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On Sophistical Refutations   


of necessity the happy man is just, whereas it is paradoxical to the

many that a king should be happy. To lead a man into paradoxes of this

sort is the same as to lead him into the opposition of the standards

of nature and law: for the law represents the opinion of the majority,

whereas philosophers speak according to the standard of nature and the

truth.



13



Paradoxes, then, you should seek to elicit by means of these

common-place rules. Now as for making any one babble, we have

already said what we mean by 'to babble'. This is the object in view

in all arguments of the following kind: If it is all the same to state

a term and to state its definition, the 'double' and 'double of

half' are the same: if then 'double' be the 'double of half', it

will be the 'double of half of half'. And if, instead of 'double',

'double of half' be again put, then the same expression will be

repeated three times, 'double of half of half of half'. Also 'desire

is of the pleasant, isn't it?' desire is conation for the pleasant:

accordingly, 'desire' is 'conation for the pleasant for the pleasant'.

All arguments of this kind occur in dealing (1) with any relative

terms which not only have relative genera, but are also themselves

relative, and are rendered in relation to one and the same thing, as

e.g. conation is conation for something, and desire is desire of

something, and double is double of something, i.e. double of half:

also in dealing (2) with any terms which, though they be not

relative terms at all, yet have their substance, viz. the things of

which they are the states or affections or what not, indicated as well

in their definition, they being predicated of these things. Thus

e.g. 'odd' is a 'number containing a middle': but there is an 'odd

number': therefore there is a 'number-containing-a-middle number'.

Also, if snubness be a concavity of the nose, and there be a snub

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