Major Works

Protagoras and Meno

- Recommended translation: Plato: "Protagoras" and "Meno,"  trans. Robert C. Bartlett (Cornell, 2004).
From the Publisher: This volume contains new translations of two dialogues of Plato, the Protagoras and the Meno, together with explanatory notes and substantial interpretive essays. Robert C. Bartlett’s translations are as literal as is compatible… More

Phaedo

- Recommended translations: Phaedo, trans. G. M. A. Grube (Hackett: 1977) Phaedo, trans. E. Brann (Focus, 1998)
Excerpt: Echecrates Were you with Socrates yourself, Phaedo, on the day when he drank the poison in prison, or did you hear about it from someone else? Phaedo I was there myself, Echecrates. Echecrates Then what did he say before his death? and how did he… More

Theaetetus

- Recommended translation: "Theaetetus" in The Being of the Beautiful: Plato's Theaetetus, Sophist, and Statesman,  trans. Seth Benardete (University of Chicago Press: 1984).
About the dialogue: In the Theaetetus, Plato explores the nature of knowledge.

Sophist

- Recommended translation: "Sophist" in The Being of the Beautiful: Plato's Theaetetus, Sophist, and Statesman,  trans. Seth Benardete (University of Chicago Press: 1984).
About the dialogue: In the Sophist, which takes place the day after the Theaetetus and was written c. 360 BCE, Plato explores what constitutes sophistry and how sophists differ from philosophers and statesmen.

Statesman

- Recommended translation: "Statesman" in The Being of the Beautiful: Plato's Theaetetus, Sophist, and Statesman,  trans. Seth Benardete (University of Chicago Press: 1984).
Excerpt: Socrates Really I am greatly indebted to you, Theodorus, for my acquaintance with Theaetetus and with the Stranger, too. Theodorus Presently, Socrates, you will be three times as much indebted, when they have worked out the statesman and the… More

Parmenides

- Recommended translations:
  • Plato's Parmenides, trans. Samuel Scolnicov (Berkeley, 2003).
  • Plato's Parmenides,  trans. Albert Keith Whitaker (Focus, 1996).
  • "Parmenides," trans. M. L. Gill and Paul Ryan in Plato: Complete Works, ed. J. M. Cooper (Hackett, 1997).
Excerpt: Cephalus When we came from our home at Clazomenae to Athens, we met Adeimantus and Glaucon in the market-place. Adeimantus took me by the hand and said, “Welcome, Cephalus, if there is anything we can do for you here, let us know.” “Why,”… More

Symposium

- Recommended translations:
  • Plato's Symposium: A Translation with Commentaries by Allan Bloom and Seth Benardete, trans. Seth Benardete (University of Chicago Press, 1993, 2001).
  • "Symposium," trans. A. Nehamas and P. Woodruff in Plato: Complete Works, ed. J. M. Cooper (Hackett, 1997).
Excerpt: Apollodorus I believe I have got the story you inquire of pretty well by heart. The day before yesterday I chanced to be going up to town from my house in Phalerum, when one of my acquaintance caught sight of me from behind, some way off, and called… More

Republic

- Recommended translations:
  • The Republic of Plato,  trans. Allan Bloom (Basic Books, 1968).
  • Plato: The Republic, trans. Tom Griffith, ed. G. R. F. Ferrari (Cambridge, 2000).
Excerpt: “What you say is very fine indeed, Cephalus,” I said. “But as to this very thing, justice, shall we so simply assert that it is the truth and giving back what a man has taken from another, or is to do these very things sometimes just and… More

Timaeus

- Recommended translation: Timaeus, trans. Peter Kalkavage (Focus, 2001).
Excerpt: Socrates One, two, three,—but where, my dear Timaeus, is the fourth of our guests of yesterday, our hosts of today? Timaeus Some sickness has befallen him, Socrates; for he would never have stayed away from our gathering of his own free will.… More

Gorgias

- Recommended Translation: The Rhetoric of Morality and Philosophy: Plato's Gorgias and Phaedrus, trans. Seth Benardete (University of Chicago Press, 1991).
Excerpt: Callicles To join in a fight or a fray, as the saying is, Socrates, you have chosen your time well enough. Socrates Do you mean, according to the proverb, we have come too late for a feast? Callicles Yes, a most elegant feast; for Gorgias gave us a… More

Laws

- Recommended translation: The Laws of Plato, trans. Thomas L. Pangle (Basic, 1980; University of Chicago Press, 1988).
This is the best edition of the Laws available in English. Thomas L. Pangle’s edition also includes an extended interpretative essay that introduces the work. Excerpt: Athenian To whom do you ascribe the authorship of your legal arrangements, Strangers?… More

Apology

- Recommended translation: "Apology" in Four Texts on Socrates,  trans. Thomas G. West and Grace Starry West (Cornell University Press: 1984, rev. 1998).
Excerpt from Plato’s Apology: “How you, men of Athens, have been affected by my accusers, I do not know; but I, for my part, almost forgot my own identity, so persuasively did they talk; and yet there is hardly a word of truth in what they have… More