He roared out to the whole company: What folly. Socrates, has taken possession of you all? And why, sillybillies, do you knock under to one another? I say that if you want really to know what justice is, you should not only ask but answer, and you should not seek honour to yourself from the refutation of an opponent, but have your own answer; for there is many a one who can ask and cannot answer. And now I will not have you say that justice is duty or advantage or profit or gain or interest, for this sort of nonsense will not do for me; I must have clearness and accuracy.
I was panic-stricken at his words, and could not look at him without trembling.
Thr: What a charming notion! So likely too, seeing that I affirm injustice to be profitable and justice not.
Soc: What else then would you say?
Thr: The opposite, he replied.
Soc: And would you call justice vice?
Thr: No, I would rather say sublime simplicity.
Soc: Then would you call injustice malignity?
Thr: No; I would rather say discretion.
Soc: And do the unjust appear to you to be wise and good?
Thr: Yes, he said; at any rate those of them who are able to be perfectly unjust, and who have the power of subduing states and nations; but perhaps you imagine me to be talking of cutpurses.