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of the supposition that he did by no means here construct his Republic as a mere scaffolding, afforded by the elaborate execution with which matters in it are discussed, which will bear no immediate application to justice P And if there is some ground for the supposition that this ideal state, even before Plato described it in the books we have, had been a subject of satirical allusion as sketched in his oral instruction, are we to believe that those oral sketches were in all respects so similar to the written works, that Plato in them also introduced the ideal of a Republic only as a scaffolding for his theory of virtue? These are, indeed, important and weighty grounds; but our view also of the work in its whole connection rests upon no authority but the same Platonic Socrates, whose own advices we have most accurately followed. Are we, therefore, to believe that in the work itself he has only played with its proper subject, and that he begins all at once in the Timaeus, and not before, to take a serious view of the question ? But to attend to this latter dialogue exclusively would be at least quite as partial as not to pay any regard to it whatever. But if we are to start upon the supposition that the representation of the state is the proper grand object, it would be hardly possible to conceive why the appearance of the contrary is pointedly produced. And even if it could be explained why Plato combined the investigation concerning justice with this grand object, still the form and the manner in which this is done would then be perfectly unmeaning and absurd. It would have been much more natural to introduce the main subject at once, and then, after the internal existence of the state had been described, to say in what the justice and discretion of such a whole consist; and then the application to the individual mind, and the ethical problems, still unresolved in this point of view, would have resulted most naturally ; consequently, a perfectly converse relation between these two grand objects and the essential parts of the work referring to them must then have obtained. And if, indeed, upon this supposition it would be more easily conceivable that the regulations about the commerce of the sexes should be treated of with the copiousness which now appears, then too, on the other hand, all that is in connection with the rewards of virtue would have to fall much farther back as mere subordinate matter; and it is impossible that this subject could be so prominent as it is here made, partly by the style and method of the execution, partly by the fact that the exposition, constituting as it does a return of the end to the beginning, very properly concludes the whole. Other discussions, such as that upon the nature of dialectics, upon the conditions of this intellectual activity and its relation to the others, and in like manner those upon the art of imitative poetry bear, indeed, a similar relation to both suppositions, and the question how they are necessarily connected with the grand Thema is in both cases equally difficult to answer. Accordingly it does not appear that by the method actually pursued even the slightest step is gained for affording a clear insight into the connection, if the whole work is only to be regarded as a representation of a normal constitution; although, on the other hand, if it is to be merely a defence of justice, a disproportionality remains, and an excess of unnecessary and subordinate matter, which the preceding attempt to explain the connection has in no way endeavoured to conceal. What remains then but to confess that the Platonic Socrates is here a double-faced Janus P. In the work itself the backwards looking face speaks, and to that we have until now listened ; in the Timaeus the front one lets itself be heard. And with the supposition the fact agrees, that in the work itself so many problems previously set are again taken up, and so many previously isolated investigations combined, and that this whole tissue into which are worked many particulars which are as keys and talismans to what has gone before, affords extreme satisfaction; while in the Timaeus the same work appears as a new member of a new series of theoretical expositions, in which Timaeus, Critias, and Hermocrates are to follow Socrates; and this two-fold relation seems to be the key to all that may yet have continued obscure in the connection of the work. The idea of virtue in general, and of the four virtues in particular, is defined, and in this we have the key-stone to all the earlier and preparatory labours upon ethical points, and the doctrine of the Republic has no other concern with this task, but that which Socrates professes from the beginning onwards. But as the idea of virtue is on the one side so essentially connected with the idea of the good, which in Plato's view is the grand object of dialectic science, and, on the other side, would not come under discussion at all unless there was an interest in the right regulation of life, it is equally natural, first, that this interest, as it here appears as an apologetic ground of morality, should also conduct and predominate through the whole work, and then that the elements of dialectics in it, as well as of ethics, should be again taken up, combined with one another, and as it were fixed by a key-stone. Now, we observe that Plato discovers the idea of virtue without having even a conception of an absolute freedom of will, such that by means of it man may at any moment, and independently of all previous conduct and existences, be any thing that he likes; but according to him this free will is so connected with that state of conditional existence in which man is here plunged, that a combination of the elements of the soul may arise in which the existence of a weak principle of virtue is all that is possible, and that there is but one style and mode of education which can enable virtue to develope itself to its full extent. And thus the constitution of the state attains a high degree of importance, and it is natural that this theory in particular should be expounded at the same time, as well as that the process in it of the continuation of the species from which, it is argued, the various tempers in different minds arise, should be placed under the dominion of common reason, and quite as natural that the theory of dialectics, and with it at the same time, the polemics against that imitative poetry which, according to Plato's conviction, most effectively crushes the endeavour after truth— should be interwoven with the theory of political education. Every step is professedly only laid down as it is necessarily evolved from the idea of human nature, without any historical conditions, which is tantamount to a declaration that the state cannot exist in actual practice, but only with a reality such that the further an actual state is removed from this standard the less virtue can appear in it. And thus, the Republic in our work attains a more important prominency than at first appears, but yet never such as to become the proper and main subject. The relation, however, of the work before us to the following dialogues is distinctly marked by Plato himself, as one not to be taken into consideration until we are arrived at a more advanced stage in the development of the philosophy of this series. In the dialogues that succeed, no one but Socrates of the whole company to whom we are here introduced bears any part; Glaucon and Adimantus, and whoever else may have appropriated those Socratic arguments, all go away perfectly satisfied, a sure sign that the work according to its original plan is only the keystone to all that has hitherto appeared. It does not become the commencement of a new series until its repetition. This is indeed a repetition which we now possess, but as a clear confirmation of what has been just said, we do not here learn to whom Socrates again repeats it, but we see first from the opening of the Timaeus that the hearers were the aforenamed, and a fourth besides who is not named. These persons then, as is clear from the expressions we there meet with had wished especially to hear Socrates’ arguments about the state, and although he was in consequence obliged to repeat the whole discussion, the Republic was to them the main subject. It is therefore to this circumstance that the title, and all who quote the work from Aristotle downwards, particularly refer; it seemed however all the more necessary to establish first of all the first and original relation of the work. Now, when Socrates on the following day requests as a repayment from those who desire him to repeat his arguments, that they, as masters in the province of practical life, will show him, better than he can himself, his own Republic in living motion with reference

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