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Pleasure: 360-300 B. C. Author(s): John M. Rist Source: Phoenix, Vol. 28, No. 2 (Summer,

Pleasure: 360-300 B. C. Author(s): John M. Rist Source: Phoenix, Vol. 28, No. 2 (Summer, 1974), pp. 167-179

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PLEASURE: 360-300B.C.


STOIC AND EPICUREAN theories and attitudes about pleasure vary

considerably;all, however, are a product of the reneweddebates of the

second half of the


willnot only shed light on whyEpicurus and Zeno said what they said- and much of this ground is well-trodden-but it may help us to get to

grips witha small part ofthe complicatedproblem ofthe development of

the thought ofAristotle.This area has oftenbeen tackled

have looked at the relationbetweenAristotle'stheoriesof

those of Plato; other scholars have consideredthe impact of Aristotle

on Epicurus,' and, less frequently, on theStoics.2 Rarely has

been made to co-ordinatethese inquiries,though the arguments of the late fourth century about pleasure affordus the opportunity to makesuch a co-ordination.We shall approach our topic primarilythrough des- criptions and definitions (or what look like definitions) of pleasure. The firstadherentof pleasure in the Philebusis Philebus himself, but his defence apparently does not rise to the level of philosophy. He may

represent the "ordinary" man,3 or perhaps the views of Aristippus. But when we get to the argument between Socrates and Protarchus, some-

thing that looks like an attempted


condition (EIs ri-vabrcrwov-4oL,

natural conditionis described by Socrates as an attunement (of what is

not clear, 31d 4). When thisattunement undergoesdisruption (Xvo~ivris),


fourth century, of whichour first documentary evi-

presumably Plato's Philebus.A glance at the history ofthedebate

partially: some

pleasure and

the attempt

definition appears: the restorationof

organ "to its own nature," apparently to its own proper and natural

42d 5), is pleasure (or a pleasure). This

simultaneously feel "pain"-Socrates says thatthereis a coming-to-be

(~Y}YELts) of pain. The

criptions of pleasure and pain, and presumably Plato has not distinguished

least has not recognized any distinctionas

important). In 31d it looks as thoughpleasure and pain are generated as

these descriptions(or at

two passages seem to offer slightly differentdes-

processes at thesame

-the composition or disruption of harmony-in the organism, but even

timeas the processes of replenishment or emptying

1E.g., E. Bignone, L'Aristotele

perduto e la formazionefilosofica di Epicuro (Florence


105-145; 21 (1940) 151-165; 22 (1941) 5-34; 23 (1942) 5-49, 121-150.

C. Diano, "La psicologia d'Epicuro e la teoria delle passioni," GCFI 20 (1939)


R. P.


A. A.

Long, "Aristotle's Legacy to Stoic Ethics," BICS

15 (1968) 72-85;

Haynes, "The

Theory of Pleasure of the Old Stoa," A7P 83 (1962) 412-419.

suggested at 66e.


PHOENIx, Vol. 28 (1974) 2.

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in thenextsection (31e-32a) Socrates appears to be saying thattheactual

movementofthe bodilycomponents is itself pleasure or pain (7 Kar& 4bTwv

b6bs) or a pleasure or pain. Thus it seems to be implied that it makes no differencewhetherwe say that pleasure (or some pleasure) whichis itself

a process, is identical with the process of replenishment, or whetherit accompaniesreplenishment.' But the question ofwhetherthisindicatesa

confusionin Plato's

help to know whetherhe is offering a definitionof pleasure or whether

he is

say "Swimming is fun"whileat

also a means of propelling ourselves through the water in an enjoyable

manner. It would be strange, however, if we were inclined to define swimming as fun, oreven as somekindoffun.But in parts ofthePhilebus


is fun"ratherthan

thinking should be appraised cautiously. It would


something is an example of pleasure: We may

thesame time agreeing that swimming is


might be supposed to have lapsed into sayingthings like "Swimming

"Swimming is an example

of fun."In 42d, it has been

claimed, it is the restoration (Karwrao-ts) of a natural state which is said

to be not pleasant but pleasure. If Socrates had said thatthisrestoration

is pleasant-or, as in the Timaeus (64d) that the experience of returning

to a natural condition, is pleasant-we should not have worried.That

would have been like

could Socrates mean

"restorationis a pleasure,i.e., an example of a pleasure"? Probably so, forhe recognizespleasures that are not restorationsat 51d-e.5 But we

saying "Swimming is pleasurable" rather than

"Swimming is fun." But the Greek is ambiguous:

should notice that to say that restorationis an


could meaneither"Restorationis identicalwitha pleasure," or"Restora-

tion is accompaniedby a pleasure."

writtenin the late 350's. The next stage

(or possibly anotherversionof the same stage) in the

be representedby our versionof Aristotle'sRhetoric1. It is

to be certainwhetherAristotleis speaking herein his own person, but at

least he takes it as a

historyappears to

merely to say that it is pleasant. For "restorationis a pleasure"

example of pleasure is

Presumably the Philebus was


is-and thistime

it does look like a seriousdefinition-a movementof the soul and at the

same time"a simultaneousand perceptible restorationto the underlying

workinghypothesis that pleasure

(or basic) natural state"

(KarraTTaULJv Op6av Kai alO7rOy-Vels



'At Phlb. 53c 4-7 it is suggested

theory of the

as though the path


that the identificationof pleasure as a

7yveotas is a

to which,by implication, Socrates is not committed.Thus it looks may be open forthe suggestion that only one type of pleasure is a

but whetherthe path is intended to be open or not, Plato does not go along it.

yevts; Perhaps there is some furtherindication that in the Philebus Plato is not wholly

committedto the view ofthe KOJA1OL in that when earlier, in the

tion of pleasure and pain with "some kind of motion" comes up (583c 9) Socrates pro-

poses it unambiguously as his own view.





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PLEASURE: 360-300 B.C.


obGtv, 1369 b 33-35).6 That this formulahas certainsimilaritieswiththe

of the Philebus (as well as the Republic and the Timaeus) has

not been missed. Pleasure is describedas some kind of movement, but

the class of pleasures


disappeared. is clearly in the soul,' while the "restoration"

which are not restorationshas


movement (Kvracls)

is said to be simultaneousand perceptible. We need not

timeon "perceptible,"except that we mustassume that the word



should not be pressed to refer only to sense-perception. Aristotlecan

hardly have denied that thereare many pleasures whichare not recog-

nized by the particularsenses,i.e., not recognizable as sensations. (What would he say about mental pleasures?) But pleasure (apparently all


of the natural state. How is this to be understood?If it is a movement of the soul, it must accompany the restorationof the natural state; yet ifit is definedas a restorationofthenatural state, it cannotbe a movement

of the soul, at least in the Platonic understanding of soul. (Of course, if thesoul is the formofthe body, thenthedouble description-both move-

mentand restoration-becomes

probably simpler: "Pleasure is the restorationof the natural state"

may be the same kindof proposition as the travel agent's "Happiness is

Europe Aristotle'saccount of

Plato's in the Philebus; indeed the notionthat all pleasures are restora- tions looks like a sloppy oversimplification. But in many respects it is not substantially different.Above all, all pleasure is apparently stillsome kind of process or at the least associated with a process. If at this time

Aristotlehad developed any more sophisticated account of pleasure, or any further refiningamong differentvarieties of pleasure, we are not aware of it. The use of the term &Bpbac does not seem to look forwardto

future developments, at least not

pleasure is a process, and the advocacy ofan alternativeview

be complete in the instant; that the restorationof the

noticed.There may be an echo of Timaeus64d. The translation"intense"

is too


been dropped.?

is nowa movementofthesoul and at thesame timea restoration

possible.) But in fact the explanation is



in the Rhetoricis not identical with


the abandoning of the notion that

thatit may

to indicate

to be

the functionof 60p6ac seems to be

bodily organs



strong;8 I should prefersomething like "significantlyperceptible"

the process-theory has

"noticeable." But thereis no suggestion that

WFor bir&tpXw see G. Lieberg, Die Lehre von der Lust in

(Zetemata 19, Munich 1958) 29-30.

7Though thisis already thecase in Resp. 583c9.


Hardie, Aristotle'sEthical Theory(Oxford 1968) 302.

den Ethikendes Aristoteles

OIt seemstobe oneofthefew probably certainbeliefsof Aristippus(theSocratic), as

Mannebach says, that pleasure is a motion (Aristippi et

CyrenaicorumFragmenta, ed. E.

193, withnote on p. 95,

Mannebach [Leiden 1961]). See D. L. 2.85 = Mannebach

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The next item in our account is representedby Book 7 of the Nico- macheanEthics'o-but chronologically this may be nearlycontemporary withour versionof Rhetoric1. At 1152 b 13 Aristotlementionsa theory

that all pleasure is a perceptible

(yOveoLs ~orTL eis k~oLv ailaorqr7), the

workinghypothesis in

theory,though without mentioning the names of

objections does

(alOyrO-7) process to a natural state


that he had at least used as a

But he now argues against the

its supporters. What

the Rhetoric."

he adduce? The crucial sentence at 1152 b 33 ff. (Kar-a

al KaOLUrTaaLE6~ T7lv 4VO






E0LV) seems

to mean that


Thus pleasure cannot now be defined as a restoration.And Aristotle goes

further.The "activity" that is going on whenwe desiresuch restoration


process ofrestorationto a naturalstateis onlyaccidentallypleasant.12

activity ofan unimpairedpart


bodily structure.'3 Thuswe

already ina

naturalcondition.The proof thatAristotle

point isthatsome pleasures(e.g., thatof contemplation)

implies that

those parts

pleasure mustbe physiologicallyexplainablesimilarly in



thataredevoidof pain,desire, and deficiency, thereforeall



is the

feel pleasure notin the partsbeing"restored," butat therestorationin

the parts thatare offersforthislast

do notinvolve pain or desire; he seemsto thinkthatthis


manifestations, ifsome pleasures are necessarilyonly


all its

pleasures mustbe feltin such

natureof pleasure can be best determinednot fromthe "bodily"

pleasures of restoration, butfromthe painlesspleasures ofthe mind.) In

course implies thatthe

S' adreaLatve7HtvXeIav KLVrlOLV els al'OaqvO L ava&&okvPfv. Mannebach's view is

other Cyrenaics). This would follow if, as I argue below, the derives fromAristotle.

Ethics, though

it is also

endorsed by Guthrie, HGP 3 (Cambridge 1969) 494. I suspect that Cyrenaic talk of pleasure KaTa& KIzV7aL (as Mannebach 195 = Ath. 12.546e) is of later date (i.e., of the

younger Aristippus or KmLzVV language

Kar 10I shall referto this book as Book 7 of the Nicomachean

generally treated as Book 6 of the Eudemian Ethics. I shall only touch on the


question of therelationbetweenEth. Eud. and Eth. Nic. whereit concernsthe discussion

account of the problem and its history is given by Nicomachean Ethics: A study in the development of

Aristotle's thought,"PCPhS, Supplement 3 (Cambridge 1971). I shall referto Book 7's

discussion of



in the same sense in the Rhetoric (1369 b 33), in (B) (1174 a

with the Stoics.

a KWlvrl7s. In his Republic (583e 10) Plato suggested


of pleasure. A recent (and sane) C. G. Rowe, "The Eudemian and


as (A) and Book 10's as

(B), followingFestugikre.

"Notice that the theory in the Philebus and in (A) identifies pleasure

that it is a

as a Yater,

Kivr)at. 19), and, as Klvriat we shall see,

"We should notice that the word Kr&xTaracs (used in the Philebus and Rhetoric) does

KPrVELt and -Tyeots do. And, as we shall see, it is C' KY?V7l, not a

not occur in (A);


form of KaT&aTaaLS,



that passes over to Epicurus. Of course the verbal




cognate of

is foundat 1152b 34.

(and &7roKaraTR7r s)

the Magna Moralia (1205 a 4, 1205 b 6, 1205 b

'"This is noticed by G. E. L. Owen in his helpful "Aristotelian Pleasures," Proc.

Atrist. Soc. (1972) 144.

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PLEASURE: 360-300B.C.


the process of restoration,therefore,pleasure willarise accidentally(and presumablysimultaneously, as in the Rhetoric).Notice, however, that pleasure itselfis not an "accident," though it arises "accidentally." The processes ofrestoration may happen to producepleasure, but they are no guide to what the natureof pleasure is. (It may be an accident of this

table to be in

natureof the table.) Aristotlethen goes on to show how what is "natur-

ally pleasant"

fromwhat is "accidentallypleasant." Things accidentallypleasant only seem pleasant whensome deficiency froma healthy or normalcondition is beingexperienced. Aristotlenextturnsto the natureof pleasure itself.It is not a process, nor does it necessarily occur in connectionwith a process. Rather it is an end and an activity. Here Aristotleis using his own technicaldistinc-

tion betweena process and an activity, a distinctionin accordancewith whichhe distinguishes an activity as "complete" in the instant, even if also extendedover a considerable length of time.Thus if"I see" entails

(or is compatiblewith) "I have seen," seeing

In thissense pleasure too is an activity and complete in itself.Hence the definition (proposed in the Rhetoric) of pleasure as a conscious process has

to be rejected. Rather pleasure is an unimpededactivity of the natural state, that is, of those parts of the organism whichare in theirnatural condition.

The most important and most misunderstoodsectionof the narrative of (A) begins at 1153 b 7. The first argument runsas follows: just as some

kindof knowledgemay be the best thing

knowledge are bad, so the fact that some pleasures are bad in no way


then goes on to argue that sincesome kindof unimpededactivity(which

is pleasure) is the thing mostto be desired, so some kindof pleasure (i.e.,


mentdoes not show that pleasure is to be definedas the supremegood,

but that some unimpeded activity, which is pleasure, but not only

the facultyqua faculty,

pleasure (for theremust also be the activity of

unless we have facultieswhichdo nothing else than

the best thing(or supremegood,


only shows that much, does Aristotleunderstandit to show more?"5 Clearlynot, forthe purpose of the argument is indicatedat 1153 b 25 ff.

myroom, but being in my roomtellsme nothing about the


or "absolutely pleasant" can be distinguished

is an

activity, nota process.'4


even ifsome formsof

possibility thatsome pleasuremay be thebest thing. Aristotle

will be the thing most to be desired.Yet this argu-

generatepleasure) is

if you will). But even if the

"Cf. J. L. Ackrill, "Aristotle's Distinction Between ENERGEIA


New Essays On Plato and Aristotle, ed. R. Bambrough (London 1965) 121-141.

"1As (e.g.) P. Merlan observes (Studies in Epicurus and Aristotle[Wiesbaden 1960]

28). Aspasius was the firstto suggest that an identificationof pleasure and

might indicate that (A) is the workof Eudoxus (CAG 191,p. 151, 24 ff. Heylbut).

the good

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Here the fact that all beasts and men pursue pleasure is held to be an

indicationthat in somesense (iros) pleasure is the best

some sense" cannot be

previous section. "The best thing is in some sense pleasure," seems to

mean that the best thing is not that the best thing is to

thing."1 The "in


and it fitsour

interpretation of the

pleasurable, or even, the most pleasurable, be simply identifiedwith pleasure.

identificationof pleasure as the supreme

good, but a statementabout the principalobject of desire which is a pleasure.But, an objectionmightrun, all beasts and men pursuepleasure,

but it is not the same pleasure which they all pursue.Aristotle,however,

will not have this-and his commentson it have

particularlystriking featureofthediscussionin (A).

What we have thenis not an

rightly been seen as a Perhaps, he explains,

it is really the same pleasure that is pursued, even ifthe pursuers do not

recognize the fact. But why should this be so? Because beasts and men share something divine by nature, and-Aristotle apparently wishes to say-this factis indicated in the universalsearch fora pleasure, which must thereforebe an identical pleasure.


(A) to whichwe must draw particular attention:the notionthat a man

can be happy on the wheel is rejected at 1153 b 19; and it is argued

1154 b 6 ff., that thereare people so constitutedthat forthemthereis no


to be

definable as an absence of pleasure. Finally the

pleasure in (A) ends witha theorythat, sinceour natureis not "simple,"

we cannot enjoy a

because ofsome weakness

enjoy that pleasure in rest

pleasure in movement (bv Kwi(fTe). activitiesin theAristotelian sense,

which God enjoys; we need also

TL), come and go. Hence we cannot

singlepermanentpleasure as God can. Our pleasures,

whole discussion of

and positive pain are to them painful. Thus pain would appear

between pleasure and pain. Hence both absence of pleasure

For our own purposes thereare a

few specificpoints

in thelater




(bv 7)pei4l)

Both pleasures are, of course, still forthereis an activity ofmovementas

well as an activity of immobility.17 From thisbriefaccount ofsome of therelevant parts of (A) let us now

extracta seriesof propositions:


Pleasure is not a process

but may be an accompaniment of a

process occurring in those organs (ybvEs) or parts of organs whichdo not need "restoration."

2. Pleasure is an activity and an end.

3. There are two kinds of pleasure,pleasure in

pleasure in immobility. Both are (as 2 above) activities.

movement (KlVtIOS) and

'"The point was made in general by A. Barbieri, "Aristotelee l'edonismo di Eudosso,"

GCFI 33 (1954) 525.

"Cf. Eth. Eud. 1249 a 20 (ob ylverat 5~b~ 5ovt) j


v rpde).

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PLEASURE: 360-300 B.C.


4. Pleasure is therefore complete in the instant,though it may of course

have longer duration.

5. Pleasure is an unimpeded natural activity.

6. In some sense (leftunclear) pleasure is "the best thing."

7. All men and animals probablypursue the same pleasure (even though

often unwittingly).

To thesewe may add two more peripheralpoints:

8. It is nonsenseto say that a good man is happy on the wheel.

9. For some people at least, absence of pleasure is pain, i.e., thereis no

intermediatestate between pleasure and pain. But the sensible man pursues absence of the pain (&Xvrta) that arises fromthe desire forre-

storative pleasures (1153 a 31).18

The nextmaterialweshouldconsideris notthetenthbookofthe Ethics, (B), but the philosophicalwritings of Epicurus. We may noticethefollow- ing points in particular:

1. Pleasure is never identified as a restoration (Kard7uracus) or

as a process

(,yineas); but some pleasure (the highest) is r6

2. There are two kinds of pleasures, those





which are katastematic

(D.L. 10.136),20 and those which are Karc KlU7VV or EV KUi7 El. This appears to be the Aristotelian distinction. Even the phrase 'V KtV'7YO occurs in (A)

(1154 b 28); the word KV77TWK?'is not used by

3. All "kinetic" pleasures vary katastematic pleasures in the same



4. Xap& and Eb&poabV'7 KaTa Kivr7atLVEp7YELL 3.#XroVTrac, i.e., even kinetic

pleasures are activities (D.L. 10.136).

5. Pleasure is complete in the instant.23


7. All creatures pursue "basic" pleasure,i.e., thesame pleasure(which is

in factabsence of pain).

Pleasure is the end of life.

8. wise man is happy on the rack (D.L. 10.118).


9. highestpleasure is absence of pain: thereis no intermediatestate

between pleasure and pain.



in general becomesthe

goal ofthelater PeripateticHieronymus ofRhodes

(F. Wehrli, Die

Schuledes Aristoteles, frs. 8-18).

19Plut. Nonposse, 1089d (Us. 68). 2oCf.Olympiodorus in Phil.,p. 274 Stallbaum = Us. 416.

2lCf. J. M. Rist,Epicurus(Cambridge1972) 102.

22Cf. most recently,J. M. Rist

23Epicurus, VS

(above, note 21) 108-111, 170-172.


(and KD 19); cf. C. Diano, "La

psicologiad'Epicuro e la teoria


passioni," GCFI 21 (1940) 159.

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What I need to indicateis that theseninefeaturesof Epicureanism all

findan analogue or point of comparison in (A). Certainly Aristotleand

Epicurus do not agree on everydetail,though thereare strikingpoints

coincidence, such as the ideas that all pleasure is activity and that there

are two specific kindsof pleasure. Aristotlementionsa view that absence

of pleasure is pain; Epicurus holds that absence of pain is pleasure.'4 Both indicatethatthe problem ofa possible intermediatestateis notdead. Epicurus talksabout whetherthewisemanis happy on the rack, Aristotle thinksof the wheel. Again the problem is the same. Our next objective

shouldbe to

occur in the tenthbook of the Ethics (B). First comes the notion of pleasure as an activity,accepted in (A); it is not mentionedin (B). A differentformulationis offered.Pleasure is


considerhow many ofthese specificEpicurean points in (A)

certainly still not a process

something "in accordance with which" we are active

(KL'VrlOL Kalc TevLP,

1173 a 31 ff.); it is indeed

1173 b 3).


It is complete in the instant (1174 b 5-6) but accompanies the activities ofvarious bodily or mental organs. Howeverit is describedas completing

the activity ofthe organ, but not qua

Rather it is a superveningend, like the bloom of healthon those in the


functioning ofthat organ.

prime of life (arLCy

r'XoS, osov

roiT&KosatoLs l otpa)-and

the same

attitudeseemsto be foundin Book 2.25 And thereasonwe do notcontinue

feelingpleasure indefinitely is also explained somewhat differently than in account (A). In (B) the somewhat simplistic remarkthat we are not

simple is given more body. Pleasure depends on the state of each organ, and tirednesswilllead to a declinein pleasure,just as it leads to a decline

in the successfuluse of the



itself (1175 a 4-10).

In brief,although(A), (B),26 and Epicurus agree that pleasure is not a

instant, in several respects

process and thatit is therefore complete in the

where (A) and Epicurus come together,(B) remains apart. For Epicurus and (A) pleasure is the end, or an end. (B) qualifies this: pleasure is

specifically a supervenient end. And if (A) and (B) are nearerthan they

look, the

where (A) emphasises the divinein the search for pleasure and brackets

menwith animals,27 thus pointing to Epicurus,(B) emphasises the ques-

24As we shall see, the Magna Moralia commentsthat a lifefreefrom pain is "near" to pleasure (1204 a 24).

wording of (A) is much nearerto that of Epicurus. Above all,

25Cf. Eth. Nic. 2, 1104 b 4-6, 32tIEov

4 ~El 7rocElOaL7Covwv yOe



7 Lv


60ovV Xbrtv rosl



b 13-14, ols a 6).

Epyoys and 1104 b 34, KOLWvTre yd&paIryTTolS

We should notice that the nearest



aI0crT7TLKI) 'ovl)



Kal rEaL T roL


section ofEth. Eud. does not containformsof




passage in the parallel

(Eth. Eud.


' Xv7r7 KaO' ab-r; cf. Eth. Nic. 10,

260On the relation between (A) and (B) see now Owen (above, note 13). 27Cf.Merlan (above, note 15) 20, 22.

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360-300 B.C.


tion of intellectand separates men from animals, thus pointing to the Stoics. There is one more quasi-Aristotelian document to which we should

briefly turn: the Magna

the view that

this is an Aristoteliandocument.28 But clearly it is at least heavily in-

of authorship, but merely to express an opinion against

Moralia. I do not intendto go into the question

debted to Aristotle, and it may be helpful to us to see on whichof the Aristoteliandiscussions of pleasure it chiefly relies. Fortunately the

significant of


all the special proposals of (A) is omitted:the proposal thatthe

answeris clear; it is discussion (A). It is truethat themost

men and animals perhapspursue a singlepleasure


theircommon possession of

against a variety ofotherconsiderations.Pleasure in the

is not a process, not a restoration (the formulationof this at 1205 b 7,

with the phrase rvvabro3, looks back to the Philebus, 42d 5); thereare

pleasures of restorationand pleasures of the restored state, but both are activities (1205 b 21). There is indeed an argument about the claim (but

things desire pleasure; but the

suggestion is rejected that it is neverthelessthe same

divine." But this must be set

is to be




perhaps oftheRhetoric [1362 b 5]) that all

pleasure (1204 a

38 ff., 1205 b 9 ff.). And we have

already noticedhow forthe authorof

the Magna Moralia absence of pain is near to pleasure.29 The only

phraseology whichseemsto

is J

1174 b 36. But furtherdetails are un-


(A) than to (B).


(and Eth.Nic. 2) ratherthan (A)

Ydap Xv'rtl rt rolTs W'

VanyKl7VOrTLv (1206 a 15); the ~irt perhaps reminds

r'XoS of

us of the 7rvvLyv6EP6v6rL

No one can (or does) deny that the Magna Moralia is closerto

Let us now look at the writing oftheolderStoics. Pleasure is not their


The Stoics, orsomeof

reason) from xapal (emotional states associated with a healthyreason),

but forour

that both lbovaL and

looks something likeAristotle'saccountin

has been noticed,s0 but the question has not been considered closely enough. For the Stoics thereis no indicationthat pleasure is a -rXos, so

frequentsubject of discussion, but a few passages are informative.

them,distinguish'boval(pleasures ofa "perverted"

presentinvestigations this is unimportant: what mattersis



by-products (brLyevPv1para). That this


Book 2 oftheEthics-

"2For some effectivecomments on Dirlmeier's more recent idea that the

[1966] 142-144).


Moralia is authenticsee D. J. Allan, 7HS 77 (1957) 7-11, and his reviewof Dirlmeier's

EudemischeEthik (Gnomon 38

"2Does this echo (A), 1153 a 31, or is therean influenceof the later Peripatetic Hier- onymus, or of Epicurus himself?

0oD. L. 7.86 (= SVF 3.178) for Jbjovj; 7.94 Cf. Haynes (above, note 2) 414; Long (above,

e'rLtye-vv-PCara see especially Stoic Philosophy 48, note 5 (with

bridge 1969) 46. For Marcus Aurelius 6.36).

(= SVF 3.76) for Xap& and ebLpooavrq.

note 2) 80; Rist, Stoic Philosophy(Cam-

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that hereat least Aristotleis at best silently corrected.More

however, is

account (A), of course, assumesthatit is, as does Epicurus. But the Stoics,


a perverted "reason" are in doubt. 'HSovi is a

irrational and unnatural movementof the soul"

definitionas a movementseemsto

make theirdistinctionbetweenthe pleasures of a healthy and


the question of whether

pleasure is "natural." Aristotle's

pathos, and a pathos is


(D.L. 7.110).11 The

a neglect of the long


whichdoes withouta



of analysis of the relation between pleasure and movementfromthe


soul dichotomy.32 The Stoics may have gone back to Plato's Laws,"3 but handled himin a novel manner.

Philebuson-or a totallydifferent approach

But in one importantrespect

the Stoics did not

go back to Plato;

they were liable to call pleasure (or at least jbov') unnatural: "an irra-

rational and must try to

detail: for Zeno, we have no useful evidence, but Cleanthesseemsto have

thought that even apparently innocuous (and perhaps unavoidable)

inspect the theoriesof the earliest Stoic leaders in more

unnaturalmovementof the soul,"

reportsDiogenes.34 We


are non-natural

(Arj7 Kar&aIwoLt). Cleanthes holds the "Aris-

aLrvyC~rvva, but his explanation ofit

is that

noticethathe does not claim thatit

totelian"viewof pleasure as an

pleasure is thuslikea cosmetic."5 We

is unnatural


his view that it is non-natural is presumably a

by-product. We notice that the Stoics apparently


used the word 80ov7 in differentsenses: sometimes, as we have seen, it is

opposed to xapL, as "irrational" pleasure; at othertimesit is a general

term referring eitherto "rational"

this latter sense which is employedby Cleanthes. Doubtless he thinks

some pleasures

natural.Is therethenno "natural" pleasure? The evidencewe have would

suggest not. Perhaps no "by-product" is natural; and

product," as we have seen. Pleasures are eitherunnaturaland associated



posed thatall pleasure is natural

the obvious way out and said that some pleasure is natural

the restunnatural (7rapd&avba).36

on its being a

or to "irrational" pleasure. It mustbe

are vicious-and hence unnatural. The rest are non-


is a "by-

unhealthy"reason," or non-naturaland associated witha sound

This curious approach is corrected by Archedemuswho pro-


and by Panaetius whotook


We need not spend time,however, on

"'Cf. D. L. 7.114 (=

"*Cf. Rist (above, note 30) 22-36.

"3Laws 897a makes pleasure and pain movementsof the soul.

34The Stoic description

SVF 3.400).


ratherthan a T'veoLs, remindsus of

Aristotle's account (B) rather than (A)

going right back to Plato. But if to Plato, then to the Republic (583e 10), not the

pleasure as a KlmV7os,

(see note 11 above), though again we may be

Philebus. "*Sext. Emp. Math.11.73 = SVF 3.155. "*Ibid.

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PLEASURE: 360-300 B.C.


theinternalStoic arguments; onone

point alltheStoics agree:pleasure

is at besta

armpits forArchedemus.More important is the

applied to xapdby Stobaeus.Wedonotknowwhose phrase itwas. Again, ,yaOv,

perhaps, it may beanechoof Aristotle,though a certainly notanechoof (A).

fewthreads together. Discussionon pleasure

flares up again

Aristotle'sRhetoricand (A)

in thelate 350's, and Plato'sPhilebusis a witness.

by-product, a cosmeticfor Cleanthes, likehairunderthe


phrase TrXLKY

distantone."'But again,

Let us try to pull a

indicatefurther (andpossiblycontemporane-



workof Epicurus fits. Oddlyenough, the Magna Moraliatoohassimil-


writings,though this probablyonly meansthat

(A) isits primary sourceforthediscussionof pleasure. Ontheotherhand


pleasure seemtobea distantecho.WheretheStoics go backbehind (B)

they seem perhaps tobe

or Laws,

While Epicurusrepresentspart

350's, theStoic writings seemtobeofan age wheretheissueisno




ofthis discussion,38

marksa different phase-a phase ofwhichtheStoiccommentson

looking atthe original themesofPlato's Philebus,

oreven Republic, ratherthantootherAristoteliandiscussion.

argument which began in the

Is it possible to put dates to the Epicurean and Stoic discussions?

Epicurus arrivedin Athensin 323 at

previous exposure to philosophy, he probably

Aristotle, however briefly, at thistime.Demetriusof

only tells us that he listenedto

But in any case Aristotledied in the next year,322, so that both (A) and

(B) musthave existedat thetimeof

the Platonist Xenocrates (D.L. 10.13).

the age of 18. Although not without

firstmet the ideas of

Magnesia, however,

Epicurus'visit, if they areAristotelian

form they


at all. But of coursewe do not knowin what

Diiring has proposed a relative chronology of Aristotle'sworkswhich

an original versionofRhetoric1 and


with the

originallypart oftheEudemian Ethics, or derivedfroman account in

must,along withthe Philebus, be a contribution

(and therefore certainly account

Diiring dates the Nicomachean [B]) to the period afterPlato's

makesa good deal of sense.39 He puts

2 between 360 and 355, and the Eudemian Ethics,

Philebus, between355 and Plato's death in 347. That means that if (A)


the Eudemian Ethics, it

to the ongoing debate about pleasure.


7"Stob. Ec. 2, p. 71, 15 = SJVF 3.106. Aristotle certainlythought that some "goods" are associated with means and some with ends.

8sScholars have often noticed that while (B) mentionsEudoxus

by name as the up-

holder of a theory fromwhichAristotledissociates himself,(A) does not mentionhim-

and some have assumed this to mean that

certainlyagree that in (A) Aristotleis more

this is one of the pointers to its

(A) is more or less straight Eudoxus. We can

powerfully influenced by Eudoxus, and that

earlierdate (in some form,though not necessarilyours).

3A4ristoteles (Heidelberg 1966) 48-52.

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death and afterAristotle'sreturnto Athens, that is, between334 and 322. Yet, although some versionoftheNicomacheanEthicsmusthave existed by thetime Epicurus firstreached Athens, he knows only theideas about pleasurerepresentedby the earlierversion (A). Indeed, ifthereweretwo


Ethics, and

been familiar only withthe earlierversion-or he would have known (B) as well! What this suggests is a theory that the textof the Nicomachean

Ethics (or at least of Book 10) was not widely available (even among

those interestedin

philosophy, and in pleasure in particular) until after

Aristotle'sdeath. We can easily understandthat Epicurus might not

have heardAristotle talking the

he would not have read it, ifit was in the public domain.

(A) in circulation, one originallydesigned forthe Eudemian one revisedforthe Nicomachean Ethics,Epicurus must have


of (B); it is harderto assume

We may speculate further. CertainlyEpicurus returnedto Athensin

306, by whichtimetheNicomacheanEthicswas presumably more

known. Why did Epicurus notmakeuse ofit? Perhapsby thetimehe had set himself up in Athensas a teacher, he had no interestin learning; he

already had a philosophy! But do we need to followthis

characteristicof Epicurusthough itis? Do we knowthattheNicomachean Ethicswas available in Athenseven in 306? Not forcertain.We do know, as we have argued, that certainStoics are aware of some of the ideas to

be found there,though thedebate about

and no longeroccupied the centreof the philosophicalstage. But we do

not know whether Zeno, the founderof Stoicism, is