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Early Indo-European Texts

Classical Greek

Winfred P. Lehmann and Jonathan Slocum

This page contains a text in Classical Greek with a modern English translation. This particular text and its translation are extracted from a lesson in the Early Indo-European Online series, where one may find detailed information about this text (see the Table of Contents page for Classical Greek Online in EIEOL), and general information about the Classical Greek language and its speakers' culture.

from Plato's Republic, Book 6, Section 13

Οὐδὲ γάρ που, ʼω̂ ʼΑδείμαντε, σχολὴ τῳ̂ γε ὡς ἀληθω̂ς πρὸς τοι̂ς οʼι̂σι τὴν διάνοιαν ʼέχοντι κάτω βλέπειν εἰς ἀνθρώπων πραγματείας. καὶ μαχόμενον αὐτοι̂ς φθόνου τε καὶ δυσμενείας ἐμπίπλασθαι, ἀλλ' εἰς τεταγμένα ʽάττα καὶ κατὰ ταυ̂τὰ ἀεὶ ʼέχοντα ὁρω̂ντας καὶ θεωμένους οʼύτ' ἀδικου̂ντα οʼύτ' ἀδικούμενα ὑπ' ἀλλήλων, κόσμῳ δὲ πάντα καὶ κατὰ λόγον ʼέχοντα, ταυ̂τα μιμει̂σθαί τε καὶ ʽό τι μάλιστα ἀφομοιου̂σθαι. ʼή οʼίει τινὰ μηχανὴν εʼι̂ναι, ʽότῳ τις ὁμιλει̂ ἀγάμενος, μὴ μιμει̂σθαι ἐκει̂νο; ʼΑδύνατον, ʼέφη. Θείῳ δὴ καὶ κοσμίῳ ʽό γε φιλόσοφος ὁμιλω̂ν κόσμιός τε καὶ θει̂ος εἰς δυνατὸν ἀνθρώπῳ γίγνεται. διαβολὴ δ' ἐν πα̂σι πολλή. Παντάπασι μὲν οʼυ̂ν. ʼΆν οʼυ̂ν τις, εʼι̂πον, αὐτῳ ἀνάγκη γένεται ʽά ἐκει̂ ὁρᾳ̂ μελετη̂σαι εἰς ἀνθρώπων ʼήθη καὶ ἰδίᾳ καὶ δημοσίᾳ τίθεναι, καὶ μὴ μόνον ἑαυτὸν πλάττειν, ʼα̂ρα κακὸν δημιουργὸν αὐτὸν οʼίει γενήσεσθαι σωφροσύνης τε καὶ δικαιοσύνης καὶ ξυμπάσης τη̂ς δημοτικη̂ς ἀρετη̂ς; ʽΉκιστά γε, ʽη̂ δ' ʽός.

Translation

"For there is no leisure at all anywhere, Oh Adeimontus, for the one who truly has his mind on the eternal verities to look downward at the affairs of human beings, and quarreling with them to be filled with ill-will and hate. But he keeps his eyes fixed on what is eternal and on the things that are constant, and sees neither what is wrong nor wronged by one another; and he will imitate everything that is in accordance with reason, and become like that as much as possible. Or do you think it to be possible if someone busies himself with something admiringly not to imitate that?" He said it is impossible. "Then the wise man who busies himself with the divine and with order will become orderly and divine to the extent possible for a human. But calumny is plentiful in everything." "Absolutely, to be sure." "Suppose then, I said, some force is applied to him to practice arranging both privately and in public the manners of humans which he sees there, and not moulding himself alone. Then do you consider that he will become a poor craftsman with regard to discretion and justice and all kinds of common virtues?" "Not at all, in truth," he said.