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Then other things not greater or less than the one, if they have
neither greatness nor smallness; nor have greatness or smallness any
power of exceeding or being exceeded in relation to the one, but
only in relation to one another; nor will the one be greater or less
than them or others, if it has neither greatness nor smallness.
Then if the one is neither greater nor less than the others, it
cannot either exceed or be exceeded by them?
And that which neither exceeds nor is exceeded, must be on an
equality; and being on an equality, must be equal.
And this will be true also of the relation of the one to itself;
having neither greatness nor smallness in itself, it will neither
exceed nor be exceeded by itself, but will be on an equality with
and equal to itself.
Then the one will be equal to both itself and the others?
And yet the one, being itself in itself, will also surround and be
without itself; and, as containing itself, will be greater than
itself; and, as contained in itself, will be less; and will thus be
greater and less than itself.
Now there cannot possibly be anything which is not included in the
one and the others?
Of course not.
But, surely, that which is must always be somewhere?
But that which is in anything will be less, and that in which it
is will be greater; in no other way can one thing be in another.
And since there is nothing other or besides the one and the
others, and they must be in something, must they not be in one
another, the one in the others and the others in the one, if they
are to be anywhere?
That is clear.
But inasmuch as the one is in the others, the others will be greater
than the one, because they contain the one, which will be less than
the others, because it is contained in them; and inasmuch as the
others are in the one, the one on the same principle will be greater
than the others, and the others less than the one.
The one, then, will be equal to and greater and less than itself and
And if it be greater and less and equal, it will be of equal and
more and less measures or divisions than itself and the others, and if
of measures, also of parts?
And if of equal and more and less measures or divisions, it will
be in number more or less than itself and the others, and likewise
equal in number to itself and to the others?
How is that?
It will be of more measures than those things which it exceeds,
and of as many parts as measures; and so with that to which it is
equal, and that than which it is less.
And being greater and less than itself, and equal to itself, it will
be of equal measures with itself and of more and fewer measures than
itself; and if of measures then also of parts?
And being of equal parts with itself, it will be numerically equal
to itself; and being of more parts, more, and being of less, less than
And the same will hold of its relation to other things; inasmuch
as it is greater than them, it will be more in number than them; and
inasmuch as it is smaller, it will be less in number; and inasmuch
as it is equal in size to other things, it will be equal to them in
Once more then, as would appear, the one will be in number both
equal to and more and less than both itself and all other things.
Does the one also partake of time? And is it and does it become
older and younger than itself and others, and again, neither younger
nor older than itself and others, by virtue of participation in time?
How do you mean?
If one is, being must be predicated of it?
But to be (einai) is only participation of being in present time,
and to have been is the participation of being at a past time, and
to be about to be is the participation of being at a future time?
Then the one, since it partakes of being, partakes of time?
And is not time always moving forward?
Then the one is always becoming older than itself, since it moves
forward in time?
And do you remember that the older becomes older than that which
Then since the one becomes older than itself, it becomes younger
at the same time?
Thus, then, the one becomes older as well as younger than itself?