Symposium is perhaps Plato’s masterpiece as a work of art, though other dialogues are of greater philosophical import. Its great range, from discussions of physical love to an almost mystical vision of eternal, absolute beauty, makes it both art and philosophy. The range of subject and level of discussion are reflected in the original Greek and in some translations by differences in the language and style of individual speakers, and the contrasts thus afforded contribute to the dramatic excellence of the work. The dramatic effect is also enhanced by the order and structure of the dialogue, which is an account by Apollodorous of a banquet described to him by Aristodemus. At the banquet, a number of speeches are made, leading to a final speech by Plato’s beloved teacher and paragon of philosophy, Socrates.