Daily Archives: September 12, 2022


The doctrine of the mean (sometimes termed ‘doctrine of the golden mean’) is a principle formulated by Aristotle in the Nicomachean Ethics, according to which a virtue is found in a position that occupies a median location between two extremes associated with it, one erring by excess, and the other by defect.

Applying the doctrine of the mean to the notion of courage, Aristotle arrives at the following definition: courage stands in a middle position between the two corresponding extremes of recklessness and cowardice.

Ross, W.D. and Brown, L. (2009) Aristotle The Nicomachean Ethics. Oxford University Press, Oxford.

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