4 Quotes from Plato on justice (Book I of the Republic)

The following quotations are taken from Victor Cousin’s translation of The Republic – (Plato), volumes nine and ten, Book I

Socrates talks about a discussion held the day before at Polemarchus ’ house, with Glaucon, Thrasymachus, Adimantus and their two guests.

Justice is not necessarily telling the truth:

“For example, if a man suffering from madness were to ask his friend for the weapons he has entrusted to him in the full exercise of his reason, everyone agrees that they should not be given back to him, and that it would be unjust to do so, as to want to tell him the whole truth in the state he is in.

Justice, then, does not consist precisely in telling the truth, and in giving back to each one what belongs to him.”

Quote source: The Republic (Book I) – Plato

Justice is not doing well to those we love, and doing harm to our enemies.

“If, then, anyone says that justice consists in rendering to each what is due to him, and if he means by this that a just man owes harm to his enemies as he owes good to his friends, this language is not that of a wise man, for it is not in accordance with the truth: we have just seen that it is never right to do harm to anyone.”

Quote source: The Republic (Book I) – Plato

Justice is a virtue, injustice, a vice

“After we had agreed that justice was virtue and skill, and injustice vice and ignorance.”

Quote source: The Republic (Book I) – Plato

Injustice is less advantageous than justice

“It is therefore false, divine Thrasymachus, that injustice is more advantageous than justice.”

Quote source: The Republic (Book I) – Plato

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General Knowledge: Justice

One thought on “4 Quotes from Plato on justice (Book I of the Republic)

  1. Better to be silent than to deliver a lie, of course, in this silence is golden! We sometimes say as an excuse the Truth hurts, so should we live and justify the lie for the peace of our own and distort justice? Justice cannot be just without the truth! the lie corrupts it even more with the money it is in this that resides a justice in the cowardice, when it is too lenient, it harms the people!

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