A continuation of Socrates' dialogue with Meno in which the boy proves root 2 is irrational. (Copyright 1995, Millennium Fulcrum)
t you want, if you never let them know you want it.
Boy: Well, Socrates . . . you know what I would want.
Socrates: Do I?
Boy: Better than I knew the square root of two the other day.
Socrates: You want to be a free man, then, and a citizen.
Boy: (looking down) Yes.
Socrates: Don't look down, then, for that is an admirable desire for one to have, and speaks highly of him who has it. I will speak to Meno, while you hold your tongue.
Boy: Yes, Socrates. (bows to kiss his hand, Socrates turns)
Socrates: Friend Meno, how hard do you think it will be for this boy to prove the irrationality of the square root of two?
Meno: You know that I think it is impossible, Socrates.
Socrates: Well, how long did it take the Pythagoreans?
Meno: I should think it took them years.
Socrates: And how many of them were there?
Meno: Quite a few, though not all worked equally, and some hardly at all, for they were most interested in triangles of