Theages (Greek: Θεάγης) is a dialogue attributed to Plato, featuring Demodocus, Socrates and Theages. There is debate over its authenticity;[1] W. R. M. Lamb draws this conclusion from his opinion that the work is inferior and un-Socratic, but acknowledges that it was universally regarded as authentic in antiquity.[2]

In the dialogue, Demodocus introduces his son Theages to Socrates for the first time, and they discuss Socrates' divine inner voice.[3] Four separate cases are described in which Socrates received a premonition from the gods, but in each case the advice was ignored with disastrous consequences.[3] Socrates is also presented as having a divine power which has a magical effect on his pupils, but which disappears when they abandon him to pursue other interests.[3]

Reference to Theages is made in Plato's Republic: “there are some who are restrained by our friend Theages' bridle; for everything in the life of Theages conspired to divert him from philosophy”.

Theages 125e8–126a4 is quoted by Nietzsche in Will to Power §958: "In Plato's Theages it is written: 'Each one of us would like to be master over all men, if possible, and best of all God.' This attitude must exist again" (trans. Walter Kaufmann).


  1. ^ Richard Kraut, in The Cambridge Companion to Plato (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1992), 35.
  2. ^ Lamb, Introduction to the Theages, in Plato XII (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1927).
  3. ^ a b c John Madison Cooper, D. S. Hutchinson, (1997), Plato, Complete works, p. 1734. Hackett Publishing.

External links

  • Works related to Theages at Wikisource
  • HTML Greek text available via Greco interattivo
  • Loeb Classical Library Greek-English edition by W.R.M. Lamb via