‘Enemies of Philebus’ and the ‘Wise’ of Republic 9
We examine the parallels between the theory of pleasure ascribed by Plato to the ‘enemies of Philebus’, in the homonymous dialogue, and that of the ‘wise men’, in the Republic 9. Though some of these parallels were noticed by G. Grote in 1865 and by J. Adam in 1907, their observations did not receive further elaboration. First, because the ‘wise’ of the Republic 9 admit at least one ‘real’ pleasure, whereas the ‘enemies of Philebus’ hold that pleasures do not exist at all (Hackforth 1945). Second, because the ‘enemies of Philebus’ came to be identified with Speusippus: indeed, Plato could not possibly refer to his nephew as ‘the wise’ in the Republic. Against this, we seek to reestablish the connection between the ‘the wise’ and ‘the enemies’, and thereby to shed some light on Plato’s literary and philosophical strategies, as well as on the making of his own theory of pleasure.