republic (books 6 - 10)
ness of learning and knowing truth.
Then the lover of wisdom has a great advantage over the
lover of gain, for he has a double experience?
Yes, very great.
Again, has he greater experience of the pleasures of honor,
or the lover of honor of the pleasures of wisdom?
Nay, he said, all three are honored in proportion as they
attain their object; for the rich man and the brave man and
the wise man alike have their crowd of admirers, and as they
all receive honor they all have experience of the pleasures of
honor; but the delight which is to be found in the knowledge
of true being is known to the philosopher only.
His experience, then, will enable him to judge better than
And he is the only one who has wisdom as well as experi-
Further, the very faculty which is the instrument of judg-
ment is not possessed by the covetous or ambitious man, but
only by the philosopher?
Reason, with whom, as we were saying, the decision ought
And reasoning is peculiarly his instrument?
If wealth and gain were the criterion, then the praise or
blame of the lover of gain would surely be the most trust-
Or if honor, or victory, or courage, in that case the judg-
ment of the ambitious or pugnacious would be the truest?
But since experience and wisdom and reason are the
The only inference possible, he replied, is that pleasures
which are approved by the lover of wisdom and reason are
And so we arrive at the result, that the pleasure of the in-
telligent part of the soul is the pleasantest of the three, and
that he of us in whom this is the ruling principle has the