Theaetetus, Plato
Theaetetus
Plato
3:44 h Ideas Lvl 10.51
The Theaetetus is one of Plato's dialogues concerning the nature of knowledge, written circa 369 BCE. In this dialogue set in a wrestling school, Socrates and Theaetetus discuss three definitions of knowledge: knowledge as nothing but perception, knowledge as true judgment, and, finally, knowledge as a true judgment with an account. Each of these definitions is shown to be unsatisfactory. The dialogue is framed by a brief scene in which Euclid of Megara tells his friend Terpsion that he has a written record of a dialogue between Socrates and Theaetetus, which occurred when Theaetetus was quite a young man. This dialogue is then read aloud to the two men by a slave owned by Euclid.

Theaetetus

by
Plato


Theaetetus

Persons of the dialogue: Socrates; Theodorus; Theaetetus

Scene: Euclid and Terpsion meet in front of Euclid’s house in Megara; they enter the house, and the dialogue is read to them by a servant.

Euclid. Have you only just arrived from the country, Terpsion?

Terpsion. No, I came some time ago: and I have been in the Agora looking for you, and wondering that I could not find you.

Euc. But I was not in the city.

Terp. Where then?

Euc. As I was going down to the harbour, I met Theaetetus — he was being carried up to Athens from the army at Corinth.

Terp. Was he alive or dead?

Euc. He was scarcely alive, for he has been badly wounded; but he was suffering even more from the sickness which has broken out in the army.

Terp. The dysentery, you mean?

Euc.Yes.

Terp. Alas! what a loss he will be!

Euc. Yes, Terpsion, he is a noble fellow; only to-day I heard some people highly praising his behaviour in this very battle.

Terp. No wonder; I should rather be surprised at hearing anything else of him. But why did he go on, instead of stopping at Megara?

Euc. He wanted to get home: although I entreated and advised him to remain he would not listen to me; so I set him on his way, and turned back, and then I remembered what Socrates had said of him, and thought how remarkably this, like all his predictions, had been fulfilled. I believe that he had seen him a little before his own death, when Theaetetus was a youth, and he had a memorable conversation with him, which he repeated to me when I came to Athens; he was full of admiration of his genius, and said that he would most certainly be a great man, if he lived.

Terp. The prophecy has certainly been fulfilled; but what was the conversation? can you tell me?

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