv) as eristics, unable to classify notions accord- ^j^^ 


regard to 


of intel- 
of ideas 

faculty ; 
it dei^encls 
on the 
idea of 
the Good. 

Idea of 
the Good 
with iinal 
of the 
only the 
way lead- 
ing to it. 

In order 
to under- 

ing to natural species (454 a : Sia to fir] SupaaOnt Kar siSt] 
Siatpov/jisi'oi TO Xsyo/xsvov s-rricrKOTTslv) and therefore using 
the art of contradiction (454 a : 77 Svpafxis Tr]s di'Tt\oyiK7]s 
TS)(j/i]9') inferior to true logic. 

Apart from the diversity of names it is evident that 
Plato has progressed since his first attempt at a classifica- 
tion of psychical acts, and that the r^eason (Xojio-TtKov) of 
B. IV is now subdivided into several distinct faculties 
{Swdfisis 477 c, cf. 443 b, 518 c) among which the highest 
is the science or vision of ideas, or of true Being (to 6v 
7ravT£\6t)s 477 A, elXiKpivMs, ibidem, ova la 525 B, 534 A, &c.). 
This knowledge is infallible (477 e : az^a^apT/^To/y), and is 
no longer as in the Phaedo based upon an ultimate hypo- 
thesis as the most probable truth, but upon a principle 
above every doubt (510 b : dp^qv dw-noOsTov, cf. 511 b : p^ixp^ 

TOV dvVTToOsTOV £7tI TTJV TQV TTOVTOS dp-^T^V, cf. 533 C, 534 B) . 

The knowledge of this principle is not an inference, but 
an intuition, and Plato constantly uses metaphorical 
expressions taken from the senses of sight and touch to 
denote the immediate character of his highest knowledge 
(IBslv 511 A, 533 C, airrsaOaL 511 B, "v/^fX^y o/xytta 533 D, 
opav 476 B, OeaaOat 518 C, &C.). 

The principle itself, being the foundation of all this 
highest science, is the idea of the Good [r] rov dyaBov I8sa 
fjisyca-Tov fxdOr)/jLa 505 A), identical with that haiixovia la'^^yi 
mentioned in the Phaedo (99 c) and there held to be beyond 
the reach of mankind [Phaedo 99 c d : ravrrjs scrrsp^^Oriv 
Kol ovr avTos svpslv ovts Trap" dXkov fxadslv olds rs iysvdfirjv). 
Now Plato has found it, but he feels unable to show it to 
his readers (533 a : ovkst olos r scrsi dKoXovOslv) otherwise 
than by indicating the method of training, which leads to 
the evolution of the dialectical faculty. He says enough 
about his idea of Good to enable modern readers, who have 
gone through the prescribed training, and are familiar 
with abstraction, to distinguish what has been said meta- 
phorically from the abstract meaning of his thoughts. 

If we wish to understand Plato's idea of the Good, we 

and cc 



must bear in mind that mythical falsehoods have an edu- stand it 
cational value (382 c) , and that he w^as carried off by the we must 
novelty and the sublime beauty of his subject into some <^listm- 
exaegerations, which he confesses clearly towards the end ^"^^, 

1 • 1 T • f^n , nr ,• mythical 

of the whole logical digression (586 C : sTrsXaoofirjv on 
STraL^OfjLSv, Kal /xaWov svrsivdfisvo^ slttov. Xiywv yap a/ia i5entation 
s^\sy\ra irpos ^L\ocro<^Lav, Kai Ihibv t poirrjXaKKTixsvqv from 
ava^luis, ayavaK.ri)cras /xoc Sokm koI coairsp dvfiuyOsl^ tols reasoning. 
air Lots aTTOvSaioTspov slirslv a slirov). In his indignation 
at the degraded condition of philosophy, Plato exalted her 
power and dignity. He does not add, in what particulars Exaggera- 
this exaggeration was contained, because the trifling tion in- 
correction introduced by this strange confession, namely 
the question of the most convenient age for dialectical 
studies, would not justify his apology. 

One property, at least, attributed to the idea of Good The idea 
cannot be taken literally.'''^' Plato says the idea of Good of the 
exceeds even Being itself in power and dignity (509 b : ^°°*^ 

, , , „ ^ 1 /I ^ ., ^ , ,/ . / - ? ' above 

ovK ovcrias ovtos tov (lyauov, a\x stl sirsKSiva tyjs ovaias 

r T • 1 /• e Bemg, as 

irpsa-^sia koI duva/xsi vTT£ps-)(ovros) and IS the lirst cause oi ^^^ ^^^^^ 

all Being as well as of all knowledge and truth (508 E : ^f -Q^mg 
alriav S' sTriaT'jfi'qs ovcrav Kal aXrjdsi'as oos yLyvtoaKOfJbSvrjs . . . and know- 
cf. 509 b). Having thus brought the expectation of his ledge, 
hearers to the highest point, he not only refuses any Nearer ex- 
explanation of the dialectic power which perceives the planation 
idea of Good (533 a) but declines even to insist that his "ieciined. 
view of it is correct (533 a : ovkIt a^iov tovto Bua'^v- 
pi^saOai,, cf. Phaedo 114 d). Here he employs much Some 
rhetorical artifice with the aim of inducing his readers rhetoncal 
to attempt the long and tedious training which according ^^*^ '^^ 

, • ■ n • . , -, 1 • ■ • P 11- used with 

to his indications leads to this vision of overwhelming 

. an edu- 

Beauty, the idea of Good. But this idea of Good m gg^tionai 
the Bepicblic, with all its brilliancy and grandeur, cannot aim. 
be anything else than the final cause depicted in more 

"» See Paul Shorey, ' The idea of Good in Plato's Eepublic : a study in the 
Logic of Speculative Ethics,' in vol. i. pp. 188-239 of the Studies in Classical 
Fliilology of the University of Chicago, Chicago 1895. 


Ideas if 
could not 
have a 


sought in 
than in 

tions of 

Love of all 
not of 
sights or 

sober language in the Phaedo. That it is raised above 
all hypotheses as an unconditioned principle means only 
that since the time when he wrote the Phaedo Plato had 
grown so much accustomed to his highest hypothesis that 
it has lost for him every hypothetical character. It had 
also become more substantial through intimate association 
with the practical aspirations which now absorbed him. 
At the same time, if he placed the idea of Good beyond 
Being, he made a very decisive step towards a return from 
the conception of the separate and independent existence 
of ideas. An idea as a necessary notion of every possible 
conscious mind is not a substance, and yet limits and 
shapes the existence of substances. We have no sufficient 
evidence for saying that Plato when he wrote the Be- 
public had fully realised this truth, but if he did so, he 
had no need to change anything in his revelations about 
the idea of Good and the other ideas. His doctrine 
that truth is rather to be found in thought than in actual 
life (473 A : (pvacv s-y^so Trpd^tv Xs^scos rjTrov aXr]6sias icfxiTT- 
Tsadai, KCiv Si fit] T(p Soksi) is a sign that he went still 
farther away from his starting point referred to in the 
Phaedo, that thought is an image of Being. 

The conditions for an actual development of the 
faculty by which we see the idea of Good are depicted 
with glowing eloquence. Not everybody is able to follow 
the path, even if he has a leader (479 E : rovs avro ro 
Kokov /jLTj opcJvTas, /nrjB^ dW(p sir avro d'yovTi hvva ixivovs 
sTTScrOac . . . So^d^siv cjitjaofjisv) . A philosopher is born, 
and when born, he must also be made and have a strong 
will to develope his innate power (518 c). He has a 
golden nature (415 a), and loves wisdom and knowledge 
above everything (475 B : rov <^Ck6ao^ov ao<^las (f)rj<To/ 
ETndv/xrjTTjv sivai, ov r^s ixsv, rfjs 8' ov, dWd Trdarjs — cf. 
376 B : TO ys <f)LXo/j,a6ss Kal cf)tX6cro(f)ov ravrov, also Phaedo 
82 c (f)t\ofjiad)]s is parallel to (f)iXoao(}>y']aas) ; he is insatiable 
of every kind of knowledge (475 c). Therein he is 
opposed to the sight-lover and others who care only for 


concrete things (476 b). A philosopher betrays akeady Early de- 

in his childhood the greatest love of justice (486 b : velopment 

'^V)(i'iv (JKoiroiv (f)tX6ao(f)OV kuI /u.t] evOvs viov ovros sTTLaKs-^^st, ° i^o^^- 

JVC./ \ r/ ,\ c. ' \ > / N qualities. 

Si apa oiKaia rs Kai Tqjjbspos rj ov<tkoipoov7]TOs kul aypca), an 

excellent memory, a great facility of learning, he is 

J ' G J o' memory, 

generous, kind, truthful, courageous, and temperate facility of 

(487 A : (f)va£i fivj]/j.(ov, svfiaOijs, fisya\o7rps7n]S, ev-^^apts, learning. 

0tXoy rs Kal ^vyysvrjs aXrjBslas, BcKaiocrvvrjs, avSpsias, Philo- 

(Ta)(f)poavv'r)s). From his youth upwards he loves truth sophers 

beyond everything (485 d: t6v tS oin (f)i>>ofjia6rj irdcnis T^^^^^^^^^*- 
1^/1/ c>"'/iv 7 / r/ / 1 / r, ^ TT virtues. 

uMjUsias osi suavs sk vsov o tc fiaXiara opsysaaaL). Me 

grows accustomed to consider the whole of the universe ^^^. ^^^ 

in his meditations (486 a : ^v'^fj jMsWovcrr) rov oXov koX limita- 

iravTOS asl STTops^sadac Ssuw Kal avOpwirlvov), which reach tions of 

far beyond the limits of his own time and include the liuman 

totality of Being (486 a : fi vTrdp'^^sL Stavoia fisyaXo- ^^^^' which 

/ ^ n ' \ N ' ' s^^ ' ' appears to 

TTpsTTSia Kai usoopia iravros fxsv ypovov, Tracrrjs os ovcnas, " 

f ./ - / ^ „ , V > /I / he insigni- 

oiov TS OLSi TOVTO) usya Ti ooKSiv sivac TOP avvpcoTTivov „ 

/ ' . ... licant, as 

^Lov ;) whereby human life appears insignificant, and compared 

death loses all its terrors (486 b). Through all ephemeral with the 

appearances he perceives a substance free from changes total 

(485 B : SKSivqs rfjs ovaUis tyjs dsl ovcttjs Kal fir) 7rXavo)fJbsvr}s existence 

VTTO ysi>sastt)S Kal 4>Hopas .... Kal irdaris avTrjs) and ° 

neglects no manifestation of eternal Being, having an "^^^^'^^^• 

open eye for the smallest detail as well as for the whole. 

His faculty by which he sees the ideas (479 e : avra 

sKaara Kal dsl Kara raind oDaavTcos ovra) does not impair 

in any way the exercise of all virtues and the capacity for 

acquiring practical experience (484 d : sfXTrsipia ^rjhsv 

EKSivuiv eWsiiTovras /jbrjS' sv aXXcp firjSsvl fispsi dpsrrjs 

varspovvTas) . 

This image of the philosopher is made still more Philo- 

attractive by the contrast to the merely practical ordinary sopher 

man (476 a) who esteems vulgar opinions (480 a), contrasted 

ignoring the certitude of science. He is dreaming, ^^* 

because he is unable to distinguish concrete things from , 

o _ <=' man who 

the ideas, being deceived by their similarity (476 a, cf . ^^^ q^i„ 



Idea of 

the Good 
-the clear- 
est in all 
with the 
sun as the 
object of 
and truth 
by the 

level of 
from the 

534 c). Plato calls such would-be practical persons 
blind (484 c : r) ovv 8okov<tl tl tik^Xcoi' Siacfispsiv ol tc3 ovtl 
Tov oinos s<dcrrov sarspi^jjLsvoL rrjs yvcocrsco? ; cf. 506 C), their 
opinions are sophisms (496 a), and if they hit the truth 
by accident they do it like a blind man following the 
right road (506 c). 

The power of the philosopher (511 B : r] tov Bia- 
Xsysadat Buvafxis) is directed towards the idea of the Good 
which is the clearest idea in existence (518 c d : tov ovtos 
TO (havoTUTov . . . slvac (f)a/jb£v Tuyadov). Whatever else 
Plato says about the idea of Good, as cause of truth, 
reason, and Being (517 c : ayadov I8sa . . . aXrjdsiav kuI 
vovv Trapaa'^ofjisvT) . . . 509 B : Kal to sivat ts koX ttjv ovcriav 
vir'' sKsivov avTols irpoaslvai), does not exclude the idea of 
Good from the system of ideas. Something is sacrificed 
to the defective comparison of the good with the sun, 
the light with truth (508 A-509 d). Plato had himself 
admitted, in agreement with the common psychological 
experience, that truth and reason are a product of the 
philosopher's own activity (490 b : oys ovtcos ^i\op,a6ris, . . . 
yswr^cras vovv Kal dXrjOs lav, <yvoit} ts Kal oKridois 
^(prj), and if afterwards for the purpose of drawing a 
parallel between the material and intellectual world he 
attributes truth to a power independent of the individual 
mind, this must be counted among the exaggerations 
into which he was led by the greatness of the subject. 

In the whole Platonic doctrine of the ideal philosopher 
there is a permanent truth embodied : that the highest 
level of objective knowledge can be reached only by the 
highest subjective training of the best individuals. Looked 
at from this point of view, Plato's indications as to this 
special training deserve the attention of the logician, and 
belong really to the logic of Plato. 

The way of initiation proceeds no longer, as in 
the Symposium, through esthetical contemplation, but 
is prepared, as in the Phaedo, by a course of mathe- 
matical propaedeutics. The power of mathematical 


studies in developing abstract thought is illustrated by philo- 

two fresh examples, taken one from arithmetic and the sopher. 

other from geometry. The identity of units, which is Mathema- 

fundamental in arithmetical inquiries, does not exist in \^* 
our sensual experience, where each unit is different from ., , 

... widely 

every other. This identity can only be understood by the f^.^^^ ^^i^ 
action of thought (526 a: dptd/xo)!' gi' ots to sv Xaov rs units of 
SKacTTov irav iravrl koI ovBs cr/xiKfJOi/ 8ia(f)spoi', /xupiov re h\;oi/ sense ex- 
iv savTM ovSsv . . . 8iavoT)67]vai fxovov iy^^ropec, dWfOs S' penence. 
ov8afx,Ms /jbSTa-)(^£ipl^s(76at Svi'arov). AVe owe it to the clear- 
ness of numbers that we distinguish things which to our 
senses appear confused (524 c : /xsya imrjv kol o-^ls khI 

OfjiLKpOV SCOpa , , . (JV'yK£-)(yiJL£VOV JL. B(a Ss TTJP lOVTOV 

oa(f)>)i'£iav /xsya av kui afjiiKpov rj vorja l s i)va<yKdcrOi] Ihslv, 

ov avy KS'^^vp.sva dWd OLOjpia fisva, rovvavrloi' i) ^Ksivr)). 

This difference between numerical exactness and the 

inexactness of sense perception is the origin of rational 

inquiry about the nature of quantity (524 c : svrsv^sv 

iroOev irpoyrov sirsp'^STai spsodac rjfjbiv, ~l ovv iror' sari to 

yuiya av Kol to a/jLCKpov). A similar difference exists be- Difference 

tween the material models of geometrical figures and the between 

ideal figures which they represent. Even Daidalos or ^^^^^ 8^°- 

another most skilful technical genius could never draw ^^®^™^^ 

or form figures corresponding to our ideal notion of them , ^, . 

. . . . and their 

(529 e), and it would be ridiculous to make geometrical material 
inferences or to endeavour to learn the truth about geo- represen- 
metrical properties of figures from such models, and not tation. 
from the models of ideal figures that exist only in our 
thought, surpassing in exactness everything visible to the 
eye. On these examples Plato shows that mathematical 
studies lead from ever-changing perceptions to the true 
substance of Being (521 d : fidd'qp.a -yfrvx^js oXkov uTro tov 
yiyvofisvov sttl to 6v), from the twilight of vulgar experi- 
ence to the dajdight of philosophy (521 c : i/c vvKTsptvrjs 
TLvos 7]/j,spas £ty dXrjOivriv tov ovtos ovaav STrdvoSov, rjv ot) gt^dy of 
(j>i\oa-o<pLav dXr^Orj (fyijaoasv slvac). But the philosopher mathe- 
will not content himself with such a knowledge of mathe- matics 


for philo- 
dently of 



nomy not 
limited to 
tion of 
the stars. 

of the 
of astro- 

matics as is useful for a practical man ; his immediate 
aim is not any practical application, but theoretical 
knowledge (525 b). He will push his investigations far 
enough to understand the natm^e of quantity, without 
caring for practical advantages (525 c : Itos- av sttI diav 
TTjs TOiV apLdfJbow (f)va£(os d(f)LKa)prai, ttj voi^ctsl avrp, ovk oovrjs 
ovos 7rpd(TcQ)9 -y^dpiv^ aXV k'vSKa avrrjs rrjs y^v^rjs paorcovrjs is 
IJL.£Ta(npo<^r}s cnro 'ysvsaccos Jtt' oK^'^Osidv rs Kal ovaiav . , .). 
Such theoretical studies develope an organ of the soul 
more valuable than a thousand eyes, because it is the 
only eye which beholds truth (527 d e : iy tovtols rols 
fiadrjixaaiv i/cdarou opyavov rt '\^v')(rjs SKKa6aipsTat . . . 
KpsiTTov ov actyOrjvai, fivpicov ofi/jidrcov ' jxovw yap avTOj 
dXi]0£ia opctTat). Plato complains that solid geometry 
was in his times very much behind plane geometry, and 
believes that it is in the power of the state to further 
such inquiries by honouring them as they deserve (528 b). 
He recommends also astronomy to the future philosopher, 
but adds that a philosophical astronomer will not expect 
very much from mere observation of the stars. He will 
use the sight of the stars just as a mathematician uses 
roughly drawn figures with a view to the discovery of general 

Plato shows here a deep insight into the logical 
nature of theoretical knowledge. His very words can be 
applied even to-day to investigations about the possibility 
of which he could not have a definite idea. When he 
says that through all the apparent movements the astro- 
nomer should reach the true velocity and the true orbits 
and movements of heavenly bodies, and that this can be 
done only by thought, not by sight (529 D), the modern 
reader involuntarily remembers how Adams and Leverrier 
discovered Neptune without the use of a telescope, by 
following out purely theoretical considerations. When 
Plato further decides a priori that the movements of the 
stars must undergo periodical changes and cannot remain 
always the same (530 B : cltotov rjy/jcrsTac tov vo/Mc^ovra 


'yi^viddai Tc ravra del Qxravrcos Kal ouSafifj ovSsv irapaX- 
Xdrrstv, awfid rs s)(ovTa Kal 6p(t)/j,spa), this appears a still 
more striking example of true physical knowledge acquired 
by pure thought. 

But our illusion is destroyed when we read that the Contempt 
details of the movements of the stars are not worth ^°^ actual 
careful search, precisely because they undergo changes. °"^^'^^^' 
Here the whole distance between Plato's logic and the . , 

" earned 

modern logic becomes evident. For Plato science could ^ ^^^ 
only refer to knowledge, while we have learnt to deal because 
scientifically with probabilities. Plato was perfectly Plato was 
right in holding that absolutely exact knowledge is not aware 
impossible in astronomy and every other investi- °^ *^^ P°^" 
gation of nature. But he was WTong in supposing that ^^°^"*^y °^ 
therefore these subjects cannot be dealt with scienti- . ' 

. investiga- 

fically. The whole natural science of to-day, though few ^j^^ qj 
persons are always aware of it, is a science of approxi- probabili- 
mations and probabilities. We have learnt to estimate ties. This 
the possible amount of our errors, and to reduce them to became 
units of such low degree that we can neglect them. We po^^i^le 
owe this power chiefly to the infinitesimal calculus, "^^ "^ 
which marks the essential advance of science from Plato's .j^ j g 
days to the present epoch of scientific progress. Plato nitesimai 
had no instrument for such evaluations, and he therefore calculus, 
could not admit an exact knowledge of astronomy. He 
went so far as to say that looking up at the stars not oiily 
does not exalt the soul, but does not even teach us any- 
thing, because the soul rises upwards only through 
inquiries about invisible Being (529 b : ov Svva/xai, dWo rt 
vo/j,tcrai dvoi ttolovv ylrvxV^ /SXsttsiv fid07]fj,a rj ekslvo, o dv 
TTspl TO 6v rs fj Kal TO doparov). 

The eyes must in no way be esteemed above reason, Only 
nor the ears, and Plato despises equally those who believe rational 
in learning music by hearing tones and distinguishing ^^^^^^^ 
them as sharp and flat (531 a). The true theory of music ^^.^°''^' *" 


has higher problems to resolve, and studies the harmony of ^^^ pj^^^ 
numbers and its reason (531 c : ETna-KOTnlv rlvss ^vpL^wvoc 


music not 
studied on 


only as 
tory to 

First prin- 
must be 
and thip is 
the pr vi- 
lege of 
The dia- 
is able to 
give the 
reasons of 
his convic- 
tions, and 
refers all 
to their 
ing the 
of the 
system of 

apiOfMol Kal rlvss ov, Kal Bia tl sKarspoi). Such higher 
music and higher astronomy, making use of the stars and 
of sound-harmonies only as matter for generalisations 
which show the unity of the whole, are recommended by 
Plato as useful in the preparatory training of a philo- 
sopher (531 d). But even such studies are only intro- 
ductory to dialectic. Mathematicians, astronomers, 
musicians are only dreaming about true Being ; so long 
as they rely on hypotheses, without being able to give 
reasons for them, their studies do not deserve the name 
of true science (533 C : ovstpcoTJovat /xsv rrspl to 6v, vTrap 
hs aZvvarov avTols ihslv). 

A true science cannot be based on unknown or un- 
knowable first principles (533 c : a) yap ap'^^r) jjlsv o /xr] ol8s, 
rsXsvrr) Ss Kal ra jxSTa^v i^ ov ^rj olhs av/HTrsTrXsKrai, rls 
fi7])^avr) TTji' TOtavTTjv 6fJio\o<yLav ttots S7rt,(Tjy]/jL7]v ysvsaOai ;). 
Such apparent sciences rest on mutual agreement, while 
only Dialectic rises above all hypothetical beginnings 
(533 C D : 7? SiaXsKTiKfj /xsOoSos fiovrj rauTj) iropsvsrai, ras 
vrroOsasis avaipovaa, Itt' avrrjv rrjv ap')(^7]V, iva jSs^aKoarjTat) 
up to the absolute principle to which it gives the highest 
stability. The dialectician seeks the substance of each 
thing (534 B : BtaXsKriKov kuXscs top Xoyov s/cdcrrov 'Xa/x- 
fidvovra t?}^ over las) and conceives himself to know some- 
thing only in so far as he is able to give reasons for it 
(534 B : Tov P'h s-^ovTu, KaO^ oanv av /at) £')(r] Xoyov avroo ts 
Kal aXX(p SiSovai, Kara roaovTov vovv irspi rovrov ov <^?;o"fts 
s-^siv). Dialectic, then, or as we should now term it, 
metaphysic, is at the summit of all other sciences 
(534 E). This summit is reached through the ability of 
asking questions and answering them (531 E, 534 d), and 
through using the hypotheses with a full consciousness of 
their hypothetical character, until the highest principle is 
found, without any reliance on the testimony of the senses 
(511 B c). Plato had then already conceived a general 
system of human knowledge, including all sciences and 
uniting them into one whole (537 c : tu rs x^^V^ fxaOij/juaTa 


. . . (TVvaKTSOv sis avvoyjnv OiKiLOTrj-os aWi)\o3V rSiv fMadv- knowledge 

fxaroiv Kal rrjs rov ovroi (fivascos). Only those who are based on 

able to perceive the unity of things are dialecticians P""^^ 

(537 C : 6 awovriKOs StaXsKTtKos). thought. 

This picture of the subjective training, which is in- Subjective 

dispensable if the highest objective knowledge is to be tiaining 

attained, betrays a point of view far more advanced than °^ *^^ 

the Symposium, in which the subjective training was also ]^. ^°" 

recognised as indispensable, but started not from reason , . . 

but from esthetical and ethical experience. Though in ^ith 

the Phaedo the importance of mathematics was already mathe- 

accepted, and one highest principle alluded to, we see matics 

here a greater certainty manifested as to this highest ^^^ i^^<^" 

principle. We find the philosopher enraptured over his ^"^ *° *^ 

discovery ; it was Plato's own discovery that all the °*^°^^P ^°" 

-,.,„. , , .... of the 

details of existence can be brought into relation to one ^ i 

final cause of the universe. His great predecessor Par- cause of 

menides had only recognised the unity of the whole, and the 

declared the ' many ' an illusion. Plato was the first to universe, 
bridge over that abyss between the one and the many, 
and his metaphysical discovery is one that has never 
since been refuted. 

Plato's conception of one final aim of the universe. This con- 

of the connection between the highest idea and the ception 

most minute particulars even of sensible experience, ^^ ^ *lis- 

remains unchanged after a long progress of particu- ^^^^'^^'^ ^^ 
lar sciences and of philosophy. This conception he ^^°. 

caught sight of in the SymjJosium, declared it beyond his • „ • ji 

understanding in the Phaedo, and affirmed confidently laLi- 

its existence in the Repuhlic, though he still declined to philo- 

explain it fully (506 d, 533 A), alleging as one reason that ^ophy. 
Socrates is unable to give that full explanation, and as 
another that Glaucon is not yet sufficiently prepared to 
understand it. But enough is said to enable the modern 
reader to see that Plato was in full possession of his 

highest principle when he wrote his Bejmblic. He called Greatest 

it a model contained in the soul (484 c : hapyh iv ttj exactness 


in the 

son of 
the idea 
of the 
Good with 
the sun, 
and of 
the earth 
with a 
tion why 
the pliilo- 
sopher is 
liable to 
err in 
he has 
a higher 
of Being. 

"^vxy -TTapaSsLyfia), and he required the greatest exactness 
in the highest generaHsations of science (504 d e : <ys\.oLoii 
. . . TOiv /JLsyLarwv fxi] fxayiaras d^tovv sivai kuI ras a/cpi- 

Two allegories used by Plato in the Eej^ublic to 
illustrate his thoughts are deservedly famous. The 
comparison between the sun and the idea of Good is 
deficient and contradictory, as truth, according to Plato's 
own acknowledgment, comes not to us from without like 
the light of day. But the other allegory in which this 
world is represented as similar to a cave (514-518) is one 
of the most beautiful and consistent answers of a 
philosopher to practical people who deride philosopliA^ as 
useless. Plato here explains why the philosopher, accus- 
tomed to the most difficult problems of Being, appears at 
first sight liable to error in practical life, and how he, 
better than the merely practical man, very soon acquires 
a certainty in action impossible for those who know only 
practical life and have never measured the depth of the 
world of thought. Nearly every image in the allegory of 
the cave has a deep meaning. We spend our life in 
chains, being limited in the possibility of our movements, 
and prevented by our situation from knowing the truth. 
Those who succeed in liberating themselves from the 
chains of earthly passion and human ignorance, and 
explore a world much vdder than the cave in which the 
others are living, have laid on them, according to Plato, 
the duty of returning among their former companions 
in misfortune and of instructing them so as to set free 
as many as possible. They will not be believed at first, 
and people will laugh at their tales about the beauties of 
the upj)er world, and they will sometimes commit slight 
errors about objects seen in the cave, which are like 
shadows of the realities above. Their sight, after long 
dwelling in full daylight, requires some time to get accus- 
tomed to the darkness of the cave, in order to distinguish 
the shadows, which to the prisoners appear to be the 


highest reahties. But once accustomed, the philosopher Once ac- 

will judge more correctly than others, even about those customed 

shadows, because he knows the realities which produce *° *^^ 

them, and he has seen the sun of Truth, which does not ^^ "^^^ 

shine in the cave. This beautiful allegory need not ^, 

^ -^ cave, the 

be repeated in all its details, as it may be assumed to be phiio- 

familiar to our readers. It has a very great logical sopher 

importance, as it shows that for Plato at that time begins to 

sensible experience was the shadow of the ideas. This "^listin- 

is also the only hint which the Bejjublic contains that the ^^ 

ideas might be independent of the human mind and indeed ^^^" ^^' 

". . . pearances 

of any existmg consciousness. In many passages, as we ^^^^^^ 

have seen, the ideas are spoken of as existing in the than those 

philosopher's soul and even as a product of the activity who never 

of his thought. It seems that Plato no longer attached saw the 

such importance to their separate existence, and that ^^§^* °* 

he had to a certain extent reconciled himself to the ^^ ' 
identity of ideas with general notions. 

The theory of ideas and of the dialectical faculty Mathe- 

occupies the largest place in this part of the Bepublic, matical 

while the remaining .intellectual faculties are briefly 'knowledge 
disposed of. The second rank is taken by the mathe- 


matical knowledge termed here Bidvoia (534 A). The ^ ^^^ 

difference between this faculty and dialectical knowledge compared 

consists in the use of hypotheses (510 b), which re- withdia- 

main untouched by the mathematician. As such hypo- lectic. 
theses Plato quotes arithmetical properties of numbers 
and geometrical properties of figures, which are ad- 
mitted to be the ultimate foundations of mathematical 
science (510 c). 

Both hidvoia and sTrtaT-ij/jbT) are called in one passage Sub- 

voTjcTLs and opposed to the inferior faculty of opinion division 

{Bo^a 534 a), which is again subdivided into irians of mtel- 

referring to things and sUaala to images (511 e). It ®°*^^_ 

seems that this division, mentioned here only and never . , 

. "^ irrelevant. 

agam used by Plato, had a purely occasional character j^. ^g^g j^^. 

and served the purpose of an elaborate parallelism troduccd 



for the 
sake of 
Not main- 

Also sub- 
of opinion 
into two 
has no 

between the sense of sight and the intuition of the • soul. 
To correspond to the difference between things and 
images a division of ideas was wanted, and the mathe- 
matical figures best corresponded within the ideal world 
to the images of the physical world. So far the analogy 
was plausible, but the subdivision of the two chief 
faculties of opinion and science into four was not justified 
and is frequently contradicted by Plato in the same 
text, as he uses Suivma, vorjacs, e-^iarnf^r] and BiaXsKTiKt] 
hwafiLs indifferently one for another. Even in the sixth 
and seventh books the distinction is by no means con- 
sistently followed, and in some passages (500 B : t(o 
-fi MS dXrjdchs TTpos rols ovai ryv Ziavoiav s)(ovTi — 511 A : 
^r]TovvTss TS avra sKsiva Ihslv a (w< av ciWois ISoi tls i] tt} 
htavoia — 529 D : ro oi> rdy^o^ . . . . a Sr] Xoyw fisv kcu Siavoia 
XTjTTTa, 6\lrsi S' ov) huivoin means pure thought, and not the 
special facult}^ of mathematical knowledge which had 
been named Stdvoui (511 d : hidvoiav koXsIv /xol SoksIs tvv 
roiv yso)/j,£TpiK(t)'' . . . s^iv). 

Equally irrelevant is the subdivision of opinion {66^a) 
into an o^^inion about things {Trians 511 E, 534 a), and 
an opinion about images {stKaala 511 e, 534 a). This 
division is of no importance and proves only Plato's 
fondness for symmetrical dichotomies. ^^^ He never again 
alludes to these distinctions, and the old bipartition of 
intellectual activity into opinion and knowledge remains 
here as in all other works of Plato fundamental. 
Opinion is intermediate between ignorance and know- 
ledge (477 B, cf. 478 D), and it refers to what in one 
respect is being and in another not-being, and appears as 
intermediate between substance and nothing (478 D : 
olov dfjia ov T£ fcal fjby 6v). 

2'" It has been attempted to find a relation between the four intellectual 
faculties of the Republic and the degrees of perfection in the Symposium 
(Carl Boetticher, ' Eros und Erkenntniss bei Plato in ihrer gegenseitigen 
Forderung und Ergiiuzuug,' Jahreshcricht des Luisenstadiischen Gymna- 
siums zu Berlin, Osteru 1894), but the exposition is by no means con- 


For the first time Plato here investigates the object of Object of 
opinion as differing both from the object of knowledge and opinion : 
from that of ignorance. While the ideas are the proper everything 
object of science, they are not accessible to opinion, and 
Plato defines with great logical acuteness what is sus- ^j^^ ^^lan 
ceptible of opinion. It is anything that could be other- ^ jg, 
wise than it is (479 A) . We see here clearly established the 
difference between accident and substance, opinion and 
science. This very important logical theory was prepared 
by the law of contradiction, stated in the Phaedo, where 
Plato observed that apparent contradictions are found in 
things but not in ideas (Phaedo 103 B). But neither in the 
Phaedo nor in any earlier work had the difference between 
the object of science and that of opinion been recognised. 

It is interesting to observe that Plato employs this Kecogni- 

distinction between accident and substance to justify his *^°^ °^ *^ 

conviction of the mental equality between the sexes, 

wherein he was so much in advance of his own times, and , , 

' _ between 

even of the reigning prejudice of our own century. It is ^j^g sexes. 
one of the deepest thoughts in Plato's Beimhlic, that the 
sexual difference is accidental and exterior as compared 
with individual intellectual differences among men as 
well as women (454 b-455 a). And this thought is one Thought 
of the most interesting practical applications of Plato's i"'lepen- 
logic. Plato thus proclaimed the truth that thought is ^"^^ °* 
independent even of such fundamental bodily conditions 
as the difference of sex. Many times later philosophers ^j^^ ^^^^ 
have been drawn by the strength of appearance to credit essential 
organs of our body with pure thought, and thus to bodily con- 
destroy the soul's independence and permanence. Plato ditions. 
had within his limited experience many inducements to Plato the 
admit the popular belief that some part of the body is ^I'st to 
active in thought. He resisted this temptation and was ^'^'^^e'^- 
the first to understand clearly and to affirm confidently ^^^"^ ^ 
that thought is an activity of the invisible, incorporeal . "^ 
soul, which does not need material organs for its exercise, activity of 
That the body's only aim is to supply us with sensations the soul. 

X 2 


object of 
which is 

to the 
in the 
of the 
aim of 
life, above 
and even 

and to act on the outward world according to our ow^n 
will, is a truth which remains even to-day incredible to 
some physiologists unjustly called psychologists. This 
truth was discovered by Plato and constantly reaffirmed 
by him, from the Phaedo onwards to his latest works. 

A consequence of the doctrine that the objects of 
opinion and science are not the same led Plato to his 
theory about Not-Being or Nothing as the object of igno- 
rance. Ignorance is a state of the soul, and consists in 
believing what is not (478 b : dhvvarov kuI h ^uaai to 
1x71 6u . . . C : M?) OVTC fiTjv ayvoLav i^ dvd<yKi)s aTrsBo/Jisv, 
ovTi Bs yvoio-Lv). Therein ignorance is distinguished from 
mere opinion and coincides with ' wrong opinion ' {ho'^a 
■x^rivhp) called also dfxaOca by Plato {Prot. 358 C : dfiaOiav to 
Totov^e XeySTS, to yjrsvSf] s^SLV ho^av xal sylrsva6ui irspl tcov 
7rpayiubdT0)i> to)v ttoWov d^ltov, cf. Euthijd. 286 D, and also 
Theaet. 170 b, Polit. 309 A, Crat. 429 d : touto sajcv rh 
yp-evSi] XsjsLv, to /j-tj tcl ovia Xsysiv). Opinion as mter- 
mediate between ignorance and knowledge had been 
already mentioned in the Meno and Symposium (202 a : 
to 6p6a So^d^sLv . . . scmv tc fiSTa^i) cro(^ias kuI djiaOias) 
but then with the predicate of ' right ' which is dropped 
here, with an intention of exact terminology not after- 
wards ixiaintained. 

In the above exposition of the logical theories con- 
tained in B. V-VII we had already occasion to see 
that Plato has here advanced beyond the stage of the 
Phaedo. But perhaps a more evident proof of this position 
is found in an ethical hint about the highest aims of life. 
It was a current theory of earlier dialogues that true 
happiness is the aim of each individual, and the tale of 
rewards and punishments after death was in agreement 
with this conception of the aims of life. Even in the first 
books of the Bepichlic this was tacitly admitted, and in 
the ninth book Plato attempts to prove that the philo- 
sopher is happier than anybody else. Intellectual pleasure 
or knowledge ((fypovrjcrts Phaedo 76 c, 79 d) was the highest 


ideal of Plato before the Bepuhhc. Now he declares that 
he ann cannot be pleasure, nor even knowledge (505 BC), 
•ecause there are bad pleasures, and because the 
aowledge, if defined, will turn out to be the knowledge 
the good. The aim of life is higher.than this, and must 
clearly known by the leader of men (505 e : o 8j; Slcokii 
' airaaa '^v'^rj Koi toutov kvsKa iravra TrpuTTei). The 
ception of an aim of life above every kind of pleasure 
happiness, even above knowledge and wisdom (509 a), 
ew, and arises here as a consequence of the new IScfk/'k^ 
k. /ledge of ideas and their hierarchy leading to the one ' i u/ ( 
hignest principle of Being. f " 

Some hints show us Plato's educational experience at Traces of 
the time when he wrote this part of the Bejniblic. He teaching 
says that the young must be taught through pla}'' (537 a : ^° ^^^i'^* 
iral^ovras rpscfis), and warns us that no teacher should 
treat his pupils as slaves (536 e : ovBsv /j,d6r]fia /uLsra 
BovXsia9 Tov sksvOspov XPV ^cbvddvsLV . . . '^v-)(rj ^iatov 
ovSsv i/x/xovov /jLd6T]/jLa) because knowle dgejgjieyer durable 
if impQaedJby violence. Plato is so confident as to the 
power of 5'outh that He credits the young with the greatest 
labours and undertakings (536 D : vstov iravrss oi ixs'ydXoi 
KoX ol TToWol ttovol), but ho has already experienced the Judgment 
logical abuses of j^outh, which he complains of later in about 
the dialectical dialogues. Young men are not serious in ^°^ _ ' 
reasoning, and delight in contradictions, playing with the /' 
argument like young dogs with our clothes (539 b). Here leading to 
again, as in the Phaedo, Plato sees the origin of scepticism scepti- 
in the abuse of reasoning : cism. 

Phaedo 90 B : eVetSai' ns ma-- Hep. 539 B C : orav ttoXXovs fiev 

revcrj] Xciyco rivi aXTjOel dvaL . . . avTo\ (Xey^axriv, vno iroWoiv 8e 

KantiTa oKiyov varepov avra 86^r] fXeyx6cci(ri, a<f)68pa kol raxv e'fX" 

yjrfvbfjs (li'cu . . . Koi avdis erepos niTTTovaiv ds to ixrjdev riydtTdai, 

Ka\ erepos , • . TeXevrcovrei o'iovrai cavnep Tvporepov. 
- . . ovhev vyies ovde l3e,3iuov. 

It is characteristic that this abuse was explained in a 

view of 

general and somewhat lengthy way in the Phaedo, while ^^j^ 


larity of 
the soul 
to the 

to the 
by com- 

liere it is briefly mentioned as well known (539 b : olixai as 
ov \s\.iidevat) and attributed specially to the young, which 
confirms the impression that Plato was grown older, as in 
his latest works he frequently speaks of the inconsequence 
of youth (cf. Phil. 15 d e). Some minor coincidences 
between this part of the Bepuhlic and the earlier 
dialogues may be briefly mentioned. The affinity of the 
soul to the ideas, affirmed in the Phaedo, is here shortly 
referred to (490 B : auTov o saTH' skcio-tov Trjs ff)vasMs 
ai^aadat, S irpoai^KSt ^\rv\r}^ s(t)d7rT£aOai rov tolovtoV 
TrpoTiiKSi 8s ^vyysvsl), with the difl:erence that according to 
the new division of faculties only a part of the soul is 
distinguished by this affinity. The metaphor Xtnsiv 
otihlvoi-, used in this passage to describe the suffering of a 
soul in search of the Truth, would be scarcely natural in 
this abridged and familiar form if the theory of intellectual 
fecundity in the Symjjosmm were not assumed as known 
{Symposium •209 a). A similar ^^Xlw.'& the Symposium 
appears in the assertion of the fewness of those who are 
able to seek the idea of Beauty, and to follow when the)' 
are led to it : 


Symp. 210 a : SeZ rov opdas 
tovra eVi Tourn to npayfin . ■ . 
iav 6p6u>s rjyjJTat 6 i]yovp,evos 
. , . KaTavor]aai on to /caXXoy 
TO eVi 6t(^ovv aoifiaTi t<u eVi erepU) 
aafiaTi a8e}^(p6v ecrTtv . . . 

Iiep.4:'16c: 6 koXci fxevTrpdypaTa 
vopl^a>v, avTo Se KukXos prjTe 
vop.i^<ov pT/Tc, av Tis r/yfjTai enl 
Trjv yvaaiv avrov, tvvdpevos erre- 
(r9ai, ovap t] vnap Soxel croi ^ijv ; 



It would be useless to enumerate all such hints, which 
become convincing to anybody who reads the dialogues 
in the order now proposed. Only a boundless indiffer- 
ence to the philosophical contents of Plato's works could 
allow the supposition that Plato wrote the Bej^ublicahout 
the same time as the Eutlujdemus, while in every respect 
we find here a thought more mature, and a positive 
philosophy which was only a desideratum when he disputed 
with the Sophists. He now no longer appears so anxious 
about the bad influence of bad teachers generally, because 


he has found in the fundamental differences of human of the 
nature a deeper reason for the natural evolution of states Sophists, 
as well as individuals. A weak mind is not capable 
either of great virtues or of great crimes (491 e : dadsvri 
Be (hvaiv jjlsjuXcov ovts ayadojv ovts kukwv amav irors 
sasadai). He denies that the Sophists could have the 
power of perverting their pupils (492 a). The eloquent influence 
picture of the influence of impersonal public opinion on a of public 
young man (492 B c) reveals an author who is himself opimo" 
very much above these dangers, and no longer in the first °" ^°" 
stage of his activity. All this agrees perfectly with our 
supposition that Plato was approaching the age of fifty 
when he wrote about the future reign of philosophers 
over the world. 

Books VIII-IX 

A strange contrast to the preceding digression is Classifi- 
formed by the two next books, w^hich resume the con- cation of 
tinuation of the fourth book broken off at the beginning ^*^*^^; 
of B. V, and except the recapitulation at the outset ^^ . 

^ ^ ness of 

contain no direct allusion to B. V-VII. The contents of . jj^, 
B. YIII-IX are chiefly political, and give a peculiar gopher 
application of the classification of human faculties to the demon- 
classification of states and the demonstration of the strated 
haj)piness of the philosopher. The philosopher has a ^y ^^^ ®^ 
better experience of the pleasures of other men than they 
can have of the pleasm'es of knowledge, and he alone is 
competent to compare different feelings and to judge tency. 
which of them gives the most satisfaction. Thence it 
results that he must be believed when he affirms that the 
pleasure of knowledge is the highest of all human plea- 
sures (580 D-583 A). This demonstration, repeated after- 
wards by Aristotle {Ethica Nic. X. vii.), is here stated 
with a certain insistence, and might appear superfluous 
after what has been said in the seventh book on pleasure 
as utterly indifferent to the true aims of life. 

While in the preceding books only contempt is ex- 

and his 



to know- 

more truly 

and can 
be better 

IX a con- 
of B. 

pressed for mere opinion as opposed to science, here true 
opinion and science are placed together ahnost as if they 
were synonyms (585 c). This shows not a difference 
of views, but a difference of exposition. The opposition 
of opinion and science was already so familiar to Plato 
when he wrote the liepuhlic that he did not always insist 
upon it in his most popular writings, and the eighth and 
ninth books are from the nature of the subject-matter very 
much more popular than the sixth and seventh. The 
author's own aim was always pure and certain science 
which he valued above mere opinion ; but he recognised 
the value of right opinion above ignorance, as he had 
done already in the Meno. In the same passage in which 
he puts right opinion along with science as opposed to 
sensuous gratification, he makes a direct and unmistakable 
allusion to the theory of ideas, and even to the special 
account of it given in the Phaedo : 

Phaedo 80 B : rw 6fia K.a\ aQava- 
Tw . . . Kctl aet axr avT u) s Kara 
TavrA exofTi eavrco ofioioTaTou fivai 
'^i^Xr] ■ . • 77 A : wdi'Ta ra TOiavr' 
iii'di cos oloi' Tf nd^icrra . . . 

Rep. 585 C: to tov del 6/moiov 
fXOfjLfvov Koi d6a vdrov kui dXTjSeias 
Kai avTo roiovToi' ov Kai iv toiovtw 
yiyvofifvov, fidXXov eival croi 

In the 

Another allusion to earlier expositions is the assertion that 
what continually changes is less susceptible of knowledge 
and truth than the eternal (585 D : ra irepl rr]v tov 
<TQ)fiaTos uspairsLav ysvij tmv <y£vo3v av tojv irspl rrjv rijs 
'^v)(^>]s Ospansiav rjTTOv aXrjdsias rs Kal ova las /justs )(^£t). 
Generally this part of the Bejnihlic is not only formally 
but also in its philosophical contents a continuation of the 
fourth book, and seems not to refer in any way, unless 
perhaps at the end of B. IX, to the high metaphysical 
speculations of the immediately preceding sixth and 
seventh books. 

Book X 

This last part of the Republic is introduced at first as 
a supplement to the judgment on the poets proffered in 


the second and third books. Plato seems to defend him- book 

self against some polemical attacks on his severe criticism esthetical 

of poetry, and he gives a deeper justification of his con- consider- 

tempt by a general definition of art as an imitation. This ^*i°"s 
part of the tenth book has its peculiar place in the history 

» , . , ^ T ,-.,,,., the fami- 

ot esthetics ; we are here concerned only with the logical ^^^^, ^ ^ 
theories alluded to in connection with other pursuits, of ideas. 
We see here the theory of ideas treated as familiar to all 
readers (596 A : sl8os ttov tl ^u SKaa-rov slrodafisv ridicrOai 
irsol SKuara ra iroXKa ols ravrov ovotia STTK^spoixsv). But in 
the formulation of this method we perceive a stage of the 
theory unknown from earlier works. Heretofore, only 
general mathematical, esthetical, and ethical notions were 
ideas. There is no trace whatever in preceding parts of ideas of 
the Rejyuhlic (except in the allegory of the cave, which manu- 
may have been written later), nor in the Phaedo and factured 
Symposium, of ideas of manufactured things, or of any ^'^'"g^ 
and every group of things bearing one name. Then the ^pp®^*^ 
ideas were contemplated, known or found as existent. .. ^, 

^ ^ • . time, thus 

Now they are posited {riOsa-Oai) ; this term has been initiating 

applied earlier to names (as, for instance, Crat. 384 D), a change 

but never to ideas, though a distinction of species was in the 

posited in the Phaedo (79 a: dto/jLsi^ ?)vo stSi] tmv ovrwv). primitive 

Here also we might at first suppose that dho^ means only ^"'^"^ 

species, as in the similar passage of the Phaedo, but in 

what immediately follows the word I8ea is used in its 

unmistakable technical meaning (596 b: fxia Ihsa), and 

applied to a table or a chair. Thus it appears that ideas 

of manufactured articles are admitted. 

Also the popular objection to the unity of ideas is infinity 

dealt with, namely, the supposition that the same process of identi- 

which leads to the positing of one idea could be repeated ^al ideas 

indefinitely, producing an infinity of ideas of the same ^^^^^'^ o" 

thing. Plato says that God being the creator of ideas, ^ ^^™^ 

either his will or some other necessity— of course a logical . . 

•^ "as Ans- 

necessity — prevented the possibility of a plurality of totlejusti- 
identical ideas (597 c). This logical necessity is further fied the 


of per- 

One idea 
of each 

God as 
maker of 
ideas is a 
the logical 

New proof 
of immor- 
ning by a 
of the 
of inde- 

A class 
of inde- 
things is 
shown to 

explained exactly in the same way in which Aristotle 
afterwards justified the simplicity of perception (Aristot. 
De anima iii. 2, 425 b 15 sqq.). If there were two ideas 
of the same thing, then the true idea would be the 
common tj^pe of the two primitive ideas (597 c). This 
would impair the perfection of ideas, and to avoid it, God, 
who is not a chairmaker, but the maker of the idea of a 
chair, made one idea of the chair (597 d : 6 6s6s, . . . 

Now if we consider the deeper meaning of this ex- 
planation, we recognise a certain advance beyond the 
Phaedo and perhaps even B. VI- VII. The God who 
makes the ideas is not the same God who is mentioned 
in earlier dialogues. God makes the ideas — this is a 
metaphorical expression which translated into abstract 
speech means : the ideas are a product of pure thought — 
not necessarily of men, but of a thinking subject. This is 
a consequent development of the theory about the idea of 
Good which was the final cause of all other ideas. Now 
this idea of good is supplanted by God, not by some god 
nor by a god, but by ' the God' (6 6s6s). The mono- 
theism appears well established and a matter of course. 

Also the immortality of the soul is reafiirmed, and a 
proof added to those of the Phaedo, which could hardly 
have been omitted in the Phaedo if Plato had then been 
in possession of it. In the Phaedo the problem was 
represented as very difficult and further research invited. 
Now it is an easy thing (608 d : ovShv yap ;^aXe7ro2') to 
prove that the soul is immortal. The proof is no longer 
based on the ideas, but on the substantiality of the soul. 
Each existing thing has its own virtue and its ow^n evil, 
and can be destroyed only by its own weakness and evil 
(609 a). If there is anything in existence which suffers 
from its own evil, without danger of being destroyed, as 
metals are by rust, then this substance, if any, is inde- 
structible (609 b). To this description the soul is 
found to correspond. This kind of proof is the converse 


of all the proofs given in the Phaeclo. There immortality include 
was found as a property of the soul, through a definition the soul. 
of the idea of the soul. Here Plato begins by consti- 
tuting a class of indestructible substances, and then 
shows that the soul belongs to it. We shall see that this 
new logical expedient is used by Plato also later, and it is 
certainly superior to the method of the Phaeclo. 

We have here an application of the principle that truth Immoi- 
is to be found in thought, that our speculation is always tality as 
concerned with our own ideas, and not with the things ^"^''^s- 
outside. Still, from our ideas we draw inferences about ®^ ^ ° 
the things, and Plato, after representing immortality as a p, ' 
necessity of thought, goes a step further and concludes gjo^ 
that the number of souls in the universe remains invari- about 
able (611 a : swosls on, asl av slsv al avrai ' ovrs yap dv number 
TTov sXarrovs ysvoivro . . . ovrs tiv TrXslovs). This simple of souls, 
conclusion, which we shall find again in a later writing, 
was missed in the Phaeclo, and leads to very important 

In the Phaeclo the unity of the soul was one of its Unity of 
properties because the threefold partition was not yet soul de- 
proposed. Now, after the repeated exposition of a division ^P^*^ ^*^ 
of faculties, the parts of the soul can no longer be ignored ^ ^^^^ 
(608 a), but Plato defends himself against a misinterpre- „. ' 
tation of his view. The soul is in its true substance not ^jj ^f 
full of contradictory powers (611 B). The eternal is eternal 
simple in its own nature, and cannot be composed out of elements 
many elements (611 B : ov pdhiov dtSiop slvai avvdsTov rs when set 
SK ttoWmv). The partition referred to the imperfect free from 
transitory earthly state, not to the soul's eternal existence. ^ °'^ ^ 
We contemplated it under the modifications produced by , , 
union with the body, and failed to perceive its eternal 

This is a manifest correction of the theory of three- Example 
fold partition as taught in B. IV and IX, and exempli- of revision 
fies Plato's manner of revising his earlier writings. He °^ earlier 
did not alter anything in what had been written, but he ^'^'^^"ss 


any altera- 
tion in 
the earlier 

of immor- 
as new 
and as 
dealt with. 

to the 
in the 
book of 

of Plato 

adds his correction in the continuation of the same 
dialogue, just as he added his confession of a certain 
exaggeration in the picture of the philosopher at the end 
of the seventh book. This way of correcting and criti- 
cising his o\wi views confirms our supposition as to the 
technical difficulties which stood in the way of many 
changes in the original drafts of Plato's writings. Some 
other examples of such self-criticism will appear in later 
works, and it is exceedingly characteristic that this pro- 
ceeding begins already with the Bepuhlic. 

Plato's habit of considering each work in turn as one 
independent whole is apparent from the fact that the 
subject of immortality is introduced in B. X as new and 
never heard of before (608 d : ovk fjaOriaaL on aOdi aros 
r)/jLb)P r] yjrv^i] Kol ovbsTTors diroXXvrai ; koI os sjJb^ks^^as fiot 
Kol 6av/Jbdaas sItts ' Ma At", ov/c sywys ' av hs rovr' h^S'S- 
\sysLv;). Some readers of Plato saw in this passage a 
proof that the tenth book of the Bepuhlic had been 
written before the Phaedo, without noticing that a few 
pages later there occurs a perfectly clear allusion to the 
Phaedo, which cannot refer to any other work of Plato 
but the Phaedo only. He says (611 B) : on rolvuv uBdvaTov 
'\^u^?7, KOL dpTi \6yos Kal ol dWoi dvajKaasiav dv. 

This means that in an earlier writing there had been 
given a number of arguments {Xoyoi) of a logically neces- 
sary or apodictic character {dvajKa^nvTss) proving the 
soul's immortality. Now a plurality of such arguments 
is not given in any other work of Plato besides the 
Phaedo. The Phaedrus, which might be thought of 
here, contains only one argument, and other dialogues, 
such as the Meno, Gorgias, &c., do not contain arguments 
(Xoyot) but tales (jjuvOol, cf. Phaedo 61 b : the poet invents 
IxvOovf, dxX' ov \6yovs, cf. also Gorg. 523 a). That \6yo9 is 
used in the tenth book in the meaning of a logical argu- 
ment can easily be seen from many passages (611 b : 6 
\oyos OVK ?dasi — 609 D : dXoyov — 610 A : Kara \oyov, &C.). 
Thus we see that Plato, even alluding in a general way to 


his earlier writings, sometimes ignored their particular though he 
contents in a new exposition. Each dialogue was meant sometimes 
to stand apart, as if it were written expressly for the new ^^^^^^ ^o 
generation of students entering the Academy, or, in the 
case of the Bepublic, possibly for a wider circle. 

The illusory character of sense perception, as repre- illusory 
sented in the Phaedo and in the earlier books of the character 

Republic, is here maintained (602 c: ravrov irov rjfiiv o^ tl^^ 

' n ' 'a ' ' /3 ?■ ^ ■< " I > >' sense per- 

fisjsuos syyvtfsv ts kui iroppcousv ota ttjs oy'Swy ovk icrov . 

6cuvcrai), and is illustrated by a skilful enumeration of 

'' . . corrected 

optical illusions produced by distance, colouring, and , ^^^^ 
reflection of light. But the distrust of the senses is no surin", 
longer so unlimited as in the Phaedo, and is subject to a counting, 
distinct modification. We have a means of correcting and 
their illusions, says Plato, and this consists in measuring, weighing, 
counting, and weighing (602 d : to fisrpuv koX dpiOfj-slu Physical 
Kal [(ndvai /So-qOsKit 'y^aptsaraTac . . . Mars firj dp-^siv to ^^^^^^^'^ 
(baii'6/jLsi>ov . . . dWa to Xojiadfxsvov) . This intuition of 
the mathematical powder of correcting the illusions of ,. 

^ . '^ distance 

sense seems to be a Pythagorean notion, and betrays also between 

the fact that since the first understanding of the distance ideas and 

between appearance and ideas Plato had been working to appear- 

bridge it over partially by physical research. His pro- ances. 

gramme is constantly realised in our own days, and we ^^^s<^" 

witness many subtle corrections of primitive sense illu- °°^^^^ ^ 


sions by the power of number, measure, and weighing. , 
This power of correcting the illusions of the senses is genses. 
ascribed to the cognitive faculty, which is the best part 
of the soul (603 a: to ixsTpw ys koI Xoyiafxa) itiaTSvov 
^s\Tt<TT0v av slrj Trj<! i^vxi)^)- 

The opposition between opinion and knowledge thus Four sub- 
alone remains out of the whole fabric of the four sub- divisions 
divisions of the cognitive faculty in B. VI-VII. And °* ^°^' 
opinion is here more sharply distinguished from know- "^ ^^^ 

ledge than ever ; it becomes quite another part of the 

^ . . . -^ ^ ^ not mam- 

soul, like feeling or desire (603 a : to irapd rd /xhpa Gained 
Bo^d^ov TrjS yjru^rjs tw vara Ta fxsTpa ovk av sit] tuvtov). 


of termin- 

Law of 
as a 
law of 

The user 
tent than 
the maker, 
as he has 
the know- 

of right 
opinion : 
below Pro- 

Hence opinion probably will not partake in immortality. 
The instability of Platonic terminology at the time when 
he wrote the Rejjublic is seen from the circumstance that 
even here, where opinion is condemned so strongly, the 
same word, So^a, is used for both opinion and knowledge, 
in the meaning of a judgment which might be wrong or 
right (602 E, cf. Theaet. 190 a). 

Here for the first time occurs a formulation of the law 
of contradiction as a law of thought, while in the Phaedo 
and earlier books of the Bepuhlic it was a metaphysical 
law : 

Phaedo 102 E : BcjpA^QB-.Tavrovra- ' Bep. 602 e: f(f)aixev 

ovSef TU)U evavTicov eVt vavria iroie'iv ij ndaxn-v ' tm avra ci^in mpi ravra 
ov OTvep TJv afia rovva- Kara ravrov ye Kid npos 

evavTia 8o^a^eti' cidvvi,- 

VTLov yiyvea-aai re kui tovtov ovk 
eival. cifxa. 

iBeXrjaei rov eivai. 
I 190 a. 

Cf. Theaet. 

This is also an indication of Plato's advancing logical 
preoccupation. There are besides other hints of the re- 
lation of the tenth book of the Republic to earlier dialogues. 
Here, as in the Cratylus and Euthydemus, the competent 
judge about anything is he who makes a proper use of it 
(601 C : oairsp eTriararai yprjadat) not the maker (601 D : 
'TToWt] dvayKT] tov '^pco/xsvov SKaarw ifXTrsipoT/nov rs sivat, 
Kol ajyeXov yiyvscrOaL ro) Troirjrfj, ola a<ya6a r) KaKa ttolsI sv 
rfj xpsla w 'xprjTai). Here this principle is generalised, 
while in the Cratylus it was applied specifically to word- 
making. The opposition between user and maker is 
parallel to the contrast between knowledge and faith 
(601 E : 6 /xef elhois s^ti'yjsWsi, -rrspl 'xp^wrow xai TTOvrjpoyi> 
. . . 6 he IT laTSVOov 'TTOtrjasL). 

The poets are now shown to have neither knowledge 
nor even right opinion (602 a : oms apa stasTat ours opOa 
So^dosi 6 pifji,r]Tr)^ TTSpl Oiv dv pip,r)Tai -rrpos KriWov ?) 
TTovnpiav). Homer, who was named in the Symposium 
as holding the first place among those who deserved 
immortal fame, is now not only esteemed below Solon 
and Pythagoras, but even humiliated by comparison with 


Protagoras and Prodikos (600 c) who succeeded better in 
life, says Plato, because they had more knowledge than 
the king of poets. We see here a pitiless condemnation / 
of what had been the chief element in Plato's own "" 
education. He knows well the temptations of the poet, 
and remains still poet enough to degrade poetry with 
poetical exaggeration. The future writer of the Lmvs 
appears here already with his boundless contempt even 
for the most refined pleasures, asking for deeds not words, 
choosing rather to deserve praise than to praise others 
(599 B), and proudly conscious of his own productive 

The style and date of the Bepublic. 

We have found a natural progress of doctrine from Unity 
the beginning to the end of the Reintblic, but no such of the 
fundamental differences between the first books and their Republic 
continuation as to make it necessary to recur to such ''^^"^^^"g 
adventurous suppositions as Krohn and Pfleiderer made 1°^^ 

• • ci- 1-1- t"^ study 

about the composition of this work, which is remarkable ^^ j^ 

for its unity in spite of its unusual volume. A comparison contents. 

of contents alone, however, is insufficient for a decisive 

solution of the question, and we must turn to our 

slcoOvca fxsdoSos of stylistic differentiation in order to 

find a trustworthy confirmation of the view resulting from 

the study of theoretical development. 

As to the single books of the Bepublic the point of style of 

main significance is the very early style of the first the first 

book. This has none of the important peculiarities ^°'^^ ^^"^^ 

common to all the following books, neither the scarcity of ^^^ ^' 

val, irdvu j£, irdvv asu ovv which characterises B. II-X • , , 
' lit- important 

(these answers form in B. I over one-third of all answers, pecuU- 

just as in Charm. Lach. Prot.) — nor ri /xtjv ; nor arities 

dXrjdscrraTa, nor opOws, nor opOorara, nor opOorara Xsyns, common 

nor SPjXov — all these being important peculiarities charac- t° ^'^ 

terising all the following books, and missed in the first i^*^'^°°o'^s 
book certainly not by chance, as all the usual opportuni- 


in the 

first book. 

arities of 
later style 
in the 
first book 
are gener- 
ally found 
also in 

ties for their use were given. Also some important 
peculiarities which were introduced into the style of 
Plato in earlier dialogues, and remained up to the latest 
works, are absent from B. I. Such is for instance the 
general prevalence of superlatives over positives in all 
affirmative answers, common to the Phaedo with nearly 
all later dialogues and all books of the Bejmblic (325), the 
great frequency of questions by means of apa (378) 
common to the Cratylus with all later dialogues and all 
other books of the Bepuhlic, new-invented adjectives in 
sihi'-js C254), beginning with the Gorgias and frequent in 
all parts of the Bepuhlic except B. I, rs singly (231) 
frequent in all other books and occurring already even in 
some Socratic dialogues, interrogations asking for better 
explanation (453), great frequency of prepositions 
(390, found already in the Laches and common to all 
other books of the Bejmblic with the latest group), 
questions by means of ttoIos (353) ; many other less 
important peculiarities are absent from the first book, 
being common to all other parts of the Bepuhlic with the 
latest group and, in the case of the last enumerated, even 
with some Socratic dialogues. In the above enumeration 
no accidental peculiarity has been included, and of these 
a certain number can easily be found in the table of 
affinity (pp. 162-171), quoted as occurring in various parts 
of the Bepuhlic except in the first book. 

If now after this long enumeration of peculiarities 
vainly sought for in the first book we ask what kind of 
peculiarities of later style are found in it, we find chiefly 
accidental occurrences of peculiarities known already from 
the earliest dialogues, and only one unique peculiarity of 
some importance later than the Phaedo, namely a double 
occurrence of KoKois or a similar adverb without verb in 
an affirmative answer. This is the only important 
peculiarity common to all other parts of the Bepuhlic, 
found in the first book and not in dialogues earlier than 
the Bepuhlic. Other important peculiarities of the first 


book belong to an earlier time, as for instance roivvv in 
conclusions (284) beginning with the Crito, frequency of 
apodictic answers equal to that in the Eiithydemus (376), 
and dXrjdrj without Xsysis as in the Charmides (385). 
This proves the very early date of the first book, which 
however may still be as late as the Gorgias. 

We cannot compare it with the Gorgias, because the 
latter dialogue is thrice as large, and we have no evidence 
as to the occurrence of the investigated peculiarities in a 
part of the Gorgias equal to the first book. That it is Compari- 
earlier than the Cratijlus appears very probable if we son of 
consider the great difference of the equivalent of affinity, *^® ^^^^ 
which is sufficiently considerable to include a reasonable , ^. , 

\ . the Lraty- 

allowance for the difference of size : ^^5 ^^^ 

Rep. a (20i pp.) : 28 (I) 6 (II) 3 (III) = 49 (I). ^'^^^ *^^ 

^ Crat. (42 pp.) : 33 (I) 16 (II) 15 (III) 1 (IV) = 114 (I). Gorgias 

shows the 

As here the equivalent of affinity of the later work is probable 
over twice as large, and more than proportional to the position 
size, while generally the equivalent of affinity increases ° ® 

. ' . f • 1 • X' ii^'s* book 

less than proportionally to the size, we may fairly inter i^g^^^g^j 
that the Cratijlus is later. This inference is confirmed ^^^^^ ^^^ 
by the fact that certain peculiarities absent from the first dialogues. 
book are sufficiently frequent in the Cratijlus to be pre- 
sumed to exist in all its parts, and therefore also in any 
part equal in size to Bep. I. Such are ovaia in the 
meaning of substance (245), adjectives in 00877? denoting 
causal relation (275), Kara with accusative prevailing over 
all prepositions except sv (389), interrogations asking for 
better explanation (453), new- invented adjectives in cohi^s 
(255), and great frequency of roivvv (308). Of these 
peculiarities, all frequent and important in the Cratylus, 
none is found in the Gorgias except one question asking 
for better explanation, and therefore they show the later 
date of the Cratylus, while thej^ cannot be used for a 
determination of the relation between Gorgias and Bep. I. 
The Gorgias has only three important peculiarities (253, 










and ninth 


B. II -IV 
and B. 
diif er in 

the com- 

307, 377) absent from the first book of the BejnLblic, which 
happen to be absent also from the Cratyhis, and these 
have generally less importance than those found in the 
Cratyhis and absent from the Gorgias and the first book 
of the Bepublic. 

Thus it may be regarded as probable that the first book 
is earlier than the Cratylus, while nothing can be said 
from purely stylistic comparisons about its relation to 
the Gorgias, to which its contents show it to be subse- 

As to the following books of the Bepublic, stylistic 
comparison proves that there is no such great distance 
between the first four books and the following as has been 
sometimes supposed by those who believed in a very early 
publication of the first four, five, or even six books. ^^' The 
style of B. II-IV is not very different from the style of 
B. VIII-IX, if equal samples are compared. Take for 
instance B. II-B. Ill 412 a, slightly exceeding in size the 
total of B. VIII-IX. Both appear evidently later than 
the PJiaedo, to which they are inferior in size : 

Phaedo (49 pp.) : 43 (I) 26 (II) 17 (III) 2 (IV) = 154 (I). 
->Rep. b 1,2 (37| pp.) : 47 (I) 20 (II) 22 (III) 2 (IV) = 161. 
->Rep. d (34 pp.) : 47 (I) 22 (II) 27 (III) 3 (IV) = 184. 

The advance beyond the Phaedo is considerable if we take 
into account the difference of size, and also the nature 
of those peculiarities which are common to B. II-IX 
being absent from the Phaedo. These include nearly all the 

-■" The separate publication of the first four books has been advocated 
by Hermann and later by Krohn, Chiappelli (' Sopra alcuni capitoli della 
vita di Dione di Plutarco,' Torino 1883, Rivista cli jilologia, anno 12), 
Siebeck [Jahrbilclicr fiir Philologie, Band 131, 1885, p. 229), and many 
others. Pfleiderer laid great stress on the division at 471 c. Teichmiiller, 
under the influence of the prejudice about the relation of B. V to 
Aristophanes' Ecclesiazusae, supposed the first five books to be one whole 
published about 392 b.c. Finally Eudolf Kunert (' Die doppelte 
Recension des Platonischen Staates,' Wissenschaftliche Beilage zum 
Jahresbcriclit des Kdnicjlichen Gymnasiums zu Spandau, 1893) believes 
that B. II-VI form one indivisible whole, published before 390 b.c. 


peculiarities enumerated above as characteristically absent parative 
from the first book. Among these the following have a frequency 
special prominence: r{ nrjv ; (202), 6v^.osih'^s as a philo- of identi- 
sophical term (261), ovkovv \pt] (338), aXTjOsa-rara, opOfos ^. 
(342), SrjXov (343), opdorara with or without \s<ysLs (342, 
388). a7rsipo9 (473), fisOicrra^iat, (488), all found in both 
parts of the Bepublic, but not in the Phaedo. On the other 
side B. VIII-IX contain not a single new important 
peculiarity absent from B. II-IV. The advance in style 
from the earlier to the later part is only due to a greater 
number of accidental peculiarities, and to an increase of 
the frequency of all kinds of peculiarities. Thus generally 
speaking B. VIII-IX belong to the same time as 
B. II-IV, showing a later style only to such an extent as 
might be expected in a continuous work of these dimen- 
sions. We have therefore no stylistic reason whatever Both parts 
to admit a great distance of time between the earlier and ot the 
the later part, as has been also shown by the comparison ^<^P'"'^^^^ 
of the contents. Naturally this does not imply that both ® °"^ 
parts must have been written in the same year, or in the . 
same couple of years. 

Style is changing slowly, and even the small advance The inter- 
in style observed may correspond to two or three years, mediate 
if we allow for the whole of the Bepuhlic an average term P^^'* ° 
corresponding to its size, anything between 5-7 years. As 
to B. V-VII, there is some stylistic evidence to place ^ppg^rs 
it after B. IX, at least its chief part designated in the table to be 
of affinity as C2 (471 c-541). We find : later. 

Rep. d (B, VIII-IX = 34 pp.) : 47 (I) 22 (II) 27 (III) 3 (IV) = 184. 
-^Rep.c, (471 c-541 = 44 pp.) : 50 (I) 21 (II) 38 (III) 7 (IV) = 234 (I). 

The comparison seems at first sight, in view of the differ- 
ence of size, to be insufficient for chronological purposes. 
But if we add to B. VIII-IX a part of B. V to increase 
its size, then we obtain : 

Rep. Ci d (50 pp.) : 62 (I) 23 (II) 36 (III) 3 = 228 (I). 
->Rep. C2 (44 pp.) : 50 (I) 21 (II) 38 (III) 7 (IV) = 234 (I) : 

T 2 


of style 
of B. 
over B. 
the suppo- 
sition of 
their later 

and end 
of B. V 


of the 






it is 


the latest. 

a small difference of few units in favour of the smaller 
sample of text, very significant through the prevalence of 
important and very important peculiarities. Some pecu- 
liarities appear in B. V-VII, which are missed alike in 
B. II-IV and in B. VIII-IX as in all earlier dialogues. 
These include 'yap ovv in short answers (326), iry (332), 
iras used with o\os (375), Kara separated from the corre- 
sponding accusative by ts (395), ovtcos 6v (236), hixo (195), 
aKivrjTos (469), and other words of a more accidental 
character. This confirms our conclusions from the con- 
tents, and makes it probable that the bulk of B. V-ATfl 
has been added later, at least after B. IX. 

From the observations it is, however, not easy to 
ascertain whether the beginning of the fifth book forms 
one indivisible whole with the picture of the philosopher 
from 471 c to the end of the seventh book. The first 
part of the fifth book, dealing with the equality of sexes, 
and with international relations between Hellenes and 
Barbarians, might still be earlier than the eighth book, 
while the larger portion filling the sixth and seventh books 
might have been added later. This point can only be 
decided by a more minute comparison of a greater number 
of peculiarities in samples of text absolutely equal. For 
our purpose it has no importance whatever, as this part 
of the fifth book contains no contribution to the know- 
ledge of Plato's logic. 

It is equally difficult to decide whether the tenth book 
is later than all parts of the Bepublic, or only later than 
B. VIII-IX. It contains a considerable number of pecu- 
liarities of later style for its small size, but only three 
accidental peculiarities are new (438, 475, 478), while B. 
V-IX contain a greater number of peculiarities which are 
absent from B. X. But a definitive solution of these 
difficulties can only be expected from further stylistic 
research. Meanwhile it remains certain that B. X is 
later than B. IV, probable that it is later than B. IX, and 
possible that it is later than all other books of the 


Bepublic. This possibility, a mere possibility so far as 

our stylistic comparison reaches, becomes a probability 

when the contents are carefully considered. 

All the parts of the Bepublic, except the first book, The 

being later than the Phaedu, and differing not very much Republic 

in style among each other, we may conclude that they "'"**®" 

were written continuously in the time next following the „, , 

■^ " . Phaedo 

Phaedo, and as we have no reason to suppose that m ^^ ^-^e 
that time Plato increased the speed of his writing, or course of 
the average amount of text produced yearly, it remains about six 
probable that the Republic occupied him for about six years, 
years, up to nearly his fiftieth year, as we supposed. 

This refutes all the suppositions about a possibly early Voyage to 
date -^'- of the Bepublic, and shows that Plato wrote his Syracuse 
great work after his return from the first Sicilian voyage, ""g^* 
and after the foundation of the Academy. Chiappelli ^^^ 
(p. 16) believes that Plato had already formed his political ^.^^ 
convictions when he came to Syracuse. If we accept the political 
traditional account of his adventures, the reverse is far matters. 
more probable : that the personal experience and observa- 
tion of the consequences resulting from the abuse of 
tyrannical power gave an opportunity to Plato for political 
reflections. This may have brought him from a position 
of individualistic ethics to a socialistic political theory 
such as is set forth in the Bepublic. 

-'- Among all the artificial arguments in favour of an early date of the 
first books of the Republic, none has been invented with such remarkable 
imagination as Pfleiderev's contention, which deserves, for the sake of 
curiosity, to be here quoted in his own words : ' nach meiner Ansetzung 
in den neunziger .Jahren des 4""" Jahrhunderts feiert BLp. A ( =; ' of ' accord- 
ing to Ptleiderer's strange designation, or B. I-V 471 c) zugleich das 
zweihundertjahrige Jubilaum der Gesetzgebung des Solon von 594, welche 
ja als Leistung seines von ihm so hoch geehrten Verwandten dem Plato 
Zeitlebens als spornender Vorgang vorgeschwebt ' (Sokrates und Plato, 
p. 248). Equally bold is Gymnasialdirector Carl Schmelzer (see above, 
p. 25, note 6'J) who declares that Plato did not mean seriously his political 
theories, and that for instance KOiva ra rwy <piKwv means : ' es muss jeder 
Mann eine jede Frau achten und schatzen als sei sie die seinige.' 



shows the 
of a philo- 

for him. 

He saw 
the use- 
of some 

II. The Phaedrus. 

(Relative afi&nity to the latest group, measured on the Laws as 
xtnity, =0'31 ; see above, p. 176.) 

The Phaedrus, beyond any other work of Plato, has 
been misunderstood by interpreters who devoted more 
attention to indifferent details than to the philosophical 
contents of the dialogue. It has been ascribed to a young 
man of twenty-five, while it contains notions and theories 
which Plato could scarcely have advanced before he was 
fifty. Some critics, and among them Grote, saw in the 
Phaedrus an erotic dialogue, either supplementary or 
even preparatory to the Synvposium — though the evident 
aim of the Phaedrus is to establish the conditions of a 
philosophical rhetoric, chiefly applicable to educational 
purposes. In the preceding dialogues we have seen 
Plato rising to the highest principles of knowledge with- 
out any attempt to reason about the best way of imparting 
them, except the few^ precepts given in the Bepuhlic. He 
tacitly assumed that any one possessing knowledge can 
impart it to others, if they are able to receive it. We 
may suppose that Plato attracted chiefly very gifted 
pupils, and to begin with he had such a great power 
of teaching that he felt no need of rhetorical artifice. 
His eloquence, which we admire even in such early 
dialogues as the Ajjology, was the natural outburst of his 
genius progressing spontaneously from the Apology to 
the Gorgias, from the Gorgias to Symposium, Phaedo, 
and the dialectical books of the Bepuhlic, apparently 
without effort or study (Phaedr. 248 b). This explains 
why he contemptuously defined rhetoric in the Gorgias 
as a kind of flattery, and why he condemned tragic 
poetry in the Bepuhlic as an imitation. 

His first opportunity for noticing the usefulness of 
some rhetorical artifice must have arisen at a time when 
his pupils began to teach, and he first observed that some 
of them, with all the knowledge inherited from the Master, 


were less capable of imparting it than others. Though rhetoriciii 

we admit some educational activity of Plato before the rules when 

foundation of the Academy in 387 B.C., the teaching by ^'^ ^''P'''' , 

others under his direction could scarcely have begun ^ 

"^ " teach ana 

earlier, and even probably began later, than the first years ^^^^i, 
of the existence of his own school. AVhen the number of tested 
his pupils increased, and some of them had remained some de- 
with him a longer time, it is natural that the elder pupils ficiencies 
should begin to teach ; and their deficiencies in teaching ^" '' 
may have led Plato to some reflections on rhetoric, which ""' 

he embodied in the Phaednis. This view is here not 
given as a reason for the late date of the Phaednis, but 
only as an explanation of the origin of this dialogue, 
which becomes probable when once we know its late 
date, as resulting from the study of its style (see above, 
p. 176). 

For the purpose of a discussion on rhetoric, Plato had to Selection 
select a speech as an example to illustrate his views. His ofaspeech 
choice of a speech of Lysias '^^^ was natural, inasmuch Lysias 
as Lysias was thought one of the greatest rhetors of 

-'^•' Much erudition has been spent on the question whether the speech 
attributed by Plato to Lysias is authentic or only invented by Plato in 
imitation of other writings of this orator. We have no reason to disbelieve 
Plato if he clearly credits Lysias with this speech. To criticise his own 
invention and to accuse Lysias of the greatest moral degradation on the 
ground of a forged document, would certainly be below Plato's dignity. That 
the speech is read by Phaedrus, and not repeated from memory, adds to the 
probability of its authenticity, which has been maintained also by Haenisch 
[De cnrtfione quae sub nmninc Lysiae in Platonis Pliaedro legit ur, Eatibor 
1825), Spengel, Franz, Westermann, Holscher (quoted by Hermann, p. 675, 
note 554), L. Schmidt ( Verhandlmujcn dcr 18''" Philologcnversammhrng, 
Wien 1858),Ueberweg (Untersuchungen, p. 262), and by many others, while 
it has been opposed by Hermann and Jowett. A certainty in this question 
can only be arrived at by very minute stylistic comparison. So long as 
an evident proof of the spuriousness is not forthcoming, we must admit the 
authenticity. Plato has never quoted by name an author attributing to 
him words or opinions which were invented by himself. So far as the 
works alluded to by Plato are preserved, all his quotations from Homer, 
Parmenides, Protagoras, have been confirmed, and the natural assumption 
is, therefore, that he included in the Phaedrus an authentic speech of 
Lysias. The onus probandi is entirely on the side of those who deny it. 

as an 


of wrong 

because it 
had to be 
a speech 
to the 

the form, 
the third 
speech the 

and not 
limited to 


those times (228 A : Avcrlas iv iroWaJ '^p6v(0 Kara a'^oXriv 
avi^sOrjKSv, SstvoTaros o)v roiv vvv ^ypd^siv). The subject of 
the speech to be selected was accidental and secondary. 
It could obviously not be a forensic speech, because 
Plato's aim was an investigation of educational rhetoric, 
not of forensic oratory. He had to choose from speeches 
which were designed for the young, and it was not his 
fault that such speeches did not attain a very high moral 
standard. He could not select a model speech, even if 
one could be found outside the Socratic circle, because 
the artistic purpose required a sharp contrast between his 
rhetoric and the wrong rhetoric of contemporary orators. 
His choice of a discourse of Lysias, written in apology of 
illicit sexual relations, must be, therefore, recognised as 
perfectly fit and proper for the purpose. Before any 
theoretical discussion followed, a better example had to be 
opposed to the example taken from Lysias. This better 
example was at first to be better in the form, and then 
afterwards to be made better and more elevated in the 
contents. Plato chose to oppose to the first speech two 
speeches of his own : the first on the same subject, but 
better composed — the second directed against the contents 
of both the preceding speeches. Thus it resulted as a 
necessity of composition that the three speeches, intended 
to exemplify the theory, occupied a great part of the 
whole writing, being nearly equal in size to the remaining 

The three speeches are avowedly examples of good 
and bad eloquence (262 d, cf. 264 e). The subject- 
matter is of secondary importance, and is by no means 
limited to love, since the myth in the second speech of 
Socrates deals even more with immortality, reminiscence, 
and human perfectibility than with the particular subject 
of love which formed the accidental starting point. We 
see here in every respect a very much widened horizon ; 
in the Phaedo the scene of the mythical digression was 
limited to the earth's depths and heights, and even in 


Bep. X the Earth is still the centre of interest. Here Place 
we see Plato, in accordance with his recommendation in of the 
the Bepublic as to the study of astronomy, taking the mythical 
universe up to the fixed stars as the scene for the periodical ^ ® 
migrations of each soul. The allegory of the cave is re- ^ , 

° o ^ . fa^j. beyond 

peated on a much larger scale. The whole earth now takes ^.j^^ nmits 
the place of that subterraneous dwelling, and instead of of earth, 
the world outside the cave, where Truth can be seen as we 
see here earth and water, we have now the supramundane 
region beyond the most distant stars, a metaphorical 
expression which means beyond space and matter. Those 
who remember their vision of Truth, and act accordingly, 
are deemed to be mad (249 d : i^cardijisvos roov dvdpooTrlvcov 
ariTuvhaa^drwv . . . vovdiTSirai vtto tmv ttoWo)!' a>9 irapa- 
KLvoiv, cf. Bep. 517 D : si diro Oaiodv diwpiCov sttI to, 
ui'dpdoTrsid Tis skOtav . . . <f>aLVSTaL actoSpa ysXolos), because 
vulgar people are unable to understand philosophy. 

While in the Phaedo even the mm'derer of his father Increase 
could be pardoned after one year's punishment (114 a), of the 
here, as in the Bepublic, the period of probation lasts a 
thousand years after each life on earth, and a free choice 
of a new fate is left to each soul : 

of punish- 
ments or 

Bep. X 615 a: dirjye'ia-dai 8i Phaedr. 249 AB : otuptov npcorov 

aXXr]\aii . . . avafxifivqcTKOfXivai ocra (diov TfXfVTrjauxTLV, Kptcrecos erv^ov, 

Tf Knl Ilia TTuBouv kiu ISi.iev ev Tij KpiBeicrai ^i id fxeu eh ra vno yrjs 

VTTo yi]s TTopeia — eivui Se liju iro- 8i<ai(i>TTjpin fXdovcrai SIkijv (ktivov- 

peiav ^iXifTT] — Tas 8' aii (k tov crii', al S' ets rovpavov Tivaronov 

ovpavov evnadeias Sirfyeladai kol vtto Trjs diKrjs Kovcptadela-ai 8idyov(riv 

Oeas dprjxdvovs to koXXus. . . . d^icos ov eV dvdparrov e'ibei ejiiaaav 

617 d: -rTpo(f)r]Tr]i' . . . Aa/Surra (Siov. rai be ;(iXiooT&) dp.(^uTfpaL 

Kkrjpovs re Ka\ l3iwi' ■n-apaSfiyp.ara d(piKvovnfi'at eVt KXrjpwa-ii' re koX 

. . . elnelv • y\rvxai- f(t>r]pfpoi . . . aipea-U' rnv devTipov ^lov alpovvrat, 

vixfls Saipova aiprjaecrde. ov av 6i\ij eKdaTif. 

This denotes a deeper understanding of the responsi- 
bilities of life, and agrees with the doctrines of the latest 
works, such as the Timaeiis and Laws. 

Even the philosopher, who, according to the Phaedo, Cycle 
reached the happiest state immediately after death, being of ten 


years for 
all souls 

before : 
All of 
less than 

of poets 

freed from the body (PJiaedo 114 c : ol cf)c\oao(pLa Uavcos 
Katir)pdfjLSvoL avsv rs crcofidTCDV ^wcn to 'Trapdirav sis rov STrscra 
j^povov), is now obliged to return twice to life on earth in 
three thousand years before he can again reach perfection 
{Phaedr. 249 a). For other souls a cycle of ten incarnations 
during ten thousand years, unknown in the Bepublic, is 
now imagined at each fall into matter (249 a). This 
shows that Plato progressed in emancipating his thought 
from the narrow limits of time as known on earth. We 
see also other signs of the greater height from which 
earthly affairs are looked upon. Those against w^hom 
Plato wrote some of his earlier dialogues are here judged 
with the indulgence of one who is too sure of his superi- 
ority to deny small merits in others (247 a : (f)66vos <yao 
gfo) Oslov x^P"^ Lararai). Thus Polos, who had been 
treated so severel}^ in the Gorgias, also Protagoras, and 
man 3' others (267 ab), are recognised here as inventors of 
certain rhetorical artifices, not quite as important as they 
pretended, but useful and even necessary to those who 
know how to use them (269 b : rd irpo rrjs tsxptjs- duajKala 
jxaOrjiJiaTa). This concession, though supplemented by the 
announcement that this preliminary knowledge should not 
be taken for the true art of rhetoric, is certainly a sign that 
the earlier hate is now changed into indulgent compassion. 
Pericles, too, who was treated with such severity in the 
Gorgias (516 A), is now represented as a model orator. 
Anaxagoras, who in the Pliaedo was accused of having 
deceived Socrates by his unfulfilled promise of explaining 
everything through the power of reason, is now credited 
with the merit of teaching true eloquence to Pericles 
(270 a). In the same line comes also the very moderate 
recognition of Isocrates, only in so far as his character is 
said to be superior to that of Lysias and other orators 
(279 A), with the addition that even the greatest merit in 
this direction is infinitely inferior to true philosophy. 

In one respect Plato's severity remained unchanged : 
the poets are here placed very low in the scale of human 


fates, below the gymnasts, money-makers, and sooth- as imita- 
sayers (248 D). That poets are imitators, is here assumed to^s pre- 
without any further explanation {ttoitjtlkos y tmi' irspl ^"PP^ses 
filfjLTjaiv Tis aWos), as if the reader were supposed to be 
familiar with the tenth book of the Bepubhc, no earlier 
general definition of poetry as imitation being known. ^^"^ 
Plato's progress from admiration of poetry to contempt 
of it began only after the Sijmposium, and was first justi- 
fied in the Eejniblic ; it is manifest in the Phaedrus and 
all later works. Also the low place assigned to the tyrant 
in the ninth book of the Republic remains here unchanged 
(248 E). 

In some other respects we notice a development of 
earlier views. Love was in the Symposium the universal Love and 
creative power in nature, and is here only one of four Beauty 
kinds of madness ; Beauty was the highest idea, and is ^^^® ^°^* 
here only one among many ideas, of which justice occu- ^ '^^^ . 
pies the first place (247 d : h hs Trj nrsptohw Kadcpa jxkv 
avrrjv 8iKaioavi>r)v, Kadopa Bs aco^poovnii-, Kadopa hs stti- 
(XTtiixTjv . . .), as is natural after the long dialogue on justice 
(276 E : TTa'^KuXi^v, iraihidv, . . . hiKinoavvi/s . . . Tripi fivdo- Use of 
Xo'youvTa). Some important terms used in the B (public are terms m 
here applied as quite familiar : thus 8vi upas in the meaning 
of a faculty (246 D : irrspov Svvap,is), BtaXsKiiKJ] meaning 
metaphysical science (never used before Plato, and by 

-■" In Be}]. II 373 b iroirjToi are named as co-ordinate to fxi/xTirai, and 
the latter term applies to interpreters of poetry. In the third book of the 
Eepublic only a part of poetical works is done ' by imitation ' (394 c : rrjs 
Troi7]<Tea>s . . . f) fiev 5id txijxiiaeus o\7\ iariv, r] 5e Si' d7ra776Aios avrov tov ttoltitov, 
7) 5' aS 5i' aficpoTepav), the term /xifjiricns being never used as a general class to 
which poetry belongs. This is for the first time explained in the tenth 
book of the Republic and then applied, in the same manner as in the 
Phaedrus, in the Laws (668 a : fiovcnKTiv ye itacrav (pafxtu elKaaTiKVf re elvai 
Kol fj.i/xriTiK-fiv). To an evidently earlier stage corresponds the definition of 
poetry as creation in the Symposium (205 b : ri roi e'/c tov /xti ovros ds rb 
ov UvTi OToiovv alria ■Kao'd. iari troiriffis . . . airh Se iraa-qs ttjs TroiVjtrecDS ev 
fxopiov a(popi(76(v rh irep] rijv fxovaiK^v Kal to. jxirpa t^ tov oKov ov6fxaTL irpoaa- 
yopevfTai), while in the much later subdivision of ttoitjtikti in the Soph. 265 b, 
the primitive meaning of the word seems to be already forgotten, and poetry 
is not even named as one of the subdivisions. 


in the 


Proof of 
the soul's 
with the 
in the 
and in the 

ments the 
tenth book 
of the 

Plato first in Bep. VII, cf. Phaedr. 276 e) ; BloXskilkos 
meaning, not as in the Cratylus, Euthydemus, and in 
Xenophon, one who knows how to ask and answer ques- 
tions, but the philosopher able to discover unity in the 
variety of particulars (266 B : Svlutov sis sv /cal sttI 7ro\ka 
7rs(f>VK6d' opav . . . Trpoaayupsvco . . . SioXsktlkov, cf. Rep. 
537 C : 6 (TWorrriKos SiaXsKTiKOs, cf . Crat. 390 C : spcorav icaX 
ciTTOKpivsadai sTnardp^svov . . . Bt^aXsKTiKov) ; ap^/j as first 
principle of Being {Phaedr. 245 d). 

There are two special psychological theories of the 
Bepuhlic which recur in the Phaedrus, and offer some 
opportunity for an instructive comparison. The most 
important is the proof given of the soul's immortality. 
Formally the proof differs here as in the Republic from 
the arguments of the Phaedo : a substance which must 
be necessarily immortal is first defined, and then the soul 
is shown to correspond to the notion thus determined. 
The proof given in the Phaedrus is supplementary to that 
of the tenth book of the Bepicblic : there the question was 
asked, what can be the cause of destruction of something 
existing, and it had been answered by the supposition 
that only a thing's own weakness and evil can destroy it. 
Here the corresponding positive question is asked, what 
is the cause of life and its external manifestation — move- 
ment, and it is answered, that the true cause must be 
a self-moving principle, all other things moved from 
without having no certainty of continued movement. 
There the only thing which is not destroyed by its own 
evil was the soul ; here also each self-moving principle 
is found to be a soul. That the proof of immortality 
given in the Phaedrus is the later of the two, is evident 
from the fact that it is the only proof recurring in the 
Laws, and that no other new proof is given in any later 
dialogue. For the purpose of a further discussion of this 
definitive Platonic theorem, the two similar demonstra- 
tions in Phaedrus and Laivs ought to be carefully com- 
pared with the last proof given in the Bepuhlic : 



i?e2J. X (abbreviated). 

608 D ; dddvarns fjfiSiv 
fj ^vxr] Koi oiSeVore 
mroXKvTut. (1). 

609 A B : TO ^vfx(pvToi' 
KaKov EKOcrroi) koI r/ 
nnvr/pin eKacrrov anoX- 
Xvaiv (2), rj ei fxrj tovto 
OTToXei, ovK av ciXXo ye 
avTo eTi 8ia(p6eipeiev (3). 
ov yap TO ye ayaOov prj 
TTore' Ti aTToXe'crrj, ov8e 

av TO liTJTe KUKOV flTjTe 

dyadov (4). 

609 B : edu lipa Tl 


a> eaTi pev KnKOV, o 
TToiel avTo pox^dripov^ 
TOVTO pevToi ov)( oiov Te 
aVTo Xveiv dnoXXvov . . . 
rjSr] elaopeda oti tov 
Tre(pVK6Tos ovTcos oXe- 
dpOS OVK ^v .... (5) 

609 D : ^vxrjp . . . 

evovaa ev avTrj ddiKia 
. . . rw ivelvai . . . 
ovBapws . . (fideipei (6). 
liXoyov TTjV pev aXXov 
Tvovqp'iav aTToXXvvai, ti, 
Trjv 8e avTov pi). 

610 C : ov8eis TTOTe 
hel^ei U39 Tcov anodirq- 
(TKovTCOV d8iKa)Tepai al 
■v|/'v;^at did tov BdvaTov 
yiyvovTac (7) . 

610 E : oTTore 8r] prj 
iKavT] rj ye ot/ceia novqpia 
nai TO oiKelov kokov 
ciTTOKTelvai Koi aTToXea-ai 
yjfvx^v, trxoAf; TO ye 
en (iXXtw oXeBpcoTeTay- 
pevov KOKOV yjrvx'fli' ^ ti 
dXXo ajToXei .... onoTe 
prjb^ v(p evos djroXXvTaL 
KUKOV, prjTe oiKeiov pr]Te 
dXXoTpiov, drjXov on 

P/iafcZr. 245 c~246 a: 
^vx^i ndcra dOdvaTo^ 
(1), TO yap deiKivrjTov 
dddvuTOV ■ TO 8' aXXn 
Kivovv Kal utt' oXXov 
Kivovpevov, rrnvXav exov 
Kivrjcrecos rravXav exei 
C^^ijs (2)- povov br) to 
avTo KivovVj aTe ovk 
arroXelTTov eavTO, ov iroTe 
Xrjyei Kivovpevov, dXXd 
Km Tois dXXois ocra 
KiveiTai TOVTO Trrjyf] Ka\ 
dpxrj KivTjoecos (3). apx"? 
8e dyevrjTov. e^ ^PX'l^ 
yap avdyK-q irdv to yiy- 
vdpevov yiyveadai, avTrjv 
de pr/d^ e^ evos . . . . 
eTreidi] 8e aye'vijTov ea-- 
Tiv, <a\ a8id(f)dopov avTo 
avdyKT] eivai. ^pX^s 
yap 8tj dnoXopevrjs ovre 
avTT) TTOTe eK tov ovTe 
aXXo e^ eKeivijs yevrj- 
aeTai,e'nrep e^ apxrjs Sel 
rd ndvTa yiyvecrOai (4). 
ovTO) 617 Kivrjaecos pev 
apXT] TO avTo avTO kivovv. 
TOVTO 8e ovT dnoXXva-Oai 
ovTe yiyvecdai Svvutov. 
.... adavdrov 8e ne(j>a- 
apevov TOV vcf)' eavroii 
Kivovpevov (5), ^vx^s 
ovcriav Te Ka\ Xoyov 
TovTov avTov Tis Xeyoiv 
ovK aicrxvve^Tai (6). 
nav yap crcopa, d> pev 
e^codev TO KiveiaBai, 
dyj/vxov, CO 8e ev8o6ev 
avTa e^ avTov, ep\j/vxoVj 
cos TavTTjs ovcrrjs (pvcrecos 
^vx^js (7)- ft 8' ea-Tiv 


dXXo Tl elviii TO avTo 
envTO Kivdvv rj ■^j/vxr]'', 
e^ avciyKTjs dyevrjTov 

Laivs : 

894 E : oTav eTepov 
(iXXo rjpiv peTa^dXj}, 
Ka\ TOVTO (iXXo eTepov 

aei, Tcbv TOIOVTCOV . . OVK 
. . eCTTal TTOTe ti TTpWTOV 

pfTujUaXXov. dXX' OTav 
avTo avTo Kivrjcrav 
eTepov dXXoicocrt], to 5' 
erepov dXXo . . . dpx^ 
Tis avTcov ecTTai ttjs 
Kivqaecos dn'dcTrjs . . . 

T} Ttjs aVTtjS aVTTjV KlVrj- 

cruarjs peTufSoXrj. 

895 B : dpxh" «P" 
Kivrja-ecov TTaacov kui 
TTpMTTjv . . . cprjcropev 
avayKaicos eivai Trpecr^v- 
Tc'iTrjv . . . 

C : ^fjvavTo TTpocrepov- 
pev, OTav avToavTo Kivfj. 

896 A : a> 8r) yj/vxr] 


Xoyos ; e'xopev liXXov 
ttXtjv tov vvv 8>) pi]de'vTa, 
TTjv 8vvapevr]v avTrjv 
avTT]v Kivelv Kivrjcriv ; . . . 
iKavais 8e8eixdai ■^uxrjv 

TavTOV ov Kal Tt)v TTpOiTTjV 

yevecriv /cat Kivrjaiv tcov 
Te ovTcov KOI yeyovoTcov 
Kai ecropevcov . . . kivt}- 
crecos aTTdarjs aiTia 

!J04 C : pera^dXXei 
pev Toivvv TrdvB'' ocra 
peTOxd icTTi yj^vxrjs, ev 
eavro7s KeKTrjpeva ttjv 7 rjs 
peTa^oXris ahiav. 

959 a: TTeideadai 8' 
eaTl Tco vopoOeTT] xp^^v 
. . . XeyovTi . . . . ev 

aVTCO TCO (Step TO TTOpe- 

Xopevov rjpcov eKacTTov 
tovt' eivai prjSev dXX' fj 
Tr]v yj/^vxriv . . . B : TOV 


dvdyKT) avTo del ov eivai, \ re Koi dOdvarov yjrvX'] '' ovraTjfiav eKacrrov outcos 


the proof 
in the 
and the 

to the 
They show 
a greater 
an ad- 
vance in 
the form 

H 8' del ov,dddvaTov{8). lav e'lr} (8). Tvepl fj-ev 
611 A : Tovro fiev i ovv adavaa'ias avTrjs 
TOLVVv, ovTOis ex^TU) (9). iKavciis (9). 

dOdvarov, yp'vxrjv errovo- 
fia^o^evov, dniiuui Sci- 
aovra \oyov . . . 

The most striking parallelism is evident between the 
two first proofs. Both begin by a short statement of the 
theorem which has to be proved in what follows (1). Both 
then name a kind of things subject to destruction (2), 
contrasted with another indestructible kind (3). The 
indestructibility of this second kind is then proved by 
elimination of other possible suppositions (4). The 
next step in both arguments is the conclusion that 
a thing corresponding to the above definition is inde- 
structible (5), and the identification of such a thing with 
the soul (6). This identification is brought about in 
the jRepuhlic by a longer digression on the possible 
analogies between soul and body (609 b-d) which has 
been here omitted. In the Phaedrus the identification of 
the soul with the self-moving principle is briefly intro- 
duced as a conviction of which nobody needs to be 
ashamed. After this identification in both passages 
follows the special indication of the opposition between 
body and soul (7) , the conclusion that the soul is immortal 
(8), in the Phaedrus supplemented by the additional 
determination that it has no beginning, and the whole 
argument concludes by an express statement that the 
proof is deemed sufficient (9). 

If Plato knew any one of these arguments when he 
wrote the Phaedo, he could not have omitted such proofs, 
which are far superior to anything which the dying 
Socrates had to offer to Simmias and Cebes. That those 
proofs were not yet deemed sufficient by Plato himself is 
seen from the exhortation at the end of the Phaedo to 
investigate the subject further {Phaedo 107 B : ava<yKd^o/j,ai 

UTTKTTiaV STL '^X^''^ "JTCip SflUUTtp TTcpl TCOV slprjUSVCOl', SayS 

Simmias, and Socrates answers : Kal tus virodicrsts ras 
Trpcoras, Kal si TrtcrTal vpZv slcriv, ojjlws STTia-KSTrrsac aa(psaTs- 


pov) which is the opposite of the confident assertion in of expi-es- 
the Bepiiblic as well as in the Phaedrus, that the above sion, 
proof is sufficient {Phaedr. 246 A : UavSis, cf . Phaedo earned 
101 E : £0)9 sirl ri iKavhv sXOols) . The logical method of ."^ ^^ 
beginning with the enunciation of the theorem which has 
to be proved, and then stating the axioms on which the ^^^^^ ^^ 
proof rests, is also an advance beyond the method used in the 
the Phaedo. Thus the arguments both of the Bepublio Republic. 
and Phaedrus are clearly later than those of the Phaedo. 
And almost equally probable is the priority of the Be- 
piiblic as compared with the Phaedrus, the latter being 
distinguished by a greater conciseness, by the avoidance of 
induction based on analogy which is used in the Bepublic, 
by its deductive character based on necessities of thought, 
by the exact co-ordination of immortality or infinite 
future with an infinite past, and above all by its agree- 
ment with the only proof given in the Laws. This is Coinci- 
a point of the greatest weight : Plato laid great stress on <ience of 
the immortality of the soul in the Laws, and out of all -f^^''^^^''''"* 
his arguments in favour of this doctrine he selected the 
proof given in the Phaedrus as adequate (Uavor) and 
worthy to be repeated in his latest work. This confirms 
our view that the Phaedrus is nearer to the Laivs than 
the Phaedo and Bepublic, which are the only other works 
of Plato containing logical argumentation about immor- 
tality. After the Phaedrus Plato thought it superfluous 
to look for new arguments, and whenever he spoke about 
immortality he took it as well established and certain, or 
he added only, as in the Timaeus, mythical representa- 
tions fit for popularising one of his favourite theories. 

The comparison with the Laios disposes also of every in both 
doubt about the author's intention to apply his proof to cases the 
the individual soul of every man.-'^-^ AVhatever Plato inili^'"^"al 

'-'= Some ancient interpreters thought that ^'"'X^ iracra means ' the whole 
soul in the universe,' and this artificial interpretation has been accepted also 
by Teichmiiller (I. 63), who contends that Plato did not admit individual 
immortality, against the evidence of the texts. But Walbe's very special 


soul is 
meant, as 
from a 
and the 

thought later about the relation of individual souls to the 
whole or to God, there is no possible doubt that he taught 
individual immortality as a rational theory from the 
Phaedo up to the Laws. There is no need to infer with 
Teichmliller that those who read this teaching in Plato's 
works make him an adherent of atomism or monado- 
logism. Individual souls can have a common origin 
and an universal direction, remaining all the same 
immortal, and always equal in number, as we read in 
the Bepuhhc as well as in the Timaeus. The Platonic 
doctrine was that the inward personality by no means 
needs the body for its existence : 

Phaedo 115 C D : ou -rreiQu) Kpiroiva, 
a>s eyci fifii ovtos 6 'SaKpiirrji, o 
uvvl 8iaXeydixfvos . . . flXX oierat 
fie fKelvou fivcu, 6v oy^eriu oKiyov 
varepov veKpov, (cat epwra Stj, ttcos 
fie 6(inTi] . . . eneiSav ttico to (f)dp- 
fiUKOv, ovKeTi Vfiiv napafieuw, aXk 
ol^rjaopai ciTnav . . . 

of the 
parts of 
the soul in 

Legg. 959 c : ovde'voTe oIko- 
(pdopelv )(pT] 8ui(f)ep6in-a>s, vofii^ovra 
Tov avTov TovTov elvai tov ratv 
aapKOiV oyKov Banrofievov, ak\' 
eKelvov . . , ovTivu tis fidXiad' 
Tjyelrat woBoiV SdnTeiv, o'i)((a6ai 
Trepau'ovTn Koi e fiTTifiTrXavTa ttjv 
avTov fioLpav. 

This doctrine, common to the Phaedo with the twelfth 
book of the Laws, unchanged in the course of thirty years 
and more between these writings, results with equal 
stringency from the Phaedrus as from the Bepublic, since 
in both the soul is opposed to the body, and immortality 
predicated of the pure soul. 

We had to dwell at some length on these comparisons, 
because of their importance for the order of the dialogues, 
and also because they illustrate a logical progress of 
method. Plato's increased power of exact argumentation 
did not prevent him from indulging in his favourite 
manner of mythical allegories, as we see in the shape 
which he gives in the Phaedrus to the other chief 
psychological doctrine of the Bejnihlic, namely the three- 
investigation on the use of -rras in Plato (see note 135) proves that here 
\pvxv iraa-a means ' each soul ' or ' all individual souls,' and not, as 
Thompson translates, ' the vital principle in general ' (Jowett : ' the soul 
through all her being'). 


fold partition of the soul. But even in this mythical 
shape a certain development of doctrine is noticeable. 

The dvfios was defined in the Bepublic as rb o5 dv/jbovrac 
(580 D), and we have there interpreted it as the moral 
feeling. This interpretation finds its confirmation in the 
Phaedrus. Plato must have felt the terms Ovfios and Wider 
dvfxosiSss to be too narrow, and this explains why 6v/xosiSh '^etermi- 
as a faculty of the soul has never been used by Plato after "^^^^"^ ^^ 
the Bepuhlic except in the recapitulation of the Timaeus 
(18 a). In the Phaedrus the moral feeling is represented 
under the image of a beautiful and good horse of noble 
breeding ('24Gb), full of ambition, but also the lover of 
temperance and honour, following right opinion and 
amenable to reason (253 d). 

This is a wider determination than that given in the ciassi- 
Bepublic, and also the classification of men according to fication 
their capacities is much enlarged. There we had only °^ ™®° 
three kinds of men, divided according to the prevalence of ^^^^^"^ 
one or another faculty. Here we find twelve kinds of ,. ., 

. . . limits 

souls, each of which has its own different ideal (247 a) (j^awn 
allegorically represented by one of the Olympian gods, in the 
We need not attach any special importance to the number Bepuhlic. 
twelve, which is here accommodated to the mythological 
form. But it is certainl}^ characteristic that Plato admits 
a great variety of souls not only in the myth of the 
dialogue, but also in the following conversation (271 b : 
y^v')(fis ysvr)), and this reveals an enlarged view of human 
nature. Here, as in former writings, the philosopher is Phiio- 
placed above all other kinds of men, as following the sopher 
band or chorus of Zeus (248 d : ttjv TrKsla-ra Ihovaav sis ^^ssumed 
yovrjv . . . AtXoaoSov, cf. 252 E). He is here named a , , 

IPflflf*!* of 

leader of men by his very nature (252 e : ^iXoao^os ts koX ^^^^ 
rjjs/jLovLKos -rrjv cf)uaiv) whereby the result of the long 
explanation of the Bepublic about the leadership of 
philosophers is briefly assumed as certain. A still stronger 
sign of the increasing educational influence of Plato is 
that he once uses ' we ' (250 B : rj/xsh) without any nearer 



of the 
above all 


to God. 



Ideas con- 
by reason 
not the 

determination, in the meaning ' the philosophers.* The 
writer has aheady a sufficient pubHc of readers among his 
pupils to feel certain that he will not be misunderstood. 
But he insists repeatedly on the scarcity of philosophical 
natures (250 a : oXlyaL XsLTTovrat, als to rrjs fivTjfirj? licai>5is 
TrdpSdTLV, . . . 250 B : inoyis avrow koI oXiyoc sttI ras siKovas 
loVTSS OsMVraL TO TOV stKaadsvTos jsvos). 

No authority is binding for the thinker but his own 
reason (270 C : ^/a?) irpos tm 'iTnroKpdTst tov \oyov s^sto.- 
^ovTa (TKOTrslv, si avixjxovsl), and the philosopher proclaims 
his superiority not only above the poets, as in the 
Bepublic, but above the law-givers and orators ; only 
when they are philosophers do any of these deserve our 
esteem (278 cd). This contempt for the eminence of 
fame and vulgar opinion (274 C : duOpw-rrLvav ho^aafxaTMv) 
shows a great distance from the Symposium. That the 
term (j)ik6o-o(fios is here introduced in opposition to crocjxjs 
(278 d) is a rhetorical artifice, like the novelty of immor- 
tality in the Bepublic, while in another passage the 
dialectician is compared to a god, whom even Socrates 
would follow with delight (266 B). Moreover, the 
ideal of the philosopher appears here, as later in the 
Laws, more and more supplanted by the ideal of a God, 
to whom the philosopher is similar. But in so far as any 
comparison of a philosopher with other men is made, the 
superiority of the philosopher accentuates itself more and 
more. Philosophy is divine (239 b : Osia <^tkoao<i>la) as in 
the Timaens (47 a : 'f>L\oao(^las /jusl^ov djaOou ovt rjXdsv 
ovd^ rj^Si iTOTs tS Ovq^-u) yivst Bfoprjdsv sk 6iO)V, cf. Phil. 
16 C : dsSiv els dvdpioirovs hoais), and leads her votaries to 
please gods not men (274 a). 

In the mythical part of the Phaedrus the ideas are 
still spoken of as contemplated by reason (247 c : 97 dxpd)- 
jjuaTOs TS KOI da-yrjixcLTiaTos Kai avacfirjs ovala ovtoos ovaa, . . . 
jjiovtp OeaTij va>), and appear to be objective (247 D e : KaOopa 
. . . SiKaioavv'>]v • . • s7naTi]/j.r]v,oux, f/ysvscris TrpoascTTiv . . . 
aWd T7]V sv Toj 6 icTTiv ov ovTcos- STTiaTiiuriv ovaav), with 


the express caution that they cannot be seen through our 
bodily eyes (250 d : 6-ylrsi (})p6vr)ais ov^ oparat) . At all 
events the theory of an immanence of the ideas, as taught 
in the Symposium, and to a certain extent in the Phaedo, 
is supplanted by the view of a similarity or imitation of 
the ideas by the things v^hich has been already indicated in 
the Phaedo and accepted in the Bepuhlic. The particular 
thing is an image of the idea {6/j,oiQ)/j.a, 250 A, B) which 
it imitates (251 A : f^sosiSss irporrwirov KoXkos sv fMSfiifir]- 
fiivov 7] nva (T(o/j,aros ISsav). 

We must translate this metaphorical speech into Ideas as 
abstract thought in order to learn whether the writer of models of 
the Phaedrus continued in his belief of separate ideas. ^®™^ 
And the metaphors here used might well be applied to "^"^ 

. . . . . , . well be 

general notions. There are some hmts pomtmg m this ■-, ^+- j 

direction. Amidst all the imagery of the space above ^yjjt^ 

heaven appears a very dry explanation of the difference general 

between man and animals. Man must understand general notions. 

notions which are the result of the union by means of faculty 

reasoning into one concept of what appears to the senses ° ^^^' 
as a manifold variety (249 b : Ssl avOpw-nov ^vvLsvai to kut 

slSos Xsiyofievov, sk ttoWmv lov ala6i]crscov sls sv Xoyia/xm gpggjgg 

^vvatpovixivoov) . This is given as an explanation of the in the 

preceding metaphorical assertion that no soul is incarnated variety 

into the form of man without having enjoyed the super- of appear- 

celestial vision of true substance and science. If we ^"^^^ ^ 

follow this example set by Plato himself in the interpre- „ 

^ . "^ . . ^ of man. 

tation of his allegories, we soon get quit of the riddle of 
self-existing ideas. Plato does not require us to take his 
mythical allegories literally : he says clearly that he does 
not insist on everything said in the myth (265 B : tWs 
fisv aXrjOovs rcvos scfiairTO/jisvot, rd'ya S' av koL aWoas 
Trapa(bsp6/J,svot, Kspdaavrs's ov TravraTraaiv aircdavov \oyov, 
fivOifcov rtva v/jlvov TrpoasT: aiaa/xsp jj^STpuos rs Kai sv(f)7]iLL0)i), 
and confesses to have mixed truth with fiction. Thus we Metaphors 
are at liberty to interpret the allegories and to distinguish about 
truth from fiction. Tha;t ' beyond the limits of the stars ^^^^^ 

z 2 


could refer 
to general 

Ideas of 
Plato and 
of Kant. 

formed by 
the study 
of par- 

vision of 
ideas into 

exist pure ideas without shape or colour, intangible and 
invisible, not fixed in sensible particulars, but free and 
independent,' means only: that pure concepts of reason 
are never fully realised in the things to which they apply, 
as for instance, absolute equality is never found identical 
with physical equality. 

Our interpretation is appliable even to the ideas of the 
Phaedo, though there we had not such an express authori- 
sation of free interpretation as in the Phaedrus, where 
the whole mythical account is called a pleasant play 
(265 C : (f)alvsTaL to, fisv aX\a tu> ovtl TratSta 7rs7rala6ai) in 
which the only serious thing is the double way from 
particular things to the general idea, and from the idea 
to all its particular kinds. Here ISsa and sJBos are used 
in a meaning which is identical with the idea as conceived 
by Kant, a necessary concept of reason. The synthetic 
union of scattered particulars is clearly a condition of 
consistent definition for the purposes of teaching (265 d : 
sis fjiiav T£ Ihsav crvvoptovra wysiv ra iroWa^y Biscnrap/jisva, 
Xva sKaarov opL^ofisvos StjXov Troifj, Trspi ov av asl SiSdaKSiv 
sOskr) . . .). The test of self-consistency is already stated 
in the first Socratic speech as the indispensable condition 
of knowledge (237 C : tovs iroWovs XsXrjdsv on ovk tcracn 
rrjv ovalav SKaarov ' oos ovv sIBots9 ov Sio/jLoXoyovvTai sv 
^PXV '^V^ (TKe-yfrSMs, TTposXOovrss hs . . . ovts suvroh ovrs 
uWtjXocs o/jboXoyovcriv). Substance is even used as a 
synonym of definition (245 e : ovalav rs koI Xojov, cf. 
270 E : Tr)v ovalav Ssl^si uKpL^MS ttjs (^vctsws tovtov, Trpbs 
roifs Xoyovs Trpoaoiasi). 

The ideas appear as a result of the study of particulars, 
not found in the particulars, nor taken from the particulars, 
but discovered by reason in the act of defining each par- 
ticular (273 E : Kar' slhrj SiaipsLaOai to, ovra kuI fjuia ISsa 
KaB'' sv sicaarov TTspiXaix^avsiv) . When once a general idea 
is formed, it becomes the dialectician's aim to subdivide 
it into kinds, not artificially, but into natural kinds (265 e : 
TO TrdXiv Koi rd slSrj SvvacrdaL rs/jvsiv kut dpdpa, y 7rs(f)VKSv) 


which are distinguished from accidental parts. This kinds 
division and classification must proceed to the point of brings 
indivisibility (277 B : irav opl^sadac, opia-dfjisvos rs irdXiv ^ °^ "^*° 
KUT^ slBt] /J'SXP'' "^^^ drfiijTov tsu-vsiv) . This method {/jisdoBos, 
269 D, 270 c, d) shows the relation between each particular ^^ ^^^^ 
and the whole, neither soul nor body nor anything being other, 
perfectly known if studied apart from everything else 
(270 C : 1^1/^7)9 <f)vaiv alloys Xoyov Karavorjaai, (dSwarov) . . . 
ovSs crco/xaros . . . dvsv rrjs rov oXov (jivasws). The first step 
of investigation is to ask whether a proposed object is 
simple or manifold, indivisible or divisible (270 D : irpwrov 
jxsv, dirXov" 7) TToXvsiSss- scttlv . . . Bel Siavosladat). 

The method of definition and division of notions differs Transi- 
from the divine intuition of ideas. And along vdth this tion from 
transition from metaphysic to logic, the efficient cause, ^^^^' 
despised in the Phaedo, regains its rights. We are asked ^ ^^^°^ 
in the case of a simple element to investigate its active or 
passive capability in relation to other things (270 d : dv 
fjbsv dirXovv 77, aKOTTsiv t>]v Svvafxtv avrov, rlva rrrpos Tt Trscpv- 
icsv sis ro 8pdv s'^ov rj rtua sU to iraOslv vtto tov), while in 
dealing with a compound whole, we have to divide it into Division 
its kinds or elements, and then to look for the activity of things 
and passivity of each of them (270 d : idv 8h irXsioo stBrj ^°*° ^^^^^ 

yi r. 1 n I " 'J.' ' ' ^ ) 55V ^ ,,, elements. 

^XOi 'T^vra apia/xrjaa/xsvov, oirsp E(p svos, tout ioslv s(p 

sKacTTOv, T(o Ti TTOLzlv avTo TTsc^VKSv rj TO) Tt TraOslv VTTO tov;). 

The recognition of efficient causes corresponds to the Efficient 

higher esteem of Anaxagoras, and to the definition of the causes 

soul as a self-moving principle. This removes at once all '^^'^°^' 

• nised. 

possibility of believing the Phaedo to have been written 

later than the Phaedrus, as the importance of efficient 

causes is constantly recognised in all later works, for 

example in the Timaeus and the Laws. 

The Phaedrus is a work of the greatest inspiration ; it 

contains in the most natural exposition the germs of much 

that was later worked out by Plato, and it betrays also a 

greater range of study than the Phaedo. Dialectic as a Dialectic 

science of Being based on definition and division is the based on 


and divi- 
sion ap- 
plied to 
to the 


wdth the 
art of 

tion of 
the parts 
of a dis- 

fulfilment of what had been postulated in the earlier work. 
Its chief application is clearly shown according to the 
ethical rules explained in the Bepiihlic : he who knows is 
bound in duty to teach. The teacher writes imperishable 
lines in his pupil's immortal soul, imparting a living know- 
ledge, together with the ability to defend it against errors 
(276 A : rov slBoroy Xoyos ^mv koI six-\^v^os- . . . ypd(f)STai sv -rfj 
Tov fiavddvovTOS '^v')(rj, BvvaTos- fisv dfxvuai savrw, STTLarii^ixwv 
hs Xsysiv T£ Kal atjdv irpos ov^ Sal). For this he requires 
dialectical art (276 e : r^ htaXsKTiKfj rs-^vrj '^pdo/jisvos) and 
must make a proper selection of receptive souls {\a/3a)v 
-yjrvxTjv -rrpoaijKovaav). Then his activit}' will yield eternal 
fruits and procure the highest happiness attainable by 
man (277 a : Xo^yovs, o'l ou;^t aKapiroi aXka s'^ovrss aTrsppba, 
bOsv oKXoL sv dxXois i]6£ai (i:vo/j,svoi tovt' dsl dOdvarov 
TrapsysLv iKavoi, rov h'^^ovra svhaifxovsiv itolovvtss sis oaov 
dvOpcoTTO) Buvarov fxaXicrra). 

An art of rhetoric is recognised as useful, but the essen- 
tial conditions of a good speaker are : innate ability, exercise, 
and knowledge of the subject on which he intends to 
speak. -^'^ If to these conditions we wish to add the 
guidance of art, then we are asked to look for much more 
than has been offered by rhetors and grammarians, who 
were able only to invent such elementary rules as are 
preparatory to the art, much as the rules for tuning a 
musical instrument are preparatory to a theory of harmony 
(268 e). True eloquence requires, besides a perfect know- 
ledge of the subject dealt with (262 c), also an excellent 
formal arrangement of the contents (236 A). Each 
speech must consist of well-proportioned parts, and have 
a proper beginning as well as a suitable conclusion, wath 
such a disposition of the contents that each part shall have 

-*" Strangely enough this knowledge (eTriirTTj/iTj 269 d) has been mis- 
understood by many interpreters as if it meant knowledge of the rules of 
rhetoric. Even E. Holzner (' Platos Phaedrus und die Sophistenrede des 
Isokrates,' Prager Studien, Heft IV. Prag 1894), who corrects the error of 
those who identified this iiri(TTT]iJi-ii with the following rexfV, falls into an 
almost worse error in asserting the identity of iTna-r^fj-ri in this passage with 
Ttt nph T7JS rix^V^ avayKoia. nadiifxaTa 269 B. This misconception is due to 



its proper place, being the continuation of what precedes 
and preparing what follows (264 c : ^iaa kuI aKpa, irpsTrovra 
dXX.'nXois Kol Tw oXo) ys'ypafxfisva) . A speech must not be 
like those verses which can be read in any order (264 d). 
There are rhetorical necessities which determine the 
placing of each part of a discourse (264 b : to hsvTspov 
slprj/jbsi'ov s/c Tivos avdyKTjs hsvTSpov rsBrjvai). 

In order to arrive at this pei'fection, an art is required 
far above anything known heretofore by the name of 
rhetoric (266 d). This art will teach us to lead souls by 
means of speech (261 a : y^vxaywyla Std Xoycov) not only in 
tribunals and on the market place, but in every circum- 
stance of life, small or great (261 B : rj avrh ajxiKpwv -rs koI 
fiSfyaXwv TTspi, Kal ovBsv svrvjxoTipov to ys opOov irspl cnrovhaia 
Tj iTspl (f)av\a yiyvo/jisvov). The true speaker must begin 

an abuse of comparison with Isocrates' oration against the Sophists, without 
taking into account his later works, and earlier opinions of others : 

Isocrates, in sophist. ' Plato, Phaedr. 269 d : : Isocr. Antidosis (Or. 
(Or. xiii.) § 17 (294 d) : | ! xv.)§ 187: (Steph.p.93). 

Se?!/ rhv fxev fj.a6rir^u I ft fj.4v aoi xtirdpx^^ (piiffn j Sel tuvs jj-fWovras Sio(- 
TTphs T(S rr]v (pvffiv ^x*"' prjTopiKw elvai, effei pi}T(cp creiu f) irepl rovs \6yovs 
o"ai'XP^y'''auevfiSriTa,r(!)vi\\6yiiJ.os,irpo(T\a^coviirt->f) trepl toj irpa^eis . . . 
\6yoov ixade7v, wepl Se ras ar'i)ixi\v re Ka] ixiT^frriv. TrpwTov -rphs tovto Tre<j)v- 
XpVO'dS avTwv yv/xvaa- Cf. 237 c: fiSevai Set Kfvat Ka\u>s . . . fireira 
drivai. (About 390 B.C.) wep'i ov hv p r] fiovXr] . . . iraiSevdrivai Kal \a0€'iv 

Cf. Plato Prot. 323 C : 259 E : virapxetv Sd tt^v iiriffT-ofxriv riris tiv 
oil (pvffei aWa BiSaKTov ro7s eS ye Kal Ka\ais ^ Trepl kKaarov, rpirov 
T6 Kal 6| fTTifieXeias irapa- f)T]Qr)CTOixevois tV toS Se Ivrpi&its yeveadai 
yiyvfffdai. AeyovTOs Sidvoiav eiSuIai' Kal yv/j-vacrdrjuai . . . 

Xenoph. Memor. II. Ta\r]6es Siv tiv 4pelv Trepi About 353 B.C. 
vi. 39 : apfras irdaas fieWy. 
/j.adri<Tet re Kal /ieXerj? 

av^avo/JLivas. IV. i. 3 : al apiffrai SoKOvffat elvai (pva^is jxaKtffTa irai^eias Seovrai. 
See also Alkidamas' Trepl aocpiaTutv as quoted by Gercke [Hermes, vol. xxxii. 
pp. 362-364, Berlin 1897) who is, however, inclined to invert the chrono- 
logical relations. 

Here it is by no means certain that Plato had in view the much earlier 
work of Isocrates, as the three conditions of success were a commonplace 
and needed not to be invented by Plato or by Isocrates. Now it is very 
important to observe that Isocrates thought, in 390, that only the know- 
ledge of rhetoric is required, while thirty-seven years later he agrees with 
Plato in asking for a knowledge of the subject. That in the Phaedrus 
eTriffT-'nv means knowledge of the subject is evident from the other passages 
and from the opposition of this knowledge to re'xi'r;- 

Each part 
from the 
to the 
end has 
its proper 

New con- 
ception of 


tion of 
souls and 
of kinds 
of oratory. 

Plato did 
not write 
a hand- 
book of 
very diffe- 
rent from 
They re- 
cord his 
own oral 
He was 
able to 
better than 
he wrote, 

by studying all kinds of souls and their classification 
(271 D : dvdyKr] elhsuai yjrvxv oa-a st'Si? £%st)- Plato does not 
enumerate here these kinds, but those enumerated by 
Aristotle are probably due to a great extent to Plato's teach- 
ing. The next step is to determine what can act on a 
soul, and what are the limits of the soul's action (271 a : 
OTO) Ti TToisiv f} ira^slv vTTo Tov TTscjiVKsv). After a careful 
classification of souls and. of kinds of oratory, a special 
inquiry is needed to show what kind of speech acts on 
each kind of soul, and why it has this power (271 B : 8ia- 
Ta^d/u.sios TO, \6<yo3v rs kul ■\^v')(rjS'y£vr] koX to, rovrcov TraBijfiara 
hlsiat TCLS alrlas, rrpocrapfjbOTroiv sKaarov i/cdarrp Kol Si8daK0)v, 
oia Qvaa vcf)' olmv Xoycou 8l r]i> acriav i^ dvd<yK7]s rj /iisu 
TTsidsrai, r] he dirsiQzl). 

This clear programme of a future rhetoric has been 
so exactly followed up by Aristotle in his work on the 
same subject that probably Plato's special teaching on 
that matter is preserved in his pupil's exposition. Plato 
himself left no written system of rhetoric, because he did 
not write for the pui'pose of teaching, but for the artistic 
reminiscence of some new thoughts, or in order to refute 
the enemies of philosophy. All his works, even the Laws, 
preserve that character of art which is absent from the 
works of Aristotle. Systematic teaching was probably 
given by Plato to his pupils, and transmitted by them to 
the following generations in the Academy. But he appears 
not to have thought it a convenient subject for written 
exposition. There is some dramatic character in his 
works even when they contain such dry enumerations as 
we find in the Sophist and Timaeus. Also in the present 
day, though writing is so much easier, some eloquent men 
write little. 

We may well believe Plato when he says that his 
eloquence was still greater than his literary skill (278 c : 
Xiyoiv avTOS hwaros rd ysypufx/jisva (f)av\a diroBsl^ai), as he 
expressly asks every great writer to be able to speak better 
than he wrote. This is certainly not a common faculty. 


and many great writers would disagree with Plato. He and he 

judged evidently according to his own experience, and his ^'^°*^ 

power of oral eloquence has been unanimously praised by 

the tradition of his times. This explains why Plato in a ^j.jj,^o^ig 

much longer life wrote much less than Aristotle. Aristotle, though he 

owing his initiation to Plato, may have been older when he lived 

began to write than Plato was, since Plato at the age of longer. 

twenty-eight was emancipated from the influence of his 

teacher, while Aristotle remained under some influence of 

Plato up to the age of thirty-seven. If we assume that 

both began their literary activity about the same early age 

of twenty-eight, then Plato wrote during fifty-two years, 

and Aristotle only during thirty-four. But the extant 

works of Aristotle are considerably more than twice as 

long as all the works of Plato, though many works Difference 

of Aristotle are lost, while we have all the works of of Plato's 

Plato. This leads us to the conclusion that Aristotle andAns- 

wrote four or five times more copiously than Plato, and . 

. views on 

this implies a great difference of views about the use j-^g^. 

of writing. It is clear that many things written out compo- 

by Aristotle were not held by Plato as fit for literary sition. 


We must not judge about this from our present point 

of view, accustomed as we are to learn chiefly from books. 

In Plato's times, and in his own opinion, oral teaching stood 

much higher than written handbooks, and this was a natural 

consequence of the difficulty of writing and reproducing Hato 

written matter. It has been frequently argued from the <^"^ "°* 

celebrated passage on literary composition at the end of ^^P^^^ 

the Fhaedrus that Plato despised writing altogether. 

This is certainly a very exaggerated inference. He calls This 

writing a play, but at the same time insists on the ^^'^^ ^o^" 

superiority of this philosophical play over the vulgar 

diversions of other people (276 d : TrayKaX'qv irathidv, tov 

£v Xoyots hvvafievov iral^siv, SiKacoo vvrfs rs Kat, a\}^co}/ 6)v 

Xeysis irspi fjbvOoXoryovvra) . To fable about justice, as had Eeference 

been done in the Bepublic, is one of the most beautiful to the 

him the 




in a 
of the 


invites the 
reader to 
join the 
to learn 
sophy ex- 
tended to 

amusements for a divine man. There is no reason to 
think that Plato would not have spoken so lightly of 
writing after his great work. On the contrary, it is 
psychologically probable that he would not have spoken 
thus without the full consciousness of being a great 
writer (cf. Laws 968 e, where the same thought recurs 
at the end of Plato's largest work). It would not suit 
his artistic intention to despise writing if he had not 
already proved that he is a master in it, and that his 
contempt is not a consequence of impotence. And he 
has a very definite rhetorical and artistic purpose in this 

After an encomium on his own written myth put in 
the mouth of Phaedrus (257 c : tov \6yoi/ Bs crov iroXai 
dav/xdcras sxfj) , admitted even by Socrates with the poetical 
pretext of inspiration due to the Nymphs (263 d : oacp 
\syst9 TS')^vLKcoTspas^Vfx,(J3as . . . Avaiov irpos Xoyovs sivaL), 
it is his purpose to raise the reader's expectation to the 
highest pitch by announcing that this beautiful sample of 
written eloquence is nothing as compared with his oral 
teaching. The Phaedrus, like the Symposium, Euthy- 
demus, and some other works, is written not only for the 
pupils, but also for those who followed wrong paths out- 
side of the Academy, inviting them to join the Schooh 
Invitations are extended even to those about whom no 
hope could be left. Lysias is told to learn dialectic, and 
what has been held for a eulogy on Isocrates is rather an 
ironic invitation to learn true philosophy. Anybody who 
reads Isocrates' Panegyricns, written in 380 B.C., or 
about the same time when Plato was occupied with the 
Bepublic, will understand that Isocrates could not be 
flattered by such a form of recognition as that which we 
see in the Phaedrus. 

The recognition was meant sincerely, as also the 
merits attributed to Pericles (269 A), Prodikos, Polos, 
Hippias (267 b), Protagoras (267 c : UpwTayopsia . . . 
TToWa Kal fcaXd), even to Sophocles and Euripides (268 c) 


who are named as the greatest poets, without any 

reference to the general low appreciation of poetry. In 

no other work of Plato is that same spirit of benevolence Spirit of 

and conciliation shown, and this disposition of mind is benevo- 

best explained after a great success, like the production ^'^^^ ^"^ 

of the Bepublic. But certainly Isocrates pretended to . 

more than to be preferred to Lysias (279 A), to hear that 

' some philosophy ' is manifest in his character (279 b : 

^ , , . recogni- 

h'sari rtv (f>i\oao(f)La tfj lov uvhpos hiavola) and to be advised ^j^^ ^^ 

to take a more divine start (279 a: opur] 6 s< or spa) than isocrates 

his present pursuits, if he cares to do better than to could 

excel 'in later age' all orators (279 a: ovhsv av <yivoiTo not be 

davp^aarov Trpulovat^s TrjS r)\LKlas-, si . . . irXsuv rj iralhoiv accepted 

Slsvsjkoi tmv ttcottots a^^rapbsvoiv \6ycov). This prophecy 

is at once shown in its relative value, when we read in , , . 

by him. 

continuation that there is something far greater (p,'i^fo) 
than to excel all orators, something requiring a divine 
power, and this is nothing else than Plato's educational ^ 

Isocrates repeatedly pretends to be a representative 
of true philosophy (for instance Panegyric. § 10) and he 
must have felt humiliated by Plato's judgment of his 
relative merits. Thompson '"° has shown at least one 
passage of the Phaedrus which clearly criticises a preten- 
sion of Isocrates as proffered in the Panegyricus : 

Isocr. (Or. iv. p.42cD) Prt«e^^r. Plato P/iaetZr. 267 a : Tiaiav 6e Eelation 

§ 8 : eVeiSij S' ol Xdyot Tuiavrrjv Topyiav re edaofiev (vBeiv, ot irpo between 

e\ovai rfjv cf)v(riv coad' olov t eivai tS)v aXrjdav to. elKora fihov 0)9 +y,g 

nepl Tcov avTMV 7roXKa)(a)s e^T]yTj(ra(T- TifxrjTea fxaWov, rd re av crfxiKpa phr,prl'rii'< 

6ai, Koi rd fieydka Taneiva notrjaai fieyaXa kuI rd peydXa crpiKpd , 

v*- '- r n /I'- j'/i -* cv\f/ X' and 

(cai Toii aiKpois ueyeaos Trepiaeiuai, (pciLvea-aai ttoiovitiv oia pcounv Aoyov 


/cat rd re noKaid kuivcos 8ie\6elv Kai Kaivd re dpxaLcos rd r evavrla 

^ - V ' > / . / ■<. f V Paneqyri- 

TrepiTaivvecocTTiyeyfvripevoiu ap)(aiMS Kaivas, avvTopiav re Koyaiv Kai ^^ 

fiireiv, ovKeri (pevKTeov ravr errri, aneipa prjKt] nepi navTcdv avrjvpov ; "^""^ "*" 
Trepl 0)1' erepoi irporepov etpriKaaiv, ravra Se aKovrnv ttotc pov IlpoBiKos covered by 
oKX' apewnv iKeivaiv flneiv nfipareov. eyeXaaev. Thomp- 


Here we see that an artifice which Isocrates recom- thou-^h 
mended as useful is attributed by Plato to Isocrates' already 


to by 

Mention of 
as at- 
a new 
kind of 
refers to 
the Pane- 
gyricus as 

This in- 
by an ob- 

though he 
as to the 

early date 
of the 

teacher Gorgias, and condemned by the remark that he 
who would follow this advice would be obliged to esteem 
probability more highly than truth, and deserved the 
laughter of Prodikos. 

This relation of the Pliaedrus to the Panegyricus, 
already implied by Cicero {Orator, xiii. 37), and again dis- 
covered by Thompson, gives a precious chronologic indica- 
tion, as the Panegyricus is known to have been published 
in 380 B.C. The date of the Pliaedrus is thus indicated by 
an anachronism of Plato almost similar to that of the 
Symposium, because he puts in the mouth of Socrates the 
prediction that Isocrates would easily excel all orators if he 
continues to write such speeches as those on which he 
works now (279 a : \6<yov9, oh vvv eiTL-x^sipsi). This ' now' 
cannot refer to the lifetime of Socrates, as then Isocrates 
wrote forensic speeches not deserving even that restricted 
recognition which Plato expresses in the Pliaedrus. And, 
as Teichmiiller (ignoring Thompson) demonstrated in a 
most convincing way, no earlier work of Isocrates than 
the Panegyricus could educe from Plato any appro- 
bation. This is unexpectedly confirmed by Diimmler, 
though he continues to believe in an early date of the 
Pliaedrus {Clironologisclie Beitrdge, p. 11). Diimmler 
sees in a later work of Isocrates (Antidosis, § 6'2) a clear 
allusion to a conditional approbation of the Panegyricus, 
though he does not refer this mention to the Phaedrus, 
but to the Bepublic (426 cde). It is more probable that 
Isocrates when he wrote the Panegyricus already knew 
Plato's views on the relation between Hellenes and 
Barbarians (Bep. 470), though this cannot easily be made 

The date of the Phaedrus is one of those problems in 
Platonic chronology on which a great wealth of ingenious 
supposition has been spent in vain. The strangest of all 
possible errors was the thought that the Phaedrus could 
have been written in the lifetime of Socrates. This is a 
result of purely philological combinations, without any 


consideration of the philosophical contents, which betray 

a date at least as late as the Bepublic, and undoubtedly 

later than the Phaedo. What reasons Diogenes Laertius 

had for his observation that the subject of the Phaedrus 

has something juvenile in it, is unknown. Probably he 

held v/ith many superficial readers the subject to be illicit 

love, not philosophical rhetoric. In our century Schleier- Schleier- 

macher was the first to proclaim that the Phaedrus must macher 

be one of the earliest works of Plato on the ground of its complains 

philosophical poverty. He says that the philosophical 

contents in the Phaedrus are not yet mature for a dialec- , . , 

, . p ■ • sophical 

tical exposition (vol. i. p. 67), for which were substituted poverty 
strength of passion and questions of method. He seems of the 
to believe that investigations of method are particularly Phaedrus. 
proper to the youth of a philosopher. According to such 
a standard Kant's Kritik might have been written thirty 
years earlier than it was. 

Another argument is the poetical language of the Poetical 
Phaedrus, which reminds Schleiermacher of the tradi- language, 
tion about Plato's verses which he was said to have burnt 
when he knew Socrates. This argument is fully refuted 
l)y the great number of stylistic coincidences with the 
Laivs which are found in the Phaedrus. Schleiermacher 
sees also a sign of early date in the triumphant confid- Trium- 
ence of the dialogue. If Plato had such confidence at ptant 
the age of twenty-five, how could he have lost it in the '^°^' 
Protagoras and Meno ? This question is left unanswered 
by Schleiermacher. The contempt of writing, argues 
Schleiermacher, is unthinkable in a man who has written 
already very much. But Plato does not despise writing Contempt 
at all, and he states it expressly (258 d : Travrl hrfkov otl of mere 
ovK alaxpov avro ys to ypd(f)£iv Xoyovs) — he despises only erudition, 
bad writing (sksIvo alaypop ^ihri, ro ar) koKms Xsyscv rs koL ,. 


ypd(j)£Lv) and the cult of mere literary erudition (275 D : 
ttXsov Tt ol6fjb£vo9 slvat \6yovs ysypajxfjbivovs rov rov slSoTa 
vTTOfivrjoai, irspl oiv av fi to. ysy pafi/xsva) which substitutes 
opinions for knowledge (275 B : ttoXvi'jkooi yap croi ysvojjLSvoi 


avsv SL8a')(^ris TroXvyvco/JiovEs slvai So^ovaiv . . . Bo^6ao(f)oc 

ysyovoTss avrl <jG(f)(t)v), and leads men to spend all their 

attention on the form, making it impossible for such 

mechanical writers to have a clear view of general ideas 

(248 B : irokvv £j(ovcrai irovov aTsXsis rrjs tov ovtos Osas 

airipxovraL) . 

Mention of What Plato Wanted, is that anybody who pretended, 

isocrates like Isocrates, to be named a philosopher, should be able 

is not a ^q impart to his pupils something better than speeches 

sign of un- (.Qj-rected over and over during many years like the 

Paneayricus of which that rhetor was so proud. The 

ti n nl Platonic Socrates recommends Phaedrus to say that to 

arecogni- Lysias (278 D e), but Phaedrus asks whether the same 

tion of his does not apply to Isocrates, and the answer is not in the 

superior- negative : more talent (279 A : ra rrjs jyvasws) and a nobler 

itytoother character {rjdsL y£i^i>LKO)T£p(p) are not denied to the author of 

era ors. ^^^ Pauegyricus, but he is left only the first place among 

orators, not allowed to rank among philosophers until he 

shall yield to a more divine inspiration. 

Solemnity What Schleiermacher quotes besides as a sign of 

of style. youthfulness, an exaggerated solemnity in some passages, 

has been demonstrated by Campbell to be a peculiarity of 

later style. The mention of Polemarchos, Lysias' brother, 

as a pupil of Socrates appears to Schleiermacher most 

probable in the lifetime of Polemarchos, who was poisoned 

four years before Socrates (Lysias contra Eratosth. 

§§ 17, 18). But Polemarchos is also introduced in a work 

written long after his death (Bep.). 

Mention of Ast saw in the Phaedrus Pythagorean influence, and 

Sophocles a great similarity to the Timaeus (pp. 106-107), but this 

^°^ did not prevent him from following Schleiermacher in 

Euripides ^(^igntifying the suj)posed date of the conversation with 

"^^' ^ the date of the comr)Osition. He added to Schleier- 
Ast as , , 

^ ^ . macher's arguments only one very curious reason : 

logical Sophocles and Euripides are spoken of as living, and 

indication, therefore the Phaedrus must be written before 406 B.C. 

Ast did not notice that the same reasoning would lead 


him to place also the Timaeus and Critias before the death 
of Socrates. 

What has been said in favour of an early date of More 
the Phaedrus by l-Q'ische '^^'' and Volquardsen,"^^** who has '"ecent 
dedicated a whole volume to the subject, is only a para- '^^^^^'^^J's 
phrase of Schleiermacher with such insignificant additions 
as the acute observation of Krische that the death of ^ .^ 
Socrates is not alluded to in this work (this would rather phaedrns. 
speak for a late date) or the unfounded fancy of Vol- 
quardsen that the philosophical contents of the dialogue 
are purely Socratic. These authors have not thought it 
of any importance to explain why Plato in the Phaedrus 
despises poetry or how he could so early have arrived at 
the conviction of a periodic migration of souls, contra- 
dictory to the very cautious statements on future life in 
the Apology, Crito, and all purely Socratic dialogues. 

A more recent attempt to represent the Phaedrus as 
written some years before the death of Socrates has been 
made by Usener ^^^ and accepted for a time by Wilamowitz- 
Moellendorff,2^° but the latter has expressly revoked this 
opinion {Hermes, vol. xxxi. p. 102). 

The case of the Phaedrus in one respect resembles Thomp- 
that of the SopJiist. As Campbell's investigations on the son's 
Sophist have waited thirty years to be at last acknow- edition 
ledged by a competent authority as an ' immortal feat ° * ^^ 
in Platonic chronology,' ^^' so Thompson's equally im- .,, 
mortal investigations on the Phaedrus — published in 1868, i^^^^y^ ^i-, 


-'■'■ A. B. Krische, ' Ueber Platons Phaedrus,' in Gottinger Studien for 
1847, pp. 930-1065, Gottingen 1848. 

-'** C. E. Volquardsen, Platons Phaedrus, Erste Schrift Platons, Kiel 
1862, 321 pp. 

■^^ H. Usener, ' Abfassungszeit des Platonisehen Phaidros,' in Bheini- 
sches Museum filr Philologie, 3-5" Band, p. 131, Frankfurt a. M. 1880. 

240 Wilamowitz-Moellendorff, Pldlologische Untersuchungen, Band 1. 
p. 213. 

-^' Th. Gomperz, ' Die Jowett-Campbellsche Ausgabe von Platos Pie- 
pubHc,' in Zeitschrift filr PJiilosophie und pMlosopMsche Kritik, Band cix. 
p. 163, says : ' Lewis Campbell's Name wird in der Platon-Forschung 
unverganglich dauera.' 


son and 
their con- 
with great 
the im- 
of incer- 

the date 
of the 
within the 
limits of 


the above 

but written and read in the university of Cambridge 
as early as 1859 — remain up to the present time a dead 
letter to continental philologers. Two reasons have 
acted in this case as well as in Campbell's : first that on 
the Continent nobody expects important original investiga- 
tions to be buried in the Introduction and Appendices of 
the text edition of a single dialogue ; and second that 
Thompson, like Campbell, did not use the confident 
language which is necessary to make an impression on a 
reader accustomed to the confidence of Schleiermacher, 
Hermann, Zeller, Teichmiiller — and maintained even by 
such paradoxical authors as Schaarschmidt or Pfleiderer. 
What Teichmuller developed into an important chapter 
of his work, without knowing Thompson, was given by 
the Master of Trinity College in footnotes, with a modesty 
which even on a reader accustomed to the incomparable 
modesty of English scholars leaves an impression of in- 

Thompson has made it evident to the attentive 
reader of the four dissertations accompanying his edition 
of the Phaedrus (Introduction and three Appendices) that 
this dialogue must be written after the Pamgijricus of 
Isocrates, that is after 380 ; and before the death of 
Lysias, that is before 378. This is such an exact deter- 
mination of date as is possible only for a very few Platonic 
dialogues. The same argument has been independently 
and with far greater assurance produced by Teichmuller 
in 1881 (Literarische Fehden, vol. i. pp. 57-82) and has 
never been refuted. This agrees perfectly with the place 
assigned by us to the Phaedrus in the development of 
Plato's logic, and with the limits of the probable time 
necessary since the Symposiimi for the composition of the 
Phaedo, Bepublic, and Phaedrus. That the Phaedrus must 
be later than Phaedo and Symposium has been also recently 
recognised by Th. Gomperz and must be acknowledged by 
all who know the investigations on the style of Plato 
which have so completely confirmed Thompson's view. 


Yet up to the present time, many eminent German Eelation 
scholars, as Zeller, Susemihl, W. Christ, P. Natorp and of the 
others, persist in the opinion that the Phaedms is earHer ■P^i«^e(^»'ws 
than the Phaedo and Symposium, so that some supple- ° ° ^^ 
mentary observations on the evidence for the priority of 
these and other dialogues are perhaps not out of place. 

As to the Phaedo, the arguments of Schulthess Eelation 
are decisive, and Schedle,-*^ Liebhold,^''^ Kassai,^'''' who to the 
advocated the priority of the Phaedrus, were unable to ^'^^^^o- 
refute them, while Bury ^^^ supplemented them in the 
best manner. The comparison of the arguments for im- 
mortality has shown equally that the Phaedrus must have 
been written after the Phaedo. The priority of the soul 
to the body appears in the Phaedo (80 a) as a new 
thought and is already familiar in the Phaedrus (246 B : 
Trdaa 7] yjfv^r) iravros sTrifisXslraL rov dy^vyov) ; the theory 
of reminiscence, which is in the Phaedo mentioned with 
the caution ' si aXrjdrjs sarcv' (72 e), is in the Phaedrus 
assumed as certain (250 A) ; that ideas or notions are 
the substance of things is in the Phaedo a probability 
(76 D : ft fjbkv sariv a dpv\ov/ji£i' dsi, KoXov rs Kol dyaObv 
KOI iraaa rj roaavTij ovaia . . . 100 B : virods/xsvos sivai tl 
KoKov avTo Ka6' auro . . •), in the Phaedrus the common 
inheritance of all philosophers (247 c : /; . . . ovala ovtcos 
ovaa Kv&epvrjTTJ fiovo) dsary) vo)). More important points of Ueber- 
comparison are afforded by some characteristic differences ^'^g's ob- 
between Phaedo and Phaedrus, which show the Phaedrus ''^^rvation 
in agreement with other later works. It has been ob- , . 

him to 

served by Ueberweg (Untersuchungen, p. 285) that an ^^^ ^^^ 
important doctrine is common to Phaedrus and Timaeus, .^ j^ter 

-*'- F. Schedle, Die Eeihenfolge der platonischen Dialoge Phaedros, 
Pliaedcni, Staat, Timae^is, Innspruck 1876. 

-" Liebhold, Ueher die Bedeutung des Dialogs Phcidon fur die Platoni- 
sche Erkenntnisstheoric und Ethik, Rudolfstadt 1876. 

-" G. Kassai, ' Meletemata Platonica,' in Egyetemes Philologiai Kozlony , 
pp. 857-870, Budapest 1886. 

■-^^ J. B. Bury, ' Questions connected with Plato's Phaidros,' in Journal 
of Philology, N"' xxix. for 1886. 



of the 

can be 


as com- 
pared witli 

in the 
to the 
and Syvi- 

for the 

while not yet recognised in the Phaedo, namely the 
axiom that what is unconditioned is indestructible, while 
everything that has a beginning must have an end. 
Ueberweg was led by this observation to place the Phaedo 
after the Phaedrus and Timaeus, wherein he departed 
from his ordinary sagacity and caution, as the natural 
inference would have been that the Phaedo is earlier, 
the more so as Phaedrus and Timaeus agree in this respect 
with the Laws (see above, p. 333), a fact which seems not 
to have been noticed by Ueberweg. 

The view of the sense perceptions offers another coin- 
cidence between Phaedrus and Timaeus against the 
Phaedo. In the Phaedo as well as in the Symposium true 
Beauty was inaccessible to the senses {Phaedo 65 d), while 
in the Phaedrus not only Beauty is accessible to the 
physical sight (250 D : koXKos . . . Ssvpo sXOovtss kutsiXt]- 
cf)afisv Slcl rrjs svap'^sardrT)^ alcrOrjascos- . . . cfipovrjais 01)% 
oparai . . . KoXkos ijlovov Taiirrjv sa-x^ fjuotpav, oior 
sKcfyavsaraTov shai Kal ipaa/jbicoTarov), but the sense per- 
ceptions lead to the formation of general notions (249 b : 
TO Kar slBos Xsyo/uLSvop, sk ttoWmv lov alcrdrjcrsMv sis tv 
Xoyia-fjiui ^vvaipov/jievcov) . This agrees with the view 
expressed in the Timaeus metaphorically (44 b : irpos ro 
Kara (f)vaLV lovtoav a')(rj[Jba skuctcov twv kvkXouv ao irspK^opat 
KarsvOvvofxsvai,, TO re OaTSpov Kal to Tavrov Trpoaayopsvoua-ai, 
Kar op66v, sfX(t>pova top s-)(pvTa avTas 'yuyvofjLSvov uTTOTskovcrtv). 

The relation of the Phaedrus to the Symposium can 
be easily shown by many comparisons, and it is now 
evident that the Phaedrus is later, though the majority 
of authors think otherwise. The mention that Phaedrus 
has been the cause of many speeches (242 a) in peculiar 
connection with a similar mention of Simmias (242 b) 
may with some probability refer to the Symposium, in 
which Phaedrus is represented (177 a) as the initiator of 
the series of speeches on love proposed by Eryximachos. 
This allusion is in so far probable as Simmias named in 
the same passage has in the Phaedo a principal share in 


initiating the dialogue on immortality {Phaedo 61 c). 
And if Plato in the Phaedriis credits Simmias with a 
greater merit, this means that he preferred his Phaedo to 
the Symyosium, and that he looked on both dialogues as 
his masterpieces, very superior to speeches of other orators 
('242 AB : Oslos si irspl rovs \6yous, m ^alSps, koI dTS)(vcos 
6uv/j,daios' olfiai ydp iyco . . . /MrjBsva irXslov^ rj crs ttsttolt]- 
Ksvai y£ysvr)a6at, i]Toc avTov \iyovTa. rj aXXovs svl <ys rw 
Tpoirw TTpoaavayfcd^uvTa. ^i/j,fjilav %r)0atov s^atpo) \6yov' 
rcov Se dWoiv TrdfjbirdXv Kparsls). 

The mention of Lysias' brother Polemarchos as con- Mention 
verted to philosophy {Phaedr. 257 b) might be a direct of Pole- 
allusion to the Bepuhlic, in which Polemarchos is repre- ™ai-chos' 
sented as convinced by Socrates that nobody ought to do ^°'^'^^'^^^°" 
wrong to his enemies {Rep. 335 e). This would be an 
allusion similar to that which is contained in the mention ^q ^^^ 
of Simmias and Phaedrus, and would tend to show that Republic. 
Plato looked upon the persons of his dialogues as more 
real than their living models, who were dead when he 
wrote. He says at least that there is more truth in 
thought than in action {Bep. 473 a), and he takes many 
times such a liberty with Socrates that he puts in his 
master's mouth allusions to his own written dialogues, or 
even to his experiences, without an}'^ consideration whether 
such allusions were suitable to the historical Socrates, 

Teichmiiller sees (ii. pp. 22, 272) in the erotic speech Teich- 
of Lysias allusions to the speech of Pausanias in the Sy7n- miiller's 
posiu77i, and believes the speech to have been written as supposi- 
a criticism of the Symposium by Lysias, thus provoking ^"'^ ^ °^^ 
Plato's pitiless criticism in the PAaetZ^z^s. This ingenious .j • 
supposition, if it could be proved, would sufficiently ex- uncertain 
plain why Plato selected just this speech of Lysias as a unless 
sample of bad rhetoric, and why he criticised it with more new evi- 
than usual insistence and irony (243 c : dvaiScJii' s'lprjadov Ta> dence is 
\6y(o . . . sv vavTaLS ttov Tsdpa^fxsvcov koX ovSava sXsvdspov °^ 
spoora smpaKOTCDv). The parallel passages quoted by Teich- 
miiller deserve our attention, but they seem not to be fully 

AA 2 


View on 
in both. 



sufficient to prove his supposition {Symp. 183 e compared 
with Phaedr. 231a, 184 c with 233 a, 182 d with 234 a, 
218 b with 231 D). These alhisions are not quite evident, 
but they might be confirmed if some independent testi- 
mony about Lysias' Eroticos should ever be found : 
therefore they deserve to be remembered. The relation 
between Phaedrus and Symposium appears also in the 
mention occurring in the Phaedrus that physical beauty 
provokes an admiration which can become a germ of per- 
fection (251 a) : this seems to refer to the corresponding 
explanation in the Symposium (210 a). 

But the most decisive argument for the priority of the 
Symposium turns on the difference of views about poetry. 
In the Symposium poets are still esteemed, in the Phaedrus 
the poet takes one of the lowest places, and Homer is 
parodied (252 B) by two verses in which the inconstancy of 
his gods is ridiculed. 

It would be easy to show in the Phaedrus also many 
points of comparison with the Cratylus, with which it has 
in common a certain etymological tendency, with the 
Gorgias, which Thompson showed to be earlier when the 
majority of German scholars were still of the contrary 
opinion, and with other dialogues. But the priority of 
the Gorgias has been lately recognised by some of its 
former opponents, especially by Zeller, and has been made 
evident also by Natorp, Siebeck, Diimmler, after Socher, 
Stallbaum, Hermann, Steinhart, Susemihl, and Ueberweg, 
so that it may be admitted as sufficiently proved.^^*^ 

Thus Thompson's determination of the date of the 
Phaedrus as written between 380 and 378, or about 379 B.C., 
is confirmed in every respect, and not the least important 
of all these confirmations is given by the stylistic investi- 

-*^ The recent attempt of Gercke {Platons Gorgias, crklcirt von Sauppe, 
heraiisgegehen von Gercke, Berlin 1897) to prove that the Phaedrus preceded 
the Gorgias is based on the assumption of uncertain allusions to writings 
of other authors, and without regard either for the philosophical contents 
or for the style of these two dialogues. See above, note 236. 


gations. Already Campbell found in the Phaedrus a sur- of the date 

pri singly large number of words common to the latest ot the 

three dialogues, exceeding in relation to the size not only P^^'^'^'^^s 

the number of such words to be found in the Phaedo f°° ™^ 


and Symposium, but even those of the Bepublic, Sophist, g^ ug^^^, 

Parrnenides, and Philebus. This peculiarity of the voca- evidence. 

bulary of the Phaedrus has been since outweighed by 

other peculiarities observed, so that in our list the Phaedrus 

exceeds in stylistic affinity with the latest group only 

those works which are really earlier, as the Symposium, 

Phaedo, and equal samples from the Bepublic. The only Only 

part of the Bepuhlic which has a slightly greater number B. Vl-vil 

of important peculiarities of later style than the Phaedrus °^ *^^ 

is the picture of the philosophers in B. VI- VII. But ff '^f 
... . might be 

the difference is too msignmcant for chronological con- j^^^^ 

elusions (116 peculiarities equivalent to 234 units of though 

affinity on 44 pp. in Eep. VI- VII against 118 pecuHari- this 

ties equivalent to 220 units on 39 pp. in Phaedr.). The remains 

more so since only the greater frequency of peculiarities uncertam. 

occurring is superior, and not their number. This might 

be a consequence of the much more varied contents of 

the Phaedrus. 

If we compare the peculiarities of later style found 

in this part of the Bepublic only and absent from the 

Phaedrus and all earlier dialogues with those found in 

the Phaedrus and absent from the Bepublic, we see that 

the Phaedrus notvnthstanding its smaller size has more 

exclusive affinities with the latest group than the latest 

part of the Bepublic : 

Peculiarities of later style found in 
Rep. All c-541 b (44i pp. Did.), Phaedrus (39 pp. Did.), and in 

and in no earlier dialogue nor in no earlier dialogue nor in the 
any other part of the BejnMic. BepubUc. 

irdvTcos Kal ivdvrrj (327) once iravrr) ndvTws (323) once 

epprjdr] (336) once flp-qrai (324) once 

TO. ndvTa e'i8r] (361) once to ^vfinav (363) once 

fivpico (329) once yevos as a logical term (24) 

dvdiravXa (470) once ' dniOavos (476) once 



of the 
379 B.C. 

Bep. (contmued) — 

ovaia = complexiis omnium rerum 

(238) once 
aKLvrjTos (469) repeated 

bvco (195) repeated 

Phaedr. (continued) — 

adjectives in tos formed of sub- 
stantives (6) repeated 

T(, adding a third phrase (233) 

ojxoiojyia (468) repeated 

great scarcity of answers denoting 
subjective assent (318), import- 

Interrogations by rt prevailing 
over those by irois (4-52), im- 

Thus it is probable, though not yet certain, that the 
Phaedrus is later than the Republic, taken as a whole, 
and it is quite certain that the last three books of the 
Bepuhlic preceded the Phaedrus. This results both from 
stylistic comparisons and from the comparison of con- 
tents. At all events the date of the Phaedrus as written 
about 379 B.C. (380-378) is now quite as well confirmed 
as the date of the Symposium about 385 B.C. 

The period 

of Middle 
as much 
as one 
of the 
of text 

Middle Platonism 

"We have seen that in the time between 384 and 378 
B.C. Plato dedicated his leisure only to the Bepuhlic and 
Phaedrus, all other works being either earlier, as has 
been already shown with respect to those preceding the 
Bepuhlic, or later, as will be seen in the continuation of 
our inquiry. This short epoch of middle Platonism 
lasting up to Plato's fiftieth year produced, therefore, an 
amount of text equal to one half (233 pp. ed. Did.) of all 
the works written in the remaining thirty years of the 
philosopher's life (476 pp. ed. Did.). Thence it results 
that Plato's literary activity was on the decrease after 
the Phaedrus, and that he followed the maxims expressed 
at the end of this dialogue, according to which writing is 
by no means the most important of the aims of a philo- 
sopher, in contradiction to his rival Isocrates, to whom 

and ideas. 


nothing appeared more important than his written 
speeches, in which he pretended to teach also a philo- 
sophy, condemned by Plato. 

The doctrine of the ideas, invented in the first period Doctrine 
after the foundation of the Academy, is maintained of ideas 
during the time of middle Platonism, but the same stress ^^^^s 

is no longer laid on the independent existence of the ideas, 

n 1 1- 1 ,-1 1- 1,1 -1 Platonism 

and the relation between particular things and the ideas, , , 

J- ^ ' developes 

first designated by the term fxsTS'x^scv, becomes a mere ^^^^ 
similarity (/Mifxrjf/^a, fjufisiaOai, ofxoico/jia, 6/jboiovv), which the view 
allows us also to form ideas by the observation of simi- of a mere 
larities in sensible objects. In several passages the ideas similarity 
and knowledge appear as created by the philosopher, 
though the earlier conception of a vision of self-existing 
ideas is not yet wholly abandoned, and reappears in the 
myth of the Phaedrus accompanied by its logical inter- 
pretation, according to which the ideas become identified 
with general notions. 

It is fully in accordance with this later stage of the Ideas not 
doctrine, that ideas are no longer limited as in the limited to 
Symposium and Phaedo to ethical and mathematical ^^^^^^^ ^'^ 
objects, but are equally supposed to exist for manufac- 
tured things. Thus a transformation of the primitive 
theory of ideas is already prepared though not yet carried 
out. AVhile the ideal of the first Platonic stage was a 
state of subjective perfection and separation from the 
vulgar surroundings of common life, a passive contempla- 
tion of ideas, we see in middle Platonism an increasing . ,. 

. . . . Applica- 

confidence in the necessity of applying philosophy to life, ^j^^ ^f 
and also of investigating particulars. The search for philo- 
definitions was a Socratic inheritance, but the fondness sophy 
for classifications appears not earlier than in the Bepublic, *o l'*e- 
though it is prepared by the Phaedo. 

This direction taken by Plato had a great influence on Logical 
the development of his logic. So long as only definitions classifi- 
are sought for, the supramundane independence of ideas cations 
can easily be maintained. But once on the way of 



tion of the 
in ideas. 

Ideas in- 
depende nt 
of par- 
but not 
conscious - 

ence of 
ideas the 
tion of 





a short 


systematic classification it is impossible not to observe 
the subjective character of subdivisions, and this leads to 
the conclusion that the existence of ideas is only possible 
in a soul : not necessarily the soul of the thinker, but a 
soul of an individual being. The objectivity of ideas 
resulting from an agreement between souls is different 
from the objectivity based on the feeling produced by 
passive contemplation. The first impression of a philo- 
sopher who notices the distance between an idea and the 
particulars is to exaggerate the objectivity and independ- 
ence of the idea, and to assert emphatically its independ- 
ence and incommensurability with the particulars, which 
seems to imply its existence outside individual conscious- 
ness. The belief in its independence of particulars is 
lasting, because it is true, and has been proved by Plato 
in the Phaedo and in all following works, remaining the 
cardinal truth of all later philosophy, ignored only by 
thinkers who were not sufficiently versed in the history of 
logic, like Comte and Mill. 

But the existence of ideas otherwise than in some 
individual consciousness is an illusion, similar to that 
more familiar illusion which makes colours and sounds 
appear objective, though they have no existence outside 
of us. The illusion of objective idealism is, however, one 
of those illusions which are necessary steps in philo- 
sophical progress. It is only a metaphoric expression of 
the truth that ideas are logically independent of the 
individual, and this logical independence {ai^djKrj) must 
be recognised as a foundation of objective knowledge and 

Thus Plato at the beginning of his logic and during 
the middle period of his literary activity was idealist : he 
believed in the objective existence of the ideas outside 
particulars and outside the individual soul. This belief 
found its clearest expression, at the beginning, in the 
Symposium and in the Phaedo, combined with a vague 
uncertainty as to the relation between things and ideas. 


During middle Platonism, so far as we can guess from Already 
the hints given in the Eepuhlic and Phaedrus, the same less 
conviction was maintained with a clearer definition of the certain 
relation between things and ideas as consisting in their ^'^ 
similarity. But less emphatic stress was laid on the ^ 
independence, and if due allowance is made for meta- pjiaedms. 
phorical language, the whole mythical part of the 
Phaedrus may well agree with a conception of ideas in 
the meaning they had for Kant. 

We need not fear to deprive Kant of his originality if Colnci- 
we come to the conclusion that Plato towards his later dence 
age understood the ideas in very much the same way as ^^"^^^^ 

— trip ISitGi* 

Kant. The truth is one, and once found cannot be ^ 

stage of 

changed. There is no impossibility or even improba- pi^to's 
bility in supposing that a thinker like Plato, having no thought 
other aim in his life than thought, arrived at a correct and Kant 
notion of ideas after a long educational career. It would "ot acci- 
be astonishing to find the contrary. And Kant cannot lose ^^^'^t'^l- 
any substantial merit in consequence of this discovery, as 
the notion of ideas forms only one of the points of Kant's 
philosophy, while in many other points he progressed, 
as might naturally be expected, beyond Plato and other 

There is one very striking analogy between Kant and Analpgy 
Plato. Kant undertook a critical reform of his earlier between 
convictions after having reached the age of fifty, and the ^^"* ^°** 
same was the case with Plato. It is not surprising that 
philosophers arrive late at the full maturity of their 
thoughts. Every more perfect being requires a longer 
development, and men's childhood lasts longer than the 
childhood of inferior animals. A philosopher in Plato's 
opinion must excel other men almost to the same extent 
as any man is superior to other animals. This is not an 
extraordinary pretension, if we bear in mind that for 
Plato the activity of a philosopher is by no means limited 
to abstract thought, but extends to all departments of 
human life ; so that he would certainly have included in 


this class some of our contemporaries, not asking them to 
write philosophical dissertations in order to legitimate 
their pride in belonging to the ruling class of mankind, 
formed of more perfect beings than the average citizens 
even in an ideal state. 




We have seen in the above exposition of middle Platon- ideas 
ism a theory of knovi^ledge according to which the ideas perceived 
were perceived by intuition, and constituted eternal ^y i°" 
models of everything in the phenomenal world. The ^^^ ^°" 
chief point was the independence of ideas, not involving, ^^^^^^ 
however, their separate existence. That no phenomenal ^^ appear- 
appearance can fully correspond to a pure idea is a great ances. 
discovery of Plato, made by the consideration of mathe- 
matical as well as moral notions. Whether such ideas 
have any existence out of the human mind, or generally 
outside an individual consciousness, was a question 
not discussed, and perhaps not clearly formulated by 
Plato : when he speaks of the beauty of ideas outside Substan- 
the physical universe, he does it in such metaphorical tial ex- 
language, that we cannot draw certain inferences from i^tence of 
his images. The true meaning of all these visions is the ^ . 

" ^ f. • 1 1 • certain, 

conviction that ideas are independent of material things, 

and that the existence and changes of physical objects 

must be ruled by immaterial and invisible ideas, often 

spoken of as objects of thought. 

The relation between things and ideas — whether 

defined as a presence or immanence of ideas in the things, 

or as a similarity between things and ideas, or as an 

imitation of ideas by particulars— was the first question 

that occurred when once the existence of the ideas had 

been established. While a personal training was deemed Existence 

necessary in order to attain the vision of ideas, their of ideas 


for the 

Once their 

order and 
the at- 
of the 





at a later 


The dia- 
carry out 
the pro- 

existence needed no other proof than the personal ex- 
perience of the initiated. This initiation by means of 
mathematical, astronomical, or musical studies, and 
subsequent discussion of political or educational problems, 
proved a sufficient aim for many years of teaching. But 
at last a new problem became inevitable. Suppose v^e 
have arrived at the intuitive knowledge of many ideas, 
and are aware of the difference between an idea and a 
particular object of sensible experience, the next question 
to ask is about the order of ideas and their mutual rela- 
tions. These can be well explained only through a 
distinction of similarities, leading to an universal classifi- 
cation of notions. Already in the Bepublic it was asked 
how many kinds of reasoning are possible (532 d : res 6 
rpoTTOs TTj^ Tov SioXsysaOat hvvdfMSco^, Kal Kara iroia Brj siBr] 
8is(TT7]Ks), but the question was left unanswered. In the 
Phaedrus (266 b) the complete classification of ideas 
from the most general kinds down to the indivisible 
logical units was proclaimed as the chief aim of the 

This classificatory tendency is absent from earlier 
works, where specific problems were discussed, without 
any allusion to a contemplation of all time and all exist- 
ence, which we find first in the Bepublic (486 a). But 
even in the Bepublic the classifications and divisions are 
limited to a few subjects, and no attempt is made to bring 
all the possible objects of knowledge under a certain 
number of heads. Nor is this fully carried out even in 
the Phaedrus, where the importance of such a logical 
method is so warmly insisted upon, and the power of 
building up general notions and dividing them is pro- 
claimed divine. 

An attempt to realise this programme is made in the 
series of dialectical dialogues, among which the T/ieae^e^ws 
and Parmenides are the earliest, as we have seen from 
stylistic comparisons, which are confirmed by the exami- 
nation of their logical contents. They share with the 


later works of this group another important pecuHarity, of the 

the historical method of comparing impartially and Phaedrus. 
judging according to their merits the theories of other 

philosophers. The primitive theory of ideas is no longer Theory 

the object of such ecstatic admiration as in the Sympo- of ideas 

shun and Phaedrus. It is subjected to a critical exami- ignored in 

nation in the Parmenides and almost ignored in the '^^'■^^"^^eki^ 

Theaetetiis, so much so that many readers have believed ^^^ ^^^^*^ 

in PctT- 

this to be an early dialogue. This impression vanishes at ,,,^,^^^^^5 
once upon a close consideration of some philosophical in both 
terms familiarly used both in Theaetetus and Parmenides occur 
vi^hich had been elaborated during the period of middle terms 
Platonism. To these belong the notions of dialectic elaborated 
{Theaet. 161 e, Parm. 135 c), of substance (ovaia, Theaet. ^^"""8^^^ 
186 D, Parm. 135 a), power or faculty {hmaijus, Theaet. ^ .- ^ ^ 
158 E, 159 A, 185 c, Parm. 133 e, 135 c), the one {Theaet. ''"'° ' 
152 D, Parm. 137 c, &c.), Not-Being (Theaet. 185 c, 
Parm. 142 a), and the opposition of activity and passivity 
{Theaet. 157 a, 174 b, Parm. 138 b). 

Both Theaetetus and Parmenides have further in Both 
common two important distinctions, which could not Theaetetus 
have been ignored in the Bepitblic, nor in the Phaedrus, a-nd Par- 
if the author had already become familiar with them. "»«'^^f^c« 
One of these is the well-defined notion of movement, 
including qualitative alteration as well as change of 
position in space. This meaning of Kivqa-ts, accepted by i^ove- 
Aristotle, and many later philosophers, is a result of the ment, 
increasing importance of this notion for Plato, and would including 
necessarily have been alluded to in the Bepuhlic and ^'hange of 
Phaedrus in those passages in which kIvtigis is used in P°^^*^'''^ 
its primitive signification of movement through space. It ^! ^^ T 

. T- • 1 • OJ^ of quality. 

is a tar-reachmg generalisation to identify movement with 
qualitative alteration, because both are a manifestation 
of change. The comparison of corresponding passages 
shows that this unity was not yet noticed in the period of 
middle Platonism : 

a new 
notion of 


Hep. 454 c D : iKelvo 
TO fibos Trjs aXXoioxrews 
Te Ka\ ofjioiocxrecos fxovop 
e(f)v\dTTOfiev to rrpos 

Theaet. 156 a : Kivrj- 
(jecos 8vo eldrj, Syvafxiv 
Se TO fiev TTOiflv e'xov, 
TO 8e nda-xei-v (quoted 

avTo. Teivov to. eniTr^bfii- as a view to be criti- 

juarn. cised). 

530 c 

vrXeiu) e'i8r] 
7rape;^erat fj (papa . . . 

583 E : TO ye rjbv iv 
'^^XH "/'■yvofjifvov Kai TO 
XvTrr]p6v Kivqa-'is tls 
dix(f)0Tepa> ea-Tov. 

Phaedr. 245 D : 
Kivrjcrfoos dpxrj ■ . . ovt 
ciTvoKKvcrBaL ovts y'vy- 
vmQai BvvaTov, t] TrdvTa 
re ovpnvov irdcrdv re 
yevecTiv (rvp-Trecrovaav 
(TTrivai Koi prjiroTe av6is 
e^^eii/ 66ev KivrjdevTa 

181 C : TtoTepov €V TL 
fidos avTtjs Xeyovaiv f) 
aawep fixol (fialveTOi 

8vo ; p,T] p,€VTOl fiovov 

efiol 8oK€iTa>, aWa avp,- 

peTex^ 'ff I (TV, . . . dpa 

KivelaOai KaXels otuv ti 

XOipav «K x^P^s peTa- 

^dWrj rj Koi iv tqJ avTW 

aTpeCJirjTai ; — eycoye — 

. . . oral' 8e fj pkv iv rco 

atiro), yqpdaKTj 8e, rj 

peXav iK XevKOV rj ctkXtj- 

pov e/c paXaKOV yiyvrjTni, 

rj rtva aXXrjv dXXoiio- 

(Tiv aWoiiiTai, dpa ovk 

a^Lov eTepov ei8os (f)dvai Kivrjaecos ; . . ■ 8vo 8f] 

Xeyo) TOVTO) e'idr) KivT)crea>s, aXXoiaxriv, ttjv 8e(f)opdv. 

153 A : TO pev eivai koi to yiyvecrOaL Kivqcns 

Trapexet, to 8e pfj elvai koI aTroXXvcr^ot fjavxio- 

Partn. 138 b : kivov- 

ro T] 

pfvop ye T] (pepoLTo rj 
oXXoioIto av • avTai 

povai KivT](reis — vai. 

162 D : ovk apa to 
ev pr] ov (TTpicfieadai av 
8vvaiTo iv iKeivo) iv co 
pr] ecTTLV . . . ov8e pfjv 
aXXotovTat TTOV to ev 
eavTov, ovre to ov ovre 
TO pr] ov. el 8e pr]T 
aXXoLoiiTai prjre iv TavToi 
(TTpicpeTai p^rjTe peTa- 
jSati/et, dp' av nrj en 
kivoIto ; iras ydp ; 

Legg. 894 e : otuv 
avTo avTO]crav eTepov 
aXXoiaxTTj, TO 8'' eTepov 
aXXo . . . pa)V apxr] tis 
avTav i'aTai rf)? Kivi]- 
aeas aTrdar]s aXXr] rrXrjv 
Tj Tr]s avTr]s avTr]v ki- 
vr](rd(rr]s peTa^oXr] ; 

The dis- 
of two 
kinds of 
ment, first 
in the 
to be a 
of the 

We see that in the Bepuhlic the distinctions introduced 
in the Tlieaetetus are not yet known. The use in the 
Bepuhlic of Ktvrjcns in its metaphorical meaning as move- 
ment of the soul is transitional to the later generalisation, 
but does not yet imply it. In the Fhaedrus KLvrja-is 
means movement through space, and this is very charac- 
teristic if v^e remember that in the later dialogues the 
distinction of two kinds of movement is represented as 
quite essential. This distinction is first made in the 
Tlieaetetus, and recurs as familiar in the Parmenides and 
Laws (where it is assumed as a matter of course that the 
first movement produced is a qualitative change) as well 
as later in the works of Aristotle. The distinction of 
two kinds of movement is introduced in the Tlieaetetus as 
a new theory, after another division had been incidentally 


referred to. It is stated expressly to be a personal dis- 
covery of the Platonic Socrates, which he is anxious to 
see accepted and to share with others the risk of an error 
{avfjifjiSTS'x^c Kal (Tv). After its acceptance, it is repeated 
as logically necessary (181 d : dvayKuiov) . The starting 
point of this theory was the recognition of movement as 
a principle of Being, justified in the Phaedrus, mentioned 
as known in the Theaetetus, and finally reconciled with 
the stability of Being in the Sophist. This discovery is It is one 
related to the increasing interest for physical science, of the 
which is manifest through Plato's later w^orks, while it ^reat 
is absent from his earlier writings. It need hardly be 8®°®'^'^ ^' 
observed that here we have not to do with such an , , ., 

... 01 pmlo- 

ephemeral distmction as between irlaris and siKaaia in g j , 

the Republic, but with one of the greatest generalisations 

of philosophy, continually discussed by later thinkers 

up to Trendelenburg and Lotze. It is one of Plato's 

wonderful anticipations of ideas which have been better 

explained only in modern times. The identification of implies 

physical movement with qualitative change is a truth subjec- 

which could scarcely be fully realised before Kant, and *^^'*y °^ 

yet it is taken for granted in the Theaetetus, Parmenides, ^P^^*^- 

and Laws of Plato. 

Had the Theaetetus and Parmenides, being the two List of 

most critical works of Plato, no other new theory than categories 

the inclusion of qualitative change and physical move- ^'^'^* 

ment under one primary kind, with the subtle sub- '^t^^^^^P*®"^ 

division of physical movement into a movement through . 

space, and revolution on the same spot — this would alone y/^^^^g. 

be a strong reason for placing them after Bepuhlic and tdus. 

Phaedrus. But we find in these two dialogues another 

theory of cardinal importance, yet introduced quite as 

incidentally as the theory of movement. In the time 

of middle Platonism the favourite examples of ideal 

existence were moral or mathematical notions, the former 

being specially fit for allegorical representation as objects 

of enthusiastic vision. When the first enthusiasm was 


tion of 
dent of 

A very 
step in 
Its im- 
stood by 

over, it became very natural to attempt a general 
enmneration of highest kinds, independently of the 
esthetical feelings of av^e and admiration which first led 
to the perception of such ideas. This problem of 
categories has remained ever since a permanent depart- 
ment of philosophy and has been cultivated from Aristotle 
onwards by all logicians. But the first table of cate- 
gories in the history of logic is found in Plato's Theaetetus, 
repeated and enlarged in his Parmenides and Sophist. 
It is not wrapped in such emphatic language as the 
sovereignty of philosophers or the precept that to suffer 
wrongs is better than to inflict them. It is the historian's 
duty to show the incomparable importance of this first 
step in a new direction. There is reason to believe that 
Plato was conscious of this importance, though he did 
not insist on it, because he felt the incompleteness of his 
table of categories {ra Koivd). The enumeration in the 
Theaetetus is introduced at a culminating point of the 
dialogue, and followed by ' an unwonted outburst of 
admiration ' (Campbell, Theaet. p. 160) of the pupil who 
discovered it ; also by the significant observation that a 
long discussion has been avoided by this happy intuition, 
a result of good natural capacity (144 B) and a training in 
mathematics, music, and astronomy (145 a) according to the 
precepts laid down in the Republic. A careful comparison 
of similar passages in later dialogues and of Aristotle's 
account of the same problem shows very clearly that the 
first attempt at such an enumeration is that occurring in 
the Theaetetus, not, as has been sometimes supposed, 
that in the Parmenides. The list is increased by some 
notions in the Parmenides and Sophist : 

Theat. 185 c : rj' be 
dfj 8ia rivos dvvafjus to 


Ka\ TO eVl TovTois drjKol 
croi, (6 TO ea-Tiv mopo- 
fid^fis Kai TO ovK ea-Tiv 
Km ti vvvhr] r]pa)TS3fi(V 

Farm. 136 A : XP^ 

(TKOTTflV . . . el TToXXa 
eVrt . . . Ka\ aii ei fit) 
e(TTi TToXXa . . . Kai 

. . . fl eCTTtV OflOlOTTjS 

. . . Kai Trept avofioiov 
. . . Kivrjaecos Ka\ crTa- 

Soj)h. 254 D : ^ey- 
LCTTa Tuiv yevuyv . . . to 
Te ov avTo Koi crTacris 
Koi Kivrjais. 

E : TO re tuvtov koi 
duTe pov. 



TTepi avTcov ; — ovcriav 
Xf'yeiy koI to fj,r) fivai, 

Kal 6 flOlOTTjTa Koi 

dvofioioTTira, koi to 
TavTov re Ka\ to ere- 
pov, en Si €V Koi tov 
oXXoi/ api6p.ov nepl 
aiiTuv. drjXov Be ort 
Ka'i apTLOv re Koi tt e p- 
iTT 6v epaTas Koi ToXXa 
ocra TovTois cTrerai, dia 
Tivos /rore twv tov 
adopUTOS Trj '^vxfl ""'"" 
davopeda ; — invipev oko- 
\ovdels, Kai eaTiv a 
€pu)Tu> avTa TaijTa. 

ere (OS, Kai nepi yeve- 
crecof Kai (f) 60 pas, Ka'i 
wepl avTOv tov elvai Kal 
Toil pfj elvai Ka\ iv\ 
Xdyoj, irepX otov av ae\ 
VTTodJj cos bvTOs Ka\ as 


ciXXo nddos 7rd(r)(ovTos, 
del aKOTrelv to. ^vpj3ai- 
vovTa TTpos avTo Kal npos 
ev €Ka(TTOV T<ov aWcov. 

129 E : TO. e'lBr], oiov 
6p,oi6TriTd Te Kal dvo- 
potoTTjTa Kal TT^rjdos 
Kal TO kv Kal a T da IV 
Kal Kivqcriv. 

Aristoteles Categor. 
1 b 25 : ovata, nocrov, 
TTOiov, npos Tt, TVOV, TTore', 
Kfladai, fxeiv, TTOietJ/, 

Metaphys. 1029 b 
24 : TTOiov, noaov, noTe, 
TToii, Kivrjcris. See also 
below, p. 480, on 
the categories in the 
Timaeus, produced by 
the movements of the 

The first place is given in all enumerations to sub- 
stance and Not-Being. The same and the other, and 
similarity and dissimilarity, are also common to the three 
enumerations. One and the many form a third pair in 
the Theaetetiis and Pa7-menides, but are dropped in the 
Sophist. A fourth pair is movement and immobility, 
omitted in the Theaetetus, but appearing both in Parme- 
nides and SopJiist. The differences are not necessarily 
due to a change of views, but to the incompleteness of 
enumeration, also frequent in Aristotle, who often men- 
tions only six Categories even in passages where it would 
seem that the enumeration might be complete. 

These highest kinds, which denote what is common 
to many particulars, are different from the ideas admired 
in the Republic. There is no place among these common 
notions for Truth or Beauty, nor for the idea of Good, 
though these are mentioned as also perceivable by the 
soul alone (186 a). These are not entirely supplanted by 
the new ideas, but they no longer attract the philo- 
sopher's chief attention. The intuitive vision of trans- 
cendental ideas is exchanged for a discursive investigation 
of a given universe. This may be explained by the 
natural evolution of Plato's activity in his Academy. 

B B 

ences in 
the three 






the Good 



Variety of 
actual ex- 
had to be 
to classi- 

of the 
field of 
the limits 
of moral 

of Plato's 
out in the 
tetus and 

The training recognised to be necessary in order to 
develope intuition had to be directed, and the variety of 
material appearances, at first despised as irrelevant, had 
to be considered and classified. The astronomical and 
mathematical studies recommended in the Bepiiblic 
tended to promote not only dialectical ability, but also 
some recognition of sensible experience, and of the reality 
underlying physical phenomena. If in earlier times the 
power of the soul over the body was chiefly seen in moral 
determinations, it now appeared that the body, though 
subordinate to the soul, is a useful instrmnent for the 
purpose of increasing even ideal knowledge by forming 
new ideas. The moral ideas, being few in number, 
afforded no sufiicient scope for the dialectical tendency to 
distinguish and classify. The field of logical exercise was 
first extended to a classification of states and men ; but 
even this did not satisfy that philosophical curiosity 
which is accustomed to consider all substance and all 
time, neglecting nothing, however small or insignificant 
it may appear to the vulgar mind. 

Among such pursuits, which seem to have occupied 
the greatest part of Plato's time after the Phaedrus, the 
general problem of knowledge was reinvestigated, and 
this led to an important reform of earlier logical con- 
ceptions. Of this reform we have a record in two works 
which more than any preceding them may be termed 
critical, though at first sight they appear almost as in- 
conclusive as the Socratic dialogues. These works, the 
Theaetetus and Panne7iides, are of decisive importance 
for an appreciation of Plato's philosophy, and deserve our 
attention not only for their main subjects, but also for 
seemingly casual allusions to doctrines of the greatest 


I. The Theaetetus. 

(Relative affinity to the latest group, measured on the Laws as 
unity, = 0-32 ; see above, p. 177.) 

The aim of this dialogue is a definition of knowledge, Defini- 
which, however, is not given, in spite of several unsuc- tion of 
cessful attempts made by Theaetetus. Among the defi- knowledge 
nitions which are recognised to be insufficient is one ^°"slit 
which had been provisionally received in some previous 
dialogues : namely, that knowledge is true opinion ^.^^^^ jj^^. 
founded on sufficient reasons. This had been proposed given. 
in the Meno (98 a) and tacitly admitted in Symposium 
(see above, p. 238) and Phaedo, whereas it is refuted in 
the Theaetetus (210 a) : 

Phaedo 96 b : noXKoKis ifxavrov TJieaet. 210 A : ovre apa aiadr]- 

civu) Karo) fj.fTe^aWov (TKona>v . . . cris, ovre 86^a aXrjdfjs ovre /ier' dXr)- 

(K fj.vT]fxr]s Koi 86^r]s Xa^ovarjs to dovs 86^r]s \6yos npocryiyvofievos 

■qpe^ieiv Kara ravra yiyvecrOat fTriaTrj^rj av eirj. 

In the Cratylus (426 a), Symposium (202 A), and Fhaedo 

(76 B) \6^os had the meaning of a sufficient reason, while 

here it is more exactly analysed, and each of its three 

meanings is shown to be incapable of changing opinion into 

knowledge. What Plato's real conviction about know- Difference 

ledge was, is known from the Bepublic, and also from later between 

works : for him the difference between opinion and know- opinion 

ledge ultimately consisted in the difference of their ^^^ 

objects. In this respect there is no change from the '^^^^'^s® 

Phaedo to the Theaetetus : the activity of reason is an ,, , . ^ 

•^ the objects 

activity of the soul, not wanting the help of the senses ^^ ^hich 
and of the body : they refer. 

Phaedo 65b c : TjyJAvxrjTrisaXrjBe las Theaet. 186d : iv fikv apa To'ls Know- 

aTTTtrai , , . ev rw Xoyi^ecrdai . . . nadrifiacnv ovk evi fTncrTTjfXT], iv be ledge is 

Xoyi^erai he ye nov Tore KaWiara, tm nepl eKeivcov (rvWoyi(rp.a- ovaias acauired 

oTai> on p.aXiaTa avrr) Kod' avrrjv yap Ka\ aXrjOeias evraida fiev, as i .i 

y'lyvqrai iaxra xaipeiv ro (rci)p,a. eoiKe, dvvarov dylraaBai. 


BB 2 


soul's own The same term is repeatedly used in both dialogues 

activity. {avri] KaO' avrijv Phaedo 65 c, 79 D, 83 A, Theaet. 186 a, 

187 A) to denote the soul's independence of the body. 

Also the distinction between attaining knowledge and 

possessing it is already prepared in the Phaedo. 

Phaedo 75 D : t6 yap etSeVat Theaet. 197 C : Spa Br] Ka\ ini- 

tovt' idTiv, \al36vTa tov iniCTTrjjxrjv (TTrjjXTjv el Bvvarov ovtco KfKTr]fi^vov 
€xei-v KOL fit] dnoXaXeKevai. fir] (Xfif. 

Unity of 

in the 
is here 

ments of 
the soul. 

But it is only here that the unity of consciousness is 
insisted upon, as resulting from the variety of perceptions. 
It had been already observed in the Bepuhlic that each 
sense is used only to convey one kind of impression. 
This observation is here generalised and affirmed as 
certain : 

Bej}. 352 E : ea-d' otco av oAXw Theaet. 185 A : a St' ere'ijus 

'l8ois fj 6(l)6aXiJi.o'is ; — ovdriTa ride; Suwijueoos aladdvd, aBvvarov eivai 

aKovaais riWco rj axriv ; — ov8nfims- 8l aXXrjs ravr aladeaOai^ olov a Si 

— ovKOVV BiKaicos av raiiTa tovtcov UKorjs, St' o\|/fa)f, rj a 6l o\|/-eco<r. 5i 

(paifiev (pya eivai ; ttcivv ye. oko^9 ; 

477 C : Xeyco oxj/LV kui ciKorjv 
TU)V dvvdfieoiv eivai, el I'lpn fiavdaveis o jSoyXofxai Xeyetv to eldos. 

There is a certain progress in the formulation of this 
principle from the Rejmblic to the Theaetetus. In the 
earlier work the term Svva/xts as appliable to the senses 
was first introduced ; here it is used without hesitation, and 
the observation that it is possible to see only by means of 
the eyes is supplemented by the general rule : it is im- 
possible to perceive through one faculty the proper object 
of another sense faculty, as can be verified through the 
familiar example of sight and hearing. 

The application of this law of specific energy of the 
senses, given in the Theaetetus, goes far beyond what we 
found in the Bepuhlic and Phaedo. Already in those 
earlier works the senses were defined as instruments used 
by the soul, and this is here maintained : 

Phaedo 79 C : fj ^j^vxr], orav Theaet. 184 c : o-KOTret yap, 

Ta> crco/xart TTpoa-Xp^Tai fls to aTroKpiais noTepa opBorepa, w 
aKoneiv ti tj Sia tov opav rj 8ia tov opafxev, tovto eivai o(p6aXpovs, rj 
UKOveLv 7] 8i aXKrjs Tivos alcrBrjcrectis 8i ov opoofxev, /cat co aKovofiev, cora, 
— ToiiTo yap icm to 8ia tov t] 8t' ov iiKovopev ; — 8t a>v (KaaTa 
(Tcouaros, TO St' aladrjcreav (TKonflu alcrdavoufda, epoiye So/cei, p.aWov ij 
TL — TOTe . . , TrXavaTat. oii- — Aeivbv yap ttov, ei noKXai 

Rep. 508 B : opuia . . . ifKui- Tives iv r]p.'Lv, Sicrnep iv 8ovpeiois 
€i8tO"raroi' tcov Trept rag ala-6i]a-eii Ittttois, alaOrjaeis eyKadrjvTat, aWa 
6 pydvcov. fXTj els p.iav tivcl Iheav, el're '^VXV^ 

tire o TL Set KaXelv, iravTa tuvtu 
^vvTeivei, fj 8ia TOVTotv oiou u pydvcov a'ladavop.eda ocra aladrjTO.. 

But we find here a new conclusion, not thought of before. Concep- 

If all senses are but instruments, they must be the in- tion of 

struments used by one and the same thing, be it named *^® ^°^^ 

soul or otherwise. In earlier works Plato used the term ^^® ^^^ ' 

soul as free from every ambiguity. Here we see already 

a trace of doubts about the existence of the soul, against 

which he guards himself by the caution that it does not 

matter whether w^e call by the name soul or otherwise 

that substance which is the necessary recipient of all 

particular impressions. A further proof of the existence Its power 

of this substance and its peculiar activity is given by ofcom- 

the argument that impressions of different senses are P^""^? 

comparable among themselves, and no single sense could ^P"^^^ 

• TI- 1 • 1 1 i X mons of 

bring about these comparisons. If w^e think about two ^gg^-ej^t 

different perceptions of two different senses, this could senses. 

not be done by means of one of the senses concerned 

(185 A : el' Tt irspl dfjicpoJspcDv Siavosl, ovk av hid >ys tov 

STspov opydvov, ou^' av Sid tov STspov irspX d/Jb(poTspoov atcrdavoi, 

dv). Plato proceeds to give well-chosen examples of Attributes 

thoughts, which are possible with reference to different per- of dif- 

ceptions. He observes in the first place that all perceptions *^^^^* P^^'" 

have in common existence (185 a), then that they differ ^^P*i°°^ 

from each other, and are identical each with itself (185 A), ^.^^ ^^ 

then that each of them is one, and both are two (185 B), categories. 

and finally that there may be similarity or dissimilarity 

between them (186 b: hts dvofioiw hts oyuoiw dWrjKoiv). 


No special 
for per- 

They are 
by the 
soul alone; 
this is a 
truth not 
easy to 

of the 
to dis- 

and heat 
as result- 
ing from 

Traces of 

This enumeration of general notions which can be appHed 
to a variety of concrete objects is not accidental, because 
it is repeated by Theaetetus nearly in the same order, and 
forms really the most ancient table of categories. Plato 
asks by what faculty the soul can perceive those general 

The answer that such general notions can be known 
only immediately by the soul's own activity (185 d e : amrj 
hC avTTjsii "^v^rj ra noivd fjLot (jiaivSTat TrsplirdvTwv siTLCTKO'Trslv) 
is received as a truth which can be at once understood 
only by the better class of intellects, and would require 
a long proof, had not this been made superfluous by the 
natural capacity of Theaetetus (185 e). These general 
notions, here distinguished as the proper object of 
knowledge, are placed in close relation to the particulars 
observed by means of the senses, and this denotes a 
change in Plato's attitude towards physical phenomena. 
He no longer despises them as in the Phaedo and 
Bepuhlic : he recognises the difficulty of discovering the 
illusions of the senses (179 C : irspl Be to irapov sKciaTq) 
TTciOos, i|- Mv al aladyjasts kol al Kara ravras Bo^at ytyvovraL, 
^(aXs'rroiiTspov sXslv cos ovk akrjOds). He has made a very 
special study of these appearances and has arrived at sur- 
prising intuitions of physical truth. Thus for instance 
he states clearly that colour does not belong to objects out- 
side us nor even to our eyes (153 d). That light is a result 
of movement and affects different persons in a different 
way, and that it is a pure quality out of space, appears 
to be a truth attainable only by the methods of modern 
physics, and yet any reader can find it in the Theaetetus 
(153 E : ixr}hs riv avrw x^P^^ dTroTd^rjs). Another of the 
great discoveries of our own time is here anticipated, 
the explanation of heat as a mode of motion (153 a: to 
6spfjb6v T£ Kal TTvp, Br) Kol rdWa ysvva kol sTnTpoTTSvsi, 
avTO yswdrai ek (f)opds Kal rply^rsws' tovto Be Kcvrjais). 
This is certainly said with another meaning than it might 
have for the modern reader. But it betrays the fact that 


Plato had already begun those physical reflections which investi- 
led him later to the theories expounded in the Tiinaeus. gations. 

It seems that a thorough-going materialism had made Eefuta- 
its appearance within the Academy or outside it and tion of 
decided him to a full refutation. For the Theaetetus, no ^^a^te^al- 
doubt, is meant above everything as a refutation of 
materialism and sensualism. The materialists are men- 
tioned as very uneducated men, not initiated into the Con- 
mysteries of a refined philosophy (155 e). With these trasted 
are contrasted the subtler sensualists (156 a : KOjMy\r6rspot, ^^i*^ * 
o)v /xsWco aoi ra ^va-vqpia Xsjsuj) who explain everything ^^"^^^^ 
by movement and make everything relative, destroying . '. 

thus all fixed notions, which are indispensable in laying j^^^ 
the groundwork for a system of science. Plato seems to produced 
admit so much of their theory of the relativity of sensa- some 
tions as agrees with his own views. He argues that physical 
the reality of dreams for the dreamer is equal to the tl^eones 
reality of waking for men awake (158 CD), and he leaves ^'^'^^P*^'^ 
the difficulty for the time unsolved. The same might be . ' 

said of illness (158 d) and madness (157 E), but only in so of ggnsa- 
far as sensations are concerned, which have always a tions 
subjective character (154 a: rj crv hua'xypicraLo av tws, olov under 
aoi <l>aivSTat sKaarov ^pco/ua, roiovrop xal Kvvl KoX orwovv different 
foJft) — fxa At" ov/ceyays). This proves that true knowledge ^ondi- 
cannot be sought in sensations. 

Though the true nature of knowledge is not stated in Plato's 
clear words as the result of the inquiry, we can easily '^iew of 
gather from certain allusions that knowledge was no l^i^owledge 
longer conceived to be a mere intuition of pre-existing „ . , 

. . of judg- 

ideas, but a product of the mind's activity. Knowledge ^^^^ 

is to be found in that state of the soul, in which it con- 
siders being, or in its judgments (187 A : kiricrrrjixr} . . . h 
sKsivm TO) ovofiari, 6 rl ttot' s'^si rj yp'V)(rj, orav avTT} Ka6' 
avrrjv TrpajfiarsurjTai, irspl to, ovto). Here knowledge is 
brought under the head of ho^a, not in the meaning of 
opinion, but of judgment (187 a : tovto KoXslrai, . . . 
Bo^d^siv). This position is not contradicted in the 


as moving 
tion and 
to the 
law of 

tion of 

is a new 
from its 

ledge of 
a whole 

following discussion and may be accepted as Plato's 
true conviction. He explains thought as a conversa- 
tion of the soul with itself (189 E : ro Ss hiavosladai ap' 
oTTsp syot) KaXsls ; — rt KaXoiv ; — Xoyov bv avrrj irpos avrrjv rj 
"^vyrj hts^sp)(£Tai rrspl mv av (tkottt} . . . avrrj kavrrjv spoorcoaa 
Koi dTTOKpLvoTTsvT], KUi (f>daKovaa Kal ov (pda/covcra), lead- 
ing to a choice between afl&rmation and negation, wherein 
judgment consists (190 A : orav 8s Spia-acra, . . . to avro TjSr) 
(bfj Koi fxrj Scard^rj, So^av rauTrjv rtds/xsv ainrjs). This duality 
of affirmation and negation begins to attract Plato's atten- 
tion more than ever before. The beautiful and the good 
are not merely associated as in Bepiihlic and Phaedrus, 
but paired with their opposites (186 A) : so also the four 
pairs of categories in the same passage, and other notions 
(186 B : aK\T]p6rr)Ta Kal fiakaKOTTjja, 180 D : sardvat . . . 
KLi'sia6ai, &c.). Thus he quotes as one of the objects of 
judgment the essence of the opposition of beings among 
each other (186 B : rrjv ovalav rrjs svavrLortfros avrrj rj '^V')(ri 
Kplvstv Treipdrac), and he insists on the impossibility of 
identity between opposite notions (190 b : dva/xL/jLvrjcrKov 
St ttcottot' slttss irpos asavrov on rravros fiaXXov . . . rb 
sTspov srspov Ian). 

The nature of judgment is further analysed and 
found to be essentially different from the notions of 
which it consists. AVhile according to the earlier 
theory the sight or intuition of ideas was knowledge, it 
appears now from the example of letters and syllables 
that the judgment is not the sum of its compo- 
nents, but a new unity (203 E : y^priv ydp lacos rrjv 
avXXa/Sijp ridscrdac purj rd aroi'ysla^ dXX' i^ sksIvwv IV n 
ysyovos sioos, cSsav pi^lav avro avrov s'^ov^ srspov roiv aroi- 
%<ciaiv, cf. 204 A). This conception is repeated with 
insistence several times (203 e, 204 a, 205 c, 205 d) in 
order to refute the supposition that the elements can be 
less knowable than the whole. He who pretends to know 
a whole without being able to account for its parts is 
declared not to speak seriously (206 b : Idv ns 4>V o-v\- 


XajBrjv fisv 'yvaxTrov, ci'yiwaTOv hs 7rs(t)VK£vai. cttoi'^scop, SKOvra presup- 

17 UKovTa Trai^siv ■^yrjaofXcd' avrov, cf. Crat. 426 A). This poses the 

postulate, to base the knowledge of everything upon the ^^'^o'^ledge 

knowledge of its ultimate elements, agrees with what has , ^ ^ 

been said in the Phaedrus on the same subject (270 D), ^^^^^ 

and corresponds to a stage in which the chief interest absolute 

attaches to those notions which are built upon the obser- ideas are 

vation of actual appearances. The question of analysing simple 

everything into its elements or kinds was superfluous in ^^ ^^^^^' 

dealing with absolute ideas which were supposed to be ^^^ ection. 

simple in their perfection. 

It corresponds also to the new classificatory tendency Three 

that \6yos is distinguished into its three kinds : speech kinds of 

(206 D) , enumeration of parts (207 A) , and definition (208 E) . ^^y' 

The three degrees are declared insufficient to guarantee ^°"^' 

knowledge, but it may be taken for granted that each of f ' 

^ -^ ^ for know- 

them is held indispensable for knowledge. Nobody knows j^ ^ _ 
who cannot explain in words the object of his knowledge, 
enumerate its parts, and give a definition of each of its 
elements. This last point is stated here with greater 

fulness than anywhere before. Definition should consist Defini- 

in the indication of the specific difference which distin- tion by 

guishes a given object from all others (208 c : to e%£tz/ re ^Q'^i'^s,- 

, ^ T " ' ' '!' I ' ^ ■> Q' tion of a 

ariasLOv siirscv 00 tmv arravTcou oiacpspsL to sptorrjasv, ... 

*■ ^ ^ SD6ClfiC 

cf. 175 c). "We are warned to avoid circular definitions, ,.„ 

' ... difference, 

which pretend to explain a notion by its synonym (147 b, equivalent 
210 a), and the enumeration of examples is also declared to know- 
to be an insufficient substitute for a definition. When ledge 
Theaetetus began by an enumeration of different kinds of a* the 
science instead of giving a definition of science, Socrates begmnmg 
detained him and appeared to imply at this stage of the 
dialogue that knowledge is based on definitions (146 e : 
TO S' sirspwTrjdsv ov tovto r]v, tlvcov ^ i7rioTi]fir], ov8s OTTOcraL 
Tivis ' ov yap apidp,rjaaL avia^ /SovXo/jlsvol '^pofjLsda, aWd 
yvuivat SIT iCTTr} p,rjv avTO 6 tl ttot saT lv, cf. EuthypJl. 5 D, 
6 E ; Me7io 72 a). Some models of definitions are given, 
as for instance ' clay is moistened earth ' (147 c), or 'the 


to know- 
ledge and 

of know- 

while the 
gation of 
is ad- 

tion of 
two views 
on Being. 

sun is the brightest of the heavenly bodies which revolve 
about the earth ' (208 d) . Though at the end of the dia- 
logue the definition is supposed not to be a peculiarity of 
knowledge alone, there is no doubt that it has been 
admitted as an essential condition of knowledge, common 
to knowledge and true opinion (209 D : Trspl Tr]v htac^opoTqra 
apa Kal rj opOrj So^a av str) sKciarov irspi). It is very 
surprising that among the possible meanings of 'ko'yos 
enumerated, precisely that meaning which this word 
appears to have in connection with knowledge for Plato 
( = aiTia) is omitted, except in one passage in the familiar 
phrase ^ovval rs Kal Ss^aadat Xoyou (202 c) in which \6yos 
is identical with sufficient reason, as in similar passages 
of the Gratylus (426 a), Phaedo (76 b, 95 a), and Bepuhlic 
(531 E). Consistency is here, as already in earlier works, 
expressly stated to be a necessary condition of knowledge 
(154 E : ^ovXrjcrofMSt^a dsdaaadai avra irpos avTci, ri ttot 
iarlv a Biavoov/MsOa, irorspov rjpuv aXXi^kocs ^v/xdxovsl rj ovB^ 
OTTwaTiovv. — 200 D : tl av amo fid\ccrTa sIttovtss rjKLcrr av 
vfjbiv avToh h-avTico6el/j,£v ;) , and the fixity of notions is 
represented as a condition of consistency (183 a) against 
the Heraclitean theory of eternal change of everything. 

This theory had been declared in the Gratylus to be 
too difficult for refutation, and only here it is refuted, 
while the criticism of the opposite view of Parmenides is 
left for a future occasion under a similar pretext to that 
which in the Cf-atylus accounted for the postponement of 
the criticism of the HeracHtean doctrine, namely that the 
philosophy of Parmenides is too deep for a superficial 
digression, while it would lead away from the chief pur- 
pose of the present conversation, the definition of knowledge 
(184 A). We see here the same dramatic opposition of 
two conflicting views as to the whole of universal existence, 
which was represented later with such pathetic solemnity 
in the Sophist. Only here the conflicting views are not 
materialism and idealism as in the Sophist, but Hera- 
cliteanism and Eleaticism (180 d e). 


firm the 
laid down 


This comprehensive survey of the great conflicts in Historical 
human thought could have been reached by Plato only stand- 
after a full elaboration of his 0"uti philosophy. Thus P°^"* 
speaks the head of a school, who has pupils from all parts 
of the Hellenic v^orld, and observes in them the natural 
tendencies towards different aims. 

What has been said in the Bepuhlic about the necessary Training 
training of a philosopher is here repeatedly mentioned of the 
with reference to Theaetetus, who has been prepared ^^i^o- 
for the present inquiry by mathematical, musical, and ^°^ 
astronomical studies (145 a, c), and also, according , 

to the recommendation given in the Bepublic, by i, ^^e 
investigation into stereometry (148 B). His mind cor- TJieae- 
responds in every point to what has been required from a tetus, so 
philosopher in the Republic : he learns everything as easily ^s to con 
as oil spreads silently over a smooth surface (144 b), and 
besides this intellectual development he is courageous and 
gentle (144 a). This pictm-e of the natural gifts of a -Qthe 
future philosopher agrees perfectly with that given in the Republic. 
Bepuhlic, as also Plato's confidence in youth expressed 
through the person of Theodoras (146 B : tm jap ovtl 77 
veor-qs sis irav sttlSoctiv sx^i)- Thus in one important point 
the psychological rule of earlier logic is maintained : the 
highest level of knowledge can be reached onl}^ by excep- 
tional natures, which have the privilege of being born rulers 
and teachers of men. For the ideal of the philosopher rises 
above the rest of mankind, and finds its own model in the ^^^^ ^^^ 
ideal of divinity, to which the philosopher approaches as divinity, 
near as possible (176 a: Sl6 kuI T-sLpaaOai ^/a^ hOsvhs far from 
SKslas (jisvysiv 6 tl rd'^iara. (f)V'yrj oh Ofxoicoats dsu> Kara ro the actual 
Bvvarov' Ofioicoais 8's SUaiov Kal oatov /jLSto. (t>poi'J]cr60)s ^° itical 
ysvsadat). The philosopher is represented as indifferent ^ ' 
to the political affairs of his country (173 d), and no stress ^^^^^^^.^ 
is laid on his duty to go down into the struggles of vulgar gpecu- 
life, and to apply his higher knowledge to the necessities lation. 
of his countrymen. 

The philosopher is here conceived in that stage of 



ment of 
of time 
and sijace 

pation of 

of Man. 

of genera- 



abstract speculation which was limited in the Republic 
to a few years of his life. His mind expatiates over 
the whole heaven, and all manifold objects forming 
different wholes, without caring any longer for what is 
near at hand (173 E : rj Bidvota ravra iravra "qyrjaafxsvri 
a/xiKpa icai cos ovhsv ariixdaacra TravTw^T] (pspsrai Kara 
Hiv^apov, Tci rs yds virsvspOs Kai rd STTCTrsBa yscofMSTpovcra, 
oupavov TS VTTsp darpovo/jbovcra, koI irdaav nrdvTr) (f)V(TCu 
8ispsvvo)/u.svr} TOiv ovtwv SKdoTov 6\ov, sis t6)v iyjvs ovBsv 
avTTjv (TvyKaOLslaa). Accustomed to look upon the whole 
earth, he despises the greatest landowner as insignificant 
(174 E), and he equally thinks little of human measures of 
time, because he knows that even this poor earth (176 A : 
Tov'Ss rov TOTTov) has already a past of innumerable millions 
of years (175 a : irdTnrMv nai irpoyovoiv fxvpidSss sKdaro) 
ysyovacriv dvapi6pb7]T0L, sv als irXovatot, koI tttcoj^oI Kal 
^acrCkris Kol SovXoi ^dp/3apoi ts Kal ' EiXXrjvss iroWdKis 
fjivpioL yzybvaaiv ortoovv). We see here an horizon of 
thought extending beyond even that of the Pliaedrus. 
With his wonderful intuition, Plato credits the earth with 
an age which modern geology for the first time made 
probable, and leaves far behind him those primitive 
chronologies which counted only thousands of years since 
the appearance of the first man. It is strange that acute 
critics, who took quite seriously the number of twenty-five 
ancestors quoted here as an example of aniKpoXoyla, and 
counted with the greatest care the ancestors of various con- 
temporaries of Plato in order to ascertain whom he might 
have meant, did not perceive that ' innumerable myriads 
of generations ' evidently was not a rhetorical exaggera- 
tion, but a quite serious view of Plato about the antiquity 
of mankind, in agreement with the cycle of ten thousand 
years alluded to in the Bejmblic and the myth of the 
Phaednis, but entirely absent from the Fhaedo and all 
earlier dialogues. 

The theoretical tendency is increasing here, and the dif- 
ferences between men still more clearly recognised than in 


the Bepublic. Few reach a full development of reason : developed 

true knowledge can be acquired only by long endeavours and in few 

under the best guidance, while man and beast alike have P^'^^o^^- 

sense perceptions from their birth upwards (186 c). The increas- 

impartial pursuit of truth is here contrasted with eristic ing 

discussion, and this exhortation is curiously enough put serious- 

into the mouth of Protagoras, against whom Plato fought "^^^ ^^ 

earlier not quite impartially in the dialogue bearing his ^ " °" 

name. Here Protagoras recommends justice in everv 

'^ . •• "^ purpose. 

discussion, and explains for us some of Plato's own 
contradictions, avowing frankly that in polemical writings Prota- 
every one seeks the appearance of being right, while goras in- 
convicting his opponent of as many errors as possible ti"o<iuced 
(167 E : ahiKslv 8' saTiv sv rw tolovtw, orav tis /xr) %&)/Ois /J,sv ^^ ^^ ' 
ct)9 dywvi^o/jisvos ras StarpL/Sas iroLrirai, "yoypiS hs ScaXsiyo- . " 
fxsvos, Kat sv fisv tco TraiKrj ts kuI (7(paX\rj kuO' oaov av clialectical 
hvvrjTai, sv Bs tS SiaksysaOaL airovha^rf) . If we lead a discus- 
discussion with the object of arriving at the truth and sion. 
deal fairly with our opponent, then he accuses only him- 
self and hates his errors, whereby he is led to philosophy, 
with a complete change of his former nature (168 a) . 

That such a purely Platonic precept should be given An 

as an exhortation of Protagoras to the Platonic Socrates, implied 

appears to be an expiation of earlier polemics and an confession 

announcement of that purely objective historical stand- °^ earher 

point which we see in the dialectical dialogues. Also "^^ ^^ ^ ■^' 

, . Recof^- 

Khetoric as an art of persuasion is here mentioned with ^^j^j ^^ , 

irony but without the bitterness of the Gorgias, and more rhetoric 

in the indulgent mood of the Pliaedms. Plato recognises as giving 

the power of Ehetoric to persuade without knowledge, beliefs 

and sees herein an argument for the great distance ^^^^lout 

separating right opinion from knowledge (201 A : ov 8cSd- '^°^^" 

aKOVTSs, dWa Bo^d^siv ttoiovvtss- d dv /SovXcovrai) . 

This importance attached to a distinction between ^|^^*°i'i° 

right opinion and knowledge mic^ht be better appreciated . 

.„ ,, .^ ° ". . ^\ , tinguished 

II we could guess with some certamty agamst whom the ^^.^^ j^j 
polemic is directed. Knowledge is emphatically affirmed losophy. 


in the 
point of 

not made 
ments not 
But cate- 
take the 
place of 

to be one of the highest aims in Hfe (148 c : sTna-TTjfir) . . . 
TMv aKpordrcou), worthy to be explained (148 d: irpo- 
dv/JbrjdrjTi Travrl rpoTro) rwv rs aX\u)v Trspt koi s'7riari]fjii]9 
\aj3slv ^6'yov ri ttots Tvyvdvsi 6v), and giving authority to 
those who possess it (170 a: sv ys toIs (xsylaroLs KcvBvpois 
. . . Marrsp irpos Osoiis e%SM^ . • • crwrrjpas cr^cov TrpoaSoKcovras, 
ovK aXXw Tft) hia<^ipovTas rj ro) slSsvac. Cf. 171 C, 183 B C). 
Although the ultimate distinction between knowledge 
and right opinion is not given, it results at least that 
there is an essential difference between them, and this 
consists in the systematic unity of knowledge founded 
on one highest principle, as has been postulated in Pkaedo 
and Be2mbUc. It is exceedingly significant that no use 
of the theory of ideas as known from those dialogues has 
been made in the whole inquiry, and that the transition 
from self-existing ideas to categories of reason is made 
without a formal revocation of earlier views. But it 
must be recognised that these views are not entirely 
contradictory, and that ideas of moral notions might 
continue to exist along with the categories of percep- 
tions. Only in some special cases the conflict becomes 
evident, as for instance if we compare some passages of 
the Phaedo and Theaetetiis referring to a problem which 
was one of the starting points of the theory of ideas and 
which again returns here as requiring a new explanation : 

Phaedo 100 E : ov8e av np av 
d7ro8€\oio, 61 Tis Tiva (f)air] erepov 
erepov rfj Ke(f)aXfj p(i^u) fivai, Kai 
Tot> eXaTTO) TM avTOi rovTU) eXarTO), 
101 A : oKka Biapaprvpoio av on 
av pev ovBfv aXKo \eyeis r] on ro 
pel^ov Tvav erepov erepov ov8ev\ aXXo) 
pel^ov (o-riv *] peyedei . . . prj ris 
(rot evavrws Xdyoy a7TavTi](rr], eav rj] 
Ke(f)aXfj pe'i^ovd nva (f);is eipai Kai 
eXarro), npayrov pev t(o avrcS ro 
pe'i^ov pel^ov eivai koi to eXarrov 
(Xarrov, eVretra rfj Ke(f)a\j] apiKpa 
ovaj] ruv pet^co peL^oj elvai. 

Theaet. 154 c : apiKpov Xa/3e 
napabeiypa, koi niivra e'icrei a 
(iovXopai. acrrpayoKov? yap ttov 
e^, av pev rerrapas avro7s irpoa- 
eveyKfjs, TrXeiovs (f)apev elvai rutv 
rerrdpuiv koi ijpioXlovs, eav Se 
8a>8eKa, eXarrovs Ka\ rjplaeis. 

155 A : arra nor ea-rl ravrn ra 
cj) a (7 par a ev rjplv ; a)v irpoiTov . . . 
prjSenore nrj^ev av pel^ov pr]8e 
eXarrov yeveaOai pr]re oyK(o prjre 
dpiBpu), e<oi icrov e'lrj aiiro eavra . . . 
Sevrepov 8e ye, w prjre irpoarlBoiro 
prjTe ci(f), rovro p-fjre av^d- 


B : ... ret SeKU Tccv oktco SvoIv veadai nore jxrjTe (fydiveiu, del Se i(rov 
TTAeto) eivai, kui oia Tavrrjv rrjv aiTiav eivai, 

vnep^aXXeiv, (f>o^oio av Xeyetv, aXXa B : kui rpirov, o firj Trporepov rjv, 

fif) TT^rjdei ... evL evos npocTTe- aWa vcrrepov tovto flvai avev rov 
6evTos TTjv TTpocrSecnv alrlav eivai yevecrOai koi yiyvecrOai ddiivarov 
Tov 8vo yeve'a-dai rj Siacrxi^o'^evTos ■ . . ravra ofioKoyfjpara rpia p.d- 
TTju <T)^l(Ti.v OVK evKafiolo av Xeyeiv ; X*'"'^' avTti avrols ev rfj fjpeTe pa 
C: Kal peya av ^oeprjs on . . . ovk '^'^Xlh orav ra nepl tu>v dcrrpa- 
e^f'S' oKXrjv riva alriav tov 8vo yakcov Xeyapev. 

yfveadai dW ^ Trjv T^s 8vd8os perd- C Kal uXXa 8f) pvpia eni pv- 

axfo-iv . . . rds 8e (T\i(reis ravras piois ovtcos i'^ei . . . 8oK€ls yovv 
Kal npocrdfcreis kuI ras nXKai ras ovk anfipos tu>v toiovtcov elvai ; — 
Toiavras Kopyjreias earjs av x^dpeiv, vn(p<f>v(os ws davpd^co ri ttot earl P'^oblem 
TTUpels nTTOKpivaa-dai toIs iavrov ravra Kal iviore an d\r)6S)s ^Xenav "°^ ^^°' 
cro(f)CL>repoi.s. els avra <tkoto8ivi(o, sidered 

with more 
We see here ^" that in the earher dialogue the difd- apprecia- 
culty is stated and left ironically to wiser men for solu- *^°° °^ ^*^ 
tion. In the Theaetetus the statement of the difficulty °"^°^ 
is no longer particular as in the Phaedo, but is expressly , .. 
generalised, and shown to be applicable to innumerable relation 
instances, out of which one had been selected as ex- to other 

ample. instances. 

Then also the form of the statement is much sharper Form 
in the later work, where the problem is reduced to three of the 
axioms {(f)da/j,uTa), two of which are in contradiction with statement 
the third. The axioms are here said to be in the soul, ^^^'^P^'^- 
whereby it becomes clear that we are no longer dealing 
with transcendental ideas, as in the Phaedo, but with sub- 
jective notions. While in the Phaedo only the fixity of Import- 
notions is insisted upon, here we see activity as a condi- ance of 
tion of change, which corresponds to the increasing ^^^ ^°^^ 
interest in physical science, and to the constant applica- 

-" H. Jackson (' Plato's later theory of ideas : iv.' Journ. of Pliilol. vol. 
xiii. pp. 267-268) infers from this passage of the Theaetetus that ' the inter- 
vention of the idea is wholly unnecessary for a change of relations,' while 
in the Phaedo this intervention was held to be necessary. But really in 
the Pliaedo there was no question of change, and only fixity of relations 
was sought. The notion of change and movement belongs to a later stage, 
prepared in the Republic, beginning with the Phaedrus, and growing in 
the Theaetetus and Parmenidcs. 



tions as 
to the 
of error 
do not 
lead to 



is defined. 

tctus not 
a Socratic 
The in- 
a new 

tion of the opposition between ttols.Iv and Trdax^iv, 
common to the Theaetetus with the Phaednis. 

In connection with this we find in the Theaetetus 
a general investigation into the possible conditions of 
error, which does not lead to a definitive conclusion, but 
contains very subtle distinctions and deserves our closest 
attention. It appears first that errors are only possible 
when one perception is taken for another (193 b c d) under 
the influence of an imperfection of sense activity (194 B : 
irspi (bv lafjbsv ts Kal at,crdavo/J^s6a, sv avTols tovtois crTps^sTat 
Kol sXtTTSrai rj So'^a yp^svBtjs Kal a\r]9r]s ytyvo/J^svr}) combined 
• with thought (195 C D: rivprjKas Srj ylrsvSrj So^av, on ovrs h 
Tois aladijcrscnv scrrt irpos a'fCkrfKas out sv rals hiavoiais, 
aXX.' sv rfj avud-ylrsL aladrjascos Trpos hidvotav). But then an 
instance is adduced of errors possible without the partici- 
pation of the senses (196 a b), and the difficulty is left 
unsettled. It results that without a definition of know- 
ledge no definition of error can be given (200 d) and know- 
ledge remains undefined, though Socrates remembers that 
in the whole discussion it had been dealt with as already 
known (196 E : ^-vpiaKis jap slpm^Kapusv to 'yi<yv(iicricop,sv Kal 
ov yifyvQiaKo/xsv, Kal siriaTdpjsda Kal ovk s'TTicndfisda, cop rt 
avviivTss dXkrjXwv sv a) hrt sTnarrj fjurjv djvoovp^sv) because 
dialectical discussion would be impossible without a notion 
of knowledge (196 E : riva rpoTrov huaXs^SL tovtwv dirsyo- 
fisvos ; — ovhsva oiv ys oy slp^i). 

These fundamental problems were not yet appreciated 
in their whole importance in the earlier works, and their 
appearance in the Theaetetus brings us back in one 
respect to the Socratic stage, namely in so far as no 
definitive conclusion is apparently reached. But the 
above significant logical contents involve subtle distinc- 
tions which would be looked for in vain in the Socratic 
dialogues. The similarity consists only in the circum- 
stance that here as well as there a new development of 
thought was beginning. This new development beginning 
here — with the substitution of categories for ideas, of 


the individual soul for the supercelestial space, of analysis 
and synthesis for poetical vision, of activity and passivity 
for immutable identity, of critical cautiousness for poe- 
tical eloquence — is a momentous step in the history of 
human thought and w^ould have required another thinker 
than the author of the Bepublic and Phaedrus, were he 
not of such an immense intellectual power and had he not 
lived so long as to initiate a new philosophical movement 
after the age of fifty. 

Thus considered, the question of the date of the Conse- 
Theaetetus acquires an exceptional importance, and no ^^^^^ ™- 
consideration of evidence will be wasted, if it helps to po^*^'^^^ 
decide the question, whether we are right in placing this ^^^^ ^^ 
dialogue after the Bepublic and Phaedrus. Up to the compo- 
present time some of the most competent scholars agree sition, 
with Zeller in believing that the Theaetetus must have which by 
been written within the first ten years after the death of teller and 
Socrates, or about the same time as the Euthydemus. We o^^^^^ is 
have seen that this position is contradicted by the style 

, to DG very 

as well as by the logical theories of our dialogue. But* in ^^ , 
view of the paramount importance of the question and of 
the great authority of those who are supporting an early 
date for the Theaetetus we are obliged to consider in 
detail the arguments in support of this opinion, which has 
been unanimously sustained by the chief writers on Plato 
from Tennemann, Schleiermacher, Ast, Socher, Stallbaum, 
Hermann, Steinhart, Susemihl up to the last editions 
of Zeller's Philosophie der Griechen (1889) and of Zeller, in 
Ueberweg's Grimdriss der Geschichte der Philosophie common 
(1894) besides many special dissertations. ^^^ The most with many 
eminent supporter of an early date of the Theaetetus is 

2<8 Among these are conspicuous Natorp's Forschungen zur Geschichte 
des Erkenntnissproblems im Alterthum (Berlin 1884) and his paper on the 
Plmedrus (Philologies, 48" Band, pp. 428-449, 583-628, Gottingen 1889), 
wherein he looks upon the Theaetetus as preparatory to the theory of ideas. 
In favour of the opposite view we have, besides all those who have written on 
the style of Plato, also some authors who admitted a late date for the Theae- 
tetus for other reasons, as for instance Munk (see note 89), Berkuski (Platans 



still up- 
holds an 
early date. 

to an 
ment near 

tion of the 
of the 
date of 
tion with 
the sup- 
date of 
the intro- 

Zeller, and he has not yet been thoroughly refuted. 
Though polemic enters to no extent into the plan of the 
present investigation, it seems to be in this special case 
our duty to consider Zeller's arguments, and to prove 
that they are insufficient to establish his claim. 

1. The first chronological indication is seen by Zeller 
in the allusion to an encampment near Corinth (Theaet. 
142 a). He refers it to the war which is known in 
history as the Corinthian war and lasted about seven 
years 394-387. Even if we admit this reference as 
possible — instead of accepting the very convincing argu- 
ments of Ueberweg, Teichmiiller, Bergk, and Eohde, 
according to which the allusion refers to a battle of 
368 B.C. mentioned by Xenophon {Hellen. vii, 1, 15) and 
other historians — Zeller's inference as to the identity of the 
date of composition and the presumed date of the con- 
versation is not cogent. The more striking the campaign 
the more probable becomes a later allusion to it. All that 
is really proved is that the date of composition is subse- 
quent to 392 ; there is no reason to identify both dates, as 
has frequently been done in the case of the Phaedo and 
Phaedrus. The association of ideas between Corinthian war 
and ' encampment near Corinth ' is more immediate for us 
than for the first readers of Plato. But we see in the 
dialogue the mention of an encampment not of a battle. 
A soldier might have been wounded in some insignificant 
attack on his encampment, without having taken part in 
an historical battle. If we take the mere fact of an en- 

Theatetos und dessen Stclhincj in dcr Reihe seiner Dialoge, Inaugural-disser- 
tation, Jena 1873), H. Schmidt {Exegetischer Commentar zu Platos Thedtet, 
Leipzig 1880), H. Jackson, E. Eohde,. W. Christ (' Platonische Studien,' in 
vol. xvii. of Abhandlungen dcr philosophisch-pliilologisclicn Classe der 
Tioniglich bayerischen Akademie der Wissenschaften), Teichmiiller, 
Siebeck, Archer Hind (Introduction to the Timaeus, p. 21), M. Jezienicki 
(Ucbcr die Abfassungszeit dcr platonischen Dialoge Theaitet und Sophistes, 
Lemberg 1887). Zeller did not consider all the above authors and their 
arguments when he declared repeatedly the discussion as definitively settled 
{ArcMv filr Geschichte der Pliilosophie, vol. iv. p. 189, vol. v. p. 289, 
vol. viii. p. 124, and on many other occasions). 


campment in which dysentery is reigning, we have no 
reason whatever to refer it to 392 rather than to 368 
unless some independent testimony is forthcoming about 
an epidemic of dysentery occurring at one of these dates 
alone. In both cases a fight near Corinth took place. It 
has been argued that Theaetetus, who was a boy according 
to the dialogue at the time of Socrates' death, could not 
already be famous seven years later. Here, as in the Compari- 
Phaedrus, we have a prophecy put in the mouth of ^°^ 
Socrates realised at the time of writing. If in the ^^ 


Phaedrtis the prophecy refers to the Paneqyricus written 

i- i- -^ 'J "J prophecy. 

26 years later, the prophecy about Theaetetus might 
well have been realised in a length of time almost equal. 
Zeller believes that the mention must refer to a recent fact. 
The notion of recent facts is often abused. Anybody Notion of 
might speak to-day of the Russo-Turkish war as recent ^ recent 
if compared with the conquest of Constantinople by the '^' 
Turks. There is no reason to believe that for Plato 
current events ceased to be recent sooner than for us, at 
a time when he spoke of twenty-five generations as a 
ridiculously small period. 

2. If historians are right in saying that Iphicrates in Mention 
this very Corinthian war introduced the peculiar force of °* ^^® 
light-armed infantry known as ireKracnal, the allusion to 
them on the part of Socrates (165 d) certainly involves ^^ ^^^ 
an anachronism. But if the use of peltasts began at that Theae- 
time, there is no reason to think that it ceased twenty tetus wit 
years later. It would be more reasonable to argue from Prota- 
a similar mention of peltasts in the Protagoras (350 A) ooras and 
that the Protagoras cannot have been written earlier than ^'^'^^• 
393 ; and any one who compares the Protagoras with the 
Theaetetus will find such differences of style, of method, 
of literary perfection, and of philosophical theory, that it 
is impossible to ascribe both to the same period. But 
the truth is that, whatever may have been the device of 
Iphicrates, the word irsKraarris occurs in several earlier 
vn'iters, Euripides, Thucydides, Lysias, Xenophon, and 




ing for 
than for 
of philo- 

is common to the Laws with Theaetetus and Protagoras, 
so that it has no chronological value whatever in Plato. 
To infer anything from it means almost as much as to 
refer any work in which a mention of potatoes occurs to 
the next time after the first introduction of this vegetable 
in Europe in 1584 a.d. It seems astonishing that Zeller 
should have followed Teichmiiller in such inferences 
from an accidental mention of an object familiar to Greek 
readers before Plato began to write. 

3. A third indication of the date of the Theaetetus is 
seen by Zeller in the allusion (175 a) to those who are 
proud of twenty-five ancestors, and of their descent from 
Heracles son of Amphitryon. This allusion has also been 
treated as a mark of date by Bergk and Rohde, but each 
assumes a different descendant of Heracles. And even if 
we take Plato to be referring to a contemporary, who 
is to decide whether among the twenty-five ancestors 
Amphitryon's father Alcaeus or his grandfather Perseus 
are to be counted or not? In any case Heracles need 
not be the twenty-fifth. The discussion whether Agesi- 
polis (Zeller), Euagoras (Eohde), Dionysius of Syracuse 
(Teichmiiller), Agesilaos (Bergk) or anybody else is meant 
by Plato is a curious example of the abuse of erudition 
leading to misunderstanding of the text on which the 
erudition is spent. Plato speaks of twenty-five genera- 
tions as he does of ten thousand plethra of land, probably 
without any intentional allusion to any one in particular. 
The pride of counting Heracles among one's ancestors, 
and even a catalogue of twenty-five or more of them, 
cannot have been uncommon in Plato's time, if after so 
many centuries four historians are able to quote four 
different descendants of Heracles with twenty-five or more 
ancestors a-piece (175 a : as^vvvo^ivcov Koi avai^spovTwv is 
a plural that might be taken literally) . But it is by no 
means certain that Plato was as skilled in genealogy as 
his modern interpreters. He regards the whole question 
as contemptible, a monstrously small way of reckoning 


(a-fMLKpoXoyio). Those acute critics who perceive in each 
round number quoted a statistical datum incur the danger 
of being accused of a a/xiKpoXojla more blameworthy than 
that complained of by Plato. 

4. A fourth argument of Zeller is more serious than The 
the preceding. He says that the critical character of the incon- 
Theaetetus does not agree with the positive constructive elusive 
exposition of the Bepuhlic. Zeller means that such °^^ 
elementary inquiry into the foundations of knowledge 
was most probable in a time when Plato began the build- pa,rture, 
ing of his philosophy. We quite agree with Zeller, but or second 
if we add that Plato in his exceptionally long and active beginning. 
life had time to build more than one philosophy, we are 
at liberty to place the Theaetetus at the opening of Plato's 
second voyage for the discovery of truth, after the Bepuhlic. 
In two passages we notice allusions which may with some Allusions 
probability be referred to Bepuhlic (177 e : irapa^styfidrcov *« 
iv Tft) ovrt karcoTwv, rod fisv Osiov svhaifiovsardTov, rov os -^ 
ddiov ddXiajTaTOv, ov'^ opSivrss otl ovtws e%£t5 ^"^o i^XlOlo- 
77Jt6s t£ koX saj(aTqs dvotas \av6dvovcn . . . 175 C : aKEyjrLV 
avrfjs ZiKaioavvqs rs koI dhiKias . . . ^aaiXscas TTspt icat 
dvOpcoTrlvrjs oXcos svEai/xovlas Kal ddXiornrjros . . • iroLco re 
Tivs earov Kal riva rpoirov dvdpcoTrov ^vasL irpocrrjKSi to f^sv 
KTrjaaaOaL avToiv, to 8s dTroipvysiu) , and to the Phaedrits 
(175 E : dpfjLOvlav Xoycov Xa^ovTos opdois vfMvrjaai dscov ts kgi 
dvdpcoTrcov evSacfioi (ov ^iov) — while Zeller could not find 
in the whole Bepuhlic an equally probable allusion to the 
Theaetetus. If we compare the critical tendency of the 
Theaetetus with the critical and elementary character of 
the works belonging to the Socratic stage, we shall easily 
notice the difference between those youthful personal 
criticisms and the fundamental criticisms of the Theae- 
tetus similar to those of the Parmenides and Sophist. 

5. Zeller finds an argument for the early date of the Zeller's 
Theaetetus in his belief that the PoUticus is earlier than view of 
Symposium and Phaedo. But he has not furnished any ^^^^^ 
proof of this assumption, which contradicts everything we 












view that 
a late 
for the 
leaves no 
room for 
the dia- 
follow it. 

Which are 

these ? 

of size 
and later 
than the 

know about the development of Plato's style and his 
logical doctrines. 

6. The relations between Plato, Antisthenes, and 
Euclides, which Zeller also invokes in favour of an early 
date of the Theaetetus, are too little known for any chrono- 
logical inferences, and they could never prove anything 
about the date of composition, because Antisthenes is not 
named in the dialogue, and Euclides appears at the 
beginning without any mention which would allow infer- 
ences about his relations to Plato. 

7. Zeller enumerates the dialogues which in his opinion 
followed, the Theaetetus, and finds it improbable that they 
could have been written in the last twenty years of Plato's 
life. But he includes the Bepublic in this enmneration, 
on the ground that he holds the Bepublic to be later 
than the Philehus, and the Philebus than Parmenides and 
Theaetetus. We quite agree that the Parmenides and 
Philebus follow the Theaetetus, but we see no sufficient 
reason for placing the Bepublic after the Philebus. Zeller 
relies on some parallel passages which are too general to 
prove anything, and even rather confirm the priority of 
the Bepublic. '^^■^ Such parallels are rarely decisive, and 
have only then a certain value, if many concomitant 
variations point in the same direction. The seven 
dialogues which, according to our exposition, precede 
the Theaetetus {Euthydemus, Gorgias, Cratylus, Sym- 
posium, Phaedo, Bepublic, Phaedrus) are in their total 
size (453 pp. ed. Did.) almost equal to the seven dialogues 
which we suppose to be later than the Theaetetus {Parme- 
nides, Sophist, Politicus, Philebus, Timaeus, Critias, 
Laws, 457 pp. ed. Did.), If we are right in supposing 
that the seven earlier dialogues were written in the years 
390-379, there is no difficulty whatever in admitting that 
the seven later works fall within the last twenty years of 

-*^ This question has been recently dealt with by .Jackson (' Plato's later 
theory of ideas VII. The supposed priority of the Philebus to the Republic,'' 
in the Journal of Philology for 1897, N. 49, pp. 65-82). 


Plato's life (367-347), or even within the time after his 

third voyage to Sicily (361 B.C.)- If this were proved, 

then the mention of the superiority of oral teaching at 

the end of the Phaedrus would mean nothing less than Probable 

an interruption of about twelve years in Plato's literary interrup- 

labours. But of course such a conclusion requires more *io" '^^ 

serious arguments than those on which Zeller founded ^ 

his conviction about a very early date of the dialectical ^. .^ 

... . activity, 

works. Here it is only put forth as a possibility which 

may be made probable by further investigations. 

At all events, the above reasoning shows that Zeller's Zeiler's 

arguments prove only that the Theaetetus is later than argumen- 

39'2 B.C., without any determination of the distance be- Nation 

tween this terminus a quo and the date of composition. ^^^ ^^^' 

All the allusions found out by Zeller with such acuteness 

and erudition, even if we a^mit the interpretation he 

gives them, would remain quite as natural twenty-five 

years after the Corinthian war as immediately afterwards. 

In such things we have not the right to look at Plato 

from the point of view of a newspaper editor, who wishes 

to give to his readers the most recent information. Plato 

was free to choose from his large stores of experience at 

any time any example proper for an illustration of his 

views, without considering whether it occurred long ago 

or yesterday. No such immediate allusion as the ScoiKia/jbos 

of the Symposium has been found as yet in the Theaetetus. 

On the contrary we have several reasons to believe that "^^^^^ ^"^^ 


the Theaetetus is a late dialogue, written by Plato after ^^^ ^ 
fifty and possibly after sixty. These reasons have been ia,te date 
collected since Munk and Ueberweg by many investi- of the 
gators and can easily be supplemented by considerations Theae- 
of style and logical comparisons. ^^^"®' 

We find in the Theaetetus clear allusions to Plato's Allusions 
school. The person of the younger Socrates, introduced to Plato's 
here, is also known from the Metaphysics of Aristotle school. 
(1036 b 25), where he is quoted in the manner in which 
Aristotle quotes oral reminiscences. This led Ueberweg to 







to travels. 

dorus of 


from the 

How far 

the conclusion that this younger Socrates belonged to the 
Academy at the same time with Aristotle, or after 367 B.C. 
If we consider that he does not take an active part in the 
conversation, it becomes probable that Plato introduced 
him as a witness out of some personal sympathy at the 
time when he already had known him for some time past. 
This argument is not decisive, because the younger 
Socrates may have belonged to the Academy a long time 
before Aristotle and still have continued in it afterwards. 
The Academy was not similar to our universities as to 
the limits of time fixed for the studies, and Plato's pupils 
probably remained in touch with him for life. 

But a more important observation has been made 
by Ueberweg as to the picture drawn of the philo- 
sopher, that it can best be explained if we refer it to 
Plato's experience in Syracuse, where he may have found 
many parasites ready for all kinds of slavish services to 
please the tyrant. It may also be argued that the insist- 
ence with which Theodoras of Cyrene is asked to take an 
active part in the discussion is most natural after Plato's 
visit to Cyrene. 

Such allusions to external events are always open to 
doubts, and are here quoted without attaching to them 
any special importance. There is another chronological 
indication of a more serious character, noticed already by 
Schleiermacher and brought forward afresh with strong 
conviction by Teichmiiller. This is the statement at the 
beginning of the dialogue that it has been written down 
in the dramatic form to avoid frequent repetitions of such 
formulas as Kal ijo) s(f)r]v, Kal ijoi sIttov, (Tvvi(j>7), ov;^^ oD/noXoyst 
(143 c). Teichmiiller infers from this passage that Plato 
began only with the Theaetetus to write his dialogues in a 
dramatic form. But the dramatic form is the primitive 
form for a dialogue, and needs no apology. The narrated 
form of a philosophical dialogue is a much more com- 
plicated mode, and was perhaps introduced into Greek 
literature by Plato. After trying its different variations, 


he returns to the dramatic form and apologises for the 
change. In point of fact the narrated form has been tried 
by Plato only in a few of his works, and almost in every 
case with some difference, as the following classification 
of the form of Plato's dialogues shows : 

1. A continuous speech, including questions and answers. This Twelve 
is the character of the Apology, in which some passages refer to con- different 
versations held by the speaker (20 a), and others introduce an niodes of 
imagined conversation with the accuser (24 d e, 27 b c, &c.). dialo^u 

2. Dramatic dialogues in which Socrates acts as leader of a con- . „, 
versation. This is the most numerous class, including Euthyphro, 
Crito, Ladies, lo, Meno, Gorgias, Cratylus, Philebus — and among 

the doubtful dialogues Alcibiades I. II., Hipparchus, Theages, 
Hippias maior and minor. A sUght variation appears when the 
dramatic conversation includes long speeches of Socrates or others : 
Menexenus, Phaedrus. 

3. In a narration in which Socrates gives an account of some 
earlier conversation, the chief part is a narrated dialogue. This is 
the form of the Republic, and besides only of Lysis and Charmides 
(among the spurious dialogues : Erastae). In this form the re- 
petition of the formulas complained of at the beginning of the 
TTieaetetus is most conspicuous. 

4. After a dramatic introduction, in which Socrates appears as 
one of the persons of the dialogue, he begins to narrate an earher 
conversation, and this narration follows up to the end. This form 
is found only in the Protagoras. 

5. Different from the above is a narration interrupted by 
dramatic portions in which other persons speak with Socrates about 
his narration, and such a conversation forms the conclusion of the 
whole. This occurs only in the Euthydemus. 

6. After a dramatic introduction another person than Socrates 
narrates a dialogue in which Socrates played the chief part. This 
is limited to the Symposium. 

7. The above form is improved by dramatic interruptions in 
which some opinions are expressed by the hearer about the narrated 
dialogue. This occurs only in the Phaedo. 

8. After a dramatic introduction follows a reading of a dramatic 
dialogue, excused by a censure of the narrated dialogues generally. 
This is the case of the Theaetetus alone. 

9. After a short narration designed to explain the circumstances 
of a conversation, follows the dialectical conversation without the 
interruptions complained of in the Theaetetus. This distinguishes 
the Parmenides from all other narrated dialogues, and makes it 
possible that this work was written after the Theaetetus, though in 


its general form it is a narrated dialogue, and even a narration of 
a narration, the dialogue being represented as first narrated by 
Pythodoros, then from him learned by Antiphon, and from 
Antiphon's narration repeated by the actual narrator. But formidas 
peculiar to the narrated form occur only on pp. 126 A-137 c, 
here being also often omitted, while they are altogether missed 
on pp. 137-166. Those occurring in the introduction are different 
from those condemned in the Theaetetus and from the use of other 
works : e^j; (pcivai, elTrelf being chiefly used. 

10. Dramatic conversations in which Socrates proposes a 
subject, which is then dealt with by another philosopher: Soijhist, 

11. After a short dramatic conversation in which Socrates 
proposes a subject, follows a much longer speech by another person. 
This long speech may be interrupted "hj some words of recognition 
from Socrates (Timaeus) or not at all interrupted {Critias). 

12. Dramatic dialogue in which Socrates no longer appears 
even as hearer : Latvs. 

It results from the above distinctions '^^^ that what 
Teichmiiller calls the narrated dialogue includes seven 
kinds (No. 1, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 9), which represent different 
Pure attempts towards a more perfect form. Only the Lysis, 

narration GJiarmides, and Bepublic take the form of a continuous 
least narration. The nearest mode to this is a narration with 

dramatic introduction, as in the Protagoras. From the 
Protagoras the Euthydemics differs by dramatic interrup- 
in three tions and conclusion, the Symposium by the absence of 
works. Socrates in the Introduction, the Phaedo in addition to 
this by its dramatic interruptions. At last, in the second 
part of the Parmenides narration is abandoned altogether 
without any explanation,, and the whole dialectical dis- 
cussion follows dramatically. 

Teichmiiller's inference, if limited to the supposition 
that Plato did not return after the Theaetetus to the form 
criticised in this dialogue, appears very probable, and 

"" An attempt at such a classification has already been made by Stein 
(Sieben Bilcher zur Geschichte dcs Platonisnius, Gottingen 1864), who 
divided all the works of Plato into five classes, in a somewhat ditferent 
manner from the above. It is noteworthy that all the sijurious dialogues 
have the form 2 or 3, while the ten other kinds of dialogues used by Plato 
have not been imitated. 

of all, and 


furnishes us with vahiable chronological information, 

giving additional strength to other reasons, according to 

which the Theaetetus is later than the Phaedo and 

Bepublic. It is not contradicted by any well-established it is true, 

fact, that Plato in his later age used the dramatic form liowever, 

exclusively. All the dialogues known to be the latest are *^^* ^^^ 

dramatic, and the narrated form of the Bepiihlic compared *^® ^^*^®* 

vnth the dramatic form of the Timaeus, its professed con- ^^ °^"^^ 

. . are dra- 

tmuation, confirms agam the supposition that Plato re- jj^^^^^ j^^ 

linquished the narrated form in order to adopt the form. 
dramatic. But it does not follow that he should never 
have used the dramatic form before he started with narra- 
tions, nor even in intervals between narrated dialogues. 
The small dialogues, as to which there is great probability 
that they were written early, are dramatic, and it is most 
natural for anybody who writes philosophical dialogues to 
begin with this form. Esthetical reasons, and the desire 
to give a greater poetical plasticity or historical probability 
to an imagined conversation, led later to the more difficult 
form of narration, which, after different variations, had 
to be finally abandoned in the Theaetetus and Parvienides. 
The inconvenience of narration could nowhere be felt 
more clearly than in the composition of the Bepiiblic, and Theae- 
thus one of the most probable inferences from the explana- tetus after 
tion given in the Theaetetus is the priority of the Bepuhlic. ^^P^hlic. 
This is further confirmed by a parallel passage in the Be- 
puhlic, where the dramatic form is condemned, after a long 
explanation of the difference between narration and dramatic 
representation {Bep. 392 d-396 c) on the ground that the dra- 
matic form is less immediate and sincere than the narrative 
(396 C : o fjbsv fxoi SoKsl fjLsrpws avi]p, sTrscSav a(f)lKr]Tai, av 
Tjj 8t7)y7](TSi STTi Xs^iv Tivci tj iTpoL^Lv dvhpos a<yadov, iOsX- 
rjorsLV COS avTos (ov skslvos airayysXKsLV koI ovk aia)(vv£ladai 
sTTi T^ Tocavrrj fjiCfxyjcrsL . . . E : SajyTjcrst ■^^pijcrsraL ola '^fjbscs 
oXiyov irpoTspov SnjXdofMsv . . . kuI scrrat avrov rj Xs^is 
IM£Ti')(ovaa ixsv dfM(f)OT£pQ)v, jjbLfJirjcrscDS rs koI tyjs dWrjs 
Scrjjrja-sajs, crfiiKpov Ss re fispos sv iroXkw Xoycp rrjs fit/jirjascos) . 


for the 
preface to 

This recommendation of narrations is given in a narrated 
dialogue, and we know that Plato wrote afterwards dramatic 
dialogues, as, for instance, his Laws, Timaeus, Critias. 
If now we meet in the Theaetetus an apology for avoiding 
the form of a narrative when it might be expected, it 
appears very natural that this apology is later than the 
condemnation of the dramatic form enunciated in the 
Bepuhlic. This conclusion is the more justifiable, as Plato 
warns us that his condemnation of the dramatic form is 
not limited to tragedy and comedy (394 d) . The above is 
only an indication, but seems to be more significant than the 
inferences drawn from the genealogy of various descendants 
from Heracles. The formulas objected to in the Theaetetus 
can occur only in a dialogue narrated by Socrates, and 
therefore the whole objection, if taken literally, refers 
solely to Lysis, Charmides, Protagoras, Euthydemus, and 
Bepuhlic. Besides the formulas expressly named other 
answers are used, and it would be an interesting investiga- 
tion to find out in which of these five dialogues the 
expressions rejected in the Theaetetus are most frequent. 
There can be scarcely any doubt that the greatest number 
of them is to be found in the Bepuhlic. 

The priority of the Bepuhlic to the Theaetetus is 
confirmed also by other allusions and comparisons already 
mentioned which may be here briefly recapitulated : 

in Thecoe- 
tetus, but 
in the 

of both 

1. byvafics is first explained in Bep. 477 c as a new notion. 
It is used currently as familiar in the Theaetetus : 158 e, 185 c, &c. 

2. The eternal models of the happiest and unhappiest life 
(176 e) as well as the mention that the philosopher investigates the 
nature of justice (175 c) are best explained if the reader is supposed 
to be familiar with the Bepublic. 

3. The short and matter-of-fact enumeration of mathematics, 
music, astronomy, geometry, and stereometry (145 a c, 148 b), as 
preparatory to philosophical problems, seems also to be a remin- 
iscence of the Bepublic. 

4. The poets are placed on the same footing with Protagoras in 
their error of denying permanent substance (152 e). This is best 
explainable after the Bepublic, as in the Symposium and even in 
the Phaedo (95 a) Homer was praised without irony. 


5. The notion of movement as distinguished into change of 
quality and change of place, common to the Theaetetus with 
Parmenides and Laws, could not easily be ignored in Republic and 
Phaedrus if already famiUar to Plato. 

6. The idea of innumerable periods of ten thousand generations 
{Theaet. 175 A, cf. Legg. 676 b c, 677 D : jxvpuiKis jj-vpia 'hrj) implies 
an advance beyond the Republic and Phaedrus, where large 
periods of generations first appeared, and were specially justified. 
The long duration of life on the earth is here assumed as known to 
every educated man, and this was first explained in the Republic. 

7. The logical standpoint goes very much beyond the theory of 
ideas as known from the Republic and Phaedrus. This results 
from our whole exposition. 

Some of the above points apply equally to the priority 
of the Phaedrus, and there is besides one special point of 
comparison which places the Phaedrus before the Theae- 
tetus, namely the calm recognition of rhetoric (201 a), 
which seems to imply what has been said on this subject 
in the Phaedrus. But the strongest reason why the Priority of 
Theaetetus must be looked upon as later than the Phaedrus 
Phaedrus lies in the affinities of both dialogues to *° ^^^«««- 
different groups of other dialogues. The Theaetetus is in ^ 
style and contents nearest to the Sophist and Politicus, 
which are proved to be very late. The Phaedrus shows Affinity of 
in style and contents the greatest affinity with the Piiaedrus 
Bepuhlic, which is proved to be earlier than the Sophist. *° *^® 
The poetical imagination displayed in the Phaedrus and ^^" *''' 
Bepuhlic is radically different from the dialectical imagin- _, 
ation of the Theaetetus and Sophist. The retirement of ^^^^^ 
the philosopher from the world, which we see in the to the 
Theaetetus, remains throughout all later dialogues, and Sophist. 
also the complaint that life on earth is too imperfect for 
the realisation of a philosopher's dreams. This complaint, 
quite opposed to the optimism of the Republic and 
Phaedrus, betrays an interval not only of time but also of 
bitter experience between the poetical and the dialectical 
group. The 

We know in Plato's life, after the foundation of the Theae- 
Academy, only one great disenchantment which could tetus 


quent to 
the second 
voyage to 


with other 












style of 




justify that change of attitude on the part of the great 
thinker. This was his second voyage to Sicily in 367 B.C. 
which he undertook in the hope of reaHsing his ideal 
schemes, and which ended unsuccessfully. It appears 
most probable that the new departure, beginning with 
the Theaetetics, coincides with his return from this 
voyage. This cannot be proved, but may be suggested as 
a plausible hypothesis, well adapted to explain many 
things otherwise unexplained. Those who believe that 
the battle near Corinth, mentioned at the beginning of 
the dialogue, must have been quite recent when Plato 
wrote the Theaetetus are then at liberty to accept Ueber- 
weg's supposition that a battle in 368 B.C. is meant here, 
and they can seek additional evidence in inscriptions and 
literary monuments in order to prove that dysentery was 
reigning then in the encampment. The lovers of genea- 
logies will have a greater choice to select from, and may 
find in some contemporary encomium, as Diimmler expects, 
a clear statement about twenty-five ancestors descending 
from Heracles, thus removing the improbable supposition 
that Plato himself counted somebody's ancestors. 

These are trifling advantages, compared with other con- 
siderations. If, as we suppose, the Phaedrus was written 
about 379 B.C., and the Theaetetus after 367, then the 
passage at the end of the Fhaedrus, in which oral 
teaching is extolled over writing, would obtain a new and 
original interpretation : it was a farewell to literary 
activity for about twelve years. And also one strange 
peculiarity of the style of the Theaetetus is psychologi- 
cally explained. The Theaetetus, having according to our 
calculations a slightly later style than the Phaedrus, is 
distinguished by the entire absence of very important or 
very frequent stylistic peculiarities. This is natural if 
that dialogue is written after a long interruption of 
literar}^ activity. Plato was then to a certain extent free 
from acquired habits, and he did not at once fall into new 
idioms which might become very familiar in later works. 


He used freely the richness of his old vocabulary and 
style, recurring less than usual to new formations and 
new idioms. Out of 500 peculiarities observed only four 
accidental words or locutions (11 : /xefXTrros, 208 : hrsvdsv 
rjhr}, 399 : irspl hr} with genitive, 467 : yvfivaala) are new, 
being missed in earlier works. All other peculiarities of Absence 
later style occurring in the Theaetetics (58 accidental, of very 
41 repeated, 31 important) have been also found in important 
dialogues which we have placed earlier. While the ^^^^'. 
number of accidental, repeated, and important peculiari- 
ties is much greater than in the Phaedrus (130 against 
112) there is not one very important peculiarity in the 
Theaetetics though seven are found in the Phaedrus. 
But none of these seven is missed in the Theaetetus, only 
their frequency is smaller, so that they are counted only 
as important or repeated in the Theaetetus, while they 
are more important in the Phaedrus (23, 231, 376, 377, 
390, 412, 451). 

The difference between both dialogues is just what 
might be expected if we place the Phaedrus at the end of 
a period of extraordinarily intense literary activity, and 
the Theaetetus at the beginning of another period, after a 
long interruption. Nor is the time of twenty years from Amount 
367-347 B.C. too short for the composition of the Theae- of text 
tetus and the seven dialogues which are left, as their total ^"**^^ 

• • • fliffpi* top 

size is inferior to the total size of the nine dialogues ^, 

, Theae- 

precedmg the Theaetetus {Protagoras — Phaedrus) written ^^^^^^ 

according to our view between 393-379 B.C. or in about inferior to 

fourteen years. Whether a writer like Plato writes more the pre- 

at forty than after sixty is a question that cannot be ceding 

decided on general grounds, and we make a due allow- °^"^ '^^^' 

ance for the diminution of activity in old age, down to an °S"^^' 
average of only four lines (ed. Didot) every day if the last 
eight dialogues {Theaetetus — Laios) were written in about 
nineteen years. 

What is here proposed as a plausible hypothesis is The 

susceptible of proof by further investigation of style. At interval 







might be 


by further 



tetus is 
than the 
and Sym- 

present the stylistic difference between Phaedrus and 
Theaetetus is only just sufficient to confirm the later date 
of the second. But if we remember that thirty years 
ago the style of the Theaetetus so far as it could then be 
ascertained appeared as early as that of the Protagoras, 
and that Campbell resisted the temptation to trust that 
appearance and judged the Theaetetus to be later than 
the Phaedrus, which has been fully confirmed by later 
research — then we are entitled to hope that also our 
present supposition, that the Theaetetus is about twelve 
years later than the Phaedrus, may be confirmed by 
further research. It may also be contradicted, but one 
thing results as certain from the whole above investiga- 
tion : the Theaetetus is certainly later than the Bepublic, 
Phaedrus, Phaedo, and Symposium}^'^ This relation will 
be still better confirmed if we study the next dialogue, 
the Parmenides, which in many respects shows a greater 
affinity with the Theaetetus than its acknowledged con- 
tinuation, the Sophist. 

but with- 
out cause. 

II. The Parmenides. 

(Relative affinity with the latest group, measured on the Laws as 
unity, = 0*34 ; see above, p. 177.) 

Among the greater works of Plato none has raised so 
many suspicions as to its authenticity as the Parmenides, 
since Socher (1820) had the courage to confess that he 
felt unable to share the traditional admiration for the 
antinomies forming its second part. Many doubts ex- 
pressed by Ueberweg and Schaarschmidt have been 
removed by the subsequent studies on Plato's style. This 
dialogue presents such numerous Platonic peculiarities, 
despite its abstract contents, as never occur in spurious 

"' The relation between Theaet. and Symp. can also be judged from 
a comparison of what in both dialogues is said about intellectual pregnancy, 
which is first introduced in the Symposium (206 b), and here supplemented 
by the notion of intellectual midwifery {Theaet. 148 e-149 b). 


works. Whatever may be thought of the philosophical Grounds 
value of antinomies, we find them here presented with urged by 
great skill, and the conclusions are not more puzzling Ueberweg 
than those found in a similar treatment of philosophical ^^^ 
problems by modern thinkers. The great originality of , .'1 
form and contents can raise suspicion only in critics who removed 
are unaware of Plato's originality in other works. The by sub- 
Pai-menides is not like other dialogues, but the Phaedrus sequent 
and the Timaeus also differ widely from the Phaedo and lesearch. 

It has been thought that Plato could not have 
invented such objections to his own theory as those 
with which he credits Parmenides in this dialogue. Thus 
Teichmliller and Siebeck.^^'^ have been led to the supposi- 
tion that Plato wrote the Parme7iides against Aristotle, 
and that the second part is intended to refute the objec- 
tions raised in the first part against the theory of ideas. 
Even if we admit that the Aristoteles of the dialogue is The 
introduced here with reference to the philosopher Aristotle, Parme- 
there are serious difiiculties in the way of crediting him '^^^^^ ^^^ 
with the objections expressed by Parmenides. Aristotle ^". ^^ 
came to the Academy in 367 B.C. at the age of seventeen, . . 
and in view of the extent of the six dialogues which are ^^^i^ 
later the Parmenides cannot have been written long after 
this. We have seen in the Theaetetus how Plato pro- 
ceeds when he seriously Irishes to refute an objection, 
and according to this standard we cannot accept the 
second part of the Parmenides as a refutation of objec- 
tions raised in the first part. It leads, like the Theaetetus, 
beyond the primitive theory of ideas to a system of 
categories, among which unity and variety are discussed 
by a peculiar method, and shown to supplement each 

Every exclusive hypothesis leading to contradictions. One and 
it follows that neither the one alone nor the many many. 

'^- ' Plato als Kritiker aristotelischer Ansichten,' in Zeitschrift fiir 
Philosophie ^md philosophische Kritilx, vol. 107, pp. 1-28, Leipzig 1895. 



The terms 
are used 

the ob- 
jections : 
to his 
or that 
of some 




explain existence altogether, and that therefore we have 
to seek everywhere the one and the many, as is done 
in the subsequent dialectical dialogues. It has been 
asked whether the one means the Platonic idea, or God, 
or anything else. This question is out of place here. 
The whole discussion is kept in the most general terms, 
and may apply to many particular cases. We notice the 
same tendency as in the Theaetetus to substitute abstract 
notions for the primitive conception of the ideas, and we 
need not deprive Plato of the merit of having discovered 
his objections for himself, the more so as these objections 
do not necessarily refer to his own earlier views, but to 
certain special determinations of these views, which may 
be ascribed to his pupils. 

In no earlier dialogue had the different conceptions 
of the relation between ideas and the particulars been 
stated with such clearness. It remains uncertain whether 
these different conceptions are Plato's own, because his 
theory of ideas so far as it was expressed in earlier 
dialogues admitted different interpretations. It might be 
supposed that these interpretations had been attempted 
by some of his pupils and that he wrote the Parmenides 
with the purpose of showing the difficulty of such very 
concrete and special interpretations. The chief point 
which had been always insisted upon with sufficient 
clearness, the essential difference between idea and par- 
ticulars, remains untouched by all objections, and for the 
first time we find it clearly stated that an idea may vary 
according to the conception of the conceiving mind. 

The chief objection, known as the ' third man,' 
consists in the representation of an infinite number of 
identical ideas (132 a : avro ro fxsya Kal raWa ra /xeydXa, 
iav oiaavTcos rfj '^v)(^rj ettI iravra iBrjs . . . sv ri av ttov fMsya 
(f)avstrac, m ravra irdvTa dvd<yKr) /jisjdXa (patvsaOai. 
aXXo dpa elBos fxsysOovs dvacpavrjasTat, irap avro rs to 
IxiysOos 'ys'yopos Kal rd ixsTS'^^ovra avrov ' Kai sirl rovrois av 
TraaivsTSpov, «5 Tavra irdyra /isydXa karai ' Kal ovkstl Srj ^i/ 


sKaarov aoL tmv sl8o)v scrrai, riW' airsipa to ttXtjOos). 
This objection is by no means peculiar to the Parmenides. Not 
It had occurred in the Theaetetus (200 B : rj ttoXiv av fiot peculiar 

spstTS on T(ov STTiaTTj/jLcov KUi avsTrtarrjfMoavvoJv siaiv av 

> ^ \f/c-\> Z1//1' »\ Parme- 

sTTiarrjuat . . . /cat ovrco on avafyKaaurjcrscras ety ravrov 

I / > (>v / \i ■ nulcs. 

'7T£piTp£')(SLv fxvpcaKcs ouosv ttXsop TroLovvTss) apphed to 

knowledge, and in the Bepithlic (597 b c) to the idea of 

a chair. There Plato indicated the logical necessity of 

stopping in this infinite x^rogress. A certain analogy to 

this is found also in the Timaeus (31 a) where the question 

is raised, whether besides our world there is not an 

infinity of worlds containing it, and this is denied. 

This argument has been attributed to Polyxenos whom 
Plato met in Syracuse, and is here for the first time answered 
by the supposition that each idea might be a thought and ideas as 
exist only in our soul (132 B : [xr) twv sIBmv sKaarov y tov- notions. 
Twv vor^ixa, koI ovhafxov avru) Trpoa-rjKr) s'yyl'yvsadai aWodi r) 
h '^v)(ais). This explanation is not contradicted by what 
follows. Parmenides says that if each idea is thought of 
as unity (132 c : slBos scnat tovto to voov/xsvov su slvac, asl 
ou to avTo sttI traaLv) the primitive theory of fisde^ts could 
not be maintained (132 c : et raXXa ^ys tmv slScov /xstsysip . . . 
ovKs^st Xor/ov). Thcu Socratcs proposes, not as a differ- 
ent solution, but only as an additional explanation, a view 
of the ideas as models of natural kinds, to which the ideas as 
particulars are similar (132 d : to, fisv siSt) ravra (oairsp models. 
•jrapaSsiyfiaTa iardvai sv Trj (f)va£i, to, Ss aWa tovtols sotKsvat 
icai sivai OfjboiwfjLara * /cal r) /xsOs^ls avTij tois aXXots jty- 
vsaOai tS)V slBoJv ovk dWr) tis rj siKaaOrjvat avroh). This 
view is consistent with the psychological character of 
ideas as notions, and the further objections refer to s'iSr} 
avra KaO' avra (133 A), not to general notions. 

The one and the many, to which the antinomies of the 
second part refer, are also notions, not ideas existing outside All 
the human mind. This is perfectly consistent with what has centres 
been said in the Theaetetus about the activity of the soul. ^^ *^® 
It is one of the aspects of. later Platonism : the soul as the 

D D 2 


of know- 
ledge to 

and fixity. 


after a 

source of movement acquires an increasing importance 
and considers its own notions as objects of knowledge. In 
the Parmeiiides the Hnk is given which makes it possible 
to use the terminology of ideas for general kinds or 
notions. One of the objections of Parmenides against the 
universal application of transcendental ideas is at once 
admitted by Socrates and gives the explanation of the 
subsequent discussion. The idea in its former shape had 
to be perfect, and at that earlier stage Plato cared only 
for the knowledge of what could attain perfection. Now 
his desire of knowledge extends to everything existing, 
and there are things imperfect by their very nature (130 c : 

dpl^ Kol TTTfKoS Kol pVTTOS T) CtWo 6 TL UTLfJUOTaTOV T£ Kul 

<pav\6raiov) of which we conceive notions, but not trans- 
cendental ideas, under the x^enalty of falling into an abyss 
of absurdity (130 d : Bsiaas fiy ttots sIstlv a^vdov (f)\vaplav 
sfiTTSCTQiv Scacpdapo)) . 

Kising from particulars to more general kinds, 
human notions are susceptible of improvement up to 
the ideal standard of the divinity. Thus perfect ideas 
appear to be out of the reach of human reason (135 A : 
TToWr) dvayKT] avra slvai rfj avd pooir ivrj (pvcrsL ajvcocrTa). 
If anybody denies their existence, it is difhcult to prove 
his error : it requires an exceptional intelligence to show 
that each thing has its own substance (135 A B : dvSpos 
irdvv pisv sv(pvovs tov hvvrjcrofxsvov fxadslv a>s scttl jsvos 
TC sKaarov kui ovaia avrr] kuO^ avT7]v^ hn Ss Oavpbacrrorspov 
TOV svprjcrovTos Koi aXkov Bwrjo-ofjusvov SiSd^ai Tuvra iravra 
iKavMs BLsvKpLVTjad/xsvov). What Parmenides says, that 
without fixed ideas neither dialectic nor philosophy is 
possible, refers to the general kinds of Being as they have 
been presented in the Theaetetus, Einddoes not necessarily 
imply their separate existence. He then recommends 
dialectical exercise as the best way of advancing know- 
ledge, and proceeds to give a sample of such an exercise, 
which is here called a laborious pastime (137 B : nrpa'^- 
/jLaTSicoBr] iraiBtdv irai^siv), convenient only in a limited 


circle of friends and pupils (137 a: avrol iafisv), not new 
before a larger public (136 d : aTrpzirrj yap to, rotavra model. 
iroKKoiv svavrlov XsysLV .... dyuoov<TC yap ol iroWoi on avsv 
TavTT]s Tijs Sta TrdvTcov Sis^oBov re Kal TrXdvrjs dSvvaTov 
svTV'^ovra tc3 aXrjdsl vovv s')(£i,v). 

The method is supplementary to the method which had 
been proposed in the Phaedo. There it was the philoso- 
pher's aim to explain each hypothesis by another up to the 
highest hypothesis which might be confidently accepted. 
Here Parmenides wants us to follow out the consequences Disjunc- 
of each hypothesis affirmed or denied, and its relation to the t^^^ i°' 
whole of our knowledge (136 B : sv\ Xoycp, irspl otov av dsl f^'^^^^®- 
viroOfj ms ovTOs Kal cos ovk Svtos koI oriovv dWo irddos irdtT'x^o- 
VTOS, Bel (TKOTTslv TO. ^v/uL^aivovTa "TTpos avTO Kal TTpos sv sKacnov 
TMV dXXcov, 6 Ti dv TrposXrj, Kal irpos rrXsioj Kal irpos ^vp,- 
TTavra axravTCOS ' Kal rdWa av irpos avrd rs Kal irpof dWo 
6 Ti av Trpoatpf} dsi, idv ts q)9 ov viroOfj o inrsTldsao^ 
idv TS d)s purj 6v, si p^sXXsis TsXscos yvp^vacrafjisvos KvpLws 
Bioy^rsaOai to uXtjOss). This method implies the recog- Mutual 
nition of a mutual relation and interdependence of relation 
all things that exist, and we need not expect in the of all 
following large sample of antinomies about the one and *^^'^"°s 
the many a full realisation of the proposed problem. ^^^ ' 

The idea of relation occupied Plato's mind with increas- 
ing fascination, as is shown not only in the antinomies of 
the Parmenides, but also in the surprising conception 
according to which our notions are in the first instance Remote- 
related only among themselves, and could be out of relation ness of 
with more perfect notions or ideas of the Divinity. The *^® P^^' 
example chosen to illustrate this relativity is the relation 
between a slave and his master. This relation is a relation 
of two men, says Parmenides, and not of the ideas of 
slavery and mastership (133 e). Although this view is 
here introduced as an objection to transcendental ideas 
generally, it agrees very well with the tendency of the 
dialectical dialogues which follow, in which we shall find 
frequently a complaint about the relativity of human 




conceived . 

sality of 
the philo- 
and his 

knowledge. The distinction between a subjective notion 
and its objective counterpart is nowhere so clearly stated 
as here ; this is not the only feature in which the 
Parmenides approaches Kant's Kritik. Also the dis- 
covery that abstract notions, if applied without restriction, 
lead to antinomies of reason, is common to Plato and 
Kant, although they have treated the subject differently. 
These antinomies are the further consequence of the 
dualistic tendency already visible in the Theaetetus and 
increasing in the Latos, where even the unity of soul 
throughout the universe is denied, since evil cannot be 
ascribed to God. 

On the other side we find here a partial answer to the 
question ' what is knowledge ? ' which was raised in the 
Theaetetus and left unanswered. Knowledge is a system 
of notions from the highest down to the lowest, brought 
into manifold mutual relations. Only uneducated people 
look upon logical exercise as idle talk (135 d). Such 
exercise leads us from the visible world to the ideas which 
are an object of reason (135 e : '^<yda6r]v, ore ovk das sv tols 
opcofispoLs ovSs TTSpl TUVTa T7]v irXdvqv STnaKOTrslv, dWd irspi 
SKSiva a /ndXiaTci tls dv Xo<y(p \dj3oi kul s'iSr) dv '^yrjaatro 
slvat). The true philosopher neglects nothing, however 
insignificant it may appear, if it has a bearing upon his 
general theories, and is not influenced by the unscientific 
opinions of the many (180 E : vsos yap si sn, koL ovttcd 
(70V dvrslXrjTTTai (j)iXoaocf)La, obs stl dvTiX.rjylrsrai kut' ifirjv 
Bo^av, 6t£ ovSsu avroiv dri/xdasLs ' vvv hs etc irpbs dvOpcorrcov 
d'TTo^XsTTUs Bo^as Bid rrjv rjXiKLav). This attitude is pre- 
served also in the Soj^hist and Politicus, in which the 
dialectical pastime is continued. 

We have seen in the preceding works the theory 
that the highest standard of knowledge is attainable 
only through the highest intellectual training. The 
training proposed in the Bejncblic was in mathematical, 
astronomical, and musical studies as preparatory to 
Dialectic. Dialectic was there only the knowledge of 


the highest idea of Good. In the Phaedrus it was 

defined as the art of analysis and synthesis of concepts, 

and this programme was probably followed out in many 

particulars in the oral teaching of Plato. The result Beginning 

was an essential change of the former views about ideas, of move- 

The occupation with particulars of nature brought the ™®'^* 

concept of movement into prominence, and movement ^™°°^ 

was in some way brought into the fixed and unalterable . , 

•^ '=' increased 

world of the ideas as we know them from the Phaedo and interest 
Symposium. This movement consisted first in the in be- 
universal mutual relations among ideas, and then in the coming, 
progress of each idea, according to the individual perfec- Evolution 
tion of the thinker. Plato's love of ideal perfection is not °^ ^ ^^^ 
on the decrease, and the ideas of the perfect Being or God ^°°°^ ^°^ 
remain as perfect as they were seen in the space above ^^ .. 
heaven of the Phaedrus. But they are not out of all of the 
relation to a living consciousness, and each of those thinker, 
unities has infinite approximations in the minds of the 
whole hierarchy of beings, and in the variety of appear- 
ances. No doubt the philosopher is able to bring his 
ideas to divine perfection, but only through dialectical 
exercise. In agreement with the importance acquired 
by general concepts, we find in the Parmenides some 
new notions. Besides hvva^ts (133 e, 135 c), KLvrjais New terms 
(138 B), aWoiwa-LS^ (fiopd (138 C, 162 D E), fxi] op (142 A) and 
and other categories used already before, we meet here motions. 
for the first time to a-vfM^slSrjKos as a logical term (128 c), 
arspsaOai (157 c, 159 e), to s^ai^vqs (156 D), which are 
clear as general notions but scarcely fit for representa- 
tion as transcendental ideas. 

If our interpretation of the logical meaning of the 
Parmenides is right, it becomes exceptionally important 
to determine the place of this work among Plato's dia- 
logues, as it begins together with the Theaetetus a new 
philosophy of Plato. 

That the Parmenides is not an early dialogue, results Parme- 
from many hints. What is here repeatedly said of nides not 


early: as 


from the 


in which 

youth is 


as very 
and sub- 
to another 

ness of 
his own 

The con- 
of ideas as 
has been 
pated ; 

youth (130 E, 135 d, 137 B), that young men are inconse- 
quent, that one must learn while young, and that youth 
is pleasing and compliant, is only explainable if the author 
was comparatively speaking an old man when writing. 
If we consider that the limits of youth were wider with 
the Greeks than with us, that youth must be already at 
some distance to be thus treated, and that we find in the 
Laws and in the other works of Plato's old age similar 
remarks on youth, we are justified in admitting that 
Plato must have passed middle life when he wrote the 

Another general argument in favour of a late date is 
the characterisation of Socrates as a young man, receiv- 
ing instruction from Parmenides. There is nothing dis- 
paraging for Socrates in this position, as Schaarschmidt 
thought. He is here clearty admired by Parmenides and 
Zeno, and his philosophical aptitude is extolled. In all 
preceding dialogues we have seen Socrates as the ideal 
teacher, only in the Symposium subordinated to the ideal 
Diotima, but even there supposed to be the true author of 
all that he attributes to her. If now we meet for the 
first time a Socrates who is truly subordinated to another 
Master, and if we know that in all remaining works of 
Plato, except the Philebics, Socrates is only a hearer, it 
becomes very natural to suppose that the Parmenides was 
written at a time when the living picture of Plato's 
Master was fading away in a distant past, under the 
influence of a consciousness of his own superiority. That 
Socrates appears here as a young man, is a consequence 
of the plan of the dialogue, in which a theory formerly 
attributed to Socrates had to be corrected and abandoned. 

It has been thought that the view of paradeigmatic 
ideas or eternal models (132 d : TrapaSsly/jbara sv rfj <pvasi, 
cf. Tlieaet. 176 e) appears here for the first tiilie, but this 
cannot be maintained in view of the fact that we had 
already in the tenth book of the Republic paradeigmatic 
ideas, and that such are also implied in the allegory of the 


Cave. The only view which is really expressed for the i deas as 
first time is the identification of the ideas with notions notions 
in the soul. This view, which we shall see recurring appear for 
in later works, cannot belong to an early time in Plato's 
life, at least in connection with a criticism of self-existing 

The meeting of Parmenides with Socrates, whether 
historic or not, is mentioned besides this dialogue also in 
the Theaetetus and Sophist. If we compare "^^^ both men- other 
tions, it is obvious that the Sophist refers to our dialogue, allusions 
while in the Theaetetus the mention is more general : *° 

meeting of 
Theaet. 183 e : tovs aWovs, ot Soph. 217 c : irorepov fi(o6as goerates 

ev €(tt6s Xtyovai to ttclv . . , fjrrov rj8iov avros eVt cravTov fiOKpoi \6ya „-j.i- 

alaxvvoyiai ^ eva ovra Ilapjuei'tSj/i' 8ie^tepai . . . f/ 8i epa>Tr)(Te<ov, oiov p 

. . . (rvfnTpo(TfiJ.i^a yap drj rw dvdpi Trore koi nappfVLdj] )(po}pevco koi 

irdvv veos nuw Trpecr^vTT], koi poi bie^iouri Xo'your TrayKiiKovs irape- 

((pavrj ^ddos Ti ex^iv TravTUT^aai yevofxrjv eyw veos wf, (Kelvov paXa 

yevvaiov. 184 a: (po^ovpai ovv pi) Srj Tore ovtos irpea^vTov ; — ra pep 

ovre rd \ey6peva ^vvmpev, t'i re aXwcor re Kni evrjvicos TrpocrStaXeyo- 

tiavoovpevos eiire ttoXv irkiov \ei- pev(a paov ouro), to irpos aWov, 
■natpeOa . . . 

We see that Plato in the Theaetetus mentions in 
general terms his admiration for Parmenides, and an 
interview which might be historical without necessarily 
implying a special reference to the dialogue, while in the 
Sophist an allusion is made to the short generally affirma- 
tive answers which characterise both the Parmenides and 
Sophist, not the Theaetetus. These three dialogues con- 
tain very frequent mentions of Parmenides, who is besides 
quoted only in the Symposium (178 b, 195 c) on an in- 
significant matter and without great esteem. In the 
Theaetetus the examination of the philosophy of Parme- 
nides is declined and adjourned ; in the Parmenides the 

■-^3 This comparison has been specially insisted upon by P. Natorp in 
his review of 0. A pelt's Beitrcige zur Gcschichte der PhilosopMe, Leipzig 
1891, in the PJdlosophische Monatshefte, vol. xxx. pp. 63-70, but in con- 
nection with a very early date of the Theaetetus. Natorp's own argumenta- 
tion gains in strength if the Theaetetus immediately preceded the Far-- 


ticism for 
the first 



for this. 


ness of 


to the 

philosopher is introduced as criticising earher Platonism 
and explaining the consequences of his own hypothesis in 
a manner which might lead the hearer to some doubts ; 
in the Sophist he is criticised by the anonymous guest 
from Elea, introduced as a friend of Parmenides and 
Zeno. If these three dialogues, in which the influence 
of the Eleatic philosophy is first noticed, are written 
after a sojourn of Plato in Sicily, then it might appear 
probable that on this voyage he came into closer rela- 
tions with the Eleatics, just as in the period of middle 
Platonism the influence of Pythagoras' school is notice- 
able. So long as we have no more detailed testimonies 
about these voyages, we must limit our inferences to the 
observation that Plato at a later stage of his life con- 
ceived a special interest in the Eleatic philosophy, either 
in consequence of personal acquaintance with the repre- 
sentatives of this school abroad, or perhaps under the 
influence of his own pupils in the Academy, some of 
whom might have arrived from Italy. 

An important argument for the priority of the Theae- 
tetus to the Parmenides is the different manner in 
which the categories and the subdivision of Kivrjais into 
aXXolcoais and (})opd appear, being in the earlier dialogue 
distinctly meant as something new, while in the later 
both theories are supposed to be known. 

Both the Theaetetiis and Parmenides are distinguished 
from other dialogues by the introductory information 
calculated to make on the reader the impression of things 
of a remote time : in the Theaetetus this is done by the 
fiction of a written account repeatedly corrected ; in the 
Parmenides the source appears more distant, as the dia- 
logue has been first narrated by Pythodorus to Antiphon, 
and by Antiphon to Kephalos, who narrates it to the 

Some reason for placing the Theaetetus before the 
Parme7iides is given by stylistic comparisons. The 
total stylistic affinity of the Parmenides with the latest 


group (equivalent to 243 accidental peculiarities) exceeds Theae- 
only slightly that of the Tlieaetetus (equivalent to 233 ^^^"^ 
accidental peculiarities), and this alone vi^ould not yet ^ °^^ 
justify a conclusion, v^^ere there not a great difference of 
size between the two dialogues, the Tlieaetetus being one ^jg^iogye 
of the largest (53 pp. ed. Did.), and the Parvienides one of jg earlier. 
the shorter (31 pp. ed. Did.) dialogues. . Under these cir- 
cumstances the priority of the Tlieaetetus appears to be 
very probable, so much more as the Parmenides has a 
much greater number of peculiarities of later style which 
are absent from the Tlieaetetus, than vice ve7-sa, as can be 
seen from the following comparison : 

Peculiarities of later style not occurring in works earlier than the 
Republic and found : 
in Theaet., not in Parm., acci- in Parm., not in Theaet., acci- 
dental : 218, 337, 348, 395, 404, dental : 486, 487, 488, 189, 216, 
336, 190, 335, 341, 324, 11, 208, 224, 331, 485, 470, 492, 483, 490, 
399 ; repeated : 192, 227 ; im- 478, 323, 476, 25, 28, 225, 322, 
portant: 247, 12, 452. 458, 459, 461, 462, 464,466; re- 
peated : 481, 477, 489, 332, 480, 
475, 24, 468, 26, 460, 463, 465 ; 
important: 479, 318, 27; very 
important: 14, 15. 

This relation of style between Parmenides and Tlieae- 
tetus was less evident as long as smaller numbers of 
peculiarities were compared. Thus, according to Camp- 
bell's table, the Parmenides appeared to have less affinity 
with the latest group than nearly all Socratic dialogues, 
and C. Ritter was led even to doubt the authenticity, 
because he found fewer peculiarities of later style than 
he expected in a work which betrayed by some very 
characteristic marks its late origin. Now we have just 
enough stylistic evidence to confirm the place assigned 
to the Parmenides between Tlieaetetus and Sojjhist, 
and further stylistic investigations may very possibly 
increase such evidence in this case, as they have done in 
the case of the Tlieaetetus. Both Parmenides and Tlieae- 
tetus are stylistically more difficult to class than most 


of an 

to Aris- 
to verify. 



affords a 
point of 
the new 

other works of Plato. The supposition that both followed 
after a longer or shorter interval of literary inactivitj^ 
accounts best for this circumstance. An author who 
returns to literary labours after an interval does not reach 
at once a certain fixity of expression and is less likely to 
introduce many new peculiarities of a permanent character. 
Thus, however original may be his style in such works, 
they will contain fewer peculiarities recurring later than 
the following dialogues, and this produces a diminution 
of the stylistic affinity with the latest group. The close 
relation between Theaetetus and Parmenides as critical 
dialogues has been illustrated by Campbell through a 
number of analogies (' On the place of the Parmenides,' 
pp. 6-7, see note 145) which are the more striking as the 
subject of both dialogues is not identical. 

There is no definitive indication which could help to 
fix the date of the Parmenides with exactness, except the 
supposed allusion to the philosopher Aristotle contained 
in the mention as a person of the dialogue of another 
Aristotle, one of the thirty tyrants. This allusion is 
plausible, and has been brought into relation with 
Aristotle's criticism of the Platonic ideas. It acquires 
some additional plausibility if compared with the intro- 
duction of the younger Socrates in the Theaetetus. But 
these conjectures require some independent testimonies 
before they can be accepted as certain. If we accepted 
them, then the Parmenides would have been written after 
367 B.C., and shortly olt&ci'he Theaetetus. Without reject- 
ing this hypothesis, it remains still possible that both 
dialogues were composed earlier, but not before the 
Phaedrus, and not in the next time after the Bepublic, as 
the elaboration of the new point of view required a certain 
length of time. The nearest approach to this new point 
of view was the recommendation of analysis and synthesis 
siven in the Phaedrus. 

of a re- 
form in 

ness of 


Plato's critical philosophy . 

To resume the results of the above inquiry on the beginning 
Theaetetus and Parmenides, we see in these two works the 
trace of a new logical departure, which does not quite 
amount to a brusque negation of earlier views, but changes 
the aims of science. While Plato in the works of his 
middle lifetime had a conception of truth eternally fixed, ^^^ j^gg^j 
which can be perceived by a well-trained mind exactly as g 
it is, he became later aware of the subjectivity of knowledge, thetic en- 
of its existence in an ascending scale of souls up to divine deavour. 
perfection. The ideal was thus further removed from the Ideas 
present life, while losing nothing in its perfection. The correlated 
aim of science is now not the immediate contemplation of ^^*^ °^^ 
truth eternally pre-existent, but the perfecting of our own 

» ' ., ^ , ^ , and with 

ideas so as to form a system built on the mutual corre- ,. , . 
lation of all particulars. The particulars of sensible ex- things. 
perience are no longer rejected as useless or perturbing, The soul 
but they have to be brought into relation with the general as source 
stock of knowledge. In the physical world movement is °* move- 
acknowledged as the chief factor, and the origin of move- ™®°* 
ment attributed to the soul. The causes of error are in 

as chief 

vestigated with greater accuracy and found chiejfly in the 
imperfection of our perceptions. The notions are paired factor, 
with their opposites, and the preference for dichotomy is Preference 
manifest, but is not suffered to stiffen into a conventional for dicho- 
rule. toi^y- 

Plato remains in this period faithful to his custom of 
fixing in a literary form only certain aspects of his thoughts, 
obliging us to supplement by inferences what he omits to 
mention. Neither the Theaetetus nor the Parmenides are 
systematic accounts of any part of the doctrine which 
probably was imparted to Plato's pupils according to the 
precepts of the Phaedrus. The centre of gravity of the The 
Platonic system has been changed vsdthout recapitulating change 
all the details it carried with it, and the dialogues written ^^ ^^^ 


are still 
of art. 

and edu- 

The ideal 

but is ap- 

after the change continue to be works of art rather than 
expositions of doctrine. They are only ideal samples of 
conversations held in the Academy, and the artistic pur- 
pose of harmonious proportion is quite as evident in these 
conversations on abstract subjects as in the more poetical 
Symposium. In these works, as in the preceding, from 
the Symposium, onwards, we have didactic conversations 
between pupil and master, not as in earlier works like the 
Gorgias, discussions between men of opposed convictions. 

The pupil is led by an ascending way so that at each 
turning point he believes himself to reach the summit, 
when a new horizon is opened, leading higher, and at the 
end the infinite ideal of knowledge remains still high 
above the highest summits hitherto described. This 
protreptic character is maintained in the critical dialogues 
no less than in the constructive works. In the Be- 
public the idea of the Good remained beyond the reach 
of Adeimantos and Glaucon ; in the Phaedrus the ideal 
rhetoric appeared as a powerful ideal beyond the under- 
standing and ability of the greatest orators of the time ; 
in the Theaetetus knowledge appeared at a height much 
above all human opinions, even those which guess the 
truth correctly. In the Parmenides the objects of know- 
ledge are shown not to correspond to poetic metaphors, 
and to be attainable only by a difficult exercise of 
reason. In all these cases the rising soul of a lover 
of philosophy is the chief object of literary exposition. 
The contents of philosophy are mentioned occasion- 
ally and never exhaustively. The distance between the 
philosopher and vulgar humanity is increasing while the 
philosopher's constant aim is to approach his ideal of the 

The occasional glimpses of theory show us a great 
wealth of intellectual life, and a consciousness of some 
cardinal conditions of truth. The chief results arrived at 
by Plato at this stage appear to be : the subjectivity of 
sensations, the unity of consciousness in the act of judg- 


ment, the plurality and mutual relation of the highest 
kinds of Being, the universal analogy between great and 
small things which must be considered all with equal care 
in order to increase our knowledge. The method pro- 
posed leads to a general system of science, some aspects of 
which are developed in the three following dialectical 


As the 
stage was 
by positive 
tion, so 
the second 
was fol- 
lowed by 
and meta- 

The aim is 
to define 

Sophist ; 
really to 
views on 



We have seen Plato begin his Hterary career with small 
critical dialogues, culminating in Protagoras, Meno, and 
Euthydemus, and progressing from this first critical stage 
to the positive exposition of some of his moral, political, 
and educational theories in the Gorgias and later works up 
to the Phaedrus. In Hke manner the second critical stage, 
manifest in the Theaetetus and Parmenides, was followed 
by some dialogues full of positive metaphysical and logical 
theories, skilfully treated with regard to questions of 
purely formal importance. This indirect manner of expo- 
sition is prominent in the three dialectical dialogues which 
follow the Parmenides, namely the Sophist, Politicus, 
and Philehiis. Here, as in the preceding works, we do 
not find a systematic exposition of doctrine, but occasional 
glimpses which betray studies very remote from those of 
middle Platonism, and show us a part of that ' longer way ' 
alluded to in the Bepuhlic as leading to the knowledge of 

I. The Sophist. 

In this dialogue the definition of the Sophist is only a 
pretext for the exposition of Plato's views on scientific 
method, on the origin of error, and on the nature of true 
Being. These vie\vs are presented in a form which 
leaves no doubt as to the author's own convictions and 
his judgments about other philosophers. The historical 
method of comparing existing theories and contradictions 
is here maintained, as in the Theaetetus and Parmenides, 


but with greater maturity of treatment. In this respect, scientific 
as well as in the manner of the didactic proceeding method, 
accompanied with frequent quotations of results obtained ^^^ ^^ 
before, and with recapitulations after each progress of the ^^^^^''^^ 
argument, the Sophist approaches more nearly to the ^^" 
writings of Aristotle than any earlier dialogue of Plato. Approach 
The dialogical form is still preserved, but the answers to the 
for the most part only confirm opinions expressed in the manner 
question, so that they could easily be omitted. of Aris- 

While in the Parmenides it was still assumed as *°*'^' 
natural and necessary that a dialectical exposition must 
be given in the form of a conversation (137 b : ris ovv /xol 
cLTroKpivstTai, ; rj 6 vecoTaros ;), we see in the Soi^hist for 
the first time a clear admission that philosophical teach- Con- 
ing may be given in the form of a continuous lecture tinuous 
(217 C : TTorspov Sicodas -ijScov avros eVl aavTOv ixaKpw Xo'yco ^^Position 
Sis^tivai Xsiycov tovto, o av ivSsc^acrdai rco jSovXrjdrjs, rj St' 
spciiri)(TSOiv, otov iroTS kui ilapfMevLorj ^(^pw^svfp . . . irapsys- , , 
pofjLTjv). If we take into account that this form of con- 
tinuous lecture prevails in the Timaeus and Critias and 
some parts of the Laws, which are acknowledged to 
be late works, it becomes evident that the Sophist is 
in this respect intermediate between Parmenides and 
Timaeus. This inference is strengthened by the obser- 
vation that in an admittedly early work, the Prota- Not as 
goras, lecturing is condemned and dialogical discussion in Prota- 
required (Prot. 334 D : iycb Tvyx^veo iirckyjcrfjLcov res wv ooras. 
avOpayiros, koI sdv ris fMOi fiuKpa Xsyrj, STrtXavdcivofxai Trspl 
ov av rj Xoyos . . . avvrsfivs fioi ras airoKpiasLS Koi ^pa- 
'^vTspas TTolsi, el fxeWo) croi sirsadai). 

Thus we see how Plato advanced from the form of 
philosophical conversations to that form of a philo- 
sophical lecture or dissertation which has been adopted Logical 
by his pupil Aristotle and by the majority of later philo- signifi- 
sophers. This fact is not without logical importance. ''^^^^ 
In conversation at least two persons are wanted to °^ *^^ 
elaborate the truth. This implies a stage of personal ^^^^' 

E E 


uncertainty or at least the absence of a recognised 
authority. The thinker who has arrived at the highest 
degree of certainty needs only receptive hearers to whom 
he may communicate his knowledge, and looks upon 
discussion as useless and tiresome. The earliest works 
of Plato were discussions ; even later, despite the in- 
creasing authority of Socrates, the persons represented as 
partners in his conversation still enjoyed the freedom of 
expressing other views. In the Theaetetus Socrates is 
represented as desiring to discuss freely philosophical 
difficulties with Theodoros rather than with a young 
man who dares not go against his authority. It is only 
in the Parmenides that discussion {irdXvirpa^iJbovetv) is 
declared useless. This is a logical mode of regarding the 
matter and amounts to this : whoever is in possession of 
truth can impart it to others without expecting an 
advance of knowledge from the conflict of opinions. Or, 
truth is the result of the activity of one soul, not of 
the co-operation of many. In all the six latest dialogues 
Plato remained faithful to this principle, which he adopted 
Form of definitively in the Parmenides. There is no discussion in 
dialogue the Sopliist and Politicus, nor in the Philehus and the 
gradually LaiDs. In the Timaeus and Critias even the dialogical 
form is extinct. Plato appears to have abandoned con- 
versational equality between investigating friends, he 
prefers now a didactic authority of one Master of wisdom. 
Conscious- The consciousness of method is also increasing. The 
ness of art of reasoning, postulated already in the Phaedo (90 b : 
method. ^ ^gpi jq{,^ \6yovs Tsxvt]), is now a reality and bears the 
name of a logical method (Soph. 227 A : tmv Xoycov 
iLis6oSos), which remained in the highest esteem among all 
later philosophers. Many translators of Plato refrained 
from the identification of fisdoSos with the modern term 
method, as if they were afraid to credit an ancient Greek 
philosopher with a consciousness of regulated proceed- 
ing which seems to be a privilege of recent science. 
Thus, for instance, Schleiermacher renders /jusOoBos by 



' das erklarende Verfahren,' Deuschle by ' der Gang Meaning 
der Untersuchung,' Miiller by 'der Fortgang unserer oi fifdoSos 
Erorteriing.' This is really a wrong cautiousness, and ^°^'^ 
Jowett and Campbell were perfectly right in translating ^ ^' 
/jisdoSos here by ' method.' In earlier dialogues, as Phaedo 
(79 E, 97 B) and Bepuhlic (435 d, 510 b c, 531 c, 533 b c, 
596 A), this word had not yet a fixed meaning and was 
equivalent to ' argument,' ' study,' or ' way of reasoning.' 
In the Phaedrus /xsOoSos (269 d, 270 d) is used in the 
same primitive meaning of ' way of reasoning.' In the 
Theaetetus (183 c) it means 'hypothesis ' or 'theory.' But 
in the Sophist there appears for the first time a ' logical 
method,' essentially different in form and contents from 
the BioKsKTiKT] /xsOoBos of the Republic (533 c), which meant 
no more than the study of dialectic, or vision of the idea 
of Good. Here the ' logical method ' means what up to 
the present time is known as the method of classification, 
or scientific method generally. 

This method neglects nothing however insignificant it Disin- 
may appear to be, and seeks truth quite independently of terested- 
all practical applications or advantages (227 a : ttj t6)v "^^^ ^* 

-V ' /I ' c- « A J r , ^v « science. 

Aoyoov fisuooo) cr7ro<yyLaTiKr]S rj <papfMaKOTTO(Tias ovosv tqttov 

ovBs Ti fidWov Tvyx^ivsi fisXov, slto /j,eu afxiKpd, ro 8s fieyaXa 
rjiMCLs Qi(f}s\st KaOalpov). Its aim is pure knowledge, which 
depends upon the distinction of natural affinities and 
similitudes between different things, without any prejudice 
in favour of one subject or another (227 b). Of this dis- 
interested impartiality of pure science Plato gives curious 
examples which show his tendency to free himself from 
every authority or reigning opinion. The art of human 
war, he says, belongs to the general kind of hunting, no 
less surely than the art of vermin-destrojdng, despite the 
greater vanity of man-killers (227 b, cf. Theaet. 174 d). 

The philosopher finds out the true similarities and Similarity 
differences which allow an exact definition of each kind and dif- 
of beings as belonging to a more general class (235 c : ^^^'^^^^ 

TTavTCos ovre ovtos ovts a\\o ysvos ovbsv fit] ttots SK^vyov 


E E 2 


ances or 

of primary 
too much 

the philo- 

sation and 
ing from 
the simple 
to the 

STTSV^TjraL rrjv tmv ovtco Svva/jbsucov fisrisvat Ka9 sKaard rs 
Kol sttI TrdvTa fxsdoSov). The greatest care must be taken 
about apparent similarities (231 a : rov 8s da<pa\i] Ssl 
TrdvTWV ixaXicrra irspL rds ofjboioTTjras dsi TroislaOai, ttjv 
<bvXaK7]v ' oK-LadripoTarov yap to ysios). The temptation 
to mix all things and to make the great appear as small 
and the like as unlike is the sign of a man who is only 
beginning to approach the problem of being, and delights 
in contradictions (259 D : to Ss ravrov srspou d7ro(paivscv 

dfjbfj rys TT]] KOi TO OdTSpOV TaVTOV KOL TO [Ji£<ya ajXlKpoV Kal TO 

OfJbOLOv dvofxoLov, Kal '^acpsiv ovtco TavavTua dev Tvpo^spovra 
sv Tols \6<yocs, ovTS Ti,s sXsyx^^ ovtos dXrjOivos apri ts tmv 
ovTcov TWOS scpaTTTOfjbsvov SfjXos vsoysvrjs cov). Many notions 
as to which apparently there is no disagreement among 
disputants are insulficiently defined, and ought to be in- 
vestigated again, however clear and simple they appear at 
first sight (242 C : ra ZoKovvTa vvv svapyws s'%H4Z' sttlctks- 
■y^acrOat Trpwrov, ^rj irrj TSTapay/iisvot pLsv co/jbsv TrspX tuvtu, 
pahlws 8' dWrfkoLs o/jLoXoyM/xsv (US' svKpivcos S'^ovrss). The 
true logician follows his opponents on their own ground 
and refutes them according to their own principles 
(259 C D : '^aXsTTov dfia Kal KaXov . .