Which philospher once said that man is a social animal?
Citing the following passage, Bartlett's Familiar
Quotations attributes the phrase, "Man is a social animal," to
"Yet it rarely happens that men live in obedience to reason, for
things are so ordered among them, that they are generally envious
and troublesome one to another. Nevertheless they are scarcely able
to lead a solitary life, so that the definition of man as a social
animal has met with general assent ; in fact, men do derive from
social life much more convenience than injury."
-Ethics, IV, proposition 35:note
The notion of man as a social animal may have originated with
"Hence it is evident that the state is a creation of nature and
that man by nature is a political animal."
The adjective that Aristotle used to describe man in Greek is
'politikos' which is where we get the English word political. For
this reason, 'politikos' is often translated as political, however
the actual Greek meaning was a little deeper. 'Politikos' came from
the Greek word 'polis' meaning city-state. To be 'politikos' was to
be a member of the 'polis' or a citizen. Being a citizen, while
certainly implying participation in various political
responsibilities, was more about being a part of society;
contributing to the good of the whole. In this way, the meaning of
'politikos' more resembles the English word social than