Protagoras, Plato
Protagoras
Plato
2:44 h Ideas Lvl 10.56
Protagoras is a dialogue by Plato. The traditional subtitle (which may or may not be Plato's) is "or the Sophists". The main argument is between Socrates and the elderly Protagoras, a celebrated sophist and philosopher. The discussion takes place at the home of Callias, who is host to Protagoras while he is in town, and concerns the nature of sophists, the unity and the teachability of virtue. A total of twenty-one people are named as present. The dialogue begins with an unnamed friend of Socrates asking him how his pursuit of the young Alcibiades, just now reputed to be growing his first beard, is proceeding. Socrates explains that while he has just been in the company of Alcibiades, his mind is now on more interesting matters. He says that the Sophist Protagoras, the wisest man alive, is in town. Socrates relates the story of how his young friend, Hippocrates, son of Apollodorus, came knocking on his door before daybreak and roused him out of bed. Hippocrates was in a big hurry to be present when Protagoras held court, as he was expected to do, at the home of Callias, and wanted Socrates to introduce him as a potential student to the old Sophist, as Protagoras had a great reputation as a teacher.

Protagoras

by
Plato


Protagoras

PERSONS OF THE DIALOGUE:

SOCRATES, who is the narrator of the Dialogue to his Companion; HIPPOCRATES; ALCIBIADES; CRINAS; PROTAGORAS, HIPPIAS, PRODICUS, Sophists; CALLIAS, a wealthy Athenian.

Scene: The House of Callias

Companion. Where do you come from, Socrates? And yet I need hardly ask the question, for I know that you have been in chase of the fair Alcibiades. I saw the day before yesterday; and he had got a beard like a man-and he is a man, as I may tell you in your ear. But I thought that he was still very charming.

Socrates. What of his beard? Are you not of Homer’s opinion, who says
Youth is most charming when the beard first appears?
And that is now the charm of Alcibiades.

Com. Well, and how do matters proceed? Have you been visiting him, and was he gracious to you?

Soc. Yes, I thought that he was very gracious; and especially to-day, for I have just come from him, and he has been helping me in an argument. But shall I tell you a strange thing? I paid no attention to him, and several times I quite forgot that he was present.

Com. What is the meaning of this? Has anything happened between you and him? For surely you cannot have discovered a fairer love than he is; certainly not in this city of Athens.

Soc. Yes, much fairer.

Com. What do you mean — a citizen or a foreigner?

Soc. A foreigner.

Com. Of what country?

Soc. Of Abdera.

Com. And is this stranger really in your opinion a fairer love than the son of Cleinias?

Soc. And is not the wiser always the fairer, sweet friend?

Com. But have you really met, Socrates, with some wise one?

Soc. Say rather, with the wisest of all living men, if you are willing to accord that title to Protagoras.

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