ΣΩΚΡ. Καὶ γὰρ ἄν, ὦ Κρίτων, πλημμελὲς εἴη ἀγανακτεῖν τηλικοῦτον ὄντα εἰ δεῖ ἤδη τελευτᾶν.
ΚΡΙΤ. καὶ ἄλλοι, ὦ Σώκρατες, τηλικοῦτοι ἐν τοιαύταις συμφοραῖς ἁλίσκονται, ἀλλ᾽ οὐδὲν αὐτοὺς ἐπιλύεται ἡ ἡλικία τὸ μὴ οὐχὶ ἀγανακτεῖν τῇ παρούσῃ τύχῃ.
ΣΩΚΡ. ἔστι ταῦτα. ἀλλὰ τί δὴ οὕτω πρῲ ἀφῖξαι;
ΚΡΙΤ. ἀγγελίαν, ὦ Σώκρατες, φέρων χαλεπήν, οὐ σοί, ὡς ἐμοὶ φαίνεται, ἀλλ’ ἐμοὶ καὶ τοῖς σοῖς ἐπιτηδείοις πᾶσιν καὶ χαλεπὴν καὶ βαρεῖαν, ἣν ἐγώ, ὡς ἐμοὶ δοκῶ, ἐν τοῖς βαρύτατ’ ἂν ἐνέγκαιμι.
ΣΩΚΡ. τίνα ταύτην; ἢ τὸ πλοῖον ἀφῖκται ἐκ Δήλου, οὗ δεῖ ἀφικομένου τεθνάναι με;
ΚΡΙΤ. οὔτοι δὴ ἀφῖκται, ἀλλὰ δοκεῖν μέν μοι ἥξει τήμερον ἐξ ὧν ἀπαγγέλλουσιν ἥκοντές τινες ἀπὸ Σουνίου καὶ καταλιπόντες ἐκεῖ αὐτό. δῆλον οὖν ἐκ τούτων τῶν ἀγγέλων ὅτι ἥξει τήμερον, καὶ ἀνάγκη δὴ εἰς αὔριον ἔσται, ὦ Σώκρατες, τὸν βίον σε τελευτᾶν.
ΣΩΚΡ. ἀλλ’, ὦ Κρίτων, τύχῃ ἀγαθῇ, εἰ ταύτῃ τοῖς θεοῖς φίλον, ταύτῃ ἔστω· οὐ μέντοι οἶμαι ἥξειν αὐτὸ τήμερον.
ΚΡΙΤ. πόθεν τοῦτο τεκμαίρῃ;
ΣΩΚΡ. ἐγώ σοι ἐρῶ. τῇ γάρ που ὑστεραίᾳ δεῖ με ἀποθνῄσκειν ἢ ᾗ ἂν ἔλθῃ τὸ πλοῖον.
ΚΡΙΤ. φασί γέ τοι δὴ οἱ τούτων κύριοι.
ΣΩΚΡ. οὐ τοίνυν τῆς ἐπιούσης ἡμέρας οἶμαι αὐτὸ ἥξειν ἀλλὰ τῆς ἑτέρας. τεκμαίρομαι δὲ ἔκ τινος ἐνυπνίου ὃ ἑώρακα ὀλίγον πρότερον ταύτης τῆς νυκτός· καὶ κινδυνεύεις ἐν καιρῷ τινι οὐκ ἐγεῖραί με.
ΚΡΙΤ. ἦν δὲ δὴ τί τὸ ἐνύπνιον;
ΣΩΚΡ. ἐδόκει τίς μοι γυνὴ προσελθοῦσα καλὴ καὶ εὐειδής, λευκὰ ἱμάτια ἔχουσα, καλέσαι με καὶ εἰπεῖν· “ὦ Σώκρατες,
ἤματί κεν τριτάτῳ Φθίην ἐρίβωλον ἵκοιο”. [Homer, Il. 9.363]
ΚΡΙΤ. ἄτοπον τὸ ἐνύπνιον, ὦ Σώκρατες.
ΣΩΚΡ. ἐναργὲς μὲν οὖν, ὥς γέ μοι δοκεῖ, ὦ Κρίτων.
ΚΡΙΤ. λίαν γε, ὡς ἔοικεν. ἀλλ’, ὦ δαιμόνιε Σώκρατες, ἔτι καὶ νῦν ἐμοὶ πιθοῦ καὶ σώθητι· ὡς ἐμοί, ἐὰν σὺ ἀποθάνῃς, οὐ μία συμφορά ἐστιν, ἀλλὰ χωρὶς μὲν τοῦ ἐστερῆσθαι τοιούτου ἐπιτηδείου οἷον ἐγὼ οὐδένα μή ποτε εὑρήσω, ἔτι δὲ καὶ πολλοῖς δόξω, οἳ ἐμὲ καὶ σὲ μὴ σαφῶς ἴσασιν, ὡς οἷός τ’ ὤν σε σῴζειν εἰ ἤθελον ἀναλίσκειν χρήματα, ἀμελῆσαι. καίτοι τίς ἂν αἰσχίων εἴη ταύτης δόξα ἢ δοκεῖν χρήματα περὶ πλείονος ποιεῖσθαι ἢ φίλους; οὐ γὰρ πείσονται οἱ πολλοὶ ὡς σὺ αὐτὸς οὐκ ἠθέλησας ἀπιέναι ἐνθένδε ἡμῶν προθυμουμένων.
(Plato, Crito 43b-44c)
SOCR. Well, Crito, it would be absurd if at my age I were disturbed because I must die now.
CRIT. Other men as old, Socrates, become involved in similar misfortunes, but their age does not in the least prevent them from being disturbed by their fate.
SOCR. That is true. But why have you come so early?
CRIT. To bring news, Socrates, sad news, though apparently not sad to you, but sad and grievous me and all your friends, and to few of them, I think, so grievous as to me.
SOCR. What is this news? Has the ship come from Delos, at the arrival of which I am to die?
CRIT. It has not exactly come, but I think it will come today from the reports of some men who have come from Sunium and left it there. Now it is clear from what they say that it will come today, and so tomorrow, Socrates, your life must end.
SOCR. Well, Crito, good luck be with us! If this is the will of the gods, so be it. However, I do not think it will come today.
CRIT. What is your reason for not thinking so?
SOCR. I will tell you. I must die on the day after the ship comes in, must I not?
CRIT. So those say who have charge of these matters.
SOCR. Well, I think it will not come in today, but tomorrow. And my reason for this is a dream which I had a little while ago in the course of this night. And perhaps you let me sleep just at the right time.
CRIT. What was the dream?
SOCR. I dreamed that a beautiful, fair woman, clothed in white raiment, came to me and called me and said, “Socrates,
on the third day thou wouldst come to fertile Phthia.”
CRIT. A strange dream, Socrates.
SOCR. No, a clear one, at any rate, I think, Crito.
CRIT. Too clear, apparently. But, my dear Socrates, even now listen to me and save yourself. Since, if you die, it will be no mere single misfortune to me, but I shall lose a friend such as I can never find again, and besides, many persons who do not know you and me well will think I could have saved you if I had been willing to spend money, but that I would not take the trouble. And yet what reputation could be more disgraceful than that of considering one’s money of more importance than one’s friends? For most people will not believe that we were eager to help you to go away from here, but you refused.
(tr. Harold North Fowler)