It has been objected that justice is honesty in the sense of Glaucon and
Adeimantus, but is taken by Socrates to mean all virtue. May we not
more truly say that the old-fashioned notion of justice is enlarged by
Socrates, and becomes equivalent to universal order or well-being, first
in the State, and secondly in the individual? He has found a new answer
to his old question (Protag.), 'whether the virtues are one or many,'
viz. that one is the ordering principle of the three others. In seeking
to establish the purely internal nature of justice, he is met by the
fact that man is a social being, and he tries to harmonise the two
opposite theses as well as he can. There is no more inconsistency in
this than was inevitable in his age and country; there is no use in
turning upon him the cross lights of modern philosophy, which, from some
other point of view, would appear equally inconsistent. Plato does not
give the final solution of philosophical questions for us; nor can he be
judged of by our standard.