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[Aristotle,_Roger_Crisp]_Nicomachean_Ethics_(Cambr(BookFi)

1157a

1157a Nicomachean Ethics bene®ts, in every way, as ought to happen among friends. Friendship for pleasure bears a resemblance to this kind, since good people are pleasing to each other. The same sort of thing applies in the case of friendship for utility, since good people are useful to each other. These lesser friendships, too, are especially lasting when each receives the same bene®t ± such as pleasure ± from the other, and not merely that, but from the same source, as happens with witty people, and not with lover and beloved. For lover and beloved do not take pleasure in the same things, but the one in seeing the beloved, the other in the attentions of the lover. And sometimes, as the bloom of youth fades, the friendship fades too, since the lover does not ®nd the sight of his beloved pleasing, while the beloved does not receive his attentions. But many do remain friends, if they are alike in character and have come to be fond of each other's characters through familiarity with them. But those lovers who exchange not pleasure but utility are friends to a lesser degree and less constant. Friends for utility part when the advantage disappears, because they were friends not of each other, but of gain. For pleasure or for utility, then, even bad people can be friends with each other, or good people with bad, or one who is neither good nor bad with a person of any sort. But clearly only good people can be friends for the sake of the other person himself, because bad people do not enjoy each other's company unless there is some bene®t in it for them. Also, it is only the friendship of good people that provides protection against slander. For it is not easy to trust criticism of a person whom one has proved oneself over a long period of time; between good people there is trust, the feeling that the other would never do an injustice to one, and all the other things that are expected in true friendship. In the other kinds of friendship, however, there is nothing to prevent bad things like this happening. People do describe as friends also those whose motive is utility, as cities are said to be friendly (since it seems to be for their own advantage that cities form alliances), and those who are fond of each other for pleasure, as children are. So presumably we ought also to say that such people are friends, but that there are several kinds of friendship. Friendship in the primary and real sense will be the friendship of good people in so far as they are good, while the rest will be friendships by being like it; it is in virtue of something good and something like what is found in 148

Book VIII true friendship that they are friends, because what is pleasant is good to lovers of pleasure. These friendships, however, are not very likely to coincide, and the same people do not become friends for both utility and pleasure; for things that are incidental are not often combined. Friendship being divided into these species, then, it is bad people who will tend to be friends for pleasure or utility, since this is the respect in which they are alike. But good people will be friends for each other's sake, because they are friends in so far as they are good. These people, therefore, are friends without quali®cation, while the others are friends incidentally and through being like them. 1157b Chapter 5 Just as with virtues some are called good in respect of a state of character, others in respect of an activity, so it is with friendship. For some people ®nd their enjoyment in living in each other's company, and bestow good things on each other. Others, however, are asleep or separated by distance, and so do not engage in these activities of friendship, but nevertheless have a disposition to do so; for distance does not dissolve friendship without quali®cation, but it does dissolve its activity. But if the absence is a long one, it seems to make people forget their friendship. Hence the proverb: `Many friendships has lack of conversation dissolved.' Neither old nor ill-tempered people seem inclined to friendship. For little pleasure is to be found in them, and nobody can spend his days with someone he ®nds painful, or even not pleasing, since nature seems above all to avoid what is painful and aim at what is pleasant. People who approve of each other but do not live in each other's company seem to have goodwill rather than friendship. For there is nothing so characteristic of friends as living in each other's company (because while people in need desire bene®t, even the blessed desire to spend their days together, since solitude suits them least of all). But people cannot spend time together if they are not pleasing to each other and do not enjoy the same things, as comrades seem to. Friendship in the fullest sense, then, is that between good people, as we have said a number of times already. For what is worthy of love and of choice seems to be what is good or pleasant without quali®cation, and what is worthy of love and of choice for each person seems to be what is 149

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