the soul is a harmony capable of being led by the affections of the
body, and not rather of a nature which leads and masters them; and
herself a far diviner thing than any harmony?
Yes, Socrates, I quite agree to that.
Then, my friend, we can never be right in saying that the soul is
a harmony, for that would clearly contradict the divine Homer as
well as ourselves.
True, he said.
Thus much, said Socrates, of Harmonia, your Theban goddess, Cebes,
who has not been ungracious to us, I think; but what shall I say to
the Theban Cadmus, and how shall I propitiate him?
I think that you will discover a way of propitiating him, said
Cebes; I am sure that you have answered the argument about harmony
in a manner that I could never have expected. For when Simmias
mentioned his objection, I quite imagined that no answer could be
given to him, and therefore I was surprised at finding that his
argument could not sustain the first onset of yours; and not
impossibly the other, whom you call Cadmus, may share a similar fate.
Nay, my good friend, said Socrates, let us not boast, lest some evil
eye should put to flight the word which I am about to speak. That,
however, may be left in the hands of those above, while I draw near in
Homeric fashion, and try the mettle of your words. Briefly, the sum of
your objection is as follows: You want to have proven to you that
the soul is imperishable and immortal, and you think that the
philosopher who is confident in death has but a vain and foolish
confidence, if he thinks that he will fare better than one who has led
another sort of life, in the world below, unless he can prove this;
and you say that the demonstration of the strength and divinity of the
soul, and of her existence prior to our becoming men, does not
necessarily imply her immortality. Granting that the soul is
longlived, and has known and done much in a former state, still she is
not on that account immortal; and her entrance into the human form may