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phaedrus   



died. And now they live again in the grasshoppers; and this is the

return which the Muses make to them-they neither hunger, nor thirst,

but from the hour of their birth are always singing, and never

eating or drinking; and when they die they go and inform the Muses

in heaven who honours them on earth. They win the love of

Terpsichore for the dancers by their report of them; of Erato for

the lovers, and of the other Muses for those who do them honour,

according to the several ways of honouring them of Calliope the eldest

Muse and of Urania who is next to her, for the philosophers, of

whose music the grasshoppers make report to them; for these are the

Muses who are chiefly concerned with heaven and thought, divine as

well as human, and they have the sweetest utterance. For many reasons,

then, we ought always to talk and not to sleep at mid-day.

Phaedr. Let us talk.

Soc. Shall we discuss the rules of writing and speech as we were

proposing?

Phaedr. Very good.

Soc. In good speaking should not the mind of the speaker know the

truth of the matter about which he is going to speak?

Phaedr. And yet, Socrates, I have heard that he who would be an

orator has nothing to do with true justice, but only with that which

is likely to be approved by the many who sit in judgment; nor with the

truly good or honourable, but only with opinion about them, and that

from opinion comes persuasion, and not from the truth.

Soc. The words of the wise are not to be set aside; for there is

probably something in them; and therefore the meaning of this saying

is not hastily to be dismissed.

Phaedr. Very true.

Soc. Let us put the matter thus:-Suppose that I persuaded you to buy

a horse and go to the wars. Neither of us knew what a horse was

like, but I knew that you believed a horse to be of tame animals the

one which has the longest ears.

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