[310a] ΣΩ: πάνυ γε, πολλὰ καὶ εἰπὼν καὶ ἀκούσας.
ΕΤ: τί οὖν οὐ διηγήσω ἡμῖν τὴν συνουσίαν, εἰ μή σέ τι κωλύει, καθεζόμενος ἐνταυθί, ἐξαναστήσας τὸν παῖδα τουτονί;
ΣΩ: πάνυ μὲν οὖν: καὶ χάριν γε εἴσομαι, ἐὰν ἀκούητε.
ΕΤ: καὶ μὴν καὶ ἡμεῖς σοί, ἐὰν λέγῃς.
ΣΩ: διπλῆ ἂν εἴη ἡ χάρις. ἀλλ᾽ οὖν ἀκούετε.
τῆς γὰρ παρελθούσης νυκτὸς ταυτησί, ἔτι βαθέος ὄρθρου, Ἱπποκράτης, ὁ Ἀπολλοδώρου ὑὸς Φάσωνος δὲ ἀδελφός, τὴν [310b] θύραν τῇ βακτηρίᾳ πάνυ σφόδρα ἔκρουε, καὶ ἐπειδὴ αὐτῷ ἀνέῳξέ τις, εὐθὺς εἴσω ᾔει ἐπειγόμενος, καὶ τῇ φωνῇ μέγα λέγων, “ὦ Σώκρατες,” ἔφη, “ἐγρήγορας ἢ καθεύδεις;” καὶ ἐγὼ τὴν φωνὴν γνοὺς αὐτοῦ, “Ἱπποκράτης,” ἔφην, “οὗτος: μή τι νεώτερον ἀγγέλλεις;” “οὐδέν γ᾽,” ἦ δ᾽ ὅς, “εἰ μὴ ἀγαθά γε.” “εὖ ἂν λέγοις,” ἦν δ᾽ ἐγώ: “ἔστι δὲ τί, καὶ τοῦ ἕνεκα τηνικάδε ἀφίκου;” “Πρωταγόρας,” ἔφη, “ἥκει,” στὰς παρ᾽ ἐμοί. “πρῴην,” ἔφην ἐγώ: “σὺ δὲ ἄρτι πέπυσαι;” “νὴ τοὺς θεούς,” ἔφη, “ἑσπέρας γε.” [310c] καὶ ἅμα ἐπιψηλαφήσας τοῦ σκίμποδος ἐκαθέζετο παρὰ τοὺς πόδας μου, καὶ εἶπεν: “ἑσπέρας δῆτα, μάλα γε ὀψὲ ἀφικόμενος ἐξ Οἰνόης. ὁ γάρ τοι παῖς με ὁ Σάτυρος ἀπέδρα: καὶ δῆτα μέλλων σοι φράζειν ὅτι διωξοίμην αὐτόν, ὑπό τινος ἄλλου ἐπελαθόμην. ἐπειδὴ δὲ ἦλθον καὶ δεδειπνηκότες ἦμεν καὶ ἐμέλλομεν ἀναπαύεσθαι, τότε μοι ἁδελφὸς λέγει ὅτι ἥκει Πρωταγόρας. καὶ ἔτι μὲν ἐνεχείρησα εὐθὺς παρὰ σὲ ἰέναι, ἔπειτά μοι λίαν πόρρω ἔδοξε τῶν νυκτῶν εἶναι: ἐπειδὴ [310d] δὲ τάχιστά με ἐκ τοῦ κόπου ὁ ὕπνος ἀνῆκεν, εὐθὺς ἀναστὰς οὕτω δεῦρο ἐπορευόμην.” καὶ ἐγὼ γιγνώσκων αὐτοῦ τὴν ἀνδρείαν καὶ τὴν πτοίησιν, “τί οὖν σοι,” ἦν δ᾽ ἐγώ, “τοῦτο; μῶν τί σε ἀδικεῖ Πρωταγόρας;” καὶ ὃς γελάσας, “νὴ τοὺς θεούς,” ἔφη, “ὦ Σώκρατες, ὅτι γε μόνος ἐστὶ σοφός, ἐμὲ δὲ οὐ ποιεῖ.” “ἀλλὰ ναὶ μὰ Δία,” ἔφην ἐγώ, “ἂν αὐτῷ διδῷς ἀργύριον καὶ πείθῃς ἐκεῖνον, ποιήσει καὶ σὲ σοφόν.” “εἰ γάρ,” ἦ δ᾽ ὅς, “ὦ Ζεῦ καὶ θεοί, ἐν [310e] τούτῳ εἴη: ὡς οὔτ᾽ ἂν τῶν ἐμῶν ἐπιλίποιμι οὐδὲν οὔτε τῶν φίλων: ἀλλ᾽ αὐτὰ ταῦτα καὶ νῦν ἥκω παρὰ σέ, ἵνα ὑπὲρ ἐμοῦ διαλεχθῇς αὐτῷ. ἐγὼ γὰρ ἅμα μὲν καὶ νεώτερός εἰμι, ἅμα δὲ οὐδὲ ἑώρακα Πρωταγόραν πώποτε οὐδ᾽ ἀκήκοα οὐδέν: ἔτι γὰρ παῖς ἦ ὅτε τὸ πρότερον ἐπεδήμησε. ἀλλὰ γάρ, ὦ Σώκρατες, πάντες τὸν ἄνδρα ἐπαινοῦσιν καί φασιν σοφώτατον εἶναι λέγειν:
from Burnet's (1903) Oxford Classical Text, courtesy of the Perseus Project
An original translation
Soc: Yes, and I talked and listened quite a lot.
Com: So why don’t you tell us about the conversation, if nothing’s stopping you? Let this boy1 get up, and you sit right here.
Soc: Sure, and you’ll do me a favor by listening.
Com: You’ll do us a favor by talking.
Soc: Call it a two-way favor, then. Here’s what happened.
Late last night, when it was still dark, Hippocrates, the one who’s Apollodorus’ son and Phason’s brother, rapped on my door very loudly with his cane. When someone opened it for him, he rushed straight inside and boomed, “Socrates, are you awake or asleep?”
And since I recognized his voice, I said, “Hippocrates! Don't tell me the news is bad.”
“Nothing but good news,” he said.
“You should tell me. What is it? Why have you shown up so late?”
“Protagoras,” he said, standing beside me, “is here.”
“He came the day before yesterday. Did you only just find out?”
“I swear, only last night.”
And then he groped about in the dark for the bed, sat down by my feet and said, “So last night it was, I was coming back pretty late from Oenoe. My boy1 Satyrus, you see, had run away from me – I meant to tell you that I was after him, but forgot for some reason – Anyway, when I got back and we had dinner and were about to turn in, that’s when my brother told me that Protagoras is here. I was set to come straight to you, but I thought it was too late at night. As soon as I’d had enough sleep to not be so tired, I got up straightaway and came over here.”
Seeing how fierce and excited he was, I said, “What’s it to you? Protagoras can't have done you wrong, can he?”
He laughed and said, “For god’s sake, Socrates, only because he’s wise and doesn’t make me wise too.”
“But I swear, if you pay him and talk him round, he will.”
“Oh god, if it was only about that, I wouldn’t spare any of my money or my friends’. But I came to you now so you’ll talk all this over with him for me. I’m too young, and I’ve never even seen or heard Protagoras. I was just a little boy last time he was in town. Come on, Socrates. Everyone speaks highly of this man and says he’s a very talented speaker…”
1The term ‘boy’ is here used of slaves without regard to their age, as in the antebellum South.
Jowett's translation (1871)
Soc. Yes; and I have heard and said many things.
Com. Then, if you have no engagement, suppose that you sit down tell me what passed, and my attendant here shall give up his place to you.
Soc. To be sure; and I shall be grateful to you for listening.
Com. Thank you, too, for telling us.
Soc. That is thank you twice over. Listen then:-
Last night, or rather very early this morning, Hippocrates, the son of Apollodorus and the brother of Phason, gave a tremendous thump with his staff at my door; some one opened to him, and he came rushing in and bawled out: Socrates, are you awake or asleep?
I knew his voice, and said: Hippocrates, is that you? and do you bring any news?
Good news, he said; nothing but good.
Delightful, I said; but what is the news? and why have you come hither at this unearthly hour?
He drew nearer to me and said: Protagoras is come.
Yes, I replied; he came two days ago: have you only just heard of his arrival?
Yes, by the gods, he said; but not until yesterday evening.
At the same time he felt for the truckle-bed, and sat down at my feet, and then he said: Yesterday quite late in the evening, on my return from Oenoe whither I had gone in pursuit of my runaway slave Satyrus, as I meant to have told you, if some other matter had not come in the way;-on my return, when we had done supper and were about to retire to rest, my brother said to me: Protagoras is come. I was going to you at once, and then I thought that the night was far spent. But the moment sleep left me after my fatigue, I got up and came hither direct.
I, who knew the very courageous madness of the man, said: What is the matter? Has Protagoras robbed you of anything?
He replied, laughing: Yes, indeed he has, Socrates, of the wisdom which he keeps from me.
But, surely, I said, if you give him money, and make friends with him, he will make you as wise as he is himself.
Would to heaven, he replied, that this were the case! He might take all that I have, and all that my friends have, if he pleased. But that is why I have come to you now, in order that you may speak to him on my behalf; for I am young, and also I have never seen nor heard him; (when he visited Athens before I was but a child) and all men praise him, Socrates; he is reputed to be the most accomplished of speakers.
Compare Lamb's (1924) translation at the Perseus Project