Saturday, February 19, 2005

Republic 329d7-e5

And I, being astonished by him saying these things, and wishing him to say still more, stirred him up and said, "Cephalus, I suppose that when you say these things the many do not accept them from you, but they hold that you bear old age easily not because of character but because of having gained much substance; for they declare that the wealthy have many consolations."

[According to Adam, the word ekinoun, which I have translated "stirred him up," has a technical meaning in the Socratic dialect: "the stimulating of the intellect by interrogation."

Most people translate ousia as "wealth" in this context, but I like sticking with the literal meaning, substance. I suppose that's because I was raised on the KJV, which often does the same.

I wonder why S. is so astonished at C.'s remarks. Why is S. astonished at what C. says? What is there at which to be astonished in C.'s statements? Is it the fact that C. believes that it is character that makes old age only moderately troublesome? Is that astonishing? I don't find that claim astonishing, but perhaps I should.

Or is it more the fact that it is C. saying these things that astonishes S.? I.e., S. is thinking, "Wow, is this C. I'm talking to?"]

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