(2)Εἰσὶ δὲ πᾶσαι αἱ ἕξεις εὐλόγως εἰς ταὐτὸ τείνουσαι 25 λέγομεν γὰρ γνώμην καὶ σύνεσιν καὶ φρόνησιν καὶ νοῦν ἐπὶ τοὺς αὐτοὺς ἐπιφέροντες γνώμην ἔχειν καὶ νοῦν ἤδη καὶ φρονίμους καὶ συνετούς. πᾶσαι γὰρ αἱ δυνάμεις αὗται τῶν ἐσχάτων εἰσὶ καὶ τῶν καθ᾿ ἕκαστον καὶ ἐν μὲν τῷ 29 κριτικὸς εἶναι περὶ ὧν ὁ φρόνιμος, συνετὸς καὶ εὐγνώμων ἢ συγγνώμων τὰ γὰρ ἐπιεικῆ κοινὰ τῶν ἀγαθῶν ἁπάντων ἐστὶν ἐν τῷ πρὸς ἄλλον. (3) ἔστι δὲ τῶν καθ᾿ ἔκαστα καὶ τῶν ἐσχάτων ἅπαντα τὰ πρακτά καὶ γὰρ τὸν φρόνιμον δεῖ ψινώσκειν αὐτά, καὶ ἡ σύνεσις καὶ ἡ γνώμη περὶ τὰ 34 πρακτά, ταῦτα δ᾿ ἔσχατα. (4) καὶ ὁ νοῦς τῶν ἐσχάτων ἐπ᾿ ἀμφότερα καὶ γὰρ… VI xi 2–4
The structure of book VI of Aristotle's Nicomachean Ethics is not pellucid. The general purpose of the book is to define the concept of practical wisdom or φρόνησις and the method by which Aristotle attempts to reach his aim is that of contrasting practical wisdom with other seemingly relevant concepts. The main contrast here, underlying the book as a whole, is that between practical wisdom and theoretical wisdom (σοφία) or ‘science’ (ἐπιστήμη).
Another, less general, contrast is the one drawn in chapters ix–xi, from which the above quotation is taken, between practical wisdom and a series of three fairly specific states of knowledge, or capacities: excellence in deliberation (єὐβουλία, ix), ‘understanding’ (σύνєσις, x) and ‘judgement’ (γνώμη, xi 1). These are practical abilities and hence are closely connected with practical (as opposed to theoretical) wisdom but they are not identical with that type of knowledge. The exact way in which they differ from practical wisdom is left somewhat in the dark, but it is possible, I believe, to see them as distinguishing parts of the total state of knowledge which is practical wisdom.