Friday, March 14, 2014


Some Definitions of Happiness

Stobaeus 4.39.18, in Ioannis Stobaei Anthologium, Vol. V: Anthologii Libri Quarti Partem Alteram...Continens, ed. Otto Hense (Berlin: Weidmann, 1912), p. 906 (my translation):
Socrates, asked what happiness was, said: "Pleasure without regret."

Σωκράτης ἐρωτηθεὶς τί εὐδαιμονία 'ἡδονὴ ἀμεταμέλητος' ἔφη.
The phrase ἀμεταμέλητον ἡδονὴν occurs in Plato, Timaeus 59d.

Stobaeus 4.39.19 (id.):
Socrates, asked who were happy, said: "Those possessed of good sense and reason."

Σωκράτης ἐρωτηθεὶς τίνες εὐδαίμονες, εἶπεν 'οἷς καὶ φρένες ἀγαθαὶ καὶ λόγος πρόσεστιν.'
Stobaeus 4.39.20 (id., quoting Diogenes):
For this alone is happiness: really to enjoy oneself and never to feel pain, whatever place or situation one is in.

εὐδαιμονία γὰρ μία ἐστὶ τὸ εὐφραίνεσθαι ἀληθινῶς καὶ μηδέποτε λυπεῖσθαι, ἐν ὁποίῳ δ' ἂν τόπῳ ἢ καιρῷ ᾖ τις.

ἀληθινῶς codd.: διηνεκῶς Meineke, "ex margine illatum" Hense
If Meineke's conjecture is adopted, translate "to enjoy oneself without ceasing," instead of "really to enjoy oneself." Hense thought that ἀληθινῶς might have been a marginal comment ("truly!") that crept into the text.

Stobaeus 4.39.21 (id., quoting Diogenes):
We say that this is true happiness: always to employ one's mind and soul in peace and cheerfulness.

εὐδαιμονίαν δὲ ταύτην εἶναι φαμὲν ἀληθινὴν τὸ τὴν διάνοιαν καὶ τὴν ψυχὴν ἀεὶ ἐν ἡσυχίᾳ καὶ ἱλαρότητι διατρίβειν.

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