SYMPOSIUM [NOOK Book]

Overview

INTRODUCTION.

Of all the works of Plato the Symposium is the most perfect in form,
and may be truly thought to contain more than any commentator has ever
dreamed of; or, as Goethe said of one of his own...
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SYMPOSIUM

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Overview

INTRODUCTION.

Of all the works of Plato the Symposium is the most perfect in form,
and may be truly thought to contain more than any commentator has ever
dreamed of; or, as Goethe said of one of his own writings, more than the
author himself knew. For in philosophy as in prophecy glimpses of the
future may often be conveyed in words which could hardly have been
understood or interpreted at the time when they were uttered (compare
Symp.)--which were wiser than the writer of them meant, and could not
have been expressed by him if he had been interrogated about them.
Yet Plato was not a mystic, nor in any degree affected by the Eastern
influences which afterwards overspread the Alexandrian world. He was
not an enthusiast or a sentimentalist, but one who aspired only to
see reasoned truth, and whose thoughts are clearly explained in his
language. There is no foreign element either of Egypt or of Asia to
be found in his writings. And more than any other Platonic work the
Symposium is Greek both in style and subject, having a beauty 'as of
a statue,' while the companion Dialogue of the Phaedrus is marked by
a sort of Gothic irregularity. More too than in any other of his
Dialogues, Plato is emancipated from former philosophies. The genius of
Greek art seems to triumph over the traditions of Pythagorean, Eleatic,
or Megarian systems, and 'the old quarrel of poetry and philosophy' has
at least a superficial reconcilement. (Rep.)

An unknown person who had heard of the discourses in praise of love
spoken by Socrates and others at the banquet of Agathon is desirous of
having an authentic account of them, which he thinks that he can
obtain from Apollodorus, the same excitable, or rather 'mad' friend of
Socrates, who is afterwards introduced in the Phaedo. He had imagined
that the discourses were recent. There he is mistaken: but they are
still fresh in the memory of his informant, who had just been repeating
them to Glaucon, and is quite prepared to have another rehearsal of them
in a walk from the Piraeus to Athens. Although he had not been present
himself, he had heard them from the best authority. Aristodemus, who
is described as having been in past times a humble but inseparable
attendant of Socrates, had reported them to him (compare Xen. Mem.).

The narrative which he had heard was as follows:--

Aristodemus meeting Socrates in holiday attire, is invited by him to
a banquet at the house of Agathon, who had been sacrificing in
thanksgiving for his tragic victory on the day previous. But no sooner
has he entered the house than he finds that he is alone; Socrates has
stayed behind in a fit of abstraction, and does not appear until the
banquet is half over. On his appearing he and the host jest a little;
the question is then asked by Pausanias, one of the guests, 'What shall
they do about drinking? as they had been all well drunk on the day
before, and drinking on two successive days is such a bad thing.' This
is confirmed by the authority of Eryximachus the physician, who further
proposes that instead of listening to the flute-girl and her 'noise'
they shall make speeches in honour of love, one after another, going
from left to right in the order in which they are reclining at the
table. All of them agree to this proposal, and Phaedrus, who is
the 'father' of the idea, which he has previously communicated to
Eryximachus, begins as follows:--

He descants first of all upon the antiquity of love, which is proved by
the authority of the poets; secondly upon the benefits which love gives
to man. The greatest of these is the sense of honour and dishonour.
The lover is ashamed to be seen by the beloved doing or suffering any
cowardly or mean act. And a state or army which was made up only of
lovers and their loves would be invincible. For love will convert the
veriest coward into an inspired hero.

And there have been true loves not only of men but of women also. Such
was the love of Alcestis, who dared to die for her husband, and in
recompense of her virtue was allowed to come again from the dead. But
Orpheus, the miserable harper, who went down to Hades alive, that he
might bring back his wife, was mocked with an apparition only, and
the gods afterwards contrived his death as the punishment of his
cowardliness. The love of Achilles, like that of Alcestis, was
courageous and true; for he was willing to avenge his lover Patroclus,
although he knew that his own death would immediately follow: and
the gods, who honour the love of the beloved above that of the lover,
rewarded him, and sent him to the islands of the blest.
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Product Details

  • BN ID: 2940012417589
  • Publisher: SAP
  • Publication date: 5/18/2011
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • File size: 80 KB

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 245 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(192)

4 Star

(17)

3 Star

(14)

2 Star

(2)

1 Star

(20)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 245 Customer Reviews
  • Posted March 25, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    vastly important

    This book is one of the classics of Western thought. It is not only a glimpse into Greek culture and norms but also into one of the West's greatest minds.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 8, 2014

    Soulcharmer*

    *fly

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 8, 2014

    Guliä 2

    Fudge! Meant to use these: '' instead of those: "" ...

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 7, 2014

    Andrew t

    Is anyone else getting locked out of EVERYWHERE YOU GO?!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 7, 2014

    The Ice Blue Dragon

    The ice blue dragon just shakes her head and scans the camp. She preferred it more like this. Only a few were awake. Spotting a new creature, she rumbles, "Weasel, do not be frusterated. Things will soon be calm." Then she charges over to Josylyn and rears onto her hindlegs with a roar. Hissing and baring her fangs, she looks down at the other creature. ~ The Ice Blue Dragon

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 7, 2014

    Synthestio>The Ice Blue Dragon

    He smiles. "The highest of compliments."

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 9, 2014

    Mouse

    The mouse squeals and runs toward Amy.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 6, 2014

    Smoke

    Looks for kylie his Rider

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 7, 2014

    The Ice Blue Dragon

    The ice blue dragon can't hold back a roar of laughter. "Really weasel?! That's what you want to use her magic for?!" ~ The Ice Blue Dragon

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 6, 2014

    Joslyn

    Yawned and streched

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 6, 2014

    Death

    Smies

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 8, 2014

    Cassi

    The barrier stopped him cold, but this time didnt zap him, as she didnt want to caus him any more pain.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 6, 2014

    Cassi

    Then dont get in between sythestio and me during an argument.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 9, 2014

    Joslyn

    Sorry fell asleep.) "Of course." She nodded

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 6, 2014

    Katie

    YOU STILL ARE SPELLING IT WRONG! Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 10, 2014

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 7, 2014

    The Ice Blue Dragon

    The ice blue dragon smirks at Synthestio and then answers, "Well we shall have to fix that. Perhaps tomorrow." Feeling no longer wary of the pair, the dragon lies down and lets out a yawn. With a laugh, she says, "If weasel is dead or if raven has a flock, then yes." Smiling, she rests her head on the ground and curls up by Synthestio and Cassi. "I have dreams to discover." She whispers. "Goodnight." Slowly her aqua eyes close and her brrathing steadies as the dragon slips away into sleep. ~ The Ice Blue Dragon P.S. I should be back tomorrow morning!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 10, 2014

    Synthestio

    "Indeed...."

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 7, 2014

    Silversong

    The dark green dragon yawned

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 10, 2014

    Guliä

    She crept off to hunt.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 245 Customer Reviews

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