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τὸ τεθνάναι ̇ ἢ γὰρ οἷον μηδὲν εἶναι μηδ ̓ αἴσθησιν μηδεμίαν μηδενὸς ἔχειν τὸν τεθνεῶτα, ἢ κατὰ τὰ λε γόμενα μεταβολή τις τυγχάνει οὖσα καὶ μετοίκησις τῆς ψυχῆς τοῦ τόπου τοῦ ἐνθένδε εἰς ἄλλον τόπον. καὶ εἴτε δὴ μηδεμία αἴσθησίς ἐστιν, ἀλλ ̓ οἷον ὕπνος, ἐπειδάν τις καθεύδων μηδ ̓ ὄναρ μηδὲν ὁρᾷ, θαυμάσιον κέρδος ἂν εἴη ὁ θάνατος. ἐγὼ γὰρ ἂν οἶμαι, εἴ τινα ἐκλεξάμενον δέοι ταύτην τὴν νύκτα ἐν ᾗ οὕτω κατέδαρθεν ὥστε μηδ ̓ ὄναρ ἰδεῖν, καὶ τὰς ἄλλας νύκτας
soul survived, and others that it perished with the body. In either case he argues that death is not an evil; as an eternal and dreamless sleep it should of necessity be unaccompanied by any feeling of either pleasure or pain arising from past or present circumstances, whereas if death were merely an affection of the body by which the spirit was wholly uninfluenced, it should not only outlive its mortal frame, but enjoy the pure and perfect happiness arising from communion with the just. It must be understood, however, that Socrates only treats of this alternative with reference to those whose lives, like his own, had been such as to warrant them in the anticipation of future felicity; the eternal punishment of the guilty, in the world beyond the grave, was a no less prominent feature than the former in the doctrine and discipline of this exalted sage.
Ἢ γὰρ οἷον μηδὲν εἶναι.] h. e. τοιοῦτόν τι ὥστε μηδὲν εἶναι, as also infr. εἰ δ ̓ αὖ οἷον ἀποδημῆσαι ἐστιν ὁ θάνατος. Eusebius and Theodoret, in quoting this passage, read μηδέν τι εἶναι, whence the conjecture of Heindorf, μηδὲν ἔτι εἶναι.
Μετοίκησις τῆς ψυχῆς.] Stob. Cod. Euseb. Oxon. τῇ ψυχῇ ; approved by Stallbaum, who refers to Matthiæ Gr. s. 389. 1. Cf. Cic. Tusc. 1. 12. "Mortem non ita interitum esse omnia tollentem atque delentem, sed quandam quasi migrationem commutationemque vitæ." Antonin. Philos. vii. 32. Περὶ θανάτου —ἤτοι σβέσις, ἢ μετάστασις. Senec. ep. 65. “ Mors quidem est, aut finis aut
Καὶ εἴτε δὴ μηδεμία--.] "Ειτε refers to the second hypothesis, εἰ δ ̓ αὖ οἷον, κ. τ. λ., further on.
θαυμάσιον κέρδος.] Aristotle, though brought up in the school of Plato, deduces, from the same principles as those in the text, a very different conclusion: Eth. Nicom. iii. 6. φοβερώτατον δ ̓ ὁ θάνατος· πέρας γάρ· καὶ οὐδὲν ἔτι τῷ τεθνεῶτι δοκεῖ, οὔτε ἀγαθὸν, οὔτε καὶ κὸν εἶναι. Epicurus, however, uses this Socratic argument against the fear of death, which he asserts that philosophy is able to conquer by teaching that it is not a proper object of terror, since while we are, death is not, and when death arrives we are not: so that it neither concerns the living nor the dead. Enfield's Philosophy, v. 1. p. 514.
Ἐγὼ γὰρ ἄν οἶμαι, κ. τ. λ.] i. e. For I imagine that if one were obliged; having selected the particular night during which he slept without dreaming, and having contrasted with this the other nights and days of his life; were obliged [I repeat] to consider and say how many days and nights he had passed, through his existence, better and more agreeably than this night; I think [I say] that not only a private person, but the mighty sovereign himself, would find them easily counted [i. e. very few] in comparison with other days and nights, i. e. in a life where sorrow and suffering are admitted to be so widely disproportionate to its pleasures and tranquillity, it must be also conceded that the enjoyment of the latter is as limited and transient as the influence of the former is extended and enduring.-Μὴ ὅτι ἰδιώτην, h. e. ne privatum aliquem. STALL. On μὴ ὅτι, fur οὐκ ὅπως, see Matthiæ Gr. s. 624. 4.-Τὸν μέγαν βασιλέα, the king of Persia, so called κατ' ἐξοχὴν.-εὐαρίθμητοι ἡμέραι, dies admodum perpauci. Pollux. iii. 88.
τε καὶ ἡμέρας τὰς τοῦ βίου τοῦ ἑαυτοῦ ἀντιπαραθέντα ταύτῃ τῇ νυκτὶ δέοι σκεψάμενον εἰπεῖν πόσας ἄμεινον καὶ ἥδιον ἡμέρας καὶ νύκτας ταύτης τῆς νυκτὸς βεβίωκεν ἐν τῷ ἑαυτοῦ βίῳ, οἶμαι ἂν μὴ ὅτι ἰδιώτην τινὰ ἀλλὰ τὸν μέγαν βασιλέα εὐαριθμήτους ἂν εὑρεῖν αὐτὸν ταύτας πρὸς τὰς ἄλλας ἡμέρας καὶ νύκτας. εἰ οὖν τοιοῦτον ὁ θάνατός ἐστι, κέρδος ἔγωγε λέγω· καὶ γὰρ οὐδὲν πλείων ὁ πᾶς χρόνος φαίνεται οὕτω δὴ εἶναι ἢ μία νύξ. εἰ δ ̓ αὖ οἷον ἀποδημῆσαί ἐστιν ὁ θάνατος ἐνθένδε εἰς ἄλλον τόπον, καὶ ἀληθῆ ἐστι τὰ λεγόμενα, ὡς ἄρα ἐκεῖ εἰσὶν ἅπαντες οἱ τεθνεῶτες, τί μεῖζον ἀγαθὸν τούτου εἴη ἄν, ὦ ἄνδρες δικασταί ; εἰ γάρ τις ἀφικόμενος εἰς ̔Αιδου, ἀπαλλαγεὶς τουτωνὶ τῶν φασκόντων δικαστῶν εἶναι, εὑρήσει τοὺς ὡς ἀληθῶς δικαστάς, οἵ περ καὶ λέγονται ἐκεῖ δικάζειν, Μίνως τε καὶ Ῥαδάμανθυς καὶ Αἰακὸς καὶ Τριπτόλεμος, καὶ ἄλλοι ὅσοι τῶν ἡμιθέων δίκαιοι ἐγένοντο ἐν τῷ ἑαυτῶν βίῳ, ἆρα φαύλη ἂν εἴη ἡ ἀποδημία ; ἢ αὖ Ὀρφεῖ ξυγγενέσθαι καὶ Μουσαίῳ καὶ Ἡσιόδῳ καὶ Ὁμήρῳ ἐπὶ πόσῳ ἄν τις δέξαιτ ̓ ἂν ὑμῶν; ἐγὼ μὲν γὰρ πολλάκις ἐθέλω τεθνάναι, εἰ ταῦτ ̓ ἐστὶν ἀληθῆ, ἐπεὶ ἔμοιγε καὶ αὐτῷ θαυμαστὴ ἂν εἴη ἡ διατριβὴ αὐ
Οὐδὲν πλείων.] Fischer, from Eusebius, reads πλεῖον; adopted by Ficinus; but πλείων is preferable in the sense of longior, more lasting.
Μίνως τε καὶ ̔Ραδάμανθυς, κ. τ. λ.] For this construction see Matthiæ Gr. s. 474. b. and the parallels adduced. Triptolemus, and the demigods alluded to in the text, were classed among the judges of the lower regions, probably from some popular superstition originating in, and connected with the Eleusinian mysteries. For Triptolemus was said not only to have instructed the Athenians in agriculture, but to have suggested a code of laws, especially relating to the boundaries and division of lands, whence he obtained the title of Θεσμοφόρος. Creuzer, Mytholog. iv. p.
Μὲν γὰρ.] Profecto sane. BUTTM.
θαυμαστὴ—ἡ διατριβὴ, κ. τ. λ.] See Matthiæ Gr. s. 636. p. 1145. Conversatio delectabilis, si colloqui licebit cum P. etc. WoLr. opp. to φαύλη ἡ ἀποδημία, supr. vita, peregrinatio, injucund. neque beata. FiscH.---Παλαμήde-stoned by the Greeks, through the stratagems of Ulysses, v. Æneid. ii. 81. sq. Socrates, in Xenoph. Apol. s. 26, mentions the similarity between the cause of Palamedes and his own. Lucian, in allusion to this, as also to the passage in the text, makes Palamedes the sole companion of Socrates in the infernal regions. Ajax, son of Telamon, slew himself when Ulysses was adjudged, in preference, the amour of Achilles, Homer. Odys. λ'.
τόθι, ὁπότε ἐντύχοιμι Παλαμήδει καὶ Αἴαντι τῷ Τελαμῶνος καὶ εἴ τις ἄλλος τῶν παλαιῶν διὰ κρίσιν ἄδικον τέθνηκεν· ἀντιπαραβάλλοντι τὰ ἐμαυτοῦ πάθη πρὸς τὰ ἐκείνων, ὡς ἐγᾦμαι, οὐκ ἂν ἀηδὲς εἴη. καὶ δὴ καὶ τὸ μέγιστον, τοὺς ἐκεῖ ἐξετάζοντα καὶ ἐρευ νῶντα ὥς περ τοὺς ἐνταῦθα διάγειν, τίς αὐτῶν σοφός ἐστι καὶ τίς οἴεται μὲν, ἔστι δ ̓ οὔ. ἐπὶ πόσῳ δ ̓ ἄν τις, ὦ ἄνδρες δικασταί, δέξαιτο δέξαιτο ἐξετάσαι τὸν ἐπὶ Τροίαν ἀγαγόντα τὴν πολλὴν στρατιὰν ἢ Οδυσσέα ἢ Σίσυφον, ἢ ἄλλους μυρίους ἄν τις εἴποι καὶ ἄνδρας καὶ γυναῖκας, οἷς ἐκεῖ διαλέγεσθαι καὶ ξυνεῖναι καὶ ἐξετάζειν ἀμήχανον ἂν εἴη εὐδαιμονίας πάντως. οὐ δή που τούτου γε ἕνεκα οἱ ἐκεῖ ἀποκτείνουσι τά τε γὰρ ἄλλα εὐδαιμονέστεροί εἰσιν οἱ ἐκεῖ τῶν ἐνθάδε, καὶ ἤδη τὸν λοιπὸν χρόνον ἀθάνατοί εἰσιν, εἴ πέρ γε τὰ λεγόμενα ἀληθῆ ἐστίν.
§. 33. ̓Αλλὰ καὶ ὑμᾶς χρή, ὦ ἄνδρες δικασταί, εὐέλπιδας εἶναι πρὸς τὸν θάνατον, καὶ ἕν τι τοῦτο διανοεῖσθαι ἀληθές, ὅτι οὐκ ἔστιν ἀνδρὶ ἀγαθῷ κακὸν οὐδὲν οὔτε ζῶντι οὔτε τελευτήσαντι, οὐδὲ ἀμελεῖται
γειν. Phædon. c. 43. καὶ ἄλλα που μυρία, κ. τ. λ. HEUSD.
̓Αμήχανον ἂν εἴη εὐδαιμονίας.] 1. e. immensum esset respectu felicitatis. STALL. i. q. ἀμήχανος ἂν εἴη εὐδαιμονία. Cf. Theætet. p. 175. Α. ἄτοπα αὐτῷ καταφαίνεται τῆς σμικρολογίας. See Matthiæ Gr. s. 320.--Εξετάζειν Socrates intends by this, that he would examine into the principles and feelings, by which those with whom he expected to associate had been influenced during their lives, and the wisdom of which they actually were, or imagined themselves to be then possessed of; not that he would make such inquiries, and promote such discussions, as if their errors and inexperience had continued to attend them, and were still liable to be confuted, when their earthly ordeal was past.
§. 33. ̓Αλλὰ καὶ ὑμᾶς χρή.] i. e. Vos judices qui me absolvistis. Cic. Tusc. 1. 41.
ὑπὸ θεῶν τὰ τούτου πράγματα ̇ οὐδὲ τὰ ἐμὰ νῦν ἀπὸ τοῦ αὐτομάτου γέγονεν, ἀλλά μοι δῆλόν ἐστι τοῦτο, ὅτι ἤδη τεθνάναι καὶ ἀπηλλάχθαι πραγμάτων βέλτιον ἦν μοι. διὰ τοῦτο καὶ ἐμὲ οὐδαμοῦ ἀπέτρεψε τὸ σημεῖον, καὶ ἔγωγε τοῖς καταψηφισαμένοις μου καὶ τοῖς κατηγόροις οὐ πάνυ χαλεπαίνω. καί τοι οὐ ταύτῃ τῇ διανοίᾳ κατεψηφίζοντό μου καὶ κατηγόρουν, ἀλλ ̓ οἰόμενοι βλάπτειν· τοῦτο αὐτοῖς ἄξιον μέμφεσθαι.
Τοσόνδε μέντοι αὐτῶν δέομαι. τοὺς υἱεῖς μου, ἐπειδὰν ἡβήσωσι, τιμωρήσασθε, ὦ ἄνδρες, ταὐτὰ ταῦτα λυποῦντες ἅ περ ἐγὼ ὑμᾶς ἐλύπουν, ἐὰν ὑμῖν δοκῶσιν ἢ χρημάτων ἢ ἄλλου του πρότερον ἐπιμε λεῖσθαι ἢ ἀρετῆς· καὶ ἐὰν δοκῶσί τι εἶναι μηδὲν ὄντες, ὀνειδίζετε αὐτοῖς ὥς περ ἐγὼ ὑμῖν, ὅτι οὐκ ἐπιμελοῦνται ὧν δεῖ καὶ οἴονταί τι εἶναι ὄντες οὐδενὸς ἄξιοι. καὶ ἐὰν ταῦτα ποιῆτε, δίκαια πεπονθὼς ἐγὼ ἔσομαι ὑφ ̓ ὑμῶν αὐτός τε καὶ οἱ υἱεῖς.
̓Αλλὰ γὰρ ἤδη ὥρα ἀπιέναι ἐμοὶ μὲν ἀποθανου
Οτι ἤδη τεθνάναι -- βέλτιον ἦν μοι.] Cf. Young, N. T. iii. 495-500.
Death is victory ;
It binds in chains the raging ills of life:
That ills corrosive, cares importunate
Οὐ πάνυ.] Non magnopere. STALL. Δέομαι, κ. τ. λ.] Peto a vobis, Athenienses, quum filii mei adoleverint, ut eos ulciscamini, easdem illis molestius exhibente [λυποῦντες, h. e. eos ad virtutem cohortantes, tentantes eorum sapientiam, convincentes eos stultitiæ. STALL.] quas ego vobis exhibere consueveram, si, aut pecuniæ, aut ullius omnino rei, quam virtutes studiosiores esse videantur.FiscH.-Τιμωρήσασθαι — λυποῦντας, Salvin. adopted also by Ficinus.
̓Αλλὰ γὰρ ἤδη ὥρα.] This simple but essentially sublime conclusion is in perfect accordance with the tone of
the entire Apology. It was in vain to
μένῳ, ὑμῖν δὲ βιωσομένοις· ὁπότεροι δὲ ἡμῶν ἔρχονται ἐπὶ ἄμεινον πρᾶγμα, ἄδηλον παντὶ πλὴν ἢ τῷ θεῷ.
at large. In fine, he addresses them: “ It is now time to depart-for me, to die ; for you, to live; but which to the happier destiny, the Deity alone can tell."
How admirable, observes Dr. Brown, is that goodness which knows so well how to adapt to each other feelings that
are opposite, which gives to man a love of life, enough to reconcile him, without an effort, to the earth, which is to be the scene of his exertions; and which, at the same time, gives those purer and more glorious wishes which make him ready to part with the very life he loved.