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writings it was found stated that the accuser of Socrates was a son of Anthemion. Menon is unquestionably the same with him whom Xenophon mentions in the campaign of Cyrus, although Plato does not describe him as so abandoned a profligate. His country, his beauty, his wealth and the friendship of the Thessalian Aristippus, who cannot be supposed to be also a duplicate, are circumstances sufficiently material and to the purpose to establish the fact.
IN the Euthydemus, if the reader regards the part which is at once the most striking and amusing, the conversation, that is, in which Socrates and Ctesippus, the same whom we already know from the Lysis, are engaged with the two sophists, Dionysodorus and Euthydemus, and how far it is from being conducted dialectically in Plato's sense, with a view to rectifying their mutual sentiments and to the extrication of truth, but is most perfectly worked up in the style of a regular prize-fight only with a view to keeping the right in words—if he considers how perfect Plato shows himself to be, though this is but his first and solitary attempt, in exhibiting the way in which the matter of the sophistical questions that may be started continually dwindles away, while at the same time the pleasure and the pride of the actors increase, until at last the former merges into mere nonsense, and the two latter pass into the most extravagantly vain self-conceit, which confounds the ridicule of the intelligent with the assent of the simple, and only puffs itself out the more; and, lastly, if he notices the way in which the whole ends with that undisguised burst of ridicule so cheerily rung out, he will, we may be assured, at once admire the life and dramatic power of the whole, but will however afterwards discover in the subject thus exclusively regarded one not quite worthy of the author. And though no one can immediately doubt whether Plato could have composed any thing with this view, still every reader will require an occasion for the composition of a piece which can only be conceived to be occasional, and will be surprised to find it given in the series of scientific productions. But it is strange enough that attention has always been exclusively given to this sophistical dramatizing when to every reader the dialogue presents more important matter, a genuine philosophical bearing and a visible reference to other Platonic writings, in that other conversation; which, though but in an interrupted and intermitted form, Socrates carries on with Clinias, and which, like the dialogues up to this point, treats of the communicability of virtue and the nature of the most exalted knowledge. This conversation may be regarded as an illustrative continuation of the Menon, and therefore, mediately, of the Theaetetus and Gorgias, as it enlarges further, by an indirect method, upon the same subject. For the consequence which we have often only inferred from former dialogues as their proper result, without finding it verbally enunciated, is so verbally enunciated in this, and, as if it were already evident, assumed; and the problems with which the subsequent dialogues are engaged are here discovered and pointed out. By this then, if it is actually the case, the place which we have assigned to this dialogue, is sufficiently assured to it. And of this every reader may convince himself if he considers the course of this conversation, the main points of which we will here note down in a few words. In this it is at once assumed almost at the beginning, as had been proved in the Gorgias, that pleasure is not identical with the good, and therefore that happiness which is sought as a common object, is defined, only for the purpose of keeping to the ordinary translation of the word eudaimonia, to be “right doing” (or, “well doing”). At the same time the conversation connects itself with the Menonic position, that every thing which is ordinarily called a good is not so in and for itself by virtue of the mere possession of it, but becomes so first by coming under the power of wisdom so as to be governed and managed by it. Accordingly the proper object of desire is defined to be knowledge, to which Plato here deliberately gives the more exalted name of wisdom, and without even mentioning that lower grade which is there called correct conception. But this is by no means a sign which can imply that this distinction had not yet been made, or that Plato contradicts himself in any way consciously or unconsciously: but the ground of it is as follows: just at the beginning, where Socrates states the problem, the two, the search, that is, after wisdom and the diligent endeavour to attain virtue, are laid down as identical or as connected in the most intimate manner. He intends therefore by this, expressly to show what he meant by what is only thrown out at last in the Menon, that it is certainly necessary to seek that virtue and statesmanship which proceed from wisdom, notwithstanding the fact that they have not yet existed, because without them those more common kinds which are satisfied with right conception, can have no permanent existence. After the proper result of the Menon has been thus enunciated and elucidated, it is now enquired further what that knowledge must be, and after it has been established, in part with reference to the Gorgias, that it must be an art which is capable at the same time both of producing and using its object, and thus several particular arts have been brought forward by way of example which satisfy these conditions, the conversation comes at last, less by the strictly scientific method of analysis and investigation, than by the unmethodical process of promiscuous adaptation, to the real political or kingly art to which all others surrender their products for its use. But now the progressive advance of the dialogue is at an end, and the conversation changes again into a hesitative kind of speculation which only starts riddles and hands them over with a few hints to the reflection of the hearer for their solution. It is in this sense then that the product of that art is investigated, and nothing is discoverable except that if in the good we are always to inquire after the end we must always come round in a circle; in this sense Socrates quite at the beginning started the question whether to teach wisdom and to create a passion for it belongs to the same art; and it is precisely in this sense that the relation between the true and the good, wisdom and art, is so multifariously repeated and brought to light. And thus, as was before maintained, this conversation contains, on the one hand, corroborative illustration of the preceding dialogues; on the other hand, the reader is to be excited not to rest content with the assumptions there made, as that virtue and wisdom are the useful, and thus this conversation becomes a preparatory indication pointing to the subsequent dialogues, in particular the Statesman and Philebus; and hence on their account, the Euthydemus appears to be a transitional member by no means superfluous, and here certainly, quite in its proper place. After we have thus properly estimated the essential part of the dialogue, it then becomes easy to take up another view of the remainder also. For the question arises of itself, was Plato, whom in the dialogues immediately preceding the Euthydemus we have already found occasionally engaged in controversy with the founders of contemporary Socratic schools; was he, I say, likely now again to commence a battle, for which the time had quite gone by, against earlier sophists whose influence and exertions were suppressed without it, as soon as ever the Socratic schools had become regularly formed P and was he likely to support this superfluous contest by such an expence of demonstrative art, and to be so well pleased with himself in the execution of his task as is here manifestly the case ? Who then were these men, Dionysodorus and Euthydemus, to deserve such notice and meet with such treatment P History is silent respecting them more than any other of the sophists mentioned by Plato, so that we may certainly maintain that they never formed anywhere any kind of school, nay, it would even seem that they were not generally men in very great repute. Xenophon mentions Dionysodorus and speaks of the time when he taught the art of war, whence we must conclude that it is a real fact which Socrates mentions