Translation from Plato’s Republic 514b–518d ("Allegory of the Cave")


Shawn Eyer. 2009. “Translation from Plato’s Republic 514b–518d ("Allegory of the Cave").” Ahiman: A Review of Masonic Culture and Tradition, 1, Pp. 73-78.


Plato’s famous allegory of the cave, written around 380 BCE, is one of the most important and influential passages of The Republic, and is considered a staple of Western literature. It vividly illustrates the concept of Idealism as it was taught in the Platonic Academy. In this dialogue, Socrates (the main speaker) explains to Plato’s brother Glaukon that we all resemble captives who are chained deep within a cavern, who do not yet realize that there is more to reality than the shadows they observe fleeting across the rock wall before them.